The scene opens on a middle-aged woman sitting alone, lauging hysterically. She has just read the WordPress Daily Prompt: the word was Chaotic… She reads aloud as she writes in her diary…
Thursday 24th November
Visited Mum in hospital today. She is still constipated but seemed happy that she is being looked after. This was a pleasant surprise, given that her last hospital admission led to a management review of the use of raised bars at the side of beds, after Mum climbed out over the bars on her bed because she wanted to go to the loo in the middle of the night and didn’t know how to press the call button.
It turns out that one of the senior docs who looked after her then spotted Mum earlier today and came for a chat. Yes, that’s how memorable the incident was.
This was the calm after the storm. The Chaos occurred on Tuesday. I went down to Mum’s place first thing to try to avert the usual distressed phone call when she awakes and cannot work out what to do with herself. I helped her wash and dress and we both ate Oatibix for breakfast; she had prunes too; and Laxido gel to help with constipation.
Coincidentally, I think, it transpired that Mum’s loo was blocked, so I called the water company to come and sort it. Fortunately there is a commode in the house, although the prospect of the constipation clearing was not attractive.
By 1pm, Mum was straining on the commode, in great agony. I requested a district nurse visit and she duly came at around 3pm bringing a student with her. Sparing the details, I overheard this: “People don’t usually squeal like this when you give them an enema.”
Around 2pm the guy from the water board phoned to say he was in _____, at least an hour away. I told him I needed to leave for parents’ ‘evening’ at about 3.30, so could he just knock and come in as my Mum takes ages to answer the door?
“Oh no, I’m not allowed to come in. I only deal with the drains outside.”
That’s not what the call handler told me when I phoned it in; she said if the blockage was external they would clear it free of charge, but if it was internal we’d get a bill.
I was 99.9% certain the blockage was internal – likely an incontinence pad accidentally dropped down the loo. So I sent the water board guy a text saying, “The blockage is almost definitely internal, so I will get a local plumber; don’t want you to waste your time coming all this way.” Then I went and worked at the loo, poking and plunging until I saw a tiny stream of bubbles, and ultimately the pan full of water flowed away with a great glugging whoosh. HOORAY!
Mum slept through all of this; and went straight back to sleep after the district nurses’s visit too, so I took the gamble of not waking her when I left to go to my meeting.
Between five and six pm, I got four phonecalls from Mum’s neighbour and her GP telling me that she was being taken away to hospital in an ambulance – for constipation!
Cannot a fecking sandwich filling daughter-mother even go to fecking parents’ evening without the whole world dissolving into chaos?
Oh and apparently (I heard later from the neighbour), the water board guy turned up in the middle of all that chaos; he DID come in, and surprise surprise! discovered the toilet was functioning perfectly!