Sunday, October 30, 2016

Migraine

Retching into the kitchen sink, tears running down my face, gasping for breath around the bile in my mouth, I cursed the migraine.  This was the second time I had gotten sick in the sink and I was getting tired of it. 

I never understood the whole "kneeling on the floor by the toilet to vomit" routine.  I'm already vomiting, you're going to make me kneel on top of that?  No, I prefer a bucket.  Failing that, give me a nice sink.  The kitchen sink did the job admirably.  Thank God I had gotten rid of the dirty dishes. 

I woke up around 1 AM with a nasty headache.  As you may know, Tylenol and other NSAIDS interact with my medication and are not advised, so I took some aspirin. 

I can't take Imitrex or other drugs like it because I am at risk for heart attacks, I am overweight and I have a family history on both sides.  Not suggested at all. 

My aunt, who is very thin, can take it. 

Anyway, I took the aspirin and went back to bed.  It helped a little, but I woke up again at 5:30.  I took some more.  It wasn't helping.  I took some Phenergan (antinausea drug that helps me relax a little), and began vomiting. 

That's a bad headache, when I'm vomiting up the Phenergan.  I wasn't sure how much I had absorbed so I resolved to wait on another dose. 

I went up to the kitchen to get some ice water.  Bad call. 

I was vomiting in my bucket and in the kitchen sink, without rest.  I'm surprised my abdominal muscles aren't killing me today.  Lots of vomiting. 

Ron didn't hear a thing.  I guess that is good.  I sound pretty wretched when I'm vomiting. 

I managed to take a shower and lie down a while.  Odds were pretty strong #6 was going to have a party (more on that later), and a local venue was having some kind of "Wicked Festival".  They had one, one year that was so loud we could hear the bass in the house.  It was really bad.  Both good reasons to go to work that night. 

Work is open 24/7.  Why not go make some money instead of shaking my fist in the air?  When I could, I took a Phenergan suppository and that managed to work pretty well.  It took the edge off my headache enough that I drank some small sips of water (which I hadn't been able to tolerate before).  I worked my way up to some small sips of Mountain Dew - I hadn't had any caffeine and I figured caffeine withdrawal was probably playing a factor in my headache (that's the problem with using caffeine, you can't stop it cold turkey without a headache).  I drank a little, drank a little more, pretty soon I had finished the bottle. 

That's when I really started to feel better, just in time for work. 

It is exhausting helping Ron at work.  I have to do most of the lifting for him, in addition to all I was doing before.  I have to do my job and a lot of his. 

Happily, we had scheduled plenty of time for the party.  We didn't want to be home during the worst of it. 

As it turns out, I don't think #6 had the party.  I don't think it is a birthday party, but, rather, a Halloween party.  I think he and another family member alternate hosting the party every year, kind of like his all-nighter Christmas eve party.  He didn't have it this year. 

I would expect him to have it next year.  The big question, for me, is the Christmas eve party.  Are they having it?  Usually he alternates every year, one year on, one year off.  He had not one, but two, Christmas parties last year, so I would expect this to be the "off" year.  I hope so.  We shall see. 

Anyway, work was exhausting.  Ron had to lay down on the floor again.  I begged him to use the sleeping bag I had brought "So people know this is intentional, and you didn't fall out of your wheelchair".  Last time, I had 2 people come and tell me I had to rescue Ron because he had "fallen out of his wheelchair".  He compromised and turned his wheelchair around backwards so people could see he hadn't fallen. 

It did work.  I stocked bottled water while he did that. 

He laid down for about 5 minutes and stretched out his back, then he got up and did the rest of the bottled sodas (about 3 cases). 

We finished up and came home.  It was quiet.  Some people were clearly having parties but they weren't disturbing us.  Thank you. 

[My subdivision] "A quiet place to live"

Unless #6 is having a party. 

I went to bed pretty early and took a while falling asleep.  I still have vestiges of a headache but I will still take my medication (it can flip the switch on a headache). 

I also have to take a shower, do my God Time (you came first today), and do up the rest of the Halloween candy for tomorrow night. 

Friday, October 28, 2016

Functional

I'm pretty depressed today so I'm going to keep it short. 

I slept in until about 9, I did my God Time and took a shower.  I did a load of laundry. 

Ever since my washer broke I am scared to run it, scared to hear it run.  I always worry something catastrophic will happen.  I learned my lesson, I won't run it during my God Time, I was very tense. 

I got everything in the dryer (except the stuff that can't be dried) and got that going. 

I forgot to get the full sized snickers bars for Halloween, the last time we went to Sam's Club, so I had to call Chuck and go today.  It was insane, very busy and chaotic. 

I listened to the woman in front of me tell her friend how she lost her job for "accidentally" hitting a student.  She was really upset she got fired for it, but, dude, she hit a student.  Accident or not no parent is going to stand for that. 

This is how things work in America.  I'm not saying it's right, or wrong - some kids need some physical discipline, in my opinion, but you don't want that kind of power in the wrong hands, either.  And I have met a lot of very strange teachers. 

I finally checked out and headed home.  I told Ron I was taking a nap, and he proceeded to make ongoing noise for the next 2 hours.  I finally gave up when #6's kids came home from school and started playing outside my bedroom. 

I got up and started bagging the candy.  I did up about half of it.  I had a talk with Ron about "waking Heather up" during her nap and he was apologetic. I liked that he asked for specific examples of what he had done so he wouldn't do it again. 

I didn't eat much, just some peanut butter and yogurt.  I didn't have the energy to fix anything. 

Ron heated up something out of the fridge, which is what we normally do. 

All in all it wasn't a bad day considering I was depressed.  At least I was functional. 

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Not that I'm saying I did anything

It was a long day and I'm tired. 

Ron couldn't sleep last night and kept me up.  I know that wasn't his intent, it was just a nasty side effect of his insomnia. 

I also realized his wheelchair squeaks, just enough to disturb me.  I had gotten used to it before he "left".  Now that he's back I have to get used to it again (I have no idea where the squeak originates). 

Someone asked if I felt different while Ron was gone.  Not really.  I wasn't "on call" to help him every minute, which he can do sometimes.  I didn't have to worry about Ron's drinking or having a blackout.  I could set my bag wherever I wanted, without worrying about him falling over it.  I didn't have him pestering me to watch movies with him. 

It was very similar to when he did his training, back in 2001.  He had to go out of town and live in a residential hotel for 4 months.  It was a litmus test, could he?  Could I handle it?  Etc.  We both did fine.  I pretty much worked, came home, called Ron, got online, did some hobbies, read a little, went to bed.  I visited him on the weekends. 

This time, I visited him every day, for a good period of time (I can just hear someone moaning at that).  Well, he is my husband. 

I was in the hospital for a month with depression, when I was 13, and then I was in the hospital for a week when I was 18.  Both times were pretty lonely.  If I'd had a spouse, I would have wanted him to visit (Ron and I were "together" for the second one so I called him on the phone - the hospital was a mile walk each way and it was hard for him to find my room).  I liked having the company. 

Ron never told me to go home, and meant it.  He would say it as a formality "You don't have to visit, you should go home".  But once he got the formality over with he enjoyed the company.  Sometimes I would sit with him quietly.  Sometimes we would cuddle.  Sometimes I read my book while he snored in his bed. 

I am pleased with what I did while he was in the hospital. 

I had enough time to myself, time to blog, time to sleep, that's all I cared about.  I ate decently.  I took care of the cats (pretty well, I did forget to feed them a couple times but they are pretty obese).   I kept up with the laundry and the business.  I kept the house running. 

All in all, I was happy with what I did.   It's not really fair to say "I felt better without him" because I was visiting.  It was quieter, even when he's asleep Ron makes noise, but that's about it. 

I got up and took a shower.  I was bad and did not do my God Time today.  I got dressed, wore one of my wicking t-shirts and my back brace.  We went to the warehouse. 

Ron made up a list and I went and got the stuff, wearing my back brace.  I got it all, and most of my stuff, then checked out. 

Chuck had taken Ron off by then, and I found Ron seated in the truck.  Chuck kept telling me Ron didn't have a problem getting in the truck.  I think he had more trouble getting out. 

I found a cart attendant and got him (another one showed up, so "them") to load the truck.  I've learned it's tricky on my back to load things into the truck.  I have to be very careful (hence, the brace), or get someone to do it for me (tipping is appreciated).  I have a good enough reputation they are happy to help. 

Of course, I can't talk about doing anything that might get someone fired, it they took it.  But I wouldn't be rude.  I would be appreciative.  Not that I'm saying I did anything.  Nope. 

So we got the truck loaded.  Ron was sitting in the back seat.  I gave him the receipt and his change.  We went to work. 

As usual, I went in, cleared off my carts (I put the contents of the carts onto lunchroom tables), and brought them all out.  We only had about 20 cases of drinks so not too bad today. 

Chuck and I unloaded all the drinks, then called in Ron to help with the snacks.  The average snack item is about 5 pounds, well within his weight limit of 10.  I'm not going to be foolish and ruin the doctor's hard work. 

We got everything loaded, I got Ron in his wheelchair, and got him in the building.  He had to use the bathroom so I pushed him over there and left him. 

Chuck and I got the carts in the building.  Since he is retired from work people know him, but he doesn't have a badge.  I do, so we park the carts in the foyer and I bring them in, one at a time, again - wearing my back brace. 

Ron's whole experience has taught me to value my back. 

I assumed working with "disabled list" Ron would be a lot harder than working and doing it all on my own.  I was absolutely right.  Ron ended up overdoing it and had to lay down on the floor, then I had people coming and telling me Ron fell out of his wheelchair. 

He had also forgotten to take his Tylenol..  While he was working, I had to do a lot to assist him, making sure he didn't lift too much, fetching drinks for him to stock, etc. 

We finally finished it all, about 20 minutes early.  Ron didn't think we needed so long, but, like I said, I assumed it would be more work to help Ron than do it on my own. 

Ron needs to work, it's very important for him.  The other vendor at work does not stock his vending machines, he is more into management.  That's not Ron.  Ron is very hands-on. 

We finally left.  We came home.  The driver said she remembered us from last time, our cat had gotten in the vehicle and didn't want to get out.  That wasn't us, but we played along.  We made sure to tell her they are inside now. 

I got Ron in the garage and shut the door, pushed him up the wheelchair ramp (money well spent) and we heard Biscuit crying inside the house.  He does that, it is so sweet.  He welcomes us home.  He's such a little cutie.  I don't see how anyone could dump him in the woods, to starve. 

Their loss, my gain.  I looked for an owner, no one posted anything online or off. 

We said hello to the cats and Ron gave them treats.  Ron loves to give treats, and the cats love to eat them. 

I took a nap but Ron (again!) made some noise and woke me up.  I was pretty annoyed he made a phone call, too.  I understood his cable box was acting up, but he could have waited. 

I was more upset by that, than I was by his drinking, or the fact he's gone off his medication.  Funny, if I did that he would throw me out. 

He should.  I'd be scary off my meds. 

I finally gave up after a couple of hours and got up.  I watched a little TV, made dinner, and took my medication. 

Tomorrow I have the day off.  When I get up I will be getting some full size candy bars and doing up all the Halloween candy - a nice handful of mixed candy and a full sized candy bar, in a bag with a scripture booklet.  It's there if the kids want it.  If not, I tried. 

It will be nice to go to bed without setting my alarm. 

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

I did not miss that man

Well, Ron's home. 

Yes, he is drinking, even though he took his medication this morning.  I talked to him, but... [shrug] there was no getting between Ron and the Precious. 

The rest of the day went better.  I got up early, did my shower and God Time, and rode out to the center for the last time with Chuck. 

Ron had finished his breakfast.  As a joke, I had ordered him a biscuit when I filled out his menu, so he ate it.  "I felt guilty" he said "But it was delicious".  Our cat, of course, is named Biscuit. 

I gave Ron some teasing about "eating him" and helped him pack.  He didn't have much.  One, he didn't bring much, and two, I didn't bring much to him while he was there. 

We got it all into a small duffel bag.  I double checked to make sure we hadn't left anything and we waited. 

I looked out the window at the orchard bees pollinating the bushes.  I would miss them.  Orchard bees are the large, black bees.  They are very gentle and excellent pollinators.  The company had taken some time with the landscaping and they had pretty ornamental grasses waving in the wind. 

All in all, it wasn't a bad sight. 

Ron's doctor came in and did his final exam.  He seemed pleased with Ron's progress.  He talked about the billing and Ron was happy. 

The nurse came in and reviewed Ron's medication.  He would no longer be taking {pain med} or the stool softener, which every hospital seems hell bent on giving Ron. 

She reviewed the two he would be leaving with, the urinary one, and the gabapentin (for nerve pain).  We were given a prescription. 

Pretty soon it was about time to go.  We left, after saying goodbye to one of the nurses at the station.  The driver came and went to the wrong door, but came around to us eventually. 

Ron got loaded in the back and off we went.  We had other passengers on board, one of whom was pitching a hissy fit over the phone at a supervisor.  The supervisor adjusted the schedule and had them dropped off first. 

Ron did fine, riding in the back. 

We got home, unloaded, put everything away, and took a nap. 

I slept really well.  Something about Ron's snoring, I guess. 

I had a hard time getting up.  I finally did, got Ron up, and we went to Walmart.  I needed to make a deposit to cover my health insurance, and Ron needed to get his prescriptions. 

We got a quote on the cost, $111 for both (not horrible considering), and I took Ron up front to wait in his wheelchair while I shopped. 

I didn't get much, just some soda, toilet paper, etc.  I found myself very hungry so I got some fake crab. 

Our ride was late, so I ended up eating the fake crab right out of the package, outside the Walmart.  I didn't care, it was Walmart.  The normal people stand out. 

Our ride finally arrived.  We rode with another lady in a wheelchair, dead silent, didn't say a word.  I don't know if she couldn't talk, or wouldn't.  I didn't ask, clearly.  We had fun talking to the driver. 

We got home and I got the groceries, and Ron, in the house.  Then he went straight for the vodka. 

I reminded him his urinary med interacts with alcohol.  "It's cleared my system by now" - I saw him take it at 9 AM today.  Ugh.  Not happy. 

Ron put on the sour, bitter, angry persona I have come to know very well, as he drank.  He became sarcastic and demanding.  I did not miss that man. 

He was doing fine without alcohol.  He wasn't even taking pain meds any more.  But he couldn't stay away, and he would rather put his health at risk by not taking his meds altogether, than to abstain from alcohol and stay with the program. 

I just hope he doesn't need to be catherized again. 

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

He does better when I'm around

I woke up pretty depressed.  Ron texted me at 7, asking me to bring him Glucosamine ASAP because he was out.  He develops excruciating pain in his wrist if he doesn't take it regularly.  That's another operation he needs, a joint replacement in his thumb. 

He's needed that one for a while but Ron and the hand surgeon agreed they will wait until Ron is in extremis before they do it.  He only has the one good hand, you know. 

I dug out the extra bottle of Glucosamine (as important, I feel, as my medication) and threw it in my bag.  Oddly enough, I cannot take glucosamine with my current drugs, I get horrible gastric upset. 

Ron messaged me again.  When was I coming?  Oh, and by the way, I could stay for a couple of hours if I wanted.  I had to laugh.  Ron wanted me to come visit but couldn't just ask. 

I got ahold of my driver and agreed on 11.  But he got hung up on something so he came more like 11:30.  I climbed aboard and off we went. 

Ron was pretty moody when I saw him, and later asked what was wrong with me.  I told him I was depressed.  "You, too" he said. 

Oddly enough, it seemed to get him out of his funk and get him thinking outside the possible bill he might get.  We had a good visit after that. 

We chatted a little bit about Medicare plans and got a real eye opener when his case manager came by.  She told us how they restrict coverage; how Ron was "allowed" to come under plain Medicare but would have been denied under one of the plans. She had a patient who really could have benefited from a stay but their "Advantage" plan denied them the care. 

I'd rather get hit with a copay, and that's what she said, it's really better.  More coverage under classic Medicare, even though it doesn't look that way in the commercials.  She reminded Ron he had really needed the therapy and he agreed. 

The man couldn't even sit up.  I am going to hate to see his pharmacy bill, though, he was eating pain meds like nobody's business.  [shudder]  I don't begrudge him, I'm just scared. 

This does make me think, if I end up in the hospital for any reason I am bringing my own medication and taking it as needed.  I have a plan that pays everything after the first 6K, which is practically a hangnail these days.  So, maybe I wouldn't need to bring my own.  I don't know. 

Hopefully it won't happen.  I am pretty healthy and I take a fair amount of supplements:
Migraine prevention herbs
Occasionally, milk thistle for my liver. 
Antioxidants (I need to get more vitamin E)
Multivitamin
Calcium/magnesium mineral supplement (the multivitamin never covers a day's worth of minerals)
Vitamin C

That in addition to:
Haldol (for hallucinations and friends)
Wellbutrin (for depression), I take 2 of those for 150 mg total.
Lithium, 4 x 300 mg for 1200 mg total, or 1.2 grams.  That means I'm eating over an ounce of lithium a month.  I sure need it. 
Depakote 250 mg - helps take the edge off the mixed episodes. 

Of course they all have side effects, weight gain, headaches, etc.  But they work to my satisfaction and that's what matters. 

Back to us.  Ron let out his secret - he had felt cheated because I hadn't cuddled him the last couple days.  I reminded him he had made some very hurtful comments about my weight, while holding me, and at other times, and I didn't want to open myself up to that. 

He apologized and we got a cuddle.  Of course half the facility walked in, during, but that seems to be standard.  "At least" I told Chuck later "The staff can pick me out of a lineup".  This was all nearly platonic, we had our clothes on and just spooned. 

Ron was happy.  He was feeling neglected, not a good thing with his personality type.  Once he got some cuddles he was a new man, much more optimistic and happy. 

Which, of course, is why I have been dragging myself out there and spending hours with him every day.  He does better when I'm around, that's all I need to know. 

He comes home tomorrow.  I leave the house early, but not too early, and get there a couple of hours before discharge.  Ron and I leave at 10:45 in a paratransit wheelchair van. We come home, take a nap, and then go to Walmart to fill his prescriptions. 

I would hate to have to get him catherized again because he went off the Flomax. 

There are various things I could do with the house to fix it up, but I'm not going to wear myself out.  I will vacuum the floor of his man cave because it needs it, but that's all. 

I have given some thought to feeding him.  Normally, I just fill up the freezer and let him scavenge, he likes to eat out a lot.  However, they have been bringing him meal trays 3x a day. 

I can't do that.  I certainly can't provide him with fresh baked goods, soup, and fresh salads.  I can't cook him bacon and eggs with a fresh baked biscuit. 

But I can heat up a breakfast burrito for him in the morning.  I do get up earlier than him, it won't be much trouble, something I can do when depressed, and I think it will make Ron feel loved.  I don't have to cook, necessarily, to feed him. 

I just have to warm something up (after asking him what he'd like). 

Monday, October 24, 2016

There's cheap, and there's stupid

Ron doesn't want to see me tomorrow. 

No, we didn't have a fight. 

I woke up pretty early and went to work.  I had a surprise visit from "The Boss" who said everything looked "Very Good".  Good.  I stocked everything and made my inventory, for Thursday, when we will most likely make a supply run. 

I wore my back brace.  It has suspenders so I can wear it like an open vest, secure it when I need a lift, and open it up again when I'm done.  Better safe than sorry.  I have seen enough with people in my life and bad backs.  Praise God mine seems pretty happy. 

I treated Chuck and myself to Burger King, and then came home.  I took my meds, and a nap. 

I got a phone call.  Ron was having hysterics.  He had talked to his case manager, who "thought" rehab cost about a thousand dollars a day.  He ran that past 20% of the total bill (his Medicare only pays 80%), came up with several thousand owed, and had a meltdown. 

He wanted to check out tomorrow morning.  After hours of conversation, I managed to talk him out of it.  The damage is done, one way or another.  He might as well stay until Wednesday. 

I reminded him of his hospital bill last year, $14K to start, Medicare adjustments, $300 at the end.  Fee for service means every provider pays a different price, not to mention the woman only "thought" it cost that much. 

Ron said, if he'd known, he just would have come home.  Bed bound and unable to sit up or roll over in bed?  How could I leave him to go to work?  "Oh, you could just clean me up when you got home". 

Hell to the no.  No way, ever.  He was completely incapacitated.  If Medicare is willing to pay 80% of rehab, I'll pay the 20%, even if it means we make payments for years.  I would have suffered a spectacular caregiver burnout. 

On the one hand, I guess I should be flattered he thinks I could do that, on the other hand I want to beat him over the head with a heavy object for even considering it.  There's cheap, and there's stupid.  God has blessed us with enough to cover the bills.  Let's use the blessing to prevent catastrophe. 

Oh, it was hell taking care of him the last time, after his accident (he didn't have Medicare at that time).  I had to do everything for him.  I was completely fried and I wasn't even running the business. 

SELFISH!  Him, not me. 

I think you know me pretty well by now. 

By the way, Chuck said something nice to me today, something I will probably not hear anywhere else.  The gist of it:
Heather, Ron's recovery is in a large part due to your care and devotion.  He couldn't have come this far without your support. 

I need to hear that.  If you have a caregiver in your life (not necessarily taking care of you), take a minute to show some appreciation.  Everyone says "take care of yourself".  How about "Can I take you out for coffee?  Can I bring you a meal?  Can I pick up something for you? (Oh, I would love you so much if you said that to me)"  Ask if there is something specific you can do to help.  Then do it.  Let them know you respect and admire them, and it's OK to "feel".  Please do this. 

By the time I got to the center Ron was "in a loop" going around and around about the money thing.  I kept reminding him, even if it's a large bill, we can make payments.  He kept insisting he had to leave Tuesday instead of Wednesday.  It was exhausting. 

As if I hadn't had enough running the business and battling my own mental wounds. 

Then he started in on me, he was sick of seeing me every day, why was I spending hours a day with him, I was wasting money (I reminded him I was wasting MY money).  Etc. He kept going on and on. 

I finally snapped.  "Fine, I won't come in tomorrow to see you, if you promise to stay until Wednesday"  He agreed. 

1 minute after I walked out, he texted me to come back and listen to something on the radio "We already left, Ron". 

When I got home I turned off my phone for the first time in weeks.  He doesn't want me around.  Fine. 

I think he will crack first. 

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Sunday

Well, the neighbors kept up the party until about midnight, that seemed to be the magic hour. 

I was left lying in my bed, watching the last light wink out, and wondering.  Will they have another party next week?   My calendar says "yes".  So Ron and I need to plan to work late next Saturday and arrange our own ride home from work. 

I don't like the parties.  I think it is inconsiderate, especially when you know many of your neighbors have to go to work at 4-5 AM and often work weekends.  Ron finds it far more upsetting and enraging, he doesn't do well with noise pollution and loud intermittent banging noises. 

I can see why they have "child free" senior living communities, although I think you'd have just as much trouble, if not more, with imported grandchildren. 

It's quiet now and that's what matters. 

I got up, did my God Time, did my shower, did some housework.  I went to see Ron at 1 and stayed until 6:30.  While there, I read my book (one of my dystopian post apocalyptic novels), and finished it. 

Ron woke up and turned on "the game" - football, Atlanta vs. San Diego.  Ron was rooting for Atlanta, but they lost. 

6:30 came and so did my ride.  I came home.  It's now 8 and I need to go to bed. 

Sorry if I seem terse, I have a headache. 

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Very Clever

I was exhausted yesterday and batting a horrific headache. 

I didn't start out with the headache, but I did have to wake up at 3 AM which was Not Fun.  I got dressed, did my God Time later, and went into work. 

The other vendor was there.  I showered them with sweetness, light, and optimism.  Positivity, Ron is doing so well.  I know everything I tell them goes everywhere so I am controlling the flow, so to speak. 

I did talk about how badly Ron had done at the start, and focused on his incredible progress and I'm so proud of him.  It was all true.  Ron has really busted his butt.  I am proud of him. 

I forget what I write (I'm surprised I can write at all taking these pills), so I'll focus on some of his latest progress. 

With a rollator Ron has walked over 900 feet at one time.  He goes up and down ramps with no problem. 

He has also gone up and down a fake set of stairs multiple times, and his only gripe being they won't let him come down backwards. 

He can knock out 15 minutes on any exercise machine with no problem.  He is at his best shape in years.  Like I said, very proud of him. 

Happily we have a rollator at home.  It's in the living room.  My house and garage look like a sale flyer for a medical supply company.  I have everything from a ramp to a shower bench. 

I do plan to have Ron get in and out of the (dry) tub to see if I need a clamp on grab bar for him.  Other than that, I think we're fine.  Ron can get in and out of bed with no problem.  He can get in and out of the wheelchair with no problem.  He can "walk" with the rollator walker with no problem.  He can go up and down stairs, even, with no problem. 

But I have to be realistic, he is old and has a lot of problems, so I have to prepare for the day when those things are a little harder to do.  Hell, I have used the shower bench and the commode chair myself, when I had a horrid bout of food poisoning 13 years ago.  Ron was a real champ about emptying the commode bucket.  I know he hated it but he was very kind about it and focused on what I needed to get better.  He brought me endless glasses of water to keep me hydrated as I expelled all the toxins. 

Ron's not a bad guy, but the alcohol demon has it's claws in his head.  He has dried out but he's going to be very tempted when he gets home.  My job is not enabling and not policing.  He has agreed not to drink until he talks to a pharmacist about the Flomax.  It lowers blood pressure and his could get dangerously low if he drinks, I think. 

On the one hand, I want to be optimistic and hope that Ron will stop drinking altogether.  He will see he doesn't need it, and doesn't miss it.  On the other hand I think he will use the last couple weeks to "prove" he isn't addicted "Because I did fine not drinking for weeks, didn't I?" 

I can't worry about that now. 

I got to work and got the soda delivery and did about 4 hours of stocking.  I stocked everything.  4 soda machines, a food machine, 3 snack machines, and a coffee vending machine.  The nice delivery guys put away my soda (all 55 cases) so I didn't have to worry about that.  Nice guys.  I paid them and put the receipt in a safe place, but not so safe I didn't file it when I got home. 

I got home and took a pretty solid 3 hour nap.  I hadn't gotten much sleep the night before, #6 left his light on all night and it was shining into my bedroom.  I have to wonder if he even THOUGHT it might bother us, or maybe he assumes I am blind too (legally). 

I don't know.  I do know I slept great during my nap and I was happy to get it. 

I got up, did my God time, ate a snack, and went to see Ron.  We had a good visit.  We mainly talk and snuggle a little (with our clothes on).  The cuddling tends to either amuse or freak out the staff.  Some of them act as though they caught us [censored], others just giggle or chuckle a little.  I remind the freaked ones we are married. 

We are.  It's OK, and if Ron were inclined, or me for that matter, we are certainly "entitled" to conjugal visits.  They can't deny us (there was a legal case a while back). 

I developed a nasty headache and came home around 7.  I took a Phenergan and went to bed. 

I didn't sleep great but I did sleep, and while I still have a headache it is vastly reduced. 

Ron is coming home today, he will "visit" for a couple of hours and then go back.  I will go back with him (to avoid the party next door).  I will stay until the end of visiting hours (9 PM) and then go to Walmart with Chuck.  I will shop a while, get my stuff, and come home around 10:30-11 PM.  The party should be about done by then. 

I thought it was very clever.  We'll see how it works. 

Thursday, October 20, 2016

It doesn't matter

Depression's pretty bad today.  It's not related to Ron, it just is. 

I hate that about my illness.  Things can be going well all around me, but it doesn't matter.  It doesn't matter.  And that, I think, is the problem civilians have with my illness. 

I learned recently I may be considered schizoaffective and not bipolar, because I hallucinate.  I don't really care about the label but I sure mind the depressions. 

Why, I wonder, couldn't I get a nice clear mania right about now?  That would be great.  Not a big one, just some nice clear energy and positivity for a change. 

Instead poor Ron is stuck with my depressions "Aren't you happy to see me?" he wonders.  Yes, I am.  That's why I came.  But I'm depressed and this is my best.  Oh. 

He had some problems with his cell phone last night, he apparently put it in silent mode and couldn't receive any calls.  He asked his "tech" (CNA) to help him and the man did, fixing the silent mode and the volume issues.  Most guys like to tinker with things like that, and I'm sure it was a nice change from his usual duties. 

Today, Ron tells me, his phone isn't charging.  So I will have to trouble shoot.  It could be his battery is dead, or the charger.  One of the two.  Ron has an extra phone, I'm bringing it. 

I plan to verify if the charger is plugged in, Ron asked but sometimes people don't see everything.  If it is, I will verify to see if it is working.  If it isn't working we will swap out the chargers.  If the charger is working I will swap out the battery.  That ought to do it. 

I am thinking about getting a little thank you gift for the guy who helped Ron get his phone out of silent mode.  I think that would be nice. 

But Ron is expecting me so I may wait.  I don't know.  I'm just do damned tired and hurting (mentally).  I don't want to do anything.  I just want to curl up in a ball and whine, but I have a husband to care for, a house to manage, and a business to run. 

Tomorrow I need to get up at an ungodly hour to go to work.  Also, very high odds (according to my calendar) #6 will have another one of their trademark parties this weekend.  Either tomorrow night (not as likely), or Saturday (high odds). 

At least Ron will miss it, at the rehab place.  I plan to avoid the party as much as possible. 

There is absolutely nothing worse than the sound of 20 children screaming at the top of their lungs, when I am depressed. 

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Two days for the price of one

I was exhausted yesterday and not up to posting. 

I got up, went to the warehouse. Arrived and realized I did not have my "membership" card.  Had to go back home.  Paid driver for all this.  Back to warehouse.  Bought my stuff, put it in the truck.  Go to work.  Free up 2 carts and drag them outside.  Load with supplies. 

Get into work and stock stock stock.  Do a cursory soda inventory and realize I need pretty much everything.  Finish stocking.  Call driver, go home. 

Take a short nap, do housework (doing God Time every day too).  Go see Ron for a couple of hours.  Come home.  Crash. 

Today I got up pretty early.  Chuck was supposed to pick m up at 7, he was late, I assumed traffic.  We got stuck in more traffic but arrived in plenty of time. 

I met the repairman and he replaced the "Y control board".  He only charged me for the part. 

I accepted graciously and thanked him profusely.  He tested it so I know it is working. 

Then I stocked everything.   That took a while.  I also did an inventory for soda and got all that done.  I called Ron and gave that to him. 

He called the company in between therapy sessions and placed the order for delivery Friday. 

I came home, took a nap, did some housework, and went to see Ron.  We had a good visit both days.  However, after I got home he called me.  His phone is broken so we need to swap out the SIM card at the provider store.  Looks like I will be taking Ron's old phone, the "spare" phone, and getting it fixed tomorrow. 

I have tomorrow off of work but I still have things to do.  I am sleeping late.  I didn't even set an alarm. 

I'm running a load of laundry right now, Ron got some tomato sauce on his clothes the other day and it had to be washed.  My clothes can generally wait politely until I have a full load, but Ron is hard on his clothes. 

I go through a lot of stain remover.  I'm OK with that.  It's generally food stains and I'm glad he is enjoying his food. 

That is the nice thing about all this - he didn't lose his flavors this time. 

Anyway, I'm tired (again!) so it's off to bed.  Hopefully I will have something more profound to share tomorrow. 

((((Hugs))))  Night. 

Monday, October 17, 2016

Pileup

I got up pretty early and went to work.  Everything was pretty quiet, except for the bottled vendor, which was broken again.  [curses]  The repairman and I arranged a date to meet to get it fixed. 

I stocked what I could, got my delivery, and stocked it.  I made a list of inventory I need to buy tomorrow.  I am lacking some important things I need. 

I had a look at my carts, I have so many bottled drinks (that I couldn't sell, because the bottled vendor has been out of order), they are pretty unusable.  I store the bottled drinks on the carts until I can put them in the fridge. When they're ready to sell they go back on a cart and into the vending machine. 

But I have a pileup of inventory.  I need certain things, like bottled water, canned soda, pastry, and chips, but I have nowhere to put it. 

I will have to settle for using my folding hand handcart for the inventory.  I looked, there's no simple way I could combine everything onto one cart, much less clear both. 

Compromise. 

Happily I will not have to load a bunch of heavy bottled drinks, that's what almost wrecked my back last week.  Praise God that healed up quickly and I didn't have any lasting damage. 

I did get smart and buy a lumbar support brace with suspenders, to use when handling the heavy stuff.  I have seen enough of back trouble with Ron in the last couple months, I don't want any of my own.  I probably have a few days yet before it shows up, but it will show before I have to do any truly heavy lifting. 

I chatted with the other vendor and bragged on Ron's progress.  I am very proud of him. 

I came home and took a nap.  Ron woke me up calling about something, but I didn't mind.  I managed to go back to sleep quickly. 

I got up around 2 and got picked up at 3.  I went to see Ron.  When I went in his room I couldn't find him, so I realized he was at the gym doing physical therapy.  Sure enough, I found him. 

I could hear him talking from the doorway.  I approached him with a catcall and he lit up.  I noticed he was very diligent in doing all his exercise, volunteered to do extra reps, asked to go for a walk without the walker (went about 100 feet), and overall showed off for me. 

I found it tremendously endearing.  If I have to be married to a man so frail, it is touching to see he is doing everything he can do bulk up for me. 

I'm just happy his pain level seems greatly reduced.  He still has neuropathy pain, and I noticed they put a lidocaine patch on his bad hand, but he was bright, sparkly, and affectionate.  I have missed this man. 

He's a good man.  Recent events have obscured that. 

Yes, I worry about alcohol when he comes home.  I would be an idiot to think he is done drinking.  I can only hope the Flomax will keep his drinking down to a dull roar.  I don't know what kind of pain pills they will send him home with, or whether he will even need them (!), but I know those also interact with alcohol.  I will have the pharmacist clearly state all this to Ron so he is aware of the risks. 

But yes, I do believe he will begin drinking when he comes home.  And that makes me very sad.  There is also absolutely nothing I can do about it. 

I won't have a meltdown when I "catch" him drinking but I will remind him of interactions and leave it at that. At some point Ron has to make his own decisions. 

We had a good time, I stayed for about three and a half hours.  I'd have stayed later, but I have an early wakeup tomorrow.  We had a nice cuddle in his hospital bed (weight limit, 1000 pounds). 

I am hoping his incision is about healed.  It's been almost 2 weeks now.  They have it bandaged and I'm really not in a hurry to look underneath.  I have seen the effects, and that's enough. 

I came home and gave the cats their treats.  They are pretty demanding.  I had better make sure I have a couple extra boxes for the disaster kit.  I can't imagine, some horrible event and now I'm out of cat treats.  They would be furious. 

And it's about time for me to go to bed, so I'll end it for tonight. 

Sunday, October 16, 2016

I can live with "cute"

I slept about 12 hours last night.  I would hate for anyone to think I am burning myself out. 

Agenda for today: shower (done), God time (about to do), dry and fold a load of clothes, do up my meds for 2 weeks.  Nap.  Go see Ron for a couple of hours and maybe get some groceries on the way home. 

Ron told me today someone had a code at his facility.  Everyone was working on the person and his meds were late.  He didn't sound too upset about the meds.  The person got carted off in an ambulance. 

I'll be praying for them.  The average person at the center seems to run between 60 and 80 years old, so Ron fits right in.  They do have a little trouble with him being blind, and have a bad tendency to move things without telling him, but that's really his only complaint. 

I got up, completed my agenda, and had a pretty good day. 

I did my God Time and did up my medication for a while, as the laundry dried.  The meds and the clothes finished about the same time.  I put the clothes away and took a nap. 

But I couldn't sleep, I'd had 2 Mountain Dews (diet) with breakfast.  So I decided to make a sandwich and take my pills, which usually create a good nap. 

I ate my turkey and cheese (with mayo, on whole wheat) with a diet pink lemonade drink I had made up.  Big mistake.  I had horrible heartburn and indigestion for hours (even now). 

I did, however, get a good little nap (about an hour) before I went to see Ron.  I brought him an extension cord because he was complaining about it.  We had a good visit, the staff walked in on us during a cuddle.  I was a little embarrassed even though we are married, and we were both fully clothed so we couldn't have been having sex. 

Ron's blood pressure was a mellow 104 when they checked it.  I guess I am good for his blood pressure.  Not that he really has problems with it, but it's been in the 140 range. 

One of the staff acted as though she'd caught me [edited for content] with Ron [edited for content], the other one just thought it was "cute".  I can live with "cute". 

Ron and I went through his bag and made some changes on what stayed and what went home. I brought him some clean clothes.  His current clothes are OK, surprisingly.  He has deodorant and a hair brush, that's all he really needs. 

And a couple changes of clothes, of course.  His vibrating back massager (he uses it on his legs) is about dead, I will need to order him a new one. 

He asked me to get him some more paratransit tickets (he will need them to travel to/from the center for outpatient therapy, and to come home), so I asked Chuck to run me by a store. 

I also needed some groceries, so after I got the tickets I got some more cold cuts and sliced cheese (the real cheese), along with some whole wheat bread, so I can make him more sandwiches.  I don't like the grocery store as much as my Walmart, but it was one trip instead of two.  I didn't want to be a precious little diva. 

The cold things were cold, and had acceptable sell by dates.  I just cared about that.  The store was packed, full of little kids yelling in English and Spanish, running all over the place.  I was happy to get out of there. 

Chuck helped me carry my stuff into the garage, so I only had one trip. Then he left, I shut the garage door, and opened the door to the house.  Biscuit and Baby Girl were ready for their dinner and made it very apparent.  I fed them and put my stuff away.  Then I gave Torbie her treats. 

I ate some pudding, hoping to calm my stomach.  No luck.  [bad word] 

I am never having pink lemonade with a meal again.  It is fine on it's own, but not with my medication.  I'm always learning what works with my medication. 

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Day Pass

Ron got a "Day Pass" (reminds me of when I was in the mental hospital) to come home and do the sales tax.  It will sure help his blood pressure (not that he has a problem) to get that over with! 

I did some cleaning, got rid of a box I keep behind the door that might impede Ron (the door wouldn't open all the way, he could always get in anyway, but still...), put that in the garage.  I am getting scared of the garage.  It is as bad as the one next door that our drivers are always gaping at and mocking. 

But I've never been one to worry what the neighbors thought, that's why I married a blind man in a wheelchair. 

Actually, Ron and I "lived in sin" for 11 years after we first got together.  I had no spine and couldn't afford to live on my own, so I couldn't give him an ultimatum.  Ron figured I was with him "for the money" so to speak (even though we were always poverty to low income per the charts).  During this time, Ron was fine except for being blind. 

Then the accident.  Now Ron's in a wheelchair.  THEN I married him (he finally figured out I was a keeper).  That was a little over 13 years ago, but we count the whole 24. 

Don't do what I did.  Because we weren't married, I had no legal say on what happened to Ron.  His Dad made all the decisions (happily we agreed on what Ron would want).  I had to beg him, at one point, to consent to lifesaving surgery or Ron would have died. 

"Don't you want to know we did everything?" I pleaded. 

Bad times.  Don't put yourself through it.  Either they are worth marrying or they aren't.  If they aren't worth marrying why live with them? 

I know, money, trouble, etc.  I know all the excuses because I made them for 11 years but you will save yourself a world of trouble if you reconsider. 

What have I done today?  Well, I got up, took my shower and did my God Time.  Torbie hung out with me for the God Time and Biscuit hung out in the bathroom during my shower.  Ron calls him "The chub in the tub" because he likes to walk along the back edge of the shower enclosure. 

That would have been a good blog title.  Happily Ron has never called me "Chub in the tub".  [snicker]

I cleaned up the house and did a load of laundry.  I have an unreasonable fear the washer is not working but I have to use it sooner or later.  I have a fan and my music going so I can't tell if it's working or not.  I have to leave that to God and say "God, please make it work". 

I don't know if I told you, but Ron walked 300 feet on the walker last night.  "You'll be running laps by the time they send you home" I told him.  He agreed. 

I also told him they had written his discharge date on the whiteboard in his room (10/26), which means Ron is only 1/3 of the way through his stay.  They have done such a good job with him already, in one week he is ready to ride paratransit to come home and do sales tax. 

That's what I'm waiting for, Ron to come home and do sales tax.  He warned me this won't be a social visit but I know he will enjoy seeing our cats.  Torbie has been fiending for cat treats all morning and I didn't give her any so Ron can be the good guy.  He can treat them a couple times before/after doing the accounting. 

Good, the washer is at the "rinse" part of the cycle.  Yay!  Clean underwear!  I know a lot of people use another word for that but that's not the word I grew up using. 

I don't generate a lot of clothes, and Ron's been doing repeats on his clothes at the rehab, so I don't have a lot of clothes to wash.  I end up doling out a medium dab of liquid laundry detergent because the Tide Pod is for a regular sized load, and I just have a small. 

That's why I have some liquid detergent in my stash, because this does happen in a small household.  If I had a couple of kids I'm sure I'd be doing a large load every day. 

My kids clean their own clothes (the cats), so I don't have that worry. 

Ron's here. 

He's working on the spreadsheet right now.  You may wonder how Ron uses a computer.  He has a talking computer.  No, he doesn't talk to it, it talks to him.  He uses keyboard commands, alt, tab, control, etc. to open and close windows.  He uses a keyboard to "talk" to the computer, and the computer "talks" back to him verbally.  He has done this for over 20 years (not on the same computer).  It is not online.  Ron wisely decided, on his own, the internet might get him in trouble. 

I started my second load of clothes, jeans, a sheet, and some other dark stuff, all topped with some "dark" detergent.  Well, I put the detergent in first.  I am finally getting the hang of it after my old washer. 

Since I have it on "bulky" I am sure it would dissolve it anyway, but why screw it up?  If it's working, why not do things by the manual? 

I am dying to go pester Ron about the sales tax, but I won't.  He will have the information when he has the information. 

He did spend a couple minutes petting and treating the cats, when he first came in. 

Then he used his black hole. 

He gave me permission to talk about it.  See, when Ron was in the hospital after his accident he was afraid to use the urinal.  He had head injury dementia and was terrified his father would beat him if he "wet the bed" by using the urinal.  I kept telling him it was OK but he said no, it wasn't. 

I finally, in desperation, told him the urinal was a secret black hole that took the urine and hid it away forever, and would never, ever, ever, spill on the bed.  I exaggerated a little on the last.  If I called it the "black hole" Ron would use it, if the staff used the word "urinal" he wouldn't. 

Then he started asking for the black hole, which of course baffled the nurses.  I had to explain it meant = urinal.  Ron has continued to call a urinal a black hole. 

Years ago, Ron found a 2 liter juice bottle.  It had a screw on cap.  Ron loved it.  He decreed it his new "black hole" and began using it as his urinal.  So, now and again, I will buy a 2 liter bottle of diet juice of some sort and drink it up, giving Ron the bottle.  He is always happy to have one. 

He is accustomed to using them now, and I don't think he ever pees in the toilet.  He has been using the urinal (and calling it a urinal) for the last couple of days without any problems.  However, when I asked him if he wanted his black hole he became so excited he almost cried.  He missed it. 

The thing smells awful, though.  I will have to bleach it out after he leaves. 

Ron arrived, did the sales tax, treated the cats. 

I rode back to rehab with him (he took paratransit and had put me down as his caregiver).  I spent about 7 hours there, just hanging out with him, and then came home. 

I am beat.  I'm going to bed. 

Friday, October 14, 2016

$250

I haven't gone to see Ron yet.  I worked from 6-10, didn't sleep well either.  I got up and did it anyway. 

I first stocked canned sodas.  I thought it would be nice to get them out of the way first.  However, I had a lot of people peering in the empty snack machines, so I won't do that again.  Then I had a guy yell at me about the coffee machine.   I told him I would get it, but I couldn't get it right now, and gave him his money back. 

The machine goes through a lot of coffee.  People really like it because I use a very high quality dark roast coffee for the machine.  I think it is important to provide a good product. 

If I drank coffee, I would drink it. 

I finally finished sodas.  Now I had to mash up about 20 cases worth of packaging.  That's where I miss Ron at work.  I don't mind stocking the soda, getting the soda, getting the merchandise, etc.  I do mind mashing up all that packaging for the recycle!

Now onto snacks.  I stocked the chips, then did candy and cookies.  Before I left, I did pastry. 

Somewhere between candy and cookies, the repairman came.  He had the part we needed.  He took about 20 minutes installing it and got it all done.  I witnessed it working before he left.  Good. 

He says it might need a board, but the board is only about $20 (he has to order it).  The bill wasn't too bad, $250.  The machine makes a lot of money so it is worth it. 

I'm going to need some more chips, but not Lays or Cheetos.  I always need hot chips. 

I noticed hot chips in the vending machine at the rehab center.  I found that very interesting. 

Ron called a couple of times.  I enjoyed talking to him. 

I crowed about his progress to the other vendors.  They kept asking in a "How bad is it?" fashion and I kept answering with all of his progress.  "He can do this, they took the catheter out..." 

He is doing really well. 

After the repairman left I finished candy and pastries.  Pastries are a little tedious because I have to write the sell by date on a label, then tag the pastry, then stock it.  Probably my least favorite after mashing up soda packaging. 

I did have it looking good, though, alternating rows of vanilla and chocolate cupcakes, another machine stocked with honeybuns.  They love honeybuns, which have a whopping 500-600 calories.  It's certainly filling. 

I had a pregnant, temporary, worker screaming at me for honeybuns one day "I need some bread!"  I was rather alarmed and glad I had them on hand. 

OOops, I just remembered I forgot to take the jammed $1 out of the food vendor.  I will have a lot of sandwiches on Monday as a result. 

All done, I called my ride and went home.  I took a nap.  I got up and tried to find the sales tax information on Ron's computer, but it isn't there and the mouse doesn't work very well.  He was "in a class" and couldn't talk much but we at least figured out he needs to do the form. 

That done, I did some housework.  At least I managed to get the nap.  I was sleeping pretty good. 

I noticed my hair has gotten really gray lately.  I will try to get a photo "made" so you can decide for yourself.  I am still pretty unclear on how to transfer images from my phone to my computer. 

I will be visiting Ron tonight, after rush hour traffic. 

Torbie is mugging me for treats, so I'm going to take care of her and make myself a sandwich. 

Thursday, October 13, 2016

I am married to this man

I had today off, mostly. 

I slept in until 8, did my God Time and shower.  I cleaned the house for a while.  I prayed and asked God to show me the Big Issues I needed to get, and Torbie got in my lap for a while.  I petted her, she purred and shed all over my black capris.  Then she left, and Biscuit climbed aboard.  He dug in his claws and enjoyed some petting as he purred in my lap. 

I suppose God was telling me to take it easy.  I did what seemed appropriate but I didn't get a chance to do the floor.  I need to do the floor, and I can never do the floor because Ron always comes along and tracks it up.  Now he's out of the picture for a while, I can get it done. 

I thought about taking a nap but didn't, mainly because I had gotten sweaty from changing the litter box and didn't want to mess up my sheets.  There's always tomorrow. 

I got picked up early and went to the Walmart by the rehab center.  I got some stuff Ron had requested and some soda for myself. That's pretty much all I needed.  Then I left it in Chuck's truck as I went to visit Ron.  When we came home, I took my stuff out and brought it inside. 

Ron was in rehab.  I set down my bags and went to find him.  He was doing leg exercises with Nathan.  Nathan seems like a very nice guy, practical and sensitive.  They told me they had Ron standing for a while today, I had just missed it, and Ron had gone back and forth on the parallel bars again. 

Nathan asked me if we had a walker and I said yes.  So they may get Ron on a walker pretty soon.  Ron is great on a walker, but he has to be steered or he runs into things.  It can get a little tiresome if I'm honest.

Let's hope for an even better recovery and Ron walking, using his white cane, and holding onto my arm like the old days. 

Ron showed off during the rest of his session, as I acted as cheerleader.  They put him on an exercise machine.  It reminded me of a recumbent treadclimber.  Ron made a good effort and was finally released. 

Ron had asked me to bring some WD-40, because one of the machines was squeaking.  I did, and also brought some lithium grease.  I think the lithium grease will work better on an exercise machine. 

I took Ron back to his room and we talked for a while.  We went to "Discharge planning" basically rehab telling us they are not going to leave us out in the cold.  That was nice to hear after the last hospital dumped Ron, catheter, fever, and unable to even sit up without screaming in pain.  How could anyone with a soul do that? 

I don't know. 

These guys are way better, well above my expectations.  They have really gone above and beyond.  Ron would say the food is a little variable, but it's institutional food, of course you'll have bad days.  Ron did like the pumpkin spice cheesecake that came with lunch, he saved me half. 

Ron used the bathroom, he was rather tired with the transfer but he got the job done.  I reminded myself he had just had an hour and a half of grueling physical therapy.  He said his hamstrings and pectoral muscles (he just pointed at them, he doesn't know the names) were pretty sore.  But he is doing a lot more than he was and I am impressed. 

I was tired, so while he was in the bathroom I laid down in the bed.  I took off my shoes and phone before I did. 

When Ron got back, he was delighted to find me in the bed and wanted a cuddle.  Good.  Except everyone, I think, in the hospital, walked in during our (chaste and G-rated) snuggle.  It was a little awkward, but I kept reminding myself I am married to this man.  It is OK. 

We had a nice cuddle for about 2 hours, until my ride came.  I came home. 

Biscuit was fiending for his num num so I served it up.  Ron got to hear Baby Girl meow on the phone (he let me know he was a little upset I had moved his wheelchair), so he was happy.  He really misses the cats. 

Tomorrow will be a more "interesting" day but I will keep you posted.  For one, they will have Ron in therapy during the time I normally visit, so I will go later.  That should work out better with the traffic, though. 

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Suitcase Ramp

So, I went to the bank this morning to make the deposit.  We have to pay the repairman, after all. 

I went to the medical supply shop and got a "suitcase ramp" which will get Ron in and out of the garage easily.  It's a little unwieldy to move but once I got it, it worked great. 

That done, I took a nap.  I slept pretty well but Ron texted me during my nap.  As it turns out, it was something about sales tax, which isn't due for 8 more days.  Surely Ron will be home in 8 more days. 

I'm mostly stiff in bed.  I pulled a muscle yesterday and it really only talks to me in bed.  Both sentences sound perverted.  Needless to say, I will take my aleve another couple days. 

I got up and got ready to visit Ron.  He wanted me to bring his wheelchair and some cash.  I did, both. 

I also brought a small massager I bought at the medical supply place.  I thought he would enjoy it.  He liked it a lot, but wants more batteries. 

He declined the cash (but later asked me to buy him a Sprite), so I took it home. 

I had a nice visit with him.  When they brought him back from physical therapy, he was sitting in the wheelchair.  He looked pretty comfortable and more the Ron I'm used to than that miserable guy in the bed. 

He sat in the chair for a while, chatting with me.  I showed him the card Mom and Dad sent - well, I read it to him and described the photo.  I had him call Mom to thank her. 

We decided to go for a "walk" in the wheelchair.  He transferred easily from the rehab center chair to his personal chair.  Then I took him for a walk, riding around the center.  He had me peek in the gym.  Boy, that is hardcore.  They have everything and put a regular gym to shame.  I was seriously impressed.  No wonder Ron is doing so well. 

These are the guys who have everything. 

We came back to the room and he wanted to "try" in the bathroom.  He got help to get on the toilet, but got himself back on the wheelchair on his own. 

This is the guy who couldn't even sit up without screaming, four days ago.  God is really working on him! 

Ron has a fighting spirit, as well.  He doesn't want to quit.  I've forgotten that. 

Later on we ate dinner outside, he propelled himself in the wheelchair using his feet like he used to,  and then he got himself into bed, easily.  I was impressed. 

I'm sure some of that was showing off for the wife.  He doesn't want me to see him as helpless. 

He tried out his new massager and liked it.  His old massager is about to die.  I was glad he had something to help with neuropathy. 

Pill time arrived.  Did he want to take his stool softener?  I will leave you to guess the answer to that, but he did take the glucosamine. 

Dinner was not impressive, egg salad on white bread.  I have seen nicer egg salad in our vending machines.  Most of his meals look like something you'd get at a restaurant. 

Like I said, I am happy to have him there.  They are taking good care of him and he is making tremendous progress. 

I got a look at part of his incision today.  It looked horrible - not infected, but just brutal.  It is hard to believe we paid a man to rip Ron open like that. 

He did mention today that he doesn't have any pain in his legs when he stands.  He thinks.  He was pretty focused on not falling on his face, you know.  [grin]

When I got home I discovered my period had started, right on time.  I have had a cycle for 29 years now, I started pretty much right around my 13th birthday.  My birth mother "went" until 58 but I had ovarian surgery (which tends to cause an earlier menopause), so we'll see.  I'm not too worried. 

Headaches: I give all the credit to God, mainly, but also to the herbs I am taking, Butterbur and Feverfew.  I got them from Swanson Vitamins.  My headaches have been dramatically reduced since I started taking them.  I'm glad I started them when I did, right before Ron's surgery. 

I feel like I am lacking in evangelism, I haven't been handing anything out at the center.  I have Bible Promise books but I haven't really had any opportunity.  The staff are understandably busy. 

Worst case, I will leave the stack of books at the desk when we leave. 

Portable wheelchair ramp

Well, my back feels better and my second rind arrived.  I got a mystic cz heart shaped ring., 

I have a soft spot for heart shaped cz's.  The first ring Ron ever got me was an inexpensive heart shaped pink cz.  I picked it out, he bought it.  I wore that thing to death.  I still have it in my memory box.  It was plated and the metal flaked off.  This is set in sterling, cost $14, and is very pretty. 

It does have a thin band, so I won't wear it to work.  Reviews said it will bend pretty easy under "working with your hands" pressure, which is one reason I wear a lot of titanium and tungsten. 

I slept pretty well last night, pretty stiff but getting better.  I will be buying myself a back brace in the near future.  No sense in taking chances.  Ron is literally, the business is, depending on my back.  I've GOT to keep it healthy. 

My ride will be here pretty soon, I have to go to the bank and make my deposit.  Then Ron asked me to find him a wheelchair ramp (they have portable ones at the medical supply stores) to set up in the garage. 

I've mentioned we enter and exit through the garage to keep the cats from getting out.  It acts as an airlock in case someone (Biscuit!) runs out.  I can grab the bad kitty in the garage, not chase them down the block. .

It has a pretty good bump, about 4 inches, to get into the house.  Ron doesn't want me to push him over the bump, in part because I think it involves tipping the wheelchair back.  That makes him nervous.  He would rather I push him up a ramp. 

He had talked about doing this before the surgery, but since it looks like Ron will do well to regain his former life in a wheelchair, we had better look a little deeper. 

I'm fine with that.  It will make my life easier.  The things aren't light, though, and I will have to put it in, and remove it from, the truck.  Not so excited about that but I took my aleve this morning. 

I have to be careful about NSAID painkillers because the raise lithium levels.  That may not be a bad thing right now! 

Seriously, though, I'll be careful. 

I should be fine in a couple days, thank God.  On a 1-10 it is normally about a 1, goes up to a 3 at times.  So, not horrible. 

Thank God He didn't allow it to be worse.  It has also given me a renewed appreciation for the cart guys loading my truck (I already tipped them). 

Anyway, I'd better go.  My ride should be here in a couple minutes. 

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Not nothing

Really tired so this one will be short. 

Went to the warehouse this morning and bought my supplies.  Had to put them in the truck by myself due to no/lazy cart attendant refusing to answer pages.  I pulled a muscle in my back, not happy about that.  That is the LAST thing I need with Ron coming home. 

Went to work, got the carts and unloaded.  Then I stocked but they didn't need much. 

The bottled vendor is broken and will require repairs, and at least one part.  I had Ron deal with the repairman over the phone.  He comes Thursday. 

Everything else was fine and needed minimal stocking since I was there yesterday. 

Ron also called his boss and dealt with that. 

I left, came home, took a nap. 

Went to rehab to see Ron.  They were having a meeting but Ron had said he didn't want to attend.  Great.  I came for nothing? 

Not nothing, I got to see Ron.  He is still being very sweet and positive.  I haven't seen this Ron in ages.  He's very lovable. 

I fed him dinner, talked, etc.  I left at 7 and came home. 

I have to run a work errand tomorrow but I have the rest of the day off.  I haven't decided how I'm going to spend it. 

Monday, October 10, 2016

Hot water hookup

Well, I took the cats out of jail (bedroom with catio access) and came straight here to report to you. 

You see, the repairman just left. 

As it turns out, it was a pretty simple fix.  One, it had to be "reset".  He showed me how to do that. 

Second, the installers *didn't hook up the hot water*.  So, when I went to run the "hot water" cleaning cycle.... it freaked. 

Poor washer.  I feel bad for all the things I said about it, now. 

The repairman looked at my "washer cleaner" products and said they are good, and I can also use a half cup of vinegar if I want, instead.  I may alternate. 

He was a very nice Indian man.  He had a good sense of humor, too. 

Of course I turned down my music, I don't - I take that back, I do know one person who would like my music, but most don't. 

Anyway, it's fixed.

Thank God. 

An easy, and lasting, fix

Just a short one for now. 

I got 8 hours sleep, not enough.  I will need to get more sleep tonight, or a nap, or something. 

I got up and went to work.  I was shocked to see the snack machines were about sold-out.  Happily, sodas looked better. 

I got to work and stocked it all, got the delivery, stocked it, and serviced all the machines. 

Ron called around 10.  He had done both physical and occupational therapy.  "They had me walk between the bars" he said "I went forward, and then I went backward on my own". 

I was shocked and delighted.  These guys are really good for him.  I wish we could keep them.  I praised him (sounds like he's a dog) and let him know I was proud of him. 

After I hung up, I went and told the other vendors.  I wanted them to realize Ron wouldn't be out of the picture for long. 

Then I came home.  I am waiting on the washing machine repairman.  For my clothes washer.  I wouldn't care if it were the dishwasher.  But I need my washer. 

I am impressed that Sears is sending someone out the day after we called.  I just hope it is an easy, and lasting, fix. 

After that, depending on the time, I plan to take a nap and then go see Ron.  His last therapy should be done around 5.  I plan to go visit him tonight even though he said not to. 

I need him to make up an inventory list for me so I can buy supplies tomorrow.  I know what I need for snacks, but I don't know what drinks to buy.  I will have him do that when I finish this. 

Tomorrow I go to the warehouse, get supplies, and stock.  I will probably be pretty tired so I will see Ron a little later, I think. 

I'll just have to see how it goes. 

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Someone else's job

It's an odd thing when I find it comforting when I hear the other patients screeching in pain at the rehab center.  Ron's not the only one. 

I slept great but woke up with an earache around 7.  I "had" to get up at 8.  I took a generic mucinex and went back to bed.  I woke up feeling better and my ear didn't hurt for the rest of the day.  It clogged up again when I got home (may be allergy related and I am allergic to my 3 cats).  I didn't have a lot of medicine left, though, so I arranged to do a Walmart run with Chuck. 

I did my God Time, shower (not in that order), etc.  Chuck arrived and we ran by a Walgreens to get some treats for the staff at the facility.  Ron can be difficult at times and I want them to feel appreciated. 

Everything I read about the medical profession says they are always starving, too. 

I got in there and sat with Ron for a while.  I like being nearby even if he isn't feeling well.  About 2, he asked for some pain meds.  However, his pain meds all contained Tylenol and he had reached his daily limit. 

{bad word] 

Then the lady came in to do occupational therapy.  Ron was pretty unhappy sitting up and transferring to the wheelchair.  Then he wanted to try to sit on the toilet.  It took some doing and was very painful.  He didn't need to toilet. 

They got him back in the wheelchair (more screams) and rolled him off down the hall.  I honestly expected them to bring him back, cursing, at any moment. 

He came back a half hour later.  The OT asked him about his pain level.  "Not bad" Ron replied.  "Well, you agreed to sit in your wheelchair for an extra 20 minutes." (!!!!!!)  "Ring the bell when your time's up and you're ready to go back to bed." 

I was shocked.  I don't know what she gave him, but it worked.  Ron, in my hearing, had called her "ignorant", and he later told me he told her she was a "terrible mother".  She took it all in stride. 

I am glad I never picked PT or OT for my occupation.  I would not have done well at either.  It seems to carry a lot of confrontation, and you need to be very tough. 

I have had to toughen up over the years but I'm nowhere near that level.  I couldn't deal with making people scream and getting shouted at all day. 

Which is why I really put Ron in rehab, come to think.  I couldn't do it. 

Well, I could have, but it would have taken quite a toll.  This way I am beloved wife, only, and not the cruel bitch who is forcing him to hurt.  That's someone else's job.  Thank God. 

Chuck got stuck in traffic, which worked out, because I wanted to see Ron again when he got back from therapy.  They both showed up about the same time. 

Ron sat in the wheelchair for 20 minutes and then a few longer as the nurse aide came to help.  I helped her make the bed and she got Ron back into bed. 

I wonder how many times I have typed the word "Ron" in my online career (18 years online now).  Plenty, I bet. 

Now it was off to the store.  I gave Chuck gas money and he filled up his tank, then we went to Walmart.  He shopped with me.  I got some vitamins, protein bars, and yogurt. 

I had planned to get some cottage cheese but the cartons seemed rather warm.  I opted instead for deli meat and cheese to make roll ups.  But then I thought, why not a sandwich?  So I got bread too.  I also got cheese dogs (love those things), and whole wheat hot dog buns. 

I was glad I was taking care of myself and getting healthy options.  Had I really thought it through, I would have bought a bag of salad mix too. 

Then I came home and put it all away.  I made myself a sandwich on whole wheat bread, pepper turkey, sharp cheddar, and swiss with mayo.  It was very good. 

I had already eaten lunch and taken my meds earlier.  Oh, and I forgot to mention Ron is getting an extra protein supplement from the nutrition department.  He has been pretty happy with all the meals so far, and he's a picky eater. 

I did warn her he had an "allergy" to cooked green vegetables.  [snort] 

Saturday, October 8, 2016

Room 214

I got up at midnight with a horrible headache.  I took some Excedrin - had to - and went back to bed.  I got up around 8. 

I am wearing jeans now, so when I showered I didn't bother to shave my legs.  I did my God Time and took care of the cats. 

Then Chuck picked me up and we went to the BBQ place.  He liked my directions (he has a new phone and can't figure out the GPS), and we found it pretty easily.  I found Ron's room and went inside. 

He was happy to see us (Chuck came in for a while) and ate a good amount of the BBQ.  It did my heart good to see him so happy. 

I just sat with him.  My love language is quality time and I am totally happy to sit with him in the hospital, especially if he isn't in any pain and I don't have to make him do something he doesn't want to. 

I got one of the rings I ordered, I found it on the porch.  It is very pretty, abalone inlaid in titanium.  It cost me about $20.  I like it a lot, it's pretty and different.  It makes a very nice wedding ring.  I plan to take it off before washing my hands, but other than that it's great.  I don't know how long it will last, because I work with my hands, but I'll enjoy it while it lasts. 

I love the price point.  I don't want to have something valuable, that I have to worry about theft or loss.  If it breaks, so what?  I can buy another size 8 ring from Amazon easily.  They have loads of stuff in titanium and tungsten, very inexpensive metals. 

I was glad I got it.  Everyone is telling me to take care of myself and this is one way I'm doing it.  I do, however, think I have ruined lavender for myself.  I bought a nice bar of lavender soap before all this and I have been using it every day, stressed, anxious, and distressed.  I don't think lavender will have good connotations for me anymore.  Maybe I should have bought some fake Irish Spring from the dollar store. 

My aunt sent my cousin out with my load of laundry, and he left it at the house.  She told me to make up a bag of dirty clothes for her to wash and I did, leaving it in the same spot.  So, he took the dirty when he left the clean. 

What wonderful family to have.  I talk about the bad ones, but I have some REALLY good ones too.

Ron became progressively more uncomfortable, and finally asked his nurse when he could get his next dose of pain meds.  At the hospital, they were given every 4 hours. 

"You have to ask for them" he was told "We don't give them out unless you request a dose, and then you have to tell us 1 or 2 tablets."  Ron immediately requested 2 tablets, and they arrived within 10 minutes.  I can't fault these guys for care. 

No, the room is not as fancy as the one at the hospital, but the staff are kind and caring.  Most importantly, Ron is happy there and it takes a huge load off my back. 

We don't have any idea how much our percentage will cost, but whatever it is, like the ambulance ride, is worth it.  They will always let us make payments.  But I'm not going to worry about that at this point and time. 

Job #1: take care of me.
Job #2: get Ron better
Job #3: run the business

I was telling Ron I will have to do a supply run on Tuesday morning, that will be a long day but I'll get it done.  I also told him I'd like him to call and schedule the repairman for the washer. 

Ron is a traditional man in that he likes to "take care of things".  That's why he is so baffled by the turn of events with me taking over the business.  His love language is "acts of service" which means doing "for" me. 

Ron was delighted to call, and I'll have him do that tomorrow.  I just want it over and fixed already.  Ron can deal with all the jabbering menus on the phone.  "To schedule a repair, press 1"  Let him have it, I say.  [grin]

I will also have him set up the order for Tuesday, I will call him and give him the inventory, he can read it onto his recorder (I brought it to him today), and then text me the order for Tuesday.  That's pretty much the way we do it now. 

I want Ron involved.  He is bound to be battling depression.  He keeps saying the "Doctor cut the wrong thing".  I can understand that viewpoint. 

Neither of us were properly educated on the level of pain to expect.  If I had known I never would have agreed to surgery.  But I have to think, God is allowing this to happen for a reason and we have to be patient and trust He is working behind the scenes. 

I was just glad to see Ron was being cared for.  That is my big concern. 

I think every caregiver worries "No one else will love them, no one else will care the way I do, and they will not get adequate care as a result".  But a nice lady came by to fill his tumbler with water, the nurse and nurse aide were polite and attentive, and someone even came by, offering to feed Ron lunch.  I confessed he had already eaten 1/2 pound of BBQ and he laughed. 

They are taking good care of him.  I can relax for a while. 

That's what's important. 

Friday, October 7, 2016

"People don't give you enough credit"

I had to get up at 3 AM, delivery coming at work, sodas are our living, gotta get them. 

My phone rang sometime in the middle of the night.  It was Ron. 

"Where am I?" 
I told him he was in the hospital. 
"And I woke you up!  I am so sorry!" 

It didn't matter, I went back to sleep pretty fast. 

I woke up at 3, got ready, put the cats in the bedroom.  I forgot to give them food and water so they went without for about 16 hours.  They forgave me and I put food and water in the bedroom so this won't happen again. 

I thought Ron might be coming home.  The hospital wanted to be rid of him. 

I went to work.  The other vendor's wife, and one of his employees, had horrible moist coughs.  I was horrified.  I took all my vitamins and plan to get a good night's sleep. 

I stocked 18 cases of soda, got the delivery (short 2 orange sodas), stocked snacks, did the bottled vendor (4 cases), and serviced the coffee machine.  The other vendor and his wife sat at a table and watched me work.  They said they were waiting on a delivery.  I'm trying not to read anything into it, but the original plan per our boss was for the other vendor to take over our business, keep some of the profits, and give us what's left. 

Ron and I both said HELL NO.  We haven't worked this hard to hand it over to someone else. 

I am certain the other vendor was disappointed.  He is always asking us questions about our level of sales, etc. 

Anyway, it was pretty creepy being watched, especially with her coughing so much, but I did my work. 

The worst part of the day was mashing up the cardboard boxes.  Soda comes in a box, or tray, and I have to mash it up before I put it in the recycle bin.  I really missed Ron at that moment because he always does this. 

The rest of the work was fine.  I finished up in about 4 hours, called my ride, and put my stuff away. 

I was happy to get away from that petri dish, a lot of employees at work were also coughing moistly. 

I took everything today, oregano oil (capsules), olive leaf (capsules), powdered vitamin C (enough to put my teeth on edge), etc.  I also, as a matter of course, take antioxidants every day too. 

I got to the hospital around 11 or so.  Ron had mentioned he had had physical therapy already but didn't mention anything about it. 

Later on I found out they sat him up and he screamed bloody murder after about a minute, until they laid him down again. 

Doc came by and was very unhappy to hear about the urination issue.  He said he would call in a urologist. 

I got some lunch.  As I was bringing it back to the room, I dropped the tray on the floor, ruining perfectly good creole wings (Ron) and a bacon cheeseburger (mine).  I went back to the cafeteria.  When I explained they replaced the food for free and even offered an employee to help walk me back to the room.  I got a bag instead and managed just fine. 

Ron loved his chicken and ate it down to the bone.  He was sucking the bones.  I was happy to see him enjoying his food again. 

He fell asleep.  I took my meds and ate my food. 

The urologist came in.  I gave his urology history.  Doc prescribed Flomax (! you were right) and said Ron would be fine. 

Ron really hates prostrate drugs but if it's the difference between going independently and having a catheter, you bet. 

I tried to nap.  It had been a long day. 

Physical therapy came by and "narced" on Ron, telling me he hadn't been able to even sit for more than a minute.  They tried again.  Same result, Ron screaming in agony and falling back down in the bed. 

Whatever Ron has done to me in the past, he's certainly paid for it, let me tell you. 

Not that I see myself as a vengeful type. 

Ron hasn't had any DT'S but he did say he wished he could "tune out".  While he seems a little more relaxed on the pain meds he doesn't seem to be dependent on them for anything other than pain control. 

He didn't use the pain pump today, and he seemed to have more clarity of thought.  That was nice.  He was very sweet unless someone wanted him to sit up. 

The social worker came by.  She asked how I was going to get Ron home and I confessed I would probably have to use an ambulance. 

She said she had talked to physical therapy.  The conversation continued and I ended up telling Ron I thought he needed to go to rehab. 

He was recalcitrant at first but I told him, I can't leave you alone like this.  What if the house catches on fire or you have to use the toilet?  You can't even sit in your wheelchair. 

That led to a mighty attempt to do just that, which resulted in, you guessed it, Ron screaming in pain and collapsing into bed.  Then he agreed. 

I told them we wanted to send Ron to rehab.  That is what they all wanted anyway.  They "let" us pick a place near the house, Ron picked one near our favorite BBQ place.  Within 3 hours, the ambulance showed up. 

They were very nice and did a really great job of transferring Ron to their gurney.  I was impressed.  I told them people don't give them enough credit for performing a very valuable task. 

Part of me wanted to go with Ron.  He's my husband after all. 

But part of me knew I had been up for over 15 hours, no rest, I have a condition, and by now I had remembered I had locked the cats in the bedroom with no food and water.  I felt like a real shit for that. 

So, Ron went to rehab and I went home.  I called my family and updated them.  They all sounded very relieved to hear it. 

Ron called me, and the rehab called me.  They want me to come in and sign papers tomorrow. 

Good thing I already arranged a ride. 

The cats were very happy to see me, and forgave me after I gave them a num-num (canned food) and some treats. 

Thursday, October 6, 2016

"That must be some pretty important bacon"

For the record, Ron had a "laminectomy" from L2 to L5 vertebrae.  It basically involves cutting away bone that is pressing on nerves. 

I slept pretty well, considering.  I woke up in the middle of the night once but talked myself back to sleep. 

I got up, did my God Time, took my shower, fed the cats, and out the door.  Ron called me to tell me he was in a lot of pain.  I guess it had to start sometime. 

My driver came to pick me up.  We ran by a McDonald's on the way and I got some sausage and egg muffins.  I didn't think Ron would want any but I figured it couldn't hurt. 

I stopped at the cafeteria on the way in, they have diet caffeine free sodas, almost impossible to find anywhere.  I woke up with a headache and had taken Excedrin, which meant I already had 350 mg of caffeine when you factor in the two diet Mountain Dews. 

I was very hungry, Chuck has a policy of no eating in the truck, it's his vehicle, I respect that.  I didn't count on getting so hungry though.

Generally bacon makes me pretty queasy.  But I was hungry, and the display of fresh, hot, crispy bacon called to me.  I picked up a couple slices and put them in a to go container.  The to go container had a clear lid so the cashier could ring me up properly.  I set the container in the wheelchair.

I was pushing Ron's wheelchair, so I got a lot of comments about the bacon, people pointing and laughing at the bacon riding in the wheelchair.  "That must be some pretty important bacon" one fellow chuckled. 

When I got to Ron, he was in pretty good spirits.  The nurse had him pushing the pain button every 10 minutes.  Something called "Hydromorphone".  It made him act drunk, but a nice one.  He was just very disoriented.  It didn't help the pain much. 

Physical therapy showed up after a while and asked a lot of very invasive questions about my home life.  I have explained, several times: If I could take care of Ron with head injury dementia, sternal precautions, a broken leg, a catheter, and hemiparesis from a stroke, I am certain I can care for him now.

We have a shower chair, a toilet chair, two wheelchairs, a walker, and 3 service cats (grin).  I think we have our equipment.  Oh, you don't have a hospital bed. 

What kind of normal person gets a hospital bed as a matter of course?  Nobody I know.  Ron is fine with a flat bed.  In fact, he kept folding up in the incline bed. 

Ron did eat a breakfast sandwich and most of the bacon.  If I eat much bacon, I get really queasy, so I only had a few bites. 

Ron and I have agreed to keep my diagnosis to ourselves.  It really isn't their business. 

I am taking everything As Directed. 

They tried to sit Ron up.  That didn't to very well, he screamed.  They laid him down again and left. 

I got some lunch and came back.  Ron didn't want anything.  He was still pretty miserable. 

I helped him with his massager, tuned the TV for him, etc.  We watched some Judge Judy together. 

Physical therapy came back.  They got him halfway standing before he screamed and sagged to the bed again. 

This is going to be a long, long, road.  But he was pretty non functional to begin with so what could we do? 

He continued to be disoriented, mumbling and getting his "places" confused.  He thought we were at work, tried to take the "Dr Pepper" out of his lap, only to realize it was the nurse call button.  He thought we were at home and that the medical staff were "salesmen". 

I guess, in a sense, they were. 

It was a very long day, made even more upsetting by the fact that Ron couldn't pee.  This could be a side effect of the operation.  This could be a recalcitrant bladder.  It could be temporary, or permanent.  We don't know. 

This may mean that Ron has to use a catheter for the rest of his life.  I suppose I will have to "do" it every time he needs to pee, or maybe he can learn to do it himself.  I don't know. 

What a nightmare.  If you pray please pray for things to get going properly again. 

I need to go to bed.  It is 8:30 and I need to get up at 3 AM for a delivery. 

I will keep you posted. 

Consolation

Ron needs to realize, not everyone is consoled by his "Don't worry, the end of the world is coming soon" speech.  Agh.