Friday, August 13, 2010

I am Breathing...

After my last entry Daddy made huge progress. When I got to the hospital that morning the nurses were meeting me as I walked down the hall with, "He is a totally different person! Wait till you see him!" He looked at me when I came around his privacy curtain with his smiling eyes that bubble over with affection and I couldn't help but tear up. I hugged him hard and we spent the day visiting in between his naps. He joked with his nurses and shared great gratitude at their patience and care of him over the weekend. The physical therapist got him out of bed for a while and though it was very painful for him, he really did great.

Wednesday he was released from BAMC for the rehabilitation center at a hospital closer to home. Yesterday morning I got a call from his nurse that began with, "Your dad is fine. I just want to let you know what happened." Good grief! As much as I want to know everything that goes on and it is the best way to prepare a conversation....I sure dislike that statement.

Apparently he had quite a vivid dream early in the morning that caused him to believe he was in another time and place and he got himself out of bed to go look for the person in his dream. I am a horrible judge of estimating distance but I'd imagine he hobbled around a good 14 feet before falling down at his bathroom door. I don't know how long he lay on the floor before his nurse found him. Despite walking full pressure on a broken hip and then falling, he is totally fine. He has a single abrasion on his arm but was able to do a full day of PT and OT without complications. Hallelujah how amazing God is!

Daddy was very embarrassed that his dreaming caused so much trouble and worried they would still think he had some dementia going on. We have opted to turn on the alarm on his bed that sounds with any big movements.....and boy does it work. It went off last night every time I leaned over to hug him. I told the nurses too that I will just stay there if I need to. He hasn't been alone in so long. I didn't get any phone calls last night though so the alarm must have worked. He has always been a huge and vivid dreamer. I should have stressed that to the staff but his dreams don't normally get him on his feet.

They have Daddy working so hard at rehab. His day starts at 5:30am with doctor rounds and morning preps. Physical therapy begins at 9am and alternates with occupational therapy throughout the day until 2:30pm. This is more exercise than he has had in months. He is so used to sleeping several times in a day. He was absolutely wiped out last night when I was there. Every few words he would check out to dream land. I think it will be good for him to have this to focus on but at the same time I hope they are sensitive to his situation of not having a lot of reserves with fighting back the chemo and cancer.

As If I Needed More Action

Wednesday morning I had gotten up and packed Daddy's bag for transfer. I got myself ready and then let the 5 fuzzies out for a few minutes of sun. When I went to call them in I did a head count and made eye contact with each one as I was rounding them up. Our "lil' woolly bear"
Tia decided to play Houdini on me though. Here is a picture of her so you can be overcome with the desire to squeeze all fluffy 7 pounds of her.

I paced the yard examining the fence line to make sure there were no holes to disappear into but I couldn't find her anywhere. I couldn't just call for her either because at 12 years old her hearing isn't the best anymore. Finally I brought out Conguito and Tia's sister Paloma because they have a nose for being overly curious about everything. They both beelined for the shed and commenced to digging and whining at one corner. Only when I laid on my belly in the dirt could I see her little eyes staring at me too scared to come out. She was under the shed for an hour before I was able to grab her by her hips and pull her out. Then she trembled and curled up in my arms with her signature "pigeon cooing" noises.

Much of BAMC is under construction so it took me a while to stalk someone for their parking space. As quick as I could, my intention was to grab purse, suitcase and coffees and head up to Daddy's room. I am normally smarter than this my desire to be efficient I ended up locking everything in the truck. The keys were in my the truck. My cell phone to call for help was in my the truck. Daddy's wallet with the spare key was in his the truck. My comfort mocha that I sip on for a mental hug....was in the truck. I tell you, given our continuous threatcon level, praise God I had clipped my military ID to my shirt before exiting the truck. I had to go to the hospital front desk, call for a lock smith and then call central security to get authorization for the locksmith to come on base. Fun fun all went quick and was over within the hour. It just didn't fit into my mental plans of the day and I sort of wanted to slap the private that suggested it was a "woman thing" to do when he had no idea what I have been through lately. But I kept my cool.

Yesterday I made a batch of my favorite recipe.....chocolate chip toffee cookies and took 2 plates full of them to the nurses on 3East. Along with those plates I added one of those huge traveler boxes of Starbucks coffee with all the fixings. (The whole time Daddy was in the hospital I was sucking down at least one grande mocha a day for my breakfast/lunch and many made comments about being jealous at my comfort cup.)

I plan on making another batch this weekend so that I can be sure to hit all shifts and different work schedules of everyone that was so caring and patient with us. Sure it's their job to tend to the sick but with all the stress and high level of maintenance it would have been easy for them to 'cast lots and draw straws' for who's turn it was to go in our room.

One Week

This time next week I will be on a plane in route to see my family. I am so excited. Here is a recent picture of my girls that they sent to me from a day on the river with friends. Tomorrow my wonderful Pippin will be an amazing 19 years old and Puddin' is quickly rounding out her 16th year with grace and ease.

Well, I am headed out to lunch with my cousin before we go see Daddy today so I had better get ready.
Thank you thank you thank you for your encouragement and prayers.
God bless your week with peace and destiny and purpose.


  1. Glad for the positive happenings (even the keys in the truck - it will make a fun story to tell for many years!)

    have a great day!

  2. Yes, funny in the telling but must have had you gritting your teeth. Those cookie look delish: do you do recipes posts?

    Best wishes for your dad's speedy recovery.


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