Tuesday, September 3, 2013

A Week in the Wheel Chair

Sunday, September 1

Wheel chair to master bath routine
accompanied by Ziggy
A week ago hubby has a relapse of not being able to walk. We make some progress by Sunday morning. Hubby can use the walker instead of the wheel chair to come to his "Archie Bunker" spot. No longer does he have to be lifted as he can get up, and take a few steps to get in the wheel chair or use the walker. Basically this has been a week in the wheel chair, however, with sweat pants, the urinal and bathroom adventures for Kenny and myself. I wheel him to the door of the master bathroom and he can get out of the wheel chair and on and off the toilet seat. Dog Ziggy often joins for the ride.

Sally and Jake come over before their church with breakfast biscuits from Burger King. Hubby hardly eats any of this and Jake eats half of his.

That morning we sing "Happy Anniversary" to Sally and Jake. Jake couldn't believe it was his 40th anniversary. I had planned a surprise anniversary party for them, but that party totally fell apart. What a bummer! I told Sally about it and she was pleased at all the effort I had gone to. She is always doing things like this for others and it was her turn to be fussed over for her 40 years with Jake.

"I guess 40 good years is not bad," Sally says to me. We both know that the next years will be very hard. We are going into a new normal. Our anniversary in April hadn't been spectacular as I wrote on this blog. When they have Alzheimer's, every day seems the same to these guys--anniversary or not.

Jake and hubby decide that we four need to go to Stone Mountain again. We all have been there, but not the four of us together. Sally and I say under our breath, In your dreams, guys. Sally and Jake go on to their church.

Our church meets in the afternoon and hubby thinks he will go, but that also turned out to be in his dreams. He is back to forgetting he has knee problems and forgetting he uses the wheel chair or the walker.

I text Kenny that I am going to church without hubby so that maybe he can check on him. The afternoon sermon by our Associate Pastor is awesome. The essence of his sermon is that we will not enter into God's rest before we pass through certain troubles, and we better not complain like the Israelites did! This is our sanctification after faith in Christ by grace alone justifies us believers. This follows my Sunday Daily Audio Bible from Job 42:2, 6, 12.
Then Job answered the LORD and said: "I know that You can do everything, and that no purpose of Your can be withheld from You. . . . Therefore I abhor myself, and repent in dust and ashes." The complaining stopped and then we read Now the LORD blessed the latter days of Job more than his beginning. 
This is my life, folks, and I am blessed each day and cannot complain like Job first did and the Israelites did.

On the way home from church Kenny calls my cell from the hospital where he has been admitted. He has another septic infection. Kenny has planned a sub for himself--his lovely mother Margaret. I tell hubby when I get home that Kenny is back in the hospital and he is motivated to walk better so we can visit Kenny. Oh I can walk, hubby says. He forgets that he hasn't been walking since last Tuesday and has needed the walker or the wheel chair. Even so, every day he does get better.

Sunday night I put a 7.54 pound pork shoulder blade roast (cost $15 at Winn Dixie) in the the crock pot to cook overnight. 

BBQ Pulled Pork and Soup

Monday, Labor Day

Ask me what my Labor Day was like. The short answer is: We had BBQ and I invited guests. In your dreams. 

Labor Day morning before hubby gets up I pull the pork to make the Southern "pulled pork". The fat is so easy to separate.  I pour an 18 oz. jar of Bull's-Eye BBQ Sauce over the shredded pork and stir. With all the fat I could get out of the liquid in the crock pot I started a soup with two diced tomato cans, older vegetables from the refrigerator including that half onion that had been my downfall when I cut my finger. The soup and the BBQ pork all turned out well. 

Note to self: From now on no movies and eating out. Cook what hubby eats at home. Perhaps this is the new normal. Will he be able to walk and go out? 

That morning hubby tries no knee brace, but is wheeled out to his spot in the den with dog Ziggy in his lap riding along through the long hall. On Labor Day Kenny's mother and our goat farmer neighbor Mary are invited for lunch but both cancel. I made Southern Banana Pudding to accompany the pulled pork I made in the crock pot and planned to cook more vegetables had they come.

There are several attempts by my husband to walk. Oh I can walk he pronounces. In your dreams, I think.

I have to go to Staples in Brandon to pick up a set-aside-for-me toner for my home copy machine that will come in handy for my 4 AM lesson plans for the day. Hubby decides he will go with me. Then he realizes again that he can't walk well and it would even be difficult to get into our SUV. However I do manage to get the Staples Labor Day sale on the toner. As usual I call home along the way to check on hubby.

At dinner time on Labor Day hubby wanted to go out to dinner. In his dreams, I thought, but said "sure" if he could get up and shave. He couldn't, so he settled for dinner at home.

Today-- Tuesday, September 3

I take a day off from my long-term sub job for errands. School can keep and there is a sub for the sub. My errands:

1. Back to the endocrinologist for the official word that my thyroid does not have cancer, but will just need monitoring every four months to see if it grows. Furthermore my carotid artery is clear. I loved the informal comment from this doctor:
Endocrinologist in Brandon
You don't need to take expensive pills forever just because some doctor was taken to lunch by a rep! 
This is so true! I had thought that about the pill Aggrenox which I had been taking twice a day for TIAs for ten years but finally challenged because they are so expensive and I really do not believe I have or have ever had mini-strokes. I just need to remember to keep hydrated with water and not coffee. Today's great blood pressure (121/67) and the clear carotid artery confirm my belief. The doctor pointed out that I would need a neurologist to officially confirm no Aggrenox. (I do not want another doctor appointment, folks.)

2. I meet Pharis at Home Depot to purchase supplies he needs for our roof repair. I also purchase a battery and a belt for the riding lawn mower we gave him in exchange for helping us. I get the 12 months interest-free Home Depot rate through September 4th for all the purchases. (Why I need to do this today.)

3. I go to have my finger prints taken again because I flunked the test after I cut my finger. I get there and find out I was supposed to have an appointment since I had checked to see with my employers (I teach occasional classes for DUI offenders) if I needed one. The finger print place gives me the phone number and I book that appointment for Saturday. Saturday for finger prints will work in my busy schedule.

Pray that Kenny gets out of the hospital soon. As I mentioned responsible Kenny had arranged for his delightful mother Margaret to be there for my husband. She comes over today and cheerfully encourages hubby's morning pills (I hadn't been able to get them down hubby this morning). When I get home from my errands, hubby has been eating the lunch she prepared. It is wonderful to have such neighbors.

Shortly after Margaret left, I take over again, wheeling hubby to the bathroom with dog Ziggy on his lap. Back to lesson plans for the special education substitute assignment. You can bet that hubby will want to go out tonight in his dreams. I am making dinner for us. 


  1. So sorry to hear that hubby's knee is a problem again. Things are changing, but I appreciate your scripture reference and excerpt from Pastor G's message. We all have our difficulties, some have more than others but we need to keep perspective from God. We will continue to pray for both of you to be able to adjust and grow in faith as your "new normal" presents itself. ((hugs))

    1. Thanks ever so much for your prayers, Sandy, and virtual {{hugs}}. Yes indeed. Our faith is what sustains us in times like these.

      I never know how what content this blog will contain--serious or humorous. So glad for friends such as you who comment and pray.

      In addition to praying for Kenny, please pray that Pharis will be able to use that lawn mower to bring in more income for his family even after we have bartered for his services.

      I wheeled hubby to the dinner table last night and it felt like as close to a date as we are capable of in our "new normal". Not eating out will help me reign in the budget.

  2. God's strong thread of grace through your life is inspiring Carol! It always gives me hope when I see it .. and read it!

    Love to you!

    1. Thanks, Georgene. I learn so much for you also, my dear social media friend. Contentment and wisdom is so evident in your journey. Glad you blog about it. Praying I can budget like you do.

      Hugs and prayers,

  3. boy did that dredge up memories for me. We did the wheelchair thing for quite a while. Hubby was falling every time he got out of his chair but you know, he'd forget that the wheelchair sitting there was for him so he'd arise out of his chair, start past the wheelchair and fall. tough times.

    1. Oh Latane! You have been through this! Thanks for commenting and letting me interview before. Women such as yourself are such an inspiration to those of us who are coming later.

      Good news! First Baptist Church of Plant City has a "Second Saturday" group of men who help us with home repairs. I am having them real install grab bars in the shower for my husband in the next month or so. Those other SAFER-ER-GRIP Balance Assist we have will not work now for this stage of "The New Normal". He does indeed need a sit-down shower.

      Who has learned from you and appreciates you.

  4. I am glad that you have an official word of no cancer! I will be in prayer for your needs. Your a very hard worker and I know very honoring to God in taking care of your husband...You know something else, reading this also makes me really want some pulled BBQ pork, lol...Love you!

    1. Leah,

      Maybe I can sneak you some BBQ sometime. Love having you read and comment and pray.