This has been some week....
On Monday, I traveled 2 hours away to be with my mother who had been released from the hospital on Sunday. She'd had a dizzy spell while in church the week prior and some friends took her to the hospital to be checked. Her diagnostic procedures included blood tests, stress test, and cardiac catheterization to supposedly put in a stent, but there were complications. My mother never does anything the easy way. She had been on blood thinners, nearly bled out after her procedure, and ended up in Cardiac ICU. As if that wasn't enough, her cardiologist said there had been a "false reading" on her stress test and she hadn't needed the stent afterall. And....she didn't need to have the cardiac cath. She went from being a little bit dizzy when she stood up too quickly, to excessive bleeding, a bed in ICU, IV's, heart monitors, and oxygen. Unbelievable. I'm afraid the doctor has not heard the last of all this. My sisters and I have many unanswered questions, and we intend to receive some explanations, but they'll have to wait for awhile.
On Tuesday, I was back down here, thinking Mom was doing fairly well in her recovery (from the dizzy spell, right). She has the worst bruise I've ever seen in my life. It's dark purple, begins at her waistline, and ends well below her right knee - apparently the result of pressure used to stop the excess bleeding after her cardiac cath. While at her house, I briefly visited with my sisters, cooked some meals so Mom would have them for at least a week, and did a few things that needed to be done. I came home feeling somewhat peaceful that she was back in her home and recovering well. My sisters were both checking in on her frequently and that gave all of us some peace of mind.
I had a dental appointment Tuesday morning and learned I need another crown. Oh joy. I was so hoping for a good report this time. Spouse met me at the optomotrist office and we picked up our new glasses after having our vision checked last week. We made a stop or two and when we arrvied home, one of Kelly's kittens was listless and cool to the touch. Despite all my efforts, we lost her. I'm still second-guessing myself a bit, wondering if there wasn't something more I should have done for her or if there was something I should have noticed before I left that morning, that might have given me some clue she was fading. I held her and cried, I let Kelly say goodbye, and we buried her. Little did I know the day would get worse.
Around 6pm, my sister called and said she had gone to Mom's house and found her sitting in her recliner with a vacant look on her face. The left side of Mom's mouth was drooping and she couldn't move her left arm or speak. I told my sister those were classic stroke symptoms, which she already recognized, and to get her to the ER as soon as possible. So back to the hospital she went. She was admitted and is still there. More tests were ordered and though the major symptoms subsided, Mom is still weak and needs help walking and getting into and out of bed.
After much deliberation and prayer, my sisters and I decided (or finally stopped denying) that Mom needed more care than any of us could offer. We were told about a rehabilitation facility where Mom could receive therapy to recover and get stronger and possibly return to her home after a few weeks. That was a more hopeful outcome than we had first envisioned. All we have to do is convince our mom. We are carefully avoiding the phrase, "nursing home", since Mom thinks all rehab centers are full of people who are no longer able to care for themselves. We've not been able to convince her otherwise. We only talk about the rehab center if she mentions it first. We allowed the doctor and the physical therapist to introduce the idea to her and we wanted the decision to go to be her choice, not something forced upon her. The details have been worked out by the hospital staff, but Mom has yet to say she's willing to go. Besides that, she's having more problems, so her release may not occur this weekend afterall.
I began making plans for another trip north for tomorrow then called my sister and learned Mom may have a blood clot in her right leg. It's not definite, but they won't release her if that's the case. I spent three hours shopping for my mother this evening. She needs a few workout-type clothes and there is no way she can shop for them herself. I can't even express all the frustration I felt as I looked for specific things I knew Mom would prefer - basic colors of blue, black, or brown - nothing low-cut - nothing short-waisted - nothing frilly - no bright colors - nothing with elastic around the waist - and on it went. When I finally found a blouse I thought she'd like, I bought three of the same style in different colors. Actually, I was somewhat relieved that Mom hadn't been released from the hospital. I do want her to go to rehab and I sincerely want her to recover and be able to live on her own again, but for now, I want to slow down a bit and re-group before I start another week.
I can only hope the next one will be better than the last.