Monday 17 December 2012, 21h30. I’m in bed, asleep already. My phone rings and Daddio flashes across the screen.

Me; Hello (croakily and irritated, asking what does the old man want at this time?)

Daddio; your mother has been admitted to hospital.

Me; (bright eyed and heart pulsating) Why, what happened?

Daddio;….. in a very typical male style, he gave me an explanation but I cannot for the life of me remember what he said, except I was left with a feeling that, yes she was in hospital but she was goingt to be discharged the very next day.

The next day I paid my mother a visit in hospital, only to find her with a huge, swollen, purple hand, an intravenous drip on the arm, blurred conversation, and such lethargy. In short, she looked deathly tired, but I forged a smile and a vivacious conversation and silently hoped all would be alright. Later that evening her assigned surgeon operated on her hand to take care of whatever it is that had gotten her in hospital in the first place.

Wednesday morning I paid her a visit. Talk about walking straight up into a “Mummy Returns” scene, bandages and all. Ok, wait up, I love my movies but being forcefully made to be in one, especially one with mummies is not what I asked for. This time, right now would be ideal for the dream to end and I can go back to my normal boring life.

Why such a humungous hand? Is it painful? It sure looks heavy. Is it? Yes it is heavy but no pain, she says, still tired.

Day in, day out I am at the hospital, well-wishers come and go and she’s still not getting much better. Better yes, but not much better.

The problem? Even the doctors are puzzled. “The mummy” (excuse the pun), first suspected a spider bite. Only because the problem started at the tip of the finger and she knows there are spiders around the house now in the summer, not that she even saw one at the time, but the Doctors weren’t convinced. Then someone somewhere said it was poison, due to the heavy vomiting she had gone through, upon going to the hospital, but in the end it was said to be a virus. What virus? We are all still in the dark. I guess any mystery illness is just shipped into the virus cabinet around here.

In the end my mother spent her Christmas in hospital, myself, Hubby and Baby spent a very wet Christmas indoors, despite our initial plans of going out on baby’s first Christmas. But cooking my mother her lovely Christmas lunch to make the hospital stay less heavy on her warmed my heart, I’m sure hers too.

She got out of hospital 11 days later and I may be all lighthearted about it now and trying to be funny, but the past few weeks have been the heaviest on me by far. At one point I remarked to my husband, “this illness and situation at the hospital is weighing so heavily on me I find myself so helpless I cannot even pray, all I can utter is thank you and that’s that”. Thank you for what you ask? I too am not sure.

What I know for sure is that my mother is a strong little lady, a fighter, I love her to bits and that I am thankful for her life, mummy bandages or not. And of course she needs to live to be a hundred, so she can teach my son how to cook, bake and play scrabble.

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