OutInTexas Ennis

A breath of fresh air

So, I should follow up with how the Sinus surgery went.

It went far better than expected right out of the gate. Apparently they're getting very good at this particular surgery, as I didn't need to have packing up my nose or splints or anything like that. Which means I was in half the misery as many of the people who have had this same surgery just a few years ago.

Which isn't to say it wasn't hellish during the first three or so days of recovery. I was not allowed to lie down, at all, so sleeping had to be done sitting up. Which I am not good at. And I had to wear gauze over my nose, and change the dressing every hour or two. It was held on by tape to my face, and my face got raw from having tape ripped from it every hour or two. Never mind every time I started to drift off, I would wake up panicked, gasping for breath, and tearing at the gauze like I was suffocating.

The following Tuesday I went for my follow up, and they did this thing where they deep-suctioned out my sinuses. It was just as unpleasant as it sounds, and even more disturbing. However! I walked out of there with the biggest smile on my face, as I breathed through my nose more clearly than I had in well over six months!

That didn't last very long (still healing, still swelling, still had stitches in), but it was still getting better every day. Two weeks later, I went for another follow up, and had the final stitches out and another suctioning. And again, I was breathing more clearly than I think I ever have in my life. And since then, it's been just fine.

One of the biggest bitches though, right after the surgery, was the medication. Apparently, science is working hard to take the 'high' out of massive narcotic pain-killers, presumably so that people won't be interested in using them recreationally. Because I never felt high during my constant taking of these stupid pills for the two days after the surgery. The only effect was maybe an 'edginess', which means combined with having to sit up, I probably got about two hours of sleep over the three days after surgery. It sure as hell would have helped me cope if I could have at least gotten a little buzz! Dammit!

Oh well, can't have everything. But at least so far, so good, and it certainly seems worth it so far. I have a final follow up in July. But I'm finally feeling healthy and finally have some level of energy for the first time since last October. Which is definitely good, because I have a LOT of crap to do in the next month or two...
OutInTexas Ennis

Beyond the Stone Age

Okay, I promised the story would continue in my last update... and so it does now.

But first we have to back up... back to the day the pain hit from my Kidney Stone trying (and failing) to pass, because I (purposely) left out a bit.

The next day, after the pain stopped... I came down with a sinus infection. Again. This is, by my reckoning, something like the sixth sinus infection in as many months. Sure enough, that night I couldn't breathe at all, and I woke up in the morning coughing and phlegmy. Awful. Same crap again. Over and over, I get better and it comes back.

I was sick of it, so I headed back to the doctor. The doctor sent me to get a sinus CT Scan, and then on to the Ear/Nose/Throat doctor. There, I got my sinuses numbed by some sort of medicated spray, and the doctor took cultures from three places in the back of my sinuses. Even with the numbing, it felt like she was ramming those q-tip things so far back, she was actually sampling brain tissue. Yikes.

Well, a week later (after the lithotripsy to zap the stuck kidney stone) the results come back: fungal infection. The prescription? A 3-times-a-day nasal wash with anti-fungal agents. A forced nasal wash, not like the gravity-fed netti-pots. Anyway, the news made sense and explained all the problems I have been having. And while essentially water-boarding myself 3 times a day is the farthest thing from pleasant, my infection did clear up. So yay.

Only... remember that CT scan? Yeah. Well. It didn't find any major pockets of infection, so that was good, but it did find something that essentially explains my life-long sinus problems, aggravated by allergies and such: a deviated septum combined with enlarged turbinates.

Okay, everyone's heard of a deviated septum, but I'd never heard of turbinates before. They're the curled structures on either side of the center-line of your nose inside. Google them, it's interesting... honest :-). Anyway, mine were such that, when combined with the deviation, explained why even the slightest inflammation would completely seal off my left nostril, among many other things I've suffered through over the years.

So ... surgery. Which is where I'm heading tomorrow morning (less than 10 hours from now as I type this). From all I hear, I'm expecting about a week of misery as down-payment for significant relief for the rest of my life. After all, they'll be chipping away at bone, and burning away flesh inside my nose. Eeep. At least I have good drugs (I hope!).

So this is how I'll spend my Memorial Day weekend... stoned out of my mind, in pain, unable to wear pull-over shirts for a week or two, with packing up my nose. Do I know how to live or what?
OutInTexas Ennis

Rolling Stones

Long over-due for a post. And once again, it's going to be whining about health.

So a couple of weeks ago, on a Monday, I get up normally. Shuffle into the bathroom to pee (normal), then shuffle into the kitchen to get breakfast. I bring my bowl of cereal to the office, sit down in front of my computer, and check out the news sites and such while eating. All normal. Then I flip over to the work PC and start to work.

And my back feels achy, like I slept wrong, or somehow got a bruise.

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OutInTexas Ennis

Rachael Maddow makes the case for food safety inspections

Like it needs to be made, but Rachel Maddow makes the case for food safey regulation and in spection by the federal government. Mostly a brilliant rebuttal to the "less regulation, smaller government" crowd. Very worth watching.


If you missed this from her TV show last Friday, give it a look. It's worth your time.
OutInTexas Ennis

The Crisis of Credit Visualized

This is a great video I ran across in my internet travels, that attempts to summarize and explain the origins of the credit crisis and financial collapse we're experiencing. It's obviously overly simplistic, but it does a good job of explaining a very complicated situation in a very clear and easy to understand manner.

You can see the video here if it doesn't load or play properly below: http://vimeo.com/3261363

The Crisis of Credit Visualized from Jonathan Jarvis on Vimeo.
OutInTexas Ennis

Crappy New Year

I had a really nice visit back in Columbus, to be honest. Except for the first two days, the weather even cooperated. And in spite of some illnesses that put the kibosh on meeting up with a few of my friends, I had a great time.

Then comes New Year's Eve... I had several invites and several additional options, but I was feeling kinda fatigued. For the first time in history, I think (certainly since teenage years), I was in bed before New Years hit at midnight.

Felt punky all the next day, with very little energy. I slept a lot, and then napped in between. I didn't feel sick, mind you, just tired.

And then it hit. Friday night. Sinuses, headaches, a bit of nausea. Bleh. All my plans for going out this weekend were in the dumpster. I've barely left the couch. What really sucks is the simple fact that I've been sick far more often than I've been well for the last two months.

Not exactly an auspicious beginning to the new year.
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