Saturday, September 1, 2012

When Do Our Kids Start Taking Care of Us? (Tongue in Cheek)

The time had come. We were down and out and in need. The milk and bread were gone, and the Pop Tarts were getting low. What to do. Damn it, we are young, and this was ridiculous.

I have been laid up for weeks, practically months with a pinched nerve in my neck. It has recently gotten to the point where it is preventing me from driving due to shoulder pain and a numb hand. Shoulder pain as a passenger, and a numb hand as a driver. Neither one is a good situation. Surgery is on the schedule and the muscle relaxants are by the bed. I thought life was going to be fine during the three week wait until my visit with the scalpel.  Uh huh.

We had even gone so far as to choose this week to have Brutus's teeth cleaned, which turned in to having one broken tooth pulled. He also had a cyst on his abdomen removed. It was about the size of a full walnut shell, and even though it had already been aspirated and we knew it wasn't cancer, it continued to grow. It was very close to his private parts, and it just seemed like a good idea to have it gone. It would be OK. We could lay low together. One problem with mom taking muscle relaxants and being the primary caregiver is mom's brain being a little fuzzy at times. The first night that Brutus was home from his surgery, I accidentally gave him his antibiotic instead of his pain medicine. I woke up in the middle of the night and heard him licking. I went to check on him, and he was frantically licking the wound on his tummy and shaking with pain. I felt beyond horrible. I quickly googled the names of medications, labeled the one for pain with the word PAIN, which quite frankly I think the clinic should have done in the first place, and got my boy medicated. The medicine was rolled up in a delicious piece of lean ham, followed by a Frosty Paws treat to calm him down. Ugh, I felt so bad.

That was Tuesday night. Wednesday was relatively uneventful, and then IT happened.

Thursday morning around 9:30 I heard the garage door open. If Don is coming home in the middle of the morning, he has either been fired, or he is dying. Either one is horrible, because it takes a lot for Don to leave work. He had thrown his back out like I had never seen before. He had to crawl down the hallway. I immediately offered to drive him to the emergency room, and his reply was that he wouldn't be able to get there. He just needed to get a muscle relaxant in him, try to get an ice pack under him and catch his breath. He was in so much pain. His back pulsed and spasmed for a good hour before it slowed down. He could barely stand to roll over enough for me to slide the ice pack under him. Oh man.....this was so heartbreaking, but this time there wasn't anything I could do. Ham and Frosty Paws wasn't gonna cut it.

Friday it was still difficult for Don to walk, but if he crawled to a doorway, he could get up by using his hands to support himself. By Saturday he could slowly get up with a little support, and walk around a little bit, but most often he was on the floor. Sitting was out of the question. He said that it feels like the muscles in his back are bruised. My hope is that he didn't herniate another disc.

After three days, Brutus was going crazy from not getting walked or being played with. I can't walk him for fear of him jerking me, and if I let him out when he's been so bored, he will be GONE! He feels completely entitled to visit any and every neighbor, pee on all of their shrubs and see whose dogs are outside to play with. During the night he had been hitting the bells to go outside at least five times. I don't know if it was boredom or something to do with his surgery, but my disrupted sleep had about had it. I was getting crabby. Add to that the fact that we were completely out of bread and milk, and the only things that were sounding good to Don were cereal and sandwiches. When I walked out in the living room and saw two empty Pop Tart packages laying on the floor, I knew it was time to call for HELP.

I sent a text message to Andrew, our only child that lives within driving distance, with an S.O.S. Actually, it was just a question of "Are you going to be in the Bloomington area anytime soon?". I think that he's always a little leery when I ask him something like that. After all, he's working two jobs with crazy hours, and lives forty minutes away. His time is precious and I totally respect that, but we were getting desperate. Amazingly, as luck would have it, he was heading over to his friends that night. Woo Hoo!!! His next question was "why?". That was a fun one to explain. Once I did, he was more than happy to help, and I was SO happy to see him. Not only did he bring milk and bread and take Brutus for an awesome run, but he brought sandwich meat and sliced cheese, and he brought me my favorite goat cheese and wheat crackers. I love that boy.

My hope is that we get on our feet soon, and don't need to rely on our kids to change our diapers or care for us anytime soon, or really ever for that matter, but it sure was wonderful to know that he was there. I guess that this experience probably makes a good point for having supplies on hand for natural disasters! Oy Vey!

Here's to getting back to feeling like our crazy old selves!