Day 68 – Sunshine and Coffee

Today’s sunshine has really been good for me.   I have been slowly dying from cabin fever.  I mean, I’ve been out and about all winter but it’s hard to find the joy in leaving the house after weeks and weeks of cold, sloppy days.    I had a second round of testing this morning for some issues I’m having with my esophagus. For the life of me I cannot swallow a piece of meat or bread without it feeling like it’s getting stuck.    Last week I had an endoscopy that showed a sliding hiatal hernia (shrugs) and the doc put me on a prescription of Prilocsec for acid reflux that I don’t feel.   Today was a barium swallow test.  If you’ve never had barium let me just say, it’s not that bad.  I mean, I wouldn’t want to pour a tall glass of it to have with my Oreo’s or anything but for a quick xray type test, it’s doable.   I’ve never had a barium swallow test before today so I didn’t really know what to expect. I did YouTube it last night and it looked easy enough – and today I found out that it was as simple as it looked on video.  Basically you sit against an xray board and the tech points the machine at the side of your body from your skull to your bellybutton.  On the screen in front of me I saw myself..  and lemme tell ya, I’m pretty cute without flesh.💀    Then the speech pathologist (SP) gave me a cup of think, berry flavored paste to swallow down in three continuous gulps.  On the screen the barium looked like three giant turds being poured down the back of my teeth and down my skeleton. (Couldn’t see anything besides my basic skeleton outline) It was pretty cool!!   Next came a bite of barium pudding that the SP fed me. That was odd. It too went down fine.  After that was a piece of wheat bread smeared with barium that the SP again, fed to me.  Two things rubbed me the wrong way at this point:
1) What if I was allergic to wheat?  No one asked me about allergies, and
2) Why did she have to feed me? Im not 6 months old and we aren’t dating. On top of that, I don’t like other people to touch my food..so.. yeah..it was a little too much “hands on” for my liking.
Anyway, following the bread was a vanilla wafer and barium. After have not eaten since dinner the night before (now 17.5 hours later) I was almost sick to my stomach.  Barium feels like a brick inside and it just sits there.  When the test was complete the SP told me that nothing was wrong with me except for acid reflux.  I looked at her and blinked a few times before insisting that I do not have acid reflux. I told her I don’t feel acid & I don’t verp acid.  She told me it was silent (well no shit sherlock) and that most people my age don’t feel it… then she asked me if I ate a lot of fatty foods. (Do I look like I eat a lot of fatty foods?) I Said no.
Do I drink a lot of alcohol? (Define a lot) I said no again.
Do I use tobacco products? No.
Do I drink caffeine? (What is wrong with this woman? Everytime I say NO she finds another thing to ask me like she’s baiting me.. I know as soon as I say YES to something she will tell me to stop doing it.)  I told her I did drink coffee off and on throughout the day and I was right- as soon as I said YES she told me to stop using it.  (Stop using it? Girl it ain’t meth, dayum!! :twisted:) 
I couldn’t wait to get out of that hospital and across the street for some real food.  I ended up with a chicken gyro. Tip o’ the day: Gyros are not drive-friendly food.   I had gyro chicken and its onion-cucumber sauce all over my leggings, my hands and seat. When I got home I smelled like a huge armpit and so did my car! Hahahaha. Gross!!!
When I got home I opened up all the windows and ripped through the house dusting and scrubbing every surface..I figured since I already smelled like an onion I might as well get the sweat out of the way too.  OCD kicked in and before I knew it, it was 3 hours later and the house was spotless.  I even managed to text with an old friend, reply to emails, post pix, add a few status updates to Facebook and replant a plant.(Apparently barium is like crack)
Just kidding. Like in said before, the sunshine has been good for me today. Much needed and now I think I’ll make some coffee and watch Survivor.
Night night.

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Day 62 – Esophagogastroduodenoscopy

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This is after one syringe full of a sedative.  Just one time I get shot up (by a doctor) and I look like ass!!!?!
I look like one of those “Before & After” meth posters.  Google them.

On the up side, I did get the best selfie ever…

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                      Inner Selfie.

But seriously, there’s no such thing as inner beauty.

Day 54 – TMI

I wasn’t going to write about this, and then I was like, “Aw, what the hell, we’re family!”  Now I know there are some thing that most people wouldn’t share with anyone else, but I am not one of those people. So here goes an embarrassing moment-

Early in the week I woke up feeling like something wasn’t quite right when I sat down. Let me go a little further so you understand what I’m talking about. Have you ever went #2 and when you were done, it felt like your insides came out, and when you stand up it felt like they go back in super slow?  Anyway, when that happens I say it feels like the pink glove is out; as in the lining of my colon. HAHAHA Wait– there’s more.      Ok so Wednesday this week I had this sensation. At first I didn’t think too much about it except that it was weird and uncomfortable.  The next day I woke up feeling the same way and I began to worry so I felt the need to take a peek.  (This is where this story gets funny- keep reading)

I’m thinking I need a shower anyway so I might as well do this thing now. I strip off all of my clothes, climb up on the vanity and bend over. Jason Mraz’s lyrics come flooding from my lips, “I’ve been spending way too long checking my tongue in the mirror and bending over backwards to try to see it clearer- but my breath fogged up the glass…” yeah you know the song.  Aaanyway, so I’m bent over trying to see if anything is going on near the backdoor and that’s when it occurred to me that if I fell, I’d fall into the textured wall, scrap the meat off of my face and then die from blunt force trauma to the frontal lobes when I landed face first onto the tiles below. (yes, this is how my brain works- keep reading)  Before I got down from the vanity I saw it; a little bluish-purple bump the size of a raisin.  At first I almost freaked out thinking it was a tick and how if I didn’t get the head off that its body would regenerate and it would crawl up into my body and eat important things and I’d be on “1000 Ways To Die” and that is not how I want things to end. Lawd knows my friends don’t need another story to tell on me when I die– hahahaha (yes, there’s that many) I get down from the vanity and had a better idea; a make-up mirror. Grabbing the Covergirl face powder I open it and put it between my legs.  “What the hell is that?” So I did what any normal person would do in 2015, I Wedmd’ed that bitch. Per the symptom checker its most likely a hemorrhoid but it could be a tick bite, neither of which made me very happy.

I went to Walmart and stood in the aisle where Preparation H is and omg- – I can’t even tell you how awful that was. I’m silly and I like to do crazy things to make other people laugh but I’m really quite shy when it comes to personal stuff (yeah, yeah I know I’m telling you about it but like I said, we’re family, so it’s ok) In this aisle there are too many selections. There’s ointments, creams, gels.. pads, suppositories.. o.m.g.     My husband and I are standing there and I say to him, “Do you think it’s ok to go with a generic for something like this?”  He died laughing. Then I tell him I don’t even know how to do it– like, did I need to put it on like lotion??? He has been around me way too long… he holds up a pointer finger as to say I need to cram it in with a finger. I turn ghetto when things around me need lightened up; like, Madea ghetto.  I blurt out in my best ghetto tone, “The hell?  I’m not sticking my finger up my ass!!!!”  He laughs. I laugh.   He tells me he thinks that there is some sort of applicator to use. I stand there with a look on my face that says, “Uh uh. Nope, not sticking a nipple in my ass. Not Happening.”    My husband, trying to be helpful points out the suppositories. What is wrong with this man?  First it’s a finger, then a nipple and now a freaking miniature Christmas tree – – –  NO!!!!!!!

I went with the generic ointment because it was cheaper and it said, “ointment,” which meant to me it would kill whatever was growing. (Hell, I dunno.  I’m new at this old thing.)

Friday I went to the doctor for my back. I had been out two days before digging my daughter’s car out from the snow and apparently pulled meat off of my spine or something.   He comes in asking me about what’s going on and I tell him about my back and how my right arm is hurting. As he’s typing I think it might be a good idea to tell him about — you know what.  Mistake. He handed me a paper sheet and told me to strip down from the waist; he left.

While he was gone I stripped down to my socks, climbed back on top the exam table and covered myself with the paper sheet. He and his nurse come in and he says, “It’s easier if you lie on your side and pull your knee up towards your belly.”  (WTH???  Didn’t I just tell you my back hurt when I twist?)  I did what I was told. This man is trying to have a conversation with me about what he’s doing down there. I was thinking to myself, “no shit Sherlock- I can feel what’s going on down there. You have your finger crammed in my no-no square.  Do you think I can’t feel that??”  I was so embarrassed. Then I heard, ‘thrombosis’ and some other medical terms…   He tells me to sit on up and hands me a box of tissues. Said when I was dressed to crack the door and he’d be back in to talk to me.  I giggled and did a Beevis & Butthead, “huh huh.. you said crack.” in my mind, but only smiled and said, “ok.”

There I am with paper-thin tissues trying to wipe 2 tons of goo out of my crack. Good grief.  What’s up with all the excess lube?  And what’s up with the crunchy tissues?  I know he’s not broke; he needs to buy some Kleenex Aloe or something for these..delicate situations.  Geeze.

He comes back in to tell me I have a 1st stage roid. He also tells me that there’s nothing I can do for it but to put cream on it until it shrinks- however it will never go away completely, this is for life.  This man was not making my day better.   I sat there for a few seconds before I turned into my usual amusing self, then I said, “Well I guess I’ll call him ‘Gary'”  The doc asked me who I was going to call, Gary?  I told him I was going to call my roid Gary- that he needed a name since we were going to be best good friends for the rest of our lives. He just blinked at me.   As he typed up all the notes I asked him how it got there, because it wasn’t there one day and when I woke up, it was.  The doc said it was from straining.   I blurted out, “Uh uh. I didn’t strain!! My poops not hard!!”  He blinked at me again.  He said, “You. were. shov-e-ling. snoooow…”  I hate when people talk to me like that.   I’m not stupid, you ain’t gotta enunciate and draw words out like I don’t understand English. Dick.   Then the doc adds, “Until its the size of an olive we can’t surgically remove it.”  I’m thinking, “Wait. What?  An olive?  This thing can grow to the size of an olive??  Uh uh, Aint nobody got time for olives. I don’t even like olives.” 😨 Now I just blink at him with a wtf look on my face.   I guess he tried to make me feel better when he said, “It’s not a big deal, they’ll just go in there and put a band on it and it will fall off in 3 or 4 days.”

I sit there for maybe 3 seconds before my brain filter dislocated.  I question, “They (because it apparently takes more than one to change that light bulb) go in my butt and put a rubber-band on my roid- and it will fall off, like a dogs tail…  then where the hell does it go?  The olive-roid is just in there, like, lost in my body?”  Again he blinks at me and tells me there’s nothing to worry about right now and handed me papers to take to the check-out.

Later on I had my husband run to Walmart to pick up my meds. I didn’t want to haha I was too embarrassed.  When he came back  I opened the bag to find roid cream and a bottle of Fibercon pills.  The hell?  I snap at him and ask him why he bought me Fibercon pills. I thought he was trying to be funny- it’s sooo something I would do. He tells me he wasn’t being funny it’s what doctor J called in. (o.m.g.  I turned 40 and my body has lost it’s damn mind.)

preparation H - old time ad

Btw. The back issue… you know, the real reason I went to the doctor… its a strain in the right rhombus. Nothing a muscle relaxer and an anti-inflammatory won’t fix.

Day 40 – What a day!

Good God… I am so sick of biology.  Just took a test and got an 81.2 and you know what?  I’m happy with that.  I don’t know about you but I am NOT a test taker. I can study and read, read and study. You should SEE my notes; work of art.  They aren’t just a bunch of stuff scribbled on paper, they’re more like color-coded schematics of knowledge.  If I’ve highlighted something I think is important in a certain color, every new note pertaining to that particular highlighted area is written in that color of ink– they have to match so I don’t have to look for what goes where. I have a short amount of time to answer the questions so my notes are OCD: level boss.  No joke.  My test are open book too. You would THINK I’d ace that bitch…nope. I don’t know what happens to my brain – it’s like all of a sudden everything is written in hindi… a bunch of random scribbles none of which looks anything like an A, B or C.
Oh well, I have a week before the next test so tonight I’ll accept my low B as if it were an educational Grammy. That’s right.. I’ve got it polished and sitting in a glass case.  So. Don’t judge me.

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Besides the biology test I had an essay to write and I had Miss Rae today. Poor baby, she’s sick. Last week her momma took  her to the pediatrician for a bad cold and possible UTI.  Flu swabs, RSV swabs, catheter… all came back negative.  Last night she was taken to the ER for another bout of the same test PLUS a chest xray.  She is positive for RSV.  Would have been swell if her pediatrician would have given the swab two hours to fester before reading the test.. you know, since that’s the required time limit instead of doing a rapid test. Would have had her treated two days earlier.  Smh.
RSV is a highly contagious upper respiratory infection that can be quite dangerous for a baby.  If adults catch it (and I will because that baby will not leave my water cup alone) it’s just a bad cold.  Rae-bug is now the not-so-proud owner of an inhaler, some icky antibiotics and a round of steroids.  She’s been in good spirits but she’s clingy.  Today after her nap she went into a coughing fit- – couldn’t catch her breath. Scared her to death which made her cry..and that made more snot for her to choke on.   I hate it when people are sick but especially babies because they can’t tell you what hurts or what they want. 

Popcicles.   They want popcicles so we bought a box of 100 and another box of Italian Ice swirl pops.  Best grandparents ever!

Oh and the frosting on the cake was when I was in the basement putting laundry into dry, thought I heard Rae cry, took off running towards the steps, crashed into the downstairs door with my bad arm (the one in had surgery on and just had injected with cortisone) …only to get upstairs to find her still sleeping sound.  After the adrenaline wore off, I felt the throbbing, then the knot. It hurts so bad right now.

I’m going to bed now so I can stare at the darkness and worry about next week’s biology test.

-Willow

Call of Duty

Im pretty sure that somewhere in a previous post I mentioned being a firefighter… if I didn’t then I’m telling you now.  I’m very petite so realistically I was never going to run into a burning structure and drag out a 175 lb man… but I was trained to.  I did complete drill school and I did it without any special treatment.  I drug hoses, caught hydrants, carried ladders, climbed up and down ladders, went through walls, cut roofs, climbed over joists, held down a 5″ hose full of pressure, saved a dummy, learned first responder life stabilization, tied knots, donned ppe, skillfully used the jaws of life, peeled a roof off of a car,  changed out SCBA… I did it in the day, I also did it blind folded.  I can also tell you all the scientific specifics where fires are concerned.  I passed every test, every challenge with flying colors!! 

A handful of times I have used my training since my time with the department.  Once I responded to a wreck on the interstate.  Once I responded to a dad who was screaming on the side of the road for help. His little boy had stopped breathing.
And today, I saved a choking man’s life.

I was debating with myself as to whether or not in should blog about it. I don’t feel like I did anything anyone else wouldn’t do.  It’s hard for me to get it sometimes,  how not everyone can just respond without thought.  That’s what I do- I just respond. It’s second nature for me therefore when I am privileged in being able to use my acquired skills I don’t see myself as any kind of hero-  it was my responsibility. 

While visiting my mother today I heard a horrible noise just outside her door. She asked me what it was and I told her it sound as though someone was getting sick or choking….
My mom freaked out and shouted for me to open the door. Before she finished her sentence I was already in her hallway.  A man across from her was standing in his doorway and he was choking.  I immediately ran up behind him and performed the Heimlich.  With the second thrust his airway was clear.   I rubbed his back and kept telling him he was ok-  he kept thanking me and saying, “God bless you.”

God did bless me.  He blessed me with the ears to hear him, the skills to respond without hesitation and the bedside manner to console him after. God blessed me by allowing me to serve Him.

I don’t know what you believe but as a Christian I believe that God puts you where He wants you, when He wants you there.  You see, I had planned to visit my mom today but later today. I wanted to finish my homework first-  but for some reason I couldn’t focus so I went ahead and went to my moms early this morning.  If I hadn’t been there when I was, I wouldn’t have been able to help the choking man.  He might have died.  Not another person heard him.  I am blessed- very much so.

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-Willow

Day 21- Carpal Tunnel

I really can’t say that I’m shocked by my diagnosis.  I’ve always been active and I’ve always used my hands.
One of my first jobs was data entry- and no one used anything ergonomically correct.   Then I went into a factory where I made pneumatic valves and pistons. That job was pretty fun. I enjoyed reading blueprints and building things; reworking a part that test bad was the best. Who doesn’t love a good puzzle??  The worst part of the job was apparently the repetition.. who knew that pulling high powered hand drills from above your head 10 to 12 hours a day, 5 days a week would reek havoc on your hands and wrist, all the way up to your shoulder?? 😉  It was during my 3rd year working at the “plant” that I ended up in PT.
I got fired shortly after for running my mouth to the wrong person so.. yeah PT ended too – can you say, “No insurance”?!?!
You see what happened was, my daughter broke her arm and I had to take time off.. time I didn’t have but what was I to do?  When I came back a few days later I was sent home on suspension- without pay.  THE HELL? Being part of a union, there was a meeting and whatnot and I popped off to the wrong person and was then escorted to my car.  Guess what? That was unpaid permanently. Hahahahaha
Anyway, after that I went back into an office for more keyboard and paperwork abuse.  Let’s not forget about all the crocheting I’ve been doing since I decided to stay home with kids.. plus now school work (all online)

I had a condition in my wrist – well, thumb actually called, “de quervains syndrome.”  You can Google it but basically if you tuck your thumb into your fist while holding your arm straight out, bending your fist down toward the ground. .that’s the test for it.  If it hurts reeeeaaalllly bad, yep. De quervains.  Summer 2013 I had the surgery to correct it. 

Here I am now with pain that starts with what feels like a weak wrist and it throbs it’s way up my arm and into my neck and shoulder blade.  It sucks!!
I saw the surgeon today. Carpal Tunnel. Damnit.  Now goes the long process to “fix” it before surgery.  Today was an injection of cortisone into the right carpal. I didn’t feel it but after the cold numbing stuff wore off I sure did. I still do. Next is more testing and more injections, then I can have my wrist cut open to release my tightly squeezed tendons.  I wish I could just get this over with but you know, gotta bill that insurance.

Oh and did you know that nowadays it’s not typing that gets you?? It’s using your cell phone too much that causes this syndrome. 😨 Doc told me (as she shot me up) to text left handed hahahaha  Is she crazy? I type bad enough using my dominant hand!! Hahaha

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-Willow