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Archive for the tag “gall bladder”

LIFE’S MEDICAL EVENT’S!

When you read this you will know why you will receive nothing from me next week. I will have knee replacement Surgery early in the morning, June 4th 2018. I wanted to share some medical history that you might encounter in your lifetime. If you do not know me and hope to live as long as I have this might help you get better prepared to grow older. This is the first bionic implant for me.

When you are blessed with a life as full as mine has been about the only major event before you croak is one more operation. When I was 12 I jumped off of a fence and had a rusty nail go all the way through my right foot. Got a tetanus shot from a nurse and never saw a doctor. My mother wrapped my foot with gauze ans soaked my foot in kerosene for a week. At 15 I had a Dermoid Cyst removed over my right eye. This was the first Doctor I ever saw in my life. A large scar is still visible. I broke my only bone at 17 when I slipped and broke my right thumb. With a cast from my fingers to my elbow for 16 weeks was uneventful.

Three and a half years active duty in the Navy only left me with a crown on a wisdom tooth. The next 27 years in Aerospace got me 3 stitches in a finger when I shoved a screwdriver 3 inches up my left middle finger installing an oil filter on the engine of an F-47, WWII fighter plane when I was 22. I had half of my stomach removed due to ulcers at age 45. At that point in my life I had 3 children with my first wife and four with my second wife, Norma, who I will celebrate my 58th anniversary June 23rd. 

I saved the other medical moments until I retired at 63 in January 1994. In my 46 year work life I visited 32 countries and worked in 23 and in 49 States. Flew over 4 million miles and never even has a sick day away from home. In the last 16 years I worked I spent over 2500 nights in Hotels, Motels and some strange places in remote areas of Saudi Arabia, Aba Dhabi, Dubai, Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, China and Thailand and never had a medical event.

I have been retired now over 24 years. Starting with the Golden Years my first event was loss of my gall bladder with an 11 inch scar, 12 days in two hospitals and after 4 days of 104 fever they finally operated. Some 15 years ago I spent two different seven-day stays in the hospital with high fever and blood problems before they deduced I was suddenly allergic to shell-fish. Many of the remote areas where shell-fish was the main diet would have finished me off half way around the world. It took 2 years for Dr. Jay Holleman to get my medications adjusted and I am still on the basic regimen he had me on all of these years.

My next experience as new lenses for both eyes that was a piece of cake. I was offered lifetime lenses but at a cost of $4000 I decided I would not live long enough to spend the money. That was 14 years ago and I am now buying 1.25 glasses at the Dollar Tree.

Thirteen years ago I had what appeared to be a seizure, fell and ended up falling and nearly bit my tongue off. Twenty one stitches in my tongue. Norma caught up with me in the ER in Nacogdoches. When she walked in the ER they had just finished sewing my tongue together. I do not remember anything for 4 days but she told me I raised up, pointed at her and said, “She did it”. This cost me a 3 carat diamond ring. After four days in the hospital that I mentioned I do not remember and a follow-up sleep study proved my problem was sleep Apnea. I have slept with a C-Pap ever since.   

We were packed 8 years ago to travel to celebrate our 50th anniversary and at 3 am I woke up and felt like I had digested a ball of fire near my appendix. Satisfied it was serious I left Norma a note that I had gone to the Emergency Room sure it was appendicitis. She found me, mad as a hornet, at the ER. This turned out to be Diverticulitis and a few miserable days healing.

The last 8 years have been spending a fortune trying to save my teeth and suffering with pain from Arthritis in both shoulders and both knees. Drugs and a golf swing have eliminated the pain in my shoulders but my knees have been a different story. For five years my left knee was AOK. The right knee was calmed down with steroids. Two years ago the left knee started needing steroids and my right knee graduated to “Rooster Comb” shots and a trip to Lufkin every six months. Last December my shots in the right knee did not help the unsteady right knee. The Orthopedic Surgeon did not even wish to discuss surgery on this 87-year-old  person. I will be 88 on August 31st, I hope?

Well, my family doctor, Dr. Chad Moody, contacted the Surgeon and convinced him my age was an issue but my physical condition was above average for most younger. Thanks to Dr. Moody, Dr.Jason Carter will replace my right knee on June 4th. Everyone has helped by telling me stories in detail about the pain and agony of the therapy that follows the operation. I visited the therapists recently and offered bribes for painless therapy. I have purchased an empty bullet to bite on to help with the pain. I asked for a sound proof room at the hospital to muffle my screaming.

I am now feeling sure I have scared the daylights out of my children who range from 52 to 69 as well as younger folks who read my articles. I promise that after I recover I will share the agony and happiness of recovery and my trip back to playing par three golf again. Should this story end before I resume golf my ride through life has been more fun than most could ever dream about. My biggest disappointment will be I missed my final bucket list dream of being shot at 105 by a jealous husband.

Wish the medical folks that will care for me patience and compassion listening to my stories about life. Feel sorry for the families sanity helping Norma nurse me back to playing golf every day. I may write a book preparing folks for getting old when the day comes that my golfing days are over even if I last until I am 105.

Just wish me luck.

Clyde Brewer  

 

      

  

 

“LIFE”, A MOUNTAIN EVERYONE WILL CLIMB! PART ONE.

After writing my last article, “Life is an Interesting Journey”, I received an interesting comment from my friend John Booker. “Clyde, I admire you for your attitude on your health problems”. For those who don’t know John Booker, I hope he will someday let me write some stories about his 94 year trip through life. It would be a best-selling book. John has been one of my inspirations during the climbing of my own mountain. He has inspired me again and if you wonder how your trip compares or what to expect is coming hang on to your seatbelt.

Have you ever wondered why some old people seem to just disappear when they get old? Until earlier this year I never really considered myself being “old”. In fact my mother lived to be 94 and except for her last couple of months she never even seemed “old”. It amuses me that when some folks discover I just celebrated my 85th birthday, they have different reactions. The one reaction that younger people have is, “you don’t look a day over 65 or 75”? A few of them have not looked in a mirror recently and most are just being kind.

Some of the things you will read were originally intended to be shared as another chapter of my life with just my family. I have already chronicled the details of my work and personal life with my family that included my personal goals, achievement’s and other major events, good and bad, for my future heirs to understand and hopefully be successful.

Now I have decided to share my perception, facts, highlights and expectations of what to expect nearing the end of the aging process with anyone who has an interest. I am sitting at my PC and my right knee throbbing with arthritis after 18 holes of par three golf this morning with five of my friends who ranged in age from 51-89. I will begin what may be a multi-chapter autobiography of pain, happiness, success, failure or boredom, who knows? Are you ready?

To set the stage, how many people do you know who have matched some of my highlights so far, in their trip climbing their mountain?

A. Had every childhood disease known except polio and had the chicken pox and measles at the same time.

B. Graduated from high school at 16.

C. Served 2 years in the US Navy, married and became a father before I was 20?

D. Entered Management at 24, passed the Registered Professional Engineer exam, received a Master Degree and became a member of Mensa and Intertel in my late 40’s without any undergraduate education.

E. Between the ages of 45 and 75 I lost half of my stomach because of ulcers, had a gall bladder that nearly ruptured, suffered shellfish poisoning, diverticulosis, high blood pressure, gout along with the arthritis in both shoulders and my right knee.

F. Visited and/or worked in 32 countries and 49 states; flew over three million miles of air travel; worked 32 years for Lockheed and Halliburton; started 9 businesses in 3 different countries and retired at 63 years old.

G. Married to my second wife and partner Norma for 55 years; fathered seven children and currently have 45 heirs including spouses ranging from 2 months to 66 years old.

Now let me begin explaining life as it happens after you know you have started the decent down the other side of life’s mountain.

Fasten your seatbelt again.

Earlier this year I started having a tingling sensation in both feet after having cold feet ever since I suffered the shellfish incident some ten years ago. This summer, while on vacation with some 32 of my family and friends I had a saliva gland stop up and get infected and appeared to have been cold cocked in my left jaw. One of my family posted a picture of this on Facebook with me at a Margarita machine that looked like I had a mouth full. Gout stopped my drinking life at 60, a long time ago.

Shortly after getting the infection medicated I lost my balance, fell, tore a muscle loose in my left thigh and arm and put a knot on my head. Norma said, “The cedar post my head encountered had more damage than my head”, indicating that I am hard headed. If you know me you know it’s all true. The torn muscle in my leg is and likely will always be tender as it will never heal. The tingling sensation in my feet had now reached my knees by the end of every day.

About a week later I fell again and tore another muscle in my left ankle, scraped the hide off of both lower legs and sluffed it off as being clumsy. Then driving home one day I had a light headed sensation and when I shared all of this with my doctor, Chad Moody, he decided I needed to see a cardiologists again. This happens about every 10 years and after another series of test they again found that I do have a heart and it is working like it is supposed to.

While visiting the cardiologists he noticed a twitch in my left index finger while resting my hands on my knees. He had me stand with my feet together and close my eyes and then stopped me from falling. His prognosis was I was in the early stages of Parkinson’s disease and immediately scheduled me with a Neurologist.

Well, after the Neurologists examined me, I was advised I am suffering from Neuropathy. I have read everything possible and there is no cure. I have never given up hope in my life and I will see this doctor again tomorrow to find out what to expect as my journey down the mountain progresses. If you care, I will continue to share my experience. I will tee off again in the morning with my friends before my 3pm appointment in Nacogdoches.   C Brewer

 

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