My dad called yesterday afternoon saying that my mother was having a medical problem. She couldn’t speak for a few minutes.
I told him that was a sign of a stroke and she needed to go the hospital immediately. They meandered home from work and I went to my parents’ house to take my mother to the hospital with a sense of urgency they apparently weren’t having. My dad had to deal with their dog and eat dinner. (My dad is like Shaggy on Scooby Doo – always needing to eat!)
Her speech became slurred in the car going to the hospital and that was scary. When we got there they took her immediately back. (If you think your parent is having a stroke or stroke-like symptoms please tell them that and don’t wait in the ER.)
After checking her in the ER they decided she had had two mini-strokes and admitted her for more testing.
When she woke up this morning she immediately combed her hair, brushed her teeth and put on lipstick. She was offended when the nurse told her it was written in her record she was confused. She said I was perfectly clear on the fact that I couldn’t talk. (I love my mom!)
They’re running a bunch of tests today and she’s meeting with a neurologist. My brother is sitting with her now so I could come home to keep the baby. My brother, whom you recall had a heart transplant last summer, was happy it wasn’t him in the hospital bed for once!
She seems fine now but they’re searching to see if there are any blockages in her body. (She’s not overweight. Her cholesterol level was awesome but her blood pressure was high, which is hereditary.)
I knew at some point I would take care of my parents and I’m happy to do that. I’m just surprised it’s so early. My mother is just in her early 60s and is fairly healthy and active. She could leave the hospital just needing to take an aspirin each day. That’s what we are hoping for.
I may be in and out over the next few days while we’re figuring out what’s going on with my mom. So I’m sorry if I don’t get a new topic up every day.
Have you experienced an aging parent needing your help? How did you handle it? What are your expectations for the care your parents will need in the future? What do you do if you don’t live in the same state or town as your parents?