Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Accidents, Good Neighbors, and Caregiving

Good Neighbors

Sunday morning while I was a home recovering from a bad cold, my husband had gone to church. About the time I was expecting him to come home, my doorbell rang. I wasn't going to answer because I was still in my robe and PJ's, and I figured it wasn't someone I knew or wanted to talk to, but I asked through the door who it was. "Your neighbor. Your husband fell outside." 

I ran out to see him flat on his back with blood on his face, surrounded by my closest neighbors who had already called 911. I hadn't heard his cries for help. The neighbors stayed with him while I ran in to get dressed to go to the hospital. He landed here at Twin Cities hospital while I was driving  over. 

The Emergency Room at Twin Cities Hospital

This is the first time either of us had ever taken the ambulance ride to Twin Cities. I wrote about our updated emergency room there in another post,  and I've also written about some of our other visits. Sunday I was more concerned about provisions and reading materials, should they be needed, so I didn't take my camera along. I knew my husband would need me there. And I knew he'd be hungry and need a snack for strength before the trip home.

By the time I arrived he was in a bed and someone was X-raying his arm. They had determined that nothing was broken. The blood on his face came from the glasses he was wearing, though, fortunately, they didn't break. They must have torn the bridge of his nose when they fell off. His cheeks and knee also had some scrapes. He had fallen on his right side. 

They finally determined he had injured the rotator cuff on his right arm. They put the arm in a sling, gave him some Norco, and sent him home with me. By the time we got home he was dizzy from the Norco, so I went across the street and two neighbor men from that house came and helped me get Hubby from the car to the house. 

Learning to Be a Caregiver

There was a reason I never became a nurse. I empathize too much with people in pain, and often have passed out when I see people in pain. I hope I've gotten over that, but I still leave the room rather than watch blood being drawn or bandages yanked off, etc., if there's nothing I can do to help. 

I never was a mother to a baby or toddler. My youngest child came to us when he was five. So learning to help put on and take off four layers of clothes (undershirt, long-sleeved shirt, and two pullover sweaters) hasn't been easy. Today during Hubby's cataract surgery, a nurse taught me a trick to make it easier. The pain level has subsided a bit, but both of us are frustrated when he can't do normal everyday activities without a bit of help. I don't mind helping, but first I have to watch him try to do something himself before he will let me help. He doesn't like my having to help him do what he normally does himself. 

I'm still not quite over my cold, and all the early hours of getting him to medical appointments and the extra workload have left me more exhausted than usual. I noticed today that either a root canal or a dental implant may be failing. The tooth hurts, but I can't remember whether it's an implant or root canal. That could be contributing to my tiredness. 

In any case, the added daytime responsibilities and night exhaustion are preventing me from blogging or doing much social networking. Sleep seems more important now. 

There are still unsolved medical issues, like what is causing my husband to suddenly lose his balance. Sunday morning he thought he had tripped while taking a can to the curb, but the night before he got off-balance in the kitchen for no reason at all. All this will mean more medical appointments and I don't really want him to drive himself until we find out why he's losing his balance or getting light-headed. We've decided it's best to stay home than to travel to be with family over the holidays. 

I'm hoping to get back to more regular blogging by New Year's Day. 

Meanwhile, Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays to all, whatever and wherever you are celebrating. 

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