Friday, December 2, 2011

You Can't Yell at Me... I'm a Cripple!

First a little rant about the media.  The following article:

is nonsense.  It is being reported that Walter Reed National Military Medical Center Bethesda has a policy that limits access to Bibles, religious sacraments, etc., and that even family members are restricted from bringing such items to the hospital.


We have been here 126 days, and we have never been limited.

This policy was enacted to protect the patients from religious groups who come in and force their beliefs on the patients when it is not requested.  The patients need to feel like the hospital is safe place.  When an unwanted religious group walks in an forces the patient to listen to their position, the patient has no where to go.   Most of the patients are bedridden.  These religious groups were hounding the patients and causing them distress.  Can you imagine if the idiots from Westboro Baptist Church came through???  I am all for the policy limiting their access.  DO NOT push your religion on me.  I have my own relationship with God, and I am not into having others' beliefs forced onto me.

As it has been in the hospital since we arrived on July 29th, when the patient or family requests, he/she has access to chaplains and religious material of every faith - Jewish, Baptist, Lutheran, Protestant, Catholic, Arabic, Hindu, etc.  Chaplains from many faiths visit on a regular basis, just to say, "Hello."  Eucharistic ministers come practically daily to offer Communion to the Catholic patients.  Priests still give the Last Rites and the Anointing of the Sick.  Derek requested a Bible, and he received three within one week, from three different chaplains of three different Christian faiths.

I really wish the media would get their facts straight before they run their mouths.

Today was a sleepy day.  Derek missed OT and PT because he was just too tired to get up and get down to the Matc.  This is what I miss about the inpatient OT/PT.  Sam and MJ used to come to the room when Derek was too tired to go to the inpatient gym, and he at least would get a little workout.  Today, he got nothing except an hour in his chair.

The day was not without its fun; however.  We always have fun in Room 431.  Some of the following happened during the week, but here is a little example of life in Room 431.

Derek:  "Silly, Si O Bon."
Me:  "Derek, stop."
Derek:  "She's getting mad, Stina!  Oh silly, Si O Bon.  You can't yell at me.  I'm a cripple."

A doctor walked out of the room and had used the foam hand wash that is in each room and positioned outside each door.  I pointed out that he had gotten a little on his jacket. 
Dr:  "I foamed myself."
Passing Corpsman:  "That's a problem, sir."  and then he started to crack up hysterically, joined by me, of course.
Dr:  *bending his head and shaking it*  "Yes, it is."

I had a severe migraine this week.  Dr. Diego recommended that I use the oxygen in the room to see if that helped.  The next day he asked me how it went.
Me:  "It worked when I had it on, but once I took it off, it slammed back into me."
Derek:  "That's what she said."
Dr. D:  "Nice one, man."  And then they fist bumped.
Dr. D is so goofy.  We love him.  I love it when he comes into the room.

Dr. West was asking Derek about his arm and how the occupational therapy was working.
Derek:  "It's almost straight."
Dr. West:  "You haven't been straight in a while."

We were told today that Dr. West is the only Navy nueropsyche, the rest are Army.  I quipped to Derek:  "Aren't you lucky?"
Dr. West:  "He's not lucky, he's privileged."

Derek has a horrible habit of burping that colostomy bag.  Oh, man!  It reeks.  A corpsman today was spraying the hall with Biological Odor Eliminator, and it wasn't working!  Also today, Derek turned the fan on because it was hot in the room.  He faced it to me.  Then he burped his bag.  When the stink hit me, I looked up and he was grinning at me.

He burped the bag when Dr. West was leaving, and Dr. West looked up at the call bell lights and asked, "Which one of these is brown to indicate that we don't go in!"  He chased West from the room earlier in the week!

Derek changed his own colostomy bag today.  He has done it a couple of times, but he really needs to be supervised, because he made a mess!  The corpsman who is covering for Dennis is not as attendant.  He was out of the room looking for supplies, instead of helping.  Derek said after the whole fiasco, "This Christmas, instead of Tickle Me Elmo, it's Tickle Me Stoma!"  At least Dr. D isn't coming in to fiddle with it anymore! 

Derek yelled out, "It's so boring in here!  I need men!  Oh wait...."  That's when I reminded him that Dr. West says he hasn't been straight in a while....

The corpsman was having problems with Derek's wheelchair and yelled out, "I can't get it in the hole!"  We asked him if he has always had that trouble....

Dr. West is trying to talk to Derek about less IV pushes of pain meds and more oral meds.  He told me each push he gets is like a pin in his voodoo doll.  He said he is going to look at the end of the weekend to see how many pins he has sticking in him!  As of when Krystina and I left tonight, he had two.  Sorry.

So, it gets a little off color in there, but we have a lot of fun.  The only thing that would make it better is if my other children were there all the time.  I miss them.  But they are in high school and I cannot pull them out and home school them or enroll them here.  They need their friends and routine, even if it is living with my sister for now.  One day, this new normal will figure itself out.

Dr. Kim came in and wanted to know when Derek is up for his next day pass!  I have to arrange transportation, but next Saturday we are going to a concert, compliments of Dr. Kim.  In the meantime, if we can arrange transportation, we can get him out for lunch or Christmas shopping at the mall!  I have to make some calls tomorrow to see what we can do but getting out feels so good!

We will not be going out tomorrow, though, because Operation Ward 57 is coming to decorate for Christmas, and we are going to help!

Here's to a quiet weekend.

Climb to glory.  God bless,

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