Monthly Archives: August 2008

surgery day

I’m only writing this morning because I can’t eat or drink (doctor’s orders).

Surgery day today!   

In several hours, I’ll have my skull back and will be able to forget about this helmet.  Kris just snapped a couple of pictures (which I assume will make it to one of our blogs) of your patient with and without the helmet, and also without the beard I’d sprouted over the past eight weeks.  I sheared that yesterday using a somewhat crude method.  I look about 50% normal, with hopes of 85% later today. Well – other than the clean shaven skull part J.

It’s time to start getting ready now.   See you later today.

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day to day well-being is a moving target

Two days until surgery, and I’m still not sure of the right daily focal points.  I can’t quite anticipate the right needs per rest and nourishment.  It’s annoying.  Roughly every second or third day feels okay now.  That’s not good enough by a long shot.

We sat with a neurologist yesterday who consulted with us on this and related matters.  Helpful, but still frustrating that some of the answers are not yet known.

The big deal is that the kids start school within a week or two, so it matters even more.  Kayla starts middle school in Seattle this year, so the athletic and carpooling needs go up.  I’m pretty sure things will be okay from the logistics standpoint, but since we’re involved with a new school, I’ll feel left out of the scrum.  That’s no fun for me.

What you’re reading is that I very much want to be a parent, very much involved with my kids’ school and recreation.  Pre-accident, I was very much used to being able to anticipate how I’d feel day to day.  Now, it’s not so easy.

This is the current work in progress.  Wish me luck!


mixed news- yes to the skull, no to the eyesight

Well – busy times today.

We started off this morning with an upbeat meeting with a neurosurgeon, planning to re-add the top of my skull back to my head.  The planned date for this operation is Saturday morning!  This is about a month sooner than the folks at Harborview had planned, and we’re definitely happy about this.  It spells the end of my time walking around with a helmet!

Several hours later, we headed into Seattle to meet with a neuro-opthomologist this afternoon.  This was not as upbeat.  We started out by waiting a long time before seeing anyone, and when we finally did – the staff we saw was very poor.  Their computer system was down, so they didn’t have much info to offer in the beginning.  We had to sit through a pretty bad intro show with people who didn’t have info, and couldn’t figure out about to secure information about my left eye.  Eventually they seemed to agree with each other that there was no way I’d be able to see out of my left eye again.  Eventually, the clown show ceased, but the answer was the same from the doctor when he showed up.  This was depressing, but credible.

I was pretty quiet on the ride home, and fell asleep when we got there.

I slept until about 7, and woke to child-generated chaos at home.  Apparently, Rachel and her friend were having some noisy fun, and our friend Trish had started making some great dinner and dessert for us!  Definitely a treat.  So although today’s news was a bit mixed, we had a chance to put things into perspective and enjoy some great company. 

Trish – thanks for the great care and company!


september NW Runner Club report

In leafing through this months’ issue of Northwest Runner, I came across some goodness I need to share.  As part of this month’s club report, they included a write up the club response to my accident.  The article employed my accident as excellent evidence of club support of members, and underscored the spirit of giving I’ve benefited from in full measure these past 8 weeks.
 
They do mention Peter Ostertag’s accident as more evidence of this same spirit,  I definitely have to underscore this impression. 
 
For those outside the editorial reach of NW Runner, I’m working on getting a softcopy.  For those of you in the Northwest, please support this fine local publication by picking a copy of the September issue now!

peace, smiles

 

I’m spending time now writing a set of thank you notes to the sizeable number of people who helped my family and I through my recovery so far.  Without their help, things would have been much more difficult.  More importantly, it’s a great way to focus on the positive now.  It’s a great path to feeling good.  I write honestly and sincerely, and definitely have many thanks to offer now. 

The past couple of weeks have been tough ones for me.  I’ve have a number of challenges that have been difficult and unexpected.  Most prominent are the falls I’ve taken after dizzy moments.  Our theory is that these are due to under-hydration, or to suddenly standing after a long period of being down.  I’ve had two trips to the ER as a resuit, with one that gained me five stitches above my left eye.  As a result my family is now constantly reminding me to move a bit before standing every time I’m supposed to get up.

The other unpleasantness has been some GI action (or inaction). This is finally getting better after some ER visits.  The adjustment for me is that my body is now acting differently than it ever has.  That’s going to require some training and diligence on my part.  This might be the most annoying this thus far.

The thing I’ll say is that my path to recovery is not as straight a line as I’d hoped, and I’m genuinely thankful for the support I have from Kris and the rest if the family.  There have been a number of late nights of assistance, hard discussions, and lost sleep all around.  No fun, and difficult to plan for.

I’m missing some regular ‘highlights’ lately.  When I’ve ventured out of a regular routine, there’s been a price to pay.  With that in mind, it’s important to think about those positives. 

I spent a while the other day on the phone with my longest-time friend, Doron.  He and I talked for about 30 minutes, relaxed and enjoying each other’s company.  We chatted about things we feel fortunate about, and reconnected about older memories too.  It was great.

I got to do some of the same yesterday at a gathering for Ed and Barb two ESR friends who are headed off around the world.  Even if interacting amongst a bunch of people isn’t easy for me right now, it’s great to sit among good friends and soak up the warmth.

So – this is what’s ahead right now.  It’s not always easy to get there, but still a damn sigh better than looking back.

Peace and smiles!


recovery and patience

It’s been a while now.  Lot’s going on.
 
I’m having trouble managing the pain, and getting out to recover.  Very annoying.  Ideally, I’d see steady progress, but what happening is a bit different.I’m not eating enough, sleeping a bunch, and not feeling much progress.  Goals are difficult, as I seem to seem short each day (1 walk instead of two, etc, 15 min insted of 20).  I’m not eating enough (I think).
 
We had a mess the other day when I ended up back at Harborview, owing to communication issues.  It’s discouraging.  What’s missing is a feeling of confidence and certainty over what’s ahead for me.  That’s difficult because I’m not sure.
 
In the running world, what’s needed in a situation like this is a steady ration of goals ahead of me.  What I’ve been seeing isn’t enough.
 
This morning, I was feeling down about this.  I’d moped to Kris about my progress, and was feeling pretty sad.  Then my daughter asked about what my half-shaven head had looked like in the hospital, so Kris retrieved a picture from the ‘early days’. 
 
Wow.  Believe it or not, it might have been what I needed for a shot of patience.  Rachel had no idea what my tears were about :).

happy birthday mom

…. and thanks for everything (since the bike accident and before).