Mary Beth Writes

Last Tuesday Len went for a big bike ride in the morning. He came home, did some chores, took a shower, ate lunch, laid down for a nap and when he got up he fell on his head.  His nose rivals a boxer's nose after a bad night.

In the ER they discovered he was in atrial fibrillation. They admitted him and did a lot of things to figure out the damage and to thin his blood. They discharged him on Friday at noon, but by then he was way too lethargic.  I said this to the nurse who told the hospitalist who ordered a CT scan and yup, Len had a big ole subdural hematoma.  By Saturday morning it was a worse so they did a craniotomy to relieve the pressure in his brain.

The surgery has been successful. Len remembers everything he knew before. His muscles and coordination seems to be all there. He's even making some jokes, though his timing is off. 

He will probably be transferred to a rehab hospital by the end of the week for a week or two. Then home with daily rehab until yes, they think he will be able to ride his bike again. I swear to God, this morning he asked if he would be able to dance and play the piano.They said yes. He said that would be great because he couldn't before. 

He is extremely weak. The hospital is where I am spending most of my time. I don't need or want anything but your good thoughts and if you see something undone in your neighborhood that Len and I should have got to, could you do it?



PS: My family has been awesome. 



So sorry Mary Beth! Sending many prayers across the ocean ❤️

Oh my goodness! Sending positive thoughts and including Len (and you) in my morning meditation. ❤️
Mary Beth's picture

Thank you ...

So sorry to hear.

Sending wishes for a speedy healing, and strength to get through the next few weeks. Love that Len is cracking jokes. Peace and Love

Sorry for your troubles, glad to hear things are improving! Sending you and yours my good thoughts and wishes for a speedy recovery for Len.

After he recovers, he has no excuse not to take you dancing, right? Good thing you were alert Friday afternoon! Peace

I’m so relieved to hear that he is doing better! We will continue to send our positive vibes across the lake. And thank him for providing us with a good laugh! You better dust off your dancing shoes!

Oh dear…..such a nasty turn of events! My figures are double crossed for you Len and for a speedy recovery.

Many prayers!!!!!

What a doozy last week was for both of you! I’m glad Len was diagnosed, tended to and ‘on the mend.’ Many prayers for both of you!
Mary Beth's picture

I told Len this afternoon about your comments. He says it proves we have good friends and good readers. He was very sleepy this afternoon, this stuff is not one even boat ride. But his sister walked in this evening and suddenly he's eating what I told her he would not eat and he's listening to her talk and there is good peace in that room.

Yes, life sure can seem to "Turn on a dime." You and Len are in my caring thoughts. I have learned that the hospital journey does take two. You are his advocate and support. Do your best to refuel you. Said YES to all offers of support both big and small....and ASK for the support you need.

Len seems to be making an amazing recovery! This is terrific news. Give him our best!

Hope Len recovers soon!!!

Much love to you and Len. Always. Patricia

Thinking of Len & You, Mary Beth. Glad to hear he's "okay" (or will be) and on the mend. Take care of yourself, too. Caretakers need xtra self-care!

Oh Mary Beth, hugs to you both from the Doctor in Chicago. And. Make sure you are taking a bit of care of you, too! Hard to explain exactly why your part in this is completely exhausting, too, but it is. You will need your strength, too. More hugs!

Oh Mary Beth, I am sorry for this news. It is positively scary how one has to be so vigilant regarding our health care! So glad you spotted the change in Len, and got it attended to. might be a completely different story otherwise. Len is amazing and great that he can pull on the humor with which he has always approached life. This is a really long haul for you both. take good care of YOU, as I'm sure you know, and so much easier said than done. I know about A fib, as I had it post op in 2018 after heart surgery. and last weekend I landed in the hospital with A flutter-another variation which is a bit harder to correct. they had to give me a shock(with paddles like they do when you code). I went to sleep and 15 min woke up to a normal heart rhythm! Growing older or having accidents is not for the faint of heart. Sending good energy and healing thoughts to you both!!!
Mary Beth's picture

I come home and read all these. Makes me feel good. Thank you very much.

What a story Mary Beth! Len's sense of humor despite all that scary stuff is amazing. Sending love and hugs to you both!

Len - Out of the blue, we can fall and we enter a new world of surviving, diagnosing what happened, and rethinking our futures. Glad the medical people got to the bottom of it, and you are cautiously on the mend. It's wonderful that you have have a caring friend and spouse at your side. I had a very mild stoke a 2 months ago weakening my right arm and leg. Fortunately, my speech and mental abilities were unaffected. After a night in the hospital, and a battery of tests, the MRI confirmed a stroke. Likely cause? Atrial defibrillation (A-Fib). Now on Elequis blood thinner pills twice a day for the rest of my life to prevent a future and possibly worse stroke. Physical and occupational therapy once a week has regained my strength and coordination. Hang in there during rehab.

I am so sorry to have just learned of Lens hospitalization. It sounds as though his wit and wonderful sense of humor will power him, and you thru all this, and will most certainly improve the daily lives of the healthcare professionals along the way. Stay strong Mary Beth, and please, give Len a big hug and smile for me.

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"You have to be your own health advocate." Really?


I don’t want to write about this forever, but I just learned some things about being ill and being healthy. Still learning, in fact.

One thing and another, this year I’ve had very high and then pretty high cholesterol numbers. My nurse practitioner wanted me to start a non-statin cholesterol-lowering medication, but because I’m me, first I tried a Chinese herbal called Red Yeast Rice (it’s the red that makes Peking Duck be red!) It lowered my numbers but because of other things going on, it wasn’t clear if it was the solution I needed.



My step-grandmother Ricky ate an apple every night. She’d sit on her bed, lean against the headboard, then chomp the apple after which she would remove her false teeth and lay down to sleep.

I haven’t really thought about Ricky in years but this week for no identifiable reason (because we were talking about unsung aspects of our lives?) I dreamed about her. I awoke one morning seeing her face as she stood in her dining room chatting with my mom and me. Ergo, I started thinking about her.

What's Ordinary in Your World?

This train photo is not cribbed from anywhere. It's a Genuine Leonardo. 


Hello and how are you? I am writing less and less as Len and I meander around to doctors, specialists, dentists, and that way-too-early appointment at the endodontist. (So far, we are fine.) The irony being that most of what we are attending to are the side effects of medications prescribed for stuff that didn’t hurt and we didn’t even know we had.

A Quiet Week

The cat in the picture is my daughter's cat, Nancy. Sometimes we all just need a quiet place to slow down and think.


What's going right in your world?


My teeth again. Argh. This past week I’ve had a jaw ache/toothache that got worse instead of better. Today my dentist said I need a crown but also that’s not the thing that is causing the swelling and infection and ache. I now have an Rx for an antibiotic and an appointment for that crown and an appointment with an endodontist to get an Xray worthy of NASA.

Memory & Consequences


To remember hard stories truthfully requires bravery.

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