Bainstorming Blog - November 2018 to Febebuary 2019.
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Bainstorming: Darrell's Bain's Blog.
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Subjects in this blog: Accident, Falls, Forgetful, Pralines, Christmas, Anniversary, The Wreck And The Strange Cause Of It--Or Not!, Writing News, Pain, Septic System, Maria, Delay and Recommendation.
I may have told about my one car accident where I ran off the road and did about $10,000 dollars damage to our new car. I still don’t remember what happened, but I was driving along at below the speed limit one second and the next I was in the ditch hitting culverts. It did some damage to my back from the bouncing. I could feel my spine being compressed each time, and in fact was afraid to move once I came to a halt for fear of damaging it more. I was taken to the nearest hospital where I indeed had broken vertebrae and compression fractures. I stayed there a couple of days and then was transferred to another hospital for a few days then came home with a walker, a very good one that Betty got at Walmart. Eventually I got better but then promptly developed pneumonia from being in bed so much. To the hospital again, and this was not a pleasant experience. In ICU it was cold and the dern bed padding was so thin that I could feel the steel bracing of the bed through it. Every time I moved it hurt, even with pain killers. The bathroom was near freezing (the widow in my room was frosted and I saw on the news that it was 16 degrees outside. The fixtures in the bathroom were cold as ice. I hated to even go in there but I developed diarrhea that for some reason was not treated even though I requested something several times. Then I was moved to a surgical ward for several days and began feeling better, although my total food intake in both ICU and the ward as a half a blueberry muffin. No appetite at all. When I asked to go home and be under Betty’s care (a registered nurse with a B.S. degree). My request was refused. The doctor who was caring for me wanted to keep me 4 or 5 more days for “therapy”. I finally had to exercise my patient rights in order to leave “against medical advice”. They had a form saying what I was doing but I flat refused to sign it. At home I had a far better walker that the pitiful gadget the hospital was using and got along fine. Then--whoops!--Betty had to go to the hospital for acute bronchitis. I was left at hope with the two dogs while she was taken to the Emergency Room. There she remained for three days, being treated in a small alcove in the ER because there were no beds available because of a flu epidemic. She was then sent home and recovered, while I did, too.
Since we were both still sort of unsteady on our feet we tried to be careful about falls, something that happens fairly frequently to the elderly. It didn’t help. The firt time we went out, Betty tripped over a curb and tood a nasty fall. I was still too weak to get her up, but a kindly person saw the accident and ran to help. There was no permanent damage but she was sore and bruised for days. Then on our next excursion to Walmart to re-stock our cupboard, I was carrying a big armful of groceries into the house. It was hard to see where I was going and I tripped on the 6 inch rise of the front porch. I fell hard, tumbled across the corner of the porch and fell onto the brick sidewalk. I could see it coming but nothing at all I could do except turn my head. The left side of my face smashed into the bricks, cutting my face in several places. When I raised up, I was bleeding so heavily that Betty immediately began dialing 911, but then she saw me get up and cancelled the call. I asked her to get a cold pack for my face to stop the bleeding so that we could see if I needed stitches. It turned out that I didn’t think I did, but OTOH, the whole side of my face was already becoming discolored and swollen. With the bleeding stopped, I could see that there were no serious cuts (remember, I was a medic for over 12 years in the AF and Army), so Betty patched me up with band-aids. The next morning my face looked horrible. I could barely see out of the one beautiful swollen black eye and the rest of that side of my face was purple. I looked as if I had gone 15 rounds and lost them all! However, I knew there was nothing seriously wrong so we didn’t go to the ER. When friends and family and casual acquaintances asked what happened to me, I replied, “I knew I shouldn’t have bought Betty that big new cast iron skillet!”.
Christmas was almost upon us, as well as our anniversary. I thought I was being real bright when I suggested to Betty that we get married on New Year’s Eve, a year from our first real date. I wasn’t thinking or I would have known better. Now I have to think of a Christmas and Anniversary gift on dates less than a week apart. I’ve managed for forty-some years, not easily, but got it done. This year I came up blank though. I did get a Christmas Gift but no Anniversary gift yet--and that date was only two weeks away. What I get for thinking I’m smart.
We are constantly forgetting the names of thingsw or people, but usually when one of us doesn’t remember, the other does. It’s kind of funny.
In our elderly years Betty and I appear to be trying to outdo each other in the forgetting department. Funny, I can’t think of the name of something if I bring it up, but if Betty does, I can remember it. And short term memory for me is about gone. I can’t remember appointments just made, or where I put my keys after bringing in groceries. I’m as liable to find them in the refrigerator rather than where they belong. I have cards to Betty for both the coming dates, hidden in odd places all over the house, but can‘t find them! It’s not that I’ve forgotten them, I’ve just hidden them from myself--or so I tell Betty when I come up short. This year I think I’ve bought three anniversary cards but found only one of them so far. I was rummaging around the other day in the drawer of my side table by where I sit, and in the very back of the drawer I found four hundred dollars I’d tucked away and never missed it. Rats. One day I’ll forget I’m alive and that will be it.
We made pralines this morning, straight from Betty’s book, Delicious Diet-Breaking Dessert Recipes. They came out great. That last stirring seems to go on forever though, but then all of a sudden they are ready to drop and you have to hurry or they’ll be hard to drop onto wax paper because they’re hardening in the pan. They really are creamy and delicious. Outstandingly so. The rest of her desserts from her book are just as mouth-watering. Yum!
Christmas has come and gone. Santa was good to both of us. We missed the kids this year, though. Mine, that is. Most of Betty’s are right near us on Santa Claus Lane.
The Wreck And The Strange Cause Of It--Or Not!
On December 17th, 2017, I intended to drive the car to Shepherd to run a few errands. It is only 4 miles, but on the way, I ran off the road, causing $10,000 dollars worth of damage to the car, and substantial damage to my back, which had just recently been partly repaired by surgery so that I wasn’t in nearly as much pain. I told the officer who investigated that another car was in my lane and I ran off the road trying to avoid it--I was in one hospital for several days, and in another for several days. It turned out that I had broken two vertebrae, as well as having some compression fractures. I knew something bad had happened because my back hurt so much to move. I finally came home, then soon developed pneumonia and back to the hospital I went. This time I stayed in ICU for several days then on a surgical ward for several days, then the Doctor caring for me told me he was going to keep me for at least another four or five days for “therapy”. No way. I was feeling okay except for the untreated diarrhea, and ready to go home where I had a walker a million times better than the stupid thing the hospital was using. I finally had to exercise my patients’ rights and left Against Medical Advice in order to have my own physician care for me. He didn’t think I needed to be in a hospital either. That place I had been was always cold, the bathroom was barely above freezing as near as I could tell, I had diarrhea and it was never treated despite several requests, the beds had so little padding that my back was constantly running into the steel bracing of the bed itself, causing me a lot of pain. I was so glad to get home.
And then…and then…my wife had to go into the hospital for severe bronchitis, leaving me at home by myself and the doggies, who by this time were looking askance at all this coming and going and not returning for days. Betty actually was never admitted to the hospital because all the beds were taken up by flu patients. She spent four days in the emergency room, in a little alcove they found for her, then was released to go home, finally. Not a good ending for the year and not a good beginning either.
Not making much progress here. I didn’t care for the two novels I had started so put them in abeyance for the time being. Perhaps I’ll write a fourth book in the Aperture series. Would anyone like to see that? I have lots of ideas for it.
Much of my time has been spent trying to get a cover for Samantha’s Talent in paperback. The program keeps telling me I’m not doing it right, so I think I’ll just give up and create a standard cover using their cover creator so I can move on.
BTW, I would appreciate any kind of review posted on Amazon for any of my books you have read. Thanks.
I began having a lot of pain in my back and protruding vertebrae. I made a special appointment and the Doc said the protruding vertebrae are from walking slumped to compensate for pain. And pain is from two compression fractures of spine that haven't settled down yet. Prescribed more walking with back straight and shoulders back, back brace and more pain meds if I need them. Turned the offer of more pain meds down and will now try to walk twice a day for 30 minutes instead of once a day. I walked this morning with the back brace I had bought and realized that I had been slumping, just as Betty told me I had, when I thought I wasn't.
My Back brace arrived and it helps. Walking with my back straight and shoulders back like I used to do without thinking hurt my neck at first but that went away. However, it is taking constant thought to walk as I should be doing. I suppose if I keep it up long enough it will get back to a habit again. Anyway, it did reduce the pain.
Note: I usually have trouble walking in the afternoon (from noon to 3PM) so I’ve begun extending the time walked in the morning. Up to 38 minutes now. Will add a minute a day until I get to 60 minutes. That’s a long time of moderately fast walking but I believe I can do it.
Again, more trouble with our septic system. It was put in wrong to begin with and has been trouble ever since. This time the sump pump had burned out, allowing solids to pile up in the tank, and we had to get a new one. Also, needed to have both the large tank and the small tank serving the sump pump emptied. That came to nearly four hundred dollars (and I won’t be using that company again. We got took, I believe). The new sump pump and associated work amounted to well over a thousand dollars. In all, close to two thousand for this episode. We’ve spent almost as much money on that stupid septic system as we have the road, and we’ve had to spend about $30,000 dollars to keep our quarter mile of up and down road in repair over the last forty some-odd years. Rats.
We hired Maria as a housekeeper about 12 yeas ago. Since then she has progressed from a simple housekeeper to, for all practical purposes, a member of our family. We love her, invite her to all our functions such as Thanksgiving, birthday parties, and so on. She is estranged from her husband. Her daughter and only child, Esmeralda, is grown. She goes to our daughter Pat’s church and from the limited information she lets slip, we know she must be lonely. All she has is work and her church for a social life. She is a woman we would be proud to claim as a relative. As it is, we simply do what we can for her, refer to her as a member of the family, and wish we could do more for her. Sometimes life isn’t fair, is it?
Delay and Recommendation
This issue of Bainstorming has gone on quite long enough, so let’s call it quits for this time and get it on out into the cyberworld. But before I send this to my web master, though, I would like to recommend for those who haven’t read it, or want to re-read it, a previous issue of Bainstorming, December of 2007. You can find it with the rest of my Bainstorming Blogs written over the years, as well as this one, at my web page, www.darrellbain.com . Its subjects include: Bain Blunders, Bain Muses, Quantum Theory, Book Reviews, Relief From Political Correctness, The “F” word, Doctors: Individuals vs. Groups, Eyewitness Convictions, Failure of Democracy and…drum roll…an excerpt from one of my books, Doggie Biscuit, which covers the entire life of our first Dachshund. What a funny and extremely intelligent dog! We still talk about him with tears in our eyes, even though we’ve had numerous others during our married life, more than 40 years so far, and we were both married previously. We have three of Betty’s and two of mine. All are now grown and some of them are either eligible or approaching eligibility for Social Security benefits, which gives you an idea of our age!
However, despite how old we are, neither of us has any serious medical issues, although we do have a number of nagging, painful, and/or limiting medical conditions and we’re still going strong despite the fact that we are neither as fast nor as prolific as we once were. Me with cranking out books and Betty with cooking and housekeeping. We both read quite a lot and there is enough exercise in our life to keep us healthy. Plus, we have help with the heavier chores, such as lifting, doing the floors, etc. I no longer cut our own firewood nor try to do the heavier work outside because of my back. We have Maria, who comes once a week to help in the house and I have a young man, a sophomore in High School who comes every Saturday to see what needs to be done. Eight or nine months out of the year he mows our large yard, sweeps pine straw from our roof, brings in firewood, takes the trash and other items to the dump, picks up the large fallen limbs from the pine trees surrounding our home, etc. They were saplings when we built the house. They are very large trees now! Sooner or later a hurricane or windstorm is going to topple one onto the house. We hpoe we are long gone when that happens!
Okay, that does it. Be sure to check out the December 2007 Blog, although I think it may have been called a newsletter back then. They are all archived with a search engine in case you remember an item you want to read again but can’t remember which issue it was in. So long for now. Happy reading to all of you!
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Site last updated February 2019.