I use a splitter to connect an oxygen concentrator and a 100 lb liquid oxygen reservoir together to provide me with 6 LPM of oxygen to conserve my liquid oxygen. I have my refill days for my liquid oxygen on Wednesdays. So, on the 3rd of June I had my tanks refilled. For some reason, since then, I had been feeling sluggish, tired, worn down more than usual. I thought maybe Mary, my cat, may have chewed kitty holes in my tubing again. So, I checked my tubing multiple times and there were no holes. Then I checked the green Christmas tree that connects my tubing to the reservoir tank to see if it was screwed on tightly… it was. Figures, right? I mean, it couldn’t have been THAT easy!
Now, I know it’s been raining like a monsoon here in Texas and it has taken its toll on my breathing but it has stopped raining.. *YAY!* and that couldn’t be the reason since I’ve been staying indoor as much as I’ve needed to be. Was my breathing getting worse? I was really worrying and so was K. I was using my inhaler, taking my diuretics as prescribed but I still felt puffy and so short of breath. It just wasn’t normal for me. I certainly didn’t want to call my PH doctor.
As my last ditch effort, and almost by fluke of chance while I was filling my portable with liquid oxygen to go to a doctor appointment, I decided to switch the reservoirs (I have two 100 lb tanks) to join with my concentrator. What could hurt, right? When I pulled my tubing off my reservoir to switch them around, I noticed something weird. The one I was about to switch out wasn’t putting out oxygen even though it was almost full. So what that means was that I was only using half of the oxygen I needed for 3 days. Once I connected the other reservoir to the concentrator, I started to breathe much better and now I feel like myself again. I understand now why my sleep, short of breath, and energy level was so bad.
From now on, I’m going to start checking the flow from both tanks when I get my reservoirs refilled. Equipment can fail and I will be reporting this come Monday so that I can get a replacement.
In other news, I’ve been crocheting like crazy! I have a box nearly ready to send out to a preteen girl who is awaiting a double lung transplant. I’m including a secret gift that I can’t tell you what it is until after she receives it. I don’t want to spoil the surprise. I have another box about to be sent out to Michelle & then one to Sara. After that, I’ll be trying to finish up my daisy afghan to go to the next recipient, Vincent. I couldn’t do this without the generous donations going to my GoFundMe.com/helpneedahug. Read how you can receive a Need a Hug afghan if you have breathing problems and need a hug.
There are many of you who are new to using oxygen but also those of us who are practically pros at oxygen use. But there is a topic that is important to talk about that even some pros don’t realize at how important it is. I may be saying things that you already know but bare with me. I’ve had a few people who have asked about this topic who just didn’t know that they should be doing this. Ok ok.. I will just jump right in and not prolong this mysterious topic.
If you are reading this blog you either were prescribed to use oxygen, whether it’s 24/7 or just during exertion or with activity, OR, you have a relative who uses oxygen in this way. Ok… I know you are probably thinking.. “Get on with it.. spit it out already!” Whew! I’m getting there.
What I’m leading up to is this: No matter how you were prescribed to use oxygen (24/7 or as needed for activity), taking a shower in my opinion is considered an activity AND in my personal opinion you should use your oxygen while you shower. Think about it. Do you get light headed if you are taking a shower and not using your oxygen? Feeling a little tired and/or woozy? Maybe you feel a bit like you may faint or pass out? Are you feeling like washing your hair is wearing you out? It’s humid in the shower. What would you do if you actually fainted in the tub alone all because you didn’t use your oxygen?
Whatever type of oxygen machine or tank you use, you can still leave your machine or tank in one room and use a 50 foot tubing to run all the way to the bathroom. The tubing can get wet..even submerged. I gather up enough slack in the tubing and drape it over the side of the tub and it lays on the bottom of the tub while I shower. When I’m done, I use a towel to dry it off. It’s that simple. By using oxygen while you shower, you aren’t taxing your heart as you would if you didn’t use it while you showered. After all, it’s all about staying safe and healthy. So be safe.
Check out my Living On O2 for Life Facebook Page or my Instagram. The links for both are in the right column… Over there —>
Hold on to yourself… I’m about to try something very different. This time I’ve done a video. You can see me in my house and all without makeup! OHMYGOSH! I know… I don’t know how I feel about this but I thought… What the heck! Why not just try? I like a good challenge! YEA ME! So, if you don’t mind sitting through an almost 8 minute video, then, you too can see how I look and act while talking with you. I did this without notes! Now, I’m not going to do the videos for every blog post. Good gracious no! But every now and then I might pop up a video just to surprise you and keep you on your toes. haha! Have a great day everyone. *hugs* to you all!
Oh yes.. we are going way, way, way back in the past of my life with this picture. Get your plaid bellbottoms on and step back into the 1970s with me for a bit. This is the house that I grew up in for nearly 10 years of my childhood. If you look on the right side of the picture, you will see the farmer’s corn field that we lived behind and also the forest of Short Story part 1 that I wrote about. This house has changed colors while I lived there from blue to green and back to blue again. It’s all wood too, which isn’t very helpful since we lived in the Tornado Alley. I can remember many of times that my sisters and I were woken up in the middle of the night to run to the closet under the staircase because a tornado was coming.
My parents bought this house when I was a toddler. Since I had so much trouble with being short of breath and heart trouble, my parents put my bedroom downstairs in a room that was meant to be an office or something like that. My bedroom door was actually a set of french doors. I thought I was pretty special because I had a bathroom that connected to my room like Mom and Dad! Everyone else’s bedrooms were upstairs. My short stories that I posted on my blog are based on my memories of this house and the fun I had here.
I guess you are wondering about the surrey. My little sister and I (and I think that my cousin is the driver!) are who you see in the picture. In fact, you can see the back of my grandpa’s head in the garage entrance. He’s the one who built the surrey from parts he found and my grandma had sewn the fringed cover. She has always loved crafts and sewing which is where I think I got my craft bug from. This surrey was awesome and it got a lot of action out of us kids! My little sister did most of the pedaling because I would tire out too fast. We even rode in it during a parade which was a VERY long and tiring pedal job!
I think my mom had to make a lot of my clothes or shirts because I wore a Milwaukee Back brace at this age too. So, shirts had to be big enough to fit over the brace and the neck opening had to be a little more roomy for the top of the brace. I always had to wear an undershirt because I wore one beneath the brace to help prevent rubbing my skin raw. My dad would take my brace off once a day and that’s when he used witch hazel on the pressure points where the brace would rub. Usually my hips, my right shoulder blade (scapula), and under my neck. For a long time, there was a dark brown bruise-like discoloration under my chin. My chin would always be up against the chin piece of the brace. You can see the brace I’m talking about here, under The Braces section of my blog. Scroll to the bottom of that page and the Milwaukee Brace will be there.
If you haven’t guessed already, I am the one with the blue shoes! Try not to laugh over my hair cut. It had to be short or my hair would get caught in the screw that closed the top of the brace which is in the back. I may have had a lot of doctor appointments and trouble during the winter with catching pneumonia occasionally, my life as a child was a good one.
Stay well everyone! FOLLOW my blog by clicking the FOLLOW button and entering your email address to receive notices for when I update my blog with a post. *hugs*