Well, Tracy sat in the chair only once today until this evening. The nurse on duty allowed Tracy to just sit up in the bed and figured that may be good enough. But actually getting out of the bed to sit in the chair allows for more muscle movement all over, so I spoke with Tracy about the need for this and also for being willing to take authority for her care and make decisions that she can require the nurses to follow through with. I also talked gently with the nurse that Tracy would like to sit in the chair for another hour. Tracy's temperature was back up to 100.6 so she was getting some Tylenol (in a place where she doesn't have to swallow, ahem). So we decided to wait about 30 minutes. We assume that the fever may be coming from the lung condition. They just need a good workout, relatively speaking.
About 30 minutes later, the nurse came into the waiting room to get me, saying that Tracy wanted to see me. I hopped up and went back in and she had been sitting in the chair for about 20 minutes. She is something else. She doesn't feel good, but she is trying.
It was funny when I was telling her all this stuff, trying to be gentle, but insistent at the same time, she eventually said, "Ok, Jeff" in that tone that means "I got it. You can be quiet now." If I were a goofy teenager, this is where I would write LOL (which for the rest of you old geezers means "laugh out loud" in textspeak). She's all there. What a grand ol' girl.
Now, Here is a great story. While she was sitting up, she did her breathing exercises and did wonderfully well. She is supposed to do 10 an hour. She stopped at 8 and said that was enough. I encouraged her to do the last two and she did 'em. She sat in the chair for about an hour and so there was a lot of time of just looking at each other and I tried to think of things to tell her about all you guys and just the "goings on". I told her that I knew my voice gets kind of loud, or raspy or just annoying or I use too many words and she should tell me if I am causing her stress. She said I was fine but me and grannie had bad breath! Now here is the good part. She smiled the first smile I have seen. And though you couldn't really hear a chuckle, you could see it. He shoulders shrugged up and she shook a little. She was really proud of herself for her little funny. And she showed it. She felt it. I'm glad, because this is the first real humor I have seen her appreciate.
Earlier I had told her how wonderful I thought she was doing and how proud of her I was and though she might be feeling crumby, she was making me feel great, because of all her effort and good spirit and how much I loved her. She said weakly, "K". That was it. That was funny.
She is having some problems with some double or fuzzy vision in a different place than earlier. Her right eye has a tendency to stay open and she seems to let it do the job of seeing as she doen't open the left eye. I brought this to her attention and she said when she opens both eyes, she feels cross-eyed. So, we will make sure the Dr. who does the assessment in the morning is aware of this. In the meantime, we talked and figured she should try to open both eyes or close both eyes. The nurses are supposed to put some ointment on her eyes at night because the right one is not producing tears. They're supposed to tape it shut at night to protect it.
Grannie had a good plan that I go to the motel for a couple of hours; get a little rest, get cleaned up and then come back for the rest of the night. Good plan. So I am here in the waiting room and every now and then go in and check on her.
She looks really good. She doesn't feel all that well, but she is improving.
Thank you guys.