Mr FD became an orphan today, due to the passing of his mother. I wrote a few weeks ago that she had fallen and broken the neck of her femur, and at 90 no one expected a good outcome.
She continued to be in pain and the doctor decided this week to order an xray to check her injury. Normally, a mobile x-ray unit would come to the care facility and take the xray, but thanks to Queensland Premier (akin to a Govenor) Campbell Newman’s gutting of our health care system there are no longer mobile units. So, the poor thing had to be placed in an ambulance and taken to a hospital for the xray.
Naturally, the journey increased her pain and so they gave her more morphine, but this resulted in her blood pressure dropping to 65 over 30. They took her to ICU and stablished her, but sent her back to the care facility the same day. After that time she no longer communicated with us, stared vacantly and moaned in pain from time to time. Last Sunday she was able to have a very long and clear conversation with Mr FD, so the change was rapid and stunning – thank you Campbell Newman (and no, I never voted for him).
So, from Wednesday all we could do was hope she would pass soon to relieve her ordeal. We were on our way to be with her this morning when Mr FD’s sister called to say MIL had just died.
MIL was actually in a care facillity where old nuns go to live out their last days and so the place is steeped in religion. We were forced to endure a funeral procession through the facility and out to the hearse. It was touching, stressful and comical all at the same time.
An old nun with a violin appeared and she led the procession. MIL’s room was not far from the front entrance, so to allow a procession we had to procced to the opposite end of the hall, out through the garden and then back into the building down the length of the main hall to the entrance. They told us we had to go through the garden and SIL was concerned because she had seen a tree snake out there the day before, but the old nuns had to have their procession.
So out we go. The nun playing a maudlin tune on a wobbly violin, followed by the undertakers wheeling the coffin. Then walked Mr FD and his sister, followed by me and SIL’s friend (she is of Russian decent and looks like she has had to many vodkas and more than a little like the grim reaper poor thing). We walk out into the garden and SIL catches sight of a blue tongue lizard, and she starts to giggle. She has always suffered with a nervous giggle and here she is following the coffin and trying to suppress her giggle.
All the residents are lined up down the hall as we proceed out. A few that knew MIL or SIL stopped SIL to give her a hug, or to press Mr FD’s hand, just to prolong the moment, but eventually we reached the exit and had to stand waiting as the coffin was placed in the hearse.
One undertaker drove the car, but the other walked in front of the car as it left the grounds and continued down the street. He walked ahead until it drew out of sight.
More hugs from unknown nuns and other residents before we could escape. All too much niceness for me I am sorry to say, so I was back to our car and reefing open the door at the first possible moment.
The circle of life complete.