27 December 2009

Sunday ~ 27 December: Day 162

Greetings all my blog friends! It is way past time for an update. In some ways the last couple of months have been very eventful and in some ways they've seemed very stagnant. First I want to say that I am improving. That is the most important thing. But often it has been two steps forward, one step back and such.

My shoulder problem had gotten bad enough that they had to double my dose of oxycodone. I wasn't able to sit up at the computer or even think straight sometimes with the medication like that. So I decided to go see my chiropractor, who is also a Chinese medical practitioner. For the last six weeks I've been getting chiropractic treatments as well as electric shock acupuncture. I can't do regular acupuncture with the needles, as I can't risk infection through breaks in the skin. The great news is my shoulder is much better. I am actually able to go some days without taking any oxycodone at all. That's a big improvement from every four hours!

When I first came home I had little to no strength or stamina at all. If I went anywhere away from home I had to be pushed around in a wheelchair. Now I am able to go out and do some things. Abbey even took me to Costco the week before Christmas. I had to ride around in their motorised cart, but just being able to get out and do something like that was great. Still haven't been to the grocery store, though. The girls are doing that shopping for us.

The last time I was at Vanderbilt they started me on a new prophylactic antibiotic to help prevent PCP pneumonia. It had unpleasant side effects, so now I am off that. My digestive system really got messed up and I started getting a lot weaker. Still haven't got the stomach stuff quite right, but I feel better today than I have in over a month. Also, my last bone density scan showed that I have osteoporosis and need treatment for that. They are recommending Reclast, which you get by IV once a year. Apparently all the chemo really did a job on my bones. It doesn't help that osteoporosis runs in my family. The good news is that hopefully I will be able to rebuild bone tissue. My 22 year old donor marrow ought to help with that, I should think! LOL.

My next appointment is this Thursday, the 31st. I'll have tests and some treatments. I also see the eye doctor to check on the graft vs host disease in my eyes. They seem to be doing a lot better, so I believe that treatment is working well.

I do find myself getting impatient with my limitations. They told me it could take a year or more before my strength gets back to normal. Often though, you hear words like that without really comprehending how it affects everyday life. I still haven't been able to stand up and cook a meal for us. The most I have done was yesterday morning when I made the sauce for Creole Shrimp. I think I may bring a stool to the kitchen to sit on and try to cook. Chopping veggies makes me tired and I'm not able to pick up the Staub and Le Crueset pots because they are too heavy. But as Mike pointed out, I am so much better off than I was this time last year. This year I even managed to send out our Christmas cards, which I was not able to do last year for the first time in my life. I need to work on having more patience.

Everyone's thoughts and prayers have been so much appreciated by both me and my family. I thank all of you from the bottom of my heart.

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