I don’t even feel bad anymore for missing work. I was up and drinking coffee Thursday morning just looking at him sleeping. His skin had taken on a grayish hue which isn’t as distinguished as the gray in his hair. Actually, the hair is a hot mess because he hasn’t had the strength to let me take him to his barber to have it shaved off. I can see where it’s thinning already from lying around all day. His current style is all Cosmo Kramer, only without the witty repartee! I was just about to hit the shower when he woke up. I told him I thought I’d go to work at the design center, and he assured me that he’d be ‘fine’. But, he hadn’t convinced me and I couldn’t stop thinking about the day before. He couldn’t have possibly gone from totally helpless to “fine” over night. So I asked him if he was just saying that I should go so I wouldn’t feel guilty. “Yeah, kinda” was the answer I got.
So we always have to play this ‘what if’ game. What if I didn’t go to work and was here all day. Would you feel better or worse. “Better”…so there you are. I didn’t even have to take the game to round 2. I decided to just stand guard from now until Monday when we go to Gainesville to meet with the Bone Marrow Transplant Team. We already lost 2 more weeks because of Steven’s last hospital stay. He’s scheduled to go back into the hospital next Tuesday for the second 4 day round of 24 hour a day chemo. I don’t anticipate him feeling better suited for a 3 hour drive right after that. He’s already pretty low, I can’t imagine what I’ll be getting back when the release him next time. I swear to God, it’s like watching a human science experiment! But I do know that if anything happens to him when he’s home alone, I’ll never forgive myself.
I’m getting pretty nurse-y. I did the sponge bath thing while he was in bed. He’s blacked out and fallen in the bathroom so many times that he’s just afraid of the shower at this point. I moved him around so I could change the sheets, and in the last 2 days I’ve taken charge of his medications so I know he’s taking all the right things at all the right times.
Luckily my team in the design center is covering my work load like champs. I can’t be more grateful that I don’t have to worry about anything there. I get an occasional phone call for back up verification on unclear issues, but for the most part I’m left to concentrate on Steven.
I was planning on staying out of the office on Friday anyway. I didn’t have any clients scheduled and Steven had a blood test on his calendar. I didn’t want another dog escape or doggie medication ransack so I just decided it would be best to do this myself. (See It’s Going to Be Alright) Everything was buttoned up at home and I whisked Steven off in his magic wheelchair to drain off a few vials of blood.
I hadn’t counted on passing Dr. Sprawls in the hall on the way to the test. He took one look at Steven and banished us to the hospital…I don’t know if it was the weakly posture in the chair, the pained look on Steven’s face or the baseball hat and sunglasses with the skin tone that made him look like a stand-in for Weekend at Bernie’s. Whatever it was, we were back in our old stomping grounds of the ER at Wuestoff Hospital within 30 minutes.
Apparently Steven picked up some kind of cootie somewhere. He’d been to the oncology office on Monday and Tuesday and who knows what kind of germ might have been exhaled in the waiting room from one of the caregivers killing time while their ward was getting pumped up with chemo juice. Or he could have just touched something contaminated. My biggest fear, though is that he got something from a dog lick. The nurse in the ER assured us that mouths of dogs are cleaner than human mouths. I don’t really doubt that, however I hadn’t mentioned the doggie part of my last post to her ( A Couple Of Firsts for Me Today! ) No matter how clean a dog kiss may or may not be, I don’t think that goes for a dog mouth that had a dead rat in it! The tests came back and Steven had bacteria in his blood. The doctor always uses special terms for me and what I asked him what that meant he said Steven had shit in his blood. Real shit? He never seriously answered that, however we live with butt lickers, so it’s not out of the question!
We left our house at 10:30 and it was now 4:30 PM. We were still in the ER and a room was imminent, but I knew it would still be way past dark when I arrived home. So I called my sister agin to run over to my house and turn on some lights for the dogs. Between that little issue and the dog excitement of the last week, the conversation just happened between Steven and me…we need to find new homes for the dogs. I’ve been thinking about it on and off for the past couple of months. My plate it full enough with a job that adds an additional 3 hours to each day in my commute, Steven’s inability to care for himself and the household chores that pile up naturally. The dogs have been really putting me over the edge. And the antics of the week have completely defeated me. We agreed not to make any permanent decisions until he was off the pain killers. And then I got a text from my sister. The dogs were fine, she put on some lights…but she found a pill bottle cap and 5 hexagonal shaped pink pills in the staging area. WTF? I cleaned the place like an OCD candidate. Where did they get pills? I never did check the back yard the day of the pill incident…but who would be looking for medication in the outdoor foliage?
Before I changed my mind, I contacted the breeder from whom we adopted Lucy. I texted her the very short version of our sitch, and she has already texted back that she would be happy to take Lucy. I haven’t been able to speak with her yet, because we’ve both been pretty tied up thus far. But I’m hoping that by this afternoon we’ll have the most active of the bunch off to a home who can match her zest for life. Killing me. Can’t even write about it yet. Can’t talk about it without tears, but I know it’s the right thing to do. She is the worst and repeat offender. She can’t help it. She’s only 6 months old and has been spending her days with a sick man who can’t give her the human direction on expected behavior. She’s so smart and so loving that it’s just not fair to her. Crying again…sorry…BRB!
With any luck, this wonderful woman will take them all to find new homes. I just don’t have the time or the strength to do it myself. I cry whenever I think about it. But I know it’s right. When Janet found the pill bottle cap with 5 tablets…I swear it was a sign from God. And then at 3 am last night I was awakened by a crunching noise. Lucy got out of bed, took herself outside to pee and then came back in, took my cheater glasses off my night table and was snacking on them. The third pair this month that she’s destroyed. Thank you God. Her warm cuddly body as I was falling asleep was making me weak and had me reconsidering our decision! Pills & glasses! What the hell is next? When I get home from the hospital today, I’m expecting a doggie party going on with the Animal Planet station blaring on the TV and everyone getting doggie fart drunk on Milk Bones and Rawhide!
So I’m here with Steven, waiting for the doctor to make rounds, watching him sleep and worrying about what is going on at home right now with no human supervision. I had really hoped that a puppy would bring new life to my oldest dog. I had no idea she would bring a whole new idea catalog of “bad dog” hijinks that both of the older ones had grown out of and forgotten. It seems like I have 3 puppies instead of 1. And they are no longer a pack…they are a gang.
It’s really no wonder I drink!
If you want to help me take more time away from work and home caring for Tumor Boy and the Whippet widgetCircus, we’d be so very grateful if you’d visit our Go Fund Me Page. Our insurance has a lot of loopholes for things that aren’t covered, and my job has no loopholes for being able to work from home! And when I say this crew needs me, I’m sure you’ll agree that I’m the glue that holds this crazy group together!
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