Monday, December 31, 2012

Scottish Quote :)

May those who love us, love us.
And those who don't love us,
May God turn their hearts;
And if He doesn't turn their hearts,
May He turn their ankles,
So we will know them by their limping.

Thoughts For the New Year - 2013



Wishing everyone a Blessed and Happy New Year for 2013.

It's a Wonderful Life is my favorite movie, not only because it is delightfully entertaining ...but gives a powerful message of hope and that we all make a difference in this life.

We should never give up on ourselves or others ...or allow the negative opinions of others to keep us down.  Remember ...God loves us and works through each of us to effect a positive difference ...even in the seemingly little things.

We may not be able to fix the world, but we can do our best to help others in our little corner of it ...big things - little things ...goodness rippling forward.  We may never know the burden others are carrying.  Even just a warm smile sent someone's way can be uplifting, validating their self worth on a day they may be feeling low.

This movie is a reminder for why we should never give up on ourselves, others ...or life in general.

May we all be as *rich* as George Bailey.

I LOVE this end scene in the movie!  :)

Anyway ....




;)

Friday, December 28, 2012

Anyone Ever Experience This? :)



I am experiencing those days all over again ...albeit ...intermittently since they don't live with us 24/7.

Anyway ...I cracked up when I saw this because just recently ...I didn't even realize that I was still on the toilet even though I had finished tinkling.  I didn't even think to wipe myself (I know TMI :), having gone into a total ZEN moment ...so peaceful ...quiet ...I was just lost in the moment.

Lost in the moment ...until ...two very young children came to the door ...Myles, almost 2 ...hitting the door with something and his sister, 3 year old Wren ...talking to me through the door.  "Mum mum?  Are you in there?  What are you doing?  When are you coming out?" , and so on.  Ha ha!

One year, at a grade school Christmas program that our youngest son and our neighbor's son were in ...we parents all sat together.  I was sitting next to the other boy's dad.  While we were waiting for the program to start, he commented on how his then 4 year old daughter never stopped talking and that she even keeps talking to him through the bathroom door.  :)

It's like young children have built in homing devices and they WILL find you.  Right?  :)

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Now I understand Why Families SUE!

I do believe in forgiveness though and unless extreme ...that is a road I'd prefer not to go down.  But ...the thought has been running through my mind since she called. I am so upset with the latest.  And maybe that first night she called 2 nights after mom died ..she wanted to tell me but thought better of it because she was still employed there. ?  At the very least ...I WILL MAKE myself look at the ED records and maybe I will have a better picture of what happened.

At 3:42 pm this afternoon, I got a call from a woman who had been one of Mom's aides in the nursing home.  She told me something so upsetting ...that I first of all can't even imagine this happened ...or that this is EVER done this way in a nursing home or anywhere.  It seems BARBARIC and even though I had nothing to do with it ...I am now feeling extreme guilt for not being there that week and extreme anger over what I think may've happened (as I piece) it all together and extremely extreme anger at the one nurse who ...if I didn't know better seemed to be intentionally neglectful of my mother because what ELSE could explain her lack of concern ...her lack of concern to take IMMEDIATE action?????!  Actually ...I don't know better.  If the aide is telling the truth ..there are some other occasions I am aware of in which she seemed to be inattentive and even intimidated me so that I didn't always push for something or insist on help with helping mom call here.  The entire winter I had concern about mom's abdominal pain, but she also had dementia and so when some came in to check ..she'd say her foot hurt.  Never the less ...when pain hit ...she gripped her abdomen which caused me to think bowels.  She died of a GI bleed that night in April.  I believe she was septic ...prior to the ER visit.  There is just so much - I don't want to get into it now.

I've got questions all over again.  I never did review the ED records from the night she died.  Those triage notes might contain a wealth of information that just might kill me to read.  I suppose it is why I've buried my head in the sand over this and frankly ...have been in limbo regarding the week, day, night ...mom died.

I've written about that time period in this blog and privately.  I journaled all of it.  I did it just to cope with my feelings and then I let it all go.  Or ..I just didn't want to face it ...not anything to cause me to feel worse than I already did.

But now ...after this call ...I have to go find out what I can for myself.

The thing is ...why is this aide calling me?  She did bond with my mother.  And she certainly put in the extra effort with her.  The only one to take the time to paint her nails.  She was the ONLY worker there that called me to put mom on the phone.  In 6 months time ...she was the only one who acted on the words I wrote  in black marker on hot pink paper taped on the wall over Mom's phone.  I asked anyone that came into the room to please call me and put mom the phone because was incapable of calling me herself.  Cafeteria workers, housekeeping, nurses, aides, administration or maintenance ...I wouldn't have cared.  Anyone would've been appreciated.  But no one ...took the time ...but this aide.

So ...I do believe she was conscientious and did care about my mother.

This aide called me two nights after mom died ...on a Sunday night about 8pm to tell me she was sorry.  I'm pretty sure she broke nursing home protocol doing that and HIPPA by taking my number out of the nursing home.  I don't care though as I did appreciate her kindness.

The thing is she called again ..telling me some things  that occurred on her last shift with mom, before mom died that night.  We talked a couple more times ..the last time that September I believe.

Then she called me around Christmas and the following mother's day and the mother's day after that.  I spoke with her at Christmas, but never returned her calls after that.  It was just too painful... even though she was just checking up on me.

She is originally from Guyenna and has lived around the world, but been settled in an area near Newark and commuted up here to work ...although she was let go from that nursing home when she reported an aide being violent with a patient - shoving and elderly woman into the bed rail because she was annoyed she was called in to change her.  The woman was sore with a lg contusion the next day and Mom's aide reported it and put it in writing.  The supervisor told her to reword it and not put what she put into writing but she did not redo it.  More happened and she was dismissed while the other woman was allowed to stay and she wondered if that violent aide had something on the nursing home.

I say all this because it does not escape me that possibly she has felt vindictive and wants to cause trouble for the home.  because they also prevented her form collecting.  But that was at least 3 1/2 years ago now.

Interestingly, not long before mom died ...she told the aide that she was pregnant and having a baby girl and aide said no way.  She was and she did. That little girl is now 3 years old.

The thing is I know from what I myself witnessed and experienced that she took good care of my mother when she had her.  I was very grateful for that.  Night shift not so attentive but that is another story.

Anyway ...I was surprised to get her call and this time I decided to take it.  I asked more questions.  I asked about that week with mom again.

I saw mom on Easter and she was doing better than she had been.  I was encouraged.  I told her I would not be in until Thursday because it was tax time and anyone that knows me knows that I put it off until last minute and then am consumed getting receipts, etc the few days before due.  Mom understood.  But I was also tired and was experiencing nausea everyday and so I did not go Thursday either.  I was however getting ready to go over that Friday afternoon, when the nurse called to tell me that they had to put a foley in mom that morning, but that she was fine now.  I asked how many ccs she put out and she said she didn't know because it came out around the foley.

I don't think I asked why it happened or if a urologist would be consulted although I did find out they use my urology group and so maybe I did ask those questions although I know I have never known the cause for that.

I also know they didn't care to consult a gastroenterologist for her abdominal pain.

I also know that extraordinary means are taken on people that should be allowed to die of natural causes in their elderly years.

But ...my major concern/FEAR is that Mom suffered SUFFERED needlessly that last week, especially so that last week.

That afternoon I asked about the open wound she called about in the beginning of the week and had informed me she called mom's doctor to get an order for a special salve to heal it.  She told me it was healing "nicely."  I asked how mom was and all chipper and like she was smiling over the phone she said, "Oh she's FINE and talking with EVERYONE!:)"

So ...I ...said tell her I will be in first thing inn the morning.  Why I didn't ask to speak with her ...I don't know.  I had the image of mom happily talking with people like I had seen in home life and enjoying conversation and guess I didn't want to interrupt that.  I felt like all was well.

And then not long after 6 I got a call from an obviously distraught supervisor that mom had a GI bleed.  There is more to this story ...the week before ..the night before ..that morning, afternoon and response of hospital staff when I asked confused questions.  I will say I had the feeling something was way wrong before mom ever got to having to go to the hospital.  matter of fact the supervisor seemed upset when I called back and said I'd meet them over at the hospital at which point she said paramedics had to intubate her.  I am sure she would've died at nursing home had I gone there.  I flipped that they hadn't already transported her  and so they did.

So today ...while asking questions ...the aide again told me she knew instantly that something was wrong because mom wouldn't sit up and when she was changing her saw that her stomach or abd (not sure now) was size of pumpkin.  First of all is that even possible from urine???

She said she pressed it and urine came out and mom cried out in pain.  She told the nurse who lied to me later that day and she did not believe aide or wasn't concerned and so aide got other person and that person told nurse and she came down.  Now that nurse said she couldn't tell me how many ccs she put out because it came out all around the foley.

This afternoon the aide told me she never used a foley... or foley bag.  That they pressed it out of mom.  and it was painful for mom.

Is that possible?

And she said they were shocked that it filled up the chuck or whatever pad they used.  They squeezed it out into a urinal a mans urinal or now I am confused but whatever they used it filled up one and a half of them.  And you KNOW it all didn't get squeezed out!

So I have to find out again what was used to collect it.  Why wasn't urologist consulted?  What exactly is documented in those nursing home notes?  And how will it compare to the ER triage and H&P notes later when they assessed her upon arrival to the ED?

I really didn't want to pursue this ...but now I just have to.

I can't bare to think about it now though.  :(

I really let mom down that week.  I mean I erroneously trusted the nursing home more than I should have.  I was guarded and knew to check up, but in hindsight I allowed myself to be intimidated at ties although other times I came at them like gangbusters when I saw they were leaving an open cut on her diabetic, poor circulation leg and only because of my insistence that night did the nurse come and put a dressing on it.  She stated the wound doctor would do it when he came in... which was not that often.  WHAT?????  She had to listen to me politely yet assertively rant on acquired infections and consequences in medical facilities.  I wasn't the nurse!  I did like that one tho.

Anyway ...in last call a few years ago Mom's aide did tell me momalso had multiple cuts on her legs (from wheel chair) that weren't dressed.

I believe either that open wound in beginning of week was infected or she had sepsis or some infection going on systemically that week.

Also ...while I am responsible for again choosing not to go in that day to see mom ...it was ONLY because she indicated mom was doing so well and seemed happy.  basically she robbed me of my last hours with mom.

The aide had also asked her when mom refused to eat that morning if they should call me and that same nurse who supposedly catheterized her said, "No because then she'll come in and ask a lot of questions and want tests done."

Actually, the night aide told me she knew something was wrong when she saw mom refused to eat even her ice cream at dinner the night before because she LOVED her ice cream.

I'll stop here for now.

What would you do about this?

I wanted to forget.

But this latest coming to light.... swelling as large as a pumpkin ...not using a foley to drain her, pressing on her abdomen to expel all the urine?  And did she retain urine when brought to ED?

And why in the world didn't they schedule her to see urologist?  Obviously SOMETHING was wrong.

At the very least urge me to come in and visit.  My God ...if I knew any of this or perceived the urology issue as emergent I would've been there in a heartbeat and stayed!  I will have to go back to look at what I wrote to find out exactly what was said.

She must've been suffering in quiet desperation ...unable to tell anyone why.  :(

And it took her one attentive aide to get the help she needed.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Christmas Eve Update



It's Christmas Eve and it's snowing!  I LOVE snow and especially on Christmas Eve.  How perfect!  :)

Our kids surprised me with a computer and younger son set it up earlier.  I'm back in my cozy ..yet efficient work space ..with my books, things I like and a view.

Everyone is coming here tomorrow and I can't wait to see Christmas through the eyes of the children.  And of course Christmas dinner and celebrating with loved ones.  And snow in the morning.  :)

Oh and regarding the previous urology post ...you don't know how close I was to actually putting red and green glitter in my urine sample today ...but then I realize it would've been contaminated.  And not sure it would've been seen as funny ...although I still think it is. :)

When I come back ...I'll talk about today's appointment ..oh and something funny happened today ...or I should say I did something funny today and realized it when I was in the urology office waiting room.  :)

I just could not get my Christmas basket done for them in time and so will deliver it Wednesday morning.  Btw ...I think I need to take canoli stuffing 101.  I KNOW ...how could canoli stuffing be a challenge?  I cut the tube to high up ...is why.  And I baked the cookies and made the fudge Sunday night ..but I wrapped them up tight and so should be alright. They stay in a tin around here and remain fresh for days.  Then there are some other things in the basket too.  I love doing it for them.

Well ...I've got wrapping to do.

And now it is officially Christmas.

Merry Christmas everyone!!!  I hope you have a wonderful day ...where ever you are ..work ..home ..visiting ...enjoy this special day.

God bless you.  :)





Sunday, December 23, 2012

This One ...No THAT One.... :)



An out of state friend sent our older son two gift cards for Christmas.  But ...a note explains that one card has money on it ...and the other does not.  He has to figure out which one has the money.  So ...of course he could be at the register with a zero balance gift card.  Just to tease him a bit.

Hahahahaha! :)


A Festive Christmas Eve Urology Procedure! ;)


This just happens to be red and green glitter floating on milk and so it would work.  :)

Baking, baking and more baking ...'tis the season!  Aromas wafting through the house ...just WONDERFUL.  :)

 Still decorating the tree!  First time ever.  I keep reminding myself that my German friends don't even put their tree up until Christmas eve.

I am feeling like "Carol of the Bells"  in my spirit ...which is typical by now.  I wish I had everything all done.  Every year I do fantasize about it.  Well, I do feel great that the shopping is done except for 1 stocking stuffer and a few gift cards ...easy stuff to find.

I do have a uro appointment tomorrow and so I am bringing them what has now become a traditional basket of Christmas goodies from us.  I'm not thrilled about a Christmas Eve appointment, but I had to cancel earlier in the month and I want to go in before end of year met deductible runs out.  It will certainly feel festive though ...Christmas Eve is always exciting no matter what you do.

I am expecting an uneventful appointment and would about die if I had to do a PUP (pure urine procedure). For any new readers, that's my made up acronym for what the procedure is really called when they want a pure sample, using a catheter.  I never remember that.  I have just always had a block about it. Seriously ...right now ...I'm actually trying to remember what the procedure is called and I know it is obvious.  Total block I tell you.  That is how much I loathe doing it and I'm grateful that I have not had to in ages. Anyway ...moot point I am sure.  I am doing well and certainly don't feel ill - like I have a UTI or anything.  Thank God.

Admittedly ...I wouldn't feel so Christmas Eve festive getting a PUP and I would resist and bargain every which way possible.  I've actually thought this through ...planner that I am.  :)

It could of course be a festive procedure if urodoc and m/a would sing a Christmas carol for me.  I'd sing too ...but they'd flee from the exam room if I sang since because God didn't see the need to give me the ability to sing well.  Hey ...wait a minute ...I could threaten to SING ...if I had to do a PUP.  That is one way to clear a room.  ;)

I could shake some bells if they sang "Jingle Bells."

And if I had to do this procedure ...well it would also really help if  they also wore Santa hats.

  And I could wear one too!

And ..I could also toss red and green sparkly glitter in the air while he does the procedure.

Okay ...that is the ONLY way this SeaSpray would ever agree to do this or any procedure on Christmas Eve.

Just picture it:  patient waiting on exam table.  Doctor and M/A walk in into the exam room with Santa hats.  They give the patient a Santa hat to wear and bells to jingle.  (A pretty cranberry with lots of white fluffy fur please:), and then they put their Santa hats on. While they sing, the patient shakes the bells.  Then they sing a song of the patient's choice ... A capella ...sans bells.  And then after they finish their last song ...they give the patient a bag of sparkly red and green glitter to toss in the air at will ...during the procedure.

Okay ...even this SeaSpray will admit ...that might be worth it.  And it would certainly make for a festive Christmas Eve Urology procedure  A bit of distraction goes along way in facilitating an as comfortable as possible procedure.

But ...as previously stated ...that is not a likely concern.  But that would be the deal breaker!  ;)

 Of course ...ever mindful of the urologic law of the universe ...when entering said urology office ...you will be expected to give a urine sample and it doesn't matter who you are or why you are there.  You give up your bladder rights when you cross the threshold into the urology domain.  You will give a urine sample.

Just saying.
And ...I would just LOVE LOVE to sprinkle a little red and green glitter into my urine sample.  It would probably float on top ...initially anyway.  Ha ha!  I think that would be hilarious and at the very least a festive surprise.

I've always said my whizzie winkles were pretty.  The sparkly glitter would just enhance what is already there. ;)

I really want to do it.

 Do I dare?  :)

Photo credit

Friday, December 21, 2012

The End ....

Not What I Expected! :)




So there I was last night ...quietly sitting with mixed company ...facing each other (3 walls), in the waiting room of a medical office.  An opthamologist's office to be exact.  Well quietly, except for the rustle of 3 large notebook filled papers I had pulled out from my purse filled with a to do list, Christmas shopping ideas, food for Christmas baking and dinner.  Most notably ..a front and back filled out Christmas list made out for my convenience by 11 year old Devan.  Shades of her father for sure.  :)

Anyway, it's weird how pulling papers out of a pocketbook doesn't sound so loud at home, but in a waiting room in which you could here a pin drop because it is as quiet as an E.F. Hutton commercial (anyone remember the noise of that pin dropping on the desk?), it seems so magnified.  You just know that everyone pretending not to look at each other is glancing up ... is now looking your way.  Oh you do it too - we all do ...pretend we don't look, but we are curious about the people we are sharing the wait time with.

I was also juggling a book, a bottle of water and wearing a bright royal blue coat ...that definitely didn't allow me to just blend in.  While looking down, intently focusing on my list, I mindlessly felt around in my pocketbook for a tissue, pulled it out of my purse, but then just as I had almost pulled this l-o-n-g tissue out ...to my abject horror and humiliation ...I realized too late that I had pulled out a KOTEX pad that had fallen out of it's covering!  I just felt the soft material and pulled it out!

I don't know if anyone saw what it was ..because I didn't dare look and possibly make eye contact ...with any MEN in the room!  My facial expression/red face (I could feel the heat) along with my energetically shoving it back into said purse at the speed of light, must've been somewhat entertaining.  Like I said ...I didn't dare look.  As a matter of fact,  I kept my eyes down until the doctor called me in.

Maybe if it were a gynecology office it wouldn't have been so bad.  I mean it's not unusual to associate Kotex pads with a gynecologist office ..right?  Although the blotting thing ...wrong end.

Oh ...I suppose I could've pretended that I wanted to blot my face with a Kotex.  "Yes ...you are seeing correctly.  I WANT to pull this big Kotex pad out of my purse and blot my face with it.  They absorb so well.  You should try it.  Must be the excellent wicking process.  Really works I tell you!" 

 Who knows ...maybe I could've started a trend?  :)

Anyway, it was really nice of the doctor to squeeze me in to his appointments when I called at the end of the day.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

I'm So Sorry



My heart breaks for the little children and adults that were massacred in CT.  And for the surviving children and adults.  And for the police officers and anyone having to be on the scene and all families.  Little children ...so innocent and full of life.  Heroic education professionals.  This was just sick and pure evil.  What a senseless tragedy ..and at Christmas and Hanukkah, when you know everyone is all excited about the holidays and you know they've been thinking about having fun with their families and friends.  All the plans ...not just for the Holidays ...but hopes and dreams for a bright future.  And the sadness, pain and and anger that ripples outward from Newtown, across America and around the world. And fear.

It's Sunday now ...and honestly ...I've tried to shield myself from watching and listening to this.  But ...understandably ..it is being reported everywhere and it should be.  It is not because I don't care ...but because I care so much.

My heart and prayers go out to everyone involved.  I've been praying on and off when it comes to mind and I know people everywhere are doing the same.

I am so sorry
.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Now You Know ;)

So Beautiful (Revised - Moved to Express More :)


Listening to Pandora Celtic and Classical Christmas music most of the day.



This song causes me to feel such love for so many people that come to mind that I care about.  I feel blessed that they are in or have been in my life.  I want all good things for them.  It causes me to feel grateful for so much.  What a profoundly moving song this is for me.  WOW.  And that is without knowing the lyrics.  The music and angelic sound of their voices ...so pretty.

It even reminds me of my Scottish grandparents, mom and family ...that I am missing so much right now ...a lot.  I never heard this during my childhood, yet it causes me to think of them..  But also people in my present.

Sentimental.

Grateful.

Love.

Blessed.

Longing.

Transcendence.

Joy.

Stirred to a profound depth within my innermost being.

But ...love ...love is the main emotion I feel while listening.  I come back to the beginning ..love and gratitude and wanting the best for everyone.

Do you have a song that causes you to feel this way?

And now ...after just reading the lyrics, it is one of my favorite Christmas songs.

Christmas music is just wonderful and makes everything feel so Christmassy ...even the least favorite housework chores.  :)
***************************
I made a surprise crock pot recipe from when we were first married, only I cooked it on the stove because I wanted to make a large pot.  Son and friends are also around.  Now going to make some biscuits.

Still missing my own computer and out of sync with blogging.  look forward to being in my own blogging niche at some point ...soon I hope.  :)



Sunday, December 9, 2012

What NOT to Do When Cleaning a Paint Stick ...and Another Perspective

So ...I was washing out a paint stick in the kitchen sink (first mistake) this afternoon ...you know those things that hold paint in the long tubular roller handle.   We were also going to go get a Christmas tree shortly, but had to wash it out first or it would harden closed.

I had washed some dishes first and then decided to tackle the paint rinsing job.  Without thinking (OBVIOUSLY), I pushed the long handle on the tube ...not realizing there was still paint in the roller bar.  It has all these holes  that allow the paint to go into the roller ...except the roller was not on this roller bar.

I shoved the tube down hard because it was already beginning to harden from last night.  And white paint went flying out ...everywhere!  On the clean dishes, Longerberger cookie jar, Longaberger basket, up on the wooden cabinets, on the curtains, on the lamp on left side of sink, across the counter, on top of the stove and down the front of the stainless steel door, on the tile and on ME!  I couldn't BELIEVE it!  But it was white PAINT and no time to remain in shock.  I was so MAD!

I scrambled to clean up the wooden cabinets.  What a mess.

Then I decided ..okay ...thank God for the delay.  Maybe it's a good thing.  Yeah ...that's it ..this was really a good thing. I didn't feel it ..but decided it felt better to go with that thought versus wallow in the extreme frustration I was feeling in the moment.  It worked.  :)

Some years ago, I heard someone say that instead of getting angry when stuck in a traffic jam or having to wait for some reason ..to thank God for the delay because you may be being prevented from an accident of some kind up ahead.  I recall many of the WTC workers said they had delays that kept them from being at work on time that day.

Anyway ...it's one perspective to consider when dealing with delays.

 I couldn't get to the dripping paint fast enough.  Fortunately it was latex and cleans up easily although was smearing. And I did break a couple of nails scraping it off the tile.  And I still have some paint in my hair.

 And we didn't go out to get a Christmas tree.

But ...our family room is a nice ...bright white.  YAY!.  :)

Just have to look for the good.  :)

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Catching Up

Still no computer which has me all out of whack with blogging and commenting.  Involved in major painting project now ..and at CHRISTMAS ..what WAS I thinking???!  Although ...I am loving the outcome.

Right now our house looks like a housework, Christmas and paint project EXPLOSION happened!  And have paths to walk through until all furniture back into family room.  Gonna be pretty tho.  :)

I have an interesting post (says me) , when I can about how word of mouth with painters, etc worked. My friend wants them, they 're interested in urologists, etc.  WOM is important.  Interesting.

Bed HOGS! :)

<3~Vero

I've always SUSPECTED they did this!