September 18, 2019

Heidi's Secret Admirer Suggests Blanket For Heidi

For years the hounds have had a secret admirer going as far back as Winston. I don't know who loved Winston more, him or me but I know I loved that basset hound more than anything. So the "admirer" has always had a keen eye when looking at the photos of the hounds. His thoughts are relayed to me through emails and shows me just how much I miss in the photos I take. So last night there came a suggestion.

He thought Heidi looked great in her new bed but he is also familiar with Arizona weather and believe it or not our nighttime temps are dropping into the 50's now. He suggested I bring out her blanket in case she needed it. So with with temps in the 50's instead of single digits, Heidi is starting with her fleece blanket with the wool Mexican blanket cleaned, folded and ready to go when those temps drop to the 30s at night. We sleep with the windows open at least through the 50's.

Bloggers ... you never know who is reading your blog. This "special admirer" of the hounds has always kept me on my toes.  HaHa

I know I am suppose to and I really am when I tell you that I am improving every day. I may not be sleeping any better but I am feeling better and getting stronger. Tuesday I needed to take a book back to the library and I needed to go to the bank to get some cash, something I rarely carry. The cash is for tipping the grocery delivery and my pizza place only takes cash for deliveries.

Soooooo I decided it was time to expand my horizons.

I told Gerry to park his Jeep Liberty at the curb because I would be walking (with walker) down the driveway and would let myself in. I think he was more nervous than I was.

I opened my front door, felt good on the front porch (no steps anywhere) and then took my time walking 'down' the driveway. Every driveway is slanted downward for the monsoon rains to clear to their gutter system in the street which makes the curb just a little higher than normal. I remembered to step with my good leg first off the curb, the bad leg followed.

The Jeep Liberty seats are the perfect height for me to stand with my back toward the door, holding my bad leg out straight as I sit, as I was instructed to do every time I sit down. Just like getting in bed, I slid into the seat that was all the way back with the back of the seat tilted back a little. Swung my feet into the passenger side and we were off. He folded up my walker and put it in back.

I felt no pain getting in and out of the car, nor walking 'up' the driveway when I got home.

I forgot to tell you, with "the grabber" I am able to change clothes and put on my left sock. The right foot and ankle is swollen so much that with the compression sock I had to have help putting that on. Shoe??? I took the shoe laces out of the flat soles, rubber grip New Balance shoes when I left the hospital on Sept 9th. With the grabber and the long extended shoe horn  I can get both shoes on with no trouble.

I wanted to concentrate on taking less steps during the day and adding more of those 30 minute rest periods flat on my back even with my eyes open. By doing that, by the end of the afternoon I felt much stronger on Tuesday than any other afternoon. By the end of the night I still had over 1,300 steps for the day.

During my afternoon siesta I was in a weird dream and either pain or the dream woke me up, only to find my bad leg raised in the air with that swollen foot higher than it had been in any exercise. I just waited for the pain in my hip to hit me but it never did. The only pain if you call it that, that I had all day, was a numb feeling deep in that hip that was replaced. To be expected of course.

I did spend some time walking around the kitchen and around the table when I needed to pick up something without the walker. I'd have one hand barely touching the table or a counter or a wall while I walked. I am still following the rules they gave me for making turns, moving laterally and reaching for things. I may have broken the 90° rule a time or two when I was bending over but it was a slow bend.

I am suppose to sit in chairs with straight backs and a seat that is a little high. The kitchen chairs work for that but they are hard and almost uncomfortable without some sort of seat pad. I tried putting a couch pillow on them but that was even more uncomfortable. I also remember every time I sit either in a chair or on the bed, to keep my bad leg straight out then bend it once I am seated.

I know I cannot just turn and pivot when walking or making a turn. I have to turn in short increments keeping my feet parallel with the side of walker and my knee/foot straight. Like I said yesterday, there are many times I am sitting at the table or computer and forget that I am using a walker. I still would do anything to be able to sleep on my left side instead of my back. I remind myself when moving to get in bed or out of bed not to go fast and follow the protocol. I can feel how much stronger my right leg and hip is each day by the exercises I do.

I was able to do all 10 of the leg slide outs this morning for the first time. That's the toughest exercise of all I think. The most discomfort. When I walked down the hallway toward the kitchen my right leg was walking normal and felt normal !!!! So the thigh muscles are getting stronger just doing those with 10 reps each and no weight or resistance of any kind, just normal movement.

Stella seems to think she can help me and will follow me from room to room. The only "close call" was last night when she planted that 85# front paw of hers right in the middle of my swollen right foot. It was so swollen that it did not hurt and I figured she was trying to move the fluid around. I have been extra careful that she does not fall, rub or lean into my right leg when I am petting her.

With my lack of activity I can feel the weight I lost coming back. I am eating healthy food but it doesn't take long to add the pounds when I am not doing anything. It should drop just as fast as it did before once I start walking, hiking and biking.

I tried my first online grocery shopping and delivery this morning.  I bought 32 items online, using my Fry's discount card, paid online and less than an hour later he was at the door bringing my groceries right to the kitchen counter. He picked the order just like I ordered, not missing a brand name nor size. It was well worth the $9.95. I did ask him if the local store really did give him the 5% tip automatically added at the checkout and he said he did but since he was fast and accurate I had to give him an additional tip.

Later in the day I started feeling so good it was scary just how good. I moved around the kitchen putting the groceries away, in some cases without the walker but it was nearby if needed. The times I have intentionally walked the hallway, the stride felt normal with very little to no discomfort. My standing marching leg lifts (slowly), my right leg had never gone higher. I am only moving that leg to the point of discomfort and then backing off.

I had a few 'rest periods' and was having a pretty solid siesta until my twitching left leg woke me up. That the non-surgical side. The hounds didn't do much outside their normal routine. It's been warm this week so they spend most of their time inside enjoying the cool air conditioned room.

Of course Stella always finds time to get a little sunshine therapy in.

Another good day in the Wild West.

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