It’s been a week of ups and downs. Each time I turned my mind to comparing what we were going through with the characters in With Malice toward One, some new part of my husband’s convalescence tugged at my attention.
He continued to recuperate in hospital, and on Tuesday had a picc-line inserted in his left upper arm. This would make blood drawing and, ultimately, ongoing chemo-therapy doses, easier to accomplish than repeatedly inserting an IV needle anew.
His discharge was scheduled for yesterday, Wednesday, along with nursing visits to attach further antibiotics to his picc-line and to check the bilial stent, which continued to drain externally.
But early yesterday morning he grew dizzy upon standing, very logically sat on the floor in his hospital room in case he would pass out, and fainted. He was running a fever and he was sent back to ICU.
In ICU, his doctors told me his white count was up considerably, consistent with a new infection, and that x-rays showed his colon was irritated and his intestines bloated. Why, then, I asked, did they continue to drain the biliary stent externally when the intestines needed bile and pancreatic enzymes to perform properly? The answer was that the external drainage continued while the fluids continued to be checked for infection. They were trying to identify and curb any possible origin of bacteria.
At home, while I’m running the AC for our dogs and for myself when I drag myself inside after visits and grocery runs, the dogs are beginning to show some stress. We’ve had “accidents” that normally would not occur since they’re not left alone for more than 3-4 hours without someone taking them out. They seldom leave me alone at home, following me from room to room, (even now my Weim Dash and his Westie brother Hamish are lying on my feet and Westie Sophie is begging to be held), and yesterday Hamish did the unthinkable. He lifted his leg on the corner of my bed–which is his bed too–and was promptly put in his crate on punishment. He looked as astonished as I did, I’m sure, at his action.
I admit the heat has taken its toll on all of us. My temper is much shorter than usual, and without my usual time to escape reality by writing, I’m not handling things well, as rational as I try to be. My husband, too, contributes to my stress. I can handle his medical needs, but–and I’m ashamed to admit this but promised to be honest throughout this experience–he hates hospital food and treats me like the local take out delivery service. Each day I have a list of things he’d like to eat and which I’m to furnish. Add the cost of these things–Italian, American, Chinese take outs, ices, ice cream, etc.–to the cost of daily parking, and his hospital stay easily costs an additional $200 a week out of pocket. LOL Oh, well, it’s only money, but I do feel small even noting it.
All that aside, I’m glad he’s still in hospital. It’s certainly better than having him come home and then have to go back.
Random thought here: Don’t ask me how the mind works, but yesterday as I sat in his ICU room waiting for updates, I remembered I had to call the TV/Phone providers to cancel the TV in his telemetry room on the fourth floor.
Not so random thought here: Still no chemo or radiation.
And yes, I still owe some comparison with characters. Sorry. Must head off on my hospital run.
Tough, tough times. I wish there was a way to ease it but, I suppose, there is no way but through. Pups are very intuitive. I’m sure their behaviour is as much a response to your emotional turmoil as it is to disrupted routines. I’m glad you have them to hold.