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2018
OldBones-Larry

Test Results

Posted by OldBones-Larry Feb 27, 2018

Well, I promised to let you know the results of my latest TTE.
I was just informed that there are now two valves with backflow. Not severe, but it's happening.
Some of the good muscle in the previous TTE is now Hypokinetic. It isn't working well and just barely pumping.
Some of the previous Hypokinetic muscle is now Akinetic. That is not pumping at all.
My Ejection Fraction has gone from 56% down to 50%.
Not great news, but, at least it isn't terrible news.
I have lost some ground, but I am still going. I will make it through this as I have everything else.
So, I guess I am doing OK. A bit depressed over this news, but I will deal with it.
Have a smoke? HELL NO!! Nothing will make me ever go back to those things!!
Keep your quit strong my friends. Nothing is worth throwing away what you have gained.
Keep that journey going strong.
One step, and then another, will get you to where you want to be.
Larry the Caravan Master

OldBones-Larry

The Fall

Posted by OldBones-Larry Feb 27, 2018

Several people have fallen off the edge at Desolation Point lately. What could be the reason?
All the warning signs are still in place. The trail is still in good repair. Why are people still falling over?
Could it be that they are distracted by the view? There is nothing but sand dunes to see.
They are just not looking where they are going? I hope this is not the case.
Are Nic and his crew sitting at the bottom calling up? This could be it. They could sit back under the overhang and cause people to overbalance and fall.
Are Nic and his buddies hiding then rushing out to push them over the edge? This is another possibility.
All have been rescued and sent back for treatment of their wounds and recovery. I have sent patrols out to see if we can find any of the Nicotine Crew.
I must caution all travelers to keep a sharp lookout for traps and be vigilent of Nic's tricks.
Be strong in your journey. Call out if you feel weak and need help.
Don't let Nic and his buddies lure you away from the true trail. It is well marked. Trust the tracks left by past travelers. They will keep you on the true path.
I want to see every traveler at the end of NML. We are waiting to welcome you with a feast at Carps Cave.
Keep the mountain in sight and travel towards it at all times.
We will be waiting for you my friends.
One step, and then another, will get you to where you want to be.
Larry the Caravan Master

OldBones-Larry

Just One

Posted by OldBones-Larry Feb 26, 2018

I hear many people that say, "I can smoke just one and throw them away." We all know that sickorettes are just like potato chips.
No one can have just one!!
That sounds like a joke, but I am serious when I say it.
How many people do we know that are now trying for the ? time to quit smoking?
They thought they could have just one and then just put them down. They bought a pack and smoked one. Then about an hour later, their body and mind said that they better have another or suffer the pangs of withdrawal again. So, another sickorette went up in smoke.
The vicious cycle is back in motion!! They are addicted once more from just one sickorette.
One moment of inattention. One lapse in judgement. One flick of a lighter and everything that you have worked for is undone.
How do I know?
I almost made the same mistake myself several times.
Buying something at the market at the express lane, you see them in the rack. You are distracted by running through your to-do list. Did you remember everything you needed?
Your mind tells you to see if they have your brand. There are the lighters right there. Yes, they carry your coffin nails. You start to reach for a lighter as you open your mouth to request your brand.
Do you catch yourself in time? Do you realize what is happening? Do you put the lighter back and just pay for the items you came for?
Many don't and are back smoking again and feeling like a failure.

Is it worth taking that step and being trapped once more in that stinking habit?

We all know that it isn't worth that one perceived moment of pleasure, because when you light it up you hack and choke on it. 

Now comes the disappointment in yourself and the self-chastisement. You lecture yourself about what you did. You feel terrible.

Now you must begin again to free yourself from them.
Keep your guard up and watch for the traps waiting to close on you.

As my friend Joan told me many times...

Keep them away from your face! You can't smoke them that way.
Guard your quit like it is a treasure of gold and jewels, because in a way it is. Your quit is your life!
Keep your journey strong, my friends. You can make it to, and keep, a life free from nicotine.
One step, and then another, will get you to where you want to be.
Larry the Caravan Master

OldBones-Larry

Why Me????

Posted by OldBones-Larry Feb 24, 2018

That is the question being asked by a lot of smokers I meet. They have just found out that they have heart problems, COPD, or other conditions.
Look in your pocket or your purse folks. The answer is staring you in the face.
When you mention the fact that those sickorettes are the cause of these conditions, the people go ballistic. Sickorettes can't cause any of this they say!!!!! They help me get through the day!!

Too bad all those things are doing is helping them to die that much quicker.
I can only walk away and shake my head.
I know why me in my own case.
I smoked for 42 years. For several of those years I was at a 4 carton a week habit. That is 800 sickorettes going through my lungs every week!!
Now add in 20 cigars every week. I didn't just puff them either. I drew them just as deep as the sickorettes.
Now a rough estimate is that I put approx. 60 years of abuse on my lungs and heart.
Is it any wonder that they would get sick and begin failing???
I no longer have to ask why me... I can say uninformed me. I know what I did to my body now.
COPD, Heart Failure, Bypass Surgery, Barrett's, PAD. Noe add in Aortic Abdominal Anurhysm and any problems not yet discovered.
All of us have our own story that will tell people about the question of why me. Tell others if they will hear your words. If they don't, they will have to learn it on their own someday.
Keep your journey of freedom from sickorettes strong my friends.

Travel safely and beware the traps that will trip you up and destroy your quit.
One step, and then another, will get you to where you want to be.
Larry the Caravan Master

OldBones-Larry

Still Traveling

Posted by OldBones-Larry Feb 22, 2018

I wanted to check in with all of my family here.
I am still doing well. The shortness of breath hasn't gotten much better though.
I had a Cardiac Echo yesterday, Now I wait for the interpretation. That should be next week.
I have to make an appointment for another Gastroscope for the Barret's. I also need to have my lower extremity and Aorta ultrasound.
Please know that even though I am not posting as much, I do check every day on all the posts. I get tired very quickly and can't stay on for long stretches at a time.
I will continue to keep my journey through life going strong. I think of everyone daily and watch those in NML closely.
To those travellers, I warn watchfulness. Beware all the traps that Nic sets for you in your daily life. He can attack you with major craves when you least expect it. Stand strong. Always remember that he lies and his promises are just words to trick you into taking that first puff to trap you again. He sets a lot of traps at Relapse Rocks. Beware at Desolation Point. Stay far from the edge so you do not fall over the dropoff.
All the camels are well my friends. The Bedoins are always out in NML checking on them and restocking each Oasis. Stop at each Oasis to rest and recover before you continue your journey.
I am watching from the cave in which I am recovering high up on the mountain. I can send aid wherever it is needed at a moments notice.
Remember that your quit is the most important thing right now. Protect it at all costs.
Be well my friends...
One step, and then another, will get you to where you want to be.
Larry the Caravan Master

OldBones-Larry

Thank You All

Posted by OldBones-Larry Feb 12, 2018

I want to thank each of you that sent messages yesterday from the bottom of my heart. If you only knew how much they meant to me.
I am holding my own for the moment. This cold air isn't helping things one bit.
I have raised the head of my bed up a bit more, but still wake up many times in the night. I wish that the center would hurry up and get the sleep study scheduled.
I have developed a squeek lately. I hope it is in tune with the music. LOL
I hope this finds everyone well.
Keep walking strong on your journey my friends.
One step, and then another, will get you to where you want to be.
Larry