Happy New Year

I’ve been reading so many Facebook posts from friends and friends of friends, all saying what a terrible year 2016 was, and how they can’t wait for 2017 and how it better be better. Here’s my response:

Even throughout the dark days I did have in 2016, and there were many, and all the awful things that happened in the world, you won’t hear me put the year down, because there were also so many good things that happened too.
I prefer to spend my energy focused on the good – all the people who came together after every tragic news story. All the people who came together to mourn and tell personal stories after each celebrity passed away – stories of their charitable giving we knew nothing about, or how they reached out to others in ways we didn’t know. I prefer to remember the spirit of humanity at work at Aleppo, or the number of people who gave to help others this Christmas, even if it was a sacrifice for themselves.
It’s too easy to say “2016 was horrible” because the media makes it easy when they bombard us with horrible stuff. Sometimes you have to dig deep to find the good stuff, but it’s worth it. So, that’s what I do, and that’s why I’ll never say it’s been a terrible year. It’s been an amazing year, in so many tiny, fabulous, courageous ways. And I expect even more in 2017.
To anyone reading this, Happy New Year. My wish for you is more of everything that makes you happy. Stay safe as you celebrate and remember:
there is always hope

I Have A Date For Hip Surgery!!!!

Oh, happy day!!!  After a very long wait, I have a date for hip replacement surgery for my right hip!!! February 7th is the big day, and Dr. Stephen Burnett is going to be my surgeon. All orthopedic surgeons in Victoria practice out of one office called Rebalance. My actual surgery will be at the Royal Jubilee hospital.
Because I have already met with the Triage Surgeon, I’ve already seen all the other people I needed to, because of my complex medical issues, such as the Endocrinologist regarding my Diabetes, and I’ve had my heart tests done as well. I meet with Dr. Burnett on January 16th, so we can go over the particulars of my surgery, any issues of concern (such as my Fibromyalgia, the fact I have D.I.S.H. on the thoracic spine (bone spurs that look more like melted candle wax), and the problem with my right knee (the loose body that causes my knee to collapse if I’m not wearing a brace). He’ll tell me how he’ll approach the incision (front or back), how long he expects the surgery to last, any complications he expects he might run into, etc. and how long he thinks I’ll be in the hospital (generally only 2 days, in my case, possibly 3-4)
I’ll also have a separate meeting with Anesthesiology to discuss pain control. I’m already taking fairly high doses of opioid medication right now, so we’ll discuss a pain management plan. I can take morphine, but I also need to take Benadryl and something for nausea if I do…not really a problem, more an inconvenience.
I have a friend who is also having this surgery done, a month before me. I’m hoping to be able to get the lowdown from her on everything…how it feels, what the pain was like, what the moving and walking and stuff are like, therapy after…basically everything. It’s my hope to blog about all the details, as this was really the main reason I started a blog. I couldn’t find any “real person” accounts of the experience from start to finish. I hope to be able to make this useful for others who will be having surgery, so they have a good idea of what to expect.
So…2017 is going to start out as a very good year for me. In the meantime, I want to wish you a very Merry Christmas!! May you and your loved ones be blessed at this most wonderful time of the year. And as always…never give up.
There is ALWAYS hope!

A Classic Christmas Carol – Rewritten (And Other Stuff)

Hello. I’ve been missing in action for the last several weeks due to a deep depression that hit and saw me in bed exhausted and unable to function much beyond the basics. I think it was probably a severe Bi-Polar Disorder low; I was diagnosed with this about 9 months ago after living with it for a number of years. I’ve been on Seroquel since the diagnosis with good results but still have episodes that pop up just out of the blue.

I was worried about this because I also had a flare up of my Trigeminal Neuralgia, and I was scheduled to fly to Calgary on November 18th to visit my dear sister/friend Charlotte to celebrate her birthday on the 19th. Somehow, everything came together, I felt well enough to go, managed the flight okay (with the help of friendly Westjet agents and Flight Attendants and fellow passengers when it came to my carry on bag), and once I landed in Calgary and got my first hug from Charlotte, all was right in the world again!

Spent a full week with her and her (my) family, had dinner with my son Troy and in general, just enjoyed a great week “at home” at my second home. Charlotte’s son Sam is 12 now, almost taller than me and continues to amaze me with his accomplishments. Sam is a multiple amputee from birth, missing both hands and one foot. I’ll share a post about him soon because he deserves one all about him. Sam is the very first multiple amputee cadet in all of Canada!!! We’re all SO proud of him!!!!

After returning home, I ended up sleeping for 3 days, only getting up for pee breaks and an occasional bite of food (Ray makes me milkshakes with Carnation Instant Breakfast in them). I finally started feeling alive again by day 4, in time to realize how incredibly sore and achy my hips are. Which led to the re-writing of the classic Christmas song “I Want A Hippopotamus For Christmas” to my version, called “I Want A Hip Repla-cement For Christmas”. Feel free to sing along!

I Want A Hip Replacement For Christmas

I want a hip repla-cement for Christmas
Only a brand new hip for me will do
Don’t want jewels
No outdoor gardening tools
I want a hip to take for walks
Without pain, that’d be new

I want a hip repla-cement for Christmas
I don’t think Santa Claus will mind, do you
Then he and I can twirl
And I’ll be a giddy girl
So get me to the Doctor
That’s the smartest thing to do
I can see me now on Christmas morning
Creeping down the stairs of wood
I won’t need to use my walker
And I can throw away my crutches
When my hip does what it should!!
I want a hip repla-cement for Christmas
Only a total brand new hip will do
No more aches and pain
To drive this gal insane
I’ll only love a brand new hip
And a brand new hip will love me too!!!!!!!
Thank you, thank you very much
Check back later for touring dates when I take this show on the road!!
and like I always say….
there is always hope!