Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Planning a Road Trip Home

My last trip home a few weeks ago was a disaster, as indicated in a recent post. Actually, most of my trips home are disastrous. Believe it or not, this time it was a disaster mostly because of my mother. As many of you know, my mother has been ill with various ailments for many years. As a result, I come to her because she is too sick to travel. I usually fly home a few times a year to check up on her. The girls don't travel home with me because of the expense and the fact that Ella would probably get us removed from a plane because of her fear of flying. It is just easier to go home alone. Unfortunately, the girls don't get to see her often. They love Busia, but they really don't know her. They just don't have the kind of relationship with her that will give them good memories when they are adults. I am eternally grateful that the girls do have my mother-in-law, who is involved, spends quality time with them and plays with them.

At any rate, we had planned to come home for Labor Day weekend to see my mom since we are now a seven or eight hour drive as opposed to a 12+ hour journey. My mother was so excited because she hadn't seen her "babies" in 14 months and really want to hug on them. We left Friday evening, spent the night in Bloomington with my MIL, and then headed the remaining three hours to LaPorte the next morning. I called my mother once we were about 45 minutes from LaPorte to let her know we were close and that we would be coming by. I do this every time we come home so that I can ensure that she is awake and has time to clean up, get dressed and put her teeth in. When I got her on the phone and told her we would be there soon, this was her response:

"I'm sorry. I'm really not up to having visitors today. I took some pain medication a few days ago and now I am too sick to visit."

I counted to 100, and told Corey to head to our friends' house instead. I was fuming that she didn't tell me earlier in the week that she had taken pain medication. She reacts horribly to any and all pain medications when she takes them and it takes days for her to recover. Had I know that she had taken pain meds, we would not have come home. It just isn't worth it to drive 16 hours round trip for the girls to see her for two hours. That's another thing--when the girls are able to see Busia, they can only spend a couple of hours at a time with her because it tires her out. In addition, the girls are stressed out because we have to coach them before we get to her apartment:

No loud talking
Don't touch anything
Busia is sick
Don't hug her too hard
Don't step on her feet
Be careful when you climb up on the couch to sit next to her
Don't sit on her lap
Keep away from the sharp things in her apartment
Busia is sick
Busia is sick
Busia is sick

Genna is usually the first one to pipe up that she is ready to go home within minutes of getting to Busia's. It also doesn't help that after the hugs and kisses are over, my mother ignores them the rest of the time they are there. While I understand she can't get down on the floor with them to play, she could certainly color with them. But she doesn't.

So, we drove a total of 16 hours and the girls saw Busia on Sunday for two hours. The whole thing sucked. This trip is not unlike a previous trip we took a few years ago.

So now, I am going back. My mother is having an angioplasty next Wednesday. She was supposed to have it today but, surprise surprise, she is sick and they won't do it. I had planned on coming home for the weekend to help take care of her. Unfortunately, I can't come home next weekend, so I have decided to come home this weekend anyway to get her apartment cleaned and run her errands so she doesn't have to worry about that stuff when she returns home. I am hoping my sister can come home the following weekend to help, but I don't know if she can.

There are two reasons why this trip will be better.

#1 I am coming unannounced. It is always much more fun when I come home and don't tell my mother that I am coming. It always pisses her off, but her insults don't bother me.

#2 More importantly, one of my best friends is coming with me. I am picking up Lori in Kentucky and we will road trip together. We are staying at her sister's house, which will involve a lot of laughing, which is something I always need after a few hours with my mother. Lori doesn't know this yet, but I will take her over to see my mom, as she is one of the only friends I have that she adores. She's always nice to Lori.

It's gonna be fun...


kia (Good enough mama) said...

Yay for roadtrips with best friends!

That list of things you have to train your kids on before they visit your mom is LONG. Ugh...

kimmyk said...

i hope your mom does well with her surgery and she gets to feeling better.

its hard when you love your children and know what kind of visit they are going to have with their grandparents and you want so much more for them.

enjoy your trip home with your friend. enjoy the laughter!