Chronic Pain

A 51 year old female living and dealing with lumbar back pain and fibromyalgia. Sharing things I do for relief, reduce stress and control weight gain.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

It's a long one!

On Friday I went for my first appointment with the Occupational Therapist.  You know how it is on the first visit.  Just like PT, completing forms and a lot of history taking.  She measured everything from my elbow down all the way to my fingertips.  It was amazing the things she pointed out to me.  A few minutes into her exam she said to me, "your hurting aren't you?"  Yes, I answered, but it's my back.  I had sat in waiting area for 15 minutes and been in her chair for 15 minutes. I asked her how long did she think we'd be today.  About another hour she told me. 

She offered me heat and I declined.  The therapist next to her told her she should sign me up for PT on my back also while I'm there.  I told her I'd already been through that numerous times and continued at home to this day.  She asked me who I saw and was surprised I remembered her name.  As we proceeded she pointed out to me that my left elbow was swollen and fingers on left hand swollen.  I mentioned I had told my rheumatologist that it was obvious the left side was worse.  She put me in a BANDIT.  A brace worn on the forearm commonly used for lateral epicondylitis, carpal tunnel and other types of forearm and wrist pain.  She also recommended and gave me some gloves for when I'm sleeping to help with the swelling. She had me put one on to try for size and it was insane how it felt so soothing just to have a "glove" on my hand.

Whats weird is I'd been complaining to my husband that I couldn't wear my wedding ring for some time now. This is something he definitely notices.   After I'd been dieting these past weeks and dropped some pounds I still couldn't put it on.  If I did get it on I couldn't get it off without soap.  Now I know why.  


During this exam they have you make various hand gestures and movements with your fingers.  You also have to squeeze and press on different instruments with your fingers/hands.  As we moved to the right arm she noticed that a certain placement with my thumb caused pain shooting from wrist to thumb area.  It's crazy the things they look at.  After this discovery she had me flip my palms over and flatten my hand.  The left side was flat across the thumb to other side of hand.  The right side was strangely uneven.  It was like an incline, not flat like the other side.  I'm assuming this had something to do with why the pain was created with the movement she had me make?  

When we're done I think I'm getting out of there and she tells me she is next going to make me a splint for my right hand. It will prevent my thumb and wrist from moving so that over time....a short time I hope, it will get better with rest.  I was cool with that.  I'm a compliant patient.  It took about 20 minutes for her to cut out this form, heat it and mold it around my wrist.  We get it on for good after trimming and smoothing ruff edges and I immediately begin to think this might be difficult being it's my right hand.  Then she drops the bombshell that I should refrain from texting.  If you use your thumb you won't be able to anyhow. 
Ha, Ha, I told her.  Most of the people I commonly text with on daily basis do not want to be on the phone.  Guess I'll be leaving some voice mails.  

Exactly at hour and a half mark we were done.  I walked out with apparatus on each side.  I asked how long I could expect my two visits next week to last and she told me an hour now that all the other stuff was out of the way.  We'll be starting the therapy next visit. 

Right arm
Left arm

My husband and I had plans to take my grandson to members night at the zoo.  I thought to myself as the day progressed, and I saw how challenging it was really going to have this brace on my hand, was I sure we could still go?  I just felt so dysfunctional.  I knew D would be able to do anything I couldn't and I was really looking forward to taking P to this event.  

We headed out at 4:15 to make our way to the zoo and instantly was shut down with a back up on the interstate.  An update from D's app told us there was a lane closure ahead and an accident on the Mississippi river bridge.  Holy cow, what luck.  We crawled for 30 minutes to get to a loup that puts you on another interstate and then we took Airline Hwy to I-110.  It was 6pm when we made it there.  An hour and a half.  It's typically a 40 minute drive from my house.  

All was well though.  We made it.  P had a great time.  He wanted to get his face painted and was willing to wait in a seriously long line.  Never complained once.  I guess he really wanted this.  His mom told me via text that he'd never had this done and we may be waiting for nothing.  Oh well, it's what he wants to do and thats what this trip was all about. How are you texting she wanted to know?  With my left thumb...slowly. 

His first face paint

After that we went to see some other activities they were having and then we came across the bubble activity.  It was a huge circle around you attached to a rope.  As you pulled the rope the circle came up and made a bubble ring around you.  It was pretty cool and P definitely wanted to try.  So, we get in another long line that he had no problem with.  It was around 7:15 and the sun was just starting to go down.  I took a picture of a young girl doing it so I could show mom what we were waiting for.  I was confidant that by the time we made it up there it would be dark.  It was as you could see by the difference in the pictures.  The mosquitos ate up my ankles and neck.  Even D was bothered with them.  He rarely gets bitten even when I end up covered with bites. I definitely wore the wrong shoes to walk around in especially when getting warm and sweating.  Just because some shoes are comfortable for some things, they are not for others.  I ended up with huge blisters on both pinky toes.  We stopped to eat on the way home then met my daughter to return P.  

Too proud!

Go Go Go everyone cheered!

I think it was around 9:30 when we made it home and I couldn't wait to take the brace off of my hand.  First I took off the BANTIT.  Other than leaving an imprint, it was fine.  I realized that it definitely was working.  There were things I did that normally cause it to really hurt and it was so mild vs moderately painful.  The brace was another story.  As I removed it I had deep imprints on the top of my hand near my knuckles.  I knew something wasn't right earlier and I should have taken it off then.  The OT said if it bothers you somewhere, take it off and we'll adjust it Tuesday.  With us being busy and I kind of brushed it off thinking it was hurting because of the correction.  I can tell you I had no pain in that area AT ALL before she put that brace on me and at that moment when I took it off and stopped to rest my hand/wrist was throbbing!  Almost to the point of tears a few minutes later.

I took some advil and propped it up on a pillow with ice.  I took pictures to show her on Tuesday and decided at that moment that I was not putting that contraption on again until I saw her on Tuesday. I'm sure it just needs to be trimmed but I can tell you I have a bad taste in my mouth for it now!  

Saturday I woke up with no pain at all in that hand/wrist. The brace today is right where I left it Friday night.  It was cutting me in between my thumb and pointer, the top of palm and on my wrist on bottom side.  My husband and I both said, "we're not doing anything today...let's take it easy."  Let's face it, that never really happens.  The morning I just did laundry but later I got into the pool and swam laps.  It had been two days off from exercise and I just had to do it.  Before that swim only my back was bothering me.  My hand had felt better when I woke up and I wore the BANDIT at all possible times.  

After swimming I decided to set up the vacuum to clean the pool.  It had been awhile.  It really wasn't too dirty but it seemed like a good time to do it.  There is a lot of hoses to be joined together involved in set up.  A twisting motion.  I told my husband after that it's crazy how you don't realize the muscles you use until they are painful to use.  Every hose I attached I cringed as I twisted it on.  As soon as I was done I put the BANDIT back on.  The plants still had to be watered.  

This is a 30 minute project front and back.  By the time I unwound and put back the hose front and back I was in tears.  When I came inside I told my husband I was going to lay down.  I literally cried my elbow hurt so bad.  What was it?  The lap swimming?  The twisting motion with the vacuum hoses. Watering the plants.  Heck, I guess maybe a combination off all things.  I don't know, but I went into depressed mode and shut down.  I put an ice pack on my elbow and alternated with heat ice heat ice for about two hours until I could stand the pain without it.  I had a HUGE pity party.  Why me?  Isn't my back enough.  Why?  Why?  Why?

Unfortunately we don't get these answers when we want them.  I tried to think of thing of things that could be worse and I came up with a lot.  When you deal with chronic pain everyday it becomes really easy to slip into depression and feeling like it's only you and why you?

The last two nights have been worst since revision surgery in May.  Friday night my hand and wrist throbbing and last night the elbow pain was unbearable.  I never left the bed after I came in from watering at 6:30.  Today has been better.  My hand has some relief but I'm dreading Tuesday to be put back into the brace after an adjustment.  It really brings some limitations. I question only because I didn't go there with pain in that area. 

I've had my BANDIT on the left side all day.  It's tender and sore but I've also REALLY taken it easy today.  Hint hint this long post. Typing is something you do that causes irritation to both problems so you'd think I'd keep it short.  I didn't type this all at one sitting.  It's been through out the day.  

My husband deals with shoulder pain on and off year after year.  He goes to PT it gets better then it comes back.  He's been swimming a good bit following seeing me swim laps.  Yesterday and this morning he volunteered at church helping prepare for a fundraiser at all masses today.  Yesterday was a lot of prep work and today he said he did a repetitive motion a lot.  I arrived home from Sam's to see him holding his shoulder (as near tears as a man can get) complaining about how bad he was hurting.  My husband rarely complains.  How can he?  I don't give him a chance.  Multiple times today I've heard some moaning and groaning while holding his shoulder.  I told him that people say they know how you feel but really they don't.  I really know how you feel babe.  Can you imagine at this moment if that pain doesn't go away with rest?  That's my life EVERYDAY!  I made sure he didn't think I did't have any sympathy for him.  It was just pointing out that I DO understand how you feel because I know, I feel it everyday.  Be grateful you always end up with relief at some point.  Something I'd give anything for.  I'm sure he'd give anything for me to have also.  Then I'd be like the person he married 9 years ago.

Maybe this caused it? He says "No"

The good news is two weeks from yesterday we're heading to the beach.  Surely when I leave my home I will take it easy and relax.  I can't believe September has just flown by us.  Tomorrow, Monday the beginning of a new week.  Let's just be joyful we're here and see what it brings us.  I know it's hard to believe here from what I write but there are many things I am thankful for.  

Have a blessed week.  Never giving up H.O.P.E. (hold on pain ends) Theresa

how the bubble ring looked with daylight


Watch your thoughts; they become words
Watch your words; they become actions
Watch your actions; they become habits
Watch your habits; they become character
Watch your character; it becomes your destiny

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

I won't quit

I won't quit exercising even though it is pure torture for me most times.
I won't quit believing I'm going to feel better someday.
I won't quit trying to get rid of these last few pounds that just won't go away.
I won't ignore what my doctors ask me to do even thought I don't want to do it. 

My day started feeling pain in every area of my body when I got out of bed this morning.  It was raining and the humidity was high.  I try to make any appointments I have later morning because until my pain medicine kicks in you just don't want to be around me.  I was awake much earlier than I needed to be.  Darn, why can't I sleep until the alarm goes off?  I stopped fighting it and slowly moved into the kitchen for that first cup of water and went to draw my deep hot bath that helps me get moving.  I was dressed and ready at 8 am and my appointment wasn't until 11.  I have this dilemma often that i try and hold out on taking my pain medicine so it will last until I can do what I need to do.  Especially when I will be out and it will be a long day with multiple stops.  

I watched some of the news and checked  email.  Paid a couple of bills, had breakfast followed by all medications.  By the time I made it to see my rheumatologist I was feeling comfortable.  I have a favorite stimulator program right now.  I also delay turning that on sometime too because at some point durning the late evening I just have to shut if off.  I want it to help when I need it most.  The wait was short.   After check in and after I saw the medical assistant he was right in to see me.  He is however, hard to get an appointment with.  I always schedule on the way out. 

I love this man.  I've been seeing him since 2006.  He is such a good listener and is very patient with you.  He wanted to know everything thats been going on since he last saw me.
(Nov '12)  I missed an appointment at the end of March.  We talked about the revision surgery and the new battery.  Of course his main concern was how my wrist, elbows and knees are doing.  While we are talking he is rubbing/pinching in certain areas.  Ouch..Ouch. Ouch. it hurts everywhere.  When I asked why it hurts like that in those areas, not the ones I mentioned, he said it was most likely my fibromyalgia.  Wait a minute, when did we decide I had fibromyalgia?  I know we'd discussed the possibility on many occasions.  As far back as my first visit.  I didn't have all the check points to diagnose it then.  He explained to me that it can take years to diagnose fibromyalgia because so many of the symptoms are also symptoms of other things too.  I remember all that, but I've always had myself convinced that is not what was causing all my "aches and pains" elsewhere.  I believed they all stemmed from the nerve damage in my back.  I was kind of in a daze while thinking when did say for sure you think I have this?

Today all the areas he checked hurt.  We talked about how the stretches helped my wrists.  I wanted to know why he thought my elbows were still giving me so much trouble?  It's the outside edge. When he put pressure the right way and I almost elbowed him.  The muscle leading to that tendon is very sore too.  The left side hurts worse I told him.  He said there wasn't as much inflammation on the right.  He really thought the best option was to try some physical therapy first.  If that doesn't help he wants to a MRI on both.  I knew sooner or later have to go back to PT again but never thought it would be for my elbows.  Seriously? Something as simple as holding Dallas' pooper scooper can bring me to tears.  He asked me to make sure any time I hold something to hold it with my palm up.  The pain comes from the inflammation and degeneration of the common extensor tendon, one of the tendons of the elbow.   Tendon tears can be the cause of chronic forms of Tennis elbow.  The fancy name Lateral epicondylitis.   From what I read rest should have it better in a couple of weeks so it has definitely become chronic. 

Shows the muscle and tendon and where it hurts!

This physical therapy session will be at the previous establishment I was going to so I am pleased about that.  It was just around the corner from where we used to live but now it will be a trip across town.  He mentioned something about rubbing and needles?  That sounds painful.  He said he wouldn't sugar coat it.  It will be.  Hopefully it will be worth it in the end.  I know plenty of people have dealt with it.  I'm just on a pity party right now with adding another issue.  As my friend says, "Girl, you need a tissue for your issues?"  Yes I do, thank you!

After he gave me all my marching papers I went down a floor to get my flu shot. First I had to stop off to check out and schedule an appointment for 6 months.  As I waited I looked at the papers in my hand.  Diagnoses this visit....first on the list FIBROMYALGIA ugh I hate that word.  It's almost like I had to see him put that down to believe he really said it.  I notice farther down listed as previous diagnoses....that same ugly word.  I guess he had been trying to tell me.  I just wasn't hearing him.   

 I waited longer to get my flu shot than I did to see the doctor.  I believe everyone there with a doctor appointment was getting their flu shot too.  I'm glad its done, but this time went a little different than usual.  Within a short time I started itching at the injection area.  It continued to get worse and soon I felt a bump coming up.  I really wasn't able to look at it until several hours later. 

right after I got home around 3:15

From there I went to meet my daughter, son in law, P and his maw maw for the new babies ultra sound.  It went well.  It took awhile because at this particular ultra sound they take a lot of measurements and look at a lot of things.  P was enthusiastic at first.  Full of questions.  Smart questions.  I can't remembered quite how he asked but it got his big brain to thinking and he wanted to know if his mommy was in a tummy one time?  It was so cute how he asked.  His daddy explained to him mommy was in Nonna's tummy when she was a baby.  I told him I could tell him all about it and show him pictures.  I started thinking and I can remember it all so clearly.  Somethings just don't erase from your mind.

P watching closely while sitting with Maw Maw
My son in law hoping to catch a glimpse of the sex

After the ultra sound was over I hung around with B to see her doctor.  My son in law, P and maw maw went ahead and left instead of waiting around longer.  It had been a long time for P.  He was so good and patient.  We had a bit of a wait to see her doctor.  When she was done there she wanted FOOD.  Poor girl was hungry.  She didn't want to put a lot of food in her stomach so she'd only had yogurt.  It was 3pm by this time.  She had a subway sandwich and we left.  

I was pretty tired myself when I made it in and my arm was driving me nuts.  In the past I've only had soreness never itching or swelling.  If I hadn't had the shot in that exact spot I'd have sworn it was a hive breaking out.  I changed into something comfortable and saw what I was feeling.  A big knot.   Of course you know I have a picture to show you!  I'm still glad I had one.  I haven't missed since 2000.  In 1999 I had a terrible case of the flu that kept me down for two weeks.  I swore I would get one every year after that.  I have and I've never had the flu again.  Knock Knock.

Around 5 and yes it's bigger!
Last but not least.  It's Tuesday.  Weigh in day.   I'll start with my measurements being exactly the same.  Weight- half a pound down.  I'm not thrilled about it because during several weeks I've hit this weight only to have it be up on weigh in day.  I believe it is just a fluke it happened on the right day today.

Well that's enough for tonight.  You got an earful yesterday.  Enough is enough.   Tomorrow is a new day.  Everyone has something to face as they wake and face the day.  We're never alone.  

Living with H.O.P.E.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Watch out for YOU!

Warning...this blog post is a big complaining post.  If you are looking for something positive to read you won't find it here!  It's a true story and other than venting I'm giving my readers a heads up of what could be happening to you too.

In 2008 I was getting my oil changed at a place I'd love to mention but not sure if I can legally say  the name of this tire and auto shop chain.  It was my second time there.  The first time was just for an oil change.  Another place had told me some months back that I needed two new tires.  I was shocked to hear this because I'd been getting my tires rotated every other oil change.  (Quite proud of myself for taking care of this too)  I'd only had them for a couple of years.  When the tire professional told me I needed these tires I told him I was shocked because I'd been having them rotated on a regular basis.   He walked me outside and showed me the wear on my tires and explained he hated to tell me this but my tires clearly showed no signs of being rotated.  He said he doubted they'd ever been rotated at all.  I was crushed.  I purchased two new tires and planned to get two more a few months down the road.   From that day forward I have been very skeptical about any auto shop changing my oil or rotating by tires.

So back to 2008 when I was getting my oil changed at this unnamed establishment I asked for my tires to be rotated also.  I get a call later to tell me that I have two tires that look bad.  I didn't doubt them but really wasn't planning to buy two new tires this day.  What are you going to do?  I told them to go ahead and put two new tires on.  The ones I bought that I previously mentioned were put on 6 months before so I figured I'm good to go now. 

I arrive at the establishment to pick up my car and as I am looking over my bill I see they charged me for a tire rotation.  What?  I question this and the gentleman asks, "didn't you request your tires rotated?" Yes, but you put two new tires on my car so they had to be moved to put the new ones in proper place.  I guess being female he thought I had a big "S" stamped on my forehead.  He never agreed they made a mistake.  He made it seem that since I was making such a big deal over it he would take the charge off.  We cleared all that up and I paid once my bill was correct.  I walked out feeling like I was not going to have a good relationship with these people.  It didn't matter I felt strongly about my decision that it was wrong to charge me for a tire rotation when I didn't receive one.

Roll forward to two oil changes later and I ask for my tires to be rotated.  Of course I reminded them it's no charge right?  "Right", he told me.  Little did they know I had marked my tires because I had a suspicious feeling about them.  Turns out I was right.  I get there and the marks I put on my front tires were still there.  No way they rotated my tires.  When I approached the counter I decided I would wait and see if there was a notation on my bill of a tire rotation.  Tried to give the benefit of the doubt.  Yep, it was there.  So I challenged them right away.  "If you rotated my tires why are the front tires still on the front?".  He looked at me strange.  Yes ma'am we rotated your tires.  See right here.  So and so initialed it.  So I told him he should go ask the gentleman if he rotated my tires or not.  He did so and returned saying the guy was on break and if I'd have a seat they'd rotate them real quick.  So I was at their mercy then.  I was so annoyed they had my car for hours and here I am sitting waiting for my tires to be rotated.  I left feeling like these people probably didn't like me very much.  I promise you it wasn't keeping me up at night.  Why would he just go ahead and rotate if he was so sure his guy did it?

The next time it was time for my tires to be rotated you bet I marked them again but I decided I would say something to them when I dropped off my car.  I had been dealing with the same man over the couple of years.  He saw me coming in and called me by name.  I spoke right up front and let him know how unhappy I was with their service and I'd marked my tires again and to please make sure I didn't show up to work undone a second time.  He gave me his word.  From then on it went the same every time I was due for tire rotation.  I made sure I said what I wanted upon arrival.  I also made it clear I would know if they did or not.  

So now we move forward to 2011 and the same chain is near where we moved in Oct of that year.  The first time I went I didn't need my tires rotated but didn't know where to go yet so I brought my car there for the oil change.  Right across the street there is a nice walking path so it was perfect for having something to do instead of just sitting there waiting.   They called me on my cell phone not to tell me my car was ready but that I need $500 worth of work.  Seriously?  I told him I wasn't doing anything today he could go over it with me when I picked it up.  He really pushed me hard on the phone so I was thinking I'd really have to stand firm when I faced him in person.  

I get there and he went over in detail what I needed done and reminded me that when people leave without having there work done the usually don't come back until the are forced to by being stranded on the side of the road.  I told him I promise that wasn't going to happen to me but I needed to have my car and wanted to discuss with my husband.  In my mind I'd already decided before making it there I wanted a second opinion anyway.  I had a bad taste in my mouth with this company.  I tired not to carry it with me, but it was there.  

There is an auto shop right down the street from us that we pass every day and they always look busy. I decided to take my car there for my second opinion.  We needed to find someone to use on this side of town anyway.  Low and behold the gentleman, who I really liked a lot, told me a couple of the things just did not exist and a couple of things could be done, but he didn't see the urgency in any immediate work required.   They were not things that would leave me stranded any where and he'd keep an eye on them for me if I was going to be returning there for my oil changes.  I really felt he was being honest with me and who turns away work in this economy?  

I started getting my oil changed there and on the opposite time that I needed oil change I'd go to the "other place" and get both.  Oil change and tire rotation.  The last time I was there D had followed me on a Friday morning and they told me they were full and couldn't take any more oil changes.  (this was 8 am in the morning)  I asked him if he meant for the full day or this morning?  He said all day.  I told him I wasn't in a hurry so he said he'd go ahead and take it but it would be end of day before they got to it.  I brought up the fact that I'd had a bad experience a couple of times at the other location and I would know for sure if they rotated my tires or not.  He said, "we'll give you a call this evening when we're done".   That was the day I spent the afternoon helping D in the afternoon with the solar blanket.  The time got away from us and before I knew it it was 6pm and I knew they closed at 7.  I called and inquired about my car and the gentleman who answered the phone claimed my car had been ready I could pick up anytime before they close.  I asked why no one called me and he said he wasn't sure he just happened to answer phone while inside, but it was usually their policy to call.  

We hurry and change into some dry clothes and take off to get there.  D asked if he should come in with me.  I told him he shouldn't need to unless they tried some of the nonsense they've done in the past.  ( i promise you if that was the case he did NOT want to be inside with me )  As we drove up on the side of my car it was so obvious my tires had not been rotated.  The pink nail polish I put on the tires stood out like a sore thumb.  I was so upset.  I could feel my blood pressure rising and I was shaking.  D came in but didn't stay long because I asked for the manager right away and told them just  what I thought of them.   You decided I needed new tires so you didn't rotate them?  I asked.  I asked for my tires rotated and if you planned to not do it I should have received a phone call asking about it.  He really had no excuse of why they didn't call but offered for me take a seat and they would do it for me right away.  I couldn't believe this.  My car had been there all day and he wanted me to have a seat and wait to have my tires rotated when I asked for that in the beginning.  

D left after a short time and I told these people just what I thought of them and their customer service.  Not that they really cared, but I told them I wouldn't ever let them touch my car again and planned to write a note on their web site stating how I'd been treated.  He, the manager, wrote on the back of his business care that the next time I was in that I could get a oil change on them!  I asked him if he really thinks I'd ever come back there much less let them work on my car?  That was the last straw.  I was done with them.  So this particular day I had my oil changed and I washed my hands of them.  I'll find another place when I'm due and it is clearly worth paying for a tire rotation before going there again.  I know darn good and well that if I need new tires they would have called and tired to sell me some.  I feel they were busy and clearly lazy.  They wanted to get done for the day. 

I agree I could use some new tires but "my place" that I trust said I have another six months to a year on my tires.  This gives me time to check around for prices and a good place I can trust.  I know this was long but I wanted to share so others know that sadly you really have to look out for yourself when it comes down to these times of things.  Your really at their mercy and trust that when they say you need something you do.  You also have to trust that when they tell you work has been done, it has.  How would we know the difference?  After leaving that day I asked my husband to look at my oil.  At this point I wasn't sure that I believed they were really changing my oil.   I am a firm believer in second opinions.  It has paid off more than once for me.  

My son and granddaughter came by for a visit yesterday.  We've had a small cool front pass through southern Louisiana and even with the solar blanket the water temp went from 96 down to 90 on Saturday.  On Sunday when we got in with the "kids" it had fallen to 88.  This temp is still very comfortable but the air was chilly.  We had a good time all of us swimming at the same time.  Nonna got a little carried away playing a game with all and I was walking backwards in the pool along the edge I bumped into the ladder.  On the left side, right on my battery!! Oh I wanted to cry ;-(  I just froze and took a deep breath.  I didn't want to scare A.  If I would had been alone I can tell you I would have screamed, cried and probably cursed!!  It started bothering me after I was out of pool and is still so sore this morning.  I just hope it didn't move any.  I can't stand the idea of any more battery shifting!  

It was Dallas' bath day so we decided to let him swim before time.  He loved it.  A loved getting to watch too.  He really seemed to like it and was very comfortable in the water.  We're just hoping he didn't like it enough to be brave and just jump in when he feels like it.  Saturday was an over cast raining day and most of Sunday was dry but cloudy.  It's beautiful and cool today.  A lot of sunshine so I can't wait to see water temp when I swim this afternoon.  

Getting some exercise
Dallas on the kick board 

Excited to go with my daughter for her sonogram tomorrow.  Checking up on baby Stevens to see how he/she is doing.  Can't wait to see what P thinks about all of this.  Also my appointment with my rheumatologist is tomorrow and I have a big list for him so I hope he has some time to spend with me.  Have a great week and I'll be back tomorrow.  I'll try to keep the complaining to a minimum.

I'm filled with H.O.P.E.

You don't have to have a great start to have a great finish!
Joyce Meyer

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

7 weeks counting calories

I guess I did jinx myself.  Here I am at 136.5.   A half inch in waist, but no where else. Only a pound less from a week ago.  I really have to stop weighing everyday.  Just a big disappointment that three days in a row your two pounds less and weigh in "for real" and it suddenly goes up.  Slow I'm telling you.  3 pounds in 7 weeks.    I'll keep hanging in there. 

I'm watching the final 6 tonight on AGT.  I can't wait to see you wins tomorrow night.  I have two favorites.  While watching I see commercial for WW's and they are offering no sign up fee again.  Hum...what should I do?

I thought I'd share this indulgent treat I've been having when I have a sweet tooth.  I always have plenty of fruit around.  I love it.  The only difference right now is I am paying attention to how much I am eating each day.  My favorite combination is strawberries, blueberries and pineapple.  1/4 cup of each.  Unsweetened Almond milk. (just enough to cover the bottom, around 1/4 a cup)  I use half a stevia to sweeten up.   Only because the almond milk is unsweetened. Then I add 30 semi sweet chocolate chips and mix all together.  It is delicious!  Really kills a craving for something sweet.  I've used raspberries in place of the strawberries.  They taste great too.  It usually averages out to about 130 calories.

So saddened that there has been another mass shooting.  What will it take to bring this madness to a stop?  People have to continue to fight for more controlled gun laws.  This man was having major problems and people all around him knew it.  Yet he still was able to own the type of weapon he used to murder innocent people.  There has been 6 mass shootings in the past 9 months and at least 20 during Obama's presidency.   I really thought after 20 children were killed in Newtown, Conn we would start to see a change.  Something is wrong here.  Just saying!

My trial has ended with the Galaxy S4.  It's a great phone, just not for me.  It took me around 24 hours to get used to my tiny screen on my iphone again.  Everything is so much smaller.  However, everything is so much simpler too.  I plan on selling it and buying myself the new iphone with the cash.  

The other trial I have myself involved in started yesterday.  It runs for 21 days.  I had to install an application on my phone to document some things about television programs I watch durning prime time.  It's very simple, easy and not time consuming at all.  Definitely worth 100 bucks!  If you forget, it even reminds you!

The pool is still staying nice and warm.  It was 96 when I swam this afternoon.  I can't tell you how much I enjoy being able to get my exercise this way.  It takes a pain pill an hour before and a lot of stretching and cream on my back when I'm done, but it is so worth it.  Oh yes, and my stimulator cranked up to HIGH!  It beats hurting entire through the entire exercise whatever that might be.  Riding the recumbent bike or walking.  At least in the pool the pain comes later so I am able to get some good exercise in while I am in the water. 

P taking care of A's baby :-)
He's going to be a helping big brother!

A visit everyday.  P was fascinated. 

Enjoy the rest of your week.  
Full of H.O.P.E.


If you want to be rich...GIVE
IF you want to be poor...GRASP
If you want abundance...SCATTER
If you want to be needy...HOARD!

John Lawrence

Saturday, September 14, 2013

It's that time again!

On Oct 12th of last year I had a guest post by my daughter.  She had participated in the Alumni week end with Tiger Band.  She wrote a post about her experience being with the band again. Unwilling at first but enjoyed it in the end.(writing) Today was a great day.  It was that week end again and I was able to go this time.  D and I drove to LSU this morning and meet up with my son in law and grandson.  

We were able to sit on the field to watch and listen while the alumni practiced alone.  They sounded great!  My daughter told us she hadn't played the piccolo since lasts year alumni game.  When they moved on to practicing with the rest of Tiger Band we went up stairs to watch.  It was just like old times when we went every home game to watch them practice.  It doesn't matter how many times you hear them march on the field and play it gives you goose bumps. 

I was so happy to be there to see my grandson be out at LSU for the first time and see his mommy march with the "Big Band"  He was a little nervous at first.  It was so loud and we were up high on the observation deck. At first I don't think he knew what to do with himself.  All and all I think he enjoyed it after all. 

After rehearsal was over we went down to see mom for a little bit and take a few pictures.  Then P left with Poppa and I while mom and dad stayed around to tailgate and have fun at the game. 

That amount of time was just enough for me. I had kind of stumbled coming in the door and jarred my self trying not to fall.  That along with climbing the stair case did me in.  When we got home we had lunch then P asked to watch a movie.  Guess what Nonna did?  Lay down and rest while he was watching the movie.  It was just what I needed to be able to go some more.  

P's Maw Maw came to get him later in the day to go to his cousin's birthday party.  I decided to try and get up enough strength to go exercise in the pool.  The solar blanket is working great.  It was only in the 80's today and the water was 96 and comfortable.  As hard as it was I felt better when I was done. 

I'll be around Tuesday for weight in.  I don't want to jinx myself but if nothing changes from weighing this am I'll be a happy camper.  See you around on Tuesday :-)

One more thing.  I noticed the strangest thing happened.  I have a post missing.  The one I typed on my sons birthday.  It is so strange how it just wasn't there anymore when I signed in to blog.  Very strange...Not sure I can go back and type the same thing over again.  May have to wait until it is his birthday again.  

Full of H.O.P.E.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Tuesday blues day

Why do we wake up with these days?  I can't put an answer to why I just woke up with the blues.  Maybe it had something to do with getting on the scale and I'm up half a pound.  No bother with a picture.  I know you believe me about gaining.  137.5.  Measurements the same.  Or maybe it was the idea of getting out of bed when I really didn't want to.  Hurting everywhere for no explainable reason.  I shouldn't question this any more, but I continue to do so.  

Could it be the stress of trying to track down a package thats been lost with the United States Postal system for over a week?  It's been to 3 different postal hubs since it arrived in BR.  Never mind that there is a link to track it.  It says it's being delivered that day and it doesn't come.  You check it the next day to see it's somewhere else and the dates been pushed two days later.  That day package.  Maybe it is the fact that yesterday afternoon I spent 30 minutes on the phone with them and got no where.  My package was at a zip code long from here.  Or just maybe its the fact that I FINALLY got it today, a watch I was very excited about getting, and the crystal was cracked all the way down the middle.  I wonder why?  Could it be that it is because it traveled to multiple places before arriving here?  So the wait begins again.  I emailed the company to see what they will do for me.  What ever the reason today has not been a good day emotionally or physically.  

I mentioned pushing myself in the pool to do more than physical therapy exercises in the pool.  When I changed to this app I'm using it has swimming as cardiovascular unlike Run Keeper that I use for walking and riding my bike.  I started bringing the clock out with me and timing my laps and jogging.  I was just casually swimming after PT and as soon as I felt a little tired stopping.  My PM doctor has assured me that I cannot hurt my stimulator or the appliance I have at L4/L5 fusion site.  I can bring on pain but will not do any damage to my back.  At lease not any that is already there and continues to get worse.  There is no stopping it. I can make it worse by stop moving and I'd be bed ridden in a short amount of time.  I refuse to let that happen.

I started out 8-10 minutes of continuous swimming and now up to 15 minutes.  I did 20 once! So I won't say I can't do that yet because it was very difficult.  I started with 10 minutes of jogging and slowly each week adding minutes.  I can now do 30 if I am not going to swim.  My usual routine is to do 15 of each.  I do change it up some time though.  If my back is hurting too bad I may only swim laps and no jogging.  

Between my update with Mr. R and increasing my swim time I'm now down from 3 pain pills a day to 2.  In between each of those doses I needed 4 liquid jell Advil.  I've cut back to 3 twice a day.  I think some of my blues today came from being in the water this morning thinking about the short time I have left to be in the pool.  I rarely swim in the am during the week.  I like for D to be home when I am lap swimming since I'm clueless to anything going on around me for a period of time.  I use a plug in one ear that gives me trouble and with the swim cap I don't hear much unless it's pretty loud.  D has startled me on occasion trying to get my attention while swimming.   My appointment with my therapist wasn't until 11 and I was up at 7 so I decided to give it a try.  I'm really thrilled about it this evening that I'm done with that part of my day already. 

Sunday my time with this Samsung Galaxy S4 phone is done.  It really is an amazing phone.  If I didn't have a mac book I'd keep it.  The huge screen is great.  You can work with multiple windows open, the camera is awesome and many other things.  I've come to agree there are more things I like than don't.  When it comes to getting pictures and other data onto my computer that is a BIG part I don't like. 

Good news about the other survey I told you about.  They picked me!! I'm so excited about it.  Just in time, it starts on Monday and I have to download an application for my phone by Sunday.  I will be doing a study about television programs.  I'm not allowed to give to many details until it is over.  It lasts for 21 days and I receive $100 reward.  Just in time for the "new Iphone", Christmas, P's birthday. Oh my, what will I do with it?

I was blessed to spend time with my grandson on Friday and granddaughter on Saturday.  Sharing a couple of my favorite pictures I took.  I know most of my friends have seen on Instagram but I have several friends who are not on Instagram and a lot of readers who do not see them there.  Besides, who could ever get tired of seeing these cute faces a second time.  Even if it is the same picture.  I know, I'm prejudice.  Soon enough I'll have a new grand baby to show off too :-)

What is Love?

Love delights in giving attention rather than attracting it.

Love finds the element of good and builds on it.

Love does not magnify defects.

Love is a flame that warms but never burns

Love knows how to disagree without becoming disagreeable

Love rejoices at the success of others instead of being envious.

Father James Keller

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

The Genie Bra

First let me say I am not being paid or rewarded from "Genie Bra" for promoting their product.  When I find something that actually does what it says, I like to tell my friends about it.  So why not share with my readers.  I first saw an infomercial about them but I didn't watch long.  When I received an email about a special, I checked into them.  Who knows how they had my email but turns out I'm glad they did.

That was about 4 months ago and I ordered my first set.  The Milana style.  I really didn't mean to order those. It happened by accident.  They have a cute lace piece across the front.  I have one in black, tan and white.  At first I didn't think I had a need for that style.  I have a ton of cami's so I thought I wouldn't find things I needed to wear one with.  As I started to wear them I realized how much I liked the bra itself and the lace across the front.  Soon i was wishing that I had two of one color because I need it and it was dirty :-(

of course the lace looks different all stretch out

Recently I noticed they were having a sale on the plain ones.  I decided to order the style I originally wanted.  Smooth in front and back. These bras are so comfortable.  They support you well without underwire.  I love the way they keep things smooth across the back.  If your wearing something something clingy this is the bra you want to have on.  No snaps or hooks.  

I love the wide coverage it gives.  Helps with the "love handles"

When I went to order I couldn't remember what size I ordered before.  I had washed them so many times you couldn't read the  size any longer.  I decided to use the guide on line to make my decision.  Turns out I must have sized up from last time.  I went by cup and inches but still to big.  I don't put them in the dryer but tried putting these new ones for a short time to see if they might shrink a little.  No luck, but I'm still really pleased.  

Remember that $5 check I showed you I get randomly in the mail sometime for a survey taken.  Today I took one for that particular company but it explained in the beginning that it was a two part survey and if qualify you will be rewarded for the second survey.  As I finished it said they would let me know if I am chosen for part 2.   I'm really hoping I qualify because ladies and gentleman this one is $100 instead of $5.  I've never seen this before.  I'll be watching for that very closely!

Guess I surprised everyone with three days in a row.  I did a DIY today.  An idea popped into my head and I gave it a try.  Turned out cute.  I'll show you on my next post. Looking forward to seeing my mom tomorrow. 

Goodnight everyone.  Please take care
Full of H.O.P.E.