Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Looking Back

Ok so I feel kinda bad... I wrote a Christmas letter this year to send with my cards (as I normally do) but in it I feel like I mostly complained. I mentioned that most of my year I struggled because of my knee injury. I mentioned that my dad had major open heart surgery that we knew was coming and I mentioned that my nephew was born. I learned a lot this year about overcoming trials but I didn't really talk about that in my letter. In fact I almost didn't even write or send a letter. But after I had written it and printed several copies and had many sealed in envelopes ready to be mailed I realized I had so much more I could've said. It is true that I struggled a lot this year (in fact I still am and I wonder how long into 2009 I will continue to struggle) but despite the knee injury there were a lot of amazing experiences I had this year. In fact if it wasn't for the fact that I have been out of work as much as I have I probably wouldn't have gotten to experience as much as I did. So here it goes a little more detailed review:

Jan/Feb I was seeing the ortho for my knee injury (it happened a year ago in Dec) and so I was still working and figuring out treatments and stuff. Late in Jan my ward went to Mount Pinos to the snow. I went sledding down the hill only once (since climbing up the hill wasn't feeling very good for my already injured knee) but I did also get to make some snow angels and have a few fights. As I trudged through the knee high (for me) fresh snow on the ground I gained a greater appreciation for the early pioneers of the church who endured through snow storms with sick families and hand carts and so much more. I could barely handle it for half a day in a "fun" environment. They overcame so much for their freedom of religion and I am so blessed because of it. R came home from her mission and we began hanging out again and got to be really close friends.... almost like twins! This turned out to be nice since V had moved back in Aug so I needed someone nearby. Because we would carpool she got me going to institute and stuff that i probably would've continued to avoid before.

March: Knee operation on the 13th. I worked up until the day before. I was so greatful to be getting it fixed and couldn't wait to get back to work! But this was also a great month because this was when my nephew Isaiah was born on the 24th. It was a blessing to be out of work and able to see him frequently as well as his older brother Elijah! I love my nephews so much! During my time after my operation I got to go to Disneyland several times, it was different going in a wheelchair but I loved the convenience it provided for the lines. I also got to go to Utah for a few days with R to see V and go through the Temple with her! It was great! While there we picked up R's piano and after returning home she started teaching me to play! I have always wanted to learn to play the piano!

April-May I was still recovering from the operation so I was home a lot with my family (and occasionally at Disneyland) and I was doing all I could to go back to work including physical therapy with a therapist that gave me the creeps! ...I got to go back on May 19th! I was so excited to be back. There were quite a few new faces but with one of my new co-workers I had some really great missionary discussions and was able to share my beliefs with him. It was incredible. Working was great!

June... still working until while at home one evening I slipped when i stepped into the bathroom. I twisted my knee and hoped it was ok. At first it seemed like it was but within a week I was starting to get really stiff and eventually the pain returned. I had to leave work early because it was so bad i was worried I might drop a patient. I ended up going back out of work on the 19th. Exactly 4 weeks after having returned to work! :( But I got to take another half day disneyland trip with R and then we went to Medieval Times for her birthday! It was a lot of fun. We sat center stage in the very front table! It was so much fun!

July: Can't remember anything too exciting then..... R was on vacation for several weeks so my piano lessons were put on hold.... but she sent me lots of postcards to add to my collection :)

Aug: R moved to Utah.... (one year after V had....) it was sad, it felt like losing a sister... as well as my piano teacher... But then my ward made a trip to the Kern River. We camped for 3 days and did some tubing. I decided I was only going to make one tube trip down river since I knew I have a knee injury and they said it would be about a 40 minute float. Well it ended up being like 4.5 hours and after that I was pretty water logged and still not where I needed to be so I ended up hiking up the mountain to the road and walking until I got picked up. Needless to say I end up being more sore than anticipated but I love camping and during the trip I got to be an EMT when not only did someone fall and cut his chin open ( I took him to the ER) but several people got bee stings and otherwise. Not that I wanted people injured but it felt nice to be able to help again! Anyways the trip was amazing despite the too long tube trip and sunburn!

Sep: I got to go up north and spend several days with my cousin and his family. He took me fishing! I loved it! I hadn't been fishing in so long and I learned so much! It was nice to be able to spend most of the night on the boat with him I learned a lot about him I didn't know before. Even though we each only caught one fish (he caught a bass he had to throw back, and I caught one trout, which I ate the next night for dinner) it was a great trip for me! I loved every minute I got to be there and cannot wait to go again. This was also the month my dad had his operation. We were worried since it was a major operation but luckily all went well. He spent a month in the hospital during which time I got to do a lot of babysitting of my nephews. I love them so much, although it didn't help my knee injury much... I loved the bonding time we got! During this time my family also started some remodeling of our house. The elders came over and tore down 2 non-weight bearing walls! It really opened up the space a lot. We also took out all the carpet and linoleum around that time.

Oct-Nov: Still knee stuff to deal with, but it was a great Thanksgiving, so much to be thankful for, family especially with my Dad home and my nephews! There is a lot of blessings to acknowldge. I think my dad went back into hospital once during this time too.... but I don't recall why.... but he was able to get released a few days later.... I also got to take another trip to Utah after Thanksgiving. Rand V were home for the holiday and R invited me to drive back to Utah with her. It was a short but fun trip! I was so thanksful for her providing me the opportunity. She also took her piano with her :( not that I have had any lessons, but it was good to continue to practice what I could so I don't lose what I've learned and hopefully be able to improve.

Dec: We got hardwood flooring installed. It looks amazing! My dad spent a few days in the hospital again, a week before Christmas, this time for pancreatitis. But he also has gallstones and will need his gallbladder removed. But thankfully they released him and he was here for Christmas. He goes in to schedule the surgery soon... I got a new keyboard that I wanted for Christmas. So I get to continue to practice and even learn. This keyboard has a lot of features including several learning modes so it is kinda like a teacher! It will hopefully help me reach my goal of being able to easily play most stuff I want to on the piano someday! Both R and V were here for most of the week, so that was a lot of fun!

Well that is a more precise looking back review of 2008 than my brief little Christmas letter had been. I have had a lot of good and bad experiences as always and have continued to learn and grow! I miss working and even though I am stil having knee problems I hope to be able to work again soon! I love the gospel, I love my family and I love all my friends and my blog readers! You are all amazing! Well have a wonderful new year!~ I know I hope too!

Love ya Renee

Monday, December 15, 2008


Ok so in the past week and a half or so I fell into the "Twilight" craze. I love to read and the movie looked interesting enough so I decided I wanted to read the book before watching the movie (since usually the book is like a bajillion times better) So I read it the first 150 pages or so I was like "whatever no big deal" I was interested but I didn't feel like everyone had been saying that "I just couldn't put it down" I was enjoying the book but did not feel drawn to it. In fact I had at that point put it down while I was on the plane with like 45 minutes left on my flight. Then later picked it up again and put it down almost immediately, then up again later. I wasn't drawn. But I had time on my hands and had already finished re-reading the first Harry Potter I had started while on my trip. I wasn't eager to be with my family (within 5 min of being home my Dad was driving me insane) so i was lying on my bed reading. I was texting with a friend and was telling her it seemed interesting enough but that I felt I could put it down. (that's how I remember being at at least page 150) anyways I was bored so I kept reading. I guess after the first 150 pages the "can't put it down feeling" hit me. I stayed up way later reading that night and only went to bed because I was getting so tired it was hard to read. I finished the book the moment I had the chance the next day. But then because I had not received my check yet I had to wait to read the next one. I had gone to the library to check it out but with no luck. I was disappointed and then eventually my money came. I went and bought the rest of the series and in the past 4 days have been doing a lot of late night reading. I have been starting in the evening and reading until I can't stay awake anymore in the early morning usually only leaving a little left. I just stopped to get ready for bed a little bit ago and for some reason decided to go online instead of to sleep....

anyways here is where the shattering comes into play.... there was a returned missionary who spoke at church today. He served in Washington State. He even went to Forks, WS where the Twilight series is based in the novels. ANyways he said at church that there are NO vampires in Forks! I was shattered, I mean how can this series of books about vampires and werewolves not be true??? I thought I was going to cry?? Well I could've been like 3 chapters closer to the end by now but I should be snoozing away so goodnight! Oh and btw I was kidding I knew the story was fiction so I wasn't expecting there to really be any vampires in Forks.... I am still not sure of the werewolves though :)

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Short note....

To let all my fans out there (all like maybe 10 of you if I am lucky) I am still alive. I would say alive and kicking... but with the whole knee thing there isn't much kicking going on. I am thinking though that I would like to try and kick things up a notch or two. It still seems as if I get sore when I do stuff but I have been losing weight (I am down almost 11 pounds now) and I really want to increase my exercise. Since now there basically is none because of the knee.... I am thinking I may start trying to ride my exercise bike a little. But my plan is to take some tylenol before I start and only do maybe 10 or 15 min (if I can last that long pain free) I will do it with no resistance and then as soon as I get off I will ice my knee to hopefully prevent any swelling.... if there is increased pain I will then take a pain pill... and or quit my bike riding. I shall see how it all goes... if I even do it.... but I do want to if I can make the time! Well here's the end of my short note. Even though I am not blogging as much I am still alive!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Trial and failure.....

SO I have been walking with crutches now since I think around September-ish and it isn't exactly my preference. By far it is more of a nuisance than anything but I have my good days and my bad. Generally when walking around the house because I am usually walking shorter distances and am up for a lesser amount of time I just walk. Then when I go anywhere I always take the crutches, and then if I am shopping and they have one I will generally use an electric wheelchair. (I am quite a pro now, I can make a 3 point turn in a store isle without knocking stuff off the shelves.... although occasionally I misjudge a turn but whatever...anyways.....) but last night I went to a friends house for visiting teaching. It was fun but then we decided to go to the church and watch part of the christmas program and look at the creche displays. I had brought my crutches to the house but left them in the car (considering it was going to be like home and I wasn't going to be doing much walking) but then when we were going to the church I decided to kinda go without. I figured it still wasn't a lot of walking, it is not like a trip to costco where who knows how long you will be up and about. So I went. After walking the displays a little I was getting uncomfortable but it wasn't bad. More like a stiffness and a little ache no big deal. Life goes on. Well then today all day long I have been getting really sharp knee pains. I don't know if it is connected with the walking last night without them... The pains today have been worse than anything I can recall in awhile, and the worse part about it was they were originating from a different spot in my knee than where most of my pain has been. Since June when I went out of work and back on disability the majority of my pain has come from the inside area of my knee. Today it seems to be below the kneecap mostly. I don't really know what to make of it and it scares me a lot. I just recently got another cortisone injection and was really starting to feel that maybe it was improving and now I am doubtful again! I really hate this roller coaster I am on! I had kind of thought about not bringing them in for church Sun but now I am realizing I better not give up on them quite yet. Also since church seems to be somewhere that it gets to be sore lately in general anyway. I better also make sure there are some pain pills in my church bag! Well I should be off to bed! Darn knee pain!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Bigger or Better

So was sitting at home the other night waiting for a friend to call so she could come and get my stuff for Utah (as she was packing the car that night with her stuff and I wanted to make sure that she would have room for my clothes) and the front door was cracked open. We were sitting watchin TV when we heard some female giggling outside. Then the dog started barking and the doorbell rang. I got up to see what all the fun was about. There was about 6 approximate teenage girls at the door dressed in formal-wear. They had a 2001 Guinness World Records book and they said they were playing a game called "bigger or better". They said that they wanted to know if we had anything either bigger or better than the book that we were willing to trade for the book. I was kind of conufsed so they explained it again. (I wasn't that I was confused at the concept or instruction but I was kind of surprised plus there was 6 of them all giggling and kind of saying it at once) so then one of them asked if maybe we had a really really big box they could have. I was kind of asking my mom if we had anything and was thinking I would go look in the garage for something when they asked if they could have a piece of the wood from the front porch. We were like sure take one but be careful of the nails in them, (The wood was remnants from the wall that had been removed from the house but it has not been disposed of yet) so then because there was also 2 really beat up weather beaten chairs on the porch they asked if maybe they could have the chair so my mom said yes. They were all excited and then they were more excited because it had wheels on it. Then one girl said "oh I get to ride in the chair" we informed her that it may ruin her dress as well as give her splinters in un-splinter friendly areas if she chose to sit down. So she didn't and they left. So then about 5 min later we hear more giggling and went outside they were at a house kinda up the street but also across the street (we live near a T intersection of the streets so they were up the T) they no longer had the chair. So they must have gotten someone to trade for it. It was interesting. I think I have heard of similar games where you start out with something simple like a paperclip and see what you end up with. So that was my interesting event of Sat night.
Then yesterday we drove up to Utah! I love road trips! It was a lot of fun and inbetween listening to conference talks and Christmas music we were reading Harry Potter in the car. We got about half way done with the first book. Woohoo! Anyways it is getting late and we are going to the Salt Lake Temple in the morning! Catch y'all later!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

A little Break

It wasn't intentional but for the past nearly two weeks I have been on blogging hiatus! I don't know why writing or reading blogs has slipped my mind but it did! But now I am back and blogging strong!!! So a little update on my life in recent weeks! My sister moved out at the beginning of the month. So I have moved into the bigger bedroom. It was a task I was not prepared for (and kinda didn't want to do because of the work involved) but I have done it and am actually glad I did! It really does make a difference and in the middle of the move I re-organized several things and went thru a lot of junk I didn't need to keep anymore. I shred a lot of papers and so I am glad now. I finally have my pictures on the walls and lights to see by. I did have a slight setback for a couple days where after I got moved in I set up some Nightmare Before Christmas lights I have and I hung them and plugged them into the wall for the lightswitch. In my old room there was a ceiling fan with a light in it and my lamp is so bright that I decided this was good for simple lighting situations. Well the next day the switch went out! UGH so a few days later I managed to get to walmart and buy a new switch that my dad helped me to install. So I have my lights again. The only thing that I haven't done is put pictures on my photo board and mirror (they are the kinds with the wood and the fabric fronts with the ribbons to slide pictures into) I figured many of those pictures were several years old and so I would like to slowly update them with newer pictures!

I am unfortunately still out of work. It is frustrating and is very hard to be at home so much but I have decided that for sure I am going to look for a dispatcher position elsewhere. This way as I continue to heal (hopefully...some days seem really good, others seem realyl bad) I can work ina desk type job so that I won't reinjure it soon! I had picked up an application about a month ago but have not yet turned it in. It is now filled out and ready to go but I need to attach a current type test certificate showing I can type more than 35 wpm. In the past I have tested in the high 40's and low 50's so I am thinking I should be able to manage that. Part of my delay other than really missing the ambulance was that I wanted to speak to my work and let them know that I am looking and that it isn't because I don't want to return there but because I don't want to return unhealed adn that I don't want to continue to be out of work. So last week I finally made it to work for a visit and was able to talk to who I needed to. They understood! That made me happy and having been there for an hour or so it felt like a new place. It didn't seem like the same environment I left from when I was working. There are a lot of new faces and overall it didn't have the same joyous feeling I remember, the feelings I miss! So that makes it feel right. That I do need a change of scene in my life. That maybe I willl enjoy dispatch after all! I know that the nearly double salary of what I make as an EMT will definately be easier to accept! I do think that eventually I would like to return to an ambulance someday! I have learned a lot by treating others. I love the feeling that I can make a difference in the life of someone else. I loved taking war veterans and other elderly patients who have so much knowledge and experiance they are willing to share! I just loved my job. I didn't necessarily love cleaning up vomit or other bodily fluids within my ambulance but I love making a difference. I love saving lives! It was a rewarding job and a great learning experiance for me! Life on an ambulance was good living!

Well yesterday I went to one of my other homes..... Disneyland! It was amazing. The weather forcast was for thundershowers but we barely got sprinkled on! It wasn't too crowded in the park and I was with a great friend and her mom! We had a blast! We got to ride all we wanted to ride and see some of the shows. We went to the "Turtle Talk with Crush" (I recommend it, it is WAY CUTE) and crush talked to me...he called me Radical Renee! It was fun! And I got a picture with Handy Manny! I know he is a character from a childrens show but being with my nephews so much I have seen it and I enjoy Manny a lot! And when I was done getting the picture and told him thank you he blew me a kiss :) It was sweet! While there Betty asked me if I would be willing to drive with her to Utah on Sun and she would get me a flight home for Weds. So I am getting to go to Utah! I am very excited about that! I was just telling my mom on Tues how frustrated I have been getting lately and I didn't tell her this part but I have been starting to get kind of depressed and so it will be nice to get away for a few days! Being out of work really stinks! I don't think I will mind as much when I am married and have a place of my own where I don't have to put up with other family members who don't do things for themselves and then wonder why they are overweight and feel like crap and are sick all the time. When I am raising my own kids and not helping full time to take care of others kids it will have a different meaning and a different feeling to it! I cannot wait for that day!

Hopefully my knee is improving. Some days it seems like it may be and others it is hurting enough for pain pills! It really is hard to tell, but I did get another cortisone shot about a week ago. This time they injected the area of the MCL and into the soft tissue not the joint. So hopefully it will make a difference! So thats the story of my life. It hasn't changed much. I am still not at work which I hate, I am still having knee problems which I hate ev en more and I am tired of being stuck at home but I am getting away soon, which I love! I still love Disneyland and got to go and ride Small World and see the Christmas stuff. Since Christmas is my favorite holiday I am excited. Today I started listening to my Christmas cd's again!

I realized that even though there is a lot of negatives in my life right now with it being thanksgiving and allI know that I do still have a lot to be thankful for! I have the gospel first and foremost which is incredible! My life would be so different if I didn't have that! I know that I wouldn't have such amazing friends and the truth that it will all be ok. That I can and will learn from this experience and it is all for a greater good! With the gospel I have the scriptures and the Temples! Many blessings there!
2nd I have a great family! Despite their getting on my nerves more often than not I know that they love me and I love them! I know that in the grand scheme of things if anything were to happen to me they would be by my side in a heartbeat! That is an incredible blessing! I know so many people who don't have that and it is sad!
3rd I have food, clothing, shelter, employment and transportation! These are all pretty self explanatory.
4th I have medical insurance! Especially with my knee condition this is an incredible blessing. I couldn't get it better if I didn't have medical coverage!
5th I live in a beautiful area and in a safe city. I know there is crime here as well as anywhere else but generally I am a lot safer here than many other areas of the world. There are many many more things I could list many big and small! I love being able to brush my teeth for instance and am thankful for that.... but overall I am just really happy that my Heavenly Father loves me and that he put me here in this day and age and has given me the opportunities that he has!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Going to the Temple

It amazes me how in spite of the vote of the people in CA there is still protesting going on because of Prop 8. It hurts me to know that mostly the No people are choosing to target the LDS community. THere has been 2 days since the election that the Temple has had to close because of it. I heard the new Temple President speak in church on Sun. He just started his calling as Temple President on the 1st. Then on the 6th the LAPD asked him to close the doors because they knew there would be protesting there. He said at first his response was "no unhallowed hand can stop the work from progressing" he then thought he should call Salt Lake about it. He spoke with someone in the Temple whatever section and they said the same thing, but then they said "let me check with the leaders and call you back" he did and they said that President Brimhall should follow the advice of the LAPD. But he also shared a moment about how when he and sister Brimhall were set apart during the blessing they were promised that the L A Temple would be "an ensign to the nations" and during his first week within the presidency that was happening already. The Temple has been all over the news. He said there was minimal damage done to the Temple, mostly it was graffitti on the wall of the fence around the perimeter that was painted over without difficulty. But then yesterday they said on the news that both the LA and Salt Lake temples were evacuated. They said that the Temple received a suspicious envelope containing white powder and they were considering it to be a hazmat situation. It made me cry. I think it is incredible how people can say they are fighting for equality that they want to be treated as equals and yet they disrespect everyone who opposes their views! I really don't think it proves their point much at all.

In the past several weeks where I have not been able to go to the Temple (I had to take a medical leave of absence due to the knee injury) it has really been sad for me! I miss going and serving in the House of the Lord so much! The peace found within is like nowhere else on earth! What a blessing it is for us to have the Temples so readily available to us! I am greatful for that! I am excited that tonight I get to go to the Temple for our stake day! I know it will be amazing to be there again! I just hope that we don't have to be evacuated! It is truely a sad day when people fighting for freedoms take away the freedoms of others!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

I Just Wanna Cry Sometimes

Ok so sometimes I just wanna cry! I am dealing with my stresses of life. I feel like sometimes things feel harder than they are and it makes it harder than it seems it should be. I consistantly feel frustrated because of the knee injury. Sometimes I think that maybe it is getting a little better because I am not taking pain pills as much than I do something like squat down to get a dish out of the lower cabinet (or put one in) and I feel a twinge of pain again. Its been several months since I have been able to actually kneel and pray (I usually just stand and sort of half kneel against my bed) and I know it seems like a trivial thing but I wish I could kneel to pray. I don't know that people really understand how much the little things mean the most. I miss being active. I miss being able to go hiking or walk on the sand at the beach. I miss chasing my nephew around the house like my sister does. When she stops or isn't here, he wants me to chase him and I can't! I miss being able to take the stairs instead of the elevator. Often times at the hospital (when we didn't have a patient) I would go up or down the 4 or 5 flights of stairs while my partner took the elevator with the gurney.

Usually every fast Sunday I get up to bear my testimony. People would always comment on how it would be hard to beat me to the stand, this past Sunday everyone giggled because as I was getting my crutches to walk up someone else kinda sped-walked past me. I didn't mind. I really don't know how it happened that I ended up with such a reputation of being first to go, but I love to bear my testimony. I know how it strengthens it for me. I know that it is part of what is helping me through this trial.

It seems lately that my family has been making a lot of comments on how I should go for a bike ride, or get a trailer for my bike... maybe it wasn't intentional but it hurts. I want to ride my bike. A year ago I was riding my bike 3-5 times a week after work. It was a nice cardio workout and at the same time gave me a good chance to rejuvenate. It was a nice time by myself to think and just be alone. I was riding like 15 miles a night, from one end of town to the other and back home again! It was a time I wont soon forget! It was an amazing time!

Then the weight stuff.... I am trying to watch what I am eating. I am buying healthier snacks and stuff to have around so that I won't munch on crap. But then some of it need refridgeration and my family is getting mad that I put my name on it so they wont eat it (they do anyway so I don't know why I try) but then they don't hold themselves accountable for eating anything, especially my stuff. I don't think it is fair that they make comments to me about my weight (when we all need to lose) but then get mad at me for doing what I can for myself. Maybe if they were being more accountable for their own decisions and food intake I wouldn't mind sharing as much. Anyways tonight I just needed to vent a little! I know that I will overcome this trial! I don't know how long it is going to take but I hope it gets better soon! Or if I can at least figure out what lessons I need to learn from it so I can make sure I am learning something! I don't know maybe that would help somehow! Thanks for reminding me from comments on previous blogs that I do have the love and support I need. I know I have support at home, but sometimes it comes in odd ways and can be a little sporatic!

Oh and I almost forgot.... a little good news amidst the crazy! I saw Dr Davis this week, he still thinks it may be my MCL aggravating me. He wants to do another injection (which at first made me think "oh no not again" but what he said he wants to do this time is when I go into the office for the injection they will numb the MCL and have me wait in the office for some time and see if it gives me any relief. From that they can kind of verify that it is in fact the MCL causing the problems and from there we can determine a treatment plan. The injection could work long term but I don't know, otherwise I don't know what my options are, but at least he listens to me and he knows I am frustrated with it all. He knows I am trying to lose weight, He knows what I do for a living and that I am an active person and really want to return to that! So hopefully soon my insurance authorization for the injection will come! :) Woohoo, I just hope that if I am going to need another surgery I can get it before the end of the year so that I don't have to pay my insurance deductible again next year!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

a little redemption

SO today (or I guess technically yesterday since it is after midnight already) I went to my weight watchers meeting. I lost 1.4 pounds last week. So even though on Halloween I kinda over-ate (but not on candy) I wasn't quite sure what my weight would be. But I was quite surprised at how I did overall I am down 3.2 lbs now! It felt really good to have lost that much. It also reminded me that I don't have to worry what the doctor said last week because he didn't care that I was doing what I can, but yet I AM being successful! So far my efforts are paying off! It is a slow road but it is good! I like that feeling! Knowing I am doing well and that my efforts are paying off!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Feeling a little better

Ok so I have had a day or so to get my thoughts off that doctor I saw on Tues and I have decided maybe he didn't intend to come off as rude and stuff. I know what I have to do (and have been working on it) and I just hope it pays off in the long run. I know that I can and will overcome this trial as I have many others in my life! For now I am still walking with crutches when i go out places, (not so much at home though.... still sometimes) and i am going to wait until my appointment with DR Davis to determine what exactly is going on and what is going to be done about it! :)

Wednesday, October 29, 2008


Oks so yesterday when I blogged my dr appointment I forgot one of the most interesting parts of the conversation about me going swimming for exercise this is kinda how it went:

DR: Can you swim?
ME: Yes I have many friends who have told me I could swim at their house anytime I want.
DR: They are not going to heat their pool through the winter just for you.
ME: Well my Bishop (it was actually Pres Walden) told me that I could call him anytime to come over about an hour later to use his jacuzzi
DR: That wouldn't work because you can't move around enough to burn calories. Could you go to the Y or somewhere for a pool?
ME: Well I used to go to 24 hour fitness but I don't currently have my membership active
DR: Can you swim there?
ME: Yes they have an outdoor pool
DR: Well would you use it?
ME: Yeah (as I was thinking I would rather go to my friends house though, and that I don't have the money for a membership)

It seemed like the whole appointment he was second guessing everything I said, that I wasn't listening to what he was saying. At the beginning of the appointment he was like "why are you here?" and I told him Dr Davis sent me for a second opinion. SO then he was like "what did Dr Davis expect from me?" SO I told him that I was told they often send people for a second opinion to get an outside opinion to see if they are overlooking something. But then for wahtever reason all my dr's office gave me to take was my MRI's and my MRI's had their reports so he through a big fit that all they sent me with was that and not any surgical report or dr's notes etc to know what they had done (even though I told him what has happened so far) In fact come to think of it he never even asked HOW I injured myself! UGH.... whatever! This is really frustrating but I think I will end there before I say something I shouldn't say!!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008


Well yesterday was my weight watchers meeting. I lost .6 pounds. It wasn't as much as I would like and even though I was glad it was a loss I was really disappointed as well. It is really hard because I can't be active because of my knee. Then I think back to about a year ago when I was like 40 pounds lighter than I am today. At that time I was doing well, I was active both at work and socially, I was riding my bike anywhere from 3-5 nights a week and so I was on a good track to continually losing weight and being healthier. Than in December is when I injured my knee, bike riding was out and as it slowly got worse I was tolerating less and less. I had my surgery and my weight went up a little but I knew I was a lot less active post-op but I knew that as I recovered I had been gaining activity again. I was working my way back to bike riding. Than I re-injured it, and it has continued to hurt more and more and I have been able to do less and less. So its hard because I am trying to lose weight based only on my food intake. I cannot increase my exercise and so I am not losing as fast as I have in the past. It is hard! So even though .6lbs was a loss and better than a gain it was still a little upseting knowing that I have gained weight because of my knee and I am struggling to lose weight because of my knee. This is a really trying time for me.

Well today I went to the doctor for my 2nd opinion. It was a fancy office. Very Beverly Hills like, everything seemed as if I shouldn't touch it because I couldn't afford to break anything. I filled out my paperwork and waited for them to call my name. I went in and was put in a room. The nurse asked my info some general questions and stuff that I could've easily filled out much faster than telling her and waiting for her to write it all down. In fact it was all the history stuff that most dr offices do have the patient fill out anyway.... So then the dr came in.

Right off the bat when knowing I was there for knee pain he was like "well I am going to be the bad guy and tell you it's because of your weight." I tried to tell him what I included in the top paragraph and he didn't seem to want to listen. He continued to tell me what my weight should be etc before asking my current conditions in full, what my dr had said and why I was there for a second opinion. He was kinda treating me as if I am lazy and ignorant of the fact that I am overweight! I wanted to cry! Anyways eventually he did get to my complaints and stuff and looked at my MRI's etc and did more of a general evaluation of my knee. He told me that I should be swimming daily and that I should be icing my knee 4x a day. He eventually told me he thinks I have Pes Anserine Bursitis (aka goosefoot) of my knee. That he doesn't think it is a joint problem. He told me that whoever read my last MRI mis-read it. He said that my ACL is basically gone but he doesn't think I am a good candidate at this time for an acl repair. He suggested that Dr Davis place me on a stronger anti-inflammatory, that I ice it, and swim and the biggest thing )which he told me over and over again as if I was ignoring him and hadn't told him I am watchign my eating and doing weight watchers) is I need to lose weight. He said overall having brusitis instead of a joint injury is a good thing. He said that there is signs of arthritis behind my knee. He told me that I can walk on it and that he would send his suggestions to Dr Davis. (Who I don't see until Nov 10th). He gave me some info on bursitis (which says to rest and discontinue activity..so why is he telling me to walk???) So anyways that is where I stand (or rather not stand...) with my knee! The paper he gave me doesn't say much about bursitis so I think later I will be online looking up more stuff!


So I tend to spend more money than I should. I have gotten myself into trouble and since I have been out of work I have been running into more and more trouble. Times are tight and my budgeting skills have never really existed.....until now. Every time I thought I was on track I would mess it up somehow. Tonight I spent a long time on the phone tonight with a debt management counselor. He was really nice and answered a lot of questions for me. I am thankful I made that phonecall (and thankful for my Bishop suggested who I needed to call) The debt management agency has worked out a debt management plan for me that is completely feasible for me at this time in my life. It is taking into consideration my current disability situation and finances because of it, as well as all my other necessities! I know I have made the right choice. I know that the commitment I am going to make will better my credit and everything else in the long run and I am excited for it! I did something I always said I was going to do and I finally cut up my credit cards. I wanted to keep at least one so that I would have it in an emergency but I knew that would lead to more problems. (plus they are kinda maxed out currently anyway...) I plan to pay them all off first and then when they send me replacement cards (once mine expire) I will have had time to be financially in control and won't have the need to use them. So then I can safely place one in my wallet for an emergency. It is going to be a long road but the nice thing is that I know once I am back at work (or at a new job) and have insurance benefits again that I will then be able to double my debt payments and so that will help me to pay it off faster. Then in about a year my car will be paid off as well, so that money can also go to paying it off!! It is amazing! I know that my prayers have been answered! I was hesitant to go to my Bishop and tell him of my struggles but I knew I had to do it! I have gotten a lot of lessons in humility lately and I am glad that it is helping me to grow! Who knows before long I may be able to move out like my sister is doing.... But I know she is just as bad as me (if not worse) so I have a feeling that even though she thinks she is ready and can handle it, she is in for a big wake up call! I just hope she can make the right choices as well! Life is bueno!

Slowly my trials are starting to teach me, I am learning a lot and growing more each day. I heard someone say in their testimony once that you cannot feel the growing in life because it doesnt feel like growing! I know its true!~ It is often way after the trials that we receive the blessings and am able to see how I have grown! Someone else once said that you cannot change the waves or storms of the sea but you can adjust the sail! My sail is finally facing the right direction and I have a feeling the seas are calming down a bit. I still have plenty of other trials and many waves and storms to pass but this is one thing that is lowering my stress levels! I am feeling a little less seasick and starting to enjoy the view!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Sunday Best

Well today has been long and tiresome and since my knee was really sore all day that didn't help much! I had to go to church early today to go to a meeting since Laura couldn't. I was supposed to be there at 11am but for some reason I was thinking 11:30.... I got there around 11:15 (which I heard the meeting started late anyway so it was ok). Then usually I am actually there at 12:15 for a different meeting. Anyway as I was rushing out the door I realized I hadn't yet eaten anything so I made a pb&j sandwich (strawberry jelly.... I don't care for grape) and ate it on my way to church. Went to the one meeting then we kinda didn't really have the second one (we talked in the foyer but never really had our "meeting"). Church goes from 1-4pm. Sacrament was first and that was when my knee started hurting. (I don't know why all I had done was sit in a couple meetings) so after sacrament I went to my car and took a pain pill. Went to sunday school and relief society (still hurting) and then after church my home teacher and I visited. It was really nice! (except as you may have guessed....still hurting) so needless to say I got home around 5pm! Well tonight was our ward fireside with a member of the Stake Presidency speaking and my mom was just barely starting dinner at 5:30 so I ate a couple pickle spears and some crackers and I went to the fireside. After teh firseide I ate one cookie and was out the door to head across town to another church building for a stake rs leadership training meeting. I got there about 7:05, the opening hymn had jsut started. Was training until 8:30 or so, then mingled a little (there was pie) and finally got home to eat dinner around 9:10. I am not sure where the "best" part comes in.... but that was today's "Sunday Best" oh and its now after midnight and I am still hurting.... tomorrow I plan to call the doctor to have them refill the pain pills. Not that the vicodin removes the pain, but sometimes it helps for a little while.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Truth Be Told...

I have AMAZING friends! Just thought you should know! Oh and yes you should be jealous!!! Have a great day!!! :) :) :) :) :)


Ok so if you know me at all, you should know that I am pretty much a klutz! I am constantly getting bruises and such and it seems since I had my knee surgery I tend to slip frequently. Well since the whole "not allowed to walk" thing I haven't done much slipping lately :) Unfortunately I have still been sore though! UGH... but on that note I do have my appointment on Tues 28th to get my second opinion from another orthopaedic. So hopefully that goes well and we can figure something out! Well slipping is sort of the topic of my blog, but my knee isn't so I am sort of off topic! On with my story:
So a few nights ago my parakeet Crayola passed away. I've had her for almost 3 1/2 years. She was a fun pet. Anyways since she passed away and I have no other birds I have some bird seed that would essentially go unused. Well my first thought was to spread it throughout either the front or back yard and let the wild birds go at it. But then I thought that mayh not be a good idea for what grass we do actually have there. So I was considering my other options. I knew I didn't want to throw it away because why should I waste good bird seed when there are birds who can enjoy it?? Well you may or may not know we have been doing some "remoldeling" of sorts within our house lately. We no longer have carpeting and soon we will have hardwood flooring installed. But before we could install it there were two walls my mom wanted to remove. So those walls are now gone. So essentially we have a pile of lumber on the front porch. The walls that were removed were actually like half walls. They came up about 4 feet or so (I don't really know how high they were) and then it was open from there to the ceiling. But in several spots along this half wall were these pillars that were cut with a pattern of sorts. I remembered that in this pile of wood we have two of those pillars. I had an idea. I could use the pillars and put a base on the bottom and then a base on top. On the top one I could put a bird house and I could put an edge on it so that the base could hold birdseed to attract the birds to the house. I told my mom of my idea and she told me that we had a bird house on the front porch that my grandma's third husband had made. She said I could use it.
So this evening I decided I wanted to work on my project. I first needed to cut down the pillar so that it wasn't as tall. So I took two bricks to lay it across so that it was raised from the ground and I could cut through the wood. My sister helped hold the pillar in place by sitting on it while I had the saw and cut the ends. So then she went inside to do whatever. Initially I was going to use a large piece of wood and cut my base and top from it when I noticed something else in my wood pile that was a better option. Recently when I had gotten the new window my shutters were removed. They were still here. The design on the shutter I realized was a much better option. One it was going to be easier to cut than the larger piece of wood and the way it was there was already wood around the top that would be good for holding the seed. I decided to use my shutter instead.
Well before I could cut the shutter to get the pieces I needed for my birdhouse stand I needed to remove the old nails from the shutter. I decided to sit on the brick to do this. As I was attempting to sit I didn't realize how low to the ground the bricks were... I misjudged and when i wasn't sitting when I expected too I ended up falling backwards. Well behind the brick I was attempting to sit on was..... another brick. I feel against that brick and basically came down on its edge. It hurt and I knew I was going to be bruised from this incident.... I opted at that point not to sit on any bricks and remained standing for the nail removal. I continued with my project and a short time later finished my birdhouse stand thing.

It looks pretty ghetto (and it is) but I think its fun. Eventually I plan to get some spray paint to improve it's appearance. Oh and it does stand on its own, but I put it against the wall anyway. (incase you got any silly ideas about it maybe not being sturdy or something) When I finished it was getting dark, so I put some seed on it but there were not really any birds around. Hopefully they will come. Isn't that how it goes "if you build it, they will come" ??? Anyways I have included some pictures of my ghetto bird feeder/house. As well as one of my injury to my leg! It hurts... Being at the top of my thigh towards the outside, it is in a bad location for a girl who has to do a lot of sitting! Especially since I have been using the wheelchair to get around the house to avoid the crutches! Hopefully it heals soon! Well all have a great night!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Self Reward

So today I went to my second Weight Watchers meeting. I lost 1.2 pounds last week. It isn't as much as I would have liked, but considering I am non-active currently (or supposed to be any way) I am proud of that! It makes me feel good to be back on track and watching my food intake. About 2 years ago I did weight watchers with some friends from work, I did really well and had lost over 30 pounds which since my knee injury I have gained back this year plus some. But considering that I don't have friends doing it with me this time and my activity level has stopped it's a lot different than before. Because we were doing it together instead of going to meetings we would sort of do our own meetings we would weigh in together and regularly share experiences together. We also walked together at the beach after work! It was our way of keeping on track. But now I don't talk to one of them anymore and the other is in N. Carolina so I am going to the meetings for my support. SO far it's been good. My meeting leader is really sweet. She is an older lady and I am pretty sure I am the youngest in that meeting time but I feel really welcomed. I am glad I am doing this! It is going to bring such a change in my life. I cannot wait for my clothes to start feeling loose again and even more so I cannot wait to have to buy new ones because they are too big all together! It is going to be amazing! I also know that losing weight can make a huge difference in the pressure on my knee so that should help ease some of my knee pain. It will also make me start feeling better about myself again! I know that I shouldn't let my size affect my self image but it does.

I decided tonight though that aside from the health benefits and everything else I will gain from losing weight I am going to inspire myself by rewarding myself. Tonight I put $5 in an envelope. I gave the envelope to my Mom to keep in a safe place for me. I told her for every pound I lose I need to give her $5 for my envelope. I have always wanted an IPOD but I don't have one yet, so I told her that could be my first goal. The newest Ipod, the Ipod touch looks really cool and has the games and stuff available for it, I really want it. So with my first significant weight loss I will have enough money to reward myself with the new ipod touch! I also will need to eventually get myself a nice keyboard or electric piano since Renee will be taking hers to Utah at either Thanksgiving or Christmas so once that is gone I will have nothing to practice on. So that is another goal! (It may get pushed in front of the ipod because I don't want to lose my chance to practice and lose what small amount of piano skills I have gained so far) They have some piano's at Costco right now. They have 3 different ones there ranging in size and price. I think I would like the middle one. I may be able to get that one around New Years if I can lose about 10lbs per month. (which is around the same amount of time it took me to lose 30lbs two years ago, and the same time that Renee will likely take her piano, so in reality it's a good first goalm and totally accomplishable!) Then my third goal is to save the money to be able to go to the Santa Barbara Zoo and do their "Zookeeper for a Day" program. I would love to work with the elephants! It is a dream of mine and since I have a lot of weight to lose and I also need my knee to be fixed before I can do that I put it as my third goal. By the time I lose all that weight I should be at my healthy body weight for my height and be skinnier than I have ever been! I will also be enjoying things that I haven't been able to because I am really bad at budgeting my money so I can just never seem to afford to buy those things! So with my first 1.2 pounds I am on my way to a lot of amazing things!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Is it furry in here??

Or is it just me??? Ok so my Oscar the Grouch costume didn't turn out quite like I hoped but it was fun anyway! It was really hot to wear but I got a lot of compliments so it was worth it. Although I was kind of disappointed because they didn't do a costume contest!!! What's up with that?? I have a good feeling I would've won. Oh and incase you didn't know... I am a celebrity! There were some asian girls at the activity (Chinese I think) and they wanted a picture with me! They even did the tourist asian peace sign thing for the picture! :) I think that means I won the non-existant costume contest even though you couldnt tell that my "trash can" was a trash can while I was in the wheelchair, and I made Oscars pet worm Slimey a little too small in proportion to the rest of me. It was fun! I did do a lot of shedding though! I think most people even if they didn't hug me or anything probably went home with a little bit of Oscar! When we were at the fabric store they had a different kind of furry fabric that I liked a lot more than the one I got, and it probably wouldn't have shed but they didn't have any in green :( but it worked out anyway! Well I hope you enjoy the pictures, a lot of people who were there couldn't believe that I made the costume myself (with some help from my Mom and a little bit from my sisters, but mostly I did it) It took about 7 hours just to do the head than there was the "shirt", slimey the worm, the trash can, and my mom made me some booties so that at the bottom of the trash can my feet were covered to look furry as well! It was awesome! It's crazy, I already had blisters on both thumbs from teh wheelchair, but I also burned my left thumb and forefinger with the hot glue so I have lots of band-aid fingers :)

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Oscar the Grouch

That is what I decided to be for Halloween. I decided this a couple weeks ago and I am really excited about it. When I thought about wanting to be Oscar the ideas came pouring in and I started writing them down and drawing pictures and so forth as to how I was going to do the costume. Than just last week I found out the Halloween party/dance at church is this coming Fri the 17th! Way too soon! Now I am trying to get all my ideas together and get my costume made (and at the same time it has to be crutches friendly... UGH I won't be doing much dancing but I want to go) but it is so hard to do anything with my shadow around and he seems to never sleep!!! The hardest part is I need to use a tunnel toy thing he has for my trash can and I can't get it out and cover it and stuff to make it look like a trash can because he is always awake! It's time to get sneaky!! Anyways we are going to try and get the trash can done tonight (if we can get him to sleep first) and then tomorrow its time for a trip to the fabric store to get the supplies for the rest of my costume! Picture to come later :)

Tears and Fears

Ok so i started to write this blog and did something and it all went bye-bye. So I've waited and now am ready to re-type it all. (well not really ready to per-say but I have no choice if I plan to share it here). So Mon afternoon was my doctor appointment to get my MRI results. First off since my Dad came home from the hospital on Sat I am not the sole babysitter of my nephews now so before my appointment I finally got to go to a weight watchers meeting. I have been wanting to do so for awhile now but wasn't able to. I decided it is about time I start paying more attention again (I lost over 30 pounds on weight watchers before but because of my lack of activity with the knee problems I've gained most of that back and then some unfortunately) so I am getting back on track there! So I went to the meeting and started up again. Then went from there to my 1:30 appointment. I got there and pretty much immediately they brought me back. Now luckily I had brought a book with me because I ended up waiting there until after 2pm when Adam (Physicians Assistant) came in. He asked how I had been doing and stuff and I told him the truth, that its not much better than before. Using the crutches to walk with has helped a little but it still gets sore etc. He had me get on the table and checked some stuff and told me what the MRI report said. Basically it showed nothing new. He said it mentioned some bruising on the patella (knee-cap) and something about the top of the Tibia but both things were noted more towards the outside of the knee and my pain is primarily on the inside so they don't think it is related. He told me they were going downstairs to get the actual copies of teh MRI films for him and Dr. Davis to look at personally, and to discuss any possible options. So he left me waiting some more! Need less to say I got to read a lot of my book during the time at the dr's office! So after he came back he said they too didn't notice anything. He said because it has only been about 4 weeks since the final Euflexxa injection there is still a chance it may make a difference. He said if I had noticed any changes after the cortisone injection they could maybe do another (but I hadn't) so it wouldn't really be worth it to try. So he said they are kind of at a loss as to what to try. So they suggested getting a second opinion. He said that it is common for them to send patients for a second opinion because often since they have been treating me this whole time they could easily be overlooking something. He said they send patients to other orthopaedics as well as others send their patients to them for second opinions. He said in the meantime to completely stay off the knee. So now instead of walking with the crutches I am supposed to actually be "crutching" with them. I have to wait for the insurance approval and authorization to come through for the other ortho to then make an appointment. I have my MRI films and reports and after I see the other dr I can follow up again with Dr Davis and Adam. So I did a lot of crying on Mon. It is kind of a relief for the MRI to have been clear, but it is really frustrating too because they don't know what is causing the pain! It is hard for me to use the crutches because I am scared to re-aggravate my wrist problems. It feels like I am stuck in a losing situation!

I did have a smart idea though after the fact. I can use a wheelchair for as much as I can when not at home and stuff instead of the crutches and that would help a lot, because I can use my right leg to kind of walk the chair as well as the wheels. So it wouldn't be as much pressure on my bad wrist! So I texted a friend who I knew had a wheelchair (because I have borrowed it in the past) to see if I could temporarily borrow it again and possibly for a little bit of a longer time. I was then also looking at classified ads online thinking that maybe if I could find one that was reasonably inexpensive I could purchase one and not have to keep borrowing one. (But I wasn't having much luck finding one) Plus then down the road it would always be good to have around with my Dad and stuff. While I was looking online she texted me back and said I could borrow it for as long as needed and that she would just ask her dad if I could keep it because they never use it anyway. It was an answer to my prayers. I was kind of worried about borrowing it incase something happened to it, but if she does give it to me than I wouldn't have that fear and it would be beneficial long term! :) SO despite all the tears and fears it may work out afterall! I just really hope that like they said having an outside objective opinion that this other ortho may notice something they are overlooking that I may get better soon!

I have been doing a lot of thinking though, and have decided as much as I hate to I am going to start looking into other career options. I have decided to apply for a dispatcher job for Simi PD. It would be good because even if I do get better it would be less pressure on my knee so I wouldn't have to worry about returning to work and re-injuring it again! They pay almost double what I make as an EMT (and thats just for trainees! After training the salary goes up like $3) I wouldn't have the commute I currently have for work so I could save on gas as well as the wear and tear on my car! So with all the extra money I could be making and or saving I could hopefully pay off my debts sooner. Once I do that then I could look into moving out and into a place of my own! It would be really great! I am scared about all this and I hate the thought of maybe not returning to the ambulance but when I look at the pros and cons with my current situation I think it is the smartest choice I can make. Besides even through the phone line I can makle a difference and help people it just wouldnt be hands on like in the ambulance! The application and potential hiring process can take sveral months because they do testing and background checks and so forth and so I am hoping to apply soon because maybe by the time I could get hired my knee may be better as well! At least I hope so! Then I can start fresh and by then I will hopefully have lost weight and can be ready for a new start!

My tears and fears may turn into smiles by the time 2009 rolls in!

Friday, October 10, 2008

getting closer

So last night I had my MRI on my knee. Now it is a waiting game. It will not be until Monday afternoon that I will know the results! My appointment is at 1:30 and so it wont be until some time after that when I will know. So if you want to ask whats going on or how I am doing or whatever else comes to mind in regards to my knee, please wait until then! I don't mean to sound rude or anything by saying that, but it's hard for me right now. I am being obediant and using the crutches as much as possible (except when babysitting my 2 y/o and 6 mo old nephews it's difficult than) but it is so frustrating to have to explain over and over again that I just don't know what is wrong. That I don't yet know whether I will have to have another operation. I just don't know. I can say that I am feeling a little better but not as much as was expected from the injections. I am still periodically having to take the pain pills and so in that aspect life is not good! I must say that I don't think Monday can come fast enough for me at this point!!! UGH UGH UGH!!

So my sister has announced this week that her and her boyfriend have decided to move out. They are going to rent a room from a friend. It is exciting for her and in fact I am kind of jealous but financially things are not good for me right now, and i have nobody to blame but myself. But eventually I will get myself on track and I too will be moving out. In the meanwhile I do get to move into that bigger bedroom. There are a lot of reasons why I want to, and a lot of reasons why I kind of don't but overall I think it will work out best. I have a lot fo stuff to move and so that wont be fun but it is a bigger room so I will have more space which will be nice. My current bedroom has a new double paned window and the other doesn't :( but it is in the back (west) of the house so I don't have to worry about the sun in my eyes in the morning! It has a bigger closet which will be nice so I can maybe actually hang some of my clothes and wont have to wear wrinkled dresses as often to church (I HATE ironing) but it isn't painted in my favorite colors, and it doesnt have the shelf space that my current room does. But we are talking about adding the same shelving. The curtains are not in my fun wild patterns but they were sewed by me so it still feels personalized and I can sew new ones eventually. I guess the biggest reason i agreed is I know that this way my sister can move my nephews into my room and it would mean that my mom can remove all the toys and kid dressers and stuff from the front room and she will be a lot happier about that. Plus because this room is right across from my sisters room she would be closer for getting the baby at night when he wakes up and stuff. So all in all I guess it will work out to be a blessing in many ways to everyone. I just hate the idea of having to move and make a new place into my space. But that part wont take long! I can make a room feel like my own pretty easily!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

One of those moments

Occasionally I get "one of those moments" when I know everything is about to change. That I know I can no longer allow the pride cycle to run my life (except for the whole wealthy part, that usually seems to be omited for me, and the forsaking God, I don't ever give him up either) I have come to realize this the past couple days. I have realized there are some things in my life that must change! I am the only one capable of making those changes and as hard as it may be I have to give up my pride and be willing to ask for help! I know it is going to be a long road, I know it is going to be a bumpy road but I also know I can grab a tight hold to the iron rod! I know that I can be lead down the path with just a little bit of humility. I know that ovcrall I will be proud of myself in the end (the good pride of course) and I know it will all be worth it! Here is to changes! I just hope I don't try to do too much at once... that can never be good! :)

Thursday, October 2, 2008

A little humility with that???

Well since last week I have been doing my best to use the crutches when walking. I hate to do so but I am being mostly good. (I kinda cheat around the house from time to time, and then my mom yells at me....) Anyways I am using wheelchairs at the store, walking with crutches, I used a cane yesterday at the Temple(next week I think I will stick with the crutches though, I prefer them) I have still been having problems for instance on Sat night I was in extreme pain and took several pain pills and finally it settled down a little bit, but I was still hurting! Yesterday the elders from my ward came over with a member of my branch and with my Mom they took down 2 walls that my mom wanted to remove. Today my home ward elders came over as well as two people from my ward to continue the work/clean up a little. They helped move some heavy large furniture back into place. To somewhat sweep and swiffer mop the floor and then they helped break down the pieces from the wall and put it into the trash can. They offered to do more, but my mom wasnt telling them what she wanted done and I didnt know what she wanted done but what they did was a big help. So after lunch they left and so did my mom (to visit dad in the hospital) I was home with my nephews. A little later on while they were both still napping I decided to clean up the living room some more. I put things away and gathered the sheets that had been used to protect furniture from wall dust during the demolition etc. I am not sure how long I was cleaning for but it didn't take much time for me to start hurting! I think it was a little swollen again too, but that may have been there all along. I wanted my mom to feel better when she got home so I did as much as I could. I again swept and swiffered part of the floor and stacked the dirty dishes. I made a pretty good size difference. Than a little while later I made dinner. It felt nice to be able to serve my family, especially my mom! Since I have injured my knee I have still helped frequently because I know others in the house don't help much. But having been cleaning and noit using crutches much today I did realize that they are making a little bit of a difference in the pain levels. I am still hurting but it does help. It seems like that has happened a lot lately, where just when I think things are going ok,I realize it was all a mask and that the truth was hiding below the surface waiting for the moment to make its debut! I am still waiting for my MRI authorization to come through so I can make the appointment... but as soon as I get it I am going in asap! I do not want to prolong the process by any means! I want to know what is going on! Ideally it would show nothing is wrong, but then why am I having all the pain?? It would be a big mystery to me if it comes back clear. So as much as I don't want it to show anything I am hoping it does, because once we know the problem we can begin to fix it! I really want to return to work! The sooner I get my knee fixed the sooner I can potentially return! So anyways I did learn a little lesson in obediance and humility today! When i am obediant to orders to stay off my knee and to use the crutches even though I am not completely pain free I think it does decrease the pain levels a little bit! I hate using the crutches though but I have bee sufficiently humbled and plan to continue that course even though I don't care too!

Saturday, September 27, 2008


For my birthday I went to Disneyland. It was a lot of fun, except that they raised the price of the wheelchair rentals and the price of the pickles!!!! UGH.... it was kind of frustrating too because I brought my crutches with me and when I was off the wheelchair I used the crutches! I had spoke to the physicians assistant at my orthopaedics office the night before about my increased pain and decreased level of tolerance with my knee. I told him that I am only able to do a very little before I am hurting and that when it is hurting it is worse than before my first surgery! It is so frustrating. He told me that even though I probably don't like to I need to be using a cane or crutches when I am up and about but more so to try and stay off it as much as possible. I told him I am doing the best I can so far and that I have been getting wheelchairs when shopping and stuff. Anyways like I said I am following his orders and using the crutches.... except not regularly when at home... but anywhere else they are there :( So all but one of my pictures yesterday when I was with the characters I had my crutches there with me... *sigh* the worst thing about it is I hate using them for church and church related stuff because I hate explaining about my knee getting worse and stuff to everyone! I really don't like drawing attention to myself and crutches is a sure attention getter! I am stubborn about that kind of thing. But I really want to get better so I guess I will do it anyway! In the meanwhile he did give me a prescription for an anti-inflammatory and more pain medication. He also put in a request for authorization for another MRI so that we can compare it to my first one before the last surgery and see if something is going on! (I am pretty sure there is considering the amount of pain and stuff, but Adam said that could just be from the injections also, but it was like this before the injections so who knows) So enough about that. Onto MONTANA!!!

Ok so I am would imagine most people who read my blog are familiar with movies and stuff on TV or even other places that when you see something to represent the desert there is usually the skull of a bull, with the horns and stuff and that is what you see. Well I like to collect the pressed pennies and stuff and always get at least one when I go to DIsneyland (or anywhere else I see them) and while at CA Adventure they had a machine for the pressed quarters. The design was brother Bear related. They were really cute and I had lots of quarters with me so I took 4 quarters out of my coin pouch (which has Mickey Mouse on it incase you wanted to know) and I put the quarters in the machine and pushed it to go. My quarter came out and was flattened. As I was looking at it and flipped it over I noticed on the back an image that reminded me of the skull thing I was mentioning! It was the weirdest thing. Or so I thought.... I showed it to Lisa who was with me and was telling her that it was weird that it had that image on it and I was really confused and amazed at how it happened! It was really a mystery to me. Then by chance while continually looking at it I tilted the quarter just right where I could barely make out the word "Montana" it than occured to me that I must have used a Montana state quarter in the machine and that is the quarter that got pressed! It was the most random thing and was completely done unintentionally but ended up becoming a pretty funny story in the end. After I realized it Lisa thought I might have been playing but it was legit. I really did not know I used that particular quarter! It was a funny moment of the day!! :) Since than I have looked at another Montana quarter that was not flattened and it's true, it does have the skull image on it!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008


I am so blessed and so lucky to have what I have in life! I have the gospel! I have a wonderful family (most of the time) I have shelter and food and employment (minus the whole disability issue) I have transportation.... and I have amazing friends!~ Ones who really know me and send me stuff like coin albums for all my Disneyland and other various pressed pennies! And a gift card that happens to be just the right amount for a snow globe I really want! And birthday cards that make me smile!!! Who could ask for anything more?? I know some of that is worldy possessions that I cannot take when I go but the people whom I am so blessed to know have also taught me a lot about who I am, who I want to be and who I am becoming! I am greatful for the knowledge I have and that opportunity I have on a regular basis to learn and to grow!

Life is good. This is something I have come to realize lately, it doesn't matter that my knee is messed up, that my Dad is in the hospital. All that matters is that I know the truth and I am doing all that I can to reach the celestial kingdom someday! I know that I can return to live with my Heavenly FAther someday! I know that when the time is right I will meet my Prince Charming and that we will be sealed for time and all eternity in the Temple! That is an amazing blessing in my life that I am looking forward to someday! I know all the other stuff will work itself out. I know that my dad is recovering and will get to come home sometime soon, I know that whether or not I have another knee surgery I will be able to work again. I know that I can make a difference! I know who I am and that is all I need to remember, as a Daughter of God I am a princess! I am entitled to peace and happiness and I can attain so many blessings beyond my wildest dreams. It doesn't take much and I am glad that I have the road map to get me there!


Ok so every now and than I take a stab at writing some poetry.... awhile ago I started this (but I didn't date it) and I forgot I had even done it... but I came across it again recently.... so here it is....

I thought I knew everything...
I thought I knew what life would bring....
I wish I knew something.....
I wish I knew anything....
I used to know a lot of things....
I now realize I know, next to nothing.....

Sunday, September 21, 2008

It's Not About Ego

I have always told people that I love my job! It is completely true that I do! I have also been known to tell people that I am not like many of my co-workers who are either burned out in the field of work (it happens fast for some people) and I am not like many who just have a negative attitude over-all which can affect every aspect of the job we are there to perform! A long while ago I was looking at a magazine related to my field of work... in it I found a really interesting "article" or story or whatever you may want to call it! Anyways I photo-copied it because I liked it so much! I am thinking eventually when I go back to work and then start training new employees again I would like to give my newbies copies of it because I think it is true in so many ways! Now sometimes I kinda feel like I am being egotistical when I am talking about how I have a different perspective of my job than my coworkers and stuff but I really am not trying to be. Anyways this is the article/story thing I was talking about, I think a lot of it can be applied in our own lives for so many different areas we are individually involved with.....

EMS: It's Not About Ego
By: Chief Tim L. Holman
(P.S. EMS stands for Emergency Medical Services)

Stop and reflect for a minute. Are you ego driven or are you values driven?If you are driven by ego, your focus is mainly on yourself. If you are values driven you are focused more on others.
People who are values driven tend to be humble. Humility is an important element for the EMS provider, since it keeps things in perspective. Norman Vincent Peale once said, "People with humility don't think less of themselves... they just think of themselves less."
EMS is not about ego, it's about caring for the organization for which you work. It's about helping make that organization better today than it was yesterday.
Ego is about a flight nurse or paramedic making three attempts to intubate a critical patient instead of passing the task off for someone else to try. Ego is about being afraid to admit that you were wrong at the expense of the patient or coworker.
EMS is not about ego; it's about maintaining and promoting a positive attitude not a negative one. EMS is about looking for the good things in the organization. It's about being part of the solution, not part of the problem.
Ego is about "me" instead of "we". EMS is about being a team player. It's about building trust with teh patient and with your team members. It's about supporting the team and cooperating with other team members. It's about searching for a win win situation instead of a win lose.
Ego is about putting yourself before the patient. It's about putting on a show instead of caring for the injured. Ego is about talking more than performing. It's about telling people how much you know instead of mentoring and guiding the new EMT.
EMS is not about ego, it's about being authentic. It's about being a real person who doesn't play games. It's about being honest and straightforward. EMS is about standing firm on your value system and speaking out when those values are compromised by others.
EMS is about a commitment to the job and what the job stands for. It's about being willing to do what others are unwilling to do. It's about dedication. EMS is about doing your very best for the critically ill and the not so critically ill.
EMS is not about ego and its not about being special because of the position you hold. EMS providers are special because they choose to care for those who cannot care for themselves. They embrace the fragile elements of life.
EMS is about making a strong comeback when you fail. It's more about how you respond when you lose than how you respond when you win.
Ego is about the conflicts you have back at the station when you are trying to get your own way. It's when you lose your focus and forget why you're here. It's about never saying you're sorry when you hurt someone.
EMS is not about ego; it's about maintaining a high level of customer service. It's about understanding both the internal and external customer. It's about knowing the needs of the customer and then exceeding those needs.
EMS is about listening to the elderly man who just lost his wife. It's about giving your time to the boy scout troop that wants to tour your station. It's about the little girl who is not only injured but frightened.
EMS is about being a good neighbor both on and off duty. It's about being involved. It's about respecting life and understanding how fragile it is. It's about being a good citizen.
EMS is not about ego and it's not about saving every life. It's about making a bad situation better than before you arrived. It's about the love for mankind and leaving everything you touch just a little better.

Well as I said, I would like to hope that I am not being egotistical when I am talking about my attitude towards work versus others I work with. But I try to live my life the way he talked about. I try to do the best I can in every situation, on every call. Even if it is a patient that is notorious for being unclean or needy or who really doesn't need an ambulance. I try to be positive even if I have to take a certain patient freqeuently and most don't like taking them. I try to help and I hope that I can. I hope that when I am working I am maintaining a sense of humility, that I am not thinking of myself as superior to others. I really hope that I am involved in a positive way and not standing by watching others do what I should be doing. I love my job! I love the company I work for and that is what it is all about. That is the reason I stay where I am and not go to other companies who offer better pay or a schedule I would rather have or that is closer to my own home. I love being able to try and make a difference on a daily basis! This is why I love my job! This is why I want to get my knee healed so that I may return to work. This is why I don't want to be a dispatcher or a mail carrier! This is why I am an EMT!!!!!!!!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Rollercoaster of life

I am doing alright. I got my third and final injection on Weds. This one has made my knee swollen and naturally it is sore as well. They said it could be up to 6 weeks after that third injection before noticing any changes.... so we shall see! The first injection went ok, I was a little uncomfortable for a day or two and then was the way it was before the injections, where if I did any walking for more than like 15 min I would get sore, or if I was sitting with it bent for extended periods of time etc. So then the 2nd injection was last week and after it I was constantly sore for like 4 or 5 days (I had the injection on Weds and was sore until the weekend) so then this one I am sore but not as bad as last week, but this one made my knee swell whereas the others didn't so much. (the first two I got a little swollen around the inection site, this one my whole knee looks swollen) and I am sore if I do too much like always. SO we shall see.... as much as I hate to say it, I have a feeling I will end up having a second surgery because in the past month or so I have been getting more sore than I did before my first surgery even! The cortisone injection didn't help and so far this one doesnt seem to be either.... but there is still a chance because I have told them all that had happened with the first two injections and stuff and they said it may not be until after the third to notice anything.... I am trying to be optimistic but as some of you can probably relate...I know my body and can just kind of tell.... I want the injections to have helped, and if they do I am hoping it doesnt end up being kinda like a bandaid where they only help short-term and I end up going through all this crap again later on down the road! It scares me because with my field of work it wont take much to re-aggravate it, if it hasn't fully healed/helped!

My dad is doing alright. It's kinda been a long week so far. On Mon of course was the operation and that night they said his heart was already looking better on the moniters with its output and so forth. Than on Tues I stayed home, but my Mom, and two of my sisters visited him and my mom said he was doing pretty well. They had taken out the breathing tube and stuff and they were starting to give him some water and stuff. Then on Weds my mom and I went in the morning, and a couple of my sisters went in the afternoon and he was super sore and really grouchy! He was also complaining of some leg pain and it was a little swollen. They had made him get out of bed to walk and he went a little further than they had expected. Then yesterday my Mom went down and he was in bed, they had re-entered the urine catheter, had him on an oxygen mask (Because his oxygen levels were dropping) and she said he wasn't feeling well at all and mostly kinda slept all day. Then in the afternoon the nurse said he was going in and out of A-Fib (which is an irregular heartbeat) and so they were going to give him medication for that! Today my Mom went down and she said he had no energy at all, they were re-establishing a picc line (like an iv but goes to the heart for meds and stuff) and they were giving him 2 pints of blood. but he was off of the O2 mask and back on a low flow oxygen. His leg was swollen even more and he was hurting and his leg was hurting as well. They said the leg is from his gout and the doctor wanted to change his med he takes for that, but the surgeon said no, so they increased his med dose he is already on for the gout. Oh and all week long since the surgery they have been having trouble equalizing his blood sugar level with his diabetes. SO they are adjusting his insulin medications as well. So thats where we stand there.... it's kinda of hard to know if he is doing as can be expected or better or worse or what! Because my mom said they were talking about taking him from ICU and putting him into the telemetry rooms (a step down from ICU but they would still be doing cardiac monitering) so if he wasnt doing ok they wouldnt take him from icu, but with all thats been happening it seems like to me that they would keep him where he is at.... so who knows... again we shall see!

So on Thurs a sister of mine and I were left home when my mom went to the hospital for babysitting. My mom told this sister that because of my injection on Weds that my knee was sore adn that she would have to help a little more with the childcare of our nephews. So we were here. She wanted to go get food so she left and came back. All was well. I took a late shower and things were bueno! She was on the computer, I was in the chair, my shadow was playing around and watching a little TV. The little one Isaiah was in his swing... swinging (go figure huh!) things were going alright. Well we had a lot of leftovers of the previous nights dinner so I called the elders to see if they were interested in it for lunch and they were. So I heated it up. I told my sister that I was going to take it to the elders at the church building and then go to the post office because I had a package to mail to a friend. She was on the computer still but said ok when I left. While I was gone, my gas light came on in my car, so I sent her a text message and said that I was also going to get gas before coming home. so after getting my gas I got a text from her asking me when I would be home because the baby was hungry and she couldn't pause her computer game! I was on my way home already and was driving so I didn't respond, I just set my phone down. Very soon after it was ringing and it was her asking me the same thing. I told her I was on my way home and that my knee was hurting. When I did get home she was still playing teh game on her laptop but was at least in the kitchen making him a bottle. SO I changed his diaper and his clothes and ended up feeding him while she continued on the computer. Meanwhile we tried to get my shadow to lay down and take a nap, he laid for awhile then wanted to continue to play! So after feeding the baby I put him on the floor with some toys for tummy time. Elijah was still watching tv and she was on computer. I dosed off in the recliner. All was well. Than the baby started crying.... I hadn't been asleep long so I stayed there.... he was still crying.... and still crying..... and still crying.... I never looked at my watch or a clock or anything, I don't think it was an incredibly long time, but long enough to know he wasn't happy.... finally I sat up, I said "let me go to the bathroom and then I will get you". I went to the bathroom and when I came back out she had picked him up, kinda set him on her lap and was still playing her game! I was thinking "finally she is going to do something!"(well she said elijah had a poopy diaper when I had been gone that she had changed, but she never changed Isaiah who had soaked not only his diaper but his clothes by the time I had changed him when getting home from errands) Since she had finally picked him up I went and got the mail and then figured I could go back to napping. I got back in the chair, she brought him and put him in my lap.... and went back to the computer~! So then of course because I had him, my shadow had to be in my lap. Not a problem except he wouldn't sit still and was doing a lot of bumping of my knee and sitting on it and stuff! I was hurting and getting frustrated and all she was doing was yelling at him from across the room while I was trying to protect my knee, not drop the baby and getting elbowed in the face from Elijah! So I texted my mom and told her that my sis had been on the computer all day and i was stuck with the kid duty and that my sis had even texted and called me to see when I would be home because he was hungry!!! She was like "what do you want me to do about it?" I told her I wasn't expecting anything it was just frustrating to basically be doing it alone when my sis knew I was in pain and I had even mentioned earlier that my knee was swollen and that I should be elevating and icing it (but I couldnt with kids all over me) anyways my mom texted her...she got ticked off, she took Elijah and gave him a bottle and got him to lay down in my moms room with the tv (which of course finally got him napping) and by this time the baby had fallen asleep on my lap so she put him in his crib and was like "you can go nap or do whatver now if you want" so I got my ice pack and elevated my knee and laid down in my bad crying because I was hurting and was frustrated and all! She in the meanwhile went and did the few dishes in the sink (it was like 5-10 min worth of dishes...not really much at all) then went back to her game on the computer! By the time the boys woke up their mom was home! So then this morning I was talking with my mom and she said something about that if both me and my sis needed to do stuff today that we could call a friend to watch the boys.... she said that because my sis had mentioned that she had wanted to try and clean her room today because she couldn't yesterday because she had to watch the boys!! I was like "excuse me?" and my mom was like "i know you dont have to say it" because my sis DIDNT watch the boys yesterday! She barely did anything but watch me struggle to care for them while I was in pain!! UGH!!! So then supposively even though she said she wanted to clean her room she left to go hang out with a friend today... but at least she took elijah with her so I only had the baby! but then she came home and was back to the computer again! Whatever! She easily could've cleaned her room yesterday instead of being on the computer all day... or this morning instead of being with her friend! I am tired of people making up excuses for not soing things they should! I did the dishes today after taking out the trash and the recycling(which my sister did neither yesterday so they were super full) and so after the little bit of cleaning I did I was so sore!!! Even though i was probably only working for like 20 min it felt like forever for my knee!

I must say I normally enjoy rollercoasters! I even like the corkscrews, and the loops! Occasionally I get a little nauseated while riding them but they are normally short trips and then you get off take a little break and move on to the next coaster ride!! But this rollercoaster we call life.... is continuing a little too rough lately, it doesn't seem to be finishing! I am ready for it to slow down and be the relaxing ride like It's a Small World, where you just slowly cruise along and can easily take a power nap to be ready for the rest of the rides you have ahead to ride!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Phone Calls

SO on Sun morning my Dad checked into the hospital and at about 6:45am they took him from his room for surgery. They did what they needed to do and finally after 2pm we were told that they were done with the operation, that he was off of the heart/lung bypass machine adn that his heart was beating on its own!!! But we were told he was still on the operating table he needed to be closed and such and that it would be at least another 40 min or so before we would hear anything more. Finally close to 4pm we were told he would soon be coming back to his ICU room, where he arrived about 4:30. We saw him briefly as they wheeled him past and into the ICU and they said it would be an hour or so for them to get him transferred into bed and connected to all his tubes and drainage tubes, blood transfusion and the moniters and such. So around 6 I think it was we finally got to see him but only briefly! It was hard to see him with all the drainage tubes, he was still intubated (breathing tube in his throat) because he had been under anesthesia so long they didnt want to remove it until they were sure he would be ok on his own. They are going to remove it in the morning! But when we went into the room to see him his eyes were open. He was able to hear and understand us but he couldn't talk. He would blink his eyes to respond though so we knew he was there. I didn't really say anything. I was crying. I know the scariest part is/was over but it was hard to see him like that! I can handle it when I am working but when its my own family, especially my Dad its hard! I guess to some extent that is probably pretty common for most people in my field of work. I am sure its always easier when you have no connection to the person! I am looking forward to going back tomorrow and this week when he can communicate more and we can really see how he is doing. There is still a chance of danger and complications, with infections and recovery and such and making sure he doesn't "bust a seam" (blow the stitches/staples or whatever they used to close him) but the surgeons said his heart is already pumping better than it was before the surgery! They removed a good size piece of the calcification and they said it was completely solid, possibly more-so then they were expecting. I don't know how pliable they were expecting it to be but I was told it was completely solid!

We did have a couple moments of fun though in the waiting room today despite all that was going on. During part of the waiting I was talking with my sister Denise about something and I wanted to go tell my mom my idea, I had known she was in the hall with my cousins wife Darla, so as I went around the corner I was calling for her, "Mom" but at the same time there was a nurse walking by and she heard me call "mom" and stopped turned around as if I was talking to her and looked right at me. Then she got a little bit of a look of confusion on her face and kept going. It was kinda funny, so then we were joking around about how she would have thought something like "why would my kid be here?" or something like "I don't even have daughter why did I look?" Anyways the other thing was my other "mom" was asian! SO we had a good laugh at my moment! The whole time my mom wasn't even in the hall anymore, she had stepped outside! UGH!!!

The other moment was during a moment when we knew what was going on and we were waiting for dad to come back to the ICU. we were making phone calls and letting people know what we knew. During this time my mom was asking us to call some of the people to make it easier... she told us at one point she was to the "M"'s in her cell-phonebook list. SHe called someone and with whatever she was saying we were tryign to figure out who she had called. We werent sure if her phonebook was the M for the first or last name. We figured out she hadn't called Marie Osmund, or Tim McGraw, and it wasn't Madonna either! I said maybe it's "mama" meaning my grandma! It wasn 't her either. Anywyas after though she decided to call my grandma! When she did apparantly something happened on the phone line and both her and my gma heard a ringing type noise in the phone and they got disconnected. Well we didn't know this part of the situation and I hear my mom say on the phone "did your phone just ring?" and so being the sarcastic person I am, I was like "you just called her and she answered didnt she?" anyways Denise and I got a good lauhg out of this even though my mom didn't find it very amusing. So we told DEann about it later and we were all a little giggly and had a good laugh about it, except when we were teasing mom about it she got a little aggressive and smacked Denise and I upside the head for laughing at her! It really hurt! I didn't think that was very nice or neccessary, in fact she hit me more than once! I already had a headache! UGH! SO then a little while later when we were leaving and we were getting in the elevator I was like "did your phone just ring?" and she looked at her phone, so I was laughing, I thought she was going to hit me again but I am glas she didn't!

Well I am glad the scariest part is over, even though I know he is going to be super sore in the morning and that he will probably be grouchier than ever because they are going to make him get out of bed and stuff and he isn't going to like that! I know we still have quite the road ahead, but I am thankful he made it so far! I am thankful for my Savior and the comfor ti have had in this time, as well as my family! I am thankful for the dinners being provided this week by ward members from church! I am truely blessed!~ I am thankful too for the little moments of fun despite a long and tiresome scary day!!!