cancer, family, health, humor, nursing


I usually like to write funny, and uplifting posts, because in general….that's the way I look at life. Recently though I have felt down and sad, and my writing has reflected that. I feel okay about that, because it gets me through my moments, and helps me process through my thoughts.

If you have followed me recently, you will have learned that my Mama P has been battling cancer. I just recently spent the weekend with her, while she got her latest news, and while she strengthened herself, so that she could go home. As a family we have shared ALOT of tears this weekend, but this post isn't about the tears….This post is about the laughter we shared. This family can do nothing without laughter, and I'm so grateful for that. ๐Ÿ™‚

The amusement started on day one, even as we dried our eyes. Patty desperately wished for a beer! But you can't have beers in the hospital…or else I would have brought a six pack with me when I came! So, when Patty headed down for her radiation treatment, my dad and I headed to the pub next door!

Our motto on this day was WHAT PATTY WANTS, PATTY GETS!

We ate, and shared conversation over a beverage, until it came time to ask our waitress to break the law. We told her the situation, and asked her to help us smuggle a beer in there! She was reluctant at first, but saw the error of her ways with my constant persistence.

She said “I can't know anything”, and I said “know what”? The classic phrase.

She emptied a Canadian mist bottle, and set a draught beer on the table, and whispered for me to do it in the bathroom. I felt like an underage teenager in that bathroom, pouring beer into that tiny glass bottle, and all over the floor and sink….but we were successful! I believe that lady will go to heaven for that deed alone!

Patty was thrilled with the beer…it was nice to see her smile! While the doctors spoke with her, she would take sips of her “Canadian Mist”, and nod her understanding.

The next day, she was going stir crazy in the hospital bed…. plus someone was roto rootering her sink, which was making a horrid smell, and creating black sludge from the drain. She wanted to get out of the bed immediately and go off the floor. So, I went on a mad dash in search of a wheelchair.

The first time we took this trip, we were calm, and just sat outside. The second time we went outside however, we became comfortable, and foolish! ๐Ÿ™‚

Patty decided that she was going to practice wheeling herself around in the wheelchair. She took a couple of laps, in the oversized chair, and I assured her she would never come close to winning a wheelchair race at that speed, but maybe she could try out for the ladies wheelchair basketball team at best…we giggled.

Then she got this bright idea to wheel herself up the ramp, without help. The ramp was very steep, and had a turn in it….it was taking her forever, but i was in no rush. As she tried to make her way up it, I stood behind her chair drinking coffee, just in case it started to roll backwards. I looked like a complete asshole, when people would walk by. This doctor stared at me on several occasions, while she was struggling to get up the hill, and while I was offering no help to this ailing lady. I finally tried to clarify, and Patty had herself a good giggle. She has bruises on both arms from doing this stunt, but she made it!

After we got back to her floor, she dared me to run as fast as I could through the hallway, while pushing her in the wheelchair. I had nothing to lose….so I did. It was exhilarating!

On Friday, we managed a surprise birthday party for my dad, in her hospital room. Subway sandwiches and cookie cake! We had quite a turnout, and irritated most of the hospital staff!

On Saturday morning, I tried to put a whole bagel in the hospital toaster…..the kind that spins around. I don't know why I didn't cut it in half, but suddenly a lady was yelling at me to get it out, because I jammed it. I tried to get it out, but the whole bagel and machine went into to flames….I was mortified, and the lady had to get it out for me saying “Next time, cut the bagel”! Patty got a good laugh out of my ignorance for awhile!

The best part for me though was cuddling with Patty for two nights in her hospital bed. This act is something I never understood when I was a bedside nurse. I thought people could go a night without being in the same bed. However, in this case, I got it! She wanted me in there with her…it was comforting. So, I did!!!

I made a comment several times about it to the nurse, to sense her level of irritation, but I really don't think it would have changed the result anyway. The nurse said it didn't bother her, so we made jokes and gave her different “weird” scenarios to make her uncomfortable, while laughing and saying things like “Would that bother you? Or “Would you say something if that happened”? …..Im pretty sure we were only amusing ourselves!! ๐Ÿ™‚

Anyway, regardless of what the nurse thought, we slept side by side, with our arms or hands intertwined for most of the night. I appreciated this time more than anything this weekend.

I am so thankful that I have had her in my life both as a kid, and still now……And I am thankful that God has softened our hearts and given us the gift of love…..and laughter!





    • That’s how I like to view life….to pick the good out of the bad. However, I admit that this tIme it was hard to lift my spirits…..until I wrote:)

  1. I had to smile reading this post. I chuckled aloud reading the part about you setting the toaster on fire. And I could picture Patty and you as she accomplished her wheelchair climb. She’ll be ready to wheel herself through a marathon in no time. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • That’s what I told her! With practice, she can participate in the half marathons still! However, if you would have seen her speed, you would see that she’s gonna need ALOT of practice! ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m glad it made you smile!

  2. Tears of compassion and true resonance in my heart as I read your story Tia. I love how you always show up for the people you love: that is immeasurable and so often the hardest thing for people to do during times of crisis. Just showing. Not a card. Not a text. Not saying, “tell me what I can do to help?”. Just being present—the greatest gift of all.
    Much love and hope for Patty. And you know I love you my dear friend.

  3. You really are a saint! Smuggling in beer, watching her wheelchair up a slope while you’re sipping coffee. My admiration for you would have been even greater, had you smuggled in Cuban cigars and smoked them with Patty and stunk out the whole hospital! One of your best, madam!

  4. I feel your pain … and joy/laughter. I “went through” cancer with my sister and people would be surprised how often and how hard we laughed during her chemo sessions. I think it goes w/o saying there were lots and LOTS of tears, but when we could laugh … laugh we DID. I’m glad you have been able to, too. Hang in there! PS. that baby!! wowza, what a beauty!

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