Last night, I heard a noise from the front porch and I got up and went into the living room, that's when I saw that Bob's hospital bed was empty.
Quickly, I looked around and then I saw him. At the front door. Standing there with his back to me. I couldn't believe my eyes, I mean, oh my god, he was standing up! On his own! This is nothing short of a miracle.
Breathlessly, I ran toward him and that's when----I woke up.*
I woke up to shrill beep-beep-beep of the feeding pump alarm. I shot out of bed, because that alarm can mean only one thing in the middle of the night: Bob's tube is clogged. But the alarm was just signaling that the feed bag was empty. So I shut it off and, confused and jangled, I crawled back into bed to gather my wits. And then I noticed the time. Crap. It was already 7:30 a.m.
Bob started calling to me from his bed. His pad was wet and he wanted it changed. So I dragged myself up again and changed his pad, then dumped his night urinal and finally trudged myself into the bathroom. The cats trailed after me like two homeless panhandlers. One by one, they leapt into the clawfoot bathtub and sat there, side by side, staring at me with bright blue eyes. Which could only mean one thing. Their food bowls were empty. And Boomer was right behind them, with that whistling whine in his nose, because, you know Mom, we are late for our morning walk. Then I heard the garbage truck rumbling down the street and oh shit, I forgot to take the garbage out last night and when your spouse wears Depends, this is an important thing to do because one doesn't want that garbage sitting around too long. So I flew out of the bathroom, out the house and into the yard and grabbed the garbage and pulled it to the curb, just in the nick of time, and still wearing my pajamas went back inside.
Where Bob was calling for me because he wanted the other urinal. He has two urinals, the one for night is the spillproof urinal, which holds up to a liter of urine so that he doesn't have to wake me to empty it. And I tell him that I still have to walk the dog and I'll give him the other urinal when I return. And I go back into the bathroom to dress, then feed the cats and Boomer is stuck to me like velcro, because, you know, he really really has to go outside, but I still have to disconnect the feeding pump and flush Bob's tube with water and Bob is still fussing about the urinal and I finally grab the damn daytime urinal and toss it to him as I head for the leash. The urinal hits Bob on the leg and he screams. I mean, he really screams bloody murder, as if I had shot him instead of tossed a plastic urinal. I tell him not to be ridiculous, it's only a plastic urinal and I didn't mean to hurt him, and it couldn't hurt that bad but he starts crying and the dog is still whining and goodness, I just have to get out of the house.
Thus begins another day....
As I was walking the dog, I thought about that dream. Bob standing at the door. And I realize, you know, I can't remember the last time I've had a dream. It seems as if that was the first dream I've had in about a year. It's as if I don't dream anymore. Or maybe I just don't remember my dreams. Which is weird.
But, anyway, there are two good things to report from the Pink House today and one of them is that I have been getting some sleep. I think an entire seven days have passed where Bob has not woke me up in the middle of the night to change his bed. And I am quite grateful for that.
And yesterday, another new record. Thirteen times walking the rail. It looks like Bob's on a roll!
*Yeah, I know, this is a really lame junior high school literary device, but heck, this isn't fiction.