Wednesday, 4 April 2012

The good days - and the bad


It’s always difficult coming back to work after a holiday, but life has been somewhat of a rollercoaster since then. To start with, the weather was so wonderful last Wednesday that a friend and I decided to go down to Rosudgeon car boot sale. So we set off on a perfect morning with the sun beating down on us like a blessing, got to Rosudgeon to find that the car boot doesn’t start until after Easter. Still, it was so lovely we headed off to Marazion and spent an hour on the beach with Mollie - as you can see above, she had a great time.

From there we went to Penzance for food, then Rinsey Cove for a sunbathe and paddle – sunbathing – in March! A quick trip to the Blue Anchor in Helston, then back home as I was going to meet a dear friend who’s just come back from New Zealand. A perfect day…..

Then, checking my phone, I found a message from one of my brothers to say Mum had had a fall so he and his wife were going down on Wednesday instead of Thursday to see her. The next day he rang to say Mum had fallen in the night and smacked her head on a dresser, had to be taken to hospital. There they found she was severely dehydrated and her sodium and potassium levels had gone haywire leaving her very confused.

To cut a long story short, she’s still there. Luckily she has agreed to go to a nursing home for recuperation, but the phone has been hot between me and my brothers and a poor confused and paranoid Mum.

On Monday, as my brother had returned home we had a phone call to say she’d just dislocated her hip, which would postpone her discharge. I felt I should belt up and see her, and a dear friend offered to come with me. She took one look at me as I arrived at her place. “I’ll drive,” she said. And dear of her, she did. So I was able to spend a couple of hours with Mum and we drove back that evening, feeling decidedly shaken and jetlagged, but glad that I’d seen her.

Life was beginning to feel like the nightmare it had been when Pip was so very ill. Panic fluttered inside me like a trapped bird, and I felt as if someone was trampling on my guts with heavy black boots, dragging me down this long dark familiar tunnel.

Thankfully it seems Mum is recovering well and I’ve just had a call to say she’s being discharged to the nursing home this afternoon. As my Dad died when I was in my twenties, I never had to deal with him getting old. I have a feeling this road with Mum could be a long, difficult and painful one for all of us.

35 comments:

Akelamalu said...

Elderly parents are a real worry, every phone call has one's stomach jumping and panic setting in. :(

Glad to hear your mum is recovering Flowerpot, I know it's easy to say but try not to worry. x

Jane Lovering said...

I'm so sorry, it all sounds horrendously difficult for all of you (brothers and mum included!)Sometimes the good and the bad don't seem to balance out the way we'd like, do they?

Flowerpot said...

Jane - it is difficult, but life's never easy, is it? I'm fortunate that the rest of my life is good.

Flowerpot said...

Ak - you're right about the phone calls Ak. It seems she probably has dementia - she is very confused indeed and paranoid bless her.

Vermont Designs said...

The dementia may only be temporary, caused by the de-hydration. Ask her docs. Glad she is moving to rehab now. Hugs, SS.

Jenny Beattie said...

I hope your Mum recovers quickly. This is all so familiar to me. (My Dad had the low potassium levels which left him confused - I think it's common in elderly people.) I'm glad your friends are good and that you are close enough to see your Mum.

Chin up. Jxx

ADDY said...

So sorry to hear abou your mum - they are a worry as they get older and inevitably we are always waiting for that bad news phone call. So glad she is much better and hope the rest at the nursing home will do her good.

Flowerpot said...

I hope so too, though not sure whether she will have to be somewhere long term. Have to see how it goes.

Flowerpot said...

Thanks JJ - though sorry to hear you are familiar with all this. I am very lucky I have some wonderful friends.

Flowerpot said...

Thanks Shelagh - let's hope you're right xx

Chris Stovell said...

I hope that your mum is feeling a little better now. It's tough seeing elderly parents becoming more frail. Take some time to recharge your batteries when you can. Best wishes, Cx

Flowerpot said...

Thanks Chris - just about to ring her. Good advice about recharging batteries. Sx

Morton S Gray said...

Hi Flowerpot - How awful to have a shock after such a lovely day. Dehydration is a big problem with the elderly. Let's hope your Mum makes a good recovery. Perhaps if she does need longer term care she could be nearer to you, but I suppose that depends on where your brothers are. Hugs for all of you. Mx

Flowerpot said...

Hi Morton yes it was a hell of a shock but at least I'd had a lovely day. Mum seems to be a lot better nd I'm very glad she's now in a home where they can look after her. We are considering where she will go next depending on how she gets on over the next few weeks. My brothers are miles away but if she comes nerer me then it's further from them which is tricky. At least in Devon she has all her mates around her for visiting.

SARINA said...

So sorry to hear about your poorly mum. Hope she gets back on her feet soon.

I read about your nice day out and you having called in at the Blue Anchor at Helston. I remember that place very well. Summer 1987 I spent some happy evenings drinking there whilst my then husband was entertaining the locals with his folk singing. Do they still have their own brewed beer on the premises? I remember visiting their backroom brewery then.

Flowerpot said...

Sarina - you bet they still make their own beer! We sat out in the garden at the back which is a real suntrap - bliss!

Deborah (Debs) Carr said...

I hope your mum is on the mend soon. Rob's mum has had a couple of falls and it's horrible when that happens.

Love the picture of Molls!

Flowerpot said...

Debs - sorry to hear about Rob's mum. And yes, Molls had a great day as you can see!

Rena George said...

Oh Flowerpot, what a time you're having.
It's a blessing that you have so many good friends to see you through the difficult times.
Hope Mum's good recovery continues.

Rena George said...

Oh Flowerpot, what a time you’re having.
It’s a blessing you have so many good friends to see you through the difficult days.
Hope mum’s recovery continues to go well.

Flowerpot said...

Rena - thanks for your comments. Mum is thankfully in a nursing home and much more with it which is a huge relief. Luckily I have great friends of both sexes which is what I need to see me through.

Melissa Marsh said...

I'm so pleased she's recovering. I know that with my grandfather, it was a long, hard road to watch him get frailer and frailer. It was very difficult. In a way, it was a relief for him to go since he had no quality of life left, nothing like the vibrant grandfather of my youth. That was a few years ago and I still miss him, but now I remember him as he was during my childhood instead of those last few years when he hardly resembled the grandfather I so loved.

Life is full of ups and downs, isn't it? But that is what makes us appreciate all the blessings we have. Hugs to you!

Flowerpot said...

Melissa - mum sounds a bit better but she will take time to recover if she does. I found that with Pip - he went downhill so quickly it was horrifying watching him disintegrate. But you're right - the downs make us appreciate the ups.

Talli Roland said...

Oh, I'm so sorry to hear about your mum, but pleased she's getting well and is on the road to recovery.

I love that photo of Mollie!

Flowerpot said...

Talli - thanks - and yes I love the picture of Molls. It wasn't my idea but helped me think of things differently.

Philipa said...

I'm sorry to hear you're mum is ill. more than glad to know the nursing home did some good and unsurprised that hospital carecwas wanting. i hope she goes ftom strength to strength x

i can relate to your rollercoaster, altough mine is not due to another's accident but head bending stuff. i too feel like my world dissolves in some black horror, feeling that the whole world laughs at my naivite. i am so stupid and the learning is like a brick in the face. i can feel it and smell it. there is no hope and crying doesn't change it but i feel like crying out to my friends for hope and clinging onto them like a child at sea.

Flowerpot said...

Oh Phil I am sorry you are going through a really rough time by the sound of it. I do hope your friends can give you the support that you must need. Take care xx

Philipa said...

LOL I thought you were my friend, Sue. People who live near are simply people who share my geography, not my views or thoughts. Perhaps you could write (and sell) an article on virtual vs RL friends?

Flowerpot said...

Of course I'm your friend, Phil. That;s a good idea for an article though. Will put it on the list. By the way I don't seem to be able to access your blog at the moment which is why I haven't been commenting!

Philipa said...

Resending an invite to access right now..

elleeseymour said...

My mum worries me much too and I spend every weekend caring for her. I hope your mum is ok.

Flowerpot said...

Sorry to hear about your mum, Ellee, it's worrying isn't it> Mum is improving a bit but has a very long way to go.

Derek said...
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Derek said...
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Derek said...

I can only imagine how difficult it must be to care for an elderly parent. It's great that you are honest with yourself and able to share the experience with other readers and writers. Wishing you both well.