My mother, known to you all as MomMom, has officially moved in with us. In theory, Pappou has as well, but he's spent most of the past two months traveling for business, or moving small items to the condo in Florida. He'll be back before Thanksgiving, and then they will both retire to warmer climes for the winter.
Since my mother came to stay, we've experienced two devastating weather events. The first, Hurricane Irene, produced massive flooding in our town, and knocked out our power for four days. This time, a freakish pre-Halloween snowstorm dropped a foot of snow, and we were in the dark for a week.
Coincidence? Or is some nefarious outside source suggesting my mother geetttt oouuuttt?
My money's on Pappou.
Oh sure, he says he appreciates our hospitality, but he hasn't stayed here for more than three days in three months. And those days were quite pleasant, weather-wise. He was conveniently absent for both Irene and the Halloween Horror. And he has mentioned how he'd be perfectly happy in Florida all year long...
Well, we're not giving her back! We're having too much fun, except for the times when we've almost killed her. When she's home, Mom's tethered to an oxygen concentrator that we've named Bertha. Bertha is a large filtering system that sucks in air, and produces pure oxygen for Mom's fibrotic lungs. Bertha runs on electricity. You see the problem.
We knew Irene was coming, so we made sure we had plenty of oxygen tanks, which can be used without power. We weren't quite as prepared for the Halloween Horror, so we had to call the oxygen supply company the day after the storm. The boys carted all her empty tanks up our steep driveway, and we laid in the new supplies. We didn't trust how long the oxygen would last through the night, so I got up at 4 a.m., and snuck in to check the meter. It was about 58 degrees in the house at night, so Mom went to bed in the Captain's flannel pants and hoodie. All I could see was her nose. And her breath. Yay for oxygen!
Two days into the outage, the Captain had the brilliant idea to call a friend and borrow his generator. More than anything else, we wanted to plug Mom back into Bertha. When the generator rumbled to life, we found Bertha, a space heater, and a lamp. Everyone flocked to the living room, and we basked in the glow. The little boys fell asleep snuggled under the blankets on the couch, with MomMom in the middle. Right where she belongs.