Okay…so vulnerable me is coming out to play…it’s been awhile. Where am I at with this whole thing? Well…one year ago today I took my Mom to a doctor appointment for what we thought were allergies. Three days later she was hospitalized…a week later diagnosed with Wegener’s Disease and told she was dying.
You see though…I have a dirty little secret that I have to live with. It’s my fault she didn’t see a doctor sooner.
My Mom was very uncomfortable about making her appointments or calling companies or talking to just about anyone in any kind of business type setting. It used to drive me up an absolute wall. The easiest calls in the world she would ask me to make for her or else make up an excuse why she didn’t so I would still end up making the calls.
This time I refused to budge. She’d been having allergy symptoms for a few months. Nothing serious but enough to notice. I told her I would call the allergist, but I got busy with things at work and forgot. A few weeks went by and I realized the call hadn’t been made so I called my mom and gave her the information to call herself. I was being very stubborn about it this time too. I would think to myself “I’m so busy and she is home all day doing nothing…she can just make the call herself!”  But, true to form…she didn’t call. So I caved and told her I would make it. But again, once I would get to work I would completely forget and Mom didn’t want to “bother” me to remind me. Again, several weeks go by…several. All in all this lasted a few months because the symptoms seemed minor and I would get busy and forget. It wasn’t noticeable enough to seem that pressing. She had her regular cardiac appointments, and other doctor appointments, but this one slipped through the cracks time and again.
Then in September of last year her symptoms took a turn. She coughed a lot and wheezed and was sleeping a lot (we thought from the Benadryl). I finally set her appointment up, knowing full well that at this point it seemed she may have asthma too.
But she didn’t. She had Wegener’s Disease. And it was far enough along that she only lived a couple of more months. The allergy-type symptoms she had been experiencing all of these months were from this.
I know logically that the treatments my Mom would have needed even months earlier had she been diagnosed then, she would have refused. Chemo, high doses of steroids…she would have declined them then as she did when she was diagnosed. But, logic doesn’t always prevail…and it tears me up inside when my emotions think louder than logic and tell me that it’s my fault she’s dead. Why didn’t I pay better attention? Why did I pick this time out of all of the moments out of all of the years to be stubborn about making a phone call? A simple two minute phone call!!!
I bury this a lot. I can’t go there too much. I know I shouldn’t go there, but I’m human and I do. I’m sorry Mom. I’m sorry I let you down…and I miss you so much.