Living my life surrounded by caregivers makes things much easier for me most of the time. And then there are some times when it makes life much more interesting. Working with a team of caregivers often means that I have to get creative in working around their schedules. It also means that when I work with a caregiver one-on-one some things get done in ways that are unconventional, just because that is what is necessary.

Last Monday morning Thomas gave me a ride to the hospital. It was time once again, for the umpteenth time this summer, to get my Montana-sized kidney stone taken down a notch. The process will take several blastings to break up the stone so it is small enough to pass. Monday was the fourth surgery of this nature that I have had since July 9th. That doesn’t count all the other medical stuff that has shown up in my body in the last few months. Anyway, on Monday as we were headed to the hospital I was just kind of tired of it all. In the last few months, I have been poked and prodded more times than the Pillsbury Dough Boy and I don’t want to giggle. Even getting me healthy can sometimes get old.

So as Thomas and I were sitting in the waiting room in anticipation of me getting prepped to do all of this again, He asked me where I wanted to get lunch from on the way home. I didn’t hesitate. Taco Bell. I’ve eaten their food many times this summer. I don’t think it is an accident that they have a location close to the hospital. I just know that once I take a bite of a crunchy taco, my bruises don’t seem quite as painful.

When I woke up from anesthesia, several nurses came to check if I was okay. They helped me get dressed then we got our discharge instructions and were on our way. Thomas asked me if I was ready to get food in my face. I answered both enthusiastically and affirmatively. We went through the drive-thru. Both Thomas and I ordered the same thing. A number 10 with a carbonated beverage. Thomas got Pepsi. I got a Dr. Pepper. When Coke products are not available, I am forced to settle and do what I must. (I know, not good for my kidneys, but I am significantly cutting down how much soda I drink overall, I promise, and surgery days have different rules somehow.) Number 10 on their menu means two of their tacos (I like the ones with the hard shells) and a crunchy Gordito thing. Not sure what the last thing means, but I do know that it is tasty.

When Thomas and I got home, we start eating lunch. But with all the traffic on the road at that time of day and having to listen to the discharge instructions (they were the same as the first three times I had this procedure done) time got away from us. Thomas had to go back to class and I still had one taco left to eat. The words “Taco Bell” and “leftovers” just do not belong in the same sentence. That is crazy talk. So what is a girl to do?

Simple. Move the soda and the taco to the nightstand beside my bed. Thomas helped me get under the covers so that I could rest for the remainder of the day and into the next. I usually have water and medication where I can reach them in the middle of the night. Sometimes I have catheter supplies as well if there happens to be a pee emergency, but having a taco and a soda from Taco Bell right next to me while I was lying in my bed? That was a new thing for me. And it was glorious. This is probably not a habit that I should get used to or I might never leave my bedroom, but it was a nice accommodation on the day of surgery. After Thomas was on his way to class I ate every crunchy bite that I had left.

Yes, it is difficult to eat while lying down. Especially something as messy as a taco. But I made it work. Yes, there were crumbs everywhere and I brushed them on the floor. But we changed the sheets and vacuumed the carpet when my next caregiver came for the night shift.

Sometimes, in order to get things done, my caregivers and I have to do things in ways that are unconventional.

Even if that means eating tacos in bed.