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Not a newbie anymore




It's been really busy around here, and I have not had much time to write. The days seem to get away from me, and are gone before I know what happened.


Larry's been a bit under the weather the last few days - nothing serious, but the heavy duty antibiotics that he's had to take because of his recent urinary tract infection have wreaked havoc with his system, and not to give too much information, but if I say that it's been a purgative experience for him you will get the idea. We will both be glad when he's finally done taking them tomorrow. In the meantime, I'm concerned that he may still have the infection. Again, I hope I am not giving TMI, but his urine smells very strong and is cloudy. I called the Kaiser "visiting nurse" today to ask her to come out and see what she thinks, and also to check on the catheter bag, which leaked all over the floor last night. I left messages for her all day, starting at 7AM and ending at 8:30 PM, and never got a call back. I'm pretty disgusted - there's no accountability at all, and no consequences if she doesn't call me back, and in the meantime here we are not knowing what to do and totally at her mercy. If I haven't heard from her tomorrow I will need to get Larry to the doctor, which is always a major production for everyone. Boy, is this frustrating sometimes!


Larry's son Eric and his family were here yesterday evening, and we had a chance to celebrate Eric's birthday together. That definitely perked Larry up. He always likes having visitors, and so do I. Since we don't get out a whole lot it's nice when people come to see us. Cecilia marinated chicken that we (as in "Eric") grilled, and she also made a Chinese noodle dish that she told us is traditional for birthdays - long noodles for long life, or some such thing. It was very good, and everyone enjoyed it. Our granddaughter Lea liked slurping up the noodles and ate quite a bit of it; definitely a hit. Lea is 18 months old now has learned how to jump, and we had fun watching her show off her new skill. Instant entertainment!


Today we are back to having contractors in the house again. The rooms that we left carpeted when we did Larry's bed/bath remodel are just not working out; moving the wheelchair on carpet is exhausting and is starting to really bother my back, so I finally decided to go ahead and get the laminate floors put in the other rooms. I can't afford to start having back problems, and I worry about Cecilia too; she doesn't complain, but I know it's hard on her as well. Fortunately the contractor had a cancellation on a big job and can fit us in right away; I was expecting it to be mid-October at the earliest before they could start, but they began pulling up the carpet today, and I am not sorry to see it go. The wood floors underneath are actually in decent shape, and if not for the wheelchair it would make sense to re-finish them, but I don't think they would stand up to the wear and tear the way that laminate does. In any case, it will be at least a week until it's all done, and I'm really looking forward to seeing it finished. After that I will see about painting the rest of the house, and then I can exhale and relax for a while, I think.


My mom is home from the nursing facility after her stroke, and doing very well. Luckily it was mild in comparison to Larry's. My sister Barbara is living at her house for the next few weeks while her (Barbara's) house undergoes renovation after the flood disaster that they had - a hot water pipe burst while they were at our house the night of Larry's party. Barbara has been wonderful, and has been looking after Mom, cooking and cleaning, and making sure she's OK. Larry (we are both married to Larrys, which gets confusing) is staying in a hotel in Thousand Oaks, where they live, since he works too far away to make staying at Mom's practical, so the two of them really have a lot going on, between Mom's issues and their house. You can have 2008 as far as I'm concerned - this has just not been a great year! At least we can hope that all the trauma and bad stuff happened this year, and that we're done with it.


My friend Mavis called me today because she has a friend whose father just had a severe stroke and she is totally lost as far as what she needs to do. Mavis asked if I would call and talk to her, since she's going through a pretty tough time. It was strange to be the one doling out advice, and it made me realize that a lot has happened since April 22nd - I'm not a newbie anymore. We were on the phone for about an hour, and although most of what I had to offer was just moral support, I think I gave her some good practical advice too. It was nice to be able to give something back to someone after all the help I've gotten from so many people, and strange to realize that it's only been 5 months since Larry's stroke. In many ways, it has literally been a lifetime ago!


So, that's all the news. I hope all is well with everyone.






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It is nice to catch up. I can imagine your days are extremely busy. It sounds as though Cecilia is working out and a great deal of welcome help.


I stroked in April of '07 and it is beginning to seem like so long ago. I understand when you say that Larry's

stroke seems so many months ago.


I enjoy your posts. Keep us updated as you are able. Be sure to get rest, too.



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Seems that overnight we're not "newbies" to this stroke thing. Not that long ago you were so "up in the air" about all that was happening. Now look at you dear, being able to help another as her friend starts down the recovery road with her Dad.


Bless you for all you're doing; hope Larry starts to feel better and that your's and Cecelia's backs can hold up til you can the laminate flooring installed.

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Hey, your not a newbie anymore, you are now in the "been there, done that" crowd. Ain't it great?


Have you thought about getting a scooter for Larry? It might save your back and help him be more mobile and independent. I have both kinds of wheelchairs. I use my manual around the house for the exercise and when we go somewhere, but I can take my motorized one outside and cruise the neighborhood. Insurance and Medicare paid for them.


I hope you get Larry's problem solved soon.


Guess I'll get into my other wheelchair and go for a ride. It is absolutely beautiful today.



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hey Janine:


Glad to hear you are being busy & taking care of things. So now you are joining our membership of been there, done that, nothing to be afraid of league. Hope you offered this strokenet site as a reference toyour friend.


Post stroke I never thought I will be helping anybody else out, my own pain was so much bigger to look at anybody else's pain.





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