Tag Archives: hospital

Keeping House in Purgatory

27 Jan

I like to arrange furniture.  Actually, I like to arrange, re-arrange, and flat out design rooms for functionality, efficiency, comfort, and visual delight.  Thankfully I am married to a design junkie as well.  He not only enables my inclinations, but he is a full packaged resource when it comes to any and all of my fancies–whether it be the design or the build.  Sometimes we work together to formulate a new quadrant creation, and sometimes we work as fast as thieves to get our vision to the end product before the other spouse can override the desired change.  All in all, we have loads of fun in either situation.  And we both enjoy keeping a non-cluttered environment where we can rest from the excitement of the world outside, and welcome friends and family to the Bent life as we live it.

Note: For some reason I am really struggling to write this post in English.  My thoughts are being driven by my Spanish speaking mind and translating to the Germanic language is a challenge.  …just something for you, the reader, to keep in mind as you meander through this literary presentation.

In fact, right now I sit in my living room mentally wanting to give into the call of slumber which comes as result of the sun beaming through the window, warming the sofa making the ideal location for an afternoon nap.

my sofa

The sun drenched couch

However, the longing of the mind to rest is being thwarted by the accelerative properties of the caffeine present within the large cup-o-joe I just ingested a few moments ago.  I am also unsure of what the next hour will bring for my weary mind and body, thus the trepidation of the forthcoming is keeping me from the prone position for now.  What might the next hour bring? you ask…

Well, it could mean another trek to the hospital with my son, Cole.  My poor son has suffered so much in these past 3 years, and yet he continues this route with a frequency too consistent too feel as if he has ever caught a real break.  And with him we ride, alongside his struggles, his sufferings, and his visits to the ER.  And as much as he wishes for himself that his cycle of pain, diagnostics, and medicinal ‘Russian Roulette’ would stop, he remains quite sensitive to the infliction his course imposes upon his family.  This is not a course for the faint of heart!  And though I personally feel we are in a Purgatory-like state, he feels as if this IS Hell.  I say, not quite Hell just yet because we are inching ever closer to a proper course of treatment for a decent quality of life.  I say, let us not give up our chores of dusting the furniture and vacuuming the rugs just yet.  This temporary place of torture, I believe is drawing close to its end; But we have been keeping house in this locale for so long now, I can understand why Cole is convinced it is Hell.

Now I must go and evaluate the condition of my son, who is in his room doing his best to distract his mind from the heaviness upon his body.  But before I take my leave from my free therapy of the day, I will properly give thanks to the Roman Catholic religion for providing me with the analogous place of the interim.  Without it, I just might forget where I am and get lost in the idea that we are here, in this moment, forever.


Suicidal Tendencies

28 Jun

A few days before I learned my son Cole had a brain tumor, I took him to the ER because he was in need of hydration due to incessant vomiting (obviously a few days later we learned why!).  And though he had been throwing up most of the night and was white as a sheet, the nurse attending to him could not get over his t-shirt.  Knowing Cole, he probably threw something clean on to wear to the hospital without giving much thought to the character of the garment.  It happened to be a “band t-shirt”, and the band happened to be ‘Suicidal Tendencies’.  Honestly, I didn’t notice his clothes at all.  I was slightly irritated to be in the ER because I seem to be the ER specialist of the family and quite frankly I just wanted to be at home.  Therefore his clothing choice was an irrelevant fact until the RN began to lecture Cole about the literal meaning of the band name (though if my memory serves me correctly, she was ignorant to it being a band), and felt it insensitive toward people struggling with thoughts of suicide.

Why bring up this little story?  Because it reminds me that what we see on the outside is not always as it is on the inside.  Oh heck, I’ll keep it personal…I will use the “I” instead of the “we”–what I see on the outside…

I am reminded that what I see outwardly (on or of a person), is not necessarily the true story at hand.  Just as above, the nurse knew nothing of Cole having a hemorrhaging and malignant brain tumor which was on the brink of changing the course of his life forever.  All she “knew” came from what she saw.  And what she saw was the ‘Suicidal Tendencies’ t-shirt.  Well I have to confess, after her diatribe I was slightly embarrassed, as his mother, at the inconsiderate suggestion she had now pointed out.  Embarrassed because I hadn’t considered the band name in the literal, for I knew it as a musical ensemble–if you can call the young (well not so young anymore) lads “musical”.  Anyway, I was embarrassed but at the same time irritated that she was lecturing my sick child.  I suppose you could say it was a ‘No Win’ situation, for she was judging Cole by his t-shirt and I was judging her for her condescension.

Bottom line…the old adage “you can’t judge a book by its cover” rings true!  And with that sentiment in tow, Cole looks healthy on the outside yet his insides are problematic.  So much so that him being at the camp in Oregon did not work out.  And with, yet another trip to an ER, he ended up coming home early–without having stepped foot upon the river in which he had hoped to navigate via kayak.  And now the mystery of his internal affairs has got him quite down.  No, he isn’t presently walking about with his ‘Suicidal Tendencies’ shirt on.  Although its message is probably more fitting to the time and might no longer provoke the angst of an attending nurse.



Fun and Games

15 Sep

Today I had the most fun I have had in a long time!

My son, Cole, had to have a venous filter removed from an artery (I believe I mentioned it in an earlier post).  So he had a scheduled appointment today at Mission Hospital, for this outpatient procedure.  We received our prep phone call yesterday; telling us to arrive at 9:00a.m. for pre-op and then the surgical procedure would happen at 11:00a.m. and than he would stay for observation 2 hours post the procedure.  Now of course, as is customary with any surgery, it was advised to abstain from food and all liquids after midnight.  Not too difficult a task when the scheduled appointment is for the morning.  Well we did what we were told and then the wait was on!

  • 9:00a.m. checked in
  • 9:30 IV inserted
  • 9:35 blood drawn
  • 9:50 admission questions
  • 10:00 swab nostrils for MRSA
  • 10:15 put in order for lunch, “they should be here to pick you up at 10:30”
  • 10:40 I hop in bed with Cole and shoot the breeze (I was cold)
  • 11:00 Cole and I decide to read one of my architectural books (checked out from the library)
  • 11:35 Call the nurse regarding start time, only to find out it would be another hour
  • 12:40 I decide to go down to the cafeteria to get something to eat–cashier recognizes me from Cole’s earlier hospital stay, sends a “hello” to Brian
  • 1:07 Cole is finally taken down for surgery
  • 2:40 Cole returns from surgery
  • 2:45 IV removed

A few moments after his IV was removed he began his attempt to eat the lunch that was provided, mac-n-cheese, green beans, and chocolate cake.  He took a few bites of the macaroni and cheese and decided the chocolate cake was a better choice.  He asked me why we couldn’t just leave.  So I offered to get his nurse so he could ask her.  He finished his cake and looked at the macaroni and asked me if we could get out of there and eat somewhere else.  I said, “Sure, if you can put your clothes on and walk out of here, I will follow you.”  So I gave him his clothes and he put them on.  Still no sign of his nurse (though there were two nurse looking ladies sitting outside his door, working on a portable computer.)  He got up and ventured to the in-room bathroom to check out his incision.  Then he said, “Ok, let’s go.” But he started walking toward me, so I asked, “Well if we are leaving, why are you walking toward me?”  To which he replied, “I am going to write ‘Thank You’ on my white board.”  And he did.  He then turned around and walked out (with his walker of course), with me following behind.  A nurse who was on duty in the morning happened to walk by as we were leaving and kindly said, “sorry about the wait.”  We assured her it was no problem, then head out the double doors of the hospital, to our car, and came home…laughing all the way!  I swear, I think we have all gone mad.  Well not Brian, he did encourage us to wait to be discharged; but he wasn’t there to stop us.

Just a few minutes ago the hospital called (It’s now after 4:00p.m.), I made sure to give the receiver to Cole so he could answer the call.  Sure enough it was his nurse.  She said, “You weren’t supposed to leave; I didn’t even get a chance to check the incision!”  He assured her he would follow up with his primary care physician in a week, and apologized for leaving.

Though he apologized, I can assure you he is not sorry.  He has had his fill of being in the hospital…and I do believe, so have I!


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