50-Day Ordeal Over. Mom Is Back Home
March 10, 2014

As an offspring, it's one of your biggest fears. In Grass Valley where I work, there's even a non-profit organization to try to educate against them, or at least how to avoid them. You just have to hope that if it does happen, it's not that serious. Fortunately that was the case for my mother. She fell.

Actually, it wasn't as disastrous as it sounds. She didn't fall in the shower, and thank goodness she didn't break anything. Sometime during the evening of January 17, she was taking a nap, and fell out of bed. Because she was alone, we don't really know what happened next, but it took her awhile to get to the phone. She either fell off the other side of the bed and had to crawl around, or fell on the side where the phone is, but got stuck. Her dresser is near the bed, too, and her foot could have gotten caught in there, but we don't know.

Anyway, she finally called a neighbor, who called an ambulance. She spent the next few nights just down the street at Palmdale Regional Medical Center. Mom had been battling a respiratory thing at the time, too, and they were concerned she might have pneumonia, but the main problem was her leg. Nothing appeared to be broken, but she couldn't walk. Tests were done which confirmed no fracture, but because she lives alone, the doctor didn't want her to be unsupervised. It was decided she would stay at a facility in Lancaster for a few weeks, so she could get much needed physical therapy.

It seemed like two to three weeks would be enough, but counting the hospital stay, it ended up being seven. Despite being there for so long, Mom was in pretty good spirits most of the time, and the caregivers there loved her. One even told me that they aren't supposed to get attached to the patients, but she was going to miss my mom. Now my mother isn't the hardest worker in the world when it comes to things physical (I guess I inherited that), and probably could have gotten out sooner, but they did give her the care she needed. Being a fall risk, she was harnessed when she walked, which didn't help a lot, but occupational therapy sessions went well. She proved she could move around a home-like setting, and we figured there was no need for her to be there anymore.

She got to come home on Saturday, and even though it had been seven weeks and I know she was thrilled to be back, she seemed rather low key. We've rented a hospital bed for now, and some in-home care will be needed for a few weeks, but she seems back to normal. She's walking better, but even though one leg was rehabbed, she has arthritis in the other knee and won't get surgery, so it still takes her awhile to get from here to there. Just like it was before the fall.

Yesterday, though, after one night back, she was doing laundry, washing dishes, and complaining that I bought the wrong brand of orange juice when I went to the store for her. That means she's fine, and I drove back to Marysville proud that she was able to get back on her feet. Now if she would only get the surgery on her knee!

Being 400 miles away when something like this happens really sucks, but mom had a lot of people looking after her. My thanks to Uncle Marty, mom's neighbors Bruce and Laurie Hickert, her other neighbor Terry Comstock, and all of the caregivers at Antelope Valley Healthcare. I hope this never happens again, but it's nice to know you are there, just in case.

I love daylight time!: Sure we lose an hour of sleep and have to set some clocks, but I don't have to drive home in the dark anymore. No more wanting to go to sleep at 7pm either. Daylight Saving Time is here, and that means baseball is right around the corner, too.

There's no “we” in team: Speaking of baseball, while I was at home, I got to watch Saturday's Dodgers spring training game on their new television channel with their new television analyst. Former Los Angeles pitcher Orel Hershiser will be doing color commentary with play-by-play man Charley Steiner when Vin Scully isn't there. Now Hershiser was a Dodger from 1983 to 1994, but that doesn't give him the right to refer to the boys in blue as “we” or “us”. This has got to stop right now. Vin Scully doesn't do it. Steiner doesn't do it, Rick Monday, who like Hershiser played for the Dodgers, doesn't do it. Jerry Doggett, Ross Porter, and Don Drysdale didn't do it either. If baseball fans want a homer, they can watch The Simpsons, or a White Sox game.

Local flavor: Sunday's Giants-Dodgers game, which I listened to on the radio, was an interesting one from a Marysville perspective. One former Gold Sox player and two former Gold Sox opponents played in it. Former Sox catcher, and now journeyman minor leaguer Tyler LaTorre caught the late innings. The almost 31 year-old walked on four pitches in his only plate appearance. Joc Pederson is now a highly touted LA prospect, but was once a Norcal Longhorn. Outfielder Tyler Graham started the game for the Giants, but in 2004, he was 4-for-9 with two doubles against the Gold Sox as a member of the Bend Elks. I didn't realize this until they said it on the air, but Graham had two big league at-bats in 2012 with the Arizona Diamondbacks.

Photo: Mom at my cousin Andy's wedding, taken 11/11/11

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