Saturday, October 10, 2015

Since I've been in Kansas...

You'll have to forgive me if this comes out scatter-brained and weird, the last several days have sort of melted together. So I am just going to break it down by person.

My cousins, they are doing well and getting along as well as they usually do. My cousin Shi-chan is still amazing and funny and I love that she's not taking shit off anyone any more. 

My Grandma. Grandma isn't doing well. She's 87 years old and while she's still moving around and doing a great deal on her own, she's become very frail. She has scoliosis of the spine and she's always stood and sat straight as can be but now, oh now you can visibly see is and she's bent to one side. She is also frustrated with my Grandpa and often doesn't know what to do with him. 

My Grandpa. Grandpa has Alzheimer's which I have mentioned before but he still remembers me and while it's progressing, he's still remembering a lot. He's not eating or drinking very much- which is a huge cause for concern since he's diabetic. He also doesn't remember taking showers and other things, but there are good days and bad days and that's just how it is. He is getting a great deal more ornery. Being that my Grandma is a strong extremely Christian woman, his cussing is getting him into trouble. He never cussed while I was growing up. Well, I heard him call some woman a bitch once and made me promise not to tell Grandma, lol. But now, oh boy, Grandma might kill him! He did spend a good deal of my visit with them telling me about stuff I had never heard before, which was great. I loved it. I will see my Grandparents again tomorrow and want to see them at least one more time after that before I leave. I am also taking that they are still planning to go to Texas for the Winter as a good sign that they are still up to doing things. 

My Dad. Oh boy, my Dad. He is exhausted. His knees aren't in good shape and one of his ankles is probably about to give out on him. He wears a brace but it just doesn't look good. He is very worried about my Mom and doesn't know what to do. I think sometimes he panic's because no one knows what the hell is going on with her or how to stop it. He's had to miss days of work to take care of her and he is worried about the stability of his job. Of course no job is safe or secure in this day and age, but, I don't know. Things just aren't good.  Given the condition of my Grandparents (despite them telling him to go where the jobs are) he won't leave them and frankly, after seeing them, I can't blame him. 

My Mom. Fucking Hell! I have never ever seen anything like her episodes before. I am not even sure if I know how to describe them and they are frightening. Firstly, her legs, arms, hands, shoulders, jeeze everything jumps. It's like she just jumps and flails uncontrollably and it's not like seizure activity. She sort of with it enough off and on to get up and try to walk it off but it seems like the moment she's up, she's not and she's sitting down again. She went to the bathroom the other night and when she's been in there for ten minutes and I kept hearing this strange noise, I got up to check on her. She was reaching for the bookshelf in front of the toilet to try and pull herself up but the moment she did, she wasn't really with it and her hands and fingernails would smack on the shelves. She also had frequent startled- deer-in-the-headlights-look as if she didn't know how she'd gotten where she was and that's when she'd try to get up but seconds later she was out of it. This went on for hours. And she was with it enough to tell us that she didn't want to go to the ER. 

The ER told her to go to her primary physician but they didn't do an  MRI or run any tests on her. Her primary physician said if things get bad, go back to the ER. So that's a very frustrating revolving door to no where. So, I called my Mom's neurologist yesterday and tried to get her January appointment moved up. Of course I didn't actually get to talk to anyone. They have a messaging service and if they call back, it probably won't be until Monday. If I don't hear from them on Monday, I am calling them again and I will be a thorn in their side until I get a reply.

My Dad says that the last look the neurologist did said- and she'd had an episode in the office while hooked up to some kind of machine that I can't remember the name of- they couldn't find anything wrong. There wasn't any sign of seizure or anything like that. The therapist who works with the neurologist theorizes that my Mom is in so much pain that her brain basically can't process or handle all of it and just shuts off. That this is somehow psychosomatic some way. But that doesn't really explain the jumping or the nausea.

She was on a medication for only a week that starts with an R- of course I can't remember what that was called- that she reacted to badly and was up for a lawsuit apparently. So I am wondering if it had a lasting effect and somehow messed her up. And that on top of what the therapist thinks is all somehow just one big cluster-fuck she's having deal with. 

I don't know. I am frustrated, scared, and thankful that today, at least, my Mom is having a good day. She's been doing laundry and she's had some actual sleep where she wasn't basically knocked out from the muscle relaxers and what little pain medication the doctor finally gave her. She thinks she's going to sweep and mop the kitchen and living room floors but I don't think I am going to let her. She needs to pace herself and no over do it. I am going to do the dishes and clean the counters and stove for her because I want her to rest as much as possible.

Other than that, I've slept, watched a lot of TV with my Mom (there were several things she wanted me to see and watch with her). My Dad has told me a lot about the MMORPG Eve, which sounds awesome and wonderfully complex and fun but I think I will just watch him play it some evening. And I've done some homework. I finally got half of it done today, which was awesome! My discussion board posts were late, but my instructors know what's going on and I am keeping them updated, and they are being so understanding. Oh and for some reason my laptop won't hold the internet connection very well, I think it's the piping in the house or something like that. So anytime I am online is either from my phone (which I hate doing because it is obnoxious) or when I am using my Dad's computer. 

Oh and I got to once again experience a Kansas thunderstorm. It was amazing and I loved every second of it. I loved the charge in the air a couple of hours before it, the kind of energy you feel when you know a storm is coming. I loved all the lightning and rumbling thunder, and all the rain, the smell of it, the fact that I had to dive 20 MPH under the speed limit because it was coming down so hard. OH it was fantastic!

Well, that's what is going on.     


  1. you are handling this beautifully Hannah!
    that's quite a lot on your plate right now...
    blessings to you and your family.

  2. Dear Hannah, I am still so sorry to hear about your mother, and the fact that they are giving her the run-around. What the therapist says just doesn't sound like sound science to me, not when her brain is seizing/shutting down too. But I don't think you have to worry about a drug she was only on for a week, the chances of lasting side effects are slim then. Yes, be a thorn - it's unfortunately the only way to get help sometimes. Best of luck, lots of strength.

  3. Honey I'm so glad you got to experience the thunderstorm. That, at least, was a much needed piece of home. I'm also glad you're getting to spend so much time with your family but at the same time I wish dearly that it was under better circumstances. I love you very much and can't wait to have you back up here with me but I hope, hope, hope that something can be done for your poor mom while you're still down there. She needs your support more than she says. *hugs*