Mom is 93 with diagnosed COPD, AFIB, Asthema, ASD, and Accute Anxiety. Her condition has progressed to the point where she can no longer shower, prepare a meal, or walk from room to room without sweating and breathlessness. She rarely sleeps well at night and naps all day. She has a helper who assists with shopping, escorting her to doctor appts, etc. as my siblings and I live more than 800 miles away. On rare occasion, she insists on driving two miles to a doctor appt—but these episodes always end with her depleted, wiped out for two days, and hysterical to get home. She used to becomes agitated and even abusive afterwards: now, she has just given up hope and prays to die.
Her doctor does not offer up a concrete prognosis except to say “You’re a very sick woman and need to keep taking your meds and trust God”. The other doctors say very little except to ensure she keeps her appts. Most recently, one doctor gave up on her altogether and suggested she find another practice (as, in their opinion, there was nothing more they could do).
My siblings and I have no idea how to proceed at this point. Each day when we talk at length on the phone she sounds worse, but nobody will tell us if it is time to be with her for final moments. I guess nobody knows, right?
As a caretaker (from miles away), I am exhausted and very depressed. Each morning I check my watch at 7:15am and when I haven’t received a call from her helper, I know my Mom has survived another night. Each evening as I lie in bed I scour the internet to find out what to expect next. It’s a very sad time, and I guess I’m wondering how long this can last? Sometimes when you’re so close to a situation you can’t see clearly ...
Can anyone advise or offer a little clarity? It would mean the world to me. Truly.