Thursday, September 30, 2010

More weird stuff

We have communicated back and forth with Ken's daughter and also her mom. Now we found out the daughter has lied extensively to her mom. The most outrageous lie is that the day they left, I should have physically attacked her and pinned her to the ground and caused injury to her!!!

Wow. That is something... I am speechless. That is so low. And what good could possibly come from making up something so ludicrous? There are other things she has lied about to her mom, but this one really made me fall off the chair. Seriously?

Wednesday, September 29, 2010


As most of you may already know, my outlook on life is generally pretty positive. I believe in positive thinking, especially when dealing with so many medical problems as I am.

This morning was however one of those moments when my positive attitude cracked and I just felt sorry for myself...

I went back to the cardiovascular doctor for the result of my ultrasound. He has such bad "bedside manners"! Not a very friendly or sympathetic old man, for sure...

Anyway, nothing new from the ultrasound I didn’t already know: I have a partially blocked vein in my left leg. What happens is that the vein will "weep", the blood will leak into the leg kind of how condensation builds on a cold glass of water on a hot day.

This blood will "clog" up the leg and cause the painful swelling that I experience once in a while.

There is no treatment for a partially blocked vein. All you can do is deal with it and wear support stockings all the time.

Support stockings? Is he kidding?! I can barely make myself wear regular socks, I am a barefoot type of person... Support stockings might be OK on a larger flight or something like that, but not all the time... no way!

Then he went on to scold me in his brusque way telling me that all the blood that pools in the leg will leave iron deposits, and over the years my leg will turn black. And if I don't wear support stockings I might get ulcers and sores that will need skin grafting!!!

So not only do I have to look forward to my leg swelling up and being useless and painful every so often, now I can also expect it to turn black and have ulcers?!

Needless to say I was not very happy on my way home. Just pissed and so tired of things always having to go wrong with my body.

It makes me feel so heavy, weighed down. At least my stomach is starting to calm down, so hopefully I just need a few more days to regain the proper hydration and electrolyte balance and I should be OK.

But the leg, what a bummer...

Tuesday, September 28, 2010


Ni som har tittat och förfasat er och tittat med glimten i ögat på Svenska Hollywoodfruar rekommenderar jag att ni tittat på det nya programmet Svenska New York-fruar på TV3...

Ja jäklar säger jag bara.

Oh no...

Last night I made a super easy paella-style dish for dinner. I am always careful about using different cutting boards for meat, making sure I use flash frozen and carefully (almost not) thawed shrimp to make sure the food is as "safe" as possible for my new, sensitive plumbing.

But apparently something was amiss, because my stomach was not very happy at all, all through the night. Ken, who had eaten the exact same thing, was fine. Grrr.... Definitely a downside to having had this surgery!

This morning I stocked up on Gatorade for drinking, took some super probiotics to kill off any bad bacteria that might have made its way down there and took anti-diarrhea medicine. I know the drill by now.

Unfortunately, I also recognize the signs of dehydration that are starting to show its ugly head. I am starting to feel that familiar feeling of all my energy draining out of my body.

I am so not in the mood for this! Let's just hope it will be short lived this time...

Monday, September 27, 2010

Bob update

Bob and I just came back from his ultrasound at the specialist's office.

We have good news and we have bad news. The good news is that there doesn't seem to be any masses of any kind, so no cancer.

The bad news is that his pancreas is in pretty bad shape. It can be controlled with careful low fat diet, but pretty much one slice of bacon can cause the pancreas to erupt into fury, cause multiple organ failure and kill him.

So the key is to make sure he doesn't steal anything that is bad for him, or let anyone give him any treats.

He can still have veggies and fruits, so that will make him happy. He loves raisins, bananas and salad!

It makes me nervous, what if he gets his paws on something that is bad for him? Especially when we have people over and stuff like that.

He is doing great now, he looks great. A few years ago he used to weigh in at 18 lbs (8.16 kg), now he is down to a much healthier 13.6 lbs (6.16 kg). He has great energy and he just looks good.

The only negative side effect of this new food, except it being so expensive, is that it has turned both dogs into pooping machines! There is no end to it! But that is all the fiber in it. At least they love the food; other "diet" food we tried they have just wrinkled their noses at.

I am just happy there is hope for Bob, he has been part of our family for 10 years now, and we would like to keep it that way for a few more years!

Friday, September 24, 2010


Ken (och jag med för den delen) har haft mycket att stå i de senaste veckorna. Ken är nog ganska så uppe i högtryck och balanserar nog på gränsen vad man kan hantera vad gäller jobb, stress och saker som ska göras. Så jag ger honom ett pass i det här fallet.

I vilket fall som helst: Igår fick Ken totalt hjärnsläpp...

Tydligen hade dottern kontaktat honom ur det blå igår och frågat om hon, hennes kille, killens bror och hans tjej plus deras 4 pitbulls kunde få hyra vårt hus till fullt pris. (!!!!!!)

Ken säger inga hundar, men visst, ni kan hyra det. Med rabatt!

Så när han nämnde detta för mig i gårkväll blev jag rejält chockad. Vad i helvete tänker han med? Killen har ju berättat om sin bror och hur kriminell han är och bla, bla. Och de skulle med säkerhet smuggla in de där hundarna i huset, det har de gjort förut när de hyrt.

Tror han verkligen att vi skulle få någon hyra? Knappast!

Skulle de ta hand om och respektera vår egendom? Knappast!!

Skulle de skapa superdrama och konflikter? ABSOLUT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Ken hade liksom inte riktigt smält allt det här, men när jag sa tvärt NEJ sådär så började han såklart tänka efter och insåg snabbt att detta inte var en bra ide. Och att han ens kunde gå med på något sådant utan att prata med mig först får det att snurra i skallen på mig. Jag vill inte ens ha dem i samma stad!

Så Ken fick snabbt komma upp med en ursäkt att en kille som hade varit intresserad tydligen hade tackat ja och redan sagt upp sin gamla lägenhet.

Så då erbjuder sig Ken att hjälpa dem att hitta något annat att hyra för samma pris. Då säger dottern: "Ja men DET har vi ju inte råd med!" DÅ trillade polletten VERKLIGEN ner: de såg vårt hus som ett ställe som de i princip skulle kunna mygla till det så de skulle kunna bo gratis, utnyttja oss såklart. Varför hade de annars sådana problem med att betala hyra i samma belopp som de skulle betalat för vårt hus?

Nej, den bron brände hon rejält. Den bussen har för länge sedan gått... Glöm det bruden. No way,

Tror inte det va... Hoppas att ni håller med mig här, att detta är rätt beslut. Efter allt det som hände när de var här vill jag inte ens tänka tanken på att få hit dem igen, plus två till!


Sarah was off to school today, she still have a faint red rash, but it seems to have greatly improved, so that is great.

Bob, on the other hand, got some bad news yesterday.

He is doing great, and it would be hard to guess anything was ever wrong with him... The vet called last night and told us two of the test results were off, both are indicators for the pancreas (bukspottskörteln). One test, the most important one, is suppose to be around 700. Bob's number was over 4000!

So he has acute pancreatitis, inflammation of the pancreas. This can usually be controlled by a careful, low fat diet. We don't know what has caused this, and there could be underlying reasons for it, such as a tumor in his pancreas, so we are going to get an ultra sound at a specialist in Sarasota. Then we will know for sure what is going on in Bob's pancreas.

If all is clear, we should be able to control this with diet alone (Bob has also been on two antibiotics for a few days now that will help him).

If he has a tumor we will have to address that. Benign or cancerous, there are circumstances that might be for or against removing a tumor, so we will just have to wait and see.

Pancreatitis is a very painful condition when it is active, so I am glad we have those puppy pain pills if we would need them...

Bob is doing great right now, he looks perfect and acts as his normal self.

I picked up a special prescription only dry food at the vet's this morning. It is high in fiber and low in fat, and especially formulated for dogs like Bob. Stan will just have to eat it and be happy, since It is very difficult to separate their food. Too bad this food costs double of their old food, which was of very good quality, just a little too much fat for his condition.

I will keep you updated on what happens...

Thursday, September 23, 2010


Sarah's rash took a turn for the worse last night, she was just crying becasue it was itching like crazy, especially on her back. The doctor had prescribed Benadryl, an antihistamine three times a day, but i can be taken every 4 hours if needed.

She went to bed and was sleeping by 8 PM, but just after 10:30 PM she came out, crying hysterically because the intense itching had woken her up. I applied a little Benadryl cream directly on her back, gave her another dose of the oral medication and tried to make it as comfy as possible for her. Benadryl have one side effect, it can make you very sleepy, so luckily she was able to fall back to sleep pretty quickly.

Then she woke up again around 4 AM crying again, and I gave her another dose. After that she was able to relax a little in our bed and slept until after 9 AM. There was no way I would let her go to school like that, so I let her stay home. The good news are that the rash has definitely started to go away, and I have not given her any more Benadryl today.

So now she has to stay away from all medications that contain sulfa or sulfonamides, since that is most likely the culprit. The antibiotic she was on is called Septra (sometimes Bactrim) and it is a combo of sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim (a very common antibiotic). Luckily she tolerates other antibiotics well...

She obviously had to stop taking the Septra for her ear infection, but it has cleared up really well, so I am not too concerned about that, Unfortunately it looks like we will not be able to get an earring into that ear anymore, since it is all clogged up now (it was such a new piercing anyway, just about 7 months old). So she will have to re-pierce that ear later on if she wants to keep wearing earrings...

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Rash girl

This is the rash from the antibiotic reaction she has, poor girl...
This is how she looks like all over, this is her leg...
 This picture is from Monay, before the rash had gotten too bad.

Ready for Tai Kwon Do class!

The other sickling

Sarah's rash seemed worse today, and her face was really red, so I called the pediatrician back. He thinks this might be an allergic reaction to the antibiotic, so he put her on antihistamines for a few days. She should start to clear up within 24 hours or so.

Hopefully it will, she looks like she has the measles! At least the rash doesn't itch, always something...


Last night, for no apparent reason it seemed, Bob started to have another vomiting session again. He was up pretty much all night being sick.

This morning I called the vet, and even though they did not have any appointments until next week, they allowed us to squeeze in between scheduled patients.

The vet took a comprehensive blood test that will test pretty much all his organ function. We should also be able to see if there is any indication of cancer in form of greatly elevated white blood cells, or signs that it might just be an infection of some sort.

The vet also gave him a shot of anti-nausea medication, two different types of antibiotics to start (in case it is indeed an infection), and orders not to eat any food today, and then eat a special prescription diet of soft food for two days.

He has to take some pretty big (no,HUGE) pills, so I also got something called pill pockets, essential a treat with a little pocket for a pill, to make taking the medicine easier.

The vet will call back with the results after 6 PM tonight or tomorrow night (think he said tomorrow night), and then we will take it form there.

Poor little Bob!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Update about the little red dots

The doctor didn't quite know what to think about the mass of red dots that are all over Sarah's body. They did a strep test which was negative, so no scarlet fever.

They even brought out a big ole' book with all kinds of pictures of different types of rashes, but they were all eliminated one by one.

The only explanation it boiled down to is some type of folliculitis. Heat rash. It doesn't look like any heat rash she has ever had before, but that was the conclusion.

So she is taking a mild bath now and is to walk around the rest of the day in one of Ken's big t-shirt with nothing else on. Air out and stay cool.

Weird. We didn't do anything warm or sweaty all weekend, but I guess the doctor knows best. If it doesn't clear up on its own by the end of the weekend, well, then I think we will have to rethink the whole heat rash thing, but for now, that is what it is.... :-)


Nice, relaxing weekend! Perfect! We ate a lot of good food and talked for hours with our good friends. We have known each other for 10 years now, time sure fly by.

On Sunday Sarah and I went to see a movie, but other than that, we have just relaxed at home all weekend.

Last night I noticed Sarah is completely covered in little red dots. The bad part is she has been trying to tell me that for a few days, but I haven't paid enough attention. She showed me a couple of spots, but I didn't think much of it. But now: all over...

She has been on the antibiotics for a week now, so who knows what it could be. I am guessing Scarlet Fever (sharlakansfeber) since it is caused by the streph infections (which she had). Her doctor wants to see her this afternoon, so we will see. And she also have a large, painful bump on the back of her head, kind of above her ear (on the side where she doesn't have an infection).

So it will be interesting to see what the doctor says about all this.

On Wednesday Sarah will get her first belt in Tai Kwon Do, so hopefully she doesn't have to miss that, she is really looking forward to that.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Nice touch

In this day and age it is sometimes dificult to get that perosnailized service of olde rdays - things are fast and faster.

It was therefore very nce to recive a handwritten note form the people where I have my business account. They always have a smile for me, and they always give me treats for the dogs and Sarah, even when they ar enot with me (I always go thorugh teh drive trough when I deposit money).

Nice to knwo someone still knows how to treat customers...

The note I got from my bank


Yesterday I cleaned and then some. A real fall cleaning. I decided to stay home last night, Sarah and Ken went by themselves to Bounce-U, so I could finish the last of the cleaning.

After I was done and took a shower it felt like every joint in my body was aching. It is in situations like this I get reminded that I am not normal, that I have lupus. My body just can't handle an entire day of hardcore cleaning like this.

But it was nice to wake up this morning, knowing there was nothing for me to do but relax. Sooo worth the aches and pains!

Stan the dog decided he wanted to cuddle just after 7 this morning, and he kissed and buffed  his nose on us until someone finally gave in and starting to pet him. Then he got super excited and pretty much walked all over us with his pointy little paws, so we might as well just get up then. I was still achy anyway, and it hurts more to stay in bed than to get up and get moving.

Ken started the morning off by pressure washing the patio, before taking off for work.

He will be back around 2 PM to pick up the food from the BBQ place and then go and get a few things form the store.

All I have to do as preparation is cut some veggies and make one of the dips, for the three dip with veggies and crackers appetizer we are having. I think I will make a spread with veggies, pita chips, pretzel crackers and hummus, ranch dip (Sarah's favorite) and spinach & artichoke dip. The kids also get chips and some other stuff.

Then all I have to do is get the food out and we can eat. Sarah requested pizza, so she and the other girls, Samantha and Hailey, will eat pizza which will be delivered by Papa John's.

Why have I not done this before? So easy! Well, I do love to cook, so I am sure it won't happen too often. But for a week like this when I have been working non stop and need a brake, it is perfect. And I have truly wanted to try the food at that BBQ place, it smells heavenly when you go by...

Now, I think I will whip out my Sony Reader and start on a book... Ahhh....

Friday, September 17, 2010


Ooops, Friday already! Today I am hoping to spend most of the time cleaning and fixing stuff at home. The morning was all work, and I had to "fire" a new client. I have never encountered a more irritating person to work for! On top of that, they try to nitpick the prices and get away with paying as little as possible. Not worth it at all, their jobs take much more time than they should, just because of this weird person.

So from now on I am going to be "too busy" when I get any project requests from them. No more.

Luckily I have mostly very nice clients, people who understand the work and actually appreciate your work. And have no problem paying for it...

Sarah and I have both had colds this past week, but not too bad. More irritating than bothersome, sniffly noses and stuffed sinus, no fever.

I think she was really tired of having stuffed sinuses last night, she actually asked me to buy her some decongestant nose spray, which she absolutely hates. I understand her, not fun...

Tonight we are going to a school at Bounce-U, an indoor gigantic playground full of different types of inflatables, like jump castles and obstacle courses. Afterwards they kids have a pizza party as well. It was a lot of fun last time, so I am sure she will like it today as well. She just have to be careful with her back, it is still hurting when she jumps too much.

We are also signing Sarah up for Tae Kwon Do, Korean martial arts. She has been wanting to go for a while, but we have just been too busy. Luckily the place is really close to home, so that is a plus. I think the classes will be on Wednesdays (when I can take her) and Saturdays when daddy can take her.

I like martial arts, they teach focus, respect and confidence. The exercise ad flexibility that comes with it is a plus too, of course!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Stretched thiiiiin

Wow. This week has been non-stop go, go, go!

I am starting to feel I am not in control and it is just too much to do. But I was able to get some breathing room by at least rescheduling tomorrow's ultrasound until Monday. That will help a lot!

There has been so much work coming and going, my head is almost spinning.

But my priorities are Sarah, work and then everything else. There is a big tax deadline today, so Ken has been super busy too, haven't seen much of him. He will actually be home in normal time today, mow the yard and have dinner with us, hooray!

Having a dinner party on Saturday doesn't sound like such great idea right now, but I think I have solved most of the cooking at least by deciding to get BBQ from a local BBQ company. Pulled pork, chicken and ribs. They are also going to supply us with cole slaw, potato salad and BBQ beans. I got the rest of the food (except a few items that has to be purchased fresh on Saturday), so we are looking good there.

And one of Ken's clients are making us specially made Halloween cupcakes for dessert, she has a bakery. Awesome! So there is a chance I will actually get to sit down and relax with our friends as well!

Now the only problem is how I am going to find time to clean? Luckily I have done a little every day, so hopefully it should not be too bad, mostly straightening up, dusting and floors.

Thank goodness for frozen lasagna, that is what is for dinner tonight, all I have to do is pop it in and make a little salad then it is done!

September is just flying away it seems, but I guess that is how it feels when you are keeping super busy.

I also managed to get a flu shot today at my local grocery store. Pretty convenient, just pop in between the Tylenol and the cough syrups and get one. Awesome!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010


I think I am done with work today, unless something comes in later on. Good, because I need to clean and organize my office. I do it quite often, but it tend to get messy fast, probably because I spend most of my work days in there.

Sarah has to go to the doctor this afternoon, looks like she has an infection behind one of her ears. Like a boil, or what probably started out as a pimple or something. I have kept an eye on it for a few weeks, cleaned it and applied antibiotic ointment, but it has not gotten any better, rather the opposite. It is not in the piercing, but higher up. It looks all purple and is very painful, so we need some help getting rid of that.

I also have to go back and get Ken's AC fixed today, they are going to call whenever the part comes in. Apparently the actual panel that controls the AC has to be changed, since it is falling apart. Almost $400, wohoo!

I was able to, with the help of a pen and duct tape, get the AC going yesterday when I had to be out and about all day. Otherwise it would not have been fun, it went up to 100F/38C, so HOT and sweaty for sure...

Bob is doing SO much better, he is definitely back to himself. I was going through old blog postings and discovered a pattern of sort. It seems Bob likes to eat mushrooms every year about this time. And he always get sick, and he always get over it... I caught him yesterday almost eating another mushroom! What was he thinking? We really have to watch him, especially at night when it can be hard to see what he is doing.

I am thinking the mushrooms are to blame, perhaps, and because he is so much older now (he would be well over 70 if he was human), his body just can't handle it so well anymore.

I will keep a hawk eye on him, and if he seems to be sick or this happened again, I will take him to the vet, but since he is doing so well now, I am leaning towards this being another mushroom incident...

Like I said before, he likes to eat anything he can get his paws on! :-)

Monday, September 13, 2010

Back from doctor

Man, some doctors sure have no "bedside manners". Is it because he is a surgeon? I don't know, but he seemed very brusque and not especially friendly...

Anyway, most likely I am dealing with a chronic blood clot/DVT, which means I am stuck with it for the rest of my life. There is no treatment, no surgery do be done. It will cause trouble and make my leg swell up now and then.


I was really looking forward to getting rid of this problem. How come things always tend to be "chronic" when it comes to me? Arghhh!!!

They are going to do do a very comprehensive ultrasound on Wednesday, which will tell us the extent of the clot and all that. This will also give us a reference in case I get any future new clots. And then I will see the doctor again next Thursday.

So not so good news, but I guess I will just have to live with it, which is what I have been doing already, of course. I was just really so hopefully that I could get rid of this problem. Oh, and he can't take that vein out, apparently it is needed since it has taken over some of the function from the deeper vein that is blocked... Sigh...


In 20 minutes I am going to see a vascular surgeon. This is the same doctor that put the vena cava filter in 5 years ago after the first, big deep vein thrombosis (DVT aka "blood clot").

This is how my vena cava filter looks like

This is where my filter is placed
I am so sick and tired of having this clot still causing trouble, so I want to find out if it can be removed. I want to be able to take long walks without having to deal with a leg that swells up and makes it impossible to walk (as in DC when I ended up having to use a wheel chair on our vacation, not fun!).

I also want to perhaps have the extra veins removed. After the clot I got these new veins popping up, and I often bump into them which is painful. And they are not pretty to look at either.

Plus, I think it could be a good idea to check on the filter now after 5 years. It is suppose to decrease my chance of dying from a blood clot on the loose by 80 %, but it could actually get clogged too, rendering it a hazard.

So hopefully he has a solution for all this, we will see...

Lupus sure is a mean disease, causing so many, many different problems. There is just never an end to it, it seems! :-(

After the doctor I have a few errands to run, which will not be fun: the switch in Ken's car's AC (which I am driving today) is broken. So no AC. And over 90F/32C with lots of humidity. I have an appointment this afternoon to have it looked at, and hopefully they can fix it on the spot or at least order the part ASAP. It will be sweaty, especially on those black leather seats! :-)

Sunday, September 12, 2010


Since Thursday it has been a bit difficult around here. Ken is doing major upgrades at work with his server's firewall and other security things. Nothing has worked out as it was suppose to, the consultant that was supposedly an expert pretty much abandoned Ken midway though the upgrade.

Ken is also very different from me. His glass is always half empty, and he always sees gloom and disaster around the corner :-)! I have pretty much lived by myself these last few days, just doing what I know is best: leaving him be, but quietly offering my full understanding and support.

It seems he was in luck yesterday when a client was in his office for some tax planning. This client turned out to be a network expert, and he was able to get Ken up and running.

There are some issues still with one of the security upgrades, but it seems to be a software problem, so until this can be addressed by the manufacturer he went out to get a band aid solution until then.

This type of stress really gets to Ken very hard. Friday he was suppose to work off site as a consultant, but could not, which resulted in him losing out on over a thousand dollars in consulting fees.

I am sure everything will be just fine, it always work out that way, but it sure is exhausting living with a person who does not have as positive outlook on life in general as I do! :-)

Yesterday Sarah and I went to see Disney on Ice. Since Ken couldn't go she brought her friend Brandon, and they had a really good time together.

This show had Mickey & Minnie and Donald Duck and Daisy Duck traveling between scenes from The Lion King, Lilo & Stitch, The Little Mermaid and Peter Pan. Lots of fun!

We had great seats with a good view
Yum, cotton candy (and check out that Flounder hat!)
The Little Mermaid and Prince Eric
Captain Hook before Peter Pan tricked him into the mouth of the Croc
Good show!

After the show we got stuck in a flash flood in the middle of downtown Tampa. It was crazy; one street we had to cross (on foot) had water almost up to my knees! Lets just say we were soaked by the time we got to the car... Not fun to drive home when it is dark, raining like crazy, you are not familiar with your surrounds, you are soaked but have to keep the AC on so the windows don't fog up...

Luckily it was pretty localized and we got out of it pretty fast, but apparently it rained 1 inch (25.5 mm) in less than an hour!

I am so worried about Bob, one of our dogs. He seems to be having some gastrointestinal problems. He has always had a stomach of steel, which worked out great for him since he liked to steal and eat pretty much anything he could get his paws on!

The last year he seems to have gotten more sensitive and he can't handle much of anything, he goes into vomit spells that takes a toll on him.

Last weekend he ate something and got sick, and then again this weekend. I woke up yesterday from some noise that turned out to be the dogs fighting over who would get to eat the candy they had stolen. Bob was running around with half a bag of Halloween candy (candy corn), the other half apparently in his stomach...

Then it started: he just wanted to eat grass (which usually helps him throw up), so I let him be out in the backyard and munch on that (otherwise he will try to eat the houseplants). He then puked most of the day, usually little lakes of water that he drank in between puking... Needless to say he is exhausted today, probably very dehydrated.

Poor Bob trying to feel better

I am worried he might have some kind of cancer, he is pretty old after all. I will probably take him to the vet this week and have them do a full work up on him, the poor thing.

I got him to drink some chicken broth this morning, hopefully he will be himself here again soon. At least he is resting comfortably now...

Wednesday, September 8, 2010


Seems like the rest of the week is going to be a very busy work week, my inbox is full of jobs right now...

Looking forward to Saturday night when we are going to Tampa to see Disney on Ice: Minnie & Mickey's Adventure.

I have wanted to take Sarah to a Disney Ice Show for years, but the times never fit. Now we happened to get a super deal through the Tampa Bay Lightning (Ice Hockey in NHL) who is doing a charity for Manatee County schools, so perfect! We got really great seats really cheap!

Now I need to get to work... I have hundred of pages that need editing, but first a small translation project...

PS Try not go get a big mosquito bite UNDER your foot, it is NOT fun!!!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

MRI results

That was pretty quick, considering we did the test on Friday and then it was a Holiday yesterday.

Sarah is officially A OK. Nothing looks out of the ordinary, so most likely she had a badly pulled/strained muscle in her back and it just never really had a chance to fully heal before she aggravated it again. So that is the theory.

She is to stay away from too rough play and jumping and things of that sort for 4-6 weeks, and if she still have problems after that she might get some physical therapy with light stretches and things of that nature.

She was cleared for going hiking and horseback riding in October, so that is good.

Just feels good knowing where we stand on the back thing. One less thing to worry about!

Labor Day Weekend

I haven't been in the mood to blog for a few days, plus my hand have been so sore from joint pain (and still are)...

Friday went really well. From door to door it took Sarah and I 6.5 hours to get to the All Children's Hospital, do the MRI and come back.

She was very well taken care off and you can tell they are all about kids. The hospital looks very new, fresh and hitech. In all waiting areas they had touch screens in the walls with all kind sof video games for kids to entertain themselves. There were also TVs with kids' shows on all over. In a place liek thhis, where it can often be a little scary for kids, I think this is a good idea. The more distractions teh better!

Sarah is trying out one of the built in video games
The hardest part of the entire process was getting the IV in. The nurse made it a smooth process and made sure the area on top of her hand was numb before putting the IV in. She was a trooper!

Wearing the hopistal outfit, wating for the IV
It is in!
What? That was nothing, dude...
Watching TV makes it a little easier...

After the IV was done we had to wait for quite some time, speak to a couple of people, including the anaesthesiologist. All the people were very nice and comforting.

When it was Sarah's turn we had to part ways and she looked a little unsure when they walked away with her, but she did good. Next time I met her she was all done, and she was veeeery sleepy and couldn't believe it was already over!

Huh?! It's over already?

She hadn't eaten anything since the day before, so she was starving after she woke up a little more. By the time we got home, so was back to normal, except for her eyes which were super red, a side effect from the anaesthesia.

On Saturday we woke up really early and made our way to north Tampa to an awesome place called Big Cat Rescue. This is a wonderful place that rescue big cats form all kinds of different bad situations. Some are from circus shows, other have even been personal pets! One guy who got busted in a drug raid was a compulsive animal hoarder, and in his house he had 5 tigers, 1 lion and 1 "liger" (illegal hybrid mix of lion and tiger). All the cats lived under horrible conditions but have now found a great home where they will live out the rest of their lives.

Big Cat Rescue has all kinds of regular and not so regular cats, and it is a very cool place for someone like Sarah who happen to love tigers...

You have to go as part of a guided tour and the only one for kids is early in the morning. It is very important not to make too much noise or move around too much, which can disturb the cats. The cages are huge, and the material they are made out of can withstand up to a hurricane of category 4 strength.

It was interesting hearing about all the different enrichment programs they have to stimulate the cats, and students from all over the world fight to get internships here. A wonderful place I can warmly recommend visiting if you happen to be in the area!

Leopard tail
Sarah's favorite, the tiger

A dragonfly landed on Ken's hand
Beautiful leopard...
Florida panther. This female had been someones pet, sleeping in their bed!
My favorite, the ocelot


When Sarah and I got home on Saturday we decided to go though every single toy in her room, her room was in dire need of a weed out. Usually this is a difficult process with her wanting to keep everything, but this time she was great! It took us 4 hours all in all and we ended up with a full car with stuff to donate, a huge sack of things to throw out and a large IKEA bag full of stuff to give to her friend next door.

The process was easy, I held something up and she quickly said yes or no to keep it. I told her to use her gut feeling and stick with what she first thought. It felt really good to clean out all that stuff, and she was very pleased as well. So nice to be able to open her closet without stuff falling out, and now she knows exactly what she has and where it is.

We sorted everything into different storage places, so things that belong together is together. Nice and clean, how we like it! 

I am going to have a dinner party here at home for some friends on the 18th, so that gives me some incentive to sort through my own stuff and clean up a little extra as well. It always feels great after cleaning stuff out!

Sunday morning we had a nice breakfast on the beach, went over to check on the progress on the house (going well), and then I spent the rest of the day cleaning.

Monday was Labor Day, a national holiday here in the US. No school. It was a very slow day, I had very bad joint pain and woke up with a searing headache, so I spent most of the day on the couch, but the weather was kind of gray, so it felt kind of good anyway.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010


About 9-10 years ago (can't remember exactly) Ken and I went to a really interesting exhibit at a museum in Tampa. It was artifacts from the South American Inca Indians, lots of cool stuff.

One section was in particular interesting, it was about the Inca's very advanced medical care. It was even proof that Inca's performed some type of brain surgery, drilling holes in people's craniums (there was also proof that the patients had continued to live afterwards, phew).

In one areawas some actually shrunken Inca heads, and Ken got so excited he scrambled to get up close. In his scramble, he accidentally kicked my left front toe, straight on. My nail split all the way down the middle. Ouch!

Since then, my nail has been messed up (thanks a lot, Ken ). Usually half the nail appears dead most of the time, but at least it grows out...

I went to a podiatrist back in 2002 that declared "It's fungus!" and she gave me fungal lotion. Now, fungal lotion is at it's best successful up to 50 % of the time, plus I was on all kinds of chemo drugs and immune suppressants, not exactly helpful.

But now, when I have been off all those drugs for 3 years, I figured I might have a fighting chance to fix this nail once and for all.

This morning I had an appointment with a new podiatrist (foot doctor), and he said it might not be fungus at all, it did not look like it, at least. His guess was that the trauma from the initial damage (thanks again, Ken)coupled with my body's lowered ability to heal itself might have caused this.

The only way to be sure is to test the nail, so they clipped it all off and it is going to a lab to test fr fungus. If it is positive I can have a new, (expensive) laser treatment that actually works, if not, well, I will be stuck for with an ugly toe for the rest of my life (thanks... well, you get it...).

So this is how my now all naked toe looks like. A little sensitive...

Hope I didn't ruin anyone's appetite now! :-)

In other medical news, Sarah's blood tests came back all clean. No signs of anything inflammatory, lupus, RA or other. Big sigh of relief! Now we just have the MRI on Friday, which she will be sedated for, since it is a rather long procedure, and it is not so easy for a little kid to be perfectly still for that long...

We have to be there at 2 PM and she i snot allowed to eat anything before to eat all, just some fluids before noon! I think she is a little tense about the MRI, but also very curios. There are lots of videos on YouTube about what to expect for kids, so she watched that, I think it helped ease her nervousness a little, now when she knows exactly what to expect.