Tuesday, December 30, 2014

I Really Need A Plan

It has been another 3 days since I’ve heard of any brilliant plan from the Gods on High regarding any new treatment and I am alternately wide awake or very sleepy when any rumor arrives. So far, it’s all turned out to be rumor, cause here I sit.

I’m getting a lot of reading done and in my very confused little mind trying to sort out a legal itinerary for a legal trip to Holland for a soothing end to this nightmare via a short side trip to Euthanasia

Anybody up to a trip to Holland?

I keep trying to write Dutch friend, Peter, for his input, but the words don’t seem to come together on paper so I give up and try again another time. I mean everything from coordinating oxygen, wheelchair, medications, transportation to airport and to the Dutch medical facility, and then reversing the whole process - without me in the mix. 

Ashes scattered all over Amsterdam would make me very happy and content.

If you have any experience along these lines I’d appreciate any input you’d be willing to share.

Meanwhile I await the coming visit of at least one surgeon or specialists for quality care of some kind…ANY kind.

Anyway, Happy New Year, if you don’t hear from me beforehand

Amazed and still confused.

*

Monday, December 29, 2014

Hi! Remember me?

Why, Hello there!  Haven’t seen you in a while and it’s just as well that you haven’t seen me.

There’s no amount of Max Faxtor on the planet, trust me.

Way too much has happened in the past 3 weeks and I couldn’t remember the dates if I tried. I do know I am on another big batch of antibiotics as well as anti-fungals now.

There is a fungal infection around the heart and the pneumonia just doesn’t want to leave me.

I am now on oxygen, too. Only 2 litres, but still enough to be annoying and in the way.

A couple of the tests were invasive, so even with the MAC a few feet away, there was no energy to write anything coherent and informative

That’s all I’ve got for a medical update for now.

Although I’ve not been online for the holidays, I’ve thought about many of you, very often. To those who’ve stayed in touch even dropping a note occasionally - a special thanks. Your words and thoughts kept me going when the pain (or painkillers) almost let me down.

Don’t know what’s in the future but without a living space on the ground floor, I won’t have one any time soon.

I don’t have an iPad here, but you folk with FaceTime might me hearing from me via my iPhone. I hope you don’t mind.

I’m stationed in room #224A (don’t know how long) at Beebe Medical Center In Lewes, DE.

I’m drugged a lot so I sleep a lot.  Sorry about that, it’s what keeps me from sitting at the keyboard and writing. 

Suffice to say, I miss you all and think of you often. If, for some reason I can’t get back online again for a while, I want to wish you all a Happy New Year.

Didn’t think I’d get this far!!!


I am amazed.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Lounging at the Christmas Spa


Just setting’ a spell at Beebe Medical Hospital & Ocean Spa in lovely downtown Lewes, Delaware.

This relaxation time was provided by the Cancer Tumor Association and is likely to last 5 to 7 fabulous days. Fevers returned with a vengeance. So far, weather has been fretful and treatments are not coming up to expectations.

....And I'm forever catching myself humming Stormy Weather.

Spending time with old friends here. Am exploring new variations on an old theme, plus giving a test run to a new anti-fungal whose name escapes me now.

Heavily sedated, of course, so can use only a single hand to type.

Hoping for good news soon. If not, here’s wishing you all the joy and love of whatever holiday you celebrate. If it celebrates neither, find another one.

Every day has been amazing and hectic here.  Good things are coming.

I am so amazed.

*

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Balancing Medical Decisions


The Friday appointment with the attorney had to be cancelled due to emergency transfusion on Friday morning. I am sure she wasn’t a happy camper when she learned that news. Couldn’t be helped.

Went into full crash mode on Thursday afternoon, so when I called the Center for advice, they told me 2 units were already ordered while we were speaking and since I was already in a crash scenario just continue to chill, rest and do as little physical activity as I could get away with until I arrived at the Center in the morning.

That was easy to do. All I wanted to do was lie quietly so as not be short of breath and be as careful on my feet to be aware of any possibility of falling. Took a painkiller and high dose of Tylenol before sliding between the sheets where I stayed until morning when I had the tedious struggle to get dressed (hard enough with the use of BOTH hands, a real torture test without) and try to be ready when Jeffrey arrived to transport me. He did have to help me with the sling (the dear!)

It all went smooth yesterday and though I was, by this time, very weak and finding it difficult to put a coherent thought into words there was no panic. I had enough trouble following instructions and answering questions posed by the staff. I managed.  I now know that I can go from a moderately low red blood cell count to a dangerously low one in less than 24 hours. For no apparent reason and without any change to normal daily activity.

At least I was able to recognize and be aware of these quick changes nowadays. Glad I made the right decision early enough that no harm was done and the attorney couldn't whine about wasting her time.

Also, this latest blood - O Positive with modifiers for me - gave me a positive kick, or booster and I feel better today than I have following transfusion in the recent past. For this, too, I am thankful.  I am not going to be doing anything crazy, but I feel like I could put on my dancing shoes and boogie around the living room for a bit.

I am amazed.

*

Christmas Angel Caturday


They always remember those little comments.
*

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Just a Thought: A Stagnant Truth.

How far does loyalty and American Patriotism take you when a young, supposedly heterosexual soldier is ordered to rape (FUCK) anally abuse teenage boys?  Forget whether the acts were performed in front of family members, or not. It’s the very act that matters.

Just following orders! (?) Foul, evil, conniving, self-righteous.  Humans enjoy nothing more than the act of harming other humans

Does it take this sick behavior to finally stop you in your tracks to say, “this, my entire way of life, has been a vast red-white-blue lie.”?  Does it?  Even a little bit? No wonder more and more of our soldiers and hurting. There are secrets to keep, they bought into the lie, too.

Yes, by all means, let’s offer a free ride and safe passage to George Bush and Dick Cheney, but do everything possible to draw-and-quarter the likes of Edward Snowden for drawing attention to their crimes, and others.

All humans are truly pathetic, dangerous creatures. We’d rather harm others who suffered as we have, than to banish that suffering and those who ordered it in the first place.


I am sick.
*

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

The Ring Goes South & That Card Again.


I am not sure whether I ought to be spooked, or freaked (2 very different experiences), grateful and curious, or give myself a slap upside the head for missing something important that this card is trying impart to me.

As you can see in the side bar, this is the card of the month - second time in a row. It has popped up as card of the day again today - the second time in the first 10 days of December.  I know shuffling the deck is not an issue. I am very careful with that, almost religiously so. This is uncanny.

Sat up most of the night in pain reading, or trying to. Between the shoulder, left arm, wrist and the leg swelling, painkillers didn’t have a chance. Pain was so intense at times the nausea kicked in big time. Compazine helped - but not with the pain. There was no way to ignore it. 

So I decided to pull my card for today and, well, imagine my surprise when this one comes up again. Everything I read about it points to having a lovely time, enjoying love and friendships, and lots of happy, strong emotions.  

But, while I’m in great pain?  I think not.

I’m more than half way through my annual reading of LOTR - about midway through The Two Towers - occasionally finding a bit of info that I’ve missed in past years, making one more part of the trilogy fall into place. With the arm out of service I’ve been unable to write these down, but I think I’ll remember enough as some of the characters (or their heirs) play a part of the final book.  I’m reading more quickly and more intensely than in other years. I guess I need more concentration this time round to pull me through.

The struggle to put on clothes begins shortly. Jeffrey will pick me up at 8 for a few appointments, then I have a few scrips to get at the pharmacy followed by a CTScan before I can head home and return to the peace and warmth of my bed.

The storm system moving through has me moving carefully and with someone’s help. Can’t afford to dislocate the right arm now. I’ll be happy when the trials and demands of the day are over.


And so it goes.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Reprimands, Appointments, Arrogance

I’ve been reprimanded for using the word “burden” in the last post. I am sorry. This is so very hard for me and sometimes I fall back into the old thinking. Were I a caregiver I know how I would feel hearing that word, but it’s very difficult to project it onto others. I will make every attempt never to use it again. 

The appointment with the Orthopedist went well. Given that we were both awake and I was only slightly sedated we were able to rehash the events of Tuesday night. He’s really a nice (read handsome) man and over the past week had educated himself to my case.  He asked a few questions that had puzzled him, but all went well otherwise.

He set up an appointment for a CTScan for this Wednesday - conveniently after the Labs and the other Dr.s appointment at the Center. Even set it up at the Imaging Center next to the Cancer Center.  Couldn’t do better than that.

I’ve an appointment next Monday to meet with the other surgeon who will aid in the cutting up of my shoulder, removing the broken bits, and repairing any damage.  You know, a few years ago I would have cringed at talk like this, probably gotten physically ill, but now it’s like I’m just another piece of meat.  And believe me, that’s what I feel like.

The sling is to remain in place and the only exercises are to strengthen the hands, fingers, wrists. That’s OK with me, because gravity begins to set in after the sling has been off for a while and it feels like the shoulder is being drawn towards the floor. I purchased a rubber ball for the purpose of exercising and use it absently while reading. 

Finally made an appointment with the attorney to update the Will, etc. only to have her call last evening to cancel that one and try to finagle another one.  She got all huffy when I told her the suggested dates wouldn’t work for me (she actually sucked her teeth, you know, that “tch, tch” sound a few times) so I explained the situation - just like Vivian Leigh I am dependent on the kindness of strangers for things such as transportation these days.  

When I finally said I couldn’t understand the problem, that her office hours are supposed to be 8 am to 4 pm Monday through Friday, she really got pissed, almost to the point of raising her voice. So I gave her specific days and times that are usually convenient, told her to work around that, then call back so as to confirm something with my friends and driver. She was not amused.

As Archy would say: “People may think they amount to a great deal boss, but to a mosquito they’re just something to eat.”

I was exhausted and went to bed soon after. She is another one who used to be a friend in my previous life. So, there’s that.

I am amazed.
*


Saturday, December 6, 2014

After the Fall. What Now?


Taking the fall, literally. Typing this won’t be easy, since the left is my dominant hand. In 68 years I neglected the education of my right hand that it is now practically useless. I manage.

Appointment with surgeon is set for Monday hopefully followed by a quick appointment for the surgery.  I can only dream.

Since the fall I’ve noticed that I’m very prone to balance issues - more than I originally thought. With two hands to help keep balance and remain steady, it’s not as obvious. But there are any number of times I could have taken the same kind of tumble here - just not conscious of the danger.  I am now.

The ER doctors kept shooting me up with pain meds. It took three tries and ultimately a call to the Orthopedic surgeon at 1 AM to reset the shoulder. The third set of x-rays he ordered show a piece of bone separated from the main bone, so the surgery.

Of course I was in no condition for Labs on Wednesday. When they were done Thursday the red cells were again down enough for 2 units. Blood was delivered overnight and I sat for 6 hours receiving while very doped up. Back to bed when I got home. Even in the sling the arm is very sore and the hand very weak. 

Though I took off the sling this morning to make a coffee and change shirts, it will go on over a fresh shirt and I will spend most of this 4th day of healing in bed reading, or sleeping. I do not need anything else. Yes, this is frustrating, but it is what it is.

I’m becoming what I wanted to avoid - a burden on those taking care of me - and so I’ve got to pull back some, do more for myself. They’re already blaming themselves for this fall and that will never do. It could have happened anywhere - even in my apartment.

Sure the whole thing sucks wet monkey ass, but it’s done and that’s that.

I am amazed.

*

A Caturday Pun



Ouch! Sorry.
*

Friday, December 5, 2014

It Happened So Fast


Oh, What a Night! So much can happen in so little time.

Rain
Rehoboth Beach Christmas Parade
Crab Quesadilla to Go
 Wet Driveway
Call 911 - Cannot use left arm.
X-rays - Left Shoulder Dislocated
Orthopedist Called 1 a. m.
IV pain medication
X-rays - Chip & Fractured Shoulder
Three Attempts at Reset
Sling & Home


Lots to write about when the left arm/hand is functional again.

I am amazed.
*

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Tuesday Out and About.

Jeffrey was the chauffeur today. Linda had to open the restaurant while the Locosguys are in Mexico, and Nicole was buried in school work requiring peace and quiet for more concentration. It’s raining again, though not the nor’easter weather of last week. We ran the usual errands;  The credit union, dry cleaners, supermarket, and lunch were on the gay agenda as they were all skipped over last week.

An added stop at Staple’s made me wince. I am not a fan of the store or of colour Ink Jet Printers, but for reasons explained here about a year ago, I had to knuckle down and purchase a set.  Neither Canon nor Apple offered new drivers to support my old Laserjet printer.  Not to worry though, with the cash back bonus money accrued the printer cost about $18.00 USD. Now, if only the consumables  were as inexpensive it would be nice.  But, they’re not

Note: The full set of replacement cartridges cost more than the full price of the printer, so stop and think about that for a moment.  It’s cheaper to simply purchase a new printer (complete with a full set of carts) then give away, or chuck the old printer and move on. Sounds silly, doesn’t it?

I prefer laser printers - no muss or fuss - the toner is heat fused onto the paper and there’s no waiting for the ink to dry.  And the printed pages never smear, as a result, crisp, clean results every time. I don’t care about colour printing.  Does anyone care about colour printing in 2014?

Anyway, the ink carts needed replacing and I finally got around to doing that which left the empty, used cartridges with no home. It is now (apparently) a mortal sin to dispose of used carts in the garbage - they need to be recycled - and the only place around for recycling is Staples. So time was wasted as I waited for an employee (scarce even on a weekend and this is Tuesday) who could handle the situation.  There is no place to simply drop-off the used carts and be on your way.  Took nearly a half hour, but it is done.

We saved that chore for last so we could head directly to a restaurant for a quiet lunch. We chose “Go Brit!” for authentic fish & chips, bangers & mash, and a pint of Guinness. The place was quiet and the food light, fresh, and heavenly. No
greasy stuff here. Our server, Andrew, also works at DL but since’s he’s off on Sundays I didn’t get a chance to see him on the weekend. Not being busy was bad for his daily tips, but it gave us an opportunity to chat and catch up.

Seems Andrew is preparing for a trip to St. Petersburg, Russia.  Why in the winter, I don’t know. Why anytime given the current political climate, I cannot imagine.  But, he’s anxious and took off for DC yesterday to pick up his visa to prove it. He’s young, single, has traveled extensively, and knows how to do it on the cheap.  He has a great experiences no matter where he goes.

OK, so I lied.  As we were heading to my place after lunch, Jeffrey convinced me to stop and purchase a couple of cotton flannel shirts, as he had a few weeks ago.  He raved about them, suggested that the cold was going to be upon us very soon and I would be glad for them. We took ourselves to Eddie Bauer where there was still a good selection. We were shocked to find such a huge selection, especially after Black Friday and the holiday weekend. But, you won’t hear me complain. 

Because of the major weight loss it was tough to decide size, so I tried one on.  My stars! It was the softest cotton and most comfortable next to the skin.  I purchased 2 size Large (100% cotton, they always shrink a little) JIC I suddenly break out in fat or something - and headed for home. 

We covered a lot of territory a few hours. I got tired and wobbly, and the swelling caused some discomfort until I lie down and propped them up. With the aid of painkillers the pain let up after a brief time, but the swelling remains for hours. Believe it or not, Benadryl helps.

Linda just called to remind me that she’ll pick me up at 5 pm to view the Rehoboth Christmas Parade this evening at 6 pm from the restaurant. I had completely forgotten that is tonight. I am thrilled, not having seen the parade in 3 years it ought to be fun. If the rain doesn’t cancel it out at the last minute.  

So, another outing and I get to see Linda and Andrew (he works tonight) and perhaps a few more customers I’ve not seen in many moons.  At any rate, I don’t have to worry about cooking supper. I’m sure Linda will make sure I am well taken care of. I remain uneasy at being spoiled like this. 

I am amazed.

*

A Magical Monday


No one was prepared for the shock of 75’F and clear skies that blessed us here at the shore on first of December. I thought about sitting on the top step of the landing to soak in the warmth and fresh air coming in off the Atlantic, prepared to spend most of the day in bed reading, as usual.

All that changed with a text message from Linda asking if I’d like to join her for an ice cream cone and walk on the boardwalk in the afternoon. Of course, I jumped at the chance. It might be just the thing to help the swelling in the feet and legs.

When she finished her catch-up work at the restaurant, she picked me up and off we went. First we took a drive to the liquor store so she could replenish her supply of beers and wines depleted during her time in Ireland. She found a new Icelandic brew that had been raved about, so she bought a 6-pack of each of the three different flavors offered by the company, which is new to the US. 

We drove back into town and found a parking spot close to the boardwalk. The jacket I brought JIC it was cooler near the ocean remained in the car. It was a magnificent afternoon and we ran into people we knew from around town and the restaurant who had the same idea. Many were surprised to see me, others surprised to see us together.

Preparations were underway for the annual AIDS Day candlelight march and service of remembrance to be held in the evening.  I was more grateful for the nice weather because for the past 3 years, the weather has been cold and rainy, or cold and windy, making for an uncomfortable experience and a lower turnout than usual.

Initially, the walk was painful aggravating due to swelling in the feet as well as ankles and calves, but that soon faded, became easier and my gait more steady. However, having walked about 5 blocks on the boards, Linda thought it wise that we share a bench, rest, watch and listen to the ocean. It was a little piece of heaven. I soon realized that this walk was Linda's plan to get me to exercise more as well as get out of the house.  Her plan worked on both fronts. Bless her.

I determined I’d walked far enough for one outing, so we returned to the car and drove back to the restaurant. The shifts were just changing, it was about 4:30 by then, so I joined the crew in a Golden Margarita, sat and enjoyed being out for the second day in a row.  Especially in such weather, which was quite a gift for December 1, in any case.

I was getting tired and hungry, so Nicole made up a Bison burger with sautéed onion rings to go, for me. Jeffrey saw me home and it felt odd not to experience leg pain for the first time in months - even walking up the stairs.

The bison burger was delicious. I washed it down with an English Ginger Beer Linda brought back from Ireland. All was right with the world. 

Interesting to note that I woke this morning a little sore in the ankles, but less swelling.  We’ll see how long that lasts. Jeffrey is picking me up shortly to run a few errands that were put off from last week, so we’re likely to stop off for breakfast, or lunch - depending on how long our journey takes.  Either way, it will be fun, and a third day out of the apartment, little worse for wear.

I am amazed.

*

Monday, December 1, 2014

Apartment Search Continues

I came upon a listing for a rental nearby on the ground level with off-street parking.  As I’ve mentioned before, it’s slim pickings out there. Only a few things wrong with it. Rent is more than I can afford, even if only $25. more. It is a 2-bedroom mobile home, I only need one bedroom. That’s quite a large space to heat with the winter ahead and I don’t know how well insulated the place is. With the compromised immune system, sensitivity to heat and cold is more pronounced. 

The other monthly expenses include water, sewer, and trash pickup. I already pay for electricity so that’s not an extra burden in itself, unless the heating system in the place is also electric. Then it could be a killer.  I know.  From the published image above the place looks clean and neat, well kept.  Yes, but at what expense?

The other issues include snow and ice removal - can’t do that myself - and the Verizon telephone and DSL wiring infrastructure is very old, so I may not have high speed access to the Net. This was a problem when I lived in that area about 6 years ago.  When it rained, snowed, or flooded the phone lines went down - sometimes for days until things dried out and techs could work on restoring service.

At any rate, I’ve called and left a message requesting the approximate cost of each of the added expenses above. I have little hope that everything will be within my budget. Even less hope that I’ll find something affordable and livable any time soon. My hope is to continue to gain strength and weight, get through the dizziness balance issues, navigate the stairs more than once rail, and drive my own car again. 

I am amazed.
*


I Remember


Sunday, November 30, 2014

I Lied. Never Say Never.


Unintentionally, of course.  You see, I didn’t mean to, but I spoke wrote before I knew I had this particular, weighty (ahem!) problem.  Some would say I ought to have known beforehand, but I've had other business on my mind,  dontcha know...Anyway.

There is a disturbance in the FORCE! (Sorry, wrong metaphor.) I found out the hard way that I cannot read the LOTR books. My hands and fingers are too weak to hold the hard cover volume for any length of time. 

The problem may be due to the cancer, causing weakness in joints and muscles.  It might also be the arthritis which I have in both hands. The fingertips become numb on occasion. I can no longer tell if the pain in the hands - like the pain in the legs - is due to the cancer nowadays, or still the arthritis.

I’ve tried reading with the book propped on my chest, but the weight and size are too clumsy and the book slips out of my mostly useless thumbs. The thought that reading the entire trilogy would have to take place sitting at desk or table, instead of snuggled up in bed, was more than I could take.

So, I did what I said I “would never do” I hunted down and purchased the entire trilogy in one volume. It turns out to be a Kindle Edition with surprisingly good reviews. 

I’ve proof-read the first 3 chapters and compared each edition. Though the script of the Elves is very small, so far, so good. The Kindle version is the authorized Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Co. edition.  Total cost was $9.00, delivered in less than 2 minutes, and I am a happy camper.  Now to continue the annual read that is certainly going to take my mind off being a shut-in most of the time this winter. 

Just shows to go ya; never say never. 

I am amazed.

*

Saturday, November 29, 2014

The Essence of My Education Today

PHILOTIMO:  Love of Honor.

The Greek Secret.


A lot to process and work through, especially since I am not Greek. I think it's worth the time, study, and meditation.  What say you?

I am amazed.
*

Inventive Caturday


What a great Holiday Gift Idea!

*

Friday, November 28, 2014

I Remember These Things


First a note to readers: If a paragraph makes no sense in any post, please be advised that Blogger did (and does) re-arrange words in an arbitrary manner.  Usually in a sentence where an image has been inserted.  I don’t know why this matters, I just know it’s true.  I didn’t realize this was happening until I was proofing a few posts online recently. From now on, after posting, I will re-read it online and attempt to correct what Blogger has messed with. Sorry for any inconvenience to your brain.

I Remember These Things.

I remember the time before Black Friday. It was a 4-day weekend usually spent visiting friends and family all the while eating more turkey than you would in the next 11 months.

I remember when there was NO sunday shopping. (In NOLA,  grocery stores were open, liquor was available 24/7 and pharmacies were open. However, back then they sold only pharmaceuticals - no toys, groceries, or any non-health related items.)

I remember when you couldn’t find products from certain manufacturers at competitive prices, no matter how hard you tried,  more than a few cents either way. I speak of price fixing by companies like Panasonic and Sony, which was finally addressed in the late 1970s. Though they were hit with huge fines the end result is that consumers lost out, as usual. 

I can remember walking into a store looking for an item and if you didn’t see what you needed, there was always more in the “back” stock room and employees knew where to find it.  It was called service back then...

I remember great customer service and care, even being on a first name basis with sales staff.  Not anymore.

If retailers wonder why the internet has taken over as King and Queen of retail, they can look at themselves, their greed, treatment of employees, and lack of care for the customer base. People eventually get tired of being treated badly or abused. Really, they do. Then they vote with their feet and wallets.

For the most part, we went elsewhere. When you get better service from a small online retailer than a big name store you’ve been shopping for years, it’s time to move on. No customer service or support to speak of? Why wait in long lines to get a problem fixed? Go elsewhere. All fixed usually with a few clicks in minutes or with a quick email.  At least that’s my experience.

A far cry from the older model of holiday shopping.

I am still amazed.

*

Support Courage Campaign Institute - Shop Amazon


This only just arrived via email and since I do a lot of shopping at Amazon I think it's a great idea to help support the CCI. A worthwhile, progressive organization.

I don't give to charities much anymore. I give to St. Jude's Children's Hospital and The Ali Forney Centers and they are the only ones to get any cash. I find most others too wasteful for my taste.

Before I hear the Amazon complaints I'll just say that I shop with Amazon, not only for the prices and service, but because there are no viable brick and mortar stores within 50 miles of where I live and I will not shop at Wal*Mart.  There are other fave go-to-spots for specific items on the Interwebs, but in general Amazon covers the other bases.

Shopping local is my first priority, even if the price is a bit higher, but driving 50 or 80 miles to Malls is out of the question.  If I find it at Amazon (I'm already a Prime Member for books & movies) and two-day shipping is free, that's where I'll get what I need.

So, if you're not in the mood to hassle the long drive, or brave the crazies at the Malls, check out Amazon for just about anything and everything (I've learned this over the years) and get it within 3 to 5 days - 2-day free shipping if you're a Prime member. Make sure your purchase is eligible for the donation.

Here's the email:
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Courage Campaign
Dear Friend,
At Courage, we hope that you support and shop at small businesses. But if you're planning to use Amazon.com for your holiday purchases and beyond, please use AmazonSmile -- a program that allows small, non-profit organizations LIKE COURAGE CAMPAIGN to raise money from Amazon purchases.
At no cost to you, Amazon will donate a .5% of the price to Courage Campaign for every eligible purchase you make! So why not get some of your holiday shopping done WHILE supporting a good cause?
Want to make it easy to use our AmazonSmile link in the future? Bookmark this link and save it as ‘Amazon.’ It's a simple and automatic way to support Courage Campaign every time you shop at Amazon.
With your purchases, you'll be helping Courage continue to fight for progressive values, equality, justice, and accountability for politicians and corporations, while training and organizing activists to change their communities.
Thank you for your support and Happy Holidays!
Paul, along with Annie, Eddie, Laura, Lindsay, Michael, Scottie, and Tim (the Courage team)
Courage Campaign fights for a more progressive California and country. We are an online community powered by more than 900,000 members. The Courage Campaign Institute is the educational arm of the Courage Campaign family of organizations. Our mission is to defend and extend human rights through innovative leadership development, training, strategic research, and public education.
http://www.couragecampaign.org?akid=1373.654996.Ur-96Q

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Full Of … Surprises

It’s cold, raining, raw, getting colder - chance of snow/sleet/freezing rain tonight into tomorrow and I am one exhausted Big Cat!

Surprises:

1. Heavy rains began overnight waking me shortly after midnight.  I’ve been awake ever since. The high winds and rain have continued all day.

2. There’s a new Hematologist on my case at the center as of today. He seems more familiar with it than even the oncologists on staff.

3. Labs showed the hemoglobin numbers to be in the basement again so two units of blood were ordered - for today.  

4. With the holiday tomorrow infusion had to be done right away. Couldn’t wait, but I had to. It can take hours to type and cross match for my infusions and today was no exception.

5. Eight hours in the infusion chair alternately waiting for the blood product to arrive or being infused.

6. Arrived home to find a message from the new Hematologist asking that I call Friday to schedule an consult with him.  Seems he has an idea for a new form of treatment. Oh yes, something new. If I have the transportation, that is.

So there you have it. I had a grand list of errands to run today - thinking that the Lab results would be just fine and no transfusions necessary.  I felt fine and looked good, too.  That’s what everyone said.

So, no dry cleaners, grocery shopping, credit union (for quick cash), no quiet lunch at a nice little restaurant, and no new flannel shirts. We did manage to get to the pharmacy to pick up the waiting scripts, but that was it for the entire day.

Now I am exhausted, sore, with swollen, painful legs and nothing in my stomach all day but a bag of gold fish, a bagel, lots of ice water, and 2 cups of coffee. Jeffrey made a stop to pick up some prepared fried chicken for my supper.  Turns out the chicken is inedible. Dry and tasteless.  A cold turkey sandwich is on the menu tonight - if I have the energy to make it.

I don’t know what is the more uncomfortable; the suppressed anger, the sore butt and fatigue from the infusion chair, the wasted day, or the fact that it will be next week before I get out to try again.

With the winter weather slowly creeping into the area, those outings will be much reduced or non-existent in the weeks leading up to the end of year holidays. And once again I’ll be a prisoner in my own apartment.

The one bit of really good news came from Linda today. She got the all clear from the Irish doctors and she’s coming home tomorrow.  We are all very relieved by this news. It certainly ends the day on a high note.

I am amazed

*

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

The Scots, Shorter Turkey Day, & Shopping UK

Finished the ebook “How the Scots Invented the Modern World” and highly recommend it for history buffs and Anglophiles for a quick and easy, insightful read. I am sure Ur-Spo would enjoy it. And maybe even Ron at (Retired in Delaware) since he's into genealogy and family histories. In fact, anyone who enjoys the historic connections between the Britons and the Americans will learn a great deal that we didn’t read about in our history books. 

The Scottish Enlightenment, the brutal, horrific Highland Clearances, the great thinkers and doers, the proud and wide-spread Philosophy of Scottish Educational System. Absolutely fascinating. It was probably a quick read because so many real life characters were written in a way that made their historic deeds and past lives before - and during - the diaspora that much more interesting. I  hope that makes sense.

I am now on to LOTR which ought to take me well into December and away from anything and everything unpleasant. Since these are real wood-pulp books, they’ll be more of a chore to lug to and from medical appointments, but we’ll get it done.

Special Alert: Today I am in a quandary and I need help.  No matter how much I clear out the one, single closet in this apartment, there is always more to find. I came upon two more large tubs today containing items that must be identified, sorted, cleaned (if usable) thrown away (if not) and that may just be the one thing a shopper at the Thrift store is looking for. I don’t know where it is all coming from and half is unrecognizable. Now Back to Regular Blogging.

I am not looking forward to Thanksgiving. Never really liked the holiday as a kid - too much family mishugass ending in arguments and creating bad feelings
too close to the real holidays.  We weren’t a sports kind of family, so verbally beating up on relatives was the order of the day. As a kid I remember that after helping clean up the kitchen my refuge was the  bedroom where I would listen to music or read for the duration. I was never missed.

Only as a gay adult in a “stable” relationship did I begin relating to the holiday. My house became the go-to place for wayward gays and lesbians with no other place to go. From NYC and NJ, to the Delaware shore. Over the years it became a tradition.  The first year there were 5 waifs; over the years the numbers fluctuated from 5 to 11 and it was all good fun. I usually did the cooking - others brought side dishes or desserts - and everyone else cleaned up.  We'd listen to music, dance and/or watch movies on the teevee machine. Spanning the eras from Vinyl to CD; VHS to DVDs.  Very relaxing times. That life, all those people are long gone. It’s a day like any other, albeit a quieter one and I don’t miss the work and fuss one tiny bit. 

It has been over a month since I ordered the “V” shape pillow from the company in the UK.  It has now been 26 days since I received word that the package had been ‘dispatched’ but to this date, the package has not yet arrived. 

The reply to my request of “Hey! What Gives” returned a familiar excuse to us Americans - “it’s the busiest time of year for the Royal Mail as it is absolutely swamped, so please be patient and give it another 3 to 5 days.”  Well, what else can I do?  They have my money and the damned thing is somewhere between the UK and the US, probably in a small steam powered boat chugging it's way across the Atlantic.  Hhrumph!

I think I’ll partake of one of those Scottish imports that must get old to be respectfully enjoyed.  A bit of single malt Scotch Whisky.  But, that’s for much later…

I am amazed.
*

Facial Comparison

It is to Laugh!
This comment at the last Throwback Thursday posed the following question:


(sorry about the small text, it's a screen grab, after all.)


Summer of 2014.  With friends Sasha and Jeffrey.




Summer in 1970s. With friend Ted.

I don't know that it's changed much over the years. It has stayed with me to some degree all these years.  I still open my trap too wide when I laugh.  I guess I just have to let it out before I burst. But hey, it is what it is.

So, Mr. or Ms. Anonymous, thanks for asking.

Yep!  I'm still amazed, too.
*

Monday, November 24, 2014

That’s Why It’s Unseasonably Warm!

(It is currently 72' F on November 24th!)
Tequila shelves.


The long-planned visit to Dos Locos finally happened, though it’s hard to  believe.  Nicole picked me up on her way to work around 2:45 yesterday. She was as excited as I was. It was a good time, wonderful to chat with the Locosguys - who are in great shape and looking svelte for their upcoming holiday trip to beaches of Mexico. Owning a successful business in a beach resort means you seldom get to see your own beach, so I am cheering them on.  I think I may have convinced them to turn off the cell phones, but time will tell. They leave on Saturday.

Super conversations with the staff; the Golden Margaritas (two) went down easily. Being football Sunday there were a lot of customers to come by and say “hello” and ply me with drinks. Truth must be told, Joe (a Locosguy) didn’t force upon me a shot of a new Tequila from Patron which is made the old fashioned way (whatever that is) and I have to say it was the smoothest alcoholic beverage ever to pass my lips. Smooth and it didn’t knock me for a loop, either.

With Jeffrey.
After their shifts, Jeffery joined me - along with Frankie, Juan, Nicole, and Bahram for the second margarita. To my great relief, neither Jeffrey nor Nicole had shared personal information about my illness, current healthcare or their places in it.  Leaving that one of those not-to-discuss topics for the afternoon. 

As Joe knew I wouldn’t be staying long, the old Mother in him decided that I needed supper.  So, as he ordered my take-out (a Duck Quesadilla, with melted Monterey Jack and crumbled Bleu Cheese drizzled with pepper jam), Darryl (the other Locosguy) arrived and promptly ordered another round of shots of yet another new Tequila called Maestro Dobel, known as a ‘sipping tequila’ and it certainly was that.  

Finished the second margarita as my supper arrived so Jeffrey brought me home and saw me up the stairs.  (Did pretty well considering the drinks and balance issues). By this time it was 5:30 and I was more weak than I realized. Probably due to all the excitement and the tequila. Supper went into the refrigerator, Jeffrey took his leave, and I took a nap. Supper was warmed up about 2 hours later and was oh so good. 

Yes, I’m in pain again today, but my jaws hurt far more from the constant laughter, than my joints from the swelling.  A great time that was made more so by sharing it with some truly terriffic people with a very sick sensahumah.

Didn’t get melancholy following this visit. I know I’ll probably never work there again, but it doesn’t mean I can’t enjoy the company and good graces of everyone I know there, however long that lasts.  It’s nice to know people still remember, miss, and care about me. Even nicer that Joe and Darryl keep them updated as they can.

I am amazed.

*

Saturday, November 22, 2014

The Ring. That Time of Year, Again.

Every year at this time (usually earlier, hospital got in the way) I read The Lord of the Rings, again. I have done so since 1971 when the trilogy was still riding high with young people and in colleges around the world. 

It began innocently enough: like most others who had read the books, there was this feeling that we missed so much on first read that we had to read it again.  And, of course, that was very, very true. In fact, each year when I read the trilogy I find some new bit of text I could swear wasn’t there before - yet I am reading from the same old hard cover books I’ve had since 1974.

I do love the films and watch them from time to time, (all hail Peter Jackson and Philippa Boyens!) but there is something about submerging oneself in Tolkien’s written text and imagination and allowing it to wash over you that transcends the visual.  

So colour me Elvish as I spotted this story at the BBC about the social impact of the trilogy beginning in the 1960s.  It’s well worth the read and brings back a lot of memories from my early days in the anti-war movement and the gay rights movement. 

Truth be told - - I had a "Frodo Lives!" tee-shirt in 1969.

From the BBC:
Hobbits and hippies: Tolkien and the countercultureIt was a time of sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll. Not to mention protest against the Vietnam War and marches for civil rights and the women’s movement. Who would think a figurehead for this social upheaval would be a tweedy Christian philologist at Oxford? But during the 1960s, a time of accelerating social change driven in part by 42 million Baby Boomers coming of age, Tolkien’s The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings became  required reading for the nascent counterculture, devoured simultaneously by students, artists, writers, rock bands and other agents of cultural change. The slogans ‘Frodo Lives’ and ‘Gandalf for President’ festooned subway stations worldwide as graffiti.
Middle Earth, JRR Tolkien’s meticulously detailed and mythic alternate universe, was created against the backdrop of two world wars.  As a professor at Oxford , Tolkien taught Anglo-Saxon, Old Icelandic and medieval Welsh and translated Beowulf, which inspired his later monsters. His fantasy vision, and his sense of evil looming over the good life, was shaped by his devout Catholicism and his experience serving in World War I, in which he lost all but one of his close friends.  “The Dead Marshes and the approaches to the Morannon owe something to northern France after the Battle of the Somme," he wrote in a 1960 letter. Frodo and Sam struggling to reach Mordor is a cracked mirror reflection of the young soldiers caught in the blasted landscape and slaughter of trench warfare on the Western Front.


For decades, fans have been obsessed with Tolkien’s Great War of the Ring, with its wizards and magicians, the legions of hobbits, dwarves, elves, orcs, giants, ents, the dragon Smaug guarding his treasure and the threatening Dark Lord. They were popular initially but sales of The Hobbit (published in 1937) and The Lord of the Rings (beginning in 1954) exploded in the mid-1960s, driven by a young generation charmed by Tolkien’s imaginative abundance, the splendour of his tales from a pre-Christian time and his obsessive cataloguing of the history, language and geography of his invented world. But deeper than this, certain aspects of Tolkien’s worldview matched the perspective of hippies, anti-war protestors, civil rights marchers and others seeking to change the established order. In fact, the values articulated by Tolkien were ideally suited for the 1960s counterculture movements. Today we'd think of Tolkien’s work as being aligned with the geek set of Comic-Con, but it was once closer to the Woodstock crowd.

Go and read the rest of it HERE.

Note: Even if these are available as ebooks, I wouldn't buy them. The thought of all the typos and other misspellings would haunt me for whatever time I have left on this earth.  So, there! My old Hard Covers are it for the next couple of weeks.

I am amazed

*

Just another Caturday...


And...repeat.

More later.
*

Friday, November 21, 2014

From Pain Comes Pizza.


Being a shut in today and that’s OK, especially after such a rough and restless night. Leg and ankle swelling made getting into a comfortable position a physical challenge. I sat up most of the night reading; falling asleep whenever I could.

As it now stands, Ireland is going to be hosting friend Linda another week. The results of the original biopsy proved inconclusive so she had to endure another one, having to wait for these results until early next week.  How the results could be inconclusive she says she can’t understand because the chunk of flesh they took out of her was quite large.

Anyway, she’s stuck.  Be that as it may, she told me this morning that flight reservations are made for next Thursday (our puny Thanksgiving - and what it’s become - means nothing to the Irish) so she is planning to come home no matter what the results of the latest biopsy reveal.  One can tell, even by the written words, that she is one pissed off Irish Lass and most folks would be wantin’ to stay out of her way these next few days.  

Jeffrey just checked in to see if I was in need and if I felt up to meeting him for an after-shift cocktail today. I nixed the cocktail idea but asked if he would deliver a small pizza after work from my fave place. He said it wouldn’t be a problem. We’ll try to meet up for a festive cocktail later in the weekend, if possible.

A fresh pizza - delivered! That’s great! I have no beer, but a shot of Jameson’s might be in order. With the swollen legs, pain and weakness, I couldn’t prepare a hot meal for myself tonight, anyway. I am pretty tired of cold turkey sandwiches, of you get my drift.

A nice reward for putting up with the pain. Pain meds following the pizza should put me down for the rest of the night and I’ll be on my feet (literally) tomorrow morning.

I am amazed.
*


Into The Woods - Trailer.

It's taken a long time to get this play to the screen.

Anticipation: Sondheim, Rob Marshall, Musical Score.



Apprehension: Disney Studios.

Unuf said.
*

Thursday, November 20, 2014

New Blood, Jettison of Shorts & Touchdown of Kilts.

One Style of Modern Utility Kilt
Unfortunately, Labs results yesterday told me I needed to be infused. The hemoglobin was down a full point - below the cut off point for my own safety. 

One unit was ordered and the port remained accessed for convenience. An appointment for blood was quickly set up for this morning at 9 am.

Nicole offered to do the honors, even if it is her day off. In return I promised a bit of winter shopping and a stop for lunch at the restaurant of her choice. She giggle and said she’d like nothing more than a burger on the beach if the weather was warmer and the winds weren’t so strong. We settled for something a little less uncomfortable - and indoors.

While I was somewhat disappointed in the outcome of the tests, the up side is that I went 2 weeks without requiring new blood. That and the fact that the platelets remain in high numbers as do the neutrophil count give me hope.   Slowly, but surely…

Patience, please! 

The infusion went well, though a little slower than usual, but I was still ready for lunch about 1 pm. And I was HUNGRY!!!  Enuf said.  

The afternoon flew by after lunch as Nicole and I traipsed around the area scouting out shopping venues for special items she wants to get her grandparents and friends. We had a good time and when we were finally done, I was pretty beat and ready for the drive home - and bed. 

I will be in bed in a few minutes and I’m sure she’ll be the same when she gets home shortly. She’s off the rest of the day, no new homework to contend with until Monday.  Her last class is tomorrow morning so I can assume she is in “chill” mode for the weekend.

Casual Tartans with sporrans.
Following 2 days of outings this week I am ready for shut-in mode, if for no other reason than to address the edema in the ankles and calves.  They are quite large after being on my feet for so long. The Kilt with soft loose cotton socks helps alleviate the itching and redness. I even bought a pair of those Eddie Bauer men’s thin lounging light-weight flannel pants, but they’re still too annoying on the front of the shins and calves.  

So, shorts or kilts are the items to remember for daily dress.  I’ve been receiving many compliments on the kilts this past week or two. So, I have a new attitude towards kilts vs. shorts.  Shorts big and baggie and not comfortable even after their washing and drying yesterday. But none of that is true with a kilt,  so as not to cause additional injury or more pain the kilt wins hands (pants!) down.

I’m totally hooked on kilts now. And…I don’t look half bad wearing one,
Similar Style to my old black one. I love it.
either. I am partial to the utility kilts due to their rugged design, heavy duty fabric, double stitching, and the over all comfortable feel. The "drop" is usually between 22" and 24" and depends on how you wear it at the waist. I'm pretty comfortable with either length, but am more used to the older 24" drop.

So, there you have it.

If you’d like more information on a small reputable company with great prices and the best shipping and customer service, just send me an email message and I’ll get the info off to you.  Or, if you’d like, I can post the info here and you can take it from there on your own. 

I am amazed.
*

Wildlife in the Snow. Rare!

And very very stoopid!



A Bear in Buffalo, New York caught doing what the non-hibernating side of the species do during a snowstorm that will eventually  dump 9 inches of lake-effect snow on the area.

***Courtesy of the Daily Mail, UK. Seems readers of the paper would love nothing more than for this nightmare to fall upon them.  Careful what you wish for.

You can’t make this up.

*

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Ear-worms, Errands, & Early Winter


This is what I woke up humming this morning. I must say I could play this score all day and not tire of it.  The brilliant Michael Ball & Il Divo - what’s not to love?  Yes, in case you didn’t already know, I am an incurable romantic.  So shoot me!


Jeffrey picked me up early and we set out in the (suddenly) frigid cold weather.  What happened?  Yesterday it was in the 50s and today we’re shivering in the 28’ F range with 20 mph winds!  And…I cannot wear long trousers because of the leg rash. All my summer shorts are in the laundry Jeffrey was taking home to wash for me and the only sweats I have are way too big for me nowadays. Three of me could fit in them. Not a great look, if you get my drift.

So guess who wore a kilt again today? The more I wear them, the more I love them. I wore the Scottish Wool one - and yes, with underwear - along with a tee-shirt under a long sleeve sport shirt and covered all with a hoodie. When he picked me up, Jeffrey thought I was nuts since he was bundled like an Eskimo or a frozen Elf.  Take your pick.

With lists in hand, we were off!

I had sets of house keys made for Jeffrey and Nicole, so they can get in if I’m not up to opening the door, for any reason. I also shopped for a small electric space heater for the bathroom. There is no vent in there for the central heat and the thermostat died in the old heater that's 10 years old. Bought that, too.

With winter making its early debut, Jeffrey wanted to look for flannel sport shirts.  We stopped at Eddie Bauer, Bass, and Dickies.  Finally found one he liked, a handsome plaid and well made; I probably should have followed his lead, but thought I’ll hold off a bit and see how the money goes. 

Hit the pharmacy for a refilled script that has done wonders for an annoying dry cough I’ve had since the hospital. The cough is almost gone completely. Grocery shopping was next then we headed for a few hot coffees and breakfast.

Happily, the wool kilt kept my torso and lower body warm. Because of the strong winds the only thing to get cold (now stop with the evil minds!) was my nose. The old Twig & Berries were fine, thank you. The hoodie kept my head and ears toasty and the feet weren't bothered at all.

Walked in the door around noon to a strange “chirp” sound that Jeffrey recognized immediately.  I was clueless until we walked into the bedroom.  The chirp was emanating from the smoke alarm, (which I thought was electrical since I had never changed a battery in the years I’ve been here) so Jeffrey asked for a 9V battery and hunted down the battery location inside the device.  Thank the Goddess he was here because I  could not have climbed a ladder to search for the hidden pocket. 

It took him a few minutes of huffing and cursing, following wires, setting off the test alert a few times, to zero in on the exact location. Let’s just say the battery compartment is well hidden. The battery power is only used if the electrical power goes off and it functions silently. How would I have known of the battery’s existence?  I wouldn’t. But FIVE years? That's some long-lasting battery.

He grabbed the laundry bag, the last of the house plants, and the new set of keys.  Then he gave me a hug and headed for home.

After putting everything away, I got into bed and took a short nap. Woke up a while ago with leg and back pain, had a quick sandwich for supper and took a pain med. I am tired, so I think I’ll snuggle into bed and read a few hours until I fall asleep.

Another day of adventure and misadventures; and tomorrow begins with Labs at the Center. Not sure I can stand being out of the house two days in a row.

I am amazed.

*

Monday, November 17, 2014

ABBA, Answers, & Baba Ganoush


Greeted the day with little pain and no dizziness. Drank 2 large glasses of orange juice while brewing a coffee. Feeling pretty good today.

The song swirling around in my brain when I awoke this morning was “Take A Chance On Me” once a not-so-big hit by ABBA. Fortunately, the song was included on the one CD I have of the group, so as soon as the sun  came up and I was sure not to disturb anyone, I played the thing just to get it out of my head.

Called the Center today with important questions for the doctors. The nurses in Triage helped me out a lot explaining some of the reactions I am experiencing and can expect for a while, as the body works up to its “new normal”. Then I talked with the doctors.  I took a lot of notes. I had to. As I re-read them they sounded more complicated than they actually are. Common sense stuff, really.  

So now I kind of know what to expect. The reason most of this information wasn’t given upon release is that people react differently in similar circumstances and it is easier to focus on an individual after the fact when they experience specific symptoms. At least that’s what they told me. In other words if it didn’t happen to you it’s not relevant to your situation. So there!

The bottom line is:
Recovery will take a long time.
Expect mild to severe pain at any time.
Take medications on schedule daily.
Get plenty of rest.
Be aware of minor physical & mental changes.
Be aware of internal bleeding.
Watch for external bruising, skin discoloration, and rashes.
Pushing the body to heal quicker can cause a relapse.
Sleep whenever possible.
Do not drive a vehicle until you know you can.
Drink plenty of water.
Eat when hungry. Force-feeding is not good for the body.
Eat what gives most pleasure, on Neutropenic diet.
Eat plenty of cooked fruit and vegetables.

Now, that’s a lot to be conscious of on a daily basis.

The truth be told, if it wasn’t for those three taking care of me from day one out of hospital, I wouldn’t be here now. It really is that simple. And to think that Linda already had an over all plan of care before I even got home is mind-blowing. She’s a very insightful woman.

On a funny note, I contacted the Funeral Home to set up an appointment to discuss my “wants and wishes” regarding a funeral. The person answering the phone couldn’t be bothered and told me to complete the survey/questionnaire at their website. I suppose those close to death or their family members don’t need personal, customer service when a few questions answered online can whip out the perfect service for their needs. Maybe I’ll answer the questions at a later date, right now I can’t stop shaking my head and laughing. 

To brighten my day I just received an email from my Visa Card company offering to turn my miles into gift cards.  Ten thousand points equals a $100 gift card. I think I will choose an Amazon card and spend it on myself since I’ve bought a lot of ebooks lately and there are a few other items I would like to order, not the least of which is proper kilt hose, or socks. With the temperatures dropping and the inability to wear long trousers (due to the leg rash), I think I’ll need a little help keeping warm this winter. Though my legs seldom get cold, my body has changed and ain’t what it used to me. 

I’ll keep - and add to - those points in the off chance that I can use the air miles for an upcoming holiday somewhere away from here.  Hey!  One can dream, can one?

Going to ask Jeffrey to take me grocery shopping tomorrow. I’ve suddenly got a craving for Baba Ganoush. I need a healthy snack to munch on while on the computer or reading. Now if I can find enough energy to prepare it, all will be well. I will use store-bought Tahini, no energy to make my own.

ABBA has been playing in an endless loop in the background all day.  Aaarrrrrggggghhhhh !!!

I am amazed.
*


Sunday, November 16, 2014

Healing, History, and Helpful Advice


Having taken a painkiller with the evening meds after supper last night, I brushed my teeth and settled into bed. Started a new e-book on the history of Scotland and got taken away for a few hours before feeling the desperate need for sleep.  Just what I hoped for, anyway. Slept like a baby, too. 

“How the Scots Invented the Modern World” is a surprisingly quick read and - for what it is - extremely easy to follow. I thought that after reading all the Civil War, American Political History stuff, it was time to take a crack at the other side of the pond. I’ve watched the multi-episode BBC series on the subject, but this is quite different.  

I received a poignant letter from a blogger buddy turned friend today, offering much wise advice regarding my physical and emotional healing and allowing time to let it happen. His words ring true, indeed. I need to follow them and think only about myself right now. Listen to my body and not try to rush the recovery process.  I don’t have to force myself to be productive so quickly after what I’ve been through. Feel vindicated in my attitude after reading and digesting his letter. Most of all, there is no reason to feel “antsy” about anything. I must learn how to rest. Now, I have help.

Unfortunately, my new V shaped pillow did not arrive in yesterday’s post.  Well, they gave a 4-day delivery window, after all. I just need to find more patience, is all. Will someone please send me a whole lot of patience - - - and hurry!

It’s great to be able to text Linda in Ireland. We had a half hour chat while she rode the train from Belfast back to Dublin yesterday. As it stands now, she is supposed to receive her test results tomorrow (Monday) so we’ll know the good or not so good news.  If she comes back this week, or not. She truly believes it’s really nothing, but it’s the not-knowing that’s driving everyone crazy.

Just a reminder; I cannot navigate the strairs unless someone is physically present in case I lose my center of balance. That’s why I must be a shut-in most of the time.  As I’m learning, not necessarily a bad thing. This also means that I cannot yet drive myself anywhere, either. The center of balance and motion thing again, I guess. I will know more when I talk with the doctor this week. 

Nicole was supposed to pick me up on the way to Dos Locos this afternoon where I hoped to spend an hour or two, but as I got out of the shower I felt a wave of achy pain and some dizziness, and made it to the bed without taking a fall. So I sent a text telling her I’m OK and we’ll do it another time. 

Got hungry a little while ago so I made it to the kitchen for a bit of cheese and crackers and a fruit cup. I’m feeling better…but it’s back to bed now.

And so it goes.
*

Saturday, November 15, 2014

An Antsy Shut-in Kind of Weekend


This weekend marks 2 weeks out of hospital, and my, how the time does fly!!! And today I am antsy.

No personal post on Friday. Mostly hung out in bed, reading or sleeping. Ate very little, didn’t feel hungry. Just tired without energy, so being a shut-in wasn’t a bad thing. 

This feels very strange. I pretty much slept from 2:30pm Friday until 1:30am today. Woke up feeling fine, without any appetite to speak of, though I ate cereal and had a coffee followed by a bagel with cream cheese and preserves. 

This is the second or third time I’ve experienced this kind of episode since leaving hospital and I think it’s time to ask the doctors about it.  Which I will do on Monday. Meanwhile, this sleeping/napping 12 to 16 hours a day is taking a big chunk out of that “borrowed time” I’m living on right about now. 

Will try to get someone to take me out tomorrow morning - maybe even have breakfast - just to get out and about for a while. Enough to tire me out from actually exerting myself, if you get my drift.I am not going to get any stronger, or prettier just sitting around like Joe Egg and I need to build my strength and stamina.

Found 2 listings for small apartments at Craigslist and put through calls to both of them.  It is the weekend, after all, so I may not hear anything, but then again. 

Some people tell me I ought to relax and watch TV or a movie, but I am not interested in being in a passive mode right now. I can’t sit still for that kind of “entertainment” nowadays. I’ve watched a few YT music videos but that’s the extent of my viewing pleasure.

I’m antsy and need to be engaged in something.  But, what? I think I need an anxiety medication about now.

And so it goes.

*

Star Wars Caturday



More later.
*

Friday, November 14, 2014

The Kinks: Give Up The Complicated Life

As I play shut in again today, waiting for my V-shaped Pillow from the UK,  as well as another small package from UTKilts to arrive today, I remember this song as one of the best of the Kinks. You can listen to the video and read the tongue-in-cheek lyrics below.


"Complicated Life"

Well I woke this morning with a pain in my neck,
A pain in my heart and a pain in my chest,
I went to the doctor and the good doctor said,
You gotta slow down your life or you're gonna be dead,
Cut out the struggle and strife,
It only complicates your life.

Well I cut down women, I cut out booze,
I stopped ironing my shirts, cleaning my shoes,
I stopped going to work, stopped reading the news,
I sit and twiddle my thumbs cos I got nothing to do,
Minimal exercise,
To help uncomplicate my life,
Gotta stand and face it life is so complicated,
Ladi dah di dahdah, ladi dah di dah dah,
You gotta get away from the complicated life, son,
Life is overrated, life is complicated,
Must alleviate this complicated life.

Cut out the struggle and strife,
It's such a complicated life.

Like old Mother Hubbard
I got nothin' in the cupboard,
Got no dinner and I got no supper,
Holes in my shoes, I got holes in my socks,
I can't go to work cos I can't get a job,
The bills are rising sky high,
It's such a complicated life,
Gotta stand and face it,
Life is so complicated.
Ladi dah di dahdah, ladi dah di dah dah
Gotta get away from the complicated life, son,
Life is overrated, life is complicated,
Must alleviate this complicated life.

Gotta get away from the complicated life, son,
Gotta get away from the complicated life.

And so it goes.
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