Friday, August 06, 2010
To say that I'm mad would be an under-statement - I'm so angry, I could spit fire! The last two days have seemed like a bad dream. For those of you that haven't read my previous blogs, I'll give you the condensed version. My MIL was diagnosed with aggressive stage 4 lymphoma, with a gloomy prognosis. She appointed me both her general and medical power of attorney, probably because my husband doesn't have the time and his sister lives in California. Since she knows that I've handled the medical needs of my entire family in the past, she knew that I could handle it. I call her the toxic vampire because she gets pleasure in hurting people and she can suck the joy out of anyone she has contact with. In the last three months I've handled all of her medical needs.
I hired caregivers through a home health agency and lined up a separate company for a Medicare nurse to check on her twice a week. The stress of dealing with her over the last few months was harming my health, causing my blood pressure to soar, triggering migraines, and causing chronic diarrhea. Her lack of appreciation was one thing, but when I started to hear how she was bad-mouthing me behind my back, I pulled back. I told her to her face that I would 'manage' her medical needs from my home, by phone, but would NO longer subject myself to her abuse.
Once a week when we went to the local farmstand for fresh produce, we would call her and offer to pick up things for her - paying separately. I wouldn't buy a single grape with her money! We also pick up her prescriptions, groceries, and any personal care items that she needs. On Saturdays we take all of this to her house and I do her paperwork and pay her bills. I manage her care by speaking to the doctors, nurses, and caregivers by phone. When she has chemo scheduled, I call the doc and ask how many hours she'll be there each day, then I call the home health agency to schedule the caregivers to take her and pick her up. I do this knowing that it's a thankless job, but felt that it was the right thing to do. Despite everything I've done to try and help her, she complains about me to anyone that will listen. As a result of hearing the terrible things that she's said, I've stepped back in what I'm willing to do for her, which has dumped it into my husband's lap. I know, it's HIS mother, but he and I are a team.
What happened two days ago has left me dumbfounded. I was out and my MIL called twice, leaving messages. She was upset that she was feeling nauseous, the caregiver wouldn't be there for two hours, and I wasn't available. She called the home health agency and spoke with Debbie, the woman that runs things. But she did NOT call for help or for someone to come then, as Debbie offered. No, she called to complain about ME!!! Since I'm the one that hired Debbie's agency, and we get along very well - she called me to warn me, and also told me that my MIL also called the company with the Medicare nurse.
Since I've had a good deal of contact with the nurse also, I called her and left a message. However the nurse didn't call me back, the manager of the agency did. She told me that they were NOT allowed to speak to me. What??? Apparently my MIL complained about me to the nurse also, and the woman wouldn't tell me anything further except that she was going to meet with my MIL today. That feeling of 'something is off' took hold of me. I called Debbie back from the other agency and told her what happened. She was shocked. She said that when the manager from an agency goes to a client's home - something is up. Debbie was so upset by this that she called the manager of the nursing agency. The woman told her that she was going to meet with my MIL in an attempt to 'straighten this out'. When Debbie asked if Social Services was going to get involved, the woman replied 'I don't know if it will come to that'. Debbie told her that I've done everything right and by the book in managing her care and that my MIL is a VERY difficult woman.
To make a long story shorter - that WITCH made complaints about me to two agencies and possibly set an investigation in motion, which may involve Social Services! Debbie told me that if it comes to that, she will back me. I was also advised to line up character witnesses.
Last week I called her doc to get the results of her PET scan. Well, nothing short of a miracle - she's cancer free after ONLY 3 rounds of chemo! I don't know how she went from stage 4 with cancer in her neck, right lung, adrenal glands, and throughout her ENTIRE liver - to NO evidence of cancer! He also said that because it's such an aggressive cancer, that it's likely that it will come back. When I called to give her the news that she's in remission, she did NOT seem happy. She's been thriving on all of the attention since her diagnosis, and now that she's in remission, she seemed almost disappointed. I would think that she would have been thrilled - she wasn't. I called her closest friends and the pastor, since they all asked me to let them know the results. When she found out that I told people the 'good news', she was aggravated with me. The pastor then mentioned her news to the congregation on Sunday. When my MIL found out he did that, instead of being pleased, she started making calls to people from church. She actually told them that 'what 'I' told the pastor was NOT true and that she still has cancer in her lung and is NOT cancer free'. Well, I have a copy of the PET scan results and have read it, and it states that there is NO evidence of cancer. My husband met with the doctor on Monday, WITH his mother, and he DID say that she's in remission and cancer free. By Wednesday's bible study people were approaching one of her friends asking 'what's wrong with her DIL'? They wanted to know WHY 'I' would tell the pastor something that was NOT true. They went on with 'it's such a shame that her DIL doesn't even take her phone calls and does NOTHING for her'. UGH!!! Her friend told me that she's come to my defense more times than she can count!
Last night I spoke with the wife of my husband's half brother, on his father's side. She has her doctorate in psychology and has experience is situations like this, and has known my MIL for over 30 years, and wants nothing to do with her. She said that she might have been diagnosed with mild dementia, but this behavior is NOT associated with it. She said that it's deliberate and calculated, and meant to hurt me. She felt that her lack of guilt and remorse for any of her actions, through out her entire life, makes her dangerous, and she strongly advised me to cut ALL ties with her. She thinks that she's trying to break me and push me to leave my DH, so that she could finally have him to herself. I found that interesting since my MIL recently told my husband 'I hope that I don't harm your marriage and come between you and Doreen'. Ah ha, there it is - that is her intention!
Well, honey, that's NOT going to happen! Bring it on Bitch, I won't be victimized by you! I can take a lot of crap, but she's crossed a line, and I'M DONE!!! I wish her no ill will, I just want the pain and drama that she creates out of my life. The strange thing is, that I'm not afraid if Social Services contacts me, because I know that I'm honest and that I've done nothing wrong. Instead of letting the stress of this get to me, it's had the opposite result - it has set me free! Instead of being thankful and appreciative for how I've helped her, she's done this terrible thing - but it's on HER, not me! I went out for a bike ride this morning and felt a strange sense of relief. I'm focusing on myself and my husband, our health, and our future together - in peace. I guess I should stock up on some fresh garlic - I hear that it helps keep vampires at bay!