Autumn

Summer has definitely gone. The weather has turned much cooler over the last few days, in the mornings the temperatures have plummeted into the 40s and that is quite a shock to the system when it happens so quickly. I am reminded of the early days of a school year when I was growing up. These were the days when I wished that I could still be outside, knowing that the wonderful, refreshing weather would not last forever. The dreary days of late Autumn and Winter aren't that far away. Every year we try to hold onto this beautiful season in vain, but on the other hand, knowing that it is so short makes it special and something to be treasured.

Necessity vs Love

     Ever since I came home from the hospital I’ve tried to re-balance my life. Because I need oxygen on a daily basis, this has caused one conflict that really breaks my heart. 

     Jax The Cat cannot seem to learn that the plastic tubing is not a toy for him to play with. He will try to sneak in at night and start biting and clawing the tubing. He does this until I notice that my oxygen supply has stopped. Then I have to try and find the point/s in the tube where Jax punctured it and repair it with tape. That solution usually works for about a day, but then I have to replace the damaged tubing altogether. 

The current predicament is that whenever Jax shows up and displays the slightest interest in any oxygen tubing, he gets squirted with water, and runs out of the room. I hate treating Jax like that, but this is a serious issue and I have to teach him to leave my medical supplies alone. There is NO CHANCE that we’ll get rid of Jax. We love him too much, and I know things will get better, but right now is a trying time around here.

Writer’s Block and Perspective

September is the month when we start to say goodbye to Summer and welcome to Autumn. This week feels like the transition period around here. When I saw the forecast for this evening, I was surprised. Lows in the 50s suddenly replace overnight lows in the 70s. The temperature change will be quite a shock to many, including myself. 

It also serves as a reminder that life, and time, go on regardless of what we desire. Each year we grow older and notice things more because we see time differently than we did when we were younger. Some would make a poetic remark about entering the Autumn of Life. I don’t think that is necessary. Even though I am older and just out of the hospital, I refuse to give up my desire to live. I just appreciate things more as time goes by.

I have written about Writer’s Block and what a struggle that is to overcome. I also wrote about perspectives and how we need to take time to stop and look at things from a different perspective to get a real understanding of things. I see these words, and I know that it is time to begin writing another post about perspectives. Everyday things cloud my vision, and I lose sight of the bigger picture. It is time to sit down and retake a good look at things.

Writer’s Block

     Writer’s block is a nightmare. Like being stuck in quicksand and unable to free yourself or pull yourself out of the situation, struggling against it only makes it worse. 

     Ideas fly around you, just out of reach, but you can’t reach them because you’re trapped. The effort to get out of the quicksand is exhausting and never seems to produce any progress or reward. 

     Writing should be a joy, a means to communicate with the world around you, but at times like this, that seems impossible. You cannot see everyone else that is being crushed by writer’s block because your own perspective is warped by the writer’s block that directly affects you. 

     The only solution I have found is just to keep fighting. Eventually, I break free of the quicksand and start writing again. There’s no timetable and no guarantees that I won’t fall right back into the quicksand, but I just keep going. For every post I publish, there are at least three that were started and then abandoned. 

Overcoming writer’s block is just part of being a writer. Something that only the creative mind can understand on a deeper level. I’ll emerge from this stronger than before, I know.

Recovery

I keep trying to find time to write, but things are still rather hectic around here. I got out of the hospital last Friday, and I am still trying to get caught up with things here as I resume work this week.

I am on oxygen here at home now and will be for the foreseeable future as I try to get my breathing back under control and my endurance. Going back to work has just added to the list of things that I am dealing with this week. Several times I have toyed with the idea of calling in again. Tempting as that sounds, it would only add to the problems later because I need to hold onto as much personal time as I can.

I am not getting exhausted as often as before, and that is a good thing. The shortness of breath is nowhere near as bad as it was before I went to the hospital. I still find myself tired at the strangest times, so I always have the oxygen nearby if I need a quick hit.

One advantage is that I have stopped vaping. It has been over a week since my last vape. I had Hal throw everything out while I was in the hospital, so I wouldn’t be tempted when I get back home. So far, the need to breathe has outweighed the need for a vape, and I believe that I have stopped for good.

The Stooges have been incredible since I got home. Hal The Cat has resumed his guard duty when I go to bed. He snuggles up to me and wakes me when he senses something is wrong. Jax will visit during the night, and Stevie Nicks checks on me during the day when she isn’t all over Hal (person).

I have been catching up with things since I got home. Hal (person) depends on me to get him around, so I am always making sure that he has all of his needs met before I surrender to exhaustion at the end of the day. I have to take him to the dentist after work this afternoon. It shouldn’t be a long visit since he is just having his new dentures checked for a proper fit. If he needs to go anywhere else, I will take him there as well.

I just wanted to get this entry written so I won’t feel the pressure of not writing anything. I will do my best to take time and compose something meaningful very soon.

I’m awake. I don’t care, because I’m awake in my own bed for the first time in nearly a week. I’ve had two of The Stooges curled up against me during the night, and it’s been wonderful.

I got home around 1400 yesterday afternoon. One of the first things that happened was a phone call from the home oxygen supply store. They came by later in the afternoon to give me the home set up for oxygen generation. So far, I feel pretty good using oxygen here at home. With luck, I’ll be able to reduce the amount of time that I need to be on oxygen as my lung capacity recovers.

The things that were routine are now different. I’m not being awakened several times in the middle of the night for vitals, but I still found myself awake at 0300, right on schedule, as if the nurse was about to come into my bedroom and wake me up. Im more than happy to deal with this adjustment in exchange for being home at last.

Great News

I just got the best news! I was laying here in my hospital bed, basically wishing I could sleep more, when the night nurse told me that I’m going home today!!! Apparently, the extra day here was to make certain that a portable oxygen concentrator would be here for me to take home. That is worth the wait rather than lugging an oxygen tank home with me. When that piece of equipment is finally ready, I will be discharged, probably tomorrow afternoon.

I wish there was someone here, besides the nurse, to share the great news with. Hal is at home sleeping, and I’m not going to bother him right now. We’ll talk in a few hours anyway. I lol let him sleep. Hopefully, I can catch a little sleep before the wake up here starts the daily routine all over again.

Going Home Today?

I sincerely hope that tonight is my last night in the hospital. The shortness of breath seems to have been identified as COPD. The last round of tests proves was hard I’ll need some oxygen when I go home. The oxygen generator is up to the insurance company.

I was looking forward to being released yesterday, but apparently things are still being finalized, and I’m comfortable with that because I want everything all wrapped up when I do leave. I’ve been here since Monday, and Hal has visited every single day. What I really want is to be at home. Time will tell.

02 September-Looking Ahead

I’m slowly making my way through another day in the hospital. If things work out as planned, I might be going home tomorrow afternoon. I don’t want to jinx things, so I’ll just say that I’m hopeful. Today has been quiet, apparently all of the tests were done yesterday and today has basically involved me talking with doctors in between meals and naps.

There is one test that remains and that’s the stress test. I won’t have any caffeine after dinner until the stress test is complete. The only problem is that no one has any idea about when I’ll actually take the test. Who thinks of ideas like “Let’s give someone a stress test without allowing them any caffeine?” Obviously, that person is a Sadist.

I think that this is the quietest time since I’ve been in the hospital. It makes for a nice change, that’s for sure. I’m waiting patiently for Hal to visit later this afternoon or evening. I miss him more than I can ever truly say. Every visit from him is too short. I also miss The Stooges and want to hug them soon.

Without a doubt, the first thing I want to do after greeting everyone at home will be to take a nice, long, hot shower. I’m not able to shower here with all the sensors on my chest, and I feel awful and gross. It seems strange that something can’t be done to allow for a shower while I’m here. I’m not complaining much, everyone here has been wonderful to me since I walked in the door.

It seems like I’m definitely getting closer to a discharge tomorrow. I was just visited by one of the hospital case workers, and she gave me a list of the doctors who practice in conjunction with this hospital. This will make finding a new primary care physician much easier. I’ll let Hal know about the list as well when he gets here.

That about sums things up for me now. I’ll write more this evening or tomorrow.