Friday, October 28, 2011

Out of the boot and Epi-fied.

The good news-- my foot is healing and while it is not fully healed, I'm out of the Aircast boot.  Dr. W- said that if we didn't get me out of it, I would end up with mobility issues, particularly with my ankle.  He told me that things are healing, look great, I have good muscle support (or something like that) and to ditch the boot and get into a good supportive shoe :insert pointing at my tennis shoe: and NO FLIP FLOPS.  Um, it's about 46 F now and it was 30 this AM when I walked K- to the bus stop.  Don't worry.  I will not be wearing flip-flops.  I'm supposed to take it easy and "don't do anything crazy" and I'll ride it out and be okay.  I asked if he needed a follow-up and he said, "Not unless you do something dumb."  :insert Dr. smirk:  Okay then.

I gave him the bee sting story.  "Oh yes.  Well, then, you need epinephrine."  He explained to me IGG's and IGE's (I'm needing to research) and how now each reaction will only get worse.  I'm to take a dose of Benadryl and a dose of Zantac when I get stung.  Give it 15 minutes and if I end up worse/major . . . , I must do the EpiPen.  I also have extreme reading to do with that.  I did talk to the pharmacist who said that the instructions are very detailed and that if I had any questions whatsoever, to give her a call and she will go through it step by step with me.  (I may need back-up EpiPen knowledge here, Janeen.)  I do know that the little tiny purse that I own isn't going to cut it anymore and now I'll need to graduate to the bigger one that I have from long ago and far away.  Hooray!  I found it!!! It needs a good polishing and some mink oil and it will be good to go. 

A side story, but related-- my lovely aunt wanted me to go and get my feet fit for some specially made diabetic shoes so that she knew that I had excellent shoes to wear. Now, as much as I appreciate her thoughtfulness, I find nothing attractive about the shoes she wanted me to purchase and asked if she was insisting, may I please just buy another pair of Saucony? She said that was fine, she just wanted me to have good shoes. I have good shoes. My shoes weren't worn during the two months of casting because I didn't want to kill one and have one. Bless her heart.

So, I'm very carefully limping my way along.  I've now been slowed considerably, as I am back to building up the muscles in the lower portion of my leg.  I'm also cautious, as I don't want to re-break the metatarsal, as it is a very easy thing to do.

So I'm bootless and Epi-ful.  Have a great weekend!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

A 50% poverty rate.

My daughter attends our local public school.  She gets an education that is fantastic and I would never in a million years consider switching her to another place.  The school she attends has a 50% poverty rate.  I've known this for quite some time now, but that 50% poverty rate statistic smacked me squarely in the face this week and I can't take a child out of my mind.

While cruising around to gather the last of the t-shirt sizes needed for our walkathon prizes, I had to flip a few shirt tags because the two notices sent home went ignored.  There was one child, in a sling and an obviously too small shirt, that I needed to check. 

He was in the 4th grade and wearing a size 7 shirt.  He is well into a 10/12, if not borderline on a 14/16 for length.  I took a deep breath.  He's gotten to the age where I'm sure that kids notice.  I hope with everything in my heart that he is not made fun of for it. 

I was speaking with a couple of PTA board members about it.  The one suggested that I speak to the guidance counselor to make certain that he has a winter coat.

Mrs. W- stopped me today and T- does not have one.

:deep breath and with tears:

We'll be making certain that he's got a bag of clothes going home and that he will have a warm coat for winter.  Still, I sit in my warm house, typing on my pieced-together computer with an operable phone, beds, clothes, water, food, a child that really should consider herself as wanting for nothing (she doesn't have everything in the world, I promise, but materially she has more than some) and then there is T-. 

Belt out a prayer for him, eh?  Word has it that kiddo has a kind of tough life.  He's on my mind and in my prayers.  He has truly tugged at my heart all week long. 

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Goodbye old friend.

A girl and her borrowed dog.
K- called me at work yesterday.  Her voice sounded shaky and sad.  "What's up, babe?"  "Mom, Mike has to put Brandy to sleep.  She's going to die."  The child cried and cried, and I cried with her.  My coworker heard me talking to her and I upset her so much that she ended up crying.  Brandy had been suffering from congestive heart failure and had gotten to a point yesterday that Mike knew he needed to have her put to sleep.  I told K- to take my camera (please don't drop Mommy's good camera) and to see if it was okay with Mike if she takes a few pictures.  She did and Hubs took a picture of her with Brandy.  10 minutes after K- called, Hubs called to give me the scoop.  "You have to buy Mike something."  Shoot.  What do you buy a mourning guy when his dog dies?  I found him a 6-pack of NE Ohio micro-brewed beer-- Thirsty Dog!  (Had to go with a dog themed gift.)  Mike called later and cried and cried.  Oh, my how my heart broke for him.  We'll all be sad not to have Brandy hanging out in the shade and romping through the front yard with K-.  So sad.  :(

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Tales from the Trenches: The great travels of an Aircast boot.

It's gotten packed in mud.

It's been water-logged from a lovely walk through a puddle that I didn't see in the dark.

It's been over inflated.

And under inflated.

The people at work say that I can't sneak down the steps since I THUNK, THUNK, THUNK down them instead.

My people have bruises.  I accidentally walked on K-'s knee, I clocked Hubs in the knee cap (hard) when I flipped while sleeping and I've clocked him in the knee a few times on the couch while we were watching TV.

My people have literally gotten underfoot.  Hubs reports having toes rolled over with the Aircast like having them crammed into a vice.  I'm guessing that it doesn't feel good.

I've walked in poop twice now.  That calls for assistance in cleaning.  Hubs got it once and my sister got it once.

I have to pull myself far closer to the steering wheel than I should be (please no lectures about the air bags-- I'm short and it is something I'm too close to anyhow) so that I can depress the gas pedal without it being a full body experience. 

I'm out of the season where it smells like little kid foot.  It's cool enough now.

Speaking of, it has vent holes and sweet Pete when the cold wind blows through the holes.  Ventilation it has.  A bit more than I realized.  Eeek, it can get chilly!

I've learned the perfect way to make a 2 minute rain boot cover from a gallery bag, a pair of scissors and two tabs of packaging tape.  It's waterproof from up top, but not down below.

The kids at school (nearly all 500 of them) have stopped asking when I'm getting the boot off.  I think that they've given up.  I've been casted the entire school year so far. 

I think that the teachers have given up, too.

Either the straps are stretching or I'm suffering from atrophy.  Or both.  The straps pull a lot tighter than they used to.  I have no swelling, so that's also something else to consider. 

The seasonals at work don't notice that my foot is broken until I tell them.  Since the jeans cover the Aircast and my tennis shoes are the same color, most people don't notice. 

Joe threatened me today when he saw a ladder in my work area.  Yes, I had to climb up once (a tall step ladder) because Steve was there to hang my Christmas tree up for me.  I've been working off of two step stools (big area for my feet).  All I could think of was Dr. W- coming in (since he knows where I work) and busting me for being on a ladder. 

I forgot to loosen the straps last night and woke up with my foot feeling rather vice-crunched.  "Need. to. move. please," said my cramped toes. 

I may have mentioned this, but I cannot run in the Aircast.  Well, I suppose that I could if I really put my mind to it, but if Dr. W- doesn't want me walking decent distances, I'm thinking that running is out of the question, too.

It's fully unrelated, but I'm presently fighting a battle with a cold sore.  I'm hoping to win. 

With that, I have a PTA directory hanging over my head.  Must get typing.

Have a great day!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

The Happy 3rd Blogoversary of "Am I beginning to develop my grandfather's allergy to bees?"

Happy 3rd blogoversary to this little chunk of the internet.  It is on this day that I sit with a box of children's Benadryl rapidmelts next to me (store brand, thankyouverymuch) to see if I'm going to have anymore reaction to this yellow jacket sting I got yesterday.

You see, yesterday was pretty simple.  We went to my sister's house to enjoy a nice fall day, go to the pumpkin patch and hang out as a family and carve pumpkins.  As the kids were carving pumpkins, I was sitting on a little chair.  I had just hauled my aircast boot into a mini pile o' dog poo, and my sister was going to tend to the removal of said substance.  In the meantime, my boot was all undone and I was sitting watching and giving carving advice. 

Then, I felt something on my leg.  I gave my pant leg a quick brush and felt pain.  Hmmm.  That can't be right.  I'm thinking something is in there.  I decided to give the pant leg a big roll up, figuring that if I pushed it up, I would make matters worse.  My niece gasped when she saw what was going on. 

There was a yellow jacket trying to fly away, but it was completely attached to my leg by the stinger.  It flapped and flapped and I thought, "Crap.  What do I do?"  The kids were sitting there.  I didn't want them stung, so I gave it a quick swipe with my hand, then grabbed a hold of the aircast boot along the sides and stomped it to death with my healing broken foot. 

Mark, my sister's partner, looked and dashed for mud.  He tried pack it on.  Where I thought the sting was wasn't where it was actually at.  Then, we started packing the mud where it needed to go, but it wouldn't stick.  LeAnne and Mark went to the house hunting for a straw to "suck the poison out," but they could only find a crazy straw.  :)  They came out with baking soda paste, which worked for a few minutes, until Lily, the Pond House Dog, decided to be all loving and distressed at my pain that she took my baking soda paste along with her on her backside. 

My leg started getting splotchy and the darned sting hurt worse than I remember a sting hurting ever.  About 45 minutes after the sting, K- and I started off for home. 

Then my mouth started feeling funny. 

My throat wasn't swelling.  My tongue wasn't swelling, the area below my lower lip was swelling.   I decided to stop by the drug store to get Benadryl.  I hate the stuff, as it makes me feel like an ogreous zombie, but it was a must.  I couldn't tell if I should stop by the fire station or take a run to the ER.  It kind of freaked me out.  I took the Benadryl in the parking lot and hoofed it to the neighbors when we got home.  (The neighbor's partner is a nurse.)  While he wasn't home, Mr. D- was and told me he could see swelling in my lower face.  He made me call him to verify that Hubs arrived home. 


The Benadryl kicked in and in an hour and a half, the fuzzy, swelling feeling went away. 

Then, it came back.  I took another Benadryl, as I could have technically taken 4, but decided that 2 initially were good.  Very soon thereafter, it made me feel so tired.  I made Hubs promise that he would wake me up a few times to see if I needed to take more.  Thankfully, I didn't. 

Today, my leg still hurts.  (I'm not normally a complainer about such dumb things.)  It also itches and there is an area of redness.  It isn't swollen or hot, so that is good.  Still, I have a family history. 

My paternal grandfather developed an allergy to bee stings in his 40's.  Sometime in his late 60's was when he passed away.  He was attacked by a nest full of bees, he was diabetic, admitted to the hospital and the stubborn mule he was, he signed himself out.  He wasn't there long enough for the time needed to heal and died as a result.  I also have a maternal 1st cousin with an allergy to bee stings.  Her allergy developed in her teens.  I believe that there is enough there to catch Dr. W- on Friday and make it a double-it-up appointment for the foot.  Hubs thinks that the bee unloaded everything he had on me, but certainly understands my concerns, particularly given family history. 

So the 3rd blogoversary?  That one must be the Benadryl anniversary. 

If I haven't said it enough, thanks to all of you for stopping in and reading the drivel that I put out.  It's nice to have you here.


Have a great day!