Sometimes life gets in the way of sewing. And sometimes, even when it's so tragic, life can be hilariously funny.
I was in a cafe this morning and did not hear the phone ring, twice. My Dad had been taken to emergency by my sister who had been shopping with her 4 year old. Her husband had to leave work to collect the 4 year old so they could go to emergency. Because I was in a cafe and did not hear the phone ring. If I had heard the phone ring I would have taken Dad to emergency, the sister would not have had to abandon the 4 year old and the husband would not have had to leave work.
My friend Marlene visited her 90 year old Mum this week to help her through the anniversary of her Dad's passing and the unexpected passing of the 90 year old's cat on the day of her Dad's passing.
My friend Joanne was to return to work on Tuesday this week. Having seriously injured her neck at work 2 years ago, she has already returned to work several times but failed to stay a day. Her life is full of rehab and doctor visits. Recently she developed a new pain. Several 'scopies of various sorts ensued. They coincided with her husband's trip of a lifetime travelling outback Australia with his brother. They went anyway, which was fine as Joanne was keen to get control of the remote control. But instead of enjoying time in front of the small screen she went to bed with a hot water bottle and her pain which had not retreated despite all the invasions of privacy. In the end, Good News, said the doctor, you have a pain but it is nothing - do not worry. Excellent she thought, I will enjoy my last day before I return to work.
Life goes on even when surrounded by mayhem - even birthdays. This beautiful handcrafted quick unpick & 'pointy thing' wrapped in red fabric was a birthday gift this week from Joanne.
My Mum's 85 year old friend Valerie has been suffering severe back pain for over six months. It's so severe she cannot walk across the road from her apartment to the doctor opposite. Instead, the doc has sent several locums to see her. None have solved her problem. Friday week ago Valerie had had enough. She got up, packed a bag, marched out and told husband Maurie to drive her to emergency. Maurie scoffed. Valerie stamped her foot and finally Maurie got the car keys. Valerie is now much happier and slightly more comfortable having found out she has 2 smashed discs and is finally and safely ensconced in hospital.
Back to Joanne. So on her last day before having to return to work Joanne spent the morning in neck rehab. The afternoon was to include coffee with me. Moments before setting off to the cafe the hospital rang. Your mother-in-law has fallen over and has 7 broken ribs, a broken vertebrae and many cuts and bruises. Joanne spent the afternoon at the hospital instead of having coffee with me. Husband and his brother unable to be contacted about their mother's predicament as travelling through the remotest part of Australia (and possibly the world, apart from Antarctica) on dirt track. No phone, no towns, no nothing. For 2 weeks.
Life keeps going on. This parcel arrived in the post for me all the way from a Stitch Witch in Canada!
Next day Joanne got up for the big day, she was finally to return to work. Mother-in-law would be visited in the afternoon after work. Stockings pulled on, skirt that fits found, face plastered with make-up. Drove to train station. No parking. Drove to next train station. No parking. Went back to first station. Parked one kilometre away. Walked to station. Trains cancelled. Now 9am - work start time. She rang work, another failed attempt to return to work. Next call to me - would I like a coffee? Yes, I would, and bonus (!) I am ready to go out as I'm on my way to the hospital. Now, this was not to visit my Dad after he was taken to emergency while I was happily scoffing coffee instead of answering my phone. No, it was to visit my Dad 3 days before he was taken to emergency! That emergency trip only occurred later, after he'd already been in hospital for a good week (and let out), which was a couple of weeks after he'd been taken to emergency (and sent home) in the first place at the beginning of this whole sorry saga. Confused? So this visit was to see Dad during his second (and fully booked) hospital stay. By then things were going well for Dad and it was perfectly reasonable to defer today's visit for an hour to have coffee with Joanne since she had failed to get to work.
So on this Tuesday instead of going to work Joanne had a quick coffee with me, then responded to a summons from the aged care facility where her mother-in-law lives. Aged care facility accused her of allowing mother-in-law to use a faulty walker thereby leading to fall. Actual children of mother-in-law, i.e. husband and his brother, had tried to replace walker but mother-in-law had refused to use new one. Next stop, hospital. Mother-in-law's lung now collapsed. Husband and his brother completely oblivious of their mother's sorry state of affairs or of their supposed culpability re walker.
Back home, Joanne's early evening of exhaustion interrupted by call from lawyer representing ex-wife of brother-in law. Sale of family home stalled due to incomplete paperwork (forensic examination of situation reveals stuff up by said lawyer). New purchaser desperate to move in. Joanne has power of attorney for brother-in-law so needs to download this, print that, sign this, scan that, attach this, send back. How do you scan? Not sure, head won't work.
Next day mother-law-law has been transferred to trauma unit, has more scans, suspected broken neck. Joanne spends day at hospital. Good news, neck not broken but 8 ribs broken not 7. Actual children of mother-in-law still unaware of their mother's even more miserable state of affairs. Still bouncing in a 4 wheel drive across the red earth of north western Australia. Serious neck injury which sent Joanne home from work 2 years previously playing up seriously.
Inside that parcel was a wonderful array of trims, threads and patterns. What a fabulous way to brighten up a week from hell! I've long said Witches were actually Wonderwomen.
It was my birthday Wednesday this week. I'm having a family celebration tomorrow. One sister won't be here as she's in Queensland supporting a former partner who is in hospital with serious heart disease. He's just decided, way too late, that he'd like to go on the heart transplant waiting list.
But today I was in a cafe and didn't answer my phone. My sister took my Dad to hospital when he had a bit of a relapse. Hopefully all will be well. They've been there all day. Dad is likely to be there all weekend, plus some perhaps. My sister had been for a fasting blood test early in the morning. Before she had time for breakfast, after the blood test, she took the 6 year old to school. Then, to save some time, she popped into the shopping centre on the way home with the 4 year old in tow, still not having had breakfast. That's when she got the call after I had not answered the phone and the rest of the day began. It's now 8pm and she still hasn't had breakfast.
Several weeks ago my husband got something in the rim of his eye. A few weeks later the doctor cut open the festering wound and removed a sliver of bamboo. This evening my husband has announced his eye still feels wrong and he needs to see the doctor, perhaps he should go to emergency tomorrow.
As I said earlier, I'm having a family birthday celebration tomorrow. At least I thought so.
Names have been changed to protect the innocent and less than innocent.
A birthday gift from my daughter - it's a wall hanging made from the hand embroidered blouses of woman from Gujarat in North Western India.
Next week I'll tell you about Werribee Park Mansion where I went on my actual birthday midweek, the only day I did NOT visit a hospital.
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