Tuesday night was a night of no sleep for Sis or me and surgery was scheduled for 8 AM; prep began at 4 AM. Preparing to send your 90 year old mother into surgery is always a sobering thought. We felt reassured by her doctor's manner, explanation, and warmth and caring, but the reality was there was no choice.
That afternoon after Mom was resting comfortably in the room, I went to get some pillows for Sis and I to try to make sleeping in a chair a bit more comfortable, and pick up some lunch. Naps ensued, followed by showers and clean clothes. Mom was doing so well, so cheerful, and right across from the nurses station, so she insisted we go out and eat a decent supper. Surprisingly, we agreed it was a good idea, and though we were not gone long, it was a needed break.
Finally Friday we were able to take her home. As Sis is Dad's night time caregiver, when they are both needing help at the same time, I get the Mom shift.
Tinka had missed her terribly while she was gone, and quite despondent to not be allowed on the bed with her after being so happy to see her back home. Mom always worries after a bout like this about "Who will take care of Tinka when I die?" As always, I remind her that I have promised I will take care of Tinka, and this time I added, "Mom, Tinka is going to die before you do; it probably will not be an issue." She agreed.
Every time I passed the window or walked outside with Tinka, or to sweep the deck, I looked at Rio's empty corral. Every morning and evening, I automatically thought of time to feed, even though I know Rio is not there. I still walked down to the gate, looked out over his pasture where the trails are now obscured and said hello to his spirit where ever it is, or is not.
One more opportunity to demonstrate love and support, and to be grateful for 'being in the workshop' as we try to "become more effective human beings" (Gerald Corey).