Thursday, March 19, 2015

Hack Attacks

Pardon this post about a very un-pretty topic.  Apparently, Rudy's chemo produces excess phlegm.  That is a serious understatement.  It's annoying throughout the day, but there are certain times when it's really REALLY bad.  When Rudy first gets up, he hacks for ages.  Riding seems to bring on hacking, too.  The ride over to CTCA and back seems to jostle his lungs pretty good and he hacks like crazy for ages after we get home.

There are other things that bring on hacking attacks as well.  He had been looking forward to cutting the grass. He thought it would be nice to do something other than sit in his recliner or at his computer.  We had some nice weather this week.  He got on the mower for a short time.  Big mistake.  Hack hack hack.

He wanted to do this so badly.
He may try it again one day with a mask.  I have very mixed emotions about him mowing. On the one hand, breathing pollen has got to be a bad idea. I want to insist he not do it.  On the other hand, he is really sad at how little he is able to do.  That's wearing him down.  Way down.  He wants to do something useful and he's not into doing dishes or cooking.  He wants to do some of the guy-things he's always done.  I'm not sure if that's in the cards right now.    Maybe after pollen season???

Another breathing issue has to do with neighbors burning.   Our property is surrounded by people who own large plots of land.  They burn their woods regularly to keep down undergrowth.  They also often burn limbs and trash. This week there was a pretty large burn on one side of us.  Rudy had radiation appointments, so there was no avoiding going outside twice - to get in and out of the car.  Our house was enveloped by smoke.  For some reason, when neighbors burn on any side of us, the smoke often settles on our property.  It's crazy.  Rudy's still paying for what that did to his breathing.

The wind begins to shift and the smoke started making its way towards the house.
We had to leave soon after this photo was taken and by that time,
it was so smokey around our house, you could hardly see.  
In the neighbor's defense, they have no idea that Rudy is sick.  I keep hoping to run into them, but it just hasn't happened.  I know they'd be very upset about causing any distress if they knew.

As for today... thankfully, the rain has cleaned the air.  It's not warm or pretty, but Rudy was able to go to the car and back without a hack attack.