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Dare to Dream by Alan Teusher on 500px

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Forgiveness- Just what the doctor ordered.

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I quit posting years ago, because I had stopped working on my weight and was just posting for social reasons…..or I just got lazy??? I couldn’t overcome my exhaustion from work, chronic pain and depression and work on my weight. My knee got horrible last year, and so this January I went in to the surgeon, who refused to do a knee replacement, and asked exactly what weight to I have to be for a knee replacement. So, I have a goal and a deadline or painline and have been working on my weight again and came crawling back.


Time for my every 2 year status update, epic! “It’s a real tear jerker, and emotional roller coaster!”...Entertainment Tonight. “Tolstoy, couldn’t have done better!”….Moscow Daily News. “Oy vey, it was long, what a schmuck!”….Jewish World News “Reading this I feel like I have been in the Bardo for 7 days”….Tibet Today

My back was bad in December, but by the time I got to the appointment in late Jan., my neck had been really bad for 4 weeks. So, I decided to have my back guy look and see if there was anything he could do for my neck. Before I got to see the doc, they took me back for x-rays, and I was surprised, but thought they would ask me what they were for. Nope, they started doing my back, and I figured it was just follow-up, and then they’d do my neck. Nope, they just did my back and sent me to the room. I then talked to the doctor and told him things had changed and he sent me back.

He looked at my neck and scheduled a procedure for the following week. The problem was they had torqued my back doing the unnecessary x-rays, and it had gotten worse, and worse throughout the day. It was so bad by the next day; I had to call and cancel my neck procedure, and request another back procedure- nerve block lower back.

While resting and trying to sit up a bit for office work, I got a visit from an IRS collections agent. She was great, but had an aggressive time table for getting her forms, data, pesos, etc. So time stress, but it was great to have this planned out and in the open, and was over a great stress relief.

A couple of days before the back procedure, my knee which I had had injected two weeks before with cortisone started hurting badly. The time before I lasted 6 months, so I was bummed. I had talked to the Knee doc, about what if it didn’t work well this time, and we had set up to do SinVisc, if it didn’t last. So the day before the back surgery, I had the first SinVisc injection, and one each week for two weeks.

I finally had my procedure, and my back still felt really bad, and I after a week was worried it hadn’t worked this time. About ten days later, I had a scheduled apt. for oral surgery and decided my back could take the time in the chair and went ahead. The procedure was for a tissue graft, for an area of my gum receding on my lower front teeth. Ick, ouchy! I was out for about 4 days from doing anything, and then started to do more, while eating a liquid diet for another 10 days.

My back and teeth were still sore, but not acutely, and I hoped I’d be better soon, but then felt a pain at my belt line, which I knew was Diverticulitis. I knew I it was happening because of the amount of pain killers, with the back procedure and oral surgery back to back. I have had it recurring since 1991, and have had a huge number of exams, so I called and gave the nurse all of my symptoms, answered the questions they always ask, and gave her the results of my exam of the things they are concerned with. I then begged her to ask the doctor to re-fill the same medicine I get every time, without coming in. I told her I knew I would get sick with something else if I had to come into the office.

She said, he said I had to come in to get a script. I did, and after a few days after the diverticulitis was feeling a bit better, I started coming down with Bronchitis/virus. I have always had a hard time with it, since I cough so hard- have thrown a rib out before- and couldn’t believe I had another ailment. After a few days of coughing my head off, I realized one day, my back and teeth didn’t hurt. Yea! Cough….

This lasted two and a half weeks, and then I was feeling better for a day, when I got hung up with the crews one morning, and couldn’t get to breakfast until late. My sugar crashed badly, but since I have been Hypoglycemic for 30 years, I had had it happen before, and the next day I always felt fine. Well….this time I didn’t.

I progressively felt worse and worse. Some symptoms were like Low Blood sugar- hard time answering questions, aggressive, irritable, etc., but others felt like my sugar was through the roof- hyped up, super edgy, etc. As this went on, I was really afraid this crash, had kicked me into full blown diabetes- been pre-diabetic for years.
I was afraid to eat, and cut out all carbs, for fear of feeling “juiced up”, and pretty much had salads with tofu/walnuts for a couple of days.

I couldn’t find my old sugar meter, since my sugar had actually been great for years, so I couldn’t know what was up- I’m terrible with any kind of not knowing. By Saturday, I couldn’t even work, and didn’t feel that great watching TV. I did however finally get the paperwork done for a meter. I was really shocked that the readings weren’t through the roof, but were not that bad. I had eaten a too large lunch and it did get up to 172 that afternoon, but after this it would be 85-95 before meals, and around 125 after.

So…..I didn’t know, but went into the doctors. It started great, they weighed me, and I had dropped 13 lbs. with my Oral Surgery/Bronchitis diet. He said he could find no evidence of sugar problems, or anything else, and said it could be some kind of virus causing it (aka. I don’t know). He said go back eating regularly and check the sugar and see how you feel. If a virus it would probably last another 5 days or so- 2wks. total. So, wait and see? That went over well.

I did feel a little better each day, but it drug on a while. I did eat my good carbs I usually do, but had stressed and researched so much about my diet, I decided to keep some of the things I had done to tighten things up, and the commitment to not eat anything bad or slightly bad, to ensure I really don’t go into Diabetes.

Having to cancel plans over and over, to work with the problems, has been really stressful- I hate having to call / tell people I can’t do something I planned on. Also, I am way behind with the schedule the IRS collections person worked out, but I have gotten a number of things done and sent to her, and so far, so patient. My plate has been overfull with dealing with old tax problems, keeping current with accounting, and spring planning- yikes!
I am still a bit wrung out, and very stressed, but I am not “sick” now. My low back is better, and my knee felt better after the injections pretty quickly with the compression pain, which really helped, though I still have the same bad nerve on the side of the knee if I step a bit off. Hopefully the illnesses are over, and we are back to the normal joint pain of Spring- being on my feet, on sites a lot.


I will be MIA for all of August. My lease for my business was terminated 7/20, after 25 years of being there. No reason was given, and no option to stay, so I have been in crazyville looking into properties to lease, buy, temp. storage places, financing, etc., etc.

I had just started back to PT and Water aerobics, and have not been able to get back at all since this came up. My depression, anxiety, and stress level have been off the charts. I did do one smart thing, at the beginning, that was out of character.

Usually, I would hype myself up and start fighting immediately, irregardless of my condition- real healthy practice. This time I felt exhausted since it was the end of the season, and I was within a day or two of taking off to rest- sleep vacation. I felt punched in the stomach, pooped, and unsure if I could deal with this new challenge- many other words were considered, but wouldn't have passed censure.

Anywhoooooo, I decided to stay in town, but take off a few days to rest, since I knew I had to have more strenght to deal with all the details in doing this. I typed out all of the ideas and to do's to move, to get it out of my head, and went home to sleep for 4 days. It wasn' very restful for my mind with so much to think about and worry about, but it was very helpful for my body to have the rest. I had a bought of vertigo and even got 3 days of extra rest.

So, I have been feverishly working through all the to do's and have found some possible places and a very good realtor. I still am very confused and unsure of the new course to take. So, there are many questions to research and look into, and I have a number of visits the next week with financial people, realtors, business consultants, etc., so along with my usual work, I won't have any time this month to be on spark.

After the end of the month, things will be resolved in some way, and after a brief stay at a lovely suite in the local mental health hospital, I'll be back on Spark. I hope everyone has a super healthy, happy month! Take care, bob

Prior entry: 7/16
I am in recovery from the Spring season. With age and health problems, they get harder every year. With the help of the 2008 economic problems things are much easier in recent years, due to fewer jobs, and this year was no exception. I did much better with over-eating this season, as reward for working such long hours, or for stress relieving, etc. My knee; however, seems to have hit a tipping point, and has given me a lot of trouble. I think the last cartlidge is about gone, since it feels like it's bone on bone all the time, and the pains are much sharper and more like bursts of nerve pain. I am hoping to get back in Physical therapy and water aerobis soon.

Current Health Problem:

I had a CT, last Thurs. morning and they found free air in my abdomen. They sent me to my doc and he didn't see me, the nurse came out and said he saw the report and said I should go immediately to the ER. They thought I'd need surgery asap. When I finally saw the GI surgeon he said a diverticula is perforated but since there is only air so far and not bowel waste he wants to try and treat it with anti-biotics. So no food or any fluids including water for at least 24 hours to see if it will seal on it's own. If it doesn't which is likely, they will have to remove that section of colon- big surgery.

If this hadn't been caught so early it likely would have leaked my bowels into my abdomen, blood and absessed- evil bad. I got a prostate infection yesterday and they were checking for something else so I got lucky. Film at 11:00, updates as I can.

Post 2: Saturday 2/5/11

I had two really ruff days so I haven't felt like updating. After two days on NPO I started feeling really de-hydrated, which really felt alwful. I already had a splitting headache since getting here so the two together were not pleasant. They couldn't give me anything for my headache, because I couldn't have fluids, and evidentally there is no IV headache medicine. Also I was having really deep coughing because of plegm building up with the bed rest.

Saturday, I was feeling horrible about the water, when they said I could have fluids. I told my wife I needed to be alone with my glass of water. OMG, I never loved water more! I was brought a lunch and was stunned by what they had. Sprite, popcycle, Juice with high fructose corn syrup, and chicken broth. Well I had the Jello and the Cranberry Juice, and had a problem.

I have been a vegetarian since I was 17- a few months before I last shaved up to last Nov., and had a problem. Even if I could get a vegetable broth without ham delivered the same night, it wouldn't have the nutrients the chicken broth would. I decided as ill as my body is that ethically it would be best to take care of it, and I could resume my vegetarianism after my hospital stay. The only thing I'd really lose is being able to say proudly, it's been 35 years since I ate meat. So I ate meat, Sat., and my wife said that it was something she thought she'd never see- like me without a beard. I told her I like to keep things fresh and change up every 35 years or so.

When we saw the surgeon at the end of the day, he said that from the x-ray things looked so bad that he recommended surgery as soon as all infection was gone and I was totally cleaned out,. The surgery will be to remove the entire Sigmoid colon, and clean up a few diverticula on the ascending and descending colons. No date on when, my guess at this point is mid-week next week. Then a 5-7 day recovery still on liquid foods- can't recommend this as a diet: however.

At the end of the day on Saturday, I started having really bad chills and my fever went up to 102, which really rung me out. it's been up and down since then, not as bad, but not staying down, and when the surgeon was here I asked what he thought about the cause of the fever and he got a sick look, and said you have a fever? He looked P.O. ed and worried, said I am NPO again, will have a CT and left. I think he is worried that the perforation has opened up and is letting in bowel, which is causing the infections.

The temp stayed up all day Sunday, around 101.5, and since I was NPO they said they couldn't give me Tylenol for it. Around 7:00 the tough old night nurse came on, and got on me and the fever. She walked in and said, "Now what is the last thing I said to you?" Me not remembering wasn't great, and then she said, "Don't get another fever! Just like a man to not listen." She looked a little concerned and said you know I am just joking, and I said, I liked it and go in. My wife chimed in that I give as good as I get.

She said my temp was 102, and asked what they had done during the day to keep it down. I told her nothing because NPO, and she looked very displeased and said we are going to get this down.

I was so exhausted from the fever, chills, that I was going to go on to bed even before halftime, when the nurse walked in with bags of ice and said we are going to pack you in ice and get it down. I was scarred I was going to start chilling, but told her if you are going to do it, how about one on my bad disc, it's killing me from all the bed rest. Anywho the ice only brought it down a bit, so she went with a backdoor tylenol, and after the game- wide awake now, I went to bed, and it broke over night.

Post 3: Tuesday 2/8/11

Yesterday, I had tests all day and got totally wrung out with that so couldn't check in. I did have the CT Scan, and an evil gaseus X-ray and cleansing- next time I'll check massage at the spa, instead of cleanse. The procedure was about 2 hours, was very painful on my joints and condition, and pretty much got rid of all feelings of dignity. The upside was I had some great jokes in the midst of it all- even cleansing he still has it!

After getting a new IV line put in, and the nurse keep asking if she hit the vein and did I feel any burning, I'd about had it with all sticks. The day before they tried 7 times to get 2 blood cultures and only got one. I asked about a pick line or a central line, and nobody got back to be, and so I kept getting stuck over and over. Anyway after the IV, I got up to go to the restroom and could watch as my hand was being inflated. It could have been something else, but when she said she'd pull the IV and put it in somewhere else I got adamant about the other line. I did get it, and that has removed so much stress, especially in the middle of the night when the vampires come for cultures. My hand is deflating slowly.

My fever got up to 99, but did not spike during the day, but I still was dragging from the prior two days and the days testing. When the surgeon came in, instead of standing in the door, saying something and dashing out, he plopped down in a chair and looked confused. He went over the tests, and basically none of them said what he thought.

All is for the good on my part, but he has no idea what is causing the infection, since the CT doesn't show any inflam. in my abdomen. He quoted Sherlock Holmes about a fine mystery or something, and said we'll see if the fever spikes again and if so he'll have to operate to go into the abdomen and see what is going on. This was so different than expected, I didn't ask what if it doesn't spike? It didn't, so I am sitting here still NPO, no food, nothing to drink, and waiting to hear.

After all this, a nurse came in about 5:00 and said are you still having surgery? I told her not today, and she said that I was down to prep. It seems that it was planned, since they thought I was getting septic and had to go on and do it, after the tests confirmed it- hince him looking so baffled.

So, I think we are back on schedule, as far as get clean, and have no infection, so the surgery should be in a day or so.

Post 4: Thursday 2/10/11:

Later Tuesday the surgeon came back in, and said that he had heard of cases like this, with air in the Abdomen and no holes, but in 25 years he'd never seen it. He was going to ask another GI surgeon to come in and look over his shoulder and double check everything.

A cute Bengally doctor came in and very precisely checked me out, and asked very specific questions. At the end of it, he stood up and said, "This is very interesting, I don't see how this is happening either." He said he'd talk to my surgeon and they'd get back.

After this, I went onto bed, and I had a ruff night Tues. since I was so exhausted going to the bathroom from the tests, and I was terribly de-hydrated after that and still being NPO. I have done really good with my attitude and been very jolly, but after waking up, I just felt pissed- all the tests, rubbed raw in the bathroom, no drinking, and no results. The surgeon intern came in and asked how are you doing, and instead of making a joke, I told her.

She said she unfortunately had another thing to add and that was surgery. They were going to go ahead and do it about 5:00 ish. She said the surgeons and x-ray doctors disagreed about what was going on, so the surgeon was going to go in and look around.

He will go in laproscopically through my belly button and look around for any inflammation, pus, leaking diverticula, etc. If he doesn't find anything he'll exit and fix my umbilical hernia on the way out, and I'll leave in a few days.q If he found any leaking, he'd immediately open me up, take that section of colon out and I'd be here for some time.

So, I hurriedly tried to get up and do some office work, before they came to prep me. I only got a little done, and the nurses had me start prepping about 1:00. One of my X-ray techs from the last two days stopped by the room to see how I was doing. She said how much tehy enjoyed me and all my jokes- it was so sweet that she came by.

There was a lot of waiting and scrubbing, and down in the operating waiting room, a lot of staring up into very bright lites. When we went back to the surgery table, they were really pleased I could go from one table to the other by myself. I think they were worried I'd need help.

The operation went great and all he had to do was step one, in and out, and left the colon alone. He told my wife that there were no perforations now, no liquid, no pus, and very little inflammation. When he opened me up the free air on the abdomen rushed out he said. So, he fixed the hernia and I was in good shape.

Yeah!!! small surgery, not really big procedure! So I had a lot of abdominal pain, and couldn't keep the liquids they finally gave me down, but was so relieved that the end was in sight. Today, I have kept the fluids down- still no food. I finally could P, and walk a little, which has my legs feeling better.

I just about have the pain meds figured out, but it still is really painful. The highlight today was a visit from the nutritionist that I asked for. Since my Lower colon wasn't removed I will really need to watch out for diverticulitis and so had a number of ??? We had a great 45 min. question and answer session and it was great talking about future healthy eating, and not my symptons.

Laurie left to get some things at 5:00, and I totally zoned out and had the best sleep I have had in a week. Total Zombie, until the blood doc., came in. After the rest, and a new pain med. I got up and had my liquid supper. After this, I was finally able to stay up long enough to post- yeah!

It looks like I'll be here another day on liquids, and then if I do ok, I'll have solid food on Saturday and they'll see how that goes. If it goes well I could leave Sat. or by Monday for sure!!!! A bit of wait and see, and but the end is very near. Thanks for all your support!

Post 5: Saturday 2/12/2011:

Yesterday went well. Lot of pain getting up in the morning, before the pain killer kicked in. My lips and throat are also baked dry before getting up. The bi-pap really dries out what little has moisture, and it takes a bit of ice to get my mouth moistened.

After being up a bit, the abdominal pain get's a bit better, and so long as I don't move much or cough I do ok. I was very fortunate to be able to be up and do the payroll yesterday, by remote desktop. I was exhausted after, and crashed, but was sooooo glad to have gotten it done.

I was able to get some sleep last night between getting

pills and them taking blood. Hopefully if my food stays down today, I'll be able to go home! I keep falling asleep posting this, so I better go get rest. bob

Post 6; Monday 2/14/11:

Everything went well Sunday, with just a lot of napping and waiting to leave. My food was staying down well, and my legs a bit better with the walking I was doing. The heavy coughing has been less, which really helps my abdomens pain.

I got to leave around 4:00pm, after I got Laurie to swap out the Mini-Cooper for one of my trucks. I told her I might could get in the cooper, but getting out wouldn't be pretty. Once I got home, I waddled in and went right to my tempur-pedic bed and gave it a hug and then went straight to the living room and re-uinited- and it did feel so good- with the Tivo remote. It took us a little while of fumbling around to get comfortable together, but it came right back.

All Sunday, I slept, tried not to cough, and had fun getting up with my sore abdomen. I kept watch for the cat, whose favorite place in the world is sleeping on my stomach. The thought of him jumping up and walking around on my stomach was not pleasant. I caught him both times earlier, then let him climb up by my shoulder and sleep, when I was up in the middle of the night.

I came in to the office today, to do a half a day or so depending on what the ole body can do.

It will take some time to process what happened, but I do know a few things. Given the right glucose in my blood, I don't have food cravings for specific things. I went 8 days without food, and never had a cravinng, so those foods that have such "control" over me, don't seem so strong.

I was without liquids for 7 of 8 days until, he allowed food and water the last 2 days. Being without my diet coke, juices, etc. never bothered me, but I was dieing for water after the first two days.

The first 6 days he was planning to take out my sigmoid colon, which wasn't acute enough then, but it is still very bad with many diverticula. Also there was no reason figured out for free air in my colon, so besides for the umbilical hernia, I am pretty much where I was going in. I was so cleaned out prepping for surgery and so tested, I do know there isn't any cancer lurking in this area.

So, I am going to really watch my diet in requards to quanitity / fibre, etc. to keep my colon clean. I can't lift anything for 6-8 weeks, no water for some time also, so I am back not being able to do aerobic exercise for some time. All in all a sobering 10 days of what bad health can do to you.

It makes all the complaints and whining seem pretty small, when you are just dieing to be allowed water, get up out of bed and walk 5 minutes, eat something, etc. I also really appreciated all my core work for my lower back I have done at PT. It made it so much easier getting out of bed, chairs, commode, etc. I can't imagine doing it withought these super strong muscles.

Thanks to all for the great support I got during this!!!!!!!!!!!!

xplanation of 10/11 status. The Alabama Crimson Tide foot
ball team loss Saturday, falling from the ranks of the undefeated, and the number 1 position. The totally appropriate language is due to the fact that I grew up in Alabama while Bear Bryant was coach and it was / is a religon following our now fallen warriors.

Could have used a Snail shell! I was taking it easy at the office because of the cataract surgery and diverticulitis, when an old office chair leg gave way and I fell backwards and hit my head on a table and then my kneck landed on the metal bar between the table legs. As I lay on the floor with my head braced in my hands I told the computer consultant who was there, "I didn't hurt my back!!!"
I was very dizzy and nauseus, but didn't know if it was the Flagyl medicine I was taking or the fall, so I decided to go to the emergency room- with my recent luck... The CT scan was fine and they said just ice and rest and told me, to not fall on my head again. I also went to see the Eye doctor and he said the lens was fine, but said, "Don't fall on your head again!"- see a trend.
I told him I didn't have any plans to, but was starting to wonder what would happen next.
I have been very woozy, had a head ache, been unsteady, and had a hard time working on the computer, walking, thinking, etc., but I know it will come back slowly this week. I am having a lot of good work on practicing patience and quite a long time resting my joints. Hope all goes well this week and can use my joints exercising- knock on wood.
I should get my glasses end of the week and be able to see with two eyes for the first time in 5 months, my anti-biotic will run out soon and the diverticulitis will be gone and I can go out in the sun end of the week, and with rest my concussion will clear in a few days. "Healthy" by weeks end- knock on wood- "functional" will be fine- knock on wood.

Survivor hasn't called back about the "Eye of The Snail" theme song- bummer. The doctor said everything with my eye looked great after the cataract surgery. I had expected to go another month without glasses, while the new lens settles in, but the doctor today said we could go ahead today if I wanted- da! let's go. He said since my lense was not a clear one, but a very near-sighted one I had more wiggle room on the pre-scription.
On the diver. front the medication Cipro an Flagyl has been terrible. I have had it before with little problem, except terrible taste, but this time I have been extremely dizzy, and haven't been able to sleep. There are no substitutes for the meds. so I'll just wobble on, which is a lot easier to take with the great eye news- I can see with two eyes in 7-10 days when the new glasses come in!!!!

Sorry for the snail analogy, but it is how I feel, gradual progress, but it is sure slow and ain’t pretty. I am frustrated as I was dealing ok with my cataract surgery and was hoping for a short walk today and now another hurdle. I am very pleased that my depression stayed fine- great therapy sessions last two weeks. Also my resolve to work on my weight / health is intact, and I’ll get over this soon and be able to run and play like the other little boyies. I did get immediate treatment last night at an after-hours clinic and it shouldn’t get too bad with the meds. It will delay me from getting back on site next week, because I won’t be able to go out in the sun. But hey, it will be a good transition back to my tightened up diet I had established in the early Spring. As I have alluded to I had made some “allowances” due to the heavy work load, and have had a bit of a hard time tightening things back up- I just wish I had found an easier way than this. The gods are having far too much fun messing with me!

My post op visit went well and he said the lens looked perfect. I have to rest for a week, can’t be around dust, and can’t bend over. After that I can gradually start adding things like exercising- with very low weight so no PT for my back for some time, going back on the job sites- flat ones with low dust, and no lifting on site for a few weeks, water aerobics is at least 2-3 wks. out. I plan to get back working on my diet this week, rest, and add some light walking end of the week.
I am excited that I finally have a “harder” set date for me to resume doing my exercise and work. I started putting in estimated dates for gym work, PT, and water aerobics, and noticed I had gaps for my mid-back PT, and my shoulder and hand PT, which doesn’t require lifting. I am excited to have dates I can “see” not to far away to get back to my usual “abnormal” state- yeh!!!
I will have to wear the eye patch for the next month, because of the disparity in my lenses / glasses. I just hope, I can fight off the chicks for another month, they have really loved the bad boy image!!!
Due to how bad the sight is in my good eye, the high chance of a torn retina in that eye, my age, shape of my eye, etc. it was decided that the safest thing to do was put a rather weak, near-sighted lens in my eye needing the cataract surgery instead of a 20/20 lens. I’ll have to wear glasses with two different prescriptions- one for each lens- and they can’t measure the eye operated on until it settles in, which takes a month, then I can get new glasses. Due to this, my current prescription makes me sick if I don’t cover that eye. I am still not sure about not getting a clear lens (20/20), but I went with the safest way my doctor recommended.
If / when I have a torn retina in my good eye, he said they will put a 20/20 lens in and do laser surgery on my eye just operated on with the weak lens, bringing it up to 20/20. The only thing not fixed at this point is a shadow I see at about 4 o'clock. It was hoped it was caused by the cataract, but it seems that it is caused by the tear. Hopefully it will go away with time, but if not, I am sure I'll get used to it.
For now though I am looking forward to a month of adding back my personal work on my health, with something being added and availible each week and hopefully come months end I can see clearly with both eyes again for the first time since the end of march. Yeh depth of field and not being sneaked up on on my right side! Take care all! bob

I am trying this to update in a shorter fashion. My eye surgery will now be on 7/26. I had too much to wrap-up from the season and was getting slammed with the drought, so I decided to move it from the 15th, and not get stressed out. I can't be around dirt for a week after, so it rules out going on site, so all needs to be in good order first. I went to a new doctor a week ago, and was weighed for the first time in 2 months, and was very pleased my weight hadn't gone up in the two months, of allowances to my diet- very active hard working days. So on my health I am starting to drop the eating again as my days get easier.

I have been seriously working on my weight since last year. I had severe back pain in February, and knew a change was needed- after 30 years of neglecting my health. The bad economy also freed up the extra time I needed to work on my health. My diet is really cleaned up now, I am mainly focused on portion size and emotional eating. Getting back into exercise has been really hard because of my many joint problems and other health issues. I do have a great team of trainers, physical therapists and doctors I have built up this last year, and between us we are finding things I can handle- most days. The Sparkpeople site is really helping me in my weakest area- support- that is from people I don't pay. Thanks to all of you on the site!

Member Since: 2/7/2010

Fitness Minutes: 2,016

My Goals:
To lose enough weight to take the strain off my joints, and hopefully relieve the daily pain with them. I also hope to be able to garden and landscape again at my home, and on jobs occasionally. Also, I want to be more active with my wife, who has been basically stuck with me working and coming home and collapsing day after day.

My Program:
I currently go to physical therapy for my lower disc, twice a week. I am in maintenance so I work on my own, and have added a lot to my time there. I added 1/2 hour of stretching, 1/2 hour of cardio, upped the weights to 1 hr, low back work is 1/2 hour and ice. I also have started water aerobics one-on-one with a trainer. I am doing 2 one hour visits a week, now and hope to go to 3x when my joints allow. I do yoga once a week. I see another PT for my shoulder- no work out, and I see a therapist every other week- been weekly. On the weekend I try and walk 30 min., one day and rest the other. I have worked with two nutritionist and have gotten all the "bad foods" out of my diet and am just working on eating the right portions of good foods. I am also working on eating as much organic as I can. I check-in with a great PA at the Univ. Weight Loss center. She answers all my health questions related to weightloss, and is watching my progress.

Personal Information:
I grew up on a beautiful mountain on the edge of Huntsville, Ala. My father was a rocket man and my mother a teacher. I am married to a saint- she'd have to be, being with me for 30 years. I am a Garden Designer and have had a small landscaping business for 30 years. I have been Buddhist about 30 + years and have a wonderful Tibetan Buddhist teacher. I have always been interested in all faiths and really enjoy hearing and learning about other peoples beliefs- I studied Religion in College along with a few other things. Besides gardening I love photography, music, electronic gadgets and am an avid reader.

Other Information:

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