Saturday, June 03, 2017

Update

Strong coffee, a good book, fresh design on the needles....what more, seriously?


My friend T had his surgery on Thursday, a quadruple bypass, and is astonishing everyone with his speedy recovery, even his surgeon. He's sitting around for a few hours, all the tubes are out and he wants to go home. So next Wednesday is his release into the real world.

The Living with Chronic Disease series of workshops is marvellous. I was resistant to getting a handicap sticker for my car (only really, really challenged people get those!)and was encouraged to bite the bullet. Often I have to park a distance away from my destination and my legs seize after a few minutes walking and the pain, m'dears. So yeah, I agreed to taking my walking pole when out walking, requesting the handicap registration from my doctor (done and mailed) and checking out a folding walking stick from a local shop which another participant recommends. You just never know, she says, when you might need it.

One of the important things I noted in this workshop is that participants with hobbies are the happiest. Those with no passion or have retirement thrust upon them with nothing to fill the time apart from chores and TV are the most anxious. Gardeners, knitters, fishers, quilters, wood-workers are the most fulfilled.


We commit to certain things each week (this week mine is 1,000 steps a day and finishing a shawl and continue to toss excess from my house)plus some exercises we are all attempting, even finger exercises which can be painful. My knitting keeps my hands fairly flexible but my legs and back seem to be worsening so I am attempting more.

New York and Quebec tourists are arriving tomorrow, both holiday rooms in my house are booked which is good news.

30 comments:

  1. I ask for a handicap tag one year ago. At first did not want it - but now thankful as I can pull right up to the door of
    where I am going. Did not want a cane, but now using one,
    did not want that thing that hangs around my neck - but now
    thankful for it. It has become a friend and makes me feel
    safe when out and about and especially at home. So life changes, wish their was a sharing program in this community
    would be helpful and never thought I would have this thought :)

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    1. Thanks for sharing these Ernestine. I fight the decrepitude of old age and not the appearance. I am never coy about my age or the fact of being old. It is the creeping decrepitude that gets my knickers in a knot.

      Life changing.

      Acceptance.

      Peace.

      XO
      WWW

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  2. If you have a local tai chi group their exercises are wonderful for hands. This is the taoist type tai chi. and it's wonderful for everything else too. we call it wd40 for the body. my fingers can be stiff in the morning but I do their warm up and it helps.

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    1. My neighbor has started tai chi and is very pleased with the results. She needed it to strengthen her core and make her more stable on her feet.

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    2. Attended one of these in Toronto. Brilliant. Nothing so sophisticated here and I don't have the energy to initiate.

      XO
      WWW

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  3. Am happy for your friend T, good news about dear friends is precious. Glad to hear you got so much out of the workshop, sounds quite inspiring. I have a neighbour who uses a cane, she says, "I don't really need it but you never know when it can come in handy." Good for her!

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    1. I didn't know small collapsible ones were around, so am thrilled!

      XO
      WWW

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  4. You might also enjoy using a grabber or reacher for things that are difficult to reach. I'm glad your friend is doing so well and it sounds like things are going well for you and you are looking after yourself.

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    1. Yes, on a good upswing, E. I find months are still cyclical for me anyway. There's always a low point for some reason and it can linger far too long sometimes. The news on my friend cheered me immeasurably.

      XO
      WWW

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  5. You are making progress in coping well; parking sticker, folding stick, etc. I agree, people with hobbies tend to do well upon retirement.

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    1. So very true Terre. I observe many just idly consuming media or what's called "retail therapy" which I find abhorrent for hundreds of reasons, much of it being brazenly tools of rampant capitalism.

      Creating anything soothes in so many ways.

      XO
      WWW

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  6. What are those needles? Two straight and one curved? I'm confounded.

    If it helps, use it. I eschew a cane because tiny degrees of lean put my spine in lock. I have a grabber! Yes, only mine doesn't GRAB, per se: it kind of hooks. It's a long-handled shoe horn curved at the top. And never actually used to urge a shoe so there.

    I find the formal "helps" are atrociously expensive and think it kind of fun to "make-do" with some surprising good results. I wouldn't dream of paying the price they want for a bathtub chair. I use an upside down milk crate, on my rubbery bath mat. For the exiting the bath mat, I use a soaked and wrung out towel. Almost impossible to make it slip.

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    1. I'm creative also. I've had a long BBQ tongs for years for reaching. 50c at a garage sale.

      I'm making another shawl as a suprise for a friend who nearly wept for the last one. Two circular needles.

      XO
      WWW

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    2. We need to pass all this coping info along.

      Gorgeous colours there. One of the Irish flags has those colours. Can't remember which.

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  7. We make our adjustments; if we are wise we do it before the worst happens. I am concentrating on quality of life, since I am terminally ill. Every day is a gift.

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    1. Quality in the moment. Me too Hattie. And being clear on our limits. I had to say no twice today and I'm so proud.

      XO
      WWW

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  8. "Those with hobbies..." should put you at the top of the list for happiness! Keep up the good work, my friend, and no sagging off the exercise. That's the advice of Dr RJ. (For what it's worth!)

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    1. Thank you RJA. It's a tough old row I hoe at times but so very many have it worse.

      XO
      WWW

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  9. I'm 8 weeks out from having my new bionic hip so in the world of walkers, canes, reachers etc... I broke my cheap reacher grabber trying to get a squirrel from chomping under the floor boards - it didn't give a care. I use the golfer's reach. Putting socks on is still a bitch but hey - maybe I won't need socks soon. I love my cane - when I feel steady on my pegs I can still use it to shake at the morons who like to drive on the beach. Today I will work on my 8th doll. They are a perverse lot of dames who might be various ego-states of mine emerging. Hang in my friend - as we sketchbook fanatics say 'embrace the wonkiness'.

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    1. Hello Jan

      I also reorganized by kitchen. I use only the bottom shelf of the upper cupboards, and do not use any of the below the counter cupboards. Soon I will repurpose a book shelf and move it closer to the kitchen for canned goods and the like, but only in the middle shelves. I will ballast the bottom with some bricks. I have also asked to have my fridge moved to the other end of my counter, where I can stand in front of it (or sit) instead of having to reach in sideways as it is presently. I am considering buying a countertop oven, with a mother's day pre$ent. All my everyday stuff is all on my countertop: utensiles, spices, dishes, frequently used pots and pans (kept only four). All my dishes cleaning is in a container near the sink instead of under the sink. I have a backless office chair (on wheels) which I use to roll around the kitchen and from kitchen into biffy or out to living area, on days when I cannot stand or move around. Not my exact style of decor, all in all: but Needs Must. Good luck with your hip surgery.

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    2. Jan or "cherish the crazies" lol.

      Adaptation and change. Very tough. But the alternative?

      XO
      WWW

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    3. Hi anonymous- I accidentally incited vonfusion! I had my surgery nestly nine weeks ago. It was extremely excellent! My pain now is diminishing day by day and stopped being what it was -a crocodile chewing on my hip - to being random surgery pain - much better!

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  10. I have been in retirement for fifteen years now and am fully occupied with various activities chief among them, crossword puzzles and reading. I strongly recommend that meditation be included in one's life as one ages.

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    1. All in the workshop meditate Ramana. Much of my meditations are with my needles,or by the shore with the loons.

      XO
      WWW

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  11. http://atlantic.canada.taoist.org/content/standard_ca_atlantic.asp?

    There are four or more tai chi groups in Newfoundland. Just in case you want to try it. Very nice people also.

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    1. I do this, maybe half-time, or leaving out parts I find too hard. Overall it's great. I do only this one. She is so highly certified and qualified in the US.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m7zCDiiTBTk

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    2. Sharyn when I move I'll explore more.
      Thank you.

      XO
      WWW

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  12. I'm sure you're right that retirees with engrossing hobbies are the happiest. Sitting around staring into space won't keep you happy for long. I'm still working part-time but I'm thinking of hobbies I could take up when I finally quit work.

    Northern Ireland is pioneering new types of heart surgery that are less invasive. It's now routine to insert stents and it's a very simple operation.

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    1. He's doing far better than expected, Nick. I'll be interested to hear about your hobbies.

      XO
      WWW

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  13. I'm glad to hear your friend is recovering well. Scary stuff.

    It only makes sense that hobbies keep people happier. I know too many people who fill their retirement years with not much other than television. I hope to garden and cook until I drop.

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