Christmas Comes Early

And my Santa is a wiry little man with round, tiny glasses named Dr. Jack Seaquist.

Along with the parts for the new hip, I’ve also asked that Jack include the following in his big bag of goodies:

Dr Santa

  1. When I roll out of bed in the morning, I’d like it to be effortless.
  2. When my feet hit the floor I’d like to begin walking right away instead of thinking OUCH how am I going to make this next step?
  3. I’d like to descend and ascend our stairs like a normal person instead of taking a step and then putting my second foot on same step. This method, while less painful, is tedious and I’ve got places to go.
  4. When lying down I’d like to be able to find multiple comfortable positions in which to lay and sprawl
  5. When getting in and out of a car I’d like it to be a smooth transition that doesn’t include me holding on tightly to anything in the near vicinity for fear of falling down.
  6. When walking down the halls in the office I’d like to walk in such a way that people won’t ask, “Oh, what happened?!”

Oh the joy of opening up presents that come early!

And our house promises to have no orthopedic issues this coming year. Our Isabella, Jack Russell + Chihuahua rescue came to us with two broken legs on the mend. Charles broke his collar bone in the fall. This is it. For sure!

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Your Turn

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Making last minute preparations for my hospital admission on Wednesday and I’ve received a few pieces of what I expect is good advice. I suspect there’s more out there. This is what I know:

1. Don’t worry about buying a new night gown. I’ll probably stay in hospital garments. I’m bringing my short robe since I know I’ll be up and around working on how to use my new hip.

2. Drink lots of water. Meds will be messing with my digestive system, so I’ll have to stay on top of it.

3. Be aware of my pain levels. The hospital has been adamant that I shouldn’t grin and bear it.

4. The incision will be hot and I expect itchy.

What else should I be aware of?

Anything I should pack and bring with me?

What should I leave at home?

Your turn. Go!

Wrapping Things Up

It’s December and wrapping generally refers to wrapping gifts and presents . . . not in this case . . .

Out-of-Office

Just hit send on an email to alert my hiring managers that I’ll be out of the office for a wee bit very soon and ideally didn’t give my co-worker that will be covering things a heart attack.

It’s scary to put things on hold from my manager’s perspective, I’m sure. Scary for me too. A lot can happen when you’re away from the office. Things that you never anticipated breaking do. Drills that you never imagined, warrant all hands on deck. Meanwhile, I’ll be dozing away and when awake practicing leg lifts with a new body part.

While I realize time away is necessary and that I’ll be of little use, I admit I’m a bit of a workaholic. I don’t think I’m totally diagnosable with FOMA (Fear Of Missing Out), but I do like catching up on Facebook and Twitter and I’m constantly checking emails. So putting away technology for a day is unfathomable.

I suspect I’ll live through it though and until then . . . much to wrap up!

Visions of Next Wednesday

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Seven days from this evening I’ll be spending my first night ever in a hospital bed. I will have arrived before dawn, been prepped for surgery, sedated, my worn out hip removed, my me hip installed and fingers crossed that before I go to sleep have taken my first steps.

As I learned about what I will be experiencing it amazed me how quickly I’m expect to be rehabilitating and how many people will be involved with the procedure.

I’m thankful that I have an amazing family and friends support team. I’m completely comfortable with the medical staff. If there’s just one thing I could add it would be my pets. I know I’ll miss them terribly. Will the realize mom’s away getting a fantastic new build? 😜

Bionic Part Countdown

As I lay in bed wrapping up Dec. 1, 2013 I begin the 10-day countdown to my left hip replacement. It’s not really bionic though, so I have no grandiose dreams of being able to leap across cars or into second story windows. But I am excited. Seems like the sharp pains of daily movements are becoming more frequent and perhaps my body simply encouraging me that this surgery is the right call.

I posted these X-rays of both my hips on Facebook and made mention of the procedure for the first time last week. I received a lot of encouraging comments and a number of them mentioning I seem too young for such a thing. I agree – I’m only a ripe 46 years old.

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The X-Ray was taken in Feb. 2013. Pretty sure a more current view isn’t prettier.

Around late Nov. 2012, I started noticing sharp, inconsistent, hard-to explain pains and all I could describe was it was coming from where my leg connected to my torso. I’d also have weird sensations when walking and most often when coming down a flight of stairs as if my leg was just going to come out from under me. It was so frustrating.

In February of this year, my chiropractor, Dr Mark Shannan, suggested that I go see a spine specialist. That specialist took these X-rays and immediately said, “Yep, that’s a hip replacement and when you can’t stand it any longer you’ll have it replaced.”

So next week it is. I have had my pre-op visits with my physician Dr Jack Seaquist and his staff, I’ve met with the anesthesia team as well as the physical and occupational therapists and I’m doing daily exercises they’ve recommended.

And after 10 more sleeps I’ll wake up and check into a hospital for the first time in my life and emerge three days later with my hip version 2.0.

Oh I can’t wait to walk without pain!

How Far We’ve Come

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Timehop is definitely one of my favorite apps – especially on days like this. Today it reminded me how far we’ve come since Charles’ prostrate cancer diagnosis and ultimate radical prostatectomy.

Little did we know that when we married in May of 2009 that in four months we’d be faced with major life altering decisions. I think we, like many others who marry, had more grandeur and happy thoughts of a lifetime together.

Four years later we’ve experienced ups and downs, traveled to foreign countries and continents, watched our son marry, watched our grandson’s birth and first birthday, changed jobs, made new friends and countless other events. And yet Timehop quiets me today and reminds me that four years ago we were being introduced to a frightening and unknown cancer world – like so many others sadly experience.

I think I can honestly say that there is a part of me that is glad this happened when it did. Charles at the time was 40 and I was 41.

I now know that the truly little things in life are just that – so many unimportant situations, comments, interactions that don’t deserve the time or energy. Rather there’s life to be lived, places left to see, people’s lives where I might make a difference and there’s time left for all of it.

Always Something

Thanks to Bottled_Void on http://www.flickr.com

Yep.

It’s such a true phrase.

And the always something can be good, bad, unexpected, planned . . . doesn’t matter . . . life is always going to throw something our way – like it or not and it’s up to us in how we respond.

I like to think of myself as a pretty patient, most times understanding and logical person. Today tried every bit of my character. Went to the office much earlier than normal. Drove in back-to-school, day after a holiday traffic that I’m not accustomed to joining which made my 23 mile commute last over an hour. Sat in a few hours of meetings only to find that my car had developed a flat tire. Called roadside assistance to help change the tire – in the midday Texas sun. And my computer, well it didn’t really act like its normal let’s get things done self.

And I could have totally had a melt down.

I think today warranted a melt down.

But I chose not to melt down. I breathed a little deeper. I focused on things that mattered more than my circumstances. And I’m determined that tomorrow will go better than today and that the things that didn’t get accomplished today will be fine getting completed tomorrow.

And . . . I had a super yummy lasagna and garlic bread for dinner. Comfort food always makes a difference, right?