What is a monkeybox?

When I was a little girl, we had a pet monkey named Amanda. My Dad worked in the produce business, so each night he brought home that days culls in a big box - spotty cucumbers, pithy apples, limp celery, moldy oranges and the like. We called it a monkeybox. It was really just trash, but my Mom would take each piece of fruit and trim it, pare it and cut it up to make a beautiful fruit platter for Amanda. Even though it was deemed trash by one, it still had life left in it and was good for the purpose we needed it. That's how I live my life - thrifting, yard saling, looking for another's trash to be my treasure.

Monday, February 05, 2018

More Than You Want To Know

Every time I come here, I apologize for not blogging in so long.  And every time it seems I go longer and longer without blogging.  Funny thing is, this year my New Year's resolution was to BLOG MORE. Can you say, Failure?  

So, the day before I was going to do the Cabin Reliever at the local museum - (a reminder since it's been so long - I was invited to showcase some of my collections along with other collectors on a Saturday afternoon - an event intended to get collectors out of the house and people out to see our collections) - my Mom had a doctor's appointment.  Her therapist thought she could benefit from oxygen therapy, so she needed to go to the doctor to have that approved.  When they checked her oxygen level, it was pretty low.  They said she needed to go to the hospital.  After a little discussion about the flu and the crowded ER, they decided to call an ambulance so she could bypass all that waiting room nastiness.  Her O2 level was plenty low, so it was completely acceptable to get the ambulance.  She just didn't want it.  

Once she was at the hospital and oxygen, her levels went up, but her legs were swollen and she had fluid in her heart and lungs.  In the end, she was admitted and I stayed with her for six days and nights.  I think I had no more than three hours sleep each night.  I did get five one night  - but only one the night before.  I swear, hospitals will kill you.  I had to leave the room a lot and be out in the public areas and I was terrified of the flu.  By the last two days, I just stayed in the room, used her bathroom and stayed away from all the germs.  She was diagnosed as having Congestive Heart Failure, which sounds fatal and horrible - but it really is just something to be watched because that is what caused the fluid in her legs.  Her actual heart is great with no blockage.

She got released at 8:30 on a Friday night - left to drive the hour and a half home to have an Oxygen delivery at after midnight.  I got home at 1:15 am.  After her discharge papers were signed, the nurse said she would call for a wheelchair to help us out.  Tick. Tick. Tick. Forty five minutes later we were still waiting.  Now, I know things take time at the hospital, so I didn't cause a fuss.  But, it was getting late and I wanted to get out of there.  She was sitting on her bedside commode (there was no chair), fully dressed with her big coat on (it was 4 degrees that night) waiting for the wheelchair to take her down.  I was standing in the doorway looking down the hall for the wheelchair to arrive when I overhead a nurse on the phone say, "Yes, we have a room open, but the prior patient won't leave the room."  I thought that was funny because who would stay there after they had been discharged?  A few minutes later, a nurse arrived in the room ( I assumed to apologize for it taking SO long to get the wheelchair) and to my SURPRISE, she said she was the hospital/patient liaison for the floor and we needed to exit the room and the hospital immediately since she had been discharged.  

This is where it gets a little fuzzy, but I know I dropped a lot of f bombs.  

"Why the F would we want to stay in this F'ing place after we have already been discharged???? We are F'ing waiting for an F'ing wheelchair!!!!!!!!"

The wheelchair arrived in no less than five seconds by one of our sweet little girl aides.  She apologized all the way down the hall and in the elevator - there had been a shift change and the nurse that discharged us forgot to call for a wheelchair and the new shift didn't know what was going on.  It really was a nightmare.  We got to her house about midnight and I had to sort out her old meds and get her new meds lined out.  I was so tired, I was sobbing, "I'm going to kill her!" I was terrified of mixing up her meds.  But the nurse came out the next day and said I had done it all perfectly.  Thank GOD.

(So, the point of that story is to say I wasn't able to do the Cabin Reliever.  Maybe next year.  Fingers crossed.)

But wait, there's more....

While she was in the hospital, they prescribed her massive amounts of diuretics.  She lost 14 pounds in fluids in those six days.  She was still on the diuretics at home and lost even more fluid.  Her therapist was working with her last Thursday and her left arm fell off her lap and she couldn't use it for awhile.  She tried to grip and nothing would grip.  Her therapist was concerned she was about to have a stroke, so another ambulance came to take her to the hospital.  After lots of MRI's and CT scans, they discovered that it was not a stroke, but that the diuretics had depleted her kidneys and she was having a loss of muscle use and muscle spasms.  So what fixed her in the fist place, made her end up back in the hospital again.  We were only there one night this time while they ironed out her medications.  I never left the room except for one fast trip to the Vending Machine room where I spent $13 on Cheetos and M&M's.  A gal's gotta eat.  :D

I will say that even though she was in the hospital, they determined that she has a healthy heart with no blockage, good lungs, her kidneys are good again, her brain is good, her Carotid Artery is clear and on and on.  So that is all really good news.  

I'm sure that is way more medical history on my Mom than you were ever wanting to read, so I apologize.  But, it's always good for me to document these things for the future.

I've been thinking ahead to the Junk Ranch.  It makes me super nervous to commit to anything anymore with impromptu hospital stays and doctor appointments.  Plus, my Dad just turned 80, but KNOCK WOOD, he is fit as a fiddle.  

I'll be back sooner than later I SWEAR and I will share junk and stuff, I SWEAR!  


  1. Absolutely document everything. OMGoodness, what a tough time for both of you. Hugs.

    1. It's getting better - thanks!

  2. It is so hard when our aging parents need us! I've been taking care of my Mom (she has congestive heart failure also) for several years now. It is hard to commit to something but I try to keep my life going also. Of course this past 6 mos I've been the one with medical issues. Ha! Take care of you! Hugs!

    1. I've been thinking of you trying to take care of your Mom plus taking care of yourself then you help take care of your grands! You make me tired!!!! And, I'm already tired!

  3. I feel like I could have written this. It's so hard to be caretakers for our parents. My mom needs more and more help all the time. I'm so glad your mom is doing better and I hope you find lots of great junk soon!

    1. It is hard to see them changing. Luckily, she's still herself and funny. She was watching the new PINK video on my Ipad when her doctor came in to talk to her. He laughed at that!

  4. Good grief Boo! Don't worry about the blog - we'll be here. But thanks for checking in. Holy cow - what a time for you and your mom! Glad she is doing much better. I appreciate the work nursing staff do - don't get me wrong. But I'm glad you set the record straight. It feels so good to let out the f bomb, eh?

    I guess we're in that sammich generation. I save some of my vacation days for taking my mom to her doctor appointments. She is terrified of riding in the car if she is not driving. Trust issues with my driving I guess! She will scream bloody murder if I take the interstate. So it's slow going. And we have to go after most people get to work so the traffic isn't as crazy. And we have to get home before traffic starts up again. It's just easier for me to take a vacation day and not stress out about rushing and going back to work. So after her appointment we have a nice lunch and I usually take her to the grocery store or to her favorite garden store. She has a hard time walking and I'm afraid for her to drive anywhere now. She's going on 80 something. (She never let us kids know the exact year she was born - she was determined to stay young as long as she could. And she does look great - I remember her religiously using Oil of Olay when it was pink and in the little glass jar.)

    Junking news - I hope I don't jinx myself but I'm going to take delivery (sight unseen, because I don't want someone to buy it out from under me, except for two pictures) of a 25 drawer map filing cabinet on Sunday! I've always been fascinated with anything that had drawers, cubbies, slots, etc. So I have a ton of printer trays, paper sorters, index filing cabinets, etc. But the map filing cabinets have always eluded me because they cost so much. This one is only $125 and delivery is very reasonable. I'm putting it in my booth with an outrageous price so it won't sell, until I figure out where I really want to put it. Oh - and wood card catalogs - I want one of those badly too! Wish me luck the deal goes through!

    Take care until next time. Again, I'm glad your mom is doing better!

    1. I'm glad you are taking care of your Mom too. Mine doesn't get out to a lot of stores since she had her accident five years ago, but we really need to start! You buy that map drawer and you send me pictures of it! I'd love to find something great like that or an old library catalog would really be fantastic! Send me a picture of your Oil of olay Mom too. LOL!

  5. Being a good daughter is better than anything else. You will never regret it. My mom had congestive heart failure for years and years and it is all about her taking her meds and you taking care of yourself because you need to be strong for her.

    1. I agree 0 it is important to be a good daughter. My Mom and I have always been best friends. I'd do anything for her. CHF sounds SO serious. Heart and failure just don't go together- but they explained it and it's manageable. Thanks for letting me know!

  6. You get the good daughter award for your efforts. The wheelchair? That is ridiculous!
    Hang in there Shara and get well hugs to your Mom!


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