The New World: Home

Published: April 15th 2014
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It was suspense in the rolling through of customs. It was suspense in the reading of my new book, "The Alchemist".

Taxi to an 8 hour bus ride. A 2 hour flight. Another 3 hour flight. Then a 14 hour jumbo jet-ride from east coast Africa to east coast USA and I was back in the homeland. I was anxious to see my mom, who had just undergone a stroke at only 61 and to see what had happened and support however I could.

When Liz, my moms good buddy picked me up at the airport she was pretty negative about my mothers condition. Deep down though; I knew my mom. I knew that if she was still breathing, she was still fighting.

We got to the Intensive Care Unit on the top floor of the VCU Medical center (only the penthouse for my momma) and I walked in. I saw her crisp blue eyes fixed on me and ran to them. It was so good to see her life sparkle back at me. I disregarded everything I had been told about her and all that mattered was that she was still there! I was so joyful.

There was a feeding tube in her and she looked a bit like Mr. Snuffleupagus with her doped out eyes. Still all I could do was laugh with hope for her. After all I had heard we were lucky that she had the strength of consciousness. It was in that moment I decided I was going to be with her as long as she needed me.

It didn't matter to me that I could do nothing except sit with her and be around. I could hold her hand and talk to her. I could tell her jokes. I called my uncle Jeff and he said something wise and I heard a little chuckle come from her. I knew it was making her stronger. I booked a room in a nearby hotel that was dedicated for patients family and slept there. The facility had a gym and I would rage my frustration to the elliptical machine both venting & hoping that the energy I created in my workout would help my mom. I slept well and would wake at 8.30 to be there by 9 and keep her company til 6 or 7 in the evening breaking for lunch. It was my full time job.

What had happened, I found out was the stroke had affected her left brain. The side that controls rational thought and speech. Now her entire right side was paralyzed and her speech was gone. On the daily she had speech therapists and soon she would be in a physical therapy unit that was top-notch.

For a while it was still rest. She had her feeding tube taken out and a pouch put in so that she could do physical therapy.

O Momma!! It was so good to spend all that time with her. Where everyone else was worrying I was on the front line serving and remembering how much I loved her. I felt like a little boy again. I recalled all she done for me and I forgave her for anything she had done to hurt me.

Whereas the rest of my world journey, I felt, had been self serving this was me serving someone I loved and that was all that mattered. It was a nice change. Me and all the nurses & therapists at VCU Medical center in Richmond were on a mission to bring Sherry Reid Margulies back to strength. And I knew that she was Strong Like Bull!


15th April 2014

Beautiful entry Josh. Funny how life-changing events wake us up, enlighten us, breaks down walls. Well done my friend.
21st April 2014

Our thoughts are with you
I've recently discovered your blogs and at this point have only read 3 or 4 of them. I enjoy them and look forward to reading more. Our thoughts are with you as you are supporting your mother. I'm so happy that you got back in time to see her again. She is unable to tell you at this point but being a nurse for thirty years I can assure you that you are the best medicine. Our thoughts are with you.
28th April 2014

thank you
and thanks for what you do as a nurse!

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