Sunday, November 23, 2014
Hi all you brave Sparkies,
2 weeks after the operation on my big toe (cheilectomie due to arthritis), I am feeling a lot better. I had half the stitches taken out on Friday so most of that discomfort has gone now and I feel as if my foot belongs to me again! It is still difficult to flex my big toe and strangely enough the second and third toe are also very reluctant to move spontaneously. I can feel them and wiggle them manually when I take the bandage off, but they are a lot more passive than before the op. My hubby has been wonderful and my daughters have cheered me up no end, so I am lucky to have such a caring family!
Physio starts twice a week beginning on Wednesday and I have made the appointments with a physiotherapist who is an avid walker and hill hiker, so he knows how important it is for me to get back into form as soon as possible. The last 2 years here on SparkPeople and my efforts to lose weight and to exercise more, have stood me in good stead this last fortnight - I remembered to drink lots of water, was careful food-wise and moved about regularly. Now that the major pain has subsided, I can walk in the surgical boot with crutches for about 20 minutes at a time, go on the elliptical for short 5 minute sessions, do a little routine with light dumbbells sitting in a chair as well as being able to cook easy meals which I prep sitting down. The most important thing was to remember to elevate my foot as much as possible when I was´nt moving and to cool it with a surgical pack a number of times a day. I also had a couple of short naps daily and took my pain meds regularly. I also had a little split in my achilles tendon repaired and although it is still tender it has bothered me very little, thank goodness! I go back to work tomorrow and will put some cool-packs into the fridge there to use in my break and I shall be putting my foot up on the desk if necessary when I am not on the computer...
By Christmas I should be able to wear wide sandals and to drive a car again - until then I will doing my best to stay healthy and will be trying out different kinds of foot-friendly activities! To top things off I have lost a pound this week for the first time in ages.... Now I am off to dream of scrambling up a cliff!
Wednesday, November 12, 2014
Hi all you brave Sparkies,
I have had arthritis in the base joint of my right big toe for a number of years now. When I had a flare up I would hobble around for a few days, avoid climbing stairs like the plague and munch away on painkillers. I also managed to run a couple of 5Ks and walked many a mile and generally imagined that things would be good for years to come.
This summer my toe got steadily worse and sometimes in the night the joint would become locked and I would wake up kind of moaning in my sleep. What a bore! The orthopedic surgeon said I was far too young to get it fusioned, so he recommended a cheilectomy to tidy up the joint and to get rid of any debris. Basically they slit open the side of your toe, saw off the lumpy bone protrusions, trim any cartilage that is tattered, wiggle your joint up and down with a metal contraption until it is more compliant and then stitch you up again. Delightful. As I also have a recurring tear in my achilles tendon, the surgeon decided to do both procedures in one session and gracefully offered me a general anesthetic - "Yes please, Sir!"
I worked like a frenzied bee the last fortnight so that colleagues would´nt be giving my empty office dirty looks during my absence and gave the house a decent clean while I was at it.
On Monday afternoon we arrived at the day clinic and my hubby was promptly packed off to go for a walk or whatever and I got undressed in a wee cubicle and sat there shivering in a green shift, plastic shower hat and elasticated bag-like slippers, waiting for events to unfold. I was feeling rather cheesed off by the time the nurse led me down the tiled corridor into the operating theatre... The anethesist was a friendly grey-haired chap who gave me a quick run-down before my leg and foot were sprayed and daubed with various antiseptics and the surgeon popped his head around the screen with a wink to say "sleep well"...
I woke up on a narrow gurney, bundled in a blue woolly blanket with my bandaged leg hanging in a sling. The pain started nagging within minutes and I gratefully took the horse pill on offer. I dozed for about an hour and then the nurse helped me shuffle back into the cubicle, handed me a pair of crutches and my bag of clothes and then retrieved my hubby from the waiting room. He carefully helped me get dressed, got the prescription meds from the pharmacy and whisked me home in a taxi. The relief to be able to lie on my own sofa, sipping hot tea while trying to read the minuscule print on the pain-killer leaflet was enormous. I am a wimp when it comes to unnecessary suffering, so I was delighted to read that the bottle of drops contained an opiate designed to eliminate severe post-op pain. Having taken the first dose, I had a lovely sleep in front of the wood-burning stove, then dreamily ate a pot of yogurt and managed to climb the stairs to the bedroom wielding the crutches like an amateur. I dozed on and off for about 12 hours and then we went back to the clinic for the first check-up. The bandages were whipped off, the wounds inspected and the toe and ankle joint "manipulated" (agghhh!) to make sure everything was nice and supple. Back home, tea and biccies were served pronto, opiate drops dished out and some nice soothing music set tinkling in the background....
I am not looking forward to starting physio next week, nor can I imagine being able to wear proper shoes before Christmas - but that´s life and won´t start for another few days...
Sunday, September 14, 2014
This morning there was a lovely breeze blowing here in North Kurdistan and I lay in the hammock, working on a short story that has been percolating for a few days. I tend to drift away into a little world of my own, and memories of things unconnected to the story often rise up in the mist... Today I remembered Marle´s melody. Marle is my 2.5 year old granddaughter and Magdalena and Jannik´s daughter. Lena (organic farmer, naturopath and Greenpeace banner seamstress) is my oldest daughter.
Magdalena and Marle, Spring 2012
Alvina, one of Lena´s goats.
Then comes Laura, my second girl (nurse turned party organizer, part-time photographer´s model and cake designer)
Laura in the sand dunes.
A wedding cake Laura made last year.
and last, but not least Hannah, my youngest (potter in training, singer/songwriter and maker of structures).
Hannah at a festival One of the shell ornaments Hannah decorated my garden shed with.
When Lena was pregnant with Marle, Hannah wrote her a wordless lullaby to sing to her unborn child. She sung it sometimes in the evenings, when the baby was kicking into high gear and she wanted it to know that it was cherished and safe. Two days after Marle was born, DH and I travelled up to Lüneburg to see them and Lena hummed the lullaby to Marle who was lying on her chest. This tiny child looked up at her mother and a look of deep trust passed across her face before she calmly fell asleep. It was a moment of magical love.
Lena often sang the tune to her as a small baby, rocking her in the hanging cradle or carrying her on her back while working in the kitchen garden.
Even now, if Marle is upset, has hurt herself or has trouble dropping off to sleep, Lena sings her the little melody while stroking her cheek, and it seems to never fail to soothe them both.
Last month when I visited them on the farm, we sat on the grass drinking peppermint tea and I heard this little voice coming from the hammock - Marle warbling her song to tell herself that all was right with the world!
Friday, August 01, 2014
Hi, All You Brave Sparkies!
In the early morning or early evening I often cycle down along the river to a lovely playground on an embankment. It has been newly renovated and an adult corner is now installed with an outdoor elliptical, a hip and waist trimmer and a disc on a pole for arm and shoulder work. While on the elliptical I tend to look over towards the weir and watch other people passing by.
May I introduce my favorites?
The elegant couple:
They are tall and fine boned and they both walk with poles and have strong walking shoes. She always wears a dress with a fitting top and flared skirt usually in some shade of red - she sports a swishy grey pony tail. He is attired in a crisp white shirt and white jeans with a panama hat sitting firmly on his pepper ´n´ salt head. They move effortlessly like well tuned engines – in the motor world he would be a stylish cream Mercedes with a pagoda hardtop and she would be a delicious red Alfa Romeo Giulietta.
The man who never gives up:
He is in his early eighties and is very thin and fragile. He also walks with poles but moves very slowly and deliberately, his faded blue tracksuited frame bent slightly forward. He comes into the playground, carefully props his poles against a tree trunk and works out on the disc. He grips the two knobs and rotates the disc in slow motion, first to the left and then to the right, whistling softly. Automobile-wise he would definitely be a pale blue vintage Austin pick-up truck.
The hound dog runners:
Imagine three young ladies – lithesome and long-limbed, dressed from top to bottom in professional black sports-wear. They appear like a vision out of the mist behind the weir, running their dogs at high speed. The blond has a golden retriever, the brunette a black and white border collie and the redhead is followed closely by her russet setter. In terms of cars, I think they would be a yellow Chevrolet Super Sport Roadster, a black Aston Martin Vanquish and a crimson Ferrari 360 Spider.
Candy Floss Lady:
She is well past 60, has bouncy grey curls and a soft luscious body. She runs until she nearly drops, but is determined to enjoy every moment along the way. Her feet are clad in fuchsia trainers and she wears a cerise top to match her vermilion Capri bottoms and rose-colored retro shades. She is never without her oversize shocking pink earphones and she cheerfully waves and high-fives the air when she sees me, all decked out in turquoise, on the elliptical. She would have to be a Passionate Pink 1968 Mustang.
And which car would I be? I like to think of myself as a dark green Mini Cooper with 150,000 miles on the mileage counter, some worn velvet cushions on the back seat, but still going strong.
Wednesday, July 09, 2014
Hi all you brave Sparkies,
living in Germany, I tend to use metric measurements for everything, which means I view weight loss or gain in kilos. As I am a slow loser but a fast gainer, I am constantly breaking the scales down into 100 gram increments (I think in terms of bars of Swiss chocolate...).
I started out at 68kg and my goal weight was 58kg. I got down to 58kg in April 2013 but re-gained 3 kgs by late Spring of this year - stress at work, too many celebration buffets, and an op on my achilles tendon zapped my motivation for a while.
Today for a change, I worked out my weight loss in pounds instead of kilos because I am raking around for facts and figures to motivate myself. This morning I weighed 132 lbs and have achieved a weight loss of 18 lbs. To get back to my goal weight I "only" have to lose another 4 lbs - I say "only" because I tend to lose and gain the same 2-3 lbs every couple of months.... At the moment I am firing up my desire to break through this invisible barrier and to reach my destination again.
With this in mind I joined the Emma Nutt Challenge in the "At goal or maintaining Team" here at SparkPeople a fortnight ago - the idea is to pinpoint a center-weight (in my case 60kg) and to not deviate more that 3% up or down from that for the next nine weeks. Of course if someone loses more that 3%, they won´t be among the winners, but that would be fine in my case as I am currently not at my goal weight! Being part of this challenge is definitely keeping my hands out of the cookie jar and motivates me to move more often and to try out new things.
This week I jumped on a trampoline for the first time in 40 years, tried out an outdoor elliptical trainer and trimmed my waistline on a piece of equipment where you sit on a disk and rotate at the waist. I also went for some lovely rides on Bella my Dutch bike.
Hope everyone is doing fine and finding new ways to stay motivated too!
Get An Email Alert Each Time WENDYANNE61 Posts