As far as encouragement goes, my advice would be to have a positive attitude (especially when you're around him) and don't EVER give up hope.
I went through something similar this Spring. My 97 year old maternal grandmother in Dallas was found semi-concious in her apartment at the retirement home where she lives. She had pnuemonia and a bladder infection.
A lady I met on the Southwest flight up to DAL befriended me and gave me a ride to the hospital when we got to DAL. She told me not to expect my grandmother to live being that old and with pnuemonia.
Anyway, my grandmother had to go to the hospital for a week and then to a nursing home for a month for some rehab. (She'd become so weak she really couldn't walk.) Except for me and her son who no longer speaks to her, she has no relatives.
For 6 weeks I flew back and forth between AUS-DAL. I was in AUS for the weekends, but in Dallas during the week when she was getting her therapy. I was there every day she had therapy and was like her cheerleader -- encouraging her, watching her, making sure she did her excercises right, paying her bills like you are for your dad, etc.
Long story short she recovered and got to finally go home. Yesterday marked 7 months since she's been home and she's actually better now than she was before she got sick. I've been back to stay with her a few days in September and I'll be going again the day after Thanksgiving.
She's hard of hearing and can get a little cranky sometimes and there were times I wanted to pull my hair out but looking back, I'm so glad I made the effort and she is too.
So in conclusion, spend as much time as you can with him, project a positive attitude, and the most important thing is to take care of YOURSELF. Don't let yourself get run down. Take a break if you have to. (I did on the weekends.) If you don't take care of yourself, then you won't be able to help him.
Good luck to you and I'll keep you and your dad in my thoughts and prayers.
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