Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Old memories die hard...

Just when you think you've moved on, old memories are awakened. What started out as an ordinary Monday turned into memory lane and not one I was eager to re live. 

Frank headed out early this morning to start on a new project. Work has been slow, but steady. We are grateful for any work and counting the days to Spring when his monthly maintenance begins again  as well as the larger contracts. He has had a lot of pain in his elbow and I finally convinced him to go and get it checked out. It turns out it is "tennis elbow" and he was given a cortisone shot. I usually am not a fan as that only masks what is really going on, but the doctors are just playing a guessing game right now, and the pain was so bad it would wake him in the middle of the night. Though we haven't seen much relief yet, it may take a couple of days. 

Zack wakes up in good spirits. He feels good and his color is back in his face (something I don't mention to him as he still doesn't like it). He is scheduled to go with Donald (who doesn't drive) to the Cancer Center for labs to determine whether he needs a transfusion. His appointment isn't until 11:30 am, so I let the boys sleep in. Donald has become a regular here. His mother is undergoing heavy chemotherapy for her cancer (she is stage four, but it is too hard for him to talk about so I don't even know what type). No matter how hard I try to get him to open up, he turns everything into a joke (sounds familiar). The boys stop by the office to pick up the gas card and after giving out hugs, head out to Asheville. Not knowing if he needs blood, we agree that Frank and I could meet with them after work and we could bring home his truck as well. Though he would feel much better after a transfusion (if needed), he is too tired from the Benedryl and sitting around all day. 

I, still having sharp pains and feeling worse as the day progress', decided to go to Urgent Care. I had started the morning feeling better, but quickly became worse. I was able to work without any problems which was  a blessing but at lunch quickly went down to get checked out. I walked up to the entrance and sign in. The nice lady took my information and within thirty minutes I was being called in to have my vitals checked. As I walk down the long hall and enter the examination room it hits me! This is where we first brought Zack for the tumor on his leg. THIS is THE room!! I sit and wait, the memories come flooding back. I see the examining table he sat on, the little table attached to the wall where I put my purse. The nurse walks in and takes all my personal information. Within a few minutes the Doctor walks in. She is a blonde with attitude, but that's okay, so am I. Oh my gosh, YOU'RE the doctor that examined Zack!  All these emotions are back, with a vengeance! She looks are me and says "Well, I'm the doctor TODAY!"  Standing by the door, she says "I'm going to give you THE lecture".  "You need a CT scan, you need a colonoscopy! You can't just walk in here and tell me what you have! What if you have, like my mother, a ruptured appendix?" I look at her in horror! "Are you saying that you are sending me for this, could it be my appendix?" "NO, I'll go ahead and give you the antibiotic, but you need to see what is really going on." She listens to my chest and stomach and says, well at least there's not a blockage.  I remind her of who I am. She said "I see too many people to remember your son." Well,  fair enough, "I find it interesting that you want me to have all these tests and yet didn't take an x-ray or anything of my son. Please just know the doctor you referred him to, cut him open without any prior scans!"  I understand what he did, is not your fault, I would just be careful recommending him, and I'm not the only person that has had a bad experience with him.  She looks at me and says "I don't remember the doctor either." I told her that I remember everything very well, my son... who was diagnosed with Ewings Sarcoma, remembers everything too well, but she is not the least bit phased. At this point, I can't get out of there soon enough. 

I leave with plenty of time to grab lunch, my prescriptions and head back to the office. Luckily I can focus on work and let go of that particular walk down memory lane. One thing is sure, I won't be returning there anytime soon. Shortly after lunch Zack calls to tell me he will not be needing a transfusion and he is to return for labs on Thursday (which I promptly changed to Friday, when I can go with him). 

It is now Tuesday. I wanted to go and see Mom, but pretty much knew last night that I wasn't going to make it. Having been through this before, I knew it would take a couple of days for me to start feeling better. Frank, Zack and new employee (and friend to Zack) Austin head out early. Zack doesn't really want to work at first, but tells me later, once he got started he was enjoying himself . A couple of hours into the morning, Zack became really tired and couldn't continue. He tried to push himself, but Frank made him stop and come back home. Frank felt bad for him, as he found Zack crying at one point, frustrated that he can't do what he used to be able to do. We explain that it will all come back, he just needs to heal. 

Zack returned home frustrated and shared how much he was enjoying work, once he stopped being in a bad mood. We had a nice little visit and then he was off to pick up his friend. I spent the day cleaning the house, one room at a time and resting when tired. I was feeling better as the day progressed and didn't want to sit too much as I felt the exercise would help. Zack and Donald leave to pick up an old friend from our "Talley Road" days. Lyndsay the daughter of our then landlady and dear friend. It was nice seeing her as she was catching me up on the current events in her life. I remembered better memories of times when her parents would have Halloween parties, equipped with their own haunted house with Frank as one of the terrors. How cool it was when they brought home two donkey's and Zack couldn't wait to go down to see them. Now, here she stands a Junior in High School! They all grow up!

Zack's energy is low, so after dinner I encourage him to get some rest. He is excited about taking Mom shopping tomorrow afternoon, but I tell him that he doesn't have to go if he doesn't feel well enough. He won't hear of it. He says he will stay in the truck while she shops so he isn't in a large crowd and if he is tired, he will rest in the car and listen to his music. He loves his time with his Meme and neither of us has seen her in a couple of weeks. He also knows if she sees him, she worries less. She always thinks we are hiding something from her. 

As the night progress' Zack comes in and tells me he has a headache. As I look at him he says "I know Mom, I probably need blood!" I tell him to keep me posted and if he does, he may need to go tomorrow or Thursday and not wait. He looks at me and says "if I have to , then I'll go, it's no big deal Mom."  Wow.. thinking of the first day at Urgent Care and how big a deal everything was in the beginning and now, it's routine! Thank God he adapts and has the strength and wisdom.

1 comment:

  1. Well written, exhausted as you must be. I want to fly you to Canyon Ranch Spa for two days or put you up in the Wharton suite at the Inn on Biltmore with massages scheduled, although I've never been and you'd never go, never mind the fact that my bank account, today, wouldn't allow it. At the same time you are gone I'd send Zack and all his buddies to meet NASCAR mechanics and arrange for him to ride around the track. And then I'd fly Frank to an exotic place where the fly fishing is incredible.

    Just a day away from this. I know just going to Mom's house would do it for you both. A day in the Nantahala for Frank. I know a day of no reminders would do it. Or a a day of sunshine and pink cheeks.

    We all hurt for you (all) when we read this. It makes us love Donald and his mom. It makes us love you. It makes us wonder what has hardened the heart of the doctor. It makes us more aware of the day and who we are in that day and the color of our cheeks. It makes us hug our kids twice as much.

    Your honesty is astonishing.

    Feel the Love we send you today and every day.