Tag Archive: health


post-opHello to all you wonderful people.

It is now 24 hours since I went under the knife. I didn’t post yesterday after the procedure for obvious reasons. Lynne, you were so very right and at the same time very wrong. You said that after the Versed went in I wouldn’t really care about what they were doing to me. Not only didn’t I care but about 10 seconds after the Versed went in I found myself in the recovery room. If you’ve ever seen the movie “Looker” from the early 80s; that is truly the feeling of time hiccupping.

Admittedly, the other effect of the time skip is the realisation that first you are dizzy and mildly disoriented. Secondly, there is great pain in your belly. It took me until today to realise that the pain felt like I was about to have a small creature ‘bust’ out of it and start singing ‘Hello my baby.’ About the time I woke up they administered some painkiller into my IV. Once I went from a 6 to about a 3 or 4 they sent me out of recovery back to a room.

In my room I waited for about 5 minutes before my glasses, iPhone and most importantly a Heather followed me. I was very happy to hear that Heather had broken her revulsion of Facebook long enough to post the news that I was fine and in recovery. I realise that everyone knew I was going to be fine. I knew (intellectually) I was going to be fine. But then there is emotional “Theatre of the Mind” which can think of unending terrors to eat away at intellectual reason.

The day was spent pretty much on the reclining sofa in the living room bouncing between unconscious and eating while pretty much consistently in pain. I was so out of it that I slept through 2 episodes of Doctor Who. I have an ice bag for my tummy, which has an amazingly deep navel now. People were wonderful in helping me get things, as standing up is a horrid strain on my body. Just being in a standing position is absolutely a horrid and burning thing. I finally realised what this specific pain felt like.

In the evening, Dinner was light. I skipped Arrow although it is on the DVR and went to bed around 9:30. I wish this had been uneventful.

Bed was unpleasant bordering on nightmarish. First there was the laying down bit. In general, you really have no idea how much you use your abdominal muscles until the thought of them hurts like an ice pick shoved in your stomach. Once actually in bed, you are laying basically flat. This is essentially standing but at a different pitch of rotation. Fortunately with a great mound of pillows I was able to get enough bend that it quieted down the throng of screaming nerve endings. I think they are planning a revolt.

The good news is that there is Norco (Vicodin + Acetaminophen). The bad news is that reaching it on the bedside table is worse than laying down in bed. All it requires one to do is to roll over using and twisting their abs. Heather actually pushed me to roll me. And at that moment I flashed on what being 90 must be like. This made me grumpy. With meds however, I was able to roll a little and sleep. Granted, the latter might be more on the order of passing out from Vicodin aided unconsciousness, but that is neither here nor there.

So for the next day or so… there is recovery, pain and Vicodin. I chatted briefly with my team at work. My manager knew I was doing this and we’d scheduled the time off.

However, in the meantime…

I can not in any way sufficiently show my appreciation for the comments, likes, and support from friends and family through Facebook. Over 7 posts there were nearly 100 ‘likes’ and 90 comments of support. While this isn’t the Academy Awards; beyond thanking everyone there are a couple of people I really have to take notice of:

Michelle Ma… and Erica… two people I haven’t seen in far too long. Both sent me very lovely messages of support outside of commenting on one of my posts. My dearest Carleen, one of my closest friends in college and someone who knew how dearly I crushed for her, Carleen sent a comment that had an image of a bouquet of flowers. I have no idea why this touched me so much, but it just made me smile and the pain subsided for a little.

Obviously also is Heather who cared for me while I was getting ready the night before the surgery and especially for updating everyone when she got the news from the doctor. I do not envy her life in pain, but it makes her so amazing when I am suffering. Both she and additionally Kylie (who helps around the house) have been beyond amazing in helping me as I meander around the house like a 90 year old.

But, I really must give a should out to Michelle Mc… Honestly, I haven’t seen her since a Pennsic that was approximately 15 or so years ago. She and her (now) husband were in the neighboring camp. Michelle talked (online chatted) with me most of the morning while I was waiting for nurses, injections, IV, etc. She was calming, reassuring, and above all else distracting. It was like having a friend in the triage room holding my hand. It was a very special thing to me and I will likely never have the chance to do for her, what she did for me. But that doesn’t mean I won’t try :)

Well, the next Vicodin is beginning to kick in. The number of typos I am making is enough that auto-correct is beginning to scowl at me.

Again, thank you to everyone for the kind words, support, and just mentions of thinking of me. I am so proud and blessed to know about 95% of you personally (There were a couple of friends of friends that were equally nice, but unknown to me :)

Once I can move without pain again, I really would like to offer each and everyone of you a huge hug!

Love to all.

Andrei with a huge belly button divot again.

uploadingThe first image upload API is now finished. This API will now take images in any format and save it tied to a relevant record in a web neutral format to the archive. This work took more effort than I expected, but it’s making things move very well. I’ve also fixed several links so that development and production environments work exactly the same. The client is now pulling entirely from the new APIs and works when used over the VPN. For some useless statistics I now have over 100 active source files with about 110 lines of code on average per source. This seems very short but the reality is that there are several subclasses that are very tiny working off nicely complex but not obfuscated super classes. I am likely missing a tonne of material. There are also several test apps that are folded in there whose entire purpose is to test APIs. Once they are removed the numbers will be a little more realistic. However, the important thing in development is not the size of the work but the results.

On the downside I’ve been fighting a bad back for the past 3 days. I will likely be calling my doctor tomorrow to take a look and see what is going on there. On the upside, however, the only chair I find any comfort and support in is the one in my home office. So, as long as I discipline myself to work… the pain isn’t as bad. (Granted, a good bit of Aleve® helps quite a bit)

Tomorrow’s goals are to call the doctor. Implement the location uploader in the DataUploader utility, And make sure that I blog for the day.

 

I’m back to wandering around the house in a somewhat tipsy manner. The tonne of Halcion they put me on wore off. I slept from 3 until 9:30. Now I have a mouthful of temporary apparatus. Smile picture in a few days when I am less self-conscious.

Obviously there is hunger (having to eaten since 9pm last night)

I had some wonton soup, a pepsi, and am now attempting mango sorbet.

We’ll see how this goes.

For those curious about The Project. The house rule was as follows:

  1. You may blog
  2. You may not drive
  3. You WILL NOT code.

SO back to that tomorrow.

imageApologies to my Armchair Director readers for this delay and topic switch.

On the way to my first appt. Just took my first Halcion. I’m told this should be a fun trip. The Valium from last night is wearing off. I’ve been told to fast so I’m psychologically very hungry.

The appointment is dental work. Today is simply impressions to decide if I’m going to require a dental implant or worse a denture. Normally impressions are a simple process but due to a horribly overactive gag reflex they have to knock me out.

Theoretically the Halcion will seriously impair me. I’ve never done “oral sedation” to this degree before. I was given Valium a decade or so back for LASIK.

20 minutes in, I’m not really feeling the Halcion at all. I’ll keep people posted. I’m curious to try to observe the effects. If it doesn’t take me down too hard, I hope to have my next Armchair Director post up before tonight’s episode.

More later!

recovery_exitAs I ramp back from my tri-annual (Meaning every three years) bout of Pneumonia, things are beginning to settle back in. A local company has expressed potential interest in me. They are pre-screening me with a programming project. The idea is to replicate base functionality and UI of an app. This is not as throw-away simple as it sounds. You have to at least implement the real functionality which does require a knowledge of the technology stack.

Sadly, when I talked to them Friday I targeted Monday as a goal. This was before I knew it was pneumonia. A very professional letter to the recruiter about my health resulted in a letter back telling me that the recruiter was down with Flu and that the group was happy to let me regroup my strength before worrying about the code.

In the mean time, the main project was on hold. There was not a lot of strength or focus to get research done. I think it was the general stress of the week that took me down to begin with. I do however have a strong desire looking forwards. There’s a lot of research. There is one small component that did move forwards, however. So I guess not completely on hold.


Then there is the story of my genetic offspring. This actually takes place today and in a humorous bit of temporal irony about 33 years ago as well.


Micromodem_II_in_Apple_IIWhen I was 12 years old my father bought me my first computer. It was an Apple ][. There was no “Plus” or “e” or any other symbol. This was the original II computer. This was a $2,000 piece of hardware and at the age of 12 I had NO idea what that meant. Especially in the late 1970s. (Yes, you can do the math) I loved this thing. The hardware, the software, the manuals. It was amazing.

One day I decided I REALLY wanted to learn as much about my computer as I could. And my implement of learning was going to be my father’s ratchet screwdriver with changeable tips. The process seemed simple enough in my mind. And in execution it was even easier. It took me about 15-20 minutes to remove every screw and easily removable component to see how everything was assembled.

Parents have an innate sense of knowing how long it has been since they’ve interacted with their child. Apparently, I had crossed the threshold for the amount of time that had passed before my mother began wondering what I was up to. She came to my room and saw me at my desk with a disassembled computer. I think every child learns what a conniption fit is at some point in their life.  I was excessively chastised for my stupidity and lack of respect. Translation: My mother explained that she was going downstairs to call my father to come home and kill me in cold blood. Translation: My mother called my father to excessively chaste him for stupidity and lack of respect. (Damned genetics)

About half an hour later my father arrived home. This required at least 5 minutes downstairs when he arrived for a recap round of getting yelled at. They came upstairs and there I was, sitting at my desk, operating the computer and writing a program. The system was up and operational as if nothing had occurred. Even the potentially damning evidence of tools had been carefully put away.

My mother stammered for a moment. Said “Fuck you.” I think the first time I ever heard her swear, and she tromped out. My father just smiled at me. “You put every part back exactly where you found them?” I pulled some screws from my desk drawer, “All but these couple of screws. Not sure where they went and it doesn’t seem to be a problem.” He smiled again proudly and went downstairs to talk my mother down.


For my son’s 7th birthday this year I purchased him “Blaster.” Blaster is a first generation toy from the Transformer’s line. The toy is about 30 years old. It cost about $40 and was valued more closely to $65. This morning he came to my bedroom and pronounced that he intended to take on a project that “…involved Blaster, 3 screwdrivers and…”

I stopped him. I notified him he was not to take apart a 30 year collectible toy. He told me he had already taken off the head and put it back. Heather (my wonderful spouse) had already purchased old electronics at Goodwill to let him take them apart. I spent an afternoon with him disassembling an old VHS camera. She told me she would supervise. I wasn’t sure if I’d be able to deal with it.

There it was; I’d turned into both my parents at once. Happily, Heather reminded me of the story above. Currently they are in the middle of rebuilding. I’m told the picture of all the pieces lain out was glorious. I’m likely to repost it once it is done. (time passes)

Well, after a days outing to see old friends, my son has completed his work. I have to admit… The reassembly was completely successful. The toy even moves better than it did when we got it. It was a bit tight when we first bought it. It moves more easily now without feeling loose. Between my wife (who did AI software for Robots) and myself (who does Apple 3rd party software) comes a very talented child with a stunning sense of spacial relations and being able to take things apart and get them back together.

Heaven help us if he learns to code.
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