Oh My Yummy!
The Test

At Least She Got Sick At The Beach

I've been down 'ee ocean for the last few days.

I wish I could say it was for a carefree romp on the beach, but alas! It was not. It was to help take of my Mom.

She'd been trying to get the best of a cold, but it wasn't getting any better. She resisted all efforts to get her to go to The Beach Doctor, until finally she couldn't breathe.

You read that right: She. Couldn't. Breathe.

My older sister lives just across the bay. Mom finally called her at six o'clock in the morning and admitted that maybe she should go to the hospital. So off they went.

The ER docs basically took one look at her, heard her deep, rasping cough, and immediately admitted her.

Diagnosis? Bacterial pneumonia, exacerbated by congestive heart failure.

Mom was convinced that This Was It, especially since my aunt died in 2005 at 96. She lay back and waited for the Grim Reaper to come and escort her off to the afterlife.

The Grim Reaper evidently had other plans, because healthy doses of antibiotics, albuteral treatments, and Lasix worked their wonders and she improved very quickly. By the time we got there on Friday evening, she was eating dinner, complaining about it, and flirting with the nurses.

See, Mom loves the hospital. To her, it's a spa vacation.

At any rate, the docs discharged her on Saturday to the nursing home across the street for a week of physical therapy, pulmonary treatments, and general perking up. When we went over on Sunday morning, she was dressed and napping on her bed. She was bit confused as to how long she'd been there, but quickly got herself oriented. We figured out the bed controls, the TV, and the best way to get to the bathroom (which is pretty much mandatory when you're 96). I knew she was better because she was criticizing the decor ("Where do suppose they got that damn mirror? Goodwill? And these bedspreads are just damn ugly!") and issuing backhanded compliments on the food. ("Well, this roast beef is certainly tender. It has to be; look how they shred it into bits!") She walked (with her walker) to the lounge, sat on the sofa ("See how it's upholstered in plastic? That's so these old people can pee on it and it won't matter a damn."), and told us to scram.

We did. We headed back to the house, put on our bathing suits, and sat on the beach. The perfect, cool breeze erased my worry. I stared at the ocean and let my mind dissolve and my feet dig in the warm sand and my heart fill and my forehead uncrease itself.

So it goes; one more emergency, one more bullet dodged. I'll take it.

Birthday Card Project Update
Mom is absolutely delighted with all of her wonderful birthday cards.
Deep thanks to all of you who sent her one!