Thursday, August 26, 2010

E R....the eternal waiting

     Daughter E zooms me to the doctor's office where we are clearly the last patient of the day.  E signs me in and takes care of the basic formalities to do before seeing the doctor.   We sit in the exam room waiting for Dr. F. to see me and chat.  I feel so odd having my daughter bring me to the doctor, sitting in the one chair while I am perched on the exam table.  A reversal of roles as it was I who sat on the chair when she was little talking to her to distract her from the wait till the doctor came in.  I am comforted by her being with me, knowing she should be on her way to work and yet she tells me she wants to be here with me to help and make sure I am okay.

     Dr. F. comes in and teases me a bit as I was in to see him barely 2 weeks before because of Tendonitis.  That is in my left arm, my writing arm, not the one I hold as though it were fine china.  He says let's take a look as he unwraps my hand.  Gentle, everyone is gentle though I still am feeling fearful.   "Oh yes" he says, "I do believe you broke your wrist".  He wants me to go to the hospital that thankfully it is just next door to get x-rays and he will call in an orthopedic.  The nurse is called to get a wheelchair as they don't want me to have to walk.  Okay.  I walk out to the hall where the chair is and start to sit down.  I feel that the chair is not locked (what was the nurse thinking?)  and start to feel a fall but I am caught by the nurse and Dr. F.  (I hope there is a chat between them later about the need to ALWAYS lock the chair.  

     E R waiting room is not too busy though that doesn't mean a thing.  The exam areas could be a zoo for all we know.  Once again E signs me in and passes over my ID and insurance card as well as any signatures.  My Love has no idea what has transpired as he had just started a new big job out of the area.  E and I sit down.  I encourage her to go back to work that I will be okay.  No she won't go, that it is alright for her to stay.  After about a half hour waiting I finally get her to go.  She calls home to give the update which is still nothing but waiting.  My Love is just home and will be on his way.  My fall was at near 3:00, the doctor visit 4:00, it is now the 4:45 or so hour.  E reluctantly leaves as we say goodbye.

     The waiting room begins to have new patients.  A young boy with a bump from running into a table and gashing the forehead as well as hitting the back of the head.  Mom has a three pack of juice boxes as well as a sippy cup, Dad cradles their son on his shoulder.  I think Dad had been on duty watching their son when the accident happens as I hear them talking.

     I am called by the triage nurse.  A curly haired young man with a knack for this job.  All the questions of how, when, etc. are asked and then I return to the waiting room, back to my chair, to wait some more.  My arm aches and throbs and I am feeling more uncomfortable.

     Next another couple with a little girl comes.  Mom is distressed and anxious to see a doctor now.  Father is agitated and speaking a foreign language to the wife.  She becomes more upset and little girl does as well.  Life in the E R is anything but boring.

     I am called by another nurse to have my x-rays.  Her name is K just like my daughter.  X-rays are not pleasant as we have to unwrap my wrist though not fully and hold it in three different positions which gets me shaky and nervous because of the discomfort.  Then it is back to the waiting room.   

     Why does the time take forever?  The room has become quite full now.  My Love arrives about 5:40.  Relief that he is here and my eyes become teary.  All I can think to say is "I'm sorry".   My Love says "Why?  You've done nothing wrong.".  But that is what I feel.  I am sorry for this unwanted attention.  I only want to be with my visiting daughter and her boyfriend.  Cooking dinner having a glass of wine, laughing, not being here on a Friday night.  I say "Some lousy date this is."  My Love looks at me with only that look of tender comfort he can do.  He asks if I am thirsty or hungry.  Well,  yes I am.  H goes out to the car to bring me what he has.   Time just drags.  My Love asks if I mind if he goes to get something more filling as he is hungry from working all day.  No problem, as the wait will be long, that is clear.


Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Under Repair

      My blogging may be a bit off.  As of last Friday I have a broken wrist.  To be exact I have an "Acute undisplaced comminuted intra-articular fracture of the distal radius with dorsal angulation".   Whew!    I am now down to one hand typing (What is the sound of one hand clapping? A question I wrote about in college ages ago that I don't feel applies to this!) which is slow and exhausting. 

      What was a lovely hike in the Las Trampas foothills near our home became a change in a split second of the use of my hand.   My two daughters K and E, K's boyfriend B, myself and my son R had thought it was a perfect day for a hike.  Going up it has a steep ascent through shady oak dotted hills, then you come to a large open area with views  of Mt. Diablo and the valley.  Heading down the trail was slippery with the very dry hard packed dirt.   You need to think when you go down and I was talking, happy to be with my kids.  First E slipped and fell and I then I made the comment of watching  your step and then I fell.  I was too off on my balance to fall on my tush only, more leaned back and I went down hard on my right arm.  I heard it or felt it the snap!   I knew I had broken it.   Everyone asked was I okay and said no, I think I broke my wrist.  My daughter was next to me wanting to help me up but I just held my arm trying to digest what had happened.  B was quick to my side, asking me what I can't remember now.  Next was him asking for wood to make a splint.  Then it was "does anyone have a bandana", no none of us did.  Quickly he removes his belt and wraps my arm up.  I felt so cared for that I didn't worry.   I just wanted to get home and prayed it was a sprain. 

      We had about 10 minutes before we reached the car and my thoughts were "can't I go back in time and do this over before I fell?"   I am bugged with myself, I should know how to go down a steep trail.   I have hiked plenty of times up and down this trail.  I have fallen countless times from horses and had one roll on my leg in a fall without any breaks.  

      We get to the car and back home.   We sit at my kitchen table and unwrap my arm from the oak and belt splint.   It looks funky on the table.  Someone gets ice packs and B comes out with a backpackers splint.    W talk about calling the Dr. as I am certain it is broken.  B carefully wraps my wrist.  My Knight in Shinning Armor to the rescue has just been awarded multi stars for his good deed!   Thank you's seem not enough for his quick action and gentleness.

       E says she will drive me on her way to work, grabs my purse and cell phone, buckles me in her car and we are off. 

Saturday, August 7, 2010


Jesse from Ellen Frasheski on Vimeo.

       For most of my life there has been at least one dog in our home except for a few short years while I was in college.  Growing up we had at one time a boxer named Humprey, two Miniature Poodles named Pepe and Charlie and then an Akita German Shepard mix named Nikki.

             When my Love and I had been married for a year and finally bought our first home I begged for a dog.  I had fallen in love with Shetland Sheepdogs after going to the Golden Gate Dog Show in San Francisco.  After that day I read up on Shelties to find out all I could about them.   My constant talk finally got the green light to get one.  I called the Northern California Sheltland Sheepdog Association for help on finding a breeder.  After a few calls from that connection I found one nearby.  Our first Sheltie we named Heidi.   She was 10 weeks old and I was in love.  I took her to dog school were she was smart as could be.  Shelties are truly an intelligent breed and learn quickly.   Heidi lived till the age of 12.

         When Heidi was around 7 we bought another Sheltie we named Tess.   I loved those two very much.  Two little dogs who followed me everywhere whether at play with our girls, cleaning house or doing yard work.  I would walk them tandom with the stroller around the neighborhood when the girls were young.  I was stopped often by children thinking they were "baby Lassie's".   When Heidi died I was blessed to still have Tess.  Sheltie's are extremely loyal to their owners but primarily to the one who trains them which was me.   Tess just picked up the slack without Heidi and became closer to me.    She was always alert keeping her eyes on me.   Tess was quite devoted to me and I to her.   When I was 7 months pregnant with R. Tess  suddenly developed  serious anemia and passed away at the age of 7.  I was shocked and distraught.   My "Little Shadow" as I had called her was gone.

          Months went by and though we had another dog who we all loved, our merry Golden Retriever Dixie, I felt lost without my shadow.   So when R. was three months old we found another Sheltie and brought him home.  We named him Jesse.   I have a thing for the runts of the litter.  Like Heidi and Tess, Jesse was the runt as well.   I was told I was crazy to get a puppy while I had a three month old baby.  I would pick R. up and pick Jesse up with the other arm to take him outside to housetrain him.  It really was easy to me.  Evey two to three hours I was breastfeeding R. and when I was done I would take Jesse outside.   As I said, Shelties are smart!  Dog school was a breeze where he was the smartest in the class.  R. and Jesse grew up together and though Dixie and R. bonded the most, Jesse was always nearby or in the mix.   

         Jesse's puffy tail with the white tip whipping around and around as he would "attempt" to herd R.  Well we know you can't herd a child but try telling that to Jesse!  

         When you own a dog you try not think of how long they will be a part of your life.   It is never long enough.  That true companionship where they come with you on vacations, go on hikes or walks, having them in family photos, simply being a part of the family.  

         Yet time marches on and that friend begins to age and slow down.  Walks become harder till they can't keep up.  One of the last trips Jesse was with us to Lake Tahoe and part way through our hike we had to carry him.  He just was too tired.  He began sleeping more and not always getting up with ease.  His breathing became labored with panting more.  The night he passed away I had made plans to take him to the vet the next morning.  He ate his dinner like normal though he was not steady on his feet and really just wanted to lay down.  His look on his sweet face was sad and I felt awful seeing him this way.  We went into watch some TV with R. and my Love on the couch along with our other dog a Chihuahua mix named Stewie and our Golden Annie on her dog bed.  Jesse came in with us and lay by the door.  He watched us for awhile and then we thought he was asleep.   When we got up later I called the dogs to go outside.  My sweet Jesse did not move.  I felt his little body and knew then he was gone.   Gone, gone from us.

          The peace I felt was that he died with his family near him where he was watching us.   He didn't have to be put to sleep which I had dreaded to have to do.   He was with his doggie friends and people family.  We all said our goodbyes to him that night.  

         I miss having a Sheltie.  It has been two years since Jesse died.  We have our Annie and Stewie who we love very much.  We play, walk and hike together and those two are just the best buddies to each other.  While I would love to have another Sheltie we just can't right now.   And you may ask why I need or want another dog let alone a Sheltie.  Until you have had one it is hard to explain that would make much sense.   Their sweet almond shaped eyes that melt when you look at them.   Their happy little gait and the way they run.  Yes they do bark but they bark for good reason!  When someone comes to the house, when they are playing but I never minded.   Yes they need to be brushed and often but what a glorious coat they have.   Yes they have teeth that seem to get dirty real easy even when they have bones to gnaw upon.  But my heart will always love them.   That loyal relationship of trust and friendship is like no other.

         Missing you Jesse...and all my doggie family....Heidi, Dixie, Tess....



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