Friday, December 31, 2010

2010 At An End

2010, The year South Africa has been waiting for ever since 2004 when it was announced that we'll be hosting the Soccer World Cup! So that has come and gone, and everything's back to normal.

For me it's been an amazing year. Did a few things that I never thought would happen for me:
  • got engaged

  • bought a house with Chris (and ever since have NO FREE CASH LEFT)

  • got married

  • furnished a house!

  • never blew a single lung function test that was less than 100% FEV1

  • visited Cape Town, Port Elizabeth and Durban

  • started swimming at the gym (although want to do more of this)

  • qualified for the 2011 World Transplant Games

I'm sure there might be more but can't think of them right now. Going to a potjiekos thing tonight (potjiekos is type of stew made on a fire), should be fun. And Anto arrived yesterday so loving it to have her here! Will take some pics!

May 2011 be just as great!!!! HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Christmas 2010

So we had our first Christmas in our new place! AND as a married couple :-) Christmas eve was spent at our place, we had delicious salads, potato bake, meat, garlic bread and choc mousse & ice cream for pudding. Got some really nice pressies :-)

On Xmas day we went to church, and then drove through to Pretoria to my grandad's house with the Christmas Lunch! Food was great again... gammon, lamb, turkey, salads, baby potato's, fruit salad... still eating left-overs! The day was finished off with my own Christmas tradition... watching the movie Love Actually! (Chris even bought me the DVD!)

On Boxing Day we went to visit my cousin (they've just moved into their new house) where we played some boardgames and had the most delicious steak! Too much yummy food! Unfortunately my sis is going back today... BUT on Thursday my friend Antoinette is coming to visit again :-) So we've got more guests for New Years!

Back at work today, although it's VERY quiet. Going to gym after work to work off some of the food I ate this weekend... ugh, too scared to get on the scale :-/

Hope everyone else had a great Christmas too... I get so sad when I think of the loved ones all the friends I've lost in the last year or so... for a few families I know this was their first xmas without sister/child/spouse/brother... I hope I never have to put my family throught that. And then also my donor fam, for who it was their 3rd Christmas without her.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Thursday, December 23, 2010

35 months yesterday

Not a long post, don't have much to say. Just that yesterday was my 35 months with the lungs, 1 month countdown to the big 3 YEARS! Very excited about that! Kind of feels unreal that this is my 3rd Chistmas with them!

Just 2 sleeps to Christmas (although I generally enjoy Christmas Eve more so that's just 1 sleep!) My sister is arriving tomorrow, going to be great to see her again.

Went to gym on Tuesday for the first time in 2 and a half weeks, SO STIFF... wanted to go again today but I'm too sore... at least I'm getting back in the swing of it.

Enjoy your last Christmas shopping!!!!!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

6 sleeps to Christmas...

Almost wishing this week would fast forward to Friday! My sis is coming on Friday and work closes at 12h00!!! She goes back again on the 28th, but it's going to be 4 great days! My mom and dad also came up from Port Elizabeth on Friday so it's been very nice, we had them over for lunch yesterday. Friday evening we went out to play tenpin bowling (I WON!!!!) and pool with friends. Was very nice, but I suck at pool! Luckily the tenpin made up for it.

I'm completely over my cold now I think. Hoping to back to gym in the week, just to get started, so that I'm not COPLETELY unfit when I start in all seriousness in the new year. I've also started swimming at the gym again (well I went once so far this summer and then I got sick), which is especially nice when the weather's so hot, and we don't have a pool at our place.

Hope you had a good weekend so far and enjoy the countdown to Christmas!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Holiday Day!

So today was Day of Reconcilliation. It's been a good day! Only woke up at 8:45am (although I need to mention I slept badly, dreamt TWICE that I couldn't breathe - probably because my nose is still a bit blocked, read half a book between 1:30am and 4am, and a dream about work... such fun). Had some yummy toasted sarmies for breakfast/brunch, and then set off to the shops for some shopping. Didn't buy anything interesting though, just pillow protectors and shampoo/conditioner. Got a bit depressed that I don't have money to buy clothes and presents the way I used to be able to do, but at least we have OUR OWN TOWNHOUSE to show for it.

Tomorrow marks 6 months to the start of the Transplant Games! A bit scary, but also exciting. We had to submit our preliminary registration forms this week to our National Team organisers. Definitely going to be the highlight of 2011...

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Awesome awesome Christmas wishlist....

Fellow post transplant CF'er living in New York, Piper, posted this yesterday... CHECK OUT HER BLOG!

Every year the holidays roll around and hundreds of CF/post-transplant spouses and significant others are left struggling with what gift to buy their sensual, scarred sweetie. Tragically, many of these clueless Cassanovas will miss the mark entirely, presenting their beloved with a gift basket of grapefruit or a membership to the Raw Meat of the Month Club. But don't be one of them! Let us help you stuff her stocking and trim her tree with helpful and exciting drugs from all walks of post-transplant life. Trust us, she (and her lungs) will thank you.

Prograf: Sure, it's predictable, but the classics never go out of style. This pill is as important as the little black dress for the transplant patient who truly wants to strut that new organ in style. It also comes in a wide assortment of dosages (each with its own color!) for your convenience. Try .5 mgs if you're shy, or hit the ground running with the 5 mg stunner and show her how much you really care. Bonus features of this gift include frequent blood draws, a sexy tremor no one can resist, possible long-term neurological issues, and some sleepless nights thrown in for good measure. We bet you'll know how to fill the extra creative.

Cellcept: Kinda like prograf, but bigger and harder to swallow! This (not so) little pill is perfect for the transplant patient who enjoys trying out new viruses and crazy bacteria that remain relatively unknown to the general population. Thought the Bubonic Plague was extinct? We bet Cellcept can prove you wrong! Use of this drug practically ensures that you'll have at least a few days a year of quality bonding time in your local doctor's office and/or hospital. Also perfect for anyone who enjoys that special thrill of seeing their partner in a germ mask. Sexy.

Prednisone: Do you know someone who might truly enjoy injecting with insulin, eating two entire pizzas washed down with pickle-topped ice cream sundaes and three family-size bags of potato chips, then burning off the calories with a round of insomnia-fueled mania -- all while crying hysterically over that rerun of Saved By The Bell where Jessie got addicted to caffeine pills and was "so excited, so excited, so...scared"? Does that special patient in your life ever stand in front of the mirror dreaming of a rounder face and possibly some gorgeous facial hair to complete that "sexy cavewoman" look we all crave? Have a friend or family member who's recently been complaining that her mood is too darn stable and her weight too effing predictable? If you answered yes to any of these commonly asked questions, then you definitely need some prednisone for her stocking. Just make sure you hide your serving of the holiday dinner somewhere safe (and preferably padlocked) before she opens her gift.

Valcyte: If you crave side effects but immuno-suppressants just aren't your style, let our personal pharmacy shoppers hook you up with some fabulous Valcyte. CMV ain't got nothing on this little pink pill, we promise. And if you really want to show her you care, why not consider upgrading to the IV Ganciclovir version? We guarantee this little gift will have her Craving More Valcyte before the year is over!

Antibiotics/Antivirals/Antifungals: And just in case your special someone isn't a CMV mismatch, never fear: we've still got you covered! These drugs can treat everything from paraflu to pseudomonas to all the stomach problems that come as a direct result from treating paraflu and pseudomonas*! Still not sure this is the gift for you? Let us put your mind at ease: if your beloved is ever planning on going out in public again -- ever -- she needs these drugs. She probably needs them just to sit in the same room with you if YOU ever go out in public again, and she definitely needs them if she ever plans to eat anything. Seriously. Buy them. Now.

*Note: the author of this statement makes no representations as to the actual effectiveness of such treatment at actually easing the nausea, digestive issues, and other stomach problems that might arise from antibiotic use. She just knows from experience that too many antibiotics leads to stomach problems that lead to more antibiotics. Why this works (in theory, at least) is completely beyond her understanding of the human body. As an aside, she also admits that she did NOT do well in high school biology, which probably explains a lot.

Beta-Blockers: Need a gift for the transplant patient who has everything? Do you want to make sure your token of love goes straight to her heart -- literally? Then let us suggest beta-blockers. These drugs are 100% guaranteed to slow the heart and lower the blood pressure, likely while lulling your beloved into a nice, drowsy state that may or may not cancel out the insomnia and/or mania induced by other drugs on this list. And while a slow heart rate and lower blood pressure might not be exactly the response you're looking for in the heat of the moment, let us assure you that they are better than the alternative in this case.

All The Old CF Staples (Or Many of Them, Anyway): Hey, let's face it: sometimes it's just hard to let go. For the nostalgic among us, why not try a gift of some of your old favorites? Pancreatic enzymes? Yes, please! ADEKs/Source CF vitamins? Sign us up! Hey, even the occasional round of TOBI, Colistin, or Cayston can make an excellent stocking stuffer. Remember: we all like to be surprised once and a while, but some drugs are simply not going anywhere -- just like her CF pancreas!

Of course, if none of these suggestions tickle your fancy, be sure to check out our "Save on Healthcare Insurance Today" (SHIT) gift card program for .2% discounts off your loved one's next insurance premium, doctor's visit, or drug copay*. Sure, it ain't much, but with the current healthcare system, you should be glad we're offering anything at all. Gift certificates run $1,000,000 each and carry a maximum value of $5. Trust us, it makes sense.*Discounts cannot be used to purchase any drug commonly taken by humans or to visit any licensed medical professional other than those who possess x-ray vision and are able to leap tall buildings in a single bound (some exclusions may apply within this category). Certificates are void on weekends, holidays, and any day ending in "Y". Gift cards purchased through the SHIT program are non-refundable and may result in higher payments in the long run. We apologize for any inconvenience these restrictions might cause and assure you that our staff is working on a timely and effective solution. In the meantime, if you have a problem with any of the above, please keep quiet and do nothing -- as anything else could seriously dampen our holiday spirit and bottom line. Thanks in advance from the Scrooge Healthcare System!

Had some minor surgery (colposcopy and LLETZ) again yesterday (same as in April). My gynae check-up 2 weeks back showed some abnormal cells and with my immune-suppressedness you have to act on stuff like that. Was fine, not sore or anything, just felt really drugged up afterwards, not a bad feeling, haha! Didn't go to work today or yesterday, but will be back tomorrow. Will see what results say, but Dr said it seemed like pre-cancerous cells and she cut everything out. Very frustrating!!!!

It's been raining and cold now for almost the last week! Feels like coastal winter weather! Love it, but actually wishing for some sun now. Think my plants are too! Although it was nice for my weekend of relaxing. Man... wish I could spend everyday gardening!

My parents will be arriving from PE this weekend, and my sis will only be flying in on the 24th, and going back again on the 18th. So far Christmas Eve will be at our place and we'll have lunch at my grandad's on Christmas day. Going to be so nice to entertain for Chritmas at our own place fot the first time :-)

Sunday, December 12, 2010


Just realised I started this blog on 12 December 2007!!!! :-)

Here's my first post:

I've come a long way in 3 years!!!!



No much interesting to report on... cold better but nose still snotty with no indication of getting less snotty. Oh well, at least I don't FEEL bad. I should have taken a few sick days from work to recover quicker, but we've just been so busy at work, and they'll call me the whole time anyway, so I felt like I'll probably be more realxed being sick at work than lying in bed staring at my phone. HAVE I MENTIONED BEFORE I WISH I HAD A JOB WHERE THE COMPANY SHUT DOWN OVER CHRISMAS??? Also had a lot of medical aid issues to sort out, which made it even worse.

At least Thursday's a public holiday! Day of reconcilliation. It used to be "geloftedag", where the white farmers thanked God for helping them kill hundreds of Zulu's in the Battle of Bloodriver. Since 1994 it's not politically correct anymore obviously, so now it's the day we all reconcile or something. There's your bad history lesson for this Sunday.

This weekend's been nice. We've just been lounging around the house, eating, sleeping, reading, wathing TV. Definitely did me good! Today we had Jenny and Aviva over for coffee, so there was at least a reason to get myself looking presentable!

I can't believe in 2 weeks time Christmas will be over already! And in Jan it'll be 3 years with the lungies... need to start planning some celebration! 3 years is a long time, but in the big scheme of things I'm hoping it'll just be a tiny fraction of my time here on earth!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Cold :-(

Not the weather but me! I've been around 2 sick colleague's at work (WHY DO PEOPLE COME TO WORK IF THEY HAVE FLU AND PNEUMONIA???) and By Sat morning I was sure I'd avoided this one too (haven't been sick once this year except for early Jan). I still went to the gym and swam there on Sat morning, followed by some gardening, full of energy... As I was getting ready for my year-end function I started feeling snotty and my throat started getting sore. It was a nice evening, lovely food, but we were back home by 22:00. During the night my throat and nose got worse, and I've had the WORST throat-ache ever in my life! So Yesterday was just spend in bed reading and on the couch watching old FRIENDS episodes.

I went in to work for an hour this morning and was back in bed by 10am. Slept a bit and just reading and playing around on fb. I got antibiotics, so just really hope it doesnt go to my lungs and stays in my "head".

So that was pretty much my weekend. Nothing exciting happening except that it's the last full working week of December. Yay!!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Celebrations of my sister's honours degree!

My sister heard on Friday that she has got her honours degree!!!! I took half-day leave from work and took her out for lunch, followed by some shopping! Was really nice! Had a braai with my dad on Friday night to continue the celebrations.

On Sat morning we went to the Oriental Plaza, which was a bit disappointing, although I did get a cheap little dress. My sis also bought me some lavender plants which I planted in some pots, very pretty! Also went to fetch Pierre, Chrislie's boyfriend aththe airport, he's joining us for the last 2 days of her visit...Had family (and family of family!) over for supper last night and did the CF Trust Walk this morning at the zoo and breakfast afterwards. Had a quiet lunch at home and late afternoon we went up to the Northcliff Towers and coffee in Parktown. Busy weekend!

Can't believe the last month of the year is starting this week!!!! The past 11 months have been so busy and also great!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Monday was 34 months!

Celebrated another month with the lungs on Monday! 2 months till 3 years! My dad took us out for supper, not just because of the lungaversary, but because Chrislie's here. Had a stunning pizza!

It's been really nice having my sister here. I've been working like usual, but tomorrow and Friday I'm taking half-day leave so I have the afternoon off! This year's been too long now... getting so tired of working! And there's going to be no break over Christmas, working rights through :-( Making me rather depressed today! Hopefully the work slows down a bit at least.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Some weekend news

Not going to update much, off to bed now... Chrislie arrived yesterday afternoon late and we had supper, watched some TV and went to bed. Today we went shopping, I played in my garden a bit, we went to church, had a braai... here are a few pics...

Thursday, November 18, 2010

2 sleeps till Chrislie is here!!!!

Yay, can't wait!!! Just have to survive tomorrow and Sat morning :-) This week's been quite nice so far. On Monday night after gym and fighting at the hosp for my creon (digestive enzymes), Chris suprised me by taking me out to go see a movie! Our first one as a married couple :-) We used to see a lot more movies before we were paying off a bond! It the The Switch or something with Jennifer Aniston, rather cute and didn't require too much brainwork!

On Sat morning I'll be attending a meeting with SASCOC (South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee) representing SATSA (South African Transplant Sports Assoc.). A bit nervous, don't quite know what to expect... will be interesting though.

Looked through some old pics last night, found one taken exactly 3 years ago. Good and a bad memory at the same time, if that makes sense. Good evening, felt like sh*t.

Anyway, hope your week was OK!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Weekend over :-(

Boo, it's Sunday night again.... always depresses me. Had a great weekend though. Friday evening we had supper at home with Malcolm who is leaving for Australia soon. Yesterday morning I replanted one of the plants in my garden... it wasn't doing so well where it was, hopefully it'll grow better now! Also went to a baby shower and then a braai and watched rugby with good friends at their new place! Only got home at 2am this morning!

We had a slow start today, Chris made us some nice breakfast. Then we went to visit more friends on the Vaal River (about 45 min drive from JHB) where we had a picnic on the river bank and also a swim! (Not in the river though, in a pool!). It was extremely hot... about 38 degrees C! So rather tired tonight, but being with friends and doing fun stuff energises me, so it's good type of tired :-) not the same as work-tired!

Hopefully this week at work will be slightly less intense than last week, can do with some breathing space! At least my sister is landing on Sat and visiting for 10 days! It'll be the first time she sees our little house, can't wait!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Been married for 3 months today!

What I wouldn't give to re-live that night! And the week following our wedding day! Only realised it late this afternoon, but we did spend the whole day together on our own :-) Did some grocery shopping this morning, relaxed, made some prego rolls for lunch, played some Monopoly and pruned our tree again.

In 2 weeks time my sister's here!!!! She got her exam results back on Friday and did REALLY well, so proud of her!! Can't wait for her visit, going to be great.

Expecting a crazy week at work again, but what's new? Wish I had some leave to take over Christmas :-/ I doubt if I have anything left for the year, but will have to check to make sure. Wish I had the type of job (like a teacher), where I had more holidays!

Have also started to look for sponsors for the WTG next year... Big job! We should hopefully also have a successfull fundraiser here in Gauteng (province of which Johannesburg is the biggest city, but I think Pretoria is the capital?)

Oh, also read on Facebook today that the longest double-lung transplant survivour is 26 years and going. Apparently there were a few individuals who passed that mark, but passed away since. So the lady who is 26 years post tx (in the States somewhere) is now the longest post tx survivour. Very inspiring!!!!!

Sorry this post has been a bit rondom and ADD-like, just had some thoughts to share.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Check-up report back

3-monthly check up went OK. Lungies still good, 103% FEV1%. Bloods were ALL good (and I had a lot done, kidney, liver functions, full blood counts, prograf levels, CMV etc) EXCEPT the glucose one, as I suspected too high. Problem seems to be my insulin dosages (too much long acting too little short acting) and not enough structured meals. So going to have to see a diabetic dietician to sort it out, which is a relief actually. Also took my wedding album with to show to the nurses and other staff!

Thank goodness the week is halfway at least, would be great if it got better from here. No specific plans for the weekend yet, which is fine.

Hope your week's been OK!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Last weekend for October

October's ending at last! Feels like it's been going on forever, although at the same time I can't believe we've reached November!!!! This morning I did some gardening (will post more garden pics soon!) and cleaning while Chris was at work. This afternoon we're having a farewell for good friends emigrating to Australia at our place.... very sad that they're leaving!

Thursday evening I went to visit a friend in hospital again, Gail, and the were 2 other CFers admitted. One post transplant and one pre. So the 4 of us ended up hanging out in the same room (with masks) chatting! I realised afterwards I've never been in a room with 3 other CF people before! Wow, was really nice.

Went for bloods yesterday morning, have my 3-monthly check-up on Wednesday. Don't know how some transplant patients only go for yearly or even 6-monthly check-ups, I'd never make it! I get anxious already if it's been 2 months since I did a lung function test! So that'll be nice to have some peace of mind again.

Not much else to report on, hope you have a good weekend too!

Thursday, October 28, 2010