Tuesday, June 02, 2009

MAY...How time flies!

Is May really over?! I can't believe it has been a month since my last post. I guess I've been busy! Getting rid of my crutches has given me so much freedom, so it's hard to keep me down for long. Yes...I got rid of my crutches on May 19 after almost 4 months. Walking in the big ugly black boot has been such a relief! It's been a huge adjustment, but a good one. My leg gets really sore and swollen by about 3:00 every afternoon, but if it means having my arms back, I'll take it! I actually look forward to going out and getting the mail, carrying a normal purse (not a backpack), pushing a shopping cart, and doing normal day to day stuff again. I go back to the Dr. on June 9, and I'll find out about starting PT. I still can't fit a tennis shoe on, so we can't start PT until that happens. As of right now, I swear I'll be wearing pants every day for the rest of my life, but hopefully my scars will start fading soon. I know I'm probably the only one who cares, but it bothers me nonetheless.

Over Memorial Day weekend, Ryan's parents came out to visit. We cooked steaks and chicken on the grill, and Bill helped Ryan finish the storage shed he built. I swear, it took him NO time to build it, and he had no plans to follow. It's not painted yet (because you KNOW I have to paint and decorate it), but I'm still pretty impressed with how it turned out. Now all of the lawn stuff can be out of our garage to make room for workout equipment. Woo Hoo!

I also decided that our front entry needed a little sprucing up, so I did a little bargain shopping and came up with this. I thought it turned out pretty cute...all for under $100...shelf and rug included. (I sound like an HGTV commercial or something.)

Last weekend we threw a baby shower at my house for Kendall and my soon-to-be niece, Hadley. It was so much fun! I took way too many pictures, but here are just a few...

Jack and Harley had to make sure they gave their Cousin Hadley a present.

Sunday, May 03, 2009

Mini Milestones

For the past two weeks, I feel like I've actually been making progress! I got word from the Dr. that my x-rays looked PERFECT. If it weren't for the torn ligament, I would be up walking right now. I've gradually started putting more and more weight on my leg while still using crutches. He told me that I could quit sleeping in the boot, and that I didn't have to wear it unless I'm going to be out and about, at work, climbing stairs...basically anywhere I could hurt myself or get kicked. What I also decided he must have meant (although he didn't actually say it) was that I could drive. The good news is that I will get to put the crutches away on May 19th. Woo hoo! The bad news is that I'll be walking in a walking boot for awhile after that, but hey...at least my hands will be free. I can't even imagine the freedom! After a few weeks of walking with the boot on, I will start rehab and transition into a tennis shoe. (No high heels yet, but I'm still holding out hope.) Speaking of shoes, I decided that I wanted to see if I could fit a shoe on my foot yet, and the answer was basically NO...with the exception of one pair of flip flops that worked! So, for the past 4 days I have lived in my black Teva flip flops that Harley chewed the back off of. I have probably worn them when I should've been wearing the ugly black boot, but the flip flops are so much more comfortable...and fashionable. Regardless, I feel like things are finally looking up.

In other news, Harleys' ACL surgery went well. She has bounced back so fast that I can't keep up with her. The vet said that a lot of dogs re-inujure their ACLs within the first month after surgery (which is where we are right now) because they feel no pain and think they are back to their old selves. Not the case. Trying to keep a rat terrier from jumping on the furniture is not the easiest thing I've ever done, so she has to spend more time in her crate than she'd like. Oh well...tough love. Isn't this the most pitiful picture of my baby? Her bandage is off now, her stitches are out, and her hair is finally starting to grow back. Bless her heart!

Also, since my last post, I had fun visitors one day a couple of weeks ago. Brittney & Quinn made the drive from McKinney to come see me. It had been WAY too long! Quinn was so sweet and brought Harley and me each a Thomas band-aid for our boo-boos. I think it really helped. :) Jack and Harley were not happy when their new friend had to leave. They pouted for the rest of the day. Even though the visit was too short, it was great to see them both!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Three Left Feet

Between Harley and me, we have 3 good left feet and not much else. Would you believe that my dog tore her ACL and is having surgery today?! I really can't imagine what else could go wrong this year, but I'm nervous to even think of the possibilities...so I won't. Last May, Jack had abdominal surgery, I've had 2 surgeries since January, and now Harley is having leg surgery. If I were Ryan I would seriously RUN (carefully though, don't fall!) as far from here as possible! Evidently Harley has had a "luxating patella" (a kneecap that moves in and out of place) her whole life, and over time it has torn her ACL. So, it wasn't like she had a major accident that caused it. She was literally sitting in my brother's lap one minute, hopped down, and then couldn't put weight on her back right leg. Since I can't drive or carry my dog for that matter, and Ryan is at work because we can't afford for him to take any more time off, Molly (Thank You!!!) came out and took us to the vet this morning. Jack was really happy that Molly came because she offered to bring him along for the ride, which he wouldn't have gotten if it had been me driving. :-) I'm waiting to hear from the vet, but I'm sure everything will be fine. She's my baby though, so I think it'll be harder on me than it is on her. I hate that she's going to have to be in a crate all week, and I can't do anything to help her. I guess we'll go through physical therapy together...she can be my workout buddy. Look at that precious face!!

On a totally different note, I was complaining about not having anything to do while stuck at home, so Brad and Kendall gave me a project to keep me busy this weekend. They wanted me to do something for my neice's room. She'll be here before we know it! They didn't give me really any guidelines...just that they wanted her name or intials somewhere in the room. I decided to do her name and initials, and I'm pretty happy with the way they turned out. Some of the patterns match her paisley/striped/polka dotted bedding, so I think it will look really cute all together. Anyway...here's what I came up with. The "L" is my favorite.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

I Got the Boot.

I don't have much to update, but I did get my stitches out and my cast off at my appointment last Thursday. I got a boot (one of the "very cool" Darth Vader looking robot boots), but I still can't put any weight on my leg. My doctor said that maybe at my appointment in 2 1/2 weeks I will be able to start putting very little weight on my leg while still using crutches. I can't wait to see what it feels like to walk again!! The boot is nice because I can take it off during the day and let my leg feel the air, which it hasn't in over 2 months. It's a very strange feeling, but it's getting more comfortable every day. The bad thing about the boot is that I can't drive with it on, so I'm back to being homebound during most of the day. Also, most of my pants don't fit over it and it's such a pain (and exhausting!) to go shopping, so my wardrobe is very limited! It's all a sign of progress though, so I'm happy about that. Other than sitting here and watching my leg heal, I've been working some from home, watching TV, working crossword puzzles, reading magazines, messing around on the computer, and then starting the cycle all over again. There's not much to do in a recliner. Any suggestions???

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Life is Good.

Everything went great with the surgery. I don't remember a thing except waking up in recovery with a sore throat. Then I fell asleep in a recliner, then I fell asleep in the car on the way home, then I fell asleep in my bed for the rest of the afternoon, then I slept like a baby all last night in between taking my pain pills. I'm back in a hard cast, which I wasn't expecting, but is actually a good thing. My ankle can't move at all, so it's bound to heal correctly this time! I go back to the Dr. next Thursday to get stitches out and find out the next step. I'm still non-weight bearing for a few more weeks. I would write more, but my medicine is REALLY good this time around...higher dosage and I get to take it more frequently. I'm feeling NO pain right now, and there's no telling what I'll type next. :-) Thanks for all the prayers and encouraging words!!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Take Two

Just wanted to ask for prayer Wednesday morning at 10:30 for surgery #2. I'm hoping it won't be as extensive as the first time around (only one incision and no broken bones anymore), but I'm prepared to be uncomfortable for at least a few days afterwards. They'll be taking out one temporary screw, moving my ankle about 1/2 inch, and putting in two permanent screws to hold it in place. I'm really just hoping and praying that this will make a big difference in how quickly I'm able to start walking again. The plan right now is that I'll go home sometime that afternoon, so I won't be staying in the hospital. YAY! Anyway, I just wanted to fill you in on the latest. I'll post an update as soon as I'm not high on drugs. :)

Thursday, March 12, 2009

The world breaks everyone, and afterward, some are strong at the broken places. -Ernest Hemingway

I really hope that quote is true after this whole ordeal is finished. I didn't get very good news at the doctor today, so I'm trying to stay upbeat and see the silver lining...that maybe this is all going to make me stronger in the long run. Today marks exactly 6 weeks from my surgery, so I went to the doctor hoping to get my cast off, set a date to get my screw out, and hopefully start putting some weight on my leg. I got my x-rays first, and the 2 bones have healed well. You could hardly see where they had been broken, so that was a good sign. The problem was that the ligament I tore, which is a major ligament, is not letting my ankle go back into the right place. There's about a 4mm gap, which sounds tiny, but it's actually the difference between walking comfortably or uncomfortably for the rest of my life. After months, or maybe even a few years, the cartilage in that gap will wear down, causing joint pain and arthritis.

All of that to say, I have to have a second surgery to move my ankle about a 1/2 inch. They are going to take my temporary screw out and replace it with two permanent screws that will put my ankle in the exact right place for it to heal. I already have 2 screws on the inside of my ankle and a plate on the outside bone. These new screws will go from my fibula to my tibia, for you medically-brained people out there. My doctor wants to do the surgery within the next 2-3 weeks, so hopefully I'll get the date soon and at least be prepared for it. He wants to have another orthopedist in the surgery to "hold things in place" during the procedure, so he's waiting to consult with his partner on it. The best news of all is that it will most likely be outpatient, which would be AMAZING considering how horribly I handle staying in the hospital...See previous posts! :-)

Anyway, that catches you up on the status of my stupid leg. What a mess! I still can't believe I've done this to myself!! I think today marked the maddest I've been about it. It's just such an inconvenience and such a long healing process, so I'm really trying to practice patience through it all. I have never valued WALKING so much in my life, and I will definitely never take it for granted again. Thanks for all the prayers and for everyone who has called or emailed to check on me these past few weeks. I love & appreciate you all so much!!

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Weekend Getaway

I think leaving the boredom in Burleson was good medicine for me this weekend! It was great to get out of the "comfort" of the recliner I've grown so accustomed to and head west to Abilene for a few days. Ryan had a long weekend, so we left on Thursday afternoon and came home Sunday. Part of the reason (well, most of the reason) we went was for Sigma Alpha alumni weekend. Pledge Class 11 was celebrating their 10 year reunion, and even though I'm technically Pledge Class 12 (because I pledged my sophomore year) , they were sweet enough to include some "friends" into their weekend plans. Unfortunately, because of my leg, I couldn't spend all night with them, but it was definitely fun to catch up over dinner and for the first portion of the pledging night. There was such a huge group of alumni that came back this year, so it was really fun!

Pledge Class 11 and Friends!

Michelle (fellow Pled Class 12-er), me, and Jenn

It's really fun that Kendall, her sister Kylie, and I have Sigma Alpha in common. While we were doing our Sigma Alpha stuff, Brad and Ryan were off with their Theta brothers...it's all in the family!!

Sisters-in-law: Lacy & Shea, Kendall & me

Thanks, Julie, for being my "cheauffeur" for the night!

Other than alumni weekend stuff, we just relaxed at my parents' house and spent some time with my grandparents too. One of the highlights of the weekend was that I got some "retail therapy" when my mom pushed me around Hobby Lobby in a wheelchair. It was wonderful!
We had to get back in time for my doctor's appointment on Monday, which wound up being a big waste of time. I was supposed to get x-rays done, but my Dr. changed his mind. I'm only at the 4 1/2 week point, which usually won't show much healing, so I'm going back on the 12th. Everyone was really impressed with my cool cast though, so I guess it was worth it to show off my mom's handiwork. I was so frustrated leaving the Dr. because I had my hopes up for possibly getting my cast off. I decided that to make myself feel better I would attempt to drive. That has been the most frustrating part of all this, so I was determined to make it work!! Since my pain isn't too bad and I'm able to move my toes more, I was able to push the accelerator with my hurt leg, and brake with my left. I think if I stick to back roads and avoid the highway I'll be fine. Ah, the freedom!!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Let the bidding begin...

I have the most fabulous work of art...on my leg! My mom spent about 7 hours yesterday making my cast 100% one of a kind. Can you believe this?! For those of you who ever sat by me in church or school, this explains my knack for doodling.

I'm already thinking of ways to display it once it's no longer a fixture on my leg. NO ONE is signing this baby except the artist!

When Ryan had to go out of town for a few days, I only had to beg a little bit for my mom to come help me out this weekend. I'm pretty self sufficient except for carrying things. I'll get into the kitchen, pour myself a drink, and realize that I can't go sit on the couch to drink it because I can't carry it in there. It's frustrating, but it's teaching me patience. And it's teaching me how to ask for help...I'm used to being pretty independent. I also enjoy when Harley wakes me up at 6 a.m. to go outside, and I have to crutch my way through the living room in the dark. That will teach me to leave a lamp on. As klutzy as I am, I'm shocked I haven't fallen on my crutches already. That's all I need...ANOTHER accident! :-)
Well, it's off to work this week...at least I'm gonna try some short days. I'm still not able to drive, which has to be the most frustrating part of all of this. I'm having to depend on others for my transportation, and I don't exactly live close to anything. We'll see how it goes!

Monday, February 09, 2009


People have asked, so I'll fill you in on the latest...

I went to the doctor today and got my soft cast taken off. I didn't include pictures of that process for a good reason. I took one look at my leg and decided that I would lay down and let Ryan look for the rest of the time. It was so gross I nearly fainted. The gauze on my leg was the same gauze that has been on since my surgery 12 days ago, so let's just say the smell was interesting. I got my stitches out, which was NOT fun at all, but I'm glad they're out now. It's definitely a relief to have my stitches out and my leg cleaned up. They put me in a hard cast for the next 3 weeks, and I still can't put any weight on my leg during that time. I was really hoping for some type of cast that would let me walk, but that's okay. That also means that I still can't drive. UGH!! I think that's the most annoying part of all of this. I'll post pictures of my cast soon, but I'm not finished with it. I opted for white so that I can get creative and make it my own. Gotta make the most of it! :)

Anyway, when I go back to the Dr. in 3 weeks, they will x-ray my leg (through my cast) to see if it is healing okay. Then, if it IS healing okay, they will cut this cast off and put me in some other kind of cast for a couple more weeks...I think he said a brace of some sort. After those 2 weeks, I will have to go back to the hospital for outpatient surgery to get one of the screws taken out. 2 of the screws and the plate in my leg can stay, but the screw holding my ligaments together has the potential to break and irritate my leg, so they want to take it out. Bummer! That means I will be in YET ANOTHER cast after that surgery. At least it won't be as extensive as the first surgery, and it will be a step toward progress. At this point I will have been off my leg for 6-8 weeks. After all of that is behind me, THEN I will start physical therapy. It's a long road ahead, but I'm checking the days off one by one.

The highlight of my day was when Ryan took me to get ice cream because I was such a good girl at the doctor! Coffee ice cream with hot fudge mixed in...my favorite!!

Thursday, February 05, 2009

Part 3: Life at Home

My brother went by my Grandma's house on his way home from work on Friday to borrow a few things that helped her after her hip surgery. Seriously, did I ever think I'd be sharing surgical gear (ie. a walker, a potty chair, a pants puller-upper, an extra long shoe horn, and many other cool gadgets) with my Grandma?! How humiliating! But thank goodness she had it all, or I would've spent way too much money. When I left the hospital on Friday, I was already feeling better, but on Saturday morning when my mom washed my hair and I actually put on makeup, I felt like a brand new person! My dad left to go home on Saturday, but not until he had cleaned my entire house top to bottom. I am SO grateful he did that because I am too OCD to live with a messy house, but I sure couldn't do anything about it. My mom reorganized things to make my clothes more accessible. And she cleaned out my fridge to make room for all of the food people would be bringing. I could not have gotten through this without my parents. They were amazing! Brad & Kendall were also a huge help. They kept me from freaking out before the surgery, and they kept me company afterwards. I'm so thankful to have them. On Sunday evening, during the Super Bowl, Ryan finally got home. Praise the Lord! I was so excited to see him, but I couldn't exactly run up and hug him the way I wanted to. Since my folks left, he picked right up where they left off and has done a great job of playing "nurse" to me. I hate feeling helpless, but I'm having to get used to it.

My leg is supposed to be elevated at least 80% of my day, so I use the other 20% to get ready in the mornings and get up and "crutch" around to keep my sanity. I can't even rest my foot on the ground without it hurting, so I'm really having to put all klutziness (is that a word?) aside. Every day seems to be progress, but it's amazing how many adaptations I'm having to make. When I first got home, my mom and dad got me settled into a recliner in the living room, and I thought I'd never get out. By the time Ryan got home on Sunday evening, I was already getting more independent. Now, I can get into the recliner by myself, but I just need some help getting out. I also thought I wouldn't be able to sleep in my own bed because it's so tall, but now I can get in and out of bed all by myself. It's also nice that I don't have to have anyone accompany me to the restroom... privacy is one of life's little joys that I'll never take for granted again. I'm occasionally humbled when I can't get my pants on, or I drop something I can't pick up, and we usually just die laughing at how awkward I am. It's so ridiculous to need help for such little tasks!! I'm still at Ryan's mercy to wash my hair, and I have to say he may just have a future in hairstyling. Between the kitchen sink sprayer, a stool, another chair to prop my leg up on, and lots of towels for the water we manage to get everywhere, we've mastered the art of Hairwashing 101. I'm sure it's a hilarious sight to see.

Anyway, I also just have to say thanks to everyone for checking in on me, whether it's been by paying a visit, bringing food, calling, sending cards, or just commenting on this blog. It means a lot to know how many people are praying for my recovery. I go to the Dr. this coming Monday, and I'm praying for good news...and maybe some type of walking cast?!? I'm still out of work for at least another week, but I'm doing some small things from home just to keep busy and feel productive. Thank goodness for a flexible job and wonderful co-workers who are picking up my slack. I'm very, very blessed.

Monday, February 02, 2009

Part 2

After I came out of recovery, I was taken upstairs to a really nice room with a decent view and a plasma TV. I was also given a morphine drip which I could pump every 6 minutes. Woo Hoo!!! Or so I thought...evidently morphine doesn't do anything to help my pain but it does make me really nauseated and dizzy. The first night was awful. I didn't get to even try to sleep until 4:30am because my pulse monitor and oxygen machine were beeping every 10 seconds because my heart rate was out of control. My mom was staying with me, and she said it read 160 beats per minute at one point. Definitely not normal for a healthy heart rate. I was just already overwhelmed, and when the machines beeped it stressed me out even more. Then nurses would come in threatening to stick me with things, which also stressed me out. I couldn't relax.

After a horrible night of sleep, the doctor came in first thing to tell me that I would NOT be going home that day even though he had told me I would. (SO SAD!) He wanted to keep me another day because the surgery had been so extensive and it had taken so much longer. He was also concerned about my high heart rate, but I told him I just needed to go home and my heart would be fine. I'm sure he thought I was an idiot, but I knew best! I had a day full of visitors, nurses in & out, flowers, horrible food (which I couldn't eat anyway), physical therapy people smothering me and trying to get me up on crutches, and a lot more pain. I just couldn't get a handle on the pain, but all of my sweet family & friends who called and stopped by really made my day fly by and kept my mind off the pain as much as possible. Thank you ALL!!! I had begged my day nurses to talk to my doctor about upping my pain pill dosage so that I could pump less of the morphine, but they didn't seem too interested. When my wonderful night nurse Melissa came, she called my doctor right away to get the OK and told me that I could take my pain pills by mouth every 3-4 hours instead of every 6. That evening, I decided to try to depend mostly on my pain pills and wean myself off of the morphine, and that did the trick. I was still in pain, but at least my heart rate was in check, my machines weren't beeping, and I was getting an appetite again. It also meant that if I wasn't dependant on my morphine drip I had a chance of going home! Forgive the nastiness of this picture. I looked horrible the whole time I was there, and unfortunately I felt even worse than I looked. I hate that people saw me like this!
My nurse during the last day was wonderful. Her son goes to Hardin-Simmons, so we all made quick friends and she took extra special care of me. Sure enough, the bone specialist finally came in and told me that he was okay with releasing me, but that he wanted the internal medicine doctor to come give me his release also. UGH. I just wanted OUT! The internal medicine doctor showed up and decided that he wanted to run tests on my thyroid, which meant more BLOODWORK. The dreaded mention of the word sent my heart rate from normal to 155 bpm in 3 seconds. Seriously, don't these people just believe me when I say I have severe hospital anxiety!?!? I waited another 2 hours and finally he came in and said, "Everything looks good, you were right, you can go." YAY!!! So, my parents packed up my things and we headed home. I'm sure we looked hilarious loading me into their car because I had to ride in the back as "cargo" because I couldn't stretch out anywhere else. I felt every bump in the road on the 30 minute drive home, which was less than comfortable, but once I sat down in my own living room, I felt like a new woman!
Part 3: Life at Home...coming soon.

Sunday, February 01, 2009

My Week of Firsts: Part 1

Am I dreaming?! I really keep hoping that the past 5 days have all been a bad dream, but I'm beginning to think this is real.

Let me start from the beginning...
On Tuesday night, the Dallas/FW area started getting some inclement weather. My first sign that things were freezing was when I went outside at about 6:00pm to get my mail, and slipped and fell in front of my mailbox. I lauged about it because I felt so stupid, and I'm sure I looked ridiculous. No harm done...just a bruise and a little embarrassment.
Wednesday was a different story. I stayed in most of the day because the ice had gotten really bad. Fort Worth schools were closed, so I figured I was home for the day. But, our church (where I also work) decided to go ahead and have Wednesday evening activities because most of the ice was melting by the afternoon. With the exception of overpasses, my drive should've been fine, so I decided to go up to church via back roads at about 2:00. I had parked my car in the garage the night before (which I hardly ever do) because I didn't want to have to scrape ice off of it on Wednesday. Since I don't usually park in the garage, I don't even have a garage door opener in my car. So I backed my car out on my VERY icy driveway. I guess my driveway has a lot more shade than most on my street because everyone else's ice was melting already. Since I don't have a garage door opener in my car, I got out and went back to close the garage door. As I was walking BACK to my car on my driveway, it happened...

I fell SO hard and fast I couldn't really remember what I did except that it hurt worse than anything I've ever felt. I know that my leg slipped out to the right, and I remember hitting the inside of my right ankle on the ice/driveway when I fell. Immediately I knew something was seriously wrong, but I needed to catch my breath and think a for a minute. I know this sounds gross, but I could tell that everything in my lower right leg was disconnected. It was throbbing mixed with knife sharp pains shooting up my leg. UGH!! Praise the Lord my neighbor was just getting in her car to leave, so she saw the whole thing happen and was able to help me. If she hadn't been outside, I don't know what I would've done because I couldn't move my right leg at all, and my cell phone was in my car already. She went and got her daughter and another neighbor, and with their help and my office-roller chair they were able to get me inside to my couch. I was really bummed because Ryan was out in the Gulf, as usual, and I had no way to get a hold of him. I sent him a text, but he was underwater at the time, so I was going to have to do this without him. I also called my boss/music minister/friend, Andy, to let him know that on second thought, NO, I would not be coming to church that night. I think he understood. I called my sister-in-law, Kendall, right away because she was home from school due to the inclement weather day. She only lives a couple of minutes away, so she came right over and we decided I definitely needed an x-ray and decided which hospital to go to. I was nervous for her to be driving because some of the roads were still icy and she's pregnant with my neice or nephew! So, we decided we could make it to Harris Southwest in Fort Worth without having to deal with any highways. I know this is gross, but here is a view of my ankle at home on my couch. Not too bad, huh?

Let me take a moment to tell you that I have NEVER been to the ER, I have NEVER had an IV, I pass out at the mention of the word "bloodwork", I have never been put under anesthesia, and I even have to hide my eyes during the "cutting people open" parts of Grey's Anatomy. I get light headed when I go visit other people in the hospital! So I was completely TERRIFIED. I was praying that I had a clean break, that they would put me in a boot or a cast and send me on my way. But, things didn't turn out so well. I got bumped up the priority list in the ER, so I got in really quickly which was a miracle. The first doctor took one look at it and knew it was broken and sent me in for x-rays. On a scale of 1-10, my pain had been at a 10+ up until this point. It was almost unbearable. Anyway, I got a Vicodin and began to feel a little more comfortable (and drunk!). My pain subsided to about a 9.5. That is, until the nurse came in to set my foot which is something I hope I never have to feel again. Let me also say that I hadn't cried once by this point. I think I was in so much pain and shock that crying didn't even cross my mind! Kendall had been with me this whole time, and I am so thankful that she was there. She is so calm and reassuring, and really helped me keep from freaking out. My brother had just arrived with some food because we were all starving, but right as I was about to eat my Chick-fil-A the nurse stuck her head in and said, "Don't eat or drink anything in case we have to do surgery."
SURGERY?!? I couldn't stand the thought of being cut on, but before I knew it, the bone specialist had come in to tell me what had happened. I had broken both bones in my lower right leg, the tibia and fibula, and had seriously damaged/torn/pulled all the ligaments in between. They could actually get me into surgery within the next 45 minutes (which was amazing!) and it was definitely not something I could avoid. Looking back, I think it was a blessing that I didn't have much time to stress about it. It all happened so fast, and that's what I needed. I got my IV (my first one ever) and it didn't kill me. I might have squeezed my brother's hand off, but he'll be okay. And I tried my best to text a few people to let them know what was going on. I was so high on Vicodin that I couldn't remember how to do it, so that is why some people heard and some people didn't. I apologize if I didn't make any sense that night. My brother did a great job talking to people and trying to communicate for me that night, so thanks Brad. By this time my parents were already on their way from Abilene, and I had a few familiar faces to send me off to surgery. It meant a lot to know that people were already praying for me. For some reason, I remember giving Jim Kiser a high five as they wheeled me back to the OR, and I told Andy to be sure to wipe the dogs' paws off with the towel by the back door when he went to let them out. Seriously, mud on my floor was important right then?!Drugs do weird things to people.

Next thing I knew, I woke up in recovery, and my parents were coming in. Everything had gone fine, but the surgery had taken 3 hours, which was twice as long as they thought it would. I have a plate on the outside/fibula, 2 screws on the tibia/inside, and another screw holding together the ligaments I tore and/or pulled in between the two bones. That's a lot of hardware. I'll follow up with my stay in the hospital in Part 2, coming soon...

Tuesday, January 27, 2009


So...I've been tagged by my lifelong BFF, Brittney, and I decided to accept the challenge...to TELL THE TRUTH and give you 10 facts about me that you probably didn't know before.

The rules are as follows...

1) Choose a minimum of 7 blogs that you find brilliant in content or design.
2) Show the 7 winners names and links on your blog, and leave a comment informing them that they were tagged.
3) List at least 10 honest things about yourself.

I was tagged to do something similar to this in August 2007, so I'm trying not to repeat these 8 things I already posted, which makes this extra HARD! Anyway, here are my 10 things...act surprised even if you're not.


1. I was in a wreck my senior year of college that was bad enough for my life to flash before my eyes. I can remember my Jeep flipping end over end 2 1/2 times on the Winters Freeway in Abilene, and the whole time it was like slow motion. I actually had time to think to myself, "Wow...this is what flipping a car feels like...I wonder if this is how I'll die...I hope this doesn't hurt..." CRAZY! I had gotten engaged a month or so before, and the only "injury" I had was that my new diamond ring cut my pinkie. When I was trying to figure out how to get out of my car because it was upside down, 3 construction worker type guys in white t-shirts, driving an old Chevy truck, came and pulled me out the back window and I never saw them again. This picture isn't of my car, but it's as close as I could find to what mine looked like...my wreck happened before I had a digital camera!

2. I would love to take a vacation by myself. I don't know why I would want to, but I think I would enjoy it! Now, I can't muster up the courage to go to a movie alone, or to sit alone at a restaurant, but for some reason I have a fantasy of taking off and driving to Maine or someplace like that. So, if I go AWOL, you'll know where I am.

3. I suffer from shoe-aholicism. I'm MUCH better than I used to be, but my guilty pleasure is still shoes. When Ryan was deployed the first time, I bought close to 50 pair of shoes in a 6 month period. I then sold half of them in a garage sale or gave them to friends because I realized I didn't really even like them that much and I felt guilty. I just loved buying them. I would actually tell myself that I could NOT buy any shoes when I'd go out shopping, but I would miraculously come home with 3 pair. I see now that it was a bigger problem at the time than I realized, but I guess being addicted to shoes in order to cope with Ryan being gone was better than being addicted to something that would've hurt me. At least this only hurt our bank account. Oops! (But aren't these to die for?!)
4. I was pulled over 9 times before I ever got a ticket. And one of those times included a female cop, which I heard was impossible to get out of! I think I only cried 3 of those times, so that's pretty impressive I guess. When I finally did get a ticket, I was going 20 over in a school zone, so it was a whopper.

5. I went 2 years without reading a single book. I feel dumber for just having said that. I really hated to read for the longest time, but just recently I've found a love for it, and I can't stop! Whether you are a sports fan or not, you must read Josh Hamilton's biography "Beyond Belief". It is incredible.

6. Speaking of sports, I have turned into such a guy about sports. I faithfully keep up with NFL & college football, major league baseball, golf, and even a little basketball. The sports page is one of the first things I check online everyday. I really want to play fantasy football next season, but I'm intimidated by it being such a male-dominated past time.

7. My typical bedtime, when Ryan is gone, is 2:00 am. I have always been a night owl, and I used to try to fight it, but now I've learned to embrace it. I get so much accomplished in the wee hours of the morning. When I write music, what could take me a week of afternoons to do, only takes me about 4 hours at night. It's when I'm the most creative and productive!

8. I really really really hate roller coasters. I love heights, and getting dizzy, and going fast though...I could do those kinds of rides forever. I just can't stand any ride that goes "tick-tick-tick-tick" as you slowly climb this huge hill only to drop down the other side and lose your lunch. I once got sick (yes, actually "got sick") in LINE for the Texas Giant just by watching the people go down the big drop. It was so embarrassing. And I had waited in line for 2 hours by that point.

9. I go through Sonic every morning before work and sometimes on weekends and get a large Diet Cherry Coke (I guess that actually totals about 3 regular drinks, huh?) Anyway, that's the only Coke I drink all day. I used to have a constant supply, then cut down to 2, and have just achieved the impossible...one a day. That means that in a typical month, I spend about $40 on Sonic drinks. Hmmm...maybe I should save that and buy a pair of shoes! Just kidding.
10. Once cell phones became every one's main means of communication, we all quit memorizing phone numbers, right? Not me. I still like to type numbers in myself just to see if I can remember them. I still have everyone saved in my cute pink phone just in case I forget, but I prefer to keep my numbers stored in my head.

Now it's your turn...and you better all do it!
Kelby-because I know I can count on you to say something either hilarious or inappropriate--both of which are things I love about you!
Robin-for the same reason I tagged Kelby...plus I can show off my godson.
Jenn-because you're a fairly new blogger and everyone needs to check out how precious your new daughter is.
Mize Family-because I'm always amazed at how your family of 6 keeps it together!
Thompson-because I think I know a lot about you and I want you to see if you can surprise me.
Kristy-because you're random like me, and I think you'll have funny stuff to say.
Melodie-because your blog tells such an amazing story over the past year.

Monday, January 05, 2009

Fun-filled Holidays

Our Christmas break was packed full this year, but so much fun. We got to spend time with just about all of our family at some point or another, and had a little time to relax too. Ryan got to be home the whole time, so that made the holidays even better.

We started off the holidays by getting together with some college friends for dinner. Our friends Jeff& Kristy Skains flew in from California, so it was a great reason to make plans! It was at a college Christmas party at my house last year that I met their first daughter, Aubrey, and they let me announce that they were pregnant with their second, Adalyn, so I got to meet her this time around!

On Tuesday of Christmas week, my parents came into town and we celebrated with my Grandma by going to her favorite Mexican food restaurant. This picture doesn't even do it justice, but you can kindof tell how ridiculously gawdy their Christmas decorations are. What's funny is that they keep them up all year, so if you ever need to get into the Christmas spirit in August, go to Campo Verde in Arlington.

On Christmas Eve, I had to play for the service at our church, so my parents graciously gave up going to the Christmas Eve service in Abilene that they never miss. It was fun to have everyone together, and I got to play hostess, which I love. One of my favorite moments during the Christmas season is singing "Silent Night" at the candlelight service. Can't beat it.

Christmas day was really relaxing. We held off on opening presents until Brad & Kendall could come over, so we had a late lunch that I REALLY regret not taking pictures of. I think it could've been pictured on Food Network if I do say so myself. Our menu consisted of Rosemary Apricot Glazed Roast Chicken, Asparagus Amandine, Baked Sweet Potatoes, Squash Corn Casserole, Rolls, Fruit Salad, Chocolate Layered Dessert (aka: "Better Than Sex Pie"), and Strawberry Pretzel Salad. SO GOOD!! And, I think it was the first meal that I managed to pull off without any stress or major disasters, so all in all, it was a success. Once Brad & Kendall came over, we did our stockings, which always starts with Jack going absolutely nuts. He has been waiting since November to tear into that stocking, so I'm glad it was worth it.

Harley was scared of Christmas as usual, and let Jack play with everything in her stocking while she took yet another nap.

Brad was sitting by me, unfortunately for him, so I got plenty of pictures of him acting like a dork. Sorry, Brad. If you didn't catch it, those are UT pacifiers he's holding up because my little brother is going to be a DAD in July!

I was so excited for Ryan to open this gift because I knew he would be surprised. It's a panoramic picture of Texas Stadium, which may not mean much to most people, but it means a lot to a die hard Cowboys fan like Ryan. The picture is of Aikman's last game in 2000, and it's out of print now, so I was thrilled to find it. And, it'll be cool to tell our kids that their Dad played football on that field during high school.

After my family left, Ryan and I drove to East Texas to see his family. We had dinner at his grandparents' house on Friday night, hung out with his uncle on Saturday, went to visit his sister's family on Saturday night, then went to Athens to see his other grandmother and aunt on Sunday. WHEW!! It was a whirlwind, but something about East Texas is relaxing, so it didn't seem that busy. Jack LOVES the freedom he gets when we go to the country because he can run forever without a leash. Doesn't he look happy?!?

Here's Ryan with his precious Mama Lee. She is maybe the sweetest person I know. She's about to turn 90 and is recovering from her second broken hip, but she still walks down to the lake with us like a champ.

This is our land on Lake Athens where we dream about the lake house we'll eventually have one day. If I ever need to de-stress, that's the place to do it.

When we got back from East Texas we still hadn't had Christmas with Ryan's parents, so we headed out that way on Monday. Why didn't we take any pictures?!

After all of our traveling, we enjoyed New Year's Eve with some neighborhood friends, and spent New Year's Day taking down Christmas decorations and relaxing. I finished up the holidays with a trip to Abilene...wouldn't be complete without it.

So, I guess it's back to the real world now. I should probably make one of my New Year's Resolutions to be a better blogger, but I'd probably break it by next week!