Middle Day …obligations!
Yesterday I had a bad case of the “don’ts.” Ever get those? Like, “screw it, I just DON’T!” Don’t want to… whatever. Goof off. I’d better get busy today or I might catch it again!
My oldest struggles with her work and I feel for her. I could kick my own ass for letting her stay in public school so long in vain hope that she might sooner or later get help. Now she is less than a couple years away from needing to get into college and far, far behind. But she’s trying and I’m proud of her for that.
My little ones continue to blast forward. I have to keep up with THEM. They’re learning cursive and multiplication. We’re talking first/second grade age, here.
My mom is getting the tests as I write that the doc wants so they can decide if she should have her kidney removed. The decision will be made tomorrow. If she can handle the operation the doc said in two weeks, the earliest. …um… two weeks from yesterday is our anniversary. Did I say that already?
No question, we’ll be here for the surgery. What it will mean is our canceling a vacation we’ve been planning with the kids. It is unlikely we’ll be able to reschedule it. Still, I’m torn between what our kids and our family needs–time to be together and escape the doldrums–and family obligations.
Am I being selfish? Am I just being snotty because *I* want to go on a trip? Our kids are just as stuck in this house all the time as I am. We have no outlets, no social groups, and no money to take the little trips we used to take. But still, kids are resilient and creative. They make do. They’re not likely to miss the trip as much as I. So, am I being selfish?
I love my mom. She is, I am sad to say, a hypochondriac. (Don’t you tell her I said so!) Life to her has always been about her. No conversation she ever has goes without a litany of her pains and problems. I think she’s alienated many doctors because she goes looking for stuff to hurt. Now, as she approaches the end, she has hit the mother-load. I know that sounds cruel but consider, she has cancer. If she gets an operation then there are all kinds of opportunities for sympathy. The doc said getting the kidney should get the cancer. If not then she still has cancer.
The doc was pretty callous, saying, “hey, you’re 86, you might ought to just wait it out and die rather than going through a surgery you might not live through and might make the rest of your life miserable.” An honest doc. Amazing. He he wasn’t one of those silly men who shave their heads to be part of the GQ generation I might even like him a little. Mom, of course, without hesitation said, “surgery!” Surgery = attention. I know, I really recognize how unkind that sounds. Still, it came from other family members besides myself.
Now, in the light of this situation, am I STILL being selfish? My mom is demanding a surgery for a problem that may or may not shorten her life and is likely to make the rest of it painful. We in the family who know her best and love her in spite of her silly ways recognize the self-serving nature of her demand for surgery. But they’re not about to miss out on an important day nor a long-planned and much needed break.
This is one of those things that exemplify “damned if I do, damned if I don’t.” To the planner of Kismet I simply raise my hands and say, “damn.”
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