Friday, June 06, 2014

like any other day

My dogs are asleep, Nicole is in the attic, sleeping or applying for great jobs available to beautiful young women, Kurt is at work and I am getting well enough to be bored. I took down the drapes and washed them all hung them on a self-installed clothesline (dog run); shampooed the carpet so it smells more like us than the dogs for a minute; organized my closet and packed a b'zillion boxes for our upcoming yardsale. Be there!

I am hosting a brunch for the local women who have supported me through the little cancer blip on my screen (Nina, g/r and Asha, wish you could be here. Truly. Your support was and is so very appreciated.) I'm making two quiches, a baked praline french toast (screw gluten) and lots of fruity salads. And good coffee. Great coffee. Tea for the weaklings. And new linen placemats I got at a yardsale which will establish the blue and white Delft-ish theme which is very important to me. Gotta have a theme. And good linen. After all, I am Martha Stewart, criminal background and everything.

I need a job. The dogs are in danger of redecoration.

I don't think I'm getting the job I applied for. Shocking. I'm always surprised by rejection. I usually at least get an interview. But... the older I get...blahblahblah. It looks like they're hiring from within, which lessens the sting a bit. Am I ready to go back to work? How will I know? This job just came my way -- I hadn't started looking. So, I think I'll begin poking around to see what's out there.

My mother in law just had back surgery and I stayed with her the first night after surgery. She did not arrange to have help and knew she needed it. She did not ask me for help, but her failure to arrange help left her in a tight spot and her very elderly sister was going to fill in, "because nobody else will." (The sister can barely walk, falls at home, should be in assisted living, etc.) It forced my hand (emotional blackmail). I've been pretty clear that I'm not interested in being her caregiver as she ages and has various surgeries, etc. It is a slippery slope. I know I sound like a terrible person, but I've taken care of the elderly for a thousand years, including my mother which was my pleasure, but she allowed very little help. But this woman is not like the women in my family. She wants a servant. She is vain, desperately chasing the ever-disappearing tail of youth. Now, another elective surgery is coming up and I think we need to have "the talk." I am not going to empty her bedpan.

Why I bring this up, other than pure irritation, is because while she was in the hospital, a demented woman was roomed across the hall from her. I just fell in love. The staff were way out of their depth, behaviorally speaking. She had Capgras Syndrome- a paranoid symptom of Alzheimer's wherein the person thinks, for example, that her dead husband was there. A conversation may go like this:

Patient: My husband just left.
Nurse: I thought your husband had passed away?
Patient: No. Alot of people think that, but he's here.
Nurse: I don't see him.
Patient: Some people can't. But they have him in that phone. Hand it to me.
Nurse: (hands her the phone which she begins to dismantle.) Oh, no! (nurse tries to take the phone , calls for backup and sedating medication.) You can't do that. We'll need the phone. (power struggle ensues.)
Patient: (now very agitated, screaming) This is what they use (the phone). Now I know you're in on it...." and so on.

 How it might otherwise go:

Patient: My husband just left.
Nurse: Oh, okay. What are we having for dinner?

To make matters worse, she had a huge mirror over the sink which faced her bed, so when two staff came in, she saw four. When she saw herself in the mirror, she thought it was a visitor. She called them angels. I recommended they cover the mirror. But they didn't. I just went in and hung out with her. Listened and laughed and helped her hands find something else to do as she tried to dismantle the phone and nurse-call lines. By the time I left, she was tucked into bed, her poor little blue feet elevated for a change. She'd been up all night. I think I'd like to have a job as a sitter in hospitals to keep the crazy people calm. I could do that. You just have to learn how to be invisible.

That's my week. Today, I'll find the strength to take both dogs to the p-a-r-k. Shhhh. Don't say it outloud or they'll stare at me until I cave.

1 comment:

nina said...

Such a classic bluesky post! Love the fact that you're better enough to write it!