Friday, October 24, 2008

Day 4 – Recovery Begins

I asked Elena if it would be OK to candidly post my thoughts on the role of a caregiver, and she gave me permission to say that the first two days were kind of like taking care of a puppy. Every hour she wasn’t asleep involved walk, water, potty, medicate, feed, and fluff the bed. The aides at the hospital made helping her out of bed look so easy. Since I was unable to pick her up and carry her, it took several tries for us to work out a system that was comfortable. I wrote out a medication regimen and provided regular snacks and meals to avoid stomach upset. Elena helped by never losing her hearty appetite.

Not to overstate my role in this process, here is where I advise medical tourists that traveling with a caregiver is ideal, if not necessary. Particularly in light of the extensive surgery Elena underwent, she would have had a tough time the first few days had she been alone. Preparing meals, getting in and out of bed, showering, and figuring out the medication schedule would have been an extreme challenge without assistance. Even with a close friend, Elena’s dignity suffered a bit of assault when I had to help her with basic needs.

No comments: