Oh ... Really?

Category: Personal

Thursday, October 29, 2009

When routine isn’t so routine

I finally got around to getting a complete physical exam last week, my first in several years, and lemme tell ya, there was nothing routine about it. I am still shaking my head in disbelief over what has happened. I see the hand of God at work, but in ways that I do not yet understand.

I went in with the primary objective of finding out why I gained a pile of weight and lose any of it in the last year and a half, despite a low calorie diet and regular exercise. My doctor had blood drawn and in addition to the regular lab tests, said she would check my thyroid and metabolic profile. Then after recalling that my last mammogram was suspicious but never followed up (I was laid off from my job about then, and just now have a job with medical insurance benefits), she ordered another one ... right away, that day. Then she did an EKG. After that, I got dressed and was about to go schedule the mammogram for later that day.

My doctor came back into the exam room. She was quite concerned about my EKG. She showed it to me, where the T waves were inverted or flattened (inverted in aVF and flattened in lead III, for those who know this stuff). From my training and experience as a paramedic, I knew this was not a good thing, and I recognized the abnormality myself. The most likely cause of this change or deviation is a prior anterior myocardial infarction ... that's fancy medical talk for heart attack.

Now imagine not only my shock, but utter disbelief. I already mentioned that I eat a low fat diet - which includes very little beef, even the lean stuff - and that I exercise regularly, but I also have always had low blood pressure - it was 98/72 that day, my resting heart rate is around 68 - 72, and the last time my cholesterol was checked it was 145. I have always enjoyed obnoxiously good health. Heart attack? Me? Surely not!

So then, in addition to the mammogram being scheduled for later that afternoon, I was also set up for a nuclear stress test two days later, an echo cardiogram two weeks later and several follow up visits. Oh, and a referral to a dermatologist for a suspicious freckle on my nose, but more on that later.

So, what does any self-respecting woman do after receiving this kind of news, and who then had two hours to kill before getting her boobies smashed? She goes shoe shopping ... that's what.

The stress test was excruciating ... I was so bored. And hungry, and thirsty. I had to be fasting for 4 hours prior to the test, with water only. And NO CAFFEINE! Auugghh! The technician placed an IV port in my arm and injected the radioactive solution. I sat for about 30 minutes while it circulated, then I laid on a table while my heart was digitally imaged. Yes, I snoozed. Then I was hooked up to the monitor leads, and a resting EKG was run, then I sat for another 30 minutes. I snoozed some more. Then the doctor came in and I got on the treadmill. After walking for about 5 minutes - more slowly than my normal pace - it was sped up to what is for me a brisk pace. When I attained the target heart rate, more radioactive solution was injected. I stopped and they measured how long it took for my heart rate and blood pressure to return to normal, which was not long. Years of regular exercise? Yep. But the doctor said that there were still some concerning changes in the rhythm, so I was ordered to avoid any kind of strenuous activity. Then I sat - and snoozed - some more, then it was back on the imaging table, where I took yet another nap. Then I was done. I left wondering, so when is the *stress* test?

So then the waiting began. This was Thursday, they said the results of the test would be back Monday or Tuesday. Of course, no news Monday, but on Tuesday I got a message while at work from Rich saying the doctor's office had called his cell phone and left a message for me to call. Apparently, they thought his cell was my daytime phone? But when I finally spoke to the nurse, all she had was the results of my blood tests - all normal, except a severe deficiency in Vitamin D, for which they want me to take a supplement plus a once a week prescription strength dose.

Remember that dermatologist referral? Consider that with the Vitamin D thing - you know, the sunshine vitamin? Ponder for a moment and hold that thought ... we shall return to this.

Towards the end of the day Wednesday, with still no call about the stress test results or the mammogram results either for that matter, I finally called the office and asked that someone check to see if they were in. I left work and went to choir practice at church. Of course, they called just as practice was starting, but I discovered later that they left a message for me on their lab line - a phone number that patients can call to get messages and test results.

So I listen to the message left for me - my stress test came back completely normal. No signs of ischemia, tissue damage or dysrhythmia, and all values were within normal limits.

After I picked my jaw up off my lap, and giving praise and thanks to the Lord Almighty, my first thought was, how in the stinkin' heck could this be? I saw the EKGs, I know what the rhythms mean and the possibilities. Remember, almost all my blood work was completely normal. Remember too that during the stress test I had EKG changes that concerned my doctor too. I was and remain baffled. They still want to do the echo cardiogram, but they don't think that I am in any immediate danger.

OK, I will go with that. No problem. I am sure God has a lesson or message for me in there somewhere, and now my prayer is that it be revealed to me.

I also got a letter about my mammogram - recall that it was concerning a few years ago - it too, is completely normal.

Oh yeah, that dermatology appointment. The doctor doesn't like the freckle on my nose. Even though she hasn't seen me in years, she swears that it is bigger now and looks bit scaly. Now, I am quite skeptical about this. I have been a very good girl over the years, and I have always worn makeup with sunscreen in it. I do not leave the house without at least some foundation on, and when at the beach or pool, I put additional sunscreen on not only my face, but my entire body.

Lemme tell ya how devoted I am to protecting my skin from the sun ... remember what the one abnormal blood test was? Yep, Vitamin D ... the sunshine vitamin. Go figure, right?

No wonder men, like my dear husband*, are scared to death of getting physical exams. This has been crazy! Oh, and that primary objective? I guess I am on my own there. My thyroid and metabolic profile are normal, and other than being curious about it, the doctor didn't have much to say about my inability to lose weight.



(*But he better man up and get his butt in there anyway, he is WAY overdue!)

Posted by LissaKay on 10/29/09 at 10:10 PM in ~ Personal
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Thursday, September 25, 2008

Counting my Blessings

A little over a year ago my job came to an end. It was a contract job, intended to last only a year, but it was extended an additional 3 months in the hope that the situation changed so that I could be hired on as a direct employee. That never happened and they had to let me go. So began my year of unemployment.

At first, I frantically searched job listings and boards, networked with others in my profession, sent out resumes, filled out applications ... and even though I had several that seemed very interesting, the offers just didn't come through. It took a lot of prayer, and a lot of faith, and a lot of listening for God's voice for me to relax and be willing to wait. He was telling me it was time to rest, and in the meantime, I had other things to attend to. My children were getting ready to leave the nest, and I had to prepare for that, and find the faith that they could succeed and that I could let them go. My personal life went through some upheavals and epiphanies, finally bringing me to my knees before God so that I would get back up and on the path He wants me on. I needed this time to prepare my life for its next chapter.

Still, the job thing was not happening. I waited, with as much patience as I could muster. It was a truly a test of my faith that whatever was coming was His Will and it would be done. From that faith, my blessings have come in abundance. My children done very well, and my son has even begun to turn to Christ. My daughter is realizing how much she is really capable of, and is enjoying having her own home to take care of, as well as a job and a pretty nice fellow to hang out with. Not the least of these blessings has been joining my life with that of my best friend and soul mate. We are already wedded before God, with our "God family" as witnesses, and we are looking forward to professing our bond and commitment before man in a ceremony next spring, to make it all legal and stuff. Hanging on to that faith, and that God has a plan that would be revealed eventually, I still longed for the security that a job would bring.

A few weeks ago, I was notified that I would be getting a formal job offer soon. Three weeks, a ton of paperwork, two more interviews, and a pee test later, I now have a formal written offer for the most awesome job ever! I first sent my resume in back in May and shortly after that, I had my first phone interview with them. That's how long this has taken. But it is well worth the wait, with a salary more than double what I was making before, an excellent benefits package and opportunity for advancement. I had been stuck in entry level positions with one company going out of business after another, so that I could never advance far enough, long enough to be able to vie for better positions with experience. But for whatever reason, these folks chose me for one of three positions out of a field of 15 candidates to start. Well, I know the reason, and that would be that this is part of His plan, His will.

Isn't God awesome?!

Posted by LissaKay on 09/25/08 at 12:44 AM in ~ Personal
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Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Casualties of this Campaign

I can hardly wait until this stupid presidential campaign is over. Yet at the same time, I fear its outcome. More than anything, I hate the effect it has on friendships. I previously mentioned this developing situation a few posts ago, and it has further deteriorated.

A friend of mine, someone I have known well for many years, is a declared Republican. She says she is a Christian and holds many conservative views, but for one thing ... she is pro-choice. It's not a subject that we have discussed much in the past, it never really came up. She is aware of my views ... that abortion for birth control purposes is always wrong, but my libertarian side makes me wary of any legislation aimed at restricting the number of abortions performed. It's not something I get all riled up over, it's something other people do, that I abhor as I believe it is murder of a human being, but I try not to be judgmental of individuals because of their opinions. She, on the other hand, is apparently very invested in this pro-choice thing, something I did not realize until Sarah Palin, who holds pro-life views, was chosen to be McCain's running mate.

She went nuts! She just cannot stand Palin, she clings to each and every rumor and smear that comes down the pike and conflates the meaning of the rumor so that Palin becomes the very devil herself. Having any sort of a conversation with her is next to impossible because it always comes around to the election and how, if McCain and Palin win, every woman will come under the direct and total control of the government, all because abortion will become illegal immediately upon their taking office. Patient explanations of the facts are waved off, and if I persist, she becomes hysterical. I remain confounded.

She is now angry at me, having accused me of being among those that would "enslave women" using their uterus as the ball and chain, tying them down to raising child after child against their will. After blinking hard a few times, I asked if these hypothetical enslaved women wouldn't have some say so in the matter, as in at the moment they decided to have sex or not. Obviously, if they chose to not have sex, then they wouldn't risk getting pregnant, now would they? Of course, she replied that it is unreasonable to expect women to do without sex, that's an old patriarchal view that is also intended to keep women down and in their place. In my view, if a woman isn't willing to take the responsibility for the possible outcome of having sex - having a baby with the man she is sleeping with, then she probably should not be having sex with him.

I then went on to propose that if women wanted to have abortion as a birth control option, then men should too. If a couple gets pregnant unexpectedly, if the man doesn't want the burden or inconvenience of raising a child, or even just being financially responsible for it for 18 years or more, then he should be able to force the woman to have an abortion. Equal rights and all, you know. Her reply to that was so very predictable ... if a man doesn't want to be making babies, he shouldn't be sleeping around.

Right. Exactly. Neither should a woman. With equal rights comes equal responsibility, and it goes both ways.

Bless her heart, she just didn't know how to respond from there, and hasn't spoken to me since.

Posted by LissaKay on 09/24/08 at 11:02 PM in ~ Personal
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Friday, March 16, 2007

Contemplating My Lovely Locks

Should they stay or should they go?

My hair has changed recently. All my life, it has been straight as a stick, or maybe a little straighter than that. Not a curl, not a wave or even a curve to be found. On the few occasions that I did cut it short, it just lay there, all sticky-outie and spikey. But I have noticed that it now has some waves to it. Not a lot, but some. It's also getting very long, and it's needs to be cut.

So the question then is, do I cut a little, or a lot? A little would mean a trim, to get rid of the ratty ends. A lot would be, oh say ... shoulder length. Right now, it is about the middle of my back. Oh, and I have kept it mostly in the same style for ... too long. Very long hair is kinda "young" for someone my age - which is fixin' to increment another year soonish.

*sigh*

I dunno. I'm tired of it ... I want something new, something different ... something that does not look like an mature woman trying desperately to hang on to the last remnants of her youth. I wish I could try on a new cut and style just to see if I like it. Maybe I'll just go for the trim and talk with the stylist ... and I need to find a new one of those too, the swishy gay guy that used to do it up and disappeared on me ... (He was so swishy, he'd lisp the word "Cracker")

Ugghhh ... I think I will just go get my nails done and look for new shoes instead.

----
*Now Playing on RadioParadise: "Changes" by David Bowie ... an omen?

Posted by LissaKay on 03/16/07 at 05:35 PM in ~ Personal
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Sunday, January 07, 2007

Turn the Page

I am in the final countdown phase of preparing to matriculate again. I have been formally accepted and admitted to Austin Peay State University to major in the Computer Science - Information Systems Online program. I have the financial aid coming in ... grants and loan to blow the mind. The Fed .gov loves for low-income single moms to go to school. Whatever it takes to keep us off the dole, eh?

It's been a little confusing and frustrating ... there's no office to drop into or call like in most college situations. The campus is 200 miles away, and when I call, I mostly get voice mail, and it's next to impossible to get calls while at work. For the last four weeks, they have also been out for the holidays, so things have been moving at a snail's pace. It wasn't until just Friday that I knew if they were going to count the classes I took way back when, over 20 years ago. Even so, I can't tell if they are giving me credit for the classes, but not the hours ... or the hours but not the GPA (which causes the cumulative GPA to be lower), or what. I don't want to be a pest and be emailing and calling all the time with these pesky little questions, but it bugs me to no end to not know!

My schedule for this first semester is going to be a killer, as I am trying to get the remaining core academic classes out of the way. I am taking World Lit, Elements of Statistics, Introduction to Programming, Data Communications and Networking, and International Politics. I haven't decided on a minor yet. I am leaning towards Criminal Justice though. I would really like to get into the field of computer and networking security and forensics.

I went to the campus online bookstore to get my books ... $503 and change, shipped to my door. Ugh. But then I got an Ebay email advertising Half.com as a source for textbooks. Sweet! I ordered nearly all my books from sellers on there, two of whom are in the same city as Austin Peay ... total price? $265 shipped to my door. The only downside to that is I had to pay for them myself, until my loan proceeds arrive, whereas if I had ordered through the campus bookstore, I could have charged it directly to my financial aid. I also had to invest a bit of time researching the books, finding the right ISBNs and making sure I was getting the correct edition and all. But saving almost half? Yeah, it was worth it.

Classes start Jan. 16. I hope I can pull this off. My goal is to have my degree no later than May 2009. I am going to keep on working full-time, and of course I have the kids to look after. But they are mostly off doing their own thing these days. My work is pretty darn laid back, I can study between calls and on breaks, but the bulk of my study time will be in the evenings and on weekends.

And, as if that didn't tighten up my schedule enough ... I have finally decided to lose some of this bulk that has piled on in recent years. I used to always be a tiny, little thing and I could eat whatever I wanted. But I was younger, had less stress in my life, and had an active job. All of that changed nearly overnight about 5 years ago, except for what I was eating. So, little by little it crept on. Now it has to come off.

I joined a fitness club, The Rush with my daughter, and we are embarking on a journey to better health and fitness. Our first orientation and work-out is tomorrow night.

So, off I go ... embarking on new and wondrous adventures!

Posted by LissaKay on 01/07/07 at 08:51 PM in ~ Personal
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Saturday, December 30, 2006

Tips for a Powerful New Year

I'm not usually one for pop-psych, feel-good, glurges, but this list of ways to improve your life sounds pretty spot on. I also hate New Year resolutions ... my only resolution is to not make any resolutions, so I am ignoring what the calendar says. There's no time like the present to make improvements. I am going to try to implement some of these suggestions from Jon Gordon, energy coach??? Whatever ... they all sound like good things to do ...

1. Take a 10-30 minute walk every day. And while you walk, smile. It is the ultimate anti-depressant.

2. Sit in silence for at least 10 minutes each day. Buy a lock if you have to.

3. Buy a TIVO, tape your late night shows and get more sleep.

4. When you wake up in the morning complete the following statement: My purpose is to___________ today.

5. Live with the 3 E's. Energy, Enthusiasm, Empathy.

6. Watch more movies, play more games and read more books than you did in 2006.

7. Make time to practice meditation, yoga, tai chi, qigong and prayer. They provide us with daily fuel for our busy lives.

8. Spend more time with people over the age of 70 and under the age of 6.

9. Dream more while you are awake.

10. Eat more foods that grow on trees and plants and eat less foods that are manufactured in plants.

11. Drink green tea and plenty of water and eat blueberries, wild Alaskan salmon, broccoli, almonds and walnuts.

12. Try to make at least 3 people smile each day.

13. Clear your clutter from your house, your car, your desk and let new and flowing energy into your life.

14. Don't waste your precious energy on gossip, energy vampires, issues of the past, negative thoughts or things you cannot control. Instead invest your energy in the positive present moment.

15. Realize that life is a school and you are here to learn. Problems are simply part of the curriculum that appear and fade away like algebra class but the lessons you learn will last a lifetime.

16. Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a college kid with a maxed out charge card.

17. Smile and laugh more. It will keep the energy vampires away.

18. Each night before you go to bed complete the following statements:

I am thankful for __________. Today I accomplished____________.

19. Remember that you are too blessed to be stressed.

20. Enjoy the ride. Remember that this is not Disney World and you certainly don't want a fast pass. You only have one ride through life so make the most of it and enjoy the ride.

===

Blessings for the New Year to all!

Posted by LissaKay on 12/30/06 at 02:57 PM in ~ Personal
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Sunday, December 17, 2006

I’m done!

Yo, check it out. I be DONE with the shopping thing!

I must have set a new personal record. With the exception of one gift I bought a week ago, I was able to get everything for everyone on my list in two days ... 5 hours on the first day, 3 hours the second. Another record, I didn't buy a single thing online. Which is a switch. A couple years ago, I did all my Christmas shopping completely online. I bragged that the only time I went into the mall that season was to go to the eye doctor that was located therein. Weird. I did do a good amount of research and price comparisons online. The RSS feeds I get from FatWallet, Techbargains, XPBargains and Anandtech Hot Deals are quite helpful too.

In other news ... I have been formally accepted to Austin Peay State University in the Computer Science Online Program. It's scaring me to death right at the moment ... I will be working full time while taking a heavy course load as I try to do this degree in just four semesters, with the added challenge of having to discipline myself "go to class" without a schedule or a place to go. I will probably need to come up with a self-imposed schedule to follow. The kids are at the age where they don't really need much in the way of supervision, just an adult presence to touch base with and provide guidance. And money. Ha!

---

OMG. I just stood up and went into the kitchen. Every. Muscle. Aches.
Marathon shopping is not for the old and out of shape. Ugghhh ....

Posted by LissaKay on 12/17/06 at 09:27 PM in ~ Personal
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Friday, September 22, 2006

One whole year without a monkey on my back

Right at about this time, one year ago today, I smoked my last cigarette. It was not a pretty journey, but here I am ... and pretty darn proud of myself. I have since discovered that smokers are less affected by caffeine than non-smokers, so that was part of the insomnia. The jitters are the physical withdrawal from nicotine, so a patch or gum would have helped with that. In the year since then, I have experienced the upheaval of a company change at work, a lay-off, six weeks of unemployment, the break-in and theft of items from my home, the never-ending trials of dealing with a teen with bipolar disorder, a job that I hated so much I would have preferred poking my eyes out with toothpicks, my dad in the hospital three times, a new job, my daughter moving in with me, a move to a new home.

Holy crap. I done did good.


imageSo I got myself a little present ... a local yarn store is closing, and everything is 50% off.
Oh yeah ... over $200 worth of high quality yarn ... squeeee! And I spent less than a month's worth of cigarettes!


(Click the pic for biggie-size yarn pr0nage)

Posted by LissaKay on 09/22/06 at 12:45 AM in ~ Knitting ~ Personal
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Monday, June 05, 2006

The week I’ve had these past two days ...

Sunday morning ... I lay in bed in that drowsy half-wake, half-sleep state listening to the cat purr. My idea of heaven. It was to be short lived though ...

I heard the phone ring, and my son answer it. It's usually for him anyway. But no ... it's my mom. Daddy was out walking the dog and somehow fell. Hard. Hard enough to knock him out and scare the crap out of the neighbor. When you are 66 years old, with a brand new hip and reconstructed, stented cardiac arteries, falls are serious. Mom was calling from the ER where Daddy had been taken by ambulance. She was not sure that I needed to come right away, but I would have to eventually, as she had no transportation. I went, as soon as I could, without killing myself rushing. My son chose to go too, surprising the hell out of me ... he does still have some remnants of humanity!

Daddy has one hell of a black eye. Not a contusion or bruise, but pooling of blood below the skin. He has a fracture of the bone around his left eye, the orbit. He also needed 7 stitches on his scalp, and was further covered with scrapes and bruises all down his left side. The replaced hip is the right one, and it was not bothered. He also had a small sub-arachnoid hemorrhage, so they sent him to ICU for a day or two.

We spent most of the day at the hospital. Let me tell you, people ... if you ever need to go into the hospital, for something even minor, take someone with you that can and will deal with the staff. They will lie to cover up their own incompetence, thinking you, as a lay-person, are an imbecile. I encountered this crap several times in the 8 hours we were there yesterday. They left us sitting in the ICU waiting area for an hour after Daddy had been brought up, then lied saying they weren't told about family. They couldn't get it straight whether Daddy could have sips of water, ice chips only, or nothing ... I know damn good and well the neuro doc and the ER doc both said OK for sips of water.

I finally let slip that I was a paramedic, leaving unsaid that I am watching every move you bitches make. Funny the different reactions that gets ... the dumbass nurses become snooty, and even a little hostile. The good nurses talk to me like a peer, and watch their own asses. Docs and PAs love it ... they have someone that speaks the language. They direct their questions to me, and let me translate for my parents. I've been out of the biz for 5 years, but it still carries the magic.

We got Mom home that evening, and made her promise to stay there until morning and get some rest. My son was drafted to be her companion the next day when she went back. Mom gets flustered and lost in these situations, and just needs someone to be her anchor. He can also lift the heavy stuff and hold doors open. Exploitation of youth? Oh yes, indeed!

While they lolled about the hospital, I had to go to work. The dreaded place of misery. And I had a check-list of things to do ...

My health insurance has some issue with the chiropractic doc I've been seeing ... so I had to cancel my visits this week until that can be straightened out. I had to call a potential employer and turn down a job offer ... the pay is too low. Had to call the child support office to get some information, then call a bunch of other people ... rally the troops, so to speak, so I will be ready for our review in two weeks. I've been preparing for this for almost three years. I'm still nervous as hell ... the well-being of my two younger children depends on the outcome ... all my ex wants is to see me suffer financially. If all goes as it should, he will be left standing on his own crank. I do hope he doesn't act like a child and stomp his feet ...

Then the credit union called ... my 401K check has arrived, and I have to go sign papers to roll it into an IRA. While there, I applied for an increase in my credit line so I can transfer the balance of two credit cards ... and pay one third the interest rate. Why do I always get the feeling that my mom should be doing this stuff? She's the grown up! I'm just the kid! What am I doing applying for loans and opening an IRA???

Then the gut punch of the day ... I was offered another of the jobs I interviewed for last week (AT! Trifecta!) One that I have wanted for a long time (still not THE dream job though!) and I don't know why, but I had the most ungodly anxiety attack! I got the offer via email during my lunch break, and my gut was so clenched, I couldn't eat. My hands were shaking, my chest was tight and I broke out into a sweat. What a weird reaction! I think it's because I had myself convinced that I blew the interview and didn't have much of a chance. I know I sounded like a retard ... I blanked when asked what is NTFS. Duh!

Anyway, the pay is about the same, the bennies will suck for a few months because I will be a temp before I get fully hired. Then I get the bennies of a government contractor. Sweet! It's a help desk job, and there is loads of room to promote there, and it will look good on a resume, should I go on the job hunt again. I don't look forward to quitting this job ... yes, I do ... but I don't. Maybe that's where the anxiety is coming from ...

This has been one hell of a two days ...


Posted by LissaKay on 06/05/06 at 11:13 PM in ~ Personal
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Monday, May 22, 2006

Chiro-blogging

To any and all that have been wondering where I am ... unreplied to emails, comments, PMs via various sites, Yahoo Groups, etc ... I have been having some really bad back problems recently. Actually, the problems have been there for several months, it just got worse in the last couple of weeks. Anyway, sitting at the computer for more than a few minutes is quite uncomfortable. Therefore, a lot of online things have fallen by the wayside ...

I have taken measures to correct the back problems ... I started seeing a chiropractic doctor that was recommended by a co-worker. It is a slow healing process, and as sometimes happens, it gets worse before it gets better. I have bad days, and not-so bad days, but the pain is pretty constant. It makes me pretty darn cranky too ... go figure.

I went to a chiropractic doc many years ago ... after each baby was born, to get adjusted back to normal. In the intervening years, I haven't had the need, even with an extremely active job and lifestyle. I tended to minor aches on my own, using postures and stretching that I had learned during my natural health obsessive years. I don't know why I let this go so long, and get so bad. Denial perhaps?

If you've never been to a chiro, here's a little peek behind the curtains - the first visit is usually just an exam, x-rays and consultation. I was in pain, so they went ahead and did some electro-therapy. Two day later, I went back and we looked at the x-rays. I have a slight curvature of the spine in the sacral area, right in between the two dimples of the low back. Since last autumn or so, I have felt like there was a knife sticking in just to the right of the dimple on the right side. The curvature caused a misalignment of the sacro-iliac joint there. The pain radiated from there, causing muscular spasms and tightness. I also have some compression around T-12 ... that's where your spine starts being bendy as the rib cage ends. So, the game plan is to visit the doc three times a week for three weeks. Each time, he re-evaluates, adjusts me and then I have the electro-therapy.

The evaluation consists of me sitting on a stool in front of him while he gently moves my spine back and forth, from side to side and front to back. From this, he identifies the tight places, and bones out of place. Then he has me lean face down on a bed that is at a high angle. Once in place, he lowers the bed with me on it to a horizontal position. He places the heels of his hands over my spine and thrusts downward. My spine cracks, and to prevent to much pressure being placed on it, the middle of the bed drops away with a certain amount of pressure. Sometimes he uses a thumping gadget thingy on the muscles to help loosen those up.

Then I go to a low couch and lie on one side. Lower shoulder slightly forward, my arms are crossed across my chest, the upper-most leg is bent at the knee with my foot hooked behind the knee of the other leg. The doc pulls me all the way to the edge of the couch and I feel like I am going to fall off. But he has me held in place. With his knee in the triangle formed by my bent leg, he pushes down, pulls my hip forward while pushing my upper shoulder back ... cra-a-a-a-ck! goes my spine. Oh my ... I turn to jelly. I flip over on the other side and the process is repeated. Next is therapy.

The physical therapist has me lie face down on a bed with a conductive pad under my tummy. She puts some goo on my back and then runs an ultrasound emitting thing over the sore places. It feels like a super-high intensity buzzer. After 5 minutes of this, she places four electrodes around the problem area. The machine then pulses high-voltage electrical current between the electrodes. She places a hot pack over the whole thing and I relax for 15 minutes. I often drift off to sleep a bit.

When it's done, I have to move slowly because it leaves me a little light-headed. But the pain is mostly gone for a while. I am afraid to move too much, for fear of bringing it back. It does come back by the next afternoon or evening, probably due to the crappy office chair I have at work. But it is a little less each day. Today was bad, because I overdid it with stuff I had to do over the weekend ... laundry, changing bedsheets, lugging a 19 pound cat to the vet, too much standing and walking, carrying an armload of stuff around Walmart. Yep, I certainly paid for it today. But after my chiro visit, I am much, much better. And I had better get up from this computer while I am still feeling OK.


Posted by LissaKay on 05/22/06 at 10:59 PM in ~ Personal
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