The post's title? No, I haven't become a ghost writer for Bill O'Reilly, who has penned many observations on such subjects (links to the unemployed, yes!). This post is just a catch-up, written in a reflective moment, as my wife may have just turned the corner in her rehab and now shows me the grit to finish it and come back home, hopefully in better shape than before she fell and busted her hip. Over the past few years, she'd endured several such falls and had picked herself up and carried on afterwards, suffering only bruises. Her luck ran out with this fall a month ago, though. So, for her, the message is clear: restore herself to her physical condition of several years ago, or it will be even worse next time and she will not survive.
To My Lady's credit, she works very hard in the rehab room at the skilled nursing facility, usually exceeding their daily goals. She is mostly-competent with a walker now, and once helped into it, can maneuver it all over her environment. She still has to have a safety person with her though, and she has to get by that limitation. Yesterday marked her starting her second month at the rehab facility, and I decided to both give her a treat and a test, so, without a shred of practical nursing training myself (just Basic EMT), I signed her out for the day and we went home the ten blocks to our house. Her VERY able-bodied daughter has brought her home twice before in the past month, but for short periods only. This time, we had a definite objective, and we accomplished it.
My lady, my Queen, has a very strong emo attachment to her cat, a huge orange tabby of 15 pounds. The attachment is two-way, so great that the animal follows her everywhere, and in doing so, was responsible for her current demise by tripping her as she prepared a meal for herself in the kitchen on 3-29. That fall resulted in a femoral hip fracture. No matter the pain and disruption of her life, she has been pining for her furry companion, so to carry this off with the partnership of the beast, I had to do everything myself, since the cat, appropriately named Houdini because it hides/escapes from everyone else but the two of us, would not come forth to comfort her if any of the rest of the family or local friends were in the house.
We plan carefully, and my big Lexus LS carries her and her wheelchair + walker home for the day. The various chair-to-walker transfers are accomplished properly, and soon she is installed in her usual recliner, from which she calls for her cat. The cat cries from two rooms away, not sure if it is safe to come out to his one and only beloved human. I call, too, and within the next five minutes, the cat appears at her side, then for the next six hours, they are inseparable again. I praise God that my prayers about this were answered, because if the cat had rejected her after her absence, she likely would end her days in the nursing home.
Her other problem, failing to eat enough to maintain strength in her musculature, goes away (for the day, anyway) with her mood elevation, and after an immediate and modest lunch upon our arrival, she pounds down a huge supper of fatty, carb-laden Chinese food four hours later, and ends the day with almost 2,000 calories aboard, a weight-gain level for her. Upon our return at dusk, the staff is amazed when I report this as required. She normally struggles to get half that total down (the facility kitchen is NOT for gourmets, let's leave it at that!).
Tomorrow, I will ask the facility staff for a "care conference", and try to persuade them to accept occasional visits of Houdini the Cat at their facility. Doing so will probably cost me a three-hundred-dollar, full physical for the animal with blood-tests and maybe more shots, but if she could see that cat several times a week at the facility, her mood might improve enough for her to lower her gustatory acceptance level down to the level of the facility's kitchen, she would up her caloric intake the necessary 800 calories per day, and she could then put on some real muscle in the rehab room, which IS the highest-rated such facility in these parts.
May God help me to successfully advocate for this plan. I love her too much to lose her now, Jesus.