Friday, February 27, 2009

Anna the Birthday Girl and Sophia

I need also to take a good photo of Emma with Anna. Emma loves when Anna comes over or goes with us places.
Happy Birthday Anna the big family party will be here next weekend. The family and her godparents - how much fun will that be????

Love You Anna


A Cold Day after the Snow

We were home nearly all day. I had to honor to go to Sophia's violin lesson with her. She is doing so well!!

It is my daughter Anna's birthday. We are having Sophia and Rosa overnight so that the siblings and friends could take her to dinner and a concert. I hope they are having fun.

It was good to get rest today. Sophia and Rosa are watching a video with us before bed. I am enjoying when Rosa lets me rock a bye her in my recliner. She and I both have colds and coughs so I hope we sleep okay tonight.

No plans for tomorrow. The girls need to be home before 10 am as Sophia gets to go ice fishing with 4H and her Grandpa Bob.

Hope you have a good weekend. Emma seems to be really relaxed today. She has had quick trips outside to go to the bathroom but that is all. Yeah I got the confirmation that I was accepted for the MS Women's Getaway - I am so pleased. That is the end of March.

Wishing you a very good weekend. I know we will rest a lot tomorrow also. She sure has been good in helping, and in snuggling up to me today...Emma can you ever know how much you mean to me? Can any person even understand how much you meant to me, HELPING PAWS STAFF - VOLUNTEERS- JUDY - I WANT YOU TO KNOW HOW MUCH I APPRECIATE YOU.

Mary and Emma

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Let it Snow

It snowed more than six inches here and is still snowing. I don't think we got as much snow as other areas. Emma of course is delighted. A very dear neighbor plowed out our driveway. Greg has a shoulder injury and our snow plow is not working right now. They say it is suppose to blow like crazy so I don't know how it will be come morning but i am happy for now.

I just took Emma outside...she loved the fresh snow!! Funny girl romping, rolling her face in the snow, and running in the snow. She just loves that white stuff. Good thing we live in MN. March is usually the snowiest month of the year and not even here yet. We will see what March brings.

Hope those impacted by the storm as it sweeps over the states can cope with it safely. We are warm and cozy at home and that is a very good thing tonight.

Emma is peacefully resting beside me. What a great dog she is.

I am pretty wobbly with my walking today and some pain but coping. MS is not fun but Emma makes my days fun.

Mary and Emma

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Ash Wed

Lent begins today. Our goal is to eat healthy for lent.

We had a quiet day. I am not feeling good and had more pain again so we rested a slept a lot. The weather was nice though so I did take Emma outside a few times.

A big snow is expected tomorrow. Emma will love it. You never know for sure how the storm will hit but we could get from 2-8 inches, Boy will Emma be healthy no matter what the amount of new snow.

Water exercise tomorrow...depends on my pain and weakness but we hope to go. I think most the snow will come later in the day.

Take care. We are fine...Mary

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

thoughts to Share

I needed a happy picture today. I heard of another relative who lost his job in this economy. It seems like almost every day I hear of someone out of work. I know you have the same situation. The Presidents talk tonight was good I thought. I pray and hope things will improve soon.

The above picture is of course my granddaughters. Mike is seeking work. So many families and individuals are out of work. I am so worried about it all. They bring me joy. I will see them on Friday so that is something to look forward to.

On a better note, Emma and I went to water exercise today. We enjoyed getting out on such a warm day in the 40's!! I had some trouble with pain and leg weakness so I only was in the water 30 min but I am glad I went and got some movement for my body.
I will try again Thursday.

We did have a fun supper since it was Mardi Gras.

Hope you have family and friends surround you with love especially in these tough times.

Mary and Emma

Monday, February 23, 2009

Cuddling Up With Rosa

Monday I did get in a nap with Emma. We went to book club and tonight enjoyed dinner out due to a gift certificate we received from my daughter at Christmas. Greg watched Rosa till I got home from book club. I was greeted by an enthusiastic "Yeah Grandma's Home".

We tried to nap with Rosa. It was so cute Rosa was laying next to me and Emma fell asleep with her head on Rosa's lap. Rosa almost fell asleep too. We didn't dare take a picture because we didn't want to wake them...but Rosa didn't quite fall asleep and the phone rang...bummer.

Rosa rested anyway. She watched a kids musical video with Grandpa while Emma and I napped. Emma and I snoozed and I still hope to go to bed soon. I feel so much better than last week but gosh I am still pretty tired and weak on that left side.

At book club I found one of the newer members has this same problem with nerve pain and it flaring up at times. She said trying not to get over tired makes it easier to deal with for her. She and another woman said it is something you learn to live with as even with the meds they both still have times with a lot of pain. I am hoping that is not the case for me at this point. I will be glad that the discomfort was not as bad today.

Emma seemed to like going in the car. She was so cute cuddled up with Rosa and I and Grandpa in bed. All of us resting. Then when Greg left she stayed with Rosa and I awhile. Rosa is so gentle with Emma and Emma so gentle with Rosa.

We will see how I feel tomorrow before I know if I will try water exercise. If I go I likely would not do the full workout yet as to not have pain and not get too worn out. We can see how it seems in the morning.

Thanks for the cards and prayers. This was a big day so we are headed to bed and it is not even 8 yet here.

Mary and Emma wish you sweet dreams

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Wishing You a Good Day

Emma enjoyed the snow in the yard today. No new snow just enjoying it.

We napped, I read and expected a quiet day.

Surprise I was invited to the movie Benjamin Buttons. I liked it. I chose not to take Emma because it was at the cheaper theater in Maple Grove and last time I took her there it was so crowded finding room for her. There were a lot of people there so it probably was better she was home. She survived (she is not home alone often) but gosh was she glad to see me.

We are watching the awards. I am so tired i am not sure if we will stay up till the end but probably. I am so glad to have less pain. Book club tomorrow.

Emma and Mary hope you are having or had a good weekend....

Emma's vote for Best Movie would be Marley and Me and I second that idea...

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Getting Out of The House Finally

I don't know when they begin celebrating in New Orleans but Mardi Graw is Tuesday. I wanted to share this picture from last year's Woman's Getaway. For those who know her - yes Tonya is in the middle. It was in spring and I had to leave for a few hours for an endorsing convention. So I was not there when they made masks etc. I was there for the fun party. Emma was with me too. We go again this spring if there is room for us...we sent in our interest from.

We got out of the house today. I had more pain again but needed to get out of the house. We went to El Loro for lunch - a great Mexican Place in Crystal. It is our favorite place to eat together. Then we went to Walmart as Greg needed to get some items for his work. In Wallmart Emma and I started with doing a big lap around the store to give her some exercise (I used a scooter) and I walked her around a lot while Greg shopped.

We got more snow again so boy was she excited. I think we have 3 inches or so now - maybe more. Enough for this happy dog to play in. She loves to put her head in the snow and get very wet. She comes up all wet and snowy. She is so delighted. I enjoyed watching her play, and romp. She did not want to fetch toys today - just wanted to roll, romp around. She loves to examine the entire perimeter of the fence. She does that most days. I always wonder what she is thinking. She goes all over the yard too though. She just loves the snow.

I think we will be home alone all day tomorrow. I am hoping my eyes are okay so I can finish reading the book for bookclub Monday. I just didn't realize how fast this month was going and am not done.

We did take a long nap today and slept late. I still am pretty tired. I am having nerve pain but I don't think going out made it worse. We weren't gone that long and gosh I had been in the house a week,

Hope all is well with you this weekend. Hope the picture makes you smile.
Mary and Emma

Friday, February 20, 2009

Fun with Anna

I love this picture showing Rosa hugging Emma and Anna. Emma was so excited to see Anna. She scooted around like such a happy puppy. Yeah we get to spend the entire day with Anna. Isn't that great. It will be quiet but fun. Emma and I are so glad to have company.

Hope your Friday goes well. Emma and Mary

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Anna is coming over

Emma and I are excited. My daughter Anna (above with Sophia) is coming over to spend the night. She will be with us all day and into the evening Friday. Greg works a long day tomorrow from morning till late as they have a swing dance for students. Anna really hits it off with Emma. She will play with her outside and she needs that exercise. We are so looking forward to having her company on Friday.

I am still having some pain and also difficulty with walking and weakness in my limbs. It is definately better than a week ago when I had the intense pain however. I have not heard from the doctor yet what are plan is now. I was suppose to wait till today or Friday to see how I was doing.

The woman who cleans for us is here and that is a good thing. I appreciate her hard work but today we also have visited a little while she works. Normally I am off to water exercise but I don't know that I could make it to the car and do that routine yet. I am hoping next week will be better.

I am so worried about the economy. It seems like almost daily I hear about someone I know losing their job or fearful of hours cut back or similar. I am so dependent on Greg's health insurance and income. I just keep praying that things improve. My son and daughter are still seeking work. I never thought I would live to see such trying times for our country. Being home I think about it even more I think.

Greg picked up a few movies for us to watch in the upcoming days. That is a good distraction. I also am weak so sleep off and on. I am trying to see if I can walk around the house a bit from room to room (with my walker) so I don't get too weak from all this. I know sitting all the time or sleeping could make me too weak.

I feel spoiled to have cleaning help but it seems important. She does the vacuuming and scrubbing I sure couldn't handle now or it would take me days. It is amazing what she accomplishes in 2.5 hours!! We get some help to pay for this service.

We are hoping even with Greg's very busy schedule now, to take Emma in to be groomed. They bathe her, brush her and trim her etc. They say she doesn't seem to mind it too much. But gosh Lent is Greg's very very busy time at work.

You can tell my spirits are better today. I hope my pain continues to subside and my abilities increase. So glad to have Emma and we are so very very very excited to have Anna come over tonight and tomorrow. How fun that will be.

Mary and Emma wish you a good day.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Emma and the Phone

Emma is helpful. This photo shows her with the phone. Greg snapped it before she brought it to me. She sure is helpful.

Yeah for Emma we got a small amount of snow. Since green grass won't be here for a few months I think she wants more snow to play in...most of it had melted.

Have a good day Mary and Emma

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Thanks Emma

I am determined to cope with all this.

I hope I don't sound like I am whining as I deal with this flare up.

Good idea Emma - television is helping take my mind off it all.

Emma is the most wonderful helper

Nurse Emma

Mary's day was a tougher today. More severe pain which means more difficult to move
We rested of course all day and took a long nap.
Mike will be stopping by soon (her son) to let me out.
Yeah he will play with me.
Greg won't be home till after 7.which is a few more hours

Mary's new recliner (just two weeks old) is a god sent
She can rest or sleep there or in bed
I prefer the bed but am at her side wherever

I will be glad when she has less pain
I bring her the blanket, the phone, the remote, anything she needs
I am trying to think of ways to help
I even get things before she asks me to do so

I am going to suggest watching a movie tonight
to distract her from the pain
We watched Mama Mia a few days ago and that did help cheer us up

Nurse Emma

Monday, February 16, 2009

A Quiet Day with Friends

We had a nice quiet day. I spent most the mornning in bed resting after I woke up. Tonya and her daughter came to see me around 2 and Greg had just left. Her daughter Mary took Emma for a walk later they went outside in the back yard a few time.
Both Tonya and Mary were helpful getting me water and helping as needed. It was good to talk with them and pass the time together.

Greg will be home soon and help me get ready for bed. Emma is doing fine. Movement is still stiff and my limbs feel heavy. The pain is not as severe and gosh I am grateful for that fact. I can sleep better now.

Emma seems sleepy today and not sure why. Maybe she is more relaxed since I am not in so much pain and distress? We will not be going to water exercise tomorrow. Will see each day what I can handle or not.

Thanks for your thoughts and prayers

Emma and Mary

A Quick thought

A relative wrote me a nice note. Included also though was the thought, I suppose it is not fun to watch people in relative good health enjoy..... On the contrary I disagree. I am always glad to hear that others are enjoying their abilities, being active and enjoying their good health. That never makes me jealous or makes me feel bad - not at all.

Mary and Emma say hello.

Needed Sleep

The medicine is helping manage the pain. Still pain but gosh we got some needed sleep.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

The Family Came Over

I am coping better today and the pain though still significant has decreased. My children all came over today. We found various ones were coming so Greg agreed to make dinner for whoever was available. They all came for dinner. I love that. Their company cheered me up, offered distraction, and I love listening to their conversations. I could sit at the table which was a nice result of less pain.

Most the time I sleep in bed or am in the recliner. Not always sleeping but trying to relax to handle this better. I think the pills are helping but I have a ways to go. Tomorrow Monday Greg goes in around noon and works into the evening. My friend Tonya is coming over to provide company and support. Het young teen daughter Mary Kate is coming too. I think it will be enjoyable. They plan to stay awhile and are the type I can say I need to sleep and go lay down without feeling uncomfortable. They would like to stay till Greg gets home but we will see how the time goes.

I always enjoy being with my family. Lily came too - my granddog. Rosa was cute but was entertained by others. I could not hold her or play on the floor. I did get a hug though.

Hope you have a good day....Emma got outside many times today which was good for her. It will help that Tonya and Mary Kate can take her outside for me tomorrow. (Monday).

Wishing you a good day...Emma and Mary

Thanks so much for the email and good wishes and prayers....

A Sweet Story

I woke up and Greg was not in bed. I called for him to help me out of bed you can guess why.

Then he told me why he was not in bed...

He told me Emma and I were hogging the bed. He said finally after days it seemed like I was sleeping soundly. Emma who was so worried about me was in bed laying so close to me. She also relaxed and really spread out as she was sleeping too. Together we took up most the bed.

He said it did his heart good to see us both sleeping so well that he got up for an hour. Then he was going to wake me as I needed medication anyway. He said Emma has been so good to get up with me everytime needed. When I roll over and moan in pain or similar she also is alert whether in bed with us or on the floor in her bed.

So he wanted both of us to be able to sleep - next to each other to keep us both calm too. Wasn't that sweet? He said it was heart warming.

YES he could have told Emma OFF and she would have gone to her bed. YES he could have waked me up to do that too. But he thought this was what he prefered to do.

Emma has helped so much but it is so evident she is worried. Sadly sometimes I yell out in pain when trying to move or moan a bit in my sleep Greg says. We need to keep reassuring Emma that I am alright. She deserved some good sleep. Greg could sleep late so he didn't mind he said.

A bit less pain I think today - I'll let you know when I can dance a jig...(ha ha with MS I would have to be in heaven to do that).
Even a little improvement or the absence of more decline is good news today. Mary and Emma and Greg wish you a good weekend.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Struggling With the MS - thanks Emma for your Help

We got through another day.
Alternating trying to sleep and trying to rest in the recliner.
Still lots of nerve pain on the left side,
Also very limited ability to move and movement causes more intense pain.
Even resting there is nerve pain.
I find myself unable to read due to my visual problems too.
This is the pits if you will forgive my complaining.

Emma continues to be helpful.
She is retrieving things, getting the blanket (often)
Greg is taking her in and outside as needed
Mostly she wants to be at my side.
A few friends with MS called and their support is helpful.
Greg is so busy helping me along with Emma.
I don't want to be a burden but am so limitied in what I can do.

I need to be patient and optimistic that things will improve
The MS Dr prescribed a high dose of Neurontin
They say it will take over three days for it to be in my system
They say it will be Thursday or Friday before we know how much it will help

I sure didn't know that MS could be this extremely painful
The nurse said oh yes it can be
The interesting thing will be
what improvement in movement I see once their is not this bad pain
I am hoping to be pain free eventually? Hope so
Wondering if the movement limitations will improve also
I am dragging my left side but this is not a stroke
Good thing I was checked by a doctor

I am sorry if this is boring to read
Greg is being so helpful as I can do so little for myself.
I think my son Danny is coming over tomorrow to hang out
and do some laundry (Sunday)
My husband has to work at least half day (Monday) so I think my son Michael and Rosa will come over.
By then I hope to be able to cope alone.

One day at a time...trying to cope....Mary and Emma

Friday, February 13, 2009

Spoiling ME

Emma is being so attentive and helpful to me. She is very concerned as my MS flare up appears to have gotten worse. Greg is helping me through this also. He is being so darn helpful, thoughtful that I feel spoiled. He has me set up in the recliner, using his lap top, with both Emma and a phone in case I have to wake him for help. So though MS is not going well (IF that is the total problem)...know I am well cared for at home.

This is what happened. I have had problems with MS. That is not new news. I probably have mentioned it too much here. The issues including vision problems, increased fatigue, and weakness (mostly on the left side, feeling worn out, and breathing problems too (not sure from MS but making it all challenging). I woke up Thurs am and couldn't walk mostly due to problems on my left side. Like someone turned a switch and suddenly I could not lift my left leg, more weakness in my left arm and spasms and lots of pain. Increased difficulty with my right side too but mostly my left leg and arm...
I still can't believe the sudden change and decline.

The pain and disability grew worse so we went to urgent care. My doctor was off for the day and the others could not fit me in their schedule (family dr) I am sorry if the details are boring. I think those who read this who do have MS will be interested in case it has or does happen to them. My family dr could not get me in so I went to an urgent care in Maple Grove. This one is staffed by emergency room physicians but is not an ER.

The big question was/is whether this is all MS or if I had an injury or something else also. I thought perhaps I had pulled muscles or something intially. The doctor who examined me thinks I need to call the MS specialist first of all today (Friday) to let him direct what happens next. When he examined my back, hip etc. it did not seem that I had pain of that type *injury". My pain is more burning (nerve pain?) and this is goes down my arm into my hand, and then down my body to my toes...

MS COUPLES GETAWAY starts today. I am so disappointed but I don't think we will be able to go. I was given pain pills but they are not helping much and they of course are not helping the weakness. I am waiting for a final decision till I talk to the MS Specialist who now is Dr. J. Calkwood (Schapiro retired). I am mostly in bed or my recliner and not sure I want to deal with pain in public. If I can barely sit for more than a bit - it does not make sense to go to an event that is listening to speakers and discussions which means lots of sitting.

EMMA - This is a time when Emma shines. She is both company and also helping in so many ways. These are the days when I realize her strong bond to me. Of course she will respond to my requests. When in bed she was so good to go get Greg as needed. She learned the cue "Go Get Help" but now also responds to "Go Get Greg". She is very concerned. Though the weather is okay for her, she would only go out with Greg for a few minutes Thursday evening - she dashes right back in to be at my side.

We have been up most the night. I can't wait till the MS Specialist's office opens to see what he suggests to do next.

Emma is like my right arm right now. She is at my side getting some sleep as the pain finally seems to be under a little better control. Greg also is getting some sleep. I dislike that I have to depend so much on Greg but he doesn't seem to mind. Friend's like to kid us that in our marriage vows we must have taken seriously the "in sickness and in health" vow since we have needed to be able to deal with his past cancer, my MS and other health issues.

I want to feel better. I am nervous as I did not get many pain pills - I don't think enough to get through till Monday. IF I am able to write I will try to choose other topics than this...

If I don't write I will catch you up on things on MONDAY.

I am honestly so very grateful that I have Emma and Greg to help me through this..poor Emma - Greg was at work and I needed the phone badly to call him as the pain was so intense. I asked her to "get the phone" but had not put it back where she can easily get it. She came back and brought me the newspaper. She knew it wasn't the phone I am sure, but wanted to help me I think.

This is long...Hope your weekend goes well....Mary and Emma

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Water Exercise and Sleeping

The title of this entry pretty much sums up our day. We slept late. Do you know how much Emma likes to go back to bed. Greg got up with her because I was so tired, fed her and went out with her. She rushes back into bed with me and cuddles up close for like an hour. When I woke up she looked at me as if to say "Are you sure we have to get up?"

After my breakfast and a bit of clean up etc I take her out again. Then off to water exercise. She has her own special captains chair to sit in my friends van. She likes to look out the window. Then off we go. She opens the door for us at the YMCA and knows the routine for water exercise. We had a new life guard today that was so amazed at how Emma lays on the towel and watches the class. Okay she closes her eyes a bit but keeps checking on me. If there is extra noise she is all eyes on me. Today only 6 of the 14 came to class so it was quiet.
We went to subway with friends on the way home. I crawled into bed very fatigued and Emma joined me. We slept till dinner time. Fell asleep in the chair a bit so I am up now but off to bed.

Emma is doing well. She is a big puzzled as rain the past days has left our yard with very little snow. She looks around as if she is figuring out where to play, roll around etc. Fortunately for me she did not try to dive into the muddy mess at all. We had a big thunder and wind storm last night that I slept through. Emma woke Greg up and he reassured her. I don't know if I was so sound asleep that she couldn't wake me or what.

Off to bed now...hope you are all doing well. My health the past two days seems about the same. That sounds weird but to me is a good sign even if I rest a lot. Thanks for the cards and good wishes and email.

Hope all is well with you and yours..Mary and Emma

Monday, February 9, 2009

Reading Books

We had a relaxing afternoon with Rosa and Emma. I don't know why I didn't try to get Emma into this photo. I have to move fast to get the photo and am just learning how to take photos on my phone. We were at Barnes and Noble and took time to read in order to select what books to buy for our home. Once home at my house Rosa wanted to read even more books. Emma content to lay by us and I think she listens to the sound of my voice. It was fun.

When they picked her up Mike, Tia and Anna came for supper. Greg was the cook. We had a nice time. Anna always is so good to take Emma outside. Emma seems happy when they are around.

I fell asleep in my new recliner minutes after they left according to Greg. I rarely fall asleep in a chair so maybe this is a good sign. The new chair seems very comfy. Though Emma likes to be on the love seat with me so I will do that too. Now we are off to bed. Hope to find some time to read tomorrow....but also will go to water exercise. Today I felt better than I have for many weeks or months...yeah for that...enjoyed time with Greg, Rosa and Emma during the afternoon...

Hope your Tuesday goes well.....Mary and Emma


This is a picture of Boomer - my beloved dog that was our family "pet". You can see he taught me that dogs like to snuggle.
When I was first home with MS it was so weird to be home alone. I didn't have the MS swim yet. I also was very sick with MS. Much worse than I am with this flare up. I even was hospitalized. Boomer taught me so much about what a dog can do to be of help to you. His first owner even took him to work. His owner sadly died of cancer. Then her friend took him and she also got very sick. Boomer learned through it all too be attentive.

Boomer had what i call a "Lassie Moment". Before my really big flare up with MS I started walking in the morning before going to work teaching. Well my walking already was not great. it was very early and I stumbled and fell. To my surprise I couldn't get myself up. Boomer was at my side. I saw the newspaper delivery van. Boomer without me saying a word ran over to get the driver (I had dropped the leash) The driver came to my rescue. I learned to use a cane, to walk only when people were around and how fantastic a dog can be.

Boomer also liked naptime. Just like Emma. Boomer taught me how comforting a dog can be. I don't know how to detail it but I guess he showed me little ways he could be helpful too...though of course not well trained like a service dog. i cried so much when we had to put Boomer down. I thought I would never get another dog it hurt so bad. He was a breeding mistake. At the breeder the goal was Tibetian terror but gosh the mix was with an American Eskimo. He looked more like and American Eskimo but with a different coloring. His color was more beautiful than shown here.

I often think of how much fun Emma and Boomer would have had together. ONLY Boomer barked a lot. I learned that is very common in their breed. It was the first dog I had as an adult and gosh he was wonderful to me though not well trained...

So here's to the pet dogs that enrich are lives. So many people tell me through the blog, email, and when they see Emma in public - so many share what their pet dogs do for them...aren't they wonderful.

I had trouble sleeping so note the time. Emma is looking at me like I am nuts to be up. Off to bed again for both of us.

Mary and Emma

Sunday, February 8, 2009


Check out this website to see the newest litter of Helping Paw Puppies -

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Saturday - At Home

Christmas? Yes it is Feb 7th and my Christmas Decorations including those above are packed away and the tree taken down. Amazing that it took this long to get the inside decorations down. Mary and Joseph and Jesus and Angels are still in our front yard though. One step at a time. For some reason several houses in our neighborhood have decorations and/or lights still up from Christmas. Maybe it is the Jan cold weather? I don't have a great excuse for inside except I just wasn't feeling well..and it wasn't in the way.

Emma likes these types of toys too. We have to remind Rosa not to put them in her reach at times. Rosa and Grandpa like the songs various of our electronic toys make. Greg likes to get them on clearance after Christmas!!

We had a very good day. My sister took me out to breakfast at a place neat here. We had such a relaxing meal and nice visit. A long nap and time to be home. Emma enjoyed extra tlc as she cuddled next to me and I petted her , really gave her a dog massage and she loves that. The day went bu quickly but a lot of the time I was sleeping.

I will be home all day tomorrow to rest and read. I need rest but it is good to move around too. We picked up our new recliner so I will be able to enjoy resting and reading in that tomorrow while Greg work from morning till late night.

Have a good weekend Mary and Emma

Friday, February 6, 2009

Who takes Care of Who?

I am having a MS flare up. You know that. So the question is who takes care of who? I pondered that today?

Rosa - first it must seem puzzling that babysitting Rosa an active two year old works and she is a joy. Well on Wed she is here a few hours but I was realizing this. She comes, she snuggles, I don't have to lift her. We color for awhile or I watch her color. She climbs up and I read a book or two. We sing. She plays with Emma or lays and hugs her. We lay down for about an hour and watch her two favorite videos and sometimes she almost falls asleep but not quite. She gets a rest though and so do I. Then we get up. We have a snack and she plays with toys. I love watching her and Daddy comes and the time has flown by. Have I watched her? Well yes I have supervized her.

But ROSA has snuggled me, rested with me, entertained me so I think she HELPS me and gives me TLC I need especially with a flare up. I love her imagination, her smile, watching her play with her baby, her little people. It is my favorite afternoon of the week. I do think Rosa is helping care for me during this flare up. She is just so awesome and so easy. It is just a few hours and flies by. And if i can't do it then they arrange something else.

EMMA - I make sure she is fed and gets outside. I have her help so I do get out of bed and even in a MS flare up you have to push yourself a bit. I think she helps me try to get to water exercise even if I can't do it all. She helps me now more than ever in the dressing room, getting my cane, the towel, openning the door. Gosh that helps me so much.

At home I am teaching her the names of more things. So if I need something I can say get the -- and she knows what I mean.
phone, blanket, napkin, silverware, clothing, and so many things. But I realize she knows the names of more things since I say them rather than just say get it - pretty cute. We put things on so she can open the firg (not just close it) and are adapting as needed. She definitely is helping.

My husband - is awesome. Cooking, shopping, doing dishes, laundry, and everything. By evening last night he literally had to bring the plate to me, cut my meat, and help in so many ways...even pull up the covers for me I got so weak. Thankfully I am not always that extremely weak all day.

You - I am getting nice notes. When I do blog it perks me up. I am hoping I don't complain so much. You hear of people like with cancer where people say "they never complain". For real? Can anyone really deal with chronic illness and NEVER complain to anyone?

I hope you keep reading. I hope if their are days that I can't write that you won't give up on me. I bet I would blog though to no one? i really have no way of knowing how many read this? Emma and I will keep trying to do it daily

Thanks for being there from Emma and Mary

Thursday, February 5, 2009

From Emma


Mary is very worn out due to MS but doing okay.
I am taking good care of her.
We even went to water exercise a lot.
It is hard to get things done around the house
So gosh it is messy
(oops Mary might not want you to know that)
and that is frustrating for her
but she needs her rest.
Greg is helping but works some nights.

Tomorrow Friday we are home all day.
This afternoon her friend Tonya came for a visit
She helped undecorate the Christmas tree
and it was nice for Mary.

Thanks for the notes and prayers.

Mary and Emma

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Home to Sleep

You know I sleep a lot. This was my third sleep study in my life. For some reason I was still nervous. The staff was great and the surroundings comfortable. I thought gosh this won't be too bad. I was so tired I called my friends to chat and keep me alert. I had to wait to go to bed till her other patient went to bed so she could get us both wired up and watch us go to sleep. Yes they watch you and photograph you all night. Well lights did not go out till after Letterman started. My eyes were blinking so hard trying to stay awake...

till...the lights went out. I was in a comfy position though wired up. She had done the check to be sure the camera could see me (how do they do that in the dark) I practiced moving limbs on command, deep breathing and all the checks she had to do. Then it was good night. I was comfy and cozy enough but I did not sleep...I did not sleep...I did not sleep...I did not sleep. At first I stayed relaxed but then I got anxious - they have to have you sleep enough hours for the test to do what it is intended to do.
Finally they gave me a sleeping pill and I still was awake. So then I was hot and they turned on the fan...finally with the lull of the fan I fell asleep. Boy did morning come early. I had woken up at 5:45 so they said Great let's get you up!!

Now in my life not working 5:45 means it is still time to go back to bed ha ha. But gosh I got up, they got wires off me, and I showered etc. Had a mtg with the doctor at 8:30 and later a meeting with the woman setting up the bi pap (no longer on cpap) machine for my use. This machine should help me deal with my apnea and the lung weakness while I am sleeping. By 10:00 am I was out the door.

I thought how s[\poiled I am. When I can's sleep I can get Emma to get even closer to me and pet her. Or Greg will rub my back...and I have my favorite pillow....well all those things you do at home to sleep. A sharp comparison to a different bed, sleeping alone, strange noises and the pressure of knowing you have to sleep.

So it is a bit past 4:30 pm and Emma and I are taking a nap. Yeah Rosa was here for several hours this afternoon - we had fun. She even showed off how she is learning to learn the potty - I was so impressed. She hugs and loves Emma. We have a great time.

But I have to sleep for awhile. Greg will be late for supper I anyway sweet dreams and yes they think they got it all figured out so I don't have to have another sleep study unless I have problems....hurray.

Mary and Emma

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

One Day at A Time

I am going to take some time to write before I nap. We just got home from water exercise. I got tired but it was good to go. I won't have any trouble napping ha ha. We went to the lung specialist yesterday who had ordered some heart and lung tests. The heart is fine. The lung tests show I have only 43% of the muscle strength you should have for breathing. He thinks most the problem is the Multiple Sclerosis. I do not know if the MS Specialist would agree as that is rare but the tests have not shown any other explanation for this problem.

I am also having problems with a MS flare up. I am very tired and sleeping so much, I am experiencing more vision problems and weakness. In time we hope this will improve. It just takes time. Sometimes they put you on steroids to feel better sooner but we are not doing that due to the fact i have diabetic problems to deal with now anyway - no sense making that worse. So Emma and I are resting a lot.

Tonight I am going for a sleep study. I have sleep apnea but might be put on a bi pap instead of a c pap machine. This helps people with lung weakness. If they decide I need it I should find more sleep more restful. I have been having trouble with my traditional c pap machine and mask. So see there is lots going on for me. Emma will sleep at home with Greg tonight but she won't mind having my whole side of the bed. I will be all wired up and also need to be sure she is not waking me up or anything as they evaluate my being at home will be the best for her.

My husband is doing more than usual to help keep up with things at home after his busy days at work. He is so kind. I think he is getting a taste of what it would be like to live alone as I sleep so much and help so little.

We did manage to go to my son's super bowl party. The whole family was there and friends. It was such fun. I slept all day before we went and was soon asleep once we got home. I am so glad I didn't miss it though. I forgot my camera so I don't have pictures. It was his first time having a group at his own apartment and he was an awesome host. Food was yummy and everyone had a great time together. Rosa added entertainment to the evening.

There were 16 adults I think - Emma was happy to curl up in a corner under my son's desk near where I was sitting. She slept away and I think was glad to be in her own quiet spot. She was wonderful.

So I am managing by taking it one day at a time. This is why I don't work so on the hard times I can sleep, rest and take it easy. My tremor is worse too i guess as one of the women at swimming was surprised to see. I think I always have a tremor but apparently it was more evident or something. Brr the water in the pool was freezing. IT would have been easy to stay home, stay warm and sleep. I am proud that Emma and I got out of bed and went. Good for my body to strecth and move even if I am worn out.

I won't write more tonight due to the sleep study. Imagine me hooked up to lots of wires as they monitor my sleep...

Sweet dreams Emma and Mary

Sunday, February 1, 2009

I like this picture but it does show my need to loose weight. Emma is so special to me.


MS is wiping me out. I went to bed at around 11 and slept till 12:30 and then needed a nap by 2. Unbelievable fatigue and weakness but for me this happens at times. So don't worry it will gradually get better. We did go to a super bowl party at my son Dan's. I would have taken a picture but forgot my camera at home. It was our family and some friends we knew. Greg and I were the old folks of the party. Dan was so welcoming, organized, and we had a good time. There was so much cheering that Emma loved her spot. She slept "under" his desk in the corner. She stayed put there. Near me and content to be out of the way.

Rosa was the life of the party. She got her hair cut and jabbered away. We had such a nice time. I was not in favor of any particular team and enjoyed the commercials. I also had opportunities to chat with my children, their friends, and Rosa too. I am so glad I mustered the energy to attend. Now off to bed.

Tomorrow another Dr appt (MOnday) and hopefully some chores and a nap. We will see what energy I have. My husband is being so helpful and of course so is Emma. Don't worry things will be okay.

Mary and Emma