Monday, August 13, 2007

On parents aging and such...

I sit here alternately staring at the screen and then hopping links to other blogs. I have been so erratic about posting of late - both in timing and topic. I think back and recall there were a few pretty good posts - just about life, some pretty funny as I remember them, some not so funny.

I wasn't going to blog about this because sometimes Reality Avoidance Therapy works best for me. I'll deal with it, but in my own quiet terms. The topic today - Parents Aging.

As some of you know, I come from a large Irish Catholic family before I jumped ship to Judaism about 12 years ago. I am the seventh of ten children. My father passed away in 1989 and my mother has since lived on her own more or less (wayward sons and divorces disturbing the relative calm of what's on sale at Shop Rite).

Tonight my sister R called to tell me that my Mom had a "spell" in church this morning and went outside whereby she must have blacked out and fallen. A priest came to her aid and she was taken to a hospital whereby they treated her physical wounds and released her! Her face is badly cut and bruised and swollen which just makes me cry. This is a woman who has barely a wrinkle thanks to good genes and Oil of Olay applied religiously. That just makes me cry - her soft skin being bruised up in such a violent way.

Anyway, the big guns were called in (which is my sister Susan) and she came over and brought my mom to a hospital proper where she is indeed being held overnight for observation and some tests (CAT scans, etc) will be performed.

My mother does not live right around the corner so I cannot just hop into the car and run to the hospital. I will go tomorrow or Tuesday based upon what we find out tomorrow. I feel sad for my Mom as I see the signs of aging taking their toll. Her hearing has gotten worse and for various reasons, she has refused a hearing aide. She probably should not still be driving but she said only half jokingly when I mentioned something to her a year or so ago "they'll never take me alive!" This, as we imagined a scenario of her home being surrounded by police requesting her license over a bullhorn, which she wouldn't hear as she turned the television ever louder behind the barricaded front door.

I look forward to her quick healing and me being able to joke with her that I told her no good can come of her hanging out in church so often. We'll have a good laugh of which she'll only hear half. And we'll have a cup of tea.

Just like old times.


Mo'a said...

I am so sorry to hear that your Mother had a fall...I hope there are no long term consequence. It is good that she did not brake any bones.
I am wishing for your Mother a quick recovery...and your peace of mind.

Carrie said...

Dear, I'm sorry to hear about your mom's spill, I know that must have terrified you. Please know that I will keep her in my thoughts. You, too. :)

Anonymous said...

thoughts and prayers are with you and your mom, dearest NBFF. trust me, i know how difficult it is to have an injured parent who's more than a hop, skip and parkway away (said the daughter of a mom who broke her wrist last winter, and was unable to visit because Mom lives 3000 miles away)

SO very glad your sister was able to see to it that your mother got the "proper" care... nothin' like a good CAT scan to allay fears of injuries you can't see with the naked eye. also thinkin' your mom will absolutely adore that sense of humor of yours (get it from her, did you?) and will laugh even more if you cup your hands when telling her to stop hanging out in church so often. (too funny!) ; ) xox

Nessa said...

I am so sorry about your Mom. It is hard when our parents get older. Who ever would have thought it could happen?

Anonymous said...

Sorry G. Will be thinking about you and your mom.

One of the hardest things in the world is to deal with a mother's aging

People like to gloss over the hard stuff, or scream "how can you let her live alone" when she's perfectly cognizant and that's unfair to us all

Magazines and newspapers tend to simplify it, as if it's one more simple responsiblity to add on or pass over--when it's your mommy

I spent my 40's so immersed in my mother's aging--though we didn't live together and had never had a dependent relationship that I went to grad school for it. It was exactly the wrong thing I needed. I needed to be with kids, and laughter etc

My friends didn't want to hear about it when I needed them to listen--gave those friends up

Now more parents are aging and everybody wants to talk about it

It's not the fall itself that is important--I hope she will recover but what it signifies

The beginning of a new era in your life

I didn't discover blogging until after my mom died, but it helped me more than anything

Use your blogging, and your blogging friends.

Never fear or being ashamed of venting--it's a good and necessary thing

Voices of NLD said...

Oh and as usual that was a wonderful post--filled with hope and Gness

Shari said...

:) Sorry to hear about that. My sister and BIL took my mom in last year. She just couldn't be alone. She can think for herself, but she just lost it after my dad died. After I quit driving, I couldn't go and see her any time I wanted. That's the sad part. I do try to call her once in a while, but I am lucky if I hear everything.

Hope your mom gets better. Kudos to your sister for taking her back in for more tests.

G said...

Thanks Mo'a. She's in the hospital now and we're waiting for MRI results - you know, the usual. She's in good hands with family nearby so I'm feeling a bit better today. Thank you though.

Pinky, that's so sweet and thanks very much.

Neva, I knew you could relate to the entire predicament. Yes it seems I inherited her sense of humor indeed. Ooh, there's an idea - cupping the hands. Thanks for that and your sweet wishes. XOX

Goldennib, it kind of just sneaks in there. You notice a little bit at a time over time. Thank you for your heartfelt post.

Pia, why did I think of you during this? I know the pain you went through watching and seeing your Mom through the aging process. You're so right - it's not the fall itself, but what it signifies. That's it, in a nutshell. Well we're waiting for MRI results and we'll see what the next step will be. But thank you for such a hearfelt comment, filled with understanding. It is so appreciated. Believe me.

Shari, that's a difficult situation you're in, to be sure. You really are a portrait in strength. Best to you and your family.

Thanks for your good wishes - my sister is our medical go-to person and she certainly would not let a night pass by without my Mom in proper care.

Thanks all. Keep you posted.

Doug The Una said...

I hope the MRI comes out well. Spells can happen for a lot of different reasons, including scary and silly. It is tough watching a parent age.

Minka said...

I am noticing things with my dad too...he gets more quickly tired, asks the same questions repeatedly and moves way slower and more careful. I can only imagine how I would feel if he were tofall and hurt himself, maybe bleed...these things are so difficult to observe and such a painful recognition for teh person itself. Age brings that sort of starts slowly...but it won't stop.

personally, I have always admired old women with wrinkles...the signs of a life lived.

The bets of luck with all the tests and peace of mind to you. making her better is in other hands than your own, loving her and reminding her of good times, maybe stirr her tea for her...those are things within your power!

robkroese said...

It is fortunate she didn't break anything. Sounds like a tough lady. This reminds me of an adopted aunt of my wife's, who is near 90 and other than not driving at night still lives a pretty full life. Contrast that to my dad, who is 20 years younger and gets winded walking to the mailbox. Attitude is an important thing.

G said...

Doug, thanks. I have a feeling we may not know much about the cause but we'll see what tomorrow brings. Yeah, no way around it huh?

Minka, you're so right - it starts slowly but really starts to creep up. Yes, each day brings the realization of just what you said. The doctors will do what they do and we'll be here for the rest - tea and sympathy. And a laugh or two. Thanks my friend, so nicely put.

Diesel, my mom is a tough lady that's for sure. She actually fractured her arm - that I know. But for now, she's in the hospital and we'll help her along when she comes out.

You're so right - attitude is everything! Well (as my MIL often says) - "to be healthy". I am also a firm believer that attitude helps to decide that.

Thanks pal.

Claire said...

I hope it turns out to be nothing but simple overheating. I worry about my mom too. She's had so many health problems over the years. A year ago she had a similar 'spell', went to the hospital, but the doctors could never figure out why. Friday my son had his version of a spell and messed up his face pretty good too. My thoughts are with you.

Miz BoheMia said...

Oh mi amiga G... I am so sorry to hear of your mom's fall. I think the aging of a parent is one of the most bittersweet things. They were our pillar of strengthas we grew up, yes, at some point we realize they are human and can make mistakes but the actual signs of aging bring the very fact that they too, like us, are mortal, to the forefront and,well, that hurts...

Regardless of my relationship with my mother, her aging is a mind screw in more ways than one so I can very well understand what you mean and can only imagine the depth of the feeling involved when you have such a sweet relationship, as you seem to have with your mother.

I hope the MRI results shall allay everyone's fears and may all be well with your mother amiga mia! Big neshikot to you and all my love!

tsduff said...

G - I'm choked up just reading about your Mom. I know the heartache of living far from loved ones... and how much worry and anxiety occurs because of such. And I had to laugh when I read the part about the Oil of Olay though... because my grandmother had the same tireless regimen on her face, only she used Pond's cold creme and Noxema. Ah - our family... we love them near or far. Hugs to you as you walk through this chapter of life. I hope it went well at the doctor's yesterday.

ann said...

oh g, tell me about it... I'm so sorry. I hope she makes a really quick recovery and I know exactly how you feel.

lotsa luv ann xxxxx

G said...

Claire, thanks so much. So far it seems that may indeed be the case.

I'm sorry to hear that about your son. As a mother, is there anything worse than seeing your child suffer in any way? My thoughts are with you as well.

MizB: You are so sweet my dear and thank you. It's not easy indeed but we breathe in and absorb it and move forward. You know, it's funny - we did not always have an easy life growing up. We were the victims of many parenting oversights. But I have accepted it as the times/the circumstances of her life and our lives. All that is to say that I so understand your feelings surrounding your mother. It's not easy no matter what. I am just glad that I am able to have a sweet relationship today. She loves us beyond belief and her grandchildren as well. We've lived enough sadness - time for joy.

Big neshikot to you too. XOX

Terry, you are so sweet. It does cause anxiety indeed.

I'm laughing - those products all belong in the Beauty Hall of Fame! Yes you know the pull and strength we draw from each firsthand. Thanks for your thoughtfulness. XOX

Ann, not easy is it? She's coming along nicely so far. Thanks for your good wishes. XOX

Ariel the Thief said...

oh G, the scenario you described with the police and the too loud T.V. made me laugh. your mother is quite something, all the stories you've told about her here say that she's not one to give it up. whoever comes to take her, they'd better be ready for some surprises.

best wishes for her, if I get old, I'd like to be like she.

Logophile said...

Oooh, G, I'm glad your mom was not any more seriously injured, that's so horrible.
My mom has had her share of medical drama and it's hard.
Even though I know she's not immortal and immoveable there is that little part of me that harkens back to childhood when she seemed indomitable and it makes it difficult to wrap the head and heart around the here and the now.

G said...

Ariel, life imitates art, doesn't it :) Thank you, I will pass them along. I'm hoping I've got one or two of her good genes.

Logo, thanks. She is a good healer, I must say - she's already well on the road.

I know your Mom has had her medical difficulties too. It's not easy. Sometimes we want time to stand still and it marches right over us and steals our Sunday NY Times from our doorstep before we even get a chance to read it.

I guess we need to remember to enjoy the here and now.


ckmunson said...

Oh G I am so sorry to hear of your mothers fall. Your thoughts echo in many of our lives. We have had quite a few of those conversations here. I'm the grandkid who is the social worker -thus I must know best. When reading your post I thought - gee at least I'm not alone. I have friends who also worry about this... I'm thinking its a phase of life we go through. Its just less fun than the others.

My best wishes for a speedy recovery!

G said...

cj, thanks. What a difference a week makes as she is recuperating so nicely.

Yeah, it's all part of living, huh? Not always so easy though. Well at least we have each other for support.

I don't know if I have your proper blog link (email me if not).

Thanks. ~ G XOX