Zombie mom, or, why you have to laugh.


One benefit to working at a cancer support organization when you have a loved one involved with cancer treatment is the fact that you have some “insider information” at your disposal if you need it.  I mentioned to one of the social workers I work with that I was going to look for a tubseat for mom to help her get in and out of the shower easily. Christy told me about an organization in town called Sources. They provide loaners to people who need walkers, wheelchairs, canes and, you guessed – tub seats!

So today I headed over to mom’s during lunch to give her the seat and a few brochures and pamphlets that I found at work as well. While I was there she mentioned that she wanted to take the bandage off of her head where they did the biopsy. Sure, I’d help… of course I would! Cuz I’m a good daughter like that.

Taking the bandage off was delicate, since the tape used to hold the gauze over the incision was stuck to her hair. It was over the right ear, and I knew they had to cut away a lot of hair so I was expecting that. What I was not expecting was seeing a two-and-a-half inch wound in the side of my mother’s head. Of course I knew it was there, but that didn’t make it less shocking.

Lucky for me, a nurse had washed the hair in the hospital and done some cleaning up of the residual blood and “stuff”. But still – there was a serious indicator in front of me that someone had cut into my mom’s skull.

I apologize for grossing you out, but that’s what you get with me. I had to joke with mom that she looked like a zombie in a horror movie, and she laughed. I have done a lot of joking since this whole thing began, and I guess it’s just the way I handle things. I really think, though, that humor, and laughing a lot, is going to be important. I’m sure you’ve all read news bits about studies that show that laughter can enhance healing. I absolutely believe that. If that means I have to compare my mother to b-movie characters and poke fun at the very serious situation we are going to be dealing with for the next several months, so be it.


About Laurie

I have too many hobbies, but have finally learned (sort of) how to focus on one at a time and stifle my desire to add more. ;) I'm a mom, a wife, a writer, an artist, a seamstress, a gardener, a backyard-chicken farmer, a fundraiser, a movie-lover, a book hoarder, a junker, a thrift-store-shopper... I also love to laugh, make people happy, and take road trips. Some of these things make it into blog posts. I'm almost 50 and I'm still able to sleep through the night. I consider that a success.

5 responses »

  1. You took pictures of this gaping hole in mom’s head, didn’t you? Did you have her stand crooked with her arms in front of her and her mouth open menacingly, like a horror film? You did this, right?

  2. I’ve heard that laughter is healing, too. So with you around, your mom will be getting the best medicine possible!

    I’m kind of with Brian. I think maybe you need to teach your mom to walk with her arms held out in front, saying, “Brains! Braaaiiiinnnns!”

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