Archive | May 2012

Wonders Never Cease.

That call came through!

After a good week of pure frustration I heard from the doctor’s office finally late yesterday afternoon. Seems there was a cancellation on the doctors Emergency Room schedule and it was offered to me. I gladly jumped on this offer with both feet before the elusive scheduler could even tell me at what UnGodly hour we would have to be at the surgical center in the morning. It didn’t matter. We were going to be there with bells on. I am at least.

The bells will be only temporary of course; as all jewelry must be removed, sans my wedding ring which I make them tape up every time. It’s been off my finger three times in our 42 years of marriage to date. I am extremely sentimental and believe strongly in symbology; meaning in this case that the ring staying on our fingers represents to me the unbroken circle of our vows. Of our marriage. I was not into taking my rings off any time I chose, willy nill.  I recall seeing aunts and cousins take their rings off for a number of reasons. Sometimes that reasons being out of anger. Seems like arguments were worth removing their rings, or leaving them beside the sink to wash their hands or dishes, often rings ending up down the drain getting knocked in accident. Sometimes not. My rings have come off once on our 20th anniversary when we renewed our vows, we had our rings cleaned and an engraved inside. Then on our 35th anniversary my husband D. took his grandmother’s ring, which she left me, and had the diamond removed from its center stage. My original wedding band was split in two, (I know the engraving is still there albeit altered now) and a third band added to it so there would then be a wide enough base to hold 6 prongs. The third time I have had the ring off was to have a prong fixed that I had somehow bent. I cherish this ring even more. Now because of its added financial value which is huge (now I know what they mean when they say a diamond is girl’s best friend) but the sentimental value is priceless. My band alone which we bought as a matching set back in 1970 held its own unique value, now with D’s grandmother’s diamond (which I never owned before) makes it a family heirloom. That to me makes it the most valuable materialistic thing I own. There is so much love in that small circle that it’s value lies out of this world. 

I digress. I’m sorry.

Obviously some nervous energy shining through the story about my rings.

I am to arrive at the surgical center at 9am this morning Pacific USA time. I am a tad nervous and am feeling grateful that I am set up for  light sedation this time. No arguments from me. The first test injection I thought despite being nervous I’d be tough and not need the offered sedation. By the time they were actually ready to take me back to the OR room I was not doing so well. Despite using mediation and prayer which usually is enough for me I had worked myself up so that even my blood pressure and heart rate were both racing up the scale. Dr Swift popped in again to se how I was doing and talked to me about the sedation. Told me it meant nothing if I needed it. It did not make me less than because I used what was obviously going to help in this situation. I told him it honestly had nothing to do with trying to be tough, not really. Just that if there was no need for more chemicals why automatically accept taking them just because. But in my own anxiety I had lost sight of my own rationale.

I accepted the mediation which after a very short time entered my blood stream. I could immediately feel the warm blanket of its chemical effect and immediately relaxed. I realized then that they had bumped another [patient ahead of me to allow time for the medication to work that it was not just about me. That I was affecting the running of the operation rooms systems. I will not make that mistake again.

Checking in, putting their gown of the latest fashion on, Tied in back please. Thankfully D will be with me to help tie my gown, to hold my hand, to talk with me and side track my focus of attention. I am no way as nervous as I get when I am being given a general anesthesia, being given just a local, light sedation means that post procedure the recovery time required before being allowed to go home with my driver D. They make sure you have a driver, know their name, and make eye contact with them. I was recently in that role for my husband D,  he had his arthritic thumb operated on.  And is doing well thank you.

Shall I just bring my sleeping bag and teddy bear?

The nurses at the surgical center were laughing with us last time we were there,.Teasing me. Between D and I we will have been there at the surgical center 5 times in less than a month’s times, so the nurses were teasing me by laughing and offering us a Family Rate; and why did I not just bring my sleeping bag and stay. Thy all are beginning to feel like friends. I’m not sure what that means.

Ring of Fire.

This morning as I enter the actual cold sterile operation room where will be the two nurses I know now, and an anesthesiologist,  And Dr Swift.  All dressed in matching attire, Dr Swift wearing his rad looking glasses that are magnifying glasses at what strength I have no clue. The music in the background has already been requested. Not by me. But by my Johnny Cash loving doctor. Today the entrance song has been promised to be Ring of Fire by Johnny Cash.

Naturally!

I fell into a burning ring of fire

I went down, down, down and the flames went higher

And it burns, burns, burns, the ring of fire

The ring of fire

~lyrics: Johnny Cash

Gotta love his sense of humour!

Thanks again for all your support everyone. Know that I will use it in medication and prayer. Between the power of both those very meaningful showers of love and the use of chemistry I am going to be better than fine. I am in Good Hands by being in God’s Hands the entire time. This is what I have been needing to have done and from here on out my life that has felt in limbo comes out of that cocoon to life full force again.

I can hardly wait.

~

©tjhelser2012

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My gratitude, thanks, and sincere love

People amaze me still!  You amaze me!

I am still being blown away by how kind and full of love people are. Even in the throes of feeling put on “IGNORE” by a professional’s office regarding something that is affecting my quality of life; I am touched beyond the moon and stars by the loving words of support from my family and friends. I think they know it because I have the great opportunity to be near them in person and can tell them with my words and touch.

I cannot do that with my blogging family, or as one sister blogger refers to us as Bliblings

So My Dearest Bliblings I have a short message.

 

To those of you who are my Rally Squad;

You who continue to cheer me on despite whether my mood is one of grins and giggles, or one that is whiny and crabby –  you have stood by my words and not given up on me.

To those of you who visit and read my blog even though the last few posts have not been my upbeat self – you still cheer me on and lend me your hearts.

I need you to know how important those short messages and long emails have helped to keep my head afloat. It is because of friends like you that I am coping, and not giving up. Or giving in.

I need to be able to thank you and send you my heartfelt hugs

Please know that as I do I still have a lump in my throat, and tears n my cheeks from your gems of supportive words.

I will cherish you and your words you share with me,…. forever.

This is a time in my life I shall not forget,

  O shall not forget friends like you

who bring me so much Hope & Sunshine.

I love you MY  WP Brothers & Sisters

I thank you all!

~

©tjhelser2012

Still Waiting…..and Waiting….On The Man

For those of you who also follow me on other blog FullCircledMe @ fullcircledme.wordpress.com/ please know that I will be reblogging this same post there. (so if you an alerted twice know it is the same post) I want, and even maybe need to share this on both blogs. Only you followers of both blogs will have the benefit to the post I have initially posted about this at FullCircledMe. I just realized that could be a bit of an issue.  We’ll see, I am always up for an experiment.

I am so not the patient person that I wish sometimes I was. Like today

I am waiting and have been waiting for ALL of my life for a phone call. Okay, not all of my life, but certainly the past say… er… 5 to 6 weeks. And definitely the last 3 weeks I have been waiting. And the call I am waiting for involves a pretty important man in my life right now.

But still I am waiting….and isn’t there a song?

The phone call I am waiting for and that is making me a bit wicked because of its failure to ring is from a surgeon. A neurosurgeon to be exact.

After much hullabaloo to get into see this physician I then went through a two-part series of injections into the cervical nerves affecting my ability to function, and my pain levels that I deal with daily. The two-part test injections were performed, I was given the okay to go ahead by the doctor who agreed to the procedure, and my insurance company. Last week I was told by his medical assistant that my pre-auth had come through, I was just had to wait for his surgical scheduler to phone me. Cool.

If I seem like I am little  too excited to have this procedure done,… you’ve got good instincts. I am impatient and I need to have this done. My life feels like it is limbo right now. But I waited for the Elusive Scheduler to phone.

I am still waiting…

I am waiting to have a Radio-frequency Ablation (RAF) done.

Some of you may be asking yourself what is an RAF and why would she be waiting to have one done.” The what it is in some detail is inserted for your convenience if you are interested towards the bottom of the page. The why I will briefly explain only as I have been living with unacceptable pain again from my spine in the neck for  the last two years. It has also in the past nine months started to affect my range of motion, and ability to function. I have been in Physical & Occupational Therapy for pretty close to a continued time of over one year. The pain is affecting my life to the point where I am unable to find any position to be comfortable in except the pile of different pillows on my bed that allows me to lay against them, and they surround me like a nest. The pillows offer the soft support I need.ave even purchased two pillows from www. My Pillow.com that are the best pillows I have ever had. I purchased one and within one week knew I had to have two. They should be a medical write off but I am not sure yet.

I also have Connective Tissue Disease and Fibromyalgia which creates a hyper sensitivity to almost anything touching skin and my muscles. There days when even the spray of a shower hurts I know that my pain levels and inflammation levels are sky rocketing. I have a lovely shower head that D bought just because it can be adjusted to even almost just a dribble. The setting I that I like is just like a gentle rain which is why he bought it for me, but there are days when even that is just too much.  Like the past week. Our poor cat, Truman has no clue that while he is walking across my body with his sweet little white booted paws he is hurting me with each lingering step. It’s all I can do on some days not to help him along just a little bit. 

Because the pain levels have built to a point where I am needing stronger pain medication, I am not sleeping, unable to do a lot of physical activities because right now it is excruciating painful to have my left arm hanging at my side, and that I also am unable to raise it above my head, are the reasons why I am waiting to have this procedure done. 

In the late 1990’s I had these same symptoms, which led ultimately in 2000 to having a Cervical Fusion Arthoplasty. This that is creating the symptoms that I am dealing with now 12 years later are not from my fusion. I am told it still looks “great”; that the hardware which is made of Titanium is intact and in good shape. For me who had jaw implants that failed in the late 80’s this was extremely reassuring. But I did not expect anything different as this implanted material was researched ad nauseam before the surgery was even agreed upon. By myself.  I was told that my neck is “wearing out” above and below my fusion. This is the least invasive technique that may give me some relief available.

The history behind what got me to where I am at today is on my other blog if you’d like to know more: www.fullcircledme.wordpress.com/

So as the spine in my neck is “wearing out”, “the arthritis is spreading into the thoracic regions; and the thinning inside the bones of the spine which is “cervical stenosis”: are all happily doing their things.

And I am still waiting for HIS phone call.

One phone call. It has been a week since last I heard that “someone will be calling you to schedule a date and time for this procedure.”  Did not happen! No phone call yesterday. Okay I thought it is a holiday.

So at 9:01 AM this morning I was on the phone. I left another message, feeling now that I almost  am having to beg to have this procedure done. Begging while praying all the time that Dr Swift’s support staff in his office start doing some supporting. I have a hard time with patience and tolerance when it comes to a job not being done with some sense of professionalism and with organized consistency. I am not the most patient person right now. I admit it. And usually this is not a big problem with me. I was surprised really when about just an hour and half later my phone call was returned.

Finally!

Another person’s whose name I never have heard before calls. Ellie tells me that they just received the pre-auth this morning.   Really?  was feeling just a bit cheeky now after all this absurdest nonsense just to get an appointment. I responded to her that I find it interesting that apparently one hand is not talking to the other in her office – because I was told the same thing a whole week earlier. She was quiet.  I was ticked.

I would much rather have someone tell me a mistake had been made than to act like I, or they, do not know what ANYONE is talking about. Pretending to be dumb when something goes awry must be being taught to the people in business school these days. While I was calling her out she started to back pedal, finally discovering that to tell me that the pre-auth just showed on her desk sounded plausible she stuck with that.

Yeah, that was the ticket. and in the mean time I tell her that…

I am still here waiting….

I agree with her that is likely what happened, and let the petty argument go. I, after all need these people to at leat not hate me, to not be annoyed with me when I come in for the RAF. I kind of would like the surgeon and his staff to have a favorable attitude towards me. I am thinking this would be a good idea. I can find a way to let  those who are in the know at said clinic  be aware of the circumstances that surrounded this fiasco on another date. For now I need to keep peace. After I have a brief and gentle blow out on Ellie’s dime I hear her tell me that she is going to give The Scheduler, another Elusive Scheduler, a note on her desk to expedite the scheduling process and to get me scheduled as soon as possible. I pray this is so.   I asked her what this meant for me?  This week?  Next week? Another three weeks?

I know….. I know…, rather cheeky. Maybe it was not necessary. I’ll never know.  I explained as best as I could ( without storming out loud to her  all that I was thinking to myself) that it had been an unbearable & unreasonable three weeks out the last two years that the pain and other symptoms like numbing hands and fingers had been going on. That my life is at a standstill it seems because there is so much I am unable to do. I tried as hard as I could to stay assertive and not become tearful. I told her just how frustrated I have been, and trying to get even further along with what I need to share, that if having to wait for another week I will then be at a breaking point and the clinic’s credibility with me is going down hill fast!

All the while….I am still waiting..

I believe Dr Swift has a right to know what has gone on in his office. Such like the issues I had when trying to get my first appointment. How can what they don’t know about get fixed?  I wonder though if this might be a sampling of why Dr Swift is picking up his lily pad and moving to another pond. I’ve heard from everyone I speak to about him that HE IS THE MAN! He is the man worth waiting for. So I am praying for more patience, ..ahem…. maybe I should be saying praying for patience.. any patience would do at this point….

While I am still obviously still waiting!

~

If you are interested in knowing  more:    

Main article: Radio frequency nerve lesioning      [ Resource: Wikipedia.org ]

RFA, or rhizotomy, is sometimes used to treat severe chronic pain in the lower (lumbar) back, cervical, (neck) and upper back, where radio frequency waves are used to produce heat on specifically identified nerves surrounding the facet joints on either side of the lumbar spine. By generating heat around the nerve, its ability to transmit pain signals to the brain is destroyed, thus ablating the nerve. The nerves to be ablated are identified through injections of local anesthesia (such as lidocaine) prior to the RFA procedure. If the local anesthesia injections provide temporary pain relief, then RFA is performed on the nerve(s) that responded well to the injections. RFA is a minimally invasive procedure which can usually be done in day-surgery clinics, where the patient is sent home shortly after completion of the procedure. The patient is awake during the procedure, so risks associated with general anesthesia are avoided. An intravenous line may be inserted so that mild sedatives can be administered. The major drawback for this procedure is that nerves regenerate over time, so the pain relief achieved lasts for only a short duration (6–24 months[12]) in most patients.

Still more information and details can also be found at:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radihttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radiofrequency_ablationofrequency_ablation

Resource:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radiofrequency_ablation

©tjhelser 2012

Hello Good People,
I wanted to share this post from Insode Out Care’s blog that she posted yesterday. Apiece that she wrote a couple years ago that is so worthy to be reposted and to be reblogged. My intent to make this reblog so was run aground yesterday, but MargeKatherine’s message got me to thinging AGAIN.Her message that we make every day a special day that our thoughts and prayers are there also for those who have served, and are serving our country & world; I’d also like to add a personal prayer request, that the families, the spouses, the kids, the parents and siblings, grandparents, aunts and uncles, who all are serving their tours for this country and world too as the support systen back home to please be included in your thoughts and prayers.
Thanks so much and please enjoy this beautiful tender post.
Thank you MargeKatherine!!

Happily After Retirement

I wrote this in May 2010 and decided to share it with you again:

Instead, Every Day the American public should express thanks to our veterans and soldiers.  If we were more caring and appreciative on a daily basis instead of squeezing our thanks in between a cold beer and a softball game, NASCAR race or Bolder Boulder on our day off, then perhaps veterans would be more honest with us about their experience and the stress they are dealing with each day.

What is it that is capturing their souls and leading our soldiers to commit suicide in record numbers? In the past five years the suicide rate among soldiers was the highest since 1980 when they were first recorded.

Military suicides make up 20% of all suicides in the US.  And for every death, five members of the armed forces tried to take their lives and were hospitalized instead.

The…

View original post 340 more words

Share Your World Sunday Week # 25

This is the day of the week I look forward to the most in regards to my blog life.  This weeks were fun, thought-provoking, and inspiring. I’d completely forgotten about that I used to be a picky eater. Thanks to Cee this memory has surfaced and now I am making plans for a layout about this in an altered mixed media memory book. This is exactly one of the reasons why I like this writing challenge each week. It draws up memories in the strangest ways,

  1. What’s my favorite holiday and why?

This would be the Holy Season of Christmas. It was always my mom’s favorite holiday although she really went nuts for all holidays Christmas time she became a little girl again. I think I adopted my moms love for this time of year and then I had lids. There is nothing better in my heart than seeing the children at Christmas time. I love the bling of the decorations, the goodies that get baked, the time spent with family and friends over a hot chocolate with mint. This is a time of year when I believe stresses of all kinds should be set aside until the new year, letting the spirit of the season shine on all things with peace and jo

        2. Do you prefer your food separated or mixed together?

This is a funny question for me and only Cee would know why. Thanks for this Cee.  I was at one time extremely picky about how I ate my meal, but also how it was laid out on my plate. I visualized the plate being divided into pir wedges, each part of the meal had its own wedge, or in the case of protein – two wedges. {This was when I was a child so the plate was divided far different from it is today,} I would then eat each wedge’s food supply one by one. Not mixing the potatoes into my corn. Then I got married and had children. Two things happened. The first was my husband’s D’s fried potatoes and eggs. D makes the most scrumptious fried potatoes. I have had him try to teach me so that I could duplicate his technique letting him off the hook some weekend mornings.To no avail.  After frying the spuds he then adds the whole eggs, one at a time onto to the top of the spuds and gently finishes the egg. The 1st time he made this family recipe of his mom’s for me I was certain I not would not like it because the eggs and spuds were mixed. I was really worried about being able to politely try them without gagging. The very first bite was not polite. I could hardly get it to my mouth. I added a piece of crispy bacon bite to the spoonful, smelling only the bacon which I could eat day or night as I raised it to my mouth with eyes shut tight. I was prepared to get sick and to be embarrassed. Instead I was so delightfully surprised to find that I liked the salty crispy crunchy on the outside, meaty, fluffy, potato that has bits of scrambled eggs mixed throughout.(the bacon bite was my addition) I had completely forgotten than I was eating mixed foods. Today this dish is my all the time go to comfort foo and there are now some foods that I will mix on my plate as I am eating..

      3.Before making a phone call, do you ever rehearse what you are going to say?

No, I am strictly an Ab liber. There have been times when I was younger for particular business phone calls I would create a script. But I would get on the phone and my personality could not be reined in so it blew my script out the window and I would wing it. So my answer would be I wing it.

     4. When you are with your friends. Do your interactions include much touching—for example, hugging, kissing, rough housing, rubbing backs?   Would you like to have more of this?

I am a touchy feely kind of person. I am of the belief that humans need that touch from one another. I believe it is healing and something that we should be doing and feeling from others every day, at least. That being said I also have come to respect people’s space, not everyone I meet is comfortable with my touchy feely way. I try to get a feel if the person is into being touched by their interactions with others, and if ever in doubt I just don’t hug or touch. When I talk I have a tendency to reach out and touch a hand, a shoulder or an arm. I am by nature a deeply affectionate person and I’d be lost without affection being reciprocated.

I would always like more affection and more hugging. As long as it is sincere and not being done because it feels expected.

 

©tjhelser 2012

Six Word Saturday May 26, 2012

This week’s Six Wird Saturday is coming later (Sunday) than usual for me. Finding this weeks words was not hard, they have been with me all week. I appreciate the creativity in this challenge more this weekend for the different way I am able to express what has been a trying week. One which at times seemed to feel quite overwhelming these last few days. Not happening though. I will not be conquered by pure frustrationed. Sometimes a great motivator, other times a mountain in the way. 

Tomorrow will be different. 

 

Here are my six words:

Patience was not my virtue today~

Thanks for stopping by and having a look-see. I always feel much gratitude for your time.

©tjhelser 2012

My Blog Lady Barefoot Baroness (this blog here) can now be accessed through MY new domain URL  which I purchased so I would not lose it to someone else. The URL is www.barefootbaroness.org. If you should take yourself there from this link it will bring you back to this page. Or my entire blog Lady Barefoot Baroness. There is no way to leave a comment here because I am trying to post this as a status so that it will remain t the top of my  page.

For a small period of time this blog may also be reached like it had been in the past which is http://www.tonij.wordpresscom.

My other blog regarding my journey for appropriate medical care is still growing into a full-fledged blog and may be found at: www.FullCircledMe.

I do hope to get to know you from either blog. Or both would be kind of nice too. Thank you!