How many spoons do you need?


Some time ago I heard a story about spoons, in regards to Crohn’s disease.  I don’t remember it exactly, and I’m going to apply it to my hip situation today.  It might help people understand what I am going through, or any people for that matter.  So here goes.

When you are sick, or don’t have a hip like me, you wake up every day with only a certain amount of energy, or spoons if you will, to get through the day. Every task, every chore, yea, every bit of entertainment costs you spoons. Some days you will wake up with more spoons than other days. Therefore, you must choose the use of your spoons wisely.

Today I woke up with 10 spoons. To get out of bed go to the kitchen and get coffee cost me one spoon. To make breakfast cost me another spoon. I got showered and dressed, that was probably more than one spoon. I talked to insurance companies and nurses. Another spoon. I am typing up this blog. Spoon.

Sigh. Here it is not even lunchtime and I’ve already used up 5 spoons. Only 5 more left to get me through the rest of the day and bedtime. I must be conservative with my spoons, because if I “borrow” a spoon from tomorrow for today, tomorrow will be that much more difficult.

So how many dang spoons do I really need? Well, when you are feeling good and able to do just about anything you want, you feel like you have an unlimited number of spoons. Me, I feel lucky that I have worked my way up to 10 spoons. Right after surgery I think I started out with only one spoon.

It is difficult to answer people when they ask how you feel, or how your day has been. I think this spoon analogy is an easy way to get people to realize how being handicapped in some way feels. Cause once your spoons are gone, they are gone dude. I don’t care how much you beg and plead and cry, there are no more spoons to be had. So learn your lesson and be more careful in how you spend your spoons tomorrow.

You never know how many spoons you will wake up with.


This hip ain’t hopping yet


I  think most of you know that I had a hip replacement a couple of weeks ago.  It was not easy, it was very hard, and very painful the first week.  I had some complications with a high heart rate, and my blood sugar went thru the roof after surgery.  Then I had to have a blood transfusion.  I remember not being able to hold my own head up.  But after 5 days they sent me to rehab in another building on campus.

I only had one issue at rehab with my leg.  One day I spent a lot of time in the wheelchair working at my laptop, plus 3 therapies where I really pushed myself.  By the afternoon my leg felt really tight, and I looked down and discovered my leg was all swelled up and the incision had burst open and leaking blood etc.  (Ick, sorry).  I was really shocked because for over a week it had been dry and healing nicely.  So, the nurses and doctors came for a look-see and started antibiotics and regular dressing changes.  I was to keep my leg up as much as possible, no more dangling.

They let me go home after a week there, with prescriptions and home health care with nurses and PT’s.  The leg kept bleeding tho.  And Tuesday I had an idiot PT guy that really hurt me, and so now my hamstring, groin, thigh, everything hurts really bad, including my back.  I could just kill him.  I’m very very upset about it, because for the past year I have dealt with this pain, and it was almost all gone, and now it is all bad again.  Last night trying to find a position to sleep in with ice bags all over my lower body, I was really cussing up a storm.

By the time I went to the doctor yesterday for my follow-up, it was apparently bad enough for him to schedule surgery, for tomorrow.  If the infection reaches my prothesis, it will have to be removed.  Unbelievable.

The new hip itself is doing really good.  They took xrays and it matches in beautifully with my other hip.  As my 4 year old great niece would say, “Aunt Janet, your new leg is adorable!”

So… rehab progress has been slow, a few bumps in the road, but overall I am doing great.  Lake Forest hospital and Rehab was EXCELLENT.  This whole process has been very emotional, both mentally and physically.  Not to mention painful.  However, I am so proud of myself for working through the pain.  I was up and walking on my own within a week, doing stairs etc.

Thank you everyone, for all the prayers and good wishes.  I firmly believe it helps.  So I will put myself in God’s hands one more time tomorrow, and he will heal me.

P.S.  Please pray that when I can walk again I don’t hunt down that therapist and twist him into a pretzel and enjoy his cries of pain.



So I’ll never be a Hip Hop dancer….

hip hop

I’ve got a bad hip. I’ve been blaming it on my bad back for almost a year now, but the reality is that I have a bad hip. Might have been aggravated by limping around with a bad back for so long, but whatever the reason, my hip is giving me a bad rap.


I’ve been going to physical therapy, and they have pretty much confirmed my worst fears.  I have all the symptoms of needing a hip replacement.  Just waiting on an MRI to confirm that.

Really, I said.  Actually I said reeeeeeeeeeeaaaaaaaaaallllllyyyyy.  I’m way too young for that.  Apparently I’m not.  Walking has been VERY painful for a while now.  Kept thinking I pulled a groin muscle, and I limped because of that.  Going grocery shopping has been brutal.  Not just traversing the store, but carrying all the heavy bags up the stairs in my house.

Yep, that’s right.  Stairs in my house.  I live in a raised ranch.  I HATE IT, always have, always will, but it is what it is.

My PT told me today that I should avoid going up the stairs, that it really aggravates my hip.  Ok, so I guess I’ll just hole up here for a while with no food and no laundry and no swimming classes and no PT.

I’m going to a wedding in a few weeks and was hoping to show off my hip hop moves, along with my new repertoire of The Shake and Gangham Style.  How I love my dancing!  I guess that won’t be happening.  I’ll have to stick to the slow stuff.  In my walker.