Last week, my mother had a mild heart attack. This week, today in fact, she went into the hospital for a catharization (Sp?) diagnostic and they found an area in her heart that had 80% blockage. They're putting a stent (and the Blogger software is again having issues with my spelling!) in and she should be feeling pert in no time, but wow...
It would seem the halcyon days of my parents' good health are shifting into what is inevitable with aging, but hard to accept, which I believe is also par for the course (and I really hate it when I can't think of a better phrase than a golf-related one, for crying out loud). I've always told my dad (who's older than my mom by 6 years, I think) that he is way too much of an asshole to ever die young. Sheer ornery stubbornness will keep him going into his late 90s, barring any freak accidents with fence posts, shot guns, or wild animals - just to list a few possibilities in his skill range right now. But my mother, that's another story.
I have this horrible fear that she has given up on living - I know, that sounds terrible doesn't it? Maybe not so much as give up on life, and not giving a damn about confronting her mortality and trying to boost her odds with maybe giving up or reducing her cigarette habit, and getting regular exercise. It scares me, the idea of having a heart attack. I imagine it to be a claustrophobic squeezing of your chest; your heart sputters, your lungs close up, and you drown in a sea of stagnant blood. Sorry to be graphic, but nightmares often are.
What is worse than imagining my own heart attack, is to contemplate my life without my mother in it. It's not like I talk to her every day, or have Sunday dinner there every week, but I do rely on her, not only for advice on sick kids, or what's missing from that recipe she gave me last week, but you know, to be there. The last little piece of my childhood is still intact, that from-birth sense of continuity that all is as it should be, as long as my mother is in the world. I know I can't have it that forever, all things yield to Time's erosion, but maybe just a little longer, please?
Well, could yesterday's post have rambled much more, or had more redundancy of word choices? Creak and groan, I am so very rusty at this!
Okay, so here is my edict to myself, concerning blogging, Facebooking, and general productivity elsewhere:
"Young lady, you are NOT allowed to log into Facebook more than twice a day, and ONLY after you have done your household chores, and written or drawn something. And you NEED to put that damn mini cinnamon roll down and go to the gym as well!"
I am already disobedient to myself, as I bite into the last mini-cinni on my plate. (It's already been touched - might as well eat it, right?) "Being bad feels pretty good" as Bender from The Breakfast Club would say, as I wash down the last morsel of sweet carby goodness with the dregs of my second cup of coffee, and ponder the crafting of today's juicy rationalization for avoiding the gym. I had a doozie the other day, you want to hear it? Okay, here it is:
So this time last year, I was pushing major maximum density, and in May I joined a gym. I lost 32 pounds working out and dieting (more or less) by mid-November. If I started back to the gym in April and worked out steadily until late fall again, I could lose about the same amount, maybe even more this year.
Isn't that a beauty? It sounds so rational, so logical, so very full of shit. How about this one:
Well, at least I haven't gained any weight back!
Only I have - about 5 pounds, which is pretty good, considering the cookie/doughnut/sweet roll trifecta I've been worshipping lately. (Again with a rationalization!)
Another ode to John Hughes, with paraphrasing:
"I'll just keep eating and gaining...I'll go, I'll go, I'll go...shit! I'll go!"
In other news, I read this post yesterday and it was so beautifully written, so completely apt, that I think I need to read it every day, as a motivator. Check it out:
Is it Spring yet? Can I come out of the hole I've been hunkering down in for the last quarter of a year, consuming mass amounts of carbohydrates?
I've been having this internal conversation lately, about whether I should continue to blog or not. It certainly is more creative than playing Vampire Wars in Facebook, but let's not poke that bear quite yet. I kind of felt that I was becoming stale in what I was posting, that it ran in a cyclical format. Post about my life, my kids, the cats, drinking on a Sunday, and the ubiquitous photo -op post when all words had dried up and blown away. These are all things I am interested in, but are they things worth writing about, and more saliently, self-publishing? I don't have the kind of egocentric personality to think, unquestioningly, "Why yes, they are! Who doesn't want to read about ME?" Rather, I shrink inwardly, thinking of the exposed, winter-white underbelly I'm exposing. Granted, my ego is unrealistic enough to have thought, at the outset of blogging, that I would become a famous celebrity blogger, doing talk shows, writing a book, and somehow transcending the mundane.
Yeah, not so much, and most of the time that's okay with me. I don't really want to be accountable to thousands of readers, who are going to take issue with me every time I take a stance on something. There is less pressure in knowing that virtually no one will read this, but it does raise the question of why do it at all, and I don't really have an answer for that right now, because I'm waffling as it is.
I'm disappointed with myself, and a little angry as well. I start projects only to never finish them, and the biggest unfinished project I have is Who Am I? At 47 years old you would think I'd have that answer, but nope - nopety, nope - I'm clueless. I'd like to be able to place the blame elsewhere, but ultimately it's all on my head.
It's been a busy period, despite the self-imposed hibernation: I took in another stray cat I found wandering the streets during a snow storm. I thought she might be terminally ill, with something horribly contagious like Leukemia or FIV, but upon observing her I discovered she couldn't chew the dry food that the neighbors had left out for her. she would bolt it whole and then vomit it back up, which was causing her to dehydrate and slowly starve. I took her in, fed her soft food, and kept an eye on her. She was covered in fleas, even in January, so I bathed her. The water ran so red I thought I had opened a wound on her body somewhere, but it was only from the flea castings. When I took her down to see Doc after about two weeks, she was stable but still fragile. He told me that she had suffered a broken pelvis and jaw, and was anemic from the flea infestation, but other than that was healthy and disease-free. And that is how Miss Willow came to be among the chosen few here at the Temple of Bast.
But wait, there's more: I discovered on Monday that Pooh Bear, named for his prodigious eating habits, had an abcess on the side of his face. I cleaned it, dosed him with Amoxicillan and put him in solitary to rest. When I checked on him later I discovered he had another abcess a little further down his neck. Apparently he was bitten by one of the feral and intact males who roam our neighborhood. Luckily, he has had his shots, and I am an old hand at abcesses, so two days later, he's looking much better.
On the family front, my son, The Professor, came down with Strep for the very first time, at 12 and a half. It was the damnedest thing I've ever seen. He came home from school on a Friday, complaining of a sore throat and a headache. Saturday morning I looked in his mouth and there were the tell-tale pustules on his tonsils. We decided to wait and go to his regular doctor on Monday, since I don't trust the doc-in-the-box and he wasn't that severe, symptomatically speaking. Sunday morning, his throat had less white lesions, but it still hurt a bit. By Monday morning he had a clear throat, albeit a bit red and puffy. I took him to the doctor, he tested positive for Strep and he started his antibiotics. He's fine now, but I wonder: would he have recovered from the strep without any antibiotics? I've never seen anyone come down with Strep and two days later, be on the mend, but it sure looked like that was the case with him. I just wish I could bounce back like that!