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Thursday, April 30, 2009

Relief Is

Seeing your doctor and having him tell you to let up a bit on the rehab! He said I was doing fine and I was too worried and that I didn't have to use the weights to straighten the knee. He said to WALK.

You see..the problem is: I didn't go to a rehab facility. I wanted to rehab it myself. I was so worried that I was behind in where that knee should be at 9 weeks post op. I could imagine him telling me I was behind and that I should have went to a rehab facility. I was so relieved when he was happy with the progress of my knee and that I should slack off a bit. He said "you know you can overdo this rehab stuff".

I plan on walking every morning and evening. He promises that lots of walking will improve the extension and that I was a mere fraction of being where I should be on the extension. He also said "time". Give it some time to heal. I won't see him for another month. I have a month of walking the neighborhood.

Right now I'm being taken out to lunch. Ciao!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Michael Douglas and TKA

My sister called this morning and told me that Michael Douglas was on The Tonight Show and he had had a total knee replacement 4 weeks ago. Since I didn't get to see the show, I went to www.hula.com and looked up "talk shows" and then to The Tonight Show and then to the M. Douglas clip. I wanted to see what he had to say. I got to watch him walk across the stage to where Jay Leno greeted him. I've heard some say he walked normal. He did look good but he did have that "hitch" to his gait that results from not having "0" extension. I could see that "hitch" because of my recent knee replacement. That is the same "hitch" I have when walking. Sometimes it's worst then other times. If I extend my leg on the coffee table then stand up immediately and walk, I have better extension and the limp is barely noticeable.

I would have liked to see M. Douglas stand up from his chair there on the dais. I did notice also that his flexion was about 90 degrees. I'm sure standing is a challenge for him also.

Tomorrow I have an appointment with my ortho doctor. I'm ready to see what he thinks about where I am in this rehab process.

I know that I have made some progress. Right now I'm due to sit on the floor with my weights. I took a Vicodin about 20 minutes ago. It's time to stretch and burn once again.


P.S. to my froggy sister that has a difficult time reading my blogs, I'm posting them in a bigger font instead of a different color for her old blind eyes.

Summer and Pictures











I don't know if it's officially summer but whether it is or not, we think so here in south west Louisiana. Carrie spent all morning in her pool. She even had breakfast in her pool. I just took her home and now I"m heading for a nap. A short post. A post of summer and pictures. My sister said it was difficult to read the black print of my blogs on the tan background so I'm going to try posting them in white print. Any opinions?





Tuesday, April 28, 2009

First Freedom


Today Carrie rode her tricycle down the driveway where she made a hard left turn and entered onto the sidewalk that runs along the front of our yard. She rode to the next driveway where she turned around and rode back to our driveway. She did this a couple of times then after those few times she didn't turn back when she reached the driveway next door. She continued on down the sidewalk and soon we had to go get her and have her turn around.


This may not seem like a big deal to anyone but it is to me. This was her first trip alone. She ventured forth on her own today. This is the start of freedom.This is her first taste of adventure and freedom on her own wheels.


It wasn't that long ago that she couldn't reach the pedals on her trike. She didn't know how to turn the handlebars to make it go where she needed to go. She couldn't dodge the flower pots; she would plow right into them. She would stand astride the trike with her feet on the ground and lift the trike to turn it in the direction she needed to go. I watched today as she cut between the brick pillars; a tight squeeze to make it through. She uses the pedals for brakes and stands on them to stop the trike. The trike goes into a slide as she jams on the brakes. She has conquered her first set of wheels and her first trip alone. It was a memorable afternoon and a sad one for me.


I had to explain to hubby how and why I felt a bit sad to see her doing so well on her trike. Too soon she will move away from us too. Everything moves too fast. Everyone moves too fast.


Right now she is a learning sponge. She watches as we do something she had never seen nor done. She is getting a lesson. Soon she takes that lesson and does it on her own. She is receptive to teaching. Most of the time she acquiesce to our rules. I say "most of the time". There are times when she insists on doing it her way; when our rules are not her wishes. We cope. We explain and gently insist. We don't use bully tactics just because we are bigger or at least not until we have explained the "why" . Usually it doesn't take bullying to get her to do things our way. I realize she is only 3 yrs old but she is a miniature big person. She understands. She may not have a lot of life experiences but she can understand reason.



Right now I have her in the tub and she is waiting on me to go play with the hand puppets with her. I must hurry. Too soon she will be too old for make believe puppets too. Good night for now.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Happy Carrie





Carrie is on her way to my house. We are going to get some mulch and flowers and do some yard work. She will he a happy child for this!

9 Weeks Post Op TKR

You can almost see a knee here. Some definition is returning. I will admit..it has a long way to go before it looks like the unoperated knee.
Clinical report: Still unable to maintain full extension without first placing weights on the knee while sitting on the floor. Muscles get sore with exercise. Still taking Percoset when needed and still at about 100 degrees flexion.
This is my weekly post op udate.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Sunday April 26

I'm sitting on the floor with the laptop on the coffee table, my leg outstretched with the heel of my foot on a pillow and weights on my knee. Of course I have a few Percosets on board which I took about 45 minutes ago. It's time to try for more extension. Just another day of Percosets and rehab. I must increase the amount of rehab time the remainder of this week. I have a doctor's appointment on the 30th and he will be checking the amount of flexion and extension I have attained. I want this to look good. I will probably not be able to do much walking tomorrow because of the stressing of the leg today. This is a must and this is normal procedure. No pain no gain. I truly know what that means now.
Grey Gardens is playing on HBO and I'm tuned in and watching it again. Hubby is watching the draft picks for the NFL. It's a beautiful spring Sunday here.
Carrie should be returning today from her visit with her father. I'll go get her and have her spend a few hours here later today. At the risk of sounding totally disconnected in this blog, I need to insert a comment here regarding the post I did titled "Beneath The Skin". That blog was about trust and really knowing someone.
Here I would like to say, although I may feel I don't really know anyone nor totally trust anyone, I will have to amend that to say "except for the very young".
With Carrie, I trust her to be mostly honest (if she breaks something, she may violate that truth and honesty ) and at only 3 years of age and those 3 years I have watched her closely so I can say that I know her. As life intrudes and molds her and she grows and expands her circle of friends and acquaintances I might have to amend this statement again. There will be much about her that she will hold secret and some of those things she might share with one she chooses; there will be some things she won't want to share with anyone. We all have our secrets, our fantasies and our dreams. Some of those we share and some we don't.
My self imposed sadist exercises are over. I don't expect to be able to walk tomorrow. I must post a note on the fridge or I'll be depressed tomorrow when I don't remember why I'm in so much pain that I can't walk!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

TKR Feelings

Done. I did get my chores done this morning. I spent some time hanging around outside and then inside for a nap. I've had such a good day. I've walked all over the place with minimal pain. Not totally pain free; muscles still creak and groan a little but I'm not complaining at all. I even have visions of total recovery in the future. This is a pleasant respite from those times when I'm disgusted and exhausted with all the rehab exercises with little or no hints of improvement for days and days. To have a day when you can feel some progress is rare and welcomed.
Neither one of us wanted to cook so we went out to dinner which left no kitchen cleanup for me!
I'm writing this in the off chance that some one that has had a total knee replacement might surf into this blog for some information and encouragement. Two months ago I had the total knee replacement (tkr). Many times after that I have had tearful moments. Moments when I felt it would never get better. Painful rehab exercises. Friends and family and online friends that would call or write to offer encouragement which helped.
I wanted a guarantee that I would recover. In the early part of this I worried I would never get the flexion or extension I needed to fully recover. I still don't have full flexion and extension but I do notice a huge difference since the surgery. Those changes came slowly. I'm beginning to feel that it will happen in time. I'm calming down a bit now and taking it day by day. I'm grasping the small improvements and appreciating each one. This is how I feel today. Today is my all. I shall cope with tomorrow when it arrives.

To Do, To Do

Damn! I'm up and about and pain free. Yep, those muscle cramps and the inability to walk yesterday can be blamed on the wall slide exercises. I'll do more but I may just not do any this weekend so I can enjoy the two days. After yesterday, I'm positively giddy that I can walk and walk pain free today. Just that insures a good day.
I'm looking around at all the stuff I need to do and most of it is inside. The sweeper, the floors that need mopped, dishes, beds and I don't want to do a thing. I do know that all this won't take more then 1/2 hr if I kick it in gear and just move. I'm getting primed to do just that. I know the urge is going to strike and I'll be like a dervish whirlwind of activity here.
It is really too nice outside to be inside at all. I need to move now; I need to get my chores done so we can go play this afternoon. I also need to do chores on the off chance that I stumble into the phone that appears to have disappeared. I don't even have any kids around to blame for misplacing that telephone. Sometimes it's just not smart to have cordless phones. In the old days we knew where the phone could be found. It had a cord attached to it and the other end was attached to the base. Ah, those were the days huh? We always knew and we never had to go on the great phone hunt.
I think I feel the urge to do something. On the off chance that I'm really feeling that urge, I'm signing off and moving. Moving to get some stuff done. If this isn't what I'm feeling, I can be found surfing the net or watching the wind blow from my chair on the patio.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Margarita Time

Last night I had a brilliant idea. I've been looking for ways to do some flexion exercises on my leg. In the past with other surgeries on it, I would lay on the sofa and hang my leg over the arm of that sofa and let the weight of the leg pull the leg down. I find I can't do this with the sofa I have and the chairs in this house don't allow this either.

The brilliant idea I had last night was to lay on the king size bed on my back with my head toward the foot of the bed. I then scooted up and placed my feet on the wall above the bed. I don't have a headboard on this bed so I could use the wall to do slides. I let my legs slide down the wall a little at a time. I would stay for few minutes and then slide my feet down a little more. The burn and the pain told me I was stretching the muscles. At the end of this exercise, I couldn't move my legs to the side to get out of this position. It hurt! This is to get my leg to flex or 'bend'. This morning as usual I felt muscle pain when I got out of bed but I assumed it was just the normal soreness I felt each morning. The problem is, it never got better as the day progressed. We went to a few stores this morning to look for flowers for the mailbox garden. I could barely walk. I took a Percoset which did little to relieve the pain when I tried walking. I finally realized toward the late afternoon the why of the pain I was having.
I feel better knowing the why. You think there is something wrong with the appliance and you get nervous. You feel as though you have lost any progress and advancement you have attained in the past weeks so knowing the why offers a huge amount of relief. I also know I won't be doing much walking today and very little exercising.
I will be doing more wall slides but it won't be today.
The mailbox garden got planted today. Carrie helped. She stayed with us to plant the garden and then did some pool time. It's a beautiful day here. Maybe tomorrow I won't be so sore and can enjoy the weekend.
12 bands are playing downtown tonight for Festival Internationale. Maybe we will go for a while. Right now the steaks are on the grill and I'm sipping a Margarita. Ah, it IS a good day!

Travel Interruptus

Oh my! I"ve followed your blog and recognized your excitement. I've read your posts about your feelings regarding his trip and your plans. He is finally visiting. You have waited so long for this moment. You say you have his itenary? You are to pick him up at the airport. I'm sure you will have a lot of site seeing to do. He is from another country and will want to see as much as he can on this visit.



I know that this is his 3rd planned trip to the USA and the prior two trips had to be cancelled. What luck huh? I think he must be the unluckiest traveler ever! I have friends that have been to Europe many times and not once have they had to cancel their trips. I too made a trip to Europe and didn't have to cancel and reschedule. I can't imagine his disappointment each time he had to cancel his trips. Maybe this time will be the lucky trip in that it comes to fruition.

Beneath The Skin

I've been watching the news reports on the Craigslist killer. Particularly interesting to me has been the killer's fiance. She is defending him with statements that go something like this. "He wouldn't hurt anyone" "I don't believe any of this" "He is a kind and gentle soul" ad infinite.
My question is "Do we really know anyone?" You might think you know that person that you have slept beside for the past 20 years. You may think you know how they would behave in any given situation but do you really?
The man that kills his wife to avoid paying alimony or sharing with her in the divorce proceedings half his wealth; the man who kills his wife to avoid being confronted by the lies he has told, the money he has gambled away without her knowledge or the affair he was having. Do you really know who you are sleeping with? I always think back to Scott Peterson and all the lies he told his lover about being in Paris when in fact he was just down the road at his home. Why? What was the point in telling these lies. Of course, the worse lie in that whole scene was the fact he killed his wife and unborn son and pitched them into the bay.
And then there are those that tell lies without reason. I don't understand telling a lie when the truth would suffice. A lie for no reason? A lie that isn't intended to cover something up? Is that pathological lying?
I know I used the male gender in this discussion; you can substitute "her" any where in the above text. It does seem to me that most of these incidents are "he" though.
I find that a woman will stick around; she wants to believe what she wants to believe. She will often times stay in a marriage when the husband has become debilitated; some men would stay but many opt out of the caretaker role but that's a whole other discussion.
Every time I see the picture flash across my TV screen of the Craigslist killer, the same thought flashes across my brain. "he doesn't look the type". "He looks like the kid next door". Tell the truth. You have thought that also. If I had a son I would be looking at him wondering just how well I knew him too. Scary huh?
Hubby and I were laying in bed watching a movie a couple of nights ago. It was a thriller. The woman and her sister schemed to murder the husband. The psych doctor was going to be set up to take the blame for this murder. The wife used a hand weight to bash her husband in the side of the head. Soon a commercial came on and I went into the dressing room where hubby's hand weights were. Just the other day I was trying to think of a weight I could use when I sat and stretched my knee. We are eating the potatoes so the bag doesn't have the weight it used to. If this confuses you, then you might have to go back and read previous blogs about using a bag of potatoes for a knee weight. I digress and sometimes often I digress.
Anyway, I bought the weight out of the dressing room and put it on the desk in the bedroom and climbed back into bed. What I didn't notice was the look on hubby's face. I did hear him say "Um, what's the weight for?". I had to laugh when I saw his face. I also had to explain about getting it to take to the living room on my next trip through to use as a weight.
Trust? Do you really know who you are sleeping beside?

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Thursday, Busy Thursday

Another spring day in SW Louisiana. Warm, not hot, and no humidity. Perfect! And for an extra treat we have a 20mph breeze.

I went shopping for more flowers today . I didn't find anything at Wally World and I didn't make it to Home Depot to look for some. I wanted hubby to plant the mailbox garden with some bright cheery flowers. I did buy some more weed and feed to dose the yard again. It is in really good shape this summer with hardly any weeds but the few that are there I want to address.


I got out the spreader and loaded it up and walked the lawn both front and back. Then I got the lawn tractor out and zipped around the yard giving it it's weekly grooming.


My car got a nice bath today too. Did I mention that I've been busy?

I'm also gathering up the things I need to start a painting project. I need to get moving. I'm done waiting on myself to heal. This healing will be in progress for the next year so I may as well do what I can during that time.


Festival International is in full swing here. We haven't been downtown to hear any of the music yet. That might be a weekend thing to do.
Right now we are watching documentries on the Katrina/New Orleans disaster. I sat here within 2 1/2 hrs away from N.O. when all that went down. A strange time!
Visiting New Orleans 4 months afterwards was a sad sight.


Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Camels of The Non Animal Type

I was reading a new post by Mark Morford who writes for the SF Chronicle and a link to his posts can be found on this blog page. This link is an old link to an old post about smoking. I giggled all the way through the post. I loved smoking also. I often wished it could be healthy and cheap.
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/g/a/2005/03/11/notes031105.DTL
I'm now 8 weeks a non smoker. Some days at certain times I really really miss them. During those times I get very frightened. It wouldn't take much effort to pick up a smoke. When I'm around people that are smoking and they are in numbers larger then one, I feel left out. Everyone is having the best time. I watch silently as they tap that cigarette out of the pack. I watch them bring it to their mouths, find their light source and flick the wheel to produce the flame. They touch the flame to the end of that cigarette and take that first inhale and slowly slowly exhale. They don' t look unhappy. The ritual has been completed until they light the next one. I miss that ritual. Not often. I miss it a few times a day. I don't crave a cigarette while watching others smoke. I observe the ritual and miss that when watching them light up. The craving comes at odd times and watching others smoke is not the trigger for that craving.
I don't want you to think this is painful. The craving is not painful. It comes and goes swiftly. I find that I think less about cigarettes since quitting. When I smoked I would obsess about when I could have the next one. If I went somewhere, I was always scoping out the scene to find where the smokers could go to have a smoke. I would quickly leave a restaurant after eating to grab a smoke. I didn't linger in non smoking areas and since most of the public places are non smoking I felt alienated.

I do find that I'm happy that I'm no longer lighting up. I can go any place I desire without having to worry about THE DESIRE and accommodating that desire. I actually hang out in places that are smoke free. It's a freedom. Free from that monkey on my back and that's the way I felt about my addiction. I wish I could be like some that can light one and not want another. If I light one, I'll be back to 3packs a day in the next 3 days so I don't do it. I know. I've been down that road the last time I tried quitting.

I won't ostracize you for smoking. It's your decision to smoke and it will be all your decision to quit. I'll make you as comfortable as possible with ashtrays, drinks and a nice outdoor area here to smoke. I won't make you feel as though you have to hide your habit or explain your habit. I've been there too and I was quick to anger when someone commented on my habit. I won't do that to you. I don't have a license to be rude to you because you smoke. I felt that a large number of the non smoking masses thought it was perfectly acceptable to say what they wanted to the non smokers. I won' t be that person. Can I get you a light?

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Just a Tuesday

It's a great day here. When I left for the shopping this morning I had to wear a jacket. The temperature was in the low 50's. A few hours later and the jacket is no longer needed. The day is bright with sunshine and a breeze is keeping the tree branches and the flowers in sway motion.

This is my kind of day and if I had a wish it would be to have all the days of summer here in Southwest Louisiana be identical to this one. No humidity and no high temperatures. I hate to sweat. I hate being hot and if I had a choice I would rather the cold weather then the summer heat. I suppose the carribean with it's 70 degree summers is where I would be most happiest.
Oh yeah, like I'm going to get to live there year round. Maybe I should be buying some lottery tickets and keep my fingers crossed

I was pleasantly surprised this morning to find my leg had good extension and I could walk with very little limping. Initially it's painful to walk when I get out of bed. The muscles are screaming out and I'm feeling the same. After being up and about for a few minutes the pain gradually ceases. I don't know if this is normal; if this is to be expected over the term of this knee or if it's temporary and part of the healing of the muscles. I'm hoping eventually to get out of bed and have none of this tightness of the muscles.

I went shopping and spent quite a long time in the store. My leg didn't tire out for a long time. I eventually had to take a break and sit down when I got home but this is better then it has been. It's improvement and I'll take it.

I'm beginning to think that there is truth is someone else's observation that
the best rehab is walking and a lot of walking.

Monday, April 20, 2009

TKR 8 weeks post op


TodayAlign Left is 8 weeks post op. Clinically I have more movement. I can get almost fully straight on extension by sitting on the floor, extending my knee and putting 16 lbs of weight on my knee. Of course by doing this I create an enormous amount of pain and burning and the next day I've again lost the full extension. On flexion, I gain a little bit more each time I work on the flexion exercises. I've finally calmed down a little and decided that eventually this will all come together and I'm trying not to count the weeks post op and gauge where I should be. This is where I am now. It will get better. I can walk. I can get around to do things. The strength in my leg is better. I get less burn and more walk time before it tires out so I'm improving. It's slow going. That's the way it is and that will have to be good enough for me.


The knee swelling continues to decrease and I can actually see some shape returning to the big blob. On the sides of the patella I can see some indentation. The hematoma on the left has completly disappeared. Improvement!


This is just my update for post op week 8.

Babies, Bookcases and Bullshit

Observations on Women Seeking Man in the year 2009:


Sitting in a garage for a week won't make you a car. Sitting in a Catholic church for a month won't make you a Catholic. Cars are assembled in Detroit and take weeks to complete. Becoming a Catholic is not an over night process. Most religions hook the children at a young age to indoctrinate them to all the fairy tales they believe in. I don't understand how an adult with no religious background could embrace any religion overnight. Do you make this decision based upon the man you are stalking? How does one change to accommodate some one else? Can these changes be permanent? I've watched friends try to remake themselves into someone that would appeal to the man they were interested in. The first step in this process is to observe his likes and dislikes then mold yourself into that person. Why should they feel they must do this? Some women would feign a huge appetite for sex. Some would go the kitchen route by deluging that male with good home cooked meals. Some would change multiple things about themselves to entice that elusive male catch. I was amazed to find this still being done in this date and time. We used to call this "selling out" when I was younger.

Making or accepting excuses time after time for broken promises and out right lies; something I find difficult to accommodate and will instigate a requirement on your part to prove yourself. Anger building after each disappointment. Anger knowing that your friends and family are observing the lies he tells and your excuses for him. Directing anger to others instead of to the person causing you pain; a phenomenon I have seen too often. To rebuild trust is required. How much of this behavior is required to negate all future trust?


Another thing I've pondered is issue avoidance. I have a friend that has a son that recently ended up on the wrong side of the law and had to go away for punishment. Although my friend isn't happy about this, when we talk, the subject usually comes up. She doesn't try to avoid it and neither do I. We discuss it for a while, questions are asked and answered and I never feel as though she avoids the subject. To avoid the subject would be like denying the elephant in the room. It would make our conversations very abnormal, stilted and uncomfortable so we address the issue at times and then move on. That's a normal conversation among friends. This is an important issue in her life and we don't studiously avoid it. That would make it a bigger issue then what it is already.

A strange post I admit. It is happening and it's just an observation. A report on that observation. Just an observation that everyone with dating experience must have observed also.

Viewing the world through rose tinted glasses has never been a fault of mine. I'm not denying my faults but this was never one of them. I'm working on all the other faults I have. On that note, I'm out of here to do some wonderful stretches and feel the burn!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Heartbreak/Broken Promises

It started early in the morning. She waited. She had been told yesterday that he was coming for her and would be here tomorrow. It is now tomorrow and she waits. She hears a car and runs to the door. I follow knowing she will want to open the door and look outside. I swing the door open and step back and she rushes forward to peek out the door to see if he is outside. Her little face looses it's smile as she notes there is no one outside. She steps back inside and I close the door. Her little shoulders are slumped; there is no smile on her face.
We get busy until the next car sound she hears from the street and she rushes to the door once again and waits for me to open the door for her. We repeat the same move as before; she steps to the door and peers out. We step back in and shut the door. He is not there. This continues throughout the morning and the afternoon. Each time she looks more disappointed; dejected and lost.
By the time 6PM arrives and the love of her life has failed to show up, I call her mother to report that he didn't show up and she is devastated.
The ending to this story isn't important. It's late. He should have been here early and she knew it. A promise was broken and a heart was shattered. A promise is an article of honesty. Not keeping that promise is being dishonest to her. Will she ever trust him completely again? I won't forget easily.
How sad to promise someone something; someone that trusts and believes in you and that loves you with all her heart. How sad that someone could be so uncaring and selfish as to disappoint after a promise has been made. That hurt can only be felt by someone that loves and she does love her daddy. She will forget. She is young. In a few more years she won't be forgetting so quickly the promises broken.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

YEOW! OUCH!

This will be a very short post. A post of pain. I've stretched and stretched. I'm almost straight. Flexion, extenstion and again and again.

As I exercised, I watched Grey Gardens on HBO. Drew Barrymore and Jessica Lange were awesome as Little Edie and Big Edie.

A storm is playing with the night. Right now the thunder is deafening; the crashes are so loud I can feel the house vibrating. Bright flashes of lightening are shocking the black night and the street is flowing with water. Yep, a big ole storm is assaulting us tonight.

I've had a long day. I'm going to bed early.



Smoothie Rox


















This is a Ted day. We are at the Smoothie Rox in Youngsville, La. a small town within a few miles of my place. Ted and his freind Tyler are playing the Playstation 3. There is a line of 5 laptops along the wall for customer use. I've never been here before and since this is Ted's day to do what he wants, he chose to come here. A nice place. Tables, sofa, lounge chairs, laptops and Playstation. What more could one want.

The weather is warm and filled with gusty blasts of air. We are still in line for more rain. We got a bunch of that stuff last night. Carrie left with her dad early this morning to spend the next few days with him. She was so excited to see him. I told her she had to get dressed right away this morning as her Dad was coming to pick her up. She never argues about dressing when she knows her dad is coming to pick her up.

We are ready to leave now but I will be stopping in here occasionally.
We are on our way to a friend of Ted's. He and Tyler will spend the afternoon there and I will go home and eat some Percosets and cuddle up with my 10lb bag of potatoes and my ankle weights. Repeat of last night. Some more stretch and burn playtime. I just love this. I will surely miss having all this fun some day...I hope. Maybe someday I will be picking up a bag of potatoes with the intention of peeling and cooking some instead of using them for a leg weight. Someday.
VIDEO: Click on arrow to play
video

Friday, April 17, 2009

Stormin and Stretching

I can hear the thunder from here in the office. Carrie is using my laptop in the living room and Ted is using the other laptop in the bedroom. We are connected!



I am taking a break. I have been using 16.5 lbs of weight on my knee and I have major burn going on right now. I also have a straight leg and no limp when I go for a test drive on it. I just wish it would stay this way after I flex the leg. I'll be doing more of this all weekend and by Monday I will be able to determine if it is working.


I think it's time to get Carrie in bed. Her little eyes are just slits now. She yawns and starts to sway; she jerks herself awake and chatters to keep herself alert. I'm going to turn on the TV in the bedroom to some cartoons and let her relax herself to sleep. She hugs me as I carry her to the bedroom and whispers "I love you Nanny". I hold her tightly enjoying the feel of her arms around my neck, her breath on my cheek. Sweetness!

We watched TV for a little while. She yawns some more. When I touched the button to turn the TV off, I heard her whisper "Thank you Nanny. Thank you for turning the TV off." Another yawn and a hand squeeze and Carrie was asleep. I slipped out of bed and came back to the living room. I plan on doing more weights on my knee.

Hoping this finds everyone where they are expected to be tonight; or with some very good excuse for not being there. ;-)

Lazy Today

I should have been doing more exercises. I should have done more walking. I've done little of both today but I'm on my way to the sidewalk and some serious walking around the neighborhood.
I''ll admit it. I'm a slacker. I'm grabbing my cell phone and my walking shoes and heading out for a while. Bad weather is headed this way. If I'm going to do a few blocks, I must go now!

Special Friday

It's a special Friday for some. For others it's just the end of another work week leading into those favored two days off.
I'm home alone which is a rare event. Ted stayed overnight. Daughter and Carrie showed up this morning to collect Ted. They stayed for a while and Carrie was able to get in her pool for some water fun. I'm still waiting on the storm to start.
Yesterday I drove to a friends' house in Breau Bridge. I took the shortcut to her house which takes you through Lake Martin and the swamp. The road through there is graveled and the speed limit is a slow 35 miles per hour. It's a bird sanctuary and there are always a lot of people parked on both sides of the road with cameras in hand or on tripods. The egrets are like white dots over the trees in the swamp. I didn't see any alligators but then I didn't really slow down and look for them. You have to look carefully. They are submerged and most of the times you can see their eyes and part of their backs. They appear as logs in the water and will lay unmoving for hours at a time.
When I got to my friends house, I looked over her computer for a while, then I went next door to meet her cousin. Jim is a victim of muscular dystrophy. He is bed fast; he has to be hoyer lifted out of bed and to his wheel chair. He used to live in Galveston Bay in a beach house. The beach house was on the right side of the road and a few feet from where you boarded the ferry to take you to Galveston Island. When Hurricane Ike hit, that whole section of houses was removed and never to be rebuilt.
He moved back to Louisiana to live with family. My friend Peggy moved him into a shotgun house on her property that had been used by her family members as needed. He needed the help.
When he lived in his beach house, it was like living in a commune. Many of the people that lived in that area were disabled and had wandered in from the sea or from land and found places to live. They helped each other survive. One lady would clean Jim's house and watch over him for whatever Jim could pay her with. Another fellow would clean up around the outside of his house and someone else would bring food a few times a week. Everybody there did what they could to help each other survive on little money and live with their disability. Jim said that many of these people had no family to check up on them and when the hurricane hit, they were not counted among the missing as they had no family members looking for them.
I walked into Jim's room through french doors that had been installed by my friends' husband. The doors lead into his bedroom. He spends a lot of time in his hospital bed; that bed faces these french doors so he always has a good view of the outside. Just outside these french doors is a deck with a ramp and a sidewalk that leads to the pool. On nice days Jim is transferred to his wheel chair for a few hours on the deck or at the pool. Jim smiled and shook my hand. He said he had heard a lot about me from Peggy. I mentioned the same thing to him.
He asked me how I was doing after surgery. What could I say? I'm looking at a man that hasn't be able to take care of himself for years and years. I'm recuperating from knee surgery; it will get better. How could I complain? Even if I walk with a limp the remainder of my life, I CAN walk. This man used to be president of a bank. Well educated. A man that has to depend on someone now to bring him food and take care of his basic needs. Nobody said life had to be fair but why does it have to suck so bad for some? How little we appreciate how well we have it. Sometimes we all could use a wake up call. Wake up to all the good we have. Wake up to what we CAN do. Focus on all the positives. How easy it is to lose sight of all the good things we have in our lives.
Here's to you Jim. I'm so happy to have met you!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Normal? Not Quite
















I planted some flowers yesterday. This is a sure sign that my life might be getting back a little of the normalcy I used to enjoy. I'm tired of sitting around and doing nothing. There are so many little things I need and want to do around here. I also bought some paint. I guess it doesn't matter if it takes a week to get a room painted. I won't be able to do things as fast as I once did them but slower doesn't mean it won't get done. It just means it will get done at a slower rate.


This weekend is supposed to be full of rain and more rain. I won't be painting anything if I wait to do it this weekend. I plan on being busy today but right now I"m going to get a quick shower, get dressed and put my walking shoes on and do a block or two or more. It will help loosen the knee up. I think walking is the best exercise I could do for it.
And on another note, the effects of the global recession are beginning to creep into this part of the country. It's only effecting the exploration and new searches for oil. That has virtually came to a halt. The producing wells are still going but have laid off a lot of the contract or ancillary help. Yep. It's arriving here finally.
The young generation of oil field workers who have never been through a down swing are now experiencing this for the first time. Few of them put any of their money away. They had no clue that it would ever end. This is a lesson they had to learn by actually living it. This is only the start of it. I expect it to get worse in the coming year.
And on that depressing note, I'm going for a walk!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Trust you say?

You fly half way across the globe to meet your love. What? He doesn't meet you at the airport? You have planned this trip for a year. He knew you were coming?

You schedule a 3 week visit and feel that even though that is all the time you can allot for this visit you wish it could be more. You use all your time off from work for this visit. You spend your own money for the plane ticket. You know you can't afford it but you go anyway. Use your charge card. Take presents. Atheist and now you adopt his religion. At 37 years old you become Catholic? Give up being a vegetarian. He enjoys meat. Learn to hike and add yoga to your routine because these are the things he likes to do. Change yourself and mold yourself into somebody he might like. Don't take any chances. Profess to love sports. He does.

You spend this time with your love on the upper floor of his parents home since that is where he lives. This man is how old? Ah, 40 you say?

He doesn't rent a place for you and he to have privacy after waiting a year to spend this time together? Wouldn't you think he would have wanted to spend this time in a bedroom that wasn't directly above his parents rooms? You make a trip with him. You pay for the rooms while on this trip? What? What does he contribute? His body and his time? What? He can't afford to spend any money on you? He has to contribute to his parents support? Ah, I see.

You didn't meet one of his friends while there? Ah, you say. They live in other towns. I see. So you have 3 weeks and train passes. He didn't at least want to show you off to his closest buddy?

I don't recognize the person you have become. You're going to build a life with this person? This life is based on honesty and trust you say? Trust? He makes appointments to meet your parents while they are abroad. He cancels all three appointments and never meets them. Trust?
Oh, this is the same man that promised to be at your graduation?

He missed his trip to the USA for Valentine's day?

He missed Easter trip?

I've planned a European trip; and actually got on the plane and got there.

Your own mother has scheduled many trips and hasn't had to cancel one of them

You yourself have scheduled many trips and made all of them.

I'm just astounded that the love of your life has an excuse for every trip planned; for every meeting planned; for every phone call forgotten and on and on and on.
At the end of your visit he doesn't go to the airport to see his love board her flight home knowing he won't be seeing her for at least 3 months. Her flight is cancelled. She spends another night and he doesn't race back to the airport to spend that last night with her?
As you are parting he promises to visit for Valentine's day? You trust him to be here. He promised. What? He doesn't come? He has a job interview? What? You had him mail you a copy of the letter requesting he be at this job interview? Trust?

Even romance novels of which you have lived in for the past 30 plus years would never end this way. Your romance novel love spends every second he can with you before having to split up for the trip home.
What is wrong with this picture?

You keep hidden his special blog site? Oh. The one with all the full frontal nudity with erections? You don't want your family and friends to know? Trust? Ah, I see. So this truth and honesty only extends to the boundaries you erect?

On the subject of games that couples play; does deceit and deception count? Ah, so it doesn't pertain to you? Keeping up appearances you say? Having friends and family not know everything? I see. Truth, trust and honesty in a relationship.




I'm exhausted. Two sets of rules. It will take some memory skills to keep the two sets of rules straight. Your rules and everyone elses rules.
A lot of work. I don't know if I'm up to it. I'll have to sleep on it. I'll get back to you.
Good night.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

A Tuesday











Nothing special going on although I'm sore. My knee is the part of me that is sore and it's not really the knee but the muscles surrounding the knee that are painful. Last night was a mainly sleepless night. I tossed and turned most of the night and finally gave up at about 4AM and climbed on the sofa. With the TV on I could drift off to sleep. I dread exercising today.
Daughter was taking Carrie to the park today so I told her I would meet her there. It's a little chilly outside but the sun was shining and as long as we sat in the sunlight, it felt great.
Carrie showed up wearing her burgundy velvet "princess dress", tiara and purple heels. She had a hoodie that was pink with multicolored flowers all over it. She made quite the statement and she was so proud of her clothing. I kept looking for the cameras and the "What Not to Wear" crew from that TV show.
Her mother said that is what she wanted to wear and since this was her day, she could wear what she wanted. The other kids were apparently wearing clothes their parents selected for them. Ya know. The jeans, tennis shoes and light jackets. How boring! I'm sure they weren't as happy as Carrie. Some parents strive to be too appropriate.
I walked around the park and discovered that my foot is now hitting the ground with more of the heel touching down first which is great. That means I have a bit more extension. I'll do the "10 lb potato on the knee" thing this afternoon. The soreness I felt this morning was from the stretching from the day before. It has to hurt to get better. I still hate it. I can only be grateful that I had only one of these knees that needed replaced. Pity the poor person that has to have both of them done!
I have a big pan of Lasagna in the oven. I think it's done! Chow! or Ciao!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Week 7 Post Op TKR

and smokeless!
I woke to a foggy morning. It looks like a steam sauna outside right now but that will soon burn off when the sun arrives. Hubby is loading up his stuff to take a nice 3hr drive in this fog. Something I dislike almost as much as driving on ice is driving in fog.
Today is week 7 post op. Some days I feel good about the movement of my knee and some times I am discouraged and feel that I should be farther along in this process.
Clinically speaking: more extenstion and about 98 on flexion with lots of soreness today.
Continued Late Afternoon:
I saved and didn't publish this post because I decided I would add to it. I did a lot of stretching on the knee and now it's so sore I can barely walk. I hobbled around the store and picked up a few groceries and then stopped by daughters' house. Of course I couldn't leave and come home alone. Ted wanted to come and I told Carrrie she couldn't come with me. She immediately burst into tears and of course I gave in and bought her home with me also. Later after I took her home it took a while to pick up all her toys and stuff she dragged out of her toy box. I think that's the main reason I didn't want to bring her home with me. I didn't want to clean up her mess.
I'm off to bed. More tomorrow.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Easter Sunday
























Dinner served, eggs hidden and found and we are now awaiting the storm that is scheduled through here at any minute. Storm warnings are being forecast on the TV. The trees are bending, swaying and whipping in the wind right now. Large hail is forecast so we have the vehicles under the carport. We'll have our ears tuned to the TV for any signs of tornadoes coming through. Nobody here has basements so I don't know what precautions one would take for a tornado other then staying home. Basements are not done in this part of the country and most people here have never even seen or been in a basement. The water table is too high for basements.

I'm ready to take two Percosets and become friends once again with that 10lb bag of potatoes but I think I'll wait till that storm passes. I would hate to be "under the influence" if a tornado should touch down close by.


I can just imagine being interviewed by the local news station and when questioned about where I was when the tornado struck and I replied "I was sitting under a 10lb bag of potatoes". Wipe that silly grin off your face. "It's the Percoset: I really don't think tornadoes are funny."

VIDEOS and PICTURES: Posted for family viewing.



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An Early Start

0530 here and I've peeled the potatoes and have them submerged in water, put together the green bean casserole and have the hot rolls in the muffin tin rising. I'm ahead. I like to get most of the prep work done in advance. I don't like to be stressed for holiday meals.

I now need to sit on the floor with my 10lbs of potatoes and weigh that knee down. I didn't get it to a "lock" position but it did get so straight that there was absolutely no limp when I walked. Of course since then I have flexed it so I don't know how extended I can get it this morning without the weight of the potatoes. Between the potatoes as weight and the frozen peas as an ice pack, I may never look at veggies in the same way again.

Since I'm having family for dinner, I have to get my exercises done early or miss them altogether.
Stretch and burn time!

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Saturday Afternoon

It's a hazy Saturday. Nice and quiet and kidless. Sometimes that's a good thing. A chance to do nothing but relax. I laced up my walking shoes and walked a couple of blocks or more this morning. By the time I got back I had developed a stride that looked normal. I'm still stretching; this can go without saying for the next 6 months I'm sure.
I've bought a spiral honey ham for dinner tomorrow, some fresh broccoli, mashed potatoes and hot rolls. Not a big meal; a meal easy to do and one that creates little mess to clean up. I'm into being casual for Easter.
Daughter will hide some Easter eggs in the back yard for the kids and I'll be in charge of the camera. Beware. There will be pictures coming. There is a big storm forecast for tomorrow. It is supposed to bring tornadoes with it so that might force some changes in the outdoor Easter activities.
Addendum:
I swallowed two Percosets. I don't usually take two but I knew I was going to need both of them. As soon as I could feel the effects of those pills, I sat on the floor with both legs extended and dragged the 10lb bag of potatoes over. Potatoes have always been a favorite of mine. I may not feel the same way about potatoes after this. I put the 10 lb bag of spuds over my knee and gasped. Even with two Percosets on board, I could still feel the burn. Laying my head on the coffee table, I took some deep breaths and stayed with it. After a few minutes, I flexed the knee and then back to full extension. This will be my new exercise for the next week or until I run out of Percosets~
Stretch and burn!

Friday, April 10, 2009

Carrie's Good Friday

Carrie with her loot.









Muggie sent Package #2 and Carrie was so excited. She didn't know what to play with first. Here is the video.
Warning: family movies ahead. You might want to sneak out now.



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Thursday, April 9, 2009

41,823.00

Taxes. We owed. We wrote the check. You have to write really small to get it all on one line.

OUCH!

For Poogie (Aunt Muggie)

I have no idea why Carrie calls my sister "POOGIE". I've told her more then once that it's Aunt Muggie she is talking to on the phone but she insisted on calling her Poogie.

From time to time she sends things to Carrie. This package arrived this week and I videoed Carrie opening her package so I could post and "Poogie" could see her excitement.

So..here ya go "POOGIE".

Ring Wrong Ring

I'm up and about; stretches done early so I can ambulate. Almost limp less but still have more work to do on that.
I mistakenly dialed the wrong number on my cell phone this morning and reached the Imaging Center where I used to work as a relief nurse for the full time nurse there. I worked in the MRI area where the patients have to be interviewed and sometimes sedated with Valium IV before being scanned. I like the job; I only worked when the nurse there took days off or went on vacation or was sick.
When I reached Blanche (the nurse) we talked for a while and she asked if I would be willing to work there again. She knows I just had the knee rebuilt and she offered 1/2 days to see how I could handle it. I may take her up on this offer. I'll have to think about it and talk to my doctor about working right now. If I decide to not do it right now, I can go when I'm ready. It's difficult to find a fill in nurse so I'm sure the position will be available when and if I'm ready to take it. It would be a PRN position which means it would pay a higher rate then staff gets which is a good thing!
With the oil field in a slump, it wouldn't hurt for me to work occasionally. I could use the money to pay health insurance premiums. It scares me to think of being without health insurance. Did anyone notice the number of people laid off in March? Horrendous. It hasn't gotten better yet. I should be prepared for a slow year with hubby's job.
I'm off to stretch and burn. I stretch and burn most of my day. Count yourself fortunate if you never have to stretch and burn!
AFTERNOON UPDATE:
I had to call and tell Blanche that it would be impossible for me to take a job at this time. After talking to her this morning, I went to Walmart and walked around the store. By the time I had picked up everything I needed, my leg was burning. I'm not ready to stand or walk on it for any length of time. She said she would check back with me in a month to see if I was ready. I'll continue to stretch and burn.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Hangin still

A lazy day here; I was lazy and enjoyed it. I've had on and off again moments of anxiety though. I stretched and burned and could walk limp less. I sat down, flexed the leg and got up only to find I couldn't straighten the leg enough to walk without a limp. Frustrated. Rethinking and calming down. I just read in the paper that Tiger Woods had to rehab for o8 months for an ACL repair.

I need to think about that when I get frustrated. He just had a repair. I got a whole new knee with all the cut muscles that go along with the procedure. I need a high dose of patience.


I stayed outside on the patio a little this afternoon. I took my laptop to the patio table and turned on the tv out there. The weather was awesome. Carrie came to visit and she and Poppy cleaned her pool and got it ready to refill. She told us she wouldn't be staying with us anymore. She said she would now just "visit". When she got ready to leave she told us she would "visit" again tomorrow. I miss having her here. I may have to go pick her up and have her spend some days here.


Hubby may have a job on Monday. If he goes and is staying at a hotel, I'm going along. I'm going only if the hotel has a pool and a jacuzzi. I can use it for exercise. We shall see what happens on Monday.
For some reason I can't begin to understand, the urge for a little cigarette was strong today and more then once or twice. I held out and did not succumb to the urge. I don't want to be a smoker. I don't want to pay 5.00 a pack. I don't want to have to go outside in the heat/cold to smoke. I don't want to smell smoke on my clothes.....
Ok..I think that will do it for now. Naming a few reasons why I don't want to smoke helps sometimes.
And since I just bought it up, of course that's what I'm thinking about right now. I'm going to bed. I'm not going to think about them again!