Note: I chose not to use names in this “story” for several reasons. People close to the situation certainly know to whom I’m referring.
Saturday morning arrived as did the Man “In Charge” ariund 8 am. There was immediate tension present as he learned that the his wife’s daughters and granddaughter had spent the night. It was the first indicator he had that this strong control on the situation he believed he had, was hoping to be under defiant assault. The only contact with him had been a terse greeting. The girls had befriended the night staff and been given a room to base out of. They had Aldo learned much about the activities, or in this case, the lack of actions during the past week.
My son, nephews and I arrived at 10:30. Minutes before, my mother in laws younger sister end her husband had arrived and witnessed a strange scene. As they walked in the facility, the Husband was at the front desk on the phone. Apparently moments before, at a point when no one else was in the room, he had summoned an attendant and announced that his wife was no longer breathing. The staffer apparently agreed which prompted the Husband to walk out front, pick up the phone and place a call. To the folks who had just arrived and were standing right there, it sounded like a call yo a funeral home. Seconds later, the attendant came in and said that she was indeed breathing, the scare was a false alarm. Immediately, many I of those present decided that those odd occurs cues could only be explained by nefarious intentions. From that point forward, the rest of the day and early evening, at least two people were in the room at all times in addition to the highly suspected husband. He sat in a chair looking miserable as a host of propel went in and out of the room.
I was prepared to participate in what would have been a logical step. To sit down at a table with all parties and thoroughly discuss the situation. That had not yet happened because everyone was awaiting the arrival of the other person closest to her situation, her brother. He had experienced flight delays from the northeast and been rerouted. Also, updating and consultation with the eldest daughter was being done by phone. My son’s mother was conveying most of those messages. Then, around 12:30, the boiling point was reached and tension gave way to confrontation.
With a number of people in the room, she asked for something cold to drink. When offered water, she said she wanted a coke. Her Grandson immediately volunteered to go to the machine and secure one. The Husband said, she does not need a coke. In the past few days, nurses had reported that she never asked for food or drink and refused it when offered. This was a promising step. The daughters had all they could stand. They marched out of the room with the Husband and convened a meeting down the hall. They lit into him, backing him up against the wall. They made it bleary that if she asked for anything she was going to get it. They demanded to know how he had reached the conclusion that she was on the due of death’s foot? He replied that the Doctor had said so. They said what Doctor, the staff told them no Dr. had been in all week. He hemmed and hawed. They wanted to know why she was dressed in a crude hospital gown as opposed to her nightwear. Where was her jewelry, why was she not being changed frequently? What about rehab that had been scheduled? His answer to all was based on his opinion that she was at the end. The meeting broke with the girls letting him know that this was unacceptable and his parting shot, ” Well, I am in Charge.”
Shortly thereafter, I took a large portion of the crowd out for lunch. Her sister, who had stayed by her side since arriving to the false alarm death scene that morning send a grandson stayed behind as monitors. Just before leaving, the emerging crisis promoted a unifying moment as the previously feuding sisters talked on the phone. The called was placed by the younger, on scene daughter. Her stepping up to make that call was the ultimate demonstration of solidarity. Big Sis and family, enroute to Disney a World, would reroute and be there within hours.
When she arrived at 6 pm, her daughter, another of my mother in laws granddaughters, was with her. She is a Doctor, the first on the scene there all week. She was valuable to the team as she declared the patient well enough for transport. She also reviewed the meds list and determined that she was on pain and anti anxiety medications, nothing specialized. At 8 pm, the husband announced he was retiring for the evening. He disappeared to his quarters with no farewells. He played what he thought would be an effective trump card on his way out. He had instructed the night supervisor to wait a few minutes until he was gone and then tell everyone they had to leave for the night. He messed up by not defining everyone. Her traveling brother had finally landed and was on his way in our direction. He was instructed to stand by, a change of plans was in the works.
When the daughters were informed if everyone’s mandate to leave, the youngest daughter and conspiracy captain asked if their mother could be wheeled out for some fresh air outside where everyone could say goodnight. The staffers response, “Take Her.” Our group was assembled in the parking lot.moments later, the daughters and Granddaughter Doctor emerged with the enter of the adventure seated calmly in a wheelchair. The backseat of the getaway vehicle had already been prepared into a bed of pillows and blankets. In a time frame of less than a minute, she was wheeled to the car and carefully lifted into and laid down in the vehicle. Youngest daughter jumped in with her daughter at the wheel and in a flash, Elvis had left the building. The remaining group was a mix between relief and anxiety. Several were anxious to get away from there. I made the statement that I didn’t expect any road blocks or shoot outs. The guard at the security gate logged each vehicle out. The package was on its way to bring delivered.
One thing was certain, the controlling husband, was no longer in charge. The staff informed him around midnight that his wife was missing. By all accounts he was shocked and furious. He assumed the senior daughter had been responsible. She related a short statement in response to his call that her mother was safe, resting comfortably and the situation was under control and hung up. The report was in fact true. Around that same time the star arrived at its destination. The patient was carried in after sleeping peacefully on the way over. That rest, which by all reports was not consistent in her previous circumstance, continued in her new environment.
Around 5 am, the Sherifs Department from the husbands county called the youngest daughter. He informed her that he was investigating a complaint of kidnapping that had been filed against her. After answering all his questions and painting a vivid picture of what had occurred, the officer told her she had done the right thing. If her siblings and aunt on scene had consented and he received the assurance from her brother that he had agreed with the action, there would br no basis for charges.
Many people ascended on the house on Sunday. She was surrounded by loved ones and she drank coffee and Diet Coke and even was able to set a little. She had a shower, her gurus in weeks. Where her mind capacity is now, is still in progress. A difficult challenger potentially lies ahead. But there is one inescapable truth. If she does have the will to continue living, now she has that chance. In her previous situation, that choice was not offered.
The women of this family recorded their finest hour. Individually they are exemplary, together they are a powerful force. The weekend started as a quest to say goodbye to someone who had been a constant, strong matriarch of a remarkable family. It quickly turned to something entirely different. It became a mission to right a wrong and restore dignity to a proud, brilliant, strong willed person. The outcome is to be determined but the story can he be authored by someone other then an individual who appeared to be crafting it to accommodate his wishes. If he was resigned and ready to say goodbye due to being unwilling and/or unable to provide care, so be it. Bid farewell and yield your cherished control and justifications to those who are up for the challenge. A chance at life surrounded by loved ones is a far better alternative than a morbid, grotesque death watch. To that, there can be no argument.
My son certainly inherited my spore cistron forbthebpep fine line between comedy and tragedy. It is always better,regardless of the circumstances to balance crying with laughter to display emotion. He delivered this great line. Remember that his aunt, the eldest daughter and her family were on their way to the happiest place when all this temporarily diverted through journey? My son said….
Terie, you just helped bust your mother out of a nursing home, what are you going to do now?
” I’m going to Disney World!”