This was a bit of a trying week for other reasons. Through the winter, I had been staying a night or two at my friend Viv’s so that I didn’t have to drive home in the uncertain winter weather. When I arrived this past Tuesday night, her speech was slurred and there were a bunch of other things I noticed that weren’t quite right.
I was trying not to jump to conclusions, so I resisted kidnapping her to the hospital and just observed her all evening, I didn’t dare fall asleep until I heard her safely out of the bath that night and woke every time she got up to go pee in the night. Viv was somewhat better in the morning, but still definitely not herself, so I decided to call her son who lives closest to her when I got to work.
I explained to Keith that I was worried, but thought a second opinion was best, because we both know how fiercely independent she is and I was afraid that I was over reacting. Viv will be 89 in less than three weeks. Viv has always complained about how some of her friends have been put into seniors homes by their kids and she wants to be in her home until the good Lord calls her home.
Keith took her to the hospital where they spent many hours and the conclusion, of course, was that she had a stroke. I will be back there this Tuesday and in the meantime, her family is with her every day. I pray that if this is a precursor to something, that whatever it is will take her quickly. I will be devastated, but it would break my heart even more to see her lose her independence. The day before her stroke, she was downtown at Sick Kids, where she volunteers every Tuesday. She gets there by bus, subway and walking! She is truly a marvel.
Viv reminds me a lot of a great aunt I had—Nell. The last time I saw Nell, she came up to Toronto on the bus from New York City. She was 99! I wouldn’t take the bus from New York City at my age! Viv and Nell are the kind of strong women I aspire to be.
I pray that Viv has a total recovery.