Monday, October 20, 2008

Busy Busy Busy

What I did today:

9:00 Go with Fran to management office of new apartment. While Fran's signing three-inch stack of papers that also have to be signed by Dad -- this is as bad as buying a house -- get phone call from hospital social worker, who needs to talk to me about payment arrangements. Become alarmed.

10:00 While Dad is signing three-inch stack of papers (as tech who's arrived to do echocardiogram waits patiently because I've told her the papers have to be signed now), talk to social worker, who informs me that Medicare will, thank God, cover hospitalization and pacemaker, but won't cover outpatient visits. This means we need to get Dad established at VA, which we already knew. Social worker gives me phone number for VA.

10:30 Take three-inch stack of papers back to management office and accompany Fran and office manager on apartment inspection. Fran likes apartment. Yay!

11:00 Drop Fran back home, since if I took her to hospital she'd have to stay there until I finish teaching at 7:00. (It will only occur to me later that she could have taken a cab home.) Pick up lunch Gary's made me. Go to hospital to eat lunch with Dad, who hasn't gotten lunch yet but seems bothered neither by my eating in front of him nor by prospect of tomorrow's procedure.

11:30 Interrogate nurses about tomorrow's procedure, which will evidently take place in a cath lab, not an operating room, and last about an hour. Ask nurses if I should cancel moving plans to be at the hospital. They say no.

12:00 Run into friend from church who's working as a nurse on this floor, but who doesn't have time to visit Dad. Maybe tomorrow.

12:15 Leave for work. Run into colleague and fill her in on events of weekend. Watch her eyes widen. "That's enough for a whole year!" she says.

12:30 Try to organize self for today's teaching. Teaching? What's that?

1:00 Produce credible imitation of teaching in fiction workshop.

2:15 Return to office after class. Answer e-mail from two medical students who want to talk to me about the summer Narrative Medicine elective. Invite them to office to discuss it. Also call U-Haul place and rent van for tomorrow morning. Also call VA and, after talking to two different people, manage to leave message for new patient scheduler to call me for a post-procedure appointment for Dad. (The good news is that they already have his new address on file.)

2:30 Do some paperwork from 1:00 class.

2:45 The two med students, who turn out to be a couple, arrive with adorable dog. Coo over adorable dog. Talk about narrative medicine. Coo over dog some more. Show med students various books they should read. Rub dog's belly. Discuss summer schedule. Scratch dog's ears. Talk to students about stress of medical school; tell them dogs are good anti-stress medicine.

3:15 Medical students and dog leave. Office and self now covered in dog hair. Finish paperwork from 1:00 class. Answer e-mail.

3:45 Realize self required at committee meeting in fifteen minutes. Dash down hall to buy bottled water, use restroom. Run into colleague in restroom. Fill her in on weekend. Get hug.

4:00 Covered in dog hair, attempt to look alert and professional in committee meeting. Quietly compete with across-the-table-colleague to see who can eat the most chocolate (bowl of chocolate goodies provided by committee chair, who knows that chocolate makes people look alert and professional).

5:00 Meeting adjourned, return to office to get ready for 5:30 class in another building. Use restroom again. Realize that right lower arm is covered with smeared chocolate. So much for professional. Attempt unsuccessfully to divest self of several pounds of dog hair.

5:30 Teach class.

7:00 Class adjourned, return home. Call Dad to wish him luck with procedure tomorrow. Eat yummy dinner with Gary and Fran.

8:00 Return call from church friend who called house today to find out how Dad was. Receive call from church friend who'll help with move tomorrow, wondering what time and where to meet us.

8:15 Wish Fran good night as she goes to bed. Go with Gary to PetSmart to buy catfood. Coo over adorable cats for adoption. Can't get covered in cat hair, as cats separated from self by glass windows.

8:30 Go to supermarket to pick up last-minute items for apartment: ground coffee, dish drain, bucket, can opener.

9:00 At home, pick out extra towels and sheets to lend to Dad and Fran while they wait for movers.

9:30 Blog about busy day.

10:30 Good night!


  1. Whew! I didn't hear you taking on any new projects in all of that so this will surely pass.

    So glad to hear that your Dad is getting the care, Fran likes the new apartment, and you've got a really good support network.

    May the rest of the week be smoother.


  2. Anonymous5:39 AM

    Hang in there, Susan! One step at a time it will all get done.

    Thinking of you and your folks,



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