Friday, September 18, 2015

We’re in Lynden, Washington



Today was moving day for Lorraine, she was moved from Shuksan in Bellingham to Christian Health Care Center in Lynden.  Basically, this move was because of insurance and therapy coverage, sure wish insurance companies would leave the doctoring to the doctors/therapists.

Last night was pretty emotional for Lorraine, she was doing lots of things for the last time at Shuksan ie, last dinner, last time with her nurse and aide.  Her favorite nurse and favorite aide were both working swing shift, both came by to let her know how sorry they were that she couldn’t stay there. 

When I got there this morning she was angry at me because she had been awake for hours and I got there at my normal time (6 am).  I think most of it had to do with the stress of her having to make this move today. 

We were scheduled to get transferred at 11:00 but they had their monthly pancake breakfast this morning so things were in a bit of turmoil and confusion.  But the breakfast was nice although Lorraine has been getting the early breakfast and was hungry way before they were ready.  They pancakes and eggs were cooked to order and had plenty of fixing to go with them. 

All morning long, people were stopping by to see Lorraine and wish her luck and hoping for a good recovery.  They all said she was a great patient and they hated to see her have to leave.  Sure wish they could have talked to the board or owner or whoever it was that made the decision to force her to leave.  

I think there were four residents leaving this morning so they were busy doing the paperwork for all of them.  There were three moving to different facilities and one moving to her daughter’s home.  But about 10:45 or so, the head nurse came in with the paperwork for Lorraine and we were able to get the 11:00 bus.  There were two ladies going so they dropped the first lady off at a place in Bellingham then headed we North on the Guide. 

I was following the van, had to get our car there with Lorraine’s stuff and if I rode with her, I would have had to just turn around and go back to get the car and I wanted/needed to be to get her through the first few hours in the new nursing home.  And as it turned out, I wouldn’t have left with the van, I needed to be there for sure. 

Lorraine said the ride was really rough, the wheelchairs are all the way in the back of the van and she felt every bump.  We pile pillows under her left arm to keep it in place and they had fallen out so her elbow was hitting the side arm and it hurt. 

Once we got here, there was the usual paperwork hassle, the gal said they didn’t send the right paperwork.  I told them it didn’t really matter, we weren’t leaving and Lorraine was tired and needed to lay down, NOW.  She tried to tell me they had to have the paperwork but I managed to convince her to change her priority to the patient vs the damn paperwork.  Not a good start at this place for sure. 

But once we got to the nurse’s station and they took over from the paper pushers, things started getting better in a hurry.  Her room was ready and waiting, they only had to find the proper lift to transfer her into bed, they use a completely different type here. The nurse said all the paperwork could wait until Lorraine was moved and comfortable.  Now we’re talking. 

The therapists showed up to check her out but decided to return later after she was more settled in.  The nurse and aide stayed with her for awhile to make sure she was doing ok. 

The therapists did come by later and did their initial assessment of Lorraine’s condition.  They were both pleased to see Lorraine had more muscle control than what the notes from Shuksan described.  The did range of motion and found where the movement caused pain, saw how much she could move her leg and arm and were really pleased to see how much muscle control she had over her left knee, very important in order to stand. 

In fact, they wanted to get her to stand before they were done.  Lorraine was able to sit on the side of the bed but still had trouble with falling over to her left.  I explained how they had worked it at the other place, they tried it and it worked again.  From a sitting position on the side of her bed, she was able to stand without a huge amount of help.  The therapist did have to brace her left leg so her knee didn’t fold but she was able to stand and hold her head up.  They had her sit back down then got her to stand again the second time. 

The physical therapist said she was pretty certain they would be able to get Lorraine standing and maybe even taking a few steps soon.  I must admit, I got a bit teary when she said that, luckily I was standing behind Lorraine at the time.  She is working so hard to get better, I haven’t (and don’t want anyone else to either) told her the therapist didn’t think she would ever walk again.  So it was really uplifting to hear a different opinion and this one was better. 

The therapist at Shuksan said one reason they thought it would be a good thing to move was to get a different set of eyes on Lorraine and she what they thought, really glad we did it.  It made the whole moving thing much better, for sure. 

I realize most people don’t know where these nursing homes are located so I will put the address and some directions here.  I think she will be here for quite awhile, months at least I’m guessing, so if you want to visit, here you go.

Christian Health Care Center

855 Aaron Drive

Lynden, WA 98264

Heading North on the Guide Meridian, go past Lynden and turn right on Badger Road (road to Sumas)

Go to the second roundabout and turn right on Bender road (at the mini-mart)

Less than a block later, turn left on Aaron (right after the mini-mart), it’s a small residential road

About 1 1/2 blocks, arrive at Christian Care Center on the left, just before the new senior care apartments.

Lorraine is in room 208B, bed next to the window.  She is, obviously, in a shared room so it may take some getting used to having someone else around but so far, the lady has not been in her room since we’ve been here over the last 5 hours or so. 

I’ll try to write a regular blog next time, really just wanted to let everyone know that Lorraine has moved and all is well, at least as well as can be at this time. 

Thanks  Chuck


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