The End of the Journey

It’s been an interesting journey for Jeff’s dad, Joe. In the past two weeks, he has been in the hospital three different times, unable to breathe because of the intense pressure of water around the heart, congestive heart disease. He has had this for a few years, and in the past, it maybe put him in the hospital once or twice a year. He appears to be immune to the medicines that are taken to help him not retain the water.

The tricky part of this situation is that his kidneys are also reacting to those medicines. Kidneys have to be monitored while taking water pills because the pills can cause extreme damage to them. And this has been the case, for Joe, as it is not uncommon for patients with congestive heart disease to be in this dilemma: Treat the heart or treat the kidneys? At some point you have to choose between one or the other.

That’s where Joe is at. His doctors have agreed that their focus is going to be on the heart. After all, you can’t live without a heart, but there are options for the kidneys, as painful as that may be. I honestly hope that we don’t have to go down the route of kidney dialysis, but who knows?

And then there is that OTHER issue of Joe’s aortic aneurysm. Yep, he had received that diagnosis at least five years ago. About a year and a half ago, he was told that his would no doubt rupture within two years, which will kill him. It’s actually the least painful way of dying, and I think he was hoping that he would pass over from that. I am hoping that as well. You basically just fall asleep. Who wouldn’t want to pass that way?

And so today, the hospital plans to send Joe home again. This time, they want a nurse to visit him 3-4 times a week. No more phone calls. They need someone there to talk with him and take his vitals. They will be monitoring him closely. We are thankful that they are letting him go home. That’s really the bottom line for Joe. That he be home and not in a nursing home.

Please include Joe in your prayers today. This is really a part of the life journey that none of sign up for but most of us will go through.

Thank you.

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