Story 12Dec2021: Tough Day

I started the day waking at 6:30 and doing all the usual things. I always find it strange to not have a weekend anymore. I just keep doing what needs to be done every day.

The blog seemed to write itself yesterday, and I was out of the house around 9ish.

Air Volvo carried me safely to Forest Grove. I began to notice rubble in the streets, and there was more wind than usual. The Oregon mist was heavy and going sideways. The traffic was even stranger; it was going fast! Even on weekends, Oregonians do not drive fast, but I had to be careful not to speed during the remains of a wind storm. At one point, I was nearly going 60 MPH on TV Highway!

A few lights were out, which means you treat it as a four-way stop. Everyone just went with it, and again this is not normal here. The passive-aggressive politeness usually makes it a contest of who will go last at a four-way stop causing many false starts and possible slow-speed accidents. Not today.

I stopped by McDonald’s in Frost Grove, and there was a long line of cars. The screens outside were not working, so two people in the heavy sideways mist took orders on a handheld. It went by fast, but even having the window open for just a moment damped me.

I finished my quick breakfast in the car and watched the mist slam the car a bit. I manage to be let in by one of the CNAs and head to Susie’s room: 44A. The place is empty as they are running on a skeleton crew on the weekend. Susie has had breakfast and is sitting up in her bed.

Susie is confused, her blood pressure is normal, and her heart rate is up to 110. Her face is tight, and her eyes look a bit strange. Susie is dehydrated and weak.

I get her water and get Susie to drink water, and in an hour, she packs in 16 oz via tiny safe sips. She only coughs a few times and then not at all; practice does seem to help!

I have the CNA check her vitals every four hours. She is not getting worse. I also get her some ensure and make sure the CNA and nurse, Sarah, are paying attention.

Physical Therapy shows they have a different person on the weekend, and she pivots Susie out of bed and takes her to the gym in the wheelchair. There they work on stands and try to walk. Susie is too unstable to walk, and standing is nearly impossible today. Susie is troubled by this today, but the PT person reassures us that there will always be good days and less good days.

I step out into the calmer weather, the storm is ending, and drive to the Grand Lodge for a sandwich. I am writing a letter to the facility about my upcoming surgery, what they will need to do, and their contacts. I write this all day between moments and when Susie is napping.

We watch the movie The Greatest Showman on my Apple laptop after lunch. This keeps Susie’s interest until mid-afternoon. She is tired now but looking better. However, her speech is tough to understand. Susie tries to nap, but the staff finally remember (after I remind them) to brush Susie’s teeth.

The staff is friendly, and Sarah, the RN, and I exchange cell numbers. I do not usually have the personal cell of the RN, so I am feeling better about leaving Susie. Sarah and the CNAs eat their late lunch while watching the final showdown of Portland and New York City’s men’s soccer team. NYC manages one goal, and that takes the game in 69 minutes. A hard loss for Portland in the rain downtown!

Susie is sleepy after being so busy and pushed hard to eat and drink water. So I leave her after 3ish. I am trying to hope for a good day for Susie on Sunday.

I notice more tree branches and other tree debris on the roads on the way back in Air Volvo. I stopped by RiteAid, once back near home, to get some cards for Christmas presents. Then, I decided to try the local sushi place, Sushi Zen. It is a track place, and I get a seat away from people and the door at the track bar. It was a hard day, and the treat to sushi improved my mood.

I never had sushi growing up in the Cold War in Michigan in the 1970s and 1980s. So it is exotic to me and wonderful. The texture of raw fish and the carefully made rolls and packages still thrill me. I did not have sushi until I moved to Oregon and worked for Nike Europe to write warehouse software (we call it all logistics now).

I do learn that the blood-red eggs are from flying fish.

I head home and rest a bit, and work on the letter some more and send copies out to check I did not miss anything important or have a phone number wrong. Michelle and David call and we meet to see the Bond-007 movie before it leaves theaters. I like it a second time, seeing it with their daughter in NYC when it opened last month.

I am home late and set the alarm to 7:30AM knowing I will likely awaken before that, but I could use a few extra minutes of sleep.

Sorry, this is rushed as I was up at 7:20…

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