Sunday, January 31, 2010

1st Step Mastered!!!

The Booger Bear has now mastered the 1st step towards potty training!!!
Pooh in the potty!!!
(Yes, I am easily entertained these days.)

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Help! My Underwear Have Fallen, and I Can't Get Dressed!!!

Yes... Those exact words rang out from my fingertips in a desperate text message to my mother the other day. After taking a shower, I psyched myself up to get dressed, only to discover that my underwear had fallen off of the back of my wheelchair into the hallway and were completely inaccessible to me (the Naked Gimp). I covered myself the best I could for modesty's (well, my mother's) sake and endured her not-so-muffled snickering as she came in to save me.

This was only the first of many unusual, awkward, and embarrassing moments that I've endured since I ever-so-gracefully fell on the ice, screwed up my leg, and became temporarily wheelchair-bound. Over the past nine days, I have managed to do quite a few things that I never thought I'd have to fess up to. Although I have to admit, dropping my underwear and having to send out a plea for help via test message was probably the most mortifying. At least my mom was here, and I didn't have to send out a broadcast message to all of my friends and family. Now that would have been awkward! So what have I managed to do to embarrass myself?

Just last night, I ran over my own toe with my own wheelchair! For real. Fortunately (I think) it was on my good foot, but come on! Who does that?!? After my cursing the bleeding stopped, I couldn't help but laugh. I mean, seriously! How often does a person get to say that they ran over their own foot with their own body? I'm a moron.

I have somehow managed to become entangled in the wheels of my wheelchair more times than I care to admit. I've been wearing lots of pajama bottoms this week. I've had a rather limited choice of attire seeing as how I've got a big old half-cast covering the bottom half of my leg, and the only bottoms that easily cover it are the wide-legged pajama bottoms. Super comfy, but dangerous! I've lost count of the number of times my pajama legs have gotten all tangled up in the front wheel of my wheelchair. I've actually had a couple of nervous moments when I thought I might have to take off the pants in order to escape! So far, it's only happened within the confines of my home. I am, however, slightly nervous about returning to work tomorrow.

I've also learned over the past week that my apartment is not exactly wheelchair-friendly. I've also learned that, while I'm really good at getting myself into certain locations, I'm not quite as adept at getting out of them. I've somehow managed to get wedged between doors, trapped under the kitchen cabinets, and stuck in the alcove in my bathroom. I'm determined not to ask for help if there is any conceivable way that I can get myself out of the predicament, so I balance on my good leg and try manuevering the front wheels or doing whatever else I have to do in order to get out of whatever mess I've managed to get myself into.

You know... Now that I think about it, I think my wheelchair might have it out for me. I mean, I know I've put on some weight, but come on!

If my wheelchair's attempts to humiliate me haven't been bad enough, my own stubbornness to remain as independent as possible has certainly had its own share of blows to my ego as well. Things as simple as getting dressed in the morning or getting up from the toilet have become entirely new. How, exactly, do you put on underwear and pants when you can't bend your leg? Well, I'll tell you. It's called "The Lasso Technique." (Ahhh... the mental pictures... I'll let you figure it out.) I do believe I'll join the rodeo when all of this is said and done. How do you stand up from a low toilet when you can only use one leg? It's not pretty. And I'm fairly certain I'm going to end up needing knee replacement surgery in my "good" leg after this one heals. "How did you injure your knee, Tammy?" "Going to the potty, Doctor."

And then we have my little emotional meltdowns. I haven't had too many, but there have been a few, and the things that come out of my mouth when I'm having them make me question my sanity. "Why can't I change his poopy diaper?!? I want to change the poopy diaper!!!" "I want to go to work!!!" "I hate not being able to do my own laundry!!!" "I just want to go upstairs and see if the catbox needs to be cleaned out!!!" Yep... I've lost my mind. I realize I'm not used to having any help around the house, but this is ridiculous. I should be enjoying every second of this! Instead, I'm in tears because my mom is changing all of the poopy diapers and taking out my trash. I think I may need my head examined as well as my leg!

I'm sure there will be many more akward and embarrassing moments in the coming weeks. And I'm sure I'll be forced to write about them. Might as well entertain the masses at my expense, right? :-) In the meantime... Have a great week!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Us Girls Like to EAT!

I heard somewhere that women tend to eat healthier and something like 50% less food when going out to eat with their girlfriends. ...something about not wanting to look like a cow in front of their friends... I'm not really sure who came up with that statistic, or what kind of unnaturally-sick women they were studying, but it sure as heck wasn't me and my girlfriends!

Now that I think about it, I believe I heard that little bit of info while eating lunch with my BFFs. And when I say, "eating lunch," I mean "EATING lunch." Us girls like to EAT!!! We love us some food, and we're not ashamed to admit it! Damnit, if we're going to pay $15 for a meal, it had better not be made of lettuce, and it sure as heck had better have dessert in there somewhere!!! None of that, "I'd like a bottled water and a small house salad with fat free dressing on the side" crap for us! If we get a salad, it is usually a taco salad, and any dressing "on the side" would most likely be extra dressing. The one time I ordered a salad when I was with my friends, I thought they were going to pelt me with the chips and salsa! I had to quickly redeem myself in their eyes by telling them that I got it IN ADDITION TO my real food and that I only wanted it for the croutons, cheese, meat, and salad dressing. :-)

Yep... We're real women who like to eat and don't really care who knows it. I feel safe in the knowledge that when I go out to eat with my best friends, they'll eat just as much as I will, order a dessert to go, and always say, "Heck yeah!" when the waitstaff asks if we'd like to start with an appetizer. The phrase, "Are you gonna eat that?" is not tabboo at our table. But you only hear it when we're being polite. For the most part, you snooze, you lose! I've lost out on many a last tortilla and a whole basket of fried okra for not being fast enough. Heck! The people at the table next to us at the Olive Garden the other day almost lost their dessert before it even made it to their table because one of my BFFs wanted to sample it before ordering it herself. And then those people ended up leaving part of it at the table when they left! MADNESS!!! If we had been a little faster, we would have snagged it before the table-cleaner boy came and took it away. DON'T WASTE IT FOR CRYING OUT LOUD!!!

Yep... My girlfriends rock! However, the "rocking" is often literal as we curl up and rock back and forth in the fetal position, asking "Why?!? Why?!? Why do we do this to ourselves?!?" after one of our lunch trips. That doesn't stop us though. Because inevitably, one of us will start the "What's for lunch?" email chain the next morning and we will go and not eat 50% less again. :-)

Friday, January 15, 2010

I Need a Break Already!!!

I know... I know... I start the New Year promising that I will blog more, and here it has been two whole weeks and NOTHING. In my defense, I think I have a pretty good excuse.

Isn't that pretty?!? That would be my leg. Fun!!! :-)

The past few months have been really hard in the foster care, home life, personal health, job world. I've had pneumonia and bronchitis almost CONSTANTLY since October, and even spent Sunday the 3rd in the ER because I couldn't breathe. By Thursday the 6th, I was at my wits' end. I've been EXHAUSTED from all of the stress of being sick and dealing with everything that had been going on at home. I had an appointment scheduled with my PCP to try to figure out why I couldn't seem to get over whatever has been going on with my lungs. And to be totally honest, I was really hoping they'd put me in the hospital just so I could get some rest.

... Be careful what you wish for...

The morning of my appointment (which also happened to be the coldest day of the year so far... 14 degrees, I believe), I headed outside with the Booger Bear in one arm and his diaper bag and my purse in the other. I looked around to make sure there weren't any wet spots or puddles that had turned into ice overnight, and the ground was completely dry. ... Or so it appeared... As I stepped onto a metal grate that covers a drainage ditch about 12 feet away from my door, I felt my right leg start to slip on a lovely sheet of invisible ice. "Mommy instinct" kicked in and I twisted on my left leg in order to keep from falling on Booger. Unfortunately, as I was falling to the ground, I heard (and unfortunately felt) my leg snap.

I knew it was broken, but as I sat there on the ground, I kept wishing it away. "It'll be fine. I'll just sit here a few seconds and the pain will go away." Fortunately, BB was fine and THANK GOD he didn't try to run away! He just stood there looking at me like, "Why are you sitting on the ground?" There was absolutely no one around, so I SOMEHOW managed to force myself to stand up and walk stagger back into the apartment. I dropped to the floor and crawled over to prop myself up on the couch and try to figure out what to do.

I had dropped my phone on the floor by the front door, and the Booger went and got it for me. He handed it to me and said, "Nana?" He was SO GOOD. He could have gotten into all sorts of trouble while we were waiting for help to arrive, but instead, he got some books from his bookshelf and shared his books with me until my mom got there.

I ended up calling my doctor's office since I was going there anyway, and just told them to add a probably broken leg and/or ankle to the mix. No sense paying for another ER co-pay when my doctor's office has radiology onsite, right? We somehow got BB and me loaded into the car, took Booger to daycare, and headed over to the doctor. Fortunately, they had a wheelchair. :-)

By that time, I wasn't sure what all I had hurt. I was pretty certain my leg was broken because it kept popping in and out of place and kind of crunching. When it was out of place, my toes would go numb and turn purple. But my ankle was really hurting a lot too, so I couldn't completely pinpoint the pain. Believe it or not, they actually did the exam for my breathing problems first. Then sent me for x-rays where I heard the tech exclaim, "Oh! THAT'S not good!" I ended up doing a breathing treatment while they called the orthopedic and set up an appointment for me and then put on a huge splint. PATHETIC!!!

At the ortho the next morning, we found out what I actually did. Apparently, when I twisted, I pulled the ligaments holding my ankle together which also happen to be connected to the smaller bone in my leg. The pressure from the twisting snapped the bone. The doctor said that the break is "inconsequential" and that it should heal itself in a few weeks. Pardon me, sir, but it doesn't FEEL that "inconsequential" to me! It kind of hurts like hell! And the "snap, crackle, popping" noises are freaking me out. The ankle on the other hand, is a doozy. Leave it to Tammy to come up with something weird. He said that in his twenty years of doing this, he has only seen an injury like mine maybe three other times. :-)

So far, the ankle appears to be staying intact, so he wants to wait for a couple of weeks before deciding whether or not to do surgery. If we do that, he'd be putting a bar in to hold my ankle together while it heals. Then we'd have to do a second surgery to remove the bar. As it is, I am to remain completely non-weight-bearing for 8-10 weeks. Easier said than done for a single mother of a 15-month-old!

Thank God for my mom!!! She's living with me for the next however long it will take, and is taking care of the Booger, me, and my house. She also watches my soon-to-be 5-year-old neice and nephew during the day! We've also had a lot of people offer help, and we'll definitely be taking them up on it.
So, I've been out of work for a week so far. Not exactly the "break" that I was hoping for, but I am at least getting some much-needed rest. :-)

(Now that I'm not in quite as much pain, I'll be blogging a lot. I have all sorts of good stories from this little incident! :-) I hope everyone else is doing well out there, and that you heed my little warning when I say, seriously, "Be careful what you wish for!"
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