I was down visiting mom again. I try to get down every couple weeks now, just to check in and make sure she’s ok in her home. Spend time with her. See if she has any chores. Stuff like that.
Part of the reason for the visit was because as I talked with her during the week last week she just seemed— groggy. Like not her typical, alert self. She also said she was having more trouble moving.
The other reason for me going down was that she wanted to go furniture shopping for a chair that fit her better.
Well- we never made it furniture shopping.
When I arrived, she seemed pretty good. But then she sort of crashed into a very logy, lethargic state and wasn’t up for moving or shopping. Mostly just sleeping- but with me making multiple adjustments to get her comfortable.
I made us a good dinner on Saturday evening and mom polished it all off (and raved about how good it was). She was very up and alert all evening, but then drifted off to sleep around 10). Since she was lightly snoring, I figured she needed the rest.
Sunday was much the same. Good spates (albeit slow) and then difficulties. When it was time for me to leave she thought it might be best if she called her aide to come and just be present. Which did not give me a warm and fuzzy feeling.
But I needed to get home to take care of shit in my life so I’d be ready to work on Monday. (Remember- no vacation time with new job).
Cut to me being 20 minutes from home when I get a call from mom’s neighbor. Mom was having an episode where she just couldn’t get up out of her chair. No strength. Couldn’t make her body move and obey her. So they called an ambulance.
Mom expressly told me not to come back for this because there wasn’t anything I could do. Ansell she was in good hands (neighbors and her aide) and the docs needed time to check her out.
I did not go back down, but felt incredibly guilty for that decision.
As it turns out, it was probably a good thing. The docs did a full check on her and couldn’t find any health issues leading to her fatigue/mobility problems (I.e. not heart, infection, stroke, etc). It’s most likely related to her Parkinsons and her medication.
They released her around the time I would have arrived back there. And she was home and doing decently well last night (able to get up/walk/etc).
So far today she’s doing ok (by her report). She has calls into her doctors and has started some other chores. (Pulling insurance info, etc to research long term care options).
Needless to say, I’m stressed out and sad and concerned and frustrated and feeling helpless. I want to just curl up in bed for a week and not deal with anything. Or better yet, run away to Palm Springs or Curaçao for sun and fun.
Unfortunately these aren’t viable options, so I’m stuck adulting.
So sorry to read this. Taking care of an aging parent can be very difficult. I was lucky to have two sisters who were physically closer to my father during his last years to take care of him. It’s important to take care of yourself and NOT feel guilty about it.
Yikes. I agree with your assessment. I hope your mom stays stable for a while.
Unfortunately, this is one of the harsh realities of life. For the past 3.5 years after my Mom died, I would make the 720-mile round trip once a month to check up on Dad, make sure the house hadn’t fallen over, and make him as comfortable as possible. Reading your post reminded me a lot of this past year as he slowly declined and finally passed away in July. It’s not easy. It’s not fun. It’s mentally and physically draining. We are driven by both the impulse to care for someone we love and care about, and the impulse to run away and shut out all the painful things we can’t control. Been there, done that. You’re doing the best you can under the circumstances. And that’s the most ANYONE can ask of you. You’re okay… and you’ll be okay. Trust in yourself and the universe. Wishes of good health to your Mom, and Peace and Contentment to you.