Saturday, May 19, 2012
The Reason Behind My Happy Blue Bird Day
I love this song! I do have a peaceful, easy feeling. :) I love today! I love this week!
I was just ironing some shirts to this song ...which always causes me to feel like a free spirit ...even when ironing. Anyway ...I am going out to get some vitamin D in a bit and just enjoy this GORGEOUS day ...doing things outside. This is a PERFECT day! If it doesn't rain Monday, we are going to open our pool which will be a bit earlier than usual. But, if it gets cold ..we can keep the solar cover on it. POOL! Woo hoo! Of course I am still doing prehab at the Y and will continue even on a maintenance program when PT stops. I can swim in lanes there too where as can't really swim with an 18" round above ground. It is still a nice size though and we enjoy it.
Anyway, Thursday was an outstandingly good day.
My knees were still sore when I first woke up from all the walking around the Newark business district the day before... but they were fine by the afternoon after resting a bit more. Thank God for the two Orthovisk injections I had or I never would've been able to do all that walking on concrete and standing and walking and standing and walking. Our younger son had his college graduation down at the Prudential Center on Wednesday and I will write a post about that soon and put up some pictures.
I was just so HAPPY Thursday. I still am. And now I realize why.
Of course it was a fabulous graduation experience and day. Well ...except for one thing, but the good far out shadowed the negative. It happened after the graduation. But, I digress.
Anyway, I had slept a lot too. I wondered ..."Oh wow ...is THIS what I feel like when I actually get sleep?" Those things might be part of it. But ...there is another reason. I will get to that in a bit.
Yesterday was so positive ..every encounter I had ...people were friendly, smiling and helpful. All the traffic lights were in sync. The weather was perfect. I even had the people in the orthopaedic office waiting room laughing with some stories I told. It tied in to why another patient was there and then I was on a roll I guess. I've never been an entertainer in a medical office before ...and it was fun! ;) Well ...it was only 7 people laughing and one older couple just kept reading. Killjoys. ;)
Then I got my final Orthovisk injections and boy did the left one hurt. My voice went up a few octaves, but it didn't stop me from regaling him with the events of graduation day. I showed him a few pictures - all of us standing with our graduate outside the Prudential Center, a better one of son with his nieces and nephew at Easter and the three grandchildren on Mother's day. My orthodoc was so upbeat and congratulated me on our son's achievement ...a few times.
I also told him how the first two sets of injections helped me walk around the city and he knows the area and said the Prudential center is pretty far from the Newark Post Office and understood why I was hurting. No big deal ...I just over did it. Thank God for the injections though.
Anyway, I don't have to go back until I think I have to go back. Of course ...I will never give up on praying for a miraculous cartilage recovery. I'm just sayin. :) I was so happy, that I gave him a big hug and then also hugged the P/A in the hallway and having wished them and reception (such a nice reception staff) a Happy Summer, I breezed out the door.
I wasn't even discouraged by the little bit of knee pain I did have. My mood was so upbeat ...everywhere I went and with everything I did that day. I even ended up getting two maxi dresses that I LOVE, look good on me and were such a great price. Conversations just flowed. People were so nice everywhere. I am usually a positive person and I think most people are nice and respond favorably to smiles and friendliness ...but this day seemed so perfect that I felt like there should've been a blue bird singing on my shoulder and if I could whistle ..I'd whistle along with him, "Zippitty doo da-a-a"... ;) And on the way home I thought, "Gosh ...if I had an interview today ...I KNOW I'd be hired!."
I just felt so in control ...and that anything was possible and life was so good.
I loved the day.
Then later ...I realized that of course I was happy and proud about our son's graduating college and for sharing that experience with him. But, something else came to mind and I realized what it was beyond that.
I realized how much urology has weighed upon me over time. Because as some of you know, I have tried real hard to avoid the reconstructive uro surgery (because of risks). I have had some relapses in the past. And I know that if I were to relapse again ...that surgery would be imminent. I know that my urologist has worked with me, done everything in his power he could do and now the rest is up to God. Urodoc gave me a last opportunity with a very large stent ...and bot did I pay my dues with what I went through with it and I would do it all again if it aided in my finally being permanently healed ...in a heartbeat.
So ...where am I going with all of this?
Well ...quick update. This all happened because of my first and only large kidney stone in 2004 that had damaged my right ureter except the other urologist I had used at the time didn't know this and after a a couple of 2 week stents and a KUB a few months later cleared me with no instruction for follow-up. I am not at all saying that was wrong. I don't know the protocols for that. I will say a KUB at intervals would've revealed a stricture occurring ...possibly. But, it was what it was. Also, that urologist told me that my right ureter was more narrow than most people and why I couldn't even pass the tiny stones at the time. Ha! Before all that happened, I didn't even know we had a ureter and two at that. :) Anyway, 16 1/2 months after that is when I had a completely closed off stricture of my right ureter and the rest is history.
That last big stent came out on March 17, 2011. And even before that, I began turning my head around ...thinking more positively. Yes ...I've always believed in God and healing miracles. I know they do happen. I also know that God most often works through physicians and other people to facilitate healing in us. But ...I really began reading and listening to things about faith and healing. And I do believe that we can overcome sickness and disease with where we put our focus. And if we fixate on the negatives can draw it back to us or keep us in the mix of it.
Let me be clear though. I in no way mean to infer that if some one is sick or dies that they lacked faith. I don't pretend to know the mind of God. It's just that I remembered how Jesus told us to have faith. And he knows not everyone will be healed. But, I think it is that he knew that our best chance is to focus on the positive to effect and maintain positive changes in anything. And for those of you who are not faith minded, studies have shown that people who pray ...or who have a positive mind set or use positive imagery do heal more quickly. There is a mind-body connection.
So for more than a year, I have really been focusing my faith on being 100% healed and having no more relapses and That I will 100% avoid that uro surgery. Yes, my thinking slipped on occasion, but I'd get right back up on that Faith horse and start riding again. Not sure why I used the horse metaphor that way. :) And since I shockingly had a uro relapse at only 7 months the last time ...I admit that knowledge began working on me and I had to try harder to resist fear.
So ...every single month past 7 months is a milestone. The fact that I am now at 14 months post stent removal is major to me. And I will run this by urodoc when I see him for renal scan next month ..or maybe in the consult after the scan, but I want to know what time frame would he consider me 100% out of the woods for a renal stricture reoccurring and if I hit that mark does that mean it will never happen again? I know my thinking seems paradoxical in that on the one hand I claim faith and healing and on the other hand ..I want dates and reassurance's. But, I also think you have to be practical ...but not dwell on the negative. get your information and then BELIEVE for the best!
Admittedly, I have had some occasions in which my flank and side have ached and some renal colic and as you can imagine ...it unnerves me when it has happened. I pray and believe and try not to react. And no ...I never call urodoc about this because I don't want to complain or react to every little thing and then what can he do and I don't want to rock that boat anyway. And when you have hydronephrosis, it is normal to have aches and pains. And even bowels can cause certain sensations. So ...I do not let negative thoughts settle in for long.
But, it turns out that I did somewhat. Not that I was always aware of how much ...until after my happy ...carefree mood on Thursday.
I just had a good report regarding my recent lab work. My pcp wants the A-1c down more, but it's not bad.
But what was especially exciting to me is that my creatinine level/kidney functions are all good - normal. Which means ...that I do NOT have a stricture. I admit, I was wondering about what is going on in my ureter. I was beginning to think of dates of things I can't miss and do not what any uro surprises for. And even though I try hard to remain positive ...I have vacillated between the positive and negative.
So it hit me after my Great Thursday and overall positive sense of well being, Ive been experiencing lately ...that those good labs just lifted a MAJOR LOAD off of me. I was feeling so free spirited ...that knee pain wasn't even getting to me. And here I thought I was pretty much handling it all well ...but, apparently was taking relapse to heart more than I realized. The marker time frames were getting to me. I even wonder if I psychologically caused some of the symptoms to exacerbate? With the strong mind-body connection?
And yes ...I do wonder ...since it was a silent chronic condition, could a stricture still be forming and creatinine levels just don't change until it is closed off? But ..I honest to GOD do feel healed. OH MY GOSH! The day urodoc tells me I am 100% cleared of this ...it is going to be one heck of a jubilant day. I feel freer even now and it is a great feeling not having that weight of immanent relapse on me.
So, I realized that the way I was thinking and acting was the me ...before all this began. Sickness of any kind was just not on my mind and I felt like I could do almost anything. And I think people responded to how upbeat and positive I was. I really do believe I would've aced an interview had I had one on Thursday.
Having been through these things, I have learned more compassion for people with illness or disabilities. I have always been compassionate and kind. But I think after having the patient experiences I have had ...that there is more depth to my understanding and compassion for those suffering with their physical conditions and the emotional, spiritual and physical challenges they go through.
I believe it is so true ...that when you have your health ...you really do have everything. And yes I know if there isn't any pain or illness getting our attention, that it is easy to take health for granted. But, I can tell you that I never will again and am grateful that things weren't worse and that I am getting healthier every day.
I just love and thank God for the Blue Bird days. :)