Archive for September, 2016

Return to a Regular Human Being

September 25, 2016

As you have noticed, it has been quite a while since I wrote a post.  There is a reason, though I am a bit embarrassed because it preventable.  In June 26th I was writing my blog and since I was writing about the yard, I wanted to show pictures of how the mulch looked after Jorge and his crew finished.  So I went out wearing my slippers to take pictures to add to the post.  When I was coming through the back door, I tripped on the rubber threshold piece and fell out of my slippers.  Net thing I knew, I had face planted on left side.  When I was able to sit up after a few minutes, I realized my left elbow was not working properly.  I knew I was in trouble and needed to call 911.

Eddie was at the Museum of Flight for his docent stint – later I learned he hadn’t taken the house keys or his phone with him.  I went in an ambulance to ER where they told me my elbow was broken.  They put me in a fiberglass splint and told me to call the orthopedic surgeon on call to make an appointment to see him.  Wouldn’t you know, it was the same one I had for my broken arm last year.

Meanwhile Eddie came home, found the door locked and my slippers by the step.  He had no idea where I was, thought I might be visiting the Dusters down the hill.  Bonnie hadn’t seen me but remembered Bill said something about an ambulance in our drive.  She called him and he confirmed it.  So they called the hospital and confirmed I was there and I was “stable”.  Scared the life out of Eddie and he said he was shaking as he drove over to ER.  I went home and got an appointment for Tuesday.

He was no help except to say I needed a new elbow joint.  He didn’t know anyone but would ask around.  He also changed the splint and put on a plaster one, much heavier than the first one.  I waited until Thursday morning and finally went looking for a surgeon on my own.  I found one at Swedish Orthopedic Institute and they made an appointment for me the following day.  He was great and both Eddie and I really liked him – as opposed to the other one.  He arranged for surgery the following Wednesday – 4th of July week.

They have the doctor’s offices, surgery and recovery all at the Institute – like a small private hospital.  I will admit, it is the easier broken bone I have had – replacement means I started therapy right away.  I was there three days and it was a great experience.  If I stayed 2 nights, then he could take off the splint before I went home.  Eddie will give you a very different view.  I came home and rested, once again confined to the house unless someone drove.  A week later I went to see the doc to have the 31 staples out.  I was having trouble with the numbness on my left hand.  He did a 24 hour nerve block – I still have numbness in my little finger – but it seems  to have been really noticeable in the ring and little fingers.  He gave me some pain med for it – it felt as if I had a swarm of bees inside – the buzzy feeling wasn’t so bad, but when it felt as if they were biting and then stinging, it was unbearable.  I wanted to have it calm down so I could sleep at night.

The stuff he gave me made me sleepy all the time, out of it, couldn’t remember things – just weird and when I first woke up I was woozy.  When I saw him 4 weeks after I told him I had had enough. Fortunately by then, things had calmed down enough it wasn’t so much of a problem.  The sensations seem to change, mostly I feel as if I have only half a hand that function.  I noticed as I used my hand, it feels as if it is slowly gaining strength.  I have to concentrate about how to use it, it isn’t working automatically yet.

To add to this, I went out one Sunday to put my feet in the grass to ground myself.  I stayed too long and the top of my feet got sunburned.  A while later I noticed something on the back of my calf, Eddie is sure I was bitten by something.  Doc Pierce sent me to Wound Care at Highline Hospital; I ended up having my leg wrapped up and I had to take spit baths.  They discharged me a couple of weeks ago – then saw them again Thursday with along narrow blister on the right leg and another are on the right.  So I am back seeing them again.  First a vascular ultrasound – everything was working well.  Now an arterial ultrasound to check the arteries.  I’m seeing a different door and she wants to find out why I am having a problem with edema.  All kinds of new adventures.

I find I am slowly building energy, stamina and beginning to take an interest in things.  I don’t think of it as getting back to normal – who knows what normal really is.  I think of it as getting back to feeling a regular human being, more of who I am.  It is also an opportunity to create a whole new life – I only have to decide what I want it to be.  I will publish the “lost post” when I attach pictures.  I will say, it isn’t deathless prose, just me writing about things in my world.

Now you know what has kept me from writing posts for the past few weeks.  Eddie say “No more falls!!!!” and I whole heartedly agree. I have had my share and I really need to watch where I am stepping.

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