Monday, July 24, 2017

Hits and Misses (July 16-22)

Here's a look at the week that was....

  • I don't enjoy hitting the stores as much as I used to, but when I do manage to go shopping, I love to find a good sale! I need some new things before heading back to Texas, so I made a trip to Dillard's this week. Walked in the door and found that a large portion of their slacks were 65% off. Very happy!
  • Wednesdays with Mom has become one of my favorite times of the week. Whether we make a quick run to Memphis for lunch, spend some time cooking together, or just sit around the Geriatric Ward laughing, these days in the middle of the week are treasures. 
  • I love to read. It's that simple. I've needed some extra distraction this week, so I buried my nose in several novels and found myself whisked away to other places. It is a great form of escape and one that brings me a lot of pleasure.
  • In the midst of a rough week, it was comforting to have family time throughout the week to share thoughts and encourage one another. Whether we talk by text message, phone call, or in person, I am blessed to have a family who listens, understands, and stands together.
  • My back has been problematic for several weeks now. It's not a constant ache, but rather something that rears its head when I bend just right or take an awkward step. This week, I felt the need to stretch shortly after getting out of bed. As soon as I did, I realized that I had thrown my back out. I was very happy to know that I already had an appointment with my chiropractor the next morning. We've been working on my back for a while now, but I'm definitely ready for things to get back to normal.
  • It seems that road construction follows me wherever I go. Highway 64, the main thoroughfare to and from Crawfordsville, is being expanded and has completely disrupted our travel in the Geriatric Ward. I've gotten to know many of the back roads this summer in an effort to avoid the mess and keep my car from getting damaged. It's added a little extra time to most drives, but I have to admit that I am sort of liking the routes. It's something different to look at!
  • Summer finally arrived in Memphis this week.....IT HAS BEEN HOT!!!! Excessive heat warnings hit the area on Wednesday and remained in effect the rest of the week. The air was thick and sticky. Breathing was rough. I spent as much time indoors as humanly possible.
  • Summer evenings without electricity are boring and uncomfortable.
  • On Sunday morning, I received the sad news that Sandy Currin, the beloved administrative assistant in Union University's Department of Music, had lost her battle with cancer and passed away that morning at 8:30am. Sandy was such a joy to work with and a marvelous friend. She was always supportive of me and provided encouragement and words of wisdom about life, maturing parents, health, and my continuing job search. In many ways, she was a Mom while I was away from home in Jackson. More importantly, she was the kindest woman I have ever met whose life was a constant witness for Christ. I consider myself very blessed that our paths crossed. I mourn for her husband Hal, her children, and her beloved grandchildren, but I celebrate with her that her suffering is over and she is now worshipping at the feet of her Savior whom she dearly loved.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Hits and Misses (July 9-15, 2017)

Here's a look back at the week that was.....

  • Both Mom and I received good reports from our respective doctors this week.  Mom's left eye continues to heal nicely from her recent cataract surgery.  My right arm continues to improve through chiropractic adjustment and my calcium score ordered by the cardiologist came back with very low numbers, suggesting that I am a low risk for a cardiac event within the next 7-10 years.
  • We've also had a lot of good cooking in the Geriatric Ward this week. Much of the success has come with our recent acquisition of a meat thermometer. It's amazing what you can do when you have good tools that provide you with good information. Mom and I are looking forward to experimenting with it some more this week.
  • The weekly Geriatric Restaurant Adventures continued this week to rave reviews by the patients. While Dad was at a meeting on Thursday night, Mom and I ventured to Bosco's in Mid-town. The biggest hit of the week was Saturday's dinner at Ciao Bella. We all loved the Italian food we sampled and the blueberry bread pudding was to die for! I anticipate we will return to Ciao Bella before I have to go back to Texas in a few weeks.
  • All week long, Facebook has reminded me of happy times serving the children of Abundant Grace Ministries. Many summers were devoted to planning and conducting music camps for the kids. During these fun times, children were given a taste of performing on stage while receiving Biblical instruction. I have seen lots of pictures this week from several of the camps and have really enjoyed looking back at the kids that were involved, thinking about where they are now in their walk with Christ, and being really thankful that I was able to be a small part of their development. 
  • Since summer vacation is winding down, I'm finding myself trying to do some planning for the Fall. It's like balancing a house of cards at times. The things I'm scheduling are important to me and I enjoy them.....but one error in calendar planning can make the whole thing come tumbling down. I'm just hoping that it all works out easily.
  • There's nothing worse to me than feeling unproductive. Lots of things can cause the lack of production -- poor motivation, lack of communication -- and it happens to all of us. I tend to get things done, but this week I've not gotten as much done as I would have liked. Here's hoping that the coming week improves.

Monday, July 10, 2017

Hits & Misses (July 2-8, 2017)

I took an extended break from almost all of my blogging to reflect and consider a few things. Now I'm looking forward to writing again. So here's a look back at the week that was.....

  • This week seems to be all about good dining experiences. On Sunday, I introduced my parents to the yummy sandwiches at Firehouse Subs. Mom had avoided trying the chain because she assumed "Firehouse" was synonymous with "hot and spicy." Fortunately, both of them were very pleased with their sub....and they even sent me back later in the week for a repeat performance! The night before, I enjoyed a Geriatric adventure at Benihana's. It was a good chance to sit together and talk in a different environment -- and an easy way to get the patients out of the ward. We repeated the process the following Saturday evening and enjoyed eating at Houston's. I could get used to this very quickly!
  • The 4th of July was a relaxed family day in Crawfordsville. It was nice to not have extra bodies to entertain and just be able to spend time with the family. I personally needed it since the next day would be the day of the first of the cataract surgeries.
  • Mom's cataract surgery went very smoothly and we got good reports all around. There is still another follow-up appointment, but this one is basically done. Mom has not had a lot of pain -- except for the afternoon of the surgery when she refused to take the Tylenol for pain -- and is feeling better with each passing day. I am certainly thankful for a smooth surgery and healing.
  • After a long summer with lots of challenges, it is nice to be inspired once again. I'm actually interested in doing things and have confidence that my body and mind are up for the task. 
  • I've had my fill of doctor's offices for the summer. I've been the patient and I've been the caregiver. While seeing the doctor has been annoying, it's necessary. Waiting rooms, on the other hand, are a special level of Dante's Inferno! I think the strangest people -- along with the rudest people -- find their way to the cramped, poorly designed spaces just to make an already awkward situation worse. While waiting for Mom's cataract procedure to be completed, I learned more about the intimate lives of two sisters who never learned the value of using an "inside voice." Yikes!
  • Eye drops are a special kind of inconvenience for geriatric patients. As we prepared for Mom's surgery, everyone told us that the procedure wasn't too bad; the worst part of the event would be trying to manage all of the eye drops! I thought they were joking.....only to find out that it was true! The meds burn and you have to do them four times a day. I'm glad Dad took the lead on handling the eye drops and that Mom was really patient.
  • Some people can just be pushy. They are a real turn off and quite annoying.
  • With hand injuries and some rough bouts of allergies, this has been the summer of steroids. I hate them! They are bitter. They make me nauseous. They pack on the pounds in ways that are not flattering and increase my appetite. I'm going to have to go on a diet because of the medication or buy a new wardrobe. (The second option is not entirely a joke either!) Ugh....just ugh!