Monday, December 17, 2012
Tuesday, November 27, 2012
I just thought it was about time that I sat down and write a really good post about what's up in FrogLand.
Tomorrow will be exactly six weeks since my hysterectomy. I feel amazing! For such an invasive surgery I have to say that the recovery has been pretty easy. Can I tell you how amazing it is to not be in near constant abdominal pain (my back pain continues to be unceasing)? A person can only deal with so much at a time and I was at my limit. If anyone in the Seattle area is need of an astounding GYN surgeon I'll point you in the direction of mine!
My Thanksgiving was great, I hope yours was too (if you celebrate, I know I have some international followers). I got to spend it will three good friends I already had, and made a few more. E, you are an fantastic cook and I thank you again for having us over.
I got to have a second Thanksgiving, or Friendsgiving, at D and E's (a different E) house. There were 30-ish people there and TONS of amazing food. It was a great time and I learned that I'm pretty good at the game Cards Against Humanity. They are hosting a Giftmas party as well and I'm really looking forward to that! Ugly sweaters and white elephants!
In health news other than the surgery; there is nothing new to report! No news is good news right? I'm hoping to make it through the winter without IVs since I ended up doing three rounds in six months this year. I have a daily cough, of course, but that's nothing new. I try to be religious about doing my treatments as I should. Sometimes my back doesn't let me though.
I could use some more money in my bank account, but who couldn't? I realize now that once my lease is up on my apartment in the spring I will have to move. As it stands now I'll be moving in with two of my best friends (I have like, 50 best friends but these two are at the top of the list), B and N. They have a condo with an extra room. The arrangement they are offering me would help all of us out immensely. Its farther outside of Seattle than I would like, mostly due to the fact that I don't drive, but I have to do what I have to do. As it stands right now if the cat needs to go to the vet (knock on wood) I'd be screwed. So, thanks B and N for helping a broke frog out. I've never been the type to care about having shiny new, fancy stuff, but a little bit of security would be a nice change.
I've been dating some, but I seem to be the perpetual victim of the guys who just drop off the face of the earth with no explanation. I shouldn't say "victim" because I don't feel like a victim. Yeah, its irritating, but in the end I don't need people like that in my life. There is one guy that I'm interested in but I'm being patient with him. I get the impression he needs to come to terms with some things and maybe learn some lessons about life and love before he moves on in the whole dating/relationship world. I'm not waiting with bated breath, but I also refuse to settle for someone who is less of a man and wonderful human being than this guy is. Either he will figure it out, or he won't and I will find someone who is just as sweet, funny, creative, and all those other things I look for in a partner/lover/companion. If nothing else I have a friend for life, no matter what ends up happening I could never resent him or hate him. He's never treated me badly, never made me feel bad about myself even unintentionally. He's also made me hyper-aware of what I want and deserve. He doesn't know that, but I thank him for it anyway!
Really, I guess I just want to say that life is awesome! Its not perfect but, I'm so happy with the way things are going and what I see in my future. Life would be boring if it was always perfect anyway! I'm excited to spend the rest of the holidays with all of my friends, and for making new friends!
Thursday, November 8, 2012
I had my post-op follow up appointment today. The nurse kept saying that I looked fantastic for only being a month out. Awesome! The doc said that I am healing up right on schedule and everything looks great. I can even go snowboarding after the first of the year! They said to give that 12 weeks because of falling and whatnot.
Thursday, October 18, 2012
For about a year and half I've been dealing with endometriosis. Its a condition that causes uterin tissue to over grow and grow in places it shouldn't. This overgrowth aggrivates nerves and is VERY painful. A few things were tried (hormonal stuff) that didn't work so I was sent of to a doctor who specializes in pelvic pain. This doc tried one more hormonal treatment called lupron. It was great! Wow! No pain at all after I had been on it for a couple of weeks. This is not a medication that can be used longer term so the hope was that after three months of it the endo would be beat back enough that my regular birth control could keep it in check.
Sadly, that did not turn out to be the case. Within six weeks of stopping the lupron I was having pain again. The specialist that I saw told me flat out that she was so concerned about my CF being an issue that she would not operate on me, which is what I would need to deal with the endo for good. Uhg.
Right about that time my mom was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. She was sent to Seattle from eastern Washington for her surgery. Mom is going to be fine, her cancer has a 95% cure rate with surgery alone! While mom was here I met her surgeon and he seemed fantastic, as did the rest of the staff who took care of her at the hospital!
When things had settled down a bit in my life I marched into my general practitioners office and asked for a referal to mom's doctor. After listening to my reasons for wanting it my doc put it through! A couple of weeks later his office called me and was ready to schedule surgery the following week! While I was very impressed by that I told that I needed some time to get this organized. So it was scheduled for the second week of October.
Well, last week I had my total hysterectomy! I no longer have a uterus, ovaries, or felopian tubes and this is just fine by me! I spent two nights in the hospital with wonderful nurses who were only concerned for my care and comfort! They brought a vase for the flowers that someone gave me, they offered my mom coffee and juice, they made sure that my pain was under control and that I was eating. Seriously, I have never had a better hospital stay! There was no worrying about getting my meds correctly and on time, the nurses would just magically appear with the right thing at the right time. Someone came right away any time I needed help with something.
I am now recovering at home with my dad taking care of me, and the cat of course. I'm almost off of the heavy pain meds entirely and getting around pretty well. Dad will be going home on Saturday but after that I have tons of friends that are willing and able to help me when I need anything! It seems weird to say that the most invasive surgery I've ever had has been one of the easiest to deal with, but its the truth!
Wednesday, September 5, 2012
At the beginning of the summer I went on 3 weeks of IV antibiotics. That was rather uneventful which is always good. It was, as always, exhausting and painful but nothing unusual happened.
Right as I was finishing that up my mom was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. SCARY! My parents came to Seattle for her surgery because they live in East Bumblefuck. Before the surgery they didn't know it was cancer 100% even though the surgeon was pretty sure. While mom was under they did a quick test on the tumor and, yup, cancer. So they opened mom up some more and poked around looking for more tumors. They didn't find any, YAY! The tumor was about the size of a grapefruit and had just started attaching to her pelvis. They dug out a chunk of her pelvis to be sure they got rid of that. The plan was for mom to have six months of chemo.
It took about another week for the full pathology on the tumor to come back. It turns out that they caught it very early, YAY. It was also a very rare cancer that when caught early does not require chemo, SUPER YAY! So mom doesn't have to deal with any of that mess!
Right as mom was getting this awesome news, word came down that a good friend of mine who had been dealing with breast cancer for a year and a half was stopping treatment. She passed away on August 1st. This was very hard for me. Lisa was such a good friend and all around amazing person. She was only 34, much too young for this! The unfairness of it was almost too much for me. Of course, there was the relief that she wasn't suffering anymore. However when someone dies we're always a little selfish in that we just want them back with us.
Not too long after Lisa died I had a dream that I got a tattoo of a pink daisy at the top of my right boob. Pink daisies were her favorite flower and her cancer started in the top of her right breast. I knew right away that this will be my next tattoo. I'm currently shopping for an artist to do it.
The week after Lisa's memorial service I had to go on IV antibiotics again. I only made it two months between rounds. That had me pretty down for a while. Now I'm starting to feel like my MAC might be back too. I'm waiting on test results for that.
One of my CF friends passed away last week. This is always hard. I wasn't super close with him and I think, still a bit numb from Lisa's passing so it hasn't really hit me yet.
So, as you can see its been a rough summer. There have been some good things too, but right now I'm still in a place where the bad is easier to see.
Thursday, May 31, 2012
1: Read the profile of the prospective date. All of it. Bonus points for actually retaining some of the information included in it! If you have trouble retaining such things then revisit the profile as needed.
2: If you are interested in the person send them a message that includes some information about yourself. "Hi" is not sufficient! Extra points for paying the person a compliment.
3: Don't send a vegetarian a photo of your barbeque covered in chicken legs (someone actually did this to me!?).
4: If, during the course of the electronic conversation you feel that you are not clicking with the person, just say so. Don't just disappear off the face of the earth.
5: If someone tells you that they aren't interested then don't message them again. You will get blocked.
6: If you progress to the point where you would like to have a date with someone, for the love of Jeebus don't stand them up. You are an adult, act like it! If you can't make it for some reason then call the person.
7: Do not start calling the person "hun" or "baby" before you've met. Don't start with that before you're actually seeing each other on a regular basis!
8: Always meet the person in a public place for at least a few dates. Note the word MEET. Do not offer to pick someone up at their place or give them a ride home. Creepy.
9: Can we please do away with the bathroom mirror pics and duck lips? Thank you.
10: Do not send unsolicited pics of your genitalia.
11: Do not ridicule anything in my profile or try to change my beliefs on things. Instant block.
12: If you really want to date me, act like you're interested in ME. Yes, I want to know about you but you don't need to make all your messages about how wonderful YOU are.
13: Have a picture that accurately represents what you look like.
14: Be honest. I don't need to know every detail of your life but "fudging" things is lying.
I will add more as it comes up.
Wednesday, May 23, 2012
The doc acted like he was listening to my concerns but then just blew them off. I just....uhg! I have a track record of going on and off IV antibiotics when they don't take a chance on them with me. I'm supposed to go to Oregon in a month. I don't want to be doing this back and forth shit while trying to take a trip too.
I want to move to a place that has doctors who are willing to be a little bit risky if it means I will do better!
Tuesday, May 15, 2012
- The illness I live with: cystic fibrosis
- I was diagnosed with it in the year: 1981
- But I had symptoms since: 1981
- The biggest adjustment I’ve had to make is: going on disability.
- Most people assume: I'm very non-functional.
- The hardest part about mornings are: breathing treatments.
- My favorite medical TV show is: ER.
- A gadget I couldn’t live without is: my vest!
- The hardest part about nights are: more breathing treatments!
- Each day I take 30+ pills & vitamins. (No comments, please)
- Regarding alternative treatments I: have had great results with massage and acupuncture!
- If I had to choose between an invisible illness or visible I would choose: invisible.
- Regarding working and career: can't do it anymore.
- People would be surprised to know: I wouldn't give up my disease if I had to give up everything it has taught me.
- The hardest thing to accept about my new reality has been: this has always been my reality.
- Something I never thought I could do with my illness that I did was: live on my own.
- The commercials about my illness: there aren't any.
- Something I really miss doing since I was diagnosed is: I don't feel like I've missed anything.
- It was really hard to have to give up: sports.
- A new hobby I have taken up since my diagnosis is: doesn't apply.
- If I could have one day of feeling normal again I would: I've never felt normal, I wouldn't know what to do!
- My illness has taught me: what is important.
- Want to know a secret? One thing people say that gets under my skin is: you're so thin!
- But I love it when people: treat me just like anyone else.
- My favorite motto, scripture, quote that gets me through tough times is: "This too shall pass."
- When someone is diagnosed I’d like to tell them: Its not the end of the world! Life is wonderful!
- Something that has surprised me about living with an illness is: I don't know any other way to live so: NA.
- The nicest thing someone did for me when I wasn’t feeling well was: house work.
- I’m involved with Invisible Illness Week because: I have 3 invisible illnesses!
- The fact that you read this list makes me feel: hopeful that maybe you understand things a little more.
Wednesday, May 9, 2012
When I woke up from my long nap my laptop was on the floor upside down, the bathroom door was closed (I never close it because the cat's litter box in there), and I had hit my on something at least twice. I have a couple of sore spots on my forehead and the top of my head. I don't remember doing any of this but the cat certainly didn't do it!
I called my doctor but since this happened because of human error, not breaking through my meds, they aren't going to change anything right now. I'll have a clinic appointment on June 1st where I'm sure I'll get scolded.
Friday, April 27, 2012
Tomorrow will be my first adventure with milk substitutes. I got a soy milk and an almond milk to try, also a soy creamer for my coffee. Stay tuned for how those test out!
Friday, April 20, 2012
I propose to find an answer to this, at least for me. I don't want to be preachy about my reasons for wanting to do this but, since people will want some kind of explanation I'll just say that I have a strong moral objection to the way animals are raised and especially slaughtered in this country. If you want details on the way this happens then I invite you to visit our good friend Google. Or read Skinny Bitch, the list of things I would do to get those visuals out of my head is LONG.
So, the issue is; how do I manage this and not completely screw up my nutrition? In case you didn't already know CFers have special dietary needs. Basically the CF diet is: EAT ALL THE THINGS! Seriously: high calorie, high fat, high protein. So, how to eliminate animal products but replace the calories, fat, and protein?
Protein: Non-animal protein sources are abundant. Protein hangs out in all kinds of things you wouldn't normally think of. Many whole grains have a decent amount, not to mention the fiber in them! Beans are another good source. Also nuts!
Of course there are all the soy products available these days. Soy milk, yogurt, and tofu are all packed with protein. I personally don't care for soy milk but tofu is great! It doesn't taste like much by itself so it just picks up the flavor of whatever you put it in. Some people are turned off by the texture of tofu but soft tofu just about disintegrates so you won't even notice it. You can even use silken tofu as an egg replacement in baking. It works best for recipes when the finished product is supposed to be dense like brownies or "cheese"cake. I haven't tried making a vegan cheesecake yet but its on my list.
For most people I wouldn't say you need a protein powder suppliment because generally people think you need way more protein than you actually do. For CFers though its probably a good idea, if you want vegan though just make sure you read your labels.
As far as fat and calories go the best thing I've found so far is coconut milk! It has loads of fat in it and is fabulous in smoothies! The really thick stuff can even be whipped like cream. I put it in strawberry crepes and I have to say it was deeeeeelish! Avacados are also a great source of fats, and yummy too! Nuts are a good source of fats too.
So far I've been vegetarian since I moved into my new apartment at the begining of this month. That means I haven't eaten anything that an animal was killed for. I'm working on cutting back on my dairy. I know that its important for me to make this transition slowly so as not to upset the GI Gods. CFers have touchy GI systems. I have less of a problem with dairy than I do meat and other things that animals are killed for. If I find that I cannot totally cut out dairy without losing too much weight then I will stick with locally produced, organic milk from farms that have good reputations for treating their animals humanely. I might even go visit some farms just to see for myself.
Stay tuned for further developments on the Vegan Experiment. I've set a goal for myself to be totally vegan by the first of May.
Friday, March 16, 2012
The hardest part for me was knowing that he loved me more than I loved him. That's not anyone's fault. I always seem to get into those relationships where one person has much stronger feelings about it than the other.
I've been in love. I mean the really romantic, passionate, movie kind of love. Its out there, it happens. That's what I want to find again. I want sparks to fly when we touch each other. I want it to hurt if we're apart. That's how I've known when it was real before. The times we were separated were actually painful.
I don't really know where I'm going with this. I just needed it out of my head I guess.
Tuesday, March 6, 2012
I've been listening to The Fray for a couple of years now. They're music is very easy for me to relate to and I like that. If I can't make some kind of a connection to a song or artist the I usually won't like it, or I get sick of it quickly. I just saw them live last week and I have to say it was probably the best concert I've ever been too. Seeing them perform you can tell they are very passionate about their music. They interacted with the crowd too, which I love to see. It tells me that they appreciate their fans.
I've find myself going back to this song since the concert. Here are the lyrics:
The Wind from The Fray
Oh my God, think I’m lost at sea
The silent waves are my company
And I lost the land between the sky it seems
And wondering, “Will the wind ever come free?”
Cause I don’t know, I don’t know where I am
Can yu tell me, will I break or will I bend
Will the wind ever come again
I feel the sun coming out, rising from the east
And I see the empire, falling to her knees
And I lost the land between her and me
My troubles are gone if the wind ever comes free
Cause I don’t know, I don’t know where I am
Can you tell me, will I break or will I bend
Will the wind ever come
You left me on the shoreline
You will stand and bare
But you, I’ll find you waiting
You were waiting for me, waiting for me
Tried to kiss the emptiness
Lost the line between sky and sea
I feel the sun coming up, coming up, coming up, coming up
But I don’t know, I don’t know where I am
I will break or I will bend
Will the wind ever come again?
This reminds me of the times in my life when I've felt lost. There haven't been many of them and its always involved the loss of someone I loved. Not always a loss because of death, but those were the worst times. I don't talk about it much but my first love died and a part of me went with him. He will always have a place in my heart and I still miss him.
After something like that happens you really do feel lost. I would find myself walking through a store and I'd go from one end to the other but not remembering anything in between. For a long time I literally didn't know what to do. I wondered if anything would ever be able to get me out. And I wondered if I would ever feel that way about another person.
Eventually I did find my way back and learned that love is not always a once in a lifetime thing. I'll always carry around the pain of that loss, and of all the others, but I am better for having known those people and sharing my life with theirs. I wouldn't trade the pain of losing them if it meant that I never knew them.
I don't know what happens we die, but I hope that whatever it is I get to see Warren, Courtney, Paul, Eva, Jenn, Ginger, Shawn, Sandy, Gess, Mel, Tom, Ted, my granny, and grandpa again.
Sorry if this post is depressing. Its not meant to be. I'm feeling reflective right now.
Sunday, March 4, 2012
Here's my idea! Everyone is familiar with the firemen calendars right? You have a bunch of incredibly sexy, half naked firemen doing what they do in the pics and then they sell the thing to raise money for burn victims. HOT! My idea would be something similar, but for CF. It would be semi-naked CF women doing what we do (treatments, IV meds, etc and so on) and it would be sold to raise money for CF research and/or medication/financial assistance programs for CFers.
Some ideas I had for photos would be someone tied up with oxygen tubing, someone sitting on the compressor for their vest suggestively, ports being accessed while wearing a corsette or something. You get the idea! I'm even willing to do all the shots myself, which would probably be easier than trying to find a minimum of 12 CF women will do this. The models would likely be all over the country (world even!) and that could turn into a big hassle.
I would need a photographer willing to donate their time (I already have one in mind that I could ask). The big thing I would need is a printing company willing to donate the production of the calendars or monetary donations to pay for it. I'm on disability and it doesn't exactly pay well so I couldn't do this out of my own pocket.
So what I want to know from you all out there in internet land is A: would you possibly be willing to donate to the making of such a thing, and B: would you buy it once it was done?
There are several reason why I've wanted to do this. First, fundraising is awesome, yo! Second; I like the juxtaposition of the whole thing. I think I can pull off sexy + clinical and make it work. Third: CF fundraising focuses very heavily on kids. Which is fine, whatever brings in the cash. The thing is that people still tend to forget that this is not just a kid's disease anymore! Adults with CF are confronted with different things and one of those is sex and sexuality. Do you know how difficult it is to get in the mood for some sexy times when there is a needle covered by a giant band aid in your tit!? I do! So I hope that something like this would bring a little more attention to some of the things that adult CFers have to deal with.
So, leave some comments and tell me what you think. Yes? No? Advice? Constructive critisism? I welcome it all. And please, pass the link to my little bloggy along so others can weigh in.
Saturday, March 3, 2012
My mom used to make this stuff for me and my brother. Its perfect CFer food. It has lots of calories, tastes great even when you're sick and its easy to make.
What you'll need:
A large container of cottage cheese
A tub of Cool Whip
A can of pineapple (I like tidbits but you can use anything except rings for this)
A packet of your favorite flavor of Jello
A large bowl with a lid
A big spoon for stirring
Let your Cool Whip thaw out so its not a solid lump. Drain the juice off of your pineapple. Dump all of your cottage cheese, cool whip, and pineapple in your bowl. Throw in some marshmellows, whatever will fit. Stir that shit up! When its all evenly mixed smooth out the top. Cut just the corner off of your packet of Jello. Sprinkle it over the top of your slop. You won't need anywhere near the whole packet. You can save it for your next batch if you want to. Eat up!
This makes quite a lot of stuff, so you can halve it if you want to. I don't, it keeps just fine in the fridge for a couple of days so I can finish it off before it goes south.
Thursday, February 16, 2012
I always do at least 3 tests at clinic and they keep the best one. My first one was 52%. I looked at the computer screen and said "52!? REALLY??" I made the resperatory therapist go back and check my September numbers. Then my next two tests were both 55%. I almost fell off of my chair. It looks like a year and a half of antibiotics has paid off.
My weight is good. I'm eating enough. I should get the results on my blood work next week but that hasn't really changed in years. In the summer I'll get a dexascan to check on my bone density but that hasn't changed in years either. So everything is looking great! This was the best clinic day I've had in a couple of years!
Friday, January 20, 2012
Seizures are pretty common. Chances are that you will witness one in your lifetime. You should know what to do if that happens!
- Try to stay calm!
- Put something soft under the person's head to cushion in. A pillow is ideal but in a pinch you can use a jacket, blanket, or something similar.
- Move anything near by that the person could injure themselves on.
- If you can, roll the person onto their side in case the vomit.
- If this is a first seizure for the person or you don't know call 911.
- If this is not a first seizure you may not need to call 911 unless it lasts more than 5 minutes, the person stops breathing, or they are injured during the seizure.
- Never try to restrain the person! You could accidentally injure them or yourself.
- Never try to put something in their mouth so they won't bite or swallow their tongue. You're more likely to get bitten than prevent an injury to the person seizing.
- Don't leave the person alone. After they come around from the seizure they might seem totally aware but they could still be post ictal. This is a period of time after a seizure but before a person is completely aware. My post ictal period lasts for the entire day after a seizure! I act normally but will have little to no memory of the day later.
There are many different types of seizures. They can range from someone just staring off into space and being unresponsive for a few minutes to the full blown tonic clonic (formerly known as grand mal) seizure that you typically see on TV shows and in movies. If you have a body part that just won't stop moving on its own, it could be a seizure and you need to get looked at.
I hope that this information is useful if you ever see someone seizing. It is a very scary thing to see but you can make it easier if you know what to do!
First, I appologize for not blogging more, I know I promised I would a while back. The fact is that not much has gone on. I've been doing well, had a slight cold last month but it was no big deal. I've been snow boarding a couple of times. Last time I did really well with the altitude! YAY!
I'm still on treatment for MAC, its coming up on a year. I have a CF clinic appointment next month where I'll give them a sputum sample to culture. Cross your fingers that its still clean for MAC.
I have been seizure free for exactly 13 months! That is amazing! I know that I could still seize at any time, but the fact that its been so long is very encouraging. I could legally drive now if I wanted to (but I don't). I still try not to use the oven when no one is around and follow other precautions to keep myself as safe as possible in case I do seize.
Speaking of seizures, I have been meaning to do a blog about the dos and don'ts if you witness someone having a seizure. There are a lot of myths out there!