Friday, December 16, 2011

Update and Gratefulness

A lot has happened lately and I have so much for which to be grateful.  A week ago today Joe had the mitral valve in his heart replaced by the best cardio/thoracic surgeon on the planet, Dr. Habibipour in Palm Springs.  We had been told to expect complications and that he was extremely high risk.  Joe came through it like the champion he is!  23 hours later he was up for a walk!  God answered our prayers and I have promised in return to be a better person and not whine so much.

That promise was immediately put to the test 15 minutes after I brought Joe home on Wednesday.  As I was bringing his things in from the car, rushing to get him settled and comfortable, I stepped off the sidewalk, fell, and broke my left wrist. badly. painfully. two bones.  Thank God grandpa was available to take me immediately to ER at the Naval Hospital.  I cried because I had to leave Joe when he was just home and so weak and vulnerable.  Finally I reached his buddy Dan and he came over and sat with him.  And I cried because it hurt so very badly and I was scared.

Ortho doc put it in place with a temporary cast to see if it will hold.  As of today he said it looked good.  He will check it again next Wednesday and either put a real cast on it or arrange for surgery if required.  In the meantime this thing is heavy.  It has made my upper arms, neck and shoulders really hurt.  AND, I can't take a shower or shampoo.  Heck, I can't even sponge off very well with only one hand.  Joe can't help much because he can't reach, stretch or lift as he is protecting that sternum incision.  But we are doing the best we can together and laughing at our ineptitude.

GRATEFUL to amazing friends who understand how difficult it is to cook with one hand and yet very necessary that Joe receive proper nutrition now as he heals.  They are bringing wonderful food to us!  I will try my best to pay it forward as soon as I am able.  It really is difficult without family or anyone else in the house to help.  My dear friends are the best.

I am continually looking for the things that I CAN do with one hand and finding more ways to get things done.  I'm keeping  it positive with these and trying to ignore the fact that I can't do a  lot of stuff.  In 2 days I've learned to hold things between my knees to open them.  This does not work well on a 2 liter bottle of diet Dr, Pepper.  Just trust me on that one.  I learned I can lay clothing out flat on the bed or table and then get a hanger in it, or fold it for putting away.  And since I can only carry one thing at a time as I walk through this house, I'm getting twice the exercise doing routine chores.

The pain relief meds make me itch like crazy, but then my friend Adell suggested I take Benadryl for the itching.  I asked doc his morning and he said yes.  Maybe I will be able to sleep tonight. 

I can't sew or quilt though, and that really hurts.  I will whine about that.  It is what keeps me going on a daily basis.   But I can design and plan and dream and scheme and keep making those beauties in my mind.

If you are healthy right now, thank God, and go hug someone who matters in your life.  That's what I am about to do.

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