Saturday, October 01, 2011

Raising Aging Parents 101

If dad says he can get to the Emergency Room of his choice several cities away, like over a half hour away, faster than an ambulance, then he can. Get in the car and shut up you're wasting time and it's raining outside, just get in the car. So I got in the car and called Erv.

"I'm in the car, they won't call 911." He swore a little bit and said he'd meet us there. I don't know at what age the parents must become before they let their children start calling the shots but I can tell you, we're not there yet, me and Erv. In the car Erv called me again, "You make sure when you get there to tell them mom's having chest pains, they'll take her right away."
Me: "She is having chest pains."
Mom: "No, I'm not having them right now."
Erv: "Let me talk to her."
Mom: "No, I don't want to talk to him."
Me: "She doesn't want to talk to you."
Erv: "Tell them she's having chest pains."
Me: "I plan on it, really."
Holy Mother of God the drama. Once on the freeway the rain became heavier thank goodness for the car ahead of us, we could at least see his tail lights. That was until he pulled under a bridge to wait it out. Dad continued. He's going to give me a heart attack, isn't that ironic? Did I mention there was hail too?
Once mom was ushered to an Emergency Room holding tank, Exam Room M, I went to wait for Erv. We discussed our stubborn parents while tests were being done and I held on to mom's overnight bag. We've been through the drill many times before and knew chest pains meant a 24 hour observation st
To unders
tand this picture you will need the aid of a previous post. It will explain our unnatural fear of infection. But if you're pressed for time, we clean hospital rooms that loved ones are staying in to make sure they are really, really clean. But mom forgot her bleach soaked rags when she packed her overnight bag. This is when the four of us stuck our heads together and improvised. We stuffed a rubber glove full of bleach wipes we found in a official looking container on the counter. That's Erv holding it and that's my dads shoulder in the chair on the left, they are so alike.
When we arrived in the 24 hour observation room and the nurse left, we frantically sta
rted to wipe down the room while mom sat in her bed pointing to things we forgot. You might as well do something with all that nervous energy.
The 24 hour observation and tests determined some kind of blockage so we moved to the Cleveland Clinic and a whole new room to clean. Some time in between the drive to the Emergency Room and wonderful outcome of one artery being op
ened up with three stints, I rifled through the closets and drawers in moms room and found these, taught Dad how to use a digital camera and convinced him to leave his cell phone on even when he isn't going to make a call, showed him where the 911 emergency button is and told him to use it when necessary. I'm literally dragging them through the 21st Century.


ReformingGeek said...

Aging parents. Sigh.

I'm not at the clean the room stage yet but I'm glad my brother lives with my mom. He got to drive her to the ER last time. Ugh.

The blue gloves match the blouse. That's not a good thing.

Children Education said...

Wow, that is amazing and scary. I can understand your need to clean the hospital room.