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General Hospital

I have been watching General Hospital since I was a small child. Perhaps my entire life through, my mother and sisters. Over the years us girls watched Days of our Lives and General Hospital. I am the only one who still watches. I tried forcing it on my kids over the kids. My oldest watched until a few years ago. My son stopped the second he realized what I was forcing him to watch. My youngest watches with me faithfully. I know I can only count on that for so long so I will continue to cherish it.

For the past few years the story lines have been very predictable, repetitive and at times downright annoying. Somehow, my morbid curiosity forces me to watch each day and at times look forward to it.

The past few weeks, the show is on fire! It is finally interesting, finally semi-unpredictable and truly entertaining. I am glad I spent 40 years paying attention as now they have brought back old storylines and infused into current storylines and they actually halfway make sense, and they have been able to pull old footage and ad into make the stories more believable.

I am impressed and a little sad that it is Friday and only one more episode for the week.

The good thing is there is plenty of tv to keep me watching. Gotta love NetFlix.

And here’s to the future….

After almost 15 years I saw a Physiatrist, I used to see one a long time ago. At the time I suffered from not only depression and anxiety but self worthlessness. That was a long time ago. I have learned a lot about life and a lot about myself in these years. I no longer see myself as worthless, I actually think I am a pretty cool person. I am kind, well mannered(for the most part) and I can hold up my end of most conversations and when I can’t I stay quiet, crack a joke or admit I have no idea what you are all talking about so I am just going to sit back and listen.

I think all that that makes for a little clue as to how I might think, but it does not. It would be improbable to think that someone would be able to delve into my brain and get what is going on in there. It can be a scary place sometimes, mostly just mixed up, hyped up type thought but then there is some dark and depressing,sad and confusing stuff in there also.

Most people think I just go about my days but there are a handful of people who really know me. They know that I fight depression and anxiety and although I give it a good fight now and again it gets the best of me. In the past few years I have learned that no matter how I am feeling, put to the test, I will react and take care of whatever I need to do. If we have appointments, I get to them. If we have bills I figure out a way to pay them, if we have food I cook it, if we don’t I figure out how to get it and so on. So I do fight it, so what does that really mean, nothing on the big swing of things I still need help. I still have days where it is a complete blur and I have no clue how the things got accomplished and sometimes I wonder what exactly I said to all the people I encountered.

Well as it seems, the doctor did not admit me to an institution so that is a good sign. He also did not deny that I have had these issues a long time and even though I fight it on my own, I don’t need to , he is there and he will help to the best of his ability. I need to understand that just because you take a pill it does not lessen the fact that your kid needs to endure one more huge surgery before the summer is out and she really does not want to do it. It does not change the fact that I need to work, yet how can I work. I need to take care of business yet it is stressful not having a clue how. I need to understand just because a take a pill it is not magic it will not take away real life, however it will help, it will make me more evened out and less I can accomplish the world today and tomorrow and then I can’t get off the couch for three days. It may not make it perfect but it will help me to help myself. I believe that is a really good starting point.

I also learned that me talking to people about my issues and what is going on in my mind is a good thing and that seeing a counselor will help me work out some of the emotions I have and if anything give me a good sounding board. I need that.

I have so many stories I would like to share. So many things I would like to talk about , but then people would know, then people judge, then people would look at me and have something say about things that are past tense and even if you would have done differently, I am not supernatural and I can’t go back and change events, it is simply not an option. Although that would be kind of cool. I watch  a lot of Supernatural and Charmed and the different powers are all kind of awesome, but I know better….

So I will try out some new medication, hope it works, hope I don’t break out in hives like the others in the past, and hope to be able to see my future in the bright way I would truly like to see it…

Team Angel- Spinal Fusion

Thanks for the reminder Vater Syndrome!

These are the Before and After X-Rays of my daughter’s spine. Actually they are after and before as the pictures are posted.

Just last week we had her spinal fusion done. It was about a 4 hour procedure, although this is Angel we are talking about so you probably already know it was not really 4 hours. We got to the hospital ahead of time about 5:45 am and the day hospital opens at 6. By 6:20 they are looking for a good spot to put an IV. I explained to them she is a very hard stick. Even though they heard me they really were not listening to me. Not one of the 4 nurses could get a good vein. Don’t get me wrong the nurses found veins. They just did not work from all the scar tissue. The reason I tried telling them she is a hard stick. Eventually the Anesthesiologist Doctor came in and popped one right in an artery. I guess he can do that. At this point she was slightly overwhelmed but she is getting older now and learning to deal with the fact that she can’t stop all the doctors and nurses to come in when they need help. That is overwhelming for Angel she hates that. At home(TGH) they know that, at The Joes as Angel calls it they are learning.

So now the procedure is supposed to start at 7:30 and in fact they do take her back at that time. The nurse told me I will call you once the procedure actually starts and then each hour until it is completed. I was happy with that. I figured I would be less stressed getting the calls. I go back to the waiting area with me son and a gentleman from the hospital approaches me and asks if I would be willing to be part of their pilot program , updated text messages. I thought it was a great idea so I agreed. Now time is passing, My Dad shows up, now we are sitting waiting, my son, my Dad and myself. I am starting to worry why have they not called out yet? What is going on? Finally just after 10 am I get a call from the nurse explaining that the procedure is just now starting as they could not find a spot to put a central line, All of her access spots are shot and they struggled to find one.  It truly breaks my heart as I told them this from jump.

In any event she was comfortable and did not know anything going on as she was already sedated. Each hour or so they called out and each time assured me she was doing great. I also received a few text messages in between so I was super informed. I think the texting is great as it is not as scary as the phone some how or another.

When she first came out of surgery we were fortunate enough to know the recovery nurse. She has known Angel since she was a little baby and was quite familiar with her past health experiences. She recognized right away that her potassium was way too high for a Renal patient and immediately worked to get that reversed. By that evening her lab were almost back to normal. That was a good thing as any stress to Stevie(her transplanted kidney) is scary stuff.

The next two days were spent managing pain , only to wind up having a reaction to one of the IV pain meds so lots of steroids and benadryl and eventually figured out another pain plan. By the third day she was out of the ICU and on the second day of Physical Therapy. By day 5 we made discharge plans and have been continuing to heal at home. Aside from the obvious pain she is doing wonderful.

We are already noticing some differences, such as she is taller, her ribs are no longer sticking out in the front and back making her shirts fit wonky as she says. She said no longer feels the pressure in her lungs she was feeling from the ribs pushing and she is now practicing being straight which is quite different than it feels.

I knew this would be a big surgery, I was not surprised by the amount of blood she needed, or the issues getting the correct plan for pain. I was totally surprised by how quickly she was able to shift herself and put full weight on her legs.

Tomorrow she goes to get her stitches out and speak with the doctor about the amount of pain she is still currently having and the best way to manage it and hopefully get clearance to go back to teleclasses as the more you miss the harder it is to make up in school.

@TeamAngel

BBQ Brisket

I found this picture among my own, although I don’t shred my brisket on a board, so I am guessing this must be from somewhere online I saved for one reason or another. Anyway credit to google I guess.

Yesterday I was heading to Publix , our favorite grocery store. I told my daughter what you you like for dinner tonight. We were thinking Steak Fried Rice. So we went straight for the steaks only to see we were not impressed with any we saw for that meal, however there was this brisket just sitting there, moved from its corrected spot, looking like a lost item that will probably not get purchased. I moved it back to the right area to save that fate only to see there were some very nice pieces that were half the price they were last time I purchased.

Dinner plans changed, BBQ Brisket, which I make in the crockpot so really it should just be pulled brisket with bbq or crockpot brisket, Whatever you want to call it , was delicious.

I started off by browning the meat with a little pepper and garlic, and some onion powder. I then added chopped, red, green, orange bell peppers and chopped onion. Then I added a can of Rotel tomatoes with Chile Peppers. Once the meat was browned to my liking I added it to the crockpot. I put the veggies I added a little bbq sauce and turned it on high. About 4 hours in I turned the meat and added more bbq sauce. Then I let it continue to cook until my son was about to cry I was starving him to death. See he is 17 and quite capable of making his own food but when I make certain meals, he reverts back to that little boy who liked being spoiled a bit. My daughter was patiently waiting but she uses her head. If it is a crockpot meal she knows she is going to smell all day and wait forever to eat. I tell them it is anticipation and they should learn to embrace it, they tell me it is torture…

When the meat is ready I take it out of the crockpot, shred it, remove any fat that I may have missed and add it back to the sauce and if needs anymore flavoring, I attend at that time then I let it simmer it the sauce while I make a quick pot of rice, or yellow rice or in last night’s case it was mac and cheese. I will admit it has been about a year since I have made boxed mac and cheese and I bet it may be 10 years before I buy it again. Totally lost my taste for it, would rather have plain egg noodles or rice with that meal anyway.

Learning to cut back on sodium is something I have been working on for years, as my daughter was on dialysis for 8 years, but I never really cut it out I just cut back and for as little as she eats it always worked but now that she is older and eating more I am truly learning to cut it out where I can, buy lower sodium versions of certain items and use fresh ingredients for flavors as much as possible. You would be amazed the flavor that comes from a chile pepper.

Kashmir…..

Shared from Youtube, if I need to state that to be on the up and up and all that.

So there are some days where no matter what your mind is a blur and you just need to escape it somehow.

Just got home from pre-op with my 12 year old. She is going in to have her scoliosis corrected. They will be putting in titanium rods and fusing a good part of her spine after they straighten out her ribcage.

I have known about this surgery for a very long time. It was scheduled for 6 months ago but she was not healthy enough to proceed at that time. She had her native kidney get infected and months of antibiotics that eventually led to surgery.

Anyhow after this day, I still had to meet up with her teacher and have a little school. See hospital homebound is a great program with little funding. If students miss days they lose funding, when a child misses on certain weeks it makes bigger impacts and this was one of those weeks. So we rushed to get in a little school and just now it’s 5 in the evening and I am quite thankful I threw dinner in the crockpot this morning.

I have several things I should be doing right now but quite frankly I am in my room, with my door shut and the music blasting as loud as my half broken sound system will go.

When my mind gets this stressy as I call it there are a few things I can do and one of the first ones is always blasting something that will bring me to a different time, a different place a mindset that was free and simple, no real responsibilities, no real people actually counting on me for anything.

The time and place right now in my mind is a much simple fun time, back of Lorenzo’s alley way on 249th and Union, hanging out sipping beers and blasting music, my first introduction to teenage life, my now I am old enough and cool enough to stand in a street alley, freezing my butt off killing myself with smoking and drinking and thinking there is nothing better than this. My life free and simple.

Blasting music from this time of my life is so easy for me, so familiar and yet so so far away. 25 years since I lived in NY 25 years since I really had friends, people to hang around with people who believed in me and trusted me. My childhood, teen neighborhood friends, school friends and all that.

In the years since, I have been married twice have 3 children and have surely had my ups and downs over these years .I would not trade them for anything as I love my children more than I could ever imagine an emotion even existed for, but today I just want to hide blast some Zeppelin or the Ramones and ignore the real life that exists on the other side of my door.

 

How does this work? If I want to write a novel?

I have been thinking of all the experiences of my life. The experiences that I have lived, the experiences that I read about, the experiences that others have shared with me. This all lives inside my brain. In the place I know there is like a whole series of novels in there , but how. How do you separate the real from the fiction and not crossover lines of deceit? How do you write an entertaining novel, a story someone enjoys reading based on things you know without sharing parts of your story that intertwine with other people’s stories.

I feel like it would be a lot more fun to tell the tales I would love to share, embellished to hide any real identities and enough to add some of the fun stuff that intrigues you to continue reading a story.

I have not always been an avid reader, as a matter of fact I suck in that department all together. I read a lot as a teenager, required stuff and stuff friends offered that they liked. I preferred to read a magazine or talk or something else. It was only in the recent years that I found out how much I enjoy writing. I was a class clown. I went to school to hang out and once 10th grade hit, at the request of the guidance counselor , I joined the CO-OP Program. You go to school one week, and work one week for the entire school year. You get paid not as much as if you just worked there but it was a paycheck, and you got skills experience. We believed that mattered at that time, only 25 -30 years ago.

In addition I had been working at the gas station after school and on the weekends, also back then it was full serve, you actually made min wage and tips, I racked up being a young teenage girl working in a gas station in the cold, in the rain, whatever and I milked it, really milked it. On school weeks I took, how to balance a checkbook, math. I took reading and study hall and aerobics and lunch or whatever I was forced to take. Science and History,although history probably had my attention the best. Never knew it then but looking back at my life I was ADHD as best as you can be. And in addition I do not hear correctly, but I hear perfectly so not really something someone would notice, other than me, I always knew something was wrong with me. I have never been properly diagnosed and have always been self medicating.

I have a lot of stories all tangled up and I would love to explore writing a novel, so if anyone can offer some pros to doing that please please comment and tell me, encourage me.

One Less Doctor

The following article was written by CPR Podcast. I shared it as it is a description of a Cardiac medical condition that my daughter had. When she was born they told us she may have some cardiac issues. They only ever discussed a heart murmur. Then when she was 3 they found that she had WPW- Wolfe Parkinson White syndrome. She had an extra pathway in her heart and it caused her heart to race and potentially could be very dangerous if not properly handled.

I came across this article this morning and wanted to share it as this week , we got exciting news from my daughters Cardiologist. He has officially discharged my daughter from Cardiac care. He stated that is just about 2 years since her Ablation and she is not showing any signs that the pathway has returned. He of course will be available if she needed him but as complicated as she is any progress is giant progress. Thank you CPR Podcast for the medical description of this condition. 

You are dispatched to a residence on a report of a child with an altered mental status. Upon arrival, you find an 8 year old boy lying on the couch responsive to verbal stimuli. His mother states he had been playing outside today when he came inside and complained of extreme weakness. He laid on […]

via Pediatric Tachyarrhythmias — CPR PODCAST