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Reason 5,991,580 Why I Love My Husband

Like many areas around the US right now, Michigan is in the middle of a cold snap. It got down to nine degrees F last night, it’s a generous 13 degrees right now, and our high is predicted only to be 19 degrees.

Last night Dave and I were talking over our plans for today, New Years Eve. We’re making chicken rice burritos but I also needed to fit my shower into the schedule, and I was trying to plan it so that I would have my ‘ears’ on (it makes it easier when we’re cooking together if I can hear him).

“I really dread taking a shower tomorrow,” I sighed. “Normally I would just take it as soon as I wake up, but the bathroom is the coldest room in the house!” I knew with the extra-cold overnight temperature, and the fact that two of the bathroom walls are exterior, it would be even colder than usual. On top of that, the heat register in the bathroom is the furthest one from the furnace and the air that comes out of it is not nearly as warm as the registers in other parts of the house.

“Here’s what happens when I take a shower,” I went on. “I finish up by rinsing the conditioner out of my hair, then turn off the water. While I’m standing there, wet and cold, I put on leave-in conditioner and rake it through. Then I use some kind of curl cream and rake that through. Then I flip my head upside down to finish with some more curl cream, scrunch my hair and put it in a flour sack towel. So I’m standing there for about five minutes, wet and freezing my ass off, while I do all this stuff.” I made a face, shrugged, and said, “Oh well, it is what it is.”

This morning I woke up to a beautiful sunrise. I love looking out the window in our bedroom and seeing all the trees lit up from the sun. Dave was already up. Maxie jumped onto the bed with me and settled in against my hip. I petted her and pointed out the beautiful view, but I think she was more interested in the birds feeding outside on the deck.

Then Dave came into the room, wearing his coat. I waved at him and put on my glasses so I could read his lips. “You’re up and about already!” I marveled.

“Yes! I bought you a heater!”


“A little heater like we talked about.” I had jokingly mentioned that it would be great to have a fireplace in the bathroom; then Dave mentioned a small heater, which I had assumed would be too expensive.

You guys. He went out early this morning and bought a little ceramic heater for the bathroom, for less than $20! It works perfectly. He had set it up to test it out, so when I got up he took me into the bathroom for a demonstration. Not only was the room warm, it made the rest of the house feel cold when I walked back out.

We won’t use it all the time, of course – just for showers, mainly. But my gosh, what a massive difference it makes.

Even better, the car started right up this morning. She’s been fine lately but the mornings haven’t been that cold … so now we know she’s fixed. My clever husband did what three car mechanics couldn’t manage to do.

Of course, I’d love him even if he couldn’t fix cars – that’s just one of the many perks of being married to him. But his thoughtful, kind nature – that’s reason #5,991,580 why I love him.

On my 50th birthday - Aug. 28, 2014

On my 50th birthday – Aug. 28, 2014

Happy New Year! See you in 2015!


A Question of Time

On Monday we went up to Hines VA hospital so Dave could have an upper endoscopy.  This was unrelated to his Hepatitis C diagnosis; he’s been going for fairly regular visits over the past year or so to figure out what is causing this chronic cough he’s had.  He doesn’t smoke, and nothing in particular seems to provoke it (exercise, etc.)  He’s had lung function tests, CAT scans and been put on medication for GERD, he’s been seen by pulmonologists and ENTs, and now he’s being seen by gastro specialists.

Since he had a bone marrow transplant back in 1993, he also gets graft-versus-host (GVH) flare-ups and these can manifest in all sorts of weird ways, affecting different parts of his body.  So we also thought the cough might be a GVH byproduct.

Dave loves to diagnose via Google, so he ran across this procedure called a fundoplication that he thinks will eliminate the GERD and the cough.  When he had his first visit with the Gastroenterologist, he brought up the possibility of getting this procedure and the doctor agreed that he’s most likely a candidate.  However, he had to get the endoscopy first.

He was given twilight sleep and it knocked him out completely so he doesn’t remember the procedure at all.  (He’s had twilight sleep before and still remained alert, so he wasn’t sure if he would be awake for this or not…I’m glad he wasn’t!)  I guess they took some biopsies so we are waiting to hear the results.  (This makes me very nervous because I always associate the word biopsy with cancer.)  It could be quite a while…they said it takes about a week to get the results, but he won’t actually find out what they are until they schedule another appointment with the Gastroenterologist. The way the VA works, they call you and tell you when your appointment is…you don’t call to schedule one yourself.  It can take weeks before they call to set up appointments…the endoscopy took about 3 weeks, and we are still waiting for a call to schedule the liver biopsy.

When Dave’s first blood test came back wonky (with low platelets) in early November, they scheduled him for an ultrasound a few days later.   We never found out the results of the ultrasound until Dec. 2, when he had another blood test and visit with the hematologist.  On that day, they took 15 tubes of blood because the ultrasound had shown his liver was enlarged.  He finally saw the hepatologist to go over the results of the blood work (which showed Hepatitis C) on Jan. 3.  So it seems to take about a month to find out the actual results of a test…and that drives me crazy, since I like to find out what’s going on right away.  This is really teaching me the fine art of patience!

So that’s where we are right now…waiting for the results of the endoscopy, waiting for another appointment with gastro, and waiting for them to call to schedule the liver biopsy. Sigh


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