Well, it’s been awhile since I posted about my mother, mostly because I’ve been exhausted again, and the parade of things going wrong/dragging on and no just gets tedious. In any case, shortly after my last post on this subject, both of her therapists discharged her and she was on her own. Because her back was continuing to hurt, to the point she was no longer doing her exercises and refused to do any walking down the street or to the bookstore or even to the mailbox, her physical therapist recommended we see her primary care.
So we did, the day after she was discharged, on Friday March 25. He examined her carefully, and wrote an order for her to get x-rays done which we did that same afternoon. The following Wednesday we heard back — nothing wrong. No broken rib, no broken scapula, no new compression fracture, lungs look fine… he even ruled out cancer based on the MRI done back in February. Instead he thinks it’s soft tissue damage sustained when she fell trying to pet the rabbit. It’s possible the bone could be bruised as well, and in both cases at her age such injuries take a long time to heal and cause the kind of pain she’s experiencing. He suggested she take pain medication for it until it heals, and so last week she stopped taking the Tramadol she’d been taking at night and started taking Vicodin in the morning. (She has no trouble sleeping at night now).
Sometime in there (I think after the first Vicodin) she started getting indigestion. The kind where she burps and feels full and so doesn’t want to eat, and even when she does it, she only eats about half of what she was eating before she feels full again. That went on for a week and this last Friday she really began to fall down on the drinking so I had to step up my visits and start bugging her about getting in the fluids. That’s when I realized she wasn’t eating as much either, which, given she now weighs 115.5 (up a pound from when she came home from The Forum) is not good. So today I called The PCP to ask about that. Turns out it’s a common side effect of the medications, and he prescribed Maalox.
Because of all that… and the pain continuing in her back even with the vicodin, she’s faltering on being able to prepare her meals, taking all morning to put together one of her (elaborate) vegetarian salads… and so skipping meals, etc. Today we were supposed to do her shower, but once again she was too tired and weak to do it. Just moving from the sofa to the chair left her out of breath. If the physical therapist is right, that’s because she’s been so sedentary of late, spending more time lying down than sitting up and letting what little strength she’d regained waste away.
So. I have no idea what to do. Bible class, of course, has spoken directly to the situation I am in, since Pastor’s been teaching about the Potter’s Wheel and how God puts us on it in order to conform us to the image of His Son — which happens only when we are broken. In fact, he’s got a whole doctrine of brokenness, that’s been totally relevant. I’m still assimilating it all, trying to put the pieces together, and make the application. Which is probably another reason why I’ve not been doing many posts. Too much to think about and not much to say since I don’t feel like I understand it yet, and probably won’t for some time. But that goes with the Potter’s Wheel experience, too: you don’t understand. Only after it’s over can you look back and see how it was the best thing for you and what it did to you…
Anyway, that’s the current update. Tomorrow we’re supposed to finally see the ear doctor about getting a hearing aid. My mother suggested today we cancel but I told her it would be another three months before we’d get in so we’re going to go for it. Last week she had to go to the dentist twice, once for a cleaning and second because the hygienist found spots she thought were suspicious and wanted the dentist to look at, but he found nothing. “Her teeth are hard as marble!” he declared.
So that was weird. But not the only weird thing that’s happened by a long shot. It would be nice if she could finally start to recover. This just seems to be going on and on and on… So I’d appreciate your prayers in that regard. Or if it’s not His will for her to recover, then guidance as to what we’re to do. She agreed today that I cannot move in with her, so it might have to be Assisted Living…