Wednesday, October 01, 2008


My brother-in-law died. He spent a portion of his life being one of the biggest asses in the country. He was an alcoholic with a bad attitude and the ability to anger and alienate anyone in his path.

However, he spent the past 28 years living sober, and giving back in incredible ways. He built a business and became successful, providing jobs and opportunities to many people. He always helped family with taxes for free. He helped his entire family, and I add extended family to that, both with support and financing through their various struggles and hardships. He formed amazing bonds with his family that will be remembered forever.

I will never know how many people he's guided through recovery in AA. For many years, his home was open to struggling members who needed a hand up. He was a dedicated sponsor and leader for all of the past 28 years.

He did all this and more with unbelievable humility and modesty. It was HARD to get him to accept a thank-you; he never did it for recognition. Some would say he was arrogant, and I can agree to an extent, but it hid a heart that was bigger than anyone knew.

If anyone has earned the respect and love of multitudes of friends, business associates and family, he has. I have no doubt that he's breathing easy somewhere in the light. I hope he knows how much I came to care about him and how much I admired and respected his incredible road to redemption.

Friday, September 19, 2008

A Better Day

I guess it's safe to say that things are better in my head. Thank-you, Dee, for the encouragement, I really appreciate it. Sometimes my mind just can't help taking a trip toward the darker side and it's a bitch getting stuck there.

I've started making a conscious effort to get out of here every day, even if it's just for a little PT Cruising. It's helped me a lot to get out of my own head and see other people and other places besides myself and my apartment. My world has been so small for the past few years, and most especially, the past year.

I am now independent with everything with few exceptions. I still can't go into stores because I'm not walking very far, but for everything else, it's all good. I've come such a long way over the past year, and I am truly grateful that I'm healing and breathing better. I tend to lose sight of that when I get down on myself and my situation. When I think about it, I know that I'm so much better off than many people.

So healthwise, for me things are definitely on the upswing, and each day is another new beginning, with new challenges and possibilities. I am working hard at being the best me I can be, and I hope that family and friends will forgive past no-shows due to illness and injury. It's been a lonely couple of years and I'm eager to participate more in life again.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

An Awful Year

I see that it's been a while since I posted anything. I might not post this one, but I have to write it.

It was a year, on August 25th, since I had fallen and broken my hip and my shoulder. It was on May 12 that I had the surgery on my hip. I was doing well and progressing steadily when I was told by the surgeon that I had to back off a little because the hip hasn't shown adequate healing yet. I knew that it could take up to 6 months to heal, but I didn't imagine the emotions that would come with the prolonged healing.

It's been just over 2 weeks since I was told to stop using the cane if I feel any pain. My spirits have gone steadily downhill since then because I feel pain every time I use the cane.

I am so tired of being home, not able to work, dependent on neighbors for shopping and being so short of breath. I feel like I live the life of someone just waiting to die. I want to swear, hit something, throw things, break everything breakable in sight. Instead, I sit here holding it all tight inside. I am the cheerleader for COPD and the picture of patience. Ha! I'm a seething cauldron of disappointment and fear for my future.

So I constantly beat myself up for not doing things. I could do more exercises, I could clean more, I could do something, anything, that would boost my spirits. Read a book, cook something, call someone. But I can't make myself do anything. And I hate myself for that.

There. I'll let you know if that helped.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Questions after the fact

I had my surgery and came out on the other side intact. A couple of days of not remembering too much, a week of rehab, and then home to begin serious rehab.

I am so grateful that my respiratory status was okay during all of this, and now after a couple of months, I've been told by my surgeon that I can weight bear and begin to walk!

Now what? I was so happy after surgery, feeling less pain, and ready to move forward. Now I wonder what will happen after I can walk, and I am still left with crappy lungs. Once I can walk, will I still be paralyzed with the inability to breathe? Will I still gasp for air with every step I take? Those things can be such torture in and of themselves. Will I work and work and get my legs back only to be too tired from breathing to move?

Well, these questions remain unanswered, and only time will tell. I hope that with hard work, I will be rewarded with better breathing as a side effect.

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Off to see the wizard

After 9 long months, I am finally having surgery on my hip. I'll have a bone graft and a total hip replacement on May 12. Am I nervous? You bet! I'm handling it with all of the bravado I can muster. It's time to put it in someone else's hands now and go with the flow.

The nurse in me knows everything that could go wrong but the spirit in me knows I'm a fighter and will do the best I can.

I'll be back on the other side of surgery!

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Sticks and Stones

Just a quick note to explain where I've been. Ironically, my last entry was on August 25th. That was the same day that I tripped in my livingroom and broke my right shoulder and left hip.

The fracture in my left hip wasn't diagnosed until 10 days after my ER visit, and after I had walked for almost a week on it, causing major damage. I had to wait until there was some healing before they would consider surgery and now after 6 months, I have to have some major reconstruction done to the hip. And then I am told it will be another 4 - 6 months before I can do any weight bearing on it.

The past 6 months have been painful, frustrating and very discouraging. Often during this time, it was hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel or even the tunnel itself.

I think I've managed to get to this point with my mental state only slightly worse for wear and plan to have surgery soon. I haven't been writing because it's been too painful to sit at the computer for any length of time and frankly, I'm tired of talking about me. So I will save my story for another time.

But if you are reading this, please say a quick prayer for me that I get through this ordeal with 2 legs to stand on and my mind intact!