Sunday, January 26, 2014


What a crazy week.  It's so unbelievable that I have a casserole contingent coming to the house this week.  I'm thankful for that because honestly we are all gonna turn into fast food at the rate we are going.

Tuesday Sonny Boy broke his femur.  Wednesday he had surgery.  All went well with the surgery but he was kept in the hospital for pain control and to make sure he could manage some movement with help before he was sent home.  Friday we piled into the car with the trunk full of medical equipment, wheelchair, walker and crutches, and the rest of us so scrunched up we looked like illegal aliens crossing the border.

Since getting home it's stressful as we get up in the middle of the night to make sure meds stay level for pain control because if they start wearing off we certainly hear about it.  The stoic kid howls and throws a rocking fit.  Even when pain is under control he's a little bear - I think all of his sense of humor leaked out of his bone when it broke.  Over all he's doing pretty well though and we keep telling ourselves we'll be sitting on him in a week or two to keep him from re-injury.

Mom has finally turned a corner and has made significant progress in her therapy.  Her planned release date is now the 30th.  I'm still stressed as to how we are going to manage two invalids in the house, jobs, school and the like.  I guess we'll manage as there really isn't another choice.

Personally I don't think I can handle one more minute of stress.  I took my blood pressure the other day and it's high.  My neck, shoulders, and back are so tight that it honestly hurts to take a deep breath.  I told Hubby if only his mother or sister were closer I'd have her come stay the night and Hubby and I would just get a hotel room in order to have a good night's sleep, and not have the noise of the household at full volume.  Because no matter if the other is taking care of the situation you still can't really escape it in our house.

Well I see Hubby pulling in the driveway from a grocery store run.  I'm going to run up to visit Mom a bit in Milwaukee because I have guilt she's basically sat in the hospital all alone all week with only a brief stop in by Igor and I one night.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Unfreakin' believable

Really, Really?!!  This has got to be some sort of record for bad luck.

I get a phone call today at work from Hubby "Does Sonny Boy have any allergies, and don't be mad." 

Sonny Boy's sled slammed into a chain length fence next to the sledding hill and broke his right femur.  Hubby had to call the ambulance to get him off the hill.  The same hill that Igor broke his leg on a few years ago.  The same hill I'd been telling the boys I didn't want them on because too many people in the family are already in the hospital and I can't deal with one more.  The same hill my co-worker whose husband is an EMS/ firefighter refused to let her kids go down because he responded to too many calls there. 

So today my afternoon was spent first at the local community hospital where Sonny Boy was x-rayed (let me tell you the x-ray makes one nauseas) and packaged up to go by ambulance to Children's hospital in Milwaukee.  I rode in the ambulance up with Sonny Boy while Hubby and Igor got a change of clothes for Hubby and came quickly behind.  We all hung out while they did more x-rays and got a consult from orthopedics.  Tonight Sonny Boy will be put in a traction boot and will have surgery tomorrow that will either be long pins or a plate depending on the surgeon.  The good news is it's a relatively clean break, not in the growth plates and should heal with few problems.  The bad news is it's surgery, a couple of days in the hospital, and several weeks on crutches.

I brought Igor home and will take him to school in the morning and head into Children's with a change of clothes and likely trade out with Hubby for the evening.  I may try to sneak over to the hospital Mom is in (across town) for a quick visit as I haven't been there in two days now. 

I just had to vent.  I'm really angry at Hubby over this.  While I know this was certainly not something he intended, he kept poo pooing my objections and letting the boys go on that hill, and now my already overloaded plate is now spilling onto the floor.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Just a note

Typing on the I pad as the lap top is in the next room and that's just too far away.  If something is crazy I blame lack of keyboard and autocorrect.

It's strange to think I've fallen into habits while visiting at the hospital but I suppose we are creatures of habit.  Mom has been in the rehab unit long enough that I've met all the nurses who typically work her wing on all shifts.  I've met several of the therapist, and I'm getting adept at managing transfers of her from bed to walker / wheelchair / commode.

Mom has one nurse who is Ukrainian and has a middling thick accent which gives Mom fits understanding her.  N is very chatty and smart as a whip and very blunt which frankly I find refreshing in medical fields, because no one ever really wants to give a straight answer.

Mom seems to have better days and horrible days.  Pain control is a real issue, she's not really on too many meds due to all the previous scare but what she is on makes her thick headed at best and really sleepy most of the time.  I think she has mostly given up TV and spends the majority of her time asleep.  I don't really know how much is med related, depression, or just plain old exhaustion from injury and not getting long periods of uninterrupted sleep due to pain and hospital environment.

This morning we all left the house before light to go to Sonny Boy's wrestling tournament.  The route to the tourney basically went right past the hospital so I parked the car there and went the rest of the way to the tournament with Hubby and the boys.  Thankfully the tournament was very well ran with a minimum of waiting around which usually occurs at these things.  Sonny Boy did surprisingly well considering he was all for giving up the sport a week ago.  He lost his first match in sudden death overtime, lost the the second match to a kid who just really did beat him, but he won the last two matches by pin to come in 3 rd in a 5 kid bracket.   He was thrilled with the results and his coach declared he was very impressed.  After the tournament we all went to the hospital to show grandma the new hardware and subject her to video replay.  The kids stayed only briefly and left with hubby while I hung around a few hours and attended therapy with her.

I came home around 6:00 to find all the boys watching some corny Garfield movie so I went upstairs to warm my feet under the electric blanket.  Did you know that warm feet induce narcolepsy?  Neither did I, but I woke up rather confused two hours later having slept through supper and just in time to give Igor a good night kiss.

I'm so very tired,  not simply physically, but emotionally, and ( crap I can't think of the right word if that tells you anything) cognitively.  I take time off from hospital visits and try to be good to myself but looking ahead more than a couple of days seems impossible.  Hubby has been wonderful and picked up all my slack, but I can tell the kids are actually missing me ( maybe the first time they would admit it) Igor is clingy( er) and even Sonny Boy has been cuddly - except when he made me be his wrestling partner the other night.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Muddling through. . .

. . . because I don't really have any other option.

When I last left I was in the hospital with Mom.  I was spending the night so I could catch the doctors who made stinking early rounds.  That night turned into a nightmare, mom so crazy and confused arguing with me, nurses, and saying she was going to get up and leave.  At one point of the night I told her if she could get her ass out of bed and walk as far as the door I'd bring her home right then and there - of course she couldn't do it.  I remember one point being in the hallway in the middle of the night near tears with the nurses because she was so out of kilter and crazy.  That morning I stayed till near noon and did manage to catch some doctors.  Stent surgery was scheduled, Mom was convinced I was demon spawn, and I'd had enough of the crazy and went home.  When I got home I handed Hubby my cell phone and told him I was only home for medical professionals and went to bed.  While I was sleeping Mom blew up Hubby's phone and he went to the hospital to try to calm her down.  I woke up several hours later confused if it was 6:00 am or pm and came downstairs to find the kids had made their own PB&J for supper and were happily gorging on video games.  Hubby managing mom, texted reports that she was certain she was in a fire station and that a cat was in her hospital room.  After CAT scans and blood work they finally came to the conclusion that she was seriously sleep deprived and gave her a tranquilizer.  The next morning Hubby and I went to the hospital early so we could be there during the stent procedure and despite having only about 4 hours of good sleep we saw marked improvement in her mental function.

The stent procedure went well.  They implanted four stents which cleared blockages that were up to 95%.  The next day or two later she was subjected to an electrophysiology study that concluded that all the blackout episodes were a result of the blockages.  A few days later and Mom was sent to a intensive rehab unit in the hospital.

After about a week in the rehab unit I don't see huge improvement within her.  In fact I see her mental state deteriorating almost daily.  After initial evaluations the rehab team had estimated her a release date of Jan 21, today they moved it back to the 28th and frankly say they are not even sure about that.

In the meantime I've managed to get her some insurance through the "Obamacare" which will start on Feb 1.  The hospital was overjoyed when I told them that today as they were not comfortable releasing her home and honestly I'm not up to taking care of her.

Mom is terribly incontinent both bowel and urine and doesn't actually feel herself going.  Worrisome as nerve damage is feared and the medical team wants to do an MRI, normally not a problem however she has a metal clip in her brain and nobody really knows if it's MRI compatible.   I googled around a bit today and found out how the hospital can get her records from the hospital that did the surgery back in '99 and called to confirm that those records exists. 

Battling a migraine and sick of looking at Christmas decorations I took the day off from going the hospital and spent it packing up the tree and other stuff.  It's all neatly stacked in the dining room waiting on Hubby to hall it down to the basement.  I'm glad to have it down, this is probably the latest I've ever had decorations up as I usually take them down on New Year's day.

I other than Mom news...  Sonny Boy was officially hating wrestling.  It seems as though he was paired with a couple of boys who are a few levels ahead of him and practices were going tough with him spending a lot of time on his back.  Sonny Boy was sick of it and declared he wasn't going to do tournaments this year and was looking for excuses to not go to practice.  Hubby e-mailed the coach who made sure to pair him with a lesser opponent last night and it's 180 degrees and now he's planning on going to a tournament this Sunday.  While I pretty sure Sonny Boy isn't the next Olympic wrestler I think he's scrappy enough to do well with it, so I'm glad he decided to stick with it for the time being.  If nothing else wrestling gives him a good outlet to vent his frustration physically which is really important to him.

Igor is trudging along being Igor.  I was trying to line out violin lessons for him so he could have his own "thing" since most sports are out of the question for him.  However with the Mom fiasco and luck would have it that the violin teacher I had spoken with is dealing with a cancer diagnosis with her husband, it hasn't happened.  In the meantime Igor is adamant he doesn't want violin lessons but does want  piano lessons.  I really have no issue with piano lessons except the fact I do not have space ANYWHERE in my house to put even the smallest piano.  That's on hold for now and in the meantime I'm trying to talk him into violin at least long enough to start learning to read music.

Work is going well for both Hubby and I.  My new job is somewhat boring but so low stress and  so easy it's silly.  I mostly stamp, sticker, and cover new books and DVD's.  I work two full days and one half day a week and I like the schedule better than just a few hours everyday.  The two full days seem incredibly long.  Currently Hubby has been able to come home and pick up the kids after school on my work days.  When I took the job I was doing it with the idea that Mom would be around to be a warm body sitter.  Now I don't know what I'll do.  We are going to have make better arrangements soon, hopefully I can find a responsible high school girl in the meantime.  I'm thankful that Hubby's job allows him the opportunity to come home and do this.  While my income certainly isn't keeping us afloat, I really enjoy having a job where I get to see adults and have a life outside of kids and mom.
Now I muddle through.  Today I asked Sonny Boy if he noticed anything different (meaning the tree was down) and in his ever present, inherited, learned and sometimes appreciated smart ass-ness he said "you're upright?"  Yeah, when I'm home I'm usually asleep or looking like mummy in my couch throw in the chair.  I tell ya, the ever present pull I'm should be at home doing something while I twiddle fingers at the hospital, the two hour round trip to get there and back, and the guilt of not being at the hospital when I'm not there is killing me.