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. 


Anonymous said...

Sorry to hear about the issues Ron is having. I googled unable to pee after laminectomy and this can happen. Most patients were sent home with a foley catheter and many said that when they were given floxmax they could pee but they didn't like the side effects of the flomax. Hopefully this will not be permanent. What did the doctor say about the not peeing and the fact that he is still in pain (if you even got to talk to him - they seem to disappear when you need to talk to them after a procedure).

mamawowl said...

prayers for you both, Heather!
I was on hydromorph with a kidney's a narcotic/opioid so pretty powerful stuff. I wasn't on it long, but it makes you out of it. I know it's personal, but do the doctors know Ron has a history with addiction? it's important to know when taking that stuff.

The not being able to pee can be from the anesthetic..prayers things start moving properly again.


Spankadoo Hardcastle said...

I am worryied he will have alcohol detox . Sorry i know that sounds pervasive but it could hamper the recovery. The first day or two can be very painful but he should be better shortly. The bladder should be back as well today i hope! That bacon story was funny! Hang in Heather you are going to work today right? Let the nurses care for him your turn is coming up...oh PT they have to ask those things because they will get them for you if you dont have the accomodations you need. I know it feels invasive . I wouldnt have told about you bipo either you are fine..very stable and a very good nurse to Ron. no home catheter! cheering you on big hugs and tons of support

Anonymous said...

praying stuff gets back to normal--right after a surgery stuff takes a sec to get back into place--I have no doubt Ron will be walking better than ever soon enough

Anonymous said...

Praying for you, God knows what you need. Listen, walk through the steps mentally, and then take each movement slowly but firmly. You have done this, you can do this, and don't let anyone rush you or hubby. I do this every day, several times a day, and I focus on the immediate issue at hand. The pain thing will have to work itself out, with or without pain meds. There is tissue swelling and drainage you can't see that will heal in time, it has to be very painful. Look at what you have already done to help in the past month...after the pain diminishes, movements need to be smooth and followed through...just like you have been doing at work and home. You gotta love that aunt of yours, she is a blessing indeed. Praying for you.

The squares

I woke up in the middle of the night, to the sound of Ron coughing, again and again.  And again.  And again.  I finally got up to offer him ...