Thursday, April 28, 2011

An update on my health and other stuff...

I haven't been blogging much these last couple of weeks because life has been really nuts around here.  Constant storms and rain, lots of company (Eric's folks were here, which I totally enjoyed, then Liisa and her Dad came for Easter weekend, which was also fun), and homework up the wazooo.  I feel like I have been burning the candle at all ends, and it isn't meeting in the middle, but I feel burnt out!  Skye is teething again, and it looks to me like she has three teeth on top coming in, the two centers and the left canine.  She has been quite the crabby pants lately! She has also started her version of crawling, and she scoots herself everywhere and into things.  One has to keep a close eye on her or she topples off things (like the bed). She is also pulling herself up on things, to her knees, then getting her feet under her, but doesn't know yet how to get back down, so that too results in screaming cuz she's stuck, or screaming cuz she fell over...  Regardless, she cannot be trusted AT ALL!

As can be seen below in a few photos, the water in the trees has now encroached into the grassy areas behind the path, and the ground is just saturated. I am so tired of rain and gloom I could scream, and I am equally tired of muddy floors and wet dog.  Today we actually have sunshine and I am so grateful for it! I sat outside with my coffee and my textbooks and basked for a bit this morning!

Brie didn't go to work today; she couldn't find her clean khaki's for work, and she couldn't wear jeans a second day in a row, so they sent her home. When she called to see if she was needed back (after her laundry was done) they said no, so I have really been appreciating a child-free morning!  It's a nice break now and again, and I really need it.

So to update my health, I had the echocardiogram/stress test on Monday and everything came out good.  No signs of problems or damage of any sort, so I have been given a clean bill of health. I am so relieved!  I spent three weeks wondering and worrying and thinking all sorts of things prior to the tests, and I am so glad to be done with the unknowns.  Now to focus on continuing my weight loss process (I have lost 11.4 lbs since March 1st when I started WW online).

Looks like I am back on deck with the baby....  My time off is over I guess...

Flooding at the tree line...

So odd to see herons and cranes out the kitchen window, as they take shelter closer to where it's shallow.
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flooding in our back lot.

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My newest doll

I have named her Emma Louise. She is a resin reproduction of a French bebe that I am looking forward to costuming in period clothing.
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Sunday, April 10, 2011

Spring flowers!

It's been a gorgeous weekend to be outside. Patrick is finishing up mowing the lawn (Brie started it the other day but ran out of gas), and I planted bulbs in the containers and filled the bird feeders with Skye. Low 80's for temps all weekend, I am feeling good, and am thankful for all I have. The stress test et al is scheduled for the 25th so no trip to MN for Easter, but that is ok too. I have enjoyed my time with Eric's family this weekend, and God bless Grandma Hap, who turned 101 on Friday!
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Sunday, April 3, 2011

It's been a crazy start to a busy weekend!

As some of you may already know, on Friday I went to the emergency room at St. Louis University Hospital, with chest pain. It was the wierdest experience I have ever had, and in terms of linguistics, "pain" is a misnomer, because I never had any pain per se; rather it was pressure and weight. My chest felt like it had a blood pressure cuff around my rib cage, inflated to it's highest level, and as it eased down, a heavy weight remained in the center of my sternum, like I had a huge animal sitting on my chest. I started sweating out of the blue, and felt winded, like I had been running up and down the stairs too many times carrying loads of laundry.  What was I doing at the time? Sitting in the car, while Eric pumped gas.  This came on totally without warning, completely out of the blue!

Prior to this starting, Eric and I, along with the baby, had run to St. Louis to get his patches sewn on to his new uniform shirts. Then, as a treat for me, we went to Knitorious, a fabulous yarn shop in south STL.  I had a new pattern, featuring a new technique I wanted to try, and I wanted/needed a special coloration of yarn to do it justice. I had also brought my Shipwreck shawl along to show it off, seeing as I had bought the yarn for it from their shop. After being thrilled with the response to my shawl, I spent a very pleasant hour playing with fibers, matching and comparing color schemes (and prices), and I had finally settled on a yarn I really wanted to use for this project (coming in at $63 for 9 skeins of yarn; one of the yarns offered to me that would work would have run me $180 for 10 skeins, which I decided against...)  We made our way to the register, I bought my yarns and a neat project bag, and then we headed off to get gas before heading home. While we were at the gas station I was calm, happy, and talking to the baby.  No stress, no anxiety, no nothing!  When the pressure first hit, it was fairly intense, but because it felt "wierd" as opposed to painful, I wasn't sure it was even something to be concerned about.  Still, because it was intense, I said something to Eric about it, and he asked if I wanted to go the emergency room. I dithered over it for a few minutes, but when I broke out into the sweat, I got a little scared, and said yeah, maybe we should check it out.

When I got to the ER, Eric couldn't come back with me because of the baby. My EKG looked ok, but my blood pressure was high--like 163/120.  That scared me too. They got me back on a gurney (after giving the diaper bag to Eric in the waiting area), and hooked me up to a blood pressure cuff, an oximeter, and a heart monitor. Then they started trying to get an IV in, and in three tries they weren't successful (along with having a trauma come in that took my nurse away from me). I had a chest xray, then they finally put in the IV and drew blood for labs. I was told to repeat my story and symptoms to every person who came into my cubicle, and was poked, prodded and listened to. I had my knitting with me (a work in progress) so despite the discomfort of the IV in the crook of my elbow, the blood pressure cuff on the other arm, and the oximeter taped to my middle finger, I knit. I knit for about 5 hours total, and was in the ER for about nine and a half hours.  They decided to admit me for observation and continued labs, and I finally got up into a room around 10:30 pm or so.  Eric had gone home with the baby, then came back with my Nook and a charger (works for both the Nook and my phone), and he stayed by me til close to midnight. I finally took the opportunity to call my kids and my mom because I had NO phone access while I was in the ER and I knew my kids especially would be freaked out.

I was up most of the night between all the labs, the vitals being taken, and the EKG's, along with having a challenging roommate, lots of noise from the hallway, and the guy in the room behind us hollering most of the night...  It felt like everytime I finally relaxed enough to fall asleep, something or someone felt the need to wake me!  Anyhow, I was up by 7, eating an extremely bland "heart healthy" diet (but hell on my WW's points /pout), and talking to the intern, the nurses, and my roommate.  I also called my family members again, giving my cell a good workout.  The cardiologist came around on "grand rounds" about noon, and he said my symptoms were classic for a heart attack, however the tests/labs and EKG all indicated I had NOT had a heart attack (a good thing, no heart damage). Just as I was ready to relax and celebrate though, he said that there could still be a blockage of some sort that triggered the event, and that I am not completely out of the woods yet.  I need to get a stress test done early this coming week (as soon as I can schedule it), and while he was sending me home (because it didn't pay to sit around the hospital bored for 48 hours til their stress test lab opened on Monday), I was to take things easy and not engage in anything strenuous.  Easier said than done around here, but I am doing my best to comply.

I am not sure what this means for my trip home to Minneapolis over Easter, because if there is a problem I don't want to be driving 10 hours by myself (with just the baby and no other drivers available), and I could still potentially fly (if I adjust my plans for a longer stay and go with just the baby and no one else--the kids can't miss school). So I don't know.  I also feel bad because there are things I wanted to have done before I get company later this week.  That too will either need to be done by the kids and/or Eric, or it will just have to be left undone.  I can't sweat it at this point.  As my wonderful mother-in-law said, time to delegate!

I am going to spend time today (and tommorrow too probably) getting the quilt machine quilted for the auction on Thursday.  I also need to get it bound off.  In an uninterrupted world, it's about 16 to 20 hours worth of work.  I am going to do it a bit at a time, so I don't over-do, but I am committed to getting it done. I figure if the kids and Eric take care of the rest of the chores, babysitting shouldn't wear me out too much, and I will just try to entertain Skye as much as possible either on the floor, in her seats, or on my bed.  Not so much walking and carrying her around (she weighs close to 20 lbs now). 

So, I'm feeling fine, no pressure, no pain, no shortness of breath; just a bit of anxiety over the unknowns, but I am lifting those in prayer; and I am taking it a step at a time. I realized as I laid in the ER that I am not afraid to die, and am at peace with that, however, I am also not ready to give up and roll over either (there were a few deaths while I was in there, one from a massive coronary, one from a severe traffic accident--it makes one think!)  I felt horrible for scaring everyone so badly, but also understood that I was blessed to have no damage at this time, and chose to look at this as a wake-up call to be sure I am taking care of myself and those I love.  I am home, sitting on my bed and watching the trees blow around outside, the sun shine, and feel very grateful that it was no worse.  My faith is strong, I am at peace, and there is nothing more I could ask for than what I have been given.  Time to appreciate it!