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A Life Forever Altered, Forever Changed
By Sharon Pulido
(Page 2 of 2)

I spoke with my aunt who said my mother simply rolled her eyes and dropped to the ground. Can someone tell me what these signs are typical of? Those symptoms could be typical of a dozen different things. Mario reminded me to stay calm and focus on the fact that my mother would probably be fine. That my mother had been having some breathing issues and maybe the breathing problems brought on a seizure. The doctor had informed me that they were talking about a “Grand Mal Seizure”. All I could think, was this was my mother and I wasn’t ready to let go yet. It was going to be a long night. Little did I know the night would turn into a couple of long days.

When I got up to go the hospital the next morning I was beginning to think positive, that my mother would smile at me when I walked into the room. That it was only a seizure and no permanent damage was done. Not only did my mother not smile when I walked in, the nurse let me know the doctor had been waiting for me. The prognosis, my mother had suffered a cerebrovascular accident. In other words a very nasty, massive stroke centered in the left side of her brain. That wasn’t the worst part of the conversation. The worst thing was that her brain was currently swelling and at the rate it was swelling my mother wouldn’t survive the day. They informed me to stop the swelling they needed to give her a drug that if she had any type of bleeding within her body, the drug could kill her. They told me I had several decisions to make and they needed to be made quickly. I called my husband and told him I needed him right then.

My mother was given Heparin therapy, the swelling stopped. The damage was already done. My mother is now paralyzed on the right side, has a conditioned called aphasia, the inability to speak and now requires twenty four hour care. I now take care of my mother as she took care of me for many years. I bath her, take her to the bathroom and I dress her. I cut her food up and make sure she takes her medicine. My mother now has the emotional maturity of a two year old. She cries when she doesn’t get her way and she loves stuffed animals. She doesn’t like to take her medicine and she will pour her drink out if it is not cold enough. This is not what I expected to be doing while raising two children.

My life was turned upside down by one phone call. I now understand how truly precious life is. What a short time we may be given. One of the most important lesson, there are worse things than death. I love my mother, but I now feel guilt because I wished it had ended in the hospital that day, but I turn around and am thankful I was given this time to say goodbye. I no longer take life for granted, I realize that material positions are really only important to you, not to anyone else. I realize that you shouldn’t put off that special dinner, that special trip or put off that phone call. Sometimes tomorrow will never come. Sometimes a phone call can change your entire life in ways you never expected.

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