It is the end of July and I finally have about 5 minutes to take a deep breath. I have meant to get back to writing on many occasions, but life keeps throwing more excitement our way. Here it is in a nut shell. Oh, an abbreviation you will be seeing a lot is ER. It stands for Hospital Emergency Room.
Quiet. Well as quiet as the post holiday month ever is. Taking down all the holiday decor and after holiday cleaning. End of semester catch-up rush to make sure all assignments are turned in before grades. There was much reorganization of schedules and things as we were now three less in the house. It was, however, still quiet and peaceful with so much of the stress now moved out. A jigsaw puzzle was set out for my mother to work on since she and my father now spent most of their days downstairs with my daughter and I.
Quiet. The first two weeks were great as we settled into our new routines. I was now doing most of the cooking and had caught up on most of the housework. We had finished out first jigsaw puzzle and started another one. About two weeks into to February it started. My mother was getting ready for church having decided that no matter what she would attend. While getting dressed she fell with her left leg twisted underneath her. After a trip to the ER, x-rays and scans we found out how talented my mother is. She had:
- broken the titanium staple in her foot.
- sprained her ankle
- twisted her knee
- wrenched her hip
- aggravated her numerous spinal issues
Needless to say she would not be walking for a while. Six weeks as least. Thank goodness for her mobility chair and the jigsaw puzzle. My stair exercises had begun since my parents room is on the second floor.
My mother is frustrated at having to stay off her feet so that her leg could heal. Of course she did come down the stairs at least once a day to be with the family or go to the doctors. Second puzzle finished and third started. Halfway through the month my parents went to have their toenails trimmed by the foot doctor. He discovered a pressure sore on the bottom of my dad’s foot. Since he has neuropathy in his feet he didn’t feel it. It was very deep with some possible infection. The doctor cleaned it and dressed it.
Ten days later our crumbling sidewalk was taken out in preparation to be replaced. We have no direct property access except through our neighbors yards and cannot park in our driveway. The construction workers, upon watching my mother using two canes to totter her way through the bushes dividing our yard from the neighbors went into a complete panic that she would fall and hurt herself. They made sure that she made it to her car (parked down the street) safely and then placed a piece of plywood over the ripped out sidewalk to give my mother access to the street with her chair. My mother was taking my father back in to see the doctor because the sore looked worse. It was now open to the bone with definite signs of infection. My father was told to stay off his feet until the doctor could order a special shoe. He did not and fell and broke his right hip. We had to call the ambulance because we could not get him into the car to take him to the ER. It is the night before April 1st.
April fools! Nope, it’s no joke. Called siblings from ER to let them know Dad had fallen and possibly broke his hip. Dad is admitted to hospital. Both his foot and his hip are operated on. Hi now has a beautiful, new titanium hip. We are looking at two weeks in the hospital and another six in physical rehab. I spend the next three weeks driving my mother (who still isn’t walking on her hurt leg) to and from the hospital as well as wheeling her in and out in her wheel chair. I am also
- making dinner
- trying to stay caught up on housework
- driving Daughter to music lessons, dance class and horse riding
- taking my mother lunch
- helping Daughter prepare for medieval fair at school
- helping Daughter with homework
- doing the shopping
My siblings do step up and help with the driving and taking Mom her lunch. Three weeks of this and I am energetic, calm and doing well. Very little anxiety. I am, however, very tired at the end of every day. Well Duh! My parents call my sister and ask her to come back from California to help out. Sister comes and takes over the driving of Mom. She also takes back some of the cooking. I have two days of massive house cleaning before it is my turn to go into the hospital. I even did my annual carpet cleaning.
I have been having issues with my period and have been bleeding excessively so I have been anemic through all of this. Now it is my turn. I am going in for a hysterectomy. I will be down for six weeks. In, out, done. No problems.
A week after my surgery we get a call from my older sister. Her ex-husband and oldest son had just been killed in a head-on car crash. Now we are scrambling to get my mother there. Dad can’t go, he is still in the hospital rehab. Mom is worried about leaving me home with just my 11 year-old daughter. A phone call to someone from our church and we have meals being provided while she is gone. Son and wife will also be there in the evenings after work. Sister takes Mom to funeral. They are gone for about a week.
While everyone is gone, Daughter has medieval fair at school. She is the minstrel and needs to take her harp. I cannot lift it since I am only two weeks out of surgery. Son puts it in the car, I drive it and Daughter to school, Teacher takes harp out. I sit in a camp chair all morning babysitting the harp. I do walk around a little just to see the different parts of the fair, but tire quickly and return to my chair. Parent packs up harp at the end of the day and puts it in my car. Son takes it out when he gets home from work.
Cousin, who I haven’t seen in a couple of decades, comes to visit. She and Husband will be staying for a week while daughters are at a youth event at BYU. We have a lot of fun visiting and catching up. We were part of a terrible trio when we were small.
School ends. On last day of school we have a celebration party for my daughter and her classmates. It starts right after school gets out (9:30 am) and goes until noon. I have baked cinnamon rolls, apple cinnamon rolls and pizza rolls. I also make hotdog octopi. Party is a success. Daughter has another party that afternoon and one the next day.
Summer starts. I get the all clear from my doctor.
Are you tired now? I’m exhausted just writing this down and this is just the quick outline of our adventures. The most exciting and amazing thing about all this is that it did not overwhelm me. My anxiety levels remained low and I was high functioning. The Fearsome Foursome were quiet and cooperative for which I am truly grateful. Why? I will share that with you in future posts as I share some of the stories.
Don’t stay out of trouble, life is too short.