Wednesday, March 31, 2010

March 31 2010

Almost a month since I broke my ankle.
Yup, 4 weeks today.
My whole world has changed.

For emotional reason, for wanting to hold on, for financial reason, all of them
counted in one reason why I did not want to give old Bob up to a nursing home.

A small step on a cold early morning slipping on ice changed all that.

The broken ankle is the big part in all of it as immediately the need came to
find a place for Bob.

I was pretty much out of it for 4 days in hospital and then recuperated for
20 days at the Oaks in Brevard.

Now home again it is a new life.

I am still in need of plenty of rest. Desperate need. I sleep all the time.
Try and watch a movie and I hardly get past the introduction and
I am gone to la la land.

The new freedom is giving me an absolute high.
Almost afraid, I am, of coming down with a crash.
This can't be good, I tell myself to be on such a high.

Only one I have to worry about now is ME.
How novel is that?
I can sleep till all hours in the morning if I feel like it.
No one to get dressed is waiting for me.
No one to feed is waiting for me.
No one needs watching and could run out of the door.
I can eat what I want and at whatever time I want it.
No major cooking plans in the works.

The leg needs mending so I am home but I truly
feel this is now a place to be happy again.
I have known so much  joy in this house and yet the
last decade almost erased it all.
I need to find all that again.

I may have a year left or 15 years or more but lets
bring on the laughter again and the joy of the garden,
the puppies and the company.

Bob is being supervised and taken care off, as well
as I did? Of course not. But now it is what it is.
I know I gave him all I had to give.
All the energy I had went into his well being.
No regrets and now try and get ovr the anger I feel
towards an illness.
Can't wrap my head around it all, not yet.
It will take time.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

May have to gi to Pirate school

Not a good day
Had to learn to jump one leg on stairs
just did not work
I am not a Pirate even if I could be witj Johny Depp

Probably need to go back for Xrays as I now have
pain under the cast
I THINK I partially leaned on bad leg trying to jumpo.

never a doll moment

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Home real soon now

march 23 2010

When they serve you Kool-Aid in a rehab center should you worry???

Bad joke.

OK OK like the kids say : 3 more sleeps and I will be home.
I can't wait.

Sure it is somewhat nice to have your meals brought to you and someone
makes up your bed. It is not home. It's not a spa. It's not a gorgeous hotel
by the Med. It is still very depressing as you go around the halls and you see
the old ladies and gents slumped over not truly wanting to do anything
anymore. Rehab? Push 1 lb bell up and down? They just do not care anymore.
Scary for you wonder if that your next trip here? Will I end up like that?

Bring on the Kool-aid and add something stronger.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Next day feeling better 2010

Last night was a hard one.
As the tears started to flow the emotions, all negative, became bigger and bigger and
a phone call to my son got me out of the groove.

4 oclock I had enormous pain im my toes, drove my chair to the nurses station who gave me
a pain pill and told me to absolutely have the leg higher than the heart.
I had done 50/50 I hate tp lay flat, so I corrected that and by morning my swollen toes looked liked
old shrivelled up prunes. Pain gone.I got tokeep that up.

Interestingly on my way in the hall I observed a man younger than my husband, he sat all dressed and neat,
his bed he had made up too and he was waiting. Waiting for no one.
How often had Bob done that? Dressed himself and then wandered until I could finally coaxe him back into
bed. Dozens of times,I did this or Bobby.
I smiled and had to admit that I would not have to do that again.
On my way back to my room, I smelled some familiar scents, 3 aids were cleaning and stripping an old
lady's bed while she watched from her wheel chair totally unaware of what was going on.
How many times did I change our bed? Hundreds and hundreds.
I had to admit to myself that I would not miss it.

I had to admit that in this late stage Bob was in a very good place.
He had 24/7 care and could not get lost, there is even a cop on duty at the door.
He has no idea about me or the kids.
He is in another world.
I am going to be OK
I am OK

thanks Lee for your nice letter.
Yes, I was fortunate to have had all these years with someome who loved
me very much. Not many women can say that.
I was very lucky in love with the second try!!!!!

Friday, March 19, 2010

how will it all end

March 19 2010
I am still in rehab with the broken ankle.
How will it all end?
How w ill the pain stop?
I want to see Bob and I don't want to see him changing like he is doing now.
I want to go home and yet how will I sleep in our bed without him there?
I want to throw out his clothing like he had never been there.
Why be so angry?
I am the one who stopped the scenario with breaking my ankle or I would
still be there with him.
Sick and tired, yes, and he beligerent? yes.
How can I continue? We had 42 years together.
Its like a woven tapestry full of our memories of trips, good and bad days, feast or famine days,
but always the love between us. How can I finish the tapestry and put on a border to
make it end or do I continue with just my colors and finish it for the both of us?
Tonight I am aching, aching so badly.
He was my best friend.
How do I continue? why do I continue?
I am so confused, so tired, so alone.
When someone comes in and is jolly I want to close the door behind them and
say : Please stay , please stay.
 Nothing is funny anymore and nothing is interesting anymore.
How can I continue? Someone tell me, how can I survive this pain.
I thought I had said goodbye for 13 years, I thought to be so
so tired that I would welcome to give him in a nursing home.
Now it feels like I just never wanted to say goodbye, in the end that is why
I kept him  with me. I did not want him to leave, down deep I just
wanted him to stay forever, even in his state of mind. he was still there and I could still hug him and
often he would return the hug.
Someone tell me how can I be without him?

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

where is Bob

So where is Bob?

During all this drama, we found a room at the inn for old Bob.

Once my ankle was broken and I am out of commission we had to find a home.

Did at the Parkridge since they have a program to study on violence.

But it is a 10 day program.

I visited him twice.

It is the hardest situation for me.

Here I am still exhausted and on one leg but not only that I have to hand over

my husband of 42 years to strangers.

I know every mood, every look in his lost eyes. I know what he wants, how will

they work with him?

First visit he looked good, showed us his room and every one elses room.

We got the tour of the place and he smiled.

He looked so clean, they had done a good job shaving him.

He had received a bath and had tried to beat the lady who did it.

A friend of Sabrina's no less.

Then 3 days later we went to see him again and this time was a bad day.

They told us up front:he is having a bad day.

He noticed Sabrina and came out of group and hugged her with his eyes closed

then he looked at me in the wheelchair and shook my hand.

Said a mild “how do”, then looked deep into my eyes and just kept looking

he was trying to figure out what he knew about this woman.

He knew there was something.

He picked my hand up again and Kissed it.

I could not get out of there fast enough.

He had to be diverted he wanted to come with us.

He did not look good, he had become so frail and skinny.

They told me that he did not want to eat.

I know there is a stage when they give up and slowly starve themselves.

I am broken hearted, a fracture in my ankle fractures the rest of me

even more.

He is going to die and I know it and I wish for the end to come today

so he no longer has to wander in a circle of doors.

Does not get the flan, the crepes which I fix him.

My friend tells me I kept him alive, I probably did.

Today we are looking for yet another place.

He has to be moved from that hospital-find another place they say.

Some want money up front-big joke-

So we file for Medicaid and hope in the meantime that they have

room in the same place where I am.

They have an Alzheimer wing.

If he is near I will feel so much better.

So we are now March 15 the Ides of March, the old tax date and

I was born 78 years ago!


Sunday, March 14, 2010


Rehab for broken bones.
I am here now for 7 days.
The entrance foyer decorated with taste, probabbly 10 years ago when
hunter green/wine and gold stripes were the fabric of choice. So are the windows decorated.
The furniture is all reproduction, a mix of Federal and Cabriole legs on cheap end tables.
The budget was small to be sure but it beats trailer furniture by a mile or two.
If they had kids or dogs here this kind of stuff would be kindling in 4 years but what they have
is little old ladies and grouchy old men. Most in wheelchairs or crawling on walkers.
They move slowly, they will not bump into the credenza. In the rooms it is another
story that is more Sauder type stuff and that has seen some scratches from our wheel commanding vehicles. I think I already have added my stripes on a dresser.
Down the wide halls on silent greenish industrial carpets we shuffle.
This is not a place to come to and cheer up.
At least it is not for me.
I look at the occupants and it is not a healthy picture.
People with strokes,people with heart attacks, broken bones, we are a dynosaure lot ready for the last hunt.
When you see photos in the brochures of a rehab you see gorgeous old ladies with white teeth hanging over a husband who looks like a gorgeous old gay guy. Where do they get these people? I looked here
and could not find a one to fit the Madison Ave advertising criteria.
I am told that I will get therapy every day for 5 days a week.
When it started it was not all that bad, Nautilus machines that I remember from 20 years ago
but the weaving, unknotting to check your accuracy is not a challenge, then I notice how much of a challenge it is for some. Yikes. This is not even an Alzheimer section.
The head therapist has a jolly Irish face , looks like a grown up leprechaun.
His eyes twinkle and he has a great mischievious smile. You would hand over your first born
to him so he gets you to sweat and you do not even know it. You want to please this guy no
matter what the burns in your arms feel like.
My goal is to get home and resume the care of my husband. It is not going to happen.
I work out and double what they ask from me. Count me 20 the pretty girl tells me and I do
30, I work and I work. Goal is HOME.
I continue to battle depression., I vaguely remember the week before I came here.
I just did not want to continue, I thought and thought about how I could just go to sleep and not wake up. BUT I am a person born from people who felt that we always had duties and we had to do them
no matter what. My husband is and was my duty no matter what. So I did not take the pills but I
continued to be so run down. I fell asleep with my head on the kitchen table, in my chair,
wherever there was q uiet moment.
Here in the new sanctuary between the push ups and jumps (one legged ones) I have time to sleep.
I do it often. I always wake up wanting more , perhaps the thyroid is not being friendly this week.
More to come.......................


Hospital stay
March 3 continued
In the ER I find my trusted son in law.
His working wife sent him on a mission.
He becomes my ears with the doctors.
I am thinking that perhaps they might keep me overnight.
I so want to stay one night and sleep and rest alone.
I keep listening to the talks and finally a young doctor tells me:
what do you mean ? You want to go home tomorrow if possible?
What do you think?
You smash your ankle you are going to have surgery and
you will be here for a few days for sure.
I do not know if the drugs are working but I am thinking
that is cool, I want a few days in bed, meals being served, cool.
Not a second thought about the bum leg, just the rest.
It is cool to be here I do not have to check on Bob.
Where and what he is does not concern me now.
I am off the hook.
I am saved from obligations, saved from devotions.
Saved, and I can sleep.
They give me a room by myself.
I am still in heaven.
How cool is that, a room by myself and a bathroom too.
I tell Frank to go home , all I want is to be alone and sleep.
Let me snore, let me forget a clock, forget the what I need to do.
I do not ask about my husband, my caregiving is down the shute.
Frank leaves and I close my eyes.
Nurse comes and tells me I will have surgery in the evening.
Whatever!Let me sleep.
Nurse tells me I cant eat all day.
Whatever! I need sleep.
The trip to the surgery wing is a lost memory and
so is the whole time my broken ankle is being repaired
with pins and wires or whatever hard ware they found about.
Return to my room is vague, Sabrina there, vague
I want to sleep some more.
Nurse comes every five minutes :
on a scale of 1 to 10 what is your pain?
I answer 5
well here is a button when you hurt push the button.
OK leave me all alone and let me sleep.
I give orders to Sabrina I do not want to see anyone.
We did 5 days with daddy at the VA just last week,
I do not want people to sit here and look at me while
they gave up work hours and much needed money.
We overdid it with Dad. I just want quiet.
Maybe tomorrow I go home and then what waits me?
Quiet please.
The little black button is easy to learn about.
Show a banana to a monkey just once and he will be back for more.
Show a morphine drip to one in pain and … get the picture.
I am told I will be there for 4 days.
I was thinking how I can hop on one leg around the house.
Maybe we better get a wheelchair.
Crutches, that is it I will use crutches.
Get Bob on the bus again and all will be like before.
I will be well rested.
What were you thinking, Jeannot?
The social worker comes by and talks to me.
OK she tells me a story about a place I need to go
and watched over.
Moi? Needing someone? Are you kidding me?
Does this bird not know that I am quite capable of taking care
of me and my husband, thank you very much.
So without a choice I am being farmed out for recuperation.
I am going to rehab.
Ouch , that hurts, I have morphine for 4 days and Vio....and I am already going to rehab. So works my mind.
I never heard of rehab for a broken ankle.
To be continued......................

March 3, 2010

March 3 2010
I am exhausted. What is new.I have a sinus problem, I cough my brains out at night and I can't sleep when down so I go and sit upright in my favorite lounge chair. I “sleep” like that most of the night.Bijou in my lap, he hardly moves.By 6 am he decides it is time for his peepee walk.I had kept on my day clothing thinking that old Bob might need me in emergency during the night.The five days in the VA hospital have made me more vigilant then ever.So before the first light of dawn I grab my leather coat , dress Bijou in his and go on the porch in the cold night air.Somehow it feels good for a few seconds, cold, fresh, try and breathe.One step with left foot on a small patch of ice and I am down at the bottom of the 4 step entry way.Left leg is half under me and part of foot sticking out, looks like I did a split but I never made it tothe ballerina state before. I am calm and I hurt, yup a biggie booboo I tell myself.Pull the leg next to the other as I sit on the cold steps and Bijou has decided to sit on my belly.The ankle has scraped the cement, that is minor (I tell myself) the foot looks crooked and that worries me a bit.Deciding to get help inside the house where every one is still asleep.Not a soul on the street either.I try and stand on the leg and I hear a crack. It had to be loud as I hear nothing much.I figured that this is another booboo and I did something stupid.I crawled on my derriere step by step dragging the injured leg and hoping I can make it to the door.Door oddly enough was easy to open a bit , usually it is shut tight.I crawl the last few inches into the kitchen and start yelling for Bobby.
Poor Bobby , he suffers from insomnia and when he finally does sleep you better not wake him up.He is a bear in hibernation. So he comes into the kitchen : What the F Mom? I was just asleep!I calmly tell him : Call 911 I broke my leg.He comes around the table and looks at the leg and turns white as a sheet.Mom!!How did you do that?Go call, Bobby, I need help.
The ambulance comes gives me oxygen and an IV is started ….............11 hours later I am in surgery and my whole world as I knew it yesterday iscrumbling like the bones in my ankle................

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

March 2 and snowing

They say that the Almanac had it right, they predicted it.
I do not care what they predicts I just want the bulbs to have a chance to come up. I want to see spring.
6 inches we have.
My annual check up canceled, now that I needed to go as I have chest problems and sound like a seal.
Lungs are my weak points, have been since I was 8.
One minute I have a fever and the next I am cold. I am a mess.
By the time the snow will be gone I will be healed-I sure hope so-

Old Bob is wound up, gave him his calm pill but he is running all over the house.
Does not sit down. Touches everything.
I better hide the scissors.
Last week in 5 minutes time he cut up our gorgeous bed covers.
Today he found my keys which I hid and I have yet to find them.
We do not want him outside.

I am totally exhausted,
how many times have I said this in the last 3 years?

We are checking in to nursing homes and the costs.