Living Life In A Wheelchair

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May 2023 Newsletter Edition

The month of May has been very full. I've had a few things happen that weren't planned. Everything considered I am satisfied.

Rocky The Hamster seems to be adjusting to the abscess. I wish it wasn't happening to him. But in terms of his day to day life he is eating, drinking, foraging, grooming and generally acting like a hamster. I really enjoy when Rocky has a sleep in the sleeve of my house coat. I equally enjoy petting his forehead as he stands on my hand. He brings me a lot of joy. The abscess has required that I spend more time focused on Rocky. I've been able to identify more of what he says through his body language, different postures and activities he is doing. I have a wonderful bond with him. I sincerely hope the abscess is able to be cured. But the good news is that I've learned how to manage this and Rocky co-operates with me when I am apply his medication.

My right knee hasn't recovered from the series of setbacks. I've experienced in 2023. On January 20th and March 3rd my right knee joint locked while it was in the tub. I haven't had the upper hand on the pain I experience in a few months. I am physically run down from experiencing poor quality sleep. I haven't made ongoing progress on my goals. What has been best for me on so many days has been to rest. On June 1st I have an appointment with the specialist responsible for managing my chronic pain. I like this doctor. I know I will be listened to and that this appointment will go well. The doctor I will be seeing is very attentive. He's been very understanding and has given me the sense that he is along for the journey that was set in motion from my Legg Perthes disease starting when I was 2 years old.

I am continuing to make some progress with my laser engraver setup. I am trying to finish off the vent hood assembly. This is the process that will expel fouled air outside my home. I am trying to do this while contending with the pain I am experiencing in all my leg joints and the broken sleep this causes. I've made great progress. What I've worked on is adding brackets Plexiglas may be secured to. I am going to use Plexiglas to secure the 4 sides and top. Overall this is going well. I still haven't completed my 2022 income tax return. I need to address this. Then I will finish the physical construction of the vent hood and set it up. The process is taking longer than I want it to. On the other hand I feel I've done well considering what has been physically transpiring with my leg joints. I am really looking forward to start earning money with the laser engraver and as a result of increased cash flow improving my quality of life.

As a hobby I continue to enjoy having a weather station on my property and sharing the data it produces. The server that receives and processes the data from my weather station required maintenance this month. One of the drives that runs the computer program that processes my weather station data died. It was easiest to reinstall the Linux operation and the specific computer program that broadcasts my weather station data. In just under 2 weeks a major Linux update will be released. I will need to spend a few hours reviewing the latest documentation on the Linux software updates and assess for any concerns that will conflict with the weather station software before installing it. I enjoy detail oriented tasks. The mental work out compensates for my physical disability. I am looking forward to this.

The grief support group I attended had the final follow up session in mid May. Essentially the purpose of this was to highlight and offer additional supports for those members who need it. I received what I was needing by attending the group for a second time and the one on one help the social worker at my family doctor office gave me. I am use to getting stuck into what I need to do even when it isn't fun on account of my legs. As a result I enjoyed attending this group even though it wasn't a fun experience. For as much as it is practical and when my legs aren't interfering I have been living my life since the completion of the group.

I have been having longer soaks to ease the pain and stiffness in my legs. With how I haven't been feeling well I need to make the best use of the time I spend using the tub. I have purchased a Bluetooth keyboard so I may work on my blog while I use the tub for my legs. This keyboard will connect to my tablet. It is bothering me that I've got behind in writing my blog entries. The health care community recommends having a journal or blog when you have a chronic health care condition. I often think while I am writing. Part of what I write about are the highlights of life that I experience. They are worth sharing. I want to get back on top of this again.

For several years now I've used a single serving rice cooker. These are sold with the characteristic of being able to cook up to 1½ cups of uncooked or 3 cups of cooked rice. I turned to this style when the 6 cup family size model didn't do a good job preparing my single serving of rice. The rice wasn't cooked. For the most part the water had simply boiled off. For living by myself this small model of rice cooker has worked very well. When I was a child we ate potatoes. I am not anti-potato. The challenge is that it isn't possible to buy a 10 pound bag of potatoes and eat through them before more than half of the potatoes have started to rot. What amazes me are the small rice cookers are the recipes included in the packaging. They provide recipes for single and two serving meals that don't all use rice as an ingredient. These small rice cookers are very versatile.

Shortly after my aunt was diagnosed with cancer I had purchased my next rice cooker. I remember photocopying the recipes and mailing them to her as an activity for her to look at during the few days she felt weak following her most recent chemotherapy treatment. She enjoyed cooking. This was a random idea to help break up the monotony of enduring treatment for cancer. This rice cooker wore out. I had to replace it this month. I found a 2022 model on Amazon that was clearly being sold off to make room for the updated model. It is digitally controlled. It has a slow cooker mode as well as a mode to cook my breakfast oatmeal. This has come with it's own recipe book. Being able to feed myself is one of the essential tasks for maintaining my independence. I manage this by cooking some meals when I am hungry and by cooking meals in bulk and freezing them. This works really well for me. I seem to be able to work around the short comings of my legs.