I’m keeping an ever growing list.
I could title it: Things we took for granted.
It’s really my prep list for going home, which is still in the air as to when.
Daily, it seems, I add something to this list.
People have generously sent amusing books and offered to bring books. What I find myself doing for hours is researching the neutropenic diet.
It’s a shame, all the cancer fighting things that will keep his body healthy, he cannot have. I’ve run to the market buying flash pasteurized smoothies, coconut water, whatever I can to help him along, only to find out he shouldn’t have them. No cancer fighting blue berries. No kale. No walnuts.
I pepper everyone who comes in our room with questions about this cheese or that juice. I continue to think he is pregnant, as he is not allowed to eat any soft cheese.
I bought a counter top dishwasher on line. I love doing our dishes by hand, but needs must. I’d feel much better about the dishes going through a wash without using a dirty old sponge. And this is one of those practical ways that I could enlist help. I knew my friend Robert would be able to help me sort out which was best, and so I asked him. That’s the beauty about community. You all have answers to our questions; we just need to ask them.
I think we may have to view John Travolta’s The Boy in the Plastic Bubble movie. If I could just wrap Dom in a protective bubble. Someone sneezed about 10 times outside our door, and I flew out of my seat and nearly escorted them out of the hall by use of force.
I’ve scouted out on line the medical supply stores in town. There’s a few items I’d like to have around. Like masks. Definitely masks. And to tell the truth, I’m quite jealous of his powder blue cinch waist pants. I’d really like to stash a pair on the way out. I’m not so jealous of the gown. While it does remind me of my Grampa’s pajamas, as much as I loved my Grampa, (dearly) I’m not in love with the nautical green stripes and blue medallions. The gown can stay.
I’ve pictured myself making a Costco run, and getting a huge pack of paper towels. I can imagine we’ll go through these. And, if you haven’t picked up on it already, we’re not big consumers; we generally use cloth rags and napkins. I once watched a friend I was staying with use an entire roll of paper towels in one day just going about day to day business. As she cooked dinner, I could hear the tear of the towels incessantly. An entire roll in a day. I nearly lost my mind. And in a matter of days, that will be me.
We have a paper towel dispenser in the room that I just wave my hand in front of and out pops the paper. I kind of wish I could install one of those at home. This one dispenser has provided me with plates, napkins, mops, hand towels and counter wipes. Well, not really, but that’s how handy paper towels are.
I’m also in love with the flimsy little water pitchers that they keep filled. There is a disposable insert for the pitcher that conservation Cass would hate, but germ-phobe Cass says yes please. It totally feels like something from the dollar store, and yet, the lid never falls off, the water never leaks, it just does its job. Why is this so exciting to me? Because I have a filter system pitcher that always, always leaks and the lid doesn’t stay put, and perhaps I’ll stash one of these hospital pitchers in my bag too. I’ve never been a thief. I’m sure it could be gifted to me via a wink and a nod.
I didn’t even think about it until I read yesterday that well water is a no no. Unless it’s tested every day for bacteria, which, of course, it isn’t. It’s off limits. We’re fortunate that there is a reverse osmosis filter in the barn, so just like the prairie girl that I am, I’ll be fetching water daily. To put in my snazzy little hospital contraband.
Some plastic baggies to wrap his arm for every shower. Sorry sea creatures. We have to keep his ports and bandage dry. And clean. Just not clean from a shower.
I see a lot of Tetra Pak in our future. A lot of individual packets and cartons. I see a world that is the antithesis of how Dom and I live! But, we know it’s a temporary world of beige food and overcooked veg. Even herbal tea must get approval. Our Yorkshire Gold is on the approved list. Phew. One thing that will be no shock to our lifestyle is no restaurants for 100 days after the bone marrow transplant. We rarely go out to eat, so this will not be a struggle for us. But seriously. 100 days. I just might slip out for a taco.