It began the Monday before Christmas. I woke up and my feet and ankles were swollen. I figured my sodium intake had been too high lately, because it has happened before, and decided to cut back on the sodium and drink more water than normal. It helped a little but 2 days later, the swelling hadn’t gone down much more and I started to feel some numbness in my ankles. There was no way I could get in to see my NP before Christmas so I waited.

After another day, the numbness had worked its way up my left leg, and the next day (Christmas Day) I was feeling numbness in my right leg, although not as bad. My legs were weaker than normal and I was sleepy as hell for the last couple of days. I knew what I was facing. There’s no way I was going to go to the ER on a major holiday, so I waited again. I have to tell you, I WAS WORRIED.

On Sunday, I did an online symptom checker. I was a CNA/CMT for several years so I knew what it would say: blood clots/DVT, PAD, among a few other things. That’s exactly what the checker told me, plus “GO TO THE NEAREST EMERGENCY DEPARTMENT.”

I did. It’s not something I was looking forward to: a possible hospital stay with tons of tests, not to mention Covid-19 and a long ass wait with a bunch of dumb ass people who weren’t wearing masks. I was pleasantly surprised. There were no others in the waiting room when we arrived. (Dad insisted he go with me. He absolutely refused to stay home. Everyone was wearing a mask!) I was checked in and called back in less than 10 minutes. The doctor on call came in relatively quickly and ordered 60mg IV Lasix to get the swelling down. A technician came in and did an ultrasound on both of my legs. Blood work followed.

While we waited, I peed 6 times; the effects of the Lasix. I was getting impatient, although we hadn’t really been there for too long. I think we were there for 3 hours, give or take a few minutes. After a while the doctor came in and told me my blood work looked good, and there were no blood clots, signs of DVT, and I had blood flow to my extremities, indicating no PAD (Peripheral Artery Disease) so that was a major relief! Oh, you just don’t know the relief I felt! He gave me a script for 20mg Lasix, orders to check in with my NP for a follow-up, and he sent me on my way.

Now 2 days later, my legs aren’t as weak as they were but I still have a little swelling and numbness which comes and goes. I couldn’t get an appointment with my NP until Monday due to the New Year’s holiday, but I will get in. She will most likely raise my Lasix dosage but we’ll see.

I’m worried because I can’t even tell you how many times my concerns and health issues have been swept under the rug over the years. Not by the NP I am currently seeing but by actual doctors/specialists! I have pretty much given up trying to find a doctor who gives a shit. The ONE doctor who actually tried to help me, got sick of the bureaucratic bullshit she had to endure at that particular clinic, and she left for a better job. Can’t say that I blame her.

Anyway, I’m doing alright. Taking it day by day; doing what I can, resting often, watching my sodium, drinking more water, and taking that little pill that makes me pee my brains out all day long!

My Goals For 2020

I don’t do New Year’s Resolutions. I have never once kept a resolution in my life. I tend to pick things that are unrealistic so I stopped when I was in my 30’s, but I can still set some small goals for myself. I made a list of things that I need or want to do for me. Some are very simple and some will take more effort, but I’m going to do my best! These are in random order, typed as they came to me.


❣ I’ll write in my blog more, start writing that cookbook I’ve been promising to write, and finish my short story “Spike” because after all, I started it when I was 22 years old.

❣ I will exercise more. I’ve been trying to walk more and using my Air Walker at least 5 times a week. I’ve started out slowly because of my pain level and mobility issues.

❣ It’s about time the spare bedroom is used as a bedroom instead of a storage room. I’ll do a little decluttering every few days, and throw a LOT of stuff away.

❣ I will continue on my weight loss journey and with the support of the gals over at Weigh to be Healthy, I just might get to where I need to be! You can join this private group, too! We are a very supportive bunch and we want to see each other succeed, no matter what health issues we have or what our goals are!

❣ I will keep a gratitude and affirmations journal. I take things for granted, as we all do, but if I write down what I am grateful for each day, I will be more grateful. I will be more aware of what I have and what I can do instead of being focused on what I don’t have or what I can’t do. The affirmations will change my mindset, and allow more positivity into my life.

❣ I will spend less time on Facebook. It’s just exhausting anymore when it used to be fun. People can be so rude and hateful. They are too quick to judge and try to impose their beliefs or their opinions on everyone else.

❣ I will drink more water because I guess 2 quarts of tea per day isn’t the same thing. Haha. I hate water. I’d rather drink tea!

❣ I will cook more and with the help of my new Instant Pot, I think I can achieve this quite easily. I’ve already made several things in it and it’s all been edible, so that’s something! I can put a little more thought into meal planning and making my own “freezer meals.”

❣ I will eat breakfast in the mornings. It really is hard for me to do that because ever since I was a teenager, I have skipped breakfast. I’m just not that much into breakfast foods. I’m never hungry first thing in the morning either.

❣ I will read more. Lordy, I need to finish the 3 books I started a few months back and never finished. I get lazy. My eyes get tired. I can’t sit still. I used to read all the time! I don’t know why I stopped.

❣ I’d like to learn a new skill. I don’t know what yet. Maybe I’ll take another online class or learn how to play guitar. I could try a new language but…been there, done that…don’t seem to grasp it well. Maybe I’ll learn superb hacking skills and get hired by the government to fight cybercrime!

❣ I will give to charity, help a Veteran, and donate pet food to shelters. I will do what I can to help others because it makes me feel good about who I am as a person.

❣ I will save money each month so I can afford to do something big for myself. I don’t know what yet, but I’ll figure something out.

❣ I will meditate more. I don’t do it enough because it’s hard for me to focus. Sometimes I just fall asleep, which isn’t a bad thing.

❣ I will create a Keepsake Box for each of my children and grandchildren. I’ll add keepsakes from the past adding more as time passes. They will each have a box of memories to remember me by when I’m gone.


So, there you go. All I can do is try, try, and try again to do all of these things. Have you made a list of goals for yourself going into the new year? Please feel free to share in the comments! I’d love to hear about your plans. Thanks for reading mine!



Fitbit, Go Home! You’re Drunk!

I’m a novice when it comes to many new-fangled gadgets like Amazon’s Echo but I’ve caught on pretty quick. Alexa has been very helpful to me. Another gadget that I’m not too familiar with is the Fitbit Fitness Tracker. It has my brain doing summersaults.

For example, I thought I had it set up correctly and one day it logged that I had gone swimming for 30 minutes. Um. What? I think I would know if I was swimming. I was NOT. So, I removed swimming and several other activities from the list of automatically detected actions. I can only do two of the listed activities, and not very well mind you; walking and my air walker, which is an elliptical of sorts. Now it’s not detecting either of those two things so if I’m doing one I have to manually clock it.

Yesterday morning, it counted 377 steps from the time I got out of bed, went to the kitchen for coffee, and back to my room to the computer. It’s only 36 steps round trip. Huh? I thought, maybe I had my stride set wrong so I refigured. Nope. Still the same. Measured and refigured again. Same.

I wear the Fitbit on my non-dominant hand. I understand it won’t count steps if my arm is not at my side. Sometimes I’m hanging onto something as I walk; my cane in my right hand and holding onto the counter or chair, etc., as I walk by with my left. I’ve been trying to keep my left arm at my side, but sometimes I’m just not that stable. I’ve counted the steps I take, arm at side, checked my Fitbit’s count and have had it be only one step off and other times, it can register 300 steps when I just walked to the kitchen. Trust me, my house is not that big.

I haven’t got it completely figured out yet but one good thing Fitbit does is to tell me about my sleep patterns. Boy, is my sleep WACK! I’m awake so many times during the night and sleep in such short spurts that I’m surprised I can even function! But I’m not even sure how accurate that data is because it doesn’t even register my naps. That’s when I sleep the best.

Fitbit, I WILL figure you out, you pesky little ticker. Then you will be putty in my hand!

Weigh to Be Healthy

I’ve been a bit absent as of late; suffering from quite the “writer’s block” and at the same time, my friend and fellow blogger, Linda, writes about her own ‘slump’ in Why Weight? She writes of her own struggles with getting healthy and losing weight, and how difficult it is to change old habits. When Linda asked if anyone would be interested in getting together to support each other in our weight loss and healthy lifestyle journeys, I jumped at the chance! You see, I’ve been struggling with my weight ever since my first child was born!

If you’ve been following my blog then you know a little of my struggles. I’ve been trying to lose weight for quite some time and when I finally found something that worked for me (Nutrisystem) I lost 60 pounds! The problem was that I couldn’t afford to stay on the full program indefinitely and I started gaining my weight back, slowly.

I keep trying to get back on track… I mean, I keep getting back on the track and then I get run over by the stinkin’ train! It’s hard to change habits. I think it’s difficult for a lot of people and without support, where are we? It’s always nice to hear a “Yay! It’s great that you lost 2 lbs. this week!” or maybe “You look great!” now and again. Heck, even when we fall down it’s nice when someone says, “It’s ok, I’ll help you get back up!”

So, I offered to help Linda work on some ideas of getting together and supporting each other, which led to the opening of a Facebook group. Lisa, from Lismore Paper, wanted to be a part of the adventure as well, so now we’re well on our way to being the greatest weight loss and healthy lifestyle support groups ever!! With YOU along for the ride, we will succeed!

If you’d like to join the group, “Weigh to be Healthy!” you can find it here. This group is all inclusive, meaning that no matter what your weight and health struggles are, we are here to support you! Linda, Lisa, and I are looking forward to this new adventure!

If you’d like to meet the other two wonderful bloggers who will be there every step of the way, you can find links to their blogs below.

Linda at Everyone Else Has the Best Titles 

Lisa at Lismore Paper

Signing off for now, with the hope of seeing others join us in support for the health of it!

Aunt Debbie

The NP & A Little Hope

I was unexpectedly and pleasantly surprised by my visit with a Nurse Practitioner today! I went in expecting to be pissed off upon leaving, but not this time! (Seems I always have problems with so-called professionals, so I wasn’t expecting anything positive!)

The NP agreed that I needed to have a TSH before she refilled my script. She surprised me when she asked how my pain medication was working. I told her that I can tell when I don’t take it, but it doesn’t work like it used to. I’ve been on it for about 6 years and I’m sure my body has built up resistance by now. She agreed. She asked me if I had ever tried anything else and my answer surprised her. I told her how I had tried to get something different from the doctor who prescribed my current meds and that she told me, “There isn’t anything else you can take.” THAT was complete bull squirt. I knew it then and it was confirmed by the NP today. She said that was a stupid thing for her to say. I agreed and told her a little about my background; I worked as a Medication Technician at a nursing home and I didn’t get that job because I was stupid. I got it because I worked hard, studied hard and trained. I may not know it all, but I’m sure as hell not stupid. So, I knew there were other medications for pain that I could try.

So, the NP switched up my medication to something else – also an anti-inflammatory but it works differently than my current medication. I am so relieved to have found someone who actually shows an interest in whether my meds are working for me and actually wants to help!

While I had her attention, I asked her about my sleeping problem. I’m lucky if I get 5 hours of sleep at night and it’s not restorative sleep by a long shot! It’s broken sleep. I might sleep for 45 minutes before waking up to reposition. If I’m lucky I might sleep a whole hour before waking. As if that isn’t bad enough, the intense pain I endure all day long makes my body so tense that it sometimes takes me 2 or 3 hours to even fall asleep. I’ve tried over-the-counter sleep aids and sometimes they help, sometimes they don’t. The NP seemed to understand exactly what I was telling her and suggested something that might help. She said it was originally an anti-depressant (technically still is) but it seems to help people with sleep more than it helps with depression. I’ll try it and if it helps me with the depression, too, then that’s a plus. My depression isn’t as bad as it used to be, thanks to my therapist, but it still resurfaces sometimes.

I’m not sure if I’ll get to the pharmacy tomorrow to pick up my meds due to the expectation of freezing drizzle, as they call it. But I’m excited to try something new! Maybe my everyday chores and personal care tasks won’t be so damn difficult for me.

I’ll even settle for a little less difficult….