Weebles Wobble and They Do Fall Down

For the past few years, my hubby and I have a shared a secret saying about my 92 year-young mom.  While watching her attempt to walk on her own, we smile and secretly say to each other, “Weebles wobble but they don’t fall down.”  Maybe you are old enough to remember that toy commercial?  I certainly am.  That is pretty much what she looks like when she walks these days, a cute little Weeble wobbling back and forth, back and forth.

My mother is not a tall woman and has only grown shorter in recent years as osteoporosis takes its toll on her.  More and more, she is very unstable on her feet, and she has fallen several times with various degrees of injury as a result.  Mom is a very stubborn lady and has never liked to use any kind of device to help her walk more safely, even though she has pretty much every available tool to assist her in getting from one place to the next.  She has a cane, a walker and a power chair, and she stubbornly refuses to use any of them much of the time, with the exception of driving her power chair to meals and to play bridge at the assisted living home where she presently lives.  I think she is agreeable to use her chair at those times only because she can drive faster than she can walk.  However, she has stubbornly refused to use anything to help her walk while alone in her apartment for many years.

That chicken came home to roost last Thursday night.

Yes, she suffered a bad fall around 11:30 pm when trying to get up from her living room chair and walk to the bedroom with nothing to steady her.  She went down hard, resulting in three fractures in her pelvis, a knot on her head, a gash over her right eye, and a skin tear on her right arm.  It wasn’t hard to figure out which side hit the floor by any stretch.  She couldn’t hide those wounds, as hard as she tried to do so when the ambulance folks arrived.

I received the call right at midnight, and I was at the hospital with her until about 6 am on Friday morning.  As hard as I tried to come home and get a little sleep, Little Red would have no part of it.  He was wide awake and ready to play.  So, I just decided to have three cups of coffee and made the best of the day, and all was actually fine.  Maybe that playtime did more good than harm for me.

Over the weekend, the therapists attempted to do a little therapy with her, but they had no real luck in doing so.  On Monday afternoon, she was discharged to a rehab facility and will be there for some time, I’m sure.  She has also had (and is still having) a very severe paranoia reaction to a UTI that was diagnosed.  That was definitely a first for her, too.  I didn’t believe the doctor and nurses when they told me this horrible reaction was most likely due to the UTI, but of course, I came home last night and searched the web for other such stories, and sure enough, UTI’s in elderly women quite often cause such a harsh reaction.  She was literally screaming at the top of her lungs and saying such things that I cannot even begin to repeat here.  God bless her nurses and aides right now.  Seriously.  They need a big dose of it.

My mother is in good and capable hands, and for that, I am grateful beyond measure.  A huge prayer request was answered when a room opened up for her at this particular rehab facility.  This is not our first “rodeo” with the falling routine where she is concerned, but it is definitely a first with the off-the-wall screaming fit paranoia.  She fell and broke her shoulder about two and a half years ago, and it took months for her to recover.  I could attempt to remind her (when she gets back to being herself again) that she could have avoided this entire scenario by just using her walker, but it won’t do any good.  So, I won’t go there.

We will just try to make the best of this awful situation as best we can with the prayerful support of others.  I’m already overwhelmed at the support from many friends and a few (older) family members, but I will admit that there is precious little support from her adult grandchildren in the area that don’t belong to me.  That makes me very sad, mostly for her.  This generation is so focused on themselves that often do not realize what life is really about and what God calls us all to do for our elders in our families.  They don’t belong to me, so I will just let them be.  I sometimes wonder, though, if our society is truly changing in a manner where friends are the new family.  That might be a good topic for discussion later on here sometime.

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Author: DK

Blogger at My Five Fs (Faith - Family - Food - Fotos - Fun) and Animal Wonder. Empty-nester that now shares life with my hubby and our two standard poodles. Enjoys camping in our RV, taking and editing photos, trying new low-carb recipes, baking pretty decorated cookies for special occasions, walking daily, spending time with family and friends when we can, playing with the dogs, and is grateful to God for every single day of this blessed life and for the opportunity to share and connect with some great people here.

8 thoughts on “Weebles Wobble and They Do Fall Down”

  1. So sorry for this — actually all of it, the fall, the injuries, and the lack of concern on some family members. Sign of the times, I guess. Still not easy to take. Saying a little prayer for her for good recovery and for the family to rally round.


    1. Thank you for praying for her. I do appreciate that so much. Her reaction to the UTI was just like nothing I’ve ever seen before, and I just wanted to specifically share that, since I never heard of such a reaction before, which seems to be specific to elderly women. I will definitely be watching for this sort of behavior in her in the future, as she has exhibited some minor paranoia pretty often in the past couple of years.


    1. The trend of friends to be more involved than actual family members has been one that I’ve noticed for awhile now. As I have more time, I may explore this trend and some specific things I have witnessed in our family and in a few others. I think there are many things that contribute to it, including a dependence on social media of the younger generation vs. actually interacting with people more directly. Since many older people do not participate in social media, they are forgotten. I also think society’s values are changing and that our elders are primarily seen as a burden with little value given to them as people. Heaven forbid that one of my mom’s adult grandchildren would actually pay her a visit sometime. It simply doesn’t happen with the ones in our family. It’s just so very wrong and sad.


      1. It is very sad. I witnessed the same thing with my father as he became more ill with Alzheimer’s. Only my brothers and I visited him. It’s a strange new world and I’m feeling more and more left behind. One of the attractions of continental Europe for me is that family values are still important. Of course it wouldn’t work for us as our family isn’t there! I look forward to your thoughts when you get them together on the new trends.


  2. Stumbled upon your blog at the recommendation of another blogger (LiveLaughRV). Ingrid said you may have some insight on west Texas. And then as I’m reading you just wrote my exact story from the fall(s) to the UTI’s that I experience with my elderly mother. Hmmm. Divine intervention? Or just Ingrid? Or a common story in strong minded elderly women? Makes me want to go exercise!! Anywho- we’re newbie full timers and heading toward west Texas in March. Our son is stationed at Dyess. Any great stuff we need to see?


    1. Thanks for stopping by and welcome! Yes, if you can tell me where in West Texas you are visiting, I can hopefully help you out a bit. Some people refer to the panhandle area and others refer to what is really far West Texas, going west toward El Paso. I highly recommend Palo Duro Canyon State Park as a must see. It is south of Amarillo, just east of Canyon, Texas. Caprock Canyons State Park is near Quitaque, and it is one of our favorite places to visit regularly. Just be aware that RVs are not permitted in the canyon area at this park, but if you have a car, you are allowed to drive it in. RVs are allowed in the day use and RV campground. Abilene State Park near Buffalo Gap is a very nice smaller park, and we like it a lot for a shorter visit. Lastly, Davis Mountains State Park near Fort Davis in far West Texas is one of our favorite places to RV camp, and the full hookups are so nice and even include cable TV in the fee. We love it there. These four state parks are the ones we tend to frequent the most for long weekend trips, since we try to go somewhere each month, if possible. I’m glad to answer any other questions if you have them!


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