Thursday, December 25, 2008

Now That All Is Said and Done

I might just skip over Christmas next year. Well, I guess I mean no big to-do. Why, you may wonder? Well, it seems to have fallen upon my shoulders to make sure everything about the day (and the eve) happen as the other two in the house think it should. This year shopping was a nightmare with limited lists and mom's jumping the gun on everyone else leaving not much left, list-wise, to buy. New lists were created and my daughter, 'A', and I finished shopping in plenty of time... for mom to decide that she wasn't thrilled with her purchases and wasn't there anything else we wanted. And then.........

She got ill.

It started with a backache that physical therapy didn't help (she claims). There was no convincing her that when you exercise muscles that you don't normally use, they are going to ache. Oh well. She scheduled her self for some cortisone injections.

Then her brother died and that spiraled everything down hill. I do empathize. Really, I do. But I have a low tolerance for the constant loud sighs and juvenile behavior that accompanies her 'illness'. She says she needs someone to take care of her. Her doc put her on some medication that evidently caused dizziness. Now she's trying another type and is not much better. I did get her up to the pain management clinic in Newburyport for her shots on Thursday. She was fine that day. Anyway, over the past nearly two weeks she had me leave work early to take her to the doctor (they said she was fine) and then take the day off this past Monday because she felt dizzy and pretty much stayed in bed for the day. She says she's trying. I'm sure Tuck's wasn't happy about being a clerk short on the Monday, three days before Christmas, after a three day weekend storm. My bank account isn't happy, either.

Christmas Eve rolled around and the gifts went under the tree.It's my job to arrange them and then play Santa in the morning. This year two of our normal guests went away for three weeks to cruise the Barbados (yes, oh please, I want that!) They stopped by last week, before they left, and regifted some Jelly Bellies. We are in charge of taking care of their house. The mail and such. Yesterday I had to shovel out the three day's worth of snowfall at their house. Oh MY back! My mom called her friend (our other usual Christmas dinner guest) and canceled with her. Still, I did have a special Christmas dinner to execute for just the three of us. Last year I had promised 'A' that I would make Cito's Special this year and she has patiently waited. It's an all day ordeal that I did get finished yesterday amid the errands, banking, getting 'A' to work and back, shoveling, and working on piano keys. Today I finished the topping while 'A' peeled carrots and potatoes. Thank goodness that 'A' found it within herself to pitch in and help out. She hates cooking from scratch!

Now all is done and cleaned up but the leftovers. Mom is resting on the sofa (last I checked) reading a book. 'A' and I worked on a new jigsaw puzzle for a little while. Mom's canceled guest stopped by with some home-baked cookies. We have an entire pecan pie to eat, too! Tomorrow the world goes back to normal (or semi, considering the mall madness that will probably be occurring without us). 'A' will be back at work and I've got a tuning job. I'm hoping mom will feel a little better tomorrow. I keep hoping. Spring is usually the only cure and that's way too far away.

(afterword - I don't mean to complain 'bout mom so much. She's never had to manage on her own...ever. Seems like all I've done for my adult life is manage on my own. I'm tired.)


Elizabeth down the street said...

Are those the regifted jellybellies or is that the puzzle?!

deb said...

Oh, thank you for the chuckle, E. They're the jellybellies. The puzzle is overlapping butterflies, is huge, and should consume weeks of effort. Photo may follow success.

Linda Ball said...

The Christmas before my mother died we were fighting these battles with doctors and pain. I don't feel bad that I didn't know that she had stage four Multiple Myeloma and her bones were riddled with little (very painful) fractures and calcium was spilling into her blood unchecked threatening all manners of health and sanity. I don't feel bad about feeling as you did because doctor after doctor gave it a miss, too. Probably nothing like that is lurking with your mom and mine demanded a lot in her old age (although she was remarkably self-sufficient for a long time) when she might have only had ailments we knew about. Still, it is so TIRING. We are old ourselves, for heaven's sake.

deb said...

Mom's tends to be a combination of mild hypochondria and depression. She's always been that way. Very much an I can't deal with it type person. It's been suggested a few times since my dad died that she see a therapist. She says it's not her 'thing' yet every time she sees her PCP she wants to rehash.

She's minimally better today. At least she got dressed!

Linda Ball said...

We said my mom was a hypochondriac. And one physician gave her anti-depression medication when he couldn't find anything wrong with her and she was sad because my sister had had a cerebral hemorrhage. And maybe she was a hypochondriac. And maybe she was depressed. (Although I had to take her off the anti-depressant because of dermatitis and it didn't seem to make a difference one way or the other.) But at the end of the day, she was also dying of something very real with confusing symptoms. We no longer talk about her and hypochondria. As they say: "Just because you are a hypochondriac, doesn't mean you aren't really ill." It makes anything real confusing, though, that's for sure. Hope you mom is better.

deb said...

Confusing, to be sure. This goes back decades, and of course there have been times when she has been ill. You're correct in that deciphering the symptoms and reactions is a nightmare. And yes, misdiagnosis and/or missed diagnosis is more likely. Some of it takes just being constantly around her to figure out (watching her work herself up in to it). I think, at this age for her (76), she is probably one of the more x-rayed and MRIed folks around!

Now that Christmas has passed, her meds under control, and whatever, she has been lots better.