Tuesday 6 February 2024

Slowly Moving Forward

 This might be an interestingly disjointed post and one that isn't as long as usual because it's my first attempt at typing, or even opening my computer in five weeks. I had surgery on my right shoulder on January 3, and while I thought I was sufficiently prepared with enough frozen meals, everything set out where it could be easily retrieved and the most positive attitude I could muster things seldom turn out as planned. Not that the surgery didn't go well, but it took much longer than anticipated and I ended up with six small holes in my shoulder instead of two or three. One tendon had to be completely reattached to the bone with two screws, several smaller tears fixed and both arm and shoulder muscles in my bicep reattached.

Needless to say I was pretty out of it for a few hours, at least so far as cognitive ability goes. My friend who had taken me to surgery needed to get home and my son was much later arriving to take over the nighttime responsibility of having someone in the house so I would even be released from surgical center care. I wasn't too worried about having someone there for the full 24 to 48 hours since I've been on my own for the past 30 years with no one to count on but myself. But I will admit that sitting alone in the basically dark house three hours after leaving the operating room left me feeling somewhat vulnerable. There is just something about the daylight hours that make life seem much less frightening, and having my arm in a sling and metal brace, feeling very unsteady on my feet and not even knowing if I could use my cell phone in an emergency only compounded my discomfort.

I had been given a pain block in my neck so I wasn't feeling much of anything. It was supposed to get me through the first day or so without having to take a pain pill. But in my rather impaired condition none of that really registered. My son was able to pick up the pain pills but the prescription had been sent to a pharmacy I had never been to and they were out of the aspirin prescription that was supposed to reduce the danger of blood clots. After all the trauma my son and his family had been through due to the deplorable actions of my ex-husband that I talked about in an earlier blog, I'm not sure things were really registering for him either. After some time spent trying to figure out what to do, my son and daughter-in-law had me take a pain pill at nine that night so I wouldn't run the risk of having any discomfort before the sun came up. Three hours later they had me take three of the strongest dose aspirin they could find, not knowing the three aspirin in the prescription were the low-dose baby ones and not 1000 milligrams at a time. 

I was feeling so strange by noon the next day that I called the surgical center for some much-needed clarification. The nurse didn't tell me I was stupid for being so overly medicated but let me know that I had basically undone everything the neck block had been designed for and my stomach had not appreciated so much aspirin. The good news was that by this time I was mentally competent to take over my own care. Now that the initial crisis was over my kids went back to living their own lives without much regard for me. My son did call most nights on his way home from work to see how I was doing for the first week or so, but I had learned long ago that he didn't want to hear about my problems because he had enough of his own to deal with.

The inflatable leg compression units that I had to wear for two weeks nearly drove me crazy. Putting them on with one hand was bad enough, but getting them tight enough to stay up was impossible. And the swishing noice every 90 seconds as they filled up and then released air nearly drove me crazy. The brace supporting my arm rested so heavily on my ribs I often felt like I couldn't get enough air, and while I was in discomfort, not any real pain, it was still hard to sleep in a recliner for more than an hour or two at a time. It didn't help that we had a couple of good blizzards that made the sky dark during the day and it was hard to stay warm enough when I had barely enough energy to get from one chair to another.

But the blessings I received during those first two weeks and the ones that have come since have been so great that complaining seems childish. Neighbors kept my driveway shoveled, came to visit and brought yummy food to eat. They were there to talk to and offer some excellent advice when we were without water for many hours after a main line in town broke, and they rearranged schedules so I could get to my post op visit during a blizzard. Someone was always available to take me to therapy or for a short drive so I wouldn't get antsy being homebound. No one gave me funny glances when I went to church looking like a frump with a hat on my head, little makeup, no bra and those unsightly felt boots since I couldn't get anything else on my feet. Unfortunately, that's just how I'll continue to look until I can get my arm above my head and around my back again.

In past years I would have made certain that no one saw me looking like that. I'm very careful about my appearance, and it's not just because I'm afflicted with the bad kind of pride. I know I'm not being my true self if I let anything go to pot. Except perhaps my waistline. Diabetes, along with breathing through my abdomen and plain old age have made my tiny waist a thing of the past. And I'm a firm believer in covering up all that pesky crepey skin and cellulite. Even the very thin have it. But instead of being obsessed with every new wrinkle, I've decided that a smile and a positive attitude is all I really need to grow old gracefully, along with a healthy sense of humor that allows me to laugh at myself without condemnation. That's what all the truly beautiful older women seem to do and I've found myself admiring them tremendously. 

I'll forgo detailing all my bouts with flushed cheeks, blotchy, red hives that didn't want to away, a twitching eye and parched skin that looked more like drifting sand or a lizard's skin. I'm assuming that's all part of the healing process and it will make up its own mind about when it's  going to stop. I was lucky in only having to take pain pills for two days before ibuprofen or Aleve would do the trick and was able to take care of my granddaughter and two dogs three weeks into recovery - minus all the food I normally fix. Even the student at the physical therapists who gave me an exercise I hadn't been cleared for yet and caused massive amounts of muscle pain and days of worrying about it having undone all the repairs in my shoulder will eventually be forgotten as new challenges arrive both in this recovery and life itself. 

There has been much quiet time for introspection and better understanding when it comes to setbacks that offer a chance to learn something important. My trust in God's universal, and yet individual, love for each of His children and the knowledge of my Savior's perfect gift for all of mankind, at least those who are willing to accept it, have never been stronger. Every moment of fear, doubt and uncertainty can be taken to Them, and while not every answer to our prayers is made immediately clear, I know I am loved, understood and protected.

I've been doing a lot of reading during my convalescence and my knowledge is rapidly growing. However, trying to form the pieces into an understandable whole is a challenge since it's impossible to get at the truth because the people in power are so determined to hide it. But tears actually came to my eyes last week when I read about all the veterans, truckers, military personnel and 27 state governors who stood behind Texas in their fight to save both their state and our country from the invasion that has come to a climax the past three years. 

Of course, main stream media will not air anything unless it advances the far left agenda that calls everyone on the right terrorists.These self-proclaimed socialists need all the illegals they can get to promote chaos, vote in the election and basically replace us. But I'll leave that alone for now and let you do some of your own research. It will open your eyes for sure and even bring to the foreground more questions than you are able to find answers for. Like the actual number of illegals recently arrived. Approximately twenty million in recent months have walked right across our border knowing our tax dollars will pay for all their needs while we become even less able as citizens to put food on our tables or get the medical care we need. 

It's a tragic situation all the way around and my heart goes out to people worldwide who are suffering, but utter civil chaos and plunging our posterity into financial slavery for generations to come is not the answer. We need to reclaim our country before it is destroyed for good, and I stand with all the loyal patriots who are trying to defend us and our cherished way of life. They are facing an uphill battle and need the rest of us to wake up. I believe there is still time for us to be heard and reclaim what we have lost, but it can only be done at the grassroots level when we let our supposed representatives know we are not happy with the decisions being made. Our constitution has been ignored and our rights as free Americans are being trampled on.

Think about these provable facts and decide where you stand. The battle for our future freedom is ongoing and can be permanently lost by the stroke of a pen. Stand tall, firm and immovable as we defend God, country and family. The ultimate war has already been won but many battles still await us.

    * Most of the persons coming across the border are military-aged men from countries who hate us. The majority of the rest are not coming for political asylum. They know policies are in place to house, feed, cloth, educate and take care of their every need for the rest of their lives if desired.

    * Estimated annual cost of illegal immigration to taxpayers annually - $455 billion. That does not include government grants, special programs and billions each year spent by charities and religious groups.  

    * 340,000 unaccompanied alien children in U.S. (Why would parents leave their children with people they don't know to enter a foreign country illegally?)

    * Nearly ninety percent of congressional districts with foreign born populations above the national average vote democrat. In 2020 hispanic voters replaced black voters as largest potential minority voting bloc.

    * Date that America is projected to become a majority minority country: 2045.

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