I'm Alive!!!

PurpleScribe

Veteran
Jun 30, 2015
23
3
Wow it does seem like I am returning home after an incredibly long journey. I had to change my username to PurpleScribe but friends might remember me as 61tasc130fe - aka Jeff.

I had to take some time away to tend to a number of real word "challenges". For those interested in hearing about my life I'd suggest a cold beverage, comfy slippers and reading glasses. It's a long story...

Prior to my departure I was struggling with placement for my elderly mother (she is currently 94 years old). At the time she was living with my younger brother in Louisiana USA. We had to start making arrangement for her to move closer to me here in Pennsylvania USA as my brother was having heart issues and could no longer look after her. To make things more difficult it was decided that she could not live with me as my home has three levels and she in confined to a wheelchair. So we had to look for a nursing home. We were able to find a place for her about a 45 minute drive south of where I live. After getting her settled in my younger brother had a heart transplant and ended up in a medically induced coma from which he never recovered. The same week he passed away I lost my aunt and a dear family friend. Attempting to attend three funerals in one week that were 1500 miles apart was a horrible experience.

Not long after I started experiencing problems with my left hand. Ultimately my little finger folded completely into the palm of my hand and I could not use it. After consultations it was determined that I had Dupuytren's contracture, a hand deformity that usually develops over years. The condition affects a layer of tissue that lies under the skin of your palm. Knots of tissue form under the skin — eventually creating a thick cord that can pull one or more fingers into a bent position. I had my first surgery in January 2020 and a second surgery in September 2020. I am finishing up my last occupational therapy session on Friday completing over 16 months of therapy (almost 100 sessions). My hand is about 60 percent usable and we're attempting to do an intensive 6 week home therapy before looking at another surgery.

In the midst of all that along comes COVID-19. Like most of you the pandemic shut down our life. Fortunately our business didn't take a terrible hit and since we worked from home anyway it wasn't a major change. Socially we did become more isolated. We were active in our church and I was a Boy Scout leader. All that disappeared overnight. About a month into the pandemic the nursing home where my mother was living became overwhelmed with COVID cases. She contracted COVID and become seriously ill. I received a call from the social worker asking me for details concerning her funeral arrangements. We were not allowed in to see her and there was a five day period of waiting to see if she would die from this disease. Amazingly, she recovered and is doing incredibly well today.

Fortunately, my immediate family (children and grandchildren) were spared. Life has started to return to normal. Both my wife and I have received both doses of the Pfizer vaccine. My oldest granddaughter is about to start her third year at the University of North Carolina. My second oldest grandson has finished high school and trying to decide if he will enter the US Air Force. Meanwhile the love of my life Pam, continues to put up with my shenanigans and we just celebrated our 38th wedding anniversary.

For all you cat lovers - we adopted a one year old tabby that appeared on our doorstep in the middle of winter two years ago. Archer (named after Captain Archer from the Star Trek Enterprise series) has stolen our hearts. We spend most mornings stalking one another. He than spends the rest of the day lounging in my wife's home office.

As you might imagine - I haven't hand a chance to do much with Minecraft while recovering from hand surgery. I have slowly developed coping skills to allow me to use the keyboard although I am not sure I'll be able to outrun some of the faster mobs. There have been some changes in Minecraft that I'll have to adapt to. So if you see a half naked character stumbling around the streets looking lost - have mercy upon me and don't pelt me with rotten fish.

While I have missed Minecraft (I often wonder what happened to my pet chicken Bob that wandered the halls of my SixtyGig home) I mostly miss the friendships I developed here and look forward to catching up with everyone.
 

Captain_Marko

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Jun 10, 2015
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I'm sorry to hear of your illness Jeff. It's been a uniquely awful time for most of the planet I think, we all have stories to tell, it seems to me that Covid has magnified lifes struggles umpteen times.

Such a relief about your mother! We have lost two friends to the virus, but thankfully my children & grandchildren have remained safe.

A cat called Archer! We lost our beloved Madame last year, 17 years old and a true matriarch...

You will find much has changed in MC and soon in Hangouts too as we will be changing things around & slimming down, you'll find a discussion thread about it somewhere.

Keep on working at that hand & keep safe.
 

Gwydz

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Jun 24, 2015
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Jacksonville, FL
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Hey 61 - good to see you again (I used to be merlinver)
I remember Bob! I think Marko cooked him and fed it to his dog....
I had carpel tunnel surgery done in both hands - and shortly after that the middle finger of my right hand has that band of tissue that the doctor thinks is Dupuytren's. It hasn't gotten worse in the last 3 years, but it's a ticking time bomb I'm sure.
If you're serious about gaming, consider a gamepad. Not a console controller - these look like a mini-keyboard. I've used one for over 20 years (different brands) and vastly prefer it to a keyboard. If I can't play a game with it, I dont play it. I use it for everything - WoW, Diablo, Stardew, MC, AgeofEmpires, Torchlight, SimCity, etc. It takes some time to configure it how you like, and time to train your brain to use it. I do everything with it in MC - run, jump, open bags, switch tools - literally everything except for looking around and typing in chat.
The reason I think it will help is because you can disable the keys you can't use, or that your pinky might accidentally click. Your left hand stays in one place, able to reach all the keys you need.

I use a version of this: https://www.razer.com/gaming-keypads/Razer-Tartarus-V2/RZ07-02270100-R3U1

If you get one and want help getting it configured - just ask and we can use discord or something to chat. Does discord do voice chat? I dont know - we'll find something that works. Is Ventrilo still around? Lol
 
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Captain_Marko

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Jun 10, 2015
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Nah, Bob was plump so ended up as a great Tandoori. :eek:

Discord does do voice Gwydz, various channels are available for HO chats too.
 
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PurpleScribe

Veteran
Jun 30, 2015
23
3
Hey Gwydz - so good to hear from you. Fortunately the surgery was on my non-dominate hand (left) and discussing with my therapist he recommended that I try to use keyboard as much as possible. I have good fine motor skills - my problem is with grip (unable to make a fist or grasp items). I managed to log on to the server and do some traveling without too much of a problem. Thanks for the info on the game pad - certainly something to consider if things become difficult. Hope to see you online soon.
 

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