When the Mom’s Away, The Kids Will Play
First, I want to let you know this is Dee Dee, Sondra Ashton’s daughter. Mom had cataract surgery on Friday, the 13th, the lucky woman. Mom decided to do both eyes at once. Her life of fun and games interrupted, she found out she’s not allowed to read, or write, or garden, or go outside because of the dust in the air from the corn and sugar cane harvest, or really do anything for several weeks. I’m glad I’m not there. She’d be a beast to live with. Not really, but maybe.
Mom seems to have trouble with the “not do anything” part of her doctor’s orders. Now, I am a baby. If I had just had my eyes peeled layer by layer and repaired and the doctor said not to do anything, that rocking chair, a cup of tea, and watching the day pass away would be on my to-do list.
Mom argued that her martial arts group isn’t exerting energy. Uh, I believe it’s listed under energy movement. No. Going shopping surely can’t be bad. Let’s see, you’re not supposed to bend over and pick anything up because of the pressure this creates on the eyes. I can’t see her accidentally dropping something and letting it lie there, or asking someone to pick it up for her like royalty. No. But what about going to a friend’s for dinner? I lost this one. She snuck out anyway. I’ve half a mind to call her doctor and tattle.
Mom loves to garden. What normal people consider a chore, such as weeding, replanting, trimming, etc., she considers a delight. She has a most beautiful, cared for garden and yard so all her work and love surely does show. To mom, this is pure bliss. To me, this would be torture.
If I were with mom, she would ask me to “just trim this a little there”, “that needs to be re-potted and placed here”, or “don’t you think those plants all want to be dug up and placed on the other side for more light in the afternoon?” I’m not sure all the people who help her really know what they are going to be doing. Wish I could be a fly on that wall.
Mom is a voracious reader. She and I find an author we like and read every book we can. I told her that Kindle has audio books and she can get them delivered to her that way. To do that however, mom would have to read. Yikes! Have you ever tried to find books for someone on the phone? I read the descriptions and she says that sounds terrible, too gruesome, not gruesome enough, and on and on. I think she just was trying to keep me on the phone to kill time.
The last time I wrote for mom, I was teaching K-8 in a 2-room school house. I’ve since left and opened my own mental health practice. I sure miss all my kids.
I am so happy to be back into the field of counseling. It is a career I know I am good at. I like to help people to feel better and to get back into control of their lives.
If you have a friend who lives in or near Glendive who needs a therapist, feel free to send them my way. Right now, my mom is my most frequent contact. She won’t be a good referral though, as she is not a great patient and directly disobeys just about everything.
An example just occurred while we were talking on the phone. I heard a knock on her door, and a male voice, Josue, said he had seen her outside walking yesterday. Busted! She’s not supposed to be outside in the sun.
I could hear mom trying to back-pedal, justify, rationalize, reframe, whatever you want to call it. She was out against medical advice and walking where she’s not supposed to.
Wouldn’t you know, Mom called again. Busted again. Mom reports she’ll stay home because she was trying to sneak to a neighbor’s to gossip and Josue caught her and sent her home. There is a huge grass fire. Pretty sure the smoke is on the no-no list.
That rocking chair sure isn’t getting much use right now. It is nice knowing that all her neighbors are watching out for her. I also heard her give Josue a chore for tomorrow. Remember when I said she would want something dug up? Well, she wants a whole area dug up and paved with bricks. I knew I was happy to be in this beautiful, balmy Montana and not trying to control mom down in Mexico.
Dee Dee Robart, for Sondra Ashton
HDN: Havre Daily News; Looking Out My Backdoor
January 19, 2017