Posted by: wrmcnutt | October 4, 2009

Dad On His Feet

Time passes so fast, when there’s a lot going on in your life.  Every time I turn around, I realize that it’s been two or three days since I’ve updated folks on my father’s condition.

Dad’s recovery post-op was very fast.  He was off of the ventilator in under two hours this time.  The orthopedic surgeon implanted a long rod in his femur and then ran a screw through it an into the ball of his hip joint.  Interestingly, when you have this kind of work done, you don’t wait for the bones to knit.  Apparently the titanium hardware can carry all of your weight.  You don’t really need your bones to stand anymore.

I have a cyber-dad.

He was on his feet the day after surgery, sitting in chairs and walking with carefully managed support.  He’s making good progress, and little is said about his lungs anymore.  But then, he’s been moved to the orthopedic floor.

And lemme tell ya something about orthopedic nurses.  They’re kinda . . .  abrupt.

That’s not to say that they lack empathy or compassion.  But it’s clear that when you’re a veteran of orthopedic medicine, you have learned the following:

“I’m sorry.  But there’s nothing we can do to make this suck less.  And no amount of physical, mental, or spiritual preparation on your part is going to make this suck less.  So we’re going to do this now. So quit stalling.”

He’s in a lot of pain.  He also doesn’t like to feel fuzzy-headed.  As a stroke victim, he’s already only running on about five cylinders, and doesn’t like pain killers or anything that makes his brain any less effective than it already is.

This leads us to a situation where he’s unhappy that he’s in pain.  Or he unhappy that he’s doped up.  He wants out of bed, out of the hospital, and to be independent.

And I don’t know if he can do that any more.  If he can fall and hurt himself that badly just be getting out of bed, he’s too fragile to be living alone anymore.  And I don’t know what to do.

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  1. thats a tough one, we have several elderlies in our family that are quickly coming to the point where they are no longer safe to be alone. 1 already has moved in with her daughter, let me tell ya, its hard. Hard on everyone, they miss their independence, even though they appreciate the lack of loneliness. Good luck!

  2. I can sympathize. Broken bones HURT! Especially when PT wants you to use them NOW! But he will heal faster if he’s not in pain. I went for lack of pain, but I couldn’t focus for about a month.

    There are assisted living places where your dad could have a modicum of independence but still have assistance available when he needed it. Time to start looking at the possibilities.

  3. Hugs. Lots and lots.

  4. if at all possible, let your dad be a major part of the decision making process. if you make decisions for him now you will never hear the end of it. and your dad has shown remarkable courage in making hard decisions recently.

  5. My heart goes out to you..



    • Thank you so much. It’s always great to hear from you.

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