Four O'clock Monday morning awake worrying about
kids the phone rang. The number looked like that of
Grandson Canaan so I picked up.
"This is Julie from
Mayo Clinic, is this the home of Marylyn Bradley?"
I answered in the affirmative. "May I
please speak to her?" I took the phone to
Marylyn. "A perfect match kidney is
available. Can you be here within two
We arrived, I gave Marylyn
a betadine scrubbing, she put on a gown and was
wheeled into surgery prep. Surgery was from 11:30am
to 02:30pm after which Dr. Mulligan walked over to
say "The operation went well, the new kidney
was actually working as we closed up and Mrs.
Bradley is now in recovery."
About 6pm Marylyn was
transported to the ICU where she was hooked up to
multi-wires and hoses that fed into alarm equipped
monitors showing squiggly lines and ominous numbers
like those seen on television. I spent the night
next to her while a cheerful and obviously
competent nurse checked in and out every few
minutes all night long.
Tuesday afternoon a
Physical Therapist helped Marylyn sit and standup
and he and her nurse walked her four times around
the unit which was interesting to watch given the
many ways she was tethered to an electronic
A little later most wires
and tubes were disconnected. Marylyn was
transported down the hall to a new room also fully
equipped with a cheerful competent nurse like those
I have grown to admire. Another all-nighter but
this time we actually got a little
Wednesday we woke up to
learn health care reform was dead having been
killed by a rich selfish Massachusetts man who had
his and doesn't want to share. Drove home to get
the house ready for Marylyn's return where I was
assaulted by a John McCain funded robo-call to hear
a selfish Massachusetts pig squealing how he was
going to kill health care reform. Ever scream in
anger at a recorded message?
Wednesday afternoon I
walked Marylyn on a leash, lots of patient
education followed by too much real food for
dinner. Almost free we both got some
Home Thursday afternoon in
time to realize we forgot to stop at the Mayo
Pharmacy to pickup "fast-acting insulin."
Scrambling we got it here just in time for evening
Treatments nurses make
look easy are actually very complicated and we
totally blew our Friday morning mandatory routine.
For the first time I realized it was going to take
both of us, working as a team, for Marylyn to get
well. I contacted the Estrella Human Resources
Manager to apply for Intermittent Family Medical
Leave and we returned to Mayo Clinic to meet the
Transplant Manager responsible for Marylyn's
Saturday we actually got
the morning routine right plus my nurse sister
Carolyn, and her super competent husband, are on
the way to help.
Said Marylyn to our
there's a chance I'll get to attend Lydia's high