Tuesday, December 13, 2011

The 12 Days . . .

of starvation for Seth and sleeping on an ironing board for me are over. Seth was discharged from the hospital today, and we're home at the apartment and exhausted. I'm not sure why, but twelve days sitting around a hospital sure took it out of us.

We've been trying to think of any bright sides to this experience; we didn't come up with much, but maybe this helped his right leg do some good healing. He got to finish his cool Lego car, and we got to experience the generosity of many people who provided meals to the families and patients in the ward and brought generous gifts and goodies. We also got another reminder of everything we take for granted. Tonight we had Campbell's soup for dinner. Seth commented on how good it was and how good the milk felt going down his throat. Then we both looked at each other, wondering the same thing: how long will this appreciation last?

Random coincedence: we went to Seth's prosthetist last week to get a new socket and found out he is stuck in a Colorado hospital after emergency surgery for, wait for it, a bowel obstruction. Maybe they're contagious!

Tomorrow was supposed to be the day we came home; now we will spend it getting paperwork etc. done so we can come home as soon as possible.

Random Rant and Reminiscence (TMI warning)
Seth's attending surgeon through this ordeal was a woman in her 50s. She was very sweet and took great care to explain things in detail and in language that was clear to us lay-folk. She was so sweet that she, frankly, annoyed Seth. I, however, appreciated her personal touch and attention. I told Seth this was perhaps because the surgeon who took my appendix out when I was 12 years old was an arrogant SOB who didn't deign to speak to me, let alone explain what was happening and why. What was happening included a pelvic exam, a frightening, and often upsetting, exam the first time for any female but even more so for a 12-year-old who had no idea what the doctor was doing and why. If a surgeon is going to err, let it be to the soft side. I'm grateful that the medical culture has and is changing from my childhood--that is, if our experience here is any indicator.

Christmas at Walter Reed-Bethesda
Walter Reed National Military Medical Center
Even though our first 12 days of Christmas were no fun, we got to experience a great outpouring from many, many groups and individuals. I cannot even begin to list those who have provided parties, gifts, meals and treats to the wounded warriors and their families. The children of wounded warriors are going to have a wonderful Christmas this year.

In the lobby of bldg 10 are these two beautiful gingerbread creations. I think they speak for themselves. (They made me very nostalgic for the old ZCMI Christmas windows . . .)

1 comment:

  1. I miss ZCMI too. So glad you're "home," but wish you were really home.