Friday, July 31, 2009

Lovin' Ya Bald...

I had a friend a few year's back who had two pet rats. Why anyone living and breathing on the face of this earth would EVER want rats as pets is beyond my comprehension, but Phyllis LOVED her rats. She brought pictures of them in to work just like everyone else did of their human offspring and talked about her rats as if conversing about children.

One day, Phyllis came to work quite disturbed about her rodent friends. It seems one of the rats had taken to seriously grooming the other rat and was doing this grooming act with such vigor, she was making bald spots on the other rodent! And more importantly, the *groomed* rat didn't seem to a matter of fact, it appeared as if the balding rat ENCOURAGED the other rat's affections and seemed quite content with the process. Phyllis sought counsel with her local RAT GURU to try to determine if the grooming process was harming the becoming-hairless rat.

It seems this vigorous grooming technique (or so she was told) was actually quite harmless (albeit a disturbingly disgusting image if one allows themselves to picture a balding rat!) and was a display of affection in the rodent world. Phyllis decided the grooming rat was simply loving the other rat bald and announced this hypothesis one day amidst an explosion of laughter by her peers.

Phyllis became ill not long after her "lovin' ya bald" theory and, within only a matter of months, she died.

Since Phyllis' passing, I have on occasion told this rat story to others, paying homage to her humorous outlook on life...she was a dynamic character in her own right who "loved the world bald" in her interactions with those around her. I have even developed this saying into a phrase with another friend...instead of using the 3-word, "I love you", which can be somewhat intimidating and intense among friends, we say, "I'm lovin' you bald" to each other as a light-hearted way of conveying our affection for one another.

** ** ** ** ** ** ** **

SO, why all this talk about rodents and past friends and quirky affection? Well, the CHEESE just found out this week that another dear friend has been diagnosed with a very serious illness and thoughts of Phyllis have been swirling around in my head as well as ideas of mortality. It seems lately, every time I turn around, someone I feel close to is being hit with life-changing news that spins them around and alters their course. I've been experiencing my own grief over THEIR losses, which has caused me to examine so many things in my own life.

My latest friend to receive grave health news is also an incredible and dynamic person, who is loved by many. He is someone who has always been able to make me laugh, is a dedicated and persistent colleague, and someone who makes others want to be a better person just by his own example. And, he is now very ill...something I have never known him to be in his vibrant self.

I spoke to him very briefly tonight by phone, stumbling for words to express the turmoil, support, love, fear, and loss I feel for him...there were simply no words I could find to say all that I wanted to say in a time when words really mean very little anyway...a time when no action or words are enough to relieve the sense of helplessness I feel...a time when even saying those three words, "I love you", somehow seem embarrassing or trite. I feel a sense of guilt and remorse over not knowing if I have truly conveyed my affection for my friend before now? I worry I have not taken the times or the opportunities BEFORE this crisis to plant these seeds of love so that he would already KNOW it exists without my having to say so.

I know my friend sometimes reads this blog. I am hoping when he feels a bit better, he might return here and read this post. But there is really only ONE thing I truly wish to convey if he does:

I'm lovin' you bald, R.S.

Nuff said...

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Healthy Living Sure Takes A Lot Of Time And Energy...

Absent from the Blogosphere...that is because this healthy living phase I am going through is sucking up my every waking moment!

That's right...if I'm not SHOPPING for healthy foods on my "Metabolism Miracle" plan, or PREPARING nutritious meals to dine on, or trying to give myself a cardiac arrest from walking 2.6 miles a day (and the last 1/2 mile is like scaling a building on the outside...straight up hills), or sucking down a gallon of water...well...I am SLEEPING! Yes, this healthy living is plain wearing me out. Who knew?!?

My walk takes me about an hour a day...preparing meals to take to work takes another 1/2 to an hour...and the fact I am actually SLEEPING now more than 5 hours a night just is cutting into my blogging/blog reading time. I never knew this was how "healthy" people's a me, me, me focus 24/7.

OK, I'm really NOT complaining here...I have now lost a grand total of 15 pounds (only need to drop the weight of a small Orca whale yet to go and I will be soooo svelte! Look out're not the only one trying to escape SeaWorld...) and I have more energy than I've felt for at least 6 years (that would be the entire time I'm been diagnosed with MS...if I really HAVE such a disease...hehe). I am very cautious of jinxing myself but...I think I feel somewhat "normal". Maybe *balanced* is a better word (although, I am ONLY speaking physically here...I remain a loose wing nut on the mental realm).

My bout of vertigo HAS seemed to resolve itself (thank you, Baby Jesus!) after religiously doing Epley Maneuvers every night before bed, causing waves of dizziness/nausea...I guess part of overcoming Benign Proxysmal Postural Vertigo is making yourself so incredibly ill from the treatment/exercises, when one finally does get up right again, the remaining dizziness feels like a cake walk! But the hidden *neener* point of this episode is, there is NO indication the vertigo has been caused by MS (so neener THAT, you stoopid disease!). It has resolved without any need for ongoing MS treatment drama. **Insert big round of applause**

My 45th birthday came and went without added drama, too...although there were gifts and a little party at my work place (thank you again, T-ster), the day and rolling that 4 to a 5 was uneventful.

There are soooo many other topics I *could* address here, but it is time for me to hit the hay again. No worries though...I WILL return soon to share my thoughts about the fine art of IRONING SHEETS and other hot topics! And speaking of *hot*...we ARE having what is predicted to be a record heat wave in the ol' Emerald City. It is suppose to go above 90 next week for a few days in a row. No. I haven't bought myself a portable AC. Leave it. I'm hoping the heat will melt off a few more pounds (diabolical plan, I know).


Tuesday, July 21, 2009

As The World Turns...

I WISH I were merely referencing that CBS daytime soap opera...but alas...I am not. I'm talking about MY world as it appeared to me this morning upon waking. I became consciously aware of a sense of dread in my body when I rolled over benignly to check the clock this a.m. and was suddenly overcome by waves of dizziness and nausea.

Yes, it appears my "whatever" has returned. That dizziness/vertigo-ish feeling I experienced in February, causing me to fall and conk my noggin (you'll have to search previous February posts if you're that enthralled in my life's drama's...too funky feeling to do it myself at the moment).

The jury remains in deliberation whether this sensation is in direct correlation to my cerebellum lesion OR if this is some weird situation in my inner ear (can you say vestibular neuritis or Benign Paroxysmal Postural Vertigo, aka, Inner Ear eff up, children?)...either cause or case, it sucks to be me big time right now. And the treatment is essentially the same...WAIT AND SEE.

I did start doing the ol' Epley Maneuvers this evening (exercises to move the possible calcium crystals in my inner ear around...if that is the cause...BPPV), which TRIGGERS the dayumed dizziness something fierce. But, if that is the problem, these exercises are the only REAL treatment for BPPV. And, if inner ear disorder ISN'T the cause, well...let's just say I'm putting myself through some highly unnecessary HELL in the meantime! Figured it is worth trying/ruling out before I go running to Dr. SWWNBN or my Always Really Nice Practitioner (ARNP) and screaming "uncle!"...or, more like it, "screw this freakin' MS!"

The worst part of this dizziness/vertigo-esk situation occurring right now is, it is interfering with my exercise is difficult to walk too far without veering to the left constantly. Makes the neighbors eyebrows raise if I am falling into their rose bushes. LOL AND, Seattle is expected to reach temperatures in the upper 80's and low 90's this week...never good weather to have a constant sensation of wanting to hurl one's cookies due to dizziness. Of course, when IS good weather for nausea?!?

The other sad part of having this dizziness is, I'm too unfocused to even WATCH the CBS soap opera that the title of this blog is named even takes all the fun out of lying about, eating bonbons all day, and watching bad daytime TV drama (which are NOT on my current intake plan - bonbons - said for anyone else curious about the "Metabolism Miracle" diet!!!)...

Saturday, July 18, 2009

All Right, Already!...

Geez and for gawd's'd think there were actually people READING this blog based on the emails and comments I've received lately, mostly wondering WHY I've not posted anything for over a week! And no, the picture up there is NOT a sign...I have NOT joined a convent (otherwise known as a "nunnery" to me...hehe) in my absence. I just put the *sista* up there for protection...mine or yours...who knows?

So, where HAVE I been? Let's see...

This past week, I've been on my 6 day furlough from work and thoroughly enjoying and squeezing every last ounce of time and energy out of it. I started my "Metabolism Miracle" intake plan and I am pleased to report, I have neither cheated nor caved on the program. AND, I've lost a whopping 9 pounds to boot. I know, I know...for some of you, that's just chump change. But when you've juiced up with steroids for Multiple Sclerosis as much as I have in the past few years (gaining weight with each, treacherous infusion), nine pounds feels like I've just birthed a small infant! Well, in actuality, that would be a rather LARGE infant to squirt out, but you know what I mean. LOL It's not been all that *arm-chewing* difficult either, which is most surprising and completely welcomed. I have to eat 5 grams of carbohydrates (yes, HAVE to) every 5 hours, supplemented with high protein foods. This is the first intake plan I have ever tried that FORCES me to eat a minimum of every 5 hours...what's not to like about THAT?!?

And along with my dietary changes (no, SPAZ ATTACK, I have not had ANY Mt. Dew for now almost 3 weeks...funeral services were held where I cremated the remains of my last cans), I have also begun a somewhat vigorous exercise program. I use the word *vigorous* because ANY exercise beyond walking from the refrigerator to the couch seemed strenuous to begin with. I am now up to walking 2.6 miles a day, taking a day off here or there to rest my bones. Since last Tuesday, I have now trekked 23 miles...I KNOW?!? Who knew a fat a$$ like myself could go that far??? AND, the route I have been taking includes hills...mother of god, what the heck is happening to me???

I have also been maintaining my moratorium on *gossip*...tis so freeing. I have no idea what is going on in my work place or with the people I work with. And, the great news is...I DON'T CARE. This seems to have also supported my mood elevation...when I have no idea WHAT the trials and tribulations are among my colleagues, I'm free to maintain my "no gossip" work zone...which does seem to free up a tremendous amount of energy (previously wasted on beauching!).

Now here's the real kick in the shorts...I have finally moved into this century and upgraded my cell phone service to one of the devil's iPhone. Yes...sigh...this coming from a person who SWORE 12 years ago she would NEVER, EVER, NOT-ON-YOUR-LIFE even own a computer!! A great deal of my time has been spent trying to just figure out how to turn the derned thing on let alone *text* people (is the word "text" really a verb?)...I am amazed by this technology. And to think I can still remember when VCR's first came out (probably while I was listening to my 8-track tapes at the time...ehem). If I could just figure out how to get this silly phone to do my dishes and vacuum my carpets, I'd be singing Apple's praises...until they get these phones to do chores, I'm holding off on the praise portion. :-)

Yesterday, the temps reached 90 degrees. I'll just leave it at that, lest I receive even MORE emails inquiring if I have EVER purchased a portable air conditioner (Harkoo...I bet you have some thoughts on this!). Walking my route produced enough sweat to water a small garden...but, I DID it anyway. Oh, and it was NOT fun. :-(

There have been a few funny tales/encounters along the way, but I'll be dayumed if I can recall what they were/are. All this exercise and healthy eating has dulled my usual sarcastic self. No's not GONE completely. I'm sure I'll be back to my old, cranky nasty ways soon...once I get past this 45th birthday approaching next week.

Ah yes, the CHEESE continues to age...kind of in a stinky-bleu-cheese sort of way unfortunately...

Friday, July 10, 2009

Clawing My Way Out...

Well, not much to say about my good friend, Multiple Sclerosis...MS seems to have taken a brief vacation from my life and I've been walking around doing the "Who me?" whenever MS is mentioned. I'm also not SO dumb as to not knock on wood, count my blessings, and throw a pinch of salt over my left shoulder for good measure! But for whatever reason, I seem to be in a reprieve from MS symptoms at the moment. My shoulder pain has even lessened to a tolerable degree (**kissing my TENS unit now**) complaints here on the MS front.

After yet another bout of infectious disease that started last week as a cold and ended as...well...a cold, even my head is *de-congesting* quite nicely. I've had the past 4 days off from work, so I imagine the decrease in stress and increase in rest has helped to debug my system also. Now, if I could just learn to stop licking every emergency room floor on which I travel in my job, I bet these flu/cold bugs would have a harder time infecting!

Even my mood has begun to lift. I KNOW!?! Whoda thunk it??? After thrashing about in a state of depressed mood, I have begun to feel an increase in energy and well-being. Once I discovered (admitted actually...ahem) I was sinking into the muck and mire of a fit of *blue*, I decided I needed to take the bull by the horns (or the CHEESE by the chunk) and DO something to help elevate my mood. I started exercising, resting/napping more, cut out gossip from my life, and began delving into a new book called, "The Metabolism Miracle"'s a book (yet another) about diet and alternate metabolism, which seemed to strike a cord with me (or, hit me over the head with a hammer). I've begun making adjustments to my intake in preparation for starting Step One of the plan and I'm already beginning to FEEL physically improved. I cut out Mt. Dew from my diet about 1 1/2 weeks ago...a main STAPLE...and, after complete withdrawal, I think I'm beginning to see the plan unfolding for a healthier intake.

There has also been the ongoing drama of refinancing the hut...I'll just leave that statement as is...but suffice it to say, MONEY is a pain in the butt as are most financial institutions! With interest rates so low, a decision was made to jump back into the mortgage mania one, last time...I'll be glad when this process is over and I can happily settle back into owing a financial institution my left kidney while pretending to own a piece of property that the BANK really owns.

I finally finished the mounds of laundry that have accumulated while I've been convalescing my cold...there's nothing finer than IRONED SHEETS to crawl into. Well, maybe clean underwear ranks a pretty close second. :-)

It's back to work I go tomorrow...I've been resting and actually enjoying the down time of the last 4 days so much, I almost forgot I am employed...almost. I'll step back into the *grind* tomorrow, but hopefully with a renewed sense of vigor and a head cleared of virus...the best way to approach a five day work week.

My nails appear a bit dirty from clawing my way out of this hole I've been in, but I imagine a good, psychological manicure will fix that just fine...who knows, I may even get back into reading all y'alls blogs soon. Scary thought, isn't it?!?...

Sunday, July 05, 2009

Summer + Cold = Oxymoron...

I have developed a summer cold...runny nose, congestion, headache, cough, sore throat (no, I DON'T have allergies...thank you for asking!).

Isn't that an oxymoron? **Summer cold** Or am I just a MORON for catching it?...