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OGFB Blog: Sue

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 12 March 2008
Recovery still slow. As I am still unable to participate in any of my normal activities, I am afraid this log is again going to be  a record of my medical status.

This week has been good. Only two days of severe pain and that was after sitting for over two hours in one position, painting at my Art class. It was worth it, as I was pleased with my efforts, the Canal at Hebden Bridge.

I am nearly off the morphine having had it replaced with another painkiller, actually a nerve blocker with fewer side effects. I think the crunch  came when I told the GP I kept screaming in the night and was shouting long sentences of garbage. Not confused English word but words that didn't even exist. A few death dreams didn't help either. That with a few other not pleasant side effects meant a change had to be made

Today I had my fortnightly check, and it was nice to be told that I looked better than I had in quite a few weeks. I am now trying to think positive and instead of dwelling on what I can't do, I plan my day around what I can do. I also make an effort with my appearance when I get up, rather than lying aroud in a large comfortable pair of jogging pants and a big sweater.

The course of acupuncture has started, and on thursday I have an assessment for an appointment with the spinal surgeon. I try not to think of that, and concentrate on what I have been told to do. Can you contract the individual muiscles that run next to the vertebral column. Its not easy, but I have to practice.

Today I am going to make a couple of birthday cards. I can't believe it is so far into March already. It looks like my next trip to France will unfortunately be called off as well. However I am aiming to be able to travel at the end of April when we go to Austria with friends for two weeks.

More news, and hopefully better news next week

Oh Yes, Warwickshire daughter has made an offer on a house and it has been accepted. It will take about 2 months I should think before everything is completed, but they are in a good position with nothing to sell, and only a one month notice to give on her rented house. Then she can start unpacking all the boxes from their home in America. She has been living out of boxes since last July!!

 04 March 2008
Its been a bad couple of weeks for me. I have had a number of highs and lows. First I thought I was on the road to recovery, and then before I knew it I was going backwards, with an increase in pain, and a corresponding increase in morphine and side effects.

It all seems back under control, and today is the first day I have stood upright ALL DAY for nearly 2 months. Keep your fingers crossed for me, so that I don't have to go down the operation route. I have been referred to a spinal surgeon consultant. Mainly to get me in the system if all else fails. I am starting acupuncture next week, and yet another pain killer instead of the morphine. I may decide on a pain management clinic but trying other options first  Time seems to fly when you spend 10 minutes of every hour lying on you stomach, in a particular manner, doing spinal and pelvic floor muscle exercises. I am taking so much medication now I have to think really hard about I am taking when, why, and what dose

Sorry about the misery but my back rules my life at the moment. I don't get out much, although I have a number of friends who call to see me or phone. Most of these friends have common interests like Art and sewing so we always have a lot o talk about. However when my plants arrived by mail order, I felt a bit down, as there is no way I will be gardening in the near future. My herb garden en france will not be making many advances this year.

However i have had plenty of time to think about my Art and put some skills into practice. I spent the whole of this afternoon cutting out pictures from plant and holiday catalogues. I have scanned them all into my computer, so I can enlartge them and have ago at painting some. There are some very atmospheric pictures in oranges and mauves. I can't wait to try some

Well its time for my 10 minutes physio so off I must go. I hope I have better news next week

 19 February 2008
Well today the MRI results arrived. I am a bit stunned as the problem is not as expected. It is very similar to the problem that Lancashire daughter, Claire had, which resulted in her operation.
I have 4 protruding discs in the lumbar region, two of which are pressing on nerves, but luckily not trapping them. Hopefully physio will resolve the problem, otherwise I could be down the same route as Claire. As you can imagine, I was shocked and not very happy.However my mind is made up that physio WILL work.

Needless to say the side effects of the morphine have kicked in but not as bad as the last type I was given. I have decided that I would rather have the side effects than the pain, so I'll just have to put up woth them.

As Bob was busy today, a friend had to take me to the Drs and then on to my monthly lunch with the sewing club that I used to go to. We had to disbandon this year, as our teacher has been quite ill and feels she can't continue any more. She is nearly 84, but only looks and sounds like 70!!. We had a pleasant lunch and chat and it was nice to get out. Kath, my friend, came back here for a cup of tea, so it was 4.00pm before I knew it.

I have just woken up from a two hour sleep and am getting my paints etc ready for tomorrows Art workshop.Again I have had to arrange a lift, but another friend has decided to join the workshop. She is a good Artist and will probably leave me standing. I am hoping to learn a bit, watching her at work

I think that is all for now. What glorious weather we have been having, such stunning sunsets.

Oh yes, has anyone else been having problems with emailing members from their email addresses on their profile. The PM works but the email doesn't seem to.


 14 February 2008
I have been VERY STUPID this week, and against all advice I went for a short walk up hill. I am back in agony and back on the morphine. The GP came to see me at home yesterday as I could hardly move. I spent most of the last two days reading a novel which is something I NEVER do.

Anway today it looks like the morphine has  kicked in, so I have manged to get a hair appoinment to cheer myself up. Of course I will have to be taken in the car  even though it is a very short walk it is downhill, and therefore up hill on the way back

I have been looking through the holiday catalogues recently, not because of the holidays, but because of the pictures, There are some fabulous photographs. I have been through and cut some out to start a painting source file. I have done the same with my plant catalogues. I have found one particular photo , I think it is Greece, witha typical domed church and the rest of the picture is in different shades of yellow. It is wonderful and is certainly my next challenge

I have scanned it into the computer, enlarged it, as it is only  about 10cm by 15cm. I have printed it off in A4 in colour and in black and white. The B&W shows the definitions and contrasts more clearly than the colour. I will use this to do a tracing. I can then use the coloured one to help with the painting. Thats my task for the next couple of days

Nothing more to report. Nothing seems to change much at the moment

Just one thing. HAPPY BIRTHDAY  to my Dad he is 91 today


 09 February 2008
Well I had my MRI this morning so all I can do is wait. I must admit my trip to the physio this week has brought some relief. Anyway enough of my ailments

What a glorious day today. Bob cleaned the house yesterday afternoon whilst I was in my drugged induced afternoon snooze, so with the sun shining into a nice clean conservatory I was encouraged to tidy up the plants that I bring in from the garden over winter.

I love fuschias ( probably spelt wrong because I can't spell it). I do a lot of my own cuttings and have a couple of 4 foot standards that I have done from cuttings. I noticed some of the plants were beginning to shoot, so I have cut them all back, dug over the soil, removed deadleaves and weeds. They have all had a dose of systemic insect killer that you water into the pots. Next watering will be in about 2 weeks, and 'll give them a bit of miracle gro then. SPRING is in the air!

Unfortunately I did a little too much exerise along witha short walk around the houses where I live. I must look a right sight hobbling around with two walking poles at a snails pace, and stopping at every curbstone to work out how to go up or down.
I now have back ache rather badly but have taken my doses of this and that and am looking forward to a nice evening visiting friends for a meal

I also took the opportunity to start touching up my painiting. I now have a dull purple hill, a little  higher than it was , but i think it looks right. I put a  'sludge' coloured wash over the field on the right and  added a few touches in other greens, and a couple of extra rocks ets. I made the long wall by the house a little higher. Its all set for a new, taller tree tomorrow. I think it looks better already. Thank you everyone for your input

 Well must go and' tart myself' up now for my evening out

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