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Holiday excitement, long nights and days - Peter Hentges

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January 7th, 2003


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11:48 pm - Holiday excitement, long nights and days
The holidays were exciting for me, in the vein of the Chinese curse.

Ericka's stay in the hospital was brief and largely uneventful. She really likes the nurses at St. John's and while they, like nurses everywhere, check on her frequently enough that she gets very little real rest, they provide top-notch care.

For the reason Ericka was most uncomfortable (the blocked duct or gland in her breast), the provided the standard remedy (hot compresses). This treatment progressed well and she was ready to go home in a day or so.

For the reason they admitted her (her breathing being very bad), they ran a bunch of tests and don't have any real good answers. Both the ER doc and the doc that examined her over the weekend heard a loud heart murmur. Later tests showed a small murmur and an intermittent leak of two of her heart valves. No real reason why this was present, and no spectacular treatment.

So they sent her home with a prescription for oxygen. We now have a oxygen condenser in the house and Ericka can use this for a boost of O2 before any physical exertion. (Most typically, this is when she walks out to her wheelchair before leaving the house.) Also, the oxygen company gave her cylinders of oxygen for use while out of the house or as backup should the power fail.

Overall, this isn't a big change for us. Ericka has been using a CPAP for her sleep apnea for several years so the low droning of small air compressors isn't new to the house. It's a white noise that I actually find easy to sleep to so it doesn't bother me. The one bother is the tubing running from the condenser to Ericka. This is necessary, to avoid her having to cart an O2 tank around with her but seems like a tripping waiting to happen.

So Ericka is doing well on the oxygen. The extra steroids she was on in the hospital to help her breathing are being tapered off. This means that she's getting back to her normal mental state (no more wanting to clean the garage or have me type up her doctoral dissertation on the movie Tremors).

To top off that fun, I came down with an annoying little bug. Sore throats and slight fevers for a bit. With Ericka in the hospital, I used it as further excuse to call in sick to work for a couple of days. That combined with the holidays meant working only one day in the last week. Of course, that day had to be New Year's Eve. Grump. I missed out on what is one of my most enjoyed holidays because my stupid job couldn't figure out that no one on third shift cares about getting New Year's Day off.

Well, things are back to some standard of normal for me. I'm catching up on email and LJ after a week hiatus. A slow night at work so that'll be good for it. More posts likely as topics wander through my head.
Current Mood: stressedstressed

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