Dear Diary: Dear Diary, it’s been 1,329 days since I had my transplant surgery. It has been 3 days since I had my first official ski lesson with the Canadian Association of Disabled Skiers. For the record, I suck. If tipping over was the goal of the sport, I am the Titanic of sit skiing. I’m not sure how long it took the Titanic to sink, but in that time I surely tipped over one time for each day that I’ve existed since my transplant. Again for the record, pointing yourself downhill on a single ski that is tied to a chair while strapped to poles that also have skis on them (just to make them useless for control of speed or tipping) ranges somewhere on the psychological scale of terrifying and heart stoppingly (yes, I know it’s not a word) insane. I’m not sure the pain clinic has given me a medication that makes me feel like trusting my life to a Styrofoam helmet and my ability to steer a ski with my ass. I’m not sure there IS a medication for that?

I noticed today that my thumb is black and blue. Clearly that is an injury that fell below the radar after I discovered the “fat bruises.” These fat bruises, as you have all seen before, are a new colour now. They’re now more of a black, navy and purple colour instead of the strange, alien green and red colour that it has been up to this point. I think the cat actually is afraid of them, hissing randomly at my love handles like I’m suddenly made of rabid Rottweilers. Pictures of the updated hips are included, of course, for your viewing pleasure.

Bruise on my right hip from sit ski lesson.
Bruise on my right hip from sit ski lesson.
Bruise on right hip from sit ski lesson, 3 days later.









Also, my dear diary, I visited the pain clinic again today. They forgot to send in my updated opiate medication prescriptions. So, I ran out of opiates before I saw them, and got to do the withdrawal dance (it’s a mix of sweating, shaking, wandering aimlessly because I can’t sit still and trying to think of way to NOT pluck my own eyes out) for the majority of the night and day. Of course, the doctor was sorry for the mix up. I’m not sure she was sorry. She was NOT doing the withdrawal dance at the appointment, so I get the impression I was the sorry one. In the end, some meds are staying the same, and some meds are going up!

I met with a new pain doctor, which luckily, is a 5 minute crawl from my door. Her name I will reveal once she has given me permission to do so. She left a very busy and high paying job as an anaesthesiologist in a busy Toronto hospital do work as a pain doctor that works with “outside the box” ideas and really works actively with cannabis. She has indicated that if I wish to try the cannabis again, she will closely monitor me to make sure I’m getting the proper benefits and not suffering the side effects I hated, which was the number two reason I quit it in the first place (the number one reason was that it costs a small fortune and my benefits do not cover it, while all my other medications are covered). Her appointment took over 3 hours. I’m not kidding. She was an hour and a half late and took two more hours to deal with me while also dealing with another patient. The upside to this was she is VERY different. She actually said she is sorry that this happened to me. She said that she cannot believe that no one is willing to do a knee replacement and she suggested two alternate amazing surgeons to talk to. She came up with three alternate treatment options to give my knee a break. Things that are not long term cures, but should relieve the nervous system problems in my knee and back perhaps long enough to have my brain settle down with the insane firing pain receptors in those areas. She has a treatment plan for my incessant, painful headaches. She has a plan to give my knee a rest and try to deal with the actual issue. She feels that the surgeon and other doctors are ignoring the actual causes for fear of having to admit what they did is not working, and instead are just trying to fix the pain somewhat so they can say that my surgery was successful. I cannot use her for medication purposes at this time because I had to sign a contract with the pain clinic that I’d not get pain prescriptions elsewhere. But I will be able to use her wholeheartedly once the pain clinic is done with me in December.

So far I think she is definitely outside the box. Her methods are very strange and her patient interaction is even stranger. I can see that staff in a hospital would find her thinking combative and revolutionary. But, sometimes it takes a revolution to change the world. And for me, this world is my body. A little coup d’état hardly ever hurts anybody, so let’s change my world!

I cannot use her as my primary pain doctor until the pain clinic is done with me. She will work with me as long as she is out in this area of the world. She expects me to do a LOT of work on my own. She actually brought up my blog on her computer right in the office when I said I was doing it for therapeutic purposes. I am amazed that she has time to take an interest in her patients. I also think that she will prove to be extremely challenging and will have very high expectations from her patients. I think she will be a positive force in my world, even if she cannot fix my knee.

And finally, diary, the wife and I are in Banff for a few days of resting. I need to heal my bruises in a nice hot tub, spend some much needed relax time with the missus and we want to get away from the city. I will endeavour to stay awake the majority of the time so that we can do some things. We have one of our kitties out with us for a break from being low cat on the totem pole. She thinks she’s died and gone to Heaven to have our sole, undivided attention. Mudge needs a break, too. Work and the holidays and health problems for me and her have tired us out. She has a sore knee. Sometimes both knees are the culprits. We are very happy that her knee problem will be corrected with some physiotherapy and some patella straps. We always have a great laugh when she complains about her knees as I am scooting around the mall in a scooter race with 75 year old cronies with glasses on a chain. Those ladies can drive and they take no prisoners. It’s terribly cold here today, but tomorrow there should be a mild reprieve and we can wheel around the town as far as the paved paths will take me!

Well, it’s nearly time for 1,330 days post-transplant. I am still sore from Sunday’s ski lesson. Gabe asked if I hurt my hips doing jumps. I said I sure did! I took massive jumps at 2 miles an hour, backwards, with my helmet fallen over my eyes, shirt untucked, gum in my mouth, tears in my eyes and it was uphill both ways. Next weekend my goal is only to hurt for two days and for my frozen chair of death to be more under my control and less under the control of inanimate snow and invisible gravity. See you then!