Hospital-ity

Renovation to Mom’s house is nearly complete, an occupancy permit has been granted, and after over four years, there is a glimmer of hope that she will get to live in her own home again before she dies! (Plot synopsis here, if you’re new!)

Why, after fourfuckingyears, has this become a priority for my niece, DQ, and her husband, BJ? Progress was sporadic from the start, since BJ needed time off for vacations, deer hunting – not to mention his paying jobs. I had considered several options to increase his motivation over the past few years, but Mom didn’t want to make anyone mad.

The motivation came from an unexpected source – BJ’s parents. When DQ and BJ first married, BJ’s parents bought the house out of foreclosure, offering to rent the house back to them. This arrangement worked fairly well – until September, when BJ’s parents announced their plans to get a divorce. The house must be sold. By Christmas. Essentially, they’re being evicted!

Taking Mom to the cardiologist when this was breaking news, she let me know that DQ had been putting pressure on to change the deed to the house before moving in. For her protection. My reaction was a bit less than enthusiastic…

daisyfae: FUCK THAT!

Mom: I know. I don’t see any reason it can’t wait until after we move in, but she’s worried that the rest of the family will cause trouble and she’ll be homeless.

daisyfae: She has earned compensation for taking care of you!  No one is arguing that! She can always sell the land you gave them. [grinding teeth] You just tell me what you want to do and i’ll make it happen…

Mom: She’s putting pressure on me to set up an appointment with the attorney.

daisyfae: Under no circumstances are you to go to see the attorney to change your will, or the deed to the house, without me present. This will not only protect you, but it will protect DQ should anyone ever think there was coercion.

Mom: That makes sense. I just don’t want her to get upset with me…

daisyfae: Tell her it’s my schedule. i really am busy at work, so taking a day off is going to be tough.

And that’s where we left it…

The message was apparently delivered. A few days later i started getting passive-aggressive pings from DQ about setting up an appointment with the attorney. i was polite – and my schedule really has gotten tough.

This is unpleasant and stressful.  i became engaged in another round of “Trailer Park Mexican Standoff” via e-mail. Trying to take the heat for Mom, without causing any trouble. My instinct is to call bullshit, and be a far more direct, but Mom requested the sideways approach.

It didn’t surprise me to get a call from DQ as i was leaving work last Thursday. Because i was driving, i let it go to voicemail. Just not in the mood to deal with the bullshit. Retrieved the voicemail when i got home.

DQ: Took Granny to the doctor today because her cough has gotten worse, and she’s been very weak. Doctor sent us directly to ER. They’re going to admit her – probable pneumonia. I’ll keep you posted.

Well.

So much for my righteous indignation. When shit hits the fan, DQ does an excellent job taking care of Mom. All squabbles set aside. Priorities firm. We’ll sort out the legal stuff later.

Visited Mom over the weekend, and she took a few minutes to write a note to The Boy. Wished him a happy birthday. Told him she’s proud of him. Didn’t mention her troubles.

hospital-ity

She’s home now, and is doing much better. We came up with a new plan of attack.  We’ll get back to the regularly scheduled bullshit later…

Where’s a Tsunami when you need it?

On Monday, i took Mom to see her smokin’ hot cardiologist for a routine check up.  One of the reasons i continue to have a potentially life-altering mild girl-crush on Dr. M is that she will fuss over my mother like she’s the only patient since the beginning of all time. 

Before entering the exam room, she had familiarized herself with every single detail of Mom’s lung cancer diagnosis, which was provided in an update to her medical records.  She also flashed me a Hollywood smile and asked where i’d gotten the tan*.  The good news?  Heart doctor says Mom is doing great on the cardiology front.  One less thing…

Mom has now had two of the four scheduled radiation treatments.  She’s chipper and enjoying the frequent doctor visits – each of which means a breakfast, lunch or dinner OUT.  i asked about any discomfort or side effects.  She said “Well, at first I thought I felt it burning – but I realized that was just my imagination.  It doesn’t hurt, I just get stiff staying in one place for so long…”.

As we wrapped up the cardiology appointment, it was off for lunch at our “usual” restaurant.  i had noticed that Mom has lost a couple of pounds – but at 4″9″ tall and 196 pounds, she’s not the picture of fitness.  The name “Short Round” comes to mind.  She’s never exercised, and “fried” is her favorite food group.  At 82?  It’s a miracle she’s able to walk under her own power at all…

She shuffled from the car to the door of the restaurant – huffing and puffing the short distance from the reserved “handicapped” parking space.  Once inside?  She was off like a rocket** to read the ‘daily specials’ board, and followed on the heels of the restaurant hostess like a tracking hound. 

Waiting for lunch, Mom mentioned that things are going pretty well in the trailer park.  Seems the run of stomach flu has passed.  Steady progress on the renovated homestead.  They’ve gotten rid of one dog, and bought another – a puppy who is yet to be house trained, making late night visits to the bathroom like walking a minefield.

My niece’s youngest daughter, DQ III, is quite a handful at three years old.  Such a spunky little thing that she must have her own bedroom – separate from the bedroom of DQ, Jr., who is fifteen and “needs her space”.  It has rankled me for over a year that while Mom sleeps on a bed in DQ’s living room during renovations, the two kids have their own PRIVATE bedrooms.

But when Mom informed me that little DQ III is “going through a phase” where she sleeps with DQ and BJ every night?  i about choked on my bourbon barrel ale***.  “You mean that the little shit isn’t even USING that bedroom while you’re on display in the living room like a zoo animal?  Seriously, Mom, do you want me to say something?  This is bullshit!”

“Oh, no… Don’t rock the boat…”

lovely photo found here.

* It was a tan, and not just blushing…

** If i really want to see her move?  Put her within 20 yards of an “all you can eat” buffet trough and watch her go!  Oh, and for someone who can’t read because of eye troubles?  Stick a menu in her hands and she’s worked through the fine print in seconds…

*** Shut. Up.  It was a late lunch.  And it’s a lovely beer…