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Archive for June, 2013

Hi All,

How are you doing?  We are doing well here.

After my last post that talked about how Jim wasn’t feeling well, he started taking additional diuretics and other than the occasional lightheadedness that goes along with taking extra diuretics, he had started to feel better.  I noticed that he wasn’t wheezing as much and was sleeping better.

Then he got slammed with an awful head cold and has had it for about a week now.  We’ve had very little sleep because of the coughing fits and he has been complaining of bad headaches.  I have no idea where he got it – the hospital, maybe?

Ugh – always something…

I’m waiting for my turn.  I did hose the house down with bleach though so hopefully that will keep me from catching it.

Jim’s LVAD clinic appointment today went pretty well.  They mentioned that they have been watching his renal function and were “getting concerned” but decided to take a wait-and-see attitude for now.  I assumed it was the result of the extra diuretics, but actually it’s because of the antibiotic that he takes for his infection.  If his renal function continues to worsen they are talking about adding a medication that will protect his kidney / renal function, and one that they mentioned was a “dialysis” medication.  That alarmed me, and I asked what that meant, but Jim said he didn’t ask.

They also said that they did three transplants last week!!!  That’s a bit momentous, don’t you think??!!  I wonder if they meant last month…  Anyways…

I asked what blood type were they!!?

He didn’t know / didn’t ask.

I asked how they are doing now!!?

He didn’t know / didn’t ask.

This is why I wish I could go with him to his LVAD appointments.  Especially ones like today where they ended up addressing some medication issues and had shared some awesome information.  Most times it’s a dressing change and blood work but when there is a blip on the radar screen that they are watching and want to address,  I want to be there.  I notice that Jim will sometimes shut down and not ask any questions – information overload?  Maybe…  So sometimes I feel it’s good for me to be there.  I would have asked questions!!!  Unfortunately, I have to work though so I have to maintain a balance.  Knowing when to go and when I’m not needed.

For the most part it feels like our lives are on hold until the transplant.  It’s difficult to go out at night with friends and enjoy myself knowing that Jim is home by himself plus it makes our nightly routine much later.  We don’t get enough sleep as it is due to heart failure symptoms, LVAD alarms and anxiety (or coughing fits) so I have pretty much backed off all social events.  It’s just too difficult (stressful).  Because of this I always tend to feel like I’m a bad friend, bad sister, bad daughter but my friends and family are awesome – so I know they understand.

This weekend I had one of those moments where I got overwhelmed looking at the pile of mail that needed to be dealt with; the messy kitchen; the pile of laundry, the pile of bills – you get the idea, and I started having those I am a bad friend, a bad housekeeper and a bad bill payer thoughts but then a strong voice in my head said but you’re being a good WIFE – which is all that matters right now… 

I felt better…

So it will be a year for Jim’s LVAD in July.  I’ve heard it called a Vadiversary.  Whatever you want to call it, I’m just thankful for the technology!

Time goes by so fast, doesn’t it?

Last year at this time Jim was in the hospital, and I was running back and forth while working full time and working with my parents to get the house renovations completed.  We had moved into this place it will be two years this fall so imagine my surprise when I walked into our backyard this weekend and found these…

IrisIris2

Irises!!!!

I love Irises and didn’t even realize we had them.  I also noticed earlier this spring that we have daffodils, tulips, azaleas and some other flowers I haven’t identified yet.

I was so excited about the Irises that I posted them on my Facebook page!!  I realized at that point that I don’t think I ever set foot in the backyard at all last spring / summer.

We had other things going on…

While I was taking pictures I saw a really pretty spider (if you like spiders).  It was brown, orangey-red and yellow; rather large and furry…  I tried to get a photo, but whenever I leaned forward to get a good shot, it went back into the foliage.  I would back-up, it would come back out.  I lean forward and it would duck under the leaves again…  This went on for a few minutes until he finally got tired of the game and disappeared completely.

I didn’t get the photo…

We have beautiful cardinals in the neighborhood too.  Jim and I were eating in the kitchen looking out the sliding glass door and all of a sudden a cardinal landed on the porch railing, checked us out and then took off.

Why can’t I EVER have my camera near me when stuff like that happens?

I missed another photo op this past weekend when I walked into the kitchen and saw a black and white cat on the porch peering into the kitchen, but when he saw me he took off.  I yelled to Jim – Hey, I think Kendall has a boyfriend!!

I really wish I could have seen (videotaped!) what kind of interaction happened between that cat and Kendall…

I wonder if they are friends…

I did manage to catch one photo op with Kendall although it was pretty easy because it’s something she does all the time.  She is very funny.  Whenever Jim and I eat in the kitchen, Kendall will walk over to this little rug in the kitchen and walk head first into the cabinet and then put her head on the rug and do a complete somersault and land on her back.  She’ll lay there for a while and then will right herself and inevitably fall asleep with her face planted in the rug.

Kendall-Head down

She can breathe like that, right?  Does anyone else’s cat do this?  I’ll try to get a video of the somersault…

Since things have been relatively stable, I felt well enough to do some quilting.  Sort of…  I haven’t actually sewed but I did take some wedding photos and copied them onto sheets of fabric.  They sell fabric that has been stabilized so that you can run them through your printer or copier.  You can get them at Cambridge Quilts if you’re interested in checking them out.  They’re very fun and it’s a great way to display photos.  I had made my parents a “Christmas Memories” quilt that came out awesome, and I made a friend a little quilt of her dog that had passed away.

So the pictures are copied to fabric.  I rinsed and ironed them and am ready for the next step.  What that next step is I’m not sure at the moment.  I’m sort of making things up as I go 🙂 and hoping for the best.

I think that’s all I have to report.  Thanks for stopping by and thanks for the well-wishes and prayers.  They are very much appreciated.

Love you guys!  Take care

Cheryl

PS:  It was my Mom’s birthday the other day, and I’m happy to report that I didn’t bake anything 🙂

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