Welcome to Anne's blog!

If you are new to the blog, you probably want to start at the beginning of the whole sad story. To get there, use the "Blog Archive" tool in the right column of the blog and click on "2009," and then "January 25." From there you can continue to click on each week to see the weekly entries.

I would love to hear from you! If you would like to leave a message, you can reach me at aheetderks@wcsmiami.org!

Wednesday and Thursday, February 11 & 12, 2009

OK—here’s my update.

I continue to have intense body aches, a mild fever, dizzy/fainting spells, and an overall feeling of being a wet dishrag (+pain).  One moment, I can look at food and think it looks pretty good, and the next moment the near mention of food can make me want to lose my lunch.  I have hardly even thought about my ankle for the last few days (and thank goodness—it has been doing very well!).

In an effort to figure out what is going on, Dr. Jacobsen (the infectious disease doctor) is running a lot of tests on my blood. 

On Wednesday, they just went ahead and assumed that the PIC line was infected (the actual results will come back late Friday) and removed it.  I now have a temporary IV line in my lower arm that needs to be changed every other day.  They put me on yet another antibiotic (Cubicin) to kill off the bacteria in my blood from the PIC line.  If it turns out that the PIC line was not infected, they will take me off of the Cubicin.

Some blood results came back today (Thursday) and showed that my white blood cell count is very low.  On the up side, my other levels are a little low but in the normal range.  They now think that the Zosyn (the antibiotic that I have been on since the first day of my fall) is the cause of the low white blood cell count, and the chills and fever.  Therefore, I go back to Dr. Jacobsen’s office tomorrow to get a new IV line, take more blood cultures, and get a whole new supply of antibiotics that will fight the type of infection that was in my foot (but hopefully NOT have the fatigue/fever side effects).

It was nice to have a day today where I did not have to go anywhere.  My Mom just keeps filling me up with food and Gatorade, and my Dad has been working on making my wheelchair “external fixator accessible.”  He also went to DMV and got me a handicapped parking sticker good until 2012!  I am thinking that when I finally get better, EVERYONE is going to want to take me along to ball games, Publix, and wherever else the parking is impossible!

The Blanco family surprised us with two frozen deep-dish pizzas—delivered straight from Chicago!!  The pizza was wonderful and the dry ice in the box provided lots of entertainment for Doug and the girls.  Our house continues to be filled with wonderful food that is keeping me going.  Thanks to so many of you who have been helping us out! 

Elise and Annika came home on a Valentine’s Day high—their arms filled with notes, flowers, candy, and love.  Just when I thought everything was great, Annika expressed sad disappointment that I wasn’t there today for her V-day party where she read an essay that she written about when Doug and I met.  What to do.

I want to leave you with one last thought:  You know how people always say that being a parent is thankless job??  Well, I found one even worse—being a caretaker.  My Mom, Dad, Doug, Sharon, and the girls were never really asked if they would be willing to drop everything to take care of me, but they did it because they had to.  And guess what . . . on average, the patient (that would be me) is quietly letting the caregiver know that they are doing a lousy job.  No kidding.  I try not to be ornery or needy or “short,” but between being extremely emotionally fragile, feeling totally lousy, and being unable to do a single thing for myself—I end up taking out my frustrations on the one person who is keeping me alive—my caretaker!!!  When I was in the bathroom at Dr. Jacobsen’s office, I was annoyed that my Mom kept knocking on the door to see if I was OK.  But guess what—I would have been annoyed if I had keeled over on the floor and she failed to check on me!  Doug is killing himself to find food that doesn’t make me crazy, and instead of saying thank you, I get all annoyed that he is putting food in my face that is making me feel sick.  It absolutely goes against all logic or “survival of the fittest” thinking that one would bite the hand that is feeding me.

So . . . Mom, Doug, Dad, Sharon, Annika, and Elise—

I am in awe of the fact that you have served, served, and served—without expecting anything in return.  I am so deeply sorry for the times that I let my neediness overwhelm me and I treat you with an attitude anything less than “extremely grateful.”  In the end, I will be healed, and it will be because God gave you to me as His angels to set your own wants and needs aside and simply serve a very flawed and annoying patient.  I love you so much, Anne/Mom

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