Sunday, October 15, 2006

So-so Sunday

Hi everyone:

As is the case most days, Patty started her morning feeling nauseous, although she claims to feel a little better today than yesterday. Early this evening, Patty and I plan to be dining with Jean, a long-time friend of Patty's, Jean's husband and Sharon. Neil is now dividing his time between downtown and Oak Park, and this evening should allow us to sample a new menu for the Oak Park location. Of course, I had to use qualifiers like plan to and should, because we never know how our patient might be doing as the day progresses.

Last night, I wandered over to Kickers for about 90 minutes, and then came back home to watch movies with Patty. We finished Anatomy of a Murder, an Otto Preminger flick neither of us had ever seen. It's funny how I can be surrounded by friends, and truly enjoy their company, but still feel like something is missing if Patty is out of commission. Making jokes that are crude to the point of being shocking loses its luster if Patty isn't there to look mortified. At home, Patty was able to sit up and chat with me, but I can tell she now feels poorly most of the time. This is one of the mysteries for us -- if these drugs will forever be part of Patty's drug regimen, how will she ever live a life in which nausea isn't a significant part?

Every once in a while, as Patty encounters new medical challenges, I feel like I gain new, minor insights into what it's like to live with someone who is ill. In many cases, these experiences lead to new discoveries about myself. For example, I noticed yesterday that I have a nearly obsessive habit of checking for a pulse (or watching for the rise and fall of sheets) every time Patty is napping. Most nights, I wake a couple of times, and again check for a pulse. When I think about it, the process seems a bit morbid and pointless, and maybe even a little pathetic, but still I do it. I've also noticed that every time Patty makes a sound in her sleep, I presume she's in some sort of pain; yesterday, when she whimpered at one point, I thought that maybe her ICD had fired again. I also positioned my arm under her nose so that I could feel her breath. Wow, this is really starting to sound like a Woody Allen monologue.

My lunch is ready. These days, there's little for me that takes priority over eating, even though I think I'm starting to bear an uncanny resemblance to Orson Welles in the later years. Food seems to be my crutch, and I have been leaning on it pretty hard. I'm thinking I need to shake the dust off the Rollerblades and get back on the streets. Patty and I do walk from time to time, but we're somewhat limited as to how much cardio we can do together.

Have a great day.


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