Monday, December 4, 2023

Our Beautiful New Christmas Tree

We were in the middle of decorating for Christmas a few weeks ago. We decided to get a proper Christmas tree. One I expect to last for many, many years. The one I got in 2021 looks like a water bottle brush, so I wasn't fond of it. I like the bushy green ones like what Mom used to use in our home. I also always wanted to have a tree that has a wow factor, LOL. 

Found some foreign currency and that's what I used to get a new tree and additional decors. We were offered to have it done up by the store. I agreed since I know it's going to be physically hard for us to do it ourselves. I also wanted to see how it will be done, so we can just follow the pattern next year. 

Here's how it turned out -

I made the tree skirt last year. This is how it looks -

I think I might add a few more red decors. Or if I have time I'll make some red decors. Also need to buy additional lights!

#BeKind #StaySafe

Sunday, December 3, 2023

Today I Pray For --

Today I pray for healing. The past few weeks have really been challenging and I am grateful to be alive. I did feel some panic when I felt really ill. I felt my body was battling something it's never fought off before. Granted that the pain was familiar, but my body isn't the same as it was before. 

It was love that made me fight back. I prayed hard and imagined God's healing light going over me. I pray for more love, patience and strength. I still want to build more happy memories with my boys, my family, my friends. 

Christmas is just around the corner. I had grand plans for Christmas. I even bought a new tree, additional decors, a simple parol and wreath. I want to celebrate like how Mom used to when I was growing up. She made sure our home was fully decorated, we always had good food and she made sure we were early for the midnight mass. I wanted to do it that way to remember her since it's our first Christmas without her. 

And that's why I pray for healing and for the stamina I worked hard to increase the last few months. If it doesn't, I will focus with what's most important, celebrating Jesus' birthday. 

Today, I pray for healing, not just for me, but the whole world. 

#BeKind #StaySafe

Saturday, December 2, 2023

Garden Update After Being Away for 3 Weeks

 My boys tried to keep my plants happy while I was in the hospital. They'd go home in the evenings to feed the cats and water the plants. Of course, this meant the usual routine was disrupted. The herbs were normally watered twice a day. I usually used a soil meter in the afternoons to make sure they were not overwatered. 

The orchids had a special watering routine. I'd give them garlic water once a week and spray the roots whenever they were dry. The gumamela plants were watered twice a day. The rest of the plants I'd water in the afternoons. Watering the plants is part of my exercise regime and I started doing part of it again today. I'll probably conk out soon, haha. 

As expected, some plants died while I was away. I haven't seen the herbs yet, but Sweetie said some of them look really sad. Told him not to worry, we can just buy again when we're able to go to Tagaytay. The orchids survived with some leaves wilting. I must have done something right because the buds that started three weeks ago have started to bloom. Yay!

I nicknamed the philodendron, Jack. It grew at least 2 more feet the past few weeks. I added a long bamboo stick to hold it up. I'll trim it once I get better and will start a new pot which I plan to put indoors. The aglaonemas are doing well. I hope to see them produce flowers like what I saw at Mom's house. 

Jack the Philodendron

The cacti and succulents are all doing well. I think they were happy to have dried soil. I think I asked Sweetie to water them once while I was away. Rubber plant soil was super dry, but it likes it that way. I've yet to check my veggies. The mustasa died while I was away, but it was already doing that direction even before my first admission. I'll just plant some again. 

The gumamela plants are fine albeit with some yellow leaves. Sweetie said they produced some flowers while I was in the hospital. I sprayed them with neem oil today and will resume spraying apple cider vinegar maybe tomorrow to keep the mites out. I probably need to prune new leaves also to encourage them to produce flowers again. 

Going to nurse them back to good health.

I hope to get some poinsettia for Christmas. Maybe I'll find some next week if I get my energy back. :)

#BeKind #StaySafe

Friday, December 1, 2023

What Really Happened

This will be my last post about my recent misadventure. I was hospitalized for a total of 16 days (4 + 12) last month. It was tonsillopharyngitis that turned into strep throat. The first admission should have dealt with it, but the vein where my IV line was attached swelled. It was really painful, so it was removed at around 4 in the morning (less than 48 hours after it was inserted). 

It was late afternoon before I was given my next dose of antibiotics. I was feeling a bit better and was discharged on day 4 without antibiotics (just Betadine, Difflam spray and pain meds). Two days later I started feeling unwell. I asked Sweetie to call the doctor since he said to call him if I had any issues after discharge. I started taking antibiotics again 3 days after I was discharge. I took it religiously but I fell very ill after my 6 am dose. I had a fever and severe chills. The boys wanted to bring me to the emergency room, but since I had meds already I told them I should be fine.

I felt a bit better by Saturday afternoon. I could barely eat though since my throat was very painful. It felt like a metallic object was lodged in it. I couldn't even drink water. Gargling warm water with salt and Betadine (separately) helped and I thought I'd be okay. I was very wrong because 15 minutes after I took my 6am dose on Sunday, I fell very ill again. I felt my heart was battling something. Miggy said my lips were turning blue. The boys insisted I should be brought to the hospital. 

The ER doctor on duty did a great job at hastening the process. I was immediately given pain medication, was swabbed, a phlebotomist extracted 11 vials of blood from both arms and I was x-rayed right on my ER bed. I was very anxious and couldn't lie down properly. I felt I had water in my lungs. Shortly after my x-ray I was given some Flumicil. It's a powder that's mixed in water and tastes like Sprite. They thought I may have pneumonia and they called in an infectious disease doctor to take over my case from EENT. 

It takes about 6 to 7 hours in ER before you're transferred to a room (if you're to be admitted). I was given antibiotics before I was brought up. The next few days were fuzzy and filled with more tests and vampire extractions (everyday!). It was later in the week when one of the doctors said that the bacteria was identified, Streptococcus. You get it from droplets from an infected person. And it was indeed a relapse.

I rarely go out (probably twice a month max). We all still wear masks whenever we go out. That week we went out and had lunch. The resto was very humid since their a/cs were not working properly. After brunch we went to the grocery and bumped into friends. Our friend said he also got sick a few days later. Miggy also felt unwell. We probably picked up the germs from the hallway to the toilet or the supermarket. 

My second admission stretched to 12 days because the doctors had to take a wholistic approach because I have other medical conditions. They had to protect my heart, my lungs and make sure the bacteria did not hide elsewhere in my body. The infectious disease doctor told me it's a good thing I was brought to the ER immediately. They were able to prevent the issue from progressing to pneumonia. Whew. I went through a lot of tests. It felt like a year worth of tests was squeezed in one week. 

I'm grateful for my doctors, the nurses (minus the one who blew up a vein), the med tech folks,  phlebotomists (minus the one who caused me two huge hematomas) and the kitchen manongs who tried their best to make my food palatable. I tried to write down all their names, but there were days when things were super fuzzy. I'm also grateful for all the prayers and food from family and friends. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. 

*Made this detailed post mainly for my benefit. I'm sure one of my doctors would ask for a detailed recount one of these days.

**Also grateful for a friend who helped connect me to her insurance agent. I went without medical insurance for 20 months! You never really know when disaster strikes, so it's best to be covered. 

#BeKind #StaySafe

Thursday, November 30, 2023

Discharged on Bonifacio Day

Finally got discharged today! Hooray! 

It's a good thing I gave feedback after my first admission because the discharge process was done before lunchtime. We were afraid we'd get stuck waiting for discharge until evening. We got lucky today and finished early.

Thank you for all the prayers and care 😘

Wednesday, November 29, 2023

One More Night

Thought I was going home today, but the Neuro doctor wanted to observe me for another day. We also have to wait for results of the scan. 

I'm feeling much better compared to yesterday. I'm still weak, but I think I'm ready to continue recovering at home. I've just been having nasty headaches since Friday. Doctors want to make sure it's not a clot.

Nonetheless I'm excited to go home! See the cats and kittens, my plants especially the orchid that's about to bloom, and just be with my boys. Christmas is also just around the corner! Before that though I want to celebrate Mom's 88th birthday. 

Grateful for all the prayers, love and care 🙏

Btw, my doctor said it's flu season until February, so best to wear a mask when you go out.

#BeKind #StaySafe

Tuesday, November 28, 2023

Can't Wait to Go Home

Still at the hospital. Neuro investigating the unusual headaches I've been having the past few days. Hopefully they'll clear me after the tests.

I miss being home and doing mundane tasks. I miss my plants, the kittens and my sewing machine. We were in the middle of decorating for Christmas when I was hospitalized. At least we have the tree up.

Can't wait to go home!

#BeKind #StaySafe