Me, stumped on what to go on about? Well, yes, but I’ll rant anyway. I’m sure this will be long too, because I’ve been in a bad way.
I actually started typing this blog post last week when things were crazy. Life got hairy and Michael’s mom had been very sick in the hospital. I started to have a bad feeling about where everything was going and I began typing this post.
Life was on hold and I keep trying to go about things as if nothing is wrong while everything just felt surreal, an overused word that also seemed to have zero meaning, yet I was disengaged from everything I was doing.
Sandy, Michael’s mom, originally went into the hospital to get part of her lung removed. They saw something there they thought was probably cancer, but couldn’t really biopsy it unless they took it out. Since cancer runs amok in the family, the plan was just to remove part of it, and it actually wasn’t all that invasive of a surgery. I mean, it was, but it wasn’t. They went in there using a tiny incision.
When she came to, though in pain, it seemed as if she was going to make a speedy recovery. It seemed like things would go as planned, but she contracted an infection, and other complications arose. Too many white blood cells–the indication of an infection–so they tried every antibiotic. But later in the week the doctors discovered that it wasn’t just a pneumonic infection. It was C. diff.
They put her through a half a dozen other treatments, but her oxygen levels kept plummeting. She was on a ventilator, in deep sedation, and soon after, a paralytic. She’d been unconscious over a week. The doctors kept saying that if she even made it through, she’d have a 50/50 chance of ever being the way she once was, which was otherwise very healthy and always vibrant–one of the sweetest and cutest people I have ever known, and the only mom I’ve had for many years now.
Even when my mom was alive, Sandy has been the mom I never had. A loving, caring, gentle, and special mom that wanted to be engaged in my life. She was a friend. She supported me. I could always rely on her to be a constant source of love and encouragement. Real family.
We were ready to get on a plane at any second. As grim as it sounds, we knew we’d either be going to St. Paul for a funeral, or if she was on the mend because of a miracle, because anything in between seemed futile. We decided not to go otherwise because it would’ve just been too difficult for Michael to see her in an unconscious state, plus I couldn’t be in the room with someone with C. Diff. I have an autoimmune disorder. Michael didn’t want to remember her with tubes and wires attached to her. His sisters were there and she definitely wasn’t alone.
I couldn’t help but think about my mom, who also went downhill directly after a surgery. It was like night and day. Her WBC count skyrocketed too, and she never was the same again, but her situation lasted four more months and she only got a few weeks of rehab before we took her home and took care of her til the end. That whole thing was also so surreal, but in actuality, it could have gone on many years, and it was only a few scary months. For Sandy, it didn’t last long at all and she passed away peacefully.
For the family, they had to make a lot of very hard decisions that I would have never been able to make myself. I commend them for being so brave. It couldn’t have been easy. Sandy was an amazing person and she will be so very missed. She taught me how to sew, crochet, play bingo, laugh about silly things, feel my feelings, be myself, and trust in people again. I called her, “Momb,” because she was the bomb. I can’t express what a loss it is that she is no longer here.