[UPDATE] I am home, now (12/26), from Florida. Mom is still in the hospital -- and likely will be for several more days -- but is out of danger. It seems that her body conspired with many ailments to bring her down. She had a serious lung infection and, believe this or not, a serious infection in her big toe. Most importantly, however, was likely the fact that the "water pills" she takes had her very dehydrated. That last thing was what likely caused the symptoms of a stroke. This is no fun for her. She has slipped into diabetes and managing her blood sugar levels is a real challenge. Keeping her blood volume up (she seems to have some internal bleeding although they've been unable to locate it as yet) and at the right consistency (through the use of Coumadin) is another huge challenge and that will likely keep her hospitalized for a while longer. She won't admit for certain, but most of us believe that her congestive heart failure and her emphysema were caused by her years of smoking (beginning in her teens and not ending until in her 60s). My dad died, painfully, of emphysema. Please, if you don't smoke, don't start. If you do, stop.
Thank you all for your good wishes and positive thoughts for my mother, whom I love so dearly. It was a privilege for me to be with her these past couple of days. We postponed Christmas in our house until I returned (had it today) and I got to spend some time with my mom and with Augie. I even got to give my mom her bath on both of the days I was there. They say I was a big help to them (I cooked a Christmas dinner for Augie and me, also). I hope I was.
When I got home from graduation yesterday, my darling spouse said that I had to call my mom before I could open my graduation gift -- a magnificent tan briefcase, which I desperately needed! -- because it was a gift from my entire family: parents, kids, sisters and spouse. She wanted me to be on the phone with my mom when I opened it.
When I called however, my joy turned to sadness and fear. My mom was admitted to the hospital at just about the same time as I was walking across the stage. She has an infection in her lungs and they think she's suffered a stroke.
My mom told me, before I came to Michigan, that she wasn't sure she'd live to see me finish. I made her promise that she would stick around at least long enough to see me graduate (which I knew would also allow me to be there for her 75th surprise party). When I got that news yesterday, I was fearful that she'd kept her promise to the same damned day.
But, she's not ready to go yet -- bless her stubborn little heart. She's been complaining lately of her inability to concentrate enough even to read. My mother needs to read -- she needs it like I need to breathe. So, I ask of you a favor. Send her a good thought today, a little prayer for a full recovery where she will be able to indulge her passion for books (and, for the past three years, blogs).