Thursday, November 11, 2010

Letting Go

Just as I think I might have things under some semblance of control...G-d laughs again. My mom only woke once overnight last night, around 3:30 am. I helped her out and went back to bed. Thankfully, the children were good and slept until after 8:00. My mom woke up first, and my Dad got her some granola to tide her over until Betty arrived. Unfortunately, my Dad forgot to take my mother's blood sugar first.

I let Micah sit in bed a few minutes longer, and Dad said he'd get Maya while I helped Mom with her meds. Micah managed to sneak into the room...and steal Mom's applesauce. I ended up putting him at the dining room table with a spoon and some applesauce.

Betty arrived promptly at 8:30, and I did my best to get things moving - I had both kids awake, I fed Maya, I gave Micah breakfast, I picked out an outfit for Micah, and I made Mom's breakfast. I started to become impatient...Mom needed to be out to the table to eat her breakfast quickly so that she could be ready for her physical therapy appointment at 9:00. Unfortunately, it was almost 9:15 before Betty got Mom out of the room and at the table, and Mom ended up missing 30 minutes of her therapy appointment.

At 9:15, I realized that Megan had not yet arrived. I went to my phone to give her a call, and I saw a text from her telling me that she had a family emergency and would not be able to make it today. Dad had already left for the day, DH had a meeting, and I just did not know how I was going to get Micah to class and juggle everything else without more help. I tried in vain to get Micah ready and out the door on time, but it became evident that we were not going to make it to class today.

After Mom's therapy, she wanted to go back to her room for a few minutes to finish getting ready. At 10:30, her former co-workers arrived for a visit! They brought us fresh fruit and a bulghur wheat dish that looked delicious, and an adorable book for Micah. Mom sat and chatted with them for a while, and then there was a knock at the door. When the woman walked in, I was confused, because I thought Mom's occupational therapy was not scheduled until Friday. Turns out, she was there for Maya from the State infant/toddler program, and I had completely forgotten that she was coming.

We headed downstairs (with Micah, too) while my Mom continued her visit, and she did her evaluation of Maya. Maya is doing great (no thanks to the program). She is at or ahead of her milestones, and she has made significant progress with her sucking issues. We just need to improve her bottle feeding skills (she is still struggling with bottle nipples). We scheduled one more appointment, and then I think she will be released from the program. I did ask her about Micah and whether he should/could be evaluated more specifically for sensory perception issues. She did notice a few behaviors while she was there, and we discussed our family history with ADD, but I have a feeling they won't do much at this time.

After our appointment, I nursed Maya and took Micah outside to play for a while in the back yard. I then brought Micah inside to watch an episode of Sesame Street while I headed upstairs to prepare lunch for my mother. Maya was cranky, and my father arrived back home to try and help out for an hour or so. I sent him downstairs to keep an eye on Micah, and I tried my best to pacify Maya while preparing lunch. Mom and I had more vegetable soup, fresh fruit, and of course Mom topped off her meal with a bowl of chocolate ice cream.

I was struggling with what to feed Micah for I decided to take the easy way out and I gave him a stick of cheese while he watched tv. After he finished the episode of Sesame Street, I gave him some crackers and fruit, too. Immediately after lunch, I put Micah down for a nap, and Maya, too. Just as I thought I was getting some down time, Mom's speech therapist arrived. Naturally, Maya woke up during the appointment, so she kept me occupied.

After speech therapy, Mom lay down for a nap. Micah slept for over 3 hours, and Mom slept for about 2 1/2 - 3 hours. I started to get a migraine, but Maya just would not give me a break and nap. I ended up getting a few phone calls...from Mom's doctors. We will be taking Mom to see the hematologist tomorrow to have her platelets checked again, and then they will decide if my mother needs to go to the hospital for a platelet transfusion.

While Betty and I were sitting in the living room, I made a comment about having a migraine and wishing I could take a nap. Betty then told me that I was not taking advantage of her ability to help. She is probably right...I'm used to doing things for my mother, and I'm not fully comfortable letting everything go yet. It turns out, she was quite insulted that I did not let her take out the trash yesterday to help me out. I tried to explain that the trash issue had nothing to do with me...DH is a little...crazy...about trash. He is a recycling nut, and he really cannot stand it when anyone else takes out the trash. It is just easier to leave it for him than for us to take it out - he will end up digging through the garbage later anyway, and I can't stand to hear the complaining about how it was done wrong!

Betty and I had a good conversation...she also pointed out that this morning I insisted on taking my mother's wheelchair to the breakfast table. That is when I decided to be honest with Betty - I'm frustrated that she takes so long in the mornings with my mother and throws off our entire schedule. I took Mom to the breakfast table this morning because she was 30 minutes late. I had specifically asked Betty to delay the morning washing routine (since she had just washed Mom thoroughly before bed) so that she could get to breakfast early and be on time for therapy, and Betty disregarded my request. I thanked her for how caring and thoughtful she has been with my mother, but I expressed my frustration that she can be a bit rigid and prioritizes doing things in a pre-set order over fitting activities around my Mom's therapy schedule. She kept insisting that my mother should be washed/bathed first thing in the morning, and I tried to explain that it was more important that my Mom eat breakfast no later than 9 because of her diabetes and medication restrictions, that therapy took precedence over morning ritual, and that it was okay if my mother needed to eat breakfast in her pajamas and dress and wash afterwards.

Betty did not seem to approve of that, and said that if Mom was going to eat breakfast in her pajamas, it should be in bed. This morning, my Mom explicitly stated that she preferred to eat breakfast at the table. We talked about the importance of therapy time, and Betty asked why we couldn't move it later. I said that I would certainly request a later time, but that for now, therapy was early, and that my Mom could not miss any more therapy time because of morning routines that could be done later in the day. Again, I pointed out that most of Mom's therapy was done in the bedroom, and there would be no real harm in doing therapy in her pajamas. I hope we settled things - I would like to rely more on Betty and let go, but I have to trust that she will get Mom to her appointments in a timely manner, even if it means setting aside her routines. I know that Betty's heart is in the right place, and I know that this is a learning curve for both of us.

Shortly after Betty and I chatted, DH and my father came both came home. Micah woke up next, followed by my mother. Betty got Mom up and to the living room while we managed the kids. Around 5:30, one of my Mom's friends showed up with dinner from a huge group of our friends. It was an incredible feast, and our refrigerator is now overflowing with food! We had cheese sticks and fried zucchini, salad, eggplant parmesan, spinach and cheese lasagna, fresh fruit, and cheese cake for dessert. Mom, of course, could not survive the meal without her chocolate ice cream! I think we have no choice but to eat leftovers all day tomorrow.

After dinner, Mom was a bit exhausted. Betty moved her back to the bedroom, and started their nighttime rituals. DH and I spent a little time with the kids. Micah was running around, he rode his tricycle in the garage, and he kept running back to see Grammy. My grandmother's friend called Mom tonight to chat. It was wonderful to hear her voice again...I haven't spoken to her in many years, but I used to call her house every New Year's Eve to wish my grandmother a Happy Birthday. They chatted for a bit, and it was bittersweet.

Micah and Maya hung out for a little while in Grammy's room. Actually, they were so cute together - Maya kept looking for Micah and grabbing handfuls of his hair, and Micah would cuddle close to her, say "baby" and give her kisses. Micah went to bed around he left the room, he said "bye bye, Mimi" to Mom - it gave her a huge grin on her face! Every time Micah has been seeing her door, he waves and says "bye bye, Mimi."

Betty left at 8:30, and my mom rested for a while. Micah went to bed easily, but Maya was quite difficult to put down again tonight. I went in to see my Mom at 10:00 to give her medication and put her to sleep. She woke up again at 1:30, and hopefully she is now back down for the night. Another good day...but I sure hope Megan is able to return to work tomorrow.

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