Saturday was such a fabulous day. Good news kept coming. With each hour, it seemed another IV would come out – he started the day with 7 or so. Another line would be pulled. Another monitor would be turned off. Waiting for a room on Floor Four (Recovery), we watched the second game of the Final Four basketball championship. Scott was certain they were reruns. Later I learned that the same two teams played battled each other last year.
At last, the Transportation Team arrived, and we were walking the walk to Recovery. Sarah and I may have been dancing more than walking. We had graduated from the urgency of an ICU.
On the ride down, we were giddy. Scott was asking to swipe every cup of soda he spotted, Sarah was complimenting nurses on their complexion. When we saw the room, we were floored. It was like a comfortable, dated hotel. There were very little electronics, very little sign of medical assistance at all. Scott may have asked: “what is this, amateur hour?” in his haze, and his clear recognition (and my appreciation) for the lack of need of all of the bells and whistles the ICU had to offer. It was like apples and oranges.
The room had older wallpapering, medium-oak cabinetry. Floral curtains. Definitely classy back in it’s day, but… Let me just put it this way: there was a VHS player. Yeah. The private bathroom, however, was slick! It was roomy and very nice. And to think, a bathroom in the room? We were going to be living it up! Sure, it was for the patient, but they were pretty lenient here, I could tell already. No more ‘beeping’ back in after every potty break for us. Multiple times they offered Sarah and I tea, coffee, juice. Blankets. “Anything” to make us comfortable. They were gems.
The nurses were much different. These were all CNA’s instead of RN’s (tho’ there were a few of the latter on the floor). They were all – well, stereotyping, but “mostly” would be accurate – older, heftier, and … comfortable. It was clear they were here to keep you cozy and comfy while recovering, that there was no need for the high-skill (and ridiculously thin, fit, and attractive females – what?!) that the ICU provided constantly. They were gentle, loving, patient and so very kind. Don’t get me wrong, the ICU folks were amazing, but these ones were all about hospitality and caring as their #1 goal.
We instantly moved from perpetual monitoring to once every 4 hours. It made me nervous. But it was a good thing, right? Right!
Scott’s Mom, Sharon, was at the hospital still, and was able to visit his room a couple of times. His Dad John, and John’s wife Nancy, also visited several times. We tried to keep visits short, as Scott was still very exhausted. He was up for a visit from a couple of friends who happened to be driving by, and so Ruth & Rachel came up and delivered flowers in person. His first visitors outside of family for what seemed forever.
Sarah and I were giddy with excitement. There were nice recliners, plenty of room for us to sleep comfy all night and to set out all of Scott’s gifts and cards and posters that people had brought. Until now, I couldn’t even bear to read them myself, Scott unable to. They were the sweetest, most loving, encouraging, warm words and gifts.
We were rubbing Scott’s feet, his arms. We were all over him. It was so good to see him awake and semi-alert. It was so good to hear him talk, if raspy, and enjoy visiting with us and others. It was sunny out. Nancy brought Sarah and I a slew of Aveda goods to clean up with. We were so happy.
At 7pm, The Recovery floor started to slow down. The hallway lights were dimmed. Things really mellowed. It was shift change, with fewer nurses coming in for the night shift.
Sarah and I had spent a while in the waiting room earlier in the afternoon, then I had to run down to connect Sharon with friends who were picking her up to take her to some friends to sleep comfortably for the night.
When I got back, Sarah was cozily sitting next to the bed. Scott looked uncomfortable. He said his head hurt (it had for a while), and his stomach was sore (to be expected, right?). Sarah had already pushed the call button to ask for some Tylenol. They hadn’t been back with it yet. Things were quiet in the hallways.
I was frustrated that I had spent so much time away from Scott this evening, clearing up logistics and other things. But I was back now, and ready to get us all settled and snuggly for bed. I walked up to the side of the bed to love up on Scott (as much as one can from beside a hospital bed, sides up). I ran my fingers through his hair. He looked miserable. He rolled over to lean closer to me. And then I saw it. One of the worst images that creeps up on me still. One of the few that haunts me. Continue Reading »