Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Planning Priorities

Richard’s fond of the phrase “infinite regression of steps.” Before leaving for Atlanta, I had washed all the towels and bed linens used by our guests. While I was gone, Richard had folded all the towels, but couldn’t stuff them into the linen closet with all the extra Christmas crud already in there. I came home to a table full of towels which I couldn’t put away until I cleaned out the linen closet. So began the regression of steps.

I couldn’t clean out the linen closet without finding the storage bin that the Christmas linens go into. I couldn’t find the storage bin until I drove over to the storage shed in which we keep the seasonal decorations, the bin being too bulky to lug across the yard. I couldn’t drive over to the shed without bundling up for the cold. On my first day back from Atlanta, I stayed in my pajamas all day, so I never got to the shed. Who knew that by the end of that day, we’d be in the hospital? And who knew that the next day the roads would ice, making it impossible for me to drive home?

I hadn’t thought to grab a change of clothes or my toiletry bag before racing out the door with Richard. On a previous ER adventure in Louisiana, Terry Sue showed up with body spray and clean underwear for me. Maybe I should have a couple of changes of clothes always in my van, just in case.

I didn’t have Terry Sue on this trip, and all of our local friends were iced in, so I went to Wal-Mart to purchase some necessary items. While there I bought Christmas -colored storage bins on deep discount. At least, this will cut out a couple of steps in the process of storing the holiday décor -- the bundling up and the drive to the storage shed.

Richard slept much of the day. I began de-Christmasing the house when I should have been paying our bills. I’m behind on bill paying and other bookkeeping, so I’ll just have to make myself focus on prioritizing. One, pay the bills. Two, catch up on paperwork. The holiday decorations are beginning to depress me, but leaving them up a bit longer won’t result in our power being turned off – unlike continuing to put off bill paying. I could have used all the down time in the hospital to pay the bills, since we pay them online. But I was afraid to use the hospital and hotel wi-fi connections for transmitting our financial information.

We do know that we have wonderful neighbors. Terry and Denny risked their lives skidding down our road to feed our pets. Shirley and Monty took over from Terry when the weather got even worse. Adam, Josie, Charlie, and Deborah all offered to slide down to where we were to visit and transport us. Mary and Don offered to bring soup. And Sue, an ICU nurse I met only once, through Jack, has been advising me online on handling our doctor issues. It is a wonderful life as long as we have our friends.

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