Archive for May, 2012

Nightly fever

Posted on Tuesday, May 29th, 2012 at 8:16 am

The newest issue is the series of nightly fevers.  They start about sundown and continue until about 2 to 3 AM.  They’re low grade, usually less than a degree F, and aren’t particularly associated with any other symptoms.  This is common in post-surgical recovery, almost expected.  And the fact that that it is predictably cyclical shows that it is in all likelihood a healing response, and not a response to an infection.

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It’s not a show stopper, but it is putting a crimp in my style, making me feel a little weaker than I have been feeling in general.  And waking up at 3 AM, needing to change my wet shirt is no big joy either.  I’m making up for it in naps, but that isn’t exactly solid sleep.  Ibuprofen helps reduce the fever to where I don’t feel like I’m sick, but still I know it’s not 100% gone.

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I guess the thing that bugs me most is that it’s yet another thing to endure in a long string of endurances.  It’s by no means the biggest or the most debilitating, but it is the current one.  And it is damping progress in how well I feel, mostly from a lack of solid sleep.

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But I am still making progress.  I have more physical stamina.  I am stretching my stomach, slowly, but still some each day.  The fluid retention is dissipating, almost fully.  I walk with ease and am not getting winded.  So I can’t complain that I’m not getting better, as I am indeed improving day by day.  Sunday, I tabbed Deep in the West by Shake Russell in the key of G, singing and playing as much as needed to assure it’s where I want it.  Yesterday, I talked Helen’s arm off for a couple of hours, telling stories (with diversions) and didn’t tire from it.  So improvements continue.  Just wish the fevers wouldn’t nag my nights so.

Progress

Posted on Saturday, May 26th, 2012 at 12:42 am

Well, used a Fleet kit (bowel clensing) today and got rid of surprisingly little material in my large intestine, but also got rid of a surprisingly large amount of the medical toxins.  I blew out the pipes afterward, singing Past the Point of Rescue at full volume, and didn’t get toxed out from the effort.  It tired me a bit, but to be able to get to that point without toxins flooding my bloodstream was a blessing.  A major hurdle, and the water retention is fading too.

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I slept a lot today, mostly in small segments, like two hours at a time.  Everything has come together pretty quickly.  Hard to believe tonight that I have been out of the hospital for only three and a half days.  Getting to that stage, 13 days after surgery, where I have to not do stupid things.  I figure I’ll save stupid until after my meds run out (30 day supply).

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Thursday night’s jam was a remarkable show and display of love by the extended family.  Helen and I had a great time.  I sang harmonies with many of the songs, but I didn’t pick up guitar, despite the urge.  I saved that for after the purge.  It was something very special.

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Starting to get back to catching up online with downloads, now that I’m comfortable sitting at the desk again.  The abdomen doesn’t complain  too much now.  It’s still a little tiring to stay at it too long, but that is a good thing, part of the more subtle side of the exercise plan.  Each day has its gains.  Not many left to be had, mostly permanent healing.  I would like to stretch my stomach so I can eat more at parties, too.

Return to Bottomland

Posted on Thursday, May 24th, 2012 at 8:29 am

Back home at Bottomland.  And it’s been anything but mundane.

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Helen picked me up at the hospital after the doctor retracted the “pass a stool and get released” ruling, after 36 hours of enforcing it.  The reason is to insure that the intestines, which were separated from the abdominal wall during surgery for access and set aside, don’t knot up on themselves, the attaching membranes no longer intact the anchor them down.  Two factors, no solid food for six plus days shrinking my stomach to the size of a tennis ball, and lots and lots of morphine (a natural source of constipation) stopped my bowels like “I-35 at noon”, something I’m now trying to reverse for a flush of my body of the whole affair, the last step of the process.  The doctor did a manual examination and found my abdomen to his liking and signed the release.

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It felt very good to be back out in the world, seeing the old and familiar route home, aged ten days since I last saw it.  On arriving home, the grass was ten days taller.  Helen turned around a short while later and went to keep a doctor’s appointment, expecting to be back in a couple of hours.  That couple of hours turned into a couple of days, as she checked into the same hospital (different location) for tests for leukemia, which the doctor diagnosed.

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So my role as a quiet healing person turned into command central like an avalanche. I was e-mailing, calling, taking care of the animals, consoling and questioning, and all the rest of the parts of the job, like washing my own clothing as needed.  It was a definite balancing act to handle the jobs at hand without overdoing my healing body.  Fortunately, I’m a tough old bird.

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The next morning, parts of the extended family showed up, and while some went to stay with Helen to support her, other came here to tackle the neglect of the property and empty the greenhouse of plants doomed to fry if left in there at the approach of summer  The crowd grew as the day moved on, progress became obviously visible, equipment got repaired as needed,  an amazing display of love.

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Before day was done, it had worn me out, and I retreated to bed.  Helen got home late, before midnight.  I managed to finally get some real sleep.  So now, I’m back to the job of getting well and flushing my system of medical/trauma toxins.  In the meantime, I’ll slowly start catching up on missed daily routines.

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I’ll be in the audience at the jam tonight.  I’m not quite up to performing yet.

Seton Hospital

Posted on Saturday, May 19th, 2012 at 10:18 am

It’s been almost a week since my 61 year old aorta was removed from my body and replaced with a synthetic one of the proper size.  My natural one had expanded to four times its proper diameter and was pressing against my right kidney, causing intense pain, uncontrolled vomiting, and other unpleasantries.  Helen got me to the hospital in time, where I had a CAT scan, found the cause, and lost consciousness from an injection.

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Each day since I woke with this scar from stem to stern has been an adventure in endurance.  I learned what opiates were all about.  Interesting, but no thanks.  I understand a certain genre of art better, but I hope it remains my sole encounter.  The hardest part is the lack of food, mostly due to blood pressure.

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I’ve been keeping a positive attitude as much as I can.  One thing I learned is that no one like a cranky patient, so I’ve kept my spirits high and the nurses on my side.  The doctor is being very conservative about what I’m allowed.  This has me dreaming of Morelia’s Enchillada Cremosas with a passion.  The act of taste deprivation is no fun.  So is forced fasting.  It’s not the primary healing, but rather secondary issues, such as blood pressure and water retention that is his main focus.  The good news is that the rest of my organs appear to be in good condition.

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Everyone is being very supportive and glad to hear that I’ll survive.  Lots of phone calls and a few visits.  I see how much I mean to people, and that means a lot to me.  I dodged a bullet on this one, and any thoughts that I’ve lived long enough have vanished.  I still have work to do in this life.  It’s worth the endurance.

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One thing that is encouraging is that the admissions people say that I’ll probably be eligible for 100% financial support.  Can’t beat that with a stick.

A farewell to plumcots

Posted on Tuesday, May 8th, 2012 at 7:46 am

A storm blew through last night, very windy from the storm’s downburst.  and  it took out 80% of the plumcot (hybrid of plum and apricot) tree’s limbs, along with 100% of the fruit that was growing fat and nearing the point of starting to ripen.  I picked all the fruit and brought them in in hopes that they will ripen.

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It also blew a lot of apricots from the two apricot trees, but the crop was so bumper that it needed badly thinning.  So that is a good thing, as some were already ripening with a 1 inch diameter.

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All in all, the storm didn’t do a lot of damage.  I could  have done much more, considering how intense the downbursts were.  It was a wild dance last night for about half an hour.  For the wildness, it could have dropped more than  a third of an inch of rain.  But add it to the third of an inch of rain the night before, and it’s welcome, since April was rather dry.  Memories of last year’s drought had started creeping into my mind.

More Nursoda

Posted on Thursday, May 3rd, 2012 at 6:33 am

Got Aina and Flish by Nursoda recently.  I’ve got quite a collection of his stuff, most everything he’s released.  I should do something with them, if I can find the time and energy.  It would certainly be fun.

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Rendered in Poser.

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Stoned again

Posted on Tuesday, May 1st, 2012 at 12:18 pm

Third session of kidney stones started Saturday, before the show.  Monday was the big dump, some 25-30 grains in a single flush.  And I still feel it.  I suppose the big ones will follow as the kidney dilates.  I am tired of this.

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But the show was fun.  Recorded audio for all three sets.  Recorded video for Nani Wahine, but it turned out dark in the shadows, as I forgot that there is a night mode setting.  First camera use, and I’m not as impressed with it as I first was, but I’m sure I’ll warm to it as I learn how to use it in the barn at night.  But the Nikon was easier, even if it didn’t record as long.  I still have the audio and video to edit.  Not exactly spry, so it may be a few days.

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That’s okay, I have new movies to watch as I recover.

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Started a new iPhoto library at the first of the month.  The old library was taking forever to update and close.

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Nursoda has a new character, Aina.  I’ll have to deposit a few of the dollars that I made doing sound and posters in the bank to cover it.