Mom Has Another Stroke

My mom lived with Bill, Shantel and I for three years after my dad died. During that time she had several small strokes that landed her in the hospital for a few days then in a care center for a week or so for physical therapy. Each time I would bring her home from the care center I would be given very clear instructions that mom was to continue to do some sort of exercise like walking everyday. It was always hard for me to know when mom really felt bad or when she just wanted to give up because she missed dad so much. She would insist that she didn’t feel good and refused to go for her required walks. As a result, she got weaker and weaker and finally got to where she thought she couldn’t walk at all. She became very dependent on using a wheelchair when we went anywhere outside the home.

I would get frustrated with mom because I really believed she just gave up on life after dad died and one day I told her how I felt. I said I realized she missed dad and didn’t think she could go on without him. I also told her that she still had Danny, Stephen, Bill, Shantel and me who all loved her and wanted her to be active in our lives. I said she was making it feel like nothing mattered to her but dad and since he wasn’t here we didn’t matter to her anymore. She just cried and said “I hope you never have to know what it’s like to lose your spouse”. I finally gave up trying to get her to do anything and told her if she wasn’t going to at least try to help herself I wasn’t going to try to force her anymore.  So, mom was content sit in the rocking chair, with her dog Beau on her lap, and do nothing all day long.

Early one morning I thought I heard moaning coming from mom’s room so I looked in and could see something was wrong. She was looking at me but wasn’t able to speak. I called 911 and an ambulance came within five minutes. They checked mom and said it appeared she was having a stroke and took her to the hospital. Bill was already at work and Shantel was still sleeping. I called Bill to let him know mom was being taken to the hospital and that I needed to meet the ambulance at the hospital so he needed to come home and get Shantel to school.

When I arrived at the hospital I was told mom had suffered another, much stronger stroke. The doctors said they were sending her for further tests to determine the extend of her stroke. A few hours later the doctors told me that in addition to mom’s Parkinson’s, and strokes, she also had an aneurysm on the right side of her brain. They were giving her medication to help reduce the effect of the stroke and said now all they could do was watch and see how she responds. I stayed at mom’s bedside all night. She would wake up off and on but still was not able to speak clearly. When she would open her eyes, she would become very agitated, and would fling her arms all around.

As the night wore on, she began to speak, but it was clear she was having hallucinations. She thought the nurses station was an airplane and we were all waiting for dad to arrive so we could all go to Disneyland. She also thought people were skinning dogs and cats in the room across the hall and would insist I go make sure her dog, Beau was not in that room. She would say she could see Beau running up and down the hall and she didn’t want those people to catch him and skin him alive…it was horrible to listen to her say these things because she really believed it and would get upset if I tried to tell her that wasn’t happening. This went on for two days then I finally asked for a second opinion evaluation for her. Another doctor evaluated her and told me he really thought mom was having a severe reaction to a medication that apparently was not working well with her Parkinson’s medication. The medication was changed and within a couple of days mom’s condition started to improve. Within a week, she was able to leave the hospital but I was told she would need to go back into the care center where she could receive physical therapy again.

While all this was going on I stayed at the hospital all day with mom and now that she was being moved to the care center I would stay there with her during the day as well, at least until I knew she was really out of the woods. Bill would go to work and as soon as I got Shantel to school, I would go directly to the care center to see about mom.

Back at out house, mom’s dog, Beau and our cat, Carmen hated each other and couldn’t be left alone together so I would have to put Beau in mom’s room, where the doggie door was, so he would be able to get out to the yard when he needed to go out. Beau wouldn’t stay outside alone because he was scared of everything and I didn’t think this was fair to Beau to have to sit in mom’s room all day. So I asked my brother Danny if he would take Beau and keep him at his house so I didn’t have to worry about him while I was at the care center during the day with mom. Danny agreed but we decided not to tell mom about the arrangement until she was feeling much better. Bad Idea!!

Next: Mom Won’t Come Home!

2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. gotham girl
    Mar 21, 2012 @ 21:05:11

    These medication reactions are so horrible…especially for the elderly. I know the impact it had on my dad when he was in the hospital. I’m glad we’re getting to some Beau stories, those are so good! xoxo


    • beyondcinderella
      Mar 22, 2012 @ 01:57:24

      Oh yes frissy…more Beau stories are on the way…if nothing else, he is for sure one of a kind…stay tuned, and thanks for your continued support and comments…Luv & hugs & MORE!!!


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