Cindy Leitz

Cindy Leitz, RN

CICU
Beaumont Hospital Troy
Troy, Michigan
United States

This is a very hard letter for me to write but I believe my mom would have wanted me to send it. Four months ago my family and I were supposed to be celebrating one of the happiest days of our lives. It was my daughter's wedding day. The day started off perfect in every way, I knew that I was going to be shedding a lot of tears that day so I made sure I had waterproof makeup on, but I had no idea just how many tears I would be crying and why.
Both my parents lived in an assisted living home, and my brother was going to pick them up to bring them to the reception at five o'clock. There was no way they could have made it through both the wedding and the reception at their age, and my daughter really wanted them at the reception. The wedding itself was just what we had dreamed of; however, in the middle of taking pictures at the church, we received a phone call telling us that my mother had slumped over while having lunch with my father. The assisted living called 911, even though they knew both my parents' wishes were not to have any extraordinary measures in case of a life threatening emergency. The ambulance drivers brought my mom to Beaumont's ER. Once at Beaumont my mom was put on a venerator to help her breath and started on medication to help her blood pressure.
Once we received the call my husband, my brother, sister in- law and I came to the hospital. We didn't tell anyone what was going on because we didn't want to spoil my daughters day. At the hospital we found my mother with everything she never wanted, on a machine to keep her alive. She was 88 years old and had severe Alzheimer's disease and had a do not resuscitate on file both with the assisted living and Beaumont. We thought we were going to the hospital to sign papers and say our goodbyes. Well, we were shocked to find her that way, we were even more shocked that the staff both doctors and nurses would not listen that our mom did not want any of that. They transferred my mom to Critical Care on the 3rd floor.
I was torn between staying with my mom, and going to be with my daughter, who had called looking for us. Once on the 3rd floor, my mom's new nurse came in, Cindy L., and started to explain all the machines and what was being done and what the next few days would be like. At that time we explained to Cindy that my mom and our family did not want any of this and that we were missing my daughter's big day. As I write this I sound so heartless, but we knew that there was no hope for my mom, and we were just prolonging her pain and ours. We explained that we had been telling everyone this and no one was listening. We didn't want my mom to die but we had no control over what God's plan was, and why it had to happen that day. Over the next few minutes Cindy explained that we needed to speak with my mom's doctor and get the orders changed. I know that Cindy was an angel, within minutes she had a doctor in the room and my mother wishes fulfilled. Cindy told us exactly what was going to happen. She took the time to sit in the room and listen to what our thoughts were. Cindy encouraged my husband and me to say our goodbyes and to go be with my daughter. My brother and sister-in law both agreed. It was so hard for us to say goodbye and then leave and put on a happy face, but we had to for our daughter and new son in-law.
I don't know if Cindy realized it but my sister in-law is a registered nurse. My brother told us that my sister in-law was impressed by all the things Cindy did. She told us that she had seen so many nurses over the years and had never seen anyone go so far above and beyond her job. Cindy stayed at the bedside and held my mom's hand as she passed just as she promised me she would do. Our family has talked at lengths about that day, some good, and some bad. But the one thing we all agree on is that Beaumont needs to know what a great nurse they have. Cindy was empathetic, thoughtful, and professional. We are so grateful for Beaumont and Cindy for helping us through one of the hardest days of our lives.
We would like to remain anonymous, and do not want any calls having to do with that day, it is too painful, that is why it's taken me this long to write this letter.
Thank you from my entire family.