How can reality and hope really co-exist?

I haven’t had to cry this morning.

The Hospice nurse who came out yesterday said my mom’s lungs sound a little better!!!!

I know it’s too soon to hope but “two weeks ” to “she’s doing a little better?” Really?

So I find myself living in a kind of limbo, the place between reality and hope. It’s a hard place to live.

It’s like this picture. Nothing can grow in concrete. Right?


All it takes is a crack and life can shoot up.


I got to sit with my mom a few minutes but then she wanted to get cleaned up, brush her teeth, have some coffee. And then the nurse came, yada, yada.

This last week has been a roller coaster. But here’s what I learned.

First of all, don’t be afraid to ask questions of everyone. Doctors, nurses, aides, social workers. EVERYONE. And you can learn as much from the non-professional staff as you can from the medical professionals.

It is only when you hear a lot from a lot of people in various occupations that you get the full picture. It’s good I don’t have any inhibitions in this area. Hospice told me to call with any questions and I did, as many as I needed and as often as I needed.

I’ve never been reticent when it comes to protecting and guarding my loved ones.

In fact, if you need an example (these posts certainly haven’t been very uplifting lately), here’s a funny story.

My son was an assistant coach for a football team for awhile. My daughter-in-law and I were at one of his games. A man a few rows in front of us started “bad mouthing” the coach. I got madder and madder. The game ended and I followed him for a few feet before I tapped him on his shoulder and told him to “Turn around”.

He did and I lambasted him loudly in front of a number of bystanders. I told him I was the “coach’s mom” and I didn’t appreciate his remarks and he better knock it off at future games. I was maybe six inches from his face. My poor daughter-in-law was mortified. She pulled me away and we left.

No one messes with a mama bear, at least not this one.

But here’s what happened the next day. This same man went to my son’s office and apologized.

So there!

I’m like that with my mom, too. I will continue to be her strongest advocate. Like today, when a social worker called and wanted to set up a time to visit her. I said, “She’s had enough prodding and probing” and “I’ll let you know when you can come.”

Since when did dying (if that’s what she’s doing) become so complicated? Everybody has to justify their job and nobody coordinates their services. I’ve answered the same questions over and over again from different people for different reasons for days. How many intake forms do you need anyway? Don’t misunderstand, I’m happy with all the help we’ve received and would recommend Hospice to anyone. They’ve been wonderful.

But when you’re already overwhelmed, the lack of clarity takes it toll. But at least now I feel like I’m on sure footing. I think I understand what is happening with my mom and as far as her prognosis, God is the ultimate decider.

I hope I get to the summer so I can sit with her on her deck, drink iced tea, and watch the birds. That’s what I’m praying for but I’m well aware it might not turn out that way and I’ll have to remember those times rather than experience them again. I like to think I’m being realistic and hopeful at the same time.

God bless and have a good day.

ps. I wrote this yesterday morning to post for today, Thursday. Since then, my mom has become stronger each day. Her appetite has returned. My brother and I are beside ourselves. All I need is for some abnormally warm weather and we are going to sit on her deck.