Wednesday, May 7, 2008

super secret trip to the west coast

I have a confession to make. I went to California. I've been there for the last few days. And I didn't tell any of my Cali peeps that I was there.

I LOVE seeing my friends when I go back home (and I'm so sorry for not having told you guys), but this particular trip was about family time. My sister has had a problem for a couple of years now with one of her arms and her back. The root of the problem was finally discovered a few months ago. Apparently, my sister had two slipped disks in her spine. These were partially cutting off the flow of spinal fluid. According to the doctor, if she didn't have surgery to repair the problem and it just got worse, she would eventually become paralyzed.

Her spinal surgery was last week and I flew home for a couple of days to be with my family. My mom had been particularly stressed out about the whole event, but everything turned out ok. My sister's surgery was a success. Instead of two crappy disks, she now has two pieces of plastic held together by a metal rod in her spine. After a few weeks of physical therapy, she'll be better than new. Her only inconvenience is that she will always be strip searched at an airport because the metal rod will always set off the metal detectors.

Also, she has a Frankenstein-like suture on her neck that I'm hoping will not turn into a scar. I couldn't even bear to look at it, so I'm glad it was mostly hidden by her neck brace. She couldn't talk for a few days after the surgery, but now she's little miss chatterbox (again; if you know my sister, then you know she LOVES to talk). And she's back to consuming regular, non-liquefied food as long as she chews it enough.

My mom was playing nurse maid and doting on her fragile patient 24/7. I took my mom out and helped her with errands (tasks that my sister usually does with/for her). Before I moved, this was primarily my responsibility and it was just like old times, including the eventual impatience after having run errands for 5 hours straight. I do regret not having the time to really take my mom out for something fun, like dinner or coffee. She was nice enough to took some delicious home-cooked meals for me and I was incredibly grateful.

I guess my mom liked the feel of 'old times.' Yesterday, I called her after boarding my plane at LAX on the way back to DC. After making the usual plane boarding small talk (Yes, mom, I was able to eat something before getting on the plane), she burst into tears. "I missed you. I really miss the time we used to spend together. I just feel like we don't do that any more and maybe we won't again. Maybe I just have to accept the fact that you are growing up and that you're not my baby any more. But I just don't want to let go."

Had I not been told to turn off all portable devices, I would've told her, "Yes, I am growing up, but I'll always be your baby."


Mme. Meow said...

Aw :o)

You should call her and tell her sometime. That would make her very happy.

instatick said...

I definitely agree with mme. meow - you should tell her.

And I'm glad your sister is going to be fine - that's awesome, and I'm glad they were able to repair the damage, although it does suck that now she'll have to leave even earlier for flights due to the whole strip searching thing.