Monday, October 15, 2012

Do you want the good news, or the bad first

It is Sunday night around 8pm when I arrive back home. I fight the feeling of guilt for the entire ride. I talk with Nancy for awhile on my bluetooth (an ear devise to keep from holding the phone while driving) and can feel her frustration at not being able to help me. She has fixed another awesome dinner and it is waiting for us at the house, but she wants to do so much more. I don't even know what I need, how can I tell someone else how they can help me when I don't even have a clue myself.  I share my feeling of relief  and yet don't feel worthy of an early "release". How could I be going home and Zack can't. It's just not fair. I can go anywhere and he is "trapped".

I walk through the back door and Sidi (my Shih Tzu) greets with me excitement. I start to unload the car, it takes four trips. I have brought home everything so that Frank and Zack have only a handful to carry tomorrow. Sidi and the cat walk in and out the door with me each time, as if to make sure I don't leave again. Once the car is unloaded, I come in determined to crawl in bed. I look around and the house is immaculate. Frank cleaned everything, including the dog! There is my "pile" of containers, suitcases and plastic bags. How could I mess this beautiful house up? There is no way they are coming home to MY mess, so determined to attempt to ease my guilt I put a couple of loads of laundry in. Zack will now have clean clothes when he comes home. I then unpack the clean clothes that were left, this is becoming kind of fun! I repack the "hospital bag" and put it back on the upper shelf in our closet. These are items we don't use in between stays and makes it so much easier when time to head back out. The bag consists of hot and cold drinking cups, two lamps to create a homey look, snacks, extension chords, books, zip locks and toiletries. Once Frank and Zack come home I will wash the blanket and comforter and they too will join the bag. Within an hour everything is put in its place and the house looks just as Frank had left it. I crawl into bed and fall asleep watching a bunch of Miami Housewives acting trashy and yelling at eachother. Yup.... THIS is MY relaxation!! Yikes!

My day started at 6:30 am., just like any other work day. It was pouring when I woke up, so I felt better about Frank being with Zack (knowing he couldn't work in the rain). It was nice getting up, going to work and getting in a full day. Frank and Zack had a rough night only because they couldn't sleep well. Zack said that Frank snored so loud, every time he would start to fall asleep Frank would start snoring.  Frank told me later that the double mattress (the same that I slept on for the duration) had a section deflated in the center, so he got very little sleep. The same had happened to me and I requested another top mattress only to have the same problem, so I gave up. One of the nurses said that they have been getting a "bad batch" lately and that has been a common problem. I , hopefully, came up with a solution for the next hospital stay, I'm going to get one of those accordion boards that is supposed to fit under the sofa to make it firm and put that in between the mattress'. Necessity is the mother of invention for sure!

They make it home by noon. The rain has stopped and Frank was able to get in a half days work. Zack immediately jumped in the shower (he is not permitted to shower when undergoing treatment as he is constantly connected to the IV through the port and it can't get wet). The rest of the day was spent settling in and resting. His mood is very good. He is so glad to be back home and even though he knows he can't go anywhere until his homework is get caught up, he at least feels free!

I come home from work around 7:30 pm and they have Nancy's meatloaf and potato dinner waiting. Frank is in a great mood, making jokes and teasing us both. Zack runs out to greet me and is met by my new toy, a little toy vampire bat that make a Halloween sound. I bought it to remind me of Zack, whom I now call my little vampire to all the nurses. (for when he needs blood?, yikes... if you have to explain....) He tells me he heard it all the way from his bedroom, but still he laughs at it and how goofy his Mom can be at times. We all sit at the table together (HUGE for this family) and talk about Frank Dad (who still wants to go home, but is not physically or mentally capable of doing so). Zack says "oh, I have some good news!", I look at him and BEG for him to tell me IMMEDIATELY!!! WE NEED GOOD NEWS!!! He says that one of the nurses checked and he only has five more in hospital treatments!  "Are you sure!" as I grab my binder full of his medical information. He says "yes, and PLEASE don't tell me if you find something else out, I NEED some good news today!" As I review the binder and count the five day stays, I confirm "only five more stays, you have a total of eight and we are down three already!" We are all excited! He sees some progress! Frank shares his discontent with regards to the bad news, which is that he must have the chemo and radiation at the same time. (We haven't seen each other since that discovery). I tell him, we just have to stay the course, we may not like everything they are doing, but it has been proven successful and we must trust!

As we finish dinner, Frank makes some joke about how he isn't going to do KP (Kitchen Patrol) since he has had to do it all week! "VERY FUNNY!!! You have been ALONE here all week!!!", he laughs as I'm loading the dishwasher. KP was done in ten minutes and I'm off to finish folding the rest of the laundry, put the blanket and comforter in the dryer and crawl in bed to complete the blog.

Tomorrow is the neulasta shot at 1 pm and Friday radiation prep and possible labs. We are hoping to be "off" Wednesday and Thursday this week. Monday Zack starts the radiation, but for tonight...Frank has once again fallen asleep on the couch with the British driving show on the TV. Zack is in his room texting a million words a minute while watching his shows and I am in the bedroom smiling because we are once again all under one roof. Free from needles (with the exception of one anti clotting shot), wires, IV bags, Blood pressure cuffs, thermometers, finger bands, ID bracelets and beeping, beeping, beeping, did I mention beeping? Our mattress is firm, our pillows fluffy ,our TV full of our favorite shows and last but certainly not least, my Sidi and Anubus on the bed at our feet.


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