30 March 2012

Doc Follow-Up

Well, today was the two week post-surgery follow-up appt. And the doc (resident) was pleased with the swelling that has started to go down, and the healing that is happening on the hip incision and the neck. However, (BIG FAT COMMA) he said they'll see me in FOUR weeks.

Read that as: not getting cut free until four weeks from now. As opposed to the hopeful 2 weeks from now (4wks post surgery) as I was dreaming for.

*sigh*

I am grateful that the healing is going well. We'll know by end of six weeks if the graft took. And the doc was pleased with my juicing that I've picked up, he said he wished all his patients would do it.

So I suppose it gives me an additional two weeks of juicing + healthy choices to perhaps get down to my goal weight, 140lbs (which is 15lbs from now). We'll see. 145lbs would be pretty sweet.

But the cool thing is that I am cleared (by the doc, not the physical therapist) to do walking/low impact walking up to my tolerance. Sweet. And I can go in a pool (water jogging, don't think I can do laps yet-movement of neck not there), and I can take a bath.

Funny story- when scheduling my followup, the nurse was like, "Okay, a month from now- April 30th." I responded with, "Um he did say 4 weeks, how about Fri the 27th?" Seriously lady. It's bad enough to be wired shut for 6 weeks... and then I already add 2 days to that since my surgery was on a Wed and I'll be cut free on Friday... AND then you want to add TWO MORE days to that?!?! And make me wait til Monday!?! PFFFT. Silly lady.

Thankfully the appt is for the 27th. :)

It's late. Time for sleep. Night night. :D

29 March 2012

Swagbucks

I have to say, if you do some online stuff (like searching, and watching some videos), you might as well do it through swag bucks, and earn $5/month doing it!

Check it out clicking the link above (or here) and maybe all you do is download the search bar and use it to search. But hey... those points add up! :)

Search & Win

27 March 2012

Grateful

We got our bill from the surgery in the mail recently. Boy am I grateful for Tricare!



26 March 2012

I'm okay!

Relatively. My dear Aunt reminded me that my last post was a little dramatic... talking about passing out and then I kind of dropped off the radar. So my last post was the 22, since then I had an appt on Friday, hung out with friends, and started drinking about a quart of green juice a day. And gotten a little depressed about food. :/ it was only a matter of time.

The followup on Friday went well. Said healing is going well, and swelling will continue to go down. At four weeks they'll re-evaluate to see if they can cut me free at that point (4/13) if not, it'll be another two weeks. Honestly, seriously expecting to stay wired for 6 weeks. Although that sucks for work life, because I am no happy camper at work wired shut :/ but we'll see. They reminded me that I'm not in the clear for infection. So prayer for the bone graft to take (I'm not sure when that is in the clear). And we have another 2-3 weeks until we're in the clear for an infection. But right now... we're doing well. Physically.

Emotionally, I'm going through that, 'UGGH I just want to eat!' phase. Which. Is always difficult. Yesterday after church I was just so desperate for food, I made some egg salad and pureed it and put it through my little hole on the right side. Which of course was appetizing, (although crazy messy)... but I woke up this morning and my muscles were pretty sore. So... I'm not sure if I'm too fond of that.. but in desperation I just put a billion little cheerios in my mouth, and I think I'm already suffering for that. :/

Guess that's about it for now. :)

22 March 2012

What a douzy!

Literally.

Yesterday was full of highs and lows, hence the no blog being posted. But, let me give you a little rundown.

In the morning, I woke up at 3am with a killer sore throat, and pain. Too early for pain meds, so I could only change out my ice packs. Tried to drink some warm water to calm the throat and then hobbled back to bed. Woke up again at 6 am. This time able to take pain meds, changed ice packs, texted people to pray because my pain was like 6/7 and I was miserable. Tried to drink some more warm liquids. Slept until about 9. Most. Amazing. Sleep. Ever. To include a dream about eating cookies.

So the day was going a bit better, was able to try and drink almost a whole 16oz of juice (room temperature ish). Emily came to visit. Took an afternoon nap. Took the kid outside to play with his tricycle for a little bit...then hung out a little before heading to bed. I started to make my hot tea to take to bed with me, and then I thought I'd go check out my neck. I see some green (gross color to see on your bandages right?!) so I was bold and took it off, but it was attached to another one, so two ended up coming off. Definitely pussy underneath. I was thinking this wasn't a good sign, so I went to the master bathroom, and added some bacitracin. I start to feel a little nauseas at this time, and I think that I'm seeing discoloration going down my neck and into my chest (sign of infection) so I think I'm freaking out. I also think I might get sick (oh no, not that clamy feeling again!). I sit on the john (sorry guys, but it's kind of part of the story), and I'm still... not...feeling very good. So I start pounding on the bathtub, trying to get hubby's attention.

I keep hitting the bathtub, I get off the john, trying to kneel to see if maybe I can let the getting sick feeling pass.. not so much get back on toilet. Hubby comes into bathroom not sure what I'm doing. I tell him to get down on the ground in front of me (my head was feeling really heavy and it was difficult to lift it up) so I had to use him for my arms and my head while I had some... projectile excrements (sorry, TMI again?) Poor M, I can't really talk at this point, beyond moaning and groaning about how much this sucks. And then, when it's all done I get up to wash my hands...

Then I hear M saying, "Are you okay? Do I need to call the ambulance?"

Ho yup yup yup, I totally passed out. Like a light. Had a dream too!

I come to and M gets me into bed... and at this point I'm fading in and out of coherentness... he puts some ice packs on me and takes my blood pressure (99/60) and then goes to make apple juice. I fade in and out, and then slowly drink the fresh apple juice (awesome). Slowly start to feel better.

Finally get out of bed, "brush" my teeth, and head back to bed to lay down.

I know right?!?! Crazy!

Anyway. Thankful it's over with. And to be doing okay. The hubby is a good man, I just felt bad for scaring him. We think what happened is that with this blasted sore throat, I haven't been drinking nearly as much as I was planning on. You know, all that Juicing I was going to do? (remember, cold stuff feels like a million razor blades down my throat). By drinking mostly warm tea with honey and ginger, I went from 170lbs morning of surgery (yeah, a good 5+ of where I wanted to be!) to 156lbs yesterday morning... in a week- not the best weight loss program. Totally not intentional, but it's what happened. So today it's been a little bit of keifir, and some homemade butternut squash/apple/carrot soup :)

20 March 2012

Not enough ice...

Sadly, our freezer has actually run out of ice cubes.

And I'm exhausted. Slept from about midnight3o until about 6 this morning, took meds, changed ice pads, slept til about 830. Haven't slept all day. Didn't take a nap yesterday either.

Starving. My tummy is empty. It's sad. Throat needs to get better, would love to drink some cold juice right about now. Tomorrow I will probably drink some chicken broth, but tonight, just too lazy. See second paragraph.

Resident emailed me back, saying that many patients complained of sore throats up to a week after surgery. It makes me think, "well, this is the first time I've had this nuts of a sore throat after surgery, so maybe you should change something!"

Vivian came to visit me today, pretty awesome. I do enjoy visitors, definitely make the day go by faster... it's nice to have SAHMs as friends!

However, don't think I'm walking tomorrow with the ladies. Did some stuff with Z in the driveway today and his tricycle and bike... think it got worked enough. Plus, at this rate- I need my sleep yo!

Sadly, I missed a seminar last night I was supposed to do online :/ Kinda bummed about that. Should probably email them and tell them my reasoning, since I'm not just a *total* flake.

Hungry. Did I mention that already?

Guess I'll catch you laters all. Night night!

19 March 2012

Another one of those days...

I realized reading back on my blogs (gonna get a little TMI right now)- that antibiotics jack up my stomach. I was getting all frustrated because every time I drink something my stomach makes these mad gurgling sounds. Also, I have crazy mad diarrhea... It's ironic cause you're plugged up the first few days because of steroids and narcotics, and then the antibiotics kick in and give you the runs. And then you lose like 10lbs in 5days. Seriously. Anyway, I forgot the antibiotics jack me up... until I was rereading some of my blogs from the last surgery.

Also of note, my sore throat is incredibly annoying. Irate is more like it. Let me describe it for you- it's like I have an itch in the back of my throat, and then when I try to drink cold drinks... it's like a blade is cutting my throat. So. Painful. And makes me frustrated.

When I thought about it, I was thinking that this time around, the surgery was going well- you know. I could move around with my hip- this morning I even went for a light walk (about 1/4mi) with minor additional pain. And I was all prepared for this wired shut business this time- getting all into juicing, and stocking up on some fresh juice... and now, I can't even drink cold juice. It feels like nails going down my throat!

Okay. That's my grumbling. Here's our Sunday teaching from service. Pretty relevant. I should listen to it again....

In the end, I am grateful for friends. The Stanleys came over to visit again today. This time the kid was home, so all three boys ran amuck in our house... which is nice since we have no furniture. Or, at least it's pretty limited. I feel like we have all this room in our house but nothing in it. But it's okay right? Who needs stuff- I just want a guest bed for our bedroom. I just enjoy having people over to visit and chat...and take my mind off things.

And for my head to not feel like a bowling ball. x_x

18 March 2012

Woe is me!

I am so easily depressed. Or distraught. Well, I guess, most people are easily distraught. Seriously. Imagine an upset tummy...and a terrible sore throat. And your stomach makes all these gurgling sounds... all the time. Just in general, today was a struggle. Perhaps because it was Sunday, so naturally Satan wants to throw his best at me. I knew we would have to make to service, but I didn't realize it would be such a struggle. The nature of the teaching today was struggle & hardship, and very timely for me (of course). Although during service I wasn't feeling the best, I knew it was a really good idea that we were there. Perhaps I should have stretched my leg out (and kept it elevated), as well as ice it during the service. Coming home was difficult, mostly I think because of my throat. Whatever is going on in my mouth was killing me... it made me feel so gross, and then it really made it difficult to even *want* to drink anything, which I think totally jacked up my stomach because I wasn't drinking anything and then taking meds and antibiotics... I don't even know where my mind was the whole day-just not anything exciting or beautiful... just survival.

Thankfully, toward the evening Marcus made some tea- green tea with ginger and some honey. Definitely helped make me feel much better, until I had to take my antibiotics. So battling it a little bit more right now, but thankfully- still not as bad as I was earlier today.

Almost time to get ready for bed, going to try and meet some ladies for a light walk in the morning. Hopefully I can get up :)

17 March 2012

Blog 250!

Well, it's been three days since the surgery, and the swelling has definitely taken its toll on my face. I can feel the skin stretching, which is slightly uncomfortable. And I keep trying to put ice on it, but sometimes the ice packs feel like they're choking me. So I asked Marcus to go out and get some frozen bags of veggies to make it easier on me (and him) hopefully in the middle of the night.

Now, this whole dangling thing in the back of the throat... man sometimes it's okay, and sometimes it just acts all mad and swollen. Like right now, it kinda feels like I need to spit it out but it won't come out.

Last night we had quite the scare... well I did. I thought I was about to get sick, but thankfully after some breathes, kneeling on the tub, and all that hooplah, I didn't get sick. I did frantically text a bunch of people asking for prayers. Man, it was the worse- chills, clammy, sweats... and then finally got back into bed. and fell asleep. Some of you might remember my last blog entry when I mentioned "In case of emergency, cut wires," so I'm not excited about the potential of having another reaction. Thankfully I'm on a different antibiotics than the last surgery, so seemingly it doesn't really make my stomach as upset, but my tummy does rumble a lot, and sometimes the green juice is the LAST thing I want to drink. I think of yummy milkshakes, and soups, and deliciousness... but I'm trying to hold strong to the theory that the juice is not only healthier for me, but it brings healing with the nutrients. Unlike milkshakes... which bring... crap?

Random thought... the docs said that if my bandages got soaked then I should remove them, but that one young buck was soo confident in his taping up bandage and making it waterproof... so I thought I'd give him the benefit of the doubt. Bad idea. Looking at it tonight I realized a part of it was green...so I had Marcus help me cut it off... and man, it was gross. Seriously, when your bandage smells, that cannot be a good sign! Probably, TMI for you-- but, I should have taken it off Thursday night. Now we wait for the little ties to come off... and in the meantime... trying to keep it clean I guess?

I think this is all babbling..and I shall end it. Night night!

16 March 2012

Day 2...

Well, technically it was the first full day at home, but day 2 after surgery I suppose. The last time I was wired shut I wrote a blog every day, and most of it was whining probably. But this time, I'm also reading "Made to Crave" and prayerfully the focus on Jesus will help decrease my whining about eating real food. Although, tonight, at our small group there was cookies (and some juice and smoothies they made in honor of me)... but man, I wanted to shove a cookie in my mouth! I do have a slight hole on the right side of my mouth, from where I don't have teeth. Last time that was where I stuffed a lot of vienna sausage and donut holes... however this time I don't think I'll be doing that. Mostly for health reasons (really, what nutrients do those things have to help me in my healing process?!) and also because my mother- for whatever reason- ALWAYS mentions how I screwed up my healing from my last surgery because I stuffed food in this hole in my mouth. Fantastic right? Anyway. The intern did say that it was okay to put pills in there- but he didn't want me to because he was scared I would choke. Well, that's nice... but liquid motrin tastes like poo- so guess what I'm taking in pill form? That's right, motrin. And I'd totally take tylenol as a liquid, but they didn't give me any. And my prior experience says I should alternate motrin with tylenol to help keep the pain down (although they use the motrin for swelling). At any rate...

This morning there was lots of sleeping until about 10, and then I'm not sure what I did until Ms Emily and the boys came over to visit. Then there was a little napping before small group. And then the pain started to get bad, so it was time to come home. Although, some of this pain is more the muscle soreness of being on the operating table, so I just put some horse bengay on it (seriously, this stuff is amazing)... and that helps a little.

My face is starting to swell more than it had in the hospital-as totally expected. It's just not the most fun having my face warm and stretching out, you know? They said to keep ice on my face for a week, it's really hard to do that. Plus some of the wrap arounds for my face that they sent me home with- give me a headache from being too tight. Thankfully, we have a few things we can use for ice in our home, to include a couple flaxseed bags that my Aunt Sharon made for me a while ago. They sit nicely around my neck.

Still not taking in as much juice as I would like. Ideally I'd take about 4 quarts, but today I probably took about a quart of liquids total, or a little more. Still using the bathroom as normal, so not too worried about that... but still. Need to get those nutrients in you know? It's all about juice feasting and not fasting... but my appetite is not there yet. Plus there is something humbug about having to drink with your mouth wired shut. Meh.

Got a beautiful bouquet of yellow flowers (and some roses!) today from my sister and brother in law. Super sweet and a big mood lifter. Also got to skype this morning with a friend, she mostly talked and I did a lot of typing.

Anyway. Thankful for all the prayers and support through this. Looking forward to even more healing and God's power!

15 March 2012

Home Safe & Sound

Just a little update on little old me. We made it safe and sound back home today around 1 or 2ish. Let me tell you, this whole check-out from the hospital was a fiasco. Holy. Smokes.

Okay, let's start from the beginning. We got to the hospital around 6, on time and good to go. Started checking in, doing vitals and all that. She messed up some of my IV stuff... so like always I have crazy bruises on my hands and arms from attempting to get some good IVs. I don't know about this hospital. I mean, I know Vanderbilt is supposed to be impressive, like regarding their quality of care- but their patient bedside manners are not that impressive. They didn't seem very conducive to trying to keep Marcus updated with surgery things (as opposed to when people sit in the lobby waiting for text updates on a monitor). I dunno. It went okay, they did the billion questions making sure I knew what was going on, and then Marcus kissed me and they wheeled me into the operating room. It really freaked me out because I didn't want to be awake for that part, but I don't really remember much of it. The next thing I know they put an oxygen mask over me and I was out.

Then I wake up in the recovery room... in and out of consciousness.. trying to wake up out of the anesthesia, and getting frustrated because Marcus isn't around. I finally start coming around, asking for some water cause my throat is crazy dry, and then ask where my husband is. They said they'll call him. After I hang out in recovery for a couple hours, they give me some pain meds, and then some anti-nauseaus meds... and then wheel me into my hospital room. Pretty cramped, shared bathroom, no shower, and poor Marcus has a humbug sleeping recliner thing. We finally got into our room around 6 or so. Thank goodness for juice! I started drinking last night, some zing and c-ya... and of course some coconut milk. Man, like I said, so glad that we brought juice with us, because I was getting over their water. Through the night, I had to keep using the bathroom (I suppose that's good right? hydration) but it was humbug because Marcus would have to unplug my IV and then help me to the bathroom, then call the nurse to empty the liquid so they could keep track of how much my outtake was. But, at least he was able to get some sleep Wed night, since he definitely didn't get a lot of sleep Tues night before surgery. Speaking of sleep- we're soo crazy grateful for the Petersons for opening their house to us and letting us stay with them, and giving us an opportunity to have a place in Nashville for Marcus to hang out.

This morning the nurse came in around 7 or so and said they wanted to discharge me around 11. I don't really know what that means in the civilian world, but apparently it means they want you OUT of the room by 11. I didn't quite understand that, so after they finally gave us our prescriptions, I sent Marcus down to the pharmacy, where they took forever, I took a nap. Then Marcus went to the Petersons to get the rest of our juice from their fridge... and while he was gone they decided they wanted to get me out of the hospital room, and down to the clinic where they would take my xrays, and the docs would look me over one last time. I just felt like I was cattle, being herded from one room to the next. So this guy puts me in a wheelchair and carries one bag, and puts the rest on me and the wheelchair, and wheels me down. Halfway down I realize I left my pillow in the room, so he calls someone to bring it down. Then he takes me to the clinic- checks me in, and then unpacks all my stuff and leaves me in these chairs inside the clinic. Seriously, it was so random. Just sitting there, in a chair, with all my stuff in two other chairs. Just waiting. For xrays. This lady asks me if I've checked in, I said yes... and then she said she'll be with me as soon as she can, they're really backed up or something. Then she asks me if I have a hip graft, because I needed her help getting into the xray room, and she was mad that the dude just dropped me off without the chair. Then she called for another wheel chair, takes my xray, and puts me in a dental room waiting for the docs. And she brings all my stuff to me. And I wait. For Marcus to come back, for the doctors...

Dr. Press (the attending) said the xray looks really good. They used a small piece of hip bone, then added some bone shavings (cadaver, or bovine, not sure which one), then used some BMP (bone morphogenic protein). Prayerfully it all takes, and this will be the last surgery (minus adding the implants), and all of the graft will take. The small piece of hip bone was less than originally expected, so my walking around is much easier than the hip graft done in March of 2010. Praise God!

Next appt at Vanderbilt is next Friday around 11ish, and hopefully then they'll give me some of my surgery pictures, as well as all of my goodies from surgery (the titanium bars, the models, etc). For now, just waiting. He said physical therapy shouldn't start for at least a week, one patient insisted on starting early, and he actually broke his hip at therapy. Totally sucks right?

Pain-wise, mouth is doing okay, more my throat is super sore. They said they put gauze in the back of my throat to prevent any hardware from going down my throat, my but little dangling thing feels super swollen. A resident said sometimes when the suction thing catches the dangling thing, it gets all swollen and stuff. *great*. Anyway. Hip is sore, probably more sore than face/neck. And I guess that's about it. Other than my throat being sore. I feel like I need to hock up a lougy, but nothing is really coming out except some bloody stuff did come out during my shower. I did get to take a nice shower when we got home.

Well, I guess that's it. Super grateful for all the prayers, I definitely feel like this is the best surgery so far (even if the patient care wasn't that great). Sorry if this is babbling, but I took the narcotics but haven't taken a nap yet... so trying to get ready for bed and wanted to get it all out while I still remembered a little bit of it.

Catch you on the flip side!
B

13 March 2012

Twas the night before surgery...

When I stuffed my face- quite literally. We knew we were spending the night at our friends' Bekah & Gregg in Nashville, so we had asked them to join us for dinner at the Melting Pot. Delicious cheese dip, and the meat part was okay, and then the dessert--was totally awesome! We had a ying yang with dark & white chocolate sauce. Totally awesome- with the strawberries, banana, marshmallows, cheesecake, rice krispies, pieces of brownie and red velvet cake. Definitely blessed by their willingness to eat with us, and more importantly- open their home to us. Such a HUGE blessing.

And of course I wanted to enjoy a Chick-fil-a spicy chicken sandwhich before the surgery-since we normally eat one on Saturday after the Farmers Market- but it didn't work out that well... so I had half of one tonight.

Of course, I cannot end the night without a huge mahalo to the Stanleys. For taking in our little man. There was definitely a fiasco with our original plan having a potential illness, and of course with The Uprising all of our church friends which would normally be totally willing to watch Z under normal circumstances, but as one friend said, "I'm not even watching my own kid for 48hrs." :D

Anyway. Prayers to not be a cranky patient...and to focus on Jesus through this time. Many thanks!

11 March 2012

Sneak Peek: Family Pictures

Our awesome friend Angela took our family pictures today. We didn't have a chance to take "Christmas" pics with the move, and I wanted some decent pics before my surgery on Wednesday. Selfish, but she did an awesome job, and I love them. Enjoy!








06 March 2012

The Hard Reality of it all...

I had my pre-surgery appointment today. The last chance to ask a bunch of questions before the big day...so I asked...

-about the reality of being wired for three weeks
-what antibiotics would be used afterwards
-when I could get in the pool for some physical therapy
-if they'd be using staples on my neck

The answers were
-unrealistic. It's gonna be six weeks. Anything less would be a miracle.
-thankfully not augmentin, likely clendamyacin (augmentin made me sick last time)
-give it a couple weeks for wounds to heal
-NO STAPLES! instead some sutures that should look good healing (which is nice, since they're cutting open my neck on the outside)

And this whole time I've been saying, "Oh three weeks, but I'm preparing for six." But that's a lie. Kind of like how I didn't take into account the leap year, and today I swore up and down it was the 7th, but it was actually the 6th (my watch has the date).

So there it is folks. The hard reality of it all. Not to mention there are some complications with our childcare lineup for Zeke... so as of right now, we're not too sure where he'll be Tues night through Thurs night. I know God has a plan... but it's interesting in the waiting.

Prayer requests:
-That I suck it up for healing: the doc says I should be able walk out of the hospital after surgery. I laughed at him and asked if he did miracles, cause I could barely move my leg. Needless to say, if I could walk out of the hospital, that would be awesome. :)
-To focus on Jesus through this. Above my pain. Above my self-conscienciousness of my swelling and scars...
-Childcare for Z. I know God has a plan, but it's just waiting for it to unravel... cause all my ends are loose!

Thanks.

At least Marcus and I have discovered juicing... and this awesome place in Nashville. But most importantly... Marcus is TOTALLY behind the juicing thing.. and I'm supposed to be drinking like 4 quarts of juice a day.. and he's been a total blessing. I am crazy grateful for that!