Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Laughter can't stop therapists

My physical therapists (there are two now because I am so cool) finally learned how I will die. (OK, there are two because one is an intern.)

I was standing as one held me up. The other one said: "Do you want to keep standing?"

I said, sure, I like the view from up there. This, of course, struck me as funny, so I laughed at my own joke. This, of course, caused my body to wiggle and I sat down.

I'd have fallen if not for therapists who can laugh and catch me at the same time.

Have I mentioned lately I love therapists.

Saturday, January 25, 2014


I blame the cold for a lot ...having freezing feet and dry and chilly hands ... feeling extra depressed, shut-in, sad, blah, blah, blah. I also have little desire to write.

I hope it is all cold-related. It could be kidney-related.

I went to a specialist to figure out my bladder. She was more about managing it than fixing it. She suggested the kidney stone may have broken me.

She also sent me to a stone specialist who wants a ton of tests, so I will be up to my neck in urine until April.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

The best

I am sure that everyone who has had a service dog is sure their partner is the best there ever was.

For that reason, I have always shied away from calling her the best. She is far from perfect, I know.

But then something happens, and I am left thinking, "She is the freaking best!"

One of those somethings happened Thursday at therapy. The therapists put mats on the floor for me to crawl on and then got me on the  floor and positioned to crawl.

At this point, Claren wandered over in front of me, sniffed me and laid down right in front of me.

I buried my head in her neck to cover my laugh, then told her to move. She did, like two feet, then down and she waited for me to crawl up to her and tell her to move again.

Between Claren and the therapists frequently having to pull up my pants, we must have been the hit of the PT gym.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

My therapist goes outside the Zappos box

No one can ever blame my physical therapist for not thinking outside the box.

One of my problems is that my foot drops, so the front part of my feet touch the ground before the heel. That sounds pretty normal, but the issue is that my heels don't also easily touch the ground. I wind up on my tiptoes.

As I understand it, the issue is my calf muscle being too active It pulls my foot down.

My therapist has me wearing braces to stretch the calf muscle and keep my ankle bent.

She hoped botox might help, but the neurologist she talked to didn't think it would help.

She told me today I just need to wear high heels. Stilettos?

Saturday, January 11, 2014

My niece is drafted

My niece and nephew are good kids, but they are just that kids, so their assistance when I fall usually just consists of getting a parent (usually, I remember my nephew's helping after a fall). Tonight, though, my niece got enlisted in the recovery efforts.

I really wish my sister had said to her -- paraphrasing Victor Lazlo to Rick in Casablanca -- "Welcome to the fight. This time I know our side will win."Except I am pretty confident FA will eventually win.

My niece came in to wake me up for dinner, which was fine, but when I awoke I slid off my chaise onto the floor. I started laughing, so she did, too, and she said to her brother, go get mom.

My sister, who wrongly thinks I write her as a villain or jerk, did come in and move stuff and then got me into a sitting position on the floor. At that point, she had my niece stand behind me to give me something to lean into. My sister went in search of a small chair I could get on as a middle step between the floor and my chair.

We learned that worked well the other night when I was playing with the puppy and my seatbelt came undone and I flopped onto the ground nowhere near anything I could use to help get up.

My brother-in-law wasn't home for the puppy-flopping incident, and he was home tonight but his back is iffy these days, so he was unable to help.

After my sister got the chair, she had my niece stand on my feet so my legs could help stand. I thought this was kind of bold since my niece is not very weighty. But it worked; I didn't kick her off. We got up to the little chair, fell off it once, got to the wheelchair, almost fell out of that once and finally got in.

All through it, my niece was laughing, which probably made it harder for me because I was laughing, but it was a worthwhile added hardship.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Sort-of Happy Hour

I went to a Happy Hour tonight. Nothing special, just a few folks from work.

I just hate not hearing. Is it bad that when I go to a bar or anywhere loud, I essentially start watching the time right away so I know when I can leave without seeming weird?

I didn't go to a bar last week when I had a chance to see some really good friends, especially one I hadn't seen in ages. I would have felt too bad. I sit there and just watch the TVs in the background if they are captioned. These were, so I got to watch news about the Redskins.  Yay, team. But it would have been too sad with my really good friends.

That worked out because she is awesome and came to the house to see me.

And thankfully my nephew was around to hear the knock on the door.

It also takes so much energy to listen so hard so you can maybe hear if you are asked something.

Actually, tonight was sort-of OK. I was sitting near enough to a friend that we occasionally talked.

I like going to be with my co-workers, but I hate,hate, hate not hearing anything.

Monday, January 6, 2014

I failed the test

An EMG is the worst test I have ever had.

I say this even though a few hours ago I passed out while a nurse tried to perform a urodynamics test.

This is the second time in blogging history that I have failed a urodynamics test because I fainted. In my defense, the test is of your bladder, and it involves a catheter.

Today's involved three actually. One goes up your rear -- survived that. One drains your bladder totally,  and the third fills your bladder. It wasn't painful or anything, but I can't get past catheter No. 2.

I was listening to the last little bit of urine drip out of my bladder, and I just started feeling all flush. I had warned the nurse ahead of time about fainting, and told her right when I got flush. She hooked me up to a blood pressure machine and kept me talking, so actually I didn't faint.

She asked me at one point if I was all right, and when I said, "no," she went into the hall and returned with a cadre of folks, including two doctors.

They removed the catheter and decided what the urologist four years ago did: that the test would be good to have but wasn't worth killing me.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

FA daredevil

I said to my physical therapist that I had not tried a certain easy, safe type of transfer but wasn't sure why.

"Because you're a daredevil," she laughed.

A while later I told her the truth.

It takes so long to line everything up perfectly to be safe. And even then, especially with FA, you have a no better than 50-50 chance of staying safe, of not falling or slipping or peeing or something.

So why take the time? Why not just take the chance?

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