Thursday, December 5, 2013

I'm Still Alive.... :)

Hey Ya'll,

Just a really quick post to let you know that I am not dead....yet!!  LOL  But I have gone through a LOT these past several months!  While trying to post, I realized that I have lost some ability to manipulate my blog, and I seem to have lost some of the content as well!  So I am in the process of trying to recapture at least some of my blog information, etc.  Anyway, I am also trying to update it for the current season.  So give me a few days (or may a week (or so so???)), and I will post what has has been happening here with me.  Some good....some bad....  :(

Anyway, I will be posting soon, so I hope there are still a few of you out there that remember me!!

Till next time....

Aloha My Friends!!  :)

Monday, June 24, 2013

Quick Update And New Photos!!

Myself and the Grand Kids
Christa and I
Christa, Walker and I (Walker making a face!!  And he is growing a mustache (he will be 13 in September!!)
Christa, Emily and I
Christa and the kids
Hey Ya'll,

Well, I have been really busy lately.  I had my Back Surgery and have been doing really well!  Most of the pain that I had before has gone!  And now I am getting ready to have FAI Surgery on my right Hip.  And we are looking into whether or not I will need the same Surgery for my left Hip as well.  I am waiting to get approval for the MRI for the left Hip....I now that the left Hip has similar issues as the right Hip, and it looks like I have Bursitis in it as well.  The right Hip has Bone Spurs in both the Ball and Socket, with a Labral Tear as well that will have to be repaired....

And best of best friend Kelly from New Hampshire is coming out to be with me for the Surgery and 2 weeks after to help me out!!  I can't wait....She is coming out 2 days early so we can actually visit a bit before I go into Surgery.  And will stay until almost 3 weeks out.  That will help me a lot!  And having her here to talk to!  We rarely see each other.  We lost contact back in 1990, and I found her again back in 2009.  And since then, I have visited with her 2 times, and this will be her first time to visit with me out here!!

In other news, we have been getting ready to have my dad's Memorial Service.  My dad requested that we wait several months before having it, so that we can just celebrate his life, rather than be all emotional directly after his death.  So Walt and I are having the Memorial at a local Hotel where the family lives.  My daughter Christa is doing almost all of the footwork for us, as she lives there, while Walt and I live in Nevada.  She is also doing all of the photos, and slide show for us!!  I don't know what we would do without her help!!  Christa we love you!!  LOL  :)

Christa will be doing most of the cooking for the Memorial as well, although I will be making a large casserole to take with us.  This casserole will take me all day to prepare!!  But it is my mom's favorite.  Most of the food items we are having are foods that were my dad's favorites.  We will also be showing a ton of photos that we found of the family from his early days on.  And of course, at least one speaker talking about our favorite times with my dad.  And then the open mike where anyone can get up and talk about him.

Well, I am currently crocheting again.  In the past month and a half, I have made 2 more Afghans for my step son and his mom Carolyn.  And I am getting ready to make an Afghan for my grand daughter and grand son as well for their birthdays!!

And....I am getting ready to start painting again!  I have to admit that I am has been almost 3 years since I have painted, and I am terrified to start.  But I am sure that once I make that first mark on the canvas, I will be ok.

I have been looking at the painting that I was almost finished with....the one that I was painting for my step son Russ.  We were all so proud of it, but the more that I look at it, the more I know that I could do better!!  So I am going to restart on a fresh canvas, and see if I can do better.  If not, at least I have the old one to finish!! LOL

I have been doing pretty well with my weight loss.  I am almost down to my goal.  I am creeping up on it slowly but surely...I am about 14-15 pounds away from my goal.  I love it, I can now go in and purchase clothes from a regular store!!  Sometimes I have to remind myself that I don't need to purchase something from the Women's shop either!!  Some of their tops just don't fit right anymore.  The problem that I have is that my chest is still larger than I would like.  I have lost there, but not enough to suit me.  So some tops, if they fit right in the chest, is too large in the lower portion, or if it fits in the lower portion, it is a little snug in the chest!!  So boobs, come on and get with it!!  I want to lose there too!!  LOL  I have included some photos that was taken about a month ago, while I was visiting my family in California.  These photos are with my daughter Christa and the grand kids, and since then, I have lost a couple more pounds.

Oh well,  I guess I better go for now, so much to do!!  So....till next time....

Aloha My Friends :)

Saturday, May 4, 2013

New Surgery!! But Doing Well...:)

Sorry guys, I did rotate the photos in iPhoto, but for some reason, they transferred in their original rotation!!  This is me a month ago....I have since lost about another 10 lbs.  So even these pants (my smallest from pre weight gain) are too big!  And this top I purchased in Salem, MA last year while visiting my friend Kelly.  I purchased a smaller t-shirt on purpose, hoping that I would fit into it eventually.  I purchased a woman's large (but it is more like a medium, especially after washing).  I say this, because pre Gastric Bypass. I was wearing a Mens xxl-xxxl!!

Hey Ya'll,

Sorry to have been out of the loop for so long....But, I have good reason (or so I believe anyway...)!

My hubby had Back Surgery last month.  He had a Laminectomy on L4-5, so I was nursing him back to health for a couple of weeks in my new Apartment.  He is doing very well now, and can do just about anything that he wants to.

I had my Back Surgery on the 23rd of April.  They moved my original Surgery date from the 24th to the 23rd.  I was doing pretty well in the Hospital until the second night, when the Nurse attempted to remove my Drain, as I was supposed to be released the next day.  But she couldn't remove it, and the harder she tried, the more it hurt.  So after having a second Nurse give it the ole college try, they decided to wait and let the Doctor remove it in the morning, when he was to come in to decide if I was to be released or not that day.  But my Back hurt like Hell the rest of the night!!

When the Doctor arrived, he was surprised to find out that they were unable to remove the Drain Tube, so he did it himself.  Luckily I had just taken a full dose of liquid Percotet for the pain about a half hour before he arrived, so I barely felt it being removed.  However, in removing the Drain, he discovered that the Tube had a couple of stitches in it from the Incision, which is why it was resistant to being removed.  So it was decided that it had to be removed....Surgically.  So I had to go back into Surgery that night to have it removed, under General Anesthesia again.  So of course I had to spend a third night there!  By early the next morning, I woke up and realized that I needed to go to the NOW!! 

So I rang for the Nurse, and started to take off my Oxygen, etc so that she didn't have so much to get me out of the bed....and I barely made it to the bathroom before I had an accident.  In fact, I really didn't make it, as I felt liquid running down my legs as I was walking as fast as I could while pulling my IV pole!!  So once I finished, the Nurse had to wipe down my legs, etc with baby wipes (or something like them), talk about embarrassing. 

But the difference in this toilet run, was that when I sat down, I had the most excruciating pain from my left Buttocks down my left Leg!  And unfortunately, this continued every time I tried to raise or lower my Leg for several days....I was thinking....So, I had the Surgery to get rid of my Back Pain and the stabbing pain in my left Leg, and now I have Sciatica pain????

So I was finally released on Friday around lunch time.  And the Sciatica pain lasted until about mid day Tuesday.  I think what helped to stop it, was that I did a major amount of walking with my Step Daughter Kat!  The more that I walked, the less it hurt.  And it hasn't bothered me since Tuesday! (picture me dancing like Snoopy! :)).  And I have been out shopping and walking every day since Monday this week until today.

I went in for my follow up appointment with the Doctor yesterday, and he was thrilled at my progress!  So as soon as I hit the 3 month anniversary of my Back Surgery, I will be able to have my Hip Surgery!  I haven't actually scheduled my Hip Surgery date yet, but I am expecting it to be sometime between late July-early August.

I was right, I will not need a total Hip replacement (thank God!!), just Femoral Acetabular Impingement Surgery (FAI).  I am one of the lucky ones, in that I have both Cam and Pincer types, otherwise Mixed.  So the Surgeon will have to go in and remove the over growth of Bone in both the Ball and Socket, plus repairing a Labral Tear.  Which means that I am supposed to be using Crutches for 6 weeks!!  Ahh!  But I have a Cane, so I am hoping that I can switch over to it shortly after Surgery....Only time will tell.

The Orthopedic Surgeon told me that the Surgery will only last about 1 1/2 hours, and I will not need to stay overnight in the Hospital.  But I won't be able to drive myself for probably 4-6 weeks, yikes!!  But by taking care of the Hip now, there is hope that I won't need a total Hip replacement in the future, or at least not for some years in the future.

Anyway!!!  I am doing well in my new Apartment.  I love it.  And I have decorated it the way that I wanted, so it totally reflects my personality.  Which I have never been able to do until now.  Before, I always had to get permission from my significant other on how to decorate, and what colors he would like, etc.  Even Walt likes the way that I have decorated it.

Now, once I recover from my Back and future Hip Surgery, I will begin searching for a job....  :(  Oh well, I knew that if I was able to get my life back, with little to no pain, that I would have to return to the work force!!

So....saying that, I must go for now, but please note that I have updated my Ticker Tape to reflect my new weight!!  Yes, I am now under 160 lbs, I am no longer considered Obese, I am just a little overweight!!  And for the first time in many years, I am able to clothes shop in a regular store!  Just the thought of being able to walk into a regular sized store and shop, and especially that they won't look at me like, what am I doing shopping here, there isn't anything that I can wear in there, is amazing!

So....Till next time....
Aloha My Friends  :)  

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Sad News.... :(

My Dad and Brother in 2008

Hey Ya'll,

This has been a post long coming....and I want to apologize for not posting in so long.  But so much has been happening here!!

1st off, my Dad passed away on February 8th of Lung Cancer.  He fought a long and painful battle, but decided to stop Therapy about a month before he passed.  Our family misses him so much, but knowing that he is no longer in such constant pain helps with the grief.  Per his request, we had him cremated, and buried along side his parents whom he loved dearly, and missed so much the last 13 years of his life.  We have not had a service for him yet, he requested that we wait for at least a month and just hold a Memorial for him.  Thus giving family members from out of State the opportunity to make plans to attend.

My Mom is holding up as good as can be expected.  They were married for just under 57 years.  So she is grieving but is also glad that he is no longer suffering.  However, now her own suffering is showing even more.  Her own Medical issues have escalated.  And now it seems that we are to add Alzheimer's to the list as well.  She has not been in to the Doctor and diagnosed with it, but I have felt for some time now, that she was at least in the early stages of it.  And now the symptoms are much worse, and more of the family has noticed it as well.  I spoke with her this morning and she has another bad Cold.  I tried to get her to go to the Doctor, but she says it isn't serious.  But I could barely understand her, and with her already having COPD, and almost constant problems with either a Cold, Bronchitis or Pneumonia, I am definitely concerned about her.

As for me....well, much has been happening with me too.  First off, Walt is planning on trying to get work out of the Country (like Saudi Arabia), and I don't want to live out of the Country, especially now that my Mom could also be passing away soon too.  So I have moved into an apartment, while Walt stays in the RV (so no one will mess with it).  So for the last couple of months, I have been packing/unpacking now!!  Plus having to search for furniture, etc.  But I am in the apartment (a nice big 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom unit on the ground floor that is handicapped accessible).  Thank god, as I couldn't do stairs now.

Walt is going in for Back Surgery on Tuesday (3/26), then will stay with me at the apartment for at least a week and a half, if not longer. 

Then on Wednesday (4/24), I will be having Back Surgery too!!  We are both having Lumbar Laminectomy's done.  His will only be on L4-5, mine will be on L3-S1.  But Dr Lynch (who did my Cervical Fusion), doesn't believe that either of us needs a Fusion....which is good, because a Fusion could mean that we need further Surgery in the future as the Fusion causes stress on the Vertebrate above and below the Fusion, whereas, the Laminectomy just releases pressure on the Nerves, etc, and unless the Arthritis causes further Bone Spurs to regrow, and cause trouble during our lifetime, we won't need further Surgery, at least not on the same Vertebrate.

I may also be having some Surgery on my right Hip this year.  I went in for a Hip MRI with Contrast on Friday (which in itself was an experience!  The Injection of the Contrast took almost as long as the MRI did), so I should find out soon what the Orthopedic Surgeon thinks.  So far, he thinks that he can end my pain without doing a complete Hip replacement.  He is hopeful that he can just go in and get rid of the Arthritic Bone Spurs, etc for now.

I also had my Blood Work done on Friday for my follow up to my Gastric Bypass.  This will be my first set of Blood Work since Surgery.  Now get this, I did the Blood draw at 2 pm.  By 7:45 pm, the Lab had called my Doctor and reported that my Potassium levels were at a Critical Level!!  And she in turn had called me in a prescription for Potassium, and called me at home to tell me!!  Just 2 months ago, my Potassium level showed that I was low, at 3.4, where 3.5 was considered the low end of what is acceptable, so now I am at a Critical level??  She didn't tell me what the level actually was.  So I am to call my Primary Care Physician tomorrow, to make an appointment with her, and to get Labs redone in 2 weeks to see if the Potassium medication is working.  And because the Potassium pills are apparently very large, I am prescribed liquid to take 2 times a day!!  Yuck!  But....the consequences of not taking it, is great.  So I am taking it, no matter how distasteful it is!

Anyway, this is not all that has been happening, but I won't go into any more detail.  I just wanted to let you know that I am still alive and well, and doing relatively fine. 

Oh, by the way....I am now down to 169.2!!  Woo Hoo!!  I have about 30 more pounds to lose.  I am not losing as fast as I would like to, but as the saying goes, the closer you are to goal, the harder it is to lose!!  LOL

Till next time....

Aloha My Friends

Monday, January 14, 2013

My Cousin Lisa found this photo of my Mom and Christa when she was a toddler while she was going through a huge box of photos at my Aunt Betty's!   Lisa is there visiting her as Betty is in the Hospital with Pneumonia.

Hey Ya'll,

Well, I found out that my daughter Kat visited with my parents on Sunday.  She was shocked at how much my dad has deteriorated in just a couple of weeks.  She said that he is now living in a Hospital Bed in their living room and is on Oxygen.  And she said that he doesn't look well at all.

So I am really glad that the weather is cooperating this week, so that I can drive down to Sacramento and visit with them.  I fear that this will be the last time that I see my dad alive....

So I am going to be there for 3 nights.  And I have a full schedule!!  My girls and grand kids want to spend as much time with me as they can.  So I will be having lunch with all of them on Wednesday, the day that I drive over.  Then after lunch, Christa and the grand kids will go over to my parents house with me, as she doesn't have a car, and can't see them as often as she would like to.  Kat has to work.

That night, I will go over to Christa's house for dinner with her family.  And then back to my Hotel room for some much needed sleep as I will probably be getting up at about 6 am that morning in order to be there in time to have lunch with the girls as Kat has to be to work by 2 pm.

Thursday, I will have lunch with Christa and the grand kids again, before I go over to my parents house.  Once Kat gets off work, she will pick up her husband, and I will meet them for dinner around 5:30-6 pm.  After dinner, Kat will take her husband home, and meet me at the theater to see Twilight: Breaking Dawn Part II.  Since the movie will get out a bit late for Kat, she may just stay the night with me at the Hotel and go into work from there the next morning, as she has to be into work at 7 am and my Hotel is about 20 miles closer to her work than where she lives.

Friday I will meet up with Christa around 3-4 pm and we will take the grand kids over to her friends house so they can babysit them for us.  Christa wanted to spend some quality time alone with me.  So we will go see a movie and then have dinner.  After dinner she may stay the night with me as well.  But she will need to drive my car home early in the morning as her husband Mark has to go into an early morning job meeting.  Thank goodness I decided to book a double Queen room!!  LOL

One of Mark's co-workers died earlier in the week in the Bay Area.  Some of you may have seen the accident reported in the news.  His Big Rig went over the railing, and dropped down off the Freeway.  The Big Rig caught on fire, but some good Samaritans managed to pull him out of the Truck before he was burned.  Unfortunately, he died at the Hospital leaving a wife and several young children.  So they are having a meeting on Saturday morning to discuss the accident.  After the meeting, Christa will pick me up and we will all have lunch together before I have to drive home.  After lunch, they will be attending the Funeral Services for the co-worker.

So I will be seeing my parents Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.  I may stop by on my way out of town as well, just to say goodbye one more time, and let them know I am on my way home.

So I will be very busy this week!!  Tomorrow I will be doing about 10 loads of laundry and packing for my trip.  I also need to remember to make sure my washer fluid is many vehicles on a wet road splashing up dirty water....ugh!  And the fact that it will be freezing cold while I am driving over the Sierra's, I need to make sure that I have washer fluid that will clean the windows and not freeze when I use it!

I got a call from my PCP Doctor tonight, letting me know that she got my Lab results back (about $800 worth of Tests).  She said that my Liver Function is now normal....whew!  When I was in the Hospital ER the night that I was released after my RNY Surgery, it was sky high.  So she was happy about that.  My Hep C is negative....great!  My Cholesterol is much better.  The good Cholesterol is 165 and the Bad Cholesterol is 93.  So she says that I can go off my Cholesterol meds for now, we will recheck in 6 months.  The only thing that she is a little concerned about is my Potassium Levels.  I am at 3.4 and the low end of normal is 3.5.  So I am not too much below normal, but she is concerned.  But since I am not currently showing any symptoms like Leg Cramps, she said that we will watch it for now.  And if I do start to have Cramping, I am to call her right away.  I didn't tell her, but my mom has always had problems with her Potassium Levels as well....

Anyway, I better go for now, I have lots to do, and so little time to do it in.  Till next time....

Aloha My Friends :) 

Saturday, January 12, 2013

What's Happening Here!

My Parents At Christmas 2012

Hey Ya'll,

Well, it has been awhile since I have updated ya'll.  So much has been usual!  Some good, some bad....

We went through a long super cold stretch here (like almost 2 weeks of 0-5 degrees over night, and daytime highs barely getting into the 20's), and since Walt was driving my car and not his Diesel Truck, once he decided to start driving it again, so that I could get around in my wouldn't start.  We went through a lot, to find out that the only thing wrong with it was the batteries were completely dead!  So now he has his Truck back, and I have my car!

Also, because of the cold spell we had....We had some major problems with the RV.  Our Heated Water Hose decided to choose this time to die....So our Water lines froze.  For like almost 2 weeks, we had no running water!  We had to fill up milk cartons, etc with water to be able to flush the toilets with.  And then we were having issues with our power.  But we finally got it all straightened out, and we are back to normal....kind of!!  LOL

We went in to Reno on Monday for joint Dental appointments.  These were supposed to be about an hour each, but long story short, Walt ended up in the chair for 4 hours!!  This would be my first check up in OVER 4 YEARS!!  I was terrified that they would tell me that I had all kinds of issues.  But they said that my teeth looked great!  I just needed a good cleaning....Whew!!  I don't know why, but God blessed me with good Genes when it comes to the Teeth!  :)

As for how I am doing after my RNY Surgery, I am doing great!  Other than that first night out of the Hospital when I didn't take any drugs for pain because I forgot to take them with us to Reno....(can you say Duh...STUPID?), I have been practically pain free.  I figured that I had gained up to about 230 lbs before I started my pre-op diet.  And yesterday, I weighted 195 on our scale at home.  So that makes me having lost about 35 lbs total so far, and about 15.4 lbs since Surgery on the 18th of Dec.  Somehow I always thought that the weight would come off a bit faster with the RNY Surgery....But the Surgeon was pleased with my progress at 2 weeks post op.  I go in for another check up on the 23rd, so I am hoping to have lost at least another 5 lbs by then!

My Aunt Betty is in the Hospital.  She has Congestive Heart Failure, Pneumonia and an Infection in the Colon.  So thoughts and prayers would be appreciated.  This is my Mom's only Sister.

My Mom isn't doing well herself.  She has multiple issues including the Liver, Stomach, COPD, Diabetes, and Heart problems as well as living in constant agonizing pain from major Back and Spinal issues as well as Neuropothy pain in the Legs and Feet!  Every time that I speak with her now, she can talk less and less without going into a coughing fit.  And at that time, she has to end the call.

My Dad....Was taken to the Hospital on Dec 29th.  He was coughing up Blood and in severe pain.  they determined that he was Anemic and gave him Blood Transfusions.  After a couple of days, they felt that he was stable enough to go home.  While in the Hospital, we found out that his Lung Cancer has spread into the Rib Cage.  And we found out that he had broken his Shoulder and a bone somewhere in the Back (we weren't given specifics) about a month earlier.  Since he felt that the Chemotherapy wasn't helping him, he decided about a week ago to end his Chemotherapy Treatments and go on Hospice Care.  He is just hopeful that Hospice Care can give him better drugs to treat his pain.  And everytime that I speak with him, he only talks about a minute or two, then gives the phone to my Mom, as he is in so much pain that he doesn't want to talk (which is totally uncharacteristic of him).  He is still coughing up Blood.

So since we are finally getting ready to have about 4-5 days of warmer weather (like in the 40's during the day and no rain or snow in the forecast), I am driving down to Sacramento to visit with my Parents and see my Daughters and Grand Kids.  I will spend as much time as I feel my parents can handle during the day, and have lunch or dinner with the girls.

I'm telling my Parents that I am staying with my Daughter Kat so they don't worry.  But I will be staying at a Hotel close to my Parents.  This way, I can see them for shorter periods of time, several times a day if necessary.  They can barely stand to sit in chairs let alone lay in bed as it is.  And while I am there, they will insist on sitting in the living room to visit with me.  So I will not stay all day long each day, so they can get some rest as well.

My Daughter Christa has requested that her and I spend time just the two of us while I am down there, as we rarely get to spend time alone.  So we are planning on letting one of her friends babysit the Grand Kids one day, so we can go to a movie or something and have a meal alone so we can be together and talk.

So I am looking forward to the visit and can't wait.  But I do dread the drive there and back.  I am not the most comfortable driver on long drives, especially when it comes to driving over the Sierra's.  I hate driving over 2 lane roads with traffic and trying to pass tons of Big Rigs!!  Sigh!  Oh well, I will get through it....again!

So, that is what is happening now, I would appreciate it if you would keep my family in your thoughts and prayers.  Till next time....

Aloha My Friends :)

Monday, January 7, 2013

I"m Back!!

It's a bit blurry because Walt's Mom took the photo and she was a bit shaky.  But this is Walt and I on Christmas Eve at the Fandango's Casino Buffet.  My first time eating out after my Gastric Bypass!

Hey Ya'll,

Just a real quick post to let you know that I am still Computer crashed a few weeks ago, or whenever my last post was.  It crashed the day after my last post.  We were afraid that it was truly gone....otherwise, the fix would cost so much that it would be less expensive to purchase a new computer!!

But luckily for me, it was an easy fix.  It just took a while....but we picked up the computer tonight.  I am just so thankful that I didn't lose all my data and photos!!

So, I am going to go for now, I will post a longer more detailed post of what is going on later.  So, till next time....

Aloha My Friends :)