Friday, October 22, 2021

October Wrap Up

 This will be a plethora of many things.

First on the list: The work on the cabin has come to a complete standstill due to my hand surgery. Every time I even think of doing something the least bit productive, I have nurse Cratchet getting in my face, telling me that if I get off of the couch, she'll break my other arm. So I sheepishly sit back down and try to go to the bathroom later. I guess she doesn't want me to lift heavy objects or something.

That brings me to the next topic in this cornucopia of many splendors: My hand. Like I said in my last post, the surgery went well. Recovery will take many weeks. Nurse Cratchet has me on couch arrest. I didn't know you could get ankle monitoring bracelets on Amazon, but you can. She even got me orange pajamas. Just because she loved me she said. She even gave me a new pet name. Prisoner 03815. When I asked "why prisoner?" She kissed me and said I was a prisoner of her love. How romantic can this woman be?

The Dr. gave me strict orders to keep my wrist straight. So they removed my dressing and custom made a splint for my arm. Which I have to wear for the next 3 weeks.

Pretty Vikings colors.

Here the OT specialist is forming it to my arm.

I am not to lift anything with that arm at all. So what does my hand look like under the brace? I am glad you asked. Cover your eyes Jim.

With stitches.

Without stitches.

The incision is longer than the first operation. What was fascinating was the Dr. took pictures of the surgery during the surgery. He comes into the room and gets on the computer and says this is what he found. All of a sudden there on the screen is my hand cut wide open. Lisa and I were a little taken aback at the sight of it. (They wouldn't let us keep the pictures so I was going to up load some off of the computer but even that was gross. So if you have the stomach for it, google carpel tunnel surgery images.) Once over the initial shock it was interesting. He showed us how discolored and deformed the nerve was compared to the surrounding nerves. So he removed a lot of scar tissue from the first surgery and then redid the carpel tunnel again.They then removed the tourniquet around the blood vessel to see if the blood flow improved. It was better but it was nowhere near 100%. That will take time for that nerve to fully heal, if it does. Always a caveat.

There are many hand exercises they sent me home with. Nurse Cratchet makes sure that I am doing them all. My hand and finger are so sensitive that I have to do de-sensitivity exercises also. To start with I am rubbing a cotton ball across my finger and palm. The sensitivity is through the roof. I can hardly stand the sensation of that. I just grit my teeth the whole time. 

I forgot to mention in the last blog that we had another quick visit from RV rock gods, Jim and Barb. It was just another quick stop as they passed by but it was fun filled as usual. They left bright and early the next morning heading west to go hunting. Jim was able to give us a quick lesson on the proper way of retracting your slide with a slide out topper. I can't believe we have been doing it wrong all of these years.

Step 1- climb up onto your roof

Step 2- while Barb presses the button, hand roll the slide out topper.

Step 3- continue until slide out is fully retracted.

They forgot about step 4 though. Which is, look around and make sure no one is taking pictures. LOL!

On a more personal note. I have always been a gun enthusiast. I am mainly interested in guns from WWII or earlier. I look at those weapons and see them as pieces of art, full of history which goes far deeper than the physical appearance. My first rifle that got me collecting these weapons is a 1898 Swedish Mauser. 
To which I still have.

So looking at one of the local gun stores I came across this beauty.
I knew I had to add that to my zombie gun collection. It is part of a new breed of shotguns. That's right. It's a 12 ga shotgun. How cool is that? So I saved my penny's, sold a kidney and sold lemonade all summer to finally be able to bring her home. Now I can't wait for my hand to heal so I can put some rounds through it. Zombies beware.

That's it for now. I may not post for awhile because I am sure my life on the couch will not be blog worthy. Unless I crap myself or something. Until then.

Saturday, October 9, 2021

First Time One Handing It


for this blog post i have invoked the "no capitalization clause" due to the fact that this is being typed completely one handed. i know what you are thinking. "how can one person be so damn talented?" i know right? the reason for that is that i finally had surgery on my hand again, my apologies go out to the grammar police.

i know everyone is on pins and needles waiting for the results, so i will just dive right in to it.

surgery was scheduled for friday. so thursday i had to go in early in the morning for a covid test. the results were negative, thank the maker, so the surgery would proceed as planned. according to the directions they give you, you have to wait until 8:15 pm the night before surgery to get your report time. we waited all day to finally make the call and it was good news. we were to report at 5:30 am on friday for surgery. 

we went in friday morning, got checked in and within minutes i was getting prepped. i am still amazed at how well run this place is. it's like the chick-fil-a of hospitals. for anesthesia they were going to do a nerve block with light sedation for a quicker recovery.

lisa quickly checked my insurance policy, said our goodbyes and i was whisked away to surgery. the anesthesiologist came in and had me lie on my side. he was going to use ultrasound to find the nerve between my collar bone. as i was on my side looking at the ultrasound picture, i could see the needle going into my neck. a nerve block is like a novocaine shot from the dentist. they just move the needle around under the skin to inject more medicine. all of which i was looking at on the screen. once done, they injected other things into my  i v and i was out sleeping away. i awoke what felt like seconds later and i was done. 2 hours max for the surgery.


the dr. came in later and explained what he did. he said he didn't have to graft anything which is good. he re-did the carpal tunnel again and then he removed a bunch of scar tissue from the first surgery that was compressing the nerve and blood supply to my finger. the nerve was very pale when he first opened my hand and once the blood flow started again it took on a better color. he was very confident that that was the problem. 

feeling no pain

on a more personal note. i finally got to cross off a bucket list item. i finally got to ride in a wheelchair and have lisa push me around. i can  die a happy man now.

see me smiling?

see how happy lisa is to push me around?

they said the nerve block would last 4-6 hours before the pain hit. giving us ample time to make it home. so i opted to have my pain meds filled in fergus. at the last minute we decided to have them filled at the hospital. it was a good decision because we didn't even get to the edge of rochester when i told lisa i could feel my arm again. pill popping time!

6-8 weeks of recovery now to see if anything has improved. i go back in 10 days to have the stitches removed and new dressings put on it with pictures to follow.