We all walk ancientrails. Welcome to the journey.

Ooff

Written By: Charles - Sep• 10•20

Lughnasa and the Labor Day Moon

Thursday gratefuls: Amber. Lisa. Wheatridge Pharmacy and its wheelchair rental. Freddy’s Steak Sandwiches. Fries. Chocolate shake. Kate’s Inogen. The X-ray tech. Madame Curie. Roentgen. The snow. The ice. The cold. Colorado and its weather. The Rocky Mountains. Shadow Mountain. Kate, her toughness.

Ooff. Yesterday. Kate, very short of breath. So much so that we had to rent a wheelchair so I could wheel her in to Amber’s Advanced Wound Care and Dr. Gidday’s. Got some new powder for Kate’s stoma site, includes a crushed up Tum’s to counter stomach acid.

Dilemma then. Home was 45 minutes away. It was 12:15. Dr. Gidday was 45 minutes in the opposite direction from Amber, also about 45 minutes from home. Did we go home, get there around 1, wait 45 minutes and head out again, or do we go to Dr. Gidday’s, stop for some food, nap in the car?

We chose the food and nap option. That meant Kate’s Inogen battery became a limiting option. A while back we miscalculated and Kate’s O2 ran out before we got home. Not a whole lot before, thankfully. Made me a bit anxious.

When we saw Dr. Gidday, who had failed to get us on at 2:30 as she said she would, it was 3 pm. The exam and consult took a half an hour, 45 minutes. You need a chest x-ray. Umm. Oxygen?

Kate thought we had enough, so we went to the Imaging place on Coal Mine Avenue in Littleton. By this time Kate had an exhausted look, slumping a bit in the wheelchair as I wheeled her. Twice on this trip I started to go into a building without a mask on, my brain back in the long lost pre-pandemic era. This was one of them.

Got her in, parked, got my mask on, and returned. About 4:00, a little after. At 5:15 we finally heard her name. The tech led us back, me pushing, Kate so tired. Me, too.

She stood, gripping the bars on the equipment like a sailor in heavy seas. Hold your breath. Hold. Breathe. Turn to the side. Hold your breath. Breathe.

At last, toward home. Into rush hour traffic. O2 at 8% battery life. Gotta remember that extra, smaller battery next time. Going up Shadow Mountain Drive the Inogen beeped. Plug battery in to charger.

Kate went straight to bed, connected at last to the O2 concentrator at the foot of the bed. Lying down, which is her preferred position these days. She breathes easier.

Nothing bad happened. The battery held out until we were near home. A hard day nonetheless. I need to do better at remembering the spare battery, timing these days. No more 11 am appointments followed by 2:30’s. Just not good.

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