Wednesday, February 17, 2016

2016 Week 6: Mother

My last post ended with the query, "What will next week hold?"
Monday Mother ended up in the ER with a serious bowel obstruction.

I went up Tuesday. She had slept well (morphine-induced) and was in no pain, just waiting.
Her health professionals wanted the blood flow rates to go down (lower Coumadin levels) to insert a pick line and prepare for surgery, if necessary.
I could only stay an hour and half and then had to rush back to meet my classes in Marion.

I spent Wednesday in the recliner at home with a heating pad to relieve lower back pain, a restful day grading papers and reading.

With pick line in and no change in her condition, Mother's surgery was scheduled for Thursday at 1:00 p.m. when I was due in the classroom. It was hard to focus on teaching, but there was nothing I could do for Mother that day, except worry and pray. 

Alan texted the good news later that afternoon--laproscopic surgery through three small holes, released the kinked intestine bound by scar tissue, and the bowel was restored to normal function. I could finally breathe! 
She was sedated and wouldn't be allowed to wake up till the next morning. When I arrived Friday she was awake, alert, and hungry! But, to her chagrin, had to remain on a clear liquid diet for at least a day.

She had a string of visitors and also enjoyed hearing about all the people everywhere who were praying for her--amazed and comforted listening to the many Facebook or e-mail messages.

I spent the night in Mother's Grace Village apartment and looked through all the family photo albums, searching for pictures of young Uncle Phil (who passed away January 31st) when he came back from Europe after MIA for a time, having been wounded while serving in WWII.
1945, with Uncle Phil

When I arrived back at the hospital Saturday morning, Mother was very serene reflecting on a memory that came back insistently throughout the night. She was in the Glee Club in high school, Miss Ziegler the director. The most vivid recollection was of competing in Valley Forge, Pennsylvania. The lyrics of one song, taken from Psalm 103, kept going over and over in her mind. When she tried to recite them for me she became a little upset because as many times as she'd gone over them in the night, now she was getting stuck in one part.

She fell asleep. Alan and I talked in the hallway so as not to disturb.

Interestingly, after he left and I quietly resumed my vigil, she opened her eyes and recited the following:
Bless the LORD, oh my soul,
and all that is within me bless his holy name.

He is full of compassion and mercy
long suffering and great in goodness.

He will not always chide
nor leave his wrath forever more.

Bless the LORD, oh my soul.

Mother also told me the story of the terrible winter in Valley Forge during the Revolutionary War, when so many soldiers died of satrvation, disease and exposure.

The surgeon came in with a very positive report--she could eat solids and go back home in a day!

Studying the menu

Before heading back to Upland for the night, I stopped by Mother's apartment to do laundry and gather some clothes for when she'd be discharged the next day, especially her winter coat to face the frigid temperatures.

I slept soundly in my own bed that night and didn't even notice when Mike got back from his long day at robotics.

February 14th was Rebecca's 18-monthaversary! 

 Mother commented, "That 's how old you were when we went to Argentina."

With Daddy in New York                                                                             On the ship

Sunday, Valentine's Day, was also the day Mother got to go home!
I stayed for a day to help her transition, and worried a little after I left. But all reports are that she is coping quite well. Brother Alan is nearby and can check on her more regularly.

Once again I close wondering what lies ahead, but assured of the Lord's promise, "Lo, I am with you always."


The Bug said...

So glad your mother is doing well! It's always stressful when those we love are ill.

Thanks for the Rebecca sighting :)

Lhoyt said...

Thanks for the details about Mother