Ok so I left off just arriving home. Coughing weak, heart pounding barely able to walk I made it down the driveway with the help of my wife not to fast because I didn't want to tear the cannula from my nose that was providing me with my oxygen as my wife followed behind me. Up the steps the first steps I had climbed since leaving 25 days earlier. I almost collapsed against the side of the house as I waited for the door to be unlocked it seemed like an eternity. The door flung open and I was home at last. my heart racing and everything getting darker and fuzzy I moved as quickly as I could for fear of not making to to my final destination my bed. It only took about 10 steps but it felt like I was running the 100yd dash. I laid down and the girls rushed in to meet me and give me hugs. They hadn't seen me since I left on my birthday. I snapped at them telling them to "Get a way!". The hadn't seen me come in but knew I was home and had come to greet me. They had missed me but I couldn't catch my breath and felt like I was going to have a heart attack.
We Switch from the oxygen tank provided by the hospital to the Concentrator supplied by a medical supply company and took my first 02 reading . The meter flashed and beeped its alarm 02-78% heart rate 175bmp . I needed to relax and practice my breathing or
I'd be headed back to the hospital that night. Deep breaths in through the nose out through the mouth steady rhythm. Finally the alarms stopped beeping, the room got clearer and i called the children back in the room who were frightened at this point. I apologized for yelling and explained to them the condition i was in and that it was going to take some time to be myself again.
The oxygen concentrator was the size of a mini-fridge and only had 50feet of air tube attached which was constantly becoming tangled or snagged on things but it was the only thing keeping me alive. It was quite literally my life line. I was on a leash of sorts. I still couldn't walk and had to be assisted into the restroom. I could only sit in the shower. When I bathed it was like when my wife would bathe our dog. I will admit there was some amount of amusement out of it. My whole world was 50feet big. anythin gi needed to do someone had to be available to assist me. I could feed myself but couldn't prepare my food. I honestly felt like a prisoner in my own body.
I was home for a week when I got a message from my friend from school. He had been following my hospital stay and recovery on Social Media and was wondering if I had any home Physical Therapy ( which I had not). He offered to help me out. he loaded up his car kissed his wife and drove 200 miles to whip me into shape. He arrive with a wheel chair borrowed from his cousin and left it with me. for the next few day he had me doing exercises that to most ppl would seem silly but to me seemed were punishment for whatever wrong doing I had committed in my life. Standing and sitting, walking 5 paces and returning back to my seat. we would do each until my monitor would go off then we would rest and do it again. He only stayed 2 days because he needed to return to work but his exercises helped greatly and I continued them after he left. I even started singing again but was nowhere I wanted to be.
A close family friend had passed a year before and the years before he died was having breathing problems so had a portable oxygen concentrator that his wife allowed me to borrow. That single act changed the whole game, finally I was able to move beyond the walls of my house. I tried to get one from the Dr to no avail he preferred a wait and see approach. I scheduled a second follow up via zoom and he never logged on to meet with me nor rescheduled so that was that. My first order of business with my new found mobility was to goto a sit down restaurant. My wife loaded me into the car and we went to one of my guilty pleasures Chili's. I know I know of all places but what can I say. They are everywhere.
Having my new mobility really lifted my spirits which I believe really helped my healing. My first big family outing was to of all places the mall. Unassisted no wheelchair on the first trip my battery died before I could make it back to the car. I moved from bench to bench Island hopping until we made it to the parking garage. It was Progress. My son had came to visit as he does every summer so i spent a lot of my free time playing video games with him. It was great chance to bond and a great way to pass the time. The family would go to the amusement park and the water park while I stayed home still not ready for that task.
August came and the summer was drawing to a close I had done so little and missed so much. Getting sick caused me to have to cancel 60+ performance which really put a strain on our finances. I had to get well enough to perform, and I needed to be able to do all of my setting up and transport by my self. I worked on my wind by taking requests via video, my stamina by walking the mall and slowly weening myself off my supplied air. My first show was August 20th in Galveston 200 miles from home. It was a practice run and my family joined me we made a vacation out of it visiting family and going to the beach. I stayed out of the water just in case. 3 hours on stage seemed like a life time but my alarm only went off a few times and I pushed through. It was good to see some of my long time friends and fans. The next day I would resume my busy Gigging Schedule of 4-5 shows a week.
A full 10 days earlier that I had hoped I was back to the grind Travelling from San Antonio to Austin to Houston and back. For the first month I was still on oxygen. I'm still not 100% and was probably closer to 80% at the time but i was where i wanted to be Back On Stage.