Monday, December 8, 2008
Not ready to be an Orphan...Part I
I can't believe the words that are coming out of his mouth. "She has three blockages, one 70%, one being 80% , and one being 90%, we are most likely looking at having to operate".... I can't believe that just a few minutes ago I was laughing and making jokes and now, I'm hearing words, that could shatter my world.
Let me start at the beginning... so a couple of weeks ago, my mother feels this sharp tingly feeling flow for a minute down her neck for a minute. Most wouldn't give it another thought, if that was the only time, and never happened again, even she had thought this. However there was something about this feeling, that made her nervous, and she felt that she needed to get it checked out. She went in for a physical, where they didn't find anything unusual, but they thought she needed more test. Those test is what led to the ultimately cardiac catherization test. This is a procedure, where they go through your upper leg pelvic region, and I believe shoot ink through your veins or something like that to check your arteries and check blockage and heart valves. It's an out patient procedure, where the patients is awake the whole time, and done by a cardiologist. It's only like 45 mins long, but takes like 4 hours to recover to be able to leave.
She is suppose to have someone there the whole time and to take her home, because she can't drive after the procedure. So me and one of my aunts go, and a family friend comes for support. We sit in the waiting room for a little while, and me and the family friend go down to the cafeteria, until she gets out, to grab something to drink, and see what they have to eat. We don't eat anything, grab our drinks, and I suggest, we run up to the maternity floor and check out the babies. I don't have much experience with the maternity floor, but I imagined it being like on television and busy nurse desk and men rushing their women to the desk, with comments, like "Her contractions are 3 mins apart", or something like that. Nurses rushing the pregnant women to delivery rooms, and stuff like that. However, that is not what I got, that maternity ward was so quite and dull, nothing like I thought it would be.I mean it wasn't like it was some small hospital in the middle of the sticks, kinda of the opposite. There is only one family in the waiting room watching "The View", waiting for their known mother to be, to deliver, and then there is only one nurse at the nurse desk, at a computer, looking like she is checking her email or Myspace page instead of anything to do with pregnant women, I bet. We go to the nursery, and I'm expected all the babies in the window, with name tags like "Baby Girl Jones", "Baby Boy Newman", but what I got was a nursery, with a black curtain drawn, and a sign saying,"Shhhh...please be considerate, babies are sleeping, even they need to get their sleep". I take a peek through the side of the curtain, that really gave me a good look, and I don't see any babies, but one, that was in an incubator. I go to the nurse desk, and ask her "Why are y'all perpetrating, like y'all have babies, when there isn't, and with some sign acting like there is, but they are sleep?" She tells me something about they are with they mommas. I was like why not just say that, what's up with the big cover up. As we get on the elevator we are laughing about the whole experience.
When we are back to the floor, that my mother is on, we see my aunt isn't in the waiting room anymore, so we go to the recovery room, my mother is suppose to be after the procedure, and as we are coming in, my aunt is leaving. The minute she sees us, she starts to cry, she wasn't crying until she saw us. See this aunt has the unbelievable talent to cry in 0 to 180, in a drop of a dime. She says she can't handle this. I rush pass her, to see what is going on. The doctor is their talking to my mother, he introduces himself to me, and he proceeds, to explain to me that my mother has three blocked arteries. As he is explaining the percentages blocked, it almost feels like a surreal moment. It was like not my mother...I just knew without that they were not going to find anything...I can't be hearing him correctly...Oh my god, I'm not ready to be an orphan.As he continues to talk, I just look at her lying there quietly, she hadn't said anything since we came in and she introduced me to the doctor. She just looks back at me, no more words exchanged. The family friend ask him, "So what do we do about this?" He then explains that we have three options. The first, is to do nothing, which he feels is not in the best interest, but it is still an option...Next!... Option two, is that they could but stints in...I can't remember exactly what he said they do, but I do remember that he said one of her blockages, the 90% one, was located in an area, where they wouldn't be able to put a stint in...Okay next...Option three, to have a Triple bypass surgery. They will open her up, take veins from her leg, and use them to reconfigure her heart, and take the veins and bypass over the blockages literally.
"It has a greater risk than the first two options, but it has a greatest reward too", is how the doctor explained it. However, those same thoughts kept running through my mind...I'm not ready to be an orphan! I heard someone tell my mother years ago, when my grandmother died, that no matter what age you are, once your parents die, you are technically an orphan, whether you are 5 or 55 you are technically an orphan. I don't know what it was about that moment, that made me remember that. It was at that moment, I truly realized, how much growing,I still had to do, and I wasn't ready for her to leave my life now. After about 5 minutes, of theses thoughts and feelings, I knew it was times to bring them into check. I don't know how my face looked, but I knew I had to reel my thoughts in...I kept telling myself she will be fine...I'm not ready for her to go, and God knows it, he knows he can't leave me alone with my family... and she just retired a year and half ago...she can't die after just retiring, she is suppose to get a few more years of relaxation and comfort...She will be fine, she has to be. I hadn't said anything this whole time, but I know it's showtime. I through on a warm smile, the best I can and I keep it together. She does the exact same thing, both of us trying to protect the other, both trying to be strong for the other. I tell her I'm going to go check on my Aunt Ina. I go out to the waiting room and I see that she is still crying, but on some strange woman's arms. I ask her, "Whose is this?" She stops crying for a moment, she looks at me and then at the woman and says "I don't know" Then starts crying again, the woman's arms wrapped around her shoulder's and gently patting her. Irritated now, I'm thinking to myself, we just can't take you anywhere, can we?
Not to long later, my other aunt calls, to see how things went. I answer it and tell her, what I had just learned. She ask me what is ruckus in the background, I tell her that it's her sister crying like a baby, she just sighs, and I can feel her eyes rolling over the phone, but she doesn't say anything, that's my Aunt CeCe's style, there is a time and place for true comments. She asks me am I crying too, I tell her no, and she says good, someone should be strong and have some sense at this time, for my mother. I get off the phone with her and now my Aunt Ina, is crying and on the shoulder with the family friend. As I sit on the window seal and look down at the busyness of the lobby, I hear my Aunt Ina, crying and going on to the family friend about how first her brother and now my mother she can't handle all that is going on in our family right now. The family friend said "But his surgery was two years ago, he's good now, right?" I turn my head to see was exactly she will say. Just as the tears started they stop. She looks at me and I look back at her, nothing said, but we both know that we are thinking the same thing. Yes my uncle did have this same surgery, but this is the same surgery that he needed the pain pills, which led to the relapse of a 15 year drug recovery. Yes... the same uncle from the journey post I wrote about a couple months ago. She looks at me and tells her, "You're right, he's fine now." Keeping the real truth where it belongs for the time being.
A hour or so, into the recovery time, I'm out in the waiting room, with the family friend. I've been in my own little world since the news. They are in a deep conversation, with a young woman also in the waiting room. She is waiting to take her catherization test. Turns out that two months ago this woman had three stints put in after she had two heart attacks. She had been walking around after having two heart attacks, but thinking she had just the flu. At 37 she was rushed to the emergency room after passing out at work, that's when the realized she had had heart attacks that week and didn't even know it. She was there with her older brother. I really didn't pay much attention to him, until he mentions how the smell of ammonia was still on his hands. The hands...that's what I noticed first about him. These thick long vein red hands. Then I noticed the rest when he got up and went to the bathroom down the hall to wash them. Sexy red bone man about in his early 40, the edges of a man, that was definitely rough. When he returns I really notice him. I can tell that in his younger years he was definitely a hottie, but even in his early 40s he has this cute child like sexiness. However I shrug off those thoughts and go back to thinking about things I know, we are going to have to do, before the surgery. I know my mother and I know she has her to do list already.
When the family friend leaves, because of an appointment, she has, I then begin to talk to the sister of sexy red bone. Well I should say, she was talking to me. Her brother was in grossed in a episode of Jerry Springer. I thought people was over that show, in the late 90s. She is telling me how, she is ready to get back to work and whatnot, and hope, everything is okay now. How a couple of their siblings has had health problems like this already. Apparently the really two healthy ones is the brother beside her and the 400 pound brother, who even though is rather large, is quite healthy...um okay. I ask sexy red bone, that even though he doesn't have any symptoms, since it's obviously running in their family, is he going to get checked out. He says, no because he has always been small, and that he eats well do to time he spent away...code for this nigga been to prison. I tell him that being small has nothing to do with it, his sister is small, big booty, but actually a small build woman. When his sister goes in for her procedure, his bounces to go get something to eat.
Me and my aunt alternate being company in my moms recover, she is only allowed one person at a time in her recovery room. When I'm in there, just like I expected she is running down the to do list before she goes into the surgery. "We got to get on the ball for the annual fall upkeep, have to call Kenny(our painter for years) to come out and paint the shutter and doors, than my new room hasn't been painted yet...then we have to call Phil to aerate the yard and seed and fertilized before it gets any later in the year... I want the driveway to be sealed.." I mention how she did that in February, and she says, she wants it shinning, for when guest come and visit her in her recovery. I leave it at that. "... I need to call the furniture store when we get home and tell them to cancel the order for the chair I just bought, I guess it's a good thing I refinished that room upstairs, I'm going to need it now, not going to be doing to much going up and down the stairs for a while. You are going to have to take care of everything..."
45 mins later I'm back in the waiting room, when sexy red bone returns...damn this nigga is hot. He has a bag full of chips and soda and cookies. I mention how I thought he was going out for lunch, not snack time. He mentions how, he wanted some McDonald's, but he had been driving around the area, and couldn't find one, and how he didn't want to drive away to far, because technically he wasn't suppose to leave anyway. I mention that there is a McDonald's, in the area, that was actually quite close, is ask where, I say down stairs on the first floor. He looks at me crazy, and I tell him that the hospital has its own McDonald's as well as a cafeteria. We talk some more, now about Maury, now that that it's on. He mentions how he knows someone who was on Maury about being some girl's baby daddy. I ask who...he says, his former cell mate, he "Was Not the father" by the way. Bingo though,I knew he had been to prison. I ask for drugs, I can be bold like that at times. He says yeah once for drugs distribution, and the other for assault. All together he was in jail for I believe 8 or 9 years. in my mind, I'm thinking... My experience has told me that guys who have been to prison for more than five years, have a high chance of a past of getting down with other guys. I ask him a couple questions about prison, the fact that he is 40 and no kids or a current wife, is divorced though...lmao...I mean I was fishing for a clue that he has gotten with a guy before.
I got up to go to the bathroom, and that's when I noticed that sexy red bone had given me a semi hard on.Hoping he is so engrossed in Maury he doesn't notice through my polyester long gym pants, that I was wearing, but I think he did. Anyway, I return and after adjusting and well...getting myself back down. I don't remember exactly but we got on the topic about life. Perhaps us being in a hospital..anyway, we are more specifically talking about types of people in life, and how they live them. I think it stemmed from one of my questions about prison. Either way he started talking about how you have people who live on the rails and those who live in their shell. Tis post is already a couple paragraphs past too long, so let me try to sum this up nice a sweet. Because of the way he was raise poor, with a single mother, and quite a few siblings, he had to grow up fast, and learned to live life on the edge, i.e. selling drugs and etc. The etc. is what I was interested in. Blah blah... he makes the statement that he can tell I am a "Shell" person. He continues that I am the type of person that take be cause to really way the pros and cons of things. That I just don't do things, I think about them greatly...that I worry about the right thing first instead of just doing things...that I worry about what people will say...worry about the repercussions of the situation first, before anything else. All I can say, is that "What makes you so sure, you got me pinned?" Meanwhile I'm thinking Dang, is that me? Am I a Shell person. He then starts to question me like I was doing to him earlier, about what makes me not a "shell" person. It's as if he is testing me. I want so badly to ask him to meet me in the bathroom, and just do some crazy as things. It was as if he knew that's what I wanted too and he wanted to prove he was right. He then says,"Face it you are are one of those people who doesn't worry about what makes you happy, but about making the right decision, and what people will think or what will happen if you make the wrong decision. I do what I want, and don't give a damn what some one says about it.I done almaost everything imaginable, I don't put all my businessout there, but I don't care what someone is going to think or say either. It was as if he was reading my mind, because I was struggling with myself, in making a move or not. I kept thinking, I've never been that bold with some guy, that I didn't know for sure got down...well at least not during day hours. Then there was the whole my mother, and what was going on with her, this was inappropriate what I was thinking or what I wanted to do, but then again sex does make me feel better. Then there was the fact that my family was just in the next room, what if he didn't get down and the assault part of him comes out...what if even though though it was a very quite men's bathroom, I mean I think we were the only men who had used it, in all these hours...what if we got caught, and my family got whiff of it. I can't let my secret out like that. I can't be careless this close to home. This debate was just going through my mind. As I got quite he leans back with a slight smirk, as if he knew what I was thinking and that he was right. My leg is bouncing hard. I want to prove him wrong, although he is right...His eyes go back to the T.V...I think to myself Oh screw it, I'm going for it!...Right then like on cue or something the nurse comes out and calls him in, his sister is out of her procedure. He gets up and I'm left in my shell.
A little while later it is time for us to take my mother home. On to another obstacle...