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Stroke Caregiver - female
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About SarahR

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  • Birthday 06/30/1948

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  • Stroke Anniversary (first stroke)
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  1. SarahR

    Celebrating Gary's 72nd Birthday

    Tomorrow, July 8th Gary will turn 72.......hard to believe that he almost didn't make it past his 56th birthday the year he had his stroke. Sometimes I wish I remembered all the Doctors names who treated him at Swedish Medical Center in Denver, CO, especially the ones who said if he survived the initial brain swelling he likely would not live six months - shows how much they knew about the human spirit...lol Tomorrow I will take him out to breakfast at his favorite casino, let him play the slot machines for a couple of hours, and he will likely nap the rest of the afternoon. He still sleeps a good 15-18 hours a day. On another note: We've had a good couple of weeks with the news that our daughter-in-law came home from hospital after 26 days, and is continuing dialysis for the kidneys and physical therapy on an outpatient basis. While she is now cancer free, she gave us quite a scare after the second surgery when she went into septic shock and the kidneys took a direct hit - she had acute kidney failure. After they finally got the sepsis under control she went through at least 10 rounds of dialysis before they finally decided she could go home and continue with outpatient treatments. She's still sleeping a lot, but doing a little better each day. We so appreciated all the prayers as they do work miracles. Sarah
  2. SarahR

    Daughter in law had rough night after 2nd surgery (to remove blockage), and they moved her to ICU this morning after blood pressure shot up. She's heavily sedated and on IV with antibiotics and fluids and fighting septic shock. Son is really worried. Wish I could get away but not possible right now. Will update if anything changes! Sarah
  3. SarahR

    Just a quick update: Daughter-in-law is back in surgery again this morning - after a week in hospital and trying to recover from surgery to remove part of colon and surrounding lymph nodes, she had rough time. ... Couldn't pass solids through the intestines - and after x-rays showed twisting and blockage they decided to go in again and try to clear the blockage. She will be in surgery for several hours and we won't know more for at least 4 hours. Prayers still welcome! Thanks, Sarah
  4. SarahR

    Asha, Her mother is in S. Dakota and just had back surgery, so not able to travel. Sarah
  5. SarahR

    We Never Stop Worrying

    It's funny how we never stop worrying about our kids, even though they have their own separate lives and have not lived under our roof in years. Our oldest son had his back problems and underwent surgery back in December, went through a painful rehab process and we worried that he would end up on disability as it took a long time for him to be able to even walk without a walker. He wasn't sure he would be able to go back to work again, especially since his employer at the time was moving out of state and he'd have to look for another job. It's not easy switching jobs once you turn 50 and have had health issues, but he lucked out and got a really good job. He's been training in Chicago and is now back home in Colorado while his wife is going through some serious health issues. She just underwent surgery on Friday after a routine colonoscopy revealed a malignant tumor. She's doing well after surgery but won't have results of latest biopsy till next week some time. If anyone can beat it, it would be her - - she's a tough cookie, but that doesn't mean we don't worry about her and our son. His new boss gave him the time off to be home with her through the surgery and some of the recovery, but I'm sure he'll have to head back to Chicago to finish his training. I'm feeling like I should be there to help out, but can't even make the trip to Colorado unless I have someone along to help with Gary - between a rock and hard place on that one! Our caregiver, Carmen was going to be away to CA for 3-4 weeks, and now it's going on more like 5 weeks and she's not coming back until around the 20th, which means I will have gone nearly six weeks without help...........ugh!! Sarah
  6. SarahR

    Thanks for the comments. It looks like we'll just be meeting up with our son at the casino next Mon. for lunch. Not many around here to attend a party if I had the energy to do one anyhow, and not much interest among friends. We plug along day by day - he sleeps a lot, I look forward to the pool water heating up so I can at least get out to swim instead of sitting inside waiting for him to wake up, so I can care for him until he's ready for his nap......it's a vicious cycle. Sarah
  7. SarahR

    I totally get it..... Sarah
  8. SarahR

    Sorry about all the uncertainties in your life right now. I am so glad we had the chance to meet up in Hawaii a couple years ago. One never knows what the future will bring especially with age creeping up on us. Hope your procedures go well .......keep us informed. Sarah
  9. SarahR

    Approaching 15 Yr. Stroke Anniversary

    June 1, 2004 Gary suffered his brain stem stroke at the local hospital, while awaiting tests to find out why he passed out at home that morning. A nightmare of mistakes followed and he was transferred to a larger hospital in Denver where he spent the next three weeks in a drug induced coma to reduce swelling on the brain and further damage. I was told he had very little chance of survival, and if he did survive he would never work again, let alone walk or talk. It was recommended that he be placed in a nursing home, which would have surely ended his life and was not going to be an option for us after checking them out. He spent 3 months in a rehab hospital in Boulder, CO and when insurance was slow in processing claims and I was complaining about the lack of proper care, they released him to go home. A lot of ups, downs and in betweens over the past 15 years, but he's still here, hasn't spent a single night in a hospital since he came home the end of September 2004, and aside from still sleeping a lot, not being able to sit up by himself, transfer without assistance, feed, shower or dress himself, he has many good days. I'm trying to decide whether I should have a small party to celebrate his 15 years of survival.......any comments, or suggestions would be appreciated. Sarah
  10. SarahR

    Glad you are back home and working on getting stronger....still lots of living to do...keep your chin up!!
  11. SarahR

    Prayers for you, Sue! When it rains, it pours!! You've certainly had more than your share of bumps in the road!! Sarah
  12. SarahR

    I don't envy you having to deal with the cold and the snow.....you need a getaway to AZ again! lol Glad to hear Dan is doing okay....I can only imagine how frustrated those nurses must be! lol Sarah
  13. SarahR

    We're Still Hanging On

    Still here, still surviving, sometimes by only a thread, but we're doing okay. We finally sold the Scottsdale mobile home the end of December, and were able to get Gary's bathroom redone for a roll-in shower. I put that job off way too long and was worried my back would not hold out much longer trying to get him in and out over that tub to shower him. A $3200 job ended up costing nearly six grand by the time I fired first contractor and had to replace him with a handyman to finish the job. Technically, I should have had him rip it all out and start over, but I really couldn't afford that and didn't have the time or patience to take the phony contractor to court for reimbursement.....I was lucky to get him to reimburse me $900 to pay the handyman, in order to get the job done. We had the doorway between bedroom and bathroom widened to 36 in. so it is much easier getting through with wheelchair and I can roll Gary right up to grab bar in shower to pull himself up, turn and sit on his shower chair. He's lost a lot of mobility and some cognitive ability through all this, but we make it work. It's been nice having my youngest sister and her husband in AZ again this winter doing the snowbird thing with their motor home. They have been across the country and back over the past couple years with that new motor home, so are now planning on buying a house south of Tucson and moving down here by Fall. This week they will be in AZ City, which is only about 25 min. away from us, so we will meet up a few times next week and they offered to sit with Gary if I need to get out while our caregiver, Carmen is on vacation to visit her son in Colorado. I may take them up on the offer and go get some acupuncture in Casa Grande. I've had those free coupon offers laying here on my computer desk for months, but never had the time or opportunity to use them. Our daughter-in-law from Colorado was in the area for about 10 days in February for the grand opening of the new Ziggis Coffee in Chandler. She's an area manager in Colorado and travels to the new openings to help with set up and grand opening. Her original travel dates were pushed back by delay in opening, which turned out to be a good thing as she ended up being full time caregiver for our oldest son after his back surgery the end of December. He had two surgeries for spinal stenosis. I talked to him yesterday and he's very disappointed that progress is slow and he's still experiencing numbness all down left side from butt down to feet, and his right foot is numb. He's been on short-term disability for over 3 months and should have been cleared to go back to work this month, but the pharmaceutical company he works for is closing their Colorado operations, so he no longer has a job. He says he can't be on his feet more than an hour or two before his back spasms start and he has to sit again, so not sure if he'll even be able to work again. Since his wife returned home to Colorado she has also been sick with some sort of infection related to her colitis....so not doing well. Please keep them both in your prayers. I'm hoping to get a new computer in the next few weeks, then can start adding people back on facebook. Had some problems with computer virus pop-ups, and lost a lot of contacts. Sarah
  14. SarahR

    New Girl in Family

    Ever since we got back from our Colorado trip in June, Misha (our little schnoodle) has been missing her playmate who visited often while we were away. The neighbor girl would bring her female shitzu mix over to play and Misha loved the company. So, for Gary's birthday I decided I'd try to find a new lap dog for him since Misha prefers sitting on my lap and hanging out with me. On Tuesday of this week we picked up a 6 month old chihuahua mix from a family who had too many dogs and were getting ready to move and couldn't take them all with them. They had named her Lala, but we changed her name to Leila (pronounced Lay-la) because I liked it better. lol Wednesday morning, I took Leila to the vet for her first wellness exam and her rabies and distemper shots since the previous owners had not done any of the shots. The vet checked her out and said she appeared to be quite healthy and she was very cooperative during the exam. We go back in three weeks for the 2nd booster for the distemper and then again 3 weeks after that for her third in that series of shots, spaying, microchipping and removal of a dew claw on back left foot. Our biggest challenge will be keeping Misha away from her after her surgery so he doesn't accidentally cause her to tear open stitches. We may have to kennel him a couple times during that time. Gary is enjoying the cuddle time with the new pup and when she's not on his lap, she makes him laugh when her and Misha are chasing each other around the living room stealing chew toys from each other. She sleeps on my bed at night while Misha sleeps in the kennel at the foot of my bed and she's been real good about going out to potty when he goes out, so that's a huge plus. Sarah
  15. SarahR

    Sounds like things are going along more smoothly than normal.....knock on wood, right? I wouldn't worry about putting on a few extra pounds - it's always easier putting them on than taking them off. I should know - been on that yo-yo plan for decades. lol Sarah