Saturday, 27 August 2016

Sick of Sitting Around!

I knew it wouldn't be long before I started getting twitchy.  I need to be moving around, doing stuff, clearing cupboards, mending things, housework, whatever.  After two and a half weeks, the urge was distinctly getting the better of me.  Now my lower cupboards have never been so clean and tidy.  Or the bin so full.

It takes a bit of thinking about but stuff is doable even with a cast on my leg.

Things I can do -

  • Get myself from room to room using the wheelchair.  Not without its drawbacks noticeable by the missing chunks on the hall skirting board.  Oh and the wall scuffs caused by the wheelchair handles.  Grumpy Trousers swears I have eyes in the back of my head except when I'm reversing out of the bathroom
  • Wash my hair in the kitchen sink under the mixer tap.  I kneel my leg in cast on a dining chair and stand on my good one.
  • Peel vegetables - same process or sit at the kitchen table
  • Mix and bake a cake - same process
  • Make coffee and tea providing people will carry their own out of the kitchen
  • Vacuum, pushing myself along in the wheelchair with my good leg
  • Dust but only with a short reach
  • Fill and empty the dishwasher
  • Fill and empty the washing machine
  • Do some ironing.  Ironing board brought down to wheelchair level is equally comfy as standing up to do it.
  • Stand on my good leg to hang clothes in the wardrobe.  Leg in cast is no excuse for tardiness.  Well actually it is - I just do it when I absolutely HAVE to!
  • Manoeuvering the wheelchair in tight spaces.  I have to say the tight turns and shunting back and forth has to be harder than reversing an articulated lorry (OK well that might be a bit of an exaggeration but quite honestly it will turn on a tanner).  This apart from the night when I got wedged between bathroom doorway and hall radiator.  Expletives?  You've never heard the like!!)
  • Water my pots and planters in the lower garden

Things I can't do (but I'm working on these!)
  • Actually walk, or even put two feet to the floor
  • Take a shower - topping and tailing just doesn't cut it for me.  I still feel a bit manky.
  • Get in and out of the house my myself.  Currently a logistical nightmare involving precise positioning of wheelchair at outer doors, and zimmer frame ready on the outside.  The process works in reverse to get me back in.  Definitely needs another person. For some bizarre reason known only to himself, Grumpy Trousers gets confused by this process and I end up directing operations
  • Water the higher part of the garden.  Grumpy will do it if I remind him.  Then he has the hose on full stream and blasts the heads off the flowers.  No amount of me knocking on the window and gesticulating deters him from this sport!
  • Hang out the  washing as the line is in the higher part of the garden.  Grumpy has a rather unique way of hanging stuff but I don't care so long as it gets dried

So clearly, what I can do far outweighs what I can't which I am very chuffed about.  This posting has been a good exercise in itself and stopped me from being negative.  There's enough of that with Grumpytrousers.  That's a posting for another day.

Signing off for this evening due to having a numb bum.  I told you I was sick of sitting about!

Wednesday, 24 August 2016

Getting Stronger By The Day

I'm rather chuffed to report that I'm actually feeling a little stronger as each day passes.  I'm still at odds with the zimmer frame that they sent me home from hospital with but it's OK for steadying me as I move from armchair to wheelchair.

I met up yesterday with Mick my neighbour who is equally as incapacitated as me, having had a knee operation a few days before my foot op.  We sat like two old-timers in the sun for a short while, him on one of our dining chairs brought out on the driveway and me in my wheelchair. We laughingly discussed ailments, how we're getting around, the stupid stuff we've done (read that as stupid risks taken) etc. then suddenly we were joined by Beryl another neighbour who is also my close friend.  She sat cross legged on the hot concrete and it was like we were having a party.  Shame there was no beer!

Trying to demonstrate  my wheelchair prowess to Beryl I didn't take into account the camber of the driveway and suddenly found myself rolling backwards with no way of stopping myself before I ended up in next door's rose bushes!  Thankfully she was quick off the mark and saved me from being stabbed by thorns.  See what I mean about taking stupid risks?  It was kind of funny though, although not as funny as Grumpy Trousers letting go of the wheelchair a few days before as it scooted down the slope of the driveway and headed for the kerb on the other side of the road!

I honestly thought the silly old fart was behind me so rather enjoyed the ride as it gained momentum. But that damn kerb was advancing a bit too quick and panic set in.  Just in time he realised what he'd done and raced to catch me before I ended up head first in someone's garden!

Loud sniggers and guffaws followed from Beryl who'd witnessed everything from her own garden.  Grumpy was doubled up out of breath (and laughing) and I was completely bloody confused.

Monday, 22 August 2016

I'm such a numpty!

Me and the wheelchair are getting to be best mates now.  Until tonight that is......I ran over my own foot while propelling myself into the kitchen.  No, before you ask, I haven't a clue how it happened.  It just did.

Good job it was my good foot, otherwise you'd have heard the expletives wherever you are!

That is all.

This is the view from my armchair, except Elvis Costello has now been replaced by something unwatchable, so the TV is off.

Saturday, 20 August 2016

And eight months since my last post.........

Well whaddyaknow, the foot operation to fuse my joint finally happend!  Almost three years since it was first scheduled, I was admitted as a day patient at our local hospital, but ended up staying overnight due to the lateness of my place on the operating list.  

I had a spinal anaesthetic which, when taking hold made me feel drunk and sober both at the same time!  Losing feeling in my legs normally happens after a few beers or a bottle of wine (you realise I'm exaggerating, don't you?) but then my head will also be mush.  The anaesthetic however, left my brain working perfectly well, so see what I did there?  Drunk/sober?  No? Oh well, you needed to be there........  They asked me if I wanted a sedative too so I gladly took all that was on offer and kipped through most of the operation.

It was too late to send me back to the day ward so they found me alternative accommodation in a side ward off one of the main ones.  I had a great roomie called Dorothy, a lady in her 70's and after a quick natter found we had mutual friends.  That made the experience more bearable.  I'd been starved of course all day, in fact going beyond endurance so when the nurse brought me a cuppa and a sandwich I was so grateful I almost cried.  Anyway, it saved me from chewing at the bed-frame!

Once the feeling came back into my legs it was rapidly followed by the most appalling itching, especially round my tum and bum.  It went on for hours!  I was given an antihistamine which seemed to settle it down a bit, but it began all over again and kept me awake.  Seemingly it was a side effect of the feeling coming back into my nerve endings.  Small consolation since I'd just scratched myself sore in my sleep.

So here's my plastered leg and foot while in the hospital.

Later in the day the physiotherapist came to see me armed with a pair of arm crutches.  Sadly I couldn't use them as my balance is bad and I'm quite weak down my right side.  Off he went and came back with a zimmer frame and all manner of aids for the bathroom.  The zimmer was marginally more successful than the crutches in that I have 4 points of contact with the floor instead of 2.  All good you'd think?  Yes, while bobbing around in the little side ward in straight lines.  Not so good at home having to negotiate corners from room to room.  I got so tired and weaker still with my hands and shoulders taking the strain of hopping on one leg with the zimmer.

Thankfully my lovely friends have loaned me their daughter's folding wheelchair and it's fine going through doorways and will turn tightly so that has been my saviour.

As I write this is the end of the first week. It's definitely been a rollercoaster ride, but I've had visits, cards and messages from family and friends and that has lifted my spirits no end.

Tonight I've booted Grumpytrousers out to the pub.  We've been cooped up together all week and both need a well earned break and a bit of peace.  So while he's propping up the bar of the local, I'm in my favourite chair, with the wheelchair in nearby reach, watching cheesy music programmes instead of the Olympics, and having a read of Rita Marley's life story.  Aaaahhhh!!