Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Change of Plans

Any anticipation about being homebound with my shiny new husband during our area's "polar vortex" didn't work out quite the way I expected.   The weather forecasters were certainly right this time and it got colder than heck; even the mail service was suspended for most of the week, to protect the mail carriers who walk for miles delivering our letters and bills.  With temperatures below zero and windchill's that were 35-40 below, schools, businesses, and government offices were all closed, while I was safe and cozy and thinking about what to bake.   

My husband and I were just settling into the enjoyment of Tuesday's sub zero temperatures when I became concerned because I wasn't able to reach my older brother, who lives further north than we do.   Just about the time I was ready to call the police for a welfare check or even drive up there myself, my brother phoned to tell me that he had been admitted to the hospital and they expected to do emergency surgery as soon as they could.   I drove through whiteout conditions down to the University Hospital where he had gone in for a routine out-patient test the day before.

Thank goodness, it was only a day before the medical team concluded that my brother does not, or probably does not have a rapidly ballooning aneurism that could kill him.  Instead, they think, he has a growth on his aorta that can be treated, at least temporarily, without surgery.  We should know for sure in the next day or so but, although he is still in the ICU,  they have cleared him to get out of bed by himself, which is a very good sign.   Meanwhile, I am spending my nights alone in a hotel nearby,  hanging out in the ICU during the day, and driving back and forth in horrific temperatures.  No kidding, the tips of fingers and nose start to burn within minutes, but things are good.  For one thing, so far, the car is starting after only a few seconds of complaint.      Better yet, while we still expect there will be some surgery in his future, and probably a few more days stuck in one of those back-flap hospital robes, it looks like my brother will be able to go home again early next week.     Meanwhile, I've explored the local community to buy him the underwear and socks that he didn't know he should pack because he didn't think he was going to stay.    And Jack is home alone, again, teasing me about my high maintenance family while we look forward to being together again.


Marie Louise said...

Oh gosh, you must have been shocked to receive such a message. It is strange, the older you get, or let I speak for myself, the older I get, the more anxious you get when you hear that one of your siblings has some kind of ailment. Hopefully your brother gets well very soon.
Be careful with the cold weather overthere, we hear horrorstories here about the Midwest.

gpc said...

Thanks, Marie Louise --we are not the coldest place in the region, it is 17 below zero (F) this morning, but they predict it will be 70 degrees warmer by Monday! The Midwest is used to wide temperature swings and many of us welcome these colder temperatures, hoping that some of the pests that entered our state during the warming trends will be slowed down a bit. But yes, it can be dangerous for those who are unprepared, or lack resources. It is true about our siblings, and I feel like mine are getting more frail, even though I don't see or acknowledge those same signs of aging in myself! :) I am hopeful that my brother will be back to his regular life soon but it is definitely a reminder, as my sister says, that 'daylight's burning'!

Barbara said...

Oh my goodness. You’ve had the worst luck when it comes to spending time with that shiny new hubby. Glad your brother’s situation turned out to be less than originally thought. Please be careful out there.