Thursday, 29 October 2015

Oh Doris

I'm waiting for something to happen!  

I've waited and waited for something to happen.  Something that would be worth you, my reader, taking a few minutes out of your day to read but life seems perfectly normal at the moment and it feels pretty good. Mind you, what normal in our house might be totally off the wall to you.

Who knew that it would be my Mother-In-Law that would break the cycle.  Doris, (82) fell off a tall bar stool in her son's kitchen and fracturing her hip in 3 places.

I mean REALLY?.  For goodness sake Doris, sit on a proper chair will you!  One with 4 legs, down low, with a back rest and one that does not require you to climb up on to it and then become off balance while getting off it. Jeepers!  I thought you older people had a life time of experience to draw on.

Well it would appear that one of the skills not mastered was the ability to sit on a bar stool Doris!

Oh, i hear you.  "Show some respect, Lynda".  Doris knows how i roll.  I can just hear my own Mum when presented by me or one of my five siblings with evidence of an injury.  "Well if you did that to yourself, what would you do to me"?  So as you can imagine, this is exactly what i said to Doris when i confronted her after the operation to replace part of her hip. She didn't laugh. In fact she was so out of it and away with the fairies that i almost didn't recognise her.  Literally. I had to peer hard to recognise her. Did i have the right room, the right ward? Doris was pale, drained, hair limp and looked like a little injured bird swamped by an oversized nest. I had to shelve some of my normal repartee and find some sympathy from somewhere.

Do you think i could buy some from here?  If so, i think my husband would buy me a huge gift card to last a lifetime.
Since i cant fly over to Wales to visit this shop, i got busy.   Right, where are your clothes, I'll take these home to launder and buy you some nice new ones (much needed) while I'm at it.  Would you like a foot rub? Seriously, how do you get to be 82 without ever having had your feet massaged.  How about some lovely cream for your hands and your nails clipped.  Despite her ill health i could tell that buried deep inside was a woman just longing to be pampered.

Flowers? Nah, they just die and take up space on the small cabinet provided.  Much better to buy helium balloons that last weeks and make you smile.

See much nicer than all those Get Well cards.  Who wants to be reminded that they are NOT well.
Doris suffered some minor complications after her op and hadn't been able to eat for several days.  She was looking completely stuffed (excuse the pun).  After talking to the nurses and finding that the treatment would soon be working (you all know what I'm talking about) i felt sure that she was going to need a pick-me-up in the next few days.  I booked Doris a sorely needed in-house haircut, shampoo, head massage and blow dry. Well who knew that the next time i visited I'd be looking at a new woman with a stylish short doo and a new found love for head massages.

I know its all messed up but i love this shorter style that does not allow for those dreaded rollers to be put in.  Its a big improvement.  
Rob works shifts and so he was able to drop in to visit after or before work, which was close by. The rehab facility was over an hour from our house making my visits limited.  A blessing in disguise perhaps?

Anyway i took a day off work to visit her in the second week and she was much improved, moving gingerly around doing therapy.  I had passed a room full of wheel chairs and so i kidnapped her from her shared room and we spent the afternoon outside in a small courtyard in the sun, chatting and laughing for several hours. I don't think we have that MIL/DIL relationship.  It feels more like we are just "girls" hanging together. We went back to her room around 5 and after having just settled in, her dinner arrived. We laughed some more.  I'd filled her up with tea and cake.  After looking at the soup, i know which one I'd rather have.

Doris has cared for her husband with dementia for many years and hasn't really had the opportunity or courage to get out and about.  Jim passed away last year and so we talked about what she would like to do now.  Not as a mother, not as a wife but as Doris. Remember her? Actually she doesn't and so I encouraged her to make a list that we could work our way through.  Doris is so quietly spoken and unassuming that she rarely asks for anything.  Things are going to change.   Do you think she's ready for me?

She's back at home now and getting stronger each day.  I've booked her first holiday in 20 years in February and so now she has a goal.  I'm taking her to Lakes Entrance for 3 days.  Item number one on her bucket list and a desired location she has mentioned before.  She remembers being there when her children were teens and has fond memories.

Its about a 4 hr trip so we will have to take lots of breaks.    The house I've booked is lovely.  
So perhaps this little slip up (or down i should say) has been a wake up call.

Life's short Doris, lets go grab it!

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Tuesday, 13 October 2015

What's That I Spy - A Red P?

Surely not, but yes i think it might be. A Red P in the corner of the front windscreen of Tom's little RAV4 and again on the rear window.  This can only mean one thing.

Tom Got His Probationary
 Drivers Licence! 

on his first attempt last Thursday and its to drive manual vehicles.  No nancy pancy auto licence for Tom.  We have waited for this day for so so long.  Go Tom!

I think he's taking me literally because he's going and going and going.

On Friday i was shocked to see his beaming face appear in front of my desk at work.  His first trip out on his own was a 25 min drive across several suburbs.  I was very surprised.  It was so cute when he called me on arriving back home.   I thanked him and said it was my job to worry.  He told me it was his job to stop me from worrying.

On Saturday we had to visit Doris (his Grandmother) on the other side of the city.  He followed us over the Westgate Bridge, through the tunnel (scary for most) and out onto the Monash Freeway till we reached Forest Hill in the Eastern Suburbs of Melbourne. No problem but Dad joined him on the way home for company.

Sunday he decided we needed cheese.  My response to his request to go get some, was "grab your keys and go get it yourself".  The list of items started getting longer and longer until Tom went out and did our entire weekly shop on his own with my credit card.  Nothing was added to the list other than bananas which he thought was surely a mistake. I'm not sure how long this will last but i sure enjoyed sitting on the couch with my feet up while he shopped.

Today is Tuesday and he was given the task of getting our scripts filled at Chemist Warehouse.  This is just too good!.  I really could get use to this.

Later in the week I've asked him to go to the local shopping centre and check out some clothes for interviews.  He's never done this before so fingers crossed.  With independent travel firmly in his grasp he can now start applying for jobs outside our local area.  Tom hates public transport (strangers and crowds) but he loves driving himself.

Can you tell I'm a proud Mum?  Those 120 hrs of recorded practice was worth it.  Thanks also go to Lynette, his Life Coach (new title, Tutor doesn't work any more),  who has let him use her car for several weeks to get use to the make and model of the car he would use to do his driver test.  Our plan  worked brilliantly.

Fly Tom!

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