Sunday, March 23, 2014

It's A Hell Of A Life If You Don't Weaken*

Sorry I haven't posted in a while, but let me explain a few things and maybe y'all will bear with me.

When I fell and was hospitalized (trip #3 of four), I not only stretched things in my feet too far, I also killed off most of my nerve endings. So now, most of the top of my left foot, and most of my right foot are numb. However, I am susceptible to diabetic nerve pain - where those dead ends seemingly fire randomly and with great intensity - they're like being stabbed with long, very sharp needles. Sometimes I can "feel" the ring on top of my left foot where it was infected.

So my doctor prescribed gabapentin, which is indicated for this very situation. It's not really a pain pill, but it's close. One of the side effects seem to be to have a rubbery face, and the need to sleep. Even now, with a full belly from supper, I'm fighting it big time.

But it has been less than effective at times. Seems I've got a bit of RLS going on as well. Sometimes I get major needle pricks in fully functional nerves - like the ones in my nads. The epitome of uncomfortableness. So I'm on Lyrica as well now. And I get even more sleepy. And for the times nothing is working, I have a scrip for generic Percocet.

Okay, now we have a perpetually sleepy Jeffro. But that ain't all. My diuretics are timed as far as when I take them for maximum effectiveness. I take one, then within a half hour or so, I take the next one, then I take Klor-Con so it can hit when I need it the most. So when everything is working, I'm fighting a full bladder every half hour to maybe two hours max - but rarely. Should I decide not to take the diuretics until later in the day so I can be less bothered while getting in a doctor's appointment, shopping at Wally World and so on. This generally means less time peeing, so that means more water retained and less weight dropped in the day. So lately I've been trying to time my trips to Dodge later in my peeing cycle.

I've also taken to riding the fat man buggies at Wally World. I've no choice - I cannot walk that far, period. I also have a handicapped parking permit for my ride as well.

Speaking of weight loss - I broke the 400#  barrier earlier. This morning I was 393 something. Considering how much tea I've had today, I would not be surprised if I lose ground tomorrow morning.

Oh, and that liquid restriction I'm on? Turns out I need to drink more fluids. Oh, damn.

At the moment, my INR is too high and I'm off the rat poison until it drops. I'm still anemic as hell.

I've also got that hybrid elliptical up and running - I just need to feel stout enough to use the damn thing. I ran it for five minutes the other day and it liked to kill me off.

Heh. I just had to clean up a super long string of the letter "k" because I fell asleep for a moment and was apparently gonna use it or something. This is about the third or fourth time I've had to clean up some sleepy typing while trying to finish the post.

So that is my life. Sleepy all the time because I cannot stay asleep - I get it in discreet intervals where I wake up with perhaps the keyboard still depressed and the sudden and immediate urge to get somewhere, anywhere to relieve my over full bladder. It's race time then, baybee. I'm also ever so gradually losing that water weight so perhaps I'll be ready and in shape enough for the heart surgeon to fix my leaky heart valve.

So, my days and nights and weeks all tend to run together. Jed, I'm sorry I haven't finished the email I had written for ya - it just sorta got lost in the "routine," as it were. Jess, I hope this helps out some. I'm not doing the best I can, but it is a fight.

*One of the favorite sayings of an old gentleman I worked for in wheat harvest so many years ago.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Dusty In Here


The video tells the story far better than I could.

Malik Stewart and Steve McKee (Credit: Vanessa Schlueter)

Mitchell and Steve McKee (Credit: Vanessa Schlueter)
This kid was doing it all for his dad - he started working out in the summer and wasn't even sure if his dad would be alive long enough to reach his goal - to win the state championship and hopefully give his dad a moment that he would not remember or think of his dire situation. The other competitors all knew about Mitchell's goal, but what made everyone really emotional was when Stewart, who wanted to win a championship just as badly as Mitchell, went to the father to congratulate and hug him.

It's enough to give a person hope for our future.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Attack Kitteh!

Lux at rest - photo courtesy The Oregonian
Seems like this big ol' Himalayan (22 pounder) attacked a baby, scratching the forehead and drawing blood. Dad's immediate response was to kick Lux off the kid. Which apparently set the cat off:
A 22-pound cat named Lux had to be snared by Portland police officers after the owners said the ferocious feline attacked their baby in their Northwest Portland apartment Sunday.
Officers were dispatched to The Yards at Union Station in the 900 block of Northwest Naito Parkway just before 8 p.m., said Sgt. Pete Simpson, a spokesman for the Portland Police Bureau.
Dispatchers stayed on the phone while the couple locked themselves — along with their baby and the family dog — in a bedroom, Simpson said.
Owner Lee Palmer told dispatchers the 4-year-old male cat "has a history of violence," and had scratched his 7-month old son in the forehead.
Palmer said he tried to get the cat off his son: "I kicked the cat in the rear, and it has gone over the edge. He's trying to attack us -- he's very hostile. He's at our door; he's charging us."
The dispatcher asked her supervisor if it was OK to send police on such an unusual call. It was. Meanwhile, on the 911 tape, the cat can be heard screaming in the background.
When officers arrived, they entered the apartment equipped with a dog snare and watched as the large Himalayan darted into the kitchen where it jumped on top of the refrigerator.
Using the snare, officers were able to wrangle the cat (perhaps jealous of said baby?) into a pet carrier.
No one was injured in the fracas, including the baby.
"We are debating what to do," Palmer said Monday. "We definitely want to keep (the cat) away from the baby and keep an eye on his behavior."
According to a cat breeder website, Himalayans, or "Himmies," are "perfect indoor companions but they possess a playful side."
"I swear I have never seen anything like it," Palmer said.

Well, while I don't condone kicking the cat, I can understand. The thing was attacking his kid. If it were me, that cat might have been the first to achieve earth orbit without the use of rockets. Just sayin.'

But calling the cops? Sheesh. Man up, dude. Don't be such a pussy. Yeah, I went there!

Friday, March 07, 2014


YouTube link CBS News Link
Naw, just sweet. Take a break from politics, hate and discontent and just enjoy this one.

The story on CBS Evening News was longer and contained more information, namely at the end: the gentleman was asked what job he retired from.

He replied that he felt perhaps all this was atonement - he sold rotisseries.

Thursday, March 06, 2014

Eye Spy

Queen of all she surveys, Kitsey rests upon the cat tree her Main Minion purchased for her recently. A little elevation helps maintain her dominance over the domicile.
It burns. It burns so.

I...... I....... I......... I have no words.


Apparently Dolly wakes up to a brand new world every day.

Tuesday, March 04, 2014

There Are Days

Then there are days.

I probably should have my butt kicked for not posting any sort of update, but there really hasn't been much to talk about unless I whine. Mostly I struggle to lose several pounds, then the diuretics desert me and I gain it all back. Up and down, back and forth. Just lately, I lost two pounds per day for four days, then gained back four yesterday. I could tell it was gonna happen because my quantity and frequency of urination was not nearly enough. Today, things started out good, but kinda petered out, as it were. I still have to take the other half of my meds for the day, so there is hope that this day might be good or at least break even, but I won't know until I take my daily morning weight.

I have not been doing much in the way of exercising, either. As unpredictable as my legs are as far as just losing feeling and dumping me - I just do not feel comfortable outside walking around away from handholds and chairs to sit in to recover. I've already had one trip to the hospital when I trusted my legs too far, I don't care to repeat that. Next time I might actually break bones and the chance of a severe infection scares me as well. Don't wanna lose a leg because I figured I could make it.

I don't even try at Wally World anymore - I just grab one of the fat bastard lazy riding carts to shop. I can lean on a shopping cart and shop for a while, but I can't take the long distances in a SuperCenter. I did spend about an hour draped all over a shopping cart at the local grocery store the other day, and I pulled it off, but wow, did it ever wreck me. I was beat and useless the rest of the day.

So, I could see this lack of exercise was gonna be a killer should I let it go. So, I ordered this:

That would be this hybrid trainer. I figure I can sit or stand and work out my arms, too, depending on how I feel.

It should be noted that I hate working out with the heat of a thousand suns. I hate working out on machines even more. However, if I want to continue to occupy my little spot on this planet for much longer, that has to change, and change in a positive direction.

So, as soon as it's put together, away I go.

And I've really, really been a sodium Nazi with my food. I went through my cabinets the other day, and pretty much anything that was over ten percent minimum daily requirement for sodium went out the door. I gave it all to Cuzzin Tom, who will pick over what he wants and take the remainder to a food bank in Dodge City. It has been an education in and of itself finding out how loaded with salt our diet really is, and how some claims for heart health are pure bullshit. I'm talking to you, Campbells, when it comes to your heart healthy soups. How can it be heart healthy when your sodium contend starts approaching fifty percent of the minimum daily requirement? Like over forty percent? I read somewhere that when they came out with that line of soup that the sodium was considerably lower (but still high at over twenty percent and well above my cutoff of ten percent), but sales were down until they pumped a bunch of salt in for flavor.

I was buying buttloads of roma tomatoes and running them and other veggies - green bell pepper, onion, celery, mushrooms, carrots and so on into a veggie sauce and cook that down for the better part of a day. I had it all loaded up with a ton of spices, and to make tomato soup I just added some sodium free chicken broth. I'd been a big user of chicken and beef bouillon, but that stuff is basically salt with a flavor added. And I lucked out at the local grocery store - Wally World sure as hell didn't carry this. Hormel makes sodium free bouillon powders in chicken and beef flavors (Herb-Ox is the brand line). The store carried a box with some one cup packets. Turns out they have jars available, but no one around here carries 'em. Amazon sells it by the case, so I'm sitting on a case each of chicken and beef powders.

And Mrs. Dash's hotter flavors really add some zing in food - I've used it in sauces, soups and stews, and pretty much everything else as well. Most of my cooking now has a Tex Mex or Italian flavor with heat.

I even tried mixing hamburger and ground turkey. That worked well for meatballs in spaghetti, but to make a patty and eat that - fail big time. Having the sauce mask the lack of flavor is one thing, but when that crap stands alone - even when it had onion, bell pepper and spices it was crap.

Lesson learned.

And it turns out there is quite a variety of tomato sauces available in low sodium. It's far more convenient to have the canned stuff on hand, but the stuff I made really has that fresh sparkle to it.

I've also purchased a double boiler/steamer pot setup - not much sodium in fresh veggies steamed rather than the sodium loaded canned stuff, or even messing with the frozen.

I've always got fresh  fruit on hand as well - navel oranges, apples, pears, bananas and so on. Bananas really help with potassium levels - when you have to take meds to pee a lot, you deplete your potassium, magnesium and yes, even your sodium levels. So, I have to take prescription strength potassium supplement as well as magnesium vitamins as well. I had to laugh - my last blood test at the doctor's showed I was low on sodium. I can't win for losing.

But anyways, if your levels drop too much, you cannot believe the muscle cramps. Generally they start in my left hand - and if I'm lucky, I can grab it with my right hand and straighten out my fingers and maybe the impulse to cramp up passe. Or not, and I get cramps in my right hand, and just have to sit there and watch my fingers writhe out of control and in pain.

During my second to last visit to the horse pistol I had a cramping episode that lasted over two hours. I needed another Klor-Con pill, but that required doctor's orders, and it took that long to obtain permission. I did talk 'em out of a banana and a couple little tiny cans of tomato juice, but even that really requires doctor's orders, and those nurses are't gonna lose their jobs giving me something I'm gonna get and everyone knows it, but their asses would be out in the wind doing that without specific doctor's orders. This last trip I pissed off the entire process because I had some of my meds with me and I took what I needed rather than wait for two hours. That cramping episode only lasted a half hour instead of two or three.

I was a bad boy - violating hospital policy. I told 'em they could blow me - I had the solution with me and there was no sense in torturing myself just to follow their slow, ineffective thinking. The nurses really agreed with me, but they had to keep the official policy. Job security, yannow.

So, I am eating the correct stuff and frankly, it tastes pretty good. You might have a problem with no salt, but I've learned to get along without it in a healthy manner. I will be getting some exercise, too. I feel like I'm doing the right things or working on getting to that point, at any rate.

And as far as the bouncing weight - I did get back to my original weight after starting keeping records once, but I'm still about six or seven pounds below right now. And many tell me that it took months to get to this point, it's gonna take that to reverse the trend. Even so, when I gain my 'tude gets pretty low, and my need to post stuff here kinda evaporates. Just. Not. In. The. Mood.

But, overall, I'm mostly optimistic and even cheery some days. Hope y'all are doing well in these supposedly closing days of winter. Supposedly, at any rate!