So I’m back at a place where I was a couple of years ago. Sitting by my mother’s bedside waiting for her to die. I got a call at 4am Tuesday morning telling me my mother had a TIA (trans ischemic attack ie. mini stroke), she was on oxygen and was resting comfortably. I realized that my instinct had been right, she had had a TIA around Thanksgiving and it was a precursor of what would happen. I had to be up super early that day to go to work so needless to say I did not sleep a wink. Hubby also had an early start, so his mother had come over from the island to take care of Boo. I only had to work a couple of hours so I went to the care home as soon as I could. The doctor there told me she thought she had had a stroke and we both thought we would just let nature take its course. The other option was to go to the hospital to confirm what had happened but the end result was going to be the same. No medical measures were to be taken. I called my sister but I knew already what she would say and I was right. So we called an ambulance and Mum had a CAT scan pretty soon after she arrived. The emergency room doctor told me she had had a major bleed and she would not recover. They admitted her to a private room eventually and she spent the night. I went home, snuggled beside my son who woke up to hug and kiss me. “I’ll make some room, mum” and I feel his dry curls against my face. I needed to be with him like I needed a cool glass of water on a hot day. In the morning, I had her transferred back to the care home. She is unconscious, sleeping in a way. No IV, no tubes. Her chest rises and falls, stops for a bit, then starts up. She sputters and snores occasionally, but she is silent.
I’ve left out a couple really good stories, dozens of texts pledging their daimoku for me and my family, frustrating phone calls with my sisters and the familiar feel of my armour sliding in place as I stand watch over my mum. And so I wait.