Monday, January 21, 2013

The unexpected defrost....

At the moment, we have snow on the ground outside...and the contents of my freezer is in the garden!

Of course, you are probably wondering why....or maybe not....depending on how curious you are...but regardless, I'm going to tell you anyway. The real reason is actually quite boring, but I thought it was a good tip for you while we have such cold weather and thought that you might like to steal my idea.

I went to the freezer today to choose something for tea. I went to open the door, just to discover that it had been left ajar and the motor was working overtime in producing a large number of ice crystals, trying to plug the gap where the door used to be. There was a certain amount of slightly soggy and soft food, which isn't ideal when its supposed to be frozen and the door would no longer shut at all as there was too much ice in the way. I got the Ken Hom cleaver out of the kitchen and whacked at the escaping iceberg formations, but the door still wouldn't shut. I guess it was a wake up call to me to defrost the freezer!

Now, normally I'd run the freezer down before defrosting it, so I could get the entire remaining contents in a cool box, but today, the freezer was full...eeek! It was then I had the inspired idea of putting the drawers from the freezer outside in the snow while waiting for the freezer to defrost. Well, it worked - what a result! Defrosted freezer, frozen food...AND...I don't need to decide what to eat for the next week either as I have a fridge full of unexpected food combinations too!

So folks...hop to all that defrosting now ;-)

Thursday, January 03, 2013

New year, new update!

I know that I've been fairly lax about updating my blog, but like everyone I seem to have been busy and just not got round to it. Part of the reason is that it has been suggested that I write my life experiences down (maybe a book in all of this?) and so my writing has rather been confined to doing that at the moment. So far, I've got as far as being about 7 years, if I keep going at the rate I am with the writing it could take some time! In the meantime of course, there has been Christmas, which was quiet, but really nice with a load of family time and of course, after the end of the world, the New Happy New Year everyone!

Its been a while since I gave any kind of update on my back and I thought that since I am now nearly 7 years post op (yes, really!) and also because I have some news, I thought I'd do a health update. Actually that's a lie, since I have good health, its just my back that is rubbish really, so I'll do a back update.

Towards the end of 2012 I saw my consultant and due to the fact that I still get more pain with my back than he would hope for in an ideal world, he called for an up to date CT and MRI scan of my top to my bottom (quite literally!). This meant 5 minutes or so in the CT doughnut (boring) and a full hour in the big MRI tube (which I seriously enjoyed). Now I know its very, very odd to like the MRI machine, but I do...somehow I find it very hypnotic...but I think I've told you that before. It was actually quite funny before I got the MRI, because they ask you all sorts of questions - things like:

Have you ever had any surgery?
Do you have any problems with your spine?
Do you have any metal inside you?
Etc. etc.

So, after I said yes to everything but diabetes and organ transplant, they said "Oh, it'll all be fine anyway" and so I had the scan...

Weeks pass before the results arrive (this is the NHS you know) and I went to see my surgeon to see what he thought. He took one look and sucked the air in over his teeth in exactly the way mechanics do before they hit you with the big bill (not really, but I'm trying to prepare you here) and said "your bones are rotten". Now I thought he was just being rude, but it turns out, that he actually meant rotten as in all broken and wearing away. Actually - he didn't mean all my bones, just my L5 vertebrae at the bottom, but it seems it needs fixing and there isn't enough bone to screw into any it needs a nice new metal cage. In addition, the bone graft at the top of my existing fusion has failed and so needs redoing. He wants to extend my metal there, just a little bit, just to help it all heal. I guess this is the understated version of what is going on, but this short version means I am back on the surgery list. Waiting is at least 9 months so watch this space.

I guess, just like so many scoliosis surgery cases, who have the surgery done when they are older, that the first fix isn't the only fix. The scoliosis forums are littered with people who need a bit of a second go to get it right, so I'm just joining a very select group. I'll post some more later on how I feel about all of this...if I keep going now, you'll get readers cramp and your eyes will get all crossed..!