Monday, March 14, 2011

Pappy's Final Words

The bathroom in the Covington, VA Holiday Inn Express looked like I knocked over a Walgreens. We arrived Friday night for a weekend visit with Matt's family to celebrate his grandfather's 90th birthday, and we arrived bearing pharmacy.

On the counter, you would find:
3 bottles Zithromax
Cough suppressant
3 syringes
2 medicine cups
1 box gloves
Rubbing alcohol

I considered filling the bathtub with ice and letting the maid think we were using the room to steal kidneys, but I was fresh out of chloroform.

Natalie's abscess was drained, cleaned, and packed with six inches of gauze. We were instructed to remove at least an inch of gauze, twice a day. Friday morning, I gave her some Motrin and let some time pass for it to kick in. Not only for the medicine to kick in, but for me to muster up the balls to pull some bloody gauze out from under her skin and cut it off.

I'm getting queezy just typing about it.

Accessing ports? I can dig it. NG tubes? I can handle it. Nephrectomy? I can manage.

Pulling out an inch of oozy gauze twice a day until it's gone? I'm suddenly your annoying 30-something friend who whines when she has to go to the phlebotomist like she's about to do something so incredibly terrifying that she should be on the news receiving a Purple Heart because she got her blood drawn.

(You know I'm talking about you.)

Anyway, I did it. There was a lot of crying and writhing in pain. And I got *barely* an inch out. WWDD? (What would Duke do?) Shove a Tylenol up her butt, probably.

Trying to bandage up a moving target proved to be interesting. It looked like a Picasso work of art, from the sauced/heavy glaucoma period. At one point, I had tape in places that would have made it impossible to use the restroom.

After that experience, I let Matt know I was passing the torch to him for evening gauze removal duty. In the hotel, he took her into the bathroom while the rest of us listened to screams and cries for a full 60 seconds. Triumphant, Matt emerges and proclaims, "I got it all out. TEN INCHES!"

A little bit more than they told us at the hospital. That's a lot of inches in my book. But, very glad Matt got it all out because...well, let's just say I could never be a nurse.

Since Nat was done with the gauze-removal and her Zithromax, Eve was able to go ahead and get pneumonia. Because that's what we do on Friday nights- hack up lungs and run fevers. All the cool kids are doing it.

On Saturday, we had a family reunion at the Greenbrier where we learned that hunter green leafed wallpaper DOES go with aqua stripes and sage carpeting, provided you are rich enough that if someone told you otherwise, you could just laugh and say, "What do you know? I'm rich!"

We had a nice lunch and Eve only managed to dump out half of the salt and pepper shakers, tear open 4 packets of sugar, and make me run after her through the restaurant twice. Success!

Back at Pappy's house, we got to feast on a cake that was made out of a Dairy Queen Oreo Blizzard. SERIOUSLY. I want one to go with my Funfetti cupcakes. I'm going to say it was like a party in my mouth, but not like a disco...more like a Paula Deen party, where she eats too much cream cheese and bacon and has to go nap it off.

Happy Birthday, Pappy! I'd rather go to Dairy Queen, though.

1 comment:

  1. I love a good "Paula Dean bacon, cream cheese and butter" nap!