Category Archives: Uncategorized

Too Familiar with the ER and ICU

Sometimes, I feel like I am using my blog as a daily journal and little else. So be it. The blog is as good a place as any to capture experiences and thoughts and emotions that, otherwise, might disappear into … Continue reading

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Tales from My Split Personality

Medical Bureaucracy I spent too much time yesterday morning battling medical bureaucrats. That’s not fair; I spent much of the morning battling medical bureaucracy. The facility from which my wife was discharged on Friday goofed and returned to the pharmacy … Continue reading

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Krampusnacht

This lovely bit of dance and music is, I assume, in celebration of Krampusnacht (Krampus Night). But it could be a Halloween celebration. Whatever, enjoy the video, then read what I wrote about December 5, Krampusnacht. Wikipedia says Krampus is … Continue reading

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Unfettered Changes

Today may mark a new experience. I spoke to my wife last night (she called me, quite unusual of late). During the conversation, she confirmed that she wants to come home. Today. So, soon after the regular workday begins for … Continue reading

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The Autobiography of Fire

If this moment were a few weeks later, I would sing words from Leonard Cohen’s Famous Blue Raincoat: “It’s four in the morning, the end of December, I’m writing you now just to see if you’re better.” But it’s early December … Continue reading

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Unnoticed

Six years ago, I wrote the following “thought for the day” in response to my own question as to whether—if a month will be lost and forgotten under the weight of the sands of time—a month ever mattered at all. … Continue reading

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Withdrawal

Two nights in a row. I awoke at 3:30, decided to try to get back to sleep, but failed. I finally got out of bed around 5:30. Spending two hours on two consecutive nights, thrashing about trying to get sufficiently … Continue reading

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Fragile

When I was in high school, I had a crush on a well-liked cheerleader, Jane. I never watched her cheer on the teams, though, because I eschewed sports. But we were in a few classes together; and had been since … Continue reading

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Brevity is Not a Personality Flaw, I Say

I wrote some fiction last night, the first time I’ve attempted truly creative writing in a long time. I did not get much done, though, because it became clear to me early on that the characters and their experiences were … Continue reading

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Before 7 in the Morning

The ache in my left shoulder has matured into pain. Are cricks restricted to the neck, or can one have a crick in the shoulder? If so, I think that’s what I have. A crick in the shoulder. I do … Continue reading

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A Different World

A year ago, our lives were what we would now call normal. We planned our days around mundane things, like shopping for a stove. I spent my early mornings exploring the universe from my computer screen. A year ago, for … Continue reading

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ER Again

This morning was harder on my wife than on me, I’m sure. She’s the one whose veins nurses could not find to draw blood. She’s the one who ambulance paramedics loaded onto a stretcher and, after the in-ambulance, pre-trip protocol … Continue reading

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Shemomechama

Fundamental philosophical differences separate me from the thinking of virtually every world leader, I think. And, perhaps, everyone else. For example, I do not agree with Joe Biden that America should be “back,” aggressively assuming the mantle of “world leader.” … Continue reading

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Visits

I went to visit my wife yesterday. It was not what I had hoped and expected. She did not seem at all interested in visiting with me. After a completely unsatisfactory fifteen minutes of unsuccessful attempts to get her to … Continue reading

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A Safer and Saner Place

I sometimes so thoroughly confuse myself that correcting my jumbled thoughts takes considerable time and effort. Recently, as I was watching one of my favorite Finnish television crime dramas, I noticed that the producers showed the wrong title on the … Continue reading

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A Theme of Paganini

Years ago, when we lived in Chicago, I bought a vinyl album that included Variations on a Theme of Paganini and Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini. I played that album over and over and over again. For some reason, I … Continue reading

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Apparently Saturday

I drove in to Lowe’s yesterday afternoon to pick up three LED light fixtures (replacements for garage workspace fluorescent fixtures). The process was simple; shortly after I bought the products, I received notice they were available for pickup. On closer … Continue reading

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My Mind Wanders

Confusion crept into my day rather early this morning when, at 5:25 a.m., I entered the guest room where a tiny corner desk usually doubles as my study. Today, though, the desktop was nearly naked, absent the computer, keyboard, and … Continue reading

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Complex Simplicities and Such

Chrestomathy. I was introduced to the word yesterday, thanks to Word Genius, which occasionally attempts to improve my vocabulary. A.Word.a.Day, by Wordsmith, highlighted the word in January this year, but I missed it. And forreadingaddicts.co.uk called attention to it in … Continue reading

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Pattern of Productivity

My wife was transported to her temporary home yesterday afternoon; she is in the rehab wing of a nursing and rehabilitation center about mid-way between town and the Village. I spoke to her briefly last night; she seemed comfortable in … Continue reading

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Costume Jewelry

The hospital was ready to discharge my wife yesterday, but the rehab facility we chose was unable or unwilling to accept her. So, we’re waiting on word from another one. I hope we get word early today. The difficulty in … Continue reading

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Improper Certainty

Yesterday, as usual, the television in my wife’s hospital room was tuned to The Food Network while she drifted in and out of sleep. And, as usual, I divided my time between the harder-than-I-would-like-sofa and the not-as-bad recliner/sleeper positioned so … Continue reading

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Refuse

Finally, I spoke to a couple of doctors yesterday. One was a hospitalist (I think) whose demeanor was more like a patient care technician; soft-spoken, compassionate, and caring. I thought she came into the room to get water for my … Continue reading

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Higgledy-Piggledy

Until this morning, the term “anxiety attack” was etched into my consciousness. But it occurred to me moments ago that it’s called “panic attack.” Right? Whatever the term, until  yesterday, I had heard of them but, as far as I … Continue reading

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Worn Pennies

This morning, when daylight begins creeping over the horizon and sunlight touches the treetops, I will drive to the car wash and give the Subaru a bath. The exterior, at least, will then be sufficiently clean to be presentable. The … Continue reading

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More to Follow

Time got away from me this morning. I had planned on going to the hospital to visit my wife much earlier, but did not get there until about 10:40. She was asleep when I arrived and I had to work … Continue reading

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I Must Remember This

Is there a term for the inability to remember any details of a precise recent memory of a long-buried recollection? Yesterday, and again today, on two separate occasions, two different flashes of memory from my childhood popped into my head. … Continue reading

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Listening to Whispers

After six nights in ICU, and just after I arrived at the beginning of ICU visiting hours, nurses transferred my wife to a regular floor yesterday afternoon. Her blood pressure had stabilized enough, without the aid of IV medications, for … Continue reading

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When Confusion Meets Indolence

Whether the culprit was the 6.5-ounce can of minced clams, the remnants of the week-old half-can of diced tomatoes, or the similarly aged half can of tomato sauce that went into last night’s pasta sauce for dinner, I do not … Continue reading

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Drifting

It is true; anxiety has the capacity to sap one’s energy in much same way as insomnia and lack of rest can drain one’s stamina. One’s reserves of vitality and strength can bleed away, almost unnoticed, simply from anxiety. Both … Continue reading

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Nourishment

Yesterday’s visit with Janine was shorter than the day before, despite my intent to boost her spirits with some of her favorite treats. I took watermelon, sherbet, and cranberry juice to her, but she was in no mood to consume … Continue reading

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Delinquency

The postal carrier, day before yesterday, delivered an unpleasant surprise. Apparently, I somehow had missed an earlier notice, a few months ago, that property and personal taxes were due before October 15; the piece of mail bearing that news notified … Continue reading

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Halfway Between

Last night or early this morning, several times when I was halfway between sleep and waking, I thought I heard the rumble of distant thunder. But the sky remains too dark to see storm clouds—if, in fact, they are present—even … Continue reading

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First ICU Visit

Visiting hours in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) are 1 to 7 p.m. I was there just before visiting hours began, so I had to wait a few minutes before I was allowed to go upstairs to visit my wife’s … Continue reading

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Thinking in My Sleep

I did not sleep well last night. The fact that my wife is in ICU kept invading my thoughts, interrupting my sleep. And, oddly enough, I was troubled all night, too, by the dilemma of how I will get her … Continue reading

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Dammit

For ten days and then some, my wife has been trying to recover her strength at home, after having been discharged from a rehab facility in which her strength ebbed during her two-month-plus stay. That struggle has not been easy. … Continue reading

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Remembering My Sister

Today, November 2, is my late sister’s birthday. She died on February 19, 2010. On one hand, it seems like a lifetime ago; on the other, like yesterday. On the day of her death, and a few times since, I … Continue reading

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Resurrection of the Beauty of Carnations

Sometimes, when things spring without warning from one’s long-buried subconscious, inexplicable biases become instantly transparent. So it was this morning as I glanced at a vase on the kitchen island. Almost all the flowers in the vase, full of carnations, … Continue reading

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The Usual Time Compression

Time compresses into an invisible blur. Hours become single-digit minutes. Minutes become seconds. Seconds become fractional measures of experience; they are so brief one hundred thousand units equates to the measure of moments required for a single beat of a … Continue reading

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A Proper Start

Sources of energy and  inspiration—shafts of bright light piercing absolute darkness—emerge from unexpected places.  They may arise from comments uttered by a close friend who expresses his care or from words sent by someone known only by name and her … Continue reading

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Escape to and from Finland

The global chaos surrounding COVID-19, presidential elections, climate catastrophe, mass hysteria and psychoses, and all manner of other horrors fade when I am so focused on what is going on in my own house. The world around me becomes less … Continue reading

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Medicine

Only four and a half days have passed since my wife returned home from her very long stint in the hospital (two stays) and rehabilitation facilities (two facilities). While I do not doubt for a minute the value of her … Continue reading

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Connections

A new visitor (I think the visitor is new, anyway) left a very helpful comment for me yesterday. Unfortunately, WordPress has, for the last week or more, steadfastly refused to reveal anything about comments except the number left on a … Continue reading

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Reality

Yesterday gave me an education. I had half expected my wife to come home in a jubilant mood, finally home after three-plus months. That was an unrealistic expectation. Why would I expect that when her return home was so different … Continue reading

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Mind Spill

I awoke about 2:30 this morning. I got up for a while, then went back to bed to try to sleep. Eventually, after what seemed like an hour, I drifted off. But I awoke again just before five with an … Continue reading

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Coping Caregiver

Finally, I found a caregiver agency that could commit to having someone here when my wife comes home. They will stay until around 8 pm and will return the next two days for twelve hour shifts. I hope, during that … Continue reading

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Strength

The first thing I did this morning after getting up, even before making coffee, was to put sheets in the washer. Yesterday, I stripped our bed and, with some much-needed help from the guy who painted my deck (and his … Continue reading

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Coming Home

I received a surprise phone call yesterday morning. Good Sam is discharging my wife on Friday because her progress does not meet Medicare standards for improvement, they say. Medicare will not continue to pay, so she is coming home. While … Continue reading

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Escapist

I’ve been binging on Deadwind, described by Forbes as “Nordic noir,” for the last few evenings. Like so many other Scandinavian films and television series I’ve watched during the past few years, it is—to me—absolutely gripping. I cannot quite put … Continue reading

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Is the Afternoon Shot?

Something is awry when, at just a bit after two in the afternoon, one feels a sudden desire for a shot of good whiskey. The onset of such a craving should wait until after dinner; that’s the natural time for … Continue reading

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