That’s the only way to describe last week. Thursday was reasonably quiet. Well, except for the imminent snow storm. Yeah, I know ya’ll up North would kill to only have an inch or two of snow, and I get it. But in Louisiana, that’s debilitating. It garnered a Friday snow day for everyone.
Friday we were supposed to go back out to see Mom whom they had finally put into a regular room. The brothers came out for a little while to watch Zombieland and took Pascal home with them. An hour later, they called to tell me that an old friend of the family had died. It was incredibly sudden and shocked us all. Jimmy Dale had been in and out of hospitals and nursing homes for the last few years. When we were at the ICU with Mom, there were several local families that we knew visiting relatives in the same ICU including Jimmy Dale’s family. Dave and Will were probably the closest friends Jimmy Dale had for the last decade since his mother had passed away and they walked down to visit with him while we were in seeing Mom. Jimmy Dale was up talking and laughing. He looked fine. The next morning he went into cardiac arrest. We were completely shocked and the Brothers rushed out to the wake that night and the funeral was held over until Saturday. That and the snow meant that we put off seeing Mom until Sunday.
Mom has seen a couple of different specialists and one thing is very clear: The doctor that did the surgery on her leg and was responsible for her broken arm and wrist has destroyed the use of her last good arm. This is the same doctor that tried to force her into a nursing home and who sent her home too early causing her to have a second surgery on her leg. What does it all come down to? Cash. It wasn’t good enough that she had health coverage because he couldn’t make her profitable enough for him. The second leg surgery made it clear that he had messed up when they put her in one of the nicest rooms in the hospital. They don’t do that for Medicaid patients. Yes, I understand the realities and how Medicaid and sometimes Medicare force doctors to work the system and move patients around. However, that was the last straw. I started saying to Tina, “It’s time to let a lawyer look into it and sort it out.” And, we’ve all agreed on it. I don’t expect much to come of it, but the guy needs a hand-slap if nothing else.
Then last night, Tina was hit with her own last straw. Mom was released last night and sent home. However, since her leg is now considered to be weight bearing, she is supposed to be charged to use the ambulance service. She can’t use either arm and up until now has been refusing to go into rehab for her legs; Mom has given up and doesn’t care about being left in a wheelchair at this point. Then as they released her from the hospital they dropped the bombshell that the cost of the trip home would be $2600. Oh, but if the non-emergency service comes, it’s only $900. Tina lost it and started crying. The doctor worked around it by saying that Mom’s legs had to stay elevated (part of what was complicating her condition is that she had over 40 lbs. of fluid on her body). Mom no longer has a choice. She must walk SOMEHOW.
Now, we have to find a way to force her into rehab. Paladin and I talked about it last night and if worse comes to worst, we might have to take it to court and have her declared incompetent. She will not listen to reason or pleading and since she can talk, the medical personnel must give in to her wishes. Mom’s only wish is to be at home. Tina is giving the home health nurse and Mom’s doctor a chance to talk her into it first. Paladin suggested that after that we talk to Social Services and see what they can do, but if neccessary, I will take it to court. Mom just can’t keep living like that and Tina and both of the Brothers are spending their entire lives catering to her. The least Mom can do is make it easier for them and get off her butt. I understand how she feels but I’m just plain mad at her at the same time. Paladin and I were talking last night and I was explaining to him about my maternal grandmother (her own treatment of her children including how abusive she was to her daughters) and how Mom is repeating that pattern to some extent. It caused me and him to realize why I just cannot be brought to suffer whores. Grams was an out and out user/whore that would come home when it suited her to come and mooch anything she could lay her hands on and was allowed by everyone around her to get away with that behavior her entire life. In the end, she was in a hospital bed being catered to by her sons. Sound familiar, Mom??? Mull??? No, my mother was never a whore, but manipulating the people around her into taking care of her has always been her M.O. and Mull does the same. Though, I guarantee you neither woman would ever admit to that; in their eyes, they’ve just done the best they could. I’ve told Bell several times that I understand exactly where she is coming from because I lived it. You love them, but at the same time, you know they are asking unreasonable things of you. Fortunately, I’m an adult and I have a choice. I just need to get my siblings to stand up to her too. We all have at different times, but never as a group. I don’t look forward to the next couple of days.
I wish I could have had a happier post. I would have tried to end on a happier note, but the camera died completely. 😦 I went half-crazy Friday. I’m still numb and I tried to pull myself out of my funk by getting a somewhat radical hair cut. The stylist at the Deridder Walmart left it long but very choppy. It was supposed to be like Jaclyn Smith and ended up EXACTLY like Jennifer Anniston after she got done flat ironing it (I pretty much have Jen’s hair color too). I never flat iron my hair. It looked kind of “old rock slag” to me. Any time I see a woman my age or older with flat ironed hair I tend to think of Madonna for some reason and it’s not a pleasant association. I couldn’t make up my mind whether I liked it or not. Everybody else had one of two reactions: you look like one of those women trying to look like their daughter OR you just don’t look right without the curls. I wish I could have shown ya’ll and gotten your opinion. I thought it was ok. The cut is GREAT! I’ve washed it and now, I’ve got Lori Singer ala Footloose hair. It’s cute. I also realized that I had no nail polish or lipstick left. I don’t know how that happened. So I splurged on some of the cheap NYC brand stuff and their nail polish was really nice which surprised me considering that it’s only $1. It was nice but it didn’t help my numbness. I’ve been cleaning a lot and disappearing into old British sitcoms. Poor Paladin wants to do something, but there’s nothing to do but wait another couple of weeks for tests to be finished.
P.S.- Hey Ginger! I found my address book this morning. Let me know when would be a good time with all your classes.