Monday, June 30, 2008

No, not today!

My husband DID NOT get home today! They've assured him it will be tomorrow, but we'll see.
I just can't believe it. Today, the doctor that needed to show up to do the final set and ordering of the vancomycin at home, decided not to come in today in spite of telling my husband he'd definitely be in on Monday..............NOT!!! I hope this will all get straightened out for tomorrow.

It has been a bit frustrating the past few days. The Etsy website has some sort of problem and I haven't been able to access any part of it. I called the Brooklyn, NY office today and apparently some sort of bug got into their system. I was told they have most of the USA up and running again but it will take another 36 - 72 hours for international locations....oh well, technology...gotta love it!

Sunday, June 29, 2008

My prayer tonight........God, please .....

My prayer for tonight will be ...God, please let everything be OK and let my husband get the go ahead to come home. It's 35 days....too, too long.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Pleasure vs. work........

I was thinking today how strange one's perception can be at times. Normally, I love to redecorate and create in my home as well as with my plates etc. Normally, I would have been so excited to renovate and redecorate our bathroom.
However, with my husband being so sick and the circumstances where I find myself having to finish this bathroom, it has become so tiresome and tedious. I'm almost there, thank goodness.
I have two more closet shelves to paint and the closet doors and that's it. Afterwards, I will need to find someone to help me reinstall the doors and help in putting the big mirror over the vanity back up.
Tomorrow I'm going to finish the painting, I hope.
My brother and sister-in-law have invited me to their place for BBQ ribs, etc and I'm really looking forward to that. I'll go see my husband and then head on out to their place. I made a chocolate pecan pie for our dessert. It's one of my sister-in-laws favourites.
When I went to see my husband today his arm infection was looking better. I hope by Monday it's OK and he can come home. I had to go buy him a sandwich and some berries for dessert down at the Tim Horton's coffee stand as his dinner that he got from the hospital was absolutely disgusting. It was some sort of fish that looked really bad and smelled even worse. He refused to eat it and I don't blame him one bit......I think hospital kitchen staff should be required to eat one meal of everything they attempt to feed patients. Maybe then, the quality of the food would improve...maybe.

Friday, June 27, 2008

NOT the Teddy Bear's Picnic...but a 'picnic' just the same

I decided today was the day that my husband needed a bit of a mental boost and some food that actually had some flavour to it....soooo, I packed a 'picnic' of sorts and took it to the hospital.
I even mixed up a couple of 'Sea Breezes' and brought fancy glasses along to drink out of. His appetite is still that of a bird, but I made my version of a Cobb Salad with chicken, standard garden salad stuff, avocado, hard cooked eggs, and grated cheese and brought him some Ranch dressing to have on it. He didn't want some fresh rolls but did want some Wheat Thins to have with it.
He really enjoyed it but still doesn't eat a lot at one time. He commented on how flavourful it was by comparison to what he usually gets.
I made little mini apple crisps for us but couldn't heat them and add ice cream but he only ate a little bit and said he'd save the rest for later. I suggested he ask the nurses to make him a cup of tea later to have when he finished it. He said that was an idea.
He said all three doctors were in today and they felt it was getting better and the main doctor said he'd be in on Monday to decide if he could go home then....gosh, I sure hope so.
There is just so much to get caught up on around the house and property but I can only do what I can do. I went out to look around the gardens today and just felt so bad at how grown up with weeds they've become in five weeks.
It's brutally hot here today and they say it's going to be that way over the entire long weekend. I don't care what needs to get done inside, I'm taking some time to enjoy and work outside a bit.
Most people have big plans for this long weekend so it should be quiet around here.
I plan to get caught up on a bit of sleep and then as a change of scenery, work on my plates that have been sadly neglected this last while. I really miss that time.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Another disappointment............

Believe it or not, my husband is still in the hospital. It's now 33 days. He was told that maybe he could come home tomorrow with IV and Home Care . He would have to be on IV for another two weeks to dispense the vancomycin and then would go to oral vancomycin. However, yesterday the infection flared up again at the pic line sight where he developed the MRSA. There is a blood clot there and it's also started to ooze again so he won't be coming home. He's trying so, so hard to stay up mentally but this is a big disappointment for both of us.
This weekend happens to be our July 1st , Canada Day celebrations and we had hoped we could have our own special celebration for his homecoming. My cousin is singing and doing a tribute to Gordon Lightfoot on Monday at our local park and bandstand and I hoped to take him and have a change of scenery.....Guess not.
Oh well, maybe I'll put a bit of a picnic together and take it up to the least he can have some home cooking if nothing else.

Monday, June 23, 2008

MRSA.............not the news you want to hear.

Yesterday, the head nurse of the hospital called to tell me my husband now has MRSA in his blood. This is very serious and can be fatal. They have him isolated, again, and have started him on vancomycin which is the first line of defense against this nasty disease. They believe his is hospital related and once the Infection Control people track where it came from we'll know for sure. I went up to the hospital early this morning to make sure I was there when the doctors and the infection team showed up.
The future for my husband is still very questionable but he did seem a bit better today and since it's been over 24 hours they are hopeful it was caught in time and he will be OK. They test his blood before and after each dose of vancomycin to see and measure the improvement made.
This is a very scary disease.
I'm angry, frightened and tired but we can't afford to give up at any point much less now. It's a damned if you do and damned if you don't situation. The longer he's in the hospital, the sicker he seems to get.

Friday, June 20, 2008

I apologize.........

Let me begin this by apologizing to all those in 'blogland' who are having a much worse time than my husband and me. Sometimes we all get a little too self absorbed in our own issues and certainly that has been so in my case the past month.
Yes, our lives are a bit tough at the moment, but there are so many out there having it much tougher. To say I understand completely isn't entirely true. No one can understand to any degree what someone else may be going through. For the most part, I've handled stress and trouble fairly well in my life. This time, however, not so.
My husband had another setback and won't be coming home for a few days yet. Today, he's been in the hospital 28 days.
This has been a real test. One day I feel I've passed with flying colours. Then I have day when I think to myself, I could have done better.
My two daughters have made me very proud in their strength and support. I guess there were some things I did right raising them as they are pretty amazing people.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

My brain hurts............

My brain just won't shut off! My husband is STILL in the hospital and there are still so many unanswered questions as to his and our future that my mind just keeps going and going!
We are waiting for the CEA ( cancer ) test to come back and those results should be available some time today..we hope. Doctors have told him that they will not let him home until his oxygen levels are stable enough . This is getting tough for both us on different levels. So, the waiting continues.
We don't know what the future is going to be, but we do know it won't be the same ever again.
I'm thinking about little changes that will need to be made in the house, our finances, how much slack I'm going to have to pick up as far as things that need to get done, etc. etc. I just don't know and for the immediate can't even begin to figure it out.
This is definitely not fun....................

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

A better day.............

Well, after yesterday, my day was somewhat better. This morning friends (former neighbours) from British Columbia dropped by for a visit. We then went up to see my husband who's still in the hospital and then out for a mid afternoon late lunch, early dinner and then I went back to the hospital to spend more time with my husband. This has been a really difficult time. They are not planning on letting him out of the hospital until Thursday or Friday now. Both doctors aren't happy with his oxygen levels yet and they are still trying to adjust the blood thinning medications. They told my husband today that they are waiting for the CEA test results ( cancer predictor ) to see if they will again need to adjust. If the test is positve, that will indicate a new strategy will be required. He was a bit discouraged, once again that he can't come home. This coming Monday, he will have been in the hospital a month. We have been told he will absolutely have to come home with oxygen and time will tell if it's permanent or not. If he's on oxygen, it eliminates a lot of things he can mow the lawn, work with anything flamable, etc.
Tonight I took him off the floor and down one level where there's a Tim Horton's coffee stand and bought him a coffee and a donut. At this stage of the game, that's a real treat for him. I left him with some money and got approval for him to leave the floor once in a while. Although he's in the new hospital, he had no idea of where anything was or the layout so we went on a tour. He enjoyed that. It's a little more pleasureable for him as the new hospital has provided laptop computers at each bed which provides TV, internet and telephone capabilities for the patients.... a wonderful distraction. He called me tonight to tell me one of my favourite Canadian comedians, Ron James had a special. I got to see some of it and then the phone kept ringing. Our friends from Ohio called to check how he was doing and to say they were having a great time in the Florida Keys at the moment.....they needed a break as well.
Tomorrow I'm going to make cookies to take to the nurses...they have simply been amazing.
My neighbour cut our lawn again today and has offered to try and put our BBQ back together, since my husband had dismantled it and was about to refurb it when he took ill. I look forward to being able to BBQ again, SOON!.

Monday, June 16, 2008

It's my day for a pity party..........

It's my day for a pity party.....and that's all that needs to be said. I have a philosophy that you're allowed to feel sorry for yourself for 24 hours and then suck it up and move forward.
Well, this is my day...

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Turning the corner....

I think my husband is actually turning the corner of this past few weeks. The doctors are actually talking about letting him come home sometime next week.
His bowel area seems to have settled down and the new bowel doctor is fairly happy with the progress and has no concerns at this time.
The lungs are still struggling and they are not sure yet if he will go home with oxygen.
That will be decided in the next couple of days.
This bout has been a really tough one for him to go through, both from a physical standpoint and as a mental struggle.
I think God must have something really special he wants for him. I'm hoping so.
We are both tired and look forward to getting back to whatever our new normal will be and take it from there.

Thursday, June 12, 2008


The past few days have been stressful to say the least. Yesterday, I made the decision to fire my husband's doctor. I was not happy with the follow through or should I say the lack of follow through on many of my husband's health issues. So, after a very unpleasant conversation with his doctor I contacted the head of the hospital and notified them I wanted this particular doctor taken off my husband's case. The end result is he now has two doctor's. One a specialist in lungs and the other a specialist in bowel. Tonight, we are a little more informed of what is happening and not happening and as we now move forward we've been told there are still some issues that can't be answered as yet. What we know for sure is he will be on injections for three to six months to prevent any more blood clots in his lungs. Because this happened less than two years ago he will be on Coumadin for the rest of his life and will need blood work weekly to adjust the medication as necessary. As yet, we do not know if he will come home with an oxygen tank and if so for how long. Each time he has these health episodes it gets more risky each time. His lungs are still a long way from being OK but I feel better now that we have a qualified specialist on board. My only regret is taking a few days too long to get rid of the doctor he had. By comparison, the nurses have been more than wonderful and their care and compassion has been so reassuring.
Sadly, we had to cancel a houseboat trip we had been looking forward to this summer but the priority at the moment is getting my husband back to as normal a life as possible.
As for me, I'm tired, frustrated, and although I'm usually not a worrier, I am worried on so many levels about the future for my husband and for us.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

How does one say thank you????

I'm very tired at the moment and I think I'm running on adrenalin. I took some private quiet time today to just sit and ponder how grateful I am for the friends and family that have helped and continue to help me through this time.
Thank you says so much and yet so little.
Between neighbours cutting grass and bringing in garbage pails and bringing me meals and treats, family and friends that have helped me put my bathroom back together and functional, many emails and phone calls of concern and caring, visits to the hospital to see my husband and many offers to help any way they can, I feel so, so blessed. Saying thank you or sending a thank you card just seems rather inconsequential by comparison.
Although it's difficult at the moment, knowing family and friends care so deeply for both my husband and myself makes one feel so lucky.
I know there is no way I can repay all the kindnesses, but will try.
When the better times come, and they will I'm sure we will find a special way to say that thank you to so many.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Husband....not so good...

Well, since my last post, my husband got very ill after the first food they gave him and things have gotten progressively worse for him. He's developed an infection and worse yet has developed blood clots in his lungs....not good at all! He almost died from this same problem two years ago after a liver resection. On top of this, the hospital he's in now is shutting down tomorrow and moving all patients to the new hospital. My husband's lungs and breathing are so bad that they are going to move him to the new hospital via ambulance even though it's only across the parking lot. Today, was his 'pity party' day. He was very, very down mentally and was worried about all the extra work put on me, worried about money an paying bills, worried about anything and everything. He said he wasn't sure how many more times he could go through this and I said as many times as it takes. We still have a lot of living to do and we have two beautiful daughters, two wonderful sons-in-laws and two amazingly lovable, precious grandchildren. By the time I left, his spirits had perked up a bit. I can't go see him tomorrow until after 5 PM when they've moved all the patients and have them settled in. The up side is at least the new hospital is air conditioned and they have much better monitors and equipment. They are planning on a full torso CT Scan later on in the day. They hope that will tell them what's gone wrong and how many blood clots he has. They started giving him a drug today that helps break up blood clots. I know tomorrow will be difficult for him.
On an upside, my bathroom will be fully functional by tomorrow afternoon....yeah..can finally have a shower in my own home.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Hoorah!.....Had a real bath!

The grouting was done on the walls around the tub and on the floor today. Although, there's still lots to do to get it back in shape and fully functional, I was able to have a bath great is that! I'm actually a shower person, but I have to tell you that the bath tonight felt s000 good. I don't care what anyone says, sponge baths are a poor second to the real thing.
Went to see my husband who's progressing nicely. He has his stomach tube out and he has the epidural for pain out. They actually let him have some soup and pudding tonight.
How wonderful is it when a bath and soup can make one ecstatic! As I said before, we are so spoiled.
My husband may get to come home by Sunday but not definite yet.
I'm trying to finish the weeding and some planting in our gardens and now will have to get the bathroom walls painted before the toilet gets reinstalled. Guess what I'm doing tomorrow. I'm so happy with the way it's turned out and it will be so worth it on so many levels.
Although I like decorating, I must admit that winning a lottery would mean we could actually hire people to do the grunt work. We are getting to old for this stuff!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

I'm back..........

I'm back. It's been a bit of a wild time with me having my surgery and my husband having his. I'm fairing better than him. I'm fairly close to being back to normal ( there are those out there that might question that ) but my husband still has some recuperating to do. He's now been in the hospital nine days and it doesn't look like he'll get out for a few more days.
All I can say is we are so blessed. We have had so much support from friends and family.
My cousin drove me two hours to the hospital for my surgery, my sister-in-law came to stay with me for the first 24 hours, our neighbours have checked in on me and cut our grass for us, and many others have both phoned and emailed to check on our well-being.
As different as each member of my family are, I'm so blessed to have them nearby and to know that I'm so loved.
Our daughters have been checking on both of us and like ourselves are so relieved we have a wonderful network of support to help us.
My cousin's husband and his son-in-law came yesterday and didn't leave until almost 2 am. this morning and finished the tile work on the walls and floor of our bathroom.
We may not be rich from a monetary standpoint, but we sure are rich with people around us who care and love us. Isn't that what's really important in life?

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Husband's surgery

Well, today was my husband's turn for surgery.....considering all the possibilities of what may be problematic, he came away with the easiest solution once surgery was definitely indicated.
They were able to open him up, untwist the bowel and sew him back up. He's in a lot of pain, but should be home by the end of the week with home care. This man has had five surgeries in the last four years and I'm pretty sure his guardian angels are getting a little tired by now.
Good news, and we will both spend this next week recovering and trying to get some rest and strength back.
I'm SO tired tonight and will head to bed very, very shortly....relieved but tired
Since we never got the bathroom re-done before he collapsed, my cousins husband has offered to put a crew together to come and finish it so we can actually bathe and shower again. That will be so great!