Monday, January 11, 2010

Not ready yet

I've been here for almost three weeks. Mom is progressing day by day and just yesterday she took her first steps with out using a walker. As they say, you don't realize what you have till you lose it and it definitely makes you think twice about taking things for granted. I am aware some people have it worse, but mom is not the kind of woman to sit back and relax, she is always on the go and this surgery has really MADE her slow down. We were having lunch one afternoon when she got a little emotional, she said she thanks God for making her realize she needs to slow down and start taking better care of herself. I am glad she had this realization because like most mothers, she put everyone before herself. I'm so grateful to have had the opportunity to be here with her for this, I know she really needed/wanted me here.

I have one more day left ::sigh.tear:: I'm not ready to leave. We head out Tuesday morning for the long 9 hour drive home. By we, I mean my brother's wife. She is moving back down to the valley while my brother stays and works for a couple more months then makes his way down. I've been fortunate to spend so much time with my mom. It's so hard every time I have to leave. I remember the first time I moved away from home. I only moved three hours away to Corpus Christi but I was ready to spread my wings. My BFF Tiff and I had originally planned to move to Houston, but she fell in love and decided to get married. I was dead set on leaving. Tiff met me at my house and both her and mom saw me off. I tried so hard not to look back but I did. Mom gave the most beautiful card and a CD, "Wide Open Spaces" by the Dixie Chicks. I remember waiting at the check point, there was a long line, probably about an hour's wait, maybe longer. I waited to read the card because I knew it would bring me to tears, and while "Wide open spaces" blared on the speakers, I sat back and opened my card. I wish I still had it; for the life of me I cant remember what happened to it. And so I cried... and cried... and cried. By the time I got to the check point my eyes were red and puffy, my nose was running, and my face was blotchy. I wasn't the least bit concerned that my make up was half off, that I looked like a raccoon with runny mascara, and that the border patrol agent was beyond HOTTT!

It wasn't long before I got home sick. Mom and I always had the best relationship. It was always just us three. We were The Three Musketeers: Mom, brother, and me (even before the divorce, dad was always away). I missed them terribly but it was a part of life. I learned a lot being on my own, I got myself into many situations but mom was always there to help me out. I have the utmost respect for her. She is my rock, and I don't know what I would do without her.

I am blessed to have a wonderful mother and a wonderful relationship with her. I look up to her. Not only is she my mom, she is my confidante, my best friend, the sister I never had, she is EVERYTHING to me. Being here with her when she needed me the most is the least I could do for all that she has done for me. So as I prepare to leave again, I know that she is only a phone call away. I hate to leave before she is completely well, but I know she is in good hands.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Country livin'

I've been out here in the country for a week and it feels like a month. I've left the house maybe three times since I got here but only because I just want to make sure that mom is OK. She is doing a lot better and recovering well. What can I say, I'm a good nurse. lol. Actually, my grandma is here also so there is not much for me to do besides a little cleaning if that.

I love it out here. I love that I have time to meditate, more importantly I cherish the "me" time (and the family time). It's weird how the pace out in the country is so different from the city. Time stands still, minutes seem like hours. It's very peaceful and you can actually take time to appreciate the beauty of it. As beautiful as it is, it has it's downfalls. My allergies and sinuses are acting up out here and my head feels so stuffy, all I wanna do is sleep. Mom takes her medication and takes a nap, I lay on the couch outside her room rolled up in a warm blanket and nap too then wake up feeling hungover because I've slept too much lol.

Mom has been getting around with a walker because her hip is still in a lot of pain. She let her dog out this morning (Troy was too comfortable behind my legs to wanna go out) and Roper, the outside dog, took her into the woods. I woke up to mom calling out to her dog. I didn't sleep much through the night and woke up very groggy to "You better get back here Mitzy". I let her yell for a couple minutes (What? I was sleepy), but as comical as it was, I had to get my lazy ass up and go look for her damn dog. I threw on my jacket and my moms crocks (No I didn't realize how cold it was. It was freezing, literally. Ice covered the ground; every leaf, twig, rock, sprig of grass was covered. The ice crunched as I scuffled through the woods half asleep. My face was so cold I couldn't even feel my nose running and double checked a few times to make sure I didn't have icicles hanging. My hands and feet were tingling too. After about twenty minutes of hollering and no dogs, I turned around and went back home, I figured they went to woods on the left side (I went to the right). I wish I had my camera at the time to capture the beauty of the morning light shining through the branches. The ice sparkled like tiny diamonds. The frost (not snow) thinly covered everything all around me. Perhaps it was because I was still half asleep, but I wanted to twirl around as the light glimmered on my face while the leaves fall down all around me. That only happens in the movies lol, and the cold air stinging my face brought me back to reality. I returned to the warmth and comfort of my home. I wanted to crawl into bed and snuggle with a warm blanket. That didn't happen.

I went into the woods yesterday and took some nice pictures. Just imagine what they would have looked like today. Well, this week is supposed to be extremely cold. I think I heard wind chill was supposed to be like 5 degrees. Maybe We'll actually get snow, that is after all, what I have been waiting for.


Mushrooms on a log

Wild berries

Happy trails

The light shining through and onto the creek

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Sweet dreams

This morning I woke up from the most beautiful yet heart wrenching dream ever. At about 5 am I shuffled over to mom's bed so I could sleep with her (She is recovering from her ACD surgery) because my step dad drove to the valley (my home town) for his brother's wake (he passed away on the 1st). Since he was gone, I wanted to make sure that I could hear her in case she needed anything. I fell into a deep sleep, nope, I couldn't even hear mom when she tried to wake me. I dreamt some random stuff. I saw my cousins outside of my grandma's house, I saw my little cousin Melissa, my gramps, and I wanna say we were all having some pan dulce (sweet bread/pastry). I looked around for my grandma and didn't see her. There is this small little one bedroom house in the back of my grandparents yard where my great-grandmother used to live. I walked over there and there she was. Laying down on her side facing the television, only it was off. She rolled over to me and my heart just melted. I got to see her beautiful face again, to look into her eyes, touch her hands, and kiss her forehead. Her face looked dusky/ashy. She was so frail, a lot thinner than before she passed away. Her eyes sunk and her skin contoured her bones. She asked me to turn the TV on for her and so I did. I asked her why she was out there instead of in the main house, she said that she didn't want to burden anyone and it was easier for the ambulance to get to her (we were using a transport service to get her to her chemo and other appointments in her final weeks). I reassured her it was not a burden and I insisted on taking her inside so I could keep an eye on her. She said OK. For some reason she took her shirt off and her chest was black (She suffered from lung cancer, she wasn't even a smoker). There were markings on her chest, her veins so thin. I was getting ready to carry her out, I held her close to me. It was so beautiful. There was a frame on the wall, and all these wonderful memories played like a slide show on that frame as I held her. What I found funny was that song, KNOCK THREE TIMES ON THE CEILING IF YOU WANT ME, played while I was holding her. I didn't realize the significance to the song till after a while I woke up. Grams used to bang on the wall to get my attention so she wouldn't have to yell. There was a time it used to annoy me but I quickly got over that. It makes me laugh when I think about it, especially now that I dreamt that song. Anyhow... Soon all those memories kinda became the past (it's kinda hard to explain) and I knew that she passed away. I woke up and told my mom about the dream and just started crying. I think I needed that. Ever since grams passed away in September, I hadn't been able to communicate with her. I had a few dreams about her but I couldn't touch her, she was at a distance and I never got to speak to her. But today, I got to touch her, hold her. Maybe she was communicating with me, perhaps it was just my mind and how our brains work in such mysterious ways. Either way, I'm glad it happened. I kind of have piece of mind now, not that I didn't before... just, it's easier. I'm glad I never got to see her as frail as she was in my dream. I hope to see her again in my dreams soon. I really miss her.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Lost in the Wilderness

So I've been M.I.A. lately. I've seriously had thousands of ideas for new blogs only I've been SUPER lazy. If I hadn't updated y'all yet, I was re accepted back into the nursing program (For those that don't know, I should have graduated in October but i failed my last class with a 74 ;( and had to wait out a semester) Hopefully by the end of spring semester I will be Cyn, R.N. The holidays were great. This was the first year in a long time that I was able to spend the Christmas with both parents (not together, they're divorced, but saw them both on the same day) It was nice especially because dad's birthday is on Christmas day even though he gets really grouchy. Mom was kinda out of it when I saw her, she had to pop some pain killers due to her degenerative spine disease in C-5, C-6, and C-7 vertebrae, which has now been corrected with ACD (Anterior Cervical Discectomy surgery. In a nutshell, they removed bone from her right iliac crest (hip bone), an incision was made on her throat to gain access to the anterior (front) of the spine, moved everything aside, inserted the bone fragments into the spine to relieve severe pain and pressure, then fused with a titanium plate. Check out the link to see a quick clip of the procedure (No, that is not mom). The surgery was on Wednesday, mom was released yesterday and is now at home recovering. AMEN!!! I was literally two seconds away from an anxiety attack till we got an update from the doc saying mom was fine and on her way up to recovery. My heart was pounding and skipping beats, my hands were shaking, and I was very nauseated, I hated thinking that something might go wrong but for some reason those thoughts just popped into my head, I'm guessing it's because the last time I was at the hospital, my grammy passed away. I'm not quite sure if she'll be able to move her head back since I didn't get to talk to the doctor (all the arrangements were made with out me here so no body was able to be advocate for mom). She is in a lot of pain but being tough and walking around using a walker.

So while mom recovers and I nurse her back to health, I get to enjoy my mini vacay here at the ranch. I love coming out here. I guess you can say I'm recovering too, I have had a seriously stressful couple of months. I get to enjoy beautiful sunsets, walk the woods (which I haven't taken pictures of yet, but once I do I'll post em), and just be surrounded by my loving family. I especially miss grandpa, I haven't left him since grams passed away but my Aunt Faith is there at home with him. I miss her too! I usually leave Troy (my dog) with grandpa when I go out of town but he had a seizure the day before I left, I decided to take him with me since I was going to be gone for about three weeks. He loves it out here too, he has the freedom to run around, experience new sights, sounds, and smells. The day after mom's surgery my step dad took him out and their dog Roper took him out into the woods and left him. My step dad spent two hours looking for him. Thank God he was found! After Noah, my Maltese, disappeared I was heart broken, I don't know what I would have done if Troy was lost too.

The only thing that sucks about the area is my cell phone doesn't get reception unless I stand in one of a few spots in the house for a long time or we're in town, which is about 15 minutes away. I haven't really talked to "manfriend" much since I've been out here but he understands, and he has got some stuff of his own going on. So I actually kinda opened up to him about my feelings (I didn't exactly say the "L" word) which is completely out of character for me, at the same time I start to wonder if perhaps I said too much. I meant to say what I said, so no regrets. I just often wonder if I'm only fooling myself that we could actually be happy together since things are kind of complicated. AND NO HE IS NOT MARRIED OR WITH ANOTHER WOMAN (At least not that I know of HA! lol JK)! GEEZ! lol.

Oh yeah, I almost forgot it's officially the new year! HAPPY NEW YEAR! I hope everyone had a safe and wonderful celebration. I passed out at 8:30 pm since I only got a couple hours of sleep at the hospital and the recliner was very uncomfortable. So no tequila shots or goblet of wine for me, but there was no where else I'd rather be. I have a couple new year's resolutions I think I wanna try. One of them of course is a healthy life style change. I freakin' say that every year and never go through with it. BUT I REALLY WANNA DO IT! I guess I just really want to re-evaluate my life and see what other changes I need to make. I just really want to be happy! I don't think that is too much to ask for. I think I deserve it.

OK, I guess that's it for now. I'll leave you with some beautiful pics of the ranch! Enjoy!