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I MISSED THE REUNION
7 March 2007
Those who have been following the saga of my mother's broken ankle may have forgotten exactly how she got it in the first place.
Her best friend Paula had been in the hospital for several weeks, with severe abdominal problems and had just been released, after a laparoscopic procedure (using a tiny puncture in the abdomen to try to fix the problem). Paula lives alone and my mother wasn't going to let her go home and recuperate by herself, so she was going to bring Paula to home with her, where she would take care of her until she was on her feet again.
When she got to the hospital, the doctor was in the process of releasing Paula and asked my mother if she wouldn't mind going down to the pharmacy to pick up Paula's medications. He would take Paula and meet her downstairs at the pharmacy.
My mother went to get on the elevator, but there was a patient on a gurney being wheeled into it, along with other people waiting, so my mother decided she would just take the stairs instead, as it would be faster. She missed the last step and that's how she fell. The rest has been thoroughly recorded in this journal.
What hasn't been recorded is what happened with Paula. She called another member of their mahjong group, who came and took Paula to her house; then both that woman and her husband got sick, so Paula moved to the last mahjong member's house, where she stayed for awhile, but continued to get worse.
Ultimately she needed full abdominal surgery, spent several weeks in the hospital, and is now, finally back in her own apartment. But she can't get out by herself (and can't drive yet), and my mother can't get out by herself and can't drive yet, so these two best friends haven't seen each other since January 6, when my mother had her fall.
I was going to take my mother to visit her when she had her first physical therapy appointment 2 weeks ago, but she had a cold that day (Bev hangs her head, guiltily) and didn't want to risk infecting Paula.
Yesterday was my mother's second physical therapy appointment. She had told me before I went home that there was no need for me to drive back and forth when she had lots of friends who wanted to help do things for her, so I was surprised when she said she wanted me to come down and take her to her appointment, but I did. I suggested she call Paula and that we stop by after the appointment.
Paula lives in a complex up a long, steep hill, with no parking available. I dropped my mother and her walker off near Paula's apartment and then went to park the car, so I missed the actual reunion. The two of them had been so eager to see each other they were like little kids on Christmas Eve, waiting for Santa. I'm sorry to have missed it.
By the time I got the car parked and walked up the long hill (did I mention it was steep?) and got to the apartment, they were already sitting at the kitchen table, drinking wine, and rehashing the whole thing.
I captured some of it on video and it is the (very brief) video of the day today.
By the time we had the physical therapy appointment (she's doing great, is the report, and her next appointment isn't for two weeks, with her next doctor's appointment the first week in April), and visited with Paula, it was 5:30, so I decided that rather than drive home at dusk and after dark, I'd just spend the night again. We picked up some chicken at the local market and went home for dinner.
It was the first real outing she'd had since her accident, since we preceded the trip to physical therapy with a stop by the bank, where she made arrangements to get a new ATM card, since she has misplaced her original card somewhere in her house. By the time we returned home, we had been out of the house for more than four hours and she was thrilled to feel somewhat "normal" again.
I left San Rafael right after breakfast this morning and was home by noon. My plan had been to stop at Best Buy and look at laptops, but I think my plans have changed. The urgency for getting a new laptop was the prospect of spending a month at my mother's house with only the frustrating one I have. But I lived through that.
In my heart of hearts, I really think my mother has forgotten either that she made the offer, or that she hasn't paid me for it yet. There has been no more talk of buying it for me. She has since bought a camera for Peach and Bob and some plants for her stepdaughter. I think she believe she already gave me the money.
I have been thinking long and hard about it and really, as frustrating as my current laptop is, I don't use it often enough to justify the cost of a new one. After the debacle with CompUSA I think I'm going to just let it go unless my mother asks me about it.
The time I need it the most is when I'm in Santa Barbara, but now that Walt's sister is married, her husband has high speed internet connection and I can use his computer and don't even really need to bring mine at all.
And — bottom line — that's a huge chunk of money that my mother can ill afford. She's had the fun of watching my surprise and excitement about shopping for it; she's had the fun of my telling her how great the new machine is; and I just won't mention that I'm not getting a new one. The way her short-term memory is failing, I honestly don't think she will even bring it up again.
PHOTO OF THE DAY
Best Friends, reunited, at long last.
This is entry #2533