Is This How It's Going To Be?

My Mom recently spent 3 nights in the hospital with Bronchitis. She told us that she had been having difficulties breathing for just a couple weeks when in reality it had been a few months. She put off seeing her Dr. because she had a feeling it would deem a stay in the hospital. She can be a stubborn old bird!

So the morning when she was finally going to call her Dr. she decided she just better pass GO and go straight to the ER. She called my older brother who was able to take her. They started her on a course of antibiotics, steroids, and breathing treatments. Bronchitis is nothing to mess with, and even more so for someone with COPD.

Of course it was on a Monday and I was working but was able to get FB messages on my phone from Bro #1. We kept in touch throughout the day with Bro #2 and #1's wife. When the doctor suggested that Mom have help come in since she lives alone, #1 started wigging out. He messaged us and said we NEED to have a family meeting to see what the next step will be and where she will go and who is going to tell her.

He made it sound like she would not be capable to take care of herself anymore and she would have to go into a facility. I'm still at work at totally freaking out! I kindly suggested that we can't just make any big decisions without talking with her too. I've been with an older woman for over 9 years; you just can't make rash decisions like that and not have input from the person you are talking about. If a person can absolutely make no decisions for themselves then you step in and take over. I know what would happen if we just took away what little choice and independence she has, she would go downhill and just die of a broken heart.

This was his response "We, as in you. Me. #2. Discussion. Not mom yet. We need a plan. If this isn't good enough then I quit!!!!! I'm eating now. I will be home later."

Wow, how did things turn from discussion to dictatorship? My question to him was "We haven't even started a discussion yet and you're pissed at me?" #2 finally chimed in when he got the chance. He's the one that lives out of town and understandably can't drop everything to get here. He basically told us to chill out and that we have to work together and not against each other. He called me later that day to ask how things were going. A few years ago when Mom was in the hospital with diverticulitis and things looked much more grim, #1 called #2 and told him he better get over here because she probably wouldn't make it. So #2 jumped in his car, traveled across the state crying, just to have #1 call him later to say Mom was home. I did not know any of this conversation. Slight over reaction to the circumstances? I think so. His wife messaged me and said he isn't mad, just frustrated and under stress because of her cancer treatment. Well maybe so, but I'm not going to take any shit from him. He can have a fit all he wants but I will try to be the voice of reason for Mom's sake.

Our Mom has made #1 POA of her finances and me POA of her medical decisions. #2 only gets to be POA of one of us can't fulfill our duties. He actually might get be POA for both if #1 and I end up killing each other. It came close.

This past Saturday we all got together at her house. The first hour was cordial, then #2 said he would have to leave soon so if anyone had anything to say.......oh boy did we. Myself and #1 got into a heated yelling match. Mom and #2 just let us go, then we calmed down for a bit. I told him I was NOT going to be bullied by him. Then he had the balls to say that I don't do anything, when it comes to helping Mom. I think he meant that he was at the hospital more than I was which is true. But two years ago he was working and I was the one there most of the time dealing with doctors. So I let him have it again and #2 had to put us back in our corners. It's quite funny really because #2 was always the one in trouble, making bad choices, and now he had to calm us down.

In the end we hugged it out and #1 was crying and I knew he felt bad, that wasn't my intention. But he was being totally unreasonable that we didn't jump when he said JUMP! It was much better this way that we could all sit down, with Mom in attendance and talk about the 'what ifs' of the future. When they left I told Mom that I hoped we hadn't upset her and she said that it needed to happen before we could move on.

I told our daughter than we get old she will have it harder in some ways because she will have to make all decisions, but easier that she won't have any siblings to fight with. It's not fun.


Mr. Shife said…
Wow what a difficult, trying week, kden. I hope you are doing OK and I hope your mom is feeling better as well. Take care of yourself. Oh and remind me to never piss you off. =)
Claire M. King said…
I'm glad you spoke your peace. Good luck with the fam.

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