Tuesday, February 5, 2013

My mum - 15 January 2013


Tuesday: I was very emotional as I boarded the flight.  It must have been the longest flight I’ve ever taken.  In between crying on the flight I somehow managed to pass out for a while. 

As we touched down in East London I felt a sense of calm come over me.  I knew I had to compose myself because I couldn’t cry when I saw my dad.

When I met my dad he told me that there was good news.  Mum had a good sleep.  She was sedated and stable.

All these words – ICU, ventilator, sedated, stable… none of them had ever been associated with my mum.  It just wasn’t natural.

We arrived home around 08:30 and as soon as I walked into the house, I started cleaning and tidying up.

I will never forget this moment.
I was making the bed when my dad and brother walked into the room.

Dad wanted to explain exactly what had happened. Post kidney stone op, my mum had contracted septicaemia. I dare not ask what it was. I dared not Google it. But what I did learn was that there wasn’t enough oxygen entering mum’s blood stream.

“…mummy took a bad turn yesterday.  She’s sedated and stable. But it’s up to her now and all we can do is pray.”

I swear, my entire being turned to stone. I became absolutely tight-lipped and nodded. After all, surely he wasn’t talking about MY mum in this condition?

There were still a few hours till the first visiting hour of the day. I didn’t quite know what to do with myself…

Dad came back home from the office around 10:30 to pick my brother and I up. I had no idea what to expect when we arrived at the hospital.  It was my first time to enter an ICU.

Walking in, it was as if I had turned into a different person completely. I passed about two or three people before seeing my mum.  I almost didn’t recognize her.  She lay there listless in bed with tubes and drips connected to her. I rushed to her side and said, “Mummy..mummy I’m here!” God only knows where I had the courage and strength to speak to her the way I did.  I reached for her hand and noticed two things.  She was strapped down to the bed and her hands and fingers were double its size.

I couldn’t help, but notice that my mother was the worst looking patient in that ICU.


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