Monday, November 02, 2009


The path that we use down to the beach from in Tenby zig-zags down the cliff and is very high and very steep. At this time of the year it's covered with leaves.

So perhaps it wasn't a good idea for an eighty-five year old to trot up and down it three times in one day.

Of course, my mother was fine with it. She was fine walking all over Tenby too, and paddling in the sea. I'd guess she walked five or six miles on Saturday and enjoyed every step.

Then, on Sunday morning, she tripped over a loose shoelace and fell over just outside the hotel, landing on the steps. We were waiting for the AA at the time as a strange warning light had come on on my car - - the AA man has done what he described as a "temporary repair" but I don't really know what he meant, because my mother had fallen over by then and I wasn't giving him my full attention, except he thought it would be fine to drive back to Leeds - and it was.

My mother's nose was bleeding from a cut and her arm was a bit sore, but she seemed fine. I tried to get her to go to hospital in Tenby - - but she has a phobia of hospitals and wouldn't, and she did seem fine, and wanted to come with me to Swansea, where we were going to see a play at lunchtime.

We set off and when we had done a substantial part of the journey, we came to a flood in the road which mean that there was a detour, which meant that I knew we'd never get there in time for the play as we'd been late setting off anyway, but we carried on to Swansea to see the cast who are friends of ours.

And then, in the cafe, waiting for them to come down after the play had finished, my mother suddenly just went very unresponsive - - couldn't hear me - - closed her eyes - - I called an ambulance.

Her blood pressure had dropped suddenly and, when laid on the floor, she came round in a few minutes. This time I gave her no option - she was going to hospital.

But there, out of her comfort zone, she became a bewildered, hysterical eighty-five-year old and it was terrible to see. The staff were doing their best but didn't really know what to do about it and they left it to me and to my friend Sonia who was in the play and came to the hospital (and she was a star!)

An X-ray showed that her shoulder is broken but in the end my mother just refused all treatment and left with her arm in a sling.

As soon as we left the hospital she was restored to her usual chirpy self and now we're back in Leeds. Her broken shoulder isn't hurting too much but she can't really use that arm and I'm taking her to hospital in the morning to get it sorted. I have pointed out to her that neither swimming nor gardening are options for the future unless she does, and she seems resigned to another trip to hospital. I'm not sure how she'll react when she gets there though.

It's been a huge shock to my mother and a shock to me too - - my mother has hardly ever been ill and it made me realise how very difficult it will be if she ever is ill in the future. And she's eighty-five, for goodness' sake - - people do get ill at eighty-five!

My mother is, I know, an exceptionally fit eighty-five year old and it was horrific to see how things could be in the future.

I'll let you know what happens tomorrow.


Anonymous Milo said...

Sorry to hear that, not good news.

Falling at any age can result in broken bones I spose. She sounds feisty in herself so am sure will, hopefully, get over this relatively quickly.

11:13 pm  
Blogger Von said...

With that much feist she'll be fine but will you? Sometimes we have to learn when to give in gracefully for the sake of others as much as for ourselves.
Hope she's mended soon.

11:29 pm  
Blogger Yorkshire Pudding said...

I have often said that a simple trip can change an older person´s life for good but I hope this isn´t true for your mum and that she gets back to her usual ways... living life to the full - agreat example for others to follow.

1:33 am  
Blogger Jennytc said...

I am so sorry to hear your news, Daphne. As GooseBreeder says, the onus is often heavier on the relatives than on the patient.A difficult situation for you, but I do hope that your mum makes a full recovery and, in the meantime, becomes a model patient.

10:05 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm sorry Daphne. It is frightening and horrid when our robust parents suddenly remind us how old they are. My parents are in their 80s and 70s and have been fit as a fiddle bustling all over the world and suddenly severe flu has struck them down and they are two very old people.
It's not been long since your dad died and I am sure you have a myriad of thoughts and emotions running through you.
Sending warmest regards and hoping your mum makes a quick recovery.

10:33 am  
Blogger rhymeswithplague said...

I'm adding my prayers and good wishes to those of others for you and your mum.

1:11 pm  
Blogger Kim said...

I hope she gets better soon, it sounds like it was a nasty fall

5:39 pm  
Anonymous ruth said...

I can completely identify with the horror of unexpectedly having to face up to what the future might hold.

My love to you and your mum. I hope you can stay strong and take each day as it comes.

6:06 pm  
Blogger WendyCarole said...

hope your mum is better soon

6:49 pm  

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