Welcome to Anne's blog!

If you are new to the blog, you probably want to start at the beginning of the whole sad story. To get there, use the "Blog Archive" tool in the right column of the blog and click on "2009," and then "January 25." From there you can continue to click on each week to see the weekly entries.

I would love to hear from you! If you would like to leave a message, you can reach me at aheetderks@wcsmiami.org!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Well, it is 3:24 am and I am up.

For the last week or so, I haven't felt the need to take any pain meds during the day. For some reason, I sleep like a baby during the day without noticing much pain. However, the minute the sun goes down, my nerve pain kicks in so I usually take a percocet at bedtime. Although this helps with the pain, it doesn't seem to put me in a sleepy mood (it doesn't help that I sleep all day which is most likely throwing off my clock a little). So, I just lay in bed--listening to Doug snore and thinking happy, melancholy thoughts. That is one thing I can say for percocet--it always fills me with this overwhelming sense of well-being. I just lay in bed thinking of how much I love my family, how grateful I am for good health, how rainbows are so pretty after a soft rain, that kittens are some of God's most cuddly and precious creatures . . . things like that.

So, here I am thinking about how much I love the softness of my bedsheets, AND that I am wondering if I need to change the format of my blog. I started my blog to alleviate the need for Doug to repeat information to caring and interested friends and family over and over again. Never did I think that this blog would end up telling the story of a woman falling off a ladder and ending up needing a lower leg amputation--but here we are. I am grateful for the written record of my journey--both medical and emotional. It is a blessing to be able to read back over it and see how far we have come. God has been so faithful.

The only downfall of my blog is that readers have to periodically check in to see if I have updated it recently. I have always thought that it would be nice to have another format that would send out email or text notification of updates. Well--there is and it is called Caring Bridge. Caring Bridge is a website that would allow me to have my own page that would have space for me to write my usual ramblings (called your "Journal" page)--but it would also allow you to leave comments/words of encouragement, look at pictures, etc., etc.

I have come to love the look of my blog but I can see that it might be nice to make it a little more convenient for my readers (listen to me sounding like I am writing Newsweek or something).

Anyway--if you wouldn't mind participating in my poll--I would appreciate it. See it up there in the upper right hand corner? Just take a moment to tell me what you think and I will think about what to do next week.

OK--now that I have this dealt with, I will try to go to sleep. (If I am not successful, I will simply start searching for pretty pictures secretly embedded in my popcorn ceiling.)

Love to you all,


Friday, October 15, 2010

We had a great weekend last week. First, I was able to get a haircut. Nothing like a haircut to make you feel human again. Before I left for the salon, Elise looked at me and said, "Your leg looks so normal I bet they won't even notice that your foot is gone." I said, "Oh thanks honey, but I am sure they will notice that something is missing." So--she came up with her own solution. She figured that if she walked very closely behind me that no one would know the difference.
Did we trick you? Look at this picture as proof that I have my leg back!!! (Not really--it is Elise's foot tucked behind my short leg. Pretty sneaky, huh?!?)

We also went to the park and the girls challenged Doug to a running race. After a lot of bravado that he would
easily win, Doug got his rear end whooped by his oldest daughter. Poor guy.

I have had a lot more phantom pain in my foot this week. It has kept me from sleeping at night so I sleep mostly during the day. I don't mind. It is kind of nice being awake in my house when I know that everyone is home with me--but they don't need anything from me. It is nice having a very low maintenance husband and kids.

A wonderful mother of one of my students just happens to be in charge of the physical therapy department at University of Miami. I spoke to her yesterday and she is lining me up for a whole bunch of great stuff. One, she gave me the names of some occupational therapists that work with you to get "certified" to drive with a left-foot gas pedal. This means that I will get an appliance installed in my car that will move the gas pedal from the far right to the far left. The brake will remain in the center. After OT has approved me, they will send me to the DMV for another driving evaluation. If I manage to pass without taking out any innocent bystanders, I will be completely legal to drive. That sounds great. Not cheap--but great.

She is also going to work to get me hooked up with a therapist that is trained to help amputees with phantom pain. There are a lot of different therapies that I would like to try (like the mirror therapy) that I am doing on my own because (so far) I haven't been able to find anyone that does it. Well, Teresa is setting me up with people who do. So awesome.

So many people have offered to help in gazillions of different ways. It is so wonderful that--when the need arises--I can call these people to get connected to people that can actually help me. I am so grateful.

I would love to write more but I feel another nap coming on (I sleep constantly!!!).

Love to you all, my friends.