Wednesday, March 15, 2017

pain you just can't ignore.

They say it takes 66 days to form a habit.  Habits can be something beneficial - starting a new diet to lose weight and become healthier - or something bad, like starting drugs.  This is a habit neither good nor bad, something neutral that I never asked for and certainly don't want.  My mind and body are fighting this lackluster routine every step of the way. Sitting on the couch hour after hour, leg propped up on pillows and being brought the things I want: it sounds like a dream to some. But when your biggest desire is to be able to walk down the stairs correctly, with both ankles and knees pumping and flexing, to simply grab a glass of water, it's not such a pampered lifestyle after all.

It's been six weeks since I developed the blood clot in my leg and not much has changed. I'm on my fourth blood thinner, a shot called Arixta, because none of the other medications have changed the size of my clot at all. It hasn't decreased in size at all and I'm baffled to how that could be. How can I have suffered through all of this pain for these past weeks, endured not being able to walk properly or very far, not being able to stand for more than a few minutes at a time, and still my clot is the same. It feels like all of this has been for nothing.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

the new normal: life with a blood clot.

Whenever I watch a movie or television show where a character experiences some life-changing event, something that really shakes up their life, I think to myself, "Did they see it coming?" Did they sense anything different in the days or hours or minutes leading up to the seconds that turned their life upside down? Did they sense a change in the wind, a subtle vibration that made their hair rise up and planted a question in their mind?

I don't know about them but for me, I didn't notice a thing. Even up until the very last second, I was completely oblivious and looking back now, it makes me feel like an idiot for not noticing anything at all.

Two weeks ago, on the 22nd of January, I was getting ready to watch the Packers game on television when I got a sharp pain around my belly button. I hadn't eaten anything strange but sometimes I get random pains around my body so I didn't think much of it. As the day progressed, the pain increased and moved up under my ribcage. It was so sharp that it hurt to walk and move around, and I thought maybe I had contracted the stomach flu that was going around. Later in the day, the pain shifted to below my belly button and finally to my right lower quadrant. After having my training in the medical field, I was worried about my appendix, but I didn't have a fever, wasn't vomiting or throwing up, and didn't have any other symptoms, so I brushed it off.

By Tuesday night, the pain hadn't gone away and I was still having difficulty moving around. It hurt with every step, I couldn't bend over, I had to sleep in a completely horizontal position, and sitting on the couch wasn't comfortable no matter how I sat. With much reluctance, I asked my mom to take me to the emergency room.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

roberson museum: home for the holidays christmas tree display

My family doesn't have too many holiday traditions that we practice every year. We follow the same menu each Thanksgiving dinner, we go out to breakfast at IHOP on Christmas morning, we open stockings at the kitchen table that include a packet of lottery tickets chosen by my dad, and we watch "The Santa Clause" after we eat our Christmas dinner. That's about it for the things we partake in annually... except for our visit to the Roberson Mansion and Science Center.

Since I was a wee Gabbi, my mom and I have made a trip to the Roberson Museum every December to visit the Home for the Holidays Christmas Tree display. It's a fun trip that has always made the holidays feel more magical and it's something we both look forward to every year.

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