My mother’s spirit is now outside her body. Her physical self is what is left for the doctors to work on. An 80 years old person has now become pure clinical chemistry, making up of percentages of sodium, potassium, chloride, creatine, bilirubin etc… . It is now all about reading blood pressure and heart beat numbers. The first thing the doctors look for are the numbers; what is plotted on yards of different colour graph lines; viewing many digital monitors and their out puts. Warning alarms and flashing red lights are going on and off all the time.
The doctors often seemed uncertain and perhaps lost. But they always have to put on a confident face to face the group of nurses and training doctors waiting for new instructions. Then the nurses busy themselves adjusting all the tubes, needles and pressure gauges. On one occasion the surgeon turns round, to say to me, ‘Your mother has O tolerance level of mistakes in the medication. We have to get the figures spot on, not one degree more or less, with your mother. Other patients have a higher tolerance for few degrees up or down. Some days they are reassuring, ‘Well the numbers are looking good to day and are in a stable position’. But you also hear them say, ‘well all the figures are looking right, only the number of her age is not’.
My measure of my mother’s conditions is when I am holding or touching different parts of her body – her face, shoulder, stomach, legs, hands and fingers. I could feel from the touch the condition of her skin, if she was water logged and that there was a built up of toxin which her kidney or liver could not handle. Then after a dialysis session, when the poisonous substances have been pumped out, her body is back to the normal feel and touch. But then, her soul is still far from home.