A New Normal



Things are starting to settle down for us.

Thank God.

We’re establishing routines and Kevin is becoming more and more independent of me every day. In fact, the occupational therapist came by today and showed us how Kevin could get on the toilet by himself. Since he has one wrist in a splint and our bathrooms are so TINY, this is actually really good news.

Kevin can’t wait to implement her ideas. But first, we need to install a grab bar.

You wouldn’t think anyone would be so excited to go to the potty by themselves, but let me tell ya, you don’t appreciate that small task until you can’t do it anymore. He’s been using a bedside commode and he has hated it. He doesn’t have any privacy and it really bothers him that I have to clean up after him.

So when the occupational therapist asked him what the number one thing that bugged him the most was, he said, “not being able to use the toilet.”

Everything else is going really well. The occupational therapist (I swear, we look forward to her visits because she always gives us great tips and ideas on how to do things more efficiently) suggested that we take the outer part of his wheelchair (the part where the patient grabs on to wheel himself/herself around) off so we could fit him into tight spaces a bit better.

Worked like a dream.

She also worked with Kevin to get him to transfer to his bed by himself, too. He can get into his bed by himself, but will need my help getting back out, at least for a little while longer.

Kevin has an appointment with the orthopedist June 8th, we should find out then whether he can get rid of the wrist splint, the back brace (which he only has to wear when he’s over 30 degrees) and the knee brace. Once all of his little fractures heal, he will only get stronger and more independent.

I’ve been really busy. Between taking care of Kevin, (transferring him from bed to chair, from chair to bed/commode, giving him sponge baths, wheeling him around the house), making sure he takes his meds, (he’s on Coumadin, a blood thinner and something he MUST take at 6:00 p.m. every day), feeding him, taking care of the house, doing laundry, dropping off/picking up kids, taking care of myself AND trying to work, my time is really limited right now. I have to say, I’m becoming rather good at managing my time nowadays.

But honestly, I love it. I find myself focusing better when I have a lot of things to do at once. You could even say I’m a master at multi-tasking … but I wouldn’t go that far. It’s when I find that I have too much time on my hands is when I never get anything done.


I’ve been seriously thinking about going to nursing school.

I know.

But I could do it. I’ve learned SOOOOO much about taking care of people these past few weeks and I’ve also learned that I’m good at it, and actually enjoy it. Yes. I realize that it wouldn’t be the same taking care of strangers (after all, not everyone is such a great patient like my Kevin), but there would always be a demand for the job and though the pay is not the best, it’s not too bad.

And I would be helping people.

Anyway, I’m just now looking into the specifics and it’s something to think about for when Kevin gets back on his feet again. (I’d like to find a profession where I can work and Kevin could stay home and do … whatever he wanted to do. It’s time we flip-flopped our roles for a while, I think).


For those that don’t know, we had a cruise scheduled for the middle of July. And believe it or not, we’re still planning on going.

But wait … before you snicker, roll your eyes and say, “NO WAY!” let me just say that by the time July gets here, all of Kevin’s fractures should be healed. AND, his legs are getting stronger and stronger every day AND, the twelve weeks he was told to stay off his legs will have ended and though he won’t be walking, he will be able to put a little weight on his legs so that getting him places will become easier.

But since he’ll still be in his wheelchair in July, we’ll have to rethink the logistics of this trip a bit more.

We called Carnival Cruise lines yesterday, told them our situation and asked them if they could possibly switch our room to a wheelchair accessible room.

To our delight, they not only had one available, they were able to put the boys in the room next door!! So, it looks like the boat part of our trip is very doable. They told us that he would be able to easily wheel himself into the bathroom AND the shower and that the doorways are wide enough to easily accommodate his chair. Again, his wrist fracture will be healed by then, so getting him out of the chair and into bed/toilet/shower should be a cinch (at least when compared to the situation now).

I’d like to take a moment to sing Carnival Cruise’s praises – they were SUPER nice to us (and have always been – this will be our third cruise with them) and we can’t recommend them enough to anyone thinking about going on a cruise.

We simply love them.

Now that the boat portion of our trip has been taken care of … now we can turn our attention to the New York portion of our trip.

Since we are cashing in our frequent flyer miles, our options on which flights to take out to New York out of Springfield are limited. As in, we will have to fly out mid-week limited. But no worries. We’re catching the boat out of New York and we thought since we would be there a few days before the boat was scheduled to take off, we’d just hang out in New York and do a little sight seeing.

And we still want to do that, only now we’ll have to make sure everything we do is wheelchair accessible.

When we mentioned our plans to the occupational therapist, she smiled and said, “Great! New York is very wheelchair friendly.” Which is wonderful to hear, but I still need to do some research as far as making sure we can get him into a taxi to get from the airport to the hotel and we need to call our hotel to make sure our room is wheelchair accessible and if not, can we switch to a room that is? I didn’t see anything about wheelchair accessible rooms on their website, so I’m a little nervous about that, and it’s really not that big of a deal if we have to switch hotels, but I’d really like to keep this hotel because it’s right across the street from Central Park and if we do nothing else while we’re in New York, at least we could hang out at the park. You know?

And then there are the subways. They’re wheelchair accessible, right? Any readers from New York that could answer that question for me?

As far as the flight out there and back, all we have to do is notify American Airlines that we’ll need assistance on and off the plane and that shouldn’t be a problem, I wouldn’t think.

So, it looks like our trip is still on at this point. It’s going to be A LOT of work for me and the boys, but we can handle it. (I hope).


Boys are doing well. The last day of school is next Wednesday. We’re all so ready for summer to begin.

Though technically, Jazz will be going back for summer school June 7th. In fact, he will have P.E. from 11:30 to 2:30 and then go back at 5:00 and stay until 9:00 for Band class.

He’ll be pretty busy for a while.

Jazz and I went to a band meeting the other night where they revealed next year’s theme – it’s called “No Strings Attached” and it will have something to do with marionettes. (?!?!)

Doesn’t that sound like fun!! I can’t wait for marching band to start back up!

I have had to rely on the boys more and more these past few weeks. Actually, they were pretty much on their own while Kevin and I were in Columbia, shortly after his accident. They both seem a lot more grown up to me. I suppose some of that is because they’ve HAD to be, and partly because I need them to be, I guess.

I need to find someone to take Dude’s senior pictures this summer. I can’t believe he will be a senior next year. I keep telling him it will be HIS year – I pray that it is.

I thank God every day for our boys. We couldn’t have been blessed with better children.