Thursday, January 8, 2015

Weed @ School; Keep Calm!?!

*The slogan comes from a United Kingdom Ministry of Information propaganda poster designed to boost morale if the United Kingdom was invaded during World War II. Despite its current popularity, the poster was never distributed.  Written about this before.

We have all seen the sign: Keep Calm &,,,,, add your unique motivator to keep calm.

Interuption of blog post to post this:  Monday morning, after a two week vacay can be pretty depressing. So when J. came home I put on my cheeriest cheer look and said:

 "WELL?? How was it to be back in the saddle?? Did your teacher go easy or go hard on you guys? "

J slung his back pack on the ground as I motioned for him to hang it on the designated orderly hanging spot specificallly put there so the spot on the floor would be unoccumpied by his back pack.

J: "Well, somebody brought marijauna to school."

ME: "For a DARE show and tell, or something... wait, what in the world? How do you know?"

J: "Ms. Do Tell (I just made that up) was walking around while we were reading and then she grabbed something by the pencil sharpener and cried out: 'This is WEED!'"

ME, flabbergasted with flabber: "Then what? Was Office Grogg (another made up name) there for your Drug Program? Which isn't graduation this week?"

J: "No-pah."

ME: "Well, who the heck and how the heck did they do that? Detail, boys! I say I neeed the details!"

J: "Well, first off, she went around the whole room and had each of us smell it. Real good. So we wouldn't forget, I guess. Then a couple kids didn't want to smell it."

ME: "So did you get a good whiff? "

J: "Well, it had only been just used at recess so there was an odd smell in the room when we got in there," 

ME: "mm-hmmm. So which kid was it?"

J: "AFter school some girls were crying. So I don't know who it actually was and if so and so got false accussed by so and so. "

ME: "You mean, the nice girl in OUR neighborhood?"
And my kid shrugs.
Yup, back to school be a real drag. And I am sure the staff at TV elementary are having a blasting weeding out the culprit.

(S0rry, I have to add some dumb, lame jokes. WHAT IN THE WORLD IS HAPPENING TO OUR KIDS??

Okay, enough about some kids getting lax about their placement of drugs in class after Christmas Break. And back to the post I had oringinaly started:


'Keep Calm & Carry On'

Lately I have had a creeping feeling of "un-calmness" take over me. I am "carrying on" in the best way that I can but it has been stressful. - No debilitating and painful. I am using the walking poles intended for snow shoeing, for walking.

It is waaaayyyy more comfortable. And with the ice is stabs better than my trekking poles purchased in the summer. So I look like a ski bunny. In a Doctor's office. Thank you L.L. Bean for making the best poles. Then seriously help so much. I have used both at times and that is most comfy. But when I have to carry my purse, I just use one.

Today, like many others that suffered through the drought of help during the holidays due to their regular doctors (the ones who know their case so on and so forth) absence,  I sat in semi-crowded waiting room.

Baby Sis brought me to my appt. and I walked into the office with my staff like I was Maleficent or something- brandishing a ski pole vs. a cane to help me walk.

Pleurisy is Painful but I could see more painful people's problems by the grimaces, hear coughing coming from the woman leaving the office. see kids getting restless as I sat in my chair until a grey bearded fellow asked me how I was. At first I was looking at him and his glasses that were sunglasses and tried to peer through them to see if his eyes were familiar.


"I'm great."  I smiled and went on trying to breathe.

"A lot of flu going around." he said sitting down and crossing one over his legs over. I nodded my head and lamented the fact. Now that I had my infusion I don't have a chance. But why am I getting down? What about all the stuff I armed the grandkids with the month of December about being kind, BRAVE, and Believing.

I kinda had more of the: 'George Washington try to give a pep talk to some fellows with dysentery, not getting paid, cold and tired, "Let's Get Out There & DO THIS because we CAN!" feeling.'

Ya know?  It's hard to be a positive, bright light to others when you yourself are thinking, " boy  this is harder than I thought." In my case it is breathing. In your case it could be a bad case of athlete's foot from going to the gym so much and swimmer's ear from the latest ultra marathon you entered.

I don't know. I am trying to look at the things that I held onto back in December- A cute Polar Bear signifies the ultimate fear we have and learning to just sit with it. The weakness- not the Polar Bear.

 But why can't I feel a sense of accomplishment and confidence in that experience under my belt and have this help me keep Calm?

Heck, I lived through the part where I could have freaked out and have calmly gone about my life a few days after the event until the magnitude and the FEAR of it happening again has made me scared!

And recall that one of the things from the Christmas book we picked out had a theme: BE BRAVE?
I had it etched into a star from Kurt to help me remember....


(The center of the white one says the words: Be Brave. And the Polar Bear from the book was an ornament I got for the grand kids and us to be a symbol of overcoming being afraid. Well, I have a new polar bear in my life and that is this pleurisy.

Leading into the holidays I shared with you some health concerns and I was on top of talking with my doctors, lining up game plans and trying to find an answer before they left town.  There was only one way through the scary two week leave of all doctors from their offices- and that was to grit my teeth.

(where is my faith? Where is my Fortitude? I have a cool patch but when it comes down to it.... boy I was bawling like a baby!)

Doctors don't owe patients. I never feel that I have some huge right or the right to cut in line in front of someone waiting ahead of me that has a problem to address

There is no emoticon to insert here. I could post a picture of me wringing my hands. Actually, I don't even know if I should even post about it.  But it happened, is real, and was very hard to endure. And maybe I think the odds are in my favor of them not happening again. At least any time soon.

** I have been reading some other blogs to get my mind off of things and the lives that they lead are so distant to the one that I once led. One is my friend's sister: mountainmomandtots. It is so fun to read about and watch an individual that I could see myself having been; a mom outdoors with her kids and family. But that is not what happened to me. My life- that life was slowly and then abruptly taken away from me and I had to find my identity still was intact even though you didn't find me on a mountain bike, on skis, running around the river, but inside a body that had a different fight and mountain to climb but it happened, is happening on the inside. And I don't have the mountain to push off of. It is a mental climb.

And this morning, as I edit and add to what I've have written on four occasions to this post, I am fearful. Yes, fearful. It is Sunday. you would think the Sabbath would calm me; that I would be on a front pew begging silently and bartering with my Heavenly Father to please, please not ever again let me cross that path again.

And while I was at it, could He tell me why I had to have that happen? After all the suffering that has gone on already? Isn't it funny how we feel that we have paid "dues" and surely there wouldn't be any more extracted from us?

I drank my Boost with my prednisone like I faithfully do each morning to avoid going into shock and am on day five of having dropped from 17 to 16. Doesn't sound like a big deal, but believe me it is.

Last night J. and I watched a science experiment. It was an invention of an "exoskeleton" to help military carry more weight.
As I watched a track star coach try to carry the same weight up a stadium and then the typical physics/ non athletic guy do the same with the help of the device; it looked like he was a bit of a Transformer.
But it held his body up and weight was put into his back pack and distributed amongst the body suit. It kind of resembled Forrest Gumps leg braces, but hey, if it made it easier for me to walk with osteoarthritis baring down on my spine and bones......

"Maybe that could help me I said sitting up straighter in my rocking chair."

J. looked at me wide eyed.

"That thing costs like 4 grand."

I nodded and sat back into my seat feeling a sense of sadness. The hunk of metal wouldn't help the immune problems inside me anyway.

 After this last week I have been able to "digest" all that happened and I am incredibly afraid of it happening again.
I may have posted some time ago the beginnings of me having a "new" problem of pain in the right rib cage. It turns out to be pleurisy.

A few weeks back I had sinus infections that took a few rounds of anti-biotics to wipe out, but that coupled with my asthma and lowered immune system, I think my lungs just couldn't hack it and the painful experience of pleurisy took place.

In times before that I have had it, it was localized in my chest and sternum. It feels like a heart attack is what some describe. As I have not had one I can only say that what happened the day before New Year's I hope I never have a heart attack.

My whole right rib cage seized up and I was unable to move. Or breathe without excruciating pain. The lungs have a sack around them along with the heart and the fluid in there is like a lubricant, making them slide against each other in a nice, smooth fashion.

For a few days the pain built up and I thought I was experiencing shingles..... then it began to hurt so badly that I thought I had somehow broken a couple ribs and not known it. I wondered if it was chostochondroitan  pain from being in the car accident a couple weeks ago.

Either way it was excruciating and it wasn't leaving. In fact, I was in for an episode of pain that ranked up there with the top five worst bodily pains I have ever suffered.

By midnight the morning of New Year's Eve,  my back and side hurt so badly.. earlier that day I had been unable to lift even the simplest things.   I called out for my son who got me some ice in Zip lock bags and I applied it to my back in the hopes of numbing the new pain that was making the rest of my symptoms that much more terrible.

Leading up to this unforgettable night, I had slowly been unable to sit up in bed without great difficulty and now I wasn't sure what was going on. My pain had increased and I was making more appts. with my physicians as we tried to unravel the puzzle which is my body's varying problems.
I was especially appreciative to my ENT who took the bull by the horns and figured out my sinus infection. It took two anti-biotics to knock out the problem.

He also had the great insight to get a pulmonologist back on board. But it was too late as the pleurisy had taken root already and the holidays were approaching. That is when all doctors leave on vacation.
But like I said in an earlier post, disease and illness don't take vacations.

So I was stuck between a rock and a hard place; I was on my own to endure and still am until Monday when I can get into my GP and more tests done.

Back to the night that has me scared....
I decided to try touse the bathroom in the hopes of it possibly being GI related, so J. helped me stand up after I'd rolled over to my left side and used my arms to circle my body around allowing my legs to fall over the side and me to grab J's hand to pull myself to a standing position.

No more than a few feet and I had an attack in my right rib that caused me to collapse to the our orange linoleum bathroom floor. I felt like my whole body was seized up and that "something" had happened below my right lower rib.

It had been 2o minutes or more since the ice pack session and the pain was a 10. After all the times the triage nurses asked for my pain level I could tell them 10. Usually you wonder how to answer that question because there are different kinds of pain and different ways in which your body can handkle it at the time.

As my elbows crushed into the floor I felt prompted to get J. to get my mom and to call for help. I couldn't move, REaders. I could not move. In my mind I thought I could not last another second of the pain. Had something ruptured? A bowel? What?

My tears were everywhere by the time my mom was trying to help me to the hallway. I told J. to call 911. Never before was I more sure. I needed to make it to the hallway at least I thought so I tried to bring my right hand forward. It was unable and I moaned in pain.

J. was in the hallway and his presence gave me the incentive to stay calm. To breath through the pain. To stay as -----

As far as this post got before being pushed over board for being too heavy to sink the boat of the blog!

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