Keeya-Lee (keeya_lee) wrote,

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My Nanna had a stroke this morning.

4.30am - The Light
"Keeya, are you okay? Why is your light on?"
I open my eyes, seeing my Nanna in the doorway.
"What? I'm asleep go away..."
I put my pillow over my head.
"Keeya? Did you hear me? Why is your light on?"
"What? Oh. I must have fallen asleep.... Five hours ago... Just turn it off."
"Okay. As long as you're okay. Goodnight Keeya."
She walks away, as strongly and as confidently as ever.
My Nanna has always been remarkably healthy.
Three months ago she went to the hospital for the first time in 12 years.
Not bad for a 90year old.
"Goodmorning Nanna."
And there's me.
Ever sarcastic.

7am - Murmurs from the kitchen
Mum's up.
She came and saw me, I think.
But I never quite know what was a dream or not when I'm in this half-asleep state.
"Keeya says you woke her up at 4.30 this morning?"
Nanna makes a confused noise.
"No I didn't."
Mum makes a confused noise.
"She said you did."
Nanna makes a less confused noise.
"Oh, yeah. She had her light and her tv on, I thought she might've been feeling sick or something."
"Oh, fair enough. You know you shouldn't leave your bedroom window open in Winter, that's really stupid."
"I didn't mean to."
"Well don't do it, you could get sick."

8.30am - The Toilet Floor
Groans coming from the toilet.
I put my pillow over my ears and cover my head with my blanket.
The groans get louder.
Nanna must be constipated or something. I try to resume sleep.
Louder still. She's crying now. "keeya? Keeya are you there?"
I jump out of bed. I run to the toilet, to find my Nanna on the floor.
Her pants around her ankles, she's unable to move.
"Nanna! What's happened?"
"My left arm went numb. Its so cold. I... I fell. I... I don't know."
"It's okay Nanna, I'll get Mum." 
And I do.
And Mum comes.
And I call the ambulance.
And they come.
And they take her.

12.30pm - Emergency Room
"Name please?"
"Ayre. A-Y-R-E."
"Ivy Ayre?"
"Yes. I'm Kerry, her daughter."
"She's just through the doors in room 18."
Room 18.
The curtains are drawn.
From the shadows and the sounds of it, the nurses are helping my Nanna to use the bedpan.
This goes on for some time.
As one of the nurses is adjusting the curtain, I see a flash of her, sitting on the contraption.
Her face is drooping and her limbs are twisted up.
I feel sick, deep inside of my stomach.
This wasn't the Nanna I'd always known, nor was this the Nanna who has put into the ambulance.
She'd gotten much worse.
We go in to see her, and my Mum sees what I'd seen earlier, and bursts out crying.
We hold her hand.
The doctors come.
The doctors go.
We hold her hand.
The doctors come.
She can't feel anything in her left side, she can't move her left arm.
The doctors go.
And we hold her hand.
A lovely HSA (Hospital Service Assistant) named Lin comes to guard Nanna's room.
She's new, and is having trouble coping.
She cries with us.
We haven't eaten all day so we have to leave Nanna for a little bit and go eat something.
We feel terrible and don't want to leave her, but I'm about to pass out.
We let go.
Lin holds her hand.

4pm - Ward G72
Nanna has been moved.
She's in a new room.
We find it, and Lin is there with her.
She made sure she stayed with Nanna.
She's been taking care of her for us.
Nanna has a fever.
She's crumpled up on her side.
It's so painful seeing her like this.
I can't word it.
I could never word it.
I've always felt tough, that I knew death, that I understood its morbid release.
I've seen it on TV.
I've been to funerals.
I've seen other family members sick, dying.
But I've never seen this.
This is Nanna.
This is my Nanna.
And she's broken.
My Nanna.
Who never needed anyones help with anything.
Never used a walking frame, or needed medication.
Always looking 60, never 90, having outlived two of her six children.
My Nanna.
The survivor.
Crumbled and broken, lying half paralysed, with tubes going in and out of her.
And we held her hand.

5pm - Goodbye
A kiss on the forehead.
I love you.
I'll be back in the morning,
But I don't know if I'll ever see you again.
You've lived with me all my life.
In the room next to mine.
I love you Nanna.
This feels wrong, being in my bed without hearing your radio lulling you to sleep next door.
And even if you pull through, you'll never be coming home.
I miss you Nanna.
I really miss you Nanna.
I love you Nanna.
I really love you Nanna.
But I know you'll be okay.
Either way, you'll be okay.
And eventually, I will be too.
We will be too.


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