Sunday, December 21, 2008

How time flies...

when you are getting ready for Christmas. The preparations have left little time to do anything more with my blog apart from add the link to a website.
The website in question is the one I set up just over 18 months ago to raise money for the Samaritans here on the Costa Blanca. Please have a look if you haven't already done so.
We are off to the UK tomorrow to spend Christmas and New Year in Cornwall with Mike's family. We will be taking my mum to Bobbie and Chas's (sister and brother in law) and will visit her there in Newton Abbot on Boxing day.
Nita and Terry (our friends from Spain) are spending time with us in Cornwall and are staying for the New Year too.
I am hoping to be able to get about a little better by then, but it is a slow slow progress and I am looking forward to seeing the surgeon to see if I am progressing as expected or whether it has all been in vain - keep everything crossed for me please.

The card I've added is for all my friends and it wishes you all a
very Merry Christmas and a Peaceful New Year.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Just a couple of my cards that I have made this year. The baby card was an order for one of my regular customers and the butterfly was for Jenny - Jevon's partner.
Later on, I will also include a few of our photos that we have taken on our travels around Spain and Europe.

The Saga of my Knee Surgery

On October 17th 2008, I went into our local hospital for what I thought was going to be a straight forward arthroscopy on my knee. I thought it would be just like the others I have had done in the past and that after a 10 day recovery period, I would be up and running - ok walking fast - and benefiting from the procedure.
But this is Spain, so I shouldn't have been surprised when I was told that I had had a micro fracture procedure performed and that I would be 6 weeks non weight bearing on crutches.
This procedure involves making tiny holes/fractures in the femur and tibia and allowing the growth of fibro cartilage which in turn resumes the job of the cartilage that has been worn away.
To say I was amazed is a bit of an understatement. I had not been told that this was an option, in fact I had not been told anything at all. Even more shocking is the fact that I didn't even sign a consent form for any procedure at all!
Thank heavens it was only a short visit to Portugal that we had planned for 2 weeks later and not a once in a life time holiday!

Once home, I realised that my next appointment with the surgeon was in 3 months time, and only common sense could tell me what I should and should not do after the 6 weeks of using crutches were finished, and before seeing the surgeon again. Post operative information leaflets? No, of course not!
I was however sure that when I went to see my local GP, he would surely be able to tell me what I wanted to know and be able to recommend physiotherapy. Wrong again! He just told me to take it slowly and that the surgeon would tell me what to do when I saw him.
So I am now in that foggy area of not knowing what to do for the best. The information I can find on the internet suggests that this procedure can have a 4 - 6 months recovery time, and can take 12 - 18 months before I am on the baseball team again - I'm really looking forward to that! Also, some sites suggest that physiotherapy must be undertaken from virtually the day after the operation, others suggest that no physiotherapy is necessary.
So where does that leave me at the moment? Very frustrated that is for sure.
I am still using the crutches for long walks - my own prescribed physiotherapy - and I am going without them around the house, but hobbling badly at the moment. The knee feels strong enough to support my weight, but I can't extend my leg fully from the knee and I feel like there is 'something' stopping me from doing so.
I am very anxious at present as to whether all this has been of benefit. I am also extremely worried that it hasn't helped or improved my mobility from what it was like before.
If only they would forget that I am only 51, pretend that I am 55 and give me a new knee! Yes, I understand there are reasons why, but I am willing to take that risk. I make cards with a lady of 86 years who had a knee replacement over 40 years ago and has never looked back. Now who is to say that I couldn't have that luck too? Why do they have to think so pessimistically and think that I am bound to need a revision on the new joint? Don't they have any confidence in their work? Hasn't it improved at all over the last 40 years?
Ah well, lets just hope that the operation I have had, does what it says on the can, and that what ever I am doing just now is enough to make it work in the long term.
I will keep you updated.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Can't believe I'm doing this, I said I never would.

However, we have unfortunately lost our web site and so friends and family all over the world are asking for up dates other than our Christmas letter.
I am not sure how long this is going to take me to sort out, so if anyone would like to give any hints or tips, they would be more than welcome.