May 132008

After two and a half weeks in the blue collar enclave known as Downriver (all the communities south of Detroit along the river and, incidentally, the area I grew up in), Mom graciously cut me loose this afternoon rather than tomorrow. She’s made incredible progress since her knee replacement; more than I expected and FAR more than she expected. The visiting nurse came today to remove the surgical staples so she should be in much less pain by tomorrow. She can handle pretty much everything herself now, so after a run to Kroger to restock her food, and a quick once-over housecleaning, I loaded up the Audi and made my way home.

We had a great visit and, even though I know she’ll be fine on her own, I was almost reluctant to leave. I feel pretty accomplished: I did all the cleaning, laundry, shopping, cooking, errand running, wound dressing, pill scheduling, exercise nagging, and TiVo/computer/TV tweaking. A couple trips home to see my man, and play Exalted, kept me from burnout, along with World of Warcraft on the laptop, a new five-pound book on Mac OS X, and a daily routine of pushups, planks (thanks throbbin!), chinups, and running. I’ve dropped 10 lbs between all that and the walking pneumonia of a month ago. I owe my boss big time for letting me work from her place for the last week and a half, and Mom sent him a thank you card last week.

In other news, I went and saw a sports medicine doc yesterday to get a definitive answer about my heel problems. The diagnosis: heel spurs caused by Achilles tendinitis, the very thing a previous doctor told me I did NOT have. Idiot.
The treatment: plenty of stretching, icing, and new running shoes, which may require tweaking at the heel to make sure it’s not too tight or loose. He also gave me a scrip for 4 weeks of physical therapy, and mentioned surgery as a last resort to remove the calcium buildup.

I also found out that my stepmother Barb had a heart attack at the end of March; 95% blockage in one artery, which required a stent. Apparently she was totally blindsided by it, as she has none of the markers for heart trouble: cholesterol’s fine, blood pressure low, no family history. The only thing the doc could theorize was, believe it or not, broken heart syndrome, which may have started when my father’s cancer was diagnosed and caused gradual heart damage over the last five years. Bizarre, though I’d recently read an article about that very thing; that the stress of grief and mourning can cause actual heart damage.

My boss cleared me to work from Mom’s the rest of the week, but I’m going back in on Thursday. Tomorrow I’m working from home, simply because I need a day at home, and I’ve got nothing but conference calls anyway. Afterwards we go pick up the new car and wave goodbye to my trusty PT Cruiser. I’m perfectly happy driving the Audi, cuz it’s all classy and shit, but I will miss the PT; I had fun in that car.

It’s good to be home.

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