Waiting for the Other Shoe to Drop

The Plan: take Mom to the hairdresser, then to the grocery store for her to do her monthly shopping, take her home and the rest of the day would be mine. Once at the store told her I would be back in three hours (on previous shopping times that was how long it took her to finish her shopping). Rather than just wait in the car, I went home and did some chores.

What Happened: I finished the chores early, and at the second hour, I felt like I needed to go back to the store, though I didn’t know why, so I got my keys and went.  I found her in an isle, and she was done. This is going well, I thought, and even she said I had timed coming back to the store well. She asked me to get her favorite ice cream, which was at the opposite end of the store. I picked up a couple of things, and was going to get in line to pay for them, but again, I felt like I needed to go to where she was in line. good thing I did: she had fallen.

Nearby customers came to her aid, and by the time I got to the isle, she was standing up, but her face said she was in pain. At the same time there were two of the store management personnel bombarding her with questions, as she was trying to get her bag and pay for the items. The cashier what told me what happened, and I left to go to the car to get her walker. When I returned, she was sitting in a chair at the checkout, this time being bombarded with questions by a customer who said she was a nurse. Eventually the bill was paid, I put the groceries quickly in the cart, as I tried to get her out of the store as soon as possible, sensing that’s what she wanted. Silently thanking God for the heads up, we made it home, as she told me the cart moved and as she tried to reach out for it, she fell. She later called me telling me not to worry, admitting her left hip had been bothering her, but after the fall it actually felt better, as the pain she had been experiencing during the week was gone. I told her to call me if anything else happened.  And to think I thought earlier in the week that it had been a while since she had fallen…

As caregivers we have to be mentally in tune with what is going on: when those we care for aren’t walking right (which I had noticed), when you get a notion to do something, and acting  on that feeling. If I had waited until that third hour before going back to the store, who knows what would have happened. However, for caregivers, there is also another concern or feeling that I am presently experiencing.

I requested my mother call me if anything happens. She assured me she was okay, and not to worry. Too late Mom, the worrying has already begun. This is an experience I do not mean to feel, yet it happens, and I think I am not alone:  I am waiting for the other shoe to drop, defined as waiting for something else to happen. At times like these all I can do is thank God that it wasn’t worse, like rushing her to the hospital. Now I have to ask God to continue to intervene, for if he gave me the notion to go to the store earlier than scheduled, He can take care of any issues associated with the spill in the store. And, he can also quash my concerns I have about the incident. The life of a caregiver continues, trying to be lucid in the process…