Thursday, March 29, 2007

The OSU experience

OK, so we weren't able to actually do the tests, but the people were really nice, which is a plus. Here's how it went:

Got there around 10:30, our appointment being at 10:45. We went to the Ross Heart Hospital, checked in w/ the outpatient (or "ambulatory") office (like a little cubicle), and then the receptionist took us down the hall to the Cardiac Lab. I was taken promptly (after having to fill out one of those god-awful forms with NEVER enough room for all my drugs). The techs had to put in a peripheral, which only took 2 tries, amazingly. One of the techs said they get a lot of cancer patients whose veins are shot from chemo, so they're good about getting the hard sticks, of which I definitely qualify.

Through the IV was injected some sort of radioactive material that would go to my heart so it would show up on X-rays and what not so they could get a nice look at the muscle itself and vein structure. I had to wait 45 minutes to an hour so it would absorb. And I had to drink a ton of water, like 2 1/2 bottles, in that time frame.

Now for most people I imagine this wouldn't be a problem (except for the bathroom thing). Well it is for me. I cannot drink a lot of water on an empty stomach. For some reason, it makes me nauseous, and it's also why I can't take pills w/ plain water (chalky ones, I mean. Capsules are fine.). So as I frantically tried to drink all this water (I did get about one bottle down), I was starting to feel nauseous. Plus my blood sugar was probably all out of whack since I'd been NPO for about 14 hours now.

When I went back for the heart scan (like the one chest scan that measures gas diffusion in your chest, but I forget what it's called now), I was nauseous, so the woman brought in a bag (they use bags and not basins. Those actually kind of work better.). I almost made it through the test...three minutes left, and all that water (plus bile) came back up. And since i was lying flat, it was an interesting process. So we have to do the test again, but there was no way it was getting done that day, because until I ate something substantial I would just throw up again. My blood sugar was 84, so yeah, it was low. The test is now rescheduled for next Thursday in the AM, so hopefully we can avoid the nausea problem. I hope so.

The place is HUGE. All the different hospitals seem like they're interconnected, and there are a lot of good signs, but it's still huge. And you've got the two extremes--the power walkers and the slooooooowwwwww people. There's almost never anyone in the middle.

Overall, not a bad experience at an "adult" hospital. Part II next week!!

Monday, March 26, 2007

Two good clinics in a row!!

Today I had another good clinic--huzzah! PFT, DLCO, NiOX numbers all satisfactory. We are starting Zithormax (I think as another way to keep the "pool clean", to use my prophylactic analogy), but it's only MWF (like the Bactrim...what is up with that? No idea. Oh well). And my next appt. isn't until the 19th of April. woohoo!

Tomorrow I go to OSU to have my heart checked out--apparently one of the EKGs we did when I was in house came back slightly abnormal, so we want it checked before my ear surgery (mya 23rd, baby). I'll let you know...

Friday, March 23, 2007

Is it worth it?

This is a question I asked a few times (OK, more than a few times) before my transplant. It's a question that can come up in the observation/pre-op process, too. You have to be willing to accept the transplant and that alll the crap you'll go through will, eventually, be worth it. And some people decide that it's not; they want to 'cash it in,' so to speak.

I can relate to that on some level, because I thought that a few times. When we first began talking about the transplant I was very reluctant, because I was still pretty functional. The problem is, you have to be listed before you really are non-functional, because they can't do the transplant if you're too sick.

And recently, with all the IV crap, I've thought "wow, why did I do this again?" But then I thought about it, and it'll be two years in July. In four months. And that's two years that I am about 99% sure I wouldn't have had if I haven't gotten the transplant. Some great things have happened in that time span, and even the ordinary things take on air of greatness when contrasted with the fact that you might not have been here to enjoy it otherwise.

What brought this to the foreground again? I was reading an article in the Arizona State University paper about two students w/ CF. One was a graduate, and one was a graduate student (I think). The one who had graduated also had a sister with CF, who died two years after a transplant. So she (the student) decided she didn't want to get one because everyone she knew that had one only lived about two years.

Now like I said above, I am sympathetic to this viewpoint. Well, to a point. Because let me tell you, when I started to get really sick, I was glad I was on that list. Knowing that your mortality is nigh makes you really wish it weren't, sometimes. I absolutely wanted that surgery. It was crazy.

And having almost hit the two year mark myself, I can't imagine not living these two years. They were good ones. And I don't know how this girl will feel if she gets worse and has said no to a transplant. Hopefully she'll be content with it. I hope so. Because you have to do what's right for you. But I wouldn't've been able to live with myself if I didn't go for it. I'm not really sure how people can turn down the second chance at life. Because before transplant, "my life was stolen from me...I [was] living a life I had no wish to live." (The Hours--great movie)

Like I said, everyone's different. But something about it just doesn't jive with me. But that's just me.


Yeah OK it's been awhile but! we DC'd all the drugs yesterday: vanco, the pill, the TOBI aerosol. PRAISE GOD. I am so excited. I took a real shower this morning and my hair ROCKS!!! :)

I'm feeling a lot better and hopefully my appointment on Monday will go swimmingly. I really don't want to have another setback. let's rock and roll!

Also, my ear surgery is tentatively scheduled for the week of Memorial Day weekend. At least I can celebrate my birthday and go to my cousin's First Communion bash without issues. So that's good.

Monday, March 19, 2007

tax breaks for organ donors?

Paying Big to Be A Donor
Gifting an Organ Can Be Costly. Would a Tax Break Cross a Moral Line?

By Jason Feifer
Special to The Washington Post
Tuesday, March 20, 2007; Page HE01

Before Michael Friedberg donated a kidney to his wife last year, he underwent multiple tests and battled the usual jitters. Then he took one other step: He refinanced the family's home.

Friedberg, 60, works as an auto mechanic in Bladensburg, and he's paid on commission. Lifting heavy car parts soon after the surgery would be impossible, so he wanted to prepare for a drought of income by reducing his mortgage payments. The drought came: After the operation, he was out of work for two months and lost about $14,000 in wages.

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Michael Friedberg of Bladensburg lost about $14,000 in wages last year while recuperating after he donated a kidney to his wife. Some states help compensate organ donors for expenses they incur, but such moves stir debate.
Michael Friedberg of Bladensburg lost about $14,000 in wages last year while recuperating after he donated a kidney to his wife. Some states help compensate organ donors for expenses they incur, but such moves stir debate. (By Lois Raimondo -- The Washington Post)
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"I didn't have a choice," he said. "It was that or my wife was going to die. The waiting list was, at that time, like eight years to get a kidney."

There were 6,196 living-organ donors last year, and Friedberg wasn't alone in his financial losses. The recipient's health insurance typically pays for the donor's medical costs such as the surgery and various pre- and post-op tests, but donors are on their own for the rest: travel expenses for the numerous trips to the hospital, nearby hotel rooms before and after procedures and wages lost while they recuperate.

Transplant advocates fear those costs are a deterrent to donating, and so have been searching for ways to compensate living donors, who can give kidneys, bone marrow and a few other body parts. But by doing so, they're inching up on a loaded question: Is it morally wrong to pay people for their organs -- or at least for some of the costs incurred in gifting them?

Virginia Gov. Timothy M. Kaine may weigh in on the question when he decides whether to sign a bill that would authorize an income tax deduction of as much as $5,000 for living donors to help cover uncompensated expenses.

The proposal is modeled after a $10,000 deduction that Wisconsin enacted in 2004. At least 10 other states have adopted similar incentives, and more are considering it.

Other reimbursement models have targeted donors' lost wages: The federal government and some states -- including Maryland and Virginia -- give their employees 30 paid days off if they donate an organ. Advocates have asked large companies to follow suit. But such measures, while appreciated by many donors, haven't solved their financial problems.

Ed Nicholson, of Eau Claire, Wis., was the first person to take advantage of his state's law. He lost about $3,200, mostly in missed wages, in donating a kidney to his brother; the tax law let him recoup a few hundred dollars. That's typical of the law's savings.

"It helps," Nicholson said, "but it doesn't go far enough."

Those who hoped a tax break might attract more donors have also been disappointed. Since the Wisconsin law passed, living-organ donations there have dropped from 199 in 2004 to 167 last year.

That's just the normal ebb and flow of organ donations, said the bill's sponsor, state Rep. Steve Wieckert. As the tax-break idea gains traction around the country, he predicts, organ donations will increase.

Who Pays -- and How

Some advocates see donor tax breaks as a matter of government responsibility.

"If a citizen is willing to step forward and . . . donate their own body, the least the state can do is pick up the expenses," said Idaho state Sen. Mike Burkett, the leading force behind a law in that state that allows living donors an income-tax credit. (A credit is more generous than a deduction: In Idaho's case, a donor can reduce his state tax bill by as much as $5,000 to compensate him for expenses associated with giving up an organ.)

The federal government is also preparing to provide compensation, through a four-year program that is expected to begin reimbursing donors later this year.

Donor reimbursements sidestep the law against trafficking in human organs, supporters say, because nobody stands to profit. Nor do they raise the kinds of ethical questions attached to buying and selling organs: They don't run the risk, for example, of turning retread organs into luxury items available only to the wealthy or of inducing murder because of a good organ resale price.

Still, while the medical community generally endorses reimbursement, health-care practitioners know they're on a slippery ethical slope, regardless of whether the practice increases organ donations and saves lives.

"I think that we have to be very careful about the debate, because I think the American public has shown that they're willing to donate but they have a lot of internal reservations about how to do it," said Cindy Speas, director of community affairs at the Washington Regional Transplant Consortium.

But economist David E. Harrington said the states' tax deductions are already tantamount to outright payment. If states were more direct about it, he said, more donations might follow.

Harrington, who teaches at Kenyon College in Ohio, compares the issue to the donation of cadavers to medical schools. The schools frequently pay for funerals or cremations after the cadavers have been used; in states where funeral costs are higher, more bodies are donated, Harrington said.

"Why don't you do the same thing with organ donation?" he said: Think of it as paying for the donor's eventual funeral expenses, rather than for his organ.

But other medical experts fear such gestures could upset the public. A report published last year by the Washington-based Institute of Medicine and co-authored by James DuBois, director of the Center for Health Care Ethics at St. Louis University, soundly rejected the idea of paying organ donors -- even for their funeral costs.

The report, however, didn't object to tax breaks for living donors. The difference, DuBois said, is that covering funeral costs can seem like a financial incentive, while tax breaks are generally considered an effort to remove a barrier to donation. It might be semantics, he said, but it makes a difference: "Will the public interpret [payment for funerals] as a sign of gratitude, or as a deceitful way of trying to buy organs?"

Making Do

In the meantime, living donors have had to find ways to cover their costs.

Some, like Hagerstown, Md., resident Lillian Ecton, said it's a matter of planning ahead. She knew for a year that she'd be donating a kidney to her brother, so she saved up as much vacation time as she could. In the end, she still had to forgo a week's pay last year, but she wasn't bothered by it.

D.C. resident Sahra Torres-Rivera donated a kidney to a friend in 2001 and took three weeks off to do it. She thought her company's medical leave policy would cover her surgery and recovery but learned that as a temporary employee she was not eligible.

Co-workers petitioned the company to reimburse her lost pay from an emergency fund into which they had contributed. "It was overwhelming, the support that I got from my co-workers," Torres-Rivera said.

Ultimately, the company decided to pay the wages itself.

And, of course, some have taken to the Internet. Luke Sams, a Seattle resident, last year launched a Web site through which he solicited -- and received -- $3,000 to cover his expenses in donating a kidney to a friend.

Although some donors interviewed for this article said the process had caused them financial hardship, none regretted their decision. A few weeks or months of lost wages doesn't compare to the potential loss of a loved one or friend, they said.

That's how Friedberg, the auto mechanic, sees it. His wife, Mary, is alive thanks to his kidney, and now he's hard at work, making up for the money he lost.

"The kidney's working good for her, and I've got good body parts," he said.

"I kid with her. I said, 'Listen, it's lasted me 60 years, so you should be able to use it for another 60.' " ?

Friday, March 16, 2007

For my Jewish constituency (if I have one)

Curious about donation? Here's an article that might clear up some things:

Nov. 15 marks the fourth anniversary of Mark Abrams’ heart transplant, and still he is reluctant to talk about it, especially in public.

“I rehash it every day in my life,” he says of an ordeal that has included 20 additional hospitalizations, a slew of medications and bouts of gout, early-onset osteoporosis, bleeding ulcers, and mini-strokes.

But then, he said, he thinks about the second chance he was given and of all the other patients who need transplants and might not get them, and he knows he must tell his story.

“The problem is the science is there, the technology is there, but what is not there are people” willing to be donors, said Abrams. “People are still afraid to even think about it. It’s not something they want to think about — it happens after their death.”

The Short Hills man spoke about his experience during High Holy Day services at Temple B’nai Abraham in Livingston, where he is a member. Last week, just after a weekend that was designated Organ Donor Sabbath by the New Jersey Organ and Tissue Sharing Network, he sat down with NJJN to talk about his own transplant and urge people to sign up as organ donors.

Abrams was 37 years old when he was diagnosed with dilated cardiomyopathy — a disease of the heart muscle. After that, he said, he sought opinions from cardiologists all over New York and New Jersey and ended up at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital, where they told him his heart was pumping inefficiently but not badly enough to put him on the transplant list. Instead he was put on medications until three years later, when his appendix burst. After that he spent five years in and out of hospitals before being admitted in August 2002 to the hospital to await a heart. One became available that November.

Now 49 years old, he still deals with the side effects of the heart disease and medicines. He also goes for weekly blood tests and still rarely drives his wife, Lisa, or his daughters — 12-year-old Samantha and 10-year-old Alexandra.

But he tends to focus on what he gained — especially the time he spends with his children. He missed out on some things — for a couple of years he couldn’t play catch in the backyard with his daughters or teach them how to ride their bikes. Now, on good days, he can play catch. And next month he will be there to celebrate Samantha’s becoming a bat mitzva.

“I try not to dwell on the past too much,” Abrams said. “I take it day by day and try to look to the future…. My wife’s been wonderful. If it wasn’t for her I wouldn’t be here today…. I can’t say I feel okay all the time, but the alternative is death, so I’m thrilled to wake up every day.”

In a sermon delivered on the eve of Yom Kippur, B’nai Abraham’s Rabbi Clifford Kulwin urged his congregation to spread the message of organ and tissue donation — and invited Abrams to the bima to tell his story. As part of this month’s Donor Sabbath, the NJ Sharing Network organized a conference call with Kulwin, the network’s president and chief executive officer Joe Roth, and a pastor. The interview will be available as a podcast on the network’s Web site.

Kulwin was moved to address the issue after hearing of Abrams’ experience and that of a woman awaiting a kidney transplant.

Kulwin was hospitalized while on vacation in Glens Falls, NY, for emergency gall bladder surgery. While recuperating, he walked around the recovery floor and noticed a woman sitting alone in a room. He walked in and talked to her. She was a dialysis patient, waiting for a kidney to become available for transplant.

It wasn’t Kulwin’s only transplant-related encounter.

“When I was getting my driver’s license renewed, I asked and learned some facts,” Kulwin said. “All of that I found profoundly moving. There are so many things in this world we can’t do anything about, and here’s something we can do. There’s no excuse not to.”

Rabbis across the denominational spectrum agree that, contrary to some stubborn myths, organ donation is permissible under Halacha, or rabbinic law, said Kulwin.

And yet not enough people are willing to volunteer. At any given moment, roughly 90,000 people nationally are waiting for an organ transplant, with a new name added to the list every 20 minutes. In New Jersey alone, roughly 3,000 people are on the list, according to the Sharing Network.

The donor Sabbath was intended to encourage people to sign donor cards.

“It’s an important way for our major religions to show support for organ donation,” said Myra Burks-Davis, spokeswoman for the Springfield-based Sharing Network. “We’re trying to raise awareness and get a multiethnic point of view.”

The New Jersey Organ and Tissue Sharing Network, with offices in Springfield, can be reached at 1-800-SHARE-NJ, 973-379-4535.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

UM scientists finding exciting things...

From the Ann Arbor News:

A University of Michigan study involving a type of lung stem cells suggests they may be able to help with lung disease and donated organ rejection.

That's significant because a large number of lung transplant patients experience chronic rejection of donated lungs, with rejection rates of about 60 percent during the first five years after transplantation.

The researchers studied mesenchymal stem cells, a type of progenitor cell that most commonly originates in the bone marrow.

They found that the MSCs in lung transplant patients are not derived from bone marrow, but rather that they reside - sometimes for many years - in the lungs, and that the cells have the capacity to differentiate into multiple connective tissue cell types.

One of the most telling findings was that, in cases where the transplant donor and recipient were not of the same sex, nearly all the MSCs, about 97 percent, originated in the donor, indicating that they were present in the tissue since the time of transplantation.

Tracy Davis, News staff reporter

Monday, March 12, 2007

A good Clinic

Today was a good clinic day: PFTs at 54%! (much better than the 40% they were last time!). Weight good, NiOx good (like an 8) and the DLCO was 38%, which was up 8 points from last time. So all is happy. I will go back next week to be checked again.

The only thing is my vanco level was high so we're going to an 18 hr. schedule for a bit. This creates some work problems. Oh well we'll just have to figure out something, but at least I can take a real bath tomorrow since we have to change the port anyway.

Also I am going to Riverside to have my hearing aids re-programmed on Thursday, thank God! So maybe everyone will stop sounding like Charlie Brown's teacher!!

I am smarter than a 5th grader!!

From that new Jeff Foxworthy show (h/t: Number 1 Happy St. )

Here are last night's questions:
- Who was the first President of the U.S. to be impeached?
- What month does Columbus Day fall?
- What's the name of the ship that the Pilgrims used to sail to America?
- Do polar bears eat penguins?
- If the area of a triangle is 16 sq ft and the base is 8 ft, how many ft is the height?
- What does R.E.M. stand for?

1) Andrew Johnson during Reconstruction
2) October
3) The Mayflower
4) No they don't even live in the same place; Polar Bears at the North Pole, Penguins at the South. If you've seen Happy Feet you know penguins have other things to worry about (like seals).
5) No idea. I hate math.
6) Rapid Eye Movement. It's when you're dreaming.

A good idea for donation?

From the Rocky Mountain Times (Denver):

The death last month of Rep. Charlie Norwood, R-Ga., may serve as a blessing for some of the estimated 70,000 kidney patients whose lives depend on receiving transplanted organs.

Norwood, who succumbed to lung cancer, was the lead sponsor of H.R. 710, a bill that will let living organ donors engage in "paired exchanges of human kidneys" without fear of prosecution.

The congressman, who waited six years for a lung transplant after his initial diagnosis in 1998, championed the bill in his final months. In his honor, H.R. 710 passed the House 422-0 Wednesday and it is expected to quickly move through the Senate.

As The Associated Press explains, "Paired donations allow a patient with a willing but biologically incompatible donor - such as a friend or family member - to match up with a similarly incompatible pair so both patients can get transplants." The United Network for Organ Sharing is but one organization that maintains databases of donors and transplant candidates.

By formally facilitating paired donations, the waiting list for kidneys could immediately shrink by 1,000 per year. This change alone could increase transplants by 14 percent, according to one study.

Paired donation is legal, but a number of hospitals have refused to participate. They've operated under the misguided notion (promoted by some ethicists) that donation should be an anonymous process, and that donors that find recipients and jump to the head of the line have received "valuable consideration," which is illegal. So the bill simply states that shared donation does not involve "valuable consideration" for an organ transplant.

The current interpretation literally is a killer: 60 percent of those on the waiting list at any time will die before they can find a recipient. It's also quite costly, as over time dialysis is much more expensive than a transplant. The Congressional Budget Office estimated that the bill would save taxpayers $470 million in spending on public health programs over the next 10 years.

Meantime, legislation is moving forward at the state Capitol that would simplify organ donation for Colorado residents at death.

House Bill 1266 would align state law with guidelines established by national transplant organizations so that, for example, people who want to make their organs available for transplant can link up with specific charities. It would also let those who do not wish to be donors more clearly make their intentions known.

These bills, federal and state, meld compassion with common sense. Both should quickly become law. Such personal acts of generosity should not be delayed by red tape or shrouded in legal ambiguity.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Spring! Spring! Spring!

Wow it's like 60 degrees here, and if anything can lift a girl's mood, that is it. :)
I went back to work for the first time (again...) on Friday. Since we're going to be busy busy this week I thought it would be a good idea to hit the desk on Friday, when we're slow, and clear as much chaos as possible, including the 100+ emails in my inbox. So now I feel ready to go for this week.

Appointment with Dr. A tomorrow at 7:30, as usual. I'll let you know how it goes but I certainly hope things go well. I am not getting up at 5:00 for nothing I hope.

Funny story: last night my friends and I went out to celebrate Branden and Andrea's birthdays (they're a day apart). Tiff came over around 4:30 and we were going to leave around 6:30. I had started the vanco IV early so that it would be done by the time we left, but it wasn't. It finished sometime on Main St. So I had the saline and heparin flushes with me and as Tiff was navigating the roads, I was disconnecting the ball and flushing the port. I had forgotten to bring a bag for the stuff, though, so I just left it on the seat.

Tiff locks the car and looks at me. "You know, if anyone looks in my car, they're going to think..."

I laughed. "Yeah, I should've brought a bag."

Such is life, eh?

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Bookshelf: Nineteen Minutes

Just finished Jodi Picoult's new book, Nineteen Minutes , about a high school shooting in New Hampshire. Alex Cormier is the local judge whose daughter, Josie, is one of the injured students; however, Alex is due to have the case appear on her docket. Additionally, Josie and the shooter, Peter Houghton, used to be friends, until peer pressure and the desire to be liked forced them apart.

I found it to be a good read, not as good as My Sister's Keeper , which is my favorite of all her books, but it's up there. The timeline goes back and forth from the present day to 17 years previous, when Peter and Josie's mothers (Alex and Lacy) first met. Two characters from previous Picoult books, Det. Patrick DuCharme ( Perfect Match ) and Jordan McAfee ( The Pact ) also show up in this book. I can't talk too much about the plot because I don't want to give too much away, but if you're interested in finding out more you can visit the author's website here.

Not a fast read, there's a lot of material to digest, and the ending is pretty cool. Totally blew me away. Overall one of her more enjoyable installments.

We're back!

Well OK, I feel like I'm back. I've been sleeping, eating, doing all that good stuff. I even went to choir last night (although my hearing aids--or "listening devices"--need a serious update after the amakacin did a number on my ears). I am feeling really good which is such a nice thing after three months of blah!!!

Going back to work tomorrow--huzzah! Who thought I'd be excited about work?? And Tiff and Andrea come home from IU this weekend for Spring Break so double huzzah. :) Branden's birthday dinner tomorrow night, too! So all this fun and excitement. Cannot wait. Will have to find a cake for Branden, though....hmmm. This could prove challenging.

Going back to the apt. tonight!

Tuesday, March 06, 2007


Finally home! Dad and I got here around 6:30 and then mom, dad, Bryan and I went to dinner at Longhorn. I also got to go to B&N afterwards (Aunt Patty sent me a gift card!) and got Nineteen Minutes, the Bob Woodward book, and An Ordinary Man, the autobiography of the man who inspired the movie Hotel Rwanda . So book reviews will be forthcoming...

So glad to be home!

Homeward Bound: The Incredible Journey!

It really is an incredible journey....

First I thought I'd get out of here at 4 b/c we do the vanco at 2. But no. We did vanco levels around 1:30 and had to wait to see if we wanted to adjust the dose. Well I guess we didn't. Then we had to wait for the dose to come up because we may do some here and then some at home. Then we decided (OK, The Powers That Be decided) to do the whole dose here. Starting at 4:10. Which means I don't get to leave for like another hour.


But at least Julie came by and we went over the discharge stuff so we are cool with that. And now we're doing the vanco every 12 hours (Q12), which is easier but also a pain w/ work in the AM. So I think we're going to do a 5 and 5 schedule so I can get to work at my normal start time of 7:30. This is where showering at night is actually a benefit. And I can do the TOBI at 6:00 am while I finish the vanco infusion. So this will all work out and hopefully I can go to work on Friday! I am planning on going to the Soup Supper and Choir at church tomorrow night which should be good. I want out of here....

Homeward bound...

Getting out of here probably around 4 after my last (well, in-house) vanco IV infusion. I will be going home on that (it's every 12 hours-Q12- which isn't bad, but it's two hours. Which is bad. Oh well we'll figure out something...), plus TOBI aerosol and levoquin oral med. Not too bad if you think about it. Not that i wouldn't love to not have the port accessed but at least today I got to take a bath and wash the skin around the port AND MY HAIR so that's good. And I am dressed and wearing make-up; these are all large accomplishments!

All in all I feel pretty good, which is a great thing after feeling like crap for so long, as we know. I am excited to get back to real world and hit Barnes and Noble for some book purchasing since I am behind. And get Peter Pan on DVD because I just love that movie.

And happy happys to: Branden, whose 25th birthday was yesterday, and Andrea, who turns 24 today!!

Monday, March 05, 2007

Getting sprung (again)

Looks like tomorrow I will be out of here, since solid food eating and the re-introduction of some oral meds is going well. I'm supposed to come back Monday for a follow-up which means I could be back to work as soon as Tuesday. Huzzah!

Sunday, March 04, 2007


I am eating a hamburger. Life is good.
Why all of the silverware was individually wrapped in plastic, I am not sure. But I have food in front of me. That is all that matters. :)

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Real food!

OK, really not real food. Jello. Broth. Juice. And usually all the same color...well, except for the broth, which has about a 10 minute lifespan of goodness before it's just not even worth eating. Oh well. Dad and Mom were very cruel and brought in Chipotle and Panera and ate it in front of me. This, as we know, is wrong and violats one of Emily's Hospital Rules. But oh well. Dad did try to make up for it by brining me chips that I may be able to eat tomorrow. May. We'll have to see what the numbers and Dr. A say, but if I can keep down these delectable meals then I should be able to try something actually worth eating, eh? That's what I thought. And I am so hungry. I've been planning menus for the game night party that I'm having soon and thinking about my birthday dinners (one with family, one with friends) and getting very hungry doing that. VERY hungry. So maybe I should stop. Oh well.
I am also off the constant fluids and we're going to sloooowly try to get oral meds back in the picture. Woohoo!

Did I say home?

Heh, spoke too soon. We're back!

But this time, it's round 7 or 8 or pancreatitis, which I haven't had in two years, so I guess that's a good thing-- 1) we know for sure what it is and 2) we know how to treat it. Basically I haven't eaten since Wednesday morning but tomorrow I might get to try broth and jello! Woohoo! And if that goes well then I can eat "real" (OK, low fat) food and then get out of here. Woohoo! And then I think we'll have fixed everything there is to fix around here. And I am eating Longhorn when I get out of here....shrimp, rice, bread...key lime pie.... :-D

So we'll see how the weekend goes. I will try to keep you posted.