Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Apple Picking Is Coming!

Fall is truly in the air as the gang is heading out for a day of NYC apple picking. And this year, wisdom has proclaimed that we hold down the various ports of call in the neighborhood.

This decision has absolutely nothing to do with surgeries, recoveries or anything of the like. To be honest, this decision was made last year! At the last apple picking adventure.

(Actually, the decision was a possibility that became reality. Boring!)

But the excitement of the day and the joy that it brings to those going plus to the newbies about to take part is beyond explanation. And the apples folks are bringing us when they return! Fellowship being fellowship among people you love, how can you beat it?

We'll miss the folks, laughter, the cider and apple donuts. Sometimes ya gotta keep the home fires burning for the coming home folks. Trust me, that makes sense somewhere in the universe.

A dear family friend has paved the way for all of us to come home. He passed away last Saturday. He and Raymon had some touching goodbyes throughout the Summer, some of the facts of their friendship leaning toward revisionist history. But glory and honor, peace and joy was their relationship no matter what. They did not have to say good-bye. Or see you later. Or wait for me.

For them, a space in time is nothing.

But we have to wait a year for fresh apples. He'll have apple donuts waiting...

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

I can't believe that it has been over a month since I've updated Raymon's progress. Sorry all!

My only excuse is that it would be the same thing, better.

But I must add a caveat: He is still doing physical therapy and seeing the new docs. And guess what. Yesterday the PT told him that he was doing better than he thought he was doing! He needs to give himself a break, after all, he has been through two surgeries in less than 7 months and at his age. My big guy has come so far and I am so proud of him.

Now the real healing has to take place. And the patience that come along with it. Um, that neither of us are very good at.

But it is sure time that we begin to reestablish our lives. It is so exciting to remake yourself, a clean slate so to speak. It's our eyes that have the clean slate, not anyone looking our way!

Dear friends, without your prayers this experience would have been unbearable. Your prayers and support pulled Raymon forward when he was not even aware of the need. With your help, I was the wife he found by his side, refreshed even if tired, supportive, even if concerned and just me when I really did not want to be.

I've said thanks before but hey, thanks again.

Call him, call me, let us know your lives again.

We love ya.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Turning Point in Providers

The letter came yesterday.

By law, on and after October 1, a veteran without a war wound and with medicare needs to be aware that he is covered for some service at VA Hospitals at his own expence after Tricare.  No VA Hospital excepts medicare. All veterans with medicare are requested to seek Tricare-4-Life providers before October 1.

That is a summation and it took several readings to figure that much out. Plus a call. And I am not sure the call center understood the letter!

Between us we have four college degrees. Surely we understood some of it. What we know for sure is that God's timing is perfect.

Raymon has had two major surgeries, numerous tests and labs, squads of doctors, physical therapy, two MRIs and consultations all before this ruling came down. And that is only this year. Prior to this year, he has had physicals, general doctor services, screenings and other medical treatments.

At this stage of the game, new eyes are a good idea.

We embrace this twist with open arms.

As the Summer is further from its beginning, the surgery side effects continue to recede slowly. The numbness in the legs and right hand fingers remains the same. Frustration is the king hinderance! I am guessing that it would be easier if he felt or looked bad.

Thanks for hanging in with us.

Raymon has already begun set-up visits with new doctors. :-) 

Monday, August 12, 2013

Dove Bars

Tonight we had a tasty treat, a Dove Ice Cream bar. 

That single luscious indulgence is a trip down memory lane for us.

Walking NYC's 5th Avenue from lower Manhattan to the Christmas Tree at Rockefeller Center on Christmas Eve became our tradition back in the 1980s. One of those years, we tasted roasting chestnuts, yuck. Trust me, the song is so much better. 

Some time around 1985 I think, we were approached by a rolling refrigerated cart and a young man, equally refrigerated. As I recall, we all were refrigerated. It was freezing but no one seemed to mind. It was the perfect weather for Christmas Eve in New York City.

[You know, this could have been a street festival in China Town. Christmas Eve makes a better story. Proceed.]

The young man approached us with a test product called Dove Bars. They were not yet on the market. He was passing them out, asking folks to give them a try and what they thought.

Its been almost 30 years since that original Dove Bar. My 1st in NYC. Tonight was my 2nd in NYC. 

I'm glad we got to try it all those years ago. Kinda makes you wonder if something we said had anything to do with them being here today. 

excuse me, my mind is going to wonder now...

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Friends To The Rescue (written earlier)

This posting was written after Raymon, home from the hospital was still sleeping in the front room. He had the pull-out sofa while I had the bedroom and king-size bed all to myself!

It made for a perfect arrangement giving him plenty of equipment and sprawling room. And it was perfect for me as well. One person in a king-size bed, what can I say!

Its seems running and jumping into a bed with risers under it really isn't a very smart thing to do. Especially at 3:00 A. M. in the morning.

I sprained most of my leg muscles. Smart, eh?

Yes, with Raymon laid up in the front room pull-out and most of the pillows, I decided I wanted a bit of attention too.

Sunday morning neither of us were moving much.

A blurry of text messages and emails later, two amazing friends sailed to our aid bearing ice cream and tex-mex food. We were 80 % healed by their gifts alone.

They then hit the grocery list, delivered the laundry to the laundromat (to be re-delivery by the laundromat the next day) and performed various house cleaning chores. I think I will sprain something on a regular basis!

Another gift of food by another dear friend came later that day. It will last through today and tomorrow.

Yet again a forth dear friend who lives down the hill and across the city public park answered scrambled voice message. He heard a panicked call that we needed help. He literally ran the hilly mile distance to see if we were okay. I felt terrible. The message we really sent was that "we are okay and do not need help."


Life Changing / Written 3rd week July

This posting is not an update but history. We are past this. I wanted you to see the process.

This posting has been recovered from draft. I did not post it but rather prayed it. God sent some folks to us during this time. Now that the crisis has passed, I want to share with you our valley moment.

Of course there have been other, many other "valley" moments. Without God, his comfort, patience and ever present peace, neither of us would be sane right now. All of you and those not reading this blog who continue to call, text and email enrich us with strength impossible to describe.

Before reading this posting, know that the medical issues remain but the personal focus has vastly improved.

Up unto this point I have been presenting only general facts. The more specifically painful, I've withheld out of privacy and expedience.

Thank you for your forbearance.

Now I ask for specific prayer for specific issues.

He is overwhelmed by the resulting life changes before him.

Continuing mysterious numbness in his upper thighs are without diagnosis, disturbing and disrupting his will. I believe that his frustration prevents him from doing things he can.

He is not doing his recovery exercises on a regular basis. Without them, he remains weak. These include leg strength, arm and back plus neck and hand.

The number one thing is lack of motivation and what-is-there-to-recover-to. In other words, why recover?

I can hear all of you start typing on that one right now, but I shall answer right away. Most of his volunteer activities are dark for the summer, our work here with Everyday Church Church is on hiatus during a developmental time for the congregation.

We are thrilled that the congregation has been and continues to be so active in these last months. It has been difficult to not be an active part of it!

We are both feeling down about the slowness of the recovery process. Not because of the time needed to heal, but because of the time and opportunities lost within the life of the community.

As many of you have gone through a recovery process, please call and give him advise and wisdom.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Be Proactive

You have heard it other places, from your mom I am sure. I feel its my duty to continue the call. 

Be proactive.

Today we went to the doctor and as it turns out, what we thought was the right appointment date, was not. We were two weeks early. Wait, I am confused. We already have a another scheduled additional appointment for this doctor in two weeks. No, we now know that it is not an appointment for this doctor but a test that this doctor has ordered. Two weeks after the test he wants to see us. Of course we did not have an appointment for that date. We do now.

(us as in Raymon)

What we thought we would learn today, we should rather learn one month from today. Following that, treatment plans. That will be over 60 days without treatment for a situation that may have nothing to do  with the surgery. However, this complication happen following surgery.

Sure the appointment confusion is frustrating yet that sort of stuff happens. One expects glitches here and there. Yet this situation, medical treatment by calendar scheduling is hindering his recovery. 

Sometimes too many cooks do spoil the pot.

And in this case, my pot is too precious to leave to these professionals.  

So, after a brief computer search, I have enough information to be dangerous, attack the NYC medical field at large and find my precious pot a workable agenda. 

Let me explain. After browsing for ten minutes, I had a workable diagnosis name to ask about. After an hour, I had done enough cross checking to know that a print-out was in order and knew of several in-office tests. Proactive? You bet. Right or wrong at least the new guy will get the idea that we need correct information and correct treatment now. 

Apparently what we are looking at isn't that common but isn't unheard of either.

In other words, a new approach begins tomorrow. The appointment with a new doctor in a different field at a new location is at 11:00 A. M.