22 Feb, 11

Got out and about on the streets yesterday and today.  Not far, but a short loop nevertheless.  And, was able to do this without hobbling.  Something that GV is doing is working.  There is still not insignificant sensitivity hence walking lightly is key.  But, considerable progress has been made.

The trach hole still hasn’t closed any further.  All the other “issues” are proceeding in their respective repair phases, but the trach hole, for me, is an open issue (no pun).  Until that hole is an un-hole, it’s difficult to not be bothered by it.

The fact that it remains open certainly makes communicating in public different.  Passing people to whom I’d normally say hi, with a winter coat on, means it’s easier to smile.  Always thought it was strange when saying hi to someone and rather than saying hi back, that person would just smile.  Now I’m the one smiling back.  It’s important not to be stopped long enough to enter the “how’s it going” phase.  But when caught it’s a smile and a nod (just a little weirder).

I did take the occasion today to get a couple of errands done.  For those, it took carefully unbuttoning the winter coat, unzipping the chin-high zipper-front fleece sweater and sliding the hand to the neck to get those fingers over the hole.  If you are prepared to talk it’s one thing.  Caught off guard is another.  At Trader Joseph’s, getting asked things like “one bag or two” is an easy finger motion.  When the cashier just starts chit chatting, then it’s either undoing the coat/sweater or just smiling.

I’ve gotten real good at simply mouthing “thank you.”  But I’m sure it again all boils down to patience.  Then again, I do have two work appointments on Thursday where talking is imperative.  Both appointments I’m sure will be a trick if that hole is not closed.  (why does that guy always have his hand on his throat when he’s talking?)

Changing topics, with luck, I remembered that today is our anniversary (w/GV).  Sitting in the freezer is our traditional certain bottle of champagne that we have every year.  Although this year it will be all GV.  I may stick my tongue in it (not the bottle) to keep the tradition alive.

7 thoughts on “22 Feb, 11

  1. Stryker Warren jr.

    Fred: “Patience is a virtue” but I think that hackneyed cliche was not intended for active patients such as yourself; again, your stamina and outlook are remarkable. . . communication appears to be a challenge not originally discussed while plotting therapy and recovery/rehab. Hoping this will benefit from the tincture of time albeit radiation therapy slows and alters the overall healing process as you have been counseled and are experiencing. SMF introduced me to Arnica; not sure if you and Grace subscribe to that therapy, but I encourage your consideration of topical application to the troublesome skin on neck, face, feet and ankles after reading precautionary citations. Whole Foods–perhaps Trader Joe’s–is likely to have in stock. In the meantime, best wishes and good karma being sent in your direction to ensure a speedy and complete recovery. You are a remarkable warrior by anyone’s measure.


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