Thursday, March 1, 2018

March 1, 2018

Yesterday I had an appointment with my trauma surgeon.  He said my current x-rays showed improvement.  My bone has filled in now to about 90%!  That is great news.  He said that now it is unlikely that I will need a bone graft.

The trauma to my body from the bus colliding with me was so severe that my hip bones (top of my right femur) had been widely displaced.  The trauma also disrupted the blood supply to the area, plus, of course, damaged my muscles.  That is why it has been taking so long for me to recover.

Now I feel like I am on the final leg of the journey to my recovery.  Maybe when the year anniversary of the accident, May 22, 2018, comes around I'll be much closer to feeling as well as I did when I arrived in Portland.

I look forward to being able to explore the city.  I can walk with a cane but not that far.  I have to resort to using a walker if I need to go more than a block or so.  The doctor said that I will get stronger with time.

My grandkids think using a cane is so cool.  They always want to be the ones to use it.  Wish I enjoyed it like they do.

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

February 21, 2018: Snow?!!

This morning I woke up to a beautiful winter wonderland.  I turned on Good Morning America.  The outside audience was in shirt sleeves.  That's just backwards - Portland is supposed to be mild.

The local news reports that this weather is unusual.  It was in the 60's last week.

I've had to cancel my PT yesterday and today.  Since I'm hibernating in the house I've been working on organizing little stuff.  Why do I have all this jewelry?  I had already disposed of tons of it before my move.  Now I'm getting ready to send half of what's left to  At least I'll get a couple dollars for it.  What they don't accept, they donate.

Tomorrow I was scheduled to take a bus trip to Tilamook.  Tilamook is near the coast and there is a big creamery there.  It will most likely be canceled.  The bus is supposed to leave from a community center.  That center is closed until noon today.   It might snow again tonight.

I am almost ready to post pictures of my house.  Every time I work on one room the whole house gets messed up.  Last night I had to throw all my boxes of sorted jewelry into a bin so I could use my bed.

My son Andy calls me a hoarder.  I disagree.  How can I throw away a cup my son, Kevin made me for Christmas ten years ago?   Or the reindeer Andy made from clothespins in preschool?  All the gifts I've received I cherish.  Then, of course, there's the stuff I've collected.  I got rid of most of my once extensive cat collection.  But, I've kept the Catwoman and pink poodle things.  I couldn't give away the dolls I've made and collected.  They're in a clear bin in the garage.

I still hope to make displays with the miniatures I've amassed.  They, too, are in the garage.  I've kept my oil pastels and drawing pencils.  I'd like to take up drawing again someday.

I have gone from 6 large bookcases of fabric to 3.  The sewing group I joined brings in things to share and swap at their meetings.  I can't carry it all at once so I take a large bag of it every month.

I went into the local arts and crafts store with virtual blinders on.  I asked the salesman to take me directly to Modpodge and that is all I bought.  The same with the huge Fabric Depot - I bought only belting to make Sweetsie a new harness.

Growing old is tough.  It's not just the aches and pains, it's the letting go of so much of one's past.  I have my dad's World War II pin, my mom's years of service at Sibley's awards, the baby book my mom made for me.  It's hard to let go of these things.  I am trying to choose just a few select things and discarding the rest.  It's only fair to my sons to minimize my possessions.  I don't want them to have to deal with too much stuff after I die.

Keeping some of my memorabilia is a form of self love.  It's important.

Monday, February 19, 2018

February 19, 2018

Since I stopped pushing myself so hard, I'm feeling much better.  It also helps that the stuff I need inside the house is now out of the garage and even in their proper rooms.

My sewing room is now 98% completed!   My living room is 100% completed.

Yesterday I finished emptying out the closet in my "closet room."  Some things I boxed up  that I don't need now and put them into clear bins in the garage. 

I put excess stuff - suitcases, pillows, etc - from my bedroom closet into the closet's closet.  I put my filing cabinet and extra towels in there.  I still need to organize my jewelry.

I have hung all my pictures in the bedroom and living room.  I hung the excess (not as nice) pictures in the garage.  I enjoy parking in a decorated garage.  I need to have shelving built in the garage to store all the clear bins.

Now I have my closet room to straighten up.  I need to utilize the space better.

My kitchen needs a pantry.  I found one online at Lowe's.  I'd go look at it today but the roads have ice and snow all over them.  I got up too late to hear the weather forecast.  Maybe I can get there later this week. 
Right now I have excess kitchen stuff on a rolling cart in the middle of my small kitchen.  I have to push it aside to get into one of the cabinets.  A pantry could hold all that stuff.

If it stays icy outside tomorrow, I'll cancel my PT appointment.  The PT office is on the other side of town that stays icy longer. 

That will give me one more day stuck in the house so I might just get this house finished this month!

My son Kevin says he will work on my yard.  He enjoys yard work.  Plus then he can plant more vegetables over here.  I've got a larger yard.

My poor little Sweetsie is bored today.  I only have the dog walker come over twice a week.  It gets expensive.

It had started to get springlike before yesterday's snow.  But, at least it's not raining!

Thursday, February 1, 2018

February 1, 2018: Giving in

This week I have really slowed myself down.  I'm so wanting to get back to a normal life but I can't yet.  The pain was so bad for most of December and January.  It would feel like I had a charlie horse from my waist to my knee. 

One day a couple of weeks ago I used my walker to go to Walgreen's.  It's only 1/2 mile away.  I rested in the pharmacy after I picked up my prescription.  As I started to head back home,  my muscles seized up and I had to limp even with the walker.  I had to call Kevin to pick me up.  Luckily it was a Saturday so he wasn't at work.

I started paying closer attention to when the muscle cramps really got bad.  It was when I was trying to clean my house, bring in a box from the garage, walk or whenever I got tired.  So, now I'll be active for about half an hour then rest for one to two hours.  That has helped a lot - physically anyway.

It bugs me that my house is still disorganized and often messy.  That's just not my style.  Hopefully, this recuperation period will end soon so I can get back to near normal.

I'm almost done unpacking boxes.  I've been unpacking in the garage and bringing things in a little at a time.  I keep an empty box in my car so I can fill it up for charity as I unpack.

I've also started repacking some things into clear bins and labeling them.  I'm stacking them in the garage.  Maybe I'll have to donate them later but not just yet.

Painting my house interior pink has really paid off.  There are lots of dreary days in Portland.  But it's always cheerful inside!

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

January 23, 2018: Portland

Today was a good day.  Tomoko got her driver's license this morning!  I've been practicing with her for the past few weeks.  She made me proud -- she got an A on her first try.  Tomorrow we are going to the mall in Vancouver.  It will give her the opportunity to drive a little bit on a freeway.  We went to brunch at Elmer's to celebrate. 

Now I want to share on the goofiness of Portland:

It rains a lot here, right?  You would think people would park in their garages so they wouldn't have to walk to their cars in the rain.
NO.  The houses are so small that their garages have to hold lots of their possessions.
There was snow and ice on Christmas.  On 12/27 I had to drive to the southeast side of town.  A big piece of snowy ice hit my driver's side window on the freeway.  It blew off a car ahead of me.  That car had a roof full of snow and ice.  The driver cleared his windshield but didn't worry about what would happen to the snow on his roof.  If you're not going to park in your garage, then cover your car with a sheet or be sure to clear the snow before it flies off and hits another car at high rates of speed.  I'm not going to drive on the freeway another time after a freezing spell. 

There is a severe lack of parking in Portland.  Cars line both sides of narrow streets.  So many shopping and dining areas have no parking lots.  This impacts where I can go and what I can do in the city.  I have to check google satellite and look at the parking situation before I can decide if I can go somewhere.  This would not be such a major deal if a bus had not hit me and shattered the top of my right femur.

Portland hires drivers with reckless driving records to drive their buses.  One of these inept drivers ran a stop sign and hit me.  Now I can't use public transportation because I no longer can walk a few blocks to the nearest bus stop. 
The disabled parking places are few and far between.
Giant apartment complexes are built with no parking garages.  Portland wants people to walk, bicycle or take public transportation.  Somebody needs to inform the powers at the bus department of this.  You can't expect to have bad drivers injure pedestrians and then not have the city accessible to those disabled as a result.

Banks here do not typically have drive throughs.  I went into Chase Bank in my neighborhood and asked where the nearest drive through was so I could use that next time.  The teller told me of one on the other side of town.  The customer on the other side of me told me it was just a short walk into the bank.  (At least the bank has a small parking area.)  I told him it hurt me so much just to get out of my car.

Then there are so many people my age and older who are so proud of how many miles they can walk or run.  They talk about hiking and biking.  They do not realize that their physical ability is not because they eat right and/or take care of their bodies.  They are damned LUCKY! 

Guess you can tell I'm angry.  I am so tired of the pain and being handicapped.  It's eight months now since the bus hit me.  The last x-ray showed that my bone has not completely filled in the gaps between the rods holding the bits together.  My surgeon said he'll x-ray me again in 6 weeks.  If the x-ray doesn't look better, I'll have to get another cat scan.  Then maybe have a bone graft.

I can tell you from experience that anger is a good thing.  It keeps depression away.  I'm fighting to get my strength back.  I continue to go to physical therapy twice a week.  I bought my own NuStep machine.  It's a recumbent cross trainer that can only be found in rehab facilities.  So, I can't just go to a gym and be able to work out.  I can't ride an exercise bike or walk on a treadmill.  The NuStep is the only machine I can use.

Despite all this I keep busy.  I get to play with my grandchildren.  I go to book clubs and meetups that are held in accessible locations.  My sewing room is still not set up so I can't enjoy my hobbies yet.  I left this room last because it's the most complicated one to organize.  I'm still unpacking boxes for that room.  I do too many crafts.  Something will have to go - doll making? miniatures? garment sewing? knitting? drawing & painting? jewelry making? fabric flowers? costume making? locker hooking? flower arranging?  All these activities have tools and supplies that take up space.  I haven't decided yet what to give up.  I keep hoping that somehow I can fit it all into my one hobby room that also houses my NuStep machine.

I actually feel more relaxed getting all that vetching ๐Ÿ˜ ๐Ÿ˜ off my chest.  It's one of the perks of keeping a journal or blog.  I appreciate anyone who actually read this entire post.  ๐Ÿ™‹

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

January 2, 2018

Starting the new year right - I got the teeth on the right side of my mouth scaled and cleaned.  In 2 weeks it's the left side's turn.  The hygienist gave me novocaine so I can only have one side done at a time.  I had to find a dentist in Portland.  I went to one about a mile away that had good reviews.  Plus, it was in a cute little house and named Edelweiss Dental.

My last checkup in Houston was great.  Maybe stress caused some gum problems.  Or maybe the dentist just needed more business.  Whatever, I figured it would be a good thing to have done.  Plus my dental insurance ends this month.

This morning I went to another 60+ meetup for coffee.  I wish it started at 10 instead of 9 so traffic wouldn't be a problem.  At least traffic was light this morning.  It's a nice group but the activities seem to be mostly on the southeast side of town.  Maybe I can add an activity on the north side in a few months and see how it goes.

So far 2018 is going smoothly - except those yucky ants are making a comeback in my house. 

Thursday, December 28, 2017

December 28: Happy Birthday to me!

 How the hell did I get so damned old?  

It's definitely NOT from good luck.

  I'm not being negative,  just realistic.  

How lucky can I be?  I got hit by a bus this year!

2018 will be a lot better- my horoscope told me so!