February 3, 2022

February 3, 2022

Things were starting to look better, a little, here. At least if Seagull Case Worker would stay off my ass, and not scare me. I even had time to fire the kiln the day before, which meant I opened it this day… of course, I was barely working so some of this stuff has only recently gone up on HaldeCraft. My god. That’s a lag, yeah? Made in February, goes up for sale in October? Well, at least it’s all up now, or already has been.

You felt like springtime on this February morning
In a courtyard, birds were singing your praise
I’m still recalling things you said
To make me feel all right
I carry them with me today

I’ll start off with the quick note to family.

Looks like our nurse today is the one nurse we had one day who’s the only one I didn’t really care for, and she scurried out of the room pretty much as soon as I got here. Tim gave me a wave (left-handed, even!) and a thumbs-up when I asked him how his night was, and now he’s fallen back to sleep (or he’s pretending to be asleep because he doesn’t care for her either… she is the one who gave up on getting blood from him after a good 15 minutes and went to go find another nurse who’d worked there longer and was ‘better at finding hard veins’). Ah, Nurse Megan is getting the chair ready, so PT might be about to come in and set Tim up for a while. Ah, yes; she’s explaining to Tim that they’re going to sit him up in the chair so they can brush his teeth, wash his hair, and get him some out-of-bed time. OK, I just asked her flat out what the plan was for the day and she said she has no idea, she was giving Tim meds while they were doing rounds so she didn’t get out there, but she’ll check with the doctor after they get Tim moved and cleaned up. I feel like it’s going to be a long day. I hope the Seagull Case Worker doesn’t fly in today, that would really top off the negative vibe in the room today.

After this, I just have one note to myself…

Staphylococcus lugdunensis

The ID people came in, and they’d finally gotten to the bottom of what started Tim’s Endocarditis. Well, what bugs started it – not how it started, that we didn’t know then. And still don’t know.

I think I’ve said this before, but Tim held my hand during this whole three month ordeal more than he had in the twenty years we were together. He wasn’t a toucher, wasn’t a snuggler. Didn’t like to cuddle or hold hands or even sit together on the couch while watching TV. We got it all in, though, in those three months.

Now as I lay me down to sleep
This I pray
That you will hold me dear
Though I’m far away
I’ll whisper your name
Into the sky
And I will wake up happy

I wonder why
I feel so high
Though I am not above the sorrow
Heavy-hearted ’til you call my name
And it sounds like church bells
Or the whistle of a train on a Summer evening
I want to meet you barefoot, barely breathing

OK; now on to what I wrote that day on Caring Bridge.

Looks like we’re having a slow morning…. our nurse today is the one nurse we had one day who’s the only one I didn’t really care for, and she scurried out of the room pretty much as soon as I got here.

Tim did give me a wave (left-handed, even!) when I came in, and a thumbs-up when I asked him how his night was, and now he’s fallen back to sleep (or he’s pretending to be asleep because he doesn’t care for her either… she is the one who gave up on getting blood from him after a good 15 minutes and went to go find another nurse who’d worked there longer and was ‘better at finding hard veins’).

The nurse and a PT got Tim up in the chair so they can brush his teeth, wash his hair, and get him some out-of-bed time. During which, since the nurse hadn’t yet really told me anything today, I asked her flat out what the plan was for the day. Sigh. She said she has no idea, she was giving Tim meds while they were doing rounds so she didn’t get out there, but she’ll check with the doctor after they get Tim moved and cleaned up. I feel like it’s going to be a long day.

What I’m going to put below, here, is a gallery of pictures I took while they were getting him to stand up. It may have taken three of them to get him boosted up and available to hold him steady… but he was up. He could put weight on his legs. He couldn’t walk unaided, but he could move a little, and stand and try to balance. Even just that little bit exhausted him. It was the kind of thing that was so good to see (he’d been so sick!) but also hard to watch (new nursing staff would always as me “what kind of help did he need at home before you came here” and they were genuinely all surprised when I said “none” – he was perfectly healthy, didn’t need help dressing or bathing or cooking, did everything for himself, walked six miles a day a couple of days a week).

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Ooo! But the doctor from ID (Infectious Disease) just came in and I love talking with her. We were talking more about the timeline of when he might have been infected, and she says the August dental work was too far away, that anything he might have done over Thanksgiving (dropping that log on his foot, etc) is too far away UNLESS he was actually having symptoms before the 12th and just never mentioned them. Also, that the type of staph infection it was, Staphylococcus lugdunensis, that the turnround on contraction to onset of symptoms with this strain is about a week — which means if the 12th was the day he first had symptoms, he contracted it some time the week of the 5th-11th. GLAM was the 5th, that weekend (about the 3rd through the 6th) was when we were having septic tank issues. Which the ID doctor says is NOT the cause of this, because Staphylococcus lugdunensis lives on the outside of skin, not in poop. That week was also the week I got my Covid Booster and I was sick for most of it, so if he did cut his hand or something, I never even noticed. I know, I know, none of this even really matters — it’s not important where it came from, it’s important that they figured it out and got him the right antibiotics. I just can’t let go of a good mystery, is all.

I am telling y’all, I still go round and round with this in my head sometimes. How did he get it? What happened that I missed? What didn’t I notice? When did he start having symptoms – was it before he actually told me? Was he worried about how sick he was, before he even brought it up to me? Did he know whenever whatever happened, that it happened? Or was it a nick or a cut so inconsequential, so much like any other time he’d hurt himself, that he didn’t notice? Because who doesn’t almost always have some sort of scrape, or bug bite, or bruise, or whatever….? How did he get so sick, so fast, and why didn’t I see it???? I mean… ultimately, I know, we all know, it wasn’t the Endocarditis that killed him. It was sepsis from pneumonia. So even if I had noticed that he’d had a bad cut or something, even if I had said something, things wouldn’t have played out any differently. Getting him to a hospital earlier, earlier than when his blood would have grown cultures, wouldn’t have done a thing. If anything, it might have discouraged him from going BACK to a hospital because what if they’d brushed him off, if I took him there before he had that first stroke? Gah. I’ll never know. And while I get, yeah, I can’t beat myself up over not seeing whatever happened as it happened… I’ll always wonder. I’ll always wonder what it was, I’ll always wonder if I could have done anything differently to change the outcome. I don’t really think I could have done MORE than what I did, just… if I’d done anything differently, would the ending be different?

As I lay me down to sleep
This I pray
That you will hold me dear
Though I’m far away
I’ll whisper your name
Into the sky
And I will wake up happy

It’s not too near for me
Like a flower, I need the rain
Thought it’s not clear to me
Every season has its change
And I will see you when the sun comes out again

Let’s see… In other news? Oh! It looks like it’s going to let me add captions to the photos today, so I’ll just caption them instead of writing it all out. I just have one other story…. Tulip woke me up at about 4 this morning becasue something was trying to break into her Catio. I think it was the raccoon – they are greedy bastards, and have hands that can get in through small places. It sounded like it was either trying to dig under it, or get in through a gap in the roof. I woke up, shined a light out there, but didn’t have my glasses on so while the noise stopped, I didn’t see anything run off. This morning it did look like raccoon prints on the ground around it, but nothing on the Catio looked damaged or pulled apart. Tulip is pretty sulky about it, though. I don’t think she likes to admit she got scared and had to wake up The Mama. šŸ˜‰

I think that’s about it for today, y’all. xoxo. Thanks for reading. <3

Here’s a little gallery of some things I took out of the kiln that day. Things that didn’t get up to HaldeCraft for a while, sporadically, as I could work. Many of these things still haven’t even sold, which makes me wonder… are they cursed? With the bad energy that became February?

As I lay me down to sleep
This I pray
That you will hold me dear
Though I’m far away
I’ll whisper your name
Into the sky
And I will wake up happy

When the sun comes out again
When the sun comes out
Oh, the sun comes out again
When the sun comes out again
Mm, comes out, comes out
Oh, wake up happy
‘Cause I pray

Lyrics by Sophie B. Hawkins
As I Lay Me Down

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