Health Check, 5-17-2020

I keep a few notes about readers who I’ve corresponded with and I’m hoping with this post I’ll hear from them to tell me how they’re doing.

Diana Stanfill in Florida

Dianne Cook, Canada

Cindy Spearman, MO

Jessica Tudor, Florida

On another health note, I have a question to other knee replacement gals. I don’t recognize my knees or my legs any more – they’re just so changed. Anybody else?

Raining here all day – things will pop out of the ground now! Loved hearing the bird stories, the squirrel stories, owls, parrots! Such fun to hear YOUR stories!!

70 thoughts on “Health Check, 5-17-2020

  1. Betty Klosterman

    I had a very wise doctor. I’d say “it hurts when I do this”
    and his reply was “Don’t do that.” And we’d grin at each other.

  2. Carol

    You are not long enough post op for all healing to take place. My doctor says, and I have found this to be true, that it takes 1 to 3 years for total healing. I am five and two years past my replacements. Each knee was and is different. I am still expecting improvement with the most recent. There are still numb spots on both knees caused by the nerve that runs crosswise that gets cut. You may or may not get total feeling back. I forget that I have prosthesis in both legs. The surgeries were the best gift I ever gave myself. Stamina, no pain, legs are now straight, no night pain, can stand in one place for a long time as standing in line was the most painful of all. Sure there are some things I can’t do but I couldn’t do them before surgery due to the arthritis. Just give it time. I am amazed that you are doing all the things you talk about. You had two major surgeries in less than a year. My doctor would not have done both knees that close together. Just be patient and it will come.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Carol – thank you! I was counting up the days/months since Jan 9 and I guess it’s not that long but I get really depressed when I can’t work. I know that sounds really stupid especially to people who would like to sit but that’s just me. I will try to be more accepting of my limitations – I’m sure getting fat tho’! Ugh.

  3. Cindy Cigrand

    I had bilateral knee replacement surgery 6 years ago. The pain I lived with , for years, was gone. I am so happy I had the surgeries. I do have pain if I kneel. Dr said, then don’t kneel. I put a folded towel down and can manage the pain. My knees don’t feel my touch, at the scar site.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Cindy Cigrand – I’m going to order knee pads – I have no feeling at the incision site either. Thanks!

  4. Barbara Wells

    I had both knees done at the same time, too much damage to do them at one time. I was up and going in 3 months and it has only gotten better since then. I had them done Oct 17 so about 2 1/2 years ago. I still have some numbness and they are wider and my legs seems to swell easier now, but I am on my feel much much more now. I put it off for years and now wish I had done it years sooner.

  5. Sandy

    My most recent replacement took nearly a year before it felt like it was mine. I think I was 65 when it was done. When I say this, it means I don’t notice it, it feels like mine when I was younger. Both hips work the same as the originals. As far as recognizing, in the visual sense, replaced knees look a bit different, but not bad. I still use cold packs occasionally. My relief comes from Excedrin Migraine, in the geriatric from Walmart. It has aspirin, aspartame, and a touch of caffeine. Works the best.

  6. Judy

    It is day 13 after knee replacement, postponed in March because of the shut down of elective surgeries. The Physical therapist says that I am doing great. I see the surgeon on Wednesday. I am not ready to give up my walker, but I am getting around much better than last week. Reading about your knee, Mary, and comments from other readers has been a big help. I know that full recovery is not a quick process, but it does get better. There hasn’t been a lot of pain, except when I am trying to sleep at night and that is really not bad pain, but uncomfortable. My husband has been great helping, but picking spinach is not his favorite thing to do and we have a good crop of it this spring. My 9 year old granddaughter brought some sewing for me yesterday, repair of her favorite pjs, and we made a face mask for her Lambie (a stuffed one). It was good to be at the sewing machine for a short time. We have had several Orioles here for a couple of weeks. I might see one in the spring for a day , but these have stayed around for some Time. They are sure colorful.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Judy – you’re doing great if it’s only Day 13! I don’t really have any complaints – it’s just that they look so odd – no pain really but much stiffness. I suppose I do too much but we wait for this time of year all year long and I don’t want to miss a thing!! I had to sleep in a recliner for awhile and still do occasionally.
      I just had 10 orioles at one feeder!

  7. Mrs. Goodneedle

    Prayers for these ladies listed above, for restored health and God’s healing touch. I am sorry about your knees, I can’t wade in to that discussion as this isn’t anything that has occurred in my own knees but know lots of friends who’ve had replacement and stellar results. You’re on my prayer list too, for answers going forward. Take good care~

  8. Dianne M Cook

    Good Morning Mary,
    Sorry to be so lax in posting. A lot has happened in the past months In the beginning of the year I was waiting for a minor surgery, lump in my arm pit. Told not to worry, then my surgeon moved and I was
    assigned another one who postponed the surgery to April, then the virus hit Canada and everything was
    postponed until we do’t know when. I have a special iV treatment every six months to protect my bones
    from the cancer drug I am taking and that also effects my arthritis very badly and makes life difficult
    for a time. I am very lucky to have a great supporter in my husband and immediate family, but does
    make extra work for him. I am also waiting for cataract surgery which has also been postponed to whenever. I find hand work which I love, very difficult at certain times of the day, so I have been reading a lot and doing jigsaw puzzles on my tablet. I do follow your blog regularly, but as we live in an area where dialup internet is all that is available, All computer work is an effort, as all are home and are using and slowing everything down. I think of you often, you are a champion for all you do for animals. I’m glad your knee surgery has gone so well too. We have friends here waiting for hip surgery, not sure how soon things will start again. We live in an area where there are only a few cases of the virus and no deaths, but it is so sad how some people have suffered.
    so lucky to have a lot of church and quilt friends who keep in touch by telephone. Well I guess thats all for now, please keep your blog going and thanks to all your blog members for all the well wishes.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Dianne Cook – so happy to hear from you! I would not think surgery for you would be elective – hate to hear your arthritis is affected by the drug. I know personally how hard everything becomes when my bones hurt. Have you read anything outstanding lately? I’m lucky to have great internet – never extremely slow. This blog is my connection to people and I’d sure miss it!

  9. Meredith

    I found that it was long after the surgical healing was done that I started to feel like my new knees were actually a part of me, maybe 9 -12 months. I think it was partially mental acceptance and partially physical like finding ways to do things that the new knees didn’t allow. The best advice I can offer is to continue to do your exercises and I mean forever. It’s worth it. Also worth it for people who haven’t had any joints replaced to start doing them whether they have issues or not. Joint exercises are so beneficial to continuing a physical life with less pain and out of the surgeon’s office.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Meredith – I can’t say my knees are painful really and I can almost run slowly but they get so stiff when I sit down and get back up again. Makes me wonder if I need to go back to physical therapy. I also have trouble standing in one place for very long – without bending my knees. They feel “locked up” – does that make sense to anybody?

      1. Marcia

        Hi Mary- I had total knee replacement (due to arthritis and no cartilage which caused bone-on-bone movement) on my right knee 15 months ago and can certainly relate to your above comments. Standing in one place for very long makes my knee feel like a thick (swollen) tree trunk that does not bend. And yes- getting up from a sitting position is slow, as well as awkward looking. My knee is very swollen daily from ongoing inflammation. I continue to ice my knee. My pain seems very similar (and sometimes worse) to before I had the surgery. I’ve had multiple blood tests, x-rays, and an MRI to find what is the culprit of my inflammation and pain. I’ve had an abundance of PT appointments (more than patients normally receive). Before all this virus shut down happened my doctor was going to make an appointment with Mayo for a second opinion. It is so frustrating to go through the surgery & all that pain to not have acceptable results. I continue to hope for the best, but unsure if I will see any improvement.

      2. Betty Klosterman

        Mary, my husband, Frank, had a hip replacement. Had knee problems, but hadn’t had surgery on them. When he was waiting for me to visit with somebody in the store, his hip and knees really bothered. BUT he could stand for a long time if he was visiting with somebody……… It does take a long time to recover from any alteration of your body. People just aren’t very patient. Keeping moving does help keep joints moving easily.
        Reading all these things blog members are coping with really lets us all know to appreciate what we have, otherwise, we just do what we have to do to survive, take care of those around us and be thankful it isn’t worse.

        1. CountryThreads Post author

          Betty Klosterman – you hit the nail on the head! I have nothing to complain about! I feel so bad for some of the readers who are living in compromised health and/or living conditions! My life is really so calm compared to many and my sister’s life is calm compared to mine. Today is laundry, errands in town and I’m making chili because it so cold outside!

  10. Paula Philpot

    Mary I emailed my newsletter to you and a Scrappy Quilts info sheet. Did you get it? Paula in KY

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Paula Philpot – yes and I replied to you – hmmmm. I asked if these three quilts were mystery quilts or if they could be seen in advance. I’d be happy to post on blog but need just a bit more info.

  11. Beth Laverty

    I have had both knees done 18 and 20 years ago. Never really thought about ‘not recognizing” them. I do know I can’t kneel on them…. it hurts unless I use a big pillow. Probably because they are titanium. But so far they still work fine. I would have been in a wheel chair many years ago if I had not had them done. In between having the knees done I developed Breast Cancer and had a lumpectomy. Probably why I wasn’t as concerned as how my knees look. But I am reasonably healthy now and hope to stay that way.
    I had to close my antique shop for the state shutdown and even though I supposedly can reopen on Friday I don’t think I will. Have to say I am enjoying the freedom.
    The one thing that I am concerned about is my son Jeff. He is disabled due to a brain tumor and a cerebral hemorrhage It caused blindness and stoke like symptoms. Thankfully the stoke like symptoms are subsiding but he still has to live where there are nurses always available because he occasionally has seizures. He is living in an assisted living center and we can’t visit him. Thankfully he can use a phone and calls us faithfully every evening at 7. He seems content under the circumstances but it is still very hard. We haven’t been allowed to visit him since March 11.
    I finally decided to use up some of my fabric stash and make some masks. So that will keep me busy.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Beth Laverty – oh, wow! You’ve had a time of it, haven’t you? Would you like us to send cards to your son? Would someone read them to him? Or wouldn’t that be helpful to him? Rick’s birthday was March 10 and that’s the last time we saw Tom and Becky for a pizza. So glad Jeff can call you – but I know you’d like to give him a hug!

      1. Beth Laverty

        I have had some interesting health events, yes, but God always helps me through them.
        Thank you for the offer of cards. He would appreciate it I know. A few of the folks at church have sent him cards and he always gets excited when he can tell us about it. The ladies in charge of social stuff always read him the cards which is so appreciated.

        His address is…
        Jeff Laverty
        C/O The Gardens at Orangeville
        200 Berwick Rd.
        Orangeville, PA 17859

        Thanks again for the offer of the cards.
        Beth Laverty

        1. CountryThreads Post author

          Beth Laverty – it’s such a small thing we can do and if it makes him happy, I know we’d all love to send a card! I will post his address on the next blog so that everybody will see it!

          1. Beth Laverty

            Mary, that is such a sweet offer. I really appreciate it and I know he will. This time has been so hard on so many people, it is so special that folks are stepping up to do what they can. Beth

          2. Susan Sundermeyer

            Mary, I would love to send Beth’s son a card. What a wonderful way to warm someone’s heart.

          3. CountryThreads Post author

            Susan S – I’ll post his address tomorrow! I think he’ll like to get our cards, don’t you?

  12. Kim Jovanelly

    Not sure I understand your knee replacement comment. I had my right knee replaced three years ago. I was 60 at the time. My doctor was not in favor of replacing it due to my age. I was tired of living in pain all the time. I also could not walk for exercise or play with the grandkids. It was the best decision I have made in a long time. Total recovery took over a year. But I now walk 3.5 miles a day, play pickleball, dance and play with the grands. Sometimes it gets stiff and it’s still strange to shave over it. But I do not regret my decision. Hang in there.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Kim Jovanelly – thanks for sharing your info – I agree that shaving my knee is uncomfortable! Not painful just odd.

  13. Brenda in SC

    Prayers for Jessica at this time as she awaits this news and just put it all in God’s hands and be still as he will carry you as he never gives us more than we can handle.
    Mary, no knee replacements for me, but my right knee sure makes a lot of noise and I have twisted it several times and the pain is just unbearable, but my doctor says it is okay for now. My sarcoidosis is holding its own and I only have a few flair ups every once and awhile. I try to stay stress free as much as possible and since I am immune compromised, I stay home right now or definitely wear mask out.
    Our African Grey parrots stay outside on the back porch all the time now since the weather is so nice. It is enclosed, so I don’t have to worry about any critters getting to them.
    We have two new kittens that I am bottle feeding as my hubby’s german shepherd decided to bring them home. Not sure where she found them, but she came home with one cute little gret one in her mouth one day, unharmed and then the next day, came home with a peach colored one. I guess she thought we needed a couple for the house. I thought it was the sweetest thing that she carried them home without a mark, but I am sure mama cat was not too happy wherever she is….anyway, I have been bottle feeding for about a week now and one is already on kitty chow and one is still on bottle. They are already litter trained (Thank God).
    Weather here in SC is great and we are expecting rain all this week, with up to five inches….we sure need it. Have a great week everyone.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Brenda in SC – oh my gosh! A German shepherd decided those kittens needed rescuing? Maybe the mom was gone? Poor mom, not knowing what happened to those babies – hope she still had one to mother. Sounds like you’re on the eventual road to knee replacement if it makes noise. Would love to see a picture of your parrots – did you read the comment from CA about the flocks of parrots? Interesting.

  14. Kate Schloemer

    Mary I had one knee replacement done two years ago. It pops and cracks, noise wise, and aches worse that it did before. I pray others have good luck with their replacements, it just hasn’t happened for me. I did so well at first. Then I twisted my knee and I’ve had issues ever since. According to my x-rays it looks great.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Kate Schloemer – OH NO! Something must have happened when you twisted it? Oh, that is too bad because it really shouldn’t hurt like that. Mine don’t hurt – but they’re so stiff and I walk lots around the farm. I make myself walk versus taking the cart but I’m wondering if I need to do some different exercises.

    2. CountryThreads Post author

      Kate Schloemer – honestly, your knee shouldn’t hurt!! Go to Mayo and see what they find.

  15. Diana Stanfill

    Dear Mary,
    I dont respond alot. We are all good here in Florida. My mom is 92 and I am her primary caregiver. She has fractured a rib, so she’s in pain. Thanks to that darn old osteoporosis. My husband had a bad accident back in 1996. He fell down the basement steps and has a brain injury. Then a stroke on top of it. Needless to say it’s been a life of therapy. My mom and dad adopted me in 1958 when I was 3 days old. So it’s an honor to care for my mom who didnt have to care for me. She has been to Country Threads with me though. We came to Country Threads back in 2009, ir 2010. When you had one of the weekend sales things. My grand daughters are growing. I read every post. I just dont always respond. Take care, I will check in later.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Diana Stanfill – thanks for the info for the other readers – I’ve just wondered how you’re holding up because I think you’ve got your hands full. Must be hard to see your mom in pain and your dad incapacitated. I think about all you readers who are living a life of service and being caregivers – you don’t have time to respond – just know that I’m thinking about you.

      1. Diana Stanfill

        Mary, You are so sweet. I cried when I seen my name on the list. We left Illinois in 2017 to come here. My closest friend is the gal at McDonalds. Mom is on the mend. Having issues with dehydration. I find that plenty of rest does a body good. Thank you again for thinking of me. It meant so much!

        1. CountryThreads Post author

          Diana Stanfill – I remembered that you said your closest friend was the gal who waits on you at McDonalds but hated to mention it because I think it’s sad. How about neighbors or church family? Wish I lived closer.

          1. Diana Stanfill

            The subdivision that we live in is primarily rental homes for vacationers. On both sides of us. The house in the left is owned by a guy in Connecticut. The house on the right is owned by a gramma in England. Havent found a church yet. I just hate auditioning new churches. I loved my church in Davenport Iowa. I still send my tithe there, even after 3 years. I dont cook much since we have so many in the house. Guess I better get to bed.

          2. CountryThreads Post author

            Diana Stanfill – wish I could bring you a pan of lasagna!

  16. the other Angie

    Jessica, you and your family will be in my prayers. I truly hope you will receive good news from the PET scan. Waiting to hear is just the worst. God is walking this path with you.

    Mary, thank you so much for all your efforts keeping this blog going. We all look so forward to hearing from you every day!

  17. Rhoda Ebersole

    Jessica- sending prayers for You tomorrow and always.

  18. Dorothy Sheldrake

    Both my legs are straight now. My husband has had only one replacement. Sooo one straight leg and one bowed.

  19. Charlotte Shira

    My kids, grandkids and I were rebels today! We aren’t supposed to travel more than 5 miles from our homes but we went to the Sacramento Valley national cemetery to see where my husband was buried. We weren’t allowed to be there for the burial the first of April. We decided this trip was essential. It was raining when we left my house but by the time we got there the sun was shinning. It was windy but no rain!. Then we had lunch at my daughter’s. It was a great day with family. Just what I needed.
    Praying that Jessica has great news tomorrow!

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Charlotte Shira – so happy you got to visit! I remember when he died and the virus was just taking hold! Yes, I think your day trip would be classified as essential. I think I need a trip out soon – when it gets warm I’m going to take Hazel to a nearby park to walk around.

  20. Mary Ann Platt

    My right knee was replaced in August of 2018. It has made a world of difference. I was 67 at the time.

  21. Kathy Schwartz in SW MN

    I had both knees done; one in 2013(right) and one in 2015 (left). The left leg is “larger/fatter” than the right. The doctor could not explain it. (Same Doc. for both knees.) Now I have discovered the right leg is about one inch shorter than the left. I maybe should get a “lift” to put in my shoe. People think I “limp” when I walk. I don’t think so. It does throw off my balance; walking on grass is a challenge–it is so “rough/bumpy”. But, I am so glad I had the surgery! This is nothing compared to the pain before the surgery. I feel I’m good for 100,000 miles.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Kathy Schwartz. – shorter, huh? I hadn’t thought of that. Mine are just so stiff and homely – ugly, really. Rough ground is definitely a challenge but I agree, the pain level is no comparison.

  22. Jo in Wyoming

    The only thing I’m good at getting rid of is flys! A while back a friend told us to put some very shiny new pennies around the table. Sure enough, it works, those pesky flys will go to some other table.
    Try it!!!

  23. Martha Engstler Gettysburg

    Prayers for sure for Jessica. It is so awful waiting to find out the results of these tests. We had another blah day but at least it wasn’t so cold. Yesterday was wonderful and we could be outside. My daughter came up from Bethesda to get supplies that we got for her with no problem but she can’t get. She has a problem getting any paper goods, chicken and meat, wipes and things like Clorox and cleaning products. She uses a lot of them because my grand daughter has a compromised immune system so they are really careful.

    1. patricia g hayes

      MAry, I have enjoyed following you, your quilting site, and your animals. I dd follow you and your knee replacements.
      I have had one knee done last Nov and have been going to catch up with you and make some comments. Well obviously did not.
      Number two is getting antsy and who this Corona virus leaves us probably will get it done. I sure hope NO 2 goes as well as No. 1 did. I forget it is not ,y own original when I am in pool exercising like mad.
      hope I am not doing it damage.
      Evidently I missed your problem or problems with two replacements. What is wrong. What with your animal care and farming chores how do you manage. Does sound as though you have a sweetheart of a hubby to aid you when he is in town, but.———- please answer when you have time as do want to catch up with you.
      I an excited as I had given up quilting, left oodles of fabric and tools when I was ugly from discomfort before surgery, planning never to go into that quilt room again. Well, May is here, I am in there and started a quilt and am enjoying the “workings”.
      Bye now sweetie, do not know how you do what you do and get done, but being a positive gal like you ar, must be.
      looking forward to hearing from you and do hope what i missed is not serious. Piffle or Piff

  24. Jane Lamborn

    I wasn’t sure how you meant “changed”. My knees were done over 4 years ago and I don’t think they are any different looking other then the incision. If you meant “feel”, it was over 6 months until they felt normal – meaning I didn’t notice them. The pain was gone in a matter of weeks. Hope you are doing well or are you overdoing with all the yard work? I have noticed my balance on rough ground isn’t the best and I blame that on age!
    Take care! Thanks for all the great posts- consider you a dear friend I’ve never met! Other than being at your shop a couple times years ago!

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Jane Lamborn – I agree – rough ground makes walking difficult!

  25. Jennie

    Jessica I will be in prayer for you. God will be there for you. and Mary both of my legs do look different. Each knee a different dr. The right knee was done 20 years ago but going strong. Just keep moving. Blessing Jennie in Texas

  26. Jessica T in Florida

    Hi Mary and all other readers,

    I was doing really well, only had 4 more hormone blocker infusions to go after this cancer journey and then I developed rib pain that couldn’t be explained.o My oncologist sent me for an MRI of the breast to see if something was wrong there. He called me the same day I had the scan to say there was something ‘suspicious’ in the rib area and ordered a PET scan to see if the cancer metastasized. My husband and I are going tomorrow afternoon for the results. I have faith that all is well and the rib pain is just something silly, but I’d be lying if there wasn’t a little fear also. I’m just going to give it to God, he knows what I can handle.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Jessica T – we all hope the rib pain is nothing serious – remember – Be Still and let God take care of it. Please let us all know the results of the PET scan. We’re all praying for you!

  27. Launa

    My retired son went Morel mushroom hunting south a few miles with a few friends yesterday. Some say they can sell for $200 a pound! He got quite a few and cut in half , washed in case of bugs, drained, dried the morels and battered and fried lightly to serve with grilled steak and salad. Delicious!
    Then during the meal he shared about seeing a coiled Timber Rattler! Thankfully, we don’t have those @ our altitude.
    Tonight we have three deer up outside the kitchen window and another four down below in the front all eating new sprouting spring greenery. My country lawnmowers! The Elk come later when they sense our dog Pepper is asleep in the house. No way could we have a garden up here.

  28. Judy Brennan

    Mary, you are doing great if you are walking around the farm and tending to the animals. It hasn’t been that long since you had your knee done. It took me a year before it stopped hurting and was “a part of my body”. It got continually better and better. Take your time. It will heal beautifully and keep doing the exercises if you don’t think you can get to 135 degrees bend. Continue to walk and walk. I was glad I did it, although the pain was more than I bargained for. If you want to chat about this, let me know. You’ll get through this and the better for it. I still have the other one to do, but it isn’t severe enough yet for me to go through the pain all over again. You’re doing great!

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Judy Brennan – guess it hasn’t been so long really – no complaints except for stiffness!

  29. Debbie Miller

    You asked-both my legs are thicker(wider) around the knees and became hairy around my scars. That might just be old age though!

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Debbie Miller – my calves disappeared and yes, my knees seem too big for my leg. I was always bow legged and now my legs are straight but just seem wrong somehow.

  30. Sue Jacobson

    Legs changed? How so? Straighter? Thinner?
    I’m so hoping I can say that next year at this time! I’m on hold til December- which seems like a long way off!!
    My bird(s) story. We live on a little 30 acre lake. We’ve recently had a couple of geese visiting. They are really messy so we don’t encourage their visits. We stuck a plastic owl down by the dock in an attempt to scare them off. This morning one goose was sitting right next to the owl while the other was swimming close by! So much for that owl!!

    1. Amy

      Sue, my friends have the same problem at their lake. A lot of people have “road closed” sort of wooden A frames set on their walkway/gangway close to the shore to block the dock to keep the geese off the dock. They are about 24” high and easy to move when they use their dock. It’s not 100% but does help. Amy

    2. CountryThreads Post author

      Sue Jacobson – haha! Loved the owl story – they’re buddies now!

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