When it comes to taking care of my foot, Bonnie gets the shit end of the stick. She’s been my nursemaid since I came home from the hospital, and as soon as the Visiting Nurses Association knew she lived with me, they made sure she understood how to change my foot dressing and medicate the wound site. That reduced the frequency of their visits drop from daily to every other day, and for the last several weeks, now that they’re happy with her technique and my progress, weekly.
Every day sheBonniechanges the bandage on my foot, and she’s gotten quite good at it – good enough that two doctors complimented her on her technique last week, along with the VNA nurse who came out last Friday to change my PICC line dressing. Bonnie’s meticulous about it. She knows exactly what to do, sets all the supplies up she needs ahead of time, pops on a couple of latex gloves and gets to work. The whole process takes about ten minutes from start to finish – unraveling the old bandages, checking the wound, dabbing it with a powerful antibiotic wash, and then rebandaging both the top and the bottom of the foot while wrapping the entire foot in gauze to keep the bandages in place. It’s really a feat of dexterity.
One side effect of getting a really bad case of swelling in the foot is that the outer skin layers have been peeling off like I have a bad sunburn. At least a few times now, doctors and nurses have peeled away dead skin from my toes as if they were peeling grapes. An unsettling experience, to say the least.
After consultation with nurses and doctors, Bonnie’s moisturizing the foot (at least in the areas away from the wound site). While some people make foot moisturizing part of their regular hygiene, it’s something I never did before the hospitalization. In the hopes that it’ll help quicken the healing process and exfoliate the dead skin that needs to come off anyway, she started doing it about a week ago.
And for the past week or so, the towels Bonnie’s used to put under my feet as she changes the dressing have come away with what looks like snow on them — all dead skin just coming off my foot in flakes.
I guess this is the “in sickness” part of the vows we repeated when we got married. It’s a good thing she loves me, because it’s disgusting and I don’t even want to deal with it, but she handles it like a champ and does a wonderful job and I love her all the more for it.