6.30.2008

A quickie

1) Somebody got to my blog by googling "the jeopardy theme sound." Huh. Haven't figured out that connection yet.

2) MY STATS SUMMARY SHOWED SOMEONE FROM JAPAN VISITED MY BLOG! How cool is that?!? Gosh, I'm all sorts of flustered. If you were the person who visited from Sendai, Japan...uh...e-mail me (link to the left) and I'll figure out some sort of prize to give you...good grief. Japan!

Stripped bare (well, almost)

I DID IT.

Well, I sort of did it.

I took off two of Damien's more controversial bumper stickers. To be honest, they weren't really my favorite, and upon rereading it I realized one could be pretty offensive. So off they came. They were fairly new so they came off easily and cleanly--no sticky stuff left. Yeah!


Off with #1

I still have...let's see...1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 9, 10 left on, plus two announcing both my high school and college. (I realize that with all the information I've given out about my car I could be pretty easily spotted if you live in my city...)


One of my favorites I left on

6.26.2008

True happiness


My beautiful 4-year-old cousin who finished her LAST CHEMO TREATMENT in March for leukemia. She's doing great in remission. Go, sweet girl, go! I'm so proud of you! (She just got back from Disneyworld for her Make-A-Wish trip--note the Sleeping Beauty locket around her neck :-) she hasn't taken it off yet!)

When I grow up

With this whole college thing looming, I've really been thinking about what I want to be when I grow up. You know, cause I'm not grown up now or anything. And though I know I want to focus on one specific field (okay, okay, I'll spill. It's communications--more specifically, journalism) I haven't been able to pin down exactly what in that field I'd want to do. I worked on my high school paper (and climbed my way to Managing Editor my senior year--and my senior year, our school's paper won several nationally accredited awards for the first time, thankyouverymuch) all 4 years and LOVED it. L-O-V-E-D loved it. My favorite part was the actual putting together of the paper--laying it out and overseeing design.

So for a while I thought I'd focus specifically on publishing. And I know I'd love that.

But what I really would love to do?

I'd love to be a professional interviewer. I LOVE to interview people. Not just famous people, mind you...I truly, honestly believe that everyone has a story to be told. Even the most unexpected people. I found that out while interviewing my grandparents last summer. I don't like so much to write the actual stories about people, I just love interviewing. I love coming up with sets of questions and plunging headfirst into the questioning--but then I love how those questions are only a spring board for where the interview can go. Does that make sense? I usually come up with 20 or so questions to start with, but I'll end up asking 50 or more, just based on what I'm hearing. I love that.

For my entire life I've wanted to write a book. Maybe this will be my book. I'll travel the 50 states and find one random person in each state to interview. Just a random person. I don't know if that's been done before. But that's what I'd love to do.

What do y'all think?

6.24.2008

All right, all right

Since I'm not generating any interesting posts while I recuperate, I thought I'd sit back, relax, and make y'all do the work.

So tell me:

What annoys you most about blogging? Or anything in general? I'll post my answer in the comments section just to get things started. (Can you tell it's been a boring day on the couch?)

More fun updates

I'm feeling better still. I'm essentially taking the anti-nausea meds around the clock (it's the antibiotic that's causing the nausea, and I finish that on Wednesday), so I'm not really having any nausea. The med also knocks me out so I'm sleeping REALLY well--yeah! I can't tell you the last time I slept 11 hours in a row.

Also, I started eating really solid foods yesterday! Woohoo!!! I had a bowl of pasta (doc approved) with the teensiest pat of butter. For dinner, I had a small pb&j--all went down fine. The anti-nausea med has made SUCH a difference!

Anyway, I'm still pretty tired & weak from going almost 4 days with no food whatsoever, but I'm gaining strength back. Hopefully I'll have more to say next time I blog :-)

6.22.2008

Still (update below)

mis.er.a.ble.

Update: I called my doc begging for relief. I'd been having such bad nausea for the past 2 days (stomach pain was gone, though) that even the thought or smell of food almost made me sick. I was having to force myself to eat a little bit of applesauce or a few crackers but even that I couldn't do anymore. I just felt terrible and hadn't slept well in 3 days. I called the on-call doc at my doctor's office and she called in a perscription for the nausea. 2 hours later, I feel SO much better! I was even able to eat a few crackers and the thought of food even sounds GOOD now! Hopefully I'll get a good night's sleep tonight and wake up much better tomorrow.

6.19.2008

Hello little boys, little toys

Y'all.

It has been a day.

It has been a day that I think, quite frankly, rivals Monica H's bad day yesterday, though not quite as bad.

It all started last night. Around 7 or 8 p.m., I started having really, really bad stomach pains. Sometimes I get gas bubbles like that, so I figured it would go away and drank a Sprite to help it. Well, no such luck. I also tried, uh, to use the restroom...to no relief or avail. The pain didn't get better at all--instead, it got worse. It wasn't unbearable, so I sort of ignored it and went to bed.

This morning...ouch. Ouch. Ouch. I wasn't of a mindest, really, to think of much other than it just must be a really large unpoppable gas bubble. I called my doctors office, in tears, asking them to fit me in as soon as possible. Once they got how in pain I was, they told me to just get there and they'd put me in.

I drove to the doctor's, moaning in pain, while it rained and thundered. Honestly, it's a miracle I didn't wreck the car. But I made it, got upstairs somehow, and into the examining room. I explained my symptoms and my doctor (whom I LOVE) told me to lie on my back so she could feel my stomach. Well, that brought unbearable pain. I was crying and gasping through the hurt while she poked and prodded. She looked up at me and the look she gave me made me downright scared. She looked worried for me, and doctors aren't supposed to be worried! They're supposed to know all the answers!

She gave me two options: 1) to go downstairs to the emergency room (my doc's office is in a large hospital) or 2) to go to her lab, give bloodwork and then go straight downstairs to get a CT scan. I think I managed to mumble, "Idon'tknowwhattodoI'mallalone" through my tears. At that point the tears were from pain AND fear. She decided for me--to do the bloodwork & then CT scan route. So I picked myself off the table and walked down the hall to the lab.

I've never really had trouble giving blood--my veins are fairly easy. But today, apparently, they were "rolling," and it took the nurse several tries to stick me in my right arm. After the bloodwork, I stumbled downstairs and into the diagnostic center where they'd give me the CT scan. Along the way, I called both my parents and D, crying. Even though I told her not to, D came flying up to the hospital to be with me. I was so grateful and felt better not by myself.

Once back for my CT scan, I had to answer 12 million questions and sign a waiver that no, I SWEAR I wasn't pregnant. I also had to sit for an hour (in big major pain) drinking some radioactive lemonade. I'm not kidding. That's what it was. It was gross and gave me...uh...bad bathroom issues. In the meantime, D sat, concerned, reassuring me that everything was okay. I was slightly freaking out, thinking stomach cancer! PCOS! Kidney stones! Kidney failure! Oh god, I'm going to go on dialysis and have to get a new kidney!

Finally, they called me back to give me the IV for the scan. Well, not having eaten in almost 18 hours + severe dehydration brought on by said bathroom issues + the room was f-r-e-e-z-i-n-g + my veins already having been poked and prodded made for no fun trying to stick a needle in me. The nurse tried my right arm again, then the left. Then the right, and then the left AGAIN. They she tried for my hands (WHICH HURT, by the way). First she tried the right, no luck but more pain. Then she tried the left, and tried the left again and finally got it. It took about 25 minutes to thread my IV. Finally, though it was done and I was good to go.

I wasn't quite sure what to expect with a CT scan. I thought it was somewhere along the lines of an MRI, which kind of freaked me out, but it wasn't nearly as bad. The machine itself was about as wide as an MRI, but a lot thinner--only about a foot of my body was under the machine at one time, I just scooted back and forth on the automatic bed thingy. They came in about halfway through to start the dye, which caused me to have weird warming sensations all over and a bad taste in my mouth.

Finally, it was done, and D and I headed back up to my doctor's office to wait for the results. Approximately 45 minutes and major pain later, it was announced that I had colitis. Or collitis. Dr. Google will accept both spellings. Basically, it means that my colon (part of the large intestine) is really swollen. Lovely. And also very painful.

My doc thinks it was caused either by something I ate or something viral. It also explaines the undiagnosed mystery sickness I had not this past weekend but the one before. In the meantime, I'm strictly on the BRAT diet again (just as I had slowly started to come off it) and taking both a major antibiotic and advil three times a day. The doc also wrote me a perscription for vicodin, which I was hesitant to accept from her (I don't usually react well to those kind of drugs) but now I'm glad I did. I was in so much pain this evening that I had to take one in addition to advil.

So right now I'm okay, a bit loopy from the vicodin but otherwise not in too much pain. The pain kind of comes in waves, though, so I don't think I'm nearly out of the loop yet. It's been a very weird, very surreal day. This time 12 hours ago I was sitting in my doc's office, crying my eyes out. Even though I'm not physically feeling all that much better, the relief that I got a diagnosis that wasn't too bad really made things okay. And D there was a really, really good thing.

All in all, I'm exhausted. D cooked me scalloped potatoes (YUM and doctor approved!) and applesauce for dinner, then we played a few games, and I'm about ready to keel over from tiredness. I'm headed to bed!

6.18.2008

The post in which I eat my words

Remember this post? Yeah. Well I take it back. The whole loving nannying thing. Well, at least parts of it.

Like the part where I'm up before the sun playing "Dora the Explorer Old Maid" with Natty's youngest sister.

*chugs coffee*

I've been staying overnight with Natty and her sisters about once a month for several months now. I do love it...I just wish they'd sleep a bit more. Especially since I was up past 1 a.m. reading Harry Potter 6 (don't they know I can't put it down??? Can't they let me sleep in??? HUH???).

Invariably, Natty will end up in bed with me at some point during the night. She and I are almost exactly alike in personality, and in anxiety. She hates it when her parents are out of town and gets scared very easily at night. This has gone on since she was a little girl (I've been babysitting/nannying off and on for them for about 5 years now), and so much of her fears remind me of myself, so I completely understand. Ironically, I'm less anxious while sleeping over there because I go into Momma Mode. My first priority is taking care of those girls and ain't nothin' gonna get in my way.

The second oldest girl, Belle, is a lot like my younger sister. They're similar in a lot of ways. Then Bean is a fiery elf of a little girl, and Liv, the baby of the four, is spoiled sweetly by everyone.

One of my favorite parts of staying long-term with a family is getting to grow with the kids. The first time I sat for them, Livie was a tiny squeak in my arms. Now she's going into first grade. Where does the time go?

Where does the time go? Honestly, yesterday I was in third grade in Mrs. Lewis's class and we were reading aloud from a book about American Indians. Or I was in sixth grade, nervously getting ready for my first school dance. Or pulling on cap and gown for my high school graduation. My childhood is over, I'm way past legally being an adult. But I love the innocence of children; I love their happiness. I think that's one reason I'm so committed to nannying. The light, airy spirit of little ones is so contagious.

6.15.2008

Out and about

Today, while running errands, I ran into a boy (well, now man) with whom I went to elementary school. I was on the phone in the middle of a crowded mall. He walked out of a store just as I walked past it...we locked eyes for a split second and I thought, Fuck, that's Jason. He looked away, and then I saw a spark of recognition in his eyes and he looked back at me, and for that millisecond we both knew it was the other, and then we had both walked on and the moment was over.

-----------------------------------------------------------------

At Macy's, I was in the Intimates department picking up a bra. A woman walked up behind me, a small shadow of a woman with her arms folded so tightly across her chest it seemed as if she wanted to be invisible. "Can I help you?" asked the saleslady, abruptly. "Yes," the woman said softly. "I just had...I had a lumpectomy, and...I need a new bra."

"Oh," the saleslady said. I could tell she had no clue what a lumpectomy was. "What size are you?"

The woman looked down. "I don't know, now that ..." she trailed off.

The saleslady looked her up and down. Then she turned to the side, to whom I presumed was her manager, and said, "This lady needs help. She had, uh, what did you say?"

"A lumpectomy," the woman whispered.

"A lumpectomy," the saleslady repeated, loudly. "She needs to be measured cause she don't know her size."

"And...I need a bra with no underwire on the side. It digs in and it hurts, now," the woman said. She looked as though she might cry. My heart hurt for her.

"Oh..." the saleslady said. "We can't help you here. I don't know of any bra without wire." She looked at the manager. "Can we?"

The manager looked at the lady and shook her head. "No. We don't have anything for you."

The lady whispered a thank-you and slipped away so fast I didn't even see where she disappeared to.

-----------------------------------------------------------------

Later, at Target, I almost bumped into a tall, tan guy. "Oh, sorry," I said, and he echoed. It wasn't until a few steps later that I realized, Fuck, that was Dimitri, another kid I knew from elementary school

Small world. Weird day.

6.13.2008

Bumper stickers

I know I've been blogging a LOT the past few days...most of it stems from me having nothing to do, really, but lie on my back as I wait to get better. I called the doc, results are not in, but I need to continue plugging on with the BRAT diet. Honestly, without any protein, I'm turning into a brat...

So I've had to cancel 2 nanny jobs this week and turn down another just from feeling crummy and/or exhausted. I ventured out of the house today, though, to be with Boy and Girl, cause they're older and easier and I don't have to do much. I'm tired now that it's done, but I got through the job OK.

I think I've mentioned before my beloved Volvo is slathered in bumper stickers. Most political, none offensive...just ones that you could disagree with. I don't want to hurt feelings, that's not my goal.

As I was driving to Boy & Girl's house, a large pickup truck drove up next to me and revved its engine a few times. I've had bad experiences with pickup trucks and my bumper stickers in the past, so I didn't look over to them, but instead just drove on. The pickup truck persisted, and finally sped up in front of me. The window rolled down, and a young guy stuck a "US ARMY" sign out the window. I could see the anger on his face, and perhaps a bit of hurt. At that point in the traffic proceedings, the best thing I could do was smile at him and give him a thumbs-up.

I felt guilty for the rest of the afternoon. I didn't want to make him feel bad, or angry. I'm NOT against the troops in any way, shape or form. As I've said before, I greatly appreciate the sacrifices they're so willingly making for our country--and I respect the hell out of them. Just because I don't agree with our current wars doesn't mean I dislike the troops.

I've been thinking a lot about my stickers lately. My car sticks out, that's for sure. Over the past several years I've learned to ignore the rude gestures, block out the angry stares, and appreciate the (rare) thumbs-up or show of approval. But honestly, I'm at the point now where I'm not sure I constantly want to be making a political statement. It is, quite frankly, a bit exhausting, because regardless, people will first see my political opinions, and then me. And I'm not sure I want it to be that way. Sure, my politics are a big part of me. And I stand by my thoughts and opinions. But I spend so much time in my car and so many people see me in it...I don't know. I'm not ashamed; I think I'd just like people to see the real me without passing judgement first.

And I'm guilty of passing judgement, too. I do automatically 'tsk, tsk' at the people who have pro-Bush stickers on their car, and feel a comraderie with those who have anti-Bush ones.

Anyway. I'm thinking of taking off the stickers. It'll be interesting to see the tan Damien has developed after almost 4 years of constant sticker-coverage on his backside. Or maybe I'll take off just a few. I have a couple of stickers I really love and want to keep on. So maybe I'll pick a few to keep and strip the rest.

One thing's for sure, though--he won't be nearly as easy to spot in a parking lot.

6.12.2008

Torture?




Your Ice Cream Personality:



You like to think of yourself as a fairly modest person. And it's true that you don't talk yourself up... but you're also pretty happy with who you are.



You are incredibly cautious. You rather miss out on something than make a mistake. No one would ever call you wild... but they would call you responsible.



You are a somewhat open minded person, but deep down you're fairly conservative. You don't like trying new things very much. And if you do find something new you like, you stick with it.



You tend to have a one track mind. You prefer not to multitask.



You can be a big dramatic and over the top sometimes. You are bold in every way



I'd definitely test this out with a big bowl of ice cream...but alas, no ice cream for me for the next 6 days. No results from the doctors yet, either. But it's breakfast time! Unsweetened applesauce and dry toast. Yum.

6.11.2008

P.S.

Still sick. It seems like I feel horrible in the mornings and evenings, and decent in the afternoon. I have a doctor's appointment at 1:15, though.

ALSO--the spacing on my blog is all messed up. I've tried changing the fonts but that doesn't work. Is anyone else having this problem/know what to do?

6.10.2008

MIA

Wow. Sorry guys...didn't realize it's been 5 days. In an amazing stroke of luck, I'm down with some sort of flu/stomach bug/potentially tomato-induced sickness WHILE dog sitting for D.

Oy.

Dog sitting is an entirely different beast than nannying. It's easier, for sure. But still demanding, since D. has three fairly large dogs. Walking them all is comical--I've got to have at least one helper. But it was all going fabulously until around midnight on Sunday...when I got sick. Yep.

So I've eaten a small piece of (unbuttered) wheat toast and half a banana total in the last...oh...36 hours. Lots of ginger ale and apple juice. But I'm really exhausted and the poor pupsters are taking the brunt of it--they didn't get a walk last night. I think I'll be better tonight so I'll take them for an extra-long walk.

Anyway. This is about an uninteresting post as I've ever done! I just wanted to make contact with the outside world. I can't figure out how to get D.'s internet to work so this is the first time I've been online since Saturday (GASP!). Talk to you guys on the other side of this sick stuff.

6.05.2008

Makes it all worth it

As I babysat for Natty and her sisters the other day, I thought about just how much I love kids. And nannying. I really do love it. And the thing that made it even better? Natty's youngest sister, Liv, begging her mom to let me stay longer. That always makes me feel so good!

On a completely unrelated note, let me ask you guys this. What was the one thing you couldn't have lived without in your dorm room, or the thing you wanted the most for it?

6.03.2008

My Volvo gets more mail than I do

Damien got this in the mail yesterday:



Yup, it's time for my beloved car's 360,000 mile check-up. *sigh* It seems like just yesterday he was turning 333,333...

And I got something in the mail yesterday, too.

It was a letter from Dream School, which as of now I'm just going to call 'College,' because I am too lazy to type out 'Dream School' multiple times.

College was writing to inform me that their dorm room beds were, uh...abnormally long. (Gosh, which is perfect for me, being 4'11 and all...) Anyway, regular twin sheets do not fit on College dorm room beds.

So they were nice enough to include a catalog from which I can order custom-made dorm room sheets.

Meaning that at the end of 4 years, I will be left with a very nice set of custom-made extra-long twin sheets for which I will have no use.

Unless I can make a Halloween costume out of them?

6.02.2008

Oops.

So...remember this?

Yep.

It's June 2. Guess where I'm not?

That's right.

Oops.

I have a myriad of excuses (all legitimate!) which I'm preparing to send to "Jury Services," begging for a light penalty and a new date. I called their little automated answering machine and apparently, people miss jury duty a lot. The robot told me to write a letter, so I'm a-writin' a letter. And it didn't say anything about a fine or penalty so I'm just holding my breath and hoping I got off easy. Whew!

In the meantime, well...I'll be thinking about what I'm missing down at the old courthouse. Wouldn't it be crazy if today I might've been picked for some crazy long trial?

6.01.2008

You wish you were here right now...

What happens when you leave two chocolate-starved girls unattended?

YOU GET THESE HEAVENLY CREATIONS:



(Our pictures are not nearly as nice as theirs...but I'm willing to bet ours taste just as good!)