Thursday, August 30, 2007

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Joy of Children and Frustration of Doctors

Today was a lazy day; I didn't have to be anywhere or do much of anything. Harry watered the plants and I emptied the kitty litter--one day early. I cleaned the wood floors on the first floor and the steps. That's all of it. Yesterday, I told my little neighbor friends if I didn't answer my front door to come around the back, to the sunroom. Today, two of them did; they told me all about school. I think they're absolutely great and having six little girl neighbors is the bestest ever. I'm sending in an application to read aloud to itty bitties at a daycare center. I saw an ad in the Sunday paper and called. I offered to volunteer for hospice patients but they didn't seem to want to work around my time schedule and the only one they called me for was in Wilmington and she had to be convinced. No thanks. I had told them at first, I didn't want to go out of Newark--my town. Oh, well, what could be better than reading to children? Other than hanging out with my kids, painting or reading?

I'm pretty conventional in what I like, progressive(?) in my politics and such, and totally nuts about animals. I love staying up late forever reacting to the strictures of childhood. And I revel in Jerry's dictum of all I need to do is be.

Next week my being will be getting shots in my back to perhaps kill the pain. After packing and unpacking to move here, I had back pain every day and it only got worse. I'm glad there is such a thing as pain specialists who have tricks to deal with pain. My right shoulder became excruciatingly painful a few months ago. Gradually it improved, and when I got shots in it, the pain was almost gone. Except it didn't all go. The ortho said my rota tor cuff tear was/is the problem and I'm having surgery on that Sept. 25. I'm nervous about the pain afterward and looking forward to sitting around watching TV. I could work it out to do that some days, but I don't. Not getting my shoulder wet sounds like a real nasty, uncomfortable, dirty challenge. I don't know if the surgery is worth it. I'm just careening toward it blindly. Not good.

Yesterday, a different doctor basically told me I was a nut case, although maybe he didn't mean that. When he said my shortness of breath and chest pain was not caused by my heart, that was good, but then when I asked him, he said reflux couldn't cause it either. He was wrong. I knew before reflux could have been the problem, and last night, I researched it, and I was right. Jerk! Arrogant piss-ant, overpriced, dressed up special bean. Boy, do I resent doctors! Medical school confers sainthood, left hand of God hood on smartass know-it-all jerks. Having a chronic disease confers the knowledge of doctors' lack of knowledge on the poor suffering patient.


Sunday, August 19, 2007

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Last month, I thought my email program was infected. Suddenly, I didn't see my emails on my lupus online support group. I examined every inch of Outlook but couldn't find any problems and I continued sending my questions and answers in. After a while, I realized my emails just weren't being printed so I contacted the "owners" who never answered. I'll never know if I offended them or sent them an email that was meant for one of my friends or what. I had been involved with that group for about five years and I was a major supporter. I'm not a professional trained writer, but I didn't ramble, and I'm intelligent and educated. I research everything connected with my lupus. I was one of the smart, informed people in that group. And they threw me out with no explanation. I think their behavior was rude and callous. How do you do that to someone who relies on your support who you supposedly cared about? Knowing how lupus is triggered by stress, how can people allow themselves to hurt other people they know also suffer from lupus? Now, I know why other members just disappeared. Maybe my asking where those people got to bothered those "owners".

On a regular basis, those "owners" sent in a list of rules and I think everyone, including me, tried to honor the "owners" requests. But it wasn't enough. I believe, just like real-life, when we break off a friendship, it behooves us to explain why if we are asked. It is hard to do that, I know, but we owe it if another person has shared a friendship with us. Also, living in God's good grace, we are required to be compassionate. Every other human being has mountains to climb, battles to fight. Whatever those women who ran the group objected to in my email, it would have been appropriate to say what it was.

I am always shocked by the coldness of some other people's words. They don't try to be gentle. Even though they are not angry, their words are cutting. Why am I not that way? Perhaps I think less of myself, or maybe I don't see myself as an authority on anything. I'm not. No one is faultless though. I may be more polite than most, but in the end, I can't throw stones either. I'm angry at those "owners", but they too have sorrow. Fuck it! I hope their list folds!

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Wednesday, August 15, 2007

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Need Dog

Max, the Yellow Lab puppy who lives across the street, came in tonight. My neighbor said it was okay, and he's been urging me to take Max during the day. I love having a dog around me, so I'm thrilled. Bubba, the twelve year old black Lab who's a little demented came too. He couldn't stand to be left behind. But Bubba wouldn't come into my house and when the dog biscuits ran out, Bubba walked across the street and back into his own house. Max was perfectly happy to be in my house. Moon, my long-haired Maine Coon, who knows about dogs, was interested in Max. Max licked Moon's face and then kept his distance. I watered the garden and cut off dead limbs from the trees and Max stayed right by my side, except when anyone walked by. Then, he was off ready to jump up and welcome anybody to his life. He's too big now to be jumping on little children. I don't know what to do about that. I don't have a fence in my front garden. Maybe I can't take Max till I'm in the back.
Having a dog around lightens my heart. Why? It means so much to me. Cats too. I need both. I'm really nuts.


Saturday, August 04, 2007

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I'm depressed, well, at one level. I'm happy about my children--my daughter just got home from a two-week retreat and I missed her badly. My son lives near here, but he's all grown up, almost married, with his own house and cat. That's all good. One of my two fur-babies is on a little window shelf in front of me taking her day-long nap so she can be ready to play tonight. (She cries at my door at night for me to be available. She likes to see me when she is awake.) I'm recovering from a heart catheterization and the terror that accompanied my getting ready for it. I thought I might die, and hoped that at least the cardiologist would fix whatever was causing me to be short of breath. It turned out the hole was the kind that studies say do not cause symptoms, except maybe migraines. When the doc asked me if I had any neurological symptoms, I said "No", because I figured that was his way of pigeon-holing me and then forgetting me. He was being honest though. He checked the numbers twice for the size of the hole, which I appreciate.

I think the exacerbation of my heavy breathing is really from the stress around my brother's dying. It started when he was in the hospital, or, it got much worse then.

I'm feeling now, like if I went to sleep for a couple of days, maybe a week, that would be fine. I don't feel like doing anything, maybe just buying jewelry and plants. Yeah, I still love my garden. I think I may be having a lupus flare, but who knows? Maybe I'm just depressed because my breathing can't be fixed and it scares me. Today, right now, I'm sad. I don't want to see anyone or do anything.