Flashin’ back

120211-1Once again, Facebook “memories” have slapped me upside the head. Five years ago today, I got a call from Freighter View telling me that The Commander had collapsed and was taken away via an ambulance. She had actually pulled the string that called for help. That kind of surprised me. Obviously she knew that she was in trouble because the folks in my fam do not like to trouble other people for help, especially if it might cause a general commotion. This time, she didn’t care about the commotion.

So I got that call and the GG and I scrambled to head north on yet another five-hour emergency journey. This was the second time (I think, I have sort of lost track) that I talked to an ER doc on the way north and was told that they weren’t sure they would be able to bring her back to life. I don’t know why I was as calm as I was. The GG was talking about bringing clothes for a funeral, etc. I was like, WTF? Somehow I knew that it wasn’t her time yet. And it wasn’t. Yet. By the time we got there that night, she was in the ICU gabbling everyone’s ear off like always.

The lights were definitely on and someone was definitely home but she said some crazy-funny things that night. Like, “They have a very good bicycle setup here.” What she meant to say was that the local university (Lake Superior State) had a good nursing program. Bicycle setup? The weird thing is that I knew *exactly* what she was trying to say. And yet, another thing I documented was, “I have some memories if I can really hang them on my hook here.” Whaaaaa?

120211-2There was a lot of talk about heart attack or pulmonary embolism that time ’round but in the end, both of those things were ruled out. It was actually aspiration pneumonia but ssshhhhh! no one told me that or even that aspiration pneumonia was A THING! Who knew? I sure didn’t. I NEVER have any trouble breathing and neither did The Comm up until fall of 2011. Say what?

We very reluctantly headed back south a few days later. She had a little fainting spell before we left and I was nervous about that but it turned out that she was anemic and needed a little blood. I didn’t know about the blood until after we left but she *told* me about it in a subsequent phone call and that precipitated one of the most surreal moments of my adult career. I was on the phone with her the *next* day. I asked her if she felt better after receiving the blood (that she had told me about the day before) and she couldn’t understand the word “blood” and so I found myself repeatedly yelling “blood” into my phone IN THE LUNCHROOM AT WORK and she kept saying, “WHAT?”. Finally I said, “you know that red stuff that runs through your veins?” and then “Oh yeah” she GOT IT! YAY!!!! Oh. My. God.

Anyway, it is really really really hard to deal with an elderly parent who lives any kind of distance away, especially one as stubborn and independent as The Commander, bless her soul. A blessing that weekend? I did get out to walk the beach and it was warm and the photos I took that day are apped via Hipstamatic. It NEVER looks that PINK there on the moominbeach. But it was beautiful and look at that setting sun!

Tonight? Five years later. We are cozily ensconced here at our home on the loverly Planet Ann Arbor. We walked downtown to the Oscar Tango for dinner and porterization and then, after a quick nod to Moonlight Madness via DHG, we hoofed it back over here.

Miss my moom but love y’all,

One Response to “Flashin’ back”

  1. Margaret Says:

    Those On This Day are killing me too. Not sure I should read them from Thanksgiving into December. Lots of heart wrenching words. Patt told Alison on the phone from the hospital that he had to get off the phone because he had a bird in his eye.