Friday, June 17, 2011

Dr. Mom Makes a Visit

"I'm dying..and you'll be sorry!!"

As a caregiver, I am becoming  many people to my Mother.  Sometimes even I don't know who I am.  She calls me her Mama, her sister, her friend, and she’s always talking to me about me.  But the day I became her doctor was a day I’ll never forget.  Here’s the story.

It was Sunday morning and Mother and I were sitting in church listening to the Pastor’s message when all of a sudden I hear her say, “Ohoooooo!” with a groaning sound.

I immediately whispered, “Mother, what’s wrong?” 

"I have a sharp pain in my stomach!", she said. 

A few minutes later, Mother was groaning more loudly and people were glancing around.  I noticed she was holding the waistband of her pants really far out to relieve the pressure on her stomach.  In an effort to help, I reached behind her back and quickly loosened her bra.  (Remember, all this is taking place in the middle of the Pastor’s message.) 

All of a sudden, she groaned even more loudly, “Ohooooooo!”   

I whispered in her ear, "You have GOT to stop making noises!”.  By now, people were looking around wondering where these groaning sounds were coming from.

Finally, church was over and a sweet friend asked us out to lunch.  I said yes, and I put Mother into the wheelchair rolled her to the car, and we were off to the restaurant.

On the way I asked her if she was okay.  “No, I’m dying.”

“Why do you think you’re dying?"  "You don’t look like you’re dying."

She said adamantly, "I have this pain in my stomach and I need a doctor.”  "If I die, you’ll be sorry!"

Now if she had been REALLY sick, I would have had her in the ER.  But I felt this one was okay. 

We went to the restaurant and had a nice meal.  All Mother did was pick at her food and make groaning sounds.  She was actually ready to go before we even got there.  "It’s been nice seeing you, but we have to go.”  (This has been her signature sentence ever since I can remember.)  Maybe that’s a southern lady’s exit line.

I shoveled in my food as quickly as I could and we left.  All the way home she groaned and said, “I need to see a doctor.”
I told her I would call the doctor and see if one could make a house call.  (Think about that for a minute.  Have you ever heard of a doctor making a house call on Sunday?... or for that matter, ANY day of the week? I think that ended in the 50's.) 

When we got home, I called my friend who is a nurse and asked what side the appendix is on and she said, “It’s the right side.”  I told her that Mother’s pain was the left side and we both had the same idea.

I changed Mother’s clothes to loose casual clothes and put her to bed.  All the while she continued to say, “I need a doctor."  "I’m dying!”

I ran and got my white jacket from the closet and casually walked back into the room.

"Good afternoon Ms. Patient, I’m 'Doctor Mom' and I hear you’re having some pain?"

“Yes, it’s right here.” 

“Let me see....When I push here, does it hurt? 


“Does it hurt here?” 

“Ouch, Ohoooo!" 

"I think I have found the problem."  "You have an acute intestinal problem so I’m writing you a prescription."  "I would like you to take one pill as needed."

"Now I need you to lay on your left side and rest for the afternoon."  "You should feel better in the morning." 

“Doctor, do you think I’ll live?” 

“Yes, you’ll be fine."  "Just call me anytime you have a problem." 

“Thank you for coming.”,  she said. 

“No problem."  "Just call me anytime.”

Exit Doctor.  Enter Carol.  "So what did the doctor say?" 

She told me word for word, and I gave her one little pill.  The next morning everything (shall we say) "came out" okay.

Let me say, that I am careful to take her to the doctor or the ER when needed, but if I can resolve the problem with a laxative or I can relieve her anxiety so she will relax and feel better I have accomplished my goal.  She is always in my prayers and as any caring caregiver, I will do the best of my ability to take care of my sweet Mom.

Hang in there all you caregivers and be encouraged.  This time will not last forever.  Take one day at a time, and be thankful for each day. “This is the day the Lord has made. I will rejoice and be glad in it." Psalm 118:24

Now go read two verses...and call me in the morning :)

1 comment:

  1. Another wonderful, sweet and funny story! Keep them coming, Carol! You just don't know how much I enjoy them! God is good!