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Category: Caregiving

This is the Closest I Get to Writing a Condensed Version

You guys, it’s been one roller coaster of a few days concerning my mom. (As of this writing, it’s all good–or as good as it can get outside of the brain cancer thing–so please don’t worry.) I have no idea how to break the week down simply, so would you like to start with me at the beginning? Here we go. Last Wednesday: the night of my monthly book club meeting. I’d been looking forward to seeing my friends, but that day, I was exhausted and down and didn’t want to be a drag. David gently pushed me out the door, and I’m glad he did. We talked about the Kobe tragedy and the month’s book selection and a lot of other stuff. I stayed up too late. (I worried about staying up too late.) I had two glasses of wine. (I did not worry about having two glasses of wine.) I wondered if I talked too much. (I always worry about talking too much.) Last Thursday: I dragged myself out of bed in the morning (this is usual). Got the kids…

Definitely Not How We Wanted It to Go

“Well, this isn’t how I thought it was going to go.” Cian said this to me the week before last. He was lying in bed beside me, and the clock said it was about four a.m. He’d been up since the middle of the night with what I thought was the stomach flu. See, Quinlan had started a barfing marathon a few nights before, then it fell on David, Saoirse, and me simultaneously like an avalanche of awful a couple of nights later (because like all things evil in the storybooks, the stomach flu descends during the night). So when a poop bomb went off in Cian’s room at one a.m., and continued to go off for the next three days (it turns out it was the actual flu this time. Silly us!), well. We were used to digestive grossness by then. Cian, though? Well, our poor buddy was in shock. And so it became the theme of our January: this isn’t how we thought it was going to go. My mom had her brain MRI last week, with a much different follow-up than usual with her…

Where We Are

I was on the phone with my mom the other day, laughing about my parenting skills while David was away for work. “I’m really good, Mom,” I told her, “really patient and calm, right up until about six o’clock.” She laughed, because she remembers. “But after six?” I continued. “Nope, I’m done. That’s when the shutters get closed on my brain and the patience goes out the window.” My mom was listening to me. Sometimes she pays only half a bit of attention to me, especially when the TV is on in front of her (sixteen months into brain cancer, and she can still tell me everything going on in the news), or her caregiver is in the room, or when she’s simply tired or extra-weak that day. But that afternoon, she was listening, and talking, and it almost felt like old times. “Well,” Mom said. “It takes a lot of patience to have patience!” When I started to write this update last week, my post was a bit different than it is today. I was going…