On late Tuesday night/early Wednesday morning, I fell on the kitchen floor. I didn’t hurt my left hip, but I banged up my right knee and both arms & wrists. My left wrist is still swollen and hurts like crazy. I’m probably going to get it checked this next week if it’s still hurting on Monday and if I can get an appointment. I hope it clears up before I have to do that.  Between pain from falling, spotty internet & phone access, my iPod getting crankier and crankier, Facebook’s Messenger app acting antisocial, and other “fun”, this week has been rather unpleasant. Hopefully, the next one will be better. It has to be, right?

I Keep On Falling


I am trying to get some supplies for Silver Sky by Janet, and I need some help. I know, I know. I’m always looking for help, but please give me a second to explain.  The easiest and cheapest way that you can help is to join Ibotta using my referral code. I get $5 when you join, and a $10 bonus if two people join. I get $50 if five join and $100 for every 10 who sign up. And all you need is the referral code and a smartphone.  Right now I have $30 worth of rebates in my account with that app. I can get that money transferred to my PayPal account so that I can use it on Beadaholique. Beadaholique uses a rewards system where you earn points for each item you buy or for some tasks you perform. For every 100 points you receive, you can get $1 discount. For every $50, you also get an extra 250 points, so if I spent $200, I could a $10 discount. That basically translates into free stuff/shipping upgrades.  Other ways you can help out is to donate directly to my PayPal or to send me gift cards for Amazon, Beadaholique, Hobby Lobby, Joann, or Michaels. Like I said before, the Ibotta method is cheapest for you. I don’t really have an expiration date for the help, though Beadaholique is running a 25% site-wide discount through tomorrow.  I could purchase jewelry supplies from any of the stores, but some of the stores also sell wreath making supplies, which I also need. If you can help me get enough money together to make these purchases, I will: Be forever grateful.  Give you a discount on purchases you make for a two months/every gift card, donation, etc. you send/make.  Name an item in honor of you.  Please help if you can and consider sharing the link with friends who might help. Thanks!

Help a Ginger Out



Have I mentioned on here before that I’m allergic to raw onions? I think I have. It’s something I discovered about five years ago when I ate something with raw onion on it & broke out in hives across my face. I confirmed it a few times after that to make sure; usually I had Benadryl on hand.1  Since then, I’ve been extremely careful about not consuming raw onions. I try to make sure to only order onions that I’m sure have been thoroughly cooked. And before you ask: Yes, it is absolutely possible to be allergic to raw onions and not to cooked ones.2  Today, I went to Quizno’s and had a sandwich that had “sautéed onions” on it. I took a bite & found they had the taste & texture of raw onions. I spent minutes taking apart my sandwich. My dad talked to the manager/franchise owner who said the onions were “sautéed” in the microwave. I know you can do that to a certain degree in a microwave, but the onions on my sandwich were either raw or barely cooked. Either way, they were a danger to me & a lesson learned.  I should just skip all onions & mention I’m allergic to them when I’m at restaurants—advice that was given to me a few years back by Anna. She’s a smart lady.  Because I’m me. ↩The theory is that the things that cause the allergy are broken down by the heat of cooking it. ↩

Locked Me Out and Threw a Feast


This Thursday was my first day of post-op physical therapy. So far there’s not much I’m allowed to do. I’m not allowed to bend past 90°. I’m not allowed turn my leg out to the side for long. I physically can’t do straight leg lifts with my left leg yet.1 The therapist was a bit exasperated because I’m not allowed to do most of the early exercises in the hip & knee program. She literally had to rip the first page of exercises off because all six are not safe for me to do yet. She’s having to do most of my PT for me; moving my leg around to stretch the muscles in a way that shouldn’t injure me.2 It’s weird.  The program that my orthopedist wants me to go through is a six month rehab meant for athletes. That’s kind of funny because he told me at my first appointment that he thought my issue was due to not being active. The labral tear made it obvious that I’m not the stereotypical lazy fat chick.  The tendon that was released was the one that helps the body do those lifts. ↩I worry that she doesn’t seem to understand what Ehlers-Danlos is and why my “amazing” flexibility in some joints is not a good thing. ↩

A New Kind of Hipster



I think I mentioned that I had hip surgery last week. My recovery has been going pretty well. I’ve has a few mishaps. Last week, for example, I accidentally pulled on one of my sutures & it loosened. The next day1 I found out that it was barely staying in when went with my mom to physical therapy & asked Erin2 to check it out for me.3 While she went to find a band-aid, it worked its way the rest of the way out. Since then, that incision has had a little yellow discharge, which I’ve told the orthopedist’s team, but has done well otherwise. Everything has been goin well. The only hard part is a hard spot in my left arm.  Calling it a spot is a misnomer. It’s a hard, raised area stretching from my wrist to my elbow. It runs right along the vein that my IV from surgery was put in. Somehow they inflamed that entire segment of my vein. It’s a bit sore, red, and warm, but the family doctor thinks it’s just a little phlebitis.4 I should be okay.  It’s just a little bizarre for me to know exactly where the vein is now.  Thursday ↩A physical therapist who has worked with me for 3 or 4 years. ↩She’d once told me that they could check or even remove stitches. ↩Phlebitis is literally the inflammation of a vein. ↩

Baby, Now We’ve Got Hard Blood (Vessels)


I got catcalled less than 12 hours ago. It was the first time I’ve had “positive” comments yelled at me by a stranger. Just like when they were intentionally hateful, I almost started crying. I did start shaking. It felt the same as the hateful ones.  I’ve had body image issues since I was a little girl. I’ve dealt with bullies, emotional abuse, and sexual abuse. I’ve gotten harassment from strangers, online and offline, including abusive comments, rape threats, assault threats, and death threats against myself or family members. I’ve been told I was so ugly that I would never be loved by my grandfather and by total strangers. I’ve had acquaintances of my family tell me at my abusive grandfather’s funeral that I would be so pretty if I’d just lose the weight. I’ve been negatively compared to my gorgeous older cousin since I was little by other family members and, worst of all, myself. I’ve been called “earthquake” and “human manatee” and all sorts of other loathe some things. I’ve had grown men that I didn’t know tell rude things out of their cars at me when I was a preteen and a teenager. So when I say I’ve had experience with harassment, I mean it.  This felt exactly like that.  Maybe when the guy yelled into my car from his place of work that I was “looking good” and “gorgeous”, he thought that was nice. Maybe he meant it as a compliment. Maybe he thought I would appreciate it. It wasn’t nice. It wasn’t a compliment. I didn’t appreciate it.  I was in my car with my mother. I thought I was in a place where I wouldn’t have someone harassing me. I thought, for lack of a better term, that I was in a safe space. All of a sudden, this comment changed things. I couldn’t hide from this person. I couldn’t get away right then. I just had to sit there and let someone I didn’t know objectify and dehumanize me. I had no out. If someone asked him about it, he might not even have registered that the incident took place. It probably isn’t a blip on his radar. If he did, he might say it was the dress I was wearing. It was strapless and short. I wore it so the physical therapist could check an incision from hip surgery  that took place on Monday. I didn’t wear the dress to be noticed. I wore it because it’s practical and appropriate in warm weather.  Even if I’d worn it for more superficial reasons, he would have no right to reduce me to an object the way he did.  I don’t even know what this guy looks like. I didn’t try to look for him. I was more concerned with getting away from him in that moment. And it wouldn’t matter what he looks like anyway, except that I would know to avoid him if I ever saw him again.  I know there are people who would think I should feel grateful. Well, I’m not and I hope I never am. There are ways to compliment people that aren’t harmful. Those are the compliments I’ll feel grateful for. There are truly wonderful men out there who know how to compliment and not objectify or harass women. Men like that are the ones I’ll applaud for their behavior. I will not applaud being harassed, objectified, disrespected, or abused solely because some random guy doesn’t know how to behave properly.  Photo credit: weaverphoto via Visualhunt / CC BY-NC-ND

How a Total Stranger Stripped Me of My Humanity in ...



In a little less than half an hour, it will be thirty-six hours before I have to be at the hospital for my hip injection. While I’m still worried about going through a general anesthetic, I’m more worried right now about who will be performing the procedure. Well, not exactly. To be more precise, I’m worried about who will be assisting. The nurse practitioner of the orthopedist I’m seeing for my hip is a guy I’ve known since I was 8 years old. We were in the same third grade class, sat at the same lunch table, and went to the same church. He was my third grade boyfriend’s best friend and my third grade best friend’s boyfriend. We used to joke, at our lunch table, about a lot of things we were too young to really understand. One of his and his best friend’s favorite jokes was that they wanted to put their “limousines” in the “garages” of my friend and me.1 Even though I know that he is a professional and is married, it’s very weird to think that he’ll be in the general vicinity of my “garage” on Monday morning. We’ve known one another for twenty-five years. I know his mother. He knows my mother. This whole thing is just very awkward for me, which is a little weird because if he was a total stranger, I would totally be okay with being naked in this scenario.23 But because I know him I feel all weird about all of this. It’s just weird. I’m not usually this freaked out about the nakedness part of procedures. If you don’t get it, think about it. I’ll give you a moment. ↩This isn’t about him being a guy. I was nervous when a high school friend had to put a catheter in me in the ER once. ↩Oddly, there are quite a few people I’m still acquainted with who have seen me naked at some point. Most were in dance with me. ↩

Of Limousines and Garages


Monday morning I have to be at the hospital for my hip injection. I’m scared and I don’t have many people to talk to about that. The person I wish I could talk to about it doesn’t want to talk to me. That may be making me worry more about this injection than I should.  Actually it has nothing to do with the anxiety related to the shot, but his lack of wanting to talk or do much of anything has been why I’ve cried five days this week. I just associate him with it because I thought he might want to know that I was undergoing general anesthesia for a shot to find out if I’ll need surgery. Finding out that he completely didn’t care just caused a lot of insecurity issues to raise up all of a sudden. Well, and they reminded me that I tend to care more about others than they care about me. I feel like there’s something fundamentally wrong with me and that’s why no one needs or wants to keep me around. I feel forgettable and ugly and stupid and broken and that no one could ever love me for any reason, and this just amplified all of that.  I don’t think anyone will miss me if anything does happen Monday or any other day. 

Amplified Tears



Alive and apparently allergic to morphine #selfie. I was given some post-op and, as with most other opioids in its class, had a reaction. This time it wasn’t just dizziness & chest pain from bronchospasm; there were also hives. I’ve taken two doses of Benadryl, including some at the Surgery Center, and albuterol. Still have some welts & trouble breathing. As for my hand/wrist, it hurts like an enculé. #wristsurgery #handsurgery #dequervainstenosynovitis #dequervain #dequervains #surgery #pain #wristpain #handpain #ginger #redhead #redhair #morphine #allergies #asthma #huntsvilleal #huntsville #alabama A post shared by Janet Morris (@msjanersm) on May 30, 2017 at 11:03am PDT On May 30th, I had surgery for De Quervain’s Tenosynovitis. The orthopedist went in and snipped the tendon sheath to relieve the pressure & swelling in an injury caused by my father during an argument over a leaking air conditioner last summer. The surgery went well, but there was a bit of recovery room drama. After a shot of morphine, I quickly developed hives. That led to a dose of Benadryl, which was apparently a higher one than is usually needed at the Surgery Center for that sort of reaction. I was given a prescription from my orthopedist for Tylenol 3 and an ice pack and sent home within an hour after the surgery. That led to a little more drama. Tylenol 3 also led to hives, as well as overly talkative and feisty behavior. So after more Benadryl, I realized I needed to recover without pain medication. The dressing is off. It doesn’t look too terribly bad. It feels worse than it looks. Now, I get to put smaller bandages on it. Fun. #dequervainstenosynovitis #dequervain #dequervains #tendinitis #wristsurgery #thumbsurgery A post shared by Janet Morris (@msjanersm) on Jun 1, 2017 at 10:13am PDT Besides using my hand too much and occasionally putting too much weight on my hand, my recovery went rather well. The bruises faded quickly and I didn’t have as much trouble with my incision this time as I did for my trigger thumb surgery in 2014. Slowly getting better. I’ve got another week before the stitches come out. #wristsurgery #dequervainstenosynovitis #dequervain #handsurgery #spoonie A post shared by Janet Morris (@msjanersm) on Jun 6, 2017 at 4:13pm PDT Last week the stitches came out and my scar is very tiny. I swear my orthopedist could be a plastic surgeon. My mom and I have talked about that a few times. The incision is healing rather well. #wristsurgery #handsurgery #dequervain #dequervains #tendinitis #tendonitis A post shared by Janet Morris (@msjanersm) on Jun 14, 2017 at 6:53pm PDT I’ve gotten back to driving since then, which isn’t very painful. Cooking, especially flipping, stirring, and breaking up ground beef, hurts like hell, but I try to keep going. The nurse practitioner said I’ll have pain & swelling for up to six months, so I guess that I just have to keep on trying until it stops giving me trouble. Pain is hard to work against. My shot for my hip is scheduled for June 26th and I’ll have to undergo general anesthesia. If my hip feels better after the shot, the orthopedist said he’ll be doing arthroscopic surgery on it. If it doesn’t, then he says the problem is not in my hip—he never listened when I told him my hip subluxates, so he doesn’t understand that I know my hip issue is a hip issue. I don’t want surgery, but I’d like to have a doctor who would listen when I talk. Maybe that’s expecting too much. I hope any fathers out there are having a Happy Father’s Day. I get the feeling that this holiday is going to always be extra depressing after my dad’s dementia has stripped him of his memories of being a dad and of being himself. Some days it seems like that outcome is approaching more quickly than others. I already feel like he’s sort of a stranger to me & that he’s not exactly someone I can ever feel safe around. I definitely hold back around him now. I can’t really be myself anymore, so this disease isn’t just making my dad “not my dad”, it’s morphing me into someone else. Someone who is even more quiet, scared, and sad than I was before…if that’s possible.

I Survived, So Does That Make Me a Survivor?


1
Well, that was fun. The entry posted before I had written anything. Oops. I guess that’s what happens when you write a blog entry at 2:30 AM.  Let’s see…what’s been going on lately?  I’ve completed 4 weeks of physical therapy. That’s all that will officially be done until after my next orthopedist visit. I’m supposed to work on weights & stuff at the Wellness Center. At my evaluation on Friday, my left hip had strengthened, but my right hip & my right knee had weakened.12 I also learned that my ankles are definitely weak.34 My left hip still has bursitis & weakness in the piriformis, and it’s still showing that there’s something wrong in the joint itself when they do the torturous impingement/labral tear test. And it just keeps on hurting & popping.5 I don’t know how the hip orthopedist will handle this news.  I got my hand/wrist checked out by the hand orthopedist6 almost two weeks ago. I have De Quervain’s Syndrome, which is basically tendinitis and tenosynovitis of the thumb/inner wrist. Typically it’s an overuse injury that moms and gamers get. Mine is from my dad’s anger outburst almost a year ago.78 The doctor put a steroid injection in the joint, which was especially unpleasant since the lidocaine shot was useless9 and he put the steroid injection through the nerve. So anytime I move my hand a certain way, I scream or flinch from the burning pain that shoots out my hand. If the tendinitis doesn’t respond to the steroid, I may have to have surgery on my wrist.  Oh, and I started a store on Etsy. Right now it just has barrettes, headbands, and hair elastics/ponytail holders. I’m planning on adding bracelets, necklaces, earrings, lanyards, and pacifier clips next. Eventually I want to add purses and my mom wants me to branch into doll clothes. I hope the stuff sells & eventually gives me a way to maintain an income off of SSDI/SSI. Fingers crossed, right? I also need it to succeed to prove my dad wrong. Twice in the last week he’s told my mom that he thinks it’ll fail. He’s hinted at the same to me multiple times. Of course he’s been on an anti-Janet rant for several weeks now.10 Anyways… It would really help if you bought something. If you can’t buy anything, I understand. Please considering sharing the link. Maybe someone will see something that they want. I guess that’s all for now.  I’ll try to not stay away as long next time.  My right knee started acting up during the warm ups for my hip’s physical therapy sessions. ↩I hope that this doesn’t mean that I will need surgery on my right knee. ↩This wasn’t really news to me. They hadn’t been checked since the 90s, but I never completed the strengthening exercises for them back then, so if they’d gotten stronger, it would be the result of a miracle. ↩I hope I don’t end up with an ankle orthopedist, too. ↩Part of the popping is because my SI joint is extremely unstable. ↩There are so many cooks in this fucking kitchen. ↩As the orthopedist put it as he dictated his notes, “The injury is a result of her deranged father” and his early onset dementia. ↩Did you know only 5-10% of dementia patients become violent? Dadada and dad have defied the odds. ↩Many Ehlers-Danlos patients don’t respond appropriately—or at all—to the drug. ↩If I cook, it’s the wrong thing. If I drive my car, I’m being selfish with his car; he doesn’t understand Nana gave it to me. If I don’t clean up the kitchen or living room on PT days or ask him to clean or move anything, I’m lazy. If I take my mom to a doctor visit or the grocery store, I’m stepping into his territory. Everything I do is wrong. ↩

Giving It All She’s Got