The Top10 Things You Should Do If You Test Positive For Alpha1

  • Have A List Of Questions When You See a Doctor About Your Alpha1(If you try to remember the questions you want to ask you may forget half of them)
  • Learn To Breathe Effectively
  • Limit Or Eliminate Your Alcohol Consumption
  • Don't Be Afraid To Be Proactive About Your Alpha1
  • Get Plenty Of Rest(You will likely have a higher oxygenation level)
  • Avoid Sick People(You have a lower immune system than most people)
  • Drink Plenty Of Water
  • Eat Healthy/Avoid Processed Food(Carbonated beverages)
  • Start A Careful Exercise Program/Pulmonary Rehabilitation Program(Your muscles will become more efficient so they won't use as much oxygen and if you have surgery you will likely recover quicker as well)
  • Stop Smoking

Friday, January 10, 2014

Every Day Is A Blessing

As I mentioned in a previous post the filter on the camera lense of my life has been changed. I wake up every morning with the feeling that is a huge gift! It might not be perfect but, it's far better than most given my lung condition.I wake up every morning want to smell, taste and experience as much as I can. I appreciate nature the most I have since I was a child! I can best describe the feeling as the first time a child notice a butterfly and see's it fly away.

My barn roof fell down a week ago and the cold weather has been causing havoc with my LP gas regulator causing my furnace to go out during this record cold snap.Not much barn has been dismantled (well, actually none has been dismantled). In the process of telling somebody about my barn I also remarked that I wish I knew someplace that made arched rafters. I'd really like to rebuild the barn only better. Somebody piped up "I know where you can get them but, the company won't let anybody see the jig or how they are made!". That got me excited!! I plan to reuse the floor boards for the new old barn and the rest try to repurpose it for converting my greenhouse into a woodworking shop, making furniture and reuse as much of the base support timbers for when I rebuild the barn (hopefully 3 - 5 years). I have given myself 2 months to completely dismantle the barn. At first I thought the dismantling the barn would kill my doing maple syrup. Then I realized if I gave myself deadlines which could be altered I likely could still make maple syrup! In the process of shoveling I FINALLY realized why my Grandfather wore those nearly knee high hunting boots in winter!! I kept getting snow in my La Crosse Ice Kings while shoveling. I started looking around online and that is exactly why Leon Leonard (LL Bean) created the near knee high boots....he got snow in his boots while out hunting and came home with cold & wet feet.

I'm trying to lose 30 pounds but, it's not coming off very fast. Why is the weigh loss so important? I have a good bit of weight around the stomach area. That puts pressure on the diaphragm which in turn puts pressure on the lungs and reducing what the lungs are able to do.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Walking The Tight Rope

In September I received a very chilling prognosis. I've never really felt great for a couple years but, I could never understand why. I saw my lung doctor on September 27th, 2013. He told me I had 1-3 yrs to live with no chance of transplant and where did I want my oxygen and concentrator prescription sent.When I stopped at the local Apria when I got home I asked the gentlemen who help me load my supplemental oxygen concentrator " Has anybody prescribed these returned these shortly after being prescribed them?" He responded" No. But, that doesn't mean you can't." Within two days of returning home I was having such a time breathing I went to one emergency room until I realized they had no clue what they were doing and there was a good chance I could die. I went home, fed my animals and headed to the next ER. There I was admitted and although it took over 30 hrs to get my airways open enough so I could lay down to rest they got Dr Hogarth involved. He asked for respiratory therapist to be brought in and I feel the best I have in 2-4 years! I spent three days in the hospital. My Oxygen level is up, heart rate down and the filter on the lense cap of my future has been altered. I was off work for three weeks and for the first time I wasn't sure I'd be able to return to work. And I'm the type of person who has never dreamed of retirement. When I returned to U of Chicago to visit Dr Hogarth I was released to return to work. Although he would have liked me to keep the supplemental oxygen & concentrator if it was paid for he was ok with me returning it. When I stopped by Apria the same gentlemen met me to help. I said "I'm here to return the concentrator & oxygen tanks." He simply said "Good.". I've been out shoveling my driveway and I have better cutting numbers at work! In spite of the financial setback I'm doing pretty good. It looks like I will be able to make first half of taxes and I haven't had to open up a charge account at the feedmill yet for propane. It's as high as I used to pay for fuel oil to heat the farmhouse I used to rent. Life is good!!!!!