Tuesday, April 18, 2017

MOM; I'm Learning to Forgive You- Part 1

Next month, my mother will have passed a year ago.  May is supposed to be amazing at it has Mother's day and my son's birthday all in the same week.  I get to celebrate the birth of my son & the Hallmark Holiday that celebrates me as the tear wiper, heart mender, tuck in at nighter with songs and good wishes, food wench & drink fetcher. It's awesome.  Well it was until last year.

Earlier in the day I had gotten a Facebook request from a friend of my mom's,  I thought nothing of it, as we had a 3 day weekend a head of us and we were taking friends to an amusement park. Ghosts of the past don't interrupt out roller coaster rides.

When I got to work that following Monday, the text's started coming in from her friend.  My mom was in the hospital for a week in ICU & they needed to find me to make some fast, hard choices as I was the next of kin.  I told them I couldn't make these choices.  We hadn't spoken in 10 years.  I had no idea if she even had an ADR, but she did have an underage son that would soon have his world rocked in the worst way ever. She had been in ICU for a week and the staff was shooting blindly.  I had to agree to a trach tube so she could breathe.  I had to consent to dialysis. I had to consent to the insertion of G-tube because she couldn't swallow & had to choose an acute nursing facility sight unseen as I was making all of these decisions from California and she was in Ohio  I had to deal with doctors who couldn't fathom the 3 hour time difference and got mad when I wasn't coherent to make a decision at 3 am when I just woke up from a deep slumber.

She miraculously came out of her coma, and started breathing with assisted machines a then on her own with a bi-pap.  She was moved from ICU to the general unit where I believe they killed her. I got 2 fluid conversations out of the 4 days she spend on the general wing.  Nobody told me she was septic.  Our last conversation, she couldn't speak.  She just grunted into the phone.  I attributed it to her diaper change.  I should have pressed the nurse, but we were busy We took the kids back to the amusement park for another day of fun.  I got a call midway through our day and I was told she could no longer swallow and was continuing to aspirate through her stomach into her lungs, May 31 was the day the G-tube was to be inserted, but I think the sepsis overtook her and at 3 am my time, she was rushed back to the ICU.  She wouldn't make it out alive.  I again from California, had to arrange everyone to get to the hospital.  I had to make sure my brother was there to say good bye.  I got a cell phone to her ear as a whirl of machines just barely keeping her alive pumped in the background. That sound will haunt me until they day I die.  She didn't hear my goodbye.  I could have been anyone.  She was too far gone.  I then had to decide to let her go.  The machines were just moving the air and the blood.  She wasn't there anymore. I asked the case worker to tell my brother they were doing all they could, but they let her pass highly sedated and feeling nothing.

This is where the story should end.  it was just the beginning of a month that tested my will, my patience, the need to do the right thing when I wanted to just go home and hopefully saved the innocent victim in all this.  It kept me away from my son during a month of a school play, a trip to Capitol Records, his 1st marching band parade and family visit at camp.  I lost my dream job that would have paid me enough to support my son on my own. I won't lie - I never want to see Ohio again.
If I thought all that was bad, there is the next part of the story where I flew back home which made the Cali portion a walk in the damn amusement park - thus Part 2

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