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Showing posts from May, 2010

A Nasty Migraine

I had a nasty migraine today. Ugh.

First, though, I was awakened at 12:30 AM by the dreaded "proud meow" and terrified squeaking. I knew that was bad. Bubba had brought something in through the pet door.

I checked it out and determined that he'd brought a mouse into the bathroom. It stared up at me, pleading. Being the kind woman I am I locked the cat in the bathroom with him and ordered him to "Finish it".

I hunted around the house for a mouse trap, to no avail. I went back into the bedroom.

We have a gap under the bathroom door due to previous homeowner repairs. Tropical Storm Allison ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Effects_of_Tropical_Storm_Allison_in_Texas ) caused some damage to our home (40 inches of rain in one night will do that), and the previous guy planed about 3/4 of an inch off the bottom of the door.

I heard the squeaking again, and saw the poor little thing dragging itself into my bedroom. I herded it into the open, away from the good hide…
Thanks to Bible Gateway (http://www.biblegateway.com/) and the nice people at NIV.

Matthew 20
The Parable of the Workers in the Vineyard 1"For the kingdom of heaven is like a landowner who went out early in the morning to hire men to work in his vineyard. 2He agreed to pay them a denarius for the day and sent them into his vineyard.
3"About the third hour he went out and saw others standing in the marketplace doing nothing. 4He told them, 'You also go and work in my vineyard, and I will pay you whatever is right.' 5So they went.
"He went out again about the sixth hour and the ninth hour and did the same thing. 6About the eleventh hour he went out and found still others standing around. He asked them, 'Why have you been standing here all day long doing nothing?'
7" 'Because no one has hired us,' they answered. "He said to them, 'You also go and work in my vineyard.'
8"When evening came, the owner of the vineyard said to his forema…

Green Chili Stew

Ron has proclaimed the Green Chili Stew delicious. I was too queasy to eat.

Crockpot Green Chili Stew with Pork Neckbones
1.5-2 pounds pork neckbones
1, 15 oz can, tomatoes with peppers - medium hot (mild is good for the mild types)
3 T chopped and seeded Poblano or other mild pepper (optional if not a spicy person)
1 t chopped garlic, or 1 clove
1/4 t chili powder
1/8 t ground oregano
1/8 t ground cumin

I used a 2 quart crockpot. Put in the garlic, add the meat. Pour in the tomatoes and then add the peppers and spices to the top. Cook at least 6 hours (this could go up to 12, it had so much liquid) on Low heat.

You will know it's done when the meat falls off the bone. Remove bones (duh!) before serving.

Ron quote "I could eat this every week. Please tell me we have more." He was delighted to hear it makes about 3 cups cooked.

This would be good over rice if you eat it, lots of delicious broth.

More Endless Fatigue - I want to leave a trail of Bibles everywhere I go

It's odd to complain about fatigue, I think, in the same breath as the word "Mania". I am. I'm manic, and utterly exhausted. The mania's well controlled, I can go hours by myself without talking to anyone, I'm listening to people, and I still have money left from this week's budget, AFTER the trip to Foodtown and Walmart.

Some of that goes to Ron: he bought me a Crock-pot today, and helped out with the purchase of Driver Candy. Our trips were an odd combination of hysterical pickups and excellent trips.

Our first ride, to Walmart, was over an hour late. He got a Bible, of course. I got Ron in the kiddie cart and off we went. I got, literally, ziplocks and the Crock-pot. Happily, it had been "Rollback"ed to $9 instead of the $11 they were asking. I'm cheap, and a clutterer. I am reluctant to add an appliance unless I'm certain I'll use it. Ron actually bought the toaster and the toaster oven. The only appliances I bought w…

Remember Heather?

Today was almost a cliche: Memorial Day, car wrecks. Ron and I are fine, [sniff] we ride with professional drivers. However, we saw several accidents, and one of them was bad enough that they had half of the freeway blocked, waiting on the helicopter, as the firemen feverishly worked to free some poor victim.

It wouldn't be a bad way to go, assuming I went fairly quickly. I just dread the thought of LINGERING. Of course, I would have dreaded the thought of marriage to someone with all Ron's physical issues. Just the thought of alcohol issues would have sent me into permanent celibacy. I would have dreaded the thought of going through my life with brain damage, always feeling like everyone else got the joke; but me. Watching other people get in their cars and drive somewhere, whenever they felt like it, while I had to wait on my bus (assuming it even RAN that day). Mental illness? Severe mental illness? The thought of that would have had me committing suicide. So, I …

Both Sacks of Bibles

It's the kind of day where I can get really bitter and resentful, or laugh and count my blessings. I'm choosing the latter.

A lot of great things happened today! I got 90 New Testaments, on sale. They were beautifully packed and easy to carry. I also got a whole box of tracts - in perfect condition. Many times my boxes of tracts look as though they've been mauled. Bubba brought home a "gift" - a fledgling mockingbird, but it was still fine and healthy when I got home - it is fine outside now. I had EXCELLENT Metrolift trips, an abundance of wonderful diet caffinated beverages, and a delicious lunch date with my husband. I handed out lots of Driver Candy. I had at least 2 people really excited that I gave them a Bible!

I didn't sleep well last night, and even if I had I didn't get enough sleep. I got up, did most of my God Time (yes to prayer, didn't finish all the devotionals but did do the Bible Study). It was all about God sustaining us.…

"No Such Account"

Tuesday, during my Day Out, I went to my local bank and made my deposit. I gave them "The Deposit you can Eat!" with Scripture booklets; they asked me if I wanted to continue my overdraft protection. I said no thanks, I'd rather they just decline any overdraft transaction. Last year my overdraft protection ran up some nasty fees when my account got hacked.

After finishing, as I was headed out, I got an irate phone call from the sandwich guy. A problem with the check. DECLINED. "No Such Account". Overdraft charges.

Oh, crap. I immediately knew 1. The guy had to call Ron direct (which I arranged) and 2. It was the fault of the new checks.

We get checks every now and then. They are always the larger size, the kind that tear down the left side, and they all say "Ron Smith, DBA Our Business" Ron had ordered some new ones, and to put it gently, the phone clerk seemed a little - dim, to Ron.

When the checks arrived, they did not say "Ron Smi…

Junk Food Pallet

I got a little crisp last night, but the aloe gel helped a lot.

Last night, God put it on me to do up 10 (English) Bibles, and some Gospels of John. I like to think I'm obedient so I did them up, thinking, "Wednesday is going to be a busy day for the Bibles".

I slept pretty well, woke up tired as usual. We went to Burger King. Ron likes the rib promotion they are doing and found them delicious. I ate a rib, thought it was good. Foodtown would call them "Riblets".

I had one, massive backpack stuffed with Jesus. I handed out several at Burger King. All the drivers got a Bible. Other passengers got Bibles, and a lady at the Blood Center got some Spanish driver candy. I wore my Jesus Saves/ USA tshirt.

We had a good trip from Burger King to the Blood Center. I find it funny, I am beginning to associate one with the other. If I'm eating at Burger King, I must be getting ready for a needle! [snort] Really, I think Burger King and I immediately envisi…

Harry, the inflatable lobster

Yesterday, after my nap, I went out and did some yardwork. I cut the grass, trimmed the tree, mowed the tree trimmings and added them to the compost pile. Whew! By the time I finished, I was STARVING.

I had some sirloin tip steaks I had to cook anyway, so I threw one in the skillet and began cooking it. It finished, and I put it on a plate. As I walked across the room, the doorbell rang. It's after 8.

I live in a large city. A large city has a lot of crime, and it's often commented on the local news site "How could anyone be dumb enough to open their door to a stranger?" I've always resolved not to be that person.

The guy SAID he had a pizza, but I hadn't ordered one! I was very skeptical and made him read the address. I went and told Ron "Some jerk's at the door saying he has our pizza!"

Ron jumps up WAIT! HE ordered the pizza, to surprise me! I chased the guy down, wearing my ugly bathrobe, and he came back. Ron paid him and gave m…

Quality

Once you read todays' other post, you'll know why I didn't get a good amount of sleep last night. As I lay in bed at 8-something last night, facing a 2-something wakeup, I asked God to please grant me a good quality of sleep. He is very gracious and always obliges. I may crash and get incredibly stupid right after work, but I generally manage well while I"m at work. God is good!

God obliged. I dropped off, got a decent quality of sleep, and woke up at my appointed time. I've figured out I feel "hungry" if I miss my God time so I always make time for Him.

I got up, did my time, and ate. Our ride was early, but I was ready. Ron often scolds me about "making the driver wait" but he's the slow one. I choose to laugh.

I guess that could be my whole life attitude: I choose to laugh.

We rode around and picked up a diabetic in horrible shape. She couldn't even walk. Yike. I thought long and hard about that when I was looking at the …

Change jar - Starting a War!

I got a great idea from World Missionary Press. They had a program where you could get a change jar from them, fill it up, cash it in, and send them the cash. I thought that was a great idea. I have a big change jar, an old protien powder jar. I put all my change into it at the end of every day, unless I am going to Foodtown - then I save a few quarters and dimes for the soda machine.

I got a small Pringles can (and I wonder why I gained back some weight!) and put half my change into it every night. The rest went into the other jar. A few times I tried to give Ron change from a transaction, a dollar or two, and he'd tell me to keep it. I would, and put the single into the jar.

I filled up the Pringles can and counted it last night. $37.65. Not bad! We occasionally do change deposits at our bank, and have giant ziplock style bags. We can put in either mixed or single change (all dimes). I plan to donate half each to World Missionary Press, and Grace and Truth. That'…

Feeling unreal

Today, I'm pretty strongly affected by my medication. I woke up feeling exhausted; got horribly sick-feeling for about 5 minutes after taking my medication, got to a nice baseline mood, and then crashed. Right now I'm feeling unreal - it's called "Depersonalization Disorder". I feel like "Me" is completely disconnected from my body. I can make my body work, but I feel like they aren't my experiences.

My ears are ringing off and on, so I know I'm at a good lithium level. I feel like reality is denser than normal, it's harder to move and think. I'm not up or down, which is good. All I want to do is go to bed and sleep.

I will try to take a nap, and hopefully that will help. I will remind myself of the torment of demons in my head and the ghastly life-sucking depressions. I will remind myself how people used to turn around and leave the room when they saw me coming.

Ron is pestering me to do things, but I told him no. I'm just…

Second-guessing

My illness comes with a lot of second-guessing and inquiry. Something about my Fetal Alcohol Syndrome affects my "thermostat". I really have to ASK myself, "Am I hot?" I just realized, I felt very warm just now, and took off my heavy bathrobe. I feel a thousand times better, but I didn't have an overwhelming sense of heat, just a gradual discomfort that worsened.

Sometimes I think my moods can be a lot like that. I have managed this mania fairly well. I've been pretty talkative, but I'm able to shut up. Minimal eye-rolling from Ron. I feel very kindly.

Over the last few days, I have noticed an overwhelming fatigue. All I want to do is sleep! I'm beginning to wonder if I'm starting to cycle depressed.

I've had a great, mild, monthlong mania. I used to only go 2 weeks, and more intense. I like the newer one, it's a lot smoother for everyone. I'm not wound up and I don't have a flock of thoughts flapping around in my he…

A Wing Grew

When Ron had his accident and effectively lost the use of one arm and leg, I immediately thought of a poem I'd read in school.

"A Man ----- Nina Cassian
While fighting for his country, he lost an arm
and was suddenly afraid:
'From now on, I shall only be able to do things by halves.
I shall reap half a harvest.
I shall be able to play either the tune
or the accompaniment on the piano,
but never both parts together.
I shall be able to bang with only one fist on doors, and worst of all
I shall only be able to half hold my love close to me.
There will be things I cannot do at all,
applaud for example, at shows where everyone applauds.'
From that moment on, he set himself to do
everything with twice as much enthusiasm.
And where the arm had been torn away a wing grew.


Very, very true. That's how I look at my life, too. I don't have everything "normal" does, but I have many things it doesn't.

"Left the Road"

We had another fatal car accident in Houston. The car "left the road", someone died. That happens fairly regularly. Cars leave the road, people die.

It would be easy, at times, to hate God for allowing me to be born crippled. And then sticking me with mental illness on top of brain damage? Horrible, you'd think.

I have never been in a serious car accident, ever. I've been in 3 fender-benders only. Two of them on Metrolift. The worst problem I ever had after an accident was an urgent need for a bathroom, as we waited on the "supervisor" to come out and investigate. After the last accident, Ron was the one who needed the bathroom, and we were in a strange subdivision with the other driver trying to get me to "fix" her cellphone (turned off for non-payment). Odd, but not dangerous.

Every driver I've known has a car wreck story, where they thought they were about to die. Some were badly injured. Some of them admit "It was my fault…

In God I trust

Today I got an approving nod from a man who read the "In God I trust" message on my t-shirt. I do, absolutely. I really believe my disabilities have been a gift; fostering complete dependence on God. Hell is being away from God.

This hasn't been an easy week; but I never have easy weeks. God took me down today with a migraine. My husband had to go to the hospital.

This world does not frighten me. It does not. God has carried me through the worst and smiled with me during the best.

Many people have well-kept homes. I don't. A lot of people think that God can be put into a little box labeled "My faith". My faith is everywhere in my life. Oh, it's at work. And look! I found some in my finances too! [grin] You get the idea.

My faith is my life. Sometimes my husband rants bitterly about God's "unfairness" and worries he'll cause me to lose my faith. Nope.

I can't imagine a life without a couple hundred New Testaments ly…

Welcome to the machine

I got a call from the Blood Center yesterday. I suspect, now that they know they can get "components" from me, they will never have me do a regular donation again. They called, desperate for platelets. I am happy to oblige. By Wednesday I will be ready, and it doesn't take much out of me at all. Why not spend a day off on a machine, when I don't have a lot of spare cash anyway? I replace the platelets in a couple of days anyway - it takes a month to replace red blood cells.

Yesterday, after we got home, I took a good nap. I slept about 4 hours and woke up. Ron wanted to get the muscle relaxants. Chuck offered to help us run errands, and Ron stayed at home. We had a hot date at the fast food place after we dropped off Ron's prescription.

I finally figured out what is going on with my Walmart pharmacy. They send the order out to the warehouse to be filled. I had odd-looking bags with my name on them. Inside the bags were the mega-bottles I've grow…
We're home now. He is eating a Kolache and some pineapple. Doc doesn't really know what was wrong, but says it won't kill him.

I gave him the advice about the Neurontin (wink).

I am thrilled I was able to mobile blog using my admittedly old cell phone. :)
Pulled muscle. both going home. pray 4 fast good cab!
Ron in xray. still hurting. got pain meds - non-narcotics. asking god for an accurate diagnosis.
Waiting. i am a vending geek, checked all the vending machines!
We're going to the hospital. Awful to sit there listening to him suffer - glad we will treat this.

I love my He-man

Image
He-man was a big hit when I was a kid in the early 80's. My little brother and I used to fight over cartoons, he loved He-Man. He-man was a very macho fellow, a prince of the realm. He fought the bad guy, Skeletor. He would shout "I. HAVE. THE. POWER!" and raise his sword. Lightning would hit the sword and transform the meek and mild prince into He-man.

I suspect my sweet husband may have been channeling He-man the other day when he lifted a case of water. Either that or "I'm tired of taking so many pills". He's in a lot of (back) pain right now, groaning occasionally. But he has the power, and refuses to see a doctor. He has been able to get to the bathroom and all. He is not hurting all the time, just when he moves.

We went to work. The urgent care clinic near work has been closed, he elected to proceed with our day as planned. After work, we went to Starbucks. He went home and went to bed, as usual. If he's home, he's lying…

I hate taking Ron to the hospital

God help me, I just dread it when Ron says he is having some kind of issue that may mean a trip to the hospital. I ask him if he's certain. I am discouraging about going to the hospital.

I just dread it. Not because I think he'll get worse and die, but I just hate the whole hospital routine. The automated IV pump alarms always going off every 3 minutes; the pulse oxygen thing that will never stay on his finger - more alarms. The endless medical history questions. Endless testing.

Occasionally, the "Nothing's wrong with you" speech that really pushes my button. If nothing was wrong, we would have stayed home. I've had doctors tell me "Peripheral Neuropathy as a result of taking Bactrim is extremely rare." Well, we're just LUCKY then. Trust me, within hours of taking Bactrim, it developed. It was sudden, acute, and severe.

The single time I ended up in the hospital, and the many times I went to the ER for severe migraines and abdominal…

Meeting Polly

Today we met my aunt Polly at the Ikea. It's a ways from my house, so we knew we'd have a long ride. In fact, we rode an hour to get there. Ron brought his MP3 player, and we got permission to plug it into the Metrolift cab's speakers. We listened to loud classic rock, the driver singing along, as we went down the road. I sure have some interesting memories!

We pulled up about the same time she did. We went in, I got Ron a wheelchair, and we had breakfast. Then we went shopping. I got a lovely new bathrobe, a twin sized bedspead ($7) I plan to use as a slipcover for my loveseat (Bubba can be pukey, and loves to sleep there, so I want a "catcher" that isn't too precious), and a nifty egg slicer. I have been telling myself for a while, the next time I found a good egg slicer at a decent price, I was buying it. This one even minces the egg, even better. I attempted to buy a flat sheet but ended up with a fitted. Feeling kind of dumb on that, we'l…

The One

It's been my experience in life; at certain points I just knew something was right for me. As a child, I knew I wanted Jesus - no doubts at all. When I met Ron, it scared me, how right he was. On the surface we had nothing in common, and yet we're coming up on 18 years of marriage. We still have great love and affection for each other.

The first time we went to work together - I knew it was "home" for us. It was difficult and challenging, but you couldn't pay me a million dollars to leave that location. I love it, and I just KNEW it was right.

The same with the house; as soon as Ron and I walked in we knew it was home. We wanted another bathroom, the house was a loud shade of orange; but we knew it was home.

I have had a very old bathrobe for several years now. I bought it secondhand at a thrift store after Ron's accident. It was a pretty rose color, long and rather old. It cost me a few dollars. I just knew it was the bathrobe for me. I love that…

On hoarding

I will need to go to bed soon so I'll keep this short.

I watched an episode of "Hoarders" recently. I found it telling.

I have pretty strong hoarding tendencies. Part of it is environmental, I feel. I lost 2/3 of my family when I was 3. I had a very unstable early childhood, no real privacy as a teen, etc. One of my only defenses against "home invasions" as a teen was the clutter. "They" had a much harder time finding whatever it was they were after, if I had crap all over the place.

Then of course you have the actual physical differences. Because of my FAS, I have a terrible time with categorizing and organizing things. I have brain damage and I really feel it in those regards. Picking up an item, say the concordance by my foot. Is it a book or is it a Bible thing? Where would it go?

With a lot of determination and practice, I can say "It goes on the red bookcase in my computer room" because I have a Bible bookcase. Bibles for d…

Good Days/Bad Days

Yesterday was a Good Day. It had been a slightly annoying weekend. One neighbor kept parking in front of our house. Another had a loud party.

However, the party animal made sure OUR party animal, Bubba-cat, had a nice sized rib off the BBQ. I hope it was a gift! Bubba WAS raised in the alley. I felt very kindly towards them after that.

The other neighbor issue was addressed by a note from Ron, stating a few facts about his inability to walk due to painful nerve disease and the need for free parking space in front of our home for paratransit. I had a hard time with that; I wanted to "get out the hatchet" (my old nickname, Heather the Hatchet, was, you could say, earned) and go off on the kid. I prayed about it repeatedly (I just KNEW the whole time the Devil was trying to push my button, too) and said, "OK, Ron's an adult, it's Ron's problem, really. Let Ron manage it." He had a logical sequence: Leave a note on the car. Then talk to the pare…

... As we forgive...

Before I start on this topic; Ron and I have actually been doing very well. This isn't really regarding him.

I feel it's important to practice forgiveness in my daily life. For one, I cannot forgive in my own power. Nope, like most of humanity, I am just a hater at heart. If I call any names - hater I think is the worst. *I* can't and don't want to forgive anyone!

Some people were actually not that difficult to forgive. I mean, I'd think I would still be battling. My mother - she drank while pregnant and maimed me for life. If I hadn't known her, hadn't seen her sob with regret everytime she had to say goodbye, if I didn't know, down to my soul, that she would have never chosen to hurt me; I'd still be hating her.

It's impossible for me to hate someone I see as a fell0w-victim. She was a slave to alcohol - she never got free. When she had finally gotten her life together she ended up watching her infant son die of an illness. I can…

You're not doing me a favor!

Today I went to my Walmart, again. Today, again, they said they didn't have my medication available, even though (like last time) I had my husband call in the prescription personally and verify it was available. Last time, it was over a WEEK before they were able to supply me with lithium - a mood stabilizer for bipolar disorder.

What's the big deal? I need mood stabilizers, anti-depressants, and anti-psychotics. They are all generics. They are not narcotic, addictive, or "stimulating" in any way; unless getting nauseous fires your engine.

My doctor, like MANY, does it in a 3 month supply to save me money. I see people getting huge bottles of medication all the time. They never get an attitude with my husband when he gets his Neurontin.

So why is it such a BFD to get me a 90 count antipsychotic and a 180 count lithium? The lithium is cheap and generic. So is the antipsychotic.

They act like I'm asking the impossible when I show up for my refill - even AF…