My mom is being discharged from the hospital today. Who gets to deal with getting her home, grocery shopping, fetching a walker, and staying with her at her home to make sure she’s ok and not at risk for falling down or ripping her stitches, ostomy, or drain tubes?
That would be yours truly.
She’s been in the hospital for two weeks which means I’ve been to the hospital every day for two weeks. It’s just draining.
Jim asked me this morning if it felt good to know she’s getting out today. I’m not feeling good. I’m feeling like this is “out of the frying pan and into the fire.”
Now.. instead of having an entire care team handling her every need and want, it’s up to my siblings and I. And I get the first shift. I pushed for this to happen today because I selfishly need her settled in at home today so that by tomorrow at about 3, I can cut and run away. I’ve had special Friday plans for this Friday night for a while.
I’m really hoping that by this time tomorrow, we’re getting ready to switch shifts and my sister is embracing the tasks at hand.
After all, I’ve had two weeks head start seeing moms pain and struggles and a week to get used to the reality of drainage tubes and wound care and an ostomy bag. I’m squeamish for sure but am convinced that anyone can get used to anything if they don’t have other options.
Of course I still have that nagging voice in the back of my head about all this. The one that’s irritated because the responsibility falls on me (or a few of us). It’s selfish thinking but the Universe be damned, I never got this much care from my mother ever.
It’s selfish thinking but she wouldn’t do all this for me if the situation were reversed. She said that. She knows it. She talked yesterday about her relationship with her mom and they weren’t close. She was just her mom and nothing more. Oh yeah, that’s familiar. So let’s just blame grandma while we’re at it for all the ways I was neglected. Because my mom was never taught any different.
I’d buy that more if people were incapable of growing or changing outside of what they were taught at 10 years old. I’m not buying it because I, myself was able to break out of that “arms length” parenting mentality and have great relationships with my kids. We’re open and honest and I make sure all the time they feel loved and supported and like they are my priority.
The way I feel about my mom is selfish and I know I can still grow and change beyond it, but the past will never change and I’ll always harbor resentment about being the “easiest” kid. I’ll always have that nagging voice that reminds me that my mom will never change so why should I?!
It would all be easier if I knew there was a light at the end of this tunnel. But the only light at the end of the tunnel is the one that will eventually come for us all, and take us away to alternate plains of existence. The one that will supposedly judge us for our choices or admit us to a better or worse place. I don’t believe in any of that, but the light seems like the best way to describe the force that will greet us when our physical bodies give out.
My mom has stage 3C ovarian cancer and the prognosis isn’t stellar, to say the least. She’s up against who knows how many rounds of chemo and multiple future surgeries. She wants to fight right now but if this first course of treatment and surgery doesn’t “fix her right up“ then she’ll prolly call it quits.
I don’t have extraordinary knowledge. I don’t have a crystal ball. Sometimes, I don’t even have a desire to know more than I know right now. Today.
And what I know right now, today Is that I have to get on with doing all the things and all the stuff. Or it won’t all get done before duty calls.
With peace and love and hopefully cheeseburgers and vodka lemonade… or