Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Two Trips, a Medical Emergency and a Wedding!!!..Part I

It's been a while and this has become a habit...need to change that...SOON!!! Anyways, it has been interesting, so there is lots to tell. Since January, I have not stop, one thing after another and an asthma attack too!......but let's not rush into this.

On February 8th, my mother was rushed to the hospital with severe oxygen deprivation and very congested lungs. She is 87 and had a stroke a few years back, so needless to say it was very scary. I kept in touch with my cousin, who was there with her. It is difficult to care for parents when one lives so far mother lives in Panama, remember? Finally at around 4 o'clock in the morning, she was stable enough....I went to bed.

The next day we talked to her doctor and he advised us to travel there, just in case....another scary thought. Rush to get tickets, organized everything at home, pack...I was exhausted by the time my sisters and I got to MIA to fly to Panama. Hate to fly, even if I do it often. My seat was at the back of the plane...not good...but my sister Laura kept me company.

Arrived in Panama to iffy weather and decided to wait until the next day to drive the three hours to where my mother lives.....the joys of getting old!!!! Never mind, had a lovely time with our cousin Damaso, who makes us laugh and feeds us well. His apartment is an oasis in our travels back and forth from caring for our grateful!

Drove out of a peaceful and traffic-free Panama was Saturday!....and made the best of the drive, stopping for a light lunch and laughing about good old times. Arrived at the clinic in the early afternoon. My mother was much better, but breathing with difficulty and getting oxygen. Her private nurse was with her, so was our cousin Alina. What would we do without her!

We drove back and forth between the clinic and my mother's home...about a 30 minute ride each way....everyday until she went home. Got her room ready, oxygen tanks and all and took her home on Thursday. Visitors, whom she had had plenty in the clinic, were not so welcome. She just didn't want to see anyone, and truthfully...why should she? Things got into a routine and my sisters and I just settled for a long run......almost three weeks.

She got better everyday, but on our second Sunday there...I woke up in the early morning and could hardly breath....oh, great, I thought, here we go again. I went to the doctor and my suspicious were confirmed: I was having an asthma attack. Back to cortisone medication for a week, coughing everyday, out of breath...just great. Only good thing: I saw the doctor early Monday morning, it only cost me $7!!!! Got my prescription right away and by 10 a.m. I was taking my medication......this place is really amazing. I wasn't even in the city, just a small town three hours away. Need to consider this when we retire...I tell you! There are housekeepers too, and people who come to your house to iron your clothes! Love it!!!!!

We had a good time, while there: ate well and enjoyed a glass of wine here and there, solved crossword puzzles in Spanish....need the practice....went to the beach for long walks, kept our mother company and the house running smoothly. A successful trip, but worrisome too. Our mother is old, we have to accept that things are just not going to end well one of these days. In the meantime, let's enjoy what we can.

Returned to the city on a Monday afternoon and went out with our cousin for drinks and excellent food. A good night sleep and Ana and I were on our way home. Laura stayed to hold the fort for a few more weeks....and Carnaval was coming! She is always there for the good times...I am always there for the worse rainy days.....why is that? Never mind.

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