Monday, October 31, 2011

Just Keep Walking, Just Keep Walking!

My walking routine has improved a lot since I'm now able to walk 3.5 miles in 1 hour.  I would think that walking 14 - 17 miles per week would make me lose weight, but not so.  One of Forteo's side effects is weight gain and I've gained 9 pounds since Aug; I was 133# in July.  So at what I thought was my usual height of 5'10" at 133#, I was told by all my docs that I need to gain weight before the surgery.  Forteo's just helping me along.  

I'm getting much better with the Forteo injections, very little bruising.  Before every injection I pray that God bless my bones to grow stronger with the medicine so I have a successful surgery.  I continue to pray for a new surgery date before Aug 1st.  


Saturday, October 22, 2011

Missing Family Day of Fun

For those of you don't know about my daughter's business, today marks her 4th year appearing at the Taste of Atlanta event where she is judging this year instead of cooking.  I realized a couple of months ago, I would be in no condition to go with her because of my need to lay down every afternoon on a heating pad to try and relieve some of my back pain.  Taste of Atlanta is a super fun event for our family and I am a bit bummed I'm home alone this afternoon.  I'm confident Jeremy is taking some great shots of Lizzie at the event which I'll add to her website next week.

I talked with one of Dr. Lenke's patients who explained how she received her phone call with a cancellation opportunity to bump up her surgery date.  I was a bit surprised to learn that her new surgery date was 1 1/2 weeks away from the day she received the phone call.  I didn't realize dates could be moved up so quickly.  We reached out to our dear friends and explained the situation how I'm on a cancellation list and regardless of when the surgery occurs (Aug 1 or sooner), could they help us by having Lizzie stay with them during my surgery.  It was a HUGE relief to not only have them say yes, but to have a few plans in place now for when I need to go to St. Louis.

Rib pain is still at an elevated level this week, making sleeping and sitting a challenge.  It's not good to literally lay around all day long, but it hurts so bad to just sit because of ribs pressing into pelvis.  Oh well, I'll get through this.



Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Such a Pain in the ***!

Did you think I was going to say something other than "pain in the rib?"  :)  

The past two evenings I've woken up because of rib pain which has increased considerably over the past several days, a Forteo side effect.  After last night's dinner, I settled into the couch with many pillows to watch a movie with the family.  Afterwards, Jeremy had to carefully help me off the couch because my ribs hurt so badly.  The thought crossed my mind to take a pain pill, but I didn't because I've been able to get to sleep fairly quickly the past few weeks.  Had I taken a pain pill, I would not have woken up at 3a.  I'll probably take a pain pill tonight.

That's the highlight of this week so far.  


Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Peaceful Sleep Makes a Happy Camper

I've finally moved beyond the not-being-able-to-sleep phase and have had very good sleep for several evenings without taking a pill.  Whew!  What a refreshing change to wake up feeling well rested as compared to waking up feeling exhausted.

Some updates on my Forteo friend.  She's moved into the front area of my ribs, but that's okay, Forteo has a short-term lease in this dwelling.  I don't mind the renovations she's making during her stay.  While my pain is at a high level, my spirits remain higher.  I am really focusing on what I am able to do as compared to what I'm no longer able to do.  My daily walking route is now at 2 miles.  My energy levels are highest before 1p.  I've noticed I'm "tipping" more to the right when standing or walking.  I try to keep Lizzie or Jeremy on my right side as my pillars of strength so I can literally lean on them.

Keep praying for the phone call, "Doreen, we have a new surgery date..."   :)


Monday, October 3, 2011

Forteo: Friend or Foe

As I enter my 5th week of Forteo injections, I've been experiencing a typical side effect of achy knees and ankles.  A few days ago I lengthened my daily walk a little bit which includes one of the steepest hills in the neighborhood.  That same evening, I started experiencing an intense lumbar ache above and beyond my "normal" daily pain.  Have you ever had the flu where your body aches terribly?  This is how it feels in my lower back now.  I spoke with my endocrinologist's office last week who confirmed the aches are a side effect of Forteo.  

I've read other Forteo patients say the aches are an indication that new bone is forming.  As much as it hurts, I'm thankful for this experience and keep telling myself the aches are a good thing.  Forteo is my friend, Forteo is my friend (chant to the rhythm "There's no place like home).  It's a painful but positive relationship, or should I say it is a positively painful relationship?   :)

I realized the other day I've been exercising everyday nonstop since mid-July.  The exercise has been prescribed by my local physical therapist and approved by Dr. Lenke's physical therapist as well.  I've been instructed to walk every day at a minimum of 45 minutes to 1 hour because Dr. Lenke wants his patients in top cardiac condition.  Jeremy suggested I take one day per week off from exercise because my body probably needs rest to recover.  I simply didn't realize I was over-exercising and should know better.  Yesterday was the first day I did zero exercise and I really felt crummy laying around all day.  It was a not-so-good-day as far as pain.

I have an exhausting daily routine now: physical therapy exercises followed by yoga and then walking.  You would think I'd easily fall asleep at night.  Not so much.  Almost two weeks ago I've had difficulty falling asleep; laying in bed for 2 - 3 hours begging for sleep.  My primary doctor said I have "sleep initiation" issues which are caused by the stress of the surgery journey.  He prescribed sleeping pills but recommended I not get into the habit of taking one every night.  They've helped me sleep very well the past few evenings, but I won't take one tonight and see how I do.

Since my goal is to NOT take a pain pill every time I hurt because the narcotics can be addictive, I pray for God to pull me through the pain.  I'm trying not to bellyache (complain) about my pain but want to candidly diarize my journey in hopes that it provide insight to folks who may have similar experiences.  I keep reminding myself that God does not give us situations that we cannot handle.  Thank you, Jesus, for my journey.