Yesterday I met with the medical staff at the hospital, to discuss our next step for my mother. It’s been three weeks (at least) and she will not eat or drink. It was recommended for her to have a procedure to insert a feeding tube, so she could get much needed nourishment. My choices were to give consent for the procedure, or not do that and let nature take its course. In either case, it is not known how much time my mother has to live on earth.
It’s a big decision to make, which brings with it a barrage of questions linked to either choice. If the tube is not inserted, then we lean toward hospice care, with people coming in and providing quality care and keep her comfortable, with the end result of death. How long would it take for death to come? Only God knows. The feeding tube could be inserted to provide needed nutrients to keep her alive, but the same question remains; how long would she live?
I talked to friends and to my son Stephen, and we went back and forth, making my already long day tiring. But during the evening, something dropped deep within me. What side is God on? Is he for death, or is he for life? I would like to think he is for life. If the tube was inserted, at least I would feel at peace with my decision that I had done all I could to help her as best I could, choosing life. So, when the doctor contacted me earlier today, I told him I would give consent for the feeding tube to be inserted. There may be possible problems with it (infection, the tube getting stopped up, my mother pulling out the tube, etc.), but at the same time I want to be able to say I had done all I could to give her the best care from what was available.
So, to all caregivers out there, consider the same. Everyone’s situation with their loved one is different but choose to do what you can that fits your situation regardless of how difficult it is in making the decision, feeling confident that you did your due diligence of doing the best course of action.
Be encouraged, and keep striving to take the best course of action…
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13