Monday, February 18, 2013

What I'm LEARNING so far this year......

Six weeks have passed since my last post.
A lot has happened in that time.
Trust me, you don't want to hear it all.
I'll give you the condensed version....
David retired from 40 years in the ministry and 24 years at First Lutheran Church on Sunday, January 13. There was a glorious worship service and a marvelous celebration for about 300 people. Some of our friends and family came in from out of town. So much fun!
On Thursday following, we left to visit our son Eric, DIL Jane and our 2 wonderful grandsons, Charlie & Miles.
We stayed with the boys on Friday and Saturday nights to give Eric and Jane a few days away.
On Monday, the 21st, we left their place to head to our favorite getaway place...
The Bellmoor in Rehoboth Beach Delaware for 5 days. We were looking forward to a much needed rest.
On the way down, I felt like I was starting to get some congestion in my chest.
I ended up sick for the week, only leaving the hotel for dinner (they have a wonderful breakfast each morning).
By the time we returned to Pittsburgh on the 27th, I had a full blown case of some strain of bronchitis.
Visited the Dr. and started on some antibiotics and steroids for 10 days.
As soon as the medicine was finished the sickness came back worse than ever.
I almost ended up in the hospital, but instead, went on a very aggressive course of steroids (my asthma made it impossible to breathe) which I will finish tomorrow.
Last Wednesday, the 13th, I finally felt well enough to meet a friend for a little while and go to the grocery store.
David decided he was going to work on the wooded hillside behind our house, clearing away some dead brush and trimming some broken tree branches. I questioned whether it was a good idea with the ground so soft but he had been caring for me for weeks and was anxious to get outside and "do some things".
I arrived home and found David 35 feet down the hill, on the ground. While trimming a tree, it had suddenly snapped off and propelled him down the hillside at an alarming speed. He tried to stop himself, got twisted and heard a snap as he fell. He had laid in the woods for about 30 minutes until he was finally able to scream loud enough for someone to hear. He thought he had broken either his hip or his femur when he fell. Two minutes after I got home, the paramedics, fire department and a news crew descended on our home. The man who heard his cries for help had called 9-1-1. Thank God.

There must have been 40 men flying about, developing a plan and putting the plan into action.
They decided to lower a stabilizing board down, load David onto it and haul him up through the woods.
These men, most of them volunteers, were wonderful! Efficient, fast-acting, kind.

David was extremely lucky!
He never lost consciousness.
There was no bleeding (and he takes blood thinners)
The outcome...
a torn hamstring tendon, just below the left buttock....very painful
Three days in the hospital.
He will eventually have 6-8 weeks of physical therapy but not yet. He is only allowed to walk using a walker and go up and down steps once a day. He needs to rest that area and let some healing take place.
We are grateful to the men who acted quickly...the man who called for help and the men who provided it.
We are grateful to God for his protection in a situation that could have been so much worse.
We are so lucky to have wonderful young neighbors who brought homemade soup, cleared snow from our driveway and sidewalks and are keeping an eye on us.
This retirement thing has gotten off to a rocky start but I think that means we will appreciate it even more when David is whole again. I am feeling better and will take good care of my patient.
I have learned, as I have 100 times before, never to take anything for granted.
David has learned never to even work in the yard without his cellphone in his pocket.
Our children have "grounded" him and said he can only play on the yard side of the fence.
This is the shortened version of this tale...but I've said more than enough.
I promise that my next post (SOON!) will have happy news and fun stuff!
Thank you to all my Facebook friends who have been following along and sending loving messages and prayers. We appreciate it very much.


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