Saturday, February 19, 2011

The wonder of "room air"

It’s been quite a week. From Bob’s first day home until today we’ve been on a roller coaster ride. He was very weak at first and experienced shortness of breath just walking on his crutches from his bed to the bathroom – a few feet away. But by the time he went to his cardiologist on Tuesday, his second day home, he was like another person – with it, no shortness of breath, and moving quite agilely on either his walker or crutches. And when his doc concluded, after an EKG, chest x-rays, and a controlled test of Bob breathing “room air,” that Bob no longer needed oxygen, Bob’s attitude and mood changed in a flash. By the time we got home he was ready to go back to using his scooter to avoid the wrist and underarm discomfort he felt with the crutches. No more worry over oxygen tubing gave him the confidence.

We both began to feel so confident about his health and mood that we talked again about attending a family wedding in San Diego – a two-hour drive away – this weekend. But we would go only for one night, the night of the wedding, and miss the planned festivities for tonight.

I even took his tux to the cleaners and asked the owner to undo the right pants seam about ten inches from the bottom so he could get his big foot into the pants.

However, yesterday he began complaining about pain, the first time all week. He had been controlling it with Advil every 24 hours so he knew this pain was different. We got an emergency appointment with his foot surgeon who agreed there was something to this new unusual pain – we had done the right thing by coming in. When he took off the bandages and dressing he found a slight infection in one of the two incisions he has in his foot. So now Bob is on two antibiotics and a pain medication.

And 24 hours later he is feeling much better.

We still think we’ll go ahead to San Diego, but we'll make a final decision tomorrow morning. I’ll hate to miss it – I have a new dress for the formal occasion, but it wouldn’t be the first or last thing I’ll have missed in my life.

I must say thanks to all the help we received this week. My friend Marlene brought in lunch and took us to the cardiologist on Tuesday, my niece Dara took care of him so I could go to my own medical appointment on Wednesday, Ben came over countless times and helped his dad take his showers, our massage wonder-woman brought over her table and gave us both massages last evening, and she and her mate are bringing us dinner tonight. Plus we had two visits from home heath nurses and a physical therapist. It’s been a hectic and heartwarming week. We are very blessed even in light of this bumpy time in our lives.

I left Bob for a short while this morning to walk downtown Manhattan Beach to the grocery store, and I couldn’t resist taking a look at my ocean while I was out. It rained heavily last night, and the sky threatened more rain today even though the sun was bright and warm. I never tire of taking photos of my beach – it is just one more blessing in my life.

Saturday morning about 9:00 am


Angie Ledbetter said...

Your attitude is as beautiful as your beach view!

Barb said...

That sky looks like it's washing away pain, Madeline. I hope your husband feels better soon. I was in Manhattan Beach just after 9/11 to celebrate the life of our young friend who died in the terrorist attacks. I remember it being a very beautiful place.