Tuesday, February 21, 2012

February 20th - Visiting Charlene

Bill's job for today got postponed at the last minute, so he did the grocery shopping that had been on my to-do list.  That meant I only had to put the things away.  Of course, he bought three times the number of things that were on the list, but.......  It did give me a morning at home to do my other things.

In the afternoon, I went to visit my friend Charlene, who has been quite ill recently.  She spent about nine days in the hospital in January when she was admitted after seeing the doctor about her heart.  She was retaining water to the point of being life threatening and every oral diuretic that they had given her had caused difficult side effects.  They kept her on an IV diuretic and pulled off an enormous amount of water.  Her heart is enlarged and there are some other problems that will be dealt with by further testing and treatment over the next few months.

She did not tell anyone, nor would she let her husband tell anyone, that she was in the hospital.  She says she didn't want any visitors at the hospital.  The truth is that she is very wary of being around people much at all.  Over the last several years, she has been hospitalized with bronchitis and other lung problems and she avoids any place where she might pick up any kind of sickness.  It really frightens her, to be truthful.

Likewise, she doesn't like a lot of people to visit her at home, because she doesn't want germs brought in.  She had contacted her visiting teacher when she got out of the hospital and let her visit (just one of them - the other has small children and she didn't want to get exposed to anything.)  Other than that, I don't think she has let anyone in.

She and I have always gotten on well.  We are close to the same age.  She had been my visiting teacher for a long time.  Plus, we just seemed to get on well.  So, I talked to her husband at church and asked if he thought she would let me come visit.  He thought she would.  He said, "She really likes you," which was a nice thing to say.  I called her that week and we talked for a long time.  When I asked if I could come by and visit she was very agreeable and we set a time.

We had a really nice visit today.  I was there for an hour and a half and we never stopped talking.  She is a big talker and I can hold my own, so we had no trouble filling the time.  I enjoyed it a lot.  She is doing much better - she has dropped more of the water; her blood pressure is back under control; she has been on oxygen but has just about cut that out, at least when she is seated; she is able to be up and around with no trouble; she is not sleeping during the day and has more energy than she has had in a while.

It was a good visit.

We ended the day by going to Empty Nesters FHE, which was fun.  There were 9 people there, the hostess was alone as her husband was working out of town, but we all told our stories of how we met (in honor of Valentine's day.).  It was a lot of fun to learn new things about some people we have known for a long time.

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