Sunday, January 3, 2010

Back to Knitting

While I was in the hospital, I did not feel well enough to knit. Even after I got out of the hospital the first time, I did not feel like knitting much. It was Cailyn Meyer's Wintergreen Gloves that got me interested in knitting again. The pattern calls for Knit Picks Palette yarn, so once all of the colors were available, I put in an order.

Before I started the Wintergreen Gloves, I did finish a pair of black fingerless mitts for me using the Maine Morning Mitts pattern in Lion Brand Wool-Ease yarn. I also made a pair of fingerless mitts for my friend Shane. His were based on the same pattern but made longer and with a few stitches added to make for a better fit. Unfortunately I did not think to get a picture of him wearing them when I gave them to him. And somewhere in there, I started on another pair of socks.

I started the Wintergreen Gloves on October 29, 2009. I have worked on them on and off, sometimes opting to work on the pair of socks and other projects depending on my mood. My Habitat hat is hiding from me, so I ended up making the Yarn Harlot's Unoriginal Hat out of some Rio De La Plata bulky yarn I had. The pattern went fairly quickly and it only took me a few days to complete--good thing too with all the snow we have had.

I also ended up making a hat for my stepsister and her partner. Originally I was going to make the Unoriginal Hat for each of them. I had bulky yarn in colors they liked. Then it occurred to me that they probably would not appreciate hats that could not be thrown in the washing machine. About that time, the Winter 2009 Knitty went live and I found a pattern I really liked: Knotty But Nice. So I went looking for Lion Brand Wool-Ease in suitable colors.

It was easy enough to find Wool-Ease in green for one hat, but I did not find anything in brown other than one called Woodland Print. Well, I started knitting that one up, and it was looking too much like camo--which would be great for some guys I know, but not for my stepsister. So the Saturday before Christmas, I managed to drive myself to and from the Yarn Barn in Lawrence to get some Plymouth Encore in a light brown color.

I started the green hat on December 15, 2009 and I actually finished it while at the pub on December 19, 2009.

Knowing I was close to finishing the green hat, I had taken some of the brown Plymouth Encore with me to the pub, and I started my stepsister's hat that night. I finished her hat in the wee hours of the morning on Christmas Eve.

Once I finished the hats, I went back to working on the Wintergreen Gloves. I finished the right-hand one yesterday.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Happy New Year!

When I posted a year ago, I mentioned that something told me 2009 was going to be an interesting year. Interesting was certainly one way to describe it. I recently learned that one of my cousins had an aortic aneurysm in January. He survived, but he had to have another repair surgery to replace his aortic arch later in 2009. However, he is doing well. In March, one of my friends had a heart attack. Fortunately, he survived, and his recovery is going well. I have other friends who have equally, if not more stressful things that happened in 2009 as well.

Then on September 6, 2009, I developed a moderate case of acute pancreatitis. My recovery is ongoing, but it seems more tangible than it did even a week ago. On Monday, I got a call from the nurse practitioner that works for the primary radiologist on my case. She told me they wanted to reposition the remaining drain catheter. She mentioned that they were booked this week, but that there might be a cancellation. Said cancellation happened on Wednesday.

I was not really understanding why they needed to reposition it, so I asked. It turns out that the drain catheter was rather close to the replacement stent my GI doctor put in last week, and they thought that the stuff was draining through the drain bag instead of through the pancreatic duct.

However, I did get good news. The radiologist told me the pseudocysts had resolved, and that the drain might be able to be removed next week. I have a vague memory of him injecting a local a local anesthetic, and the next thing I remember is waking up, and they were done. Better yet, they did not have to give me any painkiller other than the local.

It turns out they actually inserted a new drain catheter. The drain bag is smaller and lighter, and I can actually fold it up and tuck it in my waistband instead of having to carry it around in a bag. There was not anything in the drain bag when I got up Thursday morning, and so far there is very little in there, so that is a very promising sign.

So in some ways 2010 is already looking better. Not that all of 2009 was bad. I made some new friends, and I paid off my student loans. I also kept my resolutions. I had resolved to keep enjoying life, to trust my instincts, and look into getting my concealed carry permit. The first one was pretty easy to keep. The second one was a little harder, but I think it ended up saving my life. My GI doctor said that waiting another hour before going to the ER that night probably would not have made much of a difference, but if I had waited until the next day, I would have been much worse. I kept the third one as well. I took a class in February 2009, and I turned in my application a little over a week ago.

So for 2010, I am going to make the first two resolutions again. I was already pretty aware of my own mortality, even before the pancreatitis, and even before the nearly fatal anaphylactic reaction to an allergy shot nearly six years ago. So enjoying life is an important resolution. Trusting my instincts has proven equally valuable. I am also resolving to put myself first more often than I used to.

Happy New Years everyone! May 2010 be a better year.