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Spring Nesting

March 12, 2013

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Phew!  It’s almost a year since my last post.  In that time Mike’s VA disability claim was finalized and he is now a disabled Vet.  It’s a big weight off my mind…if something happens to me, there are resources available to take care of him, and that is a huge comfort.  And speaking of Mike, […]

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Memorial Day Musings

May 26, 2012

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So here we are, it’s Memorial Day 2012.  A day when we are especially cognizant of and grateful for the sacrifices of our military warriors…to all of you serving or who have served, and to the families of those who served but lost their lives, thank you for your service! It’s also a year since […]

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Almost A Year Later…

May 11, 2012

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We are well past the 1 year mark when Mike had his cardiac arrest.  We are coming up on the 1 year anniversary of the day he was finally discharged from inpatient care for the cardiac arrest and its complications.  Like that old Virginia Slims commercial used to say…We’ve come a long way Baby!  It’s […]

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Good Morning Mike!

February 19, 2012

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I can’t be quite sure what the explanation for this is, but after 62 years of sleeping until noon whenever possible, this morning I woke up at 5 to find my sweet husband in the bathroom, lights on, cabinet doors open and searching.  5 am is not new to me…it’s my usual wakeup time assuming I’ve gotten […]

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It’s Like Spring…

February 18, 2012

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Yes, yes, I know it’s only February 18.  And yes, I know I begin to harp on Spring every year at this time.  But this year, in the sense that Spring is the penultimate rebirth, it truly is the first day of my Spring…the anniversary of the rebirth of the love of my life.  Mike gets […]

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(Almost) An Ode To Spring

January 9, 2012

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Winter monotony continues.  A seemingly endless chain of days, one the same as the others, each one increasingly bleak.  Too cold to spend any time outdoors.  (Yes, I know it’s a mild winter but if I still need a coat of any type, it’s cold)  Indoors, the housework extends itself into the same bleak monotony with […]

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Farewell to 2011

December 29, 2011

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December 29, 2011…and this year is (mercifully) drawing to an end.  Maybe I should have titled this entry Good riddance 2011!   I look forward to 2012 and hope it is far less eventful than this year, thank you very much!  We seem to be cruising out of this year almost on a cloud.  Things on the home […]

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For the New Year….Commitments To Myself

December 26, 2011

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Christmas 2011 is past now…it comes and goes so quickly.  So much anticipation, so much preparation and in the blink of an eye it’s gone.  We had a very quiet day.  Very.  It was relaxing.  It gave me time to reflect as we approach the one year mark when my life changed markedly.  Phew.  It […]

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My Christmas Wish…

December 22, 2011

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It’s been a week.  Hopefully the petty annoyances of the week are behind us.   The john had no need of an auger  <ggg> after all.  I’ve not yet gotten a new plunger, but will be right after the holiday.   Remember that I worked in IT for a  lot of years?  While not a programmer, I […]

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Realities and Perspective

December 18, 2011

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So here’s the question of the day.  It’s a practical one.  How does one make a plumber’s helper actually WORK?  I’m thinking our plunger must simply be a piece of junk.  The (pinky red) rubber is getting kind of cracked where it turns itself inside out and the surface of it seems too large for the […]

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Just Weird

December 15, 2011

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Yesterday was a weird day…just weird.  I truly felt like my name was Alice and I had fallen down the rabbit hole.  I kept expecting a rabbit or a cat or the Queen of Hearts to show up (or maybe just Gracie Slick!).  I’m going to re-roll the tape here…maybe writing about it will help […]

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Well Intended Political Rhetoric

December 14, 2011

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Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords staff conducted a webinar on TBI today.  Apparently people who had written to the Congresswoman after her injury and expressed brain injury interest were invited to attend (among constituents and whoever else..).  The event was held at the Southern Arizona VA where the Veterans Administration has one of their Polytrauma Network sites.  The Brain Association of Southern Arizona […]

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Status Quo

December 10, 2011

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And so the journey continues…it’s been a couple days since I stopped those two meds Mike was taking.  It’s a daily vigil now…will there be a serious cardiac reaction or won’t there?  My sister-in-law thinks Mike got a do-over on the heart and now we simply need to work with the neuro complications.  I dunno.  I do […]

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Decisions, Decisions, Decisions….

December 8, 2011

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My current Christmas wish is to wake up one morning, transformed with some new knowledge and abilities…a cross between a cardiologist and a neuropsychiatrist.  I suspect if I were, though, I would have to run screaming from those realities because in general I lack detachment and objectivity.  The reality would be far too much for me […]

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Introspection

November 11, 2011

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Truly, it is November and I think the balmy weather is on the run though I hear it’s going to revisit us this weekend.  For now, it’s cold and the leaves are blowing around because they have given up trying to hold  on to the trees.  My energy is kind of like those leaves right about now.  I’m […]

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All Hallow’s Eve….

October 31, 2011

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Happy Halloween!  We had a ton of ghosts, goblins, pirates,princesses and puppies this year and the kids (for a change) were primarily little kids.  No candy panhandling big kids this year, just tons of cute little ones.  How about at your house?  Mike was looking forward to seeing all the kids so we were outside […]

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Deja Vu, the VA, etc.

October 30, 2011

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 Talk about Deja Vu…!  Tuesday I got a call that my youngest brother had called an ambulance to take him to the hospital as he couldn’t breathe.  Turns out he has multiple pulmonary emboli which are causing the right side of his heart to strain and have periods of hypoxia…and a big clot in his leg […]

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Hawk Mountain Adventures

October 22, 2011

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Well, to be able to check out the new 12mm Pen lens AND the new E-P3 in action, I’m not above actually hiking up a mountainside.  Which is what I did today.  Now, of course, that was only one justification for doing this.  Mike purchased some whizbang binoculars before he got sick and this would give him a […]

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Orders Of The Day

October 17, 2011

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It’s Monday morning and as I face the new week I reflect on the old and wonder how to improve on it in the new week.  Yeah, I know.  It’s a weirdness I have, but there it is.  I expect I’m just never satisfied right?  I put on some music to think by…and not interested […]

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Saturday’s Child Must Work For A Living

October 15, 2011

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But a child that’s born on the Sabbath day is fair and wise and good and gay.  October 15, 1950 was a Sunday…and it’s the day Mike was born.  And oddly enough, all these characteristics of Sunday’s child are those that typify my husband.   Today’s his 61st Birthday.  The birthday that almost wasn’t.  I still […]

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Nueropsychology for (k)Nuckleheads

October 12, 2011

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Where I would be the head knucklehead.  I keep thinking there must be some science to this whole brain injury recovery that is somehow escaping me.  While I know that every situation, every brain, every injury, every patient, and ultimately,  therefore, every recovery, is different, the lack of information I have gotten on what the extent […]

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Project Healing Waters

October 9, 2011

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Project Healing Waters is a project whose mission is :  “to assist in the physical and emotional rehabilitation of disabled active duty military personnel and veterans through fly fishing and fly tying education and outings.”   Locally, the LVMAC (Lehigh Valley Military Affairs Council) and the Hokendauqua Chapter of Trout Unlimited joined forces to present a day of […]

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October Skies

October 7, 2011

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Did you ever notice that the early morning sky can have the tiniest bit of pink shading?  It’s October…and October has the bluest skies ever…so in the early morning light, the softness of the blue approaches the sky blue in my box of Crayolas…but not as full or rich yet because the sun is just […]

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Happiness is healing…

October 6, 2011

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On the way to the doc’s office today (yes, there is mild, very mild, COPD.  No meds for it at this time.  Just watch it.  Since it didn’t appear before the cardiac arrest and all the pneumonia/vent/mrsa/respiratory failures, it is probably due to that. )  I asked Mike my usual question. “Honey, have I told […]

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Turning Corners

October 6, 2011

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I have to wonder if we’ve turned another corner in recovery.  Memory is still not really better.  However, yesterday I noticed pieces of old personality returned…or were returning.  Not the best pieces either!  Enroute to speech therapy and his visit with the neuropsychologist, Mike argued with me endlessly about how it was most certainly not Wednesday.  And […]

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Curiouser and Curiouser

September 29, 2011

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Truly, some days I feel like Alice spiralling round and round down the rabbit hole into a world of the wholly unexplainable. I’ve been reading those hospital records again.  Truly. Based on results, my adorable husband should be (a) dead then (b) vegetative then (c) dead again and then (d) dead again and (e) probably […]

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29…And Counting

September 26, 2011

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This morning I pointed out to Mike that his birthday is only a few weeks away.  I asked him how old he would be.  He responded….”29″.  I laughed and said “uuuuhhh…you wish!  Since I am almost three full years younger than you, that would make me 25 now.  Do I look 25?”  Forget diplomacy.  He […]

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Memories

September 25, 2011

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These have been on my mind a lot lately.  Both Mike’s and my memories.  And just memory itself. There’s the memories of Mike’s arrest.  I think those are some kind of post traumatic thing…they make me cry a lot and grieve.  But in reality there is not a lot of time for that in my […]

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Progress!

September 21, 2011

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It’s a day.  Neither a good day nor a bad day.  A busy day…but still just a day.  We’ve been up for hours because today is the day the super duper high efficiency heat pump/air con is being installed.  What a project it is too.  Mercifully the temperatures are cool today.  This afternoon brings a […]

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Mike: Moving Forward…most days

September 12, 2011

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How could I ever have been prepared for the reality of living with brain injury?  I’m a girl who doesn’t do grey areas in life.  Or anything.  It’s black or it’s white.  It’s literal.  It’s unequivocal.  Brain injury…nobody knows about it or what the outcome will be.  It could be this or it could be […]

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Mike’s Status and the VA Stuff….

September 5, 2011

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It’s been a busy summer and I can barely believe it is over…and we are almost 7 months post cardiac arrest.   All in all I would say we are leading a charmed life. Mike’s cardiologist says his heart is in pretty darned good shape all things considered.  Ejection fraction is normal.   Damage from the attack […]

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Mike Day 45 Moving Forward: Recreational Therapy

July 11, 2011

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All of these therapies Mike receives are great.  As far as they go.  To him, I am sure, they feel like work.  I also find them to be a bit tedious.  I’ve been looking into adjunct therapies…some speech therapy workbooks, different from the ones his therapist uses. Hyperbaric Oxygenation Therapy which I am certain I can’t afford […]

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July 3 Mike Moving Forward: “One Of The Best Nights”

July 3, 2011

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Really, Mike is so easy to please…he always was, but now is even easier.  Such simple things have always pleased him. During the day Mike slept blissfully till about noon.  After the wandering of the night before and in the absence of scheduled appointments, this was what I expected and what usually gets him back […]

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Mike Day 36 Moving Forward: Midsummer Night’s Dream

July 2, 2011

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It’s been one of those periods of those days.  Days…and mostly nights…where I can’t quite explain what the heck I’m seeing and experiencing.  They’re like bad dreams.  Unexplainable.  Surreal.   Not that there has been anything big going on, or bad, it’s just a strange period.  Mike’s been making progress cognitively.  Some days he has such […]

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Mike Day 27 Moving Forward: Catchup Epistle

June 23, 2011

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Well, I haven’t written for several days…and during brain injury recovery there don’t seem to be many static periods.  So there’s lots to ruminate on.  This will be long.  I should probably break it into multiple posts, but who has time.  Grab a cuppa joe if you’re reading and inclined to see it through to the end.  […]

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Mike Day 22 Moving Forward: Out Of The Mouth Of…Mike

June 18, 2011

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You never know what might come out of Mike’s mouth…you expect confusion, made up words, incomplete sentences, all courtesy his acquired brain injury.  When you get snippets of his old personality, his old sense of humor, it’s truly a treat that makes me laugh and laugh.  And laughing is good.  So very good. The other […]

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Mike Day 20 Moving Forward: EUREKA!

June 16, 2011

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Mike woke up, hopped out of bed, headed to the bathroom.  He came out looking for what I inferred to be the towel and  wash cloth as he mimed washing he face.  He informed me he was planning to wash and brush his teeth.  I gave it to him…he washed his face dry.  There was no convincing […]

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Mike Day 20 Moving Forward: Medical Updates

June 16, 2011

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Yesterday I met with the various therapies working with Mike.  PT tells me he is pretty high functioning actually, in the physical department.  And they tested his balance and he passed the balance test with flying colors…which surprised them because in the gym he is oblivious to what is around him which makes it throw off […]

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Mike Day 19 Moving Forward: Are You Kidding Me?

June 15, 2011

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Who would have known that the guy I’m married to for 31 years now, who cannot recall our marriage, who often doesn’t recall momentous events in our joint lives or his own life, who cannot remember his sister who died 30 years ago, who cannot remember five minutes after lunch that he had lunch and had […]

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Mike Day 18 Forward: Our Wedding Anniversary…how sweet it is

June 14, 2011

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First, Happy Anniversary to us.  It’s 31 years today since we were married.  I’m interested to see if Mike retained that information till this morning.  Lately, it seems as if sometimes his short term memory is improving with enough repetition of the same data…and then only for short periods.  Truthfully, the memory thing is a […]

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Mike Day 17 Forward: This, That n The Next Thing

June 13, 2011

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It’s Monday…our day off from Therapy, doctor’s appts, wound care center appts and the like.  Mike DID have to have blood drawn, and, since our priest is leaving for two weeks in Italy and has been wanting to give Mike the sacraments for a bit now, Mel took him to church for communion.  Right now […]

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Mike Day 15 Forward: Rainy Day Impressions

June 11, 2011

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It’s early.  I’ve been up for an hour, since 5, awakened by the pups who were sure it was time to go out.  Somehow they hadn’t realized it was raining buckets…and they don’t like the rain.  Awake for nothing.  SIGH.  I lay here in the semi-dark hoping the light from the pc and the tapping […]

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Mike Day 10 of The Journey Forward

June 6, 2011

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So here we are, ten days from Mike’s discharge.  It’s been a ride, but we are finally settling into some sort of normalcy…or something akin to a routine, which is very comforting to me these days.  Oddly enough, I used to view spontaneity as the greatest gift and found routines to be tedious.  I think […]

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Mike Day 97: D-Day

May 26, 2011

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At last it’s here…after 96 long days of hospitalization I get to bring Mike home!  I grocery shopped last night and brought home all ilk of fruit, juices, veggies and good for you stuff to eat.  I have the prescriptions in hand to drop off on the way to the hospital.  Nursing gave me my discharge […]

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Mike Day 96: D-Day Minus 1

May 25, 2011

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Tomorrow is the big day!  I can hardly wait.  It’s been a huge week getting ready, and I still have grocery shopping to do…but we are almost home “free”.  Free is an odd way to put it.  We are definitely not “free”.  The cost of a serious medical illness such as Mike’s is pretty staggering.  […]

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Mike: Quips and Giggles

May 23, 2011

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Mike has always been a funny guy and had a great sense of humor.  One of the greatest gifts I’ve ever gotten from Mike was the ability to laugh and to have a sense of humor.  His sense of humor has not left him…and when it shows itself I often wonder how much CNS damage […]

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Mike Day 92: Getting Ready For Homecoming

May 22, 2011

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Yesterday we began readying the house for Mike’s return home.  The kids, Deb, and I got together very early and descended on the bedroom.  With only 5 days to go, the countdown has begun and we need to get cracking! To say Mike has “stuff” squirreled everywhere would be an understatement.  A collector of all […]

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Day 91 Mike: ShortTimers

May 20, 2011

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It’s looking good for the 26th and D-Day (in this case, Discharge Day).  I’m a little scared the bedsore might throw a monkey wrench in…it suddenly started to have yukky drainage again.  I’ve insisted the wound care nurse evaluate it again today and I’m hoping that they can turn whatever has flared up around very quickly.  […]

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Mike Day 89: (Almost) Out Of Exile

May 18, 2011

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At last the exile that resulted from our very indulgent and unhealthy eating habits…which is all Mike’s heart attack is attributable to…is almost over.   As discharge became a sooner rather than later reality bearing down on us, I began to feel kind of unsettled about some open items relative to Mike’s daily existence that I […]

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Day 84: Such A Great Day After All!

May 13, 2011

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This morning, first thing, we visited the office of Pulmonary Associates…the critical care docs who cared for Mike for 2 months and brought him through so much illness it can’t be believed.  Dr. Jeff Marsh saw him…I had rather hoped it would be he and expressed same to nurse practitioner at Good Shepherd before she made the […]

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