Brain Barf

May contain traces of nuts.

Sunday, August 24, 2008


I think I've said before that death itself, doesn't really bother me. It's just that whole process leading up to it. And the people left to deal.

A while ago, we had a lady move in with early onset Alzheimer's.
My personal work experience with early onset Alzheimer's, is that they progress very rapidly through the stages.
This was the case.
She lived with us in assisted living for less than a year before we were no longer able to meet her needs. She then moved to the Nursing home that is attached to our facility, so I was able to keep tabs on her. Her amazing husband would also stop by just to chat (I think to work himself up before visiting her) and update us often.
Anyhoo, she went from a confused but vibrant woman when I first met her, to a skeletal version of the Edvard Munch painting in less than three years.
She basically starved to death.
We're taught that a "no code" doesn't mean, "no care", but it just seems warped, to be dutifully cleaning and wiping while someones innards are ingesting themselves.
Go ahead and starve to death, but with minty fresh breath!

What our fellow humans actually feel/experience in the final states is an unknown. But almost always they do still respond to pain stimuli.
So that must have been fun for her.
And it must have been a real kick for her family.

I don't know all the answers...and there really aren't any easy ones.
I do know that we don't allow our beloved pets to die in the same way.
It's never too early to fill out your advanced directives and become a pill hoarder.

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