Thursday, August 11, 2011

Chop wood, carry water, part fifty eight...

So today was a time of calling important places to stop direct deposits that don't relate any more, stop endless deliveries of meds, newspapers, you name it, that don't relate any more, to start on the legalities of the will and other such mysteries, to get the tv service yanked, to figure out when to yank the landline which we only kept in order to test HP's pacemaker, to return various bits of electronics, to struggle desperately to get equipment and materials picked up/freecycled/disposed of legally.

At the start of the day I was in despair, since seeing that empty bed and chair still there just fell on me like a mountain collapsing, and nobody seemed to be able and willing to take the stuff away. Even the oxygen gear, a rental, I had to pursue to get picked up. Turns out that the hospice people failed to make the calls, despite their repeated assurances that the stuff would be gone by next day to save me pain. But to be fair,their nurses are expected to do all their own clerical work in addition to patient care, hardly a reasonable burden.

So I made the calls, and when I explained the sit., the oxygen people said OMG, we're sorry, now that we know about the situation we'll have someone out in the hour. Which they did. And this prince of a man they sent out, Tom by name, agreed also to take the chair and the Hoyer, which he would present as a donation to them, and took the bed apart into component pieces though he couldn't take it away, they wouldn't take it. None of this was his job, just a nice favor to me. He pointed out with great insight, that even if I could throw something over the bed in pieces and stacked against the wall, and not have to see it that would feel better.

Meanwhile, the nurse never having got back to me as promised yesterday nor today, to pick up the extra supplies, I decided the hell with her, and put up a notice on Freecycle at 6 this morning (I'm up at five, and by six I'm at work!) and by seven I had a taker, very very grateful for a lot of the stuff. By the end of the day, a taker for the sling from the Hoyer, and another for the package of other specialty supplies, a woman who works in a facility for the aged, and she may take the rest.

My living room is now so much easier to be in. Most of the evidence of HP's suffering is now moved on to better homes. And the bed may go to a very very good place indeed, for a young profoundly disabled girl whose parents are having insurance problems. And there's a back up if they don't take it.

All this I had to do myself, none of the appropriate agencies having got around to it, or, frankly, cared enough to try. I dealt with two, one of which was frankly rude and defensive, acting as if I was imposing on them by offering several thousand dollars worth of excellent equipment as a donation, the other polite and courteous but still taken aback that I couldn't singlehandedly load a hospital bed and the other stuff in my compact car and bring it to them.... I feel a lot better now that I've succeeded in rehoming (!) all this stuff. And I have the official word on how to dispose safely and legally of the medications in the house, another worry solved.

And since the arrival of the gift from a dear blogista, Heather, a terrific bird feeder which has even baffled the squirrels up to now, the patio is a madhouse of birds feeding, all kinds of them, and wrens thrilled to have a diner open right near their home where their kids are being fed. So the peace and amusement of watching them pursuing their lives is a great antidote to my little concerns.

I have not uploaded pix yet, what with one thing and another, since all these activities are punctuated with intervals of crying, but I'll get there. The crying is fine, and it keeps happening just now and then, so whoever I'm talking to has to wait till I can go on, and people understand and either wait or chat to me.

To date, the best people to deal with in terms of accuracy, kindness and overall understanding have been Social Security, followed by the big pharma that sends the meds, whose Robert not only was kind and patient, but credited the card with the stuff that just came and had been charged, on account of they were sorry it added to my stress. And the pacemaker monitor lady in Minneapolis, who sounded quite like someone in a Coen brothers movie, (do you sound like that, Ari?) and was lovely, made it easy, too, to return that stuff.

Rather lower in the animal kingdom was the nonprofit whose job it is to arrange pickup of donated equipment, but their churlishness was cancelled out by the princely behavior of the rental company, different outfit,who went far beyond their requirements because they thought it was disgraceful not to help me.

All in all, the day went well, Mrs. Lincoln. My living room closely resembles a florist's,smelling wonderful, and with additional fruit bouquets, chocolate dipped fruit, fun artworks, and other such cheering items, cards, notes, and it's so wonderful to be surrounded by all this warmth and help.

The flowers lend a cheeriness that I really need right now, the edible gifts a terrific hostess thing, so that visitors can take a piece of fruit and go mad with joy over it, and we can all watch the birds on the patio between chatting. Great orchestration, folks! thank you all.


  1. Oh Liz - I've been off the computer and of course have missed HP's passing. I'm so very sorry, but I also rejoice with you knowing that he is finally at peace. I've read all your posts and feel so blessed that you put to voice so many of the feelings I had with my Dad and also so many of the similarities there were. May God be with you and HS.

  2. The lady in Minneapolis must have been from North Dakota originally. Only Minnesotans from North Dakota sound like they're from a Coen Brothers movie. I do, however, say You Betcha and I don't dentalize my internal Ts (Minnesota = Minnesoda). I was heavily influenced by English nuns, so my accent and vocabulary are different from most native Minnesotans. But I think it's still clear I'm from around here.

    I am very glad you have the fortitude to make these calls, get things done, and not wait too long.

  3. I'm so glad you're enjoying mobs of birds in the yard. :)

  4. I'm glad you've managed to deal with all the stuff quickly albeit with some drama. Nothing worse than being constantly reminded visually of your loss which your heart and mind are not about to forget in a hurry. Frustrating too how obtuse some people can be in other people's times of distress.

    You are certainly some woman Liz. Enjoy your birdie orchestra and the help and support of friends. You deserve it.

  5. Sorry that you had so much trouble but it is good that there is still people in the world who are kind.

    You deserve respect and kindness at this time and I am glad it has come from some quarters.

  6. Now back to read in full ... and sit with you awhile. I'm mostly nodding - having been through this series of events, emotions over the last year. ((( Liz )))


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