Wednesday, February 3, 2010

LOFT LIFE: Getting back to normal





Saw Dr. G last week, and expected him to tell me about the 2cm and 3cm nodules, and had rehearsed my “so what” speech. I was thrown a curve when he told me I had a partially collapsed lung! I really was speechless--not breathless, mind you.
So, of course, I had more questions--but not many, because, as I said, I was taken by surprise. In general, this thing should self-correct.
It is a blessing to have friends, and especially smart friends like Matt, who is an EMT. I gave him the scoop about how the radiologist found “ground glass opacity” on my CAT scan. I asked him what in the world that meant. I should have asked Dr. G. but in some ways Matt was better--more detailed. He guessed from my description that I do not really have a true pnuemothorax--collapsed lung, but the deflation of some alveoli, which he explained are the grape-like clusters (alveoli) of air in the lungs. Some of my grapes lost their puff. No problem, most likely. As I begin more normal life--instead of the cushy bedridden Mac-world I have been living in for 2 months, I am likely to have them re-inflate. I just love Matt. He turned around my fear in a second. I can just see those little alveoli puffing as I walk around the loft, to the mail box, around the mall, etc.
Matt says that saying I have a partially collapsed lung is like telling me I have a hemorrhage when it is a nosebleed. Isn’t that just like the medical community to put it the most terrifying language they can find. Collapsed alveoli are NOT the same thing as a collapsed LUNG.
In any case, I am now arising at 6:30 a.m. and going pretty strong till 10 p.m., with just a bit of congestion left, which Matt says getting rid of will dramatically speed up recovery. Coughing is good.
So for all you sweet friend who keep telling me to rest--the rest happened, and now I have to go, go, go--till right BEFORE I am short of breath. That is something like the directions I was given which told me to turn a block before the movie theatre. Think about it.
So our loft life continues, and believe me, I am grateful that my most challenging task is cooking. I am also back to “work” which amounts to writing, interviewing, and, of course, starting up as many new businesses as I can dream up. The most current is networking consulting I've wanted to continue from my workshops in 1981, after I wrote an article for Toastmaster Magazine on networking. It got some acclaim; I was still being asked for reprinting rights FOUR YEARS later--from Taiwan. No kidding. So I was ahead of my time--and am now behind the 8-ball to do something concrete with my ideas. Met this morning with a business owner and we will meet with some in the MA/CT stateline area to help each other learn about this. 
Thanks again to you all for your encouragement, comments and love during my two months of recovery from--well, let’s just say,  respiratory challenges.