Thursday, March 1, 2012

Adverse Possession

a long and important day ahead:

two appointments, two dressing changes, lots of driving -- the most activity since, well, since things went definitively to crap.

i am preoccupied with thoughts of my mother.  not loving thoughts, not gee-whiz-but-those-were-the-days retrospection.  no, it is more the sisterhood of the fallen.

i correspond regularly with a nephew i've never met.  like most kids, he's cool and we have pithy exchanges about such things as why he named his turtle "ron paul."

in the process of writing each other, it's inevitable that news of the clan insinuates itself into our purity -- these relations all live in the same town.  the mother-unit, her two preferred offspring, their lovers and spouses, their children.  i don't know them, sometimes like them, sometimes find my lip curling in derision, often am just confused.

that's why i prefer my nephew.  he has a dry wit but he's honest.

it turns out that his grandmother, my, cough, mother, has taken to falling down.  like a fish out of water?

my sister-in-law decided to flesh out the situation for me, the absentee daughter, in an email yesterday... the result of which was not pretty.  first, i wrote a condescending email back to her.  it began:

you gave me a lot to think about, and thinking is... hard, right now. it is easy for me to sit down here and wish things were different in YourTown. but now that i've a better idea about what's going on, i'm kinda flabbergasted.

there are a few things that we all agree on, i'm hoping:

infighting and backstabbing are wastes of precious energy and resources;
my nephews and their parents are all awesome individuals;
my mother should not be on the floor, ever.

like a thickening sauce, i was on the phone just a few hours later, calling my half-sister, and as she further fleshed out the situation regarding the mother-unit and her fondness for the floor, i heard myself yelling and screaming.  what kind of things did i so articulate?  fred said he heard this one several times:

"it is not normal to leave someone lying on the floor for 13 hours! it is not normal to think that that is okay!"

it boggled my already boggled mind to learn that she'd fallen "between 20 and 25 times" in the past two weeks.  my brain imploded at statements like -- if i stayed with her, i couldn't pick her up, but i could call my husband, who could come over and get her up..."



seriously, hello-o-o-o?

please tell me that i am not weird for thinking stuff like -- how about preventing the falls to begin with?  what does the doctor say?

then there is the obvious -- hire someone, take her to your home, move in with her, stick her in an LTAC (not me!), get her some PT...

but the plan in force seems to be:  place lots of phones about, so when she falls she can crawl to one and call for someone to come pick her up.

yeah, so i screamed and yelled.  not because i love her at all, or care what these folk do, ultimately, for one another, but because no one deserves such pointed disregard.  no one.

also, i am of the Felled Sisterhood, remember.  twice in the last month, i have fallen, both times while horribly ill, depressed, hopeless.  it has nothing to do with being on the ground, everything to do with wanting just to give up.  it hurts, too.  it's embarrassing.

i remember, the last time, my head freshly banged, my operated shoulder throbbing, my knees skinned, my toes twisted, begging my entourage to say only positive, encouraging things as i tried desperately to get my legs to work, to move in a predictable fashion.  my entourage, unfortunately, thought that request was crazy talk.

"that there is crazy talk," the entourage said.
"meow," said dobby, who thought my head crammed into a pristine corner of the bathroom tile a riotous affair.
"someone call 911?" asked the fireman.

even the rescuers were scared.  i mean, there i was, saying, you can't pull on my left arm, my legs aren't working, i've injured my left hip, hit my head, and no one will chant cheers for me, there are no pom poms, and you sure as hell better not have shown up with lights flashing and sirens sounding, because captain haddock will hear about it, and we'll have our squatters' rights snatched out from underneath us faster than you can say "miserable blundering barbecued blister."

i absolutely have no clue how things roll in my mother's world.  there was, in all of yesterday's exchanges, a tale about how she called 911 for help, how one of the EMTs, who knew her and her family, called her son instead of actually going to her house, so that the son, after what i assume to be a fair amount of time, was the one who arrived to scrape her up off of the floor.

it's funny, the things that ultimately sent me flying around the room backward, whistling dixie.  like the statement:  "mom hasn't been very compliant with her meds." no shit,. sherlock!  i mean, imagine.  you're lying on the floor (again) and you think, "well, drat, it's time for me to take my blood pressure medicine..."

the other thing was this whole "but we're not gonna tell her" thang that i believe is common in dysfunctional families.  in lieu of a life spent loving one another, there is a concerted effort to show loving control at life's end.  they want to keep certain medical information from her... "she would be upset to know x, to know y..."

but it would at least give her something to think about besides how nice it would be to put some plush carpeting in the family room or how to best clean the stains on the grout in the kitchen.

so anyway, today -- it's going to be a difficult day for me.

for lots of people.

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