Day 6 Update

Apologies for not posting this update yesterday. The day was a whirlwind, and I fell asleep with a dog in my lap when I sat down to write a post:

The Traveling Sisters Care Team has been a Godsend. They have taken over snacks and meals, and are providing general entertainment. Some of the meal selections from the past couple of days:

Lou hasn’t wanted much to eat and he requested pasta for dinner. He didn’t request hamburger stroganoff; that was a belated birthday gift to me. The peas, however, are Lou’s favorite.

There is a story with that last photo. We are all so focused on taking care of Lou’s every need, we forgot to feed him lunch yesterday!!! I was actually on lunch duty, since the TSCT was doing grocery shopping and more. I was rushing trying to assist Lou and get to my afternoon physical therapy appointment. I got home at 3:30 and realized he hadn’t eaten anything. So I whipped up a gourmet charcuterie board, except it had no charcuterie and came in a paper bowl. (To be fair, he doesn’t always want lunch …but he might have been feeling abandoned for a few hours.)

After serving lunch, I left the TSCT in charge and booked it back to town. I had to go into the walk-in clinic for a lab test and a prescription. This is the first time we have used the urgent care/ walk-in clinic, and it was convenient and a good option for the future. The Sisters made a delicious dinner, hamburger stroganoff, as a belated birthday dinner for me – yum!

I am saving this very special gift for when the TSCT leaves and I am on my own. This most thoughtful and helpful gift came from Louie in Florida. He thought this might be helpful to both me and Lou ❤️

This does bring up another point – I am plotting how we can keep the TSCT in residence for a few more weeks. I have not ruled out kidnapping.

Here are a few more photos from the day – click for larger pics:

The last photo is the family enjoying dinner together. Lou is sitting up. I stuck my foot up so you would know I was there.

I skipped right past Father’s Day … the girls had cards and gifts for Dad, and it was nice they could be here to celebrate the day. Stitch and Natasha did not want to be left out:

And yes! The missing luggage did arrive on Monday, so crisis averted. It is now Tuesday morning in real time (as opposed to blog update time). Lou has been up once and is now resting before breakfast. He is supposed to get visits today from both an Occupational Therapist and a Physical Therapist. I have a golf tournament so will be gone for the afternoon, but I am quite sure the TSCT will manage everything just perfectly.

I leave you with this pretty view from this morning:

Day 5 Quick Update

The Traveling Sisters Care Team finally arrived in Maine! They spent Friday night in a hotel in Washington DC. On Saturday morning, they had breakfast and made a short visit to the Smithsonian before going to the airport for their 1pm flight.

Once on the plane, there was some concern about whether it would actually leave. A somewhat disgruntled pilot arrived and there was more delay. They finally took off and arrived in Bangor at 3:20pm. Then began the real fun, as they got to play the “Where oh where is my luggage game.” Turns out, there was not one single piece of luggage on their plane, and it was filled with passengers from the previous night’s cancelled flight. Apparently 14 hours was not enough time to organize baggage.

The most important outcome of the day – the Traveling Sisters Care Team arrived safely, and we (especially me 😂😂😂) were delighted to see them both. They looked a little worse for wear upon arrival, but soon sorted that with a visit to the spa and some pizza.

Zombies arrive in Maine

They still don’t have their luggage. After hours of frustration trying to contact American Airlines, they have finally been told it will be delivered today. Our advice – don’t fly cross-country right now unless you absolutely have to. The personnel situation at the airlines is a total mess. We thank the Traveling Sisters Care Team for making this sacrifice to help us out for a week.

As for the patient, no news is good news. He is doing well, and not complaining about anything except our stupid mattress. Tomorrow we have an Occupational Therapist coming to tell us how to prepare the house for his recovery and rehab. LOL- might have been nice to have that conversation last week. Physical therapy comes again on Tuesday.

That is all we have for this morning. Will update later if anything exciting happens. And Happy Father’s Day! We will have a little celebration sometime today.

Stay Safe !!!

Day 4

I was hoping to announce the arrival of the Traveling Sisters Care Team, due in from California. But, their plane was cancelled last night and they have spent the night in DC. Hopefully their new flight is not cancelled, and they should arrive this afternoon.

Fortunately, Beth and Catherine are traveling together, so they can entertain each other. And yesterday was Catherine’s Birthday. We plan to celebrate it all week, once they get here. Here they are at the start of their journey yesterday.

Their plan today was to go out to breakfast and visit a museum before going to the airport.

We finished yesterday’s story with us arriving home and Lou trekking up the stairs to the bedroom. Things have gone reasonably well, although getting comfortable in the bed is sometimes difficult:

Stitch was disappointed he could not lay his head on Lou’s chest, so he took over the ottoman for the night.

Lou had a visit from the Homecare Physical Therapy group yesterday morning. Renee was quite helpful and also checked his bandage. She got him up and moving around, and gave him some exercises to keep the leg from getting too stiff.

The hardest part about this right now is Lou getting up from a sleeping position, then standing up. I try to hold his leg and keep it fairly straight while he turns off the bed. Then it is difficult for him to find a good place to leverage his weight as he pulls himself up. I imagine this will get easier as the days go by.

Looking good

It has been hard to get him to eat. I am sure that is not a reflection on my abilities in the kitchen. I made him a ham and cheese sandwich last night. Maybe it didn’t look exactly like this one, but I did toast the bread and put lettuce and tomato on it.

We slept reasonably well last night. At least I did. I was sound asleep at 4am when Lou woke me because he thought the dogs were into something. They seemed to be sleeping, but that was the end for me. I had already enjoyed a deep sleep so it was all good.

Lou has been up and got dressed. His knee pain is higher today, as they said it would be. The pain med they infuse into the knee is gone now, so he has to take his pain meds and also do his exercises. Since the TSCT did not arrive yet, I had to come up with breakfast. I went with a staple, English muffin with peanut butter and raspberry jam. The strawberries were a nice added touch 😉. And notice the real plate.

It is almost 11am, and I think the patient is napping. I expect he will be texting shortly to get out of bed. Check in tomorrow for more adventures.

Almost forgot, we woke up to a beautiful morning. Just got a note from Kathy, and she commented how the rain we have been getting is really making everything grow. And it is so green, as you can see here:

Stay Safe !!!

Dad’s Home!!!

Picking up where I left off yesterday – I had a few texts from Lou during the night which indicated he was doing OK. This one came in after breakfast:

“Breakfast was a serving of canned pears and reconstituted powdered scrambled eggs that would suck the moisture out of the sahara desert.”

Text from Lou

This is vintage Lou. I have to dock him a point for not including a photo.

This one was encouraging:

“PT went well… went up and down 6-7 stairs; did walking with walker… getting iced down… they might give pain pill before we go…”

Text from Lou

I dropped the dogs off at the groomers, and continued on to Bangor. Thank you, Teresa for picking up the dogs and getting them safely home. I hope they did not scam you out of another stop at McDonald’s.

I arrived at the hospital at about 11am, and was able to go right to Lou’s room. Masks are required, and they still ask the Covid questions, but visiting procedures are back to normal.

He had a nice single room on the surgical orthopedic ward, with a fancy bed right out of Star Wars.

By the time I had arrived, he was just waiting for discharge papers and instructions. This part took a while … a rather long while. They brought him lunch. Fortunately, I was there to capture this beef stew for eternity (he did not eat his lunch – nothing wrong with it, he just wasn’t hungry.).

We had to wait almost 3 hours for discharge. Apparently, the charge nurse does discharge, and she was tied up giving an emergency blood transfusion. Perhaps they need a Plan B, but it all worked out.

Getting him out to the car was fun, and getting him into the car was even more fun. He first tried getting in the back seat so he could keep the leg straight:

The seat was just a little high and not quite wide enough:

The security guard suggested loading him in the back like a sack of potatoes. Lou did not think rolling around for an hour sounded like much fun.

With no other option, we put the front passenger seat back as far as it could go. He was able to get up on the seat. The question was – would he be able to bend the new leg enough to get it into the car? Credit to Lou, he persevered and got the leg in with an inch to spare. It had to be painful.

We then had to stop at Hannaford by the hospital for prescriptions. Amazingly, they were ready, and I was in and out in 10 minutes. I received some serious navigational assistance leaving the parking lot, and I braced for a long ride home.

Lou: “You were supposed to turn left. Can’t you see the arrow?”
Me: “It looked like it wanted me to go right. I can’t see it very well because of the sun.”
Lou: “Well just turn the damn GPS off if you aren’t going to use it.”
Me: “Don’t you need to take a nap or something?”

Actual conversation 6/16/22

After an hour’s drive through mostly fields of green, we arrived home.

Our friend Roland was there to help us. Roland is a volunteer fireman, soon to add EMT to his list of accomplishments. He helped us a few years ago when Lou had his first knee surgery. We greatly appreciate Roland’s help, especially since our arrival time was so uncertain.

Getting out of the car was smoother than getting in, and Lou was able to bend his leg just enough to get his foot out the door.

After a little rest, Lou headed up the steps into the house, and then tackled the stairs to the upstairs master bedroom. He did very well, with some support from Roland:

We will leave this adventure here, and pick up tomorrow. Check in to see if we all survived the night.

Stay Safe !

Update on Lou

Surgery went well. Lou will spend tonight in the hospital and come home tomorrow. It was a long day, but glad the surgery is done. He could have come home this evening, but his recovery nurse and I decided it was better for him to stay there tonight while he adjusts to moving around on his new bionic leg.

Here are a few snaps from the day. You can see, they got him up a few hours after surgery. The tiny physical therapist wasn’t much bigger than his leg!

Just got a text from him, and he is in a room and had some soup for dinner. I came home to relieve Teresa of dog duty. I will pick him up sometime tomorrow.

He was one of the last patients to be operated on today, and it was after 6pm when they came to get me to go see him. By this time, I was the only one left on the waiting room…

Stay Safe!

Today is the Day

Thinking good thoughts as we prepare to take off for Bangor. Lou’s knee replacement surgery is scheduled for 12:40pm, and we need to get him there by 10:30am. It was nice not to have to get up at the crack of dawn. I will update this evening.

I did not take this photo. I saw it online. I would retire from photography if I ever captured a photo this good! (I am searching for the photo again, so I can credit the photographer.

Stay Safe!