Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Embedded blogging from a central valley hospital

I'm sitting in a hospital room that my grandpa is sharing with another patient, whom I haven't met because he's drawn his curtain to shield himself from the ear-blasting volume Gramps is 'watching' Dr. Phil at. I use quotation marks because my grandfather is asleep, breathing deeply, his bottom dentures slowly sliding down his chin. I'm waiting for them to fall onto the floor with a clack.

He woke up a few minutes ago and said, 'I have to go to the bathroom. Get my sweatpants from the cedar chest, will you honey?'

I only argued for a few seconds before just agreeing 'ok,' and leaving the room for five seconds. When I walked back in, he was sleeping again. He is, of course, fully rigged to eliminate any and all waste from the comfort of his hospital bed.

(He just woke up again and said, 'I'm so tired!' I told him that was ok and he should take a nap.)

My grandfather was expected to die on Sunday night. His cardiologist says as much. He was read his final rights or whatever it is you Catholics do (that is not meant to be derogatory).

But on Monday morning, he woke up and ate breakfast. By the time I arrived around lunchtime, he was eating steak and mashed potatoes. Last night he talked a blue streak for hours on end, telling my mother and grandmother all of his oft-repeated stories.

It's a bit of a miracle. He's not fully recovered and likely won't be, perhaps ever, given the heart attack and the fact that he's 90 years old.

Thanks to everyone for your thoughtfulness even though I know many of you are dealing with your own crises. I am thinking of you now, too.


  1. Glad he's doing better! When my great-grandfather was in the hospital for the last time, he was very angry that the nurses wouldn't give him butter for his baked potato.

    His logic: "I'm 92 years old and I lived a good life. At this point, butter is the LEAST of my worries. Now be a good girl and find me some."

    I should note that when he said "find me some" he was pointing at his neighbor, who was snoring. His tray had 2 pats of butter on it.

  2. And the point of that rambling post is that I'm amazed he was eating steak and potatoes. Good for him!

  3. I'm praying for your grandpa. Erin, you have a gift to bring humor to difficult situations.

  4. I was taking inventory of all the people around me who are going through difficult periods in their lives this past weekend. As I was thinking of all these bad things, the good in my life started to enter my thoughts. Things like how much Christina and I love to hear the rain hit our roof in the winter and spring and waves crash against the beach in the summer. Or how lucky Christina and I are to have friends who's children treat us like rock stars. The end result was that I realized that in life there are more good days than bad.

    I'm praying for your grandpa and for you and your family.