I'm grateful for a part-time work schedule with Mondays/Tuesdays "off". Most Mondays I enjoy hearing the garbage and recycling trucks pull up mid morning to drag off a week's supply of castoff "stuff". Once the trucks drive away, I design the rest of my day. Sometimes there's not much on my plate (ahhhh...) and other Mondays I run around with a list of errands and phone calls and a visit to Mom and Dad.
This Monday I find myself at the bedside of my Mom, hospitalized since last night. If I were superstitious, I'd be freaking out about her room number. This is the same room my father-in-law was in 12 years ago when he died of leukemia. For some reason she landed a bed on the Oncology floor. Sitting here brings back some powerful memories of E.J.'s rapid onset illness and his quick but relatively painless passing less than two weeks later. Like wisps of the past, I imagine my then 10 and 12 year old children at his bedside, comforting their grandfather, drawing him pictures, and trying to make him smile. I can see my husband's mother and two sisters coming in and out of the room. I remember the IV infusing , the television set to a golf match, and the food trays that came and went without much being eaten. He died in this very room.. How weird it feels to be here, sitting beside Mom. There are over 200 beds in this hospital. Why this one?
We don't yet have a firm grip on what's going on with Mom. I'm trying to tread the fine line between knowing "a lot" and letting the doctors in charge do their jobs. I'm pretty good at that. I think. People are rallying around to support Dad who's very worried about his life partner. I'm far more concerned for him, truth be known. Mom's situation is out of my control.
I'm wondering how this week will play out. With big weekend plans to fly to Chicago for my niece's wedding, I'm hoping that whatever ails Mom is simple, straightforward and that she'll be able to get back home so that leaving for those few days won't create havoc in my Dad's life. I'm cautiously optimistic.
With the gray, rainy skies lightening and the sun starting to shine outside the hospital window, I'm wondering how long I should stay here. Mom is sleeping. She's interacting very little. Maybe I should head up north to see Dad. Decisions.
I'm weary. I'm sad. I'm frustrated. But at least I'm not crying today; that got worked out plenty well last evening.
What will this week bring?