Mother’s Day Then and Now

Mother’s Day 1998-

Mike had been working with my stepdad laying brick for a couple of days. It was going to pay more plus it was a DAY JOB, which was really nice. It was the first day job since we’d been together. Now that we had a baby, I was really not liking the night shift so much. Like not at all.

The day before Mike came home early from work because of really bad heartburn. He even had me drive home (his mom’s house which is where we were living) from my folks’ place. I had just gotten my permit and he had JUST started teaching me to drive, so I can’t say I was thrilled with the idea of suddenly having to drive my hubby and 5mo old home.

Mike moaned and groaned and hung out watching T.V. and popping Rolaids all night. His mother and I both asked him a few times if he wanted/needed to go to the ER, but he said no.

Sunday morning, Mother’s Day, I woke up and took the home pregnancy test I’d bought the day before. I had a sneaky suspicion we were soon to become a family of 4.

I was right. =) Happy Mother’s Day!!

It was so cool! My first-ever Mother’s Day as a mom and I found out I was going to be a mom…again! =) MAN! Is this going to make a great story someday, I thought.

Oh sure, but I had no idea just how crazy of a story. It gets so much better. (Can you hear the sarcasm dripping off that last sentence? Drip, drip, drip…)

I took the test in to show Mike and he didn’t say much. Not much at all, really. I think he mumbled “Mmmhmm, thought so” or something like that. I got the baby up, fed her, dressed her, so forth and so on, and then we were supposed to take his mother out for lunch after church.

When she got home, though, Mike was still wincing and trying to burp. (Fascinating, I know…) He totally did not feel like going out to eat and I felt like such a yietz because “what would his mom say??” I was freakin’ out that they would want me and baby to go eat with Mother and leave Mike home. Yikes I so did not want to do that. I loved Mother, great woman, absolutely! However, she was 80+ years, I was 19 and we had NOTHING in common. She intimidated me like you wouldn’t believe. I was always so scared I’d say or do something stupid. And to be sure I always did.

Thankfully, Mike did NOT suggest I “go on to lunch”.

Not so thankfully, he suggested something else. That is… he wanted me to drive him to the ER. UGG and YIKES at the same time.

So we loaded baby up, and off we went. The ER is only like 2min from the house, so it really was not long at all before we were in and he was whisked away after uttering those 2 magical words: “chest pain”.

I have no idea how much time passed after that, but easily an hour, before I heard or knew ANYTHING. Even then it was just that they were running tests.

I’d been trying to call my mom off and on for a couple of hours, and I’d gotten no answer. I was desperate. No one would talk to me and I had no idea how to get in where Mike was so HE could make them. I shook all the way, but I walked out of the ER, loaded Meagan up in the car and then drove to my mom’s. Illegally. Because I did not have a license, I had only a learner’s permit.

They weren’t home, so I climbed in the window, changed the baby, and borrowed their phone. I called the Dairy Queen. They’d left awhile back. I called the movie rental store. They’d just left. I called a couple of other places. They hadn’t seen them. FINALLY they pulled in and I basically fell apart. I went crying to my Mommy. I told her Mike was at the hospital, they said he had a heart attack and said something about waiting to transfer him, but to where? and how could they know, and besides I don’t know anything else because the doctor will NOT talk to me and I can’t get back to where he is. What do I do??

She drove us back up to the hospital, where we found my MIL in the waiting room. She had come in after she’d eaten to see what was what. I had to tell her I had no idea. About that time a dr came out, recognized my MIL and started talking to her. They wandered off. I was really not liking the way this was turning out. Especially since I had NO CLUE what was going on.

This repeated at least one more time, and then MIL and the dr had a confab from which she returned and said they were talking about flying him out.

I was really getting fed up with this go-around the WIFE thing, so I walked up to the dr and asked him what was going on. He turned, told MIL bye and left.

A nurse told me I could come in and see him (FINALLY! First time all day, we’d only been there for HOURS!), so I did. MIL left to go home, and baby Meagan and I went in to see Mike in the little curtained off area they had him in. The dr was talking to him, so I just stood by quietly for a minute. When he paused, I asked the dr again what was going on, and he STILL hemmed and hawed and would not say anything to me. I told him that Mike was my husband, and I wanted to know what was going on. He shook his head and told me he couldn’t tell me.

Mike told him then, “She really IS my wife, and that’s our daughter, Meagan.” ugg!

I guess Mr. FamilyDoctorDude didn’t get an engraved invitation to the (non-existent) wedding and so refused to believe. Or it could just be that it was a little hard to believe this almost 50 year old being seen for a big-bad heart attack was married to a kid that looked maybe 16 and was holding a baby. =)

I was more than indignant at the time, though. Oh was I steamed. It was bad enough being a KID (a 19yo one, but still a kid) and scared stiff because my husband and father of my kidS(!!) and my provider was having a gas attack and people were trying to make it bigger than it was and just generally FREAK the kid out on her first Mother’s Day… but to then have the dr flat-out REFUSE to accept that you are his wife and therefore entitled to be told what in the tarnation is going on!! And I drove him in!

I wasn’t entirely STOOPID though. I knew I had some rights as his wife, and I knew that HE had rights as a patient. I also knew my husband trusted my judgement with medical stuff in general. So I fired the dr. Oh yes I did. I fired him and told him I wanted MY doctor called in. I told the guy 3 times I wanted my doc called in and 3 times he ignored me. Finally I spelled it out for him, “You Are Fired! Now call Dr. C in.” He looked at Mike and Mike nodded, so Dr. C came in.

When my doc got there, I was hoping (because he was a laid-back kinda guy) he would tell me how overblown everyone was making this gas attack and send us on our way. (Can we say DENIAL?!) Instead, the rascal confirmed that Mike had had a heart attack. A big enough one that they wanted to CAREFLIGHT him to a big hospital in Dallas.

Yee-IKES!! Do what?!?!

I was 19, pregnant, and trying to keep a 5mo occupied in the ER. Now they’re telling me my husband had had a massive heart attack and needed to ride in a helicopter (and how, pray tell are we going to afford THAT) to go to Dallas?

We wound up following the helicopter out a few hours later. Mom took Meagan and I to her place to pick up my little brothers (Bro4 and Bro5) and then to my place to load up clothes and baby paraphernalia and then drove us to my grandmother’s. My grandmother generously let us stay with her while Mike was in the hospital. He had one angioplasty and a stent put in and stayed about a week. He had to go back in 6wks to get a second angioplasty and stent put in. All his arteries were between 97 and 100 (the one that caused the attack) percent blocked. So basically I had married a heart attack time bomb.

I didn’t get flowers or a card or anything, obviously. LOL

That was Mother’s Day Then, 1998.

Mother’s Day, 2008 –

One quick preface, here. In the years between ’98 and now, it has developed into some sort of cruel joke that EVERY Mother’s Day Mike ends up going out to lunch with a friend of his (generally in payment for mowing the lawn) and sorta, kinda forgets about it being, in fact MOTHER’S Day. Oh I *might* get a card or a potted daisy that afternoon, but basically it is a day to take your buddy out to lunch… apparently.

So why should I be surprised at the way this Mother’s Day turned out? =) I have to laugh, it’s just too funny not to!

Several days ago, Mike got a phone call from a long-lost (ok, newly discovered…not LOST) relative wanting to meet to share genealogical information. WHY, oh WHY is this such a huge thing for Mike?? Drives me nuts! I digress. So he makes a ‘date’ sotospeak. Next Sunday at 2pm, he’ll meet this distant relative that he’s never heard of before in a town not far from us at his hands-down favorite restaurant… Cracker Barrel.

Let me just state for the record, I do not like Cracker Barrel’s menu options. Sorry, I just don’t. I don’t care how enamored Mike is with their salt-cured ham and friend eggs (hmmm, perhaps that helps explain that massive heart attack!) *I* am not that partial to Cracker Barrel’s food. It’s ok, but I will NOT be seen parked outside their brand-new restaurant at 3am waiting to be their first customer. (Oh yes he did!) Their store, though, I LUH-OVE!!! =) I could easily spend 4 fortunes in there. No problem.

So Mike tells me about his scheduled meeting, and I tell HIM… haha No, I just asked him if he was aware what next Sunday was, and when he answered in the negative, I told him it was Mother’s Day, otherwise known as take Pepe to lunch day. (Pepe is what the kids call Mike’s friend.) So then Mike tells me that the kids and I are welcome to come if we want, but we don’t have to.

Ummmm. Oooook. How sweet of him to offer, huh? LOL Of COURSE the kids wanted to go, they want to go ANYWHERE. Me? Well it’s Cracker Barrel. It’s loud, it’s expensive, but it does have a cool store (that I can’t afford to shop in, but still…).

So Saturday rolls around and the kids tell me that Daddy has told them he’ll be going to church with us in the morning.

Wait. A. Minute.

Back. It. Up.

Daddy said WHAT?!?!

Daddy said he’d be going to church with us in the morning so we could just go straight to Cracker Barrel from there.

Umm. Ok. Dare I hope? I mean it IS scheduled to be Friends Day at church. I WAS hoping he would come, ok, I was PRAYING he would come, but I had not said anything about it. At all. Come to think of it, I don’t think the kids did either.

Kids? Did you ask Daddy to come to church? No?? Oooook…

I woke up this morning, got Meagan up and dressed (she likes to ride the church bus, so she leaves before Matthew and I), and made coffee.

I heard Mike’s alarm go off.

Ummm, maybe it’s for real?

I went and tried to wake Mike up. Told him his alarm was going off. He shut it off, and I went about getting dressed. I came out and told the kids I didn’t think he was coming as he’d just reset his alarm for 10am. We were supposed to BE there at 10am…

Matthew went into our room and came back and told us that Daddy said he would meet us later, and for us to sit in back.

Dare I hope? Did he REALLY mean it, then?

We went on to church. I was going to call to make sure he was up, but I’m glad my phone was deader than a doornail. Here’s why…

While I thought about calling to make sure he was up, I ALSO thought about how I had not said one single word to him about coming to church, and apparently the kids had not either. I had, however prayed, and so therefore I needed to just LET WELL ENOUGH ALONE and let the Lord handle this. That is what I thought, and yet I still dialed the house. I’m glad the phone shut off before he heard it, because now I can say that…

Mike came to church with us without me asking him or even saying anything to him about it…at all. I didn’t remind him, I didn’t call him. I did nothing except TOTALLY enjoy the fact that he slipped in beside me and put his arm on the back of the pew behind me.

That was such a TOTALLY cool Mother’s Day present. =)

I got another really cool present, too. Before church, Meagan handed me this:

A light box

.

.

.

.

.

It is a box made of popsicle sticks and tape, complete with a hinged lid and a cheese cracker box bottom. The note says:

To Mom, From M+M.

Here is a box you only put light stuff in. “Happy Mother’s Day.” We love you and thank you for everything! Love! Matthew R. C. + Meagan R. C.

That was Mother’s Day Now, 2008.

We’ve come a long way, baby! =) I’m lovin’ it! SUCH a better story, this year. I think so, anyway. ;-)

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