Mother had worked the day out carefully. It was my first free Sunday for many weeks. We arrive at 11.30, lunch at McDonalds at 12.00 and then we visit her friend for afternoon tea and must admire her friend's very expensive home renovations. Truth be told, Mother's friend has the best house in the worst street. The suburb where Mother's friend is awful. Her home is wonderful but in a horrible area. Down the back, her son lives in an extension that reeks of dope.Her husband's factory is further back.
Mother's friend had promised Mother a long term lend of a walking frame, the upmarket type that has a seat as well. Mother's friend bought it for her late divorced husband. Yes, even in real life, relationships are changing. Mother's friend and her husband looked after her ex husband until his death and it was his walking frame.
When we arrived at Mother's, she was in a total mess. It is rare to see her without makeup, but she had none. She could barely walk because of her foot injury from four weeks ago, but aggravated by a twist when she was walking a few days earlier. The pain had become worse and her foot was now swollen. She was getting around the house using her washing basket trolley, which does fit between her fridge and the bench, unlike the walker that Sister gave her that Sister found on a road side collection. Mother did the usual, whatever will happen to me and I can't cope. She had already seen her doctor and had an xray but the xray was not going to be available until this Wednesday from last Friday.
At her insistence, we took her to an emergency department of a private hospital. I tried to encourage her to go to the nearest public hospital but she had heard 'bad reports' about the hospital, even though it was where Step Father died and his treatment was fine. This is really going to cost, not mother even though she has private health cover that we pay. No, her children will have have to pay, meaning me who will then have to ask for recompense from my siblings. Mother said, don't ask Tradie Son as he has no money. Don't worry, it will be added to his bill. Mother acts like a rich woman while she is confident her children will pay, but that is coming to a stop.
We stayed with her for a while as she underwent tests but it was clearly going to take a long time, plus she had packed a suitcase and three handbags hoping to stay overnight. What a lovely way to spend a Sunday. I called the hospital at 6.00 pm and was put through to her room. The hospital had given her foot a CT scan along with other tests and diagnosed a soft tissue injury and arthritis. There was not a bed available for her at the hospital in the Dandenong valley, so she was transferred last night (Sunday) by an ambulance to a south eastern private hospital/rehab centre.
I called my sister and brothers to let them know what happened, and her friend. That took some time!
Mother called Monday morning before I had a chance to call the hospital. She had not had a good night and she had been prescribed three different painkilling drugs. One is called Endo, I think, and she said she had stomach reaction. Mostly what she wanted was some nicotine patches as it was a long walk to get out of the hospital to be able to smoke. We bought some on our way there today, Monday. ABI Brother arrived with more of Mother's charlatan medicines and her clean underwear that she had left on her phone table. Her lunch arrived and we went to the cafe to have some food ourselves and when we returned, her bed number was flashing for nurse attention on an overhead screen. Oh dear. No, she wasn't dead, but had spilt the hot water for her tea on the bed. Staff never arrived in the subsequent hour we were there.
She has now been to convinced to to take at least half an Endo tablet and to get off codeine, to which she is addicted. She seems quite happy in hospital and much more cheery. We don't have a clue as to how long she will be there, but as she lives alone, she needs her foot to heal before returning home.
Meanwhile in The Highrise, we had a terrible argument and R packed a suitcase in preparation to leave to live in a rented flat. It was all brought on by the stress of dealing with Mother. R spent 20 years working with disabled people, young and old, and now just deals with sane old people in his volunteer job, and he says there are none not even close to being worse than my mother.
Mother is so manipulative and skilled at it that you don't even realise it is happening. Now I am smarter thanks to R when he notices and has alerted me to what she up to and her motives. This 57 year old man was today in the women's underwear department of Big W buying Mother new underwear. I told her her she did not need so much underwear but apparently she wears two pairs each night with an absorbent pad in between. Way too much information. I don't want to know.
One doctor at the first hospital told Mother, Mrs C, it rare for us to see an 82 year old woman with such excellent general test result. Do you smoke? Not for a while, Mother replied. Doctor said, I can smell it on you. Mother answered, I was so stressed, I had one on the way here. Actually, she had one before she left home and one before she went in to the hospital.
Lordy, with such good general test results, Mother is going to live forever. Woe is us.