Friday, October 05, 2007

On the road to recovery

Well, it's Friday and hubby is just now starting to get around on crutches. This has been a long, hard week. He has been in so much pain and then keeps getting sick form the pain meds. He finally made it down the stairs today, so I call that great progress.

Me...I've lost 10 pounds running up and down stairs all week long! LOL!

My sis and her hubby are coming tonight to spend 2 nights. I think it will be good. A diversion. Hubby is getting just a bit of cabin fever and quite bored with himself. My brother-in-law will be great entertainment and my sister and I are going shopping tomorrow. So good to have sisters who will help out!

I'm definitely gaining muscle in my calves and thighs! I also did 10 minutes on the stairstepper this morning (now why did I do that?) and 15 minutes on the stationary bike. Trying to increase my activitiy.

So looking forward to a great weekend!


Wednesday, October 03, 2007

143 days of my healthy ways!

I haven't posted this in awhile...but I'm still on track. This is 143 days of no sugar, no soda and no red meat for me.

Each day I prove to myself that he could do this...if he would only change how he eats. I am doing my part to set the example....he is just not following.

I am also trying to cut out white flour and potatoes....but that is a much slower transition. I have cut way, way back....but not 100% yet. It's a goal. And it's good to have goals!

I used to eat whole bags of tootsie rolls while designing in my studio. I used to eat dessert with every meal. I used to snack on hostess twinkies.

So if I can do this....completely and totally cut all sugar and sweets out of my life....then anyone can do it! And yeah....I'm not even eating things that are "legal" angel food cake! If it falls in the category of's gone! That includes sugar free pudding, sugar free candies..all of it!

I've also give up nutri sweet, splenda...all of those. I use stevia if I need anything. But I'm learning to live my life without anything sweet.

Anyone want to join me on this journey of setting an example for the diabetic in their life? And yes...I'm still losing weight! An added bonus!


Diabetics in Denial on Oprah.

Buried down on 9/24 is this comment:

Anonymous said...
this might be of interest...

Well, of course I checked out the link and I'm thrilled to see that she might be having a show on this topic, so I urge anyone who reads this blog to check out the link and submit.

Did I submit? Yes. With the condition that only my blog be referenced and that it be kept confidential. I can't fathom the retribution I would receive if hubby found out I'm writing about his personal life. But I can't fathom my blood pressure if I didn't get this out of my system by writing about it!

I believe that Oprah does a wonderful job of educating the American public on a wide variety of topics. But this one is too sensitive for me. I live in this world of denial 24/7. I can't go on a show and talk to the world about it and then come home and live with it. And having him go on the show is not going to get him out of his denial. That has to come from within can't be forced. And I have to continue to live with him.

My question today has been this, "Is his denial a form of abuse to me?" Oh dear....that's more than I can think of while we are recovering from foot I will ponder my thoughts on that another day.

Today has been difficult. He got so ill from the Vicadin and I have a total gag reaction to that. He did get the pain meds switched around...but I have run up and down the stairs, fetching things and doing things for him so much that I am truly starting to get irritated tonight. I just can't do this. And this is only day 2. I took his dinner up to him and had just returned to start mine when he yelled down and wanted me to come take his trash and the extra chicken breast that he did not eat. I simply asked, "can it wait until I finish eating?" I just had to wonder....does he think I don't need nourishment to run up and down the stairs? LOL!

I'm not young. I have lived enough years to be retired. I never dreamed I would spend my retirement as a caregiver. When you are just don't think about things like that.

I don't know how caregivers do this day in and day out. I just don't know. I noticed that I need to change the sheets on the bed and he has already called down for my next trip upstairs. I tried to go to my studio in the basement earlier...he called me on the cell phone. If I didn't think that was hilarious...I'd probably just sit down and cry!

Well, my doctor did tell me that she wanted me to increase my activity level....I think she will be happy! LOLOL!

Fortunately, my "other" life as an artist has had some excellent, wonderful, fabulous news in the past 48 hours. That is what sustains me through the dark side of my life....the light that comes from creating art that is getting seen around the world. Perhaps the darker this side grows, the more powerful my art is becoming. More thoughts for me to ponder another day when I have more energy to think!!


Planning for kidney failure

Can one plan for that? Well, I am starting to think so. Hubby has had a terrible reaction to the pain meds and been sick to his stomach since about 3 am. I can't begin to count the number of times I have been up and down stairs...getting things that he needs. And that got me to thinking about our future and what we are going to need in order for me to continue to care for him at home. Because I know that in the future, I won't be able to do this.

1. A one level house with at least 2 bedrooms. One for him and one for me. He took up the entire king size bed with his foot last night. No way we could share a bed when he is home from a surgery and since this is the 3rd time they've cut out gout...I can only imagine it's just the beginning.

2. Deep sink near the bedroom to rinse out pans and such. You just can't rinse stuff in a normal bathroom sink.

3. He needs his own bathroom. Today, we have meds spread out all over the bathroom sink counter, all over every available inch of dresser and nightstand top. I sort of feel like it's turned into a mini hospital room....and that's just not conducive to rest for me.

4. An extra wide garage so he can get in and out of the car. Or perhaps just one vehicle in a 2 car garage.

5. A residence that is close to carry-out or delivery, including a grocery store that delivers. He is just not able to go anywhere at the moment. As long as I'm here, I can run errands. But let's just say that I had a family emergency and had to leave...we need to have ammenities available nearby.

6. It hit me today that I need to find a courier service of some type for prescriptions. If I'm not here, someone needs to come get his insurance card, and then go get the RX and bring it back. The pain meds have made him so sick that he needs a new Rx.

7. A toilet located closer to the bed. Interestingly, in our bedroom, you walk down a hall, past 2 closets, past the shower and then you get to the toilet. Never gave that much thought until today.

8. Refrigerator and microwave inside the bedroom! LOL! Well....closer than down a flight of stairs and through 2 rooms. I need to research ADA houses next.

9. Trash can that slides out from under the bed with a remote control device. Seriously! This guy can't toss trass 2 feet!

10. A mini bar next to my bed because I'm going to start drinking if he doesn't get all well real soon! :o)

DW - trying desparately to find an ounce of humor today.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007


I do love the nurses and doctors at our hospital! We had him laughing right up til the moment they wheeled him into surgery. Of course, they do not take photos I jokingly said that I would, whipped out my iphone...and have several of his foot.

Truthfully? I am shocked they are continuing on with the operation. His foot healed up this week at sea level...and there is nothing but a tiny little bump. It looks better than it ever has. Yet they are still going to operate. With the warning that it may not do a bit of good.

They were talking about his DNR. Neither one of us wants to end up on life support at any phase of our life. But we were informed that now adays, they suspend DNRs during surgery because levels can fall so low...but they can bring you back so quick. The DNR only becomes effective once the patient leaves post-op. Wow! I did not know that!!! 15 years ago, my dad went into surgery with a DNR that they did not honor. He had 2 heart attacks on the table....and when they brought him back...he remained on life support for the next 6 weeks until we were able to hire attorneys to force the DNR into effect. I just don't ever want to go through that again. Yet at the same time...I have learned the power of attorneys when it comes to a DNR.

I do love the thoroughness of this hospital. But I don't like the new numbering system. The patient is given a number. It goes up on an electronic board. I sit here and watch as his number changes colors as he goes through the phases of surgery. Right now, he is in the operating room and scheduled to come out to post op at 1:30 pm. Then he turns a different color (ok...the number on the board turns a different color...NOT him! LOL) My biggest problem...the numbers on the board are too small for my eyes to see! I have to squint my eyes and step backwards and forwards until I can get to where I can see what it says....readers just don't help for a digital screen about 12' up on the wall!

So, here I sit in the surgery waiting room. There must be 30 people in here. Not quiet...quite noisy in fact. I'm alone...except for my laptop that keeps me connected to the outside world. And I'm looking around me wondering just how many other relatives and friends are sitting here waiting because the patient is a person who will not take care of their own health.

The good thing in all of this is that I am more and more determined to take better and better care of me. I do not ever want to be at the point where I am having surgery for something that I could have prevented. It's just not worth it!

On the other hand..I'm sitthing here with his wallet...all of his credit cards...perhaps I should go shopping online! LOLOL!!!

DW - needs to find her own humor in all of this!

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Would someone ask me what "I" need?

Kim posted on my 9/25 blog:

"I am so ready for someone to ask me about my needs.Instead I am making sure he has....." and my heart just skipped a beat. I think this must be the cry of just about every spouse of a non-compliant diabetic that I've met. We just want someone (anyone) to ask us what we need....while we spend our waking moments providing for the needs of our diabetic spouse.

That got me to thinking. The less my personal needs are met because I am spending so much time taking care of him...the more I am going to NEED to have my needs met in order to survive. It truly is a catch 22 situation...a no-win place that I really don't want to be.

Hubby joked this week that someone told him his "lifeline" on the palm of his hand is that he will live to be age 90. I quietly said, "you will be blessed to live to age 60". To which he replied "You can live a long time on machines!"

OK, so I KNOW that he was just joking....but there was an element in what he said that put the fear of I-don't-know what in my deepest soul! I can't fathom being his caregiver for years and years and years on end if he thinks he is going to survive that long on dialysis. I met someone just this week who knows someone else who has been on dialysis for 40 years. I'm telling myself right here and now...I will not live like that.

Imagine...3 hours....every other day....YES!!! I FEEL SORRY FOR THE PERSON HOOKED UP.....but WHO take care of their caregiver? I'm starting to think this has nothing to do with has to do with survival. And IF I determine that I cannot survive as his caregiver...then I will leave.

But what about a spouse who has young kids at home? Do you walk out? Once again, I'm referring only to a diabetic who intentionally and knowingly makes a choice to NOT take care of themselves.

Lets face it. My husband came on a 10 day trip and did NOT bring his testing kit. He doesn't know if he is high or low. He QUIT giving himself his 6 pm shot of insulin because he doesn't like taking 3 shots a day. He has probably had some type of beef at least once a day on this trip....when he knows his uric acid levels are sky high. He has made these decisions.....and then he thinks I'm going to stick around and be here for him when he can't walk? When they amputate his feet? When he has to go on dialysis?

If he did ever ask me "What do you need?" I would simply state, "A husband who loves me enough to take care of himself."

I doubt I have much to worry about...I doubt he will ever ask. But there is great comfort knowing there are other spouses out there who, like me, would just like him to ask, just once.

Thanks Kim! By the way, what do you need?