Posts filed under Family

Lunchtime at GT Heritage

Filed in Family

Everyone’s headed towards the dining area. But not M.

Nurse M: “M, you’re going in the opposite direction.”

Looking at me, the nurse explained that the old lady hadn’t slept the previous night and was very confused.

Me: “Why?”

Nurse M: “G kept her up.”

G is another resident of the home who has taken M under her care … too much under her care, in fact. Yesterday afternoon, M was dozing on one of the sofas when G went up and woke her! So the nurse took M to sleep in the room and put a chair against the door to keep G out. Apparently, it didn’t work.

After keeping M up most of the night, G fell asleep in the early hours of this morning. But not M. During the night, the nurse had tried to tell M she should go to sleep because it was late. Somehow, the word “late” caused a negative reaction in the old lady who went on to throw a tantrum. And never slept a wink.

After lunch, M continued to sit at the dining table, looking withdrawn, quite unlike her usual cheerful self. Eventually, the nurse led her to her bed and told her to close her eyes and go to sleep. To which the tired old lady complied.

Early morning phonecall

Filed in Family, Personal

I was just about to reverse the car out of the driveway this morning when my handphone rang. Looked at the hp to see who was calling. GT Heritage. Mother’s nursing home. What are they calling about at this hour of the morning? It was about 7:15 a.m.

Looked around for my BT headset (need to use it with the handphone which is slightly faulty) and realised I didn’t have it anywhere on me or in the car. Rejected the call (sorry ’bout that), and went back in the house to get the headset. Before that, called GT Heritage to see what they wanted.

“Your mother’s Glucosamine and Vitamins C & E last dose today, need to get more …”

Was that all? Phew … I was expecting something worse.

At least the call made me realise I’d left the BT headset in the house, so that I could still get it before I was too far from the house. Or worse, already in the office before I realised it wasn’t anywhere nearby.

I also got to thinking that since I don’t like receiving phonecalls so early in the morning, there must be other people, too, who feel the same way. Especially if the calls are from people they don’t particularly want to hear from.

So yes … no more calls early morning sms’s to a certain someone from now on.

Emergency Room Experience

Filed in Family, Health, Opinion

No, it wasn’t at all like how it’s shown on American TV shows. But then, American TV has a way of over-dramatising things.

Or maybe it was just a quiet night. Or maybe that’s how it’s done here in Malaysia. Especially this particular hospital.

In any case, it was very soothing. The nurses were very helpful. But the most amazing thing about the whole experience was mother’s response.

We had to leave mother with the nurses who ran some tests on her. Previously, she would fuss if she doesn’t see us around, and would start calling for us. Not last night. Throughout, not a squeak from her.

It is probably the medication she is on. They are supposed to calm her. Looks like they’re doing the job.

When it was all done, she told the nurses they were good girls. One of them looked amused. They’ve probably never come across someone with dementia. But they handled mother’s case very well.

Thank you, night nurses on duty at Assunta Hospital on Thursday, 16 September 2004.

Initially, the doctor said mother might have to be admitted. But that they were still carrying out the various tests. Too early to tell. Why did he ask to speak with us, then? It only got us more worried.

Eventually, the tests isolated a possible cause, which we followed up on this afternoon. And mother didn’t have to be admitted last night.

I just spoke with a friend who works in ER, and he says it can be hell most of the time, and that it depends on whether it’s a government or private hospital, and where it’s located. Okay, so what I saw last night was not typical Malaysian ER scene. Not that I was looking for one.

Niece Update

Filed in Family

It’s a month since my niece Winnie returned from her bone marrow transplant in Perth, Australia.

Right now, she’s in the hospital, down with a virus infection that requires an antibiotic IV. Her lack of appetite has also caused her to be a little under-nourished so that there’s another IV going into her, directly feeding her nutrients that she has not been getting. Actually, I think her lack of appetite is due to her being a fussy eater, thanks to an over-indulgent mother (my own sister, no less).

Her white blood cell count is also down, and the hospital’s had to give her growth injections to help boost the cell count.

When we were preparing for her transplant, we were given materials to read and prepare us for what she might go through. We read that the first 100 days after the transplant would be the most crucial as her body would be fighting the new marrow and treating it as an “enemy”.

There is a name for this condition and it’s called Guest vs Host Disease (GVHD).

For the first two months after the transplant, Winnie showed little signs of the reaction that we’d all read about. Which should be good. But my sister worried that something must be wrong. It was too good to be true.

Now I’m wondering, too. It’s only towards the end of the crucial 100-day post-transplant period that Winnie is showing those reactions, especially the ulcers.

Has something gone wrong?

But something my friend Beth Chin told me is helping me at this time – we need to go through the bad, and this, too, shall pass.

Besides, Winnie is under excellent care and in the Hands of the One who knows what’s best for her. Even though she has not accepted Him yet, she is still His creation. And I believe, with all my heart, that her name is in His Book of Life.

Somebody got engaged recently

Filed in Archives, Family

No, it’s not me. :)

It’s my brother-in-law’s niece, Mei Hua, currently working in the States (Gaithersburg, an hour from Baltimore, Maryland, I think). Not directly my niece but someone who honours me by calling me “Ah Yee” (aunty on mother’s side, the term my niece, her cousin, would address me as).

Her cousin Pooi See emailed me this morning to ask if I’d seen Mei online recently and I replied that the last time we chatted was the day Wien Yue was discharged from Royal Perth Hospital and I shared the good news with Mei. Since then, I’d not seen her online as I’d not been logging on the past couple of nights. Anyways, Pooi See and I then chatted on the phone and she said she heard news of an engagement but needed to get confirmation from Mei’s mother, “Ah Ku” (aunty on father’s side, as Mei’s mother and Pooi See’s father are siblings, but I digress).

So I made sure to come online this evening, to hear it from the engaged person herself. Here’s part of our chat:

chetmooi: Hullo, I understand I’m to congratulate you for something
Mei338: :-)
chetmooi: So, diamond engagement ring?
Mei338: Yes!
chetmooi: Wah
chetmooi: *Ah Yee turning cartwheels of delight for Mei Hua*
Mei338: I know! I said “Wah” out loud too!
Mei338: Aww, thank you sooo much!!!!

And here’s a picture from the surprise engagement party:

Can’t wait to meet Mister Loh-Burt in November.

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