Thursday, January 10, 2013

Round Robin: Good Riddance, 2012!

For the Round Robin Challenge: Goodbye 2012, I asked to see one or more photos that represent 2012 in some way. For me it's been a year of transitions, and mostly not in a good way. I am actually in a car going west at 68 mph right now, so let me just share one photo on my iPhone and fill in details later.

Here are my dad, myself and my brother on Friday, December 28th, 2012. It's been a difficult year for all of us.

In January, my brother Steve went into the hospital with congestive heart failure, severe edema and kidney trouble and nearly died. He was in two hospitals and a rehab center for the next several months, recovering his ability to walk and feed himself while navigating his way through the Social Security and health care systems and trying to get the doctors to coordinate his meds and not overdose him. He's much better now, but still walks with a walker.

As for me, I lost a friend, Jan Lockett, to MRSA and kidney failure in January. In March I finally got a second part-time job, but as a temp, with a long commute. I finally became an actual employee in November. I've lost over 90 pounds this year, but hurt my knee a couple of weeks ago, which puts the kibosh on my walking any decent distance for exercise until it heals. So it's definitely been a year of ups and downs!

My dad started the year slowly going downhill with aortic fibrillation and dementia. In May my stepmother Ruth was diagnosed with cancer; on June 1st she died. Since then my dad has deteriorated rapidly in cognition. After five months of round the clock caregivers at home he went into the hospital with a-fib and urological issues, got a UTI and MRSA and nearly died. He's about to be discharged from rehab, and will need to be moved to Tucson, never again returning to his home. I had a great place lined up for him, but the concern is that his level of health may preclude his going there. So it's back to square one in finding him a place to live.

This week what's left of the family - my two stepsisters, Steve and I - convened at Dad's house to divide his personal property so the leftovers can be disposed of and the house sold to help pay for his care. Steve was delayed over 24 hours by storms and US Airways shenanigans and missed Amy entirely, who had to return to Detroit. Dad had no clue who Steve was, and introduced himself. But we got the job done and the papers signed.

Now John and I are on our way home in my dad's 2005 Prius, which is now ours. My dog Pepper is currently in an animal hospital at home, recovering from tick fever, not eating much or popping at all, and possibly cancerous. And my boss wants to know when I'm going to get the work done that I promised to do while on the road. But there was no Internet access at Dad's house, so this is my first evening back online since Christmas. I'm sitting on a bed at a truly cruddy motel with a cracked microwave oven and a messed up heater, but at least I've got free Wi-Fi. I'd better get to work!

Normally I would post the Linking List here so you could visit the other Robins and see what they found photographically worthy for this Challenge, but it's already taken me forever and three different devices to get this far with this post. Please click the link at the top of this entry to see the original Round Robin Photo Challenges entry, and click on the links you will find there. Thanks! And I promise to be more cheerful in my next post - I hope!


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