Monday, March 09, 2009

So I'm just wondering when we'll catch a break.

Here's Zack, practicing two of the skills he will need as an LA native.


And eating Mexican food.
OK, the internet connection is working at Jeff's desk, but not mine.  I cannot explain this, but that's what's happening.  On my side of the apartment, you have to sign in, the device isn't recognized, or the connection times out.  But over here, life is peachy.

And the thing is, if I have to keep fixing things that are broken, I am just never going to get a chance to do anything creative ever again.

We took Zack down to Orange yesterday.  Mom is settling into her new place.  She feels she rescued an elderly man across the hall from her, who kept exposing himself and was not checked by any of the nurses.  Her medication was screwed up again, and while I was there the nurse on duty discovered that, "Oh yeah, the nurse last night signed for your patch but didn't put it on."  Mom greeted me with a list of "concerns," but at the end of the list, there just wasn't much I could do.  I called her pain doctor, who said he's not on staff at this place and can't do much more.  Mom said she had no idea what was going on, what the goals for her recovery were.  Luckily I was there when they went over all this with her at the hospital.  She doesn't remember because she was OD'd on methadone at the time.  Then she said, "I don't even know who my doctor is!" and she gestured toward her wrist band.

Then she read the wrist band.  It was her same doctor from the hospital.  She just hadn't read very carefully.

After I found out from the nurse that this doctor will come and see Mom tomorrow, she felt much better.  She arrived at this place on the wrong meds on a Friday night, so it's been a confusing weekend for her.  Saturday morning I dealt with straightening out her pain meds with the now obsolete (because he's not on staff at her nursing home) Dr. Sterling, who Mom always, always calls Dr. Silver.  Sometimes she focuses very hard and gets a look on her face like, "This time, I'm going to get it!"  And then she says Dr. Silver.  To be fair, she finally got it right yesterday.  Anyway, I called Mom from work to check in, and she said they were poisoning her.  They gave her Oxicodone instead of Roxenall.  They didn't believe her when she said that was wrong.  Turns out St. Joe's--some a-hole at St. Joe's--wrote the order wrong.  I frickin' hate that place.  St. Joe's in Orange is some kind of weird death trap.  The nurses at Mom's home were all, "Well it SAYS it right HERE!"  Of course, she's just another disoriented old person to them!  So they had to eat it when that all got straightened out.

An interesting piece of the puzzle has been Mom's obsession with the activities and the dining room.  She called me in a panic one day to say, "Julie, can you please go out and buy me a robe?"  I did not have time to do this, but I told her Grandma and Grandpa could wash her dirty robe. (It's quite soiled, loss of bowel control, 'nuff said.)  She said that would not be "time efficient."  Why did she need a robe so fast?  She was convinced that she had been told she must dress for the dining room.  "No one told you that, Mom.  You're in isolation.  They're bringing meals to your room."

"Oh yeah.  I forgot."

This happened again on Saturday.  She said, "Oh, that's right.  But then how will I go to all the other activities?"

"You're not going to any activities."

"Am I just supposed to sit here?  Why am I here?"

For real, y'all.  This is happening!

To my great, great relief, she called me yesterday and said, "I'm feeling so much better!  I can think!  I guess those meds are wearing off.  And I get it, Julie.  No dining room!"

She's still confused, but the fog seems to be lifting.  I really wish I could be down there more.  I'm sure it's all very depressing in the nursing home.  When we discuss getting her out of there, she calms down and says she'll try it a few more days.  It doesn't seem that great to me, but it's clean and pretty, and even though the medication snafus have been annoying as hell--not to mention bordering on dangerous--I think they're taking care of her.  She doesn't have cable, which perhaps will motivate her to get well soon.  But most importantly, her insurance pays for this place, and I think she'll become independent enough to go home soon.

Then we're on to phase two:  Grandma must ship out, and that ain't gonna be no pretty picture.

I wanted to go down alone yesterday, because Z had a cough and a runny nose.  But I was so tired.  So Jeff and Z came with me.  We stopped at Rubio's (my new obsession) and Zack had beans and rice and guacamole.  At the home, he got to peek at Mom.  I would allow no touching.  He was great.

Then, we got back on the road, and he let out a spectacular vomit while we were at almost a dead standstill on the 5.  That's when you're know you're having a bad day in LA.  Your child vomits all over his spare outfit and car seat while you're stuck in traffic.

Fortunately, Jeff and I are vomit experts.  The first couple months of Z's life, we just became old hands at maintaining our composure while covered in spew.  So we dealt with it.  We put back on the outfit that was covered in beans and rice, is all.  So what.  Then we put the child back in the slightly damp car seat and continued on our way.  It's not that big a deal, okay?  Poor kid.

He's definitely ill.  Threw up about every three hours last night.  At the 11:00 p.m. round, Jeff and I panicked.  Jeff was thinking, "What if Z caught the stuff Julie's Mom has--MRSA, parvovirus, c-def, or some other nursing home thing?"  And I was thinking, "What if a pinto bean was glued to the bottom of his duodenum by some cotija cheese?"  Anyway, before we actually got out of the driveway to the emergency room, our doctor called back, gravelly voiced and trying to stay cool, to tell us there's a flu going around and we might just want to try Pedialite.

So I'm home with the boy today, trying to get some things done.  I took a break from trying to fix the internet so I could mop the shower ceiling.  None of this stuff is getting done around here.  Once we got maids, but the silly whores broke a couple of Jeff's toys, and they will not be invited back.  We value toys over cleanliness here.


Dana's Brain said...

SO sorry Z is sick on top of everything else!! Although I am glad your Mom seems to be coming back to herself. I know it doesn't help much, but we are all sending lots of love your way!

Mamma Marion said...

Ugh. You all deserve a break, and very very soon. I'm glad you still have your sense of humor through all of this. And it probably also helps to have such an amazing little guy by your side, even if he is vomiting all over the place.

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