Impatience is my middle name

It is another night at the ER. My mind seemed split in two when I received the call. Tonight is a perfect example to be careful what you wish for.

My son and I had made last-minute plans to see a movie. We hadn’t seen five minutes of the movie when I wanted to leave. Ridiculous plot, poorly constructed characters… I began a mental calculation on the remaining time until it was over.

During a quiet moment, I heard a low buzz. It wasn’t getting louder, but it wasn’t going away. My phone. Yes, it was my cellphone. A phonecall from my husband at 10:30 pm could only mean bad news.

We rushed to the lobby and returned the call. A virus has spread throughout my mom’s facility, and her flu shot offered no protection.

The night staff confirmed what she had said: several residents had been to the ER for treatment. She was the next patient.

My mind rambled with facts, some helpful, most was useless. I went into denial. I had just seen her five hours earlier. There must be a mistake. I rattled off doctors’ names and her medication list. With each rapid-fire announcement, my son just nodded his head and continued driving calmly towards her residence.

I was not prepared for the scene in her room. I will tactfully say I have never been around such nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. My mother was almost incoherent from her symptoms, dehydration, and fatigue as it brought havoc due to her Alzheimer’s.

Suddenly it was as if I had been slapped in the face. I’m in charge. My mind rattles off a priority checklist. Do this, don’t do that. Oh, and show compassion. People appreciate that when they are sick.

Now she is resting quietly as we wait for test results to come back. What a difference a calm moment makes. I’m thankful my husband was out of town, or no one would have received the call from her facility. She would be here all alone for hours. I’m thankful God gave me such a calm, compassionate, and patient son. I’m thankful for the staff at her facility. I’m thankful for the hospital staff. I’m thankful we haven’t been moved to a room. There is still hope that this will be short-lived.

I’m thankful my mother took such good care of me when I was a child. Who knew she was preparing me for the day when I would be taking care of her?

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19 thoughts on “Impatience is my middle name

  1. on thehomefrontandbeyond December 19, 2012 at 3:56 am Reply

    wow – wishing your mom the best and good for you for taking the reins


  2. lenwilliamscarver December 19, 2012 at 5:26 am Reply

    Prayers for your mother and the staff caring for her. Kudos to you for taking so good care of her and spending time with her here. Cherish your moments for you are making precious memories!


  3. transformedbythejourney December 19, 2012 at 5:38 am Reply

    I am so sorry that you and your family (and your momma) are going through this. I am grateful with you for the timing and your availability. I know these moments are traumatic in their on right and make us wonder ‘how much longer’ will we have together. May she experince a speedy recovery and be home soon, ready to celerate a Merry Christmas with you.


  4. sagescenery December 19, 2012 at 9:21 am Reply

    I have soooo been there!! Yes, we need to take that one calm moment Jesus gives, to ask for His help to get through the frightful times…so scary!! You’ve done the right thing in remembering to be thankful for the good you see in the midst of craziness!! I’m praying for all of you!!


  5. writerwannabe763 December 19, 2012 at 6:21 pm Reply

    I’m glad things seem to have settled down…hope she improves.. There does come that time for many of us that we do switch roles with our parents…and it’s in moments like you are in that we seem to realize it more..Diane


    • Overwhelmed By Joy January 7, 2013 at 12:20 pm Reply

      I wrote an update on where things stand. We definitely have reversed roles. It is a privilege to care for her.


  6. Katie Renee December 19, 2012 at 7:41 pm Reply

    Sending many prayers your way.. hope all becomes well soon!


  7. wayfinder December 19, 2012 at 8:45 pm Reply

    All the best in this difficult time; our faith is such a gift in the face of our frail humanity, may yours stay strong.


    • Overwhelmed By Joy January 7, 2013 at 12:18 pm Reply

      Thank you for the encouragement. This time has given me plenty of opportunity to stay focused on faith and family.


  8. jackiebelle December 19, 2012 at 9:13 pm Reply

    You are always such an inspiration. Everyone wants compassionate when they are so sick. Sometimes it is hard not to get caught up in the panic of the situation and you stayed strong!!


  9. inspire1life December 20, 2012 at 9:42 am Reply

    Blessings to You and your Mom


  10. GO.Home. Blog December 20, 2012 at 1:32 pm Reply

    I’m sorry to hear about your Mother! I will be praying for you all. God is with you through all things!


  11. onestrangelifeblog December 21, 2012 at 3:55 pm Reply

    How awful for your poor mom (and the others there). I hope she’s better soon.


  12. It's a matter of prayer December 23, 2012 at 4:04 pm Reply

    I don’t know how your struggles can be inspirational but they are. It is so easy to give up but vicariously we find strength and joy through you. May God pour out an abundance of joy and hope upon you and your loved ones.


    • Overwhelmed By Joy January 7, 2013 at 12:14 pm Reply

      Thank you. I truly believe there can be joy in the journey. Not always because of the journey, but in the midst of it all. May God bless you richly this year.


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