Saturday, December 20, 2014

crab meat...

 saw my DR today for my first post op visit.  he mentioned crab meat several times in reference to my meniscus. as he was opening the door he picked up my chart and i could hear him exclaim, "oh, i remember this knee".  not sure one wants their knee to be memorable to someone who does them all the time.  it was apparently an unusual injury, impressive even.  i was asking for a note to return to work on Dec 30, but he said Jan 6.  so now i'll need to write a note to my management team and also call FMLA folks as they have me returning earlier.
 of course he could be thinking of crab meat as i had to pay him over $1000 before he even started...perhaps crab meat was on his mind all along.  the pictures do kind of look like crab meat.  he went over them with me today. there was a bit of meniscus that was imbedded in a notch.  my sutures came out and now i just have steristrips.  one of those stitches seemed to be hanging on for dear life.  Thanks again to Katie for the ride.  it was a pretty quick appointment as was my PT meeting later in the day.  thanks to Nelly for that ride.  really all i did was fill out papers and schedule more appointments for next week.
 still some pain and i suspect that will carry on a bit.  he asked if i needed more pain meds. i  said no, i mean he'd given me 40 pills already.  he gave me a script for 30 more pills.  apparently, my concerns that i was being a wimp about all of this were unfounded.
 these are views out my bedroom window where i have chilled the past several days.  it's the most comfy place.  elevation and watching "The Big Bang" and "the Gilmore Girls" at my nieces suggestion.  so far i am getting sucked into that fun and quirky show.  hopefully i have not exceeded my time on the internet or streaming stuff...if i have i will have more than just a surgical bill to deal with.
 have also played several games of bejeweled and bookworm.  i am calling this all comfort tech...is there such a thing?  Blossom has been well cared for.  thank you to my faithful dog walkers.   She looked very concerned about my crutches the other day and a few times has needed some extra incentive to go for a walk without her mama...such a loyal and sweet canine!! Rio has also been loyal and sweet.  my biggest challenge is trying to keep my needy blind mastiff from killing me on the stairs.  she seems to believe she needs to walk right next to me when i go up/down those stairs.  she stays very close...i suspect i smell hospitally and this is very concerning for her.  perhaps she fears my demise and her missed meals.  i can weight bear and i mostly use the crutches for the stairs and to keep Rio at a safe distance.  the little ice cleats are helpful as well.
 ice magically appears in the cooler on the front deck...thank you to good friends and i have had a lovely meal each night.  my friends are the best!! my appetite is still not the greatest but we are getting there.  soon i will be myself again.  beautiful day, lovely sunset...wish i could be out there walking.  not really cleared yet for swimming and hiking.  every day is one day closer.
this is my armband...50 year old female...WHAT??  so strange!! no idea how they get this information...clearly this is incorrect and i am NOT a 50 year old female!!
 wrote to the new, possibly temporary commissioner of fish and game and the President of the United States.  not sure one sure write the President on narcotics, but hopefully it doesn't read that way.  he signed papers protecting Bristol Bay forevermore from oil and gas exploration. not mining and not walrus protection but i figure, what the hell, may as well ask, right?
 this is my ice machine.  the new cryo-cuff.  we are fast friends.  i put the ice in a big baggie and load it in my little green backpack for the trek up the stairs .  it likes to eat ice!!  don't want to have too much swelling.  may cruise to the mail box tomorrow to get my own mail..my dreams this week are small i know.  everyone keeps telling me to not overdo it...i must have a reputation or something.
 Pogi has been as loyal as the dogs and is ever at my side.  such a sweet cat my boy.
 a better shot of the ice cleat adaptors for those of you who live in more sunny weather.  these just click down over the bottoms of the crutches to help keep me safe on the ice.  more alert tonight, less narcotics on board.  hopefully soon i will have pictures from new walks to share with you.  was quite bummed to not being getting to go back to work when i'd hoped.  i'm sure it's for the best.  should have told him i had a desk job....then i would have been cleared earlier.
good night...things i'm thankful for tonight.  A.  my niece for the lovely suggestion of "gilmore girls" it has made the time pass quickly (hoping i don't get through all 153 episodes this week though. ) B.  my human, canine and feline support team...couldn't do this without you all!!  C.  decreasing pain and increased ROM.  every little bit helps.  :-)

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

random old pictures of me...surgery update

 i am coming out of the narcotic/anesthesia fog.  thanks to my good friends for helping me and the pups out.  it's been amazing and comforting to have so many offers and kind words.  i have felt well cared for...!!
 surgery went well from what i hear.  it was the clean out procedure with minimal repairs required.  so my recovery should go smoothly.  i can weight bear and tonight i have actually wandered the house crutch free.  i was so dreading being on crutches.  i will still use the things, especially on my first ventures out of the house i suspect.  we shall see.
 the first night i seemed to be moving great.  about 2-3 in the morning the surgery drugs were wearing off and i had increased pain and stiffness so not the most comfortable night, but that is to be expected.  had to refill the ice container in the wee hours and drag it upstairs.
 this afternoon i blended my narcotic at a lower dose with some ibuprofen and tonight i did the same with my daily dose of aspirin the doc wants me to take.  i think the ibuprofen will help the inflammation more.
 Katie took me to the surgery center and also came by tonight to load me up with ice, get my mail, do a few things that i wasn't sure i could manage . it's the little things that are tough and it's great to have folks take care of those things.
 yesterday Sandra picked me and and was my primary caregiver for the day and then again this morning, going the extra mile and taking Blossom to the bog for a stretch.  i guess Blossom wasn't keen on leaving me behind and had to be coached to leave the front of the house.  the poor dog had seemed concerned all morning when she saw me with the crutches.  i think she really hadn't noticed the night before due to her excitement at all the visitors (of course, they must be there to see her).  Rio has been a bit more of a challenge but we are coping.  a large blind dog and crutches in a not so large house...well, i'm sure you can imagine.
 Gail came by with nummy Ling and Louis dinner last night for us all and then stayed to get me all tucked in for the night.  she also has arranged with others care for me...so sweet.  Lena picked up Blossom yesterday for a walk and i think she plans on trying to do that again.
 in addition to that i have had loads of calls and texts and even flowers.  i feel very loved and blessed and i can't thank you all enough for your kind thoughts and words.  i can't wait to get back out there walking and taking pictures to share.  these pictures are all of me at various stages of life.  aging is just one more part of that.  life has it's ups and downs but on the whole i wouldn't change a thing.
 getting sore so i will keep this short and put the ice on while i watch a movie.
thankful for...a.  a safe and successful surgery so far b.  wonderful friends and family who have made these past 48 hours not only bearable but fun.  c.  a great life, in a great place with great people and pets!!

Monday, December 15, 2014

pre op done...just op left to go...

 i can eat for a few more hours and then i can have sips of water until like 7 am.  surgery has been moved back to the original time of 11:30 so i'll have to be there by 9:30 am...so no walk for the puppies in the morning as hoped.  oh well.
 Just MT showed up to walk so she ran an errand and met me at the dog park when my pre-op stuff was all done so that worked out well. i was happy that Blossom got to get out for a real walk today.  Rio seemed happy to stay home.  as i had little goodie bags for my Monday walk folks that is probably best.  Blossom left the bags alone...Rio could never be trusted with them. her nose would have located them and devoured all.
 these are from yesterday.  doubt i'll be up to writing anything tomorrow.  i suspect all will go fine.  hoping for the best, and the least required so that recovery will be speedy and i'll be back to walking and work quickly.
 had to sign a lot of papers...you know those...you could die papers, and if you do die we aren't responsible.  that's nice.  medicine is so personal.
 it was strange.  all those papers said i was a 50 year old female...i kept thinking, "that can't be me!", "i'm not a 50 year old female".  it's baffling.  you just get older...how does that keep happening?  occasionally something just forces you to see the truth about yourself.  mostly we just pretend things like being 50 aren't real.  other than the usual aches and such i really don't feel 50...but there it was all over my chart.
 to the staff, whom i've never met, i'm just another 50 year old female.  you feel like you have to find some way to distinguish yourself.  make yourself unique so that these people will want to make sure to treat you well.
 eating some chocolate kisses.  that will probably be enough for me to eat...best to end on a good note.
 i'm anxious tonight.  thankfully, my friends seemed to be more aware of how much help i'll need in the next few days than i have been.  i think i've been convincing myself that i won't need any help.  we all need help sometimes and i think honestly, it's good to occasionally need to accept help.  it's so much harder to accept help than it is to give it to others.  seems amazing to say that it's hard to accept kindness, but it is.  i think when you accept help and kindness you initially believe it means you are weak somehow.  being as independent and stubborn as i am (thanks Dad), you just live with this idea that getting help means you are weak and incapable.
 i am grateful that my friends are smarter than i am.  my basic needs will be met and if i need more, someone will be there.  i appreciate that greatly.  i just hope that my needs are minimal and that i am not putting people out too much.  don't want to be a bother.  i will try and do my part and accept help and ask for additional help if it seems that i do need it.
 i'm pretty active really and it's been frustrating to have had to cut back on the amount and strenuousness of my activities.  i'm stressed knowing that i will have to take a few steps backwards initially before i can hope for improvement.  i hope i can be patient with it all.
 i'm signed up for my first PT this friday and a post op appointment.  so i just need to get through friday and then i can know that forward motion is happening.  it's strange to make appointments and not have a work schedule to deal with.  haven't ever had that happen. i mean i've gone on vacations, but then i was just gone.
 thought these were cute.  wore my new skhoop the past few days. tomorrow i think i'll just wear some scrubs and a big coat to keep warm.  they kept my crutches there.  one less thing to deal with.  did some crutch training.  if i can't weight bear i would kill myself on stairs...
 loved these last pictures. the colors were amazing thru the trees.
 aren't these colors cool?
 these aren't photo shopped, the sky was just that pretty.
 i kept looking behind me as i headed back to the car.  i will miss this but i can usually get a view of the sunset from my room upstairs.
 you see the ice...that is the trail out there.  so far i haven't killed myself on it...but people are falling all over the place.  another co-worker just went out with an ice related injury this past week and is looking for pto donations.  sadly i'll be about out of pto so i can't help her out.
 I love Alaska but it takes some souls . i guess a snowmachine or 4-wheeler went into an open spot on one of the rivers up north.  i think 3-4 folks were missing and presumed drowned.  not to mention that boat that sank out in the Bering that no doubt took up to 50 souls.  another guy died in an avalanche recently...the stories are very common up here.  you always have to be aware and cautious.
 look at this light!! love, love, love these.  they may show up in next years Betsy calendar.  i guess i'll have to make 2 calendars..one for WARIS.  i may see if i can get a better deal for those through Vistaprint.  i really need to learn some stuff about marketing and all that.  now that WARIS has a business license we can sell stuff for profit on our web site to make money to help the walrus and Round Island.  i just have to figure it all out.
 have a shower to  take tonight . hibiclens tonight and again tomorrow morning.
 Kaladi's was fun today . a good group and very Christmassy.  i'll be out of Monday walk shape for a few weeks at least i guess.  hopefully, we can keep it going and my being out won't break the habit.  i think it's been good for everyone...a support group for us all.  it helps make winter more fun i think.
 Rio is snoring pretty loudly tonight.  so cute that big dog.  gotta love her.
 a few last looks and then i headed up the hill and off to run errands.
 well, i guess i should hop in the shower.
things to be thankful for today
1...competent and kind staff to help me get through this tomorrow
2...good friends who take care of me, even when i think i don't need to be taken care of
3...to live in a nation that, even if spendy at times, has medical care available to make our lives better.if i lived in many other places i'd just have to continue to work on this sore knee and make it worse.  to be able to repair things is a true blessing.  to have the hope of living a better and healthier life is always a gift.

beach sunday...

 pictures keep randomly adding into this as i write. lately it seems like blogger doesn't load all the pics i select, then i re-select them and again, nothing and then suddenly...there they all are.  so hopefully there aren't any doubles/triples of the same picture in today's post.  apologies if there are.  silly computers.
I often try to hit a beach on Sundays. this time i braved the sledding hill down to the coastal trail.  not being sure how nimble i shall be in a few days i figured it was worth it.
 funny there was some news show thing about being in tune to yourself.  people pay money to go someplace and experience silence, solitude, quiet.  they walk slowly and feel each step they take.  with all the ice out there on this trail you must focus completely on each step.  i guess i live in a state of zen most of the time.
 was again on the don't get to sleep until 3 am and then don't really get out of bed until noon.  i have an early day tomorrow so i will have to drag myself up and out no matter what time my body wants to sleep until.
 loved these of Blossom.  above were from yesterdays walk and below todays.  the sun was really smacking her for a bit.  i was going to take a selfie but i was being zen and focusing on walking.
 apparently, my peaceful/tranquil life is something to be envied.  after i'd finished walking and was about done running errands i noticed all these texts on my phone.  i think i'd slept through most of them.  i'm not a slave to my phone...today is an example of me not looking at the thing for hours.
 it was friends doing a better job getting me ready for surgery than i am.  i'm not very good at asking for help or even admitting that i might need help.  of course, as i fed the dogs today it did occur to me that it might be a bit difficult to do that for a few days after this surgery.  i may need help with those things.
 one friend will take me to the surgery and another will collect me and settle me in at home.  will probably just get her to feed the dogs as well.  since my surgery isn't until 1pm i think i will try to again get my butt out of bed and cruise the bog with the two of them.  that will make it easier for them to be alone the rest of the afternoon.
 made up some gift/goodie bags for the locals.  it will be a simple Christmas for me this year, but it does feel good to have something for pretty much everyone and to have stuff that needs to be mailed, done.  cards are out, house is decorated...even did some baking.  chocolate chip cookies and some brownies.  i was going to make the brownies into cute little trees like i did last year, but that didn't go as hoped...so they still taste good even if they don't look it.  oh well.
 thought a few of the raven shots in the sun turned out.  i think it was a raven...i still get confused between ravens and crows.  how do you tell the difference?
 it was another beautiful sunset this afternoon...well 3.  the sun comes up around 10 am and is down around 3. give or take 15 minutes.
 most of the city was cloudy as i drove from the house.
 got the neighbor gifts delivered.  rang the doorbells and nobody answered...which i must admit i was kinda happy about.  things to do so nice to be able to just drop them and go.  i'm such a hermit...i know, it's sad.
 a few others were out there enjoying the sunset.  this couple had a young pup.  i think they worried that it's exuberence was disturbing Blossom . she didn't mind, she is funny though as she really doesn't care about the dog...she just wants to get at her tennis ball.
 i often liken her to a football player.  waiting for her moment to get clear. eye on the ball constantly!
 of course, she would be like me in that she is not competitive.  she is kind and would hand the football over to the other players if they really wanted it and were nice about it.
 here she is with her beloved.  haha.
 started my day in the yard doing the weekly poop pickup.  all went well until i decided to slip the bag filled with poop over the fence. it was supposed to rest on the trashcan lid on the other side, instead the dang thing slipped and all the poop fell out in the front yard now...so i had to do poop pick up duty twice in one morning from either side of the fence.  i was not all that happy about it and was a bit gaggy i must admit.
 could have easily walked to the ice edge, but i was good where i was.  still have more pictures to add in for tomorrows entry
 i gotta figure out how to walk on crutches. i tried to teach a little crutch walking for a thing we had to do for nursing school...i wasn't very well versed in crutch walking. it seemed self explanatory until i was directed to demonstrate stairs.  i was not prepared.  this was often the case. in school as in life i often slide by with the minimal.
 i often say "i'm on a need to know basis".  never was an overachiever.  of course, looking back on my nursing school days i was in school full time and working full time (evenings and nights at the vet clinic) i also worked out seriously (lifting weights for 2 hours 3x/week, biking everywhere, dancing) oh the dancing...in between all of this i was out at the country clubs two stepping and line dancing probably 2-3 x/week.  now i need to use crutches and need that knowledge.  hopefully, i'll figure it out.
 signed up for a massage the day my massage therapist comes off of maternity leave in January.  wrote notes in my phone.  will have to try and remember to ask about possibly getting scrips for massages. crutches and such will no doubt irritate my little winging scapula.
 not as stunning in black and white, but it's always worth a try. still pretty.
 not much eaten today.  may have to pop down and eat something before i crash.  at ate one of those cookies with some water for breakfast and then just kept going. that was for my wake and feed the dogs breakfast...Blossom wakes me up for breakfast around 8-8:30 am.  i think i'll set the alarm though.
 watched a bit of barbara walters (or baba wawa as my brothers used to call her) top ten most influential people.  not sure i ever agree with her.  her top one was the lawyer that married George Clooney...really?  another one was one of the Koch brothers, really.  i guess those guys are influential, but i can't say that they should be put on some block and idolized.  the brothers sued their own mother...that really tells you something about the level of greed.
 they were suing each other and the mother decided that any of them that sued the others would be cut out of the family money...so they turned around and sued her.  greedy jerks!!
 again she said this would be the last time she'd do it.
 pancake ice on the beach at low tide.
 these were from yesterdays walk.
 not as stunning of a sunset but i did enjoy the frost.
 always funny how the frost will be hit and miss in an area.  the ice fog comes in patches.
 not a horrible day to walk along the waters edge.
 there continues to be snow in the forecast but none has fallen yet.
 more frost shots.

 kinda cool
 the planes fly right over head at point worzonof.

 the house isn't clean, but i guess it's cleaner.  there is ice on the front deck.  i think i'll know more after my pre-op meeting...
 still need to schedule my vein procedure.  haven't heard about that since i went.  was it approved?  who knows.  wasn't sure what order to do these in.  could i still squeeze that in before the year is out or will it need to wait til next year...it's looking like it will be next year.  hopefully when these are both done i will be set up to get fit as a fiddle and ready to hike some nice ones next summer...
 one more from today.  always pretty out there.  great sledding hill.  not much sledding this year so far.  skating/kick sledding we've had plenty of though.
 good night...
grateful for
a..safe travels over ice in a zen fashion
b..the people who have influenced me, which have been friends and family not stars and millionaires
c..getting stuff done, it does feel good sometimes to knock a few things off the to do list, especially around the holidays!!