Saturday, May 30, 2009

2/3 is such a happy thing (crutches - week 4)

Hallejuah!!! It's been four weeks!! In some regards, time has totally flown by. In other ways - it's only been four weeks??

So physical therapy is going great. The blood still flows through my right leg. This week I gained 10% more movement in my hip!! Yeah for progress! I laugh everytime I have to fill out the questionnaire thingy. I have to rate my "skill" level on things like "walking 2 blocks", "running a mile", "walking with heavy objects", "completing household chores" - um, lets just say I score a lot of zeros!

I started back at work this week. Just one job though. I gave up my night job for the next few weeks and good thing because I'm TOTALLY exhausted every day. Who knew crutches were so much work? Seriously, I find it interesting. Walking from, for example, the house to the garage - never had a second thought. Totally easy. Could do it in my sleep. But with crutches, it's seriously a work out. It makes me wonder if it's the crutches or am I really that out of shape? Then I realized, without crutches you just use your legs to walk. But with crutches you have to use your arms and your legs. It's totally a workout. Or at least that's the story I'm sticking to.

Crutches have given me a new perspective on life. It's REALLY hard to ask for help as much as I need to. Not because people aren't helpful, but because it's hard. Get this for me, take that over there, carry this for me, open the door, and the list goes on and on and on. Of course I always ask nice, say please and thank you - but it's very humbling to have to rely on everyone (including perfect strangers) for help. Sometimes it makes me grumpy to have to ask for help, I feel like it would be better to go without then to ask someone.

People stare a lot. I'm still trying to figure out if I'm more self conscious so I notice more or do crutches really make people stare more? Either way, people stare - A LOT. I use to hang my head and not give eye contact. Now, I hold my head high and smile. I've made a lot of progress and gone through a lot. I have a right (and a desire) to be proud of myself.

School is interesting. The kids are pretty funny and I get a lot of help from them. One day my crutches fell over. Now I was sitting down and didn't need them at the current moment but about 10 kids jumped up and raced to get the crutches for me. Another time I asked, to no one in particular, if someone would get my microphone off my desk for me. No joke, about 15 kids jumped up and raced to be the first one there. Hilarious! They LOVE to help and will come asking me what they can do. I feel pretty spoiled!

My arms are doing soooo much better. It's wonderful to put weight on my leg and a little less on my arms. I have gotten braver at cooking things that require more than putting the dish in the oven. I can't wait until I can really cook/bake again!! I can now sleep some of the night on my right hip (my preference for sleeping) but I still can't roll out of bed if my right hip has to be the lead. I have to roll all the way the other direction! I still have pain but more just my hip reminding me it's not quite normal yet. I still have to sit down to get dressed, have to use a shower chair to get in and out of the tub, opening doors by myself is a challenge and our bed hasn't been made in weeks (but don't worry, the sheets have been washed!). I am much more independent but still need incredible amounts of help. I'm just soooo glad this is almost over!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Memorial Weekend

For Memorial Weekend we headed to Idaho to visit friends and family. We got up Saturday morning and headed to Colton and Sarah's house in Pocatello. Tim and Crystal were already there.

Kyla wanted to make a Princess dress. Well, I think I may be headed for fashion school after this design. I mean, isn't it awesome?? It's tissue paper!

Gavin wanted to play dress up too but in a house of two girls, his choices were limited. Doesn't he make a cute Ariel though?

We had a barbeque on Saturday night and here is cute Kenna chillin' in her camping chair.

Quinn is one smiley baby! Brian loved making her smile, but who wouldn't? What a cutie!
Then we went to the Fun Zone where the kids went wild in a climbing structure, the boys played lazer tag and we all played games. Isn't Sarah cute with her pregnant belly?

Crystal and I partying at the Fun Zone.Brian and Colton just being themselves.
Hmmm...anyone see a likeness?

Sunday morning Brian was the target of a large wrestling match. It was adorable to watch two giggling children jump on him over and over again. If you look close, you can see the smile on his face.

Then we headed to Rigby where the wrestling continued with the nephews.

Then the guys played a strange game. "Let's see who can hold their hand up the longest!" One thing to point out - only guys joined the game. It was hilarious, when nieces walked into the room they would say "What the?", but when the nephews walked in they quickly held up their hand and said, "What are we doing?" hahahaha!!!!

We colored...Got silly... Watched tv and ate food...Played with the new kitties (Benny, Mouse and Precious)...I had to add this picture to show you how tiny the kitties are...

And waited in line for sparklers...It was a great weekend filled with fun and laughter. Thanks everyone for the great time!!

Friday, May 22, 2009

I LOVE 50%!! (Crutches - week 3)

I totally cried this week. I was reading over the physical therapy prescription and it said I had to have crutches for TWELVE WEEKS!!! I totally bawled. My arms are killing me, I can't sleep, I'm so limited in what I can do and I hate it, I'm terrified of going back to work next week, etc., etc., etc. - and I thought I was going to die. I had the worst sleep of my life and woke up early the next morning to go to physical therapy. I asked, Dave, my therapist and he told me that the 12 weeks is for physical therapy, NOT for crutches! Oh, Dave, he became my most favoritist person in the world. I almost cried again. And the news got better from there. As of two days ago, I can walk with up to 50% weight on my leg!! It's so nice to "walk" again. AND by the 6th week of crutches, I will only have to walk with one crutch!! There is a light at the end of this very dark crutch tunnel.

So I can walk with 50% of my weight AND I'm 50% of the way through the crutches time!! 50% is my new favorite number!! :)

Well, this week my arms hurt so bad I was taking pain killers just for them. Then I went to physical therapy and learned that the crutch training I got before surgery was WRONG!! My therapist fixed the crutches, taught me exercises for my sore arms and my arms are much, much happier now! :)

Funny thing, I'm reverting back to early childhood. You know how little kids back up to someone's lap when they want to sit down? I have to back up to couches, the toilet, my bed, the car, etc. in order to sit down. Yep, it's quite the sight.

My inventiveness continues, I found that shoving a book up my shirt is a great way to carry a book from one area of the house to another. So now I can read anywhere! And water bottles stay quite well in the band of my pants. I'm sure you wanted to know that and I'm sure you really want to take me out in public! :)

And I can DRIVE!! Oh yeah. A little taste of freedom. Can't do much else because running errands on crutches??? Um, no thank you. But with driving came a Handicap parking permit! Never thought I'd appreciate one as much as I do. Less crutching, less pain, less things to trip over or get a crutch caught on. So many things I've never done before!

And I started work again today. I can easily cruise around now that I'm "walking" with my crutches and so now I'm not too nervous about work. People are very helpful and my students are going to love getting "helper" assignments. Since I teach year round school, we still have 6 weeks of school left. Hopefully these last three weeks on crutches will fly by!

Let's see, I haven't really gained any new skills this week (aside from "walking" and driving). But now that I'm in physical therapy, I see many changes (towards being normal again!!) happening soon. YEAH!! I've read two books, wrote, studied for my teaching license test, played with friends, went to a fun evening at Rhodes Rolls (it was a delicious event), took many naps (I'm going to miss those when I go back to work) and I don't think much else. Time is flying by!

Yeah for 50%!!!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Another test passed!

On Saturday Brian passed his second (of four) welding tests for the Union!! On the very first try (just like the last test)!! He thought I was making a big deal with how excited I was. He told me it "was easy." I told him that's because he's a natural welder and that I was sure there were tons of people who don't pass any tests on the first try. It's wonderful that he has found something he loves and is soooo good at!

Two more tests to go and some classes and my honey will be a welding man!!

Oh, and he got called to jury duty!! hehehehe!! :)

Way To Go Brian!!

Friday, May 15, 2009

Crutches - week 2

Here are the highlights of my second week on crutches.

I've started feeling pain in my hip. I don't know if it's that my muscles have relaxed or if I lowered my pain killers for long enough the pain is coming through but the pain is here. Ah pain, it wouldn't be so bad if it would let me sleep.

Sleeping is difficult. I don't stay asleep more than a couple of hours. Good thing I have another week at home so I can take naps. Poor Brian, I wake him up a lot.

I no longer have to wear saran wrap around my hip to protect the incisions. Yeah for saran wrap free showers!

But I did get a horrible infection. Lucky me gets to be on antibiotics for that.

My arms are KILLING me! Ouchy, ouchy! I'm going to have some buff arms after this.

I started a recipe blog: http://sallys-smorsels.blogspot.com/

I finally wrote a ton of recipes onto recipe cards, instead of the magazine papers they were on. These are all recipes I've tried and wanted to keep. Then I threw away a huge pile of recipes I've had forever. I figure, if I haven't made them yet, I'm not going to. And I was really sick of the clutter.

I watch too much tv/movies, take lots of naps, spend time writing, only finished one book this week, studied for my teaching license and hung out lots with my friend Tammie! Time is going by too fast.

I rode in a motorized cart and found it fun. But I didn't like how people would stare. Seriously, go judge someone else.

Went to the doctor. No change on the amount of time on crutches but I do get to start physical therapy. Good thing because it will be nice to feel the blood flowing in my right leg again. When his assistant took me back to the room, she told me she was going to remove my stitches. I wanted to cry. It freaked me out for some reason. I had spent some serious time protecting those incisions. But when she pulled the tape off, there were no outside stiches. YEAH!! Funny the things that cause anxiety.

I can now get the sock on my right foot in one step. And getting dressed doesn't take as long as it use to. I can do dishes and load the dishwasher, but only if the dishes are already in the sink. I can fold laundry but only if Brian brings it to me. And I even put already made cookie dough onto cookie sheets and made cookies. I'm definetly getting more adventurous. But there are still soooo many things I cannot do. It's tough to be so limited and scary that going back to work is only a week away.

Only four weeks left!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

I may be married to a welder soon!

Yep, that's right. My bag tossing, airplane directing, annual FBI background checked hubbie will (hopefully) very soon be a true, genuine WELDER!! Gone will be the days of our free flight benefits but my man, will be a welding man!

We have finally made some progress on the job hunt. First of all, it took forever to get things moving with the Union. It's just the way it goes. But my man, he took and PASSED his first (of four) welding tests in order to be accepted by the Union. Then he went back to practice the next test, and after only three passes, they told him he was ready to test!!

Then the very same day, he got a phone call for a job interview!! It's a small company and he would travel to Colorado, California and Idaho, as well as Utah - but we'll just have to see.

Let's hope this keeps up and my man becomes a welding man!

Congratulations Brian!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

I started a recipe blog!!

I've been wanting to start a recipe blog for a long time, especially since a lot of friends ask for recipes quite often. And one of my New Year's Resolutions is to be productive while off track - so while sitting around recovering, I finally started it! You can find it at: http://sallys-smorsels.blogspot.com/ Or you can click on the link under my recipe blog list. There are only seven recipes so far, but lots more ready to go once I can take a picture. I put all the recipes under different descriptions so it may look like there are more. I hope you like it!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Three legs are definetly NOT better than two

How do you like my new look?? And I'm not talking about my sexy pyjama pants.
I want to keep a record of this crutch time. I think it will be fun to look back on. And that's not how I normally hold the right crutch. I was posing people, posing!

I miss walking on two legs. Everything is so much more work now. I miss cooking and baking and walking with something in my hands. I was worried about gaining weight but now, I'm not as worried. Walking 5 steps on crutches is like running a mile. And let's talk about the amazing arm muscles I'm getting! (and how sore they are). Maybe I'll actually end up getting a little of my sexy back from this whole thing. One can hope, right??
Brian has been marvelous help but he is much more use to doing his own thing and not being bossed around by me! It'll be good for him though, right?? Thanks for everything honey!!

My first week has been pretty good. I haven't had a lot of pain, except for the muscles they cut in my leg. The bruises are amazing. It's like a fireworks show with all the colors and patterns. I've read three books, taken a lot of naps, mastered the stairs on crutches (almost), and found a new favorite tv show - Cooking Yourself Thin on Lifetime. You should check it out! Cousin Ann has come to visit several times, we got lots of yummy meals from the Relief Society and friends (thanks Chelsey and Crystal!!), Mom, Dad, Jeremy and Janie got home from France and it was nice to have them here for a few hours and I've enjoyed talking with my sisters almost every day!!

Life with crutches has a lot of adventures and I'm getting pretty creative. Like putting my cereal and milk in a tupperware, covering it with a lid, putting it in a grocery sack and crutching it so I can sit while eating. I've graduated this week to being able to put my own socks and shoes on, showering by myself and being able to get dressed without any help. It's been great for a first week.

Only five more to go!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

What do you do when you're bored at home and mobility is limited??

You blog about your cats!

Just be prepared for eye rolling here. Oh, and if you don't like when people's pets become their "kids" - this post is not for you, my friend.

This is Phanta. When we got her she had a "mask" on her face. We thought about naming her Phantom but I wanted something more "girly". So, hence the name, Phanta.
This is Mokie. When we got her, she had a little goatee. It fell off when she was still little but she just needed a polynesian name because of her goatee.
They love to lay in the sunshine. Here they are sprawled on the bed soaking in the sun. I took the picture a little too late. When I first saw them, they were both in the sun.
Mokie loves to sit on top of anything and everything. It is quite funny to see where she perches herself sometimes.
Phanta loves to crawl into everything. I often come home to find a lump in my bed. She has figured out how to crawl under the blankets even with the bed made. Here she is inside the plastic wrap that goes around the toilet paper. Don't worry visitors, we have taken precautions to not let this happen again so our toilet paper is not laden in cat hair.
This is usually how you will find the cats this week. Snuggled up to my legs. They have been pretty funny with me being on crutches. If I go into the bathroom, so do they. If I go downstairs, so do they. And as soon as I sit or lay down, so do they.
Phanta is a HUGE snuggler. Well, really just with me. She always has to be held or at least touching me. Here I am typing on the computer and she is snuggled right next to my leg. As long as she is touching me, she just purrs and purrs and purrs.
Mokie gets into anything and everything. I was unloading groceries, left the fridge open to put stuff in and when I turned around I found this. Don't worry peoples, she doesn't eat anything.

Here they are getting into my purse. They are quite talented at getting EVERYTHING out. Every last little gum wrapper, coin, receipt. Then they just walk away and leave me with the mess.
I have no idea what Brian was doing on the lap top but Phanta stood there like this for a loooong time. So I took a picture.

Mokie LOVES to play. The one toy she has been most consistent in loving is little mice. She loves when we throw one and she runs and brings it back. Yes, that's right - she fetches! Here she is trying so hard to play but the need to take a nap won.

I love my little kitties! They are the best of friends, completely entertaining and wonderful company. Aren't they just the cutest!

Friday, May 1, 2009

Hip Surgery

Today was my hip surgery and things went well. I don't know about you, but sometimes I doubt myself. There were moments when I wondered if I could possibly be making my hip problems up in my head, but then it would click, pop, etc and it would remind me something really was wrong. But I still kept doubting.

Well, I have to doubt no more. I really did have a problem in my hip - two problems actually. I did in fact have a labral tear (where the cartiledge is torn and the hip bone gets stuck on it) which the doctor put back in place. I actually have pictures of this and they are really cool! But since I cannot walk to the scanner (not big enough space for crutches), I'll have to post them another time. Or you can come over and I'll show you!! :)

Second problem was the hip cup bone (whatever it's really called) had a little knob on it. The ball of the hip was hitting it. So it got shaved! OUCH! Okay, I don't hurt...yet. I'm pretty doped up.

So hopefully the recovery continues to go wonderfully cause I would really like that. Oh and on the good news front - I only have to have crutches for SIX weeks! For some reason six sounds so much better than eight to twelve.

Well, that's the update. Visitors and phone calls are always welcome!