Monday, January 4, 2010

Rehab Routines

I visit Skip each evening at the rehab hospital. Even on the weekends, I like to spend most of the day here at the house and then head over as it starts to get dark. During the week, I go over after the workday officially ends at 5pm. I typically stay for a few hours, primarily because I don't like to leave the pups in their crate for too long.

There isn't much to do in the rehab hospital. So, I've come up with some things I can do in Skip's room to keep busy.
  • Clean up. The aides and nurses have a tendency to leave junk on all available surfaces, including tables, the floor and the empty bed in the room. I organize all the junk, throw out the debris, and wipe up Skip's patient table and the guest table. With flowers, cards and gifts she's received, I've organized them, watered, thrown out as they've aged.
  • Prep water bottles. Skip needs to hydrate frequently with her Clinitron bed sucking a lot of moisture out of her body. Because she'd spill a glass of water, she uses big water bottles with sports caps. I rinse out and refill the ones she's emptied since my last visit.
  • Help with self-care. Skip loves to keep her nails short but can't sit up high enough to handle the trimming herself. So, I do that. So far, I've only clipped the skin once and it didn't draw blood, just the top layer. I also handle toenails. She gets dry skin and her elbows in particular are getting quite dry (the bed again?), so I apply a lot of cream when I'm there. (Her aides apply cream in the morning.)
  • Untangle cords. The phone, the TV controller/call button, the wound vac power cord, the wound vac hose from body to vacuum and the IV line are all cords that end up on or near Skip's bed. The IV line is kept away from all the other cords so no tangling there. However, every day when I come in it's mind-boggling to see how tangled the other lines have become. I like untangling them to ensure Skip the best access to her key lifeline: the call button. Since she can't walk, if she has a problem and can't manage to get the call button she's in trouble until someone stops by for some random reason.
Besides keeping me busy, it also helps us both feel better. Skip is getting some care from me, has her few square feet of space in better shape, and I get to be a help. Fortunately, though, I'm looking forward to only doing this for another 10 days, then we're gone!


Herrad said...

Hi Cranky,
Thinking of you both.
Hurrah for the 14 january keep warm and optimistic.
Big hugs to you both.

Diane J Standiford said...

Sounds pretty much like what my care giver does for me daily. These may sound like simple things to most people, but I can attest that they make a world of difference. I'm wishing for skim squid return home. Now that wasn't what I meant to say, this voice recognition technology has its faults.

Cranky said...

Herrad - thanks for your support, always wonderful to receive.

Diane - glad to hear that you appreciate these kinds of tasks as well. I love that skim squid ...