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Tuesday, April 25, 2017

My Own Personal Crazy Train

I have decided I need some comic relief when dealing with Mom so I have decided I will start another list.  This is more of a therapeutic way for me to deal with some of the things I get calls about each and every day.

I love Mom dearly and am thrilled she is able to still live at her house. She can do this because I literally can be at her front door from my house in 2 and a half minutes.  I have told the neighbors if they see me getting into my car wearing  pajama pants, 2 different shoes, a jacket, with my hair sticking straight up or soaking wet wrapped in a towel, it means there is an emergency at Mom's and I am headed down there ASAP.  I really didn't want them to think I was headed to The Pig looking like some street person.  (Well, actually looking like some street person who drives an old soccer mom van.)

Mom's method of summoning me  in an "emergency" is to call, say "Anne. I need you right now" then hang up the phone. (What!?!)  I have an immediate adrenaline dump, grab my keys and fly out the door.  What I really want to do is reach through the phone, grab her shoulders and say "Use your big girl words to tell me what the emergency is so I will know if I have time to put on clothes (tree branch emergency) or come in only a terry cloth robe (asthma emergency) because the crisis can be anything. Instead I run out the door calling My Beloved Sister so she will stay on the line with me in case I get to  Mom's house and find her in a heap on the kitchen floor (which has happened), or she will hear my silent scream when I get to her house and realize there is a spittle bug on the window and it scared Mom. (which has also happened)

When I return if they are outside they always ask if everything is ok, then look at me blankly when I tell them  "No, there was a branch in her driveway".  Now understand that this driveway was built when they built their house 50 years ago to accommodate 6 cars outside of the 2 car garage. (The folks entertained on a regular basis and wanted off street parking for guests). The branch was never in the way and would have been fine until later in the day (after I had showered and was wearing clothes) when either My Beloved Sister or I stopped by for our daily check-in.

Now to finally get to the point of this rambling post, I am going to start my collection of Mom's daily events or ramblings, since she not only has a daily crisis, but she also has opinions about everything which she not only shares but wants me to agree with.  For example, I will be driving her somewhere and she will see something she doesn't care for. There is some bizarre reason she does not like to see older men driving red convertibles while wearing billed felt caps and she mentions it every single time we see one.
Mom: "They just think they are all that!" "Don't you think so too, Anne?"
Me: "No, ma'am,  I never really gave it much thought. As long as they stay in their lane I'm ok with whatever they wear."
Mom: "Well, they just think they are something else and they are nothing but an old fool who wants to be young"
Me: "ok"
Mom: "What do you think when you see one"
Me: "I think they are going somewhere"
Mom: "Smart Ass!"

From now on (or as long as I am getting some weird benefit from it) I am going to post Crazy Train Tuesday.  Enjoy or skip it entirely, totally your choice. Whether any of you ride along with me or not this is much cheaper than a therapist and will make me either laugh or cry as I write it.  Whatever happens will be better than my spontaneous implosion or explosion which could be triggered by whatever the next phone call is.

As a teaser this is her crisis this morning.
The oak tree in her front yard shed too many acorns last fall so she needs it cut down__this week!

34 comments:

  1. My favorite conversation with my mom started like this -- "You're dad said you kids would stop visiting when he died. I just didn't know it would be you, too." (Me looking around her kitchen and mentally asking myself where the heck I am....)

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    1. That's funny! I had taken Mom to a new doctor and was busy filling out the new patient forms when one of her friends walked in. Her daughter was also with her. Mom turned to me and said " C (her friend) is so lucky__she has Janet to take her to the doctor" Meanwhile I continued filling out her forms in my best chopped liver handwriting'

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  2. All I can say is...."Bless her heart." ;-)

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  3. I am so looking forward to this. If I had a nickel for every time....

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    1. I understand where you are coming from. I can't wait until Mom gets home so I can hear what I did wrong this morning when I went to HER house, to meet HER sprinkler system guy, to fix HER sprinkler system, because SHE had to have it fixed IMMEDIATELY but SHE had plans for the day so I could just take care of it for HER .

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  4. If you weren't living this, it would be really funny. What I want to know is why Birmingham has so many older men driving around in red sports cars?

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    1. Can't you read! It's because they think they are all that! Hahahahahahaha!

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    2. Anne,
      It is true! However, I don't obsess over it. And, I gave another opinion below in a comment.

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    3. I am laughing so hard at your reply, Anne, I now have to pee!

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    4. It's 'cos they're "mutton dressed up as chicken!!!!!" as my mom would say, then wonder why we all burst laughing.

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  5. I got to "I think they are going somewhere" and burst out laughing. My mother often lamented the state of a woman's hair, including mine. "Why does she look as if she never brushes her hair?" "Why doesn't she get a haircut?" "You should wear your hair really curly, all the time." "That perm they gave you didn't work. Your hair is hardly curly at all."

    Love,
    Janie

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    1. I guess it is a universal condition. Mom won't quit asking until I answer her. A few years ago I was driving just outside of Cooperstown NY and a car was stopped by a field of something growing (hops maybe but I am not a farmer and have no real clue) and the people from the car were standing in the field. For about 15 minutes I had to listen to her conjectures about what they were doing and also listen to her questions about what I thought they were doing, then listen to her become angry because I suggested they were standing in a field of some sort of stuff that was growing. About that time Dad burst out laughing, because given the time it took to pass them and seeing them standing by a car just briefly that was the only conclusion I could draw. Of course then I added it might be the site of a future alien encounter or possibly a drug cartel looking at the possibility of farming in upstate NY. She called me a smart ass then too. Either Mom, me, or both of us are really slow learners.

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  6. All too familiar.
    It was made complicated in my case because my mother didn't have an intimate relationship with the truth. I rushed down to see her more than once to discover the emergency had been fabricated.
    I learnt to laugh. I had to.

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    1. You do have to laugh, but I am not sure I could handle fabricated emergencies. We have enough dealing with the lack of discernment between a true emergency and a regulation run of the mill aggravation. That being said, I do understand with her declining mental capacity her reality might be slightly different than mine. (Like the night I got a hysterical call at 3 a.m. to come get my sister's head off of her pillow. According to Mom her body was not there, just her head.) We knew some of her meds were causing some hallucinations if she woke suddenly from a deep sleep, but just to be on the safe side and appease her I had to apologetically call My Beloved Sister at 3:30 in the morning just to make sure she had not been the victim of a decapitation which the perp had then taken to Mom's house and put on her pillow. I guess she was having a Godfather moment. Yeah, that was a fun night/morning.

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  7. I think this record keeping is a great idea. Maybe you could write down the past "emergencies" just for the future. I, too, get a little ticked off at old guys in two-seater sports cars. You know they think it makes them look young. Plus, that car says, "I want a young thing to ride with me!" I would love to discuss this with your mother. We could have a laugh and agree.

    I did not live in the same town as my mother before she died, but she did not do these things. However, she did other things that made me shake my head and bite my tongue.

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    1. I actually have kind of a different reaction. I think of all the young men, particularly those that got married young, and started families young, that never could afford a sporty car.Yes, it might look silly to an outsider, but the feeling internal of driving a fun car, or a convertible on a beautiful spring day, should be enjoyed by someone who now probably can finally afford the car. Just my theory, but then again, they might just really think they're all that.

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    2. Sam,
      That is a good perspective. Maybe. I just know a few of the guys who say they want a 23-yr-old, the perfect age for them, balding and 63-yrs-old. One guy actually told me that he wanted the two-seater to attract young women!

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    3. Linda, you and Mom could talk about their intentions and I would just sit back laughing to myself. The emergencies happen so often I can't remember all of them. Plus each day there is either some emergency, something that scares her or something alarming. If I just start writing them each day, I will have hundreds in a few manths

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    4. Oh dear, Sam! TheHub and I were married very young and had our oldest son 4 weeks before our first anniversary. So now in addition to taking care of Mom's emergencies I have to start saving for a red sports car and a driving cap for TheHub?

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    5. Well, I wouldn't save for it, but don't be surprised if something shiny (and then a little red number) show up one day. My father in law, happily married for 35 years at the time, bought himself a little sporty number and he an my mother in law had a really great time on weekends, before their bodies determined the low ride was not doable. For my hubs, I'm expecting an old muscle car fro the late 60's/early 70's to show up once that final college tuition payment clears for the kid.

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  8. Thanks for the laugh! I give so much credit to those of you taking care of your elderly parents. Perhaps to an extent I was fortunate that my own mother had a fear of leaving the nursing home she lived in, even just to go out for a ride. Her fear...that they wouldn't let her back in!

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    1. LINE,
      Now, that is hilarious!

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    2. That is so funny, Line!
      My Grandmother had to go to a nursing home in her mid 90's. She spent every waking moment trying to get out of there, including rolling from the porch (she was a fall risk so they made her stay in a wheel chair ) and holding on to the Ups truck bumper. When the driver came back he asked her what she was doing and she told him to go ahead and make his rounds, she would hang on tight and when he got close to her street she would just let go and roll to her house.

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    3. Oh good heavens, I think I love your grandma. I once saw a very staid English film called Mrs. Caldicott's cabbage wars, about a not-so-old widow dumped in a home by her son. The overwhelming smell of boiled cabbage makes her lead an escape group. It's rather sweet in a very understated way. Anna

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    4. I am going to have to look for that movie!

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  9. This post was great, Anne. I am glad you are able to laugh and help your mom with her emergencies each and every time. I had some crazy train moments too, with my mother. (((HUGS)))

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    1. If I didn't laugh I would have to beat my head against a wall.

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  10. I used to wake in the middle of the night with hallucinations. They scared the heck out of hubby, especially when I would jump out of the bed and point to the spiders or snakes in the bed. lol. I wasn't even on any meds. Your a good daughter to run to your mother's aid. She's lucky you're close by.

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  11. She is lucky and I suppose I am lucky too! At the very least I can hop in the car and drive 3 backroads to her house so the only ones who see me in my pjs are my neighbors and Mom's neighbors.

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  12. I laughed so hard. Totally reminds me of my aunt! Looking forward to the next post. Good luck my dear.

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  13. Great post! You have a ton of patience, that's for sure. I used to just roll my eyes and my grandma and mom's conversations when she was caring for my grandma. Grandma had opinions, memories or comments and she was always right, even when she wasn't, LOL. My mom would try to correct her or argue with her and it would just go on and on, frustrating them both. Finally, I'm like "mom - just say ok and agree with her. it will make your life so much easier!"

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    1. I even understand Mom's reality and my reality are different, and I try to agree on anything that does not have circumstances, however I will not feed her judgmental habits. I remain neutral but she will not let up.

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