When Life Throws You A Curve Ball: Part 2

Thank you all for your lovely comments yesterday ❤️ it gave me a little boost 🤗

So Part 2 goes a little something like this….

My Muma had been taken to hospital whilst I was in Philly. She had had a fall and couldn’t stand up at all. They x-rayed her entire left side and there was no obvious fractures or breaks and over the weeks that I have returned she ended up with a chest infection, a leg infection (which still looks red), high potassium (which happens with heart failure) and low sodium.

As soon as I felt better-ish, I travelled up to Macclesfield to see her. My Sister had said she really wasn’t great and despite lots of family issues (in the past) I decided that I would be there for both my Mother and Sister.

My Mum and I have had a very turbulent history and didn’t speak for many, many years. This changed after my cancer diagnosis, I decided to let the past, be the past and to reach out to her.

There are some things I can forgive but I cannot forget and I do battle with them from time to time. But… you see my mum has had many strokes, kidney disease, heart failure and has vascular dementia (the list goes on). Over these past years we have been able to build up a loving, safe relationship with each other, and… I love it now. I know that this doesn’t erase the past but I feel that it’s helping us both, to heal!

So, off I went, driving up by myself, after all, I had just gone to Philly alone.

I went to my Mums bungalow… it made me sad… her ‘home’ wasn’t homely, it’s was full of ‘broken stuff’, it was cluttered and dirty.

My Mum has had carers for many years and I do understand that their time is limited, and that they can’t do everything, from being a carer too! My Muma was over the moon to see me, so we (sister & I) sat with her chatting and laughing for a bit.

We returned to her home and that’s when It occurred to me that her home wasn’t ‘homely’ because she doesn’t have the strength or mobility to do anything to it… so taking a big breath I told my sister that we were going to sort it out for her.

My Brother came up on the Friday and helped too. We found photos of years gone by, we saw her memories, we saw her life, in the very things she had collected over the years.

We cleaned, scrubbed and threw broken stuff away. We painted and bleached. We changed her curtains, we clubbed together to replace things that were no good.

And every day we visited her. Every day we saw her getting stronger…. every day we told her what we had done to her home, hoping that she wouldn’t ‘flip her lid’ and would accept what we had changed for her, with love.

I kept wondering how I would feel if my children where going through my things? Deciding what was important and what wasn’t? Going through MY LIFE! I’m not sure how I would feel.

I kept telling myself that I would go home when Mum came out of hospital.

Yet with every day different a new challenges appeared which made it impossible to leave. I was still dealing with the after effects of the flu and then I found myself coughing and sneezing and I realised that I now had a full on head cold 😄AND we had to finish Her home.

Then the day arrived, she was told that she was well enough to go home. We had to remind her that she couldn’t return until her care plan was in place, until things were safe for her to be at home.

After 2 days I received a call from her Social Worker to say that they needed to get her out of hospital as she was a risk from infection whilst she was there and that they had found ‘respite care’ for her half an hour away from her home.

My Mum had stated that there was no way she would go into respite and wanted to speak to me. I knew what I had to do and found the words ‘could she come home if I looked after her’ falling out of my mouth.

If I am honest, my heart sank a little as I had originally only came up for a few days and it’s was already a week and a bit. I was missing my family, the Hubs, the Son & Family.

What would you of done? I stayed!

She came home on the Friday, not before having eaten and thrown up her lunch. My sister and I were a bit worried but were assured by the fact that the nurses were not worried about…..And my Mum was sooooo excited about coming home, so we let it go.

It was wonderful to see her reaction to her now, very homely home. On her wall are photos of all her family, she has a new side light, new cushions. Her bedroom looked cosy and nice. We also decided to put her Christmas tree up for her too. Our hard work had made our Mum very happy.

On the Saturday she was just tired. I apologised for snoring and coughing for most of the night and bless her, she said I didn’t keep her awake. (I did!)

My Mum & Buster ❤️

By the Sunday she was back in pain. Despite nothing showing on the X-ray, she was complaining about the pain in her left leg. She couldn’t even stand on it.

The District Nurses said to give Mum some codeine and yes, it helped a little with the pain by filling it, it just never ‘stopped’ it. (She was already having paracetamol & gabapentin)

Her words became slurred, just a little and her appetite went. She started being sick again, we put that down to the codeine however the DN had done a blood test the previous day and she had very low sodium levels and high potassium again. (We had amended her diet)

Due to an emergency I came home on the Monday evening. By the Tuesday evening my poor Mum had gone downhill. She had a fall in the night (thank god for lifeline & her carer)

By Wednesday she couldn’t keep anything down, which is a huge worry as she is type 1 diabetic and was taking back into hospital that evening.

I spoke to my sister yesterday and Mum was refusing visitors and had also refused a ct scan by saying she will have it done today instead. She must be feeling utterly awful.

So today…, I wait… my headache is still here, as is my hacking cough and am starting to lose my voice again…. I wait for 11am, when I call call the ward and find out how she is.

I’m so so worried! I know her health isn’t great at the best of times. She is my Mum, she is loved (even thought she can be the most cantankerous, stubborn, old boot ever!) and I desperately want her to get well.

I used to wish for a relationship with her, like my Aunt has with her Daughter. I can’t tell you how jealous I was of their closeness, how I desperately wanted a Mum to love and hold me, to be there for me.

I guess sometimes we don’t get what we want. I’m so glad I have this time with her, life is very fragile and we need to heal and move on from past hurts and upsets.

My relationship with her has been more me nurturing her right now and that’s ok. She tells me she loves me…. that’s something I have wanted all my life ❤️

Love & Hugs

Anita xx

A huge thank you to Mums Carer and the Wonderful staff on Ward 7 at Macclesfield General Hospital