Chadwick Boseman

It feels a little like Neil Peart, doesn’t it? I mean, no offense to Mr Boseman, his memory, his fans, his family, his friends, but this isn’t devastating to me the way Neil Peart was, but it probably is to more people. I just mean, one day he’s there and the next day he’s not, and not only do you learn he’s gone, but you learn he’d been suffering for years and none of us knew.

We’re going to watch Black Panther today. I think we should watch Civil War and Infinity War and Endgame too. The only non-Marvel movie I’ve seen him in is 42. We should watch that one too.

Maskless

I left the house today! WOOHOO! Suck it, Coronavirus!

I went to my parents house today for something that was not an emergency. What a nice feeling that was, let me tell you. They are having a bit of an issue with vines and invasive plant over growth. They are kinda taking over. I took a trusty, heavy duty hedge clipper over there and went at it. They can now get through the front door without anything pulling any Little Shop of Horror shit on them.

The downside. Thorns. I didn’t realize it. They didn’t realize it. Some of those vines had the biggest, ugliest, razor sharpiest thorns I’ve ever seen. My father chucked a pair of heavy gloves out the door for me, which helped, but I half expected my second favorite Bruins t-shirt was going to go home in rags. Luckily I avoided that.

I stayed until my back pain convinced me that it was time to go. I got to talk to my parents through the door for a few minutes. Mom had a bad day yesterday, pain wise. Today seems a little better. She’s definitely a little more together cognitively, which is great. She had blood work yesterday, and a nurse visit the day before (I think?) and a chemo treatment this coming Monday. It’s not going to get easier for a long time.

On the way home I had to do something that I hadn’t done in months. I had to put gas in the Mazda. I’ve written about it before, but I haven’t put gas in that car since early March. Five months. If there’s a plus side to lock down, it’s the huge reduction in carbon emissions coming from our family. I’ve now put gas into each car once since the lock down started.

Unfortunately, the visit to the gas station was a clear demonstration of why our country has gone to shit. There were four customers. Me, a driver on the island next to mine, and a couple on a motor cycle on the next island over. There was also a youngish guy putting air in his tires. Of the five people, there was one mask. Mine. I had latex gloves on too. The rest of the group? Nothing. My skin didn’t touch anything that isn’t a part of the bubble we live in. Inside the car? Yes. Outside the car? No. I kept waiting for some smart ass nazi-friendly remark from one of the other customers. It never came. Good. Screw them.

My Flickr photo-a-day thing is up to day 343 today. Just a few more weeks to go. I tried to take a picture out the car window while stopped at a stop light. There’s a farm on the State Hospital grounds (technically I don’t think it’s on the grounds anymore, I think the land changed hands? Something like that? It used to be State Hospital property, but who knows, whatever) and I tried to get a picture of some corn.

That was my second attempt. The first attempt also caught the control box for the traffic signal. I didn’t want that though, so I took another.

When I got home I noticed the image on the box. I thought it was a reflection of one of the State Hospital buildings, but the angle is all wrong. I zoomed in and saw it’s a painting! How cool is that? A little cropping and now this photo 343/365:

343/365

Another Long Day

Today was another long day. My mother is still in the hospital and she’s still not handling it well, but she was much better than yesterday. They are trying to figure out her back pain. They found the UTI that was the source of most of her current problems. The also found bursitis in her hip. She had an MRI on her back tonight. No word on the results yet.

Still no word on when she can leave. We were hoping for today but no dice. At least one more day.

Sun downing is a Thing

10 years ago (approximately) when my mother was first diagnosed with cancer we learned about a new thing: Sundowning. It seems for some patients, their behavior changes drastically right around the time the sun goes down. My mother went from strong and confident to mean and whimpering and pretty much impossible to reason with.

It happened again today. Due to Covid-19, she is only allowed one visitor for the duration of her stay. It’s my sister. She gets to the hospital when visiting hours start and leaves when it ends. My father wanted to do it but he can’t handle sitting in those uncomfortable chairs for 12 hours. If he tried we’d be checking him into the hospital too.

So my sister had to take the full brunt of the sundowning. Both barrels, BLAMMO! It was awful. My mother waffled from inconsolable to telling my sister right off. She called my father once and told him that if he doesn’t come and bring her home he must not love her. So yeah, dad took both barrels too.

We know that by morning she’ll be back to her normal self again, but for the night time? It’s just awful.

How Does That Work

So tell me how this works.

My mother was admitted to the hospital because of confusion and memory issues that were caused by a combination of a UTI and dehydration.

While in her room, she complained about pain in her hip. She always has pain in her hip, her back, her legs… everything. A doctor came in to examine her hip and said she has bursitis.

So… are they clear to treat the bursitis even though that’s not what she was admitted for? I mean, yes they are, but from a legal standpoint, are there problems with that?

I just want her to be better and come home.

Oh, and I want the cancer to be gone again.

Still in the Hospital

My mother is still in the hospital. She’s starting to have trouble again. She keeps pleading to go home, but they are looking into where her constant hip pain is coming from. The nurse speculated that she’s going to need another day. This is going to be a bad day. My sister is with her. My brother is with my father. I’m not with anyone. I don’t like feeling useless, but I’m getting pretty good at it.

It’s just a UTI, it’s not the cancer, and it’s not a recurrence of the old cancer. Keep thinking positive. Its bad but it’s not as bad as it could be.

Feelin’ Fine

Everything is okay today. My mother is still in the hospital but she’s improved by leaps and bounds already. Maybe one more day and she’ll be good to go.

There is nothing wrong. There is nothing to be upset about. There is nothing out of whack anywhere in my little sliver of Universe.

Why then do I feel like I’m two heartbeats away from screaming?

What the fuck, bro?

News to Me

Did you know that a UTI can cause changes in behavior under some circumstances? I had no idea. My mother was exhibiting behavior that was unnervingly reminiscent of the first time we went through this. False memories, confusion, all sorts of awful. She had a CT scan and I was stunned that it came back clean. Everything was the same as it was the last time.

Nope, it was just an infection. I wasn’t there, my brother and sister were in the parking lot talking to the doctors on the phone. Apparently when they said they wanted to admit her for the night, my mother lost her shit. She fought against it, really hard. She threatened to walk home. She could barely stand, never mind walk, but she was dead set against it. My father, my brother, and my sister all fought with her and she wasn’t having it. Eventually one of the doctors was able to talk her into it. Thankfully.

So she’s getting treatment for a UTI and a blockage and it’s awful, but hopefully she’s through it and we can get back to worrying about the actual cancer.

Still a Bad Day

Mom is being admitted to the hospital. Today’s issues are not cancer related and that is good. There are physical and behavioral problems today. The diagnosis makes sense to me for the physical stuff but not really for the behavioral. Others in our little circle have more experience with it though and they say it makes sense. The docs do too, and they know more than I do.

I’m not at the hospital. My brother and sister are, but they are riding this out in the parking lot, speaking to the ER staff on the phone. I’m at my parents’ house. I can’t be of use directly, but I can swiffer mop the holy hell out of their bathroom and kitchen. It’s better than nothing, I guess.

Really Bad Day

My mother is having a terrible day. Is it a side effect of chemotherapy? Is it something new? Is it both?

Shit.

She’s on her way to the hospital. My father and my sister went with her but it’s doubtful they’ll get to go to the room with her. One of them, maybe. Both? Probably not.

I don’t know what to do.