Thoughts for Dad

Dad has had a rough couple of weeks. As you know, they snowbird down in South Carolina, and a couple weeks ago he had a knee replacement (last year, he had the other knee done). It’s just so much easier to have it done down there- the hospital is closer, the weather is nicer, the rehab people come directly to his house, etc. At any rate, everything was fine until last weekend, when dad was reaching to turn off a ceiling fan and fell, ripped his stitches out, and had to go back to the hospital.

On Monday, he had another surgery to fix something he had messed up, sewed him back up, and then kept him until yesterday. They normally let him go the day after, but since he had opened the wound at home and it had been open for several days rather than being open and closed in a surgical setting like the first one, they were super aggressive regarding potential infections and kept him for several days on liquids and antibiotics. They let him come home yesterday, and then last night while trying to sleep he kept gasping for air.

Back to the hospital, worried he had pneumonia, but his heart enzymes were off so they did a heart cath, and lo and behold he has a blockage so he is having a bypass surgery tomorrow. He and mom normally hate it when I talk about them on the website (“YOU ALWAYS EXAGGERATE AND GET THINGS WRONG” and “WHY ARE YOU SO PROFANE I RAISED YOU BETTER THAN THAT”), but you know what, fuck him. You guys did miracles with Lily so I’m asking you all to send some positive vibes.

You can yell at me when you feel better, dad.

138 replies
  1. 1
    donnah says:

    Sending love and positive thoughts. I hate when one bad thing leads to another and it all seems to gang up at once. I hope he weathers this storm and is on the road to recovery.

    Be strong! Be well!

  2. 2

    Oh no!! Consider vibes sent.

  3. 3
    raven says:

    Aw man, hang tough dad.

  4. 4
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    Very sorry to hear that. Best wishes to your dad, and your mom too.

  5. 5
    chopper says:

    positive thoughts.

  6. 6
    MomSense says:

    Sending healthy healing vibes to your dad – and a hug to your mom. Please tell her to make sure not to neglect her own care.

  7. 7
    spudgun says:

    Yikes – when it rains, it pours…sending you and yours strength and healing thoughts!!

  8. 8
    Sandlapper says:

    Hoping for all the best for your Dad and, while I’m at it, always happy to see new pics of Miss Lily and continue to think good thoughts for her.

  9. 9
    White & Gold Purgatorian says:

    Oh, gosh! Best thoughts for your dad. Rotten luck he has a blockage but great they found it and are dealing with it. Hoping the third hospital stay will be the charm for him.

  10. 10
    MazeDancer says:

    The two most oustanding areas of Western Medicine are ortho and heart. Because they’re structural. And can be fixed by surgery. They are well-researched. And highly competitive, so all the docs read and keep up and go to the conventions to hear the latest.

    This means they’ll figure out what needs to be done for your father and they’ll make it happen.

    Sending many healing beams to your Dad.

  11. 11
    Brachiator says:

    Positive thoughts and best wishes.

  12. 12
    satby says:

    Might have been a blessing in disguise that they caught the blockage before he had a heart attack. Bypasses can work miracles, so here’s all the best wishes for a full and quick recovery to Dad Cole!

  13. 13
    Lyrebird says:

    Good thoughts incoming!

    And since I can’t send soup, have some unsolicited advice: the Heart Attack Proof book, Dean Ornish’s stuff, and anything by dad or son Esselstyn all contain well-tested stuff about interventions that help people not have second heart attacks. Yes it means eating like Bill Clinton or worse yet Tom Brady, but if it works…

  14. 14

    May all go well for Dad Cole.

  15. 15
    Yarrow says:

    Oh, wow. That’s a lot. Sending good thoughts to your dad and your whole family.

  16. 16
    Fair Economist says:

    Best wishes to your dad! Glad they caught the heart issue before it got worse.

  17. 17

    Sending positive thoughts to senior Cole.

  18. 18
    Joy in FL says:

    Health and good care for Mr. Cole, Sr.

  19. 19
    delk says:

    Sending good and positive thoughts. I hope your mom is doing okay.

  20. 20
    kindness says:

    Sending energy to John’s Dad. I know what it’s like to rip stitches out. Hoping for a quick recovery.

  21. 21
    The Dangerman says:

    I don’t think you are fucking profane.

    Sending along best wishes.

  22. 22
    CarolDuhart2 says:

    Heal quickly, Cole’s Dad.

  23. 23
    Gin & Tonic says:

    Best wishes to Dad, as well as Mom and you.

  24. 24
    J R in WV says:

    Reminds me of RBG’s fall and broken ribs, which led to the very early discovery of her lung cancer and subsequent successful treatment. Tell your dad to do what the PT folks tell him to do, both for his knee and for his heart issues. Use that walker they gave him!!

    Sending many of the best thoughts for successful treatment for all Dad Cole’s issues tomorrow and on going. You take care too, John G!!

  25. 25
    eclare says:

    What a rough week! Sending my supply of positive thoughts through the ether to you, Mom, and Dad.

  26. 26
    Mike J says:

    Sending good thoughts. Been through all of this with my parents. My dad had his knee done in October, fell two weeks ago. Thank goodness it was far enough along that it was mostly healed already and no permanent damage was done.

    Mom had a aortic valve replacement and a CABG year before last. Nice to have the therapy people come to the house instead of having to go out.

    Both of them have recovered from their ailments, at least as well as folks in their 70s will. Hope the same for your dad.

  27. 27
    David Hunt says:

    To the elder Mr. Cole,

    Even though I consider John to be partially your fault, I still think well of him you have my best hopes. Also, anyone that an make Rosie into a lovie dovie has got to be someone special.

    But seriously, we all think well of John, regardless/because of how foul-mouthed he is. Thanks for your part in that. I hope for the best for you.

  28. 28
    Jane2 says:

    Yikes! Best wishes to your dad and a good recovery.

  29. 29
    JPL says:

    John, This is why we need thoughts and prayers.

  30. 30
    Ann Marie says:

    I’m sorry your father is dealing with this. Sending good thoughts to him and all your family.

  31. 31
    jacy says:

    Sending all the good thoughts to your dad (and the rest of your family). The positive thing is they caught it before it became critical — my mom had the same thing about six years and after her surgery she felt so much better. Please keep us updated, even if your mom yells at you.

  32. 32
    pat says:

    Best wishes to your dad for a full recovery!

  33. 33
    oldster says:

    I’m wishing good luck to you and your dad.

    And I know he is going to be drowning in therapy-dogs and therapy-cats when he needs them. Just put Steve in one armpit and Lily in the other, and he’ll be better in no time.

  34. 34
    HRA says:

    My very best wishes for a successful surgery and speedy recovery for your Dad, John.

  35. 35
    Another Scott says:

    Hoping for a quick and full recovery for ColeDad. Hang in there JC and all the Coles.


  36. 36
    Mike S1 says:

    Good thoughts and now we know where your gratefulness comes from.

  37. 37
    A Ghost To Most says:

    Best wishes for a speedy recovery.

  38. 38
    Gbbalto says:

    Best wishes to your dad – glad they caught the blockage.

  39. 39
    Haroldo says:

    Oh, so many years ago my dad went through all this. While certainly not a piece of cake, remarkably commonplace.

    A full recovery for Mr. Cole!

  40. 40
    Lapassionara says:

    The good news is that SC has some excellent hospitals. Sending very positive thoughts his way.

  41. 41
    Ohio Mom says:

    Good wishes and positive vibes on their way from southwest Ohio for a speedy and complete recovery for Dad Cole.

    Good thoughts for Mom Cole too — it’s hard work being the caregiver — and also for John. It’s nerve wracking to be so far away during these sorts of family emergencies.

  42. 42
    Old School says:

    Positive vibes sent!

  43. 43
    Anne Laurie says:

    Praying for the best possible outcome for Cole Senior.

    Thoughts & prayers for Mrs. Cole, who has to put up with him, not to mention her profane son who always gets the details wrong. (Seriously, Cole, keep an eye on your mom!)

    Repressing extended comments on the degree to which being willfully stubborn and/or accident-prone is hereditary…

  44. 44
    Larime Taylor says:

    Definitely sending our best!

  45. 45
    mainsailset says:

    What I learned years ago is that it’s a great thing when the docs tell you whatever ails you is fixable! I’m thinking that if stuff has to happen it’s probably a whole lot better that he’s getting all his stuff fixed at the same time and is already in the care of a great team in a great hospital.

    Looking forward to your dad giving you hell next week when he’s on the other side of the surgery and feeling much better. Best vibes I can must be sent his way!

  46. 46
    bobbo says:

    Witnessing your loved ones going through this shit is just the worst. Get well soon, Cole’s dad!

  47. 47
    banditqueen says:

    OK Daddy Cole, gather up the family and friend love that’s all around you, let everyone spoil you because they really want to spoil you–you’ll make them happy, and get better soon so you can keep that son of yours in line (you know you raised him right!).

  48. 48
    Yarrow says:

    @Anne Laurie:

    Seriously, Cole, keep an eye on your mom!

    Seconding this. Caregiving is hard work and takes a toll. Keep an eye on your mom.

  49. 49
    Jane Helms says:

    Sending everything I got to the man who helped to raise Lily’s father. Standing by for good news.

  50. 50
    Mike in NC says:

    Best of luck to him.

  51. 51
    rikyrah says:

    Prayers 🙏 going up for Papa Cole.

  52. 52
    Nicole says:

    Sending your dad good thoughts. Mine died suddenly in his sleep at 69, so I’ll second those who say finding the blockage was a blessing in disguise. May surgery be smooth and recovery smoother.

  53. 53
    mg_65 says:

    Sending healing, loving thoughts to your dad and your family, John.

  54. 54
    Doug R says:

    My dad had a bad infection in his leg that his doctor was in no hurry to deal with. Ended up losing his leg. This happened in his 80s, his life was not the same after that.
    So it’s good they’re being so aggressive with your dad. Hope he has good insurance.

  55. 55
    CapnMubbers says:

    Best wishes and good thoughts for Cole Dad, your mom, and all the family. As others have said, the outlook is excellent for full recovery from both knee and blockage repair—may it be speedy and without incident.

  56. 56
    dexwood says:

    Strength and comfort to the Cole family. Honestly, Mr. and Mrs. Cole, we know you did your best with John.

  57. 57
    tobie says:

    All good wishes to your father for a successful operation and a swift recovery. I hope in a week’s time he will be yelling at you, Cole, for this post. It will be music to your and your family’s ears. Good luck to all of you tomorrow and in the days ahead.

  58. 58
    trollhattan says:

    Your dad’s so good at fixing houses and things he should be up to the task of fixing himself. Okay, that sounds wrong, make that putting his energy into healing while trusting the Experts to fix him. (Certain folks of a certain age not trusting anybody to do anything for them.)

    My best wishes for a successful procedure and speedy and complete recovery for Dad. We’re pulling for you all!

  59. 59
    Quaker in a Basement says:

    Apparently you get your luck from his side of the family.

    Listen to your nurses, Dad Cole, and get well quickly.

  60. 60
    Skyweaver says:

    I’m so sorry, John. All my best thoughts for your dad and your mom and you. I hope it al comes out well.

    I did have to tell you it’s been a draining week and “but you know what, fuck him” is my first belly laugh of the weekend. Just wanted to say thanks for that

  61. 61
    geg6 says:

    All the good vibes I have and all I was sent earlier this week for my John from Jackals that weren’t used up with his health issue are headed your dad’s way, Cole. The Jackaltariat does wonders.

  62. 62
    Leto says:

    Sending all the positive thoughts and well wishes I can. If he’s in the Charleston area, I still have a ton of family/friends there, so if they need anything please let me know. A ride? Someone else to cook a meal? Just some nice people to talk to? Speedy recovery Mr. Cole!

  63. 63
    Doc Sardonic says:

    Sending healing thoughts to your dad, and strength to you and the rest of your family.

  64. 64
    MelissaM says:

    Old old man Cole is getting the vibes from me. Get home and on your feet quick!

  65. 65
    Mel says:

    Sending good mojo to your Dad and to your Mom and to you. I’m so very sorry that your Dad is going through this, and the cats and I will be thinking about you guys and sending you all hugs this week, but especially holding your Dad in the light tomorrow. Please tell him that there are so many people here sending him love.

    As hard as it is for the person who is sick, it’s hard for the people who love them as well. So you and Mom Cole take extra good care of yourselves this week, okay?

    Thank goodness they found the blockage now. It’s not often that scary health issues have a silver lining, but maybe finding out about the blockage sooner rather than later is one. My Dad was hospitalized for a painful but non-life threatening case of pancreatitis about 10 years ago. His doctor ordered an abdominal CT just to make sure that there was no obstruction contributing to the problem, and lo and behold: the CT revealed a large aortic aneurysm. Completely unrelated to the pancreatitis, but as the vascular surgeon said, “ready to blow at any moment”. A stent was put in, and he gets an ultrasound once a year just to make sure all is well with the stent. The pancreatitis, as miserable as it was, probably saved his life.

  66. 66
    Betty Cracker says:

    Healing vibes and positive thoughts heading Papa Cole’s way!

  67. 67
    Ninedragonspot says:

    Send your Dad and the whole family healing thoughts. I am coming around to the view that we all should injure ourselves periodically just to make sure there’s nothing seriously wrong with us.

  68. 68
    ruemara says:

    Sending prayers of healing and a quick rejuvenation for your Dad & Mom..

  69. 69
    Tazj says:

    Good vibes and positive thoughts sent for your Dad and family. Here’s to a speedy recovery!

  70. 70
    RedDirtGirl says:

    Sending heathen prayers your dad’s way.

  71. 71
    Kalima says:

    Sending love and healing vibes to Dad Come and hugs to you and Mom.

  72. 72
    debbie says:

    Hope your dad bounces back surprisingly quickly.

  73. 73
    Tenar Arha says:

    Many good thoughts for your Dad.

  74. 74
    Mandarama says:

    All my best to your family, John Cole. So glad they caught that blockage. Lots of pet therapy will help!

  75. 75
    sukabi says:

    That sucks John. Sending good wishes for your Dad & Mom & you.

  76. 76
    frosty says:

    My best wishes and good vibes to your dad. May he be annoyed at you for years to come.

  77. 77
    skerry says:

    Best wishes for a speedy recovery to Cole Dad

  78. 78
    waratah says:

    Lots good healing thoughts for your father John.
    Lots of love for your mother.

  79. 79
    laura says:

    Sending a Station wagon of well wishes! Enough for the entire family.
    Echo the sentiments to keep an eye on your mom. Caregivers bear the brunt of what ails us.

  80. 80
    Josie says:

    Sending best wishes to John’s Mom and Dad and hopes for a speedy recovery.

  81. 81
    Steeplejack says:

    Vortex of healing energy launched to Dad Cole.

  82. 82
    Kristine says:

    Good thoughts headed to Daddy Cole.

  83. 83

    Sending happy thoughts to Papa Cole.

  84. 84
    Drunkenhausfrau says:

    His spirit animal is a JRT. Wishing him all the best!

  85. 85
    Scuffletuffle says:

    Can we send cards to your dad, or to your mom?

  86. 86
    JanieM says:

    Adding to the pile of healing energy with hopes for a quick recovery for Dad Cole, and lots of good thoughts for Mama, too.

  87. 87
    Mary G says:

    So sorry to read this; sounds very scary. I will pray for him and send light and all the other things, as well as for you, your mother, and your brother and sisters.

  88. 88
    Pogonip says:

    Get well soon, Mr. Cole!

    Cole Junior, why ARE you so profane?

  89. 89
    J. says:

    Thoughts and prayers? Hope your dad has an easy surgery and recovers quickly. Old age sucks. But at least he has you to yell at.

  90. 90
    ronp says:

    praying to the spaghetti monster (the flying one)

  91. 91
    zhena gogolia says:

    We’re praying for your dad.

  92. 92
    maura says:

    um silver lining? without the 2nd injury he would not have found the blockage and may have just died in his sleep or any time. that blockage didn’t happen overnight

  93. 93
    Skepticat says:

    What’s the old saw about silver livings? Helluva way to find a problem (much like RBG), but it’s good that they seem to have found it in time. Sending strong healing vibes, positive thoughts, and some suspicion that being a tad clumsy runs in the family (as it does in mine). Please keep us apprised when you can, and use some colorful language on your mother for us.

  94. 94
    KBS says:

    De-lurking to say I hope your dad heals quickly, from everything. Positive thoughts sent.

  95. 95
    Mai Naem mobile says:

    Best of luck to your dad. When my mom had her knee done one of the docs said it changes your fluid load around and affects your heart. Don’t be surprised if your dad has some depression after the bypass. It’s not uncommon.

  96. 96
    RoseMary says:

    @ruemara: seconded!

  97. 97
    DCrefugee says:

    Fingers crossed, John.

  98. 98
    Elizabelle says:

    All the best to Dad Cole.

  99. 99
    p.a. says:

    All positive vibes to Cole Vater.

  100. 100
    Gelfling 545 says:

    Blessings on your Dad.

  101. 101
    Virginia says:

    Will be keeping him my thoughts. Updates often, please?

  102. 102
    dww44 says:

    Best wishes and good healing to Daddy Cole and to your Mom! My brother had knee replacement almost 10 months ago and thought he would have done the 2nd by now but recovery from the first has been slow and therapy somewhat painful. Now it seems he might need a hip replacement first.
    Your Dad and my brother are probably close in age, given how old you and brother’s kids are.

  103. 103
    Bumper says:

    All the best to Cole Dad. And to Cole Mom, please take care of yourself too.

  104. 104
    MaryRC says:

    Best wishes to your Dad.

  105. 105
    MoxieM says:

    Sending good thoughts to you, and your family. I hope dad heals up easily and well.

  106. 106
    Miss Bianca says:

    Oh, JC, all best wishes for your dad. And while we’re at it, you and the rest of your family.

  107. 107
    Tinare says:

    Sending best wishes and good thoughts for your dad, you, your mom and the rest of the Cole clan.

  108. 108
    Amir Khalid says:

    Good vibes to Ma and Pa Cole sent.

  109. 109
    HumboldtBlue says:

    Feel better, Pop, and I’m the vulgar and crass one.

  110. 110
    Cermet says:

    Been there – done that: five way by-pass. While I’ll wish him only the best I have little doubt all will turn out well.

  111. 111
    Tom Levenson says:

    All good thoughts to your dad, your family , and you.

  112. 112
    prostratedragon says:

    It is nice when it’s something that can be fixed instead of just ‘managed [blech].’ Best wishes to Mr. Cole and the whole family.

  113. 113
    felonious says:

    Lost my dad while in Iraq. Long story. John, my advice is to pony up, get everything you can possibly think of to say and then say those things. All of them, as much as you/he can stand. Say them. Force it out. It means a lot when you’re the last one standing and I, presume, it means a lot to the one looking at the precipice. Sending positive thoughts…

  114. 114
    sgrAstar says:

    Best wishes to the whole Cole clan. Slainte!

  115. 115
    mkd says:

    all of our house,both people and pups, send ponderous vibes

  116. 116
    Denali says:

    Best wishes for a quick recovery for your Dad!

  117. 117
    Ella in New Mexico says:

    Blessings and warm wishes to your Dad. No matter how his surgery is done (traditional open heart vs. the newer less invasive techniques”) it is definitely a major thing, but generally hospitals and doctors/support staff have the entire process, from pre-post op- down to a frigging science with all our protocols and procedures to keep any bad stuff from happening. Most do hundreds over and over during the course of their careers and because of that they’re usually damn good.

    Good cardio-thoracic surgeons demand a lot from their ICU nursing staff and their NP’s/PA’s who round on the patients afterwards. Some can be downright prima donnas but for a really good reason–any significant complications or deaths are really bad for their reputations and their insurance rates. And to be honest, we ICU nurses take a great deal of care to make sure we watch our post-op’s like a damn hawk, cuz, well, we love them. And even though we take these big surgeries super seriously, we also LOVE these complicated recovery periods with all the drips and the vent and the chest tubes and labs we do–it’s fun as hell.

    He’ll be well cared for and he could even have very little serious pain afterwards–I’ve had 80 year-olds refuse morphine for the entire post op period. We get most of our patients up out of bed and walking the unit twice the first post op day.

    I’m sure it will but sending lots of positive wishes that all goes well, John.

  118. 118
    Svensker says:

    Sending all the best to Cole’s dad. Long may you wave! Holding the whole family in the Light.

  119. 119
    Chacal Charles Calthrop says:

    Sending best wishes along with the rest. I can add to the other anecdotes: someone I know went in for a medical procedure which required a thorough checkup for any other possible conditions. During this checkup, the hospital found her cough was due to incipient lung cancer, which she never planned to have checked because she never smoked (she figured she was coughing due to acid reflux or something similar).

    And then it turned out she has a type of lung cancer that comes from an EGFR mutation in people who don’t smoke that now has new drug that turns it into a chronic condition which does not need to be treated with chemo. If she had waited until her cancer produced symptoms because it had spread to other organs, her story would have had a very different ending, but the hospital stay caught it early enough. So take heart.

  120. 120
    CaseyL says:

    Oh, we love Daddy Cole. You’ve immortalized him with your stories and videos. My fave is still the one where he discovers how fast Jack Russells can trash a previously-neat living room.

    Wishing him all the best.

  121. 121
    Olivia says:

    Sending best wishes and fervent hopes that it all will be cleared up soon.

  122. 122
    stinger says:

    Best wishes to Mr. Cole Senior! One of my favorite BJ pet pics is the one of your dad nose-to-nose with Rosie — I think you call him the Rosie Whisperer. Every girl needs an older man in her life, and he is clearly hers!

    If he likes to get snail mail, please post the appropriate address.

  123. 123
    wenchacha says:

    Best wishes for your dad, John Cole. Docs can do some great things these days. I wish your dad an enjoyable rehab!

  124. 124
    txvoodoo says:

    Sending your dad all the good mojo!

  125. 125
    Sandia Blanca says:

    Shouldn’t it say “Old man yells at old man who yells at clouds”?

    Mr. Blanca and I are praying for you, your Dad, and especially your Mom to get through this with minimal discomfort.

  126. 126
    cbear says:

    Peace and prayers for your Dad, John.

  127. 127
    TomatoQueen says:

    All the very best for Pa Cole’s return to good health and good thoughts to the whole family.

  128. 128
    Matt Smith says:

    Cole, wishing your dad a full and speedy recovery. And also wishing he starts taking pride in your profanity. If my kid was a fuckin pottymouth, I’d be proud as hell. I’d want it on a bumper sticker.

  129. 129
    mvr says:

    Best wishes to you, your dad and your family!

  130. 130
    Aleta says:

    Sending all positive thoughts to your dad and his medical staff. Best wishes to your mom and you and sibs.

    Unexpected bypass (+ discovery of the need) has proved a new age medical miracle to my family members, w/ years of increased energy. Hope you and your family can get a bit of rest now. Take care.

  131. 131
    Aleta says:

    @Chacal Charles Calthrop: comes from EGFR mutation in people who don’t smoke that now has new drug that turns it into a chronic condition which does not need to be treated with chemo

    That’s amazing. I lost two young nonsmoker friends to that in the 90s.

  132. 132
    Aleta says:

    @Ella in New Mexico: ICU nurses and all nurses are the best. They make very difficult things much much better. Thanks for everything you do.

  133. 133
    WaterGirl says:

    Oh geez, I took yesterday off from the blog and I woke up to this news. Dad Cole, we’re with you. Good thing you are feisty like your son — that will stand you in good stead.

  134. 134
    suezboo says:

    Lots of woo-filled good wishes to Old Man Cole. And to Mom, John and the rest of the family. Good vibes, good luck.

  135. 135
    biff murphy says:

    Heart felt good vibes on the way! good luck sir!

  136. 136
    Laura Too says:

    Thinking good thoughts for all of you for a speedy recovery!

  137. 137
    karensky says:

    @frosty: Ditto.

  138. 138
    psychobroad says:

    Day late as usual, Best of everything Mr. Cole! Be well.

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