Wednesday, July 29, 2009

I'm Going to Blow My Stack

The drama never ends.

When last I spoke of them, my sister in law was sent home from the hospital with instructions to follow up with five or six doctors. I was ticked because I wasn't asked if I would take her to said appointments, it was assumed. There was a blog entry.

She read the blog post, as she does all of them. If I write about her, she vents her spleen at Ed and tells him to "control his wife." His response? Fat chance of that happening.

So, after I wrote the post linked above on May 23rd, I called the next day to ask what time she need to be at the doctor's office to have a stent put in. "You don't need to take me, I'll take myself." Um, no, with a surgical procedure, they don't let patients drive home. For one factor, anesthesia is still in the system. For another, she's on blood thinners-a vein puncture doesn't close up quickly. She could bleed out if she hit the brakes too hard.

I mention this and she says "I'll wait until they let me leave." Sorry, with a vein puncture, that's not going to happen. The whole exchange was rather pissy. Each time I brought up a valid reason for why her plan would not work, she refused to listen. I bowed out. I told Ed I was washing my hands of it.

It was clear she'd read the blog and rather than talk to ME, she was going to breathe fire on Ed when she next spoke to him. Only problem was, after an eight day hospital stay and two weeks at home, he wasn't talking to her, either. He'd come to realize that the ONLY time he hears from his mother or sister is when they need him to do something. He was done with them, too.

There's more to the story than that, but it's a reasonable summary.

So, neither one of us was calling them. I think Ed wanted to see how long it would take before they picked up the phone. Tick tock, tick tock.

No calls until I got a voice mail on July 4th, six weeks after we'd last spoken. I was at a parade with the boys and got a breezy, phony-cheerful message "Hi, it's me. Miss you and the boys. Happy 4th of July. I need you to call me when you get a chance."

There's that word again, need. In Janespeak, it translated into "I'm going to sucker you into doing something for me, but I won't leave it in a message-I'll make you call me back so you can't get out of it." Nope, I wasn't buying it. Considering how many times I've left messages in the past year that would be ignored for weeks, ignoring ONE message wasn't that bad.

Then a week ago, Ed's mom calls him. "Are you mad at me?" He explains that no, he's not mad at HER. During the conversation, he once again tells his mom that the infections that he got were a direct result of visiting Jane in the hospital. She acted as if this was new information, when I'd told her at least twice, my sister in law several times and Ed had stated it, too. She refuses to believe it.

It ends up that Jane is in the hospital. Again. According to Mom, she's been there four weeks. Jane's doctor called mom to say that things don't look good: renal failure, congestive heart failure, still with the stupid infections that Ed had (and didn't get from her, remember?) and leg pain. The doctor says there's possible dialysis in her future. Not a surprise, the Vancomycin that she's on is murder on a healthy body. She's on a morphine drip for the pain.

Some of what his mom said didn't make sense, so I called sister in law to see what she knew. Actually, Jane's been in three weeks (hmm, since around July 4th). She asked the doctor to call mom and give her a scenario worse than it is, so that mom won't expect her to come home from the hospital and do everything. Supposedly, things aren't as bad as the doctor told mom. The truth? I suspect that what the doctor told mom is the truth, but Jane chooses to live in a fantasy land about the status of her health.

In the meantime, our nephew has been living with Mom and Jane for the past year. At first, the plan was for him to get a job and move out on his own in a few months. Instead, over time, he's turned into mom's slave, unable to leave the house to socialize with friends or even to go run errands. Nephew does not drive, and has had some unrealistic expectations placed upon him (like doing a weekly grocery shopping, then bringing it all home on a bicycle.)

Remember, they weren't calling us-and nephew's suggestions to do so were blown off. In his Asperger's logical mind, mom was watching our garage door, therefore, she wanted to know what we were up to. He was thinking she should pick up the phone, instead of expecting us to have ESP and know that she needed help.

After three weeks in the hospital, Jane got transferred to the same rehabilitation center she was in back in January (if you're keeping tally, I think it's now 72 days in the hospital so far this year, and it was 78 total last year). She needed items that were too large to transport on the bicycle. Sorry, in 100 degree heat, expectingy an asthmatic is ride his bike three miles to the nursing home is too much. He refused, but asked a friend to come over and help out and was told his friend could not come to the house.

I spoke to sister in law again yesterday and was updated. After hearing all of it, I called Ed and insisted he go over there after work to find out what the hell was going on and see what we should do. He spoke to nephew for a while and said he'd take him to nursing home and store today. As he put it, there was detente-but if mom pulled another one of her verbal tirades, nephew was going home.

When I got over there this afternoon, she'd just finished being nasty to him. Apparently, she was annoyed that 'everyone runs to help YOU and ignores me'. Um, we're not psychic, nor are we setting foot in a hospital when both of us have open wounds of some sort on our bodies. We said we'd bring him, but neither of us is going inside (me because I don't think Jane wants to talk to me, Ed because of the infection risk)

This was the final straw. On the way to run his errands, nephew told me what had happened. The plane ticket is purchased, while he is packing to go home tomorrow as I write this.

My kids stayed with mom while I ran nephew around in the car. The plan was to take the boys along, I don't think my mother in law is capable of watching Game Teen. They wanted to stay, she insisted she was up for it. However, she and Game Teen disagreed on something and she told him to LEAVE! The house is locked up, so she instead made him sit on the front porch for a while.

When we returned, I was asked how Jane was. I was honest, telling her I didn't go into the nursing home. I got the wrath of Mom, mad that I didn't see her. My response was "I don't think she wants to see me, to be honest-her last phone conversation with me was quite clear on that front."

The nasty retort? "Sue, it goes both ways, you know."

WHAT THE F*CK?


I bit my tongue.

I've been called the know it all bitch, all for taking an interest in health treatments, for suggesting they put their house in a living trust four years ago, and basically, for trying to be helpful. Now that I've backed off, because they don't like what I have to say, I'm called out for NOT doing anything.

It does go both ways, but you can't have it both ways.

Something has to give. It won't be me and I don't think it should be Ed.

Without nephew there, neither Jane nor mom is capable of cooking, cleaning, grocery shopping, yard work or pool maintenance. How can one expect to live independently if they can do nothing without assistance?

I'm the evil person who has said for a long time that they should be in assisted living. Sister in law has been on that bandwagon since nephew explained the situation he moved into a year ago. Ed doesn't want to come across as an ogre for bringing it up again.

Hell, if he does, they will think that it was my idea, anyway.

Not my battle to have, yet, it's not a battle Ed wants.

It is going to lay unresolved until there is no other option.

I hate this.

**Note** I may take this down. It's pretty harsh, but it is my opinion. I respect Ed's point of view and if he doesn't want it to stay up, it won't.

5 People talked back:

daysgoby said...

Sending you love, and support.

songbird's crazy world said...

DO NOT REMOVE THIS POST!!!!

those two need to be in assisted living of some sort, and everyone knows it.

simba2 said...

I wouldn't remove this post either... but I know you may have to.

They need to be in assisted living before they become more of a danger to themselves and everyone around them.

Anna said...

Hang in there! Family drama is never easy and this sounds like an extreme case. Do what's best for you, Ed and the boys.

Assisted living may not end up being a choice they'll get to make. And good for nephew that he was able to get the heck out of dodge, poor thing.

DoeWDW said...

Hooray that nephew is out of that situation. No need for him to suffer. I say let the post up and let the chips fall where they may, but I understand following Ed's wishes if he would like it removed. Stand your ground, Suzanne. Assisted living really is what they both need, whether they realize it or not.
- Doreen in PA