Tuesday, October 27, 2009

If you push hard enough, something has to happen

"PUSH PUSH PUSH PUSH PUSH.." Said the man holding up my knees " Why is your face purple?'

" Because the last time I had a man down there screaming that, a baby came out!"

But this time it was the Physical Therapist attempting to realign my pelvis. The baby delivery was certainly quicker... even with the time I was in active labor for 15 hours.

I have been to physical therapy for a bit over two weeks now. The Knee- Hold-Pushfest, a checking of how things are going, some stretching pulling and prodding as well as 5 minutes of some warm ultrasound device is all that the rotating physical therapists do that I do not do at home. Each session they add a few more exercises. At first I thought it was going to be exercises for the PT location only. But no, they are for me to do at home. Yes, they show me the proper form, and give me a printout. It does not take me long to do them at home, under 30 minutes.

I do not have the greatest track record of being self motivating when it comes to exercise. So far I have done them, oh, 90% of the time. The idea that strengthening my core ( oh yeah, I sound so sporty don't I?) will help to support my newly straightened pelvis and keep it that way. Further theory says that this all will help relieve my old lady ailments that I don't like to talk about: sciatica and bursitis. I get rid of those,and keep up the hair coloring, I could lie about my age. I mean, if I was so inclined.

Starting today I am down to one pain med at night, and two anti inflammatory. De-drugging myself is one of the biggest motivations I have for doing those exercises. That and, as a nifty side affect of this whole thing, I have lost a chunk of weight. Those exercises have to help out with that, too. Whittle my middle. Just in time to wear those baggy sweaters all winter. yay.

So I keep pushing on at physical therapy. It's not that bad, seems to be helping and only once did I feel any pain from my sessions. That was the other day when the two receptionists ( who I had seen last week as well) were talking about how they were battling H1N1 all week and spent the weekend sick and still didn't feel so great that day. I hope this development doesn't have me pushing fluids in the near future.

For those of you who have wondered where I have been, I had the pleasure and honor of sub blogging on my favorite moms site, Mom2momkc.com for my Pal Jennifer Brown the past couple of weeks. I have yet to master the learning curve to put a link on here...dangnabit..well I did. It was fun. Go there to read them, or just trust me on it.

Also,I will admit it. I have been lazy. I don't know if it is the weather,the beginning of the hibernation season, added exercise,or the schedule juggling that was necessary to fit in these therapy sessions. Whtever the reason,I have been lazy. But I will push on. Push it, push it real good...

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Back to Back

Tomorrow I go for my first physical therapy session. At last count I had about a dozen different ( or similar) offers to whack my pelvis back into place. How kind. I think I'll go the physical therapy route for now, but I'll keep your suggestions in mind.

The current meds seem to work ok. I trade full pain coverage for full brain function now that I am off the vicodin, but it's a price I am willing to pay. I need my brain to work properly. It lets me handle things like this morning.

I came in the house, after dropping Beks off at school, to find Brian in full rant about the furnace. He told me yesterday that it wasn't working right and to listen to it during the day, which I did. And it functioned properly all day. However, not this morning. Now we had no heat.

It's not that it is bitter cold out, it's 41 degrees right now. But a broken furnace, one that keeps running but not engaging the fan, is not something we like to wait on. All things house are my domain. Clogged toilet to appliance repair-- my job. A hook rips out of the wall- I repair it. A cup of cocoa drops on the carpet? I haul out the cleaner. Lock repair, wall painting,computer rebooting, new microwave installation- all these things are on my Job Description.

Calling the furnace repair guy is also my job.. and normally I would do it when Brian was gone, but he was still here. I wanted to get on this as soon as possible and 7:45 AM was good enough for me. But apparently Brian was not satisfied with the description I was giving the man on the phone. He kept yelling the words he wanted to hear. While he was sitting on the can.With the door open. 10 feet from me.

" The heat pump isn't working properly, and the fan on the AC unit won't shut off but the furnace fan won't run" I said.


" I turned the thermostat to " emergency" but the furnace isn't clicking on" I said trying to walk away from the powder room.


Then the guy on the phone totally cracked me up: " wow, your phones are great I can hear everything!"

But he sent a guy out right away. The same guy that came a month ago as I was puking my guts out in the kitchen sink. The part was under warranty and within an hour we had heat again.I just have to wonder what our file says . Maybe " Crazy family but pay on time".

Brian was also upset because he has had to log onto his AOL account all week. For some reason his cookie keeps getting deleted.. but I can't explain this to him because he doesn't understand it. He wants to sit with his coffee, after doing his morning Bible reading, and check his email. Apparently typing his password is an added step he doesn't want. I don't use AOL. It isn't Susan Intuitive. I can't explain that either because he likes it, for some reason, and wants it to work the way he wants it to work when he wants it to work. " Get 'er done, Bunny."

* pause to explain.. That is my family nickname, given by him many years ago because he thinks my feet in socks look like little bunnies. I don't see it, I have very small feet and bunnies have proportionately large feet, but it stuck and now everyone uses it. Not you. Please don't."*

The other drama I was juggling is that Noah seems to have picked up a cold somewhere. I say that like the source is a mystery but if I was a Betting Mom I would narrow it down to his first statement when I picked him up from school the other day. You know, his first day back after being sick for 2 weeks ? He gave me a big hug and screamed " Lana sneezed in my FACE!" ( he obviously gets his sense of subtlety from his father). Now we are on day one of a cold. The day where he is a bit tired, a bit grumpy , a bit sneezy and a bit dopey. I hope we don't have to throw in another dwarf and call him a Doc. I probably would have kept him home even if I wasn't opening the door for the furnace guy at the same time I should have been driving him to study the letter B and cough into his sleeve. Not a big drama, but if he gets worse, and really sick again, it will turn to big drama.

But I get to escape tomorrow to go to Physical Therapy. Right at this moment it sounds like a trip to a spa. Kid free, me and paid strangers concentrating on my problems. I suppose that tells me I need to get out, need to distance myself from My To Do list of home repair, child raising, and husband PMS wrangling. But doing something to help stop my pain so I can fully concentrate on, as well as develop, the more interesting things in my life will be as refreshing and renewing as a spa day.Of course I have never been and will probably be moaning about it in a day, but let me live with this image for now. Tomorrow I get to get back to my back and the promise of that fills me with hope. Hope that I get to scratch that project off my To Do list!

Friday, October 9, 2009

A quick update and a new working theory

Brian and I met with the neurosurgeon the other day. We went expecting to find out when my surgery would be and exactly what it entailed. We got neither.

What we did get was good news: I didn't need surgery just yet. Maybe not for a very long time. This guy thinks my pain is being caused, not by the tumor living in a sea of nerves in my back, but by a pelvis out of whack.

I have to take pain medicine to drive, and Brian doesn't drive too well so I took a vicodin before I drove downtown. This got me there without pain, but it also made my inner gears not move so fast. I couldn't wrap my head around this, how is my pain going to stop? Who is going to make this all better? Brian and the doctor seemed to speak the same language so while time was moving at a snail pace for me, they were mapping out a strategy.

I will head to physical therapy and see if that alleviates my discomfort. I was not anxious for surgery, I don't like pain, and relying on others and all that surgery entails. But, if I'm being honest, having someone else do the work and fix me held some appeal. I would have probably been at the same PT place afterwards,and in quite a bit of new pain. I could see this when I took off my rose colored glasses, but the original pain would be gone. Of course as the doc described the surgery so many more things could go wrong I switched gears and embraced the new working theory: my pelvis is out of whack and physical therapy will get it back in place. I have to go for another MRI in 3 months to see how the tumor is growing, it will have to come out when it reaches a certain size. But there is a chance I might live a very long life and die a natural death before that happens. I like that.

And even in the the few days since I met with this doctor I have had numerous offers and guffaw presented methods to fix my pelvis. Hey, yeah, thanks for that.

So, off I go to work this new theory. I never have been to Physical Therapy before so I have no idea what to expect. This should be an adventure.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Confessions of a Germaphobe

Brian will be the first to confess that he is a germaphobe. He doesn't have to be accused of it, he admits it freely. He wears the title like a badge of honor, no, more like a shield than a badge. He feels that his germophobic tendencies keep him and those who he loves safe. He feels that he will do everything in his power to keep us from getting sick. This is his method, what he feels he can do.

He has taken it upon himself to place all over our house, Sanitation Stations. This one is between our kitchen and dining room. Wipe your hands, wipe a counter, wipe a nose, then your hands again, of course-- all you need is right here.

I'm pretty laid back, if he thinks that this is keeping us healthy, then more power to him. His peace of mind is worth it to me. He is the natural born worrier in our couple. Not arguing and allowing this is just my way of helping him worry just a bit less. Some years I think he is right. We have had years when we skip the majority of crud that is floating around. Some years.. eh, not so much. Right now I am winding up our family wide Crud Fest. Only time will tell if this is, overall, a healthy year for us.

In light of what seems to be a fact that the Crud Season is not only upon us, but a bit early this year, here is a tour of all our Sanitation Stations for your consideration. I'm not saying that living life afraid of a teeny germ is the way to go, and I can tell you that being obsessed about it is certainly draining. Moderation in everything. Brian doesn't know much about moderation. Before you roll your eyes, think of this: who wouldn't want a husband who goes into a project with such determination and all encompassing attention? For better or worse.

Most people have Lysol front and center in the cleaning product cabinet like we do.

And most people have soap dispensers at every sink. Ours is just everfilled.

And the Lysol in the kitchen cleaning cabinet isn't the only one in the house. Each toilet sports it's own bottle.

This was the result of the rotovirus that put a kidnergarten aged Bekah in the hospital for 5 days , and Luke in the ER during the same time. We are pretty sure she picked it up at school, computer lab actually, but " kills rotovirus" is right there on the Lysol label.

In the planning mind of the gemaphobe, mini-germx bottles should be plentifully stocked. This is the baking accessory/ germx drawer in our kitchen.

Exactly why this box of Wet Ones is kept in a bowl with bananas totally escapes me. Speaks volumes in my mind, but I suspect the reasons in his are very serious. It does make me laugh, though, so I leave it alone.

Every germaphobes house should have a back up supply of sanitation products. Since Mr Moderation is in charge of this supply, and often given free reign in Sam's Club, we have several stock up spots.

Under the powder room sink, for instance.

Brian does a fine job making sure that the kids have supplies before they head out the door. This is a permanent fixture in Luke's lunchbox.

Of course, the question remains " when they are out of sight of Daddy,do the kids use them?". The world may never know.

Even the cars are not free from germ warfare. This is my van, between the first row of passenger seats. The Wet Ones are for bringing into stores to wipe down carts, the pop ups are for germy hand messes, and the bottles of sanitizer are for squirting whenever the kids get in from school or friends house.

This is just a peek into the life of my germaphobe. You don't see the wiping down of door handles, backpacks and refrigerators. You don't see the man who thinks that his methods are keeping his family safe and healthy. Sure, it's kinda wacked. He might even fess up to it being a sickness. But if you ever meet him, you can shake his hand with the knowledge that you can't catch that sickness from him.