Monday, August 12, 2019

8-12-2019 Monday-4pm

Well, I had planned to post after seeing the new GP, Dr. Lien, but I turned out I had to cancel and am rescheduled for Monday the 26th.  Embarrassing explanation to follow. 
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Warning: 
Ugly knuckle pictures.  
But it's better than pictures of my uglier toes--LOL!  
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Sorry.  
You guys are probably so sick of hearing about all of this, but I can guarantee you not as sick as I am of living with it--LOL!  The infamous knuckle and toe have been gradually getting worse over the last week or so.  The huge, painful knuckle is why I am not online as much as normal and comments are usually brief if I make any.  For quite a while it had been easier to hand write because of not having to hardly move the knuckle.
But over time since I quit the steroids it has slowly become more swollen...and the swelling was spreading.  
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Dagan came over on Wednesday to take out a heavy trash bag for me.  I had promised them because of my back, but my hand couldn't have handled it, either.
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Thursday Leah came over again for a Craft Nite--tada!  She had planned to work on Liam's invites for his birthday, but she hadn't gotten all the okays on the date yet.  So we started working on the other set of three-tree cards.  Leah started taping the fronts on (removing all the two-sided tape is a project)...
...and I used a tape runner (much easier) to put on the inside piece. 
Sadly, that is the one card I managed to finish.  My hand was too sore to even use the tape runner.  Leah took a picture of how much the swelling was spreading--other knuckles, was going up my finder next to the knuckle, and it even looks like my hand and wrist might have been swelling.
So, I reluctantly decided to start that last steroid refill I had on Friday.  Thinking I would be seeing the new GP today on Monday, right? 
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I am so tired of this knuckle business interfering with my life. 
The toe was getting worse, too.  The swelling was spreading into my foot and neighboring toes at the bases--but your toe isn't as much of a hindrance to daily life, you know.  You don't brush your teeth with your toes. 
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Anyways, I decided to try the last of the steroids to see if they would do anything.  
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Meanwhile, Annie has been very attentive and--dare I say--cuddlier.  I think she's worried about her food source--LOL!  ;)  That clump next to her is a flower from the catnip plant that went to seed that she bats around.
She's even been coming up to sit next to me on the arm of the chair while I was slowly writing letters.  Normally she didn't want to come up if my lap was occupied.   
Anyways, after a couple of days on the steroids I could hand write again with less pain because of less swelling coming up that finger, too. 
I know it's not that easy to tell but the rest of the hand swelling around the knuckle had gone down some...
...even if that darn knuckle remains a small, hard mountain. 
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The steroids effect my ability to sleep very long but make me really tired--so in no time I was napping around the clock.  I had to cancel Gramma Day on Saturday.
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On Sunday I did make soup.  Completely new combination for me.  Trying to stay closer to Keto but needing less broth-y and more my usual stew-y, filling soup.  I put in a few beans, all kinds of veggies, some of my Gardein fake hamburger (got to get the rest out of the freezer), and mushrooms.  Really delicious!  And so much more filling than broth with cabbage and carrots--LOL! 
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Leah got the date okayed and wanted to pop over on Sunday to finish up Liam's birthday invites.  She asked if Ian could come with since we didn't have a Gramma Day.  Sure!  (Neither of them mind if it's a house dress day.) 
I had purchased the ingredients for a meatloaf back when Caroline got groceries for me on the first.  Have been thinking about meatloaf ever since because it's been over a decade since I've had any and I used to love it--maybe even has been 15 years?  But my hand hurts to grip or squeeze--well, do anything really--and hasn't gotten well enough to be able to put it together.  Leah said she'd do that for me--whoohoo!  
So, I thawed out the meat and Leah mixed it all up for me and popped it in the oven before they left.  Was absolutely delicious, I have to admit.  :) 
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BUT--I totally blanked!  My own fault.  I know better.  The steroids make me quite hungry and extremely thirsty, but that's no excuse.  Because of the IBS with the fibro I usually am so careful about what I eat the day or two before I have to go anywhere and I usually don't eat after lunch the day before...plus the steroids have given me the very same issues, too...well, duh!!
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Let's just say that is why I had to reschedule Dr. Lien's appointment and why I am also writing the blog so late in the day--LOL!  I am finally finished with throne time.  Good grief!
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I do have enough BP pills, though.  I counted.  Feel so silly.
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Well, Dr. Ryan, the orthopedic doctor, wanted me to email him to let him know how I was doing in a month.  So probably tomorrow I shall do just that.  And let him know it's not gone, etc.  He may want to see me again or prescribe more steroids...who knows?  Anyways, I'll let him know.
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Besides all that health stuff...and despite the swelling flaring up worse in the knuckle and toe game over here...I have been in pretty good spirits and enjoying the cooler weather so much!  So has Annie.  I have the patio cracked or wide open as much as possible.  This doesn't feel like August weather.  But I love it!
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When I do get dressed I am often, like I said I would, wearing things I don't normally wear.  Long, flowing, crinkle dresses do surprisingly lift my spirits.  And for some reason Annie likes to lay on them between my legs on the chair.  Maybe they make her feel a little glamorous, too?  ROFL!
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Anyways, I am fairly confident that Dr. Ryan will probably either have me come in or call in a prescription for more steroids.  (I can send him the pictures--LOL!)  Meanwhile, Annie is parked between my legs but keeping her eyes peeled for any critter visitors.  I think she really misses me feeding them every day so that they were around here all day long.  Fall is coming soon enough.  ;)  I miss them, too.  I may start again earlier than I think.  I just hate to think I am feeding those voles.  But I haven't seen one for a while now.  They may be trapping them.  
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Okay--time to go.  Knuckle is not as happy as I am--LOL!  I'll rest my hand a while and then it's time for dinner.  I think I hear meatloaf calling me.  Have a great week!  :) :)
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"Just to be is a blessing.
Just to live is holy."
Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel

Monday, August 05, 2019

8-5-2019 Monday-11:45am

Good Morning!
Woke up so plugged up I have to breathe through my mouth.  But it's a beautiful morning now that the sun is peeking out.
 Had thunderstorms during the night and it was dark this morning for some time--she says sneezing and scaring Annie into the bedroom--LOL!
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This week Caroline came to clean on Tuesday.  Wednesday Leah dropped me off at the West Acres Clinic and went to drive around because Liam was sleeping in his car seat.  I went in only to discover that my online appointment that I made...well, it didn't exist.  I won't try making an appointment online again, that's for sure.  Had to make a new appointment for the 12th, then texted Leah to come back to pick me up, and she dropped me off at home again.  So, I don't meet the new GP till next Monday.  I have enough blood pressure pills to last me till then, so no problem.  But I felt badly wasting Leah's time.  :(  She said she didn't mind. 
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Thursday morning Caroline came with groceries.  In the evening Leah came over for a Craft Night!!  I asked her if she could make it over to work on Christmas cards last week because I needed some "normal" soooo badly--even if I couldn't do a lot.  
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We had an absolutely wonderful evening.  Worked on the white-three-tree cards.  I am so glad I bought all these trays we can use for drying stuff!  This was the stack in the studio after Leah left.
We were so close to being done.  I only managed to tape on the inside red sentiment with a little tape runner.  Leah did most of the work.  She punched out the snowflakes... 
...and glued the bauble in the center (can't remember what they're called but they look like a big water droplet) and then glued the snowflake on the inside.
We finished that set--TADA!!!  Feels fantastic!
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Yesterday I moved them out onto the kitchen table... 
...to fold and stack them. 
This is the satchel we keep Christmas cards in.  (I have another one for sets of birthday cards.) 
This set took up half the satchel because of the bling on the snowflake--LOL!  But this the the card we plan to use this year for Christmas, so they'll be out of there in no time.  ;) 
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Saturday was a Gramma Day.  Ian and I worked on another of the craft project boxes Tori sent Ian from England.  The parts had glue on them that wasn't dry yet so we stored them in a shoebox on his bookcase until next Gramma Day when he can finish putting them together.  Hard to tell but this box was about baking and this is a doughnut and a pizza--LOL!
Strangely the doughnut has two icings--pink and brown.  Maybe there was supposed to be two doughnuts?  We decided we'll put icing on both sides of the doughnut--LOL!  Ian doesn't care.  The process is what is the fun part.
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Then yesterday I did a load of laundry...and got it put away in sections throughout the day.  Hand was pretty sore.  Yes, hand and foot still the same--along with everything else with this old, cranky body.  Except waking up clogged up and sneezing--that's new--LOL!  But no big deal.
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They're mowing for those apartments across the way that I see out my window.  They zip by on their riding lawn mowers.  The grass has to still be quite damp from the thunderstorm and it's 68% humidity.  So even if it is only supposed to get up into the low 80s it is going to be thick and sticky out there today.  
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Leah is planning to try to come again for a Craft Night on Thursday again this week!  :)  Pretty soon she'll need to make invitations for Liam's birthday party which will be coming up early September  too.  Feels sooooo good to be working on something creative again!!  I needed some normal.  I really did.  Even if things aren't normal...yet--LOL!   ;)
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Have a thoughtful week, my friends.  Let the people you love and care about know what they truly mean to you.  Spread the love and positives.  The whole world needs it.  We can start in our own back yards...lavishly spreading.  :) :)
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"The universe buries strange jewels deep within us all, and then stands back to see if we can find them."
Elizabeth Gilbert

Monday, July 29, 2019

7-29-2019 Monday-11:15am

Good morning!
Unbelievable.  I didn't even realize I had not taken one picture all week.  No photos today.
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Monday I took two large containers down from the top shelf in the bathroom to go through for donations...and put my back out, apparently.  My own fault.  No more lifting stuff like that for me anymore.  (I promised Dagan and Leah.)  I was so happy to have gotten things done last week I guess I pushed it a little too far.
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Tuesday I could't move without shooting pain on my left side.  (I'm not sure if it is actually my back or a pulled muscle, but it's in the same place back below my left shoulder blade kind of.)  Dagan was coming after work to haul all the winter clothing and donations to the garage for me.  I felt so stupid for having done this to myself that I hadn't told either Dagan or Leah.  Dagan was so sweet.  He watered my planters on the patio, scooped Annie's litter box, got my mail, took my trash out, emptied my dishwasher and even asked if I wanted him to make me something for dinner (no, I had eaten a very late lunch).
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Wednesday I woke up and my other knee (right one) was all weird!  Felt like a pulled muscle in the back and it was swollen.  I just had finished that third round of steroids on Monday.  Well, shall we say that knocked the optimistic wind out of me?  I woke up with a stiff neck, was exhausted and ached all over.  (Steroid withdrawal?)  Took a three hour nap.  Watched Netflix DVDs that came.  End of season three of Outlander and started season six of Ray Donovan.  Did not even want to think about the other leg swelling up--but how could it not cross my mind.  So--escaped into DVDs.
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I knew Leah was coming over on Thursday.  I had hoped the knee thing would disappear so I hadn't said anything...but it hadn't.  I told her and showed her how my knee was puffed up and hurt.  Felt like crying, to be honest.  I am sooooo worn down from these last couple months...it felt like that camel's straw.  Leah had brought with her the last steroid refill she picked up.  I didn't want to start it unless my knee got worse.  If it did--I would--and we'd have to go to the orthopedic walk-in clinic again on Monday (today).  My back was a little better (heating pad) and the stiff neck was, too.  Toe and knuckle the same.  Just waiting to see what happened.
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Friday.  Knee was about the same so I didn't start the steroids.  Leah had forgotten something the day before and was sending Dagan over after work with some deli turkey she had picked up for me.  He stayed for a while for a nice visit.  Dagan wondered about Gramma Day on Saturday.  I said if my knee and everything was about the same in the morning I'd let them know and Ian and I could have a movie day.
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Saturday.  My knee actually felt better than it had been--whoohoo!  So, Ian and I had a Gramma Day for the first time in two months!  I had never seen the Lego movies so we watched both of them.  (Gramma wasn't all that impressed, but Ian loves them.)  Of course, we had to watch a little PJMasks before he had to go, too.  And--yup--no pictures.
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Sunday was just zombie woman recovery day.  Annie has spent a lot of time in the chair with me this last week.  Maybe she knew I was not feeling my usual self.
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Well, today--knee still okay.  Knuckle worse the last couple days but toe about the same.  I am beginning to think they will never go back to the way they were.  They stay within the same range though, at least.  Haven't gotten noticeably worse.  Back is still acting up.  Worse some days than others.  (Thanks to whoever invented the heating pad.)  Am generally low on spoons, but able to get done what I have to and glad I have been more independent again.  Life goes on.
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Tomorrow Caroline comes to clean.  Wednesday I go meet my new GP for blood pressure check and filling that prescription.  I'll fill her in on the last couple months and show her my toe and knuckle--LOL!  Won't she be glad to have me as a new patient complete with a mystery illness--LOL!  She may refer me to some other specialist or back to the orthopedic doctors...who knows?  At least my knee seems to have settled down.  Maybe I pulled a muscle from all the crooked walking from the toe--LOL!  And I finally had a Gramma Day!!  :)  
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Meanwhile--end of the month stuff.  Banking, make out my grocery list for Caroline, get my bullet journal ready for August, etc.  August!!  Do you believe it?  I don't even believe a post from me without pictures--LOL!  ;)  I wonder if anyone will read this? 
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That's it from here.  
Thanks so much for listening.  
I hope you all have a really good week.  :) :)
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"The beginning is always today."
Mary Wollstonecraft

Monday, July 22, 2019

7-21-2019 Monday-10am

Okay--this is a terrible, short video where all you can hear is my fan and it's hard to see through the screen--but I wanted to try to share what I saw this morning!!
BABY PARTRIDGES!!  
I face east and it was early morning so the only way I could take pictures or a video was to get off to the side of the patio door and hope I could catch them as they were crossing the lawn pretty quickly. 
Picture was hard to tell what they were, so I quick grabbed that short video.  Not much better--LOL!  But I was so excited to get any kind of proof!  In all these years that I have been feeding them all winter I have never seen them bring their young up here to the apartment complex!  Whoohoo!!  :)
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The baby cottontail has also been around.  I think it has swiped some geranium leaves--LOL!  Mostly just nibbles on the grass.
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So, how did the week go?
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Okay.  :)
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Caroline came to clean on Tuesday and took the walker back with her.  (Hurray!)  Dagan dropped off my next round of steroids--which I finished this morning.
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On Wednesday Gramma Day was cancelled because of sudden IBS issues.  Things have still been a bit "off" since.  Not sure if it is the steroids or the new diet catching up with me--LOL!  But--truth--as long as I was afraid to sit in my recliner (electric one takes longer to get out of) for a couple of hours...I decided to check something off my list and wiped down, refilled, and re-labeled my coffee bean jars.
 Yes, I do love my coffee! 
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 Leah picks me up all kinds of different coffee beans from Costco for much cheaper than I can get them at the grocery store.
 Yes--below my coffee stash is the stockpile of Annie's canned foods.
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Leah stopped by Wednesday night with some groceries so I was set up for their next four day trip.  (This time to Minneapolis for some kind of an e-sales convention Dagan won tickets to.)  Leah even brought me some low carb snacks!
They're salty so I am only eating very few.
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Then Thursday through Sunday while they were gone I worked on my seasonal clothing switch and some purging.  I didn't get to do a really decent Marie Kondo like I had planned, but I did what I could with my 15 minutes at a time in between episodes of Outlander.  I finished yesterday--tada!  Yes, the summer's half over--LOL!  But then I wasn't wearing anything but my house dresses for almost two months.  (Still have house dress days.) 
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Anything that was questionable I kept.  I decided that if I haven't worn it by the time I switch clothing again in the fall--off to the donation bags.  That has forced me to wear different clothes than the usual lazy favorites I wear all the time...and made me try to get dressed most days this last week--LOL!
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When I moved here I thought I would be going to community events regularly so I purchased some new clothes--tops, blouses, skirts, and even casual dresses.  As you know, it ended up I haven't been going to much.  So I was still wearing t-shirts or turtlenecks every day and the new stuff has hung in the closet except for when I went to appointments, did make it down to something here, or sometimes when I went to visit McFamily--LOL!  So now I am wearing shirts and dresses...just for me.  And it does make you feel a little differently.  In a good way.  :)
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I'll do the same thing when I switch over next spring too.  If I haven't worn it--in the donation bag it goes.  Can't just wear turtlenecks all winter.  ;)
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How have I been as far as the flare or whatever?  Well, I have gone through three rounds of steroids and it is not gone.  It will be better...I think these were last Tuesday or Wednesday...and I got all excited!
I could make a fist again for the first time in six weeks without too much pain!! 
Be looking better--less red and swollen. 
But then the next day it is worse.
Then have a better day even after having used hand and foot all day the day before??  And then a worse day when I took it easy the day before?  No logic to it, really.
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This is what it looks like this morning.
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There is one more steroid refill.  Leah is going to fill it for me, but I am going to hold off on starting it.  Since I have had three rounds of steroids, have such dry mouth my teeth stick to my lips, and I haven't noticed any huge changes that are actually sticking...kind of bouncing around the same up and down range but not going away...I plan to just leave things be and see what happens.  I can always take the last refill round if I start to see I am getting worse again and not just in this same range of swelling and redness and pain level (toe, too).  And I see the new GP at the end of the month.
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So, I am about the same as I was last week.  Still running reverse temp.  Still have the same toe and knuckle issues this all started with over six weeks ago.  I am still more limited with what I can do with my hands and how long I can be up and about--but I am mobile and semi-functional.  Still tired (slept almost 10 hours last night).  Still less spoons.  But I already know about baby steps and prioritizing, so I am absolutely thrilled that I got those two projects crossed off my list this last week...and half the time I can type and write with less pain.  That's tolerable to me.  :)
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I've been much happier the past couple weeks since I can do a lot more for myself again.  Now I am just hoping and praying that this eventually finishes going away on its own.  Fingers crossed, eh?
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I heard the heat wave is breaking up today for a huge part of the US.  It's been cooler up here since yesterday!  I've been able to keep the place opened up for most of the day.  Annie and I have both been loving it!  I hope it cools off for all of you who have been roasting for days.
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May you have an enchanting week ahead.  :) :)
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"If your view is basic goodness, 
you see it wherever you go."
Pema Chodron

Monday, July 15, 2019

7-15-2019 Monday-2:15pm

I am obviously not moving fast today.  Can't believe how tired I am--still.  Already afternoon--but here I am...and getting better!  :)
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Tuesday night Leah was over.  She kind of got me set up for them being gone Thursday through Sunday and she needed to repair a skirt she wanted to wear over the weekend.  She didn't get here till 10:30pm and left at about 2am!  So we were both tired for the Dr. Ryan visit on Wednesday--LOL!
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Dr. Ryan.
The good news is that the steroids are working.  Not exactly sure what caused this but he thought it was some kind of rheumatoidal or arthritic flare...but didn't think I have rheumatoid arthritis.  Said "rheumatoid" covers a broad area.  Or could be a virus...or something related to auto-immunity.  He threw out a few ideas.  So no concrete diagnosis...but he was impressed by how much my leg and knee and ankle had gone down.  Dr. Ryan was just the same as other doctors in the total lack of interest in hearing about a reverse temp or below normal temp (which I am still running).  Said he'd never heard of the extreme sweating I had, either.  Was just glad the steroids were working.  
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Got another round of steroids with a refill.  He said some people have been on steroids for up to a year with no ill effects and off we went.  Wants me to email him through the system in a month to let him know how I am doing but he fully expects the steroids to eventually get rid of the foot/toe and hand/knuckle swelling, redness, and pain.  Hasn't so far, but they are a little better, I think.  I definitely need the refill.
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Regardless, I might find out more when I eventually go to the new rheumatologist in October.  I am just glad I can walk better--only limping a little compared to before (unless I walk farther, like to the mailboxes)--and can stand for longer, too, and my toe doesn't get as purple.  I've been able to tend to Annie every morning and do my journaling (even if in my chair to keep my foot up and not at the table like normal).  I'm impatient for my hand/knuckle to get better.  You use your hands all day long, you know!  Maybe the next round of steroids will do the trick.  (Tomorrow is the last day of pills again on the second round and I am far from rid of this.)
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Anyways, I came home and looked up arthritis flares.  Said can last for weeks, run a low grade fever, malaise, fatigue, stiffness, joint swelling, acute pain, and often sudden onset.  Didn't mention an entire leg swelling up from thigh to toes, but I fit all the rest, I guess.  Steroids give me that light at the end of the tunnel--hurray!
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Dagan stopped by after work Wednesday and emptied the Litter Genie and brought out my trash.  Leah dropped off some taco meat in the evening.  I was totally set up well for while they were gone.  They have been just wonderful!!
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Thursday they finally mowed our lawn here.  It has rained so often that our grass was really long.  I went out and swept the patio of most of the grass clippings and got the birds fresh water. 
The flowers are looking good... 
...considering they've been soaked and soaked and blasted by high winds. 
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I try to pick a task or two every day.  Friday was do a load of clothes and water the inside plants.  Saturday was check mail and unload the dishwasher.  Sunday was make soup.
But a lot of the time this is my view--LOL! 
Annie loves it.  She learned to jump over my leg and not step on me.  Annie always comes up by jumping on the arm of the chair first.  Who knows why.  She could just jump right up on to the footrest.  Cats.  LOL!
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Oh, and note--I couldn't even get these soft, pliable slippers on my foot before because (1) my ankle and foot were half again as big and (2) I couldn't bend my knee, anyways--LOL!  The little things in life--ahhh!  So nice.
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Anyways, this was the view this morning.  It's 91 degrees right now says it feels hotter.  Bless the soul who invented air conditioning!!
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So...I am well on the way to getting rid of this, I think.  The arthritic flare or virus or whatever it is.  Still exhausted.  Still running reverse temp.  But am on more normal hours with fewer naps, so that's good.  Normalcy is returning, folks--whoohoo!!  I am even hoping for a nice, quiet, movie-watching Gramma Day this week.  We'll see.  Been a month and a half!!  July is half over already.  Goodness!
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Nice to have some positive news to share, anyways.  Thanks so very much for all the comments, emails, well-wishes, cards, letters, prayers, and good thoughts.  I needed every bit of them...still do.  ;)  May you have a productive, peaceful week.  :) :)
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"Sometimes I go about pitying myself, and all the time I am being carried on great winds across the sky."
Chippewa, translated by Robert Bly

Monday, July 08, 2019

7-8-2019 Monday-8:15am

Back again.
I'm still about where I was before I went in the first time.  Haven't gotten much worse, I guess.  As soon as I am up and about the toe swells and hurts worse.  Using my hand causes the knuckle to swell and hurt worse.  But I can get around and nuke my own food.  Just waiting for Wednesday when I go back to see Dr. Ryan.
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I  said I wasn't running a temp, but that's not entirely true.  I haven't been running a high temp.  Both Dagan and I will sometimes run below normal temps when we are sick.  Doctors don't seem to care about low temps, but I have been running between 97 and 98 degrees consistently and am hot and cold and get sweaty when I get up and move about so I am going to be sure and talk to him about that.  It's still a temp...just a reverse temp...because normally I run 98.6.
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Leah was over Monday night and we worked on my grocery list for Caroline.  Leah's got me on this low-carb keto diet for now.  I figure it can't hurt--another way to fight the inflammation.  She's been cooking for me so that all I have to do is nuke food in the microwave or throw together a salad or sandwich.  I can stand long enough to do that now so they don't have to be over here every day.  :)
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Tuesday I was finished with my medications.  I finally began sleeping longer than 3 hours at a time--whoohoo!  Been sleeping mostly at night and longer hours again.  More normal.  I even started to get back to my morning routine with Annie's needs (she's thrilled) and then doing my morning journaling (even if I have to do it in my chair and very briefly).  One tiny piece of normal lifts the spirits.  :)
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If it is cool in the morning I crack open the patio door for Annie.  She won't leave it until I close it later to turn on the AC--even if she falls asleep there waiting to see voles and baby cottontail rabbits and birds.
Wednesday I had more swelling in the toe and my knuckle.  Seems to have remained about the same since then--maybe slightly worse.  This is how my left hand looks--basically flat knuckles when hand is flat. 
This is what that knuckle looks like when my right hand is flat. 
This is today.  
Yup--might be a little worse.  (And I realize my hands are looking older than they used to--LOL!  That's what happens when you are creeping up on 70.)
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Anyways, I am so glad that while it was doing better I caught up on letters--short as they were.  :)  It is harder for me to hand write for very long now and to even type.
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Back to Wednesday...
Caroline brought my groceries.  I saw two partridges (almost said grouse) at dusk come to drink water.  Haven't   seen any since spring!  Leah came over in the evening.  :)
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Thursday I had a quiet 4th of July.
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Friday Dagan asked if he and Ian could come over for a little visit.  Since I haven't had a Gramma Day for a month--of course!  Well, surprise!!  Dagan brought me a new smart TV to trade for my old one!  Same size.  Lighter.  Two feet instead of a single base.  Has some kind of special HD that makes things look ultra-real.
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That's  a picture of Liam smiling on their old couch.  Leah has family pictures on rotation for a screen saver.  :)
Anyways, it already had all these links to Netflix, Prime, etc.  Cool! 
Dagan set me up with the things I have so I don't have to go through my laptop anymore.  I am slowly learning how to navigate this new smarter-than-me TV--LOL!
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This month my Amazon orders were mostly for Annie.  Saturday I had a package of cat foods coming.  When Alexa told me my package had arrived...Dagan came over to bring it in for me.  He even opened up the canned food boxes and stacked the cans in the pantry for me.
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On Sunday it was a 40# bag of kitty litter that Dagan came over to dump in the bin for me.  He took out trash and filled the birds water dish outside.  Nice to have visits with Dagan, too.  :)
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And that brings us to today...which should be another quiet day watching shows.  Thank goodness for all the choices I have when I can't do much else right now.  Can't even hold a Kindle to read, let alone a book.  Can't write very long...
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I hope I will find out more on Wednesday from Dr. Ryan.  At least he's on the trail.  :)
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Have a really good week.  
Hug those loved ones. 
Till next time...  :) :)
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Found this quote.  Funny--I've always told people I am a realistic optimist--LOL!
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"The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails."
William A. Ward

Monday, July 01, 2019

7-1-2019 Monday-1:30pm

Well, the saga continues and has turned into a medical mystery.  I will write a little at a time and eventually post today to fill you in.  :)
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Leah came over Monday night.  She wasn't happy I hadn't let them know how bad I had gotten--unable to even make myself coffee or toast.  Just getting to the bathroom and back was about it for me for days. I had good intentions about calling Leah--managed to take a shower but afterwards was too exhausted and hurtin' to even think about going anywhere.   Could barely walk even with the walker.  Just plain too miserable to care, to be honest.  You can get that way sometimes when the pain is all-encompassing. 
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Anyways, Leah had read that carbs were bad for inflammation and so she took over cooking for me.  I have read that about carbs, too, so was just grateful to let her and Dagan take over.  I hadn't even been able to scoop Annie's cat box for days.  They took care of everything all week.  What a relief!  
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Why do we hate to ask for help?  
At least I do.
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But I cannot even express my gratitude.
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On Tuesday Dagan took off early from work so that Leah could take his car (and no kids) to bring me to the walk-in clinic again that afternoon.  I slowly hobble-hopped with the walker to the challenge of actually getting into the car when I couldn't bend my knee and every movement was painful.  Success!  Whew!  I never would have made it into Leah's new SUV!
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That doctor put me on a strong antibiotic (also got infection in a couple of fingers during this time, too?), they took a lot of blood in the lab, and sent me over to the hospital for an ultrasound on my leg to make sure I didn't have a blood clot.  If I had a blood clot--into the hospital with me.
No blood clot.  (Have something called a Baker's Cyst behind my knee but that is of no concern, apparently.)  He didn't know if it was gout or infected joints.  Referred me to the osteopathic doctor the next day and I got to go home and collapse.  But told me that if the osteo dr found infected joints I'd be put into the hospital. 
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It's kind of a blur--so much pain, so exhausted.  Leah made me food, brought me water, checked on Annie's needs...and then on Wednesday...we kind of did the whole thing all over again.
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Leah came to get me in Dagan's car and we went to the osteopathic walk-in clinic at the hospital.  Dr. Ryan didn't think it was gout or infected joints...wasn't sure what this odd combination was, but seems determined to try to figure it out.  First of all he drained fluid from my knee in the office.  Leah knows I can't lie flat on my back so she jumped up on the table so I could lean back on her side.  (Makes me mist up just telling you that.)  He was fine with that.
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He said that he would be able to tell by the look of the fluid if it was infected.  If not, he could give me a steroid shot in the knee.  Looked good--so I got the shot.  And having a good cup of fluid drained off my knee--well, I could partially bend my knee!  And the pain level dropped some right away.  Whew!
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But--still don't know what it is.  
No diagnosis.
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Dr. Ryan sent me to the lab there to get a lot more blood drawn for another series of tests (sent some to Mayo Clinic).  He is on vacation this week.  I go back to see him on July 10th.  He hopes all the test results will be back by then.  (Also referred me to the new rheumatologist already because of some questionable test results, I believe--appt Oct 2nd--yes hard to get in.)  He put me on steroids for six days and I got to go home again.  Whew!
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For a couple of weeks now I have been cat napping around the clock.  The next two times I slept I woke up drenched in sweat!  Never had anything like that--not even with menopause--LOL!  Was like the fluids were trying to escape from the steroids or something--ROFL!  I was clammy all the time.  Still clammy off and on and sweaty when I sleep but gradually have transitioned to just waking up feeling kind of damp behind your neck, instead of dripping wet--LOL!  But I haven't been running a fever.  ??
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The swelling has been going down.  I am right now getting close to being back to about as bad as I was when I went in to the walk-in clinic the very first time.
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Anyways, Thursday Dagan came over to cook for me, empty the Litter Genie, take out the trash, and keep me company for a while.  I could hobble about without the walker again, but can't be up for long.  Thrilled to see improvements!!
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Friday morning they had ANOTHER apartment inspection.  They were just here the Wednesday before!  This time it was for the City of Fargo, they said.  Again--had to let themselves in with the pass key and lock up when they left and I was here in my chair.  I had asked her on the phone when I got the notice why they had to come again when I am so sick and it was just 4-5 random apartments?  Different inspection--won't take but five minutes, she says.  (Makes me wonder if the investment owners are thinking of selling the complex?)  Anyways, they seemed sheepish and weren't here five minutes.  Geez!
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Friday I was able to nuke food Dagan and Leah had made for me and was okay on my own.  Kind of back to semi-functional.  :)
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Saturday McFamily planned to come over for a quick visit so that Ian could open his birthday presents from me.  A crazy storm blew through early in the afternoon.

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After Liam had a nap they popped over.
Gramma was in her chair, but got a few hugs from Ian before they left.
They took pictures and videos for me--tada!
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Ian got a big book about feelings.

Then he was stunned into silence by the set of PJMasks figurines--LOL!
Liam was pretty interested in what was going on, too, of course.
Couple videos:

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It was a quick visit, but a happy one.  :)
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Leah is coming by tonight.  
I am ready for another nap.
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Really hoping they can track down what this mysterious illness plaguing me actually is and that they can do something about it.  I have medication today and tomorrow and then am crossing my fingers I will still continue to improve.  Dr. Ryan is testing for things they did years ago when I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia--so he seems to be looking under all the stones--LOL!  I'll try to post next week.  Thanks for all the well wishes and good thoughts.  :) :)
Zzzzzz......
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"Set wide the window.
Let me drink the day."
Edith Wharton