At least he had moved his truck from in front of the house. He had left it out there this morning while he was working. For whatever reason, people who live in #2 seem to like to park in front of our house. Maybe it's because their driveway is on such a steep grade, they don't like it, and prefer street parking in front of our house. This has been ongoing with a couple of different tenants and the homeowner. I had a heck of a time with her (the homeowner) but she is "nice" now and understanding Ron is in a wheelchair.
They left with lights on, no siren, so not in a hurry. If I didn't know better, I'd say bad medical "luck" is spreading out from our home.
So, how did it go at the doctor? I got up, did my God Time, took my shower. I used the shiny hair shampoo and made sure to shave my legs, even though they didn't really need it. After I got out, I threw Ron in the tub and scrubbed him (most of him, I let him do his own privates, pits, and feet). We washed his hair and rinsed it.
I would have liked to do his beard but he said no. I made sure I had my "copay" (a bag of Hershey Almond minis), and all the paperwork.
Our driver came and picked us up. I had to put the wheelchair in the back of the pickup but I did it, getting it in and out a couple of times.
We headed north. Amusingly enough, turns out Doc is affiliated with Memorial Hermann, the hospital that took care of Ron after his accident. MH took care of Ron when he was a little boy going blind, providing 9 eye operations. He even had his own reserved bed in the hospital, if another little boy was in "Ron's" bed they would evict him for Ron.
Of course after the accident they did a lot for him, and I appreciate it. They always took good care of Ron. I did not have a good experience the one time I went, but I don't hold it against them. I am sure when they heard "bipolar" they thought "drug addict" and figured I just wanted a fix for my "severe pain". I wanted a diagnosis, not a fix!
Anyway... it was all very plush and fancy, after all this is "The Woodlands" - the kind of place where a condo starts at half a million. Horrific deed restrictions, the kind of place where there are literally people roaming the streets waiting to send you a nasty letter because you left the hose unrolled in the yard.
I wouldn't want to live there even if we could afford it.
Paratransit, of course, does not go there. Hence having to pay for a ride.
We got there and had to use a parking garage. We did that and used the elevator to get to the ground floor, although I could have easily pushed him down the ramps.
When I was a little girl, my Dad (during his single phase) used to take me grocery shopping. He would take the shopping cart, make a running start, and release it, leaving me to fly down the aisle screaming for joy. Then he would sprint to catch up.
I was dying to do that with Ron, on the ramp. I didn't. What if he fell out and got all scraped and bloody?
We both thanked God I wasn't taking Ron to the Cancer Center.
We got to the building and the clear sliding glass doors opened to admit us. Very fancy, I kept thinking "They take Medicare?". We found the office and went in.
I thought it a little odd the driver went in with us, I felt a little uncomfortable asking Ron for his social and stuff. They had questions about bowel movements and such.
I sighed as I sat down and began to fill out the forms. Lots of forms. I finished them and included my handwritten medical history.
They copied it, put it in the chart, and gave it back, which I thought was sweet. I would hate to fill that out again. They really liked the candy - if you have to go to the doctor, or take someone - DO THAT! Buy a bag of mini candy bars for the office staff. They will love you. I do this at the vet, too.
Pretty soon they called us back. Doc, as I had read in the internet, did not have a charming bedside manner - but he doesn't need to. He needs to be able to operate and put Ron back together again. That's what I care about.
He told Ron he needed surgery. He asked Ron if he could walk and Ron demonstrated "walking". It's pretty awful to watch. Doc asked when the last time Ron could walk and I said about a month, which seems right. Doc nodded.
Ron asked about the surgery and Doc said it is "easy" to perform. Ron asked if he would be better off going to a neurosurgeon (that's Ron for you) and Doc said sure, we could, but anyone (trained) could do it. Ron liked that answer, and the fact that Doc had done a lot of these. He also liked the fact that Doc was booked up for about a month.
I mean, you would have to wonder about a doc that could operate right away, unless he was an on-call trauma specialist.
Doc said Ron would be in the hospital for a few days, and then recuperating for 2-3 weeks. That sounds reasonable.
From what I read on the internet they move the spinal muscles out of the way, then move them back. That's bound to be pretty ouchy. Not to mention cutting on the vertebrae. Trimming off bone spurs? Who knows what all.
Ron is determined to go through with surgery. I am not as eager. He has pretty good function now, but he does say his legs are bothering him when he is lying in bed. He's been sleeping folded up like a pretzel, maybe as a result.
This is what happens when you fall in love, much less when you fall in love with someone who has chronic medical problems. I was impressed Doc knew Shcheuermann's disease, a condition Ron had in his teens. Ron had a lot of pain in his lower (lumbar) back. Doc had clearly had experience with it.
So, to summarize, doc basically said "straight to surgery, see you on the table in a month". And I am left gaping.
There are things we need to do first:
1. Get Ron's ID card renewed.
2. Get mine renewed.
3. File monthly report.
4. Renew paratransit (part one, see Doc, part two, delivery to headquarters).
Keep running the business.
Take care of the cats.
Get Ron eating more protein and on a decent supplement plan. At the very least, I want him on Milk Thistle and Vitamin E.
Lots to do.
We do have tomorrow "off" off. We are just going to Walmart. I haven't seen the garage door guys yet. I do hope they come today, it's a big hassle getting Ron in the wheelchair out the front door.
Things to do! All around me things!