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August 2--Back to school??

Saturday, August 02, 2008

Hi there,

This has been quite a week. I ha a full day on Wednesday. I went to my neurosurgeon and had to almost beg, but he is going to let me try to go back to work half days. He told me that if there are any problems, to call his office and he would change the content of my work release note. After that, I went to my home school and met the new principal. I found that anything more than 20 steps wears me out and hurts like all get out. He seemed very nice but stared at my body armor big turtle shell brace and leg attachment like I was an invalid or something. Then, I went to another doctor appt. and he tried to convince me that I was not ready to go back to work. After I left there, I spent over 2 hours with a case manager interviewing my oldest son. We were out for 6 an 1/2 hours an when I got home, I hurt too much to cry--my husband helped me out of my brae and into my nightgown.

On Thursday, we left at about 12:30 and spent over 2 hours packing boxes in the school I served last year that I wont be at this year. I have to pack my things up and am praying that the district will move them, but they haven't returned my call on that. We left there and went to my new school to travel to. They had just waxed the ground floor by the entrance I need to use, so the principal there came out to my car to meet me. He took one look at me in my body armor and told me three times how my health came first and that if I needed more time off or whatever that I should do it. I'm beginning to feel like some kind of invalid and after this 3 hour day, I felt awful from head to toes. Again, I had to have help to rest when I got home.

On Friday, we left around 1:30 and went to my now "former" school again to pack. I talked to the principal there and found out they were in no hurry for my room to be emptied, not to worry. We commiserated over the fact that the district wasn't replacing me and I introduced him to my 2nd oldest son who is looking for a teaching job. The packing is now 98% done and we left a 4:15 so that I could get my prosthetic fixed. He didn't get there until almost 5:30. He asked me how long that I had to wear this thing, and like I've told everyone else, I do not know. I peeked at the insurance papers he had and the thing cost over $3800 so I'm guessing it will be with me for a while. We stopped to pick up pizzas that my daughter ordered--I know, I know, but I hadn't eaten breakfast and I only ate two pieces so it was okay. For the third day in a row, I cried to get out of the brace and ready to relax.

I am definitely worried about the coming week. I missed going to weigh in, but I had a great victory that didn't involve the scale. The man who made my brace noticed that I was having some problems with it and did a couple of adjustments that were necessary because I "had lost a good bit of weight" since it was made. YAY, it is good to have somebody else notice.

On that note, I'm going to get ready for dinner. My husband fixed chicken tacos for supper and I love those. Sylvia

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CHILLIWACK 8/11/2008 1:31AM

    Sylvia, thanks so much for the goodie. With all that you are going through, it is a major pain in the keister that you have fibromyalgia, too. One of the things I found out when I had my knee replaced is that the post-op pain for those of us with fibro is much different than for most folks. My ortho surgeon said that is the only reason he can think of that I have a burning pain in the muscles around my knee five years post op. It isn't too troubling, but it is there.

Hope you get well soon. You will be in my prayers. We FMS gals have to stick together; nobody else understands us! I had two sisters with FMS, (one pssed away in April), so we always had somebody to complain to when nobody else would listen. LOL.

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JEANELLEN59 8/3/2008 7:47AM

  I was just "popping" around from blog to blog and telling people to 'hang in there.' Well, after reading your blog I realize how less important some people's problems and complaints are. It sounds as though you are determined to return to work. You must be very strong. Well, hang in there, and GET HEALTHY and FIT both physically and emotionally.


Comment edited on: 8/3/2008 7:45:28 AM

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Last Monday in July

Monday, July 28, 2008

Hi there,

I have been awake since I took a nap Sunday. I have no clue what is up with that, but I'm expecting that a nap is soon coming. I am going to try to hold out until bedtime so that I can get back on schedule with the rest of the world. Maybe, it is because of all of my activity yesterday. I got to go to church for the first time since my surgery and it was awesome. We had a wonderful service with lots of music. Our community has a jazz festival every summer in honor of Bix Biderbecke (spelling may be off!!) and out church music director takes that into our church. We get to sing and hear lots of great music and we had an awesome sermon about the fact that we cannot be perfect, but we need to try our best--and I got to see everybody and talk to my friends. That side of everything was awesome. The down side was trying to sit with that brace in a pew, There was a baptism (aww-ww) but the sermon time was far over the 15 minutes I'm supposed to sit up--more like 1 1/2 hours) I also walked around, including in and out from the parking for about 30 minutes, far longer than I have been on my feet. I think the pains that I'm having have been my payback. I am still glad that I went.

We also had this horrid storm a week ago Monday. It was called a "derecho" and 94 mph winds went through the community as part of its trip from Omaha to Chicago and did mass destruction. These storms give no warning that they exist or are coming. We had 140,000 homes without power. Ours went out shortly after the storm went through around 6AM. We finally got our power back Thursday evening, Considering we live in the country, that made it so we couldn't get water along with no phone, laundry, air, fan, etc... It was fortunate that it cooled off on Wednesday for the sake of peace, lol There were trees everywhere and I do mean everywhere. We had one on our porch, but no real damage. There were people who lost their homes. There was only one family with loss oflife--they were traveling and camping. It was sad because a tree fell on their tent and killed children. That was so awful, yet it was surprising that more people weren't hurt by the activity of all of the trees.

I am fighting with my depression, anticipating a new job this year when school starts up on Friday if the neurosurgeon releases me to return to work when I see him on Wednesday. It is an important job and if my health and energy are up to stuff, I can do well with it. I will be teaching reading to special ed junior high kids at the alternative school for part of my day. Wow, I'm so impress to be asked to help with the district's neediest students, but I'll have to leave my home school for an hour and a half each day and then come back. When you consider that I'm wearing a full brace that includes one of my legs with my complete torso, and that I use a walker, this will interfere with my position from a traveling viewpoint and from the comments that kids that age will have. Quite honestly, I look pretty bizarre weighing 286 pounds, wearing the brace,shorts and tennis shoes, while limping with my walker. I know that I'll do fine with the kids anyway--once they learn that I really care about them, they seem to eat out of my hand. Setting up my room at my home school, packing up the room I traveled to last year, and leveling boxes of books for our primary take-home program. I have two new bosses this year and need data from my former boss to complete my evaluation project from last year. There will be no shortage of work for me whenever I get there.

It has been a few weeks since I weighed in and I know that I haven't journaled my food or cared much about what I have eaten. Chips are an easy food for a house without power. Today, I ate cookies because my daughter baked them--I know how to praise her without actually eating them, I just did it the easy way. I think I'm off plan and out of control. I'm hingry right now and thirsty again too.

I have a lot to think about--I need to do that. Take care to you all, my friends and support. I will try to blog more often in order to hold myself acountable. Take care, Sylvia

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CTEMPLE 7/29/2008 6:10AM

    Hi Sylvia, sorry to hear you're feeling low, circumstances don't seem to help.. Keep using SP and it will get better.

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AMHISPRINCESS 7/28/2008 7:10PM

    Sylvia... I am so happy that you were able to go to Church.. Sounds like it was awesome..

You need to listen to Doctors Orders.. It is for your own good you know.

I am sure that you will do just fine with your teaching.

Please take care of your self and do get the rest that your body is telling you.

Keep in touch. Hugs, Carol emoticon

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7/12--I weighed in and lost 5.2!!

Saturday, July 12, 2008


I decided that I was going to do m ore, even though I haven't quite been given permission yet. I went out yesterday evening and I did a little "good food" shopping. I also weighed ijn for the first time since my surgery. I lost 5.2 pounds and found out my brace weighs 6.2 pounds. This is a lot of good news for me. I belong to Weight Watchers and that is the onlyplace except the doctor's that I will weigh. When I have tried to lose and weighed at home before, I got to where I would weigh myself multiple times a day and it was out of hand. I have to give myself a break, I tend to push myself too hard and try to be perfect. I also tend to take on all of the work and let everyone, be it colleagues or family or anyone, off the hook. I have been learning both the word "no" and to be unavailable to "everybody." This has been like a lot of major rewiring of the way I operate and just like eating, it is easy to slip back into the old ways of doing things.

I am going to try to attend my husband's work picnic this afternoon. I am not worried about the food at this point, but I am totally worried about being able to manage myself at an event that is that long...11-5. The kids will go swimming in the lake, the food and cold beverages will be plentiful, my husband is taking off work early to be there after a bunch of my pushing. I have to be top notch in every way for my family. My hour and a half excursion to WW today took it all out of me and I needed pain meds tonight.

It was fun to change my weight "ticker" and it has given me reason to believe that I am getting more capable right now. Success can help in so many ways. Take care my friends, Sylvia

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CTEMPLE 7/12/2008 8:08AM

    Yes. Success is a big thing a helps a lot. I have trouble staying in long social things and I haven't been through all you have. It think it's a feat even thinking of it, you have so much strength!
Hope it all went well.
Cool today and a bit tired. Had to talk to my mum for more than two hours international, a family problem that seems to have no solution and I don't want her to worry about it.
Tomorrow a new day. Congrats on your weight loss!

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July 8, 4:00 AM

Tuesday, July 08, 2008


I am a bit behind in my plan to blog every week and in eating healthier. I have day and night a bit mixed up these days and am feeling a bit off in many ways. Yesterday, it finally dawned on me that part of my problem is my fibromyalgia. I think I have an article about it on my spark page, but it is a stinker of a disorder that beats up mostly on women, They are just now looking for ways to deal with it and to find out what causes it although historically, it actually has roots that can be traced back to the civil war days at least. My issue is that I have had excessive pain and haven't a clue why I'm not more active yet. My legs and body just ache and throb from my ribs to my calves. I enjoyed the 4th of july festivities with my family, but after our picnic, I began hurting and had to go to the van and recline at 7ish. I did see fireworks from the reclined seat--and then hurt so much since then that I haven't been back out since.
I want to rant, because I cannot get up by myself yet. I cannot get dressed or shower without help either. The things that need doing like shopping and cooking are being done by my older kids, but have little to do with healthy eating but lots to be done with impulse and ease. My husband works seven days a week, although he did have the 4th off. We try to take care of things so that he can do the things that he must take care of without worrying about day to day stuff. The kids even took my dog to the vet on Saturday for me.
I am going somewhere today because I am supposed to go back to work in less than 4 weeks. Our year round school district returns on Aug. 1--and that is probably my biggest worry. I don't even know how I'm going to go potty yet, I have a new boss in the building that I have the most seniority in. I also have a wheelchair there which could be handy, but it needs a new battery and my husband hasn't had time to deal with that for me.
Now I know clearly why I haven't written--I am sick to my tummy, my body hurts, fibro flare, sadness, my unhealed incision, dependence on everyone, and the brace from somewhere hot (lol) have me in a mind frame that doesn't match who I am. Nobody wants to hear this or needs to hear it either.
Thanks to those of you who are hanging with me through this--I'm praying that this is the storm before the calm--ha ha. Take care of yourselves. Hugs, Sylvia

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ENUFF81020 7/10/2008 6:50AM

    To all of my friends who responded--thank you, thank you, thank you.

Kindness is often one sure way of easing pain and discomfort. I tried a sleeping pill the night before last and the big result from that was that I slept part of the night, woke up in the early morning and then slept until 1:30 in the afternoon. I was stiff and achy for the rest of the, well, I'm still awake. I did some chedking on the net, found DrSt.Amand's stuff. It is kind of confusing. I think I need to check with my rheumy or my pcp before I add another med to my large list now. A lot of it was right on target though. I agree that getting out of the dumps is important. and your kindness helps. I think my kids have just about spent all of the money we have for food--that may slow the strange foods, and junk foods for a while--haha. I have gotten them to make the list now. I may need that wheelchair business to go back to work. One of my schools is a big 2 story building, but we have a deal that I stay on first floor. My other building is under construction to grow this year, but it is only one floor--and big, very big. Last year, I spent mornings at one school and afternoons at the other--next year, I think it will be one day at one and the next day at the other. I don't think I can pick up and leave during the day--at least not now.
I have lots on my mind, it sure is great to have a place to talk about it all. Thanks, Sylvia

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CTEMPLE 7/8/2008 10:53PM

    Hi Sylvia and you can rant all you want we can take it. I can't remember if I asked you, have you tried dr St Amands treatment for fribromyalgia? It works for a lot of people and it's not hard to try.

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AMHISPRINCESS 7/8/2008 12:42PM

    I am so sorry that you are so down. I know that pain can cause a million other things within our bodies. I am going to pray that this too shall pass. You will be feeling so much better within no time.. Please try to think positive. I know that is not an easy thing to do... but I have found if we can think of something positive each and every day it does help me get though what ever I am feeling or going through.. Please keep in touch.. FEEL BETTER SOON.. Hugs, Carol

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LRCP4556 7/8/2008 8:29AM

    hi sylvia
-sorry to hear of your situation
-am no expert
-just a few thoughts on things
-can you write down the grocery list for your children (explain about nutrious foods)
-don't know how the building you work in is layed out, but can you use a regular wheelchair? it will exercise your upper half which is a start. maybe after awhile you'll be able to use the hands and arms for other things (ex. going to the bathroom...etc.)
-will be praying for you and may GOD bless emoticon

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June 22, I'm back, Post-op

Sunday, June 22, 2008

I am on the road to recovery. I was in surgery for close to the projected 8 hours and the surgeons wrapped things up without having completed everything they planned. They gave told me that if all of the symptoms have not been covered that my neurosurgeon will have to do the rest of the work--but, if it is better, I won't have to have the rest of the surgery, YAY, but too soon to tell how it is.

My current orders are that I can walk around the house, wearing my new improved brace that covers my top half and has an extension to my left leg to keep me in line--lol. I also get 15 minutes sitting up three times a day and I can sit up to eat. The rest of my time is flat on my back--great fun. I am learning to type on my laptop this way and am getting better. My bifocals make both reading and watching TV tough in this position. As for pain, well, thank heavens for my pain meds because I am having pain. most of it is in my hip, where the big incision is and where they removed bone for the fusion of my lumbar vertebrae. Bone removal is a big pain. Ouch.

I am going back on my eating program today, if I can. I have little control over what I eat but I can fuss. I am starting physical therapy on Monday afternoon and have a week packed with doctor appointments and the like--so I'll be getting in more activity. I will try to weigh on on Friday with lots of help--both with and without the brace.

Anyway, this is my update. Thanks so much for the encouragement and the prayers. Those are the things that have kept me going.

Hugs all around!!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ENUFF81020 7/8/2008 5:02AM

    Hi everyone,
Thanks for your comments. I haven't posted in a while because, well, I am feeling awfully self serving these days. Getting better is a slow process and because I am an overachiever who deals with depression, this is not working well for me. I will post a blog entry about how I am doing physically very soon.
This note is to all of you who have sent me notes--I really appreciate you and your thoughtfulness. I need so much around here that it is nice to have friends who I'm not asking for help from--be it an update on something or a hand to get up from a chair. Sometimes there is another side to being strong and independent. I have found it now.
Anyway, you are appreciated, Sylvia

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    Checking in to see how you are feeling. Hope you are hanging in there! emoticon

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AMHISPRINCESS 7/6/2008 10:08AM

    How are you doing? Feeling better? I sure hope so. Keep me posted. I just ran across your BLOG this AM.. Hope that you are finally getting rid of the pain. I know that pain is something that we can not handle. Please drop me a note and let me know how you are doing... Hugs, Carol

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CTEMPLE 6/22/2008 6:21AM

    OH Sylvia it all sounds so painful, but the way you talk about it makes it feel that it's easy and I'm sure it isn't. Good spirits is so important.
I hope everything goes as smooth as possible, and don't forget your pain killers, there is no worse thing for the body than pain because it brings more spasms and more pain.
I have special glasses to watch tv and to work at the computer , I got sick of my multifocals ruining my neck. Old frames with new lenses.
Thank you for remind us to put our own stuff into perspective and for being a tower of strength. Don't hesitate to ask for more support, attention and anything that can be done long distance. I will be thinking of you.
With all my best wishes
Claudai emoticon

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