I suppose there comes a time in every person's life when their parents stop being the supporters and start being the ones who need the support and the help of their children.
Well it seems that that time has come all too soon in the Mad family. My mum who is only 66 is in hospital yet again. She is not in the best of health generally as she suffers from rheumatoid arthritis, but she how has COPD and is suffering with type 2 respiratory failure and it appears that she caught a chest infection on her holiday in Florida, which meant that she became oxygen compromised and when me and MiniMad visited at 9am on Wednesday morning, we couldn't rouse her and had to call 999. (she returned to the UK late Monday).
Safe to say Wednesday is not a day I want to repeat in a hurry, the whole experience was frightening, not only for me, but my adorable, perceptive and impressionable three year old was in the thick of it too.
The Ambulance and first responder staff were excellent and she was blue lighted to A&E. Me and Mini followed behind in the car. The first thing I did after ring for an ambulance was to call MadDad and ask him to meet me at the hospital to take Mini, as he didn't need to see anymore of this.
Now my mum has been hospitalised with breathing difficulties before in January of this year in fact, but never as serve as this. She is a strong willed woman and not only was she virtually silent, she was compliant and fading in and out of consciousness.
I watched, listened and talked to the nurses and the doctor and we made the decision to put mum on to DPAP, as she really wasn't getting enough oxygen even with a mask on. It was a very, very frightening time for me. Even with the DPAP my mums stats weren't rising sufficiently and we had to discuss ventilation, this felt like a slap in the face for me.
When my father was involved in an industrial accident more than 9 year ago, he was ventilated so I know all the issues that come with ventilation and once someone has had it, well recovery is a challenge and also it can become necessary for future hospitalisation's.
Thankfully she started to pull through and her statistics improved thanks to some medication they gave her, but all the same I was emotionally exhausted. She was finally stable enough to be transferred from resus to a ward at 4.30 pm. That was when I got my first drink of the day!
I left her sleeping at 5.30 and came home to eat with the mini's and pop them to bed, well we all had a cuddle on Mummy's bed and that was all I remember till 6am yesterday morning. I was emotional exhausted as well as physically tired.
Me and the mini's visited yesterday and she is going to be in quite a while, so is now reliant on me and my brother for everything she needs yet again. We have agreed that I will visit daily with the children from 3pm to 5pm and then he will visit from 7pm to 8pm. This means an additional hour a day in the car for me and the boys as the hospital is not close to us in the sticks.
Harder than all the visiting is having to make the decisions on what needs to be done. Mum will be in a while and will not be allowed home without oxygen, which means that she has to stop smoking. I told her this yesterday and she is going to. neither I nor the nurses will wheel her out for a cigarette and she isn't well enough to walk, so lets hop this time she really does stop.
I am so glad that she is going to be OK, but I can only see things going down hill from this point forward. I will have to become more and more involved with her care and ensure that she is looked after correctly. I will have to mother her, when all I want is for her to mother me. I am 36 years old and already my mother needs my support and care.
It is expected of me as her daughter, she expects it, my brother expects it and to some extent I knew it was coming, but just not so early. My baby's are only 3 and 4 they need me still, they need to be the centre of my life and have all my attention. I don't want to share it yet, I am not ready.
The thing is my mum and dad nursed my paternal grandfather at home and after that she said that she would never subject me or my brother to it, but slowly it is what she is doing. little by little she is expecting more and gets upset if I tell her that I can not manage it.
So what am I going to do, I don't know...... not yet, my focus at the moment it to get her out of hospital and settled with oxygen at home and then I will think about the future. But one thing I do know is I will manage, I can manage. I am a mother.