Our lives are on hold…Staying upbeat through the process…

Typical house in the Campanario neighborhood in Madeira, where we lived for almost three months in 2014. Excuse the tilted photo…we were on a very steep hill.

In the past two weeks since we’ve been sick, time has passed so quickly that one day folds into another, and we hardly notice. We are anxious to reconnect with family and friends when we are our “old selves” again.

In reality, we aren’t our “old selves” lately anyway. The waiting period until we leave for Cleveland in two months is dragging on, regardless of how busy we are. Typically, we love the anticipation of our lives, but this type of anticipation is hardly enjoyable or exciting. The sooner we “get this show on the road,” the better.

Days pass when I hardly think about it in an attempt to stay upbeat and not be dragged down by the eventuality of this gross surgery. When we are with our friends and family, we are cheerful, and they never know it is on our minds. When it’s just the two of us, we do very well. It’s not “doom and gloom” in our daily lives. We still laugh, talk, and enjoy our time together.

My primary concern is that I’ll start getting severe symptoms of valve disease before we get to Cleveland and have to seek medical care in Minnesota on an emergency basis. I’m hoping I can hold out for two more months. I have mild symptoms, but nothing I can’t live with for now.

It’s been a little more difficult while we’ve been sick these past few weeks. This Friday will be two weeks since I got sick and three weeks for Tom. Tom is still feeling tired and out of sorts. I don’t feel weak or tired but cough quite a bit, although it’s not a dry, hacking cough.

In any case, it’s been dull and uneventful these past few weeks. Hopefully, we can go to Billy’s Bar and Grill in Anoka this Friday to get together with Tom’s siblings and other family members for happy hour and dinner. Gosh, I haven’t had a glass of wine since Vincent’s graduation party on June 7, not that I’ve missed it.

Often weeks go by, and we don’t drink any alcohol. For us, adult beverages are more about socialization and ritual than “getting a buzz,” which rarely happens for either of us. Based on my heart situation, I am very cautious about drinking wine, sticking to small portions when I imbibe. Tom, always the driver, also keeps his consumption to a minimum.

The walking is going OK. Yesterday, I walked for a total of 3500 steps, which is the most I’ve been able to do for quite a while. I set my phone’s timer for once an hour or less, depending on how I feel that day. My new goal is to stretch the time I am walking instead of a specific number of steps while keeping the end-of-the-day step count in mind.

Today is another beautiful sunny day, making the walking all the more enjoyable. But, the struggle to walk causes me to concentrate on not teetering while walking to avoid falling. My gait is not consistent and steady.

We wish a fantastic summer day for our friends and family in the northern hemisphere and a pleasant winter day for our friends in the southern hemisphere.

Be well.

Photo from ten years ago today, June 26, 2014:

A papaya tree in the house’s side garden in Campanario, Madeira. For more photos, please click here.