Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Colonoscopy here I come

Well I had my GI consultation today. I really like the doctor a lot. I guess I'd have to considering we're going to get a little personal and all ;) He did a great assessment on me so I felt happy about that. He agreed by looking at my CT scan result from the last bowel obstruction in June that we do need to rule out intussusception by seeing if I have a polyp in my ascending colon. Otherwise everything was pretty normal. I went over my CF meds with him because with some of them he wasn't too familiar. No biggie, I'm used to that. He said he was impressed with my health and that of course made me feel great. He said my abdominal assessment was essentially normal, no liver enlargement, Hemocult negative, etc.

So the big day is November 2nd. Woo Hoo! Since I'm a GI Nurse he was pretty funny and said that since I was very knowledgeable in this area, the need for his instructions was minimal. I was pretty happy with the bowel prep too. I'm so grossed out or maybe just traumatized by Golytely so I was a little nervous about him saying I had to do that. But instead he does a Miralax/Gatorade prep. Works for me, and I was very happy. Well as happy as one can be for bowel prep anyway ;) I'll just be happy when everything is over with and I can have some piece of mind. I'll have the procedure done in an outpatient center similar to where I work with the same Anesthesiologists. That's nice because hopefully I'll have to pull and get to choose my Anesthesiologist. I did for my Upper Endoscopy a few years ago, so that was a perk.

Otherwise that's the hightlight of my day. I went for a great run today and really pushed myself to the limits. That felt great!! The 5K is only 3 days away!!!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Tuesday Ten

I kind of feel as If I've been pretty boring recently. I haven't had overly much to blog about really. However here's my list of my Tuesday Ten....Just some random happenings in the life of me :)

1. I won a Happy Hour at a cool place in Baltimore. I never win stuff, so I was very excited!!!!!

2. I did some major outlet shopping on Sunday and to my surprise got a ton of awesome deals, and knocked some Christmas shopping out! :)

3. I've been Running, Running, and more Running. My 5K is this Sunday! Gulp.

4. I have a dinner/GI nurse lecture this week at Ruth Chris steak house, can you say yum!? ;)

5. I've been buying Girl Scout cookies from the Doctors at work like they are going out of style. For some reason I have a hard time saying "No" and so at this rate we'll have cookies to last for about 10 years, ha ha.

6. It was decided this week that I will be hosting our family Thanksgiving here at our house this year. So excited!

7. I'm loving the Fall weather and am making a point to thoroughly enjoy it, and take time each day to appreciate it. Anything from the smell in the air, or the crispness, to a leaf crunching under my feet.

8. I think I've bought a Pumpkin Spice Latte everyday this week, I'm going to turn into a Pumpkin soon.

9. I've had a rough couple of days last week. Family issues, emotional stress, and worrying about things...or everything for that matter. All in all I'm grateful for Scott who is so great at being such a wonderful husband to help me pull through the rough spots.

10. I think I'm going to surprise Scott this Saturday with us going to a Pumpkin Patch to get some pumkins and decorate the house for Fall!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

They're Dropping Like Flies

So the running is going great! (For Me Anyway). My coworkers are slowly bailing out on the running. I started the Couch-5K plan over again because they wanted to start running with me. And now each day that we're all "supposed" to run, there are excuses excuses excuses. It does frustrate me because I stopped my running plan to accomodate them by starting over. I think the only thing to do is look at it positively that it gave me simply more practice.

I'm definitely not letting it affect my attitude or running though. I simply take my gym bag that I have @ work, change and just run by myself when I get home. Yes sir, I am sticking to this and am not going to stop!! I mean I was running long before they joined the group. I just really like having others to run with, and running alone is just that...alone.

They said "We'll start fresh on Monday" hmm...if they don't want to run now, what makes me think they are going to want to try again. And I wonder, do they expect me again to stop my plan and go back to where they are? I can't, I have to keep moving forward. We have our 5K that all of us are supposed to be running in 2 weeks. Running is something that I have to do and will continue it until I'm an old lady ;)

Chin up!

Monday, September 21, 2009

CF Awareness

Hey CF peeps...Want to help out with a cool project??? Visit my friend Ronnie's blog here then! :) He and his girlfriend are working on this aweosme project and could use your help. Check it out. They would really appreciate it!

Friday, September 18, 2009

6 Miles

It's been a good week. I'm super excited to say that I ran a total of 6 miles this week!! :) I've been running on Monday, Wednesday, Friday (with the work girls) and Saturday at home. This week we did a total of 6 miles, not including what I'll do tomorrow. Feels great!!!!!!!!!! And I'm looking forward to keeping up the increase in mileage. :)

Monday, September 14, 2009

Special Patient

I am blessed to get to meet new people every single day being a nurse. Most of my patients will have a story to tell or make simple small talk. Then sometimes there is one that touches me deeply with their life story. I had this experience last week. And I told this patient who of course will remain nameless, that I thought her story was amazing and I wanted to share it. I think she was even more touched by that.

So my patient who was a female was coming in for a routine procedure. She was very nervous, but most patients are when about to go into surgery. I was telling her how to change and what to do with her belongings when I noticed she was trembling. This made me dig a little bit deeper, and I know she needed someone to talk to. So after she pulled the curtain she got onto her stretcher and I began my routine assessment. I took her blood pressure which was sky high, neither one of us were surprised. She looked at me with a terrified look, so I tried to calm her and asked her what I could do to alleviate her anxiety, and what exactly she was so afraid of. She was so grateful she started to tear up. She said she was just so scared to have this procedure, since her father had died of a cancer and she was afraid of the results. We began to review her medical history and she admitted she had a history of HIV. At that moment she started to cry. My heart broke for her. I'm required to ask her how she acquired HIV and she told me of a history of IV drug abuse. I'm happy to say she has been clean for 19 years this January. I let her cry and held her hand and just listened...

We went on with the assessment and I told her I was going to start her IV. She had an episode of Post Traumatic Stress and began to panic at the sight of the needle and cried heavily. While trying to keep my composure I just wanted to burst into tears with her. My heart ached for her and her regrets. She was wonderful with the process, and I talked her through each step of what I had to do. When I applied the tourniquet she cried and almost screamed saying "I used to tie belts to me and rip them tight to get my veins to come up." "I can't believe I used to do this to myself." I rubbed the alcohol on her and I thought she may pass out, but she was so strong and brave and told me that I had a job to do and not to let her get in the way of that. Of course easier said than done, because I truly felt for this woman. I put the needle in and she started to shake horribly. Almost like someone would while having a seizure. It was awful, but very quick and she was able to stop. The whole time she was having flash backs of her drug abuse days. You can tell it was every bit of traumatic.

I sat there with her and consoled her and finished up our work. She warned me that she had no veins left from the abuse. I reassured her in a joking way, that I was a pretty good vampire and we'd be A-OK. And we were just that. I got her IV in a tiny area on her hand and I have to say even I was happy to find one that worked. She immediately thanked me and cried and cried some more. She was so grateful to GOD for letting her get this far in her life. She thanked GOD for letting her be a survivor. She thanked GOD for letting her be clean for almost 19 years, and for giving her re-birth. She cried that these horrible things she'd done to herself had caused her to have HIV and she doesn't understand what made her do those things to herself. She frequently cried out "Why, why did I do this to myself!?"

She inspired me so much. Her faith alone was amazing to me. She had so much to be grateful for despite her past and she knew it. She made it through the dark and now is able to live this new life as a "clean" adult. Through her tears (and almost mine) I reminded her that sometimes in life we all make mistakes. Some of those mistakes are much bigger than others and have extremely different outcomes or circumstances. What matters is what you choose to do with those lessons and experiences. And I told her to be proud of herself. Yes she made some mistakes that could have taken her life, but look at what she gained from it as well. From those life experiences, she now is who she is today. She's a drug free, Faithful, and turned her life around and now has a gift to help others who are in the shoes she once wore.

At the end of our triaging I wheeled her back to the O.R. I stayed with her until it was time to start her procedure. As soon as she was in recovery in her sleep she was calling for me. I went over to her and when she opened her eyes she said " Jessica, I don't know If you've been told this today, but I want you to know you are an Angel who made my day."

Sometimes patients just leave a mark on you....And I'm happy to say her procedure went 100% perfectly.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Soupy Saturday

Cancelled this weekends plans to stay in and feel better. Was supposed to go to a birthday party for my friends daughters 1st birthday. Then to a surpise party for 2 of my cousins tonight. Better to be smart and stay in, plus I don't want to spread this germs to anyone else. Relaxing is the name of the game this weekend.

As some of you know I love to cook. So today I thought I'd make some comfort food for the weekend. I'm feeling better overall, just sound awful. I think it's a combo of the TOBI and the cold, but probably more of the TOBI. Cooking just makes me happy and definitely made me feel better today. In all the years of cooking, experimenting, and recipes I've done, I looked back and realized I've never made Chicken Noodle Soup. So today I did just that. I made a great pot of soup from scratch and it was delicious. I was on a roll and also made 2 loaves of Pumpkin Bread from scratch. Then I did bread with home made herbed garlic butter. YUM! Nothing like eating warm comforting foods when you have a cold. It was perfect.

Tomorrow the cooking continues with Caprese Bread, Pumpkin cheesecake bars, and Pumpkin and Shrimp bisque. Tomorrow also brings FOOTBALL Sundays back! So far this relaxing weekend plan couldn't be any better. Well....I guess it could be better is this junk in my chest would go away :) If not better by Monday I'm going to call Hopkins and see what they feel safe prescribing me. Hopefully won't need antibiotics, but we'll see.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Tobramycin Remedies? Please.

I'm feeling better and I think I'm doing pretty good at keeping this cold out of my chest. Hooray for that. Those sinus rinses (as gross as they are) sure are amazing! I'm currently on my TOBI cycle, started 5 days ago. It works wonders and is so great, however I lose my voice just about completely every time I am on it. I've asked the doctors if there is anything I can do or take to help with this. They said they weren't too sure, but to just gargle warm salt water which doesn't help unfortunately. Maybe some others out there who take TOBI know something that works for the voicelessness???

I bought Airborne at Target today. I figure it can only help keep this cold from getting worse. And a little immunity boosting is always nice :)

*Remembering 9/11 we will never forget*

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Pretty much on Track

Well I called Hopkins to touch base with them today about the cold. I went to work and did well just tired of course. No fevers, just lots of sinus drainage and the annoying hack. Anyway Hopkins decided to hold of on the Levaquin after all since we're TTC again. Basically I'm to do what I was doing in the first place....TOBI 2x/day, HTS daily, Sinus rinses 2x/day, Pulmozyme daily, up the vest to 2x/day if needed, and Mucinex 2x/day. Sounds good to me.

*fingers crossed*

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Sick day #2

I'm home from work today feeling worse actually. Last night I took Nyquil and it knocked me out for about 12 hours. I woke up to my head being so congested that I felt dizzy. And things in there are changing colors so that means infection. Ugh. I'm just hoping I can try to prevent it from going into my chest. I'm doing my vest 2x a day, Sinus rinses 2x a day, and am on TOBI currently so that helps. I also got a RX for Levaquin. I'm trying to stay as Proactive as possible. So I hope this does the trick. This head cold or whatever it is is actually making my face hurt. Heres to a day in bed....and to feeling better soon. Oh you stupid cold, you won't get me down!!!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009


Ugh it's that time of year for the lovely change in seasons cold. Well at least I hope thats all it is. It started yesterday when we were out just enjoying having the day off. I had a continuous runny nose and just didn't feel right. Sure enough as the day went on I felt worse. By this morning I now have a mega sore throat and just want to go back to bed.

So here I sit at work because I thought I'd be ok to come in and maybe I'd feel better once I got up and moved around some. Wrong. I'm drinking OJ, taking Zicam, Vitamin C, Cold-Eeze lozenges, and Day-Quil. Please cold or whatever you are go away soon. :/

Just waiting for the boss to come in and tell her I'm going home....

Saturday, September 5, 2009

First CF meet up

Today was a wonderful day and a first for me. I met up with some of my fellow Cf'ers that live in Maryland and it was awesome!! Like I've said before I've never met anyone else with CF, let alone people that are so close to where we live. Thanks to the lovely CF sites like and, and good old Facebook I've met some amazing people with CF that I can say I'm friends with now. I love it.

So the meet up today was for my friend Danny's 2 year lung transplant anniversary. We went to our Maryland Renaissance festival for the meet up party. I also met another fellow CF friend, Juliet. Over all it was an amazing day. All of us talked and enjoyed each others company as if we'd known eachother for years. We got to enjoy foods, drinks, and fun. We got some great pictures too which are already posted on FB. I can't think of a more wonderful thing to celebrate. I'm so happy I was able to be a part of it.

I'm definitely hoping that we can do more meet ups in the future. Some of us have talked about meeting in NYC for the day possibly. All I can say is, it was such a great experience today. I'm so extremely grateful for having the opportunity in this last year via the CF sites, blogs, and FB to have met such wonderful people who have truly impacted my life.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Friday Fill Ins


Friday Fill-Ins we go!

1. I feel exhausted.

2. Shopping is always fun.

3. Right now, I can hear these things: My vest and nebulizer

4. It's almost Fall and I'm glad Starbucks already has the Pumpkin Spice Latte back!

5. The last time I ran was today.

6. Mandatory overtime this week makes me happy about having off this Labor day weekend.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to relaxing at our campfire via our fire pit, tomorrow my plans include meeting some fellow CF'ers at our Renaissance Festival, and Sunday, I am going to a graduation party for my cousin who just received his Masters Degree.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Thankful Thursday

There are so many things I am thankful for in my life. My health, family, friends, our home, job, CF network, positive outlook, I could go on and on forever....

However today I am most thankful for MY BED. Today was anticipated by us all week as being the longest work day ever! And just as promised it was. Getting to work at 5:45 in the morning and being on your feet all day long without barely a chance to take a bathroom break means exhaustion. I was on my feet today for about 14 hours and am beat. Kind of to the point where you are so tired and exhausted that your body aches and you feel sick. I'm home alone tonight since Scott is playing cards with the guys. Maybe I can train the dogs to rub my feet? ;)

I'm extremely grateful for my job and love it. But I'm pretty sure I can hear my bed calling my name right now. I am happy to oblige and go collapse in it!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

First 5K run!

That's right, today I signed up to do my very first 5K run!!! I'm so excited for this. Talk about a great goal to work towards. I've been doing the couch to 5K plan for a while myself. Then when the girls at work started to run with me, I started over and together we began at the beginning. The 5K is Sunday October 4th. By the time of the 5K we'll be at week 7 of 9 which has you running 2.5 miles in about 25 minutes. Very exciting!

The 5K supports the Colon Cancer Foundation. This run is dedicated in the memory of a patient of ours who lost the battle to Colon Cancer a few years ago. I can't wait to do this!!!

And the running continues! :)

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Tuesday Ten (Happy September)

Hooray for September! It's officially the start to my most favorite time of the year! So I'm dedicating today to 10 things I'm looking forward to in September :)

1. I'm super excited first of all to be meeting some fellow CF'ers this weekend!! I've never met anyone else with CF so I'm super excited, also a little nervous (in a good way). I'm meeting them at our Maryland Renaissance Festival. It'll be great to actually meet some of the CF folks that I talk to on Facebook,, and CF2Chat. Very Cool.

2. My favorite wine Festival is this month in a very rural beautiful part of the state. By far my favorite festival of the year.

3. Going to an expenses paid party at a piano bar in Baltimore called Howl at The Moon. My cousin won a free party there and I'm going. I feel super cool too because it's VIP and you have to be on a list to get in. Woo Hoo!! I know I'm a dork, but it's the little things that make me :)

4. I'm going to see U2 this month and I can't wait!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Enough said.

5. Going outlet shopping to my favorite newly remodeled Outlets. Yay! This could be dangerous ;) However I'm all about getting a jump start on Holiday shopping....oh and buying my Halloween costume too.

6. I have my GI consult this month for my colonosopy. No it's not necessarily desirable I know. However I'll be happy to get checked out and have piece of mind. So to me, it's a good thing.

7. I am doing my re-certification for ACLS (Advanced Cardiac Life Support) this month. As a RN I have to do this once every 2 years. Kind of nerve wracking, but once it's done, I'm good for 2 years. Ahhh.

8. I'm also looking forward to continuing my running regimine. I'm so happy that I have the girls at work to run with now too. It really pushes me harder than ever and I'm feeling and seeing great results. I'm happy to have kept this running stuff up for almost a year now.....and counting!

9. Several surprise parties, graduation parties, and birthday parties this month. Including my nieces birthday party tonight.

10. And here's to FOOTBALL season!!! Woo Hoo!! Time for Football Sunday's, relaxing, and making awesome comfort food!

So Hooray for this time of year.....I also had my first Pumpkin Spice Latte of the season today at Starbucks. Great stuff, and many more to come :)