Friday, June 21, 2013

The Road is Still Bumpy -
But Getting Better
Friday,  June 21, 2013

Yesterday was another hard day.  Again, there are no real problems from the Cochlear Implant Surgery except for not being able to sleep on that side.  I continue to clean and medicate the incision site 3 times a day.  There is a ridge of scar behind the ear, but no one sees it.  Not even me.

The biggest problem:  I can't hear!  It will be about 10 more days before they activate and program the implant so until then, I have NO hearing on the side where the surgery was done.  The other side has had very little hearing for many years.  I use my amplifier in that side but understand very little.  I can hear that a person is speaking, but usually can't understand what the person is saying.  With a FEW people with voices in a certain range, I can do fairly well understanding them, if they speak slowly and distinctly.  But I have only found about 3 people in that range.  Others must resort to the dry marker board or pencil and paper.  It is VERY frustrating. 

It has now been over 5 months since the hearing loss and I am tired of it.  My patience is hanging by a thread!  I can't talk on the phone at all, so no one can call to chat or share news or tell me they are at my door.  This past weekend our youngest son became ill and was running fever.  He went to the doctor and had texted me to tell me that much.  I didn't hear more from him.  I asked my husband and he said yes he had talked to our son but then he couldn't answer any of my "mother" questions about what our son had reported.  So I texted my son again and he called me.  Only I couldn't understand him, so my husband would relay the "mother" questions and then relay answers to me.  It broke my heart to not be able to talk to him.  He is still not well and may need more extensive treatment and I am feeling useless.  Unable to help.

Then that same feeling yesterday came flooding over me.  Useless.  Through all of these months of my health issues, the load on my husband has gotten bigger and bigger.  Yesterday he got a call from his mother that her gas was off.  She uses gas for cooking, heating, and hot water heating.  She lives alone and is 88 yrs. old and is barely able to get around.  A sweet lady cares for her several hours a day, but the rest of the time she manages on her own.  Well, Ron called the gas company and they said a neighbor called that they smelled gas and that the gas man knocked on her door at 10:00 the night before but she didn't answer (duh?!) so they cut off the gas.  He spent well over an hour on the phone getting the run around while I was working in my office, paying bills.  At one point when he finally got the person he needed, a customer came in, but he needed to stick with the phone call.  I sat in my office watching the monitor but knowing I could be of no help either with the customer or the phone call.  Useless.

It is hard when I feel so useless.  After my mom picked me up when I finished the paperwork I needed to do, Ron got hold of a plumber friend who said he should be able to cut 10 days off the 2 weeks the gas company said it would take to help her, but he had to close the office and go meet the gas man and work stuff out with him.  To top it off, his mom has guests coming for a visit.  They may do their cooking and showering at our house if they want to spend their days at her house.  They are all welcome here, but his mom likes to be at her home.  I really understand that.

A couple of weeks ago Ron saw our dermatologist, not in the office but on an outting, and mentioned he was coming in soon to see about a couple of spots they missed last time.  As they chatted, the doctor spotted another more concerning spot and told him to come soon.  So he did.  Reports on tests done made the doctor call him to tell him to come back again.  He goes back Monday.  (Since he has nothing else to do or be concerned about.)  So the saga of our year 2013 continues. 

When Mom picked me up at the end of my work morning at the office, I was ready to go home, but she offered shopping for a new keyboard to replace this one with the blank keys (some of letters are worn off) and lunch.  I agreed to try shopping and then see about lunch.  I quickly became aware that it had been a mistake to try the outings.  I was past my limit of energy.  I had to text Ron for some information about what kind of keyboard to get and his answer ruled out what was at that store. I also needed some information about a Kindle that could be synchronized with the audio books (more on that on another posting - it has to do with the implant).  Either I was not making my questions clear to the clerk, or I could not understand enough of his answers, but I decided it was time to go home.  By the time I got home, I was in "meltdown mode" and my poor Mom got the brunt of it.  The five months of almost no tears had come to an end and I needed to be alone.  Not a good day.  I skipped lunch and eventually fell asleep and slept till almost 7:00. 

Later our friends the Lawlers brought supper to us and stayed for a nice long visit.  It was good to catch up on assorted news since we had not seen them in two weeks.  Ron and Dennis ran an unsuccessful errand for me while Pat and I visited.  It was a relaxing evening after a long hard day for both of us.

I was concerned I would not be able to sleep after my long nap, but I slept well and woke only once during the night, and then got up a little before 6:00 this morning and had Ron's coffee ready for him for a change.  My arm had given me a great deal of discomfort all yesterday and through the night but now seems better.  Mobility increases and it is VERY hard to follow the rules about not lifting, pushing, pulling, etc. with that hand. 


I have now had my lunch and am ready for a nap.  Ron has been going out in the yard every evening and watering my hanging baskets and filling the bird baths and ponds.  I am enjoying watching the activity of out my window.  This immature yellow-crowned night heron came by today. 

 The sparrows are loving the two bird baths and keep the rim lined as they take turns getting a drink, taking their baths, or going to the top for a shower.  It is hot here in South Texas!

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