8 1/2

That’s eight and a half hours in the ER. We left at 5 p.m. It’s now almost 2 a.m. I haven’t eaten since lunch, and I’m sitting here eating baba ghannouj with a spoon and drinking V-8 Fusion because it hurts when I chew because I had a tooth extracted yesterday.

Mom was severely dehydrated and we couldn’t seem to stop the diarrhea. So they took all kinds of her fluids for testing, stuck a hydrating infusion in her arm, X-rayed her and did a CAT scan of her stomach and intestines. They didn’t find anything that we didn’t already know was there — nothing that would be causing her to spend so much time sitting on the commode. So, just in case, they gave her an antibiotic and we loaded up on gatorade on the way home.

And just to make the day complete, as I was rushing around making sure I had her health insurance info and stuffing extra clothes for her in a bag, along with a water bottle, kleenex etc. etc., my flip-flop caught on something sticking out of her wheelchair and I did some damage to my second toe on my left foot. No time to worry about that, right?

At the hospital, my toe started throbbing; turning purple. I had the option of signing myself into the ER too and have my toe X-rayed, but that would have left my sib to deal with my mother all by himself. My toe hurt and looked gross, but I could bend it and move it, so I figured it’s just a bad bruise. I opted to tend to the reason we were there in the first place.

She is supposed to consume nothing but ginger ale and gatorade for the next two days. If she refuses to drink — as she has been doing midst fits of dementia — it’s back to the hospital and back on the IV.
I’m wondering how they ever manage situations like this in nursing homes. It took two of us to manage the care of one of her.

I’m still hungry. But I’m also tired. I don’t know which need I’ll fill after I post this. Either way, it’s been a hell of a day.

2 thoughts on “8 1/2

  1. I don’t necessarily believe that what doesn’t kill us will make us stronger. But numerous people in different aspects of my life have said that I am the only one they know with the strength to handle the loss of my daughter and yet raise her children in a happy, healthy home. I don’t know why women of strength seem to be tasked the most, and plagued with adversity at every turn. I find that strength a curse more than a benefit at times. I think the same is with you. Your sibling does not have the strength to do what you do for your mother, (as evidenced by your choice not to be treated and leave him to tend her at the ER, yet you “handle” her alone all the time!) I get so tired of hearing how “strong” I am, and that no one thinks I need them because I always handle everything myself. I commend you for what you do 24/7 and the burden you let weigh on your shoulders by letting the child in you now become the Mother. I know I feel as though I had no choice and can think of no other option than the path I am now on. I think of you and your daily struggle as I wade through the mire of my own emotions and obligations. Little help it may be when you are being screamed at and overwhelmed, but in spirit, you are not alone.

  2. Even if you broke your toe there’s not much they do but tape it and give you one of those “shoes”. I suggest getting first aid tape and gently tape it to your other toe (unless that hurts way too much,then I don’t know) and where nothing but flip flops (even sandals usually have a strap across your little toe so they aren’t any good. Hence the little “shoe” they give at the hospital).
    But promise that if it gets worse in any way (pain swelling) you’ll go take care of YOURSELF!!!

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