Tuesday, April 24, 2007

No, I Haven't Heard Back From The Doctor

I'll leave another message tomorrow.

Meanwhile, I've joined the 21st Century and bought a flat screen TV. A small one, 19 inches, to go with my/our/the tiny apartment. Looks great, but for some reason, when I connected it I had to disconnect the VCR. A small technicality, since I have to get a new, improved HD cable box anyway.

Also, J&R had a better price than Best Buy.

Here's Chico's favorite component:

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Roughin' It

This is what I'm using for a TV (and Chico is using for a toy) until I can make it to Best Buy this week.

No cable. Darn.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Spring Loaded

Wednesday night, these trees were bare. Thursday morning, boom. Twenty-nine Aprils I've been living in this neighborhood and it still never fails to impress me.

The Return of "Afraid of My Phone Day"

For the past three years, I feel like I've spent half my life waiting for the phone to ring with the results of a medical test--Jim's, mine, the cats.

When Jim went up to Calvary, which is "not a hospice, per se," there was sadness and disappointment, but also "freedom from Afraid of My Phone Days," At least as far as Jim was concerned. The results were in.

But now there's a little ray of hope. We met on Tuesday morning at the rehab with the attending physician, the social worker, the nurse practitioner, and an assortment of other professionals on Jim's team. They told us that their aim was to get Jim in good enough shape to go home.

"But if you don't treat the underlying cause, which is the brain tumors," I replied, "then nothing you do here for him is going to last very long and he'll be back in the hospital."

I explained how the doctor at Sloan-Kettering had said that long-story-short, Jim was too sick to be poisoned, so they couldn't give him chemo for the brain tumors anymore, which is why they'd sent him to Calvary. But then Calvary had sent him down to rehab, because he was doing too well. And after a week at the rehab, he was making some progress with walking and with weight gain.

So the attending physician at the rehab is going to contact the doctor at Sloan-Kettering and find out if this changes Jim's status as far as being able to be treated. I called the attending physician this afternoon to find out if he had made any progress yet, because a bevy of relatives had begun to call me with the same question about five minutes after I'd told them that there was a chance Jim could begin treatment again.

His office took a message and said he would call me back. So now, there's a little ray of hope. And now, I'm afraid that my phone is going to ring with news that will snatch that hope away.

Saturday, April 14, 2007


If I had hatches, I'd be battening them down.

Instead, I have:

If it lets up later in the afternoon, I'll take a walk to see Jim. They've got him up and walking with a walker, so he's been talking about the places he wants to go and the people he wants to see.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

It Takes A Village Nursing Home

They're transferring Jim to a rehab unit at Village Nursing Home either today or tomorrow. I checked out the facilities last Friday and they seem to be acceptable, or at least as acceptable as the rehab unit at Mount Sinai where he's spent time after previous brain tumors.

It has the advantage of being a ten-minute walk from our home. I've passed this place almost every day of my adult life and figured, someday I'll probably be moved from my rent-stabilized place to the Village Nursing Home. I didn't think I'd have to be checking out its environs for any reason this early in my game, but I'm not the player here.

The rehab is a separate, short-term unit from the rest of the home. It's affilitated with the Rusk Institute and it's part of a pretty recent thing that's becoming a phenomenon: Instead of stockpiling the eldery and the ill in nursing homes, patch 'em up and get 'em out. Back into their homes as "part of the community." In other words, the insurance companies are balking at the expense of storing somebody long-term. So we're approved for 60 days in a short-term rehabilitation facility.

If he gets stronger, we can call Sloan-Kettering again for further cancer treatments. If he worsens, that's when we check out hospice care again, unless they're calling it something else 60 days from now.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Peep Jousting

Some entertainment while I'm awaiting the next step of straightening out The Insurance Mess.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Insurance Blues

I've been told by the hospital that according to the insurance company, I have to find another place for Jim.

"But Sloan-Kettering said he should be in hospice care!"

"We're not a hospice, per se," the doctor replied. And the first thing I thought is, But I wrote "hospice" on my blog! "We're an acute palliative care facility, and right now your husband is considered stabilized." Of course, since the cancer in his brain is no longer being treated, this is expected to change.

"So what if it changes? Does he come back here?"

"If your insurance says that he can."

One thing is for sure: He's still in no shape to be home. Even if I could afford to take a long leave from my job, he needs more care right now than I or any other single individual could give him who isn't a medical professional, or strong enough to pick him up when he falls.

And if anyone suggests that I'm shirking some kind of adult responsibility...well, yeah! I am. What's it to ya? At this point, I'm willing to fake insanity if I have to. Is there some kind of test for sanity? I'll hire a shrink and have him coach me the right answers for "crazy." At this point, it wouldn't be much of a stretch.

It's a shame. It's such a nice place, and he's doing so well there. Apparently, maybe too well.

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

nyc bloggers map