Sharing the trial and error learned lessons of a MS spouse caregiver / carer about family, home care, and transition to the care facility era from 23 years of living with Multiple Sclerosis as a family ... a ‘warts and all’ picture of living with MS.
knows when he can fight and when he cannot, will be victorious.”
‘The Art of War’
theoretical half way point of recovery from lung surgery, the word itself
remains somewhat alien after decades of spouse caregiving for Multiple
a little better each day is strange, almost guilty, contrasted to decades of MS
caregiving where ‘progress’ is measured in slowing decline.
three weeks not every lesson learned is a quandary. Foolishly trying to be ‘muy
macho’ I kept the pain meds in the bottle - until the first time I coughed or
accidently rolled over on my surgical side while sleeping, then I grabbed that
Oxycontin like a baby grabs its bottle. … Though unlike a chronic illness, hour
by hour it does get better. Yesterday, I only took two (2) ibuprofen.
For me, mainly it’s my ribs that were retracted for surgery that
ache and ribs take time.
recovery is about not stressing my incisions. I have lifting restrictions. My
surgeon’s anecdotes of repairing lung hernias for those who do not listen were deterrent
enough for me. Not lifting more than 5 lbs - also means no pulling, no pushing,
no sliding, etc of anything over 5 lbs for six weeks.
do not need assistance with my activities of daily living, our adult daughter
has been a godsend for grocery shopping, lawn mowing, etc. even things I never
foresaw such as lifting the weights weekly on our grandfather clock.
and strengthening lungs ... When I
woke up after surgery I was handed my very own Voldyne 5000! Actually it’s
rather fun once you get the hang of it, inhaling steadily to try and keep the
bobber suspended in the “best” range.
Walking is unrestricted. I’ve currently built up walking to a mile
twice daily, stretching it each day. Pre-surgery I walked two miles most days
of the week.
I must confess that in our parallel universe I have found it
helpful in my healing that Patti’s outings from her care facility, now made
possible by our daughter, have only fallen off about one day a week during my