An unplanned hospitalization for our daughter has me back in the hospital with her just 10 days after our last stay. 

Days get long in the hospital. Even longer when you’re not the one who is drug-affected, body-tested, and time-invested.  Shaina’s care has always been 24/7.  Because hospitals don’t normally staff for adults who need ’round the clock watch, and because she communicates in her own unique way, I have to be here 24 hours every day.  Today is the dawn of Day 5 (and a half).  

To pass the extraordinary amount of awake time (when the nurse comes in at 4 a.m. for vitals my day has begun), I am trying to accomplish things. 

So far, I researched and selected my Thanksgiving side dishes.  (None of them involve cream of mushroom soup.)   I sent out invitations for a couples’ night with friends.  I went grocery shopping.  Met with a Medicare rep and chose Shaina’s 2012 Part D plan.  Learned how to read her quarterly billing report and corrected errors and oversights. (This is the equivalent of moving a mountain!)  Had a nightly chat with a friend. Paid bills.  (Ugh, these hospital stays!)  Created a new garden plan for next summer. Cancelled and rescheduled missed therapy sessions.  Met with a group about a “new and improved” ministry opportunity.  Picked out and begin reading a classic book.  (Everyone should reread the books of their youth.  Except maybe Moby Dick.)  Watched the Next Iron Chef.  Learned how to make baby booties. Read travel brochures and planned our next summer vacation. Took a FEMA class. Bought baby gifts. Sponsored a needy child in another country.  Did Christmas shopping. Visited with family and/or friends in Mississippi, Calgary, Rome, Vermont and Woodbury.  Did some volunteer work.  Bought a flat-screen TV. Registered for a college course. Mailed a sympathy card.  Shared photos with a friend (grandbabies for me, engagement of a son for her).  Put a used vehicle up for sale. Watched Gnomeo and Juliet with Shaina. Opened my mail.

All by the work of my 10 fingers, and often by the light of a heart monitor.  Ain’t no moss growing under my fingernails!

Isn’t the Internet a wonderful thing?  Now, if I could only figure out a way to test-drive a car from here.


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