why do our eyes roll back when we die
We processed about 220 customers when I worked at a funeral home and I saw a lot of open eyes. I can't recall specifically if all thier eyes were open naturally, but I suspect not. They used Super Glue to glue the eyes shut because as time goes by the eyes will open. IIRC, it had something to do with the eyes drying out and that causes the lids to retract, or something like that. Not sure how long that takes to take effect. FTR, some of the nursing homes used to prop up a towel to shut the mouth, since that will open as well. If rigormortis (sp? ) sets in, it may be tricky getting the mouth shut. Mouths are wired shut at the funeral home.
One of my more memorable customer was a guy I had to drive about an hour to pick up at the hospital. He died of liver failure, or something, and was completely jaundiced. The hospital morgue staff had him in a gurney (sp? ) with a four-post shroud. I had never seen one before and it took me a minute to figure out how to get it off. Because my concentration was elsewhere, I was totally unprepared when I pulled the shroud up and saw his eyes. His eyes were wide open and the whites of the eyes were as bright yellow as crayons. It was a bit of a shock to say the least.
C. I dont know if you have contacted hospice yet but I feel that would be the best step you can make right now.
They can help you understand where your father is in his journey and what to expect and WHEN to expect it!! They are a wonderful, supportive organization and can offer so much support and relief for all of you. As to the things that you can do for interaction with your Dad. at the times that he is alert enough to enjoy interacting. do some digging into family history with him. When my mother was in the final stages of cancer. we spent many many hours going through boxes of old pictures that she had, so now I know who those older relatives are who passed away many years before I was born.
Maybe you could even get a tape recorder and record what you all are talking about so that you dont forget anything. It will be invaluable information after he is gone. Let your children do things with him. even if he is just watching them and commenting. it is building memories for them of their grandpa. How about the older one reading the newspaper to HIM. and the two of them can talk about sports stories or something else that captures their interest?? Think about what interests your Dad. and build on that. As far as the food is concerned. I wouldnt push a lot of food on him. I was told by the hospice that helped me when my Mom was going through this. that as people move towards the end of their lives. their system starts to slow down. and they really can t digest a lot of food.
If they eat too much they are going to either be uncomfortable as it just sits there in their digestive system. or they will become nauseated and sick. Let him guide you. if he says he wants to eat. and if something sounds good to him. then go for it!! And he may not eat more than a bite or two and decide that is all he wants to eat. Dont push it. let him be in charge of it. There will come a time when he will be bedfast. it will be just too hard on him. and too dangerous to try and get him up and sitting in the living room.
Bring a tv into his room, if he wants to watch tv. hospice can arrange to get a hospital bed for you so he can elevate his head if he wants to. and the bed rails will provide more security for him. They will also send in home care to help bathe him and change his sheets. There is no reason for your Mother and the rest of the family to carry this all on their shoulders. Hospice can be so helpful. I really do encourage you to call them. Not only do they help with the things I have mentioned. but they will give you access to the medicines he needs to remain pain free. God bless you. R. Ann
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