Saturday, February 22, 2014


Discover. Play. Build.

Today I'm celebrating my mom.
She's turning 80 on Monday.

My dad died twenty years ago
so after 35 years of marriage
my mom had to create
a new life for herself.

She's done an amazing job.
Does a ton of volunteer work,
Serves on a million different boards,
Plays bridge two or three times a week.
Drives all of her seventy-year-old friends 
to charity luncheons,
the symphony and the theater,
chemo and doctor appointments.

I thought we would be celebrating tonight,
with her family and friends
at a restaurant she wanted to try.

Instead we are celebrating from a hospital room.

On Monday, I got a call that my mom had collapsed.
My sister had gone to accompany her 
to a routine doctor's appointment
and found her on the floor.

The preliminary diagnosis was a minor stroke.
That proved negative.
She had fallen recently
and there was a possibility of a hematoma.
And then a brain tumor.
Nothing showed on the CAT scan or MRI.

Finally, they diagnosed 
something called
normal pressure hydrocephalus
It's an age-related condition 
where the veins in the head
hold too much fluid
it leads to imbalance and incontinennce
and eventually dementia.
But they caught it early
She had a two hour surgery yesterday
to install a shunt
to redirect the extra fluid
into her abdominal cavity
and she'll be fine
in a few days.

Today I'm celebrating my mom
her strength
her bravery
her generosity
her sense of humor

but most of all
that my mom 
is here for us to celebrate.


Jone said...

I lost my mom fifteen years ago. I am so happy for you that you have your mom to celebrate her 80th . Enjoy the day. And here's to her improving.

Linda B said...

It sounds like this is good news, Carol, and a blessing that the warning came soon enough. What a tough week for you, and it is great that you will celebrate with your mom, even in the hospital. Sending hugs!

Ramona said...

While it's not where you planned to celebrate, it's a celebration just the same. We are so lucky for the advances of modern medicine. Enjoy the day with your mom! Sending prayers and get well wishes.

Carrie Gelson said...

Best best wishes that all is okay. Your Mom sounds like a huge inspiration. I hope her recovery is smooth.

Tara said...

I loved the way you sketched a portrait of your mom, Carol,what a strong and vibrant woman. But yo had shared some of this on Tuesday and I was really holding my breath throughout. Good to know that the doctors acted swiftly and the prognosis is good. And, when she's better, you will have to try out that new restaurant!