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» Friday, November 10, 2017I Just Want to Be Bored...
You know that supposed "old Chinese saying" (or is it a curse?) "may you live in interesting times"? Well, I'm done with interesting. Seriously. I want to be bored.
The last time we met, it was Sunday night and we were all prepared for work. Wish we were prepared for sleep. Not only did we not sleep well, but James woke up at 3:30 a.m saying he "felt weird." This is a signal that his blood sugar is low. We did the usual stuff: juice boxes and a Trader Joe's fruit bar, then tried to reenter the arms of Morpheus. Good ol' Morph wasn't having any of it. By the time the alarms rang, we were both dazed and lightheaded. I teleworked; James carefully chose his diet to keep his sugar even. Ever since he got home from the hospital he has been having trouble with this. They changed his dosages and he has been waking up often with low scores.
Tuesday morning was not only the absolute nadir of the week, it tied with some pretty bad nadirs in previous years. Last week I had had a problem with a stuffy nose. So not to sleep with my mouth open, I was taking half a dose of Sinex before bed only. It wore off very quickly and I'd get up in the morning feeling tottery and half awake. So since it was my telework day, I was bad and hit the snooze alarm once, and then had to rush to get up to wash my face, take my Protonix, and then boot up the computer for work.
As I was about to leave the bedroom, I realized I hadn't heard a very routine sound yet.
A couple of years back I started using this app called Life360. It was basically a personal tracker. I put it on my phone and James' phone, and then also marked our workplaces. It kind of irritated James at first; he grumbled "Don't you trust me?" to which I replied, "Implicitly. It's those other morons on the road I don't trust." Eventually he got to like it. When he was in the hospital last year he would use it to "follow" me home and back when I went to take care of Tucker and Snowy.
Anyway, I have the app set to make a little "tweedle" when James gets to work in the morning. It also tweedles when he leaves work so I can start cooking on days when I telework.
I realized that I had not heard the morning tweedle and checked my phone. The app said he was still at home.
I knew he didn't sleep well, so I wondered if he'd fallen asleep in the kitchen. No one there. Perhaps he left his phone at home. It wasn't on the charger, though. Uneasy, I ran down the steps and looked out the sidelight next to the front door, and the truck was still in the driveway! Shit! I raced outside through the garage and found the truck, with the power chair already mounted on the back, halfway in and halfway out of the garage door, and James was slumped sideways in the seat!
I banged on the passenger side window, heart in my throat, and he started, then stared at me, and I shouted "What are you still doing here?" and he snapped back "What?" I ran around to the driver's side door. He looked fuzzy and just picked up a water bottle and started to drink. I shouted at him to open the door, and he did, looking very woozy but grumpy. I asked again "What are you still doing here?" and he gave me a confused look. It was very, very obvious that he had crashed again, although he told me when he got up that his score was 140, because when he answered my questions he answered as if he were drunk.
At that point I saw a pumpkin bar balanced on his chest and more or less got him to eat it, because at that point he could barely chew, and I took the chance and ran in the house for juice. There was none in the refrigerator and in panicking I knocked every bottle of insulin down and broke one. Instead I fetched two juice boxes from the bedroom closet and raced back downstairs. He had to drink two of those juice boxes and eat most of one of his breakfast burritos before he was even coherent enough to explain what he remembered. Apparently he had done all his morning activities, including taking his usual dose of insulin, warmed up his burritos, gotten his lunch, gone downstairs, backed out the truck, mounted the chair (and he did it perfectly), and went back into the cab of the truck to start to work. He said the truck would not start, and that was the last thing he remembered until I hammered on the window.
Well, apparently God, in the instrument of the truck, was with us this morning. And he had not had a chance to close the garage door, so it was okay, too; it looked like the truck had rolled forward and come to a stop on the lip of the garage.
He finally got upstairs and ate the other burrito, and he was fine, but we were pretty much both in shock. I logged on to work and said I wouldn't be working that day, and James called up Kaiser, both to cancel his cardio treatment for today, and to get an appointment. His GP had openings, and we got the earliest one.
I made a big, big, big mistake when I got to Kaiser. The nurse with the free flu shot cart was making her rounds as we waited. I turned her down last week, but in a moment of weakness said "yes."
In the meantime, we got in to see Dr. Mobley, and it was as we suspected. Since James' kidneys aren't working properly, they're not filtering the insulin out of his body properly either. He had taken a full dosage of long-acting insulin at bedtime, and taken another before leaving for work. The first dose was still in his system, and the second dosage hit just as he was about to back out of the driveway. Basically he was OD'ing on insulin. I don't know why the truck "refused to start," but I'm sure glad it did. We need to light a candle and say a nice long prayer!
Anyway, we got out of Kaiser long after our 12:20 appointment; it was almost three o'clock. So we went to Panera to have lunch. During lunch, I started to cough, initiated, possibly by a baguette crumb. Or possibly not, since by suppertime I kept coughing. And coughing.
I coughed all through the night, to the point I had to go sleep on the futon to keep from waking James, waking up like a zombie. So I teleworked, and James teleworked as well, as Dr. Mobley had cautioned him to make sure his blood levels were balanced before he drove anywhere again. He had been fine yesterday afternoon, but he was clumsy and a little shell-shocked for the first few hours. At one point he could not get the test strip bottle open, and then he asked me where the caps lock key was. It was more like he was sleepy than overdosed this time. As he ate, he perked up more, and he worked very capably, but he wasn't as chatty as usual.
Meanwhile my temperature started to climb, and I was miserable and shivering on the sofa, wrapped in a blanket, all evening. By then I had all the symptoms of a reaction to the shot except for nausea: fever, muscle aches, headache, tenderness at the injection site, plus the cough, which was being a stone-cold bitch. My sides and chest and neck were hurting from all the coughing, and my nose was beginning to get stuffy. I took some Sinex and ibuprofin, and with the help of three pillows, was able to sleep a little bit more than last night, and stay in our own bed without waking James. Otherwise I was a mess, and my temperature was starting to climb again when I got up on Thursday. So I called up the advice nurse and she thought I needed to be seen right away.
Thankfully Twilight can practically drive himself. I saw the nurse practitioner and she pretty much said it was what I thought: reaction to the shot. Since the flu shot has a virus in it, every so many people get "mild" flu symptoms from the vaccine. Usually, she said, people just feel tired and a little under the weather. But because it was virus, no antibiotics unless my temperature remained high. She gave me some pills for the cough [James had these the year he had pneumonia] and gave me the usual instructions: ibuprofin or Tylenol, lots of water, hot soup or tea, rest, and I could take Sinex for three days to be able to breathe out of my nose. Our favorite pharmacy clerk told me she'd had a reaction to the vaccine, too.
The pills actually did help the cough some. If nothing else, it made the cough wetter instead of a dry hacking one, and it got rid of the throat spasm I got every time I tried to talk that made me gasp and cough. The temperature, however, crept up and up until I ended up going to bed with a fever of 101.4.
However, when I woke up this morning, and except for creeping up to 99.3 at some time during the day, it has remained relatively normal. I got dressed to go out this morning, but was not up to anything but walking the dog twice. I am furious. It was so bloody hot last week it was uncomfortable to do just about anything outside and I was fine, and now that it is cold and I can walk more, I can't, because with this stupid cough and stuffed nose I can't get enough air to make it comfortable. Grrr! I spent the day messing around on the Roku stick and watching all of the 1948 "Superman" serial with Kirk Allyn and falling asleep in the meantime. The only useful thing I did was make the bed and take Tucker out. I hate feeling miserable.
There is good news: James did go to work today and had a good day all day; he brought home pizza from Uncle Maddio's for supper. Today is our anniversary: #27 and I hope many more. And the medicine Dr. Mobley gave me for that fugging heat rash combined with the cool weather appears to be working: it was both a pill this time and a fungal cream.