Got to work on time, and it was busy today. Good deal because it makes my day go so much faster.
At 3:45, I get out and call my mom's for the daily check in. I'd called yesterday around 5ish, and got the machine. I figured they'd been out and didn't think much of it. Well, I should have-today's call got my stepdad on the phone with the news that Mom was in the hospital.
Her home health aide had come yesterday while stepdad was out running errands. Mom complained of tingling in her arms (as soon as he said that, I knew what it meant). The aide called the doctor's office, doctors office says "Hospital, ASAP" What does this mean, you ask? Blood clots. Now, those of you who know me well know I've had a round and a bout with them. I was VERY lucky the first time (DVT), and the second time, I knew what it was and caught it early. I'm extremely relieved that Mom said something to the aide as soon as she experienced the tingling, instead of toughing it out.
The bad part is that they know there's a clot in her chest-Ultrasound has been ordered. They've also ordered an MRI-suspecting that she's had a small stroke. After two hours with her, I can say that she's had a minor stroke. She's lost some words, derailed more than is normal in general conversation and when asked questions, answers perfectly logically with a different answer. For example, a nurse asked her if she liked chocolate, and she answered by telling a story about Joe Namath, as if that was what was asked of her. She got annoyed that the nurse didn't stay to hear about Broadway Joe.
Chemo's on hold, treatment at this point is uncertain-the chemo complicates the normal protocols. They'd insert a screen to prevent her throwing a clot to the lungs or heart, but can't. They can't give heparin, due to the chemo.
She doesn't know, but she's lost considerable amounts of hair (no access to a mirror is a *good* thing). She asked me to brush her hair, and it was coming out in clumps. Stepdad started to say something, but I shot him a look and mouthed "DON'T YOU DARE SAY ANYTHING" as I was grabbing the hair out of the comb, out of her sight.
I think the hardest part of this today was seeing how scared she is, and hearing my stepdad choke up on the phone when he was telling me what was going on. This is a strong, resilient lady, and to see her scared is something I have never experienced before.
Now, to figure out how I can make the best of her birthday, which will now be spent in the hospital. Ideas?