AQUAGIRL08's SparkPeople Blog AQUAGIRL08's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community Using What I've Learned! I've completed my to do list. It took me six months to get our house the way I wanted it. Why six months? I've battled continuing health issues for three years. I've been forced to learn how to break down tasks into small doable chunks. I can proudly say that I figured out how to do some forms of cleaning from a chair. <BR> <BR> Throughout my six month project, I've encountered many obstacles. Fatigue, pain and infection were the biggest obstacles. To quote my husband, "She's tenacious... Wed, 13 Dec 2017 14:35:03 EST Thanksgiving Time The gluten free, sugar free apple dessert has been made. (I made up the recipe myself and hubby says it's delicious!) The stuffing has been made and is warming in a covered dish. Hubby loves my stuffing! Keeping him from eating it before dinner is usually fruitless. He is my appointed taste tester. The turkey is in the oven and it all smells so wonderful. The pans and dishes I've used thus far are all washed and put away. I learned a long time ago to clean up as I cook. It makes dinner and... Thu, 23 Nov 2017 12:30:28 EST Keeping Busy Manages Stress After my self pep talk yesterday, I felt motivated to take action. I groomed/bathed the dogs, vacuumed the house, used wood cleaner on our wood floors and went to the grocery store. I have long used physical activity to deal with stress. Yesterday, I had 10,327 steps. I was exhausted when bedtime rolled around. I was almost overtired. <BR> <BR> Today, I decided that my only activities would be to change the sheets on the beds, do laundry, fold laundry and wrap gifts for our oldest daughter... Sun, 19 Nov 2017 15:15:31 EST Dealing With Stress And Disappointment We've had some picky, demanding and rude potential buyers looking at our house. (Even though I've been cleaning twice a week and we've done tons of favors to accommodate buyers!) This creates stress. Couple that with my sore back and knee and it could be a major disaster. I'm disappointed in the fact that the combination of stressors has lead me to revert to my former eating habits. My eating pattern, this past week, has not measured up to the goals I've set for myself. <BR> <BR> So......... Sat, 18 Nov 2017 07:27:55 EST All Clean And Organized! I was a careful but thorough cleaner yesterday! I cleaned (as in took apart the shelves and washed) the refrigerator, wiped down the counters/cabinets and microwave in the kitchen. Then, I cleaned both bathrooms. I took a short rest between every job to protect my body and did as much as possible from a seated position. My last task was to wipe down all of the doors (surprisingly enough, they were pretty dusty). I still need to run the self cleaner in the oven. Perhaps we can get the youn... Mon, 13 Nov 2017 07:44:50 EST Cleaning After Organizing I spent two days cleaning the floors. I vacuumed, cleaned the wood floors, mopped the tile floors and shampooed the bedroom carpets. This week, I will wipe down the kitchen, clean the bathrooms, and start cleaning the refrigerator. The refrigerator is the job I dislike the most. I will probably do some of that today, just to get it over with! If I get too tired of it, I'll clean the bathrooms! LOL. The garage still needs to be swept out. We had a lot of leaves blow into the garage during ... Sun, 12 Nov 2017 07:39:11 EST I Sorted All 7 Christmas Boxes! Yesterday, my task was to sort through 7 large tubs/boxes of Christmas decorations. I said in my last blog that I would approach the task with the same ruthless determination that I used in organizing our interior living space. It took me about 2 hours but I went through all of the tubs and re wrapped what I kept and got rid of all of the stuff that was old, broken or unwanted. We now have 3 slightly smaller, new rubber tubs in our garage. Hubby was amazed! I took 7 tubs and reduced it to... Fri, 10 Nov 2017 08:17:52 EST I'm Finished With Our Living Area! It has taken quite a while but I am finished with organizing our inside living space. We need to box up a few more things and clean the house so the house will smell as good as it looks! Then, on to organizing the garage! I will be as ruthless in the garage as I've been in the rest of the house. I need to go through old Christmas stuff and get rid of everything that we don't use. I purchased three large new Rubbermaid tubs and may need one or two more. I will whittle down 8 old tubs and r... Tue, 7 Nov 2017 17:37:02 EST The House is Starting To Look Great! My current project (a monumental undertaking) is to get rid of clutter and unused items. After that, I organized everything in our house. The whole process has taken me five months so far. The results are simply amazing! Over the next few days, I will work on cleaning out the pantry, washing the front windows, hanging the freshly washed curtains and boxing up a few more items. <BR> <BR> Then, on to the garage! We have several old plastic storage tubs that have split. I plan to go throu... Sun, 22 Oct 2017 09:45:24 EST Trying To Slowly Increase My Activity I am pretty much finished with organizing the cabinets, closets and bookcases in our house. It has taken me several months to finish. I filled the trash cans many times, donated tons of stuff to Good Will, sent things to our oldest daughter and shredded over 20 bags of old documents. Today, I am boxing up items that are cluttering up various corners and tabletops. Sometime during the coming week, I will wash the front door and it will be given a quick coat of paint. We get eastern sun th... Sat, 14 Oct 2017 14:37:58 EST I've Been A Busy Bee My leg is slowly getting stronger. I'm doing Silver Sneakers followed by Chair Yoga, two times per week. At first, I was exhausted and could barely make it home to rest. The combination of the 2 classes (one following the other) has kept me from getting very sore from all of the cardio and weights. That is amazing to me but it works! My physical therapist told me that it would take between 6-8 weeks (2 times per week) for the fatigue to decrease. She also said that around the same poin... Mon, 2 Oct 2017 14:24:04 EST Very Little Storm Damage! I'm glad we survived hurricane Irma! Our power was only off for 18 hours but the internet, land line and television were off for 8 days. They came on in the late afternoon on Monday. I was busy doing tasks from my to do list since the television and Internet were down. It turned out to be a blessing since I got so much done! The television and internet are nice but I'd really be lost without air conditioning. We were blessed to have lost the air conditioning for only 18 hours. We are ver... Wed, 20 Sep 2017 19:49:00 EST We're As Ready As Possible Sunday, September 10, 2017. at 8:00am <BR> <BR> With the exception of hurricane shutters or plywood boards, we are as ready as possible for hurricane Irma. We have flashlights, candles, canned foods, bread, cereal, water, trash bags, bleach, a first aid kit with extra everything and the dogs are up to date on their shots. Our prescriptions are up to date and our clothes are clean. <BR> <BR> We went through four hurricanes in a row back in 2004. We survived that and did okay. I think we'l... Sun, 10 Sep 2017 06:39:11 EST Progress Update #22 Good news! My leg is finally starting to get stronger! I was able to complete a Silver Sneakers class this week, followed by chair yoga. The instructor suggested that I should stay after the Silver Sneakers class for the chair yoga so that I would be less sore. She was right! I was slightly tender but not sore the next day. I was wiped out for two days but that's okay. My PT said the teacher made a great call. She said feeling really tired is normal and that the more I work out, the s... Sun, 27 Aug 2017 09:56:32 EST Progress Update #21 I am slowly making progress. I'm now back in physical therapy. This week we added some easy balance exercises to the ultra sound treatments and ice. The area that was infected blistered and peeled. It now looks brown instead of bright red. A big sigh of relief here! My therapist and I noticed something strange when we started the balance exercises. It was my poor left leg that had difficulty with balance, as well as the right one. That was a surprise! <BR> <BR> My left leg has taken a ... Sat, 29 Jul 2017 09:46:37 EST Progress Update #20 Monday, I had my visit with my orthopedist as a follow up to last Wednesday's urgent care visit. Last Wednesday, my knee still looked angry and was red, hot and sore. After 5 more days of a strong antibiotic as well as more bed rest and ice, it now looks a lot better. That being said, it is still very warm and pink. I finished my antibiotic on Sunday. The orthopedist said that it looked better but not great. He said the numbness below the knee is coming from the area where I have all of t... Wed, 12 Jul 2017 10:09:18 EST Progress Update #19 It has not been a good week. Last Wednesday, I went to see my orthopedic surgeon after my leg turned red and hot after a fall the week before. The doctor wasn't sure if I had an infection or not but gave me an antibiotic just to be safe. He went out of town the next day. <BR> <BR> Well, as luck (or lack thereof) would have it, my infection blossomed overnight. I felt hideous that night and worse the next day. I went to my primary since my orthopedist wasn't available. The antibiotic was c... Wed, 5 Jul 2017 21:27:07 EST Progress Update #18 Just when you think you can go back into the water a shark called infection, bites. I fell and was caught by a Good Samaritan before hitting the pavement on June 14th. One week later, I woke up feeling off balance and almost fell when I took the dogs out. I did fall about an hour later and bruised my new knee. I iced it and elevated it for several days - staying off it most of the time. Then the night sweats started. Ugh! I would go into a very deep sleep for hours on end and wake up with ... Thu, 29 Jun 2017 22:05:21 EST Progress Update #17 It has been a while since my last blog. The big news is, I am now back in the water for water workouts! After over two years away, due to poor health, it feels good to float around in the water. I am also cleared to ride the recumbent cycle for up to ten minutes. <BR> <BR> Friday, I finally graduated from physical therapy! Yes, at just short of 20 weeks post op, I completed physical therapy and move on to my new home therapy plan. I even got a T-shirt as a parting gift! How much fun ... Sun, 11 Jun 2017 09:53:18 EST Progress Update #16 My leg swelled when I increased my activity level over the weekend. I'm not a happy camper. The pain is awful. My whole leg is stinging and throbbing. This morning, my physical therapist worked on trying to move the fluid around so my body would reabsorb it. It hurt like crazy but she was successful. The areas around my scars are tight and have little electrical shocks running through them. This is ridiculous! I'm 17 weeks post op and this shouldn't be happening. I realize that I had ... Tue, 23 May 2017 23:04:37 EST Progress Update #15 I am now 16 weeks post op. It has been a long and painful recovery. I'm in my 4th week of outpatient physical therapy. Yesterday, for the first time, I felt like I was making progress. I'm pushing myself, sometimes a little too much, to achieve more. All of the scarred areas are still quite painful. Sigh! My last open wound is close to being closed. The orthopedist said I can go into the pool now but he's not the one who will risk infection, I am. No thank you! I'll wait until that ... Wed, 17 May 2017 09:56:23 EST Progress Update #14 I have mixed feelings about the amount of time it has taken for my leg muscles and scar tissue to calm down after my Thursday physical therapy session. I know that some amount of pain during and after physical therapy is normal. The amount of pain I experienced Thursday, Friday and part of Saturday seems a bit over the top to me. In fact, it scared me. I've decided that I need to talk to my therapist this coming Tuesday, to hear her thoughts regarding my physical reaction to strength trai... Sun, 30 Apr 2017 20:21:58 EST The Wedding My daughter made a beautiful bride. <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Her gown sparkled and her face glowed with happiness! We all had fun getting our hair and makeup done. (Bride, me, and bridesmaids.) We had a limousine pick us up after we were finished and we drove to a friend's home to dress in our finery. The photographer took pictures while we got our hair and makeup done and again after we dressed. I was blin... Fri, 28 Apr 2017 09:18:36 EST Progress Update #13 The wedding was beautiful (pictures later) but the schedule we kept was grueling. Hubby and I are exhausted still. The big thing we have noticed is that after five days of constant activity, we don't bounce back like we did when we were younger. Aging isn't for sissies! <BR> <BR> I started outpatient physical therapy on Tuesday. My therapist got a chance to see what my leg looks like in all its swollen, inflamed glory. She was shocked at the amount of scar tissue from the soft tissue da... Fri, 28 Apr 2017 08:11:50 EST Progress Update #12 My progress is currently a real mixed bag. I have lots of highs and lows. Today, I had my final visit with wound care. I am totally finished with home care. That leaves me temporarily on my own for physical therapy. <BR> <BR> Two days ago, I had a check up with my primary. My thyroid level was too high, which is to be expected because of my three weeks in the hospital without proper medication. My doctor was surprised that it is as good as the current level. It will improve with time. ... Thu, 13 Apr 2017 20:15:01 EST Progress Update #11 I walked around the antiques fair in town and......drumroll.....I drove today! I drove for the first time in 3 months! WooHoo!!! Sun, 9 Apr 2017 12:20:52 EST Progress Update #10 This has been a big week for me. On Tuesday, I was released from home health physical therapy. I am now at a fully functional level. The therapist gave me several sheets of exercises that I can do by myself. I'm still having pain and swelling issues. The therapist said that what I am experiencing is normal for the amount of soft tissue damage I've experienced plus the normal swelling from the knee replacement. She suggested that I may want to wait to do out patient physical therapy, unti... Thu, 6 Apr 2017 09:21:54 EST Progress Update #9 Progress is still slow but now it is more steadily going in a positive direction. I have developed a huge amount of scar tissue from all of my open wounds. I find that so scary since the scars are red and painful. The incision from the surgery is great and right on track with healing. The problem comes from all of the complications. I honestly don't know what we will do about it. <BR> <BR> I have finally reached the "functional" level in my home therapy after weeks of therapy. I'm stil... Sun, 2 Apr 2017 09:28:06 EST Progress Update #8 Yesterday, I met with the orthopedist. I had x-rays after I got there and then had an hour wait to be called back to see the doctor. It was an interesting visit. <BR> <BR> The knee's revision itself looks good. Another stitch worked it's way out of my incision and the doctor removed it. This is because my knee was so swollen after surgery, that some of the swelling hid a few of the stitches. That was the second or third one that has just popped out like that. <BR> <BR> I told the doctor... Fri, 24 Mar 2017 00:09:46 EST Progress Update #7 This week has been a tough one. I'm still fighting a cough and sinus issue that has left me short of breath and hacking. Yesterday, hubby took me to the doctor because I seemed to be getting worse instead of better. The doctor didn't like the sound of my cough but my lungs are clear. All of the drainage from my sinus infection is sitting above my lungs, pressing down on them from the top, which is why I am short of breath. She changed my medication to the stronger one (CVS messed it up th... Tue, 21 Mar 2017 12:25:23 EST Progress Update #6 I walked outside with just a cane (plus my therapist and a safety belt) today! I walked one block and was huffing, puffing and waddling on the way back. This upset me greatly. My therapist reassured me that it quite normal and by next week it will be much better. I am still bending at 107 degrees which is pretty good too. I couldn't believe how tired I got and winded , just by walking one block! Yikes! I have some serious work to do. <BR> <BR> My wounds are the big hold up and they cont... Mon, 13 Mar 2017 12:50:48 EST Progress Update #5 I had my 2 week follow up with my primary doctor late this afternoon. He was pleased that I have done quite a bit of healing but disappointed at the healing rate behind my knee. The location of that wound alone will slow the rate of healing. The doctor wants me to make sure that I keep the area clean and dry. The other wounds are healed on the surface of the skin, with the exception of one small area. Unfortunately, the area under the surface surface of the skin, is very hard and painful... Wed, 8 Mar 2017 23:25:59 EST Progress Update #4 Hubby has become concerned about me lately because I have been isolating myself. At first, it was for purely medical reasons. I was pretty sick for a long time. The danger of infection is also a huge concern. The complications from my surgery were pretty gross, painful, ugly and debilitating. I also lost an aunt, to whom I was very close. On the last day in rehab, my roommate coded and died, while I was right next to her. That was a huge trauma. I was angry with my surgeon for being slop... Sat, 4 Mar 2017 15:53:43 EST Progress Update #3 My progress in healing has been a mixed bag. Two steps forward and one step back. This week I have walked outdoors with my physical therapist, mastered the art of getting in and out of the shower, worked on upper body strength and frustrated myself by wishing my wounds would heal and my swelling would go down. <BR> <BR> The stronger pain medication has enabled me to push myself harder to reach my goals (within limits). I can now walk to the corner and back with very little difficulty. Whe... Thu, 2 Mar 2017 16:24:28 EST Progress Update #2 Finally, I am starting to make some good progress. My wounds still have to be constantly checked by a nurse, cleaned and treated with medicine. They are slightly smaller but are still weeping and bleeding. Some of them really hurt and others are fast approaching that awful itching stage. I don't know which is worse. There are purple scars all over the place from the wounds that have healed. They look like purple bruises. Weird! <BR> <BR> My big news is that, today, I was able to walk up ... Mon, 27 Feb 2017 17:44:48 EST Progress Update #1 Yesterday, hubby took me for a four week check up at the orthopedist's office. He was pleased that the wounds look better and that my knee is beginning to improve. He said that the wounds will take a long time to heal. <em>39</em> When I asked if I could go out in public he said yes but make sure wherever I decide to go doesn't have an issue if I gush blood. Oh great! That eliminates just about everywhere. I don't know if he was trying to be funny or what, but I fail to see the humor in... Thu, 23 Feb 2017 16:29:39 EST My Surgery Nightmare I had my revision replacement on January 24 as planned. Sometime during my surgery, I had an allergic reaction to something and when I returned to my room, I was covered with weeping, oozing blisters on the back of my leg and all over my bottom. The blisters caused huge amounts of swelling and horrendous amounts of pain. In fact, the pain from the blisters was so bad that I couldn't feel the pain from the replacement! The blisters would drain and refill over and over. My bedding had to b... Mon, 20 Feb 2017 15:50:37 EST Nervous But Ready The dogs are groomed and bathed, their beds are clean, our bed is clean and the laundry is done. I made gluten free cookies yesterday and the house smells wonderful. I froze the majority of them, ate a couple and packed a container to give to our friend next door. The grocery shopping is done. I bought food for the dogs and put it in the pantry, so they won't go hungry while I'm laid up. I will do my first antibiotic scrub of the day in a few minutes. Before bed, I will bathe, wash my hai... Mon, 23 Jan 2017 07:39:55 EST Up At 3am And Feeling Stressed I know why this is happening but all of my techniques have failed to work this morning at 3am! So I will ride it out the best way I can and take a nap later. Fear is a funny thing and often times not real rational, especially when you are tired. I think I will use distraction and see if I relax and,fall back to sleep. T minus two days and counting until my surgery! <BR> <BR> 9am <BR> I showered, dressed and read for a while. Then I fell asleep for an hour and a half. I almost feel huma... Sun, 22 Jan 2017 04:14:24 EST Practicing Anxiety Techniques The other day, I wrote about my surgery and the anxiety I was feeling. A good Spark friend wrote to me privately with some suggestions. They were consistent with what my stress counselor and I were working on, so I've added them to my repertoire of coping mechanisms. Knowing that I have a variety of options for dealing with my stress, is empowering. <BR> <BR> Last evening. Hubby and I had a lovely dinner out with friend Slenderella61 and her hubby. Stress has been messing up my eating pla... Thu, 19 Jan 2017 13:22:50 EST Surgery Plan And My Anxiety..... I will have to hand it to the professionals! They knew that this particular surgery is the type that can cause lots of pre surgery anxiety. My stress person went over lots of techniques and strategies yesterday, which is really helpful. I am up at 3am with anxiety. Let me qualify that with an explanation. With revision surgery on an existing knee replacement, there are many variables that come into play that just aren't part of an original knee replacement. Bones can break during the rem... Wed, 18 Jan 2017 05:09:48 EST Starting Surgery Prep Today Changing hospitals means a different preparation for surgery. I've never done a week of surgery prep before. The pre op department told me that it is a new MRSA protocol. H-mm Okay. I have to bathe with a surgical scrub until next Monday, when I switch to prescription antibacterial wipes twice a day and Tuesday once before I go to the hospital. No deodorant is allowed next Monday or Tuesday and no lotions or creams. My poor skin will be ready to peel off! The other thing I have to do i... Mon, 16 Jan 2017 13:24:55 EST Making (And Owning) Your Choices Is Liberating! I decided to try an experiment yesterday and it proved to be a successful way to make better choices. I decided that I need to cut back on the amount of sugar I consume. So all day long I said to myself, "I am choosing to skip the sugar. I don't have to, I can choose to be over weight instead. Nobody is telling me I have to watch my sugar intake. It is my choice to not eat that cookie (or candy etc.). I am in control." <BR> <BR> The result was that I stayed on track. Today, I have been... Thu, 12 Jan 2017 17:38:52 EST Pictures Of My Recent Craft Projects For the past several days, I have blogged about my latest craft projects. I have made all of the items in the pictures. The wreaths we made a few years ago. Everything else I made this week. <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Here are the wreaths on our front doors. <BR> <BR> <img src=" Thu, 5 Jan 2017 15:18:17 EST My First Pre Op Explains A Lot! This afternoon, I had my first pre op and it was with my primary care doctor. I explained that I feel like I'm sitting on a keg of dynamite because this surgery was cancelled once and rescheduled. By the time my surgery rolls around, I will have been waiting almost nine weeks to have it done. We discussed the fact that it was a blessing to have the surgery rescheduled because having this kind of tricky surgery was not a good idea two days before Christmas. This will be a tedious procedure ... Wed, 4 Jan 2017 23:49:23 EST Tuesday...... Hubby is feeling better today! Yay! We met good friends for a late breakfast and had a wonderful time. There's nothing like surrounding yourself with positive people to boost your mood. It was great. <BR> <BR> After breakfast, we returned home and I continued working on my craft project. Yesterday, I painted the buckets a medium gray color. They turned out to be very pretty. They were ready for me to start arranging flowers to fill all three buckets. I started out pretty gung ho but ... Tue, 3 Jan 2017 22:04:45 EST A Busy Day.... Today has been a very busy day. Hubby has been sick with the flu. I'm dreading the possibility that he might give it to me. With my rescheduled surgery looming on the horizon, the very last thing I need is to be sick. I did have a flu shot so, fingers crossed, maybe I won't get it. Hubby has been in bed since Friday and feels stir crazy. We went out for a quick breakfast and we're back in the house. I will probably air the house out tomorrow. <BR> <BR> I worked out in the yard this aft... Mon, 2 Jan 2017 18:09:09 EST The Day After Christmas Hubby and I have relaxed and kicked back today. My eating has been on plan! Yay! Lots of fruits and veggies today. Perhaps I'll have some sugar free, gluten free pumpkin pie later. It was delicious yesterday! I'm making a grocery list for fresh fruits and veggies. I'll go shopping either tomorrow or Wednesday. Mon, 26 Dec 2016 18:42:42 EST Merry Christmas! To all of my Spark friends out there, have a joyous day today. Let the joy in your heart carry you into the new year. I am blessed to have you in my life! <BR> <BR> Merry Christmas, Happy Chanukah, Happy Kwanza! <BR> <BR> <em>446</em> <em>443</em> <em>499</em> <em>500</em> <em>501</em> <em>247</em> Sun, 25 Dec 2016 09:10:51 EST My Holding Pattern....... My original plan was to be finished with my Christmas preparations by the end of November so that my scheduled pre op appointments would not cause any conflicts. I am proud to say that everything was accomplished and I was ready to roll before November 30th! That being said, the doctor's office called and cancelled my December surgery and rescheduled it for January 24th. So, I have this internal dialogue going on in my head that convinces me that it was a good thing because this way I get t... Sat, 24 Dec 2016 19:22:20 EST