Friday, October 25, 2013

Friday Fun ~ Bunny, Husband, a Post Stroke Scare, and Assorted Updates

The one fun thing I haven't been doing is writing.
But here's what else is going on...

Babs Bunny is now three months old. Her forelock between her ears now measures four inched and her body hair measures three inches in length. I can't wait to get enough fur to spin it. Another months tops before she loses her baby coat.

And see Alex, she does have ears rather long ones at that. I recently bought a pen so she could go outside. She went outside for the first time yesterday. I bought it for her protection plus she's too darn quick to catch. My stroke aside even my healthy children and grandchildren have a hard time in inside of the house. My new family room, the old office, is her playroom. With the tiled floors she can't hurt anything in there. She's got some powerful legs!

The pups are doing well and are house trained already. They are cute when they try to negotiate the pet door to go outside. They were taught by the cats how to use it. Speaking of my cats...they've adjusted well to the new influx of animals into their domain. Little Bit looks at them all as new toys to play with. Of course now, they are all smaller than her. This cat's favorite game is to lie stretched out on the sofa and reaching a paw down to swipe the youngsters' heads.

Wouldn't you know Babs, the smarty pants rabbit, would figure out how to jump up on the couch. She is quite pleased with herself for doing it. Not only did she figure out a way to jump up on the sofa to be with her buddy up she also followed her up on the back of the sofa and onto the windowsill to look outside. The look of surprise on Little Bits' face was precious!

Patches, our other cat, takes a guarded attitude to all the new additions. She tolerates them in typical cat like fashion. Unlike the chickens and meat rabbits who she regularly plays with, she gives the pups and bunny the evil eye and they back off. The cats definitely rule the house.

My beloved is doing poorly. You would figure with four caregivers in the family (2 RNs, 1 CNA, 1 LPN) we wouldn't need hospice in our home also, but in my case it's a necessity and the reason is not what you might think.

Yes, there is the ability to step back and be the wife which is a godsend, but I've had some serious doubts in my ability to care for him. A prime example...

When he went into congestive heart failure again last week, my first thought was to give Lasix to reduce the amount of fluid compressing his heart and lungs. It is after all the standard treatment for that ailment. What the stroke has done to the cognitive function part of my brain could have killed him. One of the MAJOR contraindications for Lasix is low blood pressure. Because by reducing the fluid in the body you lower the blood pressure as well. I forgot that very important thing.

When I was reminded, I was rattled. I became unsure of what I knew and more importantly what I did not remember. Now, I'm second guessing EVERY decision I make. I'm filled with self doubt and no this isn't a fun thing in general, but surprisingly it's liberating!

We argued constantly before about his care. Now, not so much. I let the hospice nurse be the heavy. I would argue with him to stay in bed with his feet elevated to combat the swelling, to wear his oxygen, and assorted other things. I was making life miserable for us. They made me see that his noncompliance was his choice in how he lived the remainder of his life. That he was happier sitting at the computer dozing than being in bed. I've often said that I'd die happy typing a novel at the computer so that they'd have to pry my hands off the keyboard. They made me see he's the same way. It was a light bulb moment for me. I'm still beside him with his oxygen at the ready for when he feels he needs it. I'll still get him something to drink or eat. I'm still here helping him die the way he wants to.
The Great Raised Bed Garden Experiment is now over. Three bushels of tomatoes or 153 lbs, 180 lbs of green beans and black eye peas, 40 ears of corn, 20 lbs of sunflower seeds, 100 lbs of cucumbers now pickled, 33 lbs of Japanese Eggplant now frozen and dehydrated,  57 lbs of potatoes and onions, and 102 lbs of assorted squashes. I've also got three good sized pumpkins for Halloween and baking for the holidays and about 20 lbs of cantaloupe fruit leathers. My fig tree produced 50 lbs of fruit now canned and dehydrated. My lime and navel orange trees are heavy with fruit. While my pecan trees are in their dormant year. So all in all, not too shoddy of a harvest on less than 200 square feet of growing space not counting the trees and potatoes and onions. The trees are planted in the yard and the onions and potatoes were grown in 5 gallon buckets.

Hope y'all have a good Friday and make it fun.


7 comments:

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I'm very sorry you will have to go through that downward spiral with your husband. Glad the two of you have a balance now on what he can and can't do. As a man, I admit I wouldn't want a nurse, I'd want my wife.
Amazing the cat and bunny get along so well. Although once that bunny gets big, no way the cats will mess with him. Those back legs pack a punch.

J.L. Murphey said...

Alex- Actually I meat rabbits that average 5-7 lbs each and my cats get along with them too. They chase each other around the yard. The hens are a bit slower but they join in the chase too.

Suzanne Furness said...

Cute bunny, glad the cats are getting on well with him. Glad you are finding peace with your situation it is so hard to watch a loved one suffering. Hope you can make the moments together special. My thoughts are with you.

Zan Marie said...

{{{hugs}}} for your entire family and menagerie! I can say from experience, hospice is a God-sent blessing. Take care, Jo.

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Lara Lacombe said...

Hospice is such a wonderful service--I'm glad they're helping you here. Also glad to hear all the critters are doing well! Hope you have a quiet weekend.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Jo .. this is so good to read - to know that you're doing your thing with your husband - just enjoy as far as you can these happy memorable laughing times ... oh that keyboard!

Your veg look amazing - so satisfying ... loved hearing about James and wonderful you could lose yourself with the two year old happily cooking ... and then the pets - love seeing all the photos ..

Enjoy life as and when .. cheers Hilary