January 8, 2022

January 8, 2022

I think there were maybe three good days in all of this, days that made me feel hopeful. This was one of them. It wound up being an only-Facebook/no-big-family-text days, because not much happened that needed to be written down in order to get right.

You don’t even have to try
It comes easy for you
The way you move is so appealing it could make me cry

Go out drivin’ with my friends
In Bobby’s big old beat up car
I’m with a lot of people then, I wonder were you are

Good times, bad times gimme some of that
Good times, bad times gimme some of that

Tim waved hello to us when we came in this morning!

Nurse Chelsea (who is wonderful) says he had a good night, nothing happening; they did take him for an MRI after we left last night but no results yet. We got here at a good time, and they haven’t done rounds yet… so there’s not much to report, but I can always edit later if there is (we’re hoping for a restful day, though, knock on wood).

He’d had those electrodes on for 24-36 hours, so when they took them off, they gave him a little shampoo! This was so cool. Well, I thought so, and everyone I told said it sounded cool. I’m sure he was like “whatever,” hahaha. Tim got a spa day! This little shampoo cap is so cool. It’s in a little packet, like baby wipes. You microwave it for about a minute so that it gets warm (activates the shampoo), put it on, massage the scalp (since the shampoo has been activated by the heat), and then let it sit for about ten minutes. You can use the cooled cap to wipe off the last of the shampoo that doesn’t come off when you massage it a second time (after cooling).

He also really wanted a shave, but that was an ongoing thing for the rest of the time.

What else? We are loved (I forgot to take a picture of the puzzle book that came for Tim a day or two ago, but I’ll try to remember to that tomorrow). Newt and Moya are bonding (!!!). I also let Newt in the bedroom because she cries at night and I didn’t want her to bother Linda, and Tulip is a little salty that Newt discovered and loves the Catio. Oops. Haha. Linda and I are eating well; she’s been getting lunches at the cafeteria and I’ve been bringing things to eat myself (and don’t worry about Lefty, I’m drinking just as much water here as I do at home… I’m glad Tim’s room has a bathroom!).

Hey, I need some advice — I want to do something nice for the nurses here on our floor (it’s the brown wing on the 4th floor of the NeuroMedicine Hospital but I think they call it “floor 47” which makes Shands sound a LOT taller than it really is). ANYWAY. They’ve all been amazing, and I want to do something nice. Not donuts or cookies, something more sort of healthy-adjacent. Could my health care worker friends weigh in? I was thinking either a dozen or so popsicles from Hippo (they’re all fruit popsicles), or maybe ask Titi at Chopstix (I think they’ve reopened from holiday break) for a tray of gyoza and spring rolls??? What is good for nurses on the go, that isn’t just full of sugar and empty calories?

Oh! And I brought in opened, and spread out all the holiday cards. ❤️

Thank you, loves. I couldn’t get through this if I didn’t have all of you listening to me, sending your love to Tim, and making sure I’m taken care of so that I can take care of him. x o x o y’all ❤

That question about what to get the health care workers on the floors really paid off – long time readers will know that, and I’ll get into it later. I wound up putting together a lot of baskets!

I don’t wanna say goodbye
Don’t wanta walk ya to the door
I spent a little time with you, I want a little more

Good times, bad times gimme some of that
Good times, bad times gimme some of that

Then, later that afternoon…

❤️💛🤎 I’m so excited about this I had to give it it’s own post 🤎💛❤️

PT came in for a brief assessment, to see where he is and what his needs are. Not only was he able to swing his legs over the edge of the bed, BUT he was able to sit all the way up, AND he was able to stand! And hug me and his mama!

He will definitely needs weeks of rehab (I’ve got my heart set on Shands’ own UF Health Rehab Hospital) (I’ll add the link in the comments), physical and speech, and this isn’t even taking into account rehab from the open heart surgery (still on track for Monday) but this shows us he is still in there, still working hard to be himself.

Earlier today I was telling him that we’re a team, that it’s okay for him to go as far away as he needs to, as long as he comes back, because I’m not going anywhere, that I love him…. And he was able to get out “I love you too.”

Today is a Good Day.

Part of me wants to look at myself here and say “oh, you sweet summer child.” All that talk about rehab centers. All that talk about what it will take for his recovery, which wouldn’t be much, because we’ve all met Tim and we know how stubborn and determined he is. You might think “stubborn” might imply he wouldn’t want to do any sort of recovery therapy, but throw “determined” in there and you get a guy who won’t be told he can’t do something.

Which is one of the many reasons why it was so hard to watch him keep losing parts of himself. Every time he had another stroke (or group of strokes at the same time), he would never, ever get back to 100%. Every time, he would maybe get back to… 90%. And since, before his heart surgery on the 10th, he had… hell, I’ve lost track… seven? nine strokes? Even on a wonderful day like this when he could stand, mostly put his arms around you, and get “I love you” out… he still wasn’t anywhere near 100%. At this point he was maybe a strong 75%. Yet we still had hope. We had hope that he’d pass through the surgery with flying colors, he’d have his two weeks here to keep him under observation, and then the weeks of intense rehab at a center would bring him back up to maybe 90%, and home care would do the rest.

And, again… the things that were coming between us, the things that we couldn’t see eye-to-eye on but would need to be repaired or compromised or worked through or whatever… none of that mattered right now. What mattered was getting him out of the hospital. Then it mattered that we would get him back up to strength. Then, after all that, we’d work things out. Later. It could wait. This was more pressing.

And baby really, I don’t have to
I don’t have to go anywhere right now
You want some more, you want some more of this
Anywhere, were ever you want baby, just,
Say it

Good times, bad times gimme some of that
Good times, bad times gimme some of that

I want those good, good, good times
And got those bad, bad, bad times
I want those good, good, good, good times
Gimme some of that

Lyrics by Edie Brickell
Good Times

2 thoughts on “0

  1. That part about Tim losing bits that he never quite got back after a stroke or series of little strokes really resonated with me. My dad broke a hip at 83, got disoriented in the hospital and fell and broke the other damn hip and his elbow, and between all the medications they gave him for the various things, he started having little mini strokes. I would see him sitting slouched to one side and drooling of of that side of his mouth and tell him to sit up straight, and he’d tell me he was sitting up straight. Then there was the day he tried to call his sister on the TV remote. He got very upset with me telling him that was not possible, he “durn sure could.” So I told him to call her. Fingers hovered over the remote buttons and then he tossed it down and said, “sometimes it don’t work!” Every little stroke or group of strokes took some of him away, and each time not all of him would come back. Oddly, the Sunday before he had a massive brain bleed and died, he was alert and more himself than he had been in years. Took him three years to die, but I believe that all the anesthesia for the surgeries for hip, hip, elbow, hydrocephaly (yeah, not sure if that was there already or from the hospital fall) was the beginning of the end for him. Hard to lose someone by bits and pieces, harder still when it was a relatively young fella like your precious Tim. So I get the bits and pieces loss. I get the “things are looking up, we’re making progress” and then the crash back to the new reality. Life is fucking cruel. But we pick ourselves up and we go on, and we learn to temper our grief with memories of all the good times and funny things. So when I see “professional” wrestling on TV, I remember laughing at my dad yelling at the TV because by golly, it was “real!” When I hear myself laughing that Muttley laugh that I got from him, it makes me laugh harder because he would start and then I would laugh at him laughing and start, and he would laugh harder…and off we’d go. Every time I make a dish that he loved, hear a song that he liked, there’s some good stuff going on in my head and my heart. So life goes on and we cherish the memories. I love that you are writing it all down, no matter how painful it might be, because those are precious memories, too. The people who helped you and Tim, who brought you food or took you out, who came to visit, who sent you stuff to do or to make you laugh, all good memories in a bad time. The pain of loss will get more dulled as time goes by, and the sweetness of the memories will get more intense. You go, girl. You go.

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