Saturday, October 25, 2014

Saturday Musings

I was about to title this "Saturday Sabbath," but I don't think I have ever done a true sabbatical.  It would be interesting to do one, since I find it very difficult to do hardly anything all day.  On the weekends, I usually clean the apartment, do laundry, clean dishes, go work out, and maybe cook depending on what Alex's food plans are.  Today has been close to a Sabbath, since the apartment is basically clean and I refuse to go work out right now.  I feel the need to rest.  So, writing on my blog and listening to film scores by John Williams seems to be enough to keep me sitting still.

I don't have anything particularly deep or inspirational to say today, so I will talk a little more about my job and house-hunting.  YES.  HOUSE-HUNTING!  :)

This past week was a particularly hard week at my job.  We had many discharges and just as many admissions--scared, anxious people who have been told that they need to go to The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center for the latest in treatment to have the best fighting chance.  There are many good outcomes, but I am sad about what is done to have to get there.  These are strong people.  Just to give you an idea, I'll explain the basic process.

Most of the people who are admitted to my floor are newly diagnosed with some type of leukemia.  Once admitted, they undergo emergency treatment, diagnostic testing, and insertion of a central line.  The physicians have some results in one to two days time, and in a few more days, they have specific genetic markers for the type of leukemia that the person has.  Specialized treatment is selected per the genetic markers.  Treatment (usually chemotherapy) is started as soon as possible.

So, usually within the first week of admission, this person has learned that they have leukemia; they have finished their first cycle of chemotherapy; and that they must stay on our floor for a month in protective isolation.  YES.  THEY ARE ISOLATED FOR 28 DAYS.  No physical contact with family members, friends, or any familiar surroundings.  The only people that come in the room are care providers, dressed from head to toe in gear meant to protect them from any microbes that care providers might be carrying on their scrubs.

These are strong people.

Can you imagine staying in one room for 28 days without any physical contact?  Even the care providers try not to have as much physical contact with the person as possible.  I have found that those with some type of faith do much better.  I often walk in on someone who is praying with their loved one on the other side of the glass with their hands connected, the window in between.  There are special anterooms that the family members use to come visit, and they can talk through the intercom on the phone.  I have also been told several time by people that they aren't alone and that God is with them.  I guess you would get much closer to God if you were separated by everyone else in your life.

So.  House!  Alex and I are going to buy a house!  This is a picture of it:

It has an open floor plan, and I was standing from the kitchen.  I guess I can post some more pics later when it becomes official.  There are three bedrooms, two bathrooms, a large living room, a dining area, a kitchen, a laundry room, an attic, a detached garage, a nice-size backyard, a side yard, a front yard, and nice big trees.  Right now, we are working out foundation issues (which is quite common in Houston because the ground is so dry).  We have to water our foundation to keep it from cracking.  That's right.  We water our house.

HOUSE!  I'm so excited.  :)

What every care provider looks like to our patients.  Some can tell us apart by our eyes.  Wouldn't you be scared?  

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