I wished to write this sooner for all of you who want to know if we’ve left Cleveland and if we’ve come home. There was so much to do today:
The snow clouds arrived in Cleveland today and hovered over the city. I parked on the “roof” of the parking ramp last night, and very early this morning I went out to get some “necessities” for the day.
Our departure from Cleveland was supposed to be last night, but at the last minute they decided to keep Hubbie overnight. I had just checked out of the hotel, and I know I could have checked right back in again, but Son and I were allowed to stay in Hubbie’s hospital room all night long, and neither of us wanted to leave him.
I think we were all uneasy about taking him home. Very, very uneasy.
You don’t need another snow cloud picture, but this one is for me. I like winter’s arrival.
Thick, heavy bands of clouds coming from the west and the north. They were quite impressive, standing in the strong wind on the rooftop in the early morning light. We are so small compared to the forces of nature.
Back in the hospital, the nurses were busy unhooking all those tubes and wires and machines and monitors. Robo-Hubbie no longer looks like Octopus Man…..it was almost humorous two weeks ago when they “tied him up” with all those things, but now we feel nervous without them.
How will they know if they have the right amount of medicine in him without the monitors? How will they deliver the medicines without the tubes? They are telling us it no longer matters.
And they arranged for an ambulance ride, all the way to Michigan. Here is our Son accompanying Hubbie’s bed and the ambulance team during Hubbie’s departure:
Our giant “Viking” of a Son, will ride in the ambulance, providing companionship and encouragement for his Dad…and advice for the ambulance team about the possible use and responses to medications on the long way home. Son is a pharmacist. They’ll listen to him.
I pack all the bags and take a last look at the Cleveland Clinic on this dark, rainy day; looking back from the elevators that bring me to the top of the ramp:
Outside the window is that curved heart specialty building we’ve all become so familiar with. That’s it. We’ll never have another appointment in that building again. This is our last departure from the Cleveland Clinic.
The ride home takes about four hours. I make a game of trying to catch up to the ambulance on the journey home. They all left before I did, and I had to make three stops along the way. One to fix a giant box in the back of The Big Red Car, which was blocking my rear vision. A happy thought: the box contained one brand-new baby car seat — to be used when Cooper comes back to Michigan.
Another stop at Hubbie’s favorite Cleveland gas station.
One more stop at a turnpike oasis to complete some business with the ambulance company that the hospice people had arranged for us.
I never did catch up with the ambulance. Son texted me from time to time, telling me where they were. Even with my freedom to go….well, any-miles-per-hour, I didn’t quite reach them. Until I got home.
This is NOT a scene you want to see when arriving at your own home:
Son’s girlfriend had let in the hospice people and they had prepared the “equipment” needed for Hubbie. She took in an unbelievable amount of instructions. She has told me some of them, but she’ll need to tell me them again….and again, I think.
They had left. And then the ambulance team placed Hubbie in the Bed-thing. (Hospital bed, but it’s….so….strange….) And they left. And the nurse came and did a lot of work and instructing us (probably) and he left.
Hubbie has fully arrived back at his own home.
And now our family room looks different.
It’s Hubbie’s favorite room. It’s not for his TV programs anymore, but he’s resting almost comfortably and he’s able to sleep…and breathe. I hope it will be where he can see his friends some day. Soon. But impossible now.
Soon, I hope.
For now, Hubbie has arrived home. We have him now. Happy Thanksgiving to us, for this and for so many, many things. We’re too weepy right now to list them all, but minute by minute there is something to be thankful for.