My Brother.

AS some of you already know my brother has been very ill for much of his life. Things recently have become much harder for him and I just can not get my around how he copes.

It started when he was about 12 and got diabetes. His kidney failed 16 years ago and he spent a long time on dialysis, getting weaker all the time, until he had a transplant of exceptionally good match. That kidney has just failed, 15 years later. In the meantime, he has lost one leg, below the knee due to circulation problems leading to gangreen, and then the other in exactly the same way. The plastic arteries put in many years ago before the amputations, in an effort to save his legs (obviously they failed) have now completetely deterriorated and his blood flow to both stumps is less than 30% what it should be, meneaning healing on his badly ulcers stumps is unlikely to occur. He has not been able to where his false legs for many months – he has spent most of the last 6 months in bed, too cold becasue of his fading kidney to get out anyway. Last year he had a minor heart attack. He has also lost a great deal of his eye sight. There are numerous other difficulties too, too many to mention….

He is now back on Dialysis and they have said he is not well enough to have any operations or be put on the transplant list.

3 Days into his dialysis he started to feel a bit better and then on the
3rd visit, he spent many hours facing blood clots and repeated doses of blood thinning and thickening drugs just to keep him going through the set up process. That day he told my mother that he would sooner die than have his life prolonged only to die anyway. He was passing out repeatedly, being sick and terribly frightened.

In the next few dialysis treatments he has had only 1 session when thngs went well, all the others going wrong somehow.

He is back in today for his 7th session…

Now I just dont know how anyone can keep going under these circumstances. Indeed to be honest I dont know how he has kept going through much of his life. I feel guilty that he has all these problems and I dont have any. And I feel powerless to help as do his wife and my parents.

I wonder sometimes why everything is just so crap for some people.

I am going to see him on Thursday, if he feels well enough, but it is just so hard to know what to say or do. I can usually find something positive in nearly all situations but I have long since been unable to do that with him. If he where a dog, he would have been pts by most caring owners a long time ago. But he isnt a dog, he is my brother, my parents son and his wifes husband. And he feels a responsibility to carry on for his wife. But she is exhausted herself from just getting him to and from the toilet, car etc.

Why are some situations just so impossible?

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