Friday, December 2, 2011

Out of the ICU (day 36)

It's a good thing I didn't send this at my usual time. It was a pretty quiet day until 8pm, with Nancy sleeping a lot after all her physical therapy yesterday. They didn't have a bed available in 14 Moffitt for her to move to, so she was staying in the ICU, and getting anxious. Then a room opened up, and boom, we spent a couple of hours preparing and then transferring her to the 14th floor. We're here, and she's finally resting.

Yes, Nancy is out of the ICU, after five weeks to the day (her first day in the hospital was on 11-Long, the heme-oncology ward).

She was getting short of breath before the move, so the PM valve is off to let her breathe easier. Some pain and anxiety medications have helped also. Stepping back and looking at the whole picture, I'd say that she got worked pretty hard yesterday by the physical therapy and the new breathing arrangement with the valve, and it set her back slightly. So delicate is her recovery, still. Sleep is the best thing.

Her new room is private, and she has a 24x7 sitter, a nursing assistant who can call a nurse and do minor things for her. I am hoping that this will be reassuring for her, to have someone with her in the room all the time. It's also quieter, although the NA tonight, Shanelle, is a bit of a chatterbox :-)

When I was leaving last night at 11, the family therapist and counselor for the unit greeted me, and we had a conversation about Nancy's future recovery. She'll eventually be spending time in a physical therapy center, which seems to be a lightweight residential medical facility dedicated to physical rehabilitation. The therapist suggested that I could start looking into various options now (here is an example), so that when Nancy is ready to leave the hospital, we will be all set up. It's rather wonderful that wisdom and resource seems to arrive when I need it...I haven't even thought about Nancy's extended recovery, although I know I can't give her 24x7 care. It's good to have some idea of what it will look like.

What a late night. Heading home now.


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