Every day is a gift.
I awoke early Tuesday morning and still found myself rushing around getting ready for work. My shift at the laboratory was from 05:00 a.m. to 14:00 pm
Mother was admitted Monday night. A mediastinoscopy with possible lobectomy of R-lung was on the surgery board for 10:00am. My sister, who is ten years old, then I, was currently finishing her Master program at the University of Illinois, which is only about an hour or so away. She and Mother had spoken, and Mom insisted there was nothing to fret about. “Finish your studies, Sissy. (my sisters pet name) I’m fine. There is no need for you to be waiting around here.”
In my sister’s defense, Mother was correct. Sissy is incredibly educated but, when it comes to medical terms, procedures, caring giving, or a fast decision to be made, let’s just say, that would not be her strongest attributed.
I had phoned everyone I could think of an informed them, and promised I would call when we knew something. My Father, whom had been M.I.A from our lives over the last fifteen years or so, wished me luck and told me to call, when I knew more?
I was hoping for a better reaction. Maybe his presences! But, that would have in all probabilities been a gift, Mother, or I really did not want to open, especially today.
The morning air was crisp. The sun slightly peeking through the night line as I got in the car and headed for the hospital. Guessing Gus, our local weatherman, had called for a perfect sunny, pre-spring day. It was March 1983 as I opened my locker door at work and shoved my purse in my assigned hole. I grabbed my white coat, checked my pockets for all the necessary item I might need for the day and headed down the long shinny marble corridors of the lab. The smells seemed especially pungent as I turned the corner and entered into the path lab.
“Wee… Tommy, what you got cooking in here today?”
“You know, this and that. Been a busy night. I got a cool liver hanging out over here, want to see.” He jumps up to retrieve it.
“No, I’m afraid it may look like mine in a few years. I’ll pass. But thanks anyway. You know where Dr. Nicky might be?”
“Check the cafeteria. Last place I saw him, and good luck to Mom today. I see she is on the surgery board for 10:00 am today. You know she is in the good hands, my dear.”
“Thanks Tommy.” I smiled and gave him a wink. “I’ll check in the cafeteria.
I poked my head in the cafeteria door and gazed over at the area where all us lab junkies usually sat., But it was empty. So, I grabbed the elevator and headed up to the eighth floor, Room 800-A, to check on the star of the day.
Mom was up in a chair, her lips stick and make-up on perfect, hair perfect in her standard French roll twist, covered in a striking dark blue bed jacket, stretched out across the bed, as if she was a guest on the Queen Mary, lounging with the morning’s paper.
“Good Morning, Merry Mari.” (mothers pet name again) She said with a big smile as she folded the paper.
“Mom.” I said bending over and giving her a kiss on the forehead.”
“How are the boys?” She asked.
“Boy’s are fine Mother. How are you? Has anyone been in too see you yet?”
“No. All quiet in here, my dear.” She said with a giggle.
“Mom, let’s talk.” I softly said.
“Merry Mari,” she said, as she clasped my hand, I bent down beside her.
“Remember love, faith makes things possible, not easy, possible. I love you, and have faith in your judgment. You will make the right decisions. You have the best Doctors guiding you and talking care of me.
“I know but,” I began to tear up…. When my pager began to screech madly as if it would shoot out of my pocket. I pulled it out trying to quiet its insufferable alert.
“It’s the Lab.” I said, softly.
“Well, dry those tears and get to work then. There are sick people in here!”
“Mom, I love you! We will get through this.”
“Look young lady, you have things to do. I have things to do. So move on. Every day is….”
“I know Mother…… a gift.” I whispered as I walk out of room 800-A. I called Doctor Nicky from the nurse’s station, and he indicated that things were on scheduled, that’s a first, so Mom should be going up to surgery in about an hour.
I poked my head in 800-A and told her that things were running as scheduled, and someone should be by to collect her, in about an hour.
“Ok, Dear.” She replied.
I headed for the elevators. It was now 9:00am.