Friday, January 30, 2015

I, apparently, wasn't paying attention

Today's update will include a full admission of me not looking at things realistically.  Everyone else in the world knew it however I was not ready to admit it.

All of you worriers can rest easily because I will be taking all next week off of work as well. 

This is hard for me to admit, but I guess this is why I accumulated 100+ sick days. In case I needed them. And every morning I have gotten up since this happened, expecting to feel way better and don't,  I do understand why I need these next few days off. 

A sweet friend of mine told me all about what happens to injuries overnight. She did a lot of research a year or so ago. Apparently the swelling in injuries goes down overnight when you're sleeping and so when you wake up your injury is what really hurts.  And boy does it ever hurt. Then as the day goes on, the swelling goes up, hence the pain goes away because the swelling supports the injury. 

I barely notice my ankle sprain during the day but every single morning that baby is stinging like crazy. And my wrists and elbows.... Well you get the idea. 

So for the good side of things I get to talk today to a friend who I have not seen in a very long time. Even though we live in the same town, she works and I work and our schedules absolutely do not mesh up. So yay for visiting with good friends!! 

I'm looking forward to seeing my sister this afternoon too! I wish we could go bumming around Bayfield or some place fun, but I'll have to be satisfied with the grocery store!! 

So until such time that I can chat with people I am going to rest my hands/fingers/elbows. I hope that you all are able to spread some additional joy to keep me caught up! 

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Optimism is my thing

Even tho my arms are pretty stiff and sore in the morning - and I have to drink coffee through a straw - again- I'm back to my usual feeling of optimism. 

Yay me. (I like the way that feels)

I had to do this and it's fine. 

Go out there and be joy givers people!!! I'm at home again, I need you to pick up the slack!

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Well this is no fun~

So this is your update for the day from the art teacher who can't use her arms.

Yesterday I ended the day feeling pretty well,I was getting some range of motion back, but certainly not a lot. I decided to try to sleep without the splint on, which was fine except I was in some pain when I woke up. Oh well. 

That pain continued throughout the day. So I lightly treated it with a little ibuprofen and ice. It's a weird thing this particular injury I feel actually pretty good. I feel awake,  I don't feel sick all in all I feel like normal. Until it comes to picking something up or trying to do something that involves my hands. 

Now wouldn't you think that would be most of the day? When you're just sitting around talking to friends it's not too big of a deal. But when your friend or your husband leaves and you want to open up a bowl of soup that someone so kindly package for you in individual servings so as not to be too heavy, and you CAN'T OPEN IT,  it then becomes a problem. 

I think the issue is that because I feel healthy otherwise I sort of feel like a fraud.  However, when you find it next to impossible to zip up your own sweatshirts, clip your own fingernail, or even for heavens sakes rub lotion into your hands- then you realize that you are not pretending, or imagining or anything. I can't move my hair from under my collar or put on my own socks. Sigh. 

I am  trying to not complain, because I know that there are so many more people in the world who are actually in dire straights and all. I am having a hard time admitting that there is a lot of stuff I can't do right now. What is this about? Our culture makes us feel like we never should admit to weakness or pain? As a female I should suck it up and just do everything? As a teacher I am letting my students down because I am not there for them? Maybe a combo of everything. At any rate, I am having a hard time wrapping my mind around it all. The last time I missed more than one or two days of school in a school year, was the year that my dad died and I missed a week then.   The MA and a few friends think I should maybe think about staying  home Monday as well.....  but I don't feel like I can stay away.  So I'm not quite sure how to process all of this. 

On the positive side I've had a lot of really nice people come and visit me (read: be my helping hands)  By visiting and texting and telephone calls I have caught up with an awful lot of people who I don't see enough and certainly don't talk to enough. Rumor has it my seester-Rose is coming to visit me this weekend too!  

Anyway, I'm going to attempt to hold a book for a while and other adventurous things that I may or may not be able to do!

Hoping to make it through the evening without help of pharmaceuticals which just make me feel creepy- and also to be able to drink my coffee in the morning without a straw! Optimistic person that I really am!! :) 
And that will be a joy. 

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Not under any influence update

Well since we last talked, I actually did get a good nights sleep.  I will say that I read, with some trepidation, the post that I did last night. I was a little bit worried about what I said under the influence of good old Oxy. So I was relieved to see that I was somewhat coherent. Whew 

I have found some interesting things this morning. I can pick up a grand total of a half a cup of coffee.  I cannot brush my own hair. I cannot clipped my own fingernail with my left hand. I CAN however eat a peanut butter bagel without assistance!!  I can ice my parts without any assistance as well. 

I am somewhat dismayed that my strength in my left arm and hand is not increasing very quickly. I understand that this is absolutely normal and that I can't expect things to get better really fast. However that does not stop my brain from thinking that it should! So I've been sitting around and watching TV and sipping coffee through a straw!  After a marathon texting session this morning, I have found that my limitation on that is approximately 45 minutes.  And I am definitely done doing that for a while. A while being an hour or so. I find that texting is a very easy way to communicate with people I can do that with one hand. I can talk on the phone if you call me on myself phone because it is impossible for me to hold the home telephone up to my ear. 
I also checked Facebook this morning and was astonished by the number of messages of support.  It's sort of brought a tear to my eyes to read all of them. But I really shouldn't be surprised after all I have amazing friends. I can't type very well yet on the laptop so I guess making the blog posts like this is the best way to keep people updated. 

One of the reasons I feel so much better today is that I was able to get a really really good night sleep. I had my bed to myself (thanks Fred) and I think I sort of passed out once I finally got comfortable. I feel very awake but my arms are definitely getting tired and it's only 9 AM. 

Anyway, I just thought I would update this for anyone who is interested. It's not a very exciting post but that is just fine with me. Make sure that you are a joy giver today!
Eta: I could brush my teeth pretty well too!! People it's the little things. Love your life. 

Monday, January 26, 2015

And now for something totally unexpected......

I am writing this post in a slightly altered state thanks to my new best friend pain-killer, with ice on one elbow, my ankle in a temporary cast and my second elbow in a queue for the ice bag.  Somewhere below me lies the other ice pack, but I am not sure where it went.  I also discovered that one can drink coffee with a straw if you are desperate enough.

I took a little tumble on the road yesterday.  I was innocently taking a little walk so I could get some miles in before the Book Across the Bay on February 14. The obnoxious thing is that I was being actually careful- I was watching the road like a hawk.  I was going from dry pavement to rough roadside to avoid the icey patches, I was over half way done and heading down a small decline and my  foot hit a small chunk of ice.  I twisted it as it kicked out behind me and I landed on my hands.  FORTUNATELY, I did not hit my head or anything like that.  It didn't seem like anything was too wrong, except for the stinging in my ankle.  Sigh.  A nice man saw it happen and he stopped and offered a ride, but of course I didn't take him up..... why??  who ever knows.

I got home pretty well, but I was a little worried about things.  Things being my arms and my ankle, but mostly my arms.  IN particular my elbow area, which started feeling weird.

Cut to 15 minutes later when I contacted the MA via of the cell phone of Bob and asked him to come back from the cabin area and drive me into the ER. When I plunked my ankle up on the coffee table I noticed the enormous amount of swelling and decided that I probably should get it all looked over. 

After a four hour stint in the emergency room I learned a few things: first I learned that my ankle was merely sprained not broken. Next, I learned that my right radius was indeed fractured. And I kept asking him, the ER doc, if he wasn't talking about the left radius which was far worse as far as pain went. But oh no he knew what he was talking about!  And indeed it was very suspicious that the left radius was also broken. I say suspicious because apparently the bleeding that went on inside of the bone and around the bone kept a really good picture from being taken in the x-ray. Isn't life grand?

So I was horrified to see that I was going to have both arms splinted with this stuff that is made out of fiberglass. And then I was all wrapped up with my arms bent at a 90° angle or maybe it was a 45° angle I don't know. So basically until I saw the orthopedic person I was stuck not being able to feed myself or rub my eyebrow or brush the hair out of my face. This was not an ideal way to end a Sunday, to say I was distraught is a bit of an understatement.

 Fortunately a nurse came to my rescue when the doctor suggested that perhaps I need to stay in the hospital overnight because I would be unable to care for myself!  She asked me if I had anyone that could help! So I arranged for a good friend to come over on Monday to stay with me and of course Fred has done tons, too. This makes me chuckle because if you know him at all you will know that he likes to have people (that would be ME) bring him things. Particularly food!! Lol. So it was a little amusing asking him to get me like everything that I needed - literally EVERYTHING!! It's been interesting 24 hours. I got a sub for the week- I have awesome and amazing friends and coworkers and a great boss, at school. They are so supportive 

So this morning I got a phone call from the clinic and I had an appointment with an orthopedic practitioner. I am thrilled to say that the fractures are intact and I do not have to- at least at this point – have a cast on either one of my elbows. That could possibly change next Thursday when I have my x-rays were taken again. I am hoping karma is on my side and everything is just fine. In other news I got a Aircast for my ankle and I have to leave that on there for approximately four weeks. So much for the Book Across the Bay. I get to choose how much I leave the splints on. And it is also looking like I'm going to have to wear the splints at least for another night. It is pretty obnoxious to try to sleep with those things on but it hurts if I just let them dangle too. So another couch night. I hope I can sleep. 

My arms got so pained from typing that I have done most of this post by text to talk!! You might ask why I am doing this then if I am in pain, well it is because there are a lot of people that I don't know what happened yet and frankly I'm a little tired from all the phone calls that I have had to make. I hardly know what I said to anybody on Sunday night (thanks really good painkiller) and then today it feels like I've been repeating myself constantly. Which I guess I have when you think about it. 
I did get some nice flowers from some of the kids so that is a pretty cool thing to happen from all of this. Right at this point it's the only cool thing I can see coming out of this.  But you never know what unexpected surprises come in these sorts of circumstances. 

So there you have it. I never in my life would have guessed I would break both arms/elbows. I've never broken a bone before. I have found myself to be somewhat resourceful- I do not like being fed like a little birdie, so I figured out how to use a shish kebab thingy to spear my bagel and peanut butter and feed myself this morning.  And of course the previously mentioned coffee idea! Yay for me. And I guess this was my joy for the day.

Thanks to all the wonderful people who have texted me and emailed me and called me. I am very grateful for you all.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

And off into the New Year we go

I sit down on my couch to write a blog post and it is 4:29.  Yes, in the a.m.  Man, am I tired.  So WHY am I writing at 4:29  4:30 (cuppa coffee #2 happened)??  Well, sleep was not real good last night.  A certain person who shares the room with me MAY have been snoring........AND there was an extra blanket on the bed, which ended up causing all sorts of odd issues....... and my shoulders I realize are aching from my workout yesterday.  I should have moved to my alternative bed, but it was TOOO cold again last night AND I kept thinking that I would sleep well.  Not so much.

Jacpot enjoying his breakfast
So now that you know all sorts of unnecessary things about my sleep or lack thereof last night,  how has your new year been?  I had a glorious Christmas vaca.  Got a lot of snow shoeing in, which rocked!  Had Christmas with 2/3 of the kiddos and a belated Christmas will be coming hopefully VERY SOON.  Checked out a new gym, which no actual insult intended to the owners, I call it the ghetto gym.  It is actually a weight room at a local motel, and it has actually a lot of equipment there. It will do, let's put it that way.  My shoulders are pretty achy today, so I did well, and I have a feeling other parts will be aching later.

In case you didn't get the memo, we also have had 2 extra days off from school this week for some delightful cold Northern WI weather.  -30 - -40 degree windchills will do that to ya.  I have to smile (I've grown incredibly tolerant these days) at the people who in their infinite wisdom question the decisions of school districts around the state who cancelled classes..  Seriously??  I heard of one radio announcer who actually said if he had to come to work, why can't they just have school??  Well, how about that you aren't 5 and you don't have to ride a school bus for 45 minutes in the middle of no where??  I guess I am not so tolerant, lol.  These people would be the first to sue a school district if their little kid got frost bite standing at the bus stop waiting for a broken down school bus. Ah yes.

Anyway, that first day off was epic for me.  I had a list about a mile long to accomplish and I DID!  I was so pleased with myself!  :)  The second day, yesterday, I was more at a loss.  I knew that if I wanted to sit and read all day - I could, but I felt way more restless.  I ended up getting a few things accomplished, and I did sit and read for a while.  But not as much as I wanted to.  Oh well.  It was REALLY cold and windy yesterday. I think the high was -7.  About 7 last night I established myself in a nest of blanket and pretty much stayed there for the rest of the evening.  TODAY, I see on the news, we have a double blessing of a wind chill advisory (merely -20 windchills) AND a winter weather advisory (2-4 inches of snow with that wind).  Yay for us!!  I did manage yesterday, to step outside in the morning to get a couple really nice photos using the gorgeous morning sunlight.

Giant hand holding her share of snow
Meanwhile, I have no idea what day it is......  I intellectually know that it is Thursday, but my inner time keeper is feeling a bit lost.  But we will get through the day, I am again thrown into one of my busiest days of the week with 6 classes, pretty much back to back to the end of the day.  Fortunately, my elementary kiddos are all painting, which takes a lot of the prep stress off of me.

So I will head off into my day in a while here, armed with the knowledge that no matter how goofy the kids are from their extra day off and being cooped up in the house/school that this will be a 3 day week!  It is Friday already tomorrow.  Wow!  And the MA is starting into his January routine and comes home later and later- but still will take weekend afternoons off for a while yet.  Hopefully the temp recovers enough over the weekend for some serious snowshoeing to take place.  And he can go back and burn stuff and do other cabin things for a few more weekends.

So have a happy day, whatever day it is and be a joy giver in this New Year!  We all need a few more joygivers in life.