Respecting the wishes of one’s grandmother seems like a normal thing to do. And in the beginning, it was as easy as eating a piece of her delicious Strawberry Trifle. But, aside from her yummy desserts, she was one of the most stubborn, yet bubbly and full of life individuals I have ever known. Though being British, I am sure had its influences.
There was this one time I went to visit her. I walked in her side door to her kitchen, saying “Hi Nan” as not to startle her, and there was nothing but a subtle groaning coming from her bedroom which was across a small hallway from the kitchen. I said are you ok? She was her bubbly self, yes dear, just a moment, let me throw something on and I will be right out to the kitchen. Well, I watched with an eagle’s eye at all her movements as she walked towards me. And there it was, she was so subtly holding her tummy inside the pocket of the slightly oversized bath robe.
So Nan, I asked her directly, are you not feeling well? To which her reply was, I have the tummy wobbles dear. Now for me, just hearing her say that there is discomfort; it is quite rare. Now my alarm bells are doing their thing in my head and there she is making a cuppa tea. Now I ask, on a scale of one to ten, what is your pain level. She says it is tolerable. I ask again, and she concedes. It is about an eight almost nine. So then I ask, should I call an ambulance or shall we go to the emergency room? She stays silent and drinks her tea. Then tells me after the rather long pause. The Emergency room will be fine dear. But, before we go, can you call up the salon and ask her if there is an opening for a quick set. I asked, shouldn’t we just go to the emergency room now? Not bloody likely she says, and at my age, all us old ladies have is our hair and I will be damned if I will be caught dishevelled. So respecting her wishes, off we go to the salon. Mind you, she is ever so silently grunting and groaning in pain with every step. So about two hours later, we managed to get on our way to the emergency room. Arriving was an adventure, as not a wheelchair was in sight. And since she was past the ability to stand as her pain was as she said over eleven dear. Running through the doors, I was like hey, could someone please help me. Finally, a security gent came out and she was made to walk inside. Her grunting and groaning were no longer silent. But, thank goodness they were not busy and a wheel chair arrived shortly after she sat down in the waiting room. We were taken back and after some xrays and a few other odd tests. The doctor says we need to operate right away this minute, not an hour from now, but now. So they whisked her away. I sat and sat for what seemed like hours. Then one of the patient advocates came to fetch me. And I was taken to see the doctor. He said, if she had arrived thirty minutes later, it could have been life or death situation. Apparently, she suffered from undiagnosed diverticulosis, of which they had to remove part of her colon do to the extreme infection and dying tissue. But, she survived and of course when I went to see her in her room. Where is my handbag dear, I need my brush. These buggers messed up my hair…
Miss you Nan.
Your Ever Loving Grandson