Saturday and Sunday; a weekend off call where I'm trying to balance my own needs for quiet, connection with Denny, and my duties to parents. I've managed all three so far and we are only into early Sunday morning right now. What this day will bring isn't entirely clear; it is unstructured and ambiguous.
Saturday morning I couldn't sleep; wide awake at 6 AM, fueled by coffee and an energy that was mostly restless, I went to a yoga class. The instructor was new to me and he put our Level I/II class through some new moves. I'm sore today but glad to have participated; there is always something to be learned in yoga. Shoulders, "heart center", and upper arms are talking to me today, a reminder of all those stretches and extensions.
Then, I was off with Denny on a series of errands and outings that had me watching the clock, still restless and in dread of the afternoon's plans. I shouldn't have felt that way but I did. Dad had asked me to accompany him to the reception for his friends Nancy and Frank, a couple who met at Merrill Gardens, courted, fell in love, and were married several days ago. Both in their 80's they looked fabulous and the reception was impressive. Everyone, save me and two men sporting jeans, were dressed "to the nines". Dad had a glass of wine at the event and seemed to enjoy the fanfare. He particularly like the "Eat, Drink and Re-Marry" banner posted behind Barbara who was serving drinks. Dad's balance was quite unsteady after the wine and it was a challenge to get him safely into my car for our short ride up to the hospital to visit Mom. We didn't stay long but both were glad to see each other. MM is right; neither Mom nor Dad say much but it's touching to see them side by side; yesterday she was in bed and I pulled his wheelchair up close so they could hold hands. Dad was ready to get back home after 30 minutes, tuckered out by the reception and the outing to visit Mom. I left him resting in the recliner at Merrill Gardens with an Ensure chocolate shake, the TV remote and a reminder to tune into Lawrence Welk at 6PM on PBS. By the time I made it home, I too was ready for a glass (actually 2) of wine with Denny. With all good intentions to read afterwards, I zapped out around 8 PM dead to the world. I even missed out on Mom's phone call to me on my cell timing in at 9:30 PM even though the phone was by my bedside. The wine, perhaps?
And today as I write this, I am at the hospital visiting Mom. She is busy with physical therapy right now, walking the halls and bearing weight on the leg that exactly three weeks ago was fractured after a fall in her apartment. Even at age 90 progress can be made if there is attention to detail and perseverance (hers and theirs). The rehab unit is amazing. I learned today that the unit recently won an award for being in the top 5% of rehab units nationwide. "Only the very best" as we say. We are hoping Mom will return to Merrill Gardens later this week, with 24/7 care at least for awhile. She has a lot of work ahead but she's benefited from an excellent jump start.
And the rest of today? Still unstructured. I'm hoping to get back to that book of mine, Love in the Time of Cholera by Marquez. That and more thinking about how to structure my professional life in 2008.