Yay! Mom is home! And she was ready. We spoke on the phone Sunday night to try to figure out the game plan. She wanted out of there as early as possible; however she didn’t know when they’d let her go. All she knew was it would be soon after breakfast. We decided I’d check in with her first thing in the morning and then we’d go from there.
I called just after 8:00 knowing breakfast would’ve been served already. Mom still didn’t know, so told me to go to work and she’d call me. Around 10:00 she called and said she was only waiting for her own walker to be delivered by the pharmacy and she’d been assured it would be there “any minute.” I jetted to the facility and found Mom sitting in her chair with her leg propped up and her bed covered with her bags. There still wasn’t a walker and still only a promise of “any minute.” So I took her things out to my car and then settled down next to her to wait. By 11:30, Mom was fed up and declared we were leaving. She shuffled to the nursing station and informed them she was tired of waiting and asked that her walker be delivered to our house. I ran outside and moved the car closer to the entrance. She maneuvered herself into the car and we drove home.
I’d been worried about leaving her on her own for her first day home. I didn’t like the idea of her using the stairs, but she insisted she was going to be fine. She didn’t think I should wait with her for the walker to show up because they’d already proven “any minute” to be “any day now.” She promised to demonstrate her abilities on the stairs to show me she really would be okay.
Once to the house, I opened the car door and then ran her things inside. Mom got out of the car and using her cane, walked slowly to the house. She made it up the two stairs slowly, but definitely surely. Now it was time to go down one small flight to the main floor. She told me to watch her. She took each stair by stepping down with her bad leg, leaving the good knee to do all the bending. Of course! It was so easy and something I’ve done a million times after being super sore from a long run. We laughed a little in relief at how easy it really was.
She settled right back in. She shuffled from one room to another, checking on things and making sure she could get around. When she popped something into the microwave for her lunch, I somehow felt she was going to be fine, so I went back to work. The walker did eventually show up, but not until well after 1:00.
When I got home that evening, she asked me to finish putting together her shower chair. It looked intuitive enough, so I set about it, but soon discovered it was a bit more complicated. I needed her hands to help me hold a couple of things in place. I remarked that it was a time like this when I wished my brother Phil wasn’t off with the Army in Korea. One Christmas I received a small piece of furniture. With hope in his eyes, Phil asked if he could please, please put it together for me. Really? Um, yes! He would’ve loved piecing together that stupid shower chair.
Chair together, walker delivered, exercises being done, therapist schedules made. Mom is home and is starting her new routine of recovery. She’s still grumbling about her exercises, but as she told me, “I have to do them. If I don’t, I’ll be like this forever and a day.” I smiled as she shuffled off with determination. I’m so glad she’s home.