Wednesday, November 30, 2011

All hooked up for the next 24 hours!?!

My cardiologist thinks that I might have "white coat hypertension" where my blood pressure is only high when a doctor is taking it.  Because of that, he feels that I might be actually taking more bp medicine than I should. Nothing would please me more than to take less meds...and, I am hopeful that this will be the case.

So, since 9:30 this morning I have been wearing a 24 hr. bp machine.  This basically is a bp cuff that stays on my arm always and tubing that goes from the cuff to a box that is tethered around my waist with a strap.
Every twenty-five minutes or so the machine is activated and the cuff tightens around my arm and my bp is taken and recorded.  I am forewarned of this by a beeping sound that comes from the box around my waist.

Not only have I had this on all day, but I must sleep with it all night.  After midnight the time span will change to every hour.  I cannot imagine getting much sleep as the squeezing of the cuff is quite uncomfortable and my arm has gotten very sore.  Then there is the lovely beeping sound that will occur every hour.

"Can I take something to help me sleep through all of this?" I asked the nurse today.  Of course the answer was a definite "no" in that it might affect my pressure reading.

...should be an interesting night.  : O

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

I was doing okay until I began to eat the rest of the M & M's....

(The empty M & M jar....)

The family is gone.
The house is quiet.
The sheets and towels are washed and put away.
Toys are stored in the attic until next time.
The card games are back in the closet.
Borrowed baby items are being returned.
Floors are vacuumed and mopped.
Bags of garbage are put out.
The last remnants of turkey are eaten.
Missing the kids and grandkids....
....and I find myself eating way too many M & M's to fill the empty space...


Saturday, November 19, 2011

There's only one thing that can get me out of this "funk" right now....

....and, that is KIDS and GRANDKIDS!!!!!! :  )

The first of the gang will be arriving in about 30 minutes and I can't wait!!!!  They left 20 degrees and snowy Minneapolis tonight and will be pleased to "thaw" out here in mild Birmingham where temps are hovering around 56 degrees.

I know that they will be sleepy (they land at 10 p.m.!) but, hopefully I can sneak a couple of good hugs in before they head to bed....

ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.....I needed this.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Making sense out of confusion...

Without even getting out of bed this morning, I grabbed my iPad and immediately went to the obituary page online.

 I looked in disbelief as a beautiful picture of my friend popped up on the screen. "This is real..." I muttered to myself, as I read through the short synopsis of her life...

Being out of town and hearing the horrific news, the nightmarish past days...the prayer services...the complete shock of seeing my usually ebullient friend lying silently in a hospital bed...the stories of friendships past and present being told...feeling hopeful that she would make it through this sudden illness...and then, the "telling" MRI letting us know the grim news.

Feeling helpless while trying to make sense of a life taken too soon and so suddenly.

Rest in peace, dear Gail.

You are loved....and you will be missed.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

I am still not believing that this is real.... friend Gail passed away this morning after being in a coma for the past week and a half from spinal meningitis.

It still feels surreal and so very sad.

:   (

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Four girls and a Mom....

                                                 (Marsha, Me, Sherri, Karen, and Mom)

What a wonderful five days I just had with my family.  My three sisters and I planned a surprise 89th birthday celebration for Mom down in Florida.  It was joyous to see her surrounded by all of the people in her life....and, to see how beloved she is.

By the time that I got ready to fly home we had lit candles on more than three different cakes and sung "Happy Birthday" at least that many times! 

We were all stuffed and pooped, but smiling....   : )

Smiling, that is, until I returned back home....

Unfortunately, while I was away this past week, I received some tragic news about a local girlfriend of mine.

It seems that what started as a sinus infection ended up becoming spinal meningitis....the bacterial kind, which is the most dangerous type to have. Once she got to the emergency room, she was in a coma....and, today, nine days later.....she remains that way.

It was surreal as I walked into her room in the intensive care unit with her husband.  This friend is generally very talkative and colorful....and, there she was....silent.  I spoke to her and stroked her arm, hoping that she might miraculously open her eyes and smile.  Of course, nothing of the kind happened, and I left there with a heavy heart.

So, now it is a horrific waiting game for my friend's family as they sit vigil at the hospital hoping and praying for her to come out of the coma and be alright. I can't even begin to imagine how very difficult this must be for them all...

The friends have organized a weekly prayer group as well as a system of bringing food to the family.  There is such a feeling of helplessness, that anything that we can do seems to help us get through this time.

If you have an extra moment during your day, please say a prayer for my friend, Gail.