30 December 2014

Marathon Christmas Eve

Kevin's mom is doing really well, I am happy to report.

We left for Seattle at 11:00 in the morning on Christmas Eve.  We took a separate vehicle than the parents and siblings because we had to go to my family that evening, all going well.

Traffic was kind, until we got into North Seattle then we stopped.  This is where one of the few differences between Kevin and I becomes abundantly clear. I don't mind traffic.  I don't mind driving in Seattle.  Kevin, however, not so much.  Seriously.

We found the hospital pretty easily.  I forget that downtown Seattle is all uphill, everywhere. Fun for Kevin in a four-wheel-drive, stick shift.  I would have just abandoned our vehicle.

We parked in a pay lot simply because it was easier than parking in the garage and trekking through the entire hospital.   As I was getting ready to pay, a family approached Kevin and offered to share the space they had paid for but didn't need all the time for.  How nice is that?   We couldn't take it because they only had two hours left and we had to be there until up to five hours.

In hindsight, we could have taken it and just returned to pay the reminder but we didn't think of that. Also, it would be our luck that we would forget or be late or whatever.  More to the point: what a kind gesture of that family. They had obviously just gotten good news and in the spirit of Christmas Eve, decided to pay it forward.

We still got there in time, only to wait an hour and a half.  It's difficult to complain because clearly someone's surgery/day has gone wrong but seriously.

We've spent enough time in hospitals that we have a routine. Kevin and I sit together, then the parents and siblings opposite of us.  This alleviates chances for gunplay.  I carry a kit for the hospital: book, water, snack, headphones, tablet, jacket that can double as a blanket.

Emphasis on the headphones.  Remember that my father-in-law is a whistler but indoors he usually just whistles without actual sounds.  This makes every single person in the family (perhaps, world) murderous after an amount of time has passed.

Then there's the b-i-l that sighs heavily about everything.  Pair this with "patting" his wife's leg sporadically.  "Patting" is in quotations because it's more like a slap.  It actually pisses me off when he does it.  I told Kevin that one of these times I'm going to walk over and simply poke him in the eye when he does it.

And, oh there's more, the s-i-l that nervously giggles at everything. You know what's loud and annoying in a hospital? Nervous giggling.  Slapping.  Not-whistling.

Finally they took her in.  The doctor wasn't optimistic that they could get everything by doing the procedure via colonoscopy. ( I know there's a proper word for it, this just explains it much easier)
This was disheartening but nothing we weren't already aware of.

We were mostly alone in the waiting room.  An older gentleman came in for an appointment alone.  I wondered where his family was.  He checked in then began talking about the Seahawks with everyone.  His procedure was quick and he wished us well and said he would pray for our mother.  I thought that

Two hours later, she was done and they were able to get it all.  Whew.  They took a section out and tattoo'd not only that place but the site where the first tumor was removed.  Now we wait for the biopsy of the section that was removed and hope for the best. We're hoping that it's benign, even though it's unlikely, and that there shouldn't be any further need for treatment.

The most difficult part of this was that Kevin's mom couldn't quite understand why they were doing the procedure this way and not an actual surgery.  She felt like they were just "band-aiding" it.  They explained it all different ways, including just being blunt of "You won't live through the surgery".  But because of the stroke and vascular dementia, she just can't understand.  It's sad.

So, now it's a little after 5 pm. We booked it out to the truck and was on I-5 in minutes.  Lucky for us, we were going against traffic so we were making good progress.  This is where I say that we have to go 30 minutes past our final destination to our house in order to get the Christmas presents.  There was just no way that we were going to leave the presents in the truck in downtown Seattle.

As we went past the exit we should be taking, I spotted a Starbucks.  I wistfully mentioned that it would be nice to stop by there on our way back. Kevin worried that it would be poor form to walk into Christmas Eve late with drinks in our hands.  I told him "Yeah, I don't care."

We hurried into the house.  Kevin took care of the puppy while I pulled out storage bins and pulled presents out from underneath the tree.  A wise person would have done this prior to leaving for the day or even the night before.  I never claimed to be wise.

Within minutes, we were back on the road.  Neither of us in the holiday spirit at this point.  I texted my s-i-l that "Santa is on his way in his red sleigh".  She answered "Santa is crazy."  I didn't disagree.

Soon we were back at the Starbucks.  While there were cars in the drive-through when we went by, there weren't any cars now.  We were just considering continuing on when a voice came over the speaker.  "Welcome to Starbucks. You're our last customer tonight.  Merry Christmas and come on down!"   And there was cheering in the background. How fun is that?

We got our drinks and tipped handsomely.  They were very friendly and excited for being 7:00 on Christmas eve night.  As we got our drinks, one of the girls said "Merry Christmas! Now hurry and get out of here so people don't think we're open!"  It made me laugh.

So, if you're counting, that's three Faith in Humanity Restored episodes.  In one day.

We finally arrived at the fams house.  Everyone was eating so our timing was good.  My mom was the only one who eyed our drinks a bit. No surprise there.  We snacked a bit then sat down to relax and open presents.

With a baby/toddler in the house, Christmas was rejuvenated.  He had a great time opening presents and pushing all the boxes around the house. His toys were fun too, the boxes were better though.

Finally we were back in our own home around 11:00 pm, exhausted and grateful that Christmas didn't start again until noon the next day.

1 comment:

Swistle said...

That was QUITE A DAY. How nice to get Faith in Humanity episodes at exactly that kind of time.