Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Nan's News

A few posts ago, I wrote how my Nan has been unwell recently and was flown from Albany to Fremantle Hospital over two weeks ago.  I also mentioned that she isn't a Christian, and I was hoping to share the gospel with her again, thinking it could be my final chance.

Praise the Lord that I did get to share with her about how salvation is by grace through faith in Christ, not by works.  She listened, which astounded me, and then she said, "Yes."  I'm not sure what that meant, and she is not the most open person when it comes to spiritual things, but she did tell me that she said she was hoping that she would go to heaven and not to hell, which is why I shared about God's wonderful gift of salvation in Jesus.  Duncan and I shared Romans 10:9 with her in a card, and I saw her looking at and reflecting on it for a while.

Until Saturday, her leg that was operated on had been healing well, although the doctors found a host of other things wrong with her (I suppose this is quite normal as she is 97).  Still, this hasn't been stopping her enjoying a host of visitors, proving she can still draw a crowd in her old age.  Besides finding eating and sleeping difficult, she has been battling a chest infection and passing blood.  Then on Sunday morning, she took a turn for the worse.  The nurses were attending to her, when she couldn't breathe and air had to be forced into her lungs to get rid of the fluid building up.  They were wondering if she would make it.  Duncan and I rushed to Perth, quite upset, thinking we might have to say a final goodbye.

One of the valves in Nan's heart is no longer working meaning her heart cannot pump oxygen as well as it should and causes her blood to clot.  The only cure for this is open heart surgery, but the doctors have ruled this out as an option as there is little chance she would make it through the operation.  Basically these sorts of episodes are going to keep happening, and there's nothing which can be done.  She is in the Lord's hands.

One of the more light-hearted moments of the weekend was watching Nan go on drug-induced 'trips'.  I don't know what medication she is on, but every now and then, she'd say, "I'm going now," close her eyes and then a few minutes later she'd say, "I'm back," and then proceed to tell us about how she was in her hospital bed, being wheeled down a laneway among lots of tulips.  My cousin, Brad, and his partner, Marisa, visit her most days, and once when Nan was about to go on one of her 'trips', she said to Marisa, "Come on my trip with me," and Marisa was like, "Ummm, ok."  If I didn't know better, I'd ask Nan if she'd been smoking dope. ;)

Feeding your own grandmother is a strange feeling.  I remember all the times she cared for me as a child while I was sick and now the roles are reversed and I'm the one sitting by her bedside.  It is an enormous privilege to bestow a little of the care she gave to me back to her.

Nan seems to have picked up for now and she was quite chirpy when we visited her.  I'm still bracing myself for the day when I will have to farewell Nan from this life forever.  Praying she will turn to Christ if she hasn't already.


Iris Flavia said...

Thanks for this post - and all the best wishes!
It´s a great gift that your Grandmother is still sane.
Mine didn´t recognise us towards the end, which was very hurtful.

Sarah said...

Oh I can't imagine how hard that must have been, having someone you love not know who you are.

My grandpa (on Dad's side) had alzheimers, but I never got to meet him as he died five years before I was born. It is a horrible, horrible disease.