Thanksgiving - Especially to Kristin and Dr. Christy King

Posted by Kitty Sharkey , Saturday, November 30, 2013 2:19 PM

I started writing a Thanksgiving post the other day, but got distracted.  A little late is better than never, right?

The first thing I'm thankful for this year is that I finally had surgery on my foot three weeks ago.  I have strict non-weight bearing orders for at least 6 weeks.  After that, I'll be in physical therapy and will slowly start putting weight on it again.  All in all it will probably be at least 6 months or more before I'm back on my feet so to speak.  Healing takes time.  After dealing with this injured foot for over two years, I am NOT going to rush my recovery.
I'm thankful to finally know what was wrong with my foot.  And I'm thankful to be able to prove to the naysayers that indeed I have been in pain for the past two years.  But mostly I'm just thankful that I finally had surgery to fix it.

Here is a summary of the surgical findings / fixes.
  1. A significant amount of tenosynovitis within the peroneus tendon sheath (love Google) - DEBRIDED
  2. Low lying peroneus brevis muscle belly with significant synovitis - DEBRIDED 2 cm
  3. A 2 cm longitudinal tear in the peroneus brevus tendon - REPAIRED
  4. A 3 cm longitudinal tear in the peroneus longus tendon - REPAIRED
  5. A hard mass within the peroneus longus tendon - REMOVED (pathology determined it was a segment of dense fibrocartilage adjacent to a small area of trabecular bone with focal calcification and adjacent ossification.  Now isn't that a mouthful of terms for Google searches)
  6. A cyst in the proximal lateral aspect of the cuboid bone - CURETTAGED AND MICRODRILLED TO PROMOTE FIBROCARTILAGINOUS GROUTH

The original splint was removed after two weeks.  Everything looks to be healing well.  My biggest complaint now is pain, burning, and numbness along the outside of my ankle and down the outside of my foot to my small toes.  This is normal and is caused by swelling in the foot putting pressure on the sural and superficial peroneal nerves.  My doctor was very careful to isolate the sural nerve before performing any repairs during surgery.  So hopefully once the foot heals I won't have any permanent nerve damage.
But the foot surgery is not the only thing I'm tankful for right about now.  This year I'm especially thankful for the help of my friend Kristin. 

Post surgery, it would have been impossible to take care of myself, much less the farm (goats, chickens, rabbits, geese, garden).  So I asked Kristin if she wanted to come stay with me for several months to help out.  She had helped with the petting zoo at the Northern California Renaissance Faire so I knew she was good with the animals.  But she's never gardened, canned, fermented, brewed, etc.
Kristin learning to make Mozzarella and Ricotta cheese

I can't afford to pay her as I'm out on disability and have a severely reduced income.  But I offered her room and board along with a chance to learn about sustainable living first hand.  Lucky for me, she jumped at the opportunity.  She and her cat moved into the library (converted garage) so she has her own space and some privacy.
She gets up every morning at the crack of dawn to feed the critters, and makes sure they get fed and put to bed at night.  During her first week here, she did the same for me.  I haven't lived with anyone in years, so I'm happy to report we're getting along just fine.  I don't know how I would have handled this entire episode of my life without help.  I have peace of mind knowing that I don't have to stress about my animals.  I know they are being well taken care of.

And Kristin?  She's thankful for the entire situation too.  She didn't have to stress about finding short term housing.  She loves the animals and is thoroughly enjoying caring for them.  She's learning a lot about gardening, sustainable living, and homesteading skills.  Oh, and the homemade lamb lasagna which included two types of cheese she had helped make along with home grown / canned tomatoes, basil and garlic was fantastic.  She's getting to experience the joy and pride of homemade meals using home grown produce and home made products that she's had a hand in making.
But it's not all work.  We've gone fishing, shopping, and to Dickens Fair.  Plus she's having fun expressing her creative side.  Here she is decorating my cast for Christmas with sparkly snowflakes, Santa, and his reindeer.
Fun stuff!  Thankfully this has proven to be a win-win situation for the both of us.

Happy Holidays!!!

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