Ya Can’t Put A Good Woman Down!!
So as you all know in my last post I decided to come off of the trail because I was a wimp, cold and wet. What I ended up with was the discovery of an impaled stick in my arm which turned out to be a deeply infected tick bite and word that my mother had fallen and fractured her hip.
Let’s clean up the lesser problem first. With 25 years of land surveying, EMS rescue, the army and hiking under my belt I’ve had more than my fair share of tick encounters over the years. They have become friends. That…… and I’ve always clung to the thought that tick problems are mainly a New England problem. Well……. wrong! Besides I was hiking in the cold. What self respecting tick would be causing havoc at this time of the year?
My arms have been covered the entire time so I never noticed until I felt the pain in the shuttle. The site was mighty red and more so after Boston got done probing under the surface. The next morning I awoke and there red streaks running in every direction from the bite site. I got a shuttle ride to an urgent care facility in Stuart’s Draft, Virginia. Wow, they were great. In and out in no time. Those of us who have worked around emergency rooms have often expressed concern about folks who bring every little problem to clogged ER’s. This was a perfect solution.
A nurse practitioner took a look, said “It’s good that you came in”, and placed me on Doxycycline for 14 days. The site is now a really cool scab with a tad of redness.
I’m Not A Fan Of Hospital Pictures But I Wanted You To See A 95 Year Old Survivor
My son Tory’s response to this picture was that Gramma looks happy to be there. That may not have been totally true but I can tell you that her attitude, thankfulness for medical help and clear headedness went a long way for the medical team to decide to go ahead with surgery. A soon to be 96 year old on dialysis and hypertension sometimes gets the recommendation that surgery not be done. I didn’t have to ask in any way. All I had to do was consent. GREAT MEDICAL TEAM at Milford Regional Medical Center.
She Just Needed Coffee to Walk Again
Mixed good fortune played a part in a positive outcome. When she fell she fractured her proximal ( high ) femur rather than her hip. There was no damage to her hip or pelvis. That allowed them to place a rod in her leg. The next day….. actually the same day since surgery ended at 0020 am…..she was up and bearing weight. The next day she was transported to a rehab center. I was not allowed to see her on Saturday or Sunday but on Monday they began their first visitation program since the pandemic began. One person one time a day for one hour. That left me with 23 hours a day on my hands.
The Last Time I Bathed
Truthfully I had showered in Virginia once before I flew North but upon my arrival in New England at my brother Scott’s home I discovered that he had running water and I could shower whenever I wanted. After the trail this was quite eye opening and helped me fill some of the 23 hours a day of downtime. Basically I spent the time organizing my mother’s stuff which had been initiated by Scott and setting up autopay on all of her expenses. I got to see her three hours over three days…… well…… on the second day they forgot about me and I was there 2 and 1/2 hours. My downfall was the need to use the bathroom. Mom had a roommate who was taken out of the room for a moment for rehab. I made a move for the bathroom but was thwarted by the most confusing configuration of disabled toilet seating I’d ever seen. I had no confidence that my aim was skillful enough to successfully conduct business so I ventured out into the hallway in an attempt to make use of past military skills of deception to seek out the entry restroom.
Bam…….. caught! Within seconds the head guru was there informing me that my time was done. It was the door or the gallows. Luckily it was an automatic door so there was no chance of it striking me on the tail on the way out.
She’s Going To Be There For Awhile
Within three days I had completed everything that I could possibly do. Boredom set in although I thoroughly enjoyed my time with Scott, my niece Josie and Nephew Ben. My mom and I talked….. and decided…. it would be back on the trail for me. She couldn’t color her Appalachian Trail map with my progress if I was sitting in Massachusetts. So I’m riding Amtrak. Philadelphia at this moment. Arrival at 7:23 tonight in Charlottesville, Virginia. Shuttle to hostel and back on trail tomorrow morning.
And Here Is Why We Hike In The Forest
Random pictures of New York City from the train. It’s difficult to understand why there are so many slobs in the world. Their total disregard for saving the beauty of our country is astounding! I know that cities must exists and there is a huge segment of our population that thrive on city life but……. for goodness sake……I know….. there is no sense in harping on it…… litter is where it’s at.
For now I can dwell on the thought that my mother is well and where she needs to be. We have talked and discussed and weighed options and decided that for me the best thing is to railway past this litter and tomorrow, once again, hike on.
Love you Mom!!!!!