Doing better

After support group last week, Mom’s roommate’s daughter, who is still visiting daily, said Mom had been taken out of the Alz center for a doctor’s appointment earlier that day. She asked me how Mom did with it. Based on what an aide said, she was under the impression Mom was having her feet treated. But I knew nothing about it, and I was surprised to think that the staff would have let Mom go to a doctor without telling me. I had tried to visit Mom before support group, but she was sound asleep on a couch, with her head resting on Mr. R’s lap. “I think she ate too much,” he said to me. I smiled. I noticed the stitches had been removed from her head. I let her sleep.

The next day, I went to the center around lunch time. A nurse saw me in the hall and said, “Those stitches came out beautifully.” And I said I noticed they were out, but hadn’t been notified about it. She said nurses tried to remove them, but they were internal stitches so they were a little tricky. So protocol is to return residents to the emergency room to have stitches removed. It was scheduled, so Mom was just in and out. I was relieved to hear that, though still a little surprised they hadn’t told me. Mom apparently did fine. But I wish I could have been with her. I didn’t say anything to the nurse about that, though I did mention that if they could inform me the next time the podiatrist visits, I might be able to encourage Mom to let that doctor work on her feet a little bit. So that might be in my future.

I found Mom on a couch in the program area, sitting next to a woman who was sound asleep and snoring, with her head tilted back. Mr. R was in a nearby chair. Mom’s cut did look like it was healing really nicely. And the bruising had turned to a greenish color. I asked Mom to smile at the camera and this was her response.

One day after the stitches were removed, and one week after the fall.

While I was sitting there and we exchanged pleasantries, Mom rolled up one of her pant legs. She didn’t really say anything. But I noticed she had revealed a huge bruise on her left knee. I took this as a sign that she was communicating to me. I touched the bruise and could feel a large raised area. I was not entirely surprised, considering that if she had hit her head, she probably had hit some other body parts on the way to the floor. I put my palm over the bruise, gently, and told her it would be OK. “Yeah,” she said. And she rolled her pants back down.

I'm pretty sure the reddish area represents the location of the impact. The bruising below is just residual broken blood vessels, I am guessing.

I had arrived before lunch, and I saw the cart of trays had come in. I wanted Mom to be able to be as focused as possible on eating, so I encouraged her and Mr. R to find chairs at a table so they could eat. He got up and came over to Mom, and they shared a kiss. They held hands and walked with me toward the hall leading to the lobby. I turned to say goodbye and they had drifted off, heading to a table. Which is what I had hoped for.

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4 comments so far

  1. JenniferJayhawk on

    Wow! I’m glad she’s healing but it does look like she took a terrible fall. It really is amazing how much damage they can do to themselves when they fall.

  2. momsbrain on

    Hi, Jennifer – It is amazing. I feel like Mom has a new bruise every time I see her. But she must have a decent immune system – her face is almost completely free of any signs of the fall.

  3. Laura on

    I think she looks beautiful in the photo. That was sweet how she let you know about her leg bruise.

  4. momsbrain on

    Laura, I think she looks really good, too. One of my co-workers who is a regular reader also said recently that he thinks she is such an attractive woman. True! It helps, I think, that she has not a care in the world. It has a relaxing effect on her face.


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