“You pump the fluid out of your leg?”

Men’s Fitness and Harrisburg Magazine are now on the shelves.  Harrisburg Magazine has put the article on their website.  You can read it here. You will need to go out and buy Men’s Fitness if you don’t want to wait for them to put it on-line.   Between the two magazine articles and the Sentinel newspaper article from a few weeks ago, I sure have had some awesome opportunities to share my story of recovery and motivation.  I have received a lot of emails from people all over the country commenting on my articles and telling be about their own personal struggles from accidents and medical “issues”.  It has been very meaningful to know that my story is, in some way, helping others.

This week, my blog also got its own web address.  You can now also find my blog at www.mymotivation-myrecovery.com You can still find it  at the WordPress address, but the new address is easier to give to people when I speak in public.  Speaking of giving talks, I just agreed to speak to approximately 1000 people this coming September in Las Vegas.  I will be one of the speakers discussing the “Secrets of Life”.  I am very thankful for the opportunity and will be working hard to develop a great presentation for them over the next few months.

My next big step is to start to look for a literary agent and/or publisher.  If any of you know someone to whom I should talk, please send me a message.  I feel a little overwhelmed by the big world of publishing.  Any recommendations might help to get me started.  I am a relationship person.  Not knowing anyone “in the business” makes me uneasy.  Blogging also made me uncomfortable in the beginning.  I sit here at my desk writing about personal things from my life in hopes of giving you, the reader, insight into my recovery so that you will take my story and find inspiration to overcome your own personal challenges.  In return, I can feel that what happened to me was not without meaning or purpose.

The issue with “blogging” versus public speaking is that I get instant gratification from speaking.  I can see the people I am talking to.  With the exception of the person who gets up to go to the bathroom and never comes back, they are a captive audience.  You can stop reading at any time and click back to Facebook, Twitter or your emails.  Some of you post comments, but that is not the same as raising your hand and asking a question.  There is less interaction and I don’t need to try to spell things correctly. (I also think it is more “uncomfortable” to post a comment.)  I can see statistics that show how many people click on a post.  I know that I have 3500+ “reads” to date.  Therefore, people must be reading what I write. (Or maybe you’re just looking at the pictures. It’s hard to not look at a car crash.)  I also know, thanks to a friend who makes a living on Facebook, (I know, how do you get a job where you are on Facebook all day?) that the best time to post a new blog is 11 AM on a weekday.  I guess we are all suppose to be working, but instead we are checking our Facebook and Twitter before lunch.

I am learning to accept that you all are out there, somewhere in cyberspace, reading what I am writing, and that my mom isn’t just clicking on my blog 3500+ times.  I feel I am, in some way, fulfilling my promise to God to share the miracle of my recovery with others. Now I feel my next step is getting my book published.  (Mom, I will put you down for a case.)

Almost forgot to answer the question in the title… One of the questions I have been getting a lot since the articles is “You pump the fluid out of your leg?”  Some folks think that I have a port in my leg and that the fluid is pumped out of my body.  That is not true.  I have a vascular disease called Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT).  This is damage to the valves in the deep veins of the legs.  The valves in the veins need to close in order to push blood back to the heart. Mine do not close properly because of blood clots and trauma to my leg which allows blood to leak back down the veins.  This causing fluid to build up and my leg to swell.  The swelling causes my skin to break down and ulcers to form. If I didn’t manage it, infection could cause me to lose me leg.  In order to control the swelling I put a sleeve on my leg.  The sleeve has four chambers and is connected to an electric pump.  The pump first fills the lowest chamber around my foot.  Next, it fills the chamber around my calf, without releasing the pressure around my foot.  It continues to fill each chamber until the sleeve is squeezing my entire leg.  It then releases the pressure and starts all over again.  The fluid is absorbed by my body.  I do this for an hour twice a day.  (I am doing it now.)  I think a lot of people pictured some sort of external port that I hooked up to suck out the fluid.  I did have two of those hooked up to my stomach for a about a month after my abdominal surgery, but that is another story…

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2 Responses to “You pump the fluid out of your leg?”

  1. Vabs says:

    It is, in fact, possible to get paid to work on Facebook all day … and it’s fun! 😉

    Cheers, John … your posts continue to encourage me.

  2. nesha says:

    I wish that I could have found this blog sooner that now, but better late than never right ?
    I just happened to be searching around on Goggle to see if there is some type of surgery where people can go in and get fluid sucked out of their bodies like they can with fat. Which brought me to your blog. I have Lymphedema and I have a lot of fluid on me. Which has gotten worse from 2005-2011, and I was trying to find some kind of help before this fluid gets to my heart and
    ( Need I say more.) With that being said, I was wondering if your doctor gave you the stomach pump as well for at home treatments?

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