Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Two hands better than one?

(This was after the 1st shoulder surgery, I ended up having messed it up so badly I had to have two more.....which accounts of such will follow sometime.....)

A Dollar’s Worth
By Alisa Dollar

Has anyone had to use a hand not accustomed to using? I’m right handed, and even though I can use my left hand quite well, I was recently challenged to be a southpaw.

My knee was replaced on December 1st and I had to use a walker even though I could walk after four days. For once while trying to follow rules this big door tried to attack me and I fell.

In order to protect my new knee, I let go of the trapped walker and fell with all my glorious body on my right elbow which exploded and husband took me to have stitches. It was not appropriate the doctor laughed.

I’d hurt my shoulder but refused to pay attention to it until the knee was well. When I finally went in, it seems I’d cleaned the rotary cuff which would require surgery.

I had that done (trust me, knee replacement is a piece of cake compared to this!). For six long weeks I wore a body-type sling allowing my shoulder to not move. The surgeon found more damage than expected and without telling me I was old, he told me I was old and needed to be very careful so that I could have 65% recovery rather than the original 95%.

Sounds easy if you aren’t claustrophobic. I did well during the day, but at night “it” would taunt me with chants only I could hear. Something like “I’ve got you, you can’t move, nana-nana-boo-boo”–it could have been the drugs, but I don’t think so.

My hair was a mess with impossible left hand drying.  I never dreamed how hard it was to put on mascara with “the other” hand!

The first day back at work I was so pitiful. I looked like I’d washed up on some shore in dry West Texas with no comb and smudged eyes.

I wanted badly to say I went skiing instead of falling off a walker.

I figured out a way to cheat without moving my shoulder and use the computer.

At the end of the six weeks, my hair looked better and the mascara was almost perfect.

Now I’m in physical therapy which is another story. The PT person is so young I felt I needed to burp her before she tortured me.

The moral of this story–walker lessons should be given before being let loose.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Cell Phones and Husbands

A Dollar's Worth
by Alisa Dollar

Everyone is experiencing huge onsets of allergies causing sore throats, ear aches, incessant coughing and sleepless nights.

After 2 1/2 weeks I decided to see Doc Jolly.

Husband met me there and while waiting in the lobby I broke his brand new phone. I didn’t really break it, but you’d have thought the world as we know it had changed to cell phone Hades. I heard from “how did you do that” to “why did you do that” to the best one: “you know this is my business phone.”

My insides were screaming and my head was killing me, I’m not sure which. I sure wanted to eliminate him from my sight at that moment. All I’d done was what the 611 lady’s voice said and initialized his phone.

Bam. It doesn’t work. How was I to know he’d taken it to one of the neighborhood stores to make sure all his phone numbers were transferred and the kid didn’t know you had to initialize the sim card that came with the phone. He’d just moved it over.

So, in the process of doing the right thing, I killed the active ‘old’ sim card.

Simple to understand, right?

When called into the exam room, he had Cute Young Nurse checking the phone with him.

Hello? I’m the sick one!

Doc Jolly comes in and asks what’s wrong as he sits down to take notes, knowing I usually entertain with a list of three ailments.

I told him I’d been sick for too long, I couldn’t sleep and I didn’t want to be really ill the few days I had for Thanksgiving and felt that ’whatever’ was going into my chest.

I sat for a few minutes to silence. Unless you account for Cute Young Nurse and husband wondering aloud what I’d done to his phone.

“What?” I nearly screamed.

“I’m waiting.”

“For what?”

“You don’t have three things wrong?” He frowned. “You must be really sick.”

I pointed to husband. “Him and that blasted phone. That’s three. Now fix me.”

It turns out I had baby bronchitis and a good thing I went.

I followed husband to the major phone store and the lady there fixed his phone and coddled him while the bad wife who messed up his phone stood there wondering how guys seem so innocent when they really aren’t.

It’s a conspiracy.

I’m sure of it.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

This is the one I called The Damn Bird.....her real name was Cookie......

A Dollar’s Worth
By Alisa Dollar

Over the years, we’ve had various parakeets. Husband doesn’t like cats and parakeets pacified children in lieu of.  Daughter named one Cookie.  Cookie came from the local parakeet store with a well-trimmed cage.

Cookie had severe nesting problems.

Usually a happy little bird, she chirped through the day until her cage was darkened by the night-night cover. Then she became aggravated and started to build little nests out of paper cage lining. Trimming turned into fluttering shambles

Then, out of nowhere, she laid an egg!

I called the pet shop complaining I didn’t appreciate buying a pregnant bird to which they replied female birds, chickens, what-have-you, can lay unfertilized eggs.


I wanted to ask if all these species were so possessive of ‘non-eggs’. I decided that would be a question for husband. 

In the meantime we had to put up with an extremely irritable bird. On some level I could understand and feel her pain. I’d have been angry if I’d had a fake kid.

It didn’t take long to get over the sympathy after she pecked my hand while trying to retrieve spawned matter. We were both screeching. I decided to allow Cookie to sit there and just be disappointed when nothing happened. Or till husband came home. Hopefully he’d know what to do.

As long as we left her un-baby alone, Cookie was a happy camper.

Son came in from school and asked what happened to Cookie’s little household–it was a mess. How could I explain something to a ten year old I didn’t understand myself?

Cookie made a mockery of the birds and bees story.

I did what any good mother would. I sat down with him and told dad would explain later.

It was a mistake to not tell son. Daughter and I heard son yelp and Cookie ‘bird cursing’ all afrenzy.

By the time we got there, son was holding the egg to the light asking if Cookie knew she was having a fit over nothing.

My first thought was I should’ve had son tell me what happened when I noticed how content and quiet Cookie had become. If birds could sigh, I’d swear that’s what she was doing.

I asked son what happened.

Simple, he’d wanted to look at the egg so he replaced it with peanut M&Ms.

Cookie spawned three “eggs” and had a colorful behind.

She was happy.

And quiet.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Nurse Goodbody? Okayokayokay...Nurse Ratchett here.......

A Dollar’s Worth
By Alisa Dollar

Unlike some, I never wanted to be a nurse. The thought of bedpans make me shudder.

The closest I came was when I tried to give husband allergy shots–back when they were allowed to be given at home. In fact, now that I think on it, I wonder if I’m the reason real nurses have to give them now?

Allergens were pin-pricked into squares on his back, which is how he found out he’s allergic to chicken and turkey. He always said they were called fowl for a reason. It’s a good thing he isn’t a preacher because fried chicken is a prerequisite!

Most of his allergies were ragweed and molds. Something was brewed, stewed, and concocted to protect him. Since he deemed himself too busy to stop by the doctor’s office for the nurse to give shots, he appointed me to give them.

The thought of sticking a needle full of some weird juice into husband’s arm would be a no brainer. That’s what “he” though anyway.

A friend, a local school nurse, took it upon herself to teach me to give shots. I now know she feared for husband’s arm, but at the time I thought it was very nice of her to have me over for coffee while I practiced on oranges and towels.

There is an art to giving shots. You have to know your needle, medicine, and patient. I already knew husband hated shots. He wasn’t afraid of them; he just didn’t want a stranger poking him with a needle.

I became quite the expert on oranges. I didn’t like towels, but nurse said skin types were different even though I assured her husband was definitely an orange.

The day arrived. I had alcohol prep, medicine and the syringe. I was shocked the needle was so skinny and short. I’d practiced with long, fatter ones. I wanted a real needle even though I had a feeling of power filling the syringe.

Husband turned his head while I rubbed alcohol everywhere. I couldn’t decide where to poke. I pinched up skin, shut my eyes and whammed it in. When I opened my eyes, it was in the wrong place so I jerked it out.

Husband came unglued at that point but b y then I had it in the right place and squeezed in the meds before he could yelp again.

Husband decided he had time to stop by the doctor’s office.

My nursing days abruptly ended. Go figure.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Don't Make Me Go To Sam's!!!!

Hey Toby, another one for you, since you just told me to go there....yech.....YOU can by 5 gallons of mayonaisse.....I like little jars from the grocery!)

A Dollar’s Worth
By Alisa Dollar

Husband is a Samaholic.  If you don’t know, Sam’s is a huge warehouse to buy mass amounts of “stuff” at low prices.

I hate Sam’s. Husband loves Sam’s. He can’t understand why I don’t. I try to tell him it’s like a curb appeal to a house and Sam’s just doesn’t have it. When you walk in the door this huge, and I mean colossal room overwhelms and to top it off, everything is flat. I went further to explain it was like me moving from the Austin/San Antonio area to Lubbock. It’s flat. No curb appeal.

He argues that I feel a deep affection and appreciation for Lubbock. I always have to remind him it took me a long time to understand that God went to sleep outside of San Angelo and woke up in Ruidoso because there was a strong lack of rivers, trees, hills, and people.

During that time, I’ve become fond of the plains. I’d never seen the sky touch the ground till I moved here–it always touched the trees or tops of hills–never the ground! I admit, when I go back to “my” part of Texas, I almost get claustrophobic.

Husband also is another reason I don’t like Sam’s. He drives me crazy in there! He wants to buy things, which for us are less costly at the local grocery, auto shop, clothing store or anywhere in town.

He seems to forget you save money buying in mass if you have a lot of mouths to feed, like a cafeteria in the school or stands at the football games, or the fair. Not two old people who need fiber!

We don’t have the kids at home anymore, but when one of them, or the grandkids come, he’s off to Sam’s. If he bought things kids like that would be one thing. Most kids our grandkids age really aren’t into organic peanut butter. They like the REAL kind like Jif or Skippy or store brand. This type of thing is irritating.

I always hope natural peanut butter doesn’t expire all too soon because he has to eat it.

I like Jif.

There are some good things about him going there though. When I run out of paper towels or toilet paper, it takes me forever to remember to buy it.

Needless to say, I have a good years’ supply of both in the pantry.