It's been a slow slog of a month for us. Rich's output is going down with the exception of days he gets on an airplane. The same thing that all that high altitude pressure does to your ears, it does to his fistula and literally pushes stuff out of him. But it's a known thing and one we can work around.
We need to make a follow up appointment with the surgeon in NC now that the fistula is on the ropes and hopefully about to get knocked out. Rich has been very tentatively experimenting with food. Mashed potatoes and cranberry sauce at Thanksgiving. Seaweed salad at the sushi restaurant. We've discovered that after five or more months of not eating real food, his gums have grown down and become even more sensitive than usual, so chewing is difficult. Just one more thing on the list to acclimate to. I'm hoping we get to the burrito stage very soon.
That lower wound that he had from the original surgery just won't give up. It's down to the eraser end of a pencil (originally it was about 2" across and 4" deep) but just won't close up that last little bit. So we just keep putting gauze over it and waiting.
The ostomy bags are working much better, thanks in part to significantly lower output. I can't remember the last time we've had a leak (knock on wood).
Rich has taken over a lot of his medical maintenance. He sorts his own TPN supplies. He mixes and delivers his own TPN now (thanks to extensions on his PICC lines). I'm just in charge of ostomy bags and lower wound dressings because he can't easily see them to do himself. He's also doing his own laundry again. Hallelujah! Now that Taj MaPorch is done (I owe everyone an update on that as well), we are both able to work in the office again with the exception of Wednesdays when he has the nurse come for labs.
After such a difficult November of barely perceivable progress and lots of anxiety, I'm going all in for Christmas this year. We are cash poor this year (see Taj MaPorch) but I'm trying to find all the things I like best about this holiday season right now to spread some cheer. We started the Christmas book Advent countdown last night and that was a rousing success. I'm a sucker and let Ian pick two books on the first night, but thankfully I still have enough to get us through Christmas Eve night. I encourage everyone to use those 20% off Barnes & Noble coupons as well as after Christmas sales to prep for next year if you haven't already.
So we're hanging in. Send us a card or festive letter to add to the holiday cheer around here.
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