At home I began the task of nursing and mothering. I have a strong stomach and a natural ability to switch into auto-mode when necessary. However, no mental shutting down while caring for MacD could keep out the pain if felt seeing him try so bravely to not let me know how badly I hurt him during wound care. He became sullen and withdrawn. Bored and antsy. Depressed and hopeless.
We followed up the second day with his primary care who scarcely believed our story. She asked us to wait and went out to have the records faxed over from the hospital. She was stunned. We received our “official” diagnosis of diabetes and a medication plan. Less than a week later, the world crashed down around me again.
Physically, it appeared things were running along smoothly. Not progressing so much, as it was going to be a very slow process, but remaining the same. I worried about his emotional and mental well-being and closely monitored and cared for his wounds. We followed up with doctors every few days and kept him as free from pain as I could. One morning, at dressing change, I noticed a very slight increase in redness around one portion of the gaping wound. I peered closer and to my dismay discovered the redness spread over to the unaffected thigh/testicle. I called Dr. B’s office and left a message with the nurse. She said it was likely nothing more than irritation, but would let the doctor know when he got into the office after surgery later that afternoon. Unbeknownst to her (and me), Dr. B had flagged MacD’s chart and was to be paged immediately if I called, no matter what I said. He called back in 5 minutes, asked me to explain him what I saw. I really didn’t think it was bad at all, but I had become very overcautious. He agreed it was possibly nothing, but said he trusted my opinion and instincts. He insisted I bring MacD to the office immediately.
At the office, only a short while later, Dr. B examined MacD. The redness was brighter and swelling had begun. He felt it was a small infection and moved us into his office surgery suite. He thought he could drain it easily and avert any further problems. MacD was brave as I held his hand and prayed aloud with him. Dr. B lanced and drained. The nurse actually started crying (a lot of nurses cried, which should have made me feel even worse, but just intensified my resolve to be strong for him) and encouraged MacD to be brave. He completed the mini-surgery and we went home. MacD was in extreme pain and couldn’t get out of bed for days.
To be continued…