Wednesday, October 24, 2007


I don't feel optimistic about things.

Mom remains hospitalized and had a terrible night with confusion, irritability ("I want to get out of here"), and pain. By morning she was in so much misery that she needed IV pain medications. The good news is that she had relief of the pain but the bad news is that she remained lethargic all day, barely ate, and intermittently (between long naps) woke up to tell stories about people that weren't there. "This kid with the blonde curly hair" was a key player. I suppose dreams and reality blend together in her mind. Unfortunately all this "delirium" made postoperative day 3 a relative waste; there was no meaningful work done on the enormous task of "getting mobilized". Impatient members of the team are now talking about transfer to a skilled nursing facility because she is not strong enough to participate in the rigorous work required on the inpatient rehabilitation unit at the hospital. I call them impatient because I am on the opposite end of their decisions and wish that they could just give her more time to prove herself.

My mind is taking me everywhere. I know too much. I have seen too much. My experience is a negative factor at times like this. Or, is it really a positive factor in disguise? I can barely force myself to plan, to think ahead, or to envision where we will be next week. All I want to do is distract myself with the television, the internet and emails, the newspaper, caffeine, sugar and my bed. I am clearly taking one day at a time and allowing some component of benign neglect to run free. Perhaps that is too harsh an assessment; there is so little that I can do except to translate the language of medicine to my family and offer a few insights here and there. I cannot affect the outcome in any major way. I participate but I don't direct. Surrender.

Surrender again.

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