Saturday, January 23, 2010

Coughing and Wheezing

Marty is still coughing and wheezing. Marty's husband is still obsessing, going quietly crazy and driving her nuts. Renae, caregiver supreme, tells me I'm doing better than I did two years ago. She tells me we would have been to the emergency room a couple of times by now, two years ago. I don't feel the improvement.

Marty's blood test and sputum culture both came back earlier this week with good news, no infection. Still, she is coughing and hacking around and wheezing. It's the wheezing, the asthma that is the most troubling to me. She seems pretty okay with the whole thing, I'm the one who needs the treatments now. I still remember Marty's words when I would get anxious, take a deep breath, and breathe. Okay, I'm doing that, my breathing is fine -- it's Marty's I'm obsessing about.

We have been to the office and received the counsel of Great and Wise twice this week. The first appointment was to check Marty, the second appointment to provide clinical teaching and cognitive therapy for her husband. Like the mystery noise in your car which quits when you take it to the shop, Marty is always breathing quietly and smoothly when we see the good doctor. They are really generous with me at that shop and allow me my psychoses.

Marty tells Great and Wise, "Larry just doesn't know what to do with me when I'm feeling good." Maybe I am a bit hyper vigilant. Could be.

Marty asks Great and Wise, "What can they do for me at the hospital that we can't do at home." She says this to pre-empt any attempt to even go the hospital. She is really crafty that way because Great and Wise lists the litany of things we do at home and says, "Nothing." I get a "so there" look from Marty. She's brain damaged only when it is convenient for her. She can still make her point, which is I don't want to go anywhere close to the hospital.

I wrote once that you can tell how our life is going by the number of trips we have made to the doctor or the hospital. Given that, it hasn't been the best of weeks, we have seen and talked to her doctor way too much but I have managed to avoid a trip to the ER, so far.

Marty still battles the stroke recovery and whatever particular respiratory malady is the flavor of the day. Me, I just battle myself.

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