Friday, April 30, 2004



The cat's favorite place to nap is smack in the middle of the desk, between the 2 computers. I like to think this is because she wants to be near me, and I spend a lot of time parked at the computer. (It's my delusion, and I like it.) Anyway, she's sleeping now and is making this funny little purring sound with her breathing, in and out, in and out, there are two different gurgle rates. It's almost snoring, but more like purring. Snurring. Endearing.

After yesterday, I am completely worn out. I don't want to do anything except sleep. I'm letting the little ones watch DVDs while I aimlessly bounce around reading online. We did run out to do a quick errand and I picked them up BK for lunch. They appreciated that, I think. We may have a trip to Border's when we pick DS1 up from school later. That's about the extent of my ambition today.

I have to call the cheer squad and let them know about tomorrow's game. That's 6 calls. No big deal.

Off to tote up my hours for my freelance job. Maybe I'll do a status report for March & April. Before the surgery in February, when I was working quite a bit, they were weekly. That practice fell by the wayside. I probably should do one, huh?



Tonight at dinner, DH proposed a toast to me in honor of all the cleaning work I did. The kids always love a good toast. "Cheers, Dad!" Says DS2, wildly waving his sippy cup of milk around. God bless the Playtex company for inventing that valve'd wonder.

At the time, I was busy doing something in the kitchen, I'm not exactly sure what. Taking cornbread out of the oven? Probably.

Anyway, it made me smile but also kind of snort, as in, "ha!" I am feeling under-appreciated these days. A little taken-for-granted. Especially by the kids, but also just a tiny bit by DH, too.

A few days ago, I unintentionally rebuffed an advance with the question, "why do you always wait until it's so late?" That was interpreted as a "no". Since then, I've felt a bit of a distance between us, which is probably not there on his part but is definitely there on my part. He speaks to me of this and that, and called today to see how I was doing on my first post-procedure day, but there's just something lacking.

I don't expect him to read my mind but I haven't brought this up with him because I'm expecting I'll get over it. There's nothing really wrong, I'm just in a bad mental place right now, with the skin biopsy (and others pending) and the colonoscopy. The lack-of-health stuff definitely puts me off, but I should get over it.

I just think I deserve a little more effort than a four word question. I don't want a major seduction scene, but the functional equivalent of "you want some coffee?" just isn't working for me. Still, I know how to get what I want -- it's very simple and never needs to be discussed. The way to get a kiss? Give one... it's very simple.

But I don't feel like giving kisses or anything else these days, and so this sense of estrangement and vague resentment persists. I'm sure it will dissipate eventually. Right now I don't exactly feel as if I am worth the effort. Blech.

Thursday, April 29, 2004

merry maid



I cleaned everything today. I dusted everything. I cleaned the glass door out to the patio. I cleaned off the kitchen counter and cleaned out the toaster oven. I vac'd (the family room, anyway). All 4 bathrooms. Stripped and remade all the beds, washed all the sheets and other laundry.

DH called to see how I was doing today and I told him I cleaned everything. He said, "Wow, you have a lot of energy today." I said, "No. I just couldn't stand living in this house the way it was, and if I didn't do it, it wasn't going to get done."

I think he was a bit taken aback by that. I didn't say it as an indictment of him, because I don't expect him to do this stuff. I usually do it more often than I have been lately, and the place really had turned into a pit. I meant to clean last week but I had that biopsy and lots of other running around. Meant to do it over the weekend and my ambition failed. Meant to do it Tuesday but ran out of steam and freaked out over the colonoscopy prep. Couldn't do it yesterday, so that left me at today with a state that I couldn't stand anymore.

So I cleaned.

I had a sense of accomplishment. It lasted about 10 minutes, and then DD and DS2 went outside and proceeded to smear up the nice clear door. I swear, as soon as that door is clean they make it their mission to mess it up again. So I have a sense of futility, too, but it's not that strong. It's just nicer not being surrounded by dust and cathair and whatnot.

We saw a real tumbling tumbleweed today on the way home from DD's school. That was cool. I'd much rather see a real one outside than the cat hair and dust scooting down the hallway in the same way...

hard time getting going today


My day started with cleaning up DS2, who did not pee in his bed, or in the toilet, but waited until he was halfway down the stairs. He doesn't think about using the upstairs bathroom yet. He's just not comfortable with it, even though we have a stepstool up there so he will be comfy on the toilet. It's still too new.

Anyway, had to clean him up and then blot all the wet out of the carpet. He was crying, poor little guy. I didn't yell at him about the pee, but I did tell him calmly but firmly not to freak out about it, it's not worth ruining the whole day over. Accidents happen. Whenever it happens, he just stands there and doesn't know what to do. So I told him, go on into the bathroom and get out of those clothes, and we'll get you cleaned up. He can do all that with no problem, and he did... all in all, I think it only added about 10 minutes to the routine of getting him into his clothes, LOL.

After that rather energetic (for me) and get-it-done episode, I've had a really hard time getting motivated to do anything. DH took DD to school this morning, so I've just been hanging out. I didn't make DS2 his breakfast until almost 9 -- he always eats better when we have it later. Of course, that led to it's own minor disaster, and further reflections on trying to stay gluten-free:

I asked what he wanted for breakfast (sometimes he only wants toast). He asked for scrambled eggs. He never eats them, so I asked him, literally, 4 times if that was really what he wanted. He insisted yes, he wanted the yellow eggs, the eggs with the cheese, scrambled eggs. I made him his toast, which he started to eat. I made the scrambled eggs and put them on the same plate (on top of the toast crumbs). He immediately bursts into tears and insists he asked for "white eggs" (fried egg whites, he never eats the yolks).

Now, a lot of people will tell me I spoil my kids, but I know my son and there was no way he was going to eat those eggs. I hadn't eaten at that point and any time in the past, I would've just eaten his eggs as my breakfast. But today I didn't, I just dumped them and made him his egg whites which he ate right up.

I may have wasted an egg but I saved myself a huge argument, which would have resulted in him not eating his breakfast and therefore being hungry and more cranky later.

But I seriously thought about eating those eggs for a minute, then realized there was no way I could eat them without getting a fair amount of toast crumbs, too. And I have quit entirely licking the butter off my fingers after I make the kids' toast in the morning... too many crumbs, again.

Sometimes I feel as if I am doomed, though, since I'm surrounded by wheat products every time I walk into the kitchen.

I lost about 3 pounds during the purge process. DH encouraged me to eat pizza last night (!!!). I told him I'm trying to avoid gluten to see if it helps. He just gave me a look... almost "why bother?"

Sometimes, I don't know.

Wednesday, April 28, 2004

the less said, the better


Yesterday I didn't do anything really because I had the colonoscopy prep looming over me all day, and I didn't want to deal with it.

Wait, that's not right: I did a bunch of errands with DS2 in the morning. What I did not do was the housework that really needs to get done, cleaning and laundry... DH ended up throwing in a load of dark colors this morning because DS2 ran out of underwear (he has red and blue underwear -- hey, he's three!). Oh well.

I would really rather forget the whole thing, but I just want to note here that it was impossible for me to swallow the Visicol, so I had to crush it and drink it mixed with grape juice. Visicol is sodium phosphate: DETERGENT! Yikes. After choking down (literally) 4 tablets every 15 minutes between 4 and 5 (!!!) I actually passed out for an hour and a half. I was so exhausted. The fun did not actually begin till after the second round at 8. Then it really started up when I had to take the laxative at 9. I was up until 2:45, completely miserable. Woke up at 6:15, still miserable.

The procedure went well, dr took some biopsies for microscopic examination, didn't see anything scary or have to take anything else out. I have to schedule a follow-up. Whee. Now I'm just dealing with all the air that's still gurgling around in me. It's a very weird feeling. DH picked up about 10:30, I dosed downstairs until our babysitter brought DD home from school (DS2 was dawdling in the bathroom... ) then I went upstairs and crashed for 5 hours. Oh, I had a couple of poached eggs before the "nap". I've had night's sleeps that were shorter than that "nap".

Dinner: a huge salad with romaine, a really beautiful tomato, roasted red peppers, and pepper jack cheese, yum. I'm contemplating some tuna right now (hee!). I haven't eaten much in the past two days, some late-night tuna could just hit the spot. I would really like a tuna melt but I'm still avoiding wheat to see if it helps at all. So far I haven't noticed any improvements but then again I just went through a roto-rooting so it probably doesn't matter what I eat, but I'm not going to undo my several good days' eating just for a sandwich.

Still feel exhausted.

Looking forward to a normal day tomorrow.

Last: I got a really excellent and encouraging e-mail with feedback on the work I did Monday. Since it was a completely unsolicited proposal, I was wondering how it would be received, and now I know at least one team member appreciated it. Sometimes I wonder how sharp my instincts are, since I'm working remotely. Nice to know I can still hit the mark.

Tuesday, April 27, 2004

Weirdness (addendum)


At dinner time somehow we got on the topic of DD's earliest days (previously discussed here in riveting detail). DH swore up and down that DD never drank from a bottle when she was an infant. I had to remind him of the 6 weeks (or was it 8?) that I nursed her while pumping to bring down the milk, and then gave her the bottle from the side that was pumped. He honestly didn't remember it.

It was one of the most traumatizing periods of my life, and he had completely forgotten about it. What's worse, even after talking about it a little bit, he still doesn't remember it. Maybe it's repression. I felt like I was crying all the time in those days. Maybe I never let the tears out? That part I don't remember. I do remember that DH often gave her the bottle so I could go and clean up the pump and get it ready for the next feeding. That time was one big blur punctuated by nursing&pumping sessions. My universe collapsed down to the point of, is my daughter eating? It was the only thing I cared about. Poor DS1, I have no memories of him during that time... I'm not sure how different it would've been had everything been fine, either. New babies tend to be overwhelming, even when you've been through it before.

I just think it's really weird that DH has no memories at all of that time. I swear that stuff still influences me today, and here he is, oblivious to the fact that it even happened. Perhaps I should take a page out of his book, but I don't believe that's possible for me!

Good day


Why do I like bad movies so much? Ah, yes -- Colin Firth. *sigh* I watched What a Girl Wants, and it didn't even bother me that he was the dad. There was this one scene involving leather pants, a black t-shirt with the sleeves cut off, incredibly funny air guitar and seriously funking dancing. I should find that clip online somewhere and download it for when I seriously need cheering up, because I can't see how it would ever fail. I read Walter's review over on FilmFreakCentral and he rightly trashes the movie, but Firth's charm and willingness to make a complete idiot of himself will win me over every time. Between this and Bridget Jones, I think he's my favorite actor.

Did tons and tons of work today, some of it unsolicited, but I've been thinking about that stuff for ages and wanted to get it out there. Those guys, they need to think about this stuff... at least I think so. I actually worked on and off all day. I'm going to have to tote up the hours somehow. Doesn't really matter.

Talked to one of my old work friends and she may be coming to Tucson next month! That would be cool, I could take off for an afternoon and go see her and her fiance -- I dated him for a while, in a previous life. Poor guy, I was psycho during that phase. When I got over my lunacy I realized that those two were really compatible and I think it has worked out well between them. They've been together for a number of years now, and almost got married in the Caribbean this past winter but had to cancel at the last minute when some family members couldn't make it. If and when I do see them, I'll hassle them about not being married yet. I just looked it up (checked the date on the email announcing their engagement) and they've been engaged for almost 4 years! This is getting excessive!

Tomorrow will be a long day, and I have the colonoscopy prep to look forward to. Ick. Have to remember to pick up the prescriptions. I got so much done today it was great: called the vet about boarding Rosie (the cat) over vacation, called to rent a car for same, did tons and tons of paying work, talked to my friend, talked to my niece for a bit, talked to my sister, drove the kids all over the place, and even managed to make dinner not-too-late. I just did wings on the grill and they were just a little bit overcooked. It was my first attempt at this particular kind, so it's a learning process. They were still quite good. Everyone seemed OK with them.

I have no idea about dinner for tomorrow because I CAN'T EAT ANY! Arg.
Oh, and my dr called about getting the Selective IgA Deficiency test and wants to know more about it. I think I'll just print something out and fax it over to him. I have no idea if he has been keeping up with me and all my various conditions. It's pretty ridiculous, all that I have going on. It would be nice to point to one thing and say, that's it, that's the cause of all this... I don't know if I'll ever get to that point. What difference does it make if they can't fix whatever that one thing is?

My left hip is really bad today, another no Vioxx day. This morning I saw that it was rotated a good inch lower than my right hip. Ouch. Then I figured out that I was doing the stretch I needed to do for when it had rotated higher -- it does both, I have no idea why. So I did the other stretch and popped it back into alignment and that held me for a few hours, but I have spent too long in this chair today. Now it is hurting again even though I just did those same stretches like half an hour ago. Sheesh. Falling apart. Can't wait for Wednesday morning to come and go, and then I'll slow down my life again. Yeah, right.

Still and all, strangely content. Thank you, Colin Firth.

Sunday, April 25, 2004

Let it go


I remembered to put in my retainer last night. The reason my jaw is sore now is from gritting my teeth this morning during coffee-with-the-girls. I am in such a pissy mood I probably should not have gone. All the little things, I had no patience for them. Fortunately I had to duck out after an hour-and-a-half to get home so DH could take DS1 to the ballgame. The competition and repetition are just a little insane... but I can handle it, I'm used to it. Where I really get ticked though is if the topic ever turns to politics, because these women are ignorant, in the true sense of the word. They have no idea what they are talking about. If they are lucky they get 10 minutes of national and international news a day from Peter Jennings. That's not news, it's spin. I don't have the time or energy to educate them, and besides that, they are not interested in being educated. So when the talk turned towards the Middle East, I was just as happy to be leaving.

Let's see, we talked about my hair, and mentioned the my upcoming colonoscopy too. What I didn't talk about: cheerleading, the Princeton Review, my freelance job (except in the context of giving one of the others advice on setting her rates for the web page building she is doing now), my kids. I'm tired of listening to other moms talking about how brilliant their kids are and how they work all day with them on their homework. I'm not like that: DS1 does his homework, we review it together. I don't have to sit with him all day to get it done. He's in first grade! We read together. We talk about stuff. He's cool. He's bright but not a prodigy. He's happy, and as far as I can tell, he's secure and comfortable with himself. He's a nice kid, too. It's all good...

I know I'm grumpy because of the upcoming procedure. It's hanging like a weight over me. Grrrrr.

Didn't do much today after coffee. Got home and didn't feel like rushing around, so hung out for a while. That made it too late to get lunch and go to Borders, so we just went out to lunch at the Elephant Bar. The kids were fine, but the waitress ignored me for a good 10 minutes. Grrrr, again.

The kids only ate half their meals, actually less than that for DS2, so I brought the leftovers home and then went out again to drop off my prescriptions I need for Tuesday's prep. There were issues with both of them, but I should still be able to pick them up tomorrow once they call the dr's office. How was I supposed to know that I was supposed to leave the instructions stapled to the prescription form?

DD and DS2 played beautifully all afternoon, and if I were not in such a funk I would've worked, but I lazed around and watched Trading Spaces: Home Free (psyched the light blue team won). DS1 had a great time at the game with his dad; DBacks over the Padres, 12-7.

This whole day has passed in a fog, with a sense of just marking time. All the ambition of yesterday has evaporated. My sciatica is really acting up and my hands are ouching, too, because I had to stop the Vioxx prior to the procedure.

I really should just stop bitching and do some work, it should go fast. I have all my screen shots, I don't have to do any back-and-forth in the product at all. I have so many things I want to get done, yet when I have the time, I am blocked, I don't do anything. Sucks. I hope that after Wednesday morning I can just get over all this and get moving again.

Watching Scarface, which somehow I had not yet managed to see before. It's a good contrast to The Sopranos. Italian mobsters vs Cuban mobsters. So removed from my existence, all this casual violence and disregard for life. Thank God.

Saturday, April 24, 2004

I've got blisters on my fingers


Damn screwdriver. Trying to disassemble DD's furniture in prep for the refinishing and upholstering... the drawers have this decorative/functional molding on their fronts, instead of pulls. That stuff is practically welded onto the drawer fronts, there are so many screws. It's ridiculous. At least on the bigger pieces, they're just attached with finish nails so I can just pry them off. On the smaller drawers (there are 4), there are like 8-10 screws holding the molding in place. It's bizarre.

But, I feel like I'm making some progress because I did something with the furniture today, and it has been sitting there waiting all this time.

The first thing I tried was to cut the quarter-round to go on the top (it's complicated to explain, I'll post pictures when it's done) of the little rolling seats... without a miter box, and with a crappy saw. So I went off to Home Depot with DD (the boys didn't want to come! How weird is that?) and got a bunch of stuff. I did get a cheap miter box with a hand saw, but I also got a little electric jig saw I can use, and also one of those Black & Decker Mouse palm-sander things. There are some things that need sanding around here... anyway, throw in some water seal for the swing set and the gate, and a new set of lopping shears, and all of a sudden I'd spent $180. I may return the power tools but then again, I might keep them. I've always wanted a jig saw. You can make cool things with them. Not that I have time to make cool things right now but I will eventually.

So when I got home it was time for church, basically, and off I went. Came home completely exhausted (was up way too late last night -- so late I spaced out at bedtime and forgot to put in my retainer, and now my jaw has been bothering me all day). Puttered around for a while doing little chores like cleaning off the kitchen counter and putting away laundry... those things are time consuming while seeming instantaneous. Eventually made dinner: scallops and spinach for me and DH, pasta for the 2 little ones, leftover pizza for DS1, who doesn't like pasta much at all. It was kind of ridiculous, I was in the kitchen for an hour putting all that together and doing the continuous cleanup thing.

Then in spite of my exhaustion I went upstairs to start disassembling the furniture, because that really does need to get done first. I'll work on the new molding for the tops (it will hold the cushions in place) once I get the old molding off the drawer fronts...

This morning went very well even though we were late for cheer -- DS2 had to use the toilet, and there is just no way to rush a 3-year-old who is still pretty new at using the toilet. So it was, everything ready to go, and then we come to a screeching halt while we wait for him. So I was pretty late, but the others didn't seem to mind. I had the girls practice all their cheers and we reviewed a couple they were unsure of. It was great that I had written them down, so I could refer to my notes. Then we went inside to do the cheers for the teams, and the referee held the games up -- I think they were both at half-time, so our timing was good. Anyway, everyone else cleared off, the girls all lined up in the middle of the two courts, and they did all their cheers. I kept them going, calling out each cheer by name and saying, "Ready?" They all respond, "OK!" and then they do it... they really did great. Of course there are mistakes and confused lefts and rights and what not, but generally they really did great and had fun and got a lot of applause.

It was a bit nerve-wracking to be out there but I had to be brave because how could I expect them to be not-nervous if I was nervous myself? I had to get out there, too... it was OK, a very nice crowd. After we finished (the whole thing was maybe 5 minutes, it really doesn't take that long, and I didn't want to delay the basketball games any longer) all the moms were really appreciative, and one girl's grandmother came over to introduce herself and to thank me. So that was a pretty good thing that I did today. The girls all felt good about themselves, and DD had a really good time. She's finding that when she does practice, she's good at it, and she loves the positive attention she gets. She wore her uniform the entire day! I didn't mind, that thing is indestructible.

One cute thing is that DS2 walked around chanting, "Let's go! Fight! Victory, tonight!" all day... poor baby stubbed his toe this afternoon (we still can't figure out exactly what happened) and was complaining about it off and on all evening. He may have broken it (any time you touch it he whimpers) but I'm not taking him to the Dr unless it gets worse -- it didn't even seem swollen this evening. I've taken DD for x-rays for broken toes twice, and it's just an exercise in futility. Even if it is broken, all they do is tape it to the neighboring toes to immobilize it better while it heals. There is really nothing else you can do. We gave him some Motrin to help with the pain and any swelling (although there was none we could see) and he dropped off to sleep so quickly... he was exhausted.

And DS1 made a shot at his game today! I'm not sure of the details, but DH mentioned that the Ref gave him the ball 3 separate times because he just wasn't in the action of the game much at all... this was the same Ref that halted the games so the girls could cheer. Very nice guy, really attuned to the kids.

All in all, it was a really good day even though I am frustrated about those drawers. I'll figure something out, I'm sure. I may end up having to saw off the molding in pieces, because those screws are impossibly long. What were they thinking? You can tell these are old pieces because they are constructed to withstand anything. Nowadays they use the shortest screws possible to attach whatever it is they are attaching... it's cheaper that way.

Tomorrow morning, coffee with the girls, I should get some feedback on my hair. Maybe, maybe not, I'm not pushy with that crowd, LOL. I have to hang back and not get into the competitive groove. But I do have to remember to tell them that Bernard's in Ocotillo is closed -- this is quite a blow to the chocolate lovers among us, now we'll have to go all the way up to Scottsdale for Bernard's, or settle for something else. Eh, Dove, and especially Dove Dark, usually suit me well enough anyway.

In the afternoon tomorrow DH is taking DS1 to the Diamondbacks' game, so I will do something with DD and DS2, not exactly sure what, yet. The weather was so gorgeous today, I wanted to do something outside like go to the zoo, but DH got involved in some outside chores, and they really needed to get done so we just did our separate things. And if DS2's toe is really bothering him tomorrow, the zoo is not a good idea. But we'll find something to do, I'm sure.

And I have some work to do, too. Part of me is saying, go to bed. Part is saying, flick on the tv and work on those drawers some more. Part of me is saying, do the f'ing work and get it out of the way, it's due end-of-the-day Monday. Why not just clear the deck?

I think I'm too tired, honestly. Shall I be smart for once and just go to bed now like a sane person would? Yeah, I think so.

today's briefs


Not. Underwear. Sorry.

Day started out well with the 2 little ones climbing into bed with me for snuggles. That never happens. They wait for me to stumble out of bed and hobble downstairs to make them breakfast, glued to the tv until it happens. Perhaps they have reached the saturation point with the tv? that would be nice.

Took 'em over to a friend's house for a visit, she has a boy a few months younger than DS2. I thought we would only be there for the morning, but we didn't get home till practically 2. It was nice visit. She has such a grown-up house. Really gorgeous furniture and everything, and her DS is a such a little wild man, it is really not a good fit! LOL She does go mildly crazy.

After we picked up DS1 from school we went to Borders and hung out. It has been so long since I went with the 3 of them! DS2 was overwhelmed with the choice of books, I think. I think we all had a good time.

In other news, my g/e doc's tests did not include total IgA or IgG, and his nurse suggested I take it up with my primary care dr, so I left a message about getting the test for IgA deficiency with his nurse -- no call backs until Monday, possibly even Tuesday.

DD has been breaking out in mystery bumps for the past couple of days. They look like bug bites and itch. A little Benadryl cream and they subside. I wish I could figure out what it is. I was suspecting an allergy to the cat, but this morning she got a bump on her forehead, and there was no way she had cat contact there. I called the pediatrician's office and they were not very helpful, telling me that it was obviously some kind of allergic reaction and to put Benadryl on it and pay attention to what might be the cause... Duh. I suppose there are people out there who wouldn't know to do that, but since I had already told her that I was doing all those things, there was no point in telling me to do them, right?

Had a good talk with my sister today. Did 3 loads of laundry. Watched the rest of Spartacus. Goran Visnjic, still yummy.

Up too late... this weekend: cheer, WORK, coffee with the girls on Sunday, and DH takes DS1 to the Diamondbacks game on Sunday afternoon. It's going to go by in a flash!

Friday, April 23, 2004

Jumping Jiminy Cricket!

Did some late night, last minute-before-bed web searching on a topic that Max brought up and suddenly, I'm pretty sure I know what's wrong with me. This is a condition that explains everything I have been going through: Selective IgA Deficiency.

Of course, it sucks that there is no treatment for this condition, per se, you just have to treat the complications that come up because of it. Oh, and avoid blood transfusions because they can throw you into anaphylaxis. Also, it is hereditary, so I should have the kids tested if it turns out I have it.

DEFINITELY calling the dr's office with this particular question tomorrow morning first thing!

Thursday, April 22, 2004

Shooting the enemy


I'm trying to take digital pics of all my fuzzy, multi-colored spots using the macro mode on my camera. They're all getting washed out by the flash.

I'll have to try again in the morning when it's bright and I can turn the flash off. I would like to establish baseline size and color measurements for these things so I can make comparisons later and see if they have changed. Also, I could conceivably print them out and show them to the dermatologist for evaluation.

It seems a little stupid but I feel like at least I'm doing something about it.

Worst thing: noticed a small brownish discoloration on my upper lip just
today. Wondering if it's hormonal (although I am post-ovulation, pre-PMS); oval, about 1cmx2cm, and noticeable at a distance. Have to keep an eye on that one.

My favorite thing


For today, anyway:

My little guy, who insists that he is NOT LITTLE! (insert foot stomp here), has, for a good while now, periodically crawled into my lap when it's time to go to bed and insisted on being carried up and lullaby'ed. I love to sing, and I love it that he loves me to sing him to sleep (and he really does drift off). Sometimes we do "The Twelve Bugs of Christmas" but lately it has been the melancholy "Baa Baa Blacksheep" from Ralph Covert's "At the Bottom of the Sea", which is so simple and full of longing that it breaks my heart even though it's nothing more than a nursery rhyme. It is incredibly precious to me, being able to carry him, limp and heavy with sleep, up to his bed and tuck him in while I sing to him. I wish I could do it every day.

This same DS2, who just turned 3 in February, made an amazing picture of "a kid" today (he later insisted it's DS1). Most very young children will draw a person as a big head with little arms and legs sticking directly out of the head. DS2 drew only faces when he was 5, starting kindergarden... DD, who turned 5 in November, started drawing bodies on her people somewhere between 4 and 5. DS2's picture had the head with eyes, nose, mouth, ears, and hair, then the body, two arms, hips, and legs. It was stick figure, yes, but with quite an astonishing amount of detail for a kid who is not even 3 and a half!

I'm a bit hyper-aware of his abilities right now. His fine motor control is incredible, although his gross motor skills lag a little because he is so cautious. He just learned to jump, finally, a few months ago, and he is still not comfortable walking down stairs holding onto a railing, by himself, even though he is quite tall enough to reach the railing comfortably. It will come, in time. But the main thing I'm wondering is if he might have dyslexia, because none of his letters or numbers are "sticking". Maybe it's just a question of not being constantly exposed on them, it just surprises me that he still can't reliably recognize A, B, and C, at least. Those one we see all the time. Not to mention the first letter of his name, which he also sees all the time. It's not a worry, exactly, just an "I want to know about it asap if that's what's going on" type of thing. He's so brilliant that I know he'll do fine as long as he is in the right, encouraging environment, which the schools we have selected definitely will provide.

I had my biopsy today and it is in a very annoying place, on my shoulder blade. You'd think it would bother me much but it interferes with leaning back and reaching and all sorts of things. And, no ibuprofen or such like drugs because of the impending colonoscopy.

Speaking of which, Max returned today and I discussed my celiac tests results with her and she gave me some new questions to ask my g/e dr. Right not I'm not going to change anything before the colonoscopy. The reading I've done makes me wonder how I would be feeling if I weren't taking digestive enzymes with every meal, and a probiotic supplement every day. I also wonder if I have a bile duct problem as I'm still getting gut pains there, or possible pancreatitis since I get the one closer to my navel, too. OR it could quite possibly be my fibromyalgia attacking connective tissues and making me feel miserable... except I do still have that rapid-transit problem, even with taking the fiber supplements as recommended by the doc.

I look like hell these days, too. Huge circles under my eyes, no matter how much sleep I get. I've been off the proton-pump inhibitors (acid reducers) for quite a while now, and think I might benefit to be back on it, starting to get that icky pit-of-stomach feeling again, but that could just be from nerves. Nerves, nerves, nerves: it always comes out on my stomach...

I got a completely spontaneous compliment on my hair today. That was nice.

During the biopsy, I did ask my dermatologist about the great quantity of freaky spots I have. He didn't seem too concerned about it. I'll be back in to him on May 13th to get the cyst out of my leg, finally. That thing is ugly. And I don't get the stitches out of my back until the 5th! 12 days. Lord help me (and DH) because there is no way I can bandage that thing myself!

I was a pretty good Mom today, all things considered. I made one of our favorite meals -- ribs, cole slaw,and baby corn bread -- which is just very time consuming. It was good to make a nice dinner. And now it will be good to have (gluten free) corn bread for breakfast or snacks for the next few days, too!

Wednesday, April 21, 2004



Over on the writer's forum I frequent, one of the infrequent regulars just totally went off the rails and attacked one of the regular regulars. It was freaky and scary, and completely unjustified. He's a socialist (no lie), and he grates against all the "injustices" he perceives in our society. The fact that he makes his living as a movie critic (and a part-timer with full benefits at UPS) somehow escapes him, how decadent his chosen career is. But, he's really good at it, highly educated, and incredibly perceptive. It was just painful to watch. I emailed the admins and asked them to remove the post, we'll have to see what happens.

I managed to do some work today (yay!).

DD tried hard at her cheer practice and had fun, too, so I lifted the chocolate ban. I'm a total pushover.

Nothing much of note happened today, which is not a bad thing at all.

Tuesday, April 20, 2004

Lurching along


My days have no "flow" lately. I hate that. There is no routine, and there's too much running around. I don't like having to go out on Wednesday nights and Saturday mornings with DD to her cheer stuff. I don't mind the cheering itself, but the running around is exhausting. Especially this week, with having to go out last night, too.

OTOH, this is a good preview of what life will be like if I work for Princeton Review. I will be out one or two nights a week over a couple of months for each class. Maybe at that point I'll be used to it!

Heard back from the g/e dr's office today, and my celiac tests all came back in the normal range. I am simultaneously relieved and annoyed. I don't want to have celiac but I do want to find the trigger, what is causing all this auto-immune crap I am dealing with. I was perversely hoping that it is celiac, because there's a known successful treatment for it -- going gluten-free. And I'm so close to being gluten-free now that all it would require is an additional layer of vigilance with respect to ingredient-checking. It would also put a big crimp on eating out, which we periodically do quite often. But still, it would be do-able.

I'm also wondering if the Plaquenil I'm on could be affecting the test results, too. I swear, I never have any antibodies when I'm tested for them. My RA factor was negative, as were my anti-thyroid antibodies. And yet I have RA and I definitely have Hashimoto's thyroiditis, which is an auto-immune condition. Not to mention the adrenal fatigue stuff I went through, which some drs brush off but was very real. Or is it just foolish of me to say, well, it was a very specific treatment and it worked, so that must've been it?

Thursday I get my shoulder blade "spot" biopsied. Next Wednesday, the colonoscopy. I can feel my whole system just tensing up over this. Blech. I should take up meditation.

All this medical stuff is weighing heavily on me. I'm having trouble focussing on work, either for the freelance job or for MILC -- and I do have a couple of letters that need answering! I hate this "stuck" feeling, I know I just have to sit down and start, and I'll be OK, but for now even getting into gear is tough.

I'm sick of my own whining, too. *grrrrr*

today's bullet report


Major cheer squad accomplishments: got the pompoms for the girl who needed them. Six out of seven girls showed up for the team photo. We all decided on Saturday, basketball, 10AM for this week. Everyone seems happier to know what's going on now.

Princeton Review wants me to come in for training and will let me know as soon as they have set the schedule.

Watched part one of Goran Visnjic (sp?) in the USA mini-series Spartacus. Yum. Also, the cheesiest, most cliche-ridden dialog, ever. Still... yum. Can't wait for Heathen's recap over on TWoP. Bad news is that due to my own stupidity (and lack of specificity in the TiVO guide), I failed to record part 2 tonight, so have to wait until Friday to catch the rest. No big deal.

Still no word on the celiac test.

It was a good day. I'm liking the hair more, getting used to it. The cut is a definite winner regardless.

Sunday, April 18, 2004

Zebra head


So. The hair. I'm loving the cut, but I'm unsure about the color.

Yes, I threw caution to the wind -- Elizabeth asked, "So when are you going to let me color your hair?" and I said, "Well, if you have the time to do it, now, NOW!"

She brightened up my overall brown, and gave me two colors of highlights. One is very blond, the other a really nice dark honey-blonde, and the effect when my hair is wet is very stripe-y. It's also stripey when my hair is dry, but less noticeable. It is a look you see around these days, women with blonde highlights on top of dark layers underneath. I don't particularly care for it on other people (it looks too "done") but I'm going to live with this for a few days before I go in and say, no, the highlights are too light, I'd like them to blend more... I think, basically, I'm not "with it" enough in the hair world to like the difference in color. I need to get some feedback from girlfriends!

The cut is awesome, though. This woman understands my hair better than anyone else ever has. It's nice to have a nice cut.

Had a 2 hour conference call this evening for work. It's so demoralizing, because the work that I did was shredded at the last minute before the Alpha went out, and of course we're getting nailed on what remains of it.

I'm nervous also because tomorrow I have to try and get somewhere on this cheer squad stuff. It's really important to me that we pull the squad together and be more organized for the remaining 5 weeks. I called around to everyone today to tell them about the new team photo shoot, and I caught some flak from one mom because she didn't get the message I left her on Thursday. However, she had moved out from her old place, and had a new phone number, which I didn't have... so, what's up with that? It was just random luck that I caught her today, because she was visiting her old place.

I'll just do the best I can, there's nothing else for it.

Between work and this cheer stuff, plus the pending biopsy and the waiting for the celiac test results, I'm more unsettled than ever. I talked to my Mom today, let her go on about this and that and finally in the waning moments of the conversation, she wants the 30-second bullet on my family. I told her about my pending biopsy and she kind of stopped in her tracks: "Wow, you sure do have a lot of those." Well, yeah -- this is #4, and it's up to the dermatologist when we go after numbers 5 and 6. Whee! Not. I said to DH today, "Well, if I'm going to have cancer, at least I can have pretty hair."

Strangely, I do not feel as if my head is going to explode. But I do feel upset. Disquieted. Experience tells me there's nothing I can do except endure until it's all over. When I think about that, it irritates me, because I realize I'm more or less wishing my life away, not living "in the now" but focussing too much on the future, and that's a waste.

Oh, yeah, I should probably follow-up with Princeton Review, too. I can just see them popping up and saying, come on in for training this weekend when I have some huge deadline for my freelance job... I need to make a list.

Sad and bitter


I've had a couple of personal interactions this week that make me reflect on my own life all the more positively.

I spent the afternoon yesterday with my best local friend. She is such a great person, but she is so emotionally damaged that there is next to nothing I can do to help her. She is also morbidly obese, and has been struggling with her weight since she was an adolescent. At one point she had lost a lot on LC, but then she went off and gained it all back, and more. I know she is depressed, and she's in an ill-advised marriage -- she has always wanted to have children but somehow convinced herself it was OK to marry someone who had had a vasectomy -- and her health is shot on so many levels, mostly because of her weight. At the root of all this is a real self-esteem problem, not a fake one, or a pop-psychology bs "syndrome".

I constantly see her making decisions to put everyone else's feelings before her own, and denigrating herself, and it's always, "Next week or next month" she'll get back on track to taking care of herself. I can't help her with this stuff, she has to want to do it for herself... it just makes me sad. I try to be there for her but I have no idea what good it does if any.

Then, there's the former leader of DD's cheerleading squad. I had to call her again today because we have rescheduled the team photo shoot, and I wanted to get one of the girl's pompoms. She gave me an earful about how badly organized this whole thing is, not realizing (for the nth time), that she was the one who was supposed to be doing the organizing! And she had mailed everything back to NYS, so I couldn't even go over to her house to pick up the pompoms. I offered to bring her daughter to practices and games if that was a problem, and she just got more irritated with me. Finally I said, "Well, I just think it's too bad, because it seemed to me that your daughter really enjoyed it when she was there." That woman's priorities are just screwed up. Who cares about the uniform? I know, she paid for it, but the point of this exercise is to teach the girls about teamwork, etc. It seems to me that what she is teaching her daughter is that if it's not what you expected, quit.

Once again, I just don't understand people like that.

I have an appointment at 3 for a hair cut, and I honestly have no idea what I'll do with it. It could get either way -- just a maintenance trim, or a wholesale chop. I trust Elizabeth, so I'm putting my unruly mop in her good hands! It's just hair, after all. If I hate it, it'll grow out again, anyway.

I managed to schedule the kids' swimming lessons yesterday, although I think it took me over half-hour to get through. Fortunately this will be the last time we have to use this goofy system, because the teachers are setting up a year-round business at a pool near Chandler Fashion Center. That will be great, because it will be much closer to us. As it is, I'm very happy to have DS2 taking his lessons with the teachers he will have this year, because they are absolutely wonderful, DS1 and DD had them their first year, too. The older two kids are having a private lesson (30 minutes for the 2 of them) in the evenings. All of this will be M-F, the last 2 weeks before we leave on vacation. Man, we are going to be busy.

DS2 wore his underpants overnight last night without incident. I think this is truly the End of the Diaper Era, here. Whoo-hoo!

Friday, April 16, 2004

Yeah, right


I reviewed the mini-movies I took with my digital camera at cheer practice on Wednesday so I could help the squad practice tomorrow. If you had told me, at any point prior to about a month ago, that at 40 years old I would be learning to be a cheerleader, I would've fallen down laughing.

But, it's really good for the girls. You can see that they do feel good when they all do the chant together, and if they get the motions/steps somewhat close. Most of these girls are around 5 or 6 years old, and some of these cheers are pretty complicated for them. They're so cute when they have their uniforms on and they are waving their pompoms around.

I really expected to be barely able to tolerate all this cheer stuff, but I'm suprised to find it is really not bothering me at all. I just hope I'm not being too pushy a mom. I probably am, but in my experience you can't let a group of 5 and 6 year-olds be self-directed, because they don't know how to be. They just need a little guidance and then they're good to go.

We went out to dinner tonight at Red Robin. My dinner was good but overpriced, and I was sitting right under an A/C vent, and it was so loud in there I couldn't hear myself think. I will have to remember all of that for the next time we go there. Seriously, I was miserable and don't want to go through it again. At the same time, the kids were fantastic, and it was quick -- so I really shouldn't complain, right? Eh. At least I didn't have to cook.

I am struggling with some replies to reader questions, so I have just put them aside for now, letting things percolate in the back of my head for a while. When it becomes a struggle is when it's time to put 'em away, I figure. I did manage to get another column over to the new contact at LCL, and hopefully that will go well... and just typing that reminded me of some other chores I should do this evening to make tomorrow run a little more smoothly, so, I'm off!

Uff da


which is Norwegian for "whew!" only with more spin.

The kids are outside running around singing loopy and annoying songs. It's OK. They are outside doing it. If they were in, the top of my head would have exploded off already.

I actually was in two conference calls today, one from 8:30 to 9:50 and the 2nd from 11 to 12:45. I'm tired from so much listening. Also from so much beating my head against the same brick walls. I have to give major props to the lead engineer, because he really put the reins on boss guy today. Plus, there was great news -- the graphic designer, who is the lead engineer's brother (this is a very nepotistic little group I have stumbled upon), lives one town over. Seriously! This is so great, because if I can get together with him, I'm sure we could hammer out a fantastic website in very short order. Being in the same time zone -- practically in the same town -- should be extremely helpful.

So, I'm hopeful.

A busy morning for tomorrow but then things open up... although I have another conference call scheduled for 6PM Sunday. It works for all of them on the East Coast, so it's fine with me. Also, since it's scheduled so late for them, it shouldn't go too long. I don't want to be up too late watching the latest Sopranos off the TiVO. Also, I think 24 is being broadcast on Sunday because Tuesday was the President's press conference. I have to look into that and make sure it will be recorded. Will Keifer shoot Chappelle and fulfill the dreams of so many viewers over the years? Too many shades of Keifer "shooting" Nina back in season one, but there are some twists here. We'll see. 24 is I think the only regular network show I actually watch!

DH was going to go out tonight and watch the ballgame but now he has changed his mind and is coming home instead. That's really nice but I was planning on taking the kids out and now I don't know what to do! Hee. I'll figure out something, I'm sure.

I could use a nap about now. I wonder, if I lay down, would I fall asleep? I have so much trouble sleeping at night now without the Ambien, I don't even know if I can sleep other times without it now.

Between conference calls today I made oatmeal cookie bars with both chocolate chips and raisins. They're too dry, alas. Maybe dunked in milk they would be OK. Or crumpled up and eaten like granola, that could be OK, too. The taste is good though. I lc'd the recipe and was just off on my conversions, I'm not sure what I was thinking, I put in twice the oat flour and vital wheat gluten I should have! That's what I get for trying to be quick. But still, they're very filling and nutritious. Too high in carbs for all the people on the forum, who would be horrified about all those oats (3 cups), raisins and chocolate chips, but for me, eh. I'm not going to worry about it.

At least my digestion seems to have slowed down a little in the past few days. I have been taking the fiber capsules and they do help. A little. Not a whole heck of a lot, but some. That was one thing that was funny when I saw my g/e doc earlier in the week. He'd get halfway through a recommendation, and I'd just cut him off, "tried that, didn't work", then he'd move on to the next one, same thing. I knocked off everything he had to offer and that's when he gave up and said he would schedule the colonoscopy. I don't want this test -- I really don't want to go through the prep -- but I also feel like I really need it. When I had IBS before it was nothing like this. There may be some IBS at work here but I don't think so. I don't have abdominal pain... I have a rapid transit digestion system, and that's just not normal. Also, I don't have a problem with different foods, at least not that I've identified. With the IBS, I remember being really sensitive to fatty foods. I've had chicken wings for dinner 3 times in the past couple of weeks and they don't phase me any more or less than anything else. Just remembered, if I eat a huge salad that seems to speed things up a bit more, but that's the only thing.

I am going to take this time to go and knock off another column for LCL, so I can concentrate on my freelance work for the rest of the month. Of course as soon as I start, I know the kids will come in and start hounding me, but here I go!

Thursday, April 15, 2004

Really good news


Just got off the phone with my sister, who had some great news today, and I am so happy for her that I feel my own clouds lifting a little bit. She had a willful daughter episode yesterday, too, so maybe there was something in the alignment of the planets that conspired on us? Hee.

Today was not a bad day, either. It got better this evening when I found that Keckler had recapped "Spock's Brain" over at TWoP.Worst. Episode. Ever. It was a total riot, and cheered me up a lot. Then I read the recap of Texas Chainsaw Massacre, which was even funnier, especially since I just saw that last weekend.

And, in the most recent spin of the Great Karmic Wheel, work called and informed of a conference call to review the results of the Alpha, which basically say the message is confusing and the users don't have a clue. Hmmm, ya think if they had kept the homepage copy I wrote for them, instead of subbing it out at the last minute for what the boss guy wrote in his infinite wisdom, we might have done better? I have my hunches, but in this meeting tomorrow, I'm just going to listen, listen, listen. I hope Boss Guy listens, too, because he tends to be a flighty. I think the results from this round of the Alpha have shown that it would benefit them greatly to keep me in the loop, and also to keep the stuff I write for them! Sheesh.

Medical stuff is still getting on my nerves and it is my biggest trigger into depression. I did manage to do a few house-worky things today, and I also talked to the former cheer squad leader who is a case of cognitive dissonance if I ever heard one, and got all the info from her... and I called and left messages for all the other girls about this Saturday's plans. So I actually did do some things today, which is cool. I always find I start to feel better as soon as I can make myself get moving...

Now, to bed, so I can be up early enough to be conscious for that call.

Wednesday, April 14, 2004

Willful daughter


Took DD to her cheer practice tonight, and it was a disaster on a few levels. First, the squad leader didn't show up. After missing last night's picture appointment, she's not looking too good right now. The remaining squad moms decided we'll go to football at 10AM on Saturday instead of 9.

DD did well learning the new cheers but decided to pitch a fit and not practice the old ones -- the ones that she complained about not knowing last week! She threw her poms on the floor and stomped on them. Then she threw them across the room (at me). Then she sat on the floor while the other girls practiced around her. Then she laid down on the floor full out. Ay. Yi. Yi.

She got majorly lectured by me about the whole team responsibility, respect for coaches, etc. She did apologize to her coach for being rude before we left (I made her do it, of course.) Once home I also made her tell DH what she did, and that made her cry because she was so sure she was going to get spanked. She deserved a spanking... with her, it really works. Instead DH nixied her chocolate for an entire week. This is a huge hardship for her, and it's such a great idea that I can't believe I didn't think of it.

I told the other moms that I would call and get the roster and make sure everyone knows the plan for Saturday. If the squad leader is going to drop out I have no problem stepping in. I'm regretting not doing it from the get-go. At this point we have no idea whether the trophies were ordered or not.

Today sucked for me. My digestion is in overdrive and it has -- literally -- taken a lot out of me. Having the cheer practice and no real dinner until very late wasn't good, either. God bless DH for cleaning up all the dishes. I was such a slug today, all I did was drive the kids around and hang out online...

Actually, I did let DD make her own grilled cheese sandwich for lunch. She was delighted. And she did a good job.

But again, I go back to being afraid of what she'll be like when she grows up. She honestly seems to believe she should never have to work for anything... it is really tough. She's only 5, but she can't develop an attitude like that. I'll do everything in my power to struggle against it -- I know that much. Both DH and I really came down hard on her for her attitude. Seriously, what kind of life can she ever have if she never tries? We warned her that we have no intention of supporting her as an adult, so she had better get her head straight on the fact that Life Requires Work. I don't care if she is only 5, it's not too soon to learn that lesson.

Today was one of those days I would label myself as "failure mom". Physically present but otherwise unavailable to my kids, didn't do a lick of housework or writing work, major brouhaha with DD. This health crap is getting me down. I have to watch I don't descend all the way into depression.

I wonder when I will get my blood test results?
I wonder if I will ever hear back from the Princeton Review?
I wonder when my freelance job will rear its ugly head again?
I wonder if I need to tell my dermatologist about the 3 or 4 other "suspicious" spots I've spotted?

Definitely starting to freak out here.

Tuesday, April 13, 2004

Entertain me


Where is everyone? All of my online haunts were people-free this evening. Maybe everyone was glued to their television sets, watching the President's news conference. Ya think? I'm waiting for the liberal news media to hammer him for not apologizing for 9/11. You know it's coming.

Also, whoever picked out and/or approved that tie should be fired.

Another too-busy day. Took DD to school, got my blood drawn for the celiac test, took DS2 to story time (he actually did 2 songs! amazing!). Picked DD up from school, picked up BK for lunch for them, went to the dentist to get my teeth cleaned. They behaved themselves remarkably. Finally got home well after 1:30, having left the house around 9. That is a long day for a 3-year-old.

So we were slugs until it was time to get DS1 from school. Picked him up and then helped him with his homework, then it was time for his basketball practice (DH's domain), then they came back and it was time for us all to go out to the Peter Piper Pizza where they do the sports photos. DH's entire basketball team showed up. Of DD's cheer squad, only 4 girls showed up --the squad leader forgot! One of the women had her phone number with her and called her, and she said she was on her way. We all hung around for an hour before giving up. We did get individual photos taken of the girls, though. We'll see about re-scheduling the team photo tomorrow at practice. I forgot to bring DD's pompoms but we were able to borrow another girl's for the picture. She looks very cute but very skinny in her outfit. Of course that's because she is very skinny.

Max reminded me that if I test positive for celiac I need to have the kids tested, too. It would not surprise me at all to find that DD has something like that going on. She never seems to gain any weight, although she is growing, height-wise. Maybe that's just the way she is. But I swear her head hasn't grown at all in the past 2 years. Maybe she'll just have a small head, proportionately. Teeny tiny girl.

Came home, watched the TiVO'd President and a bunch of commentary. Makes me want to throw things at the TV screen. Grrrrr.

I'm coming down with a cold. I had a brutal sinus headache today and now my nose is simultaneously stuffed and drippy. I wish DH had given me more warning about his impending cold last week, because I might not have been so willing to mack. The last thing I need right now is a cold. I don't get them often but when I do, they seem to hang on forever. Well, with this journal now I will be able to keep track. Today is officially Day 1, because yesterday I didn't have an inkling.

Of course, it may not be a cold at all, just the after-effects of staying up until 2:30 this morning. Moron!

Finally got my e-mails from my latest column over at LCL. Yay! Another half-dozen or so, with some good content-generating questions. I need to get them another column for May, I think I'll send over "The Tyranny of Food"... it's a good one. Maybe I want to save that for my syndication packet. Have to think that one over.

Tomorrow... usual school pickups, maybe one or two errands, and DD's cheer practice in the evening. I hope I feel better than I do now, but it's not a realistic hope, I fear. DD has this cold, too. So far, the boys have been spared. We'll see how long that lasts...

Odd day today. Not good, not bad, really, just busy busy.
Eh. I need some sleep.

Lost/toxic friendships


I went looking in my "Sent" box for some emails I had, obviously, sent, and got completely sidetracked. I re-read a bunch of really ancient correspondance from back in the heyday of a.t.f. ( I've been hanging out there a long time. Of course I re-subscribed when the mini-series was announced... or possibly even before. I am such an addict.

Anyway, re-reading those emails was interesting, because for the most part it was friendly, or involved coming to good terms, but there were 2 women there with whom I started out very friendly. Now, to put it bluntly, I am toxic to them. There are a lot of reasons for that. I can be a bitch but re-reading all that stuff, I don't think I'd do anything differently today. It still pisses me off if people snip what I wrote to shreds, and then reply to the misquotes and quotes out of context that remain. That's just lousy. But it's also USENET.

I feel some inadequacy in myself for not being able to sustain those relationships. Then I realize that's ridiculous. You can't make everybody like you, no matter what you do. And especially if you hold some strong opinions (like being opposed to situational ethics and moral relativism).

I do miss that sense of camraderie, though. For a long time, I considered them my friends, and I miss that. I had a lot of online friends at one time, because I had no life in the real world. The kids were very small and I was depressed and lived in the computer... now we are out and about all the time, and I know people, and I get more interaction. Sill not enough, but a whole lot more than I used to, back in those days.

I don't have the time to put into it anymore. I can't spend hours on a ng or in a chat room. Even if I had the time, I don't have the patience for it. I feel like I've outgrown all that, and maybe I have. Or maybe I'm just well now, and wasn't then, even though at the time I didn't realize it.

Over the course of my life, I can think of exactly 6 people who have gone from liking and respecting to me to thinking I am evil incarnate. All of this happened in the 1997-2001 time frame. I don't feel I was any different then than I was before, or since. I'm just me, still feel like me although there are some differences: parenthood, for one.

Well... I'm less apt to put up with being condescended to, there is that. But I've always had a big mouth for telling people what they ought to be hearing, no matter whether they want to or not. In every one of those situations, I can recall one pivotal conversation, from which point everything went downhill. And every time, I have to think, I must've been right in what I was saying, otherwise these folks wouldn't have taken it so hard.

I'm not talking about hurling insults or anything of the sort. I'm talking about things like telling a co-worker that I didn't think he'd do well in the job I was leaving when I moved away, which was my honest assessment. It had nothing to do with skills or intelligence, just his temperment and the type of work he enjoyed doing. He went for, and got, the job anyway, and was miserable as predicted... but after that, he really couldn't stand me.

No point in cataloguing them all, I'm not likely to forget and if I do, it doesn't matter. Does not having these relationships impoverish me in some way? I don't think so. I have to balance the negatives with the positives, because these generally were people who created stress for me.

Were they ever really friends to begin with? Or were they, as Amy Alkon would say, acquaintances with frequency?

Up way too late & getting loopy now. Stupid. I have to stay out of Memory Lane, all this introspection just leads to late nights and no great revelations.

Obviously, the doctor's appointment today upset me more than I realized.

Monday, April 12, 2004

Another day, another invasive medical procedure scheduled


I love my life. Really, I do. My body, I could do without. Obviously not literally, but if I could trade, I would. What would it be like to not have to deal with a seemingly endless parade of stupid medical issues? I have no idea, because I've been dealing with medical issues practically since the day I first got pregnant nearly eight years ago. The medical issues only turned bad after the babies were born, fortunately. Although there was a breast lump scare in between kids 2 and 3, or was it 1 and 2? Turned out to be nothing, but still. Having babies is nerve-wracking and physiologically tough on OLD women like me (33 when I had my first).

Anyway, I finally got back in to see my gastroenterologist today and we discussed my problems with (the most delicate way of phrasing this I could come up with) my "rapid transit" problem. Along with that comes a problem with major discomfort that extends beyond what Preparation H can help with, not that it ever really helped at all. So he ordered a bunch of tests for Celiac and scheduled a colonoscopy. I am not psyched about the prep for that exam. Nice dr saw me blanching as I looked at the prep requirements and wrote me a scrip for an anesthetic gel to use on what I know will be my very sore butt.

See, I've had IBS before (pretty much concurrent with my first marriage and resolving with the divorce), and some of my symptoms could be from that, but when I had IBS before, I never had these other symptoms. And now I do not have symptoms I had before, namely, eating does not make me double over in pain the way it used to. So I don't think this is IBS. Or if it is, it's an entirely different form of it.

I go for the blood draw tomorrow after I drop DD at school. I'll only have DS2 with me, and he's cool with this kind of thing. We'll go before storytime. Incentive for me to get DD out of the house on time.

Last night i did have a good sleep and it really helped with today. I actually (gasp) cleaned the bathroom and did a load of laundry. Shocking!

I also called the Survey Question guy and we talked out the issues with the questions I sent him ("too comprehensive") -- OK, just another casualty of the lack of communications, and I have to start getting more aggressive like calling them and not waiting for them to call me all the time. I don't want to be a pest but this is ridiculous. Beta is supposed to be in 5 weeks(?) now and there are volumes to write. Just now, I'd like to finish this job up and be done with it, although I do like having a paying job.

One really good thing is that I had that appointment today, but I was not flattened by it. Often when I have an appointment with news like that ("Hey, let's schedule you for 12 hours of misery!") I will go into a funk and not be able to do a thing for the rest of the day, but I actually did the laundry and cleaned the bathroom when I got home. It seems really trivial but it is a big change, and one I really appreciate. I'm not thrilled by it but at least today, I'm not completely undone by it, either.

Kids all OD'd on chocolate again today, making it the last day that the Easter Baskets stayed out on the counter and readily accessible. I transferred all the goodies into lunch bags and stuck 'em up on top of the fridge, and put the baskets away for next year. From now on, strict(er) rationing -- not to be mean, but because they really can only handle so much.

I've had 3 chocolates so far today. I wonder how many I'll have eaten by the end of the day? It helps me, too, having put the "family basket" chockies away. Yesterday I probably ate at least 10! No wonder I felt miserable last night.

Sunday, April 11, 2004



Yes! I survived!

This will not be a long entry since I had no sleep to speak of last night, and I'm dying here... I'd love to be in bed by 11. We'll see. If I am, it will be a record.

These last few days have been so busy. Friday, as I noted, was miserable. Sometimes when I butt heads with the kids all day I think, I could solve this just by softening up a little. And often I do, just for the sake of the peace. But not that time. There are times when the level of disrespect and disregard just gets to me, and I was thoroughly tired of it. I'm not sure it made any lasting impression, but I had to make a stand. There will be many more such days, I'm sure. Watching The Sopranos tonight, AJ was being such a jerk to both Carmela and Tony, and I thought -- well, they've been making excuses for him his whole life, why should they expect any different? (I do know these are fictional characters, btw -- ) At any rate, I am resolved not to let my own kids grow into their teens thinking they can treat their parents with such a lack of respect. I made them turn off about 6 television programs today on the grounds of general stupidity, meanness, and - again - disrespect.

Saturday was running-around day: 9AM basketball and cheer. DS1 is so clueless on the court, his mind is off in the clouds somewhere. He has good ball handling skills during drills but he never gets the ball during the game because he is not engaged. Then there's DD in her tiny cheerleading outfit, with her squad. She struggled, having missed practice this week. She was practically in tears on the way home, "I couldn't do anything." She's so tiny, and so tall, it really does take more learning to control those long limbs, and she didn't practice. So I told her we would practice more this week, and I took some video of the cheers so we could watch them and learn them better. It was a bit of a comeuppance for her; she's never tried anything that was hard for her before, and not succeeded to her own satisfaction. I hope it motivates her to try harder. I tried very hard to help keep her from being demoralized.

So, after that, I left the kids with DH and headed out and made it to confession (last minute Lizzy), then got some new Easter clothes for the kids, then headed up to Trader Joe's for more groceries. I was psyched to find a boneless turkey breast to have for dinner today, it saved me another trip to yet another grocery store.

Came home, had lunch. Took the kids to Mesa SW Museum, then to Sam's Club for a cookie snack and more groceries. Then home, cooked dinner, boiled eggs for the kids to decorate, decorated eggs with the kids, finally got them to bed. Did laundry so their new clothes wouldn't bother their sensitive skin, rounded up all the Easter basket stuff; DH hid the (plastic) eggs.

Ended up going to bed around 1:30, Ambien-less. Mistake, mistake, mistake. I should've taken a quarter or SOMETHING! I didn't sleep at all. Not helping at all, DH has a cold and was restless and coughing a lot of the night, so every time I sort of nodded off, I woke up again. Finally about 5:45 I got up and got dressed and dragged my sorry butt off to church. I wasn't planning on going so early (6:30 service) but I figured I might as well, since I wasn't sleeping.

I am such a hurting puppy. But it was an OK day. Lots of time on the phone with brothers and sisters and Mom. And lots of time in the kitchen, about 2 and a half solid hours: put the turkey in the oven at about 4, but dinner made it onto the table at about 6:30. I made: mashed turnips, roasted carrots, pureed cauliflower, stuffing (Orowheat's LC bread, yum), cucumber salad, and gravy to go along with the roast turkey, which came out terrific. I did all the dishes as I went along, too, so there wasn't too much for DH to clean up afterwards. And I was super-organized and just put all the veggies right into the containers their leftovers would go in, since I planned for the leftovers from the beginning... no serving dishes to wash! The Domestic Divas out there will be scandalized, eh? Hee. It helped. When there's only 2 adults to do all the work on a dinner like that, every little bit helps.

DH had a big nap this morning, but then took the kids out to play ball and shoot hoops after lunch. That gave me a nice break before I had to start on dinner. He has a nasty cough, I hope it doesn't settle in his lungs like it often does. He has been yelling alot at his basketball games, being coach and all. Some of those kids (6 & 7 year olds) can really play!

I think the kids liked their Easter. They got a bunch of different kinds of chocolate. Not one of them started on their bunnies. I think they're going to eat the smaller chocolates first. Oh, they got books and some new music CDs (Ralph's World, previously ref'd), and the Ralph's World DVD, which DD and DS2 really enjoyed watching today -- DS1 watched only out of the corner of his eye and would not admit he liked it! I was cracking up. The music is very fun, but I'm sure he was feeling "too grown up" for that baby stuff... sigh.

I lost 2 hours of my life which I will never get back trying to get the new Bionicle PC game which DS1 got to work on either one of our creaky old computers, before I realized we don't have a fast enough processor (600 MHz Pentium 3) in either computer -- they're both around 400-500 MHz P2s. Of course this desktop is more than 5 years old now, and the lap top is pushing 4. Yes, it is getting to be time for a new computer, now that you mention it! But, we will keep the old ones around because they are good for playing the old games that won't work on the new machine, I'm sure... but I spent sooo much time today installing DirectX 9, then updating video drivers, after, of course, webcrawling to find the right versions for the 2 different pieces of hardware...what a PITA.

The supreme lack of gratitude on the part of my children is another thing that has been irritating me lately. DS1 was really grumpy about the game "not working yet" when I dedicated a good chunk of my day to it. I had to point that out to him -- Hello? You think this is how I wanted to spend my day?!?! He got it. Same with DD and the Easter dresses I bought her yesterday -- I found two, one that was very fancy with a tulle overskirt (she looked really sweet in it), but it was too big, and another more casual one that was still quite pretty -- but she argued with me, she wanted to wear the fancy dress right now, so I just said, forget it, it's too big, I'm taking it back to the store... Not even so much as a "thanks, Mom." Plus she whined at the museum, and at Sam's Club. The whining! It has to stop.

OK, 10 past 11, and I'm turning into a pumpkin. Appointment with the gastroenterologist tomorrow, have to go look up those tests that Max wants me to get done, and figure out what the heck it is I want to say to him! Going and saying, "There's something screwed up going on here," isn't going to cut it.

Friday, April 09, 2004

waste of a day


My day was consumed by a temper tantrum.

Not mine, although I veered awfully close, but no, DS1 decided to pitch a fit because I told him to straighten his collar. Thus, an entire day down in flames. Man, being a mom is hard sometimes.

Also, those survey questions I sent off last night? I get an email back this morning: "Thanks for the survey questions. For the next round, we have to make sure they follow the task list." WTF?! I followed the task list, if I hadn't followed the task list, I would've had to pull them out of thin air. I replied with a terse, pointed e-mail of my own, basically saying, what do you mean, because that's what I did, and if I didn't, you need to tell me where I went wrong before I do anything else. Resounding silence on that score.

Resounding silence all around, actually. I'm coming to the conclusion these guys are not worth working for, but I will stick it out till the end. I have thoughts on more specific things having to do with this job but I will leave them for another time.

I managed to salvage the evening by making Shrimp Dianne for dinner, and having a glass of white wine. Sometimes good food can make a world of difference. Still, I am walking around heavy-hearted. So much struggle today, and pretty much nothing to show for it...

Tomorrow, basketball and cheerleading first thing, and then the rest of the day, we'll see how it goes. I'm not enthused. I have to boil eggs at some point so we can color them, I suppose. I don't feel like doing much of anything right now, because no matter what I do the kids just accept it as if it is their right, and not anything special or unusual or even anything to be grateful for.

I threw away 97% of the outside toys today. They had been left out in the sun too long and all the plastic had de-natured. Some were just cracked and broken, most were just covered with this powdery old-plastic film. Anyway, the yard looks much better and is all ready for finding Easter eggs. Speaking of which, I have to find the Easter eggs that we hide! I think they're just in the hall closet, so it shouldn't be too bad.

I could eat about a pound of chocolate right now. I think I'll settle for a cup of coffee and a handful of pecans... maybe a few chocolate chips in the mix!



If only there were a font style like italics that indicated "sarcasm".

I just mailed off the first round of survey questions for my job. That would be fine, in fact I think they're quite good, it's just that no one ever mentioned survey questions to me before Tuesday morning, and they needed them, as they say, "Like, yesterday." Then DD got sick and I got demoralized having to write questions that I know people are going to "strongly disagree" on, for example, "I understand the core concepts of the product," because my home page copy, not brilliant but definitely clear, was yanked at the last minute, pulling lots of concepts down on the cutting room floor with it. tant pis!

I never, ever say that in real life, but I do think it while I'm writing. How odd.

I need to go to bed but I had to mini-vent about the stupid writing assignment. Also, I looked up last night what my rates should be and I am kicking myself for not doing that before I started, because I could easily be charging these guys 50% more per hour than I am, and I still wouldn't be at the top of the pay scale for what I'm doing. Sheesh. If I'm going to continue working with these guys after this release, I'm going to raise my rates!

Otherwise, a fairly good day. Not much happened. Managed to deliver the Easter Baskets, even though DH let me sleep until 8:45! Yikes. Still got DD to school around 9:40 or so, which is great considering that she hadn't eaten breakfast yet. At least DH fed DS2.

I was very sulky all day with this assignment hanging over me head. I think the best part of the day was when I called my sister and we had a great talk. She's my catalyst, my spark -- for some reason, she can say the simplest things to me, and it sets whole trains of thought in motion. I'm very lucky to have her, and I told her so. Of course we both choked up. Hee!

Now that the house is empty of junk you can really see how much it needs to be cleaned! Tomorrow is a good day for that, I think, but we'll see. The kids are all off school, and there is some shopping to be done, and perhaps more work, too.

Well, it's off to bed now or I won't be able to do anything tomorrow...

Wednesday, April 07, 2004

I lost 300 pounds today


Yep, probably more than 300 pounds, that's just a rough estimate. The St. Vincent de Paul truck came today and the two nice guys took all our we're-not-using-it-anymore stuff. That included the crib. It was a really nice crib and we had it for 7+ years, and it's weird to think we don't have a crib, or a playpen, or a changing pad even, in the house anymore. DS2 is only in diapers overnight but I don't think that will last too much longer (probably until the supply of diapers holds out) as he wakes up dry every day.

I went to bed too late last night to take an Ambien, and slept horribly. Or rather, didn't sleep until very late. It was a long, physically active day and I was a hurting pup, but even after the bad sleep, I did OK today. I feel a lot more fatigued, but I still managed to get stuff done, and I even had energy to try not one, but two new things in the kitchen.

For lunch, I made stuffed French toast, like at Mimi's Cafe, and it was awesome. Kids hated it. tant pis! DS1 had a big temper tantrum when I refused to make him something else. He had one bite of the SFT and declared it "sour"? I guess from the cream cheese. Dude, just put some more syrup on it! But, no. He sulked. Then the truck came and took the stuff, so I said, C'mon, let's go to BK and do some errands. I got all 3 of them BK (by the time we got out of the house it was after 2PM!), they snarfed it in the car, and I drove up to DD's school to pay her tuition and drop off all the magazines I had lying around, plus all the wood puzzles we aren't using anymore.

Then we popped over to the mall to go to See's Candies to get Easter baskets for all the teachers. It's my thing, I do it every year. I'm terrible about Valentine's Day so I figure I will make it up at Easter. I got 3 little rabbits, too, sneaking them in, and figuring I could put them in the basket, but noooo -- DS1 spied them in the bottom of the bag, "What's that? What's that?" So I had to give them up for dessert after dinner, because if he saw them in the Easter basket, the jig would totally be up on the Easter Bunny. I'm not ready to let that go, yet. It's a touchy thing. So far, DS1 hasn't had his notions about the E.B, Tooth Fairy, or Santa Claus disabused, and I'm just fine with that!

For dinner, I made fettucine Alfredo. DS2 liked the sauce, the other 2 didn't, and they didn't even like the pasta all that much. Eh. For me, I steamed and then sauteed in garlic, olive oil, a pat of butter for flavor, red pepper flakes and parsley: zucchini ribbons, and slices of red, orange, and yellow bell peppers. It was beautiful, and great with the Alfredo. I splurged and had some pasta, too, but not too much. It was great with the veggies and sauce.

Then after dinner, I booked over to DD's cheerleading practice to pay for her trophy and exchange her uniform. The new ones weren't in yet but I did get her pompoms. They're adorable. Then I went to Target for Easter shopping, got an egg dye kit plus basket stuff. Looked for a dress for DD, either casual or fancy, and there was literally nothing in her size that I would buy! Then I dashed up to Trader Joe's for milk and bread, more eggs, a few other things -- like 4 bottles of the ultra-cheap Charles Shaw wine ($2.99). It's very drinkable and so cheap it's impossible to resist. Hee!

Now I'm a bit exhausted but still and all, considering I got such bad sleep last night, it was a pretty good day. I do need to do some work-work, though! DD will be back in school so I should be able to get some down tomorrow. DS2 actually likes it when he is home alone, I think, especially when I need to work, as he rules completely what DVD he watches! I know it's not optimal that they watch so much TV, but they are home with me and that's way better than day care ever could be. I won't say I have no guilt, because I do have some, but I don't think it's justified. It's just one of the trade-offs.

I am thinking about whether or not I want this job stuff to be ongoing. I need to do some research into fees and whatnot, because I have the feeling I'm undercharging for my services. It doesn't matter for the current situation, but if I were to go forward with these guys and work on other projects, I would probably ask for more $.

Even though the money is good, I sometimes feel pulled in too many directions. I wouldn't miss the work if I didn't have it. I have so many projects of my own that I don't have time to work on! It's nice to feel ambitious again, that's probably the thing that's most noticeable to me since starting on my new meds.

Unexpectedly melancholy


Don't know where this slight case o' the blues is coming from -- possibly just from exhaustion. It was a very busy day made simultaneously more easy and more difficult by DD having a stomach virus. Easier because there was way less driving, more difficult because she's sick. This is a girl who cannot afford to not eat. To say she is a twig is to exaggerate how fat she is. She is less than twig-like. What is smaller than a twig, a blade of grass? There ya go.

So, I worry about her, and perhaps that is the source of this melancholy I am feeling. All her life, she has been rather anti-food (except sweets, of course). Seriously. She is a prime candidate for an eating disorder later in life, although she has complained about being too skinny, and that's a more healthy complaint than the other way around, I suppose.

She's only in the 5th percentile for weight, but is in the 75th percentile for height. Just let your brain run on that a minute. Take the smallest weight five-year-old you know, and stretch it out over the nearly-tallest frame. Her little face and head are so tiny that she can still wear a hat we bought her at the zoo 2 years ago. DS2, who is 3, weighs more than she does.

Ah, I am obsessing over this more than I realized. She will be fine, she managed to keep down some toast and Propel this evening, and seemed to be in much better spirits. I just worry about her losing weight. It's bad enough she only gains about 3lbs a year (when you're in the 5th percentile, 3 lbs a year is right on track, according to the pediatrician), she definitely can't afford to lose anything.

Still, she is bright and lively and strong and active. I don't know why I worry so much about her.

Well, that's a lie. Of course I know: when she was born she didn't care to eat, and she lost a pound in her first week, from 6lbs 9 oz down to 5lbs 9 oz. She was nursing often but not strong enough to bring down the hind milk, the kind with all the fat and nutrients in it -- she was mostly getting the watery foremilk. And my milk supply was drying up, since she wasn't sucking hard enough to bring it down. When we weighed her at her 1 week checkup, the pediatrician was seriously freaked and wanted me to switch her onto formula immediately. I argued with him about that, and went to pumping and bottle feeding the breast milk. I had to bring her in for daily weighings for a week. The day after I started pumping she gained something like 3 ounces so the pediatrician was OK with it, it was working.

I think it was 6 weeks? 8 weeks? Pumping and nursing. Nursing while pumping, so the pump would bring down the milk, and she would get some while on the breast, then feeding her the rest from the bottle. She would get so tired. It used to take her 45 minutes to take an ounce and a half from the bottle.

That time is a complete blur to me. I was so scared but I don't even remember now if I ever talked to anyone about it at the time. There wasn't anything anyone could say to comfort me. It was all up to her, whether she would decide to eat or not -- it wasn't even a breast-v-bottle issue, either, because she was just as desultory on the bottle as she was at the breast, probably more so. She did love being snuggled up to me. She was so tiny I could easily hold her on one arm.

My heart broke every feeding. She's five now, and it still hurts a lot to remember that time. Even though she finally "got it" at around 8 weeks or so and I could ease off the pumping, she never caught up to where she "should" have been. She's always been tiny, always had this take-it-or-leave-it relationship with food, like she doesn't understand or care that she has to eat to live.

OK, I have to back away from this subject because rehashing it again is pointless. She is a very healthy girl and there's no reason to get into a tizzy over a little stomach virus! Sheesh.

I managed to get everything ready for the charity pickup tomorrow, even inventoried it all -- yay! It was a lot of physical work, so I wonder how I will feel tomorrow. Especially as I am up too late to take an Ambien tonight. Stupid me.

Of course, with the Farscape mini-series news, I am back on like an idiot. Although I am steadfastly resolved to avoid all political discussions there as they are just pointless! I was snippy to some newbie who bashed Bonnie Hammer yet again, but at least I had the grace to apologize later. I should just lurk, but I don't have that much self-discipline.

Clearly, I have no self-discipline regarding certain things, because I am not in bed yet.

Tomorrow is a half-day for DS1 and I am planning on taking it easy and letting DD recuperate, and doing some paying-work, now that all the housework is pretty much done. In addition to all the junk moving, sorting, and listing, I stripped all the beds and remade them too (except for ours, DH must've done that himself), and did four loads of laundry: washed, dried, and folded. Also, cooked dinner. And took a shower, too -- all that heavy labor, quite a bit in the garage, made me really grungy. DS2 pointed to my leg, "What's that?" to which I replied, "Dirt!" He laughed.

I quite seriously need to go out and get stuff for Easter! We are so unprepared, it's pathetic. And on that absurd note, I'm outta here.

Monday, April 05, 2004

Busy busy bee


So much going on today!

First, SCI FI announced that the Farscape mini-series will air there in late 2004. Whee! So then I sent out a newsflash to my mailing list, and have spent the rest of the day deleting e-mails that bounced. I think I'm down to about 520 or so, but that's pretty respectable for a series that was cancelled 2 years ago. Hee!

Somewhat later I got an e-mail from my boss with yet another new direction for the home page. I fired off an e-mail with my concerns, and we talked for about 15 minutes. We were not too far off, actually, and agreed we will talk later in the week. Bigger news is that the Beta is schedule to go out in 4 weeks, and they want as much copy as possible for it. Basically -- everything! Yikes. That might be OK if I had a clue about some of the functionality, but I don't.

And, oh, by the way, we want you to write up the survey questions for the Alpha testers, which is a completely new thing... it never rains but it pours.

I updated the main page over at Make It Low Carb, with a "special notice" that I may not (ha!) have received any emails sent from the LCL Mag link. I also re-organized the page slightly, and added the third column to the site. I do hope I get some e-mail feedback from the third column. I will be upset if I don't get any, especially given that I did get some from my first two!

I also updated the index page at FarscapeWeekly, with an "It's Official!" announcement at the top, and a link to the SCI FI Wire story.

All that, plus trucking around with the kids, a quick trip to Trader Joe's, putting gas in the car, blah blah blah. I'm whupped.

I only took half an Ambien last night and consequently slept well from about 11 til 2:30 or 3, and then was restless. Guess I need to take the whole thing or nothing at all. It might just be easier to have a glass or two of wine! Hee. I've been tired all day, but I think part of it is the weather, this storm system is just lingering. I'm enjoying the cooler temps (it's only in the 60s to low 70s) but the damp is icky, and it's not even that damp! If I still lived in New England I would be a complete cripple by now.

I need to bake. I have nothing to eat in this house! I had chocolate chip cookies after dinner... not many, as the kids polished off most of them, but I just wanted something and had the last few crumbs, probably only 1 or 2 small cookies total. I feel stupid after eating sugar, I think to myself, "why are you feeding the cancer?" Not that I have cancer, but eating sugar will certainly encourage any that may be lurking. There's a cheerful thought, huh?

There are still piles of stuff in the living room, but I feel as if I am making some progress, regardless. The truck is coming on Wednesday, and if I don't have everything ready to go, it won't all go... there will be other trucks, other days. I have to stop stressing about that, it's not that important!

Still no word from Princeton Review. I wonder if I my test score was too low? But seriously, how can they tell from a 25-question test? I have to remain philosophical about this, too. I have plenty to keep me busy right now, so if I don't get called back for training, it will probably be a good thing.

OK, I'm off to do some reading for paying work, as opposed to all the non-paying work I keep doing for myself! Don't know when I'll get back in here. Things are just too nuts, and sometimes I get tired of hearing my own voice whining.

Saturday, April 03, 2004

Hope springs eternal


I took an Ambien at bedtime last night and slept like a rock. I had a harder-than-usual time feeling awake this morning, though. Usually I feel awake right away, it's just getting body to cooperate that's difficult. So tonight I'm going to try a half and see how that goes.

I also took my first Plaquenil dose today, and perhaps it is the placebo effect but I'm feeling pretty good. Maybe it is a side effect of relatively clean eating these last few days (very little high carb junk, no soy). It was a very wet day here, it actually poured off and on all day, and the clouds didn't start blowing out until late in the evening. Normally I would be in agony on a day like today, but my hands are holding steady at around a 3, and my feet and ankles are somewhere around 1-2. That is simply outstanding. I hope it continues, it's nice to feel like a normal person again.

It is difficult to convey how being in pain all the time affects me. Unless you have dealt with chronic pain, or even a constant pain over a shorter period of time -- say, a couple of weeks -- you're just not going to understand. It wears on you. More precisely, it sucks the life out of you and makes many things that should not be a struggle, seemingly impossible.

This morning, for example, was close to a disaster... I poured DD's juice and then promptly (stupidly) knocked it off the counter. It was like the Exploding Soda Can Mess all over again, only this time it was all over the fridge. Fortunately it wasn't all that much juice. However, cleaning up the tile is murder on my back, knees, ankles... everything. And the reason I knocked it over was because my coordination is just off in the morning until everything loosens up a bit. Then there's the fact that I couldn't open the milk... but you get the idea. Some of DD's shirts have buttons at the back neckline with elastic loops instead of buttonholes. They're f'ing tiny, and they always, always take me 3 or 4 tries. One of these days I will have to tell her to ask her brother to do it! Or maybe not, if these meds really do work... what a nice thought.

DD's cheerleading was cancelled for tomorrow morning because we had planned to cheer at football, and all the football games were cancelled because of today's rain (the fields will be a mess). I could've suggested we go to basketball instead, but didn't bother. There doesn't seem to be a lot of enthusiasm just yet, I don't know if there ever will be. I should've volunteered to be squad leader because I know I could do a better job, but it's just as well that I'm not...

Didn't hear anything from Princeton Review today. Shoot, I should've sent out little thank you notes! I'll do that first thing tomorrow.

Little by little I am getting stuff done. I did fold the laundry. Wait, let me pause a moment and mourn the loss of 2 or so hours of my life wasted on the horrible movie Cold Creek Manor. How could Sharon Stone agree to play such a stupid character? Eeesh. Stupid, stupid movie. So that was something that got done that didn't need doing! Ahem. I also toted up the kids' money so now I know how much they have to spend: too much. We will put some into their savings accounts, just haven't decided how much to put in, yet. We're going to wait until after Easter, they will probably rake in some cash from someone (not us).

DS2 is doing great with the bathroom thing now. He really "gets it". YAY!

I want to get everything ready for the Wednesday stuff pickup this weekend, maybe even tomorrow, so I can start working on DD's furniture. I really need to put some time into my paying work, too -- at least a status report, if not more actual writing... I have a ton of work to do!

Right now, at least, it's all good...