The years rolled on and I finally did get smart enough to see that my mama was not so dumb after all. Then, gradually, she was not as strong, and her age started showing on her....not so much in her appearance but in little things. About 6 years ago it became necessary to get her a life alert to wear around her neck because she would have little accidents, always in the middle of the night, and we'd get a call from the hospital that they could not get her to respond. The first time it happened, David and I drove to her house like bats out of hell...not knowing what to expect. My sweet husband told me to wait outside, he'd go in first....she had fallen near her bed coming back from the bathroom and could not get up. The central moniter for the life alert system is in her kitchen and they could not hear her response to their call. This has happened a number of times over the last few years and everytime we get that call, my heart is in my throat until we see that she is okay. Unbelievably, she has never broken any bones or had any trauma whatsoever...she just falls.
Last night was different. About 9:30 p.m. our phone rang. I was taking my bath and David came to the bathroom door saying mama's neighbor had called....mama had fallen, was "okay" and was at her house and she thought it best if we got over there. Thank goodness we live only about 2 miles away and we got there in record time. I walked in Nita's house and there sat my mom in her kitchen, holding a towel to her head, covered in blood, all over her hair, all over her clothes, all over her! She had fallen in the kitchen, tried to catch herself on the table, the table toppled over breaking and everything on the table was on the floor. I grabbed her car keys and her purse with her insurance info and we headed to the hospital. Her neighbor is a retired
nurse and knew what to do before we got there. As a matter of fact, Nita had cleaned her up some so I would not have to see mama looking like she did when she got to Nita's.
Got to the ER, they took us back right away, took CAT scan, EKG, blood work, three stitches to her head and pronounced her to be in good condition. No blood on the brain, no elevated blood pressure, etc. Of course, we sat in the ER room from 10:00 - 3:00 a.m.! Got her home, undressed, in bed, soaked her bloody clothes and made sure she was okay before I went to my house for a few hours of sleep. On the way to the ER I told her that it was time for her to move to a place where someone could check on her 24/7. There is a little retirement home a few blocks away from her house, and I pass it every day, very convenient. We are going to check it out Monday, get on the list, and list her house for sale. She's lived there 38 years.
Right now I feel like that little girl again....I'm scared and I want my mommy, but I have to be mommy to her.....please pray that God continues to keep her safe and we make a smooth transition from her home. It will be a big step for her but she now knows she cannot continue to live alone. She will be 88 on June 22nd.
Edited 5/8/08: My mama is amazing! After she got up Wednesday morning I told her we'd go to her beauty shop and get her hair washed to get all the dried blood out. The little shop she goes to caters to the "older" crowd so a lot of her friends were there and made a big fuss over her. She got her hair washed by "Ms. Mary", blow dried and styled by Kim, her regular stylist. They "worked" her right in! Then she wanted to go eat at Olive Garden! Of course, once we got there, she saw some friends and had to visit with them a little bit. After lunch we bought some b'day cards for some family members who have birthdays coming up this weekend and by then I was pooped! We got home, I changed her sheets and did a little more straightening up before I went home for a 2 hour nap. Today we met with a real estate broker who is a great friend of mine (and whose daughter and I have been friends for 20+ years), he's coming next week to list her house and she feels really good about this move. I think she's resigned herself to the inevitable and I told her we would not rush into anything, but we need to take these little baby steps so we can make it easy on her.
I want to thank everyone for your kind words and keeping us in your prayers. I hope I can repay the favor one day.