Sunday, January 12, 2014

Prepping and Waiting

I'm not very good at waiting.  This will come as no shock to those of you who know me personally, but for those who don't I must confess to not always being the model of patience and tranquility.  Hubby and I like to claim that he has my share of patience, by way of excusing my lack and explaining his abundance.  Right now I am stuck waiting for surgery to finally be rid of this extra large kidney stone.  

Last week we saw the large stone specializing urologist, and were scheduled for extraction on Jan. 30, which seems so very far away.  Especially since the ureter stent they placed to help drain the kidney affected by the stone causes a lot of bladder irritation and pain on evacuating.  I've finished my course of aggressive antibiotics, so there's only the phenazopyridine to fight the discomfort.  I'm diligently fighting off a cold, constantly hacking and coughing and blowing my nose so it can't settle into my chest.  There's not much else I can do to try to be ready for surgery.  

But there's plenty to help me pass the time in between.  Like seeing my endocrinologist last week, and being thrilled to confirm that my blood sugars have been in great control, my A1c value decreased from the high sixes to 6.3, and getting permission to drop from four glucose checks a day to two.  It's fantastic to get some good news for a change.

A trend we will hopefully continue Monday, when I see my oncologist for those all important blood tests, that will, I'm sure, continue to show NO signs of any dangerous changes to my tumor or the rest of my system.  The lab will also be running some tests ordered by my endocrinologist to keep an eye on my somewhat questionable thyroid hormone levels.  Let's hope that turns out to be a non-issue.

Meanwhile the kids are all doing excellent in school, all A's and B's, so we took them out to celebrate their report cards last night, and to spend some of their gift money on the toys of their choice.  The weather took a break from sub-zero wind chills to make that a pleasant afternoon, and I never forget to be grateful that I can still go and do those types of things with my family.  If I'm going to spend a couple more weeks waiting for surgery, at least they will be good weeks.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

New Year's Resoluteness

It's been a hectic end to 2013, what with this whole kidney business threatening to keep me hospitalized in late December and almost ruin yet another special day with my neverending medical crises.  Fortunately, I got out in time for Christmas, and also had New Year's at home.  

Now we are kicking off 2014 with our game faces on.  Monday is my pre-surgical consult with a urologist specializing in very large stones, followed later that day by my pre-surgical anesthesia consult, so that everything will be in order for whatever date they set my kidney stone removal to be.  Wednesday brings routine Endocrinology check-ups for both hubby and me, and the week after that is my six month Oncology follow-up with those all important lab draws to check for non-specific tumor markers and other traces of potential problems in my blood.  Next up we'll need to schedule the entire family's eye exams that we're more than a year late for, and then see about finally getting us all in to visit the dentist again, two things that were allowed to lapse in the face of more urgent issues and lack of time and energy to get them done.

People are always making lots of resolutions this time of year, usually about their health - eating right, exercising more, losing the magic number of pounds they think will make them happy inside their skin.  After seeing the way my oversized body has weathered the shitstorm of problems thrown at it the past three years, I'm inclined to not make any resolutions about my size anymore.  Clearly my shape is not going to change much, and if it continues to survive every hurdle it faces, this body suits me just fine.  

Nope, my resolutions have less to do with body changes and more to do with horizons and possibilities.  I would like to again be able to handle car travel and hotel stays, enabling much-needed trips to California to visit my hometown and family.  I'd like to cautiously invest a little money in small improvements to this house, so that we can once again attempt to sell it and relocate to a single-story, handicap-friendly home.  I'd like to see my family visit more of the fun and educational attractions our city has to offer, more often, even if outings with my big power chair are physically exhausting and tedious to plan.  The memories are worth it.  

I hope you set your sights on interesting horizons in 2014, and that the coming year brings your goals and dreams within reach.  Never settle for less than your best, and always strive to surround yourself with people who uplift you, not tear you down.  And may we all find ourselves healthy, satisfied, and still full of hope once again when this year is done.