Work, Medication & Relocation

I am about half way through my third week back at work. I am doing six hour shifts this week. So far I am doing okay. Not great but okay. I am still having considerable pain but I am just glad to be back. I started Lyrica about the same time I started back at work (the night before). That is not going so great so far, not that I really expected much. It’s not really helping at all with my pain during the day. At night it makes me so sleepy that I am unsure if I am sleeping okay because of that or because it is helping my pain. I think more just that it is knocking me out

I started at 75 mg and was supposed to increase it after about a week slowly up to no more then 300 mg. I haven’t gone up at all. The reason is that I don’t think I would be a fully functioning human being if I did. I can barely tolerate the 75 mg. I tried last night just the one time to increase to 150 mg, today I struggled with every word at work, I was staring off into space and I felt as if I had cotton balls in my mouth. I am not doing that to myself again tonight so back to 75 mg I go.

I am going to see if I can get a prescription for 25 mg from my doctor and try going up more slowly from 75 mg. I can see why I hate this medication the first time I was on it. It really does a number on you. I am so dizzy as well. I am scared to drive and won’t drive right after I take it. So I take it at night. I am not sure it’s going to work for me but I need to give it some more time I think. It’s hard because I am tired of dealing with the pain which is still pretty considerable. I have pain which is sometimes feels like a stabbing pain and other times a burning or searing sensation down my leg. I have pins and needles and a numb sensation that happens often. I am also getting a lot of swelling still.

I want so badly to just ditch the crutches and walk but I am scared to as well. Sometimes I wonder if that part is in my head. If I am just limiting myself because I am scared. The medication is making me unsteady and dizzy, plus my leg tends to give out from underneath me but should I just stop using the crutches? I am trying to slowly come off them. I can put most of my weight on my leg with them. Without them though I tire so quickly and I hurt so much more. I really am not sure what to do there.

Anyway, so as you can guess from the title of this post, Edward and I have been considering relocating for a little bit now and guess what? We are moving! We’re doing it! Edward found out today he has a job in Digby at Gidney Fisheries! He starts November 19th and gave his notice at his current job today. He was concerned how his boss would take it but he took it pretty good and was happy for him.

I also put in my resignation at the bank today, or at least that was the plan. Instead though I am going to see if I can take a leave of absence at their suggestion. Apparently they have an option when moving to another city or town in the same or different province that you can take a transfer leave which gives you 90 days to apply to and get a position in the same bank with another branch, location or department. If you don’t get one then on the 91st day your employment ceases as if you resigned but it also gives you a chance to keep your benefits and seniority while I attempt to find something and 90 days in case nothing is available right away. I read somewhere I have to give 4 weeks notice to do this but they suggested it so hoping no one notices

When I mentioned I was resigning my manager asked me to give him about an hour before I put in my resignation and talked to his manager then came back and told me this. They said they hope I can stay with the bank. They have branches in both Digby and Yarmouth. Yarmouth is only about an hour’s drive. We could settle somewhere between Digby and Yarmouth if I got something there eventually. In the meantime my parents have offered to rent us the cottage they just bought for quite a bit less then what we are paying for rent here.

They bought it outright so no mortgage. We would pay the utilities and a small rental fee all in one, the utilities will be on budget plans that will be the same each month, they plan to keep them in their name I think and we just pay them one amount to cover it all and even if we don’t and we pay the utilities ourselves in our name we will still be ahead. We’d be looking at half to two thirds what we are paying here once everything is said and done. About a $200 to $350 savings a month over our current living situation here. Edward will be making a bit more then $2/hour more there then here, plus after 6 months he will have full benefits.

If I stay with the bank I will still have everything I have here (full benefits plus lots more) but be $1 to $2 less then I make here. So in the long run it would even out pay wise. I have a lead on a job outside the bank as well and have been talking to a recruiter for a domain registration and web design/hosting company that has an office in Yarmouth and one here in Halifax, they are really interested in me. I have actually worked for them before.

They are looking for both domain specialists (sales) and technical support in Yarmouth. I enjoyed it the first time I worked there but I left to go to Afghanistan and when I came back they weren’t hiring and I moved on to somewhere else and honestly never considered them again till now. I know a few managers and other employees. In the meantime I can do some transcription work for my mom who has a lot of work right now and could use my help.

Overall this is a move in the right direction for us I think. We will be getting out of the city which we both want. We are tired of it here. We will be living in an area we love doing things we love. We’ll miss our friends in the city but plan on still doing a once a month game night with them and they can come visit and we will be in the city a lot still. We have to keep our doctor in the city as there is currently a shortage and over 50,000 Nova Scotian’s who don’t have family doctors. Plus we like him and want to stay with him anyways

So anyway, in the long run though it will mean saving more and much faster. We can save a down payment now, it would actually be possible. I plan on taking the full amount we would pay for rent up here each month, pay my parents what they want and take the rest and put it in a savings account. Something we can’t easily access. Also it will be good as well because the cottage is 2 bedroom, or will be in a few months when we make it back into a two bedroom. So we will start the process again for fostering/adoption. We are so excited!

A Broken Toe & New Theme

Between my husband and I we should be locked up in bubble wrapped, rubber padded rooms. Eddie broke his pinky toe and damaged the one beside it and has a huge bruise on his foot. He had a run in with my office chair. Needless to say, the chair won He’s been told to keep off it for 2-3 days then take it easy after that. When he first did it it was displaced I think. It was crooked, but he sat down and started playing with it and all I heard was a pop after the initial crack and then he said it hurt less.

The x-ray tech said it was definitely broken and that it was no longer displaced and suggested he just tape the two toes together because even though the other one hurt and was cut and bruised it was not broken, might be fractured a bit. I swear everyone in my family is a klutz, last weekend my brother dropped a bed rail while they were moving things from the cottage to the house on my mom’s arm. That had a huge hematoma and bruise and she is waiting the results of an x-ray (her tech was not as nice as my husbands). So she could have a broken arm as well. The doctor said there was a good chance it was broken so she was splinted. And I am still on crutches

In other news, the new theme is ready. I am not entirely sure I am happy with it or even like it It’s something different, a change, I guess. I still have the old one in case. I just copied it and changed the colors and a few other things. It was my theme I made with Underscores anyways. I had initially planed on doing a 1980’s theme in blue, pink, green and yellow but I abandoned that when I didn’t end up liking it. I still have it so I might keep working on it. I abandoned it for a 1950’s theme which I was going to make a logo for. I abandoned that as well. I ended up just going with colors I liked. I got bored with creating a theme pretty quickly. I get frustrated when it doesn’t go my way.

It’s Halloween!

Halloween is one of my favorite days of the year and autumn is my favorite season typically. I never really had time this year to look for a Halloween costume for work. Kind of wish I had. There was some great costumes. I would have taken pictures but as it is a secure area I couldn’t. It seems though that everyone was having a great time dressing up. I was only there 4 hours so I missed a lot of the Halloween festivities they had going on. I still enjoyed all the costumes. One person even asked me if my crutches were a part of my Halloween costume. I just kind of laughed and said no unfortunately not. No costume for me

One thing I noticed on my way home around 6:15 PM was that there was barely any little children out. A few years ago they would go out mostly around 6 PM with the bigger kids going out around 8 PM. But today I had only seen one child all the way home. When I was a kid when 6 PM hit the streets were teeming with kids and parents. I remember that even when my brother was young and I was in my teens. At what point did kids stop going out as much? I know all my nieces, my nephew, god son and some of my little cousins all went out. Where were the rest of the kids?

Oh well… food for thought. Anyways I am working on a new theme. Retro is all I am going to say. Not sure how good it will turn out but I was inspired by something

The do’s & don’ts of using crutches

So I have been on crutches now for about four months. In those 4 months I have have had a few mishaps and a few victories. I am going to share some do’s and don’ts of using crutches that I have oh so eloquently learned over the last few months. Now I am not the most graceful of people to begin with so stick me on crutches and there is bound to be issues. Also, I am referring to auxiliary crutches as in the image above not elbow (forearm) crutches so keep that in mind.

  1. 1) Don’t go by the height on the crutches, have them properly fitted to you by a trained physiotherapist or at the very least watch some videos on how to properly fit crutches. My first set of crutches I had in the beginning were youth crutches. As I am only 5 foot and half an inch (yes that 1/2 inch matters) I assumed that youth crutches that go to 5 foot 2 inches would be the right size and that adult crutches that start at 5 foot 2 inches would be too big. I was wrong. If I go by the 2 finger rule (the top of the crutches should be about 2 finger widths below the armpit) then I am actually setting it to 5 foot 3 inches.
  2. 2) Do learn how to properly go up and down stairs. Good foot up, bad foot down. If your hands are big enough (mine aren’t) place both crutches under one arm and use the railing with the other arm or hand one crutch to someone else. It’s best to have someone with you until you get the hang of it. When going up stairs leave your crutches on the current step and bring your good foot up to the step above, push up with your good foot bringing your bad foot and the crutches with you to the next step (that your good foot is already on). When going down leaning forward but looking straight not down (so you don’t loose balance and fall which I did more then once) bring your crutches and bad foot down to the step below and “hop” down to the step holding onto the railing or using your crutch. This is harder then it sounds. I could not do it and had to put some weight (as much as I could bear through my bad foot to be able to get down). I will be honest because my hands are so small I had to have each crutch separate under each arm and hold onto the railing with one. It took a bit of juggling and a few close calls to get the hang of it. YouTube has some great instructional videos.
  3. 3) Don’t walk any more then is necessary and use other means of getting around if you can such as a wheelchair or chair on wheels if you are going to be on them for a long time. It might be tempting at first and sort of a novelty using the crutches. I remember as a kid thinking it was cool but especially if you have a little extra weight or are not in the greatest shape like me you need to conserve your energy, you are going to need it for times when you need to go somewhere and need to use the crutches. Lots of stores have wheelchairs or scooters you can borrow to get around.
  4. 4) Do consider asking your doctor or local department of motor vehicles if a temporary handicap parking permit can be obtained. This will help if you need to go somewhere like a doctors appointment or pharmacy or store and the parking lot is full so that you don’t have to walk as far on crutches. Some people might disagree with this but for me there is no way that I would be able to go anywhere without it, including back to work. It’s okay to need a little help now and then.
  5. 5) Do consider padding the handles and possibly arm rests (is that what they are called?). However don’t just duct tape tea towels/face clothes around them. Extra padding is great if it was made for the crutches. I used these crutch covers from Drive Medical that were made for my crutches which I bought at Wal-mart. Taping tea towels/face clothes can actually be dangerous. It can put more pressure on your armpits or your hands could slip off the hand grips causing injury.
  6. 6) Don’t skimp on quality. It might be tempting to purchase the cheapest pair you can find however make sure to consider how heavy they are, how sturdy they are (can they hold your weight). You can still buy wooden ones but out of the crutches I have used over the years I find light weigh aluminum to be the best. If you have the option of forearm crutches ask your doctor or physiotherapist if they may be better for you. I have never used them but have heard that they require even more arm strength then the auxiliary kind.
  7. 7) Do feel free to decorate them. If you are going to be on them for a bit have fun with them! If you have a cast decorate it too if you want! Check out Pinterest and YouTube for some great ideas and tutorials. I never did this and kind of regret it but kind of don’t.

Well that’s all I have. I am sure I missed a few things. Crutches don’t have to be cumbersome and depressing. Have a little fun, but be safe.

Halloween, Moving & A Ghost

I can’t believe it is almost Halloween!!! Only a few more days left! I am back at work on a gradual return and after two 4 hours days (with a day in between) I am feeling a lot of pain but just glad to be back. We haven’t decorated or anything but I am okay with that. We will for Christmas. We took the wheelchair back and I am still using crutches for work and outside the house, inside I am using a walker, to give my arms a bit of a rest.

Anyways I am sure you are more interested in hearing about the “Moving & A Ghost” part of this post aren’t you? So your probably wondering if Eddie and I are moving and the answer to that is no. We aren’t. It’s actually my parents who are. Strangely enough though they bought a house the 1st of October they are actually moving somewhere else. They are moving into a house my cousin and her husband bought around the same time. Both are in Digby and my parents are renting out the one they bought which they will eventually retire in but they will be living in my cousins house and guess what?!?!? It’s haunted! Yep, that’s right, haunted. It’s about 150 -180 years old. I can’t remember exactly what she said.

So the story goes that a woman who’s husband was a Sea Captain took sick while waiting for him to come home from sea. She passed away before he came home so her family decided it would be a shame to bury her before he came home and had his chance to say his goodbye’s. Being winter they wrapped her in blankets and put her in the shed which believe it or not was normal at that time. They waited for him to come home as he was due home in a week.

They waited and waited and after a few weeks they decided they needed the shed she was in and so they moved her closer to the bay to a pig shed. Still they waited and waited and the husband never came home. He was presumed dead, lost at sea. Finally spring came and they were able to bury the woman on her property close to the house. It’s said that she walks the property looking for her lost husband still to this day, waiting for him to come home from sea.

Apparently she has been heard in the house and on the property. Things move around without anyone touching them. She also likes to tuck people in including kids and she will kiss them on the cheek. She is said to be kind and gentle and not at all scary. Can you imagine? And my parents are going to be living there. I can’t wait to be honest! I love a good ghost story. It would not be my first encounter with the paranormal and likely wouldn’t be my last. I can’t wait to stay the night there.

We are going down Friday but will be staying in the cottage as there are not enough beds in the house yet.