Sunday, September 1, 2013

Yes, she lives.

You've probably noticed my absence both from this blog and from the lists I'm on since . . . oh, say, April 26th.  I'll fill everybody in on what's been going on with me.

I'm very, very close to my elderly parents (mother 87, father just turned 90).  My mother had just one major problem after another this year and was basically in and out of the hospital starting around Christmas -- pneumonia, complications from COPD, atrial flutter, you name it.  In May, she was back in the hospital with a compression fracture of her L2 vertebra -- easy for her to do due to bad osteoporosis -- and a week later she had a compression fracture of her L3 vertebra as well.

While in the hospital for the second fracture, she had a cardiac event and we thought we'd lost her.  She was on a ventilator for two days, but then started improving.  Still, the fact that she'd basically been bed bound most of this year meant she had lost WAY too much weight and was very weak, so when she was released from the hospital she went to a skilled care facility for physical rehab.  At this point Dad and I were pretty sure she wouldn't be able to go back to their independent living apartment, if she was able to leave skilled care at all -- her heart was in really poor shape, and at her age and condition there was nothing that could be done about it.

On July 27 I lost my mother.  Although Dad and I thought we were prepared for it, it hit me very hard.  I don't cope well with death.  Nevertheless, my dad and I managed the arrangements, and I've been going through Mom's things and helping Dad move into a smaller apartment.  It's been gruesome, and in a particularly badly-timed fit of coincidence, my best friend's father died only a couple weeks after Mom did.

So that's where I've been.  I'm still pretty blue.  Thankfully, my dear, wonderful husband has been unfailingly patient and supportive and has basically carried me through this really bad few months.  I still cry at the drop of a hat -- as Paul and I put it, I keep "tripping over Mom's ghost"; we were very close and memories of her are everywhere -- but it's slowly getting better and I have whole days when I don't unexpectedly burst out crying at some memory or other.

Miraculously I've stayed on plan through this apart from two scheduled off-plan meals (our anniversary and Paul's birthday), so yeah, I'm blue, but I'm keeping the faith!