Broken leg for Christmas

I used to say that all I wanted for Christmas was my 2 front teeth, but what I really want is mobility.

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So I was riding my bike to the gym as I always do, but on December 8, 2015, the city was grinding up the street at Hughes Lane, which is the street I ride to get to the gym. At first I was riding in the gutter before I noticed that I was coming up on the ground up street. I usually stay in the gutter to keep my distance from the cars where there isn’t a bike lane. I was actually doing pretty good in the gutter for quite awhile, until my bike decided to go into the street. That’s when it all went wrong. I was doing okay for a little bit until my front wheel hit the gutter, which was a little higher than the street. I lost control when my front wheel hit the gutter and fell onto the sidewalk. A car pulled over and asked if there was anything she could do, but I wasn’t sure what damage I did, so I just asked her to hand my phone to me to call home. My partner put the bike in the car then tried helping me up, but I knew I broke something, so he called 911 to have an ambulance take me to Mercy hospital.

The emergency room doctor at Mercy hospital ordered x-rays and told me it was broken in 2 places. They actually sent me home in a brace with a referral to an orthopedic clinic. That was Tuesday night and they were closed when my partner called them from the hospital. He had to call them back on Wednesday morning. They called back on Thursday night to tell us that they are rejecting my case. I don’t know why, but I’m thinking they don’t take Medicare and Medi-Cal. They told us to go to Kern Medical Center, so we actually got in the car and drove to the KMC emergency room. They told us that the orthopedic clinic is closed and they would be closed on Friday too, so our best bet would be to come back on Monday morning at 6:30am. They only help the first 20 people, so be sure you’re here before then.

I’m sure there are better places than KMC, but it literally was the only place, so we waited. We arrived at 5:30am and there were at least 8 people ahead of us, and more came after us. They looked at the x-rays from Mercy hospital and told me I would need surgery to put a plate in my leg. That was Monday the 14th. They scheduled my pre-op for Wednesday the 16th and surgery for Friday the 18th. They called us when we came home asking if I was still there, and of course we were home, but they wanted me to come back on Tuesday the next day for pre-med because they rescheduled my surgery for Wednesday instead. That was extremely fast, but it’s best to get it over with. This is the brace they sent me home with after surgery. It’s supposed to help with my rehab when the stitches come out.

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I can’t really get around too well because it’s too painful. My partner doesn’t really want me moving around too much anyway because I’ve already fallen twice. The first time was the first night when I broke my leg on the 8th. I got up to go pee and I did fine getting to the bathroom and coming back to my room, it was trying to get back into bed where it all went wrong and I fell backwards. The second time was when my partner helped me back into my bed after my appointment at KMC. I fell forward onto my bed. Ever since then he doesn’t want to to get out of bed for anything. He gave me a bottle to pee in and he bought a portable toilet for $100 at Walgreen’s to do the TMI thing lol.

They told us to change the dressing, and when we did, we noticed that they stitched me up with staples. Ouch! What am I, paper?

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I wanted to be able to go to the living room for Christmas to be able to look at the tree, but I’m set up nicely in my room, and I really didn’t feel like having to lie on a couch in an awkward position, so we just nixed the idea and I spent Christmas day in my room enjoying my new PS Vita and my new lava lamp.

We go back to KMC in a couple of days for a follow up, and I’m hoping they will remove the stitches because it looks healed up. The staples hurt, a lot!

So what’s going to be my future gym goals? Well, when I’m able to walk again, I’m sure they’ll send me to a clinic to rehab my leg or to teach me how to exercise my leg to get it back to bending again. I’d also like to go to the gym that I’m actually paying for whether I go or not. I’m sure I can walk on the treadmill at 0.5mph just to get my leg bending, but I’m not sure what they will allow me to do. My partner won’t let me ride my bike again. We’re going to give it to a neighbor. He wants to buy me a tricycle, but that’s months down the road, and he’s going to drive me to the gym from now on. He could use the exercise too. We’ll see what happens next.

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My Triglycerides Are Super High

My triglycerides have been an issue for a long time. I gained weight when I quit smoking in 1996 because I was tasting food for the first time, or at least it seemed that way because I was actually getting the full flavor of the food for the first time. I guess I had just forgotten what food was supposed to taste like and I went a little overboard. I was 150lbs and gained 50lbs in the first 2 months when I quit smoking. Over the years I gradually gained so much weight until I was my highest at 262lbs in 2013. I lost 70lbs, but I stopped losing weight, and nearly all of the weight came back.

Last month the doctor told me to get my blood tests done a week before our appointment. I was supposed to go in last week on Friday, and we did come in, but the guy just left for lunch and we didn’t want to wait an hour for him to come back, so we just went home and decided to come back on Monday morning. When we went to our appointment today, the doctor told me that my triglycerides were extremely high. He said they should be 150, but they are 332 or so. That’s more than double what they should be.

He told me it’s from eating too many fatty foods, but the problem isn’t the foods that I eat, because I don’t eat fatty foods that often. In fact, it’s very rare. We had Burger King twice this month, and that’s the first time we’ve had Burger King in years. We don’t eat fast food, like ever. When we go to the mall and we get hungry, I always get Subway. That’s about that only fast food I will eat because it’s supposed to be good for you. We don’t eat Subway that often, but when we do eat at a fast food restaurant, it’s usually Subway. At home, I am usually always eating skinless boneless chicken breast and I cut out all the fat. I don’t eat red meat, chicken is the only meat I will eat.

Here’s my issue, I’ve been going to Planet Fitness for 5 weeks. I don’t eat fatty foods. I think the blood report he was looking at wasn’t the new report from Monday, but from my last report from several months ago. He had me do more blood work today, so next month I will find out the results.

Fish OilI asked him what I can do to fix this and he told me fish oil. So, I went to Albertson’s when we came home and bought some fish oil. I read the directions and it says to take 3 pills with a meal every day, so that’s exactly what I will do for the next month. It’s a 30 day supply, so it looks like I will be taking 3 pills a day for the next several months until my next blood report. Hopefully that will lower my triglycerides enough to bring them back down to normal.

The doctor told me that there is fat on my liver and that’s why the numbers are high. The bottle says that fish oil may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease. I Googled triglycerides to see what it is, and this is what I found.

wpid-2015-10-23-00.35.14.png.pngStroke??? Holy cow! Yeah, I don’t want to have a stroke, so this fish oil better do what it is supposed to so I don’t have a stroke. That’s a scary thought.

So we will see how things go. My next blood test will probably be in 3 months, and I will find out the results in probably 4 months from now. I will definitely keep this blog updated on the results. Wish me luck.

Experiencing side effects of new a drug

Hydroxyzine

I’ve been having trouble sleeping for a long time. Sleeping pills are useless because I’ll take them at 11pm or Midnight and I’m still up until 3 to 5am, and even then I’m still not tired. I blogged about my chronic insomnia the other day, well, I hadn’t started taking the new meds yet, and now I have.

So this is what it says on Google…

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The doctor prescribed this medication to me because it is non-addictive. I have allergies, but this is not why I am taking it, but perhaps it will help where the claritin hasn’t helped. I am taking this for insomnia, but it doesn’t say that in this description, but it does say one of the possible side effects is Somnolence, which I am definitely experiencing, so if he gave it to me for that side effect to help me sleep, then it’s working.

I’m sorry, but let’s be real with one another right now. I’m having trouble concentrating. I’ve hit the backspace button about 100 times already deleting whole sentences and paragraphs because I just can’t seem to word anything right, or correctly, or… ugh… I find that I am typing, then I stop and stare at the monitor for a few minutes trying to think of what next to say, but it’s like I’m lost, like what am I doing right now? It took me like 10 minutes to even start the first sentence. Another side effect? I’ve been walking at a snails pace throughout the house like I’m doped up. I was watching The Originals on the CW and was falling asleep throughout. It’s a good thing I recorded it on the DVR because I’ll definitely have to watch it again when I can stay awake.

I haven’t been experiencing headaches, but one feels like it is coming on. One other thing I’ve been experiencing is pain in my arms and shoulder. I’ve had this pain caused from the way I sit while playing video games with my PS4 game controller, but the pain hasn’t been bothering me until now, and now it seems like it has been intensified.

So the side effects are somnolence, dizziness, existing pain being intensified, and I feel drugged up. I’m sure the side effects will start to subside when I am more used to taking this medication.

Honestly my brain is dead right now and I don’t even know what else to write so tootles!

Chronic Insomnia

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I don’t know why, but I have suffered from chronic insomnia for at least 21 years. When I was in the hospital way back in 1994 with Pneumocystis pneumonia, I wasn’t taking any HIV medications. The doctor’s told me that I didn’t need to take any medication, so I didn’t take any until I was in the hospital. After I got out of the hospital, I started going to a HIV clinic in downtown Los Angeles. The medication was fine, but I started noticing that I couldn’t sleep very well at night, so when I was at one of my appointments, the doctor asked if I was having trouble sleeping and asked if I wanted sleeping pills, so I said yes.

The doctor gave me a medicine called Trazodone which I took for several years until one morning I woke up with an erection, which is usually common with men, but the erection would not go away. After several hours I decided it was time to visit the emergency room, and they had to inject something into my ass to make the erection go away. It was so embarrassing having to go to the emergency room, and the doctors snickering and gathering around me to look at my erection added to the embarrassment. I told my doctor about it and he told me to stop taking it, but didn’t give me a new prescription, and I was having trouble sleeping again, so I took it once more and it happened again and I had to go back to the emergency room. After that I tossed them in the trash.

After Trazodone, the doctor gave me Ambien which was a miracle for a very long time, but then gradually it stopped working for me. I was on Ambien for too many years, and I think my body built up a tolerance, so I would take it and it would be like 3am and I was still awake. I started eating when I took it, like a banana or toast or something, and that worked for a long time, but eventually that stopped working as well. Last year my insurance stopped paying for Ambien, so the pharmacy didn’t include it with the rest of my medication without any explanation. I assumed the new doctor didn’t want me to take it, but I found out it was the insurance company.

Last month I told the new doctor about my insomnia and the first thing he suggested was Trazodone, which I had to tell him that that medication is not good for me. He gave me Amitriptyline which he said was Elavil. My partner used to take Elavil and that stuff was potent. I would take it, but it would leave me groggy in the morning. He only gave me 25mg and they were tiny green pills as opposed to the big red pills that my partner used to get, but the Elavil 25mg tabs didn’t do a damn thing for me. I took that all month long and I was still awake until 3, 4 or 5am.

We just went to the doctor again yesterday and he gave me something else called Hydroxyzine. I told him about the depression and the anxiety caused from the flashbacks of my childhood and he said this should help out with my PTSD, but as far as it being a sleeping pill, it doesn’t work. It is a antihistamine, so that’s why he gave it to me. I’m supposed to take this one every 6 hours, which is odd, but whatever. I took it last night and was up until 5am and I ended up drinking some Zzzquil to help me get to sleep. I use that out of desperation.

Today I’ve slept the entire day away.  I don’t know if it was because of the Zzzquil or if it was that combined with the new medicine, but I just did not want to wake up. I woke up several times, got on the computer, took the dog out, but then went back to bed. As soon as I finish writing, reading and editing this, I’m thinking I’m just going to go back to bed. I hope I can sleep until morning.

I just hope that I can find something that will help me sleep because I absolutely hate staying awake so late and waking up around noon or 2pm. Although, I think in the summer it might be to my advantage because I can just sleep the heat of the day away.

Noom Week 1 Weigh In

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Today was my first weigh in for week 1. I restarted my weight loss program with Noom less than a week ago, but for some reason, Noom wants me to weigh in twice a week and today was the first weigh in. I started out at 238 and today I was 234.6. I was actually 240 before I began my weight loss program, but I had already dropped 2lbs by the time I started, but I can’t count that. So as it stands I have lost 3.4lbs.

That’s good enough as far as I am concerned. You are only supposed to lose 2lbs a week, so I’m happy with 3.4lbs. I have been dieting and exercising, except yesterday I didn’t because I follow a routine now. I eat lunch at 12, then wait about half an hour before getting on the bicycle, then I try to be finished by 1:45 so I can get in the shower so I can watch tv with my partner. He likes to watch TV with me from 2pm to 5pm because that gives us time together. If we don’t, then we never see each other because of my video game addiction lol. So there is a reason for a routine.

My nutritionist wants me to follow a specific diet where my plate has 1/4 protein, 1/4 starch and 1/2 vegetables. Here are the papers she gave me which shows the plate planner, and breakfast, lunch and dinner.

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They don’t seem to be too bad. They are actually what SparkPeople wanted me to do, but the thing is, sometimes I don’t want to eat a specific thing. I usually only eat a Weight Watchers frozen dinner which is green in the Noom app. Hey, I lost 70lbs with the weight watchers frozen dinners, so how can I go wrong?

I will do my best to eat a healthy diet, but I can’t promise I will be able to fill a plate since I usually just eat my food from a bowl. If I eat pasta or rice and meat and vegetables, I usually mix the entire amount and eat it in a bowl. I find it better to combine everything because it puts sauce on the veggies so I don’t have to use margarine or butter. Oh and I asked her about that, and she told me to use lemon in place of butter. I haven’t tried that yet, but I have a feeling it isn’t going to be the same thing lol.

Well, I can’t promise I will eat a 3 or 4 course meal, but I will promise to do the best that I can with what I can actually afford on my disability checks. So far the best option for me is 1 weight watchers frozen dinner for $2 at Food Maxx. It fills me up and it isn’t expensive.

I don’t know if I will continue to update my blog every week like I did 2 years ago.

Sleep Apnea

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My aunt in Simi Valley and my other aunt who lived in Palmdale at the time (2002 – 2004) both told me when I visited them that I gasped for air in my sleep and that I snored REALLY loud. I never took the snoring issue seriously because I’ve always snored loud, at least that’s what people always tell me. I remember when I was 19 and lived with my sister and her husband in Tujunga and I fell asleep on the floor while watching TV and my snoring actually woke me up lol.

When we lived in the little house next door in 2004, I would wake up in the middle of the night gasping for air. Not like a little gasp and being able to breathe like normal, I mean I was choking and I could not get any air at all. It was frightening, to put it mildly. Just imagine not being able to breathe for several minutes and feeling like you’re going to die soon. What happened was, when I was sleeping, my airway would close, causing me to not be able to breathe. Try as I might, I could not get any air. I would even vomit during this. Vomit was able to leave my mouth, but then my airway would close up again. Eventually the airway would open and I could breathe, and then I would have really bad acid reflux. My doctor gave me a inhaler, and that would help until I could get a sleep study referral, which took a long time to get.

I was diagnosed with sleep apnea in 2005. They told me at the sleep study that I would stop breathing for 25 seconds, then breathe for 35 seconds (or maybe it was the other way around) and this went on every minute. I don’t recall if they told me that I gasped for air or not during the sleep study, but I’m sure I did. Thankfully I didn’t vomit lol.

I received my BiPap machine in September 2005 and I used it faithfully every night until 2013 when I lost 70lbs. I was told that if I lost enough weight, I wouldn’t have sleep apnea anymore, and for the last 18 months I didn’t. The last week I’ve had to start using my machine again because I would wake up in the middle of the night with really bad acid reflux, which is always an indication that I need to use my BiPap machine.

One of the concerns I have is that if I don’t use my machine, I could die of a heart attack or stroke in my sleep. My mother was overweight and she died of a heart attack in her sleep. I don’t know if she had sleep apnea, but I do remember that she snored really loud, so I am only assuming that she did, and that was how she died. I was told that sleep apnea is genetic, and that the reason I got it was because a family member had it. My aunt in Palmdale moved to Texas and was also diagnosed with sleep apnea. She and my mother have the same father, but different mothers, so perhaps this was bestowed upon us by my grandfather, who also gave me the gift of male pattern baldness lol. I’m not complaining, I wouldn’t have it any other way, and every time I look at it in the mirror, I see him and it makes me smile because I loved him.

So I called Monitor Medical today and told them that I was using my machine again, and they made a note in my chart. I would really hate to leave this world and leave my partner because I was dumb enough to stop using my BiPap machine. It’s very irresponsible of me! I hate that I have to use it, but it keeps me alive. I would love to go back to losing weight, but it will happen if it is meant to be. In the meantime, I was continue to use my machine until I don’t have to use it again, but honestly, this is probably going to be with me until the day I die.

If you or someone you know has really bad snoring issues and they might gasp for air, tell them to get to their doctor for a referral for a sleep study. Sleep apnea is a matter of life and death, so when you see someone snoring, don’t laugh at them or ignore the problem, tell them to get to a doctor stat! You will thank me later.

Oh and by the way, the machine at the top, that is a stock photo, but it is the machine that I have. And in case you are wondering about CPAP vs BIPAP, the CPAP uses one pressure and the BiPAP uses two. These two pressures are called inhalation pressure (IPAP) and the exhalation pressure (EPAP). Everyone I have spoken to who has sleep apnea uses a CPAP and they tell me they’ve never even heard of BiPap before. So now you know.

Getting FAT

My partner and I went to the movies today. We saw Into the Woods, which by the way was a really good movie. I had to pee so bad by the time it ended, so I went to the restroom and well, took a piss lol. When I went to wash my hands, that’s when the realization hit me that I am right back to where I started 2 years ago when I started my diet when I lost 70lbs.

I had really bad sleep apnea back then, and when I had lost all that weight, I couldn’t use my BiPap machine anymore because the pressure was too high, and I actually didn’t even need to use it for the last 18 months. The CPAP company told me I could bring it in to have it readjusted to lower the pressure, but I had it in my head that I finally don’t need it anymore, so I never did anything with it.

The year that I had lost 70lbs, I stopped losing weight in July and I never could figure out why. I was doing everything the same, I was eating the same portions and the same calories, but the weight just stopped coming off. Actually, when I first began losing weight in January of that year, the weight was coming off really fast, but then gradually it went from say for example 5lbs a week down to 4lbs, then 3lbs, then 2lbs, then before you knew it I was only losing half a pound a week until there wasn’t any weight loss at all. The weight gradually started climbing back up and I could not understand why.

You know how when you plateau, then get so frustrated that you say screw it, I’m going to eat something bad. Then once a week you start eating junk, then twice a week, then 3 times, etc. Next thing you know, you are gaining the weight just as fast as you lost it. Sometimes you just need that “AHA” moment, and that was today.

After the movies, we went to the grocery store and my partner asked if I wanted some valentine’s candy, but that is the last thing I need right now.

I have the Dr. Phil 20/20 diet that I pre-ordered in December that arrived on my Nook last week. I have been meaning to read it, but with all the Minecraft and other video games taking up all of my time, I just haven’t been able to read it yet, but I think now is the best time to start reading.

So I guess what I am saying is, this is day 1… well, perhaps since the day is almost over, I will make it day 0, epiphany day, tomorrow can be day 1 lol.

I can always do something if I set my mind to it. I have the Noom app, the SparkPeople “The Spark” on my shoe to count my steps and cardio along with a SparkPeople workout DVD, bicycle trainer and the Dr. Phil diet book. I also have the PlayStation 4 which I will save the money for the camera so I can use it to dance with a dancing game lol. Hey, all I know is the cabbage patch, it would be awesome to know more than that, I mean, not that I really go out dancing.

I have been very lazy, but I need to discipline myself because I don’t want this sleep apnea and I don’t want this fat face again. I’m done with that, so wish me luck.