Monday, May 30, 2011

Today is Memorial Day

Tuesday October 22, 1991

Up early again to have breakfast with Bob & Donna before they leave for home. Then we are off to see my surgeon, Dr. Bienstock at 9 a.m. and Dr. Bix, my oncologist at 11 a.m. I feel fine but my blisters still look very red but dry and my infected hole in my incision has not healed up yet. I am uncertain if I want chemo to start today. I'll let the doctors decide.

Dr. Bienstock thinks I'm doing great and says OK for chemo. Dr. Bix thinks I'm doing great also but says she will schedule chemo for a later date so she can talk to Dr. Bienstock first.

We go out to lunch and then to L.A. to visit with Frank's folks. At 5:30 we meet potential tenants at Lemona house. We have a nice Chinese dinner in Granada Hills. I'm pretty tired when we finally get home about 8:30. It's been a long day but I'm no worse for wear.

Today is Memorial Day 2011 and it has been a very memorable day for me, but not in the traditional sense of remembering our servicemen, but in the sense that it has been a day filled with memories of days long gone by. I have been going through mom's scrapbook that she left behind and some very old photos. What a sentimental woman she was. In her scrapbook are matchbooks, napkins, brochures, for several places she visited as a teenager. She and my dad married in 1951 and she had a wedding shower a few weeks before the wedding. She saved every card from every friend at the shower. She saved the invitation to her senior prom in 1952, the pressed flowers from her corsage as well as Dad's. She saved the graduation announcement from San Fernando High School in 1952, which shows her GPA was 2.61. She saved the tassel from her graduation cap. She also saved every letter I ever wrote her after I moved away to Santa Rosa in 1974. Those will be the subject for another blog.

Friday, May 27, 2011

I Miss Dancing

Monday October 21, 1991

Up early and off to "Eggs and Things" for breakfast special at 8:30 with Bob and Donna. They leave to visit her sister. I relax all day with my belly exposed trying to dry out the blisters. There is no pain. The incision is healing really well. The infected hole is nearly healed. My energy is good. I am looking forward to walking 1/2 hour each day again and up to one hour soon after. I miss dancing but will miss 2 more Monday nights. I will go to watch though, starting tonight.

I keep my appointment with nurse practitioner in Simi Valley. She says I'm doing good. She makes a big fuss over how well Frank has done taking care of my infection.

I go to square dancing with Frank. He dances. I watch and really enjoy just being with all my friends.

Only two weeks after major surgery and mom is out and about! Pretty amazing. Mental attitude has been shown to have a very close relationship with physical healing, and mom's attitude was very positive. Kind of bizarre that the only physical problem she is having after 2 weeks is an allergic reaction to the tape on her belly. I'm glad Frank was praised for doing something that he found very difficult, and that he got to go square dancing and have some fun. How nice that they shared the same passion for dance.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Donna & Bob Visit

I'm up and making bacon and eggs for everyone at 8:30. We visit with Donna & Bob til 11:00 when they leave to visit Bob's sons. I decide to spend the day at Lemona with Frank. We leave at 11:30. Feeling good at Lemona we have 3-4 families come through. I rest alot on a lounge chair.

We leave at 4:30 and stop at Gary's to eat dinner of leftovers. We have a nice 1-hour visit and head home where we relax til Bob and Donna come home about 8:30. We visit til 11:15 and hit the hay.

Mom seems to have quite a bit of energy considering she had major surgery less than 2 weeks ago. How frustrating to have the Lemona house sit vacant all those months. After all the back-breaking work Frank put into it, I'm sure they wanted to be careful with their choice of a new tenant.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Gary's Birthday Party

Saturday October 19, 1991

Donna and Bob arrive at 9:30. Frank and Bob go to Thousand Oaks to deliver the trailer they pulled down. Donna talks to Mark and watches me do my makeup.

Frank leaves for Lemona house for 12-5 open house. Bob and Donna go out to get us Cupid's hot dogs. We will go to Lemona house at 3:30 and then all go to Gary's about 4:30-5 p.m. for the party to celebrate his birthday. The party is fun and lots of kits and food. We stay from 5-8. I feel fine except both of my blisters break and look awful. They are dime size.

Mom and Frank had a huge master bathroom that was bigger than many normal sized bedrooms. It had a large corner soaking tub with large windows surrounding it. Mom spent half an hour every morning applying her makeup and styling her hair at the vanity next to this tub. I would sit on the corner of the tub while she worked at making herself beautiful and we would talk. These were some of my best memories of her. I'm sure it was the same for Donna.

Frank Is Feeling Put Upon

Friday October 18, 1991

Donna and Bob will be here tomorrow morning sometime at my insistence that I'm OK for company. Actually we probably won't see much of them as they plan to spend time with Bob's boys. Marc has a new baby and Greg needs some interference--his life is a mess and so is his wife and children.

The tape on my belly seems to be bothering me all the way up and down: itching. The doctor suggests Benedryl. Luckily, I have some.

There is some straightening, etc to do today and Frank is feeling "put upon". I'm sorry. I'm trying not to ask for much from him.

It's a beautiful 85 degree day. Donna and Bob should enjoy this.

Tomorrow I hope to go to Gary's birthday party for a few hours, at Gary's house.

Tonight we're going out for Mexican dinner.

This is hard for me to say because I loved Mom so much and she loved me unconditionally, but mom could be quite bossy. I spent two weeks with her and Frank in Europe in 1986 and I was disturbed at how much she ordered him around. Frank was very patient and usually took her bossiness quite well, but it looks like this day, he finally stood up to her demands. I know it had to be bad because Frank would do anything for her in spite of her domineering attitude. I can relate to mom wanting to have the house nice and neat for company, as she has passed this on to me, and I understand that she must have been frustrated to not be able to clean the house herself after having surgery. Mom always did like things nice and orderly, and fortunately she married an energetic man who liked things orderly too. Unfortunately, I married a man who likes things completely chaotic, and have two sloppy teenage boys as well, so to retain my sanity I have completely given over the upstairs level of our house to their chaotic messes. My "territory" is the downstairs that I struggle to keep some kind of order.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Dr. Frank

Thursday October 17, 1991

Oops, the tape has caused some blisters on my belly so we see a nurse practitioner at our local Kaiser clinic. She isn't too concerned about the blisters but finds some infection in the incision. She instructs Frank on how to clean out the hole with peroxide and how to clean the rest of the incision.

Frank has a weak stomach for anything red or oozy. I'm real proud of how well he handles this though it is obviously very distressful for him to do twice a day. Then he must replace all the steri-strip tape holding the incision together. I now call him Dr. Frank.

My husband Ric is the same. He gets faint at the sight of blood and always has trouble having his blood drawn. He actually did videotape my C-section surgery in 1995 though. As long as he was looking through the tiny image in the camera he could not see any blood, but when he put the camera down, he fainted and the nurse had to rush to his side until he recovered.