Thursday, June 30, 2011

hippy bridal beautiful

Hippy brides need to be beautiful on their wedding day too.  It is the most important beauty day of my life.  Hopefully not the most important day of my life, but the most important beauty day.  This is how a hippy bride gets beautiful for her wedding day.

1)  Get rid of those pimples.  I have acne prone skin so it has been a chore to get rid of my pimples.  This is what I do. First I go swimming everyday. Not only is this good exercise but the chlorine zaps those germs that cause pimples and dries out my pimples.  Next I have a prescription for Acanya, a topical antibiotic cream that I put on in the morning.  At night I apply a prescription vitamin A cream.

Exfoliating is key.  I exfoliate my face and body every other day in the shower.   When I am done with the shower I wipe my face, neck, chest and back with an astringent with salicylic acid in it.

Be germ free.   I wash my hands several times a day.  Everytime a switch to a different activity.  Like when I am done watching tv, or before I use my computer. As soon as I walk in the house from outside I always wash my hands.  I also have alchol swabs that I disinfect everything with.  I disinfect all my makeup when I am done applying it.  I disinfect, the phone, computer, purse handles, doorknobs, toothbrush, steering wheel of car.  Pretty much anything I will be touching.  You should also wash your makeup brushes once a week.  I wash them with regular shampoo and dip them in alcohol and let them dry.
Finally I use Alba, an organic face mask.  It gets rid of my pimples and leaves my complexion baby smooth

2) Kissable lips.  To get kissable lips you need to exfoliate everyday.  I exfoliate twice a day.  In the shower at night and with a toothbrush in the morning.  You also need to moisturize.  I use softlips chapstick in the morning and at night before bed.

3) Moisturize.  I apply an oil free moisturizer at night plus a special under eye cream.  I have an all over body moisturizer I use at night

4) Makeup.  It is important to find the perfect makeup for your wedding day and practice applying it.  Dont use foundation with SPF in it because it will interfere with the flash and make you look washed out.  Also eyeshadow is important.  It is important to get a palette of shades that are not too shimmery. You also want your shadow to be highly pigmentated and soft in texture.

5) Beautiful Hair.  I use K pak on my hair a few times a week.  I leave it on for 30 minutes and then rinse.  Also, dont forget your swim cap when you are swimming to protect your hair from the chlorine and sun.

6) Massage.  I am getting a massage a day before the wedding to relax so I dont feel like bridezilla.

Well, I hope my beauty regime works.   We will see in one week how I look.  I have no pimples as of today

UPDATE ON HIP.  My hip was feeling fantastic 2 weeks ago (still in pain but a lot less pain, I can walk farther).  Now, it has regressed a little bit. I had to use my crutches yesterday and it was hard to sleep last night. The only thing that I have changed is now I am only going to physical therapy only once a week now.  I was going twice a week.  Hopefully my bridal massage will help my hip feel good for my wedding day.  I will be sure to ice my hip a lot this week as well.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Saw my surgeon QUICK UPDATE

Last week I met with my surgeon, Dr Safran.  (So many people have said great things about him).  He said I am doing great!  I have improved a little bit, but a little bit of improvement is good in my case.  I believe I have improved about 30% in the last three months. 

When I first met with Dr. Safran, I was on crutches full time.  I hated to get up in the morning. I hated haveing to walk to the bathroom because I was in so much pain.  I just sat in bed most of the day.  Now I am off crutches and I dont dread walking to the bathroom.  I still use my cane to walk sometimes, but now I feel comfortable going places by myself.  I feel confident that I can walk from the parking space into the store and maybe even walk around the store a little if I am feeling really good that day.

So, Dr. Safran checked my strength and was happy with my progress.  I have never worked out with so much ambition before.  My hip flexor is still really weak.  But hey, Dr. Wright just cut into my hip flexor 10 months ago, what do you expect?  Dr. Safran is hoping I dont need another surgery.  I am hoping that too.  I see him again in 3 months.
I still have good days and bad days, but more good days than bad.  I am feeling so happy with my improvement.  For me, a small improvement is actually a huge improvement.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

An Open Letter To Those Without Invisible Disability

This week I am not writing my own blog post.  I am too busy planning my upcoming wedding.  But I found this open letter written by Ricky Buchanan and I thought it was great!  It really expresses what I am going through.  Take a read.

Having an invisible disability (ID) and/or invisible chronic illness (ICI) means that many things change. Just because you can’t see the changes doesn’t mean they aren’t real.
Most people don’t understand much about these disabilities/diseases and their effects, and of those that think they know, many are actually mis-informed. In the spirit of informing those who wish to understand …
… These are the things that I would like you to understand about me before you judge me…
Please understand that being disabled/sick doesn’t mean I’m not still a human being. I have to spend most of my day being very careful what I do, and if you visit I might not seem like much fun to be with, but I’m still me stuck inside this body. I still worry about school and work and my family and friends, and most of the time I’d still like to hear you talk about yours too.
Please understand the difference between “happy” and “healthy”. When you’ve got the flu you probably feel miserable with it, but I’ve been sick for years. I can’t be miserable all the time, in fact I work hard at not being miserable. So if you’re talking to me and I sound happy, it means I’m happy. That’s all. I may be tired. I may be in pain. I may be sicker that ever. Please, don’t say, “Oh, you’re sounding better!”. I am not sounding better, I am sounding happy. If you want to comment on that, you’re welcome
Please understand that being able to stand up for five minutes, doesn’t necessarily mean that I can stand up for ten minutes, or an hour. It’s quite likely that doing that five minutes has exhausted my resources and I’ll need to recover – imagine an athlete after a race. They couldn’t repeat that feat right away either.
Please repeat the above paragraph substituting, “sitting up”, “walking”, “thinking”, “being sociable” and so on … it applies to everything that I do.
Please understand that the effects of chronic illnesses and many disabilities are variable. It’s quite possible (for me, it’s common) that one day I am able to walk to the bathroom and back, while the next day I’ll have trouble sitting up. Please don’t attack me when I’m worse by saying, “But you did it before!”. If you want me to do something, ask if I can and I’ll tell you.
Similarly, my illness/disability may vary suddenly, meaning I may need to cancel an invitation at the last minute, if this happens please do not take it personally.
Please understand that “getting out and doing things” does not make me feel better, and can often make me worse. Chronic illnesses/disabilities may cause a secondary/reactive depression (wouldn’t you get depressed if you were stuck in bed 23 hours a day for years on end?) but they are not caused by depression. Telling me that I need some fresh air and exercise is not not correct and probably not appreciated – if I could possibly do it that, I would.
Please understand that if I say I have to sit down/lie down/take these pills now, that I do have to do it right now – it can’t be put off or forgotten just because I’m doing something else more exciting. Illnesses and disabilities do not forgive their victims easily.
Please understand that I can’t spend all of my energy trying to get well from my incurable chronic illness/disability. With a short-term illness like the flu, you can afford to put life on hold for a week or two while you get well. But an important part of having a chronic illness or disability is coming to the realization that you have to spend energy on having a life while you’re sick/disabled. This doesn’t mean I’m not trying to get better. It doesn’t mean I’ve given up. It’s just how life is when you’re dealing with a chronic illness/disability.
If you want to suggest a cure to me, please don’t. It’s not because I don’t appreciate the thought; and it’s not because I don’t want to get well. It’s because I have had almost every single one of my friends suggest one at one point or another. At first I tried them all, but then I realized that I was using up so much energy trying things that I was making myself sicker, not better. If there was something that cured, or even helped, all people with a certain illness or disability then we’d know about it. This is not a drug-company conspiracy, there is worldwide networking (both on and off the Internet) between people with similar and different chronic illnesses and disabilities, if something worked we would know about it.
If after reading that, you still want to suggest a cure, then do it if you must. Preferably in writing and accompanied by the scientific papers that prove it works. But don’t expect me to rush out and try it. I might not even reply. If I haven’t had it or something like it suggested before, and it sounds reasonable, I’ll probably take what you said and discuss it with my doctor.
Please understand that getting better from an illness can be very slow. And getting better from an invisible disability might not happen at all. People with chronic illnesses have so many systems in their bodies out of equilibrium, and functioning wrongly, that it may take a long time to sort everything out, if it ever happens.
I depend on you – people who are able-bodied – for many things.

But most importantly, I need you to understand me.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Disability Discrimination

I know it is hard to believe but I get discriminated against regularly because of my disability.   I know this sounds crazy right?  I thought so too, until it started happening to me on a regular basis.  It happens to be at least every month.  The majority of people in this world are nice decent people, but one sour apple can really ruin your day.  I have learned to stick up for myself and to complain and write letters to companies anytime a discrimination occurs.  My disability has really given me a lot of self confidence in this sense.

Luckily, I have the American with Disabilities act backing me up.  Under Title III, it says any private place of business that is open to the public must make accommodations for people with disabilities.  There is even a special section for airports.  I have only had one incident of discrimination happen at the Bellingham airport.  One good thing about having a disability is I never have to wait in line at the airport!  I have learned to carry around a copy of Title III in my person in case any body gives me any trouble. It also helps to carry a cane with me because it signals to people that I have a disability.

I will share a few of the most recent discrimination stories with you.

I was at the mall crossing the road to the parking lot.  I was in the crosswalk.  When I get tired, I walk with an obvious limp with my leg dragging behind me.  I always have to walk slowly and gingerly.  As I got finished crossing the cross walk, the lady waiting for me in her car yelled out her window "Hurry up, your holding up traffic!"  And then sped off to get a parking space.

I have had two incidents at Target.  I always ride the power carts to do my grocery shopping.  I cant go to a store that doesnt have these power carts.  As I was getting on the power cart at Target an employee starts yelling at me and running over to me.  The employee says to me "These are not for children to use, these are for the elderly and people with disabilities."  Another time at Target I was riding around on my cart and an employee was glaring at me and rolling her eyes and sighing.  I thought that she couldnt be rolling her eyes at me.  When I went to ask her where an item was she says to me  "you know you shouldnt be riding that thing."
I did write to Target and they promised to speak with all 400 employees in the store about the American with Disabilities Act.  Also, they were very apologetic.

These are just a few incidents that happen to me on a regular basis.  I can understand why people would be confused, since I am young, healthy-looking, and dont look like I have a disability.  However, there are a lot of young people with disabilities and I think it is important to bring awareness to this.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

My hippy surgery

I had my first hip surgery Sept 13th to correct a labral tear and to correct a tight hip flexor.  The reason my surgeon did this surgery first is because it was the least invasive surgery.  It is arthroscopic  so I just have two small  scars the size of a dime.  The surgery only takes about an hour, then I can go home to recover.  The recovery is also relatively quick.  4 months for most people.  Not for me though because my hip still hurts.

The next surgery I am talking to my surgeon about is for my impingement called FAI surgery.  This is the second least invasive surgery.  It is more invasive than the first surgery bc the surgeon has to take your leg out of your hip socket and scrap out all your cartilage, shave off some bone, then put your hip back in.  This surgery can be done arthroscopic or open.  If it is not an open surgery then you can go home after surgery.

SURGERY NUMBER THREE (hopefully dont need this) 
If that doesn't work there is a third surgery option for me to correct my dysplasia.  This surgery is called Periacetabular Osteotomy (PAO).   Surgery 2 and 3 can be done at the same time but since my my dysplasia is not really bad (just bad enough to cause a ton of pain though ) my surgeon is hoping that the impingement surgery will work.  For a PAO surgery the pelvis and hip socket is broken and then pined back together as seen in the photo above.  This is an open surgery.  There will be a big scar and it is more risky.  There is more loss of blood.  The hospital stay is about one week.

SURGERY NUMBER FOUR (hopefully dont need this) 
If surgery number 3 happens then surgery number 4 needs to happen to remove all the pins.  Petite and / or thin patients have the most problems with the pins because the pins poke out through the skin and are painful.  You can see the pins too.  Also when it is cold out they will ache.  Another surgery needs to be performed to remove the pins. 

SURGERY NUMBER FIVE (will need someday) 
Hip replacement surgery is inevitable for me and other patients with my condition.  Many patients get the hip replacement at around age 35 which is the minimum age surgeons want to do a total hip replacement.  The reason you need to wait to get a hip replacement is because your body, or pelvis, cannot support a hip replacement forever.  It is possible your hip socket or pelvis will give out and you will be in a wheel chair in 40 years.  At 75 you don't want to be in a wheel chair.

ALTERNATIVE TO SURGERY NUMBER FIVE (alternative to delay a hip replacement longer or forever) 
There is a new surgery out as an alternative to a hip replacement called resurfacing.   This option is suppose to be less stressful on your body and it gives a tighter fit to the hip socket.  This means it is less likely to dislocate, meaning, many patients can still go snowboarding, play tennis, or basketball.  These activities are not really an option with a total hip replacement.   

Whats wrong with my hip. I'm so hippy.

Alright a lot of people are  confused about what is going on with my hip bc I am too young to have a hip problem.  I will try to explain it the best I can.  To start off, before my Sept 13th 2010 surgery I had 4 things wrong with my hip.

1) labral tear.  A piece of tissue that lines the hip socket was torn and the torn part was catching in my hip socket. OUch

2) tight iliopsoas muscle (hip flexor) also known as snapping hip syndrome.  My muscle was super tight and would rub on my hip joint and was not in the correct position

On sept 13th i had surgery to correct these two problems.  I had a labral debridement and a iliopsoas release.  The Dr. cut away the torn labrum and stitched it up.  There is little to no blood supply to the labrum so it rarely heals on its own.  The Dr.  also cut my hip flexor muscle to make it longer.

But I have 2 more things that are wrong with my hip that actually caused problem #1 and problem #2

3) Hip dysplasia.  This is very common in dogs.  I was born with hip dysplasia but it didnt cause pain until i had my growth spurt around 13 years of age.  Hip dysplasia means the hip sockets are shaped wrong and cant properly support the hips.

4) Femoral Acetabular Impingement (FAI).  My hip socket hits the head of my femur, bone on bone.  This problem has gotten more painful as my cartilage wears down. 

oh and i also have

5) Osteoarthritis, or breaking down of the cartilage caused by wear and inflammation.  But there is nothing the surgeon can do to fix this.