Yesterday afternoon around 3:00, my mom fell in her kitchen in Waco while I was in my kitchen in Lubbock foraging for snacks. She called me at about 6:45 to let me know. She doesn't remember what made her fall. She waited until about 6:30 to call her neighbors because she finally decided that she might need stitches in her chin because it was still "bleeding a little bit." The ever faithful McGuires took her to the ER to have her checked out. No stitches. This pattern of something happening to her is becoming more frequent. I can't tell you how many hours I've spent waiting by my phone to hear from one of her neighbors what a doctor said. The people at Providence ER are really nice about hunting her down for me when I just can't stand the not knowing. "Ms. Kinzbach is collecting a urine sample." "Ms. Kinzbach is in X-ray."
Last night when she got home from the ER, she called me. In her ever-growing-tinier little voice she said, "I'm fine. I'm ready to sell my house and move to Lubbock." I actually put her on speakerphone and had her repeat those words to Alan so that I would have a witness.
She went to spend the night at the McGuire's across the street because the doctor didn't want her to be left alone for 24 hours. She was supposed to call them to come help her down the driveway and across the street when she "had her gown on."
I have been trying to get her to move to Lubbock since Kathy died. However, last night the magnitude of her decision hit me full-on in the heart. After all these years of holding tightly to her home with it's pretty pink and yellow walls and floral bedspreads and ba-zillion feminine chotchkies, she is ready to close down the House of Memories. Just the day before, she called and rattled on and on about all the amenities of the place her precious friend, Rachel, will have in her independent living megaplex in Austin. "Three meals a day!" "A nurse on duty 24-7!" "Tai chi!" "Water aerobics!" These things are high on the list of must-haves for youthful 80-somethings. I'm heading to Waco in a bit. I'm going to bring her to Lubbock to look at Senior "dorms." She will need the tai-chi-water-aerobics-no-more-cooking-movies-in-the-chapel-on-Saturday-nights package. She can stay with us indefinitely until the right thing comes along. Sweet, sweet Alan.
I'm a pretty tough old bird, but moving Bryce back to Baylor on August 10, moving Reed into his dorm at Baylor on August 19, and moving Mom to Lubbock thereafter is making me feel...well...like an emotional mess. Mother's love for her pretty little house and yard is going to make it hard to close that chapter. Also, so much of Kathy and Kirk is embedded within those walls. And, then, there's Aunt Wanda. Mother is going to miss her so much. "I know that she's my sister-in-law, but she's more like a sister to me." With unlimited long distance, they can still discuss Dancing With the Stars as long as their hearts desire.
I am in need of prayer. I know that God will see me to the other side of all these changes. I pray that the transitions will be smooth and happy. I pray that I can quit crying before Alan wakes up... I woke up at about 4:30 trying to remember whether Mom had really cried "Uncle" or I had dreamed it up. I feel like a big, fat baby.