Friday, May 26, 2017

Day 7...

Goodness, today will be one week since Denny was admitted to hospital. What a week. Yesterday was his first Chemo. It definitely brought him some anxiety and concern and questions, especially after the oncology coordinator visit.  I know they need to prepare you for the what ifs, but it is down right scary. I think he is second guessing having treatment. Concern about the side effects, how much time does he have how many treatments. The alternative? I made it clear that everything concerning him is decision and his alone. She emphasized that I need to sanitize everything all the time, keep him away from anyone ill, no crowds, and on and on. Did you know there is a procedure for flushing the toilet when on Chemo? Having not dealt with Chemo patients, I had no idea of some of he things we will need to do to keep him safe. We have not a road to walk but a hill to climb and we will do it together. He made me laugh several times yesterday....and it felt good to see and hear his humor. They tell me to rest then come in and wake me. I told him I was going to the restroom and he told me to Toddle along little doggie... The CNA was in before each meal for blood check. She asked if she could take a sample, he rolls his eyes....it was good. In the afternoon he listened to a few NE Patriot player interviews on the tablet. He even tried to watch a movie but in they came several times so that ended that. Are you familiar with the Sherlock Holmes movies with Basil Rathbone ? He kept dismissing me like Sherlock would do to Mrs. Hudson.  A flip of the hand! Oh yes, it was good to see him this way and at the same time see him mentally in his own space. I usually stay until the evening meal. Last evening the CNA brought me a tray. When she left I said --- Oh honey how romantic that we can dine at Chez Boswell...he gave me  that look and rolled his eyes. Glad that day is over and now on to today,  Friday---has all this happened in one week? If all went well last night and today, he will be discharged this weekend. So, when I leave him tonight I will be off to Walmart for a supply of disposable gloves and lots of Clorox wipes. My finger will be crossed for a good day for Denny.  Right now, I think I will try to get a couple hours of nap time. Ooooh I just felt a hug...Thank you!
PS...I guess I should tell him the Doves are at it again...another nest and this time back in the wall planter.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Day 6 on day 6

 It has been an overwhelming day.  Denny called them, " a gang of people". Seems today was the day for all to want to stop in and talk. Oncology Doctor, Oncology Nurse, Cancer Society Navigator, and the IM Doctor....everyone had initials and something to say. Navigator, that was a new title to me. They direct you to the right path or person or agency...okay. The word cancer was said often we found out more about this illness that is taking a toll on my Denny. He finally asked if the chemo was going to fix this ( as in cure) and the doctor quietly said no. After everyone left Denny looked almost defeated and turned to me to say he was nervous and worried about me. How would I manage financially...how this and that. I asked him not to think or worry about that.  Finally it was decided to start chemo tomorrow ( Thursday ) and so up to the Oncology unit from the Cardiac unit he was going. I just got used to remembering he was even on the Cardiac unit. So, after dinner which the doctor finally consented to change to a regular diet, transport was arranged. Craig arrived to find Denny with severe dry heaves and not feeling very well at all. He patiently waited then took us upstairs. They greeted us and I explained that he was not doing well and he  (on cue ) started to dry heave again. Finally he seemed to settle and they came in to do the admissions to the floor. I brought to the RN's attention the rash that now is spreading and very red. Friends, I must say he is not looking well at all. I hated to leave him but I desperately needed to come home to settle myself and let him rest. I really feel scared and I know he is too. His T Cell Lymphoma is Stage 4 and we still await the tests complete results. Tonight sleep will not come easy if at all. My mind and heart are in overload. I know I can count on you to think of us and keep us in your prayers. Maybe, just maybe things will be okay tomorrow........goodnight........

It was day day 5 yesterday...I think

Oh my, I must have been as tired as I thought I was last night. I just woke and the clock said 6:22AM. Today my body aches...I fear it is the chair they call a recliner in the hospital! Long day yesterday. I arrived at 6 AM so I could accompany Denny for the procedure. At 7ish down we went to have the fluid drained and a transfusion for the blood cells. It was still a low count so this was necessary. They also put in the port. They explained all this but still I thought why all this? It was more real seeing this thing that would now become part of him. He did well, all took about one hour and right back to the room. Denny actually ate a little better for lunch and dinner. Did I mention this place is freezing? I swear I am going to be ill from the cold. The temp outside yesterday was 104, and 103 the day before and I emerge from the hospital wearing a sweater which is on all day! I think I am in a fog---just tried to pour milk into my coffee with the cap still on....oh dear, it is going to be another long day. We spoke with one of the doctors just before I left, actually I was already down in the main lobby when my phone rang asking me to return to talk with him. We reviewed the DNR--do not resuscitate policy. Always a pleasant thought. After the doctor left Denny was angry with me, said I asked too many questions. But if I do not ask who will? He does not so I must. One thing is for sure, I am glad of the  medical knowledge ( minimal as it is) I have. Dear DianeD sent me a PM with encouragement and a few questions. She is a long distance life line. All of you are so kind and caring. I know I can reach out and touch you. Right now though, I need to get myself together. The pond fish will be hungry and the plants refuse to drink water by themselves! I have to read my list to remember what I must take with me today once I find it. I think today will have some drama especially if the tests results are ready. it is already Wednesday....it is isn't it. So glad to have you all to talk with. 

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

News from Day 4

Yesterday brought a plan and then a change. Denny and I had a discussion about his tea...that is correct tea. I fixed it with sugar and creamers and he decided that I must have put or added salt! What??! I said it is your taste buds they are off...no it was the salt. The doctor came in and said that they were going ahead with the plan to drain fluid and insert a port for the chemo later in the afternoon. So it was off all flood and liquids to prepare. The port would also be used to draw blood as they were having great difficulty using veins now.  The afternoon passed and at 3:30 the RN said his platelet count was too low for any procedure so it would be on Tuesday for all to take place. She suggested that Denny order from the menu for evening meal and so he did. When it came to fixing the tea, I suggested he do it himself and handed him the sugar packets. After a few sips he said it tasted salty....this time, he did not say salt was added but that maybe I should bring him sugar form home and his English Breakfast tea. Good thing I could not whack him! Getting back to our day, it was a good rest day except for trips to the bathroom. It means unplugging the monitor, untangling the tubes and walking with the rolling pole. I now know how to get it all done ( of course with his supervision ) and then back to bed.  For a short time he was not his sweet self but rather grumpy and short tempered. I gave him "the knock it off" speech and things were much better.  On Sunday I had taken my Thursday Club stitching bag with me...
In the entire day this was all that I did. It is the Words of Affirmation from Donna at By The Bay Needleworks that I usually do when I join in the Thursday group. Everything that I need stays in the tote bag ready to go. Well, the next word on the list...Patient! How appropriate, he is and I need to be. This is where I left off yesterday (Monday)
Much more accomplished. I leave the tote bag there so it is one less thing to remember each morning. So today is an important day moving forward. We should have the rest of the test results and the port going in and possible coming home on Wednesday. If all goes well. We are so lucky to have all of you sending hugs and good thoughts and wishes. Lucky too that the staff are caring and patient and attentive. It is still scary trying to learn more and keeping my list and notes. AI am not sure how Denny will react to having this port but it certainly will eliminate the need to finding veins. Hope too that they switch him to oral meds for the blood clot and not have to inject himself in the abdomen...you know I can not do it. I think I will try to catch a couple of hours more sleep. He asked me to be there before they take him for the procedure which means I will be arriving at 6 AM instead of 8. Your kind words and encouragement keep me going. I feel the hugs and kisses that you have sent.  I will leave you with this
We still hold hands when we walk together and even just because. These two hands rest on a hospital bed.