alee_grrl: calvin from calvin and hobbes in rant mode (calvin rant)
Discussions of doctors, frustrations with doctors, and having a controversial illness/treatment )

We had an absolute house full over the holidays, and it was very nice to see everyone. We had several games of Cards Against Humanity, which is like a much more twisted version of Apples to Apples. It was wickedly fun. We saw "The Hobbit" on Christmas day, and several of us went to see "Into the Woods" on Saturday. Both were enjoyable, though I was a bit frustrated with the editing/storytelling choices for "Into the Woods." I would like to see "The Hobbit" again as I'm sure I missed a whole bunch of details. I'm not exactly in a critical mood regarding my entertainment right now, so if you want a thoughtful critique of either film I'm probably not the best to ask.

Everyone left for their own homes on Sunday, and so things are slowly returning to routine around here. It is strange to have such a quiet house after so much activity, but nice as well. I used the Amazon gift card I got for Christmas to finally buy the complete Cowboy Bebop series on DVD as well as the movie. I've been eyeballing both for a very long time. I already have most of the soundtrack. :)
alee_grrl: Image of Miranda from Devil Wears Prada holding her glasses and looking pensive. (dwp think)
Wednesday last week was kind of horrid. Things have gotten a little bit better since then. I'm doing my best to hang on and be patient with my body and myself. It is remarkably hard. CW: health things and insurance frustrations )

I did treat myself to lunch out after my appointment, which was kind of nice. And I spent a little bit of time wandering around the local mall (middle of the week before school lets out meant it wasn't unbearably crowded). It was kind of nice to do a bit of window-shopping and just be out of the house for a bit.
alee_grrl: Groot, a very tall humanoid tree, leaning down and peering curiously at the camera. (groot)
The various skin issues (turns out it was a couple of different problems) are finally healing and for the first time in weeks I am feeling something other than miserable, which is very happy making.

Saga of rash continued (cw: health stuff and anxiety thoughts) )

I did get out of the house briefly today despite the slush on the ground. Was a good test of my cars ability to handle not so good weather and the roads were actually pretty clear. I made a short trip to the pharmacy to pick up a refill and get a few other necessities. Also made a very brief stop by Target. Then came home and put my pajamas back on. :)

Sister and niece have ventured out to explore an IKEA somewhere to the south of us. Niece is getting a bedroom make-over for Christmas and wanted to go pick out her new bed. So for now the house is quiet with just me Artemis and Z. Z has not needed to go out yet, so we haven't seen her reaction to snow. She was originally rescued from South Carolina, so I'm not sure if she's experienced snow or not. Right now she is perfectly content to snore on her comfy bed. I hope all my friends in the US enjoy their Thanksgiving holidays and that said holidays are not stressful (as I know they can be). Hope all my friends outside of the US are having a good and non-stressful week as well. :)
alee_grrl: Picture of a variety of spoons, text reads "never enough spoons" (never enough spoons)
Sometimes you do not realize how badly you've looted your spoon drawer until you run out of all the spoons. This is essentially what has happened to me and why I have not been online or posting much. In the past few months I have (understandably) used up all of my emotional and social spoons and most if not all of my physical spoons. I'm much better at recognizing my physical limits than my social and emotional limits, which can be problematic, though I've gotten better at recognizing all of those limits over the years.

When I think about it I also realize that the last few months involved me needing to be very social. And while I had some downtime where I could just be myself and recoup some spoons, it wasn't a whole lot. So my generation of spoons did not match in any way, shape, or form my use of spoons. This means that now I am foggy, exhausted, and really not much in the mood to be social. I keep informing my brain weasels that this is all very normal for a grieving individual, and not an indication that I am doing something wrong health wise or that something is flaring up.

I am enjoying my trip to Vermont and my heart family is filled with other introverts, which means that we can all sit around and do our own thing and not feel like we have to entertain each other. So that has been nice. I did manage to pull up enough spoons to stop by my former law school and see some of my friends there, which was nice despite being a bit tiring.

I saw my Lyme doctor. CW: health and medical discussion )

Now I'm going to go run some errands and then start rounding things up so that I can leave out in the morning.
alee_grrl: Bruce Willis holding coffee cup.  Text reads: Coffee fail....caffiene levels dangeriously low (coffee fail)
This post is mostly going to be a bit of whinging and venting re: my own health. I just needed to get the frustrations/feelings out. Please feel free to skip if low on spoons.CW: Lyme disease treatment, diet frustrations, internalized ableism )

In other news, my father is doing as well as one can. discussion of parental illness )
alee_grrl: Captain America clutching his stomach, reads "right in the feels" (feels)
This is going to be a seriously hard post for me to write. The past week has been a doozy and come with some very not good news that rocked my small law school community to the core. Most important for those who may not read the whole post: I am doing okay, and coping far, far better than I had expected considering all the change and stress of this year.

I'm just going to throw all the content warnings on here for good measure. If you are low on spoons, particularly emotional ones, please feel free to skip this post. I'm going to break this into the three sections mentioned in the title with content warnings on each section.

The Good
We'll start with The Good because that is a nice thing to talk about. I'm going to put this under a cut tag not just for length, but also because I know some of my friends may not have spoons to read about any medical stuff, even stuff with happier outcomes, and other may wish to avoid discussions of food issues. CW: Discussion of medications, Lyme treatment, and food/dietary frustrations and realizations; also brief mention of dental stuff at end of section )

The Bad
CW: Hospitalization of sick extended chosen family member, and discussions of medical tests and treatments post stroke )

The Seriously Ugly
CW: Suicidal depression, death of a mentor/professor )

I'm doing what I need to do to take care of myself, including compiling lists of resources and sharing them on various social media sites. I also have plans to go see "Guardians of the Galaxy" tonight. If you have good thoughts and energy to spare, please send them out to Professor Hanna's family because I cannot even imagine how hard this must be for them. Some of the resources I've found. )
alee_grrl: Black and white kitty peeking up out of a pink box.  Text above reads "Lurk" (lurk)
I'm doing so-so. Tired and a bit out of it, but better than I was earlier in the week. I am not always sure what to include in content/trigger warnings. Please know that you can always tell me if something triggers you or you would prefer something go under a cut tag for any reason. CW: discussion of health issues, primarily med interactions; mentions of childhood trauma and toxic parental units; employment related stress and firings (not me, I'm still employed) )

For those wondering, Z is doing quite well and coming back into her own as a dog. My sister has been doing amazing amounts of work with her (training in morning and evening every day--and throughout the day when opportunity presents itself). When I have spoons I do some training with her too. We've had great fun doing the ping-pong game where my sister and I sit on opposite sides of a room and practice here, sit, wait and find. She is starting to show more of her own personality, and she is going to fit right in with the rest of the family--she's smart and got a stubborn streak a mile wide. She's comfortable enough that we have to watch her or she'll swipe the cat's wet food at dinner (she used to be too scared to approach the cat when he was eating). We've found a good trainer to come in and work one on one with Z and my niece when niece returns from her dad's in early August. This will help niece bond with Z and make everyone worry less about niece walking Z. Seventy-pounds of muscle can pull an unsuspecting 13 year old off her feet pretty quickly (hell a seventy-pound dog can pull a full-grown adult off their feet if they aren't careful).

So that is what is going on in my world. All in all I'm doing okay, which is not so bad considering. I'm happy that I'm even remotely functioning. I'm super thankful for having the most-awesome support network and friendships even if I haven't felt much like talking to anyone this week. I know they're there, and that makes a world of difference.

Updates

Jun. 15th, 2014 02:22 pm
alee_grrl: Rainbow colored stylized picture of a thoughtful looking pitbull (thoughtful pitbull)
Long post is long. Short of it is that we are all settling in and doing ok. CW: Anxiety discussion (both dog and human), brief mentions of bodily functions (dog), usual mentions of health stuff )

Right now I'm enjoying the fact that it is cool enough to have the back door open to only the screen and let the breeze come through. E is doing homework, Z is sleeping as is Artemis, and Em has gone to her dad's for the summer so the house is bizarrely quiet. Our house is usually quiet and calm, even when Em is home. We're a low energy household, which is probably really good for Z. I know its good for me. :)

On a whim I decided to put all the music I have on my computer into a single playlist and hit shuffle. I left out audio books and Christmas music. It's an accumulation of almost two decades. I got my first cds at 16, and I've ripped all my favorite cds to digital file format over the years. The list is over 5,000 songs and about 343 hours worth of music. An interesting variety. It's kind of fun to just hit shuffle. I had completely forgotten about some of these songs.

I did all the stuff I had to do yesterday. So today I can just relax. Hope everyone else is having as relaxing a day possible.
alee_grrl: From Fantasia: Demon mountain from Night on Bald Mountain (bald mountain)
I am sitting here, awake much later than I should be, drinking a cup of unsweetened chocolate soy milk and attempting to calm my brain and body's anxiety response via humor and journaling (and some form of calories that is not likely to add to the anxiety nausea). I do not have my glasses on and have taken my bed-time meds. So if this makes little sense or contains huge typos, I apologize. But typing is helping me calm down. So typing it is.

TW: Financial related anxiety; big honkin' decision making anxiety )

Typing this out seems to have helped calm the terror-induced brain freeze, anxiety-feedback loop that was threatening to kick in. So yay! Mission accomplished.

Advice, hugs, good thoughts, and whatnot are all accepted. A case of whatnot can be very amusing afterall, and if it contains a few extra spoons then all the better, because i am so going to need all the brain and emotional spoons I can find and borrow on Saturday. Sunday I will sleep.
alee_grrl: Lyme disease Awareness, better treatment, more funding, no more lies, accurate testing, Lyme literate Drs, patient right (lyme awareness)
As most of you know I've been in treatment for my Lyme for about four years. One problem with being further along with treatment is that you can be less vigilant with certain protocols because you have been doing it for a while. content warning: discussion of medical treatment (meds and med reactions), mention of skin issues, and food sensitivities )
alee_grrl: A kitty peeking out from between a stack of books and a cup of coffee. (Default)
I was supposed to go to Pennsylvania for the weekend for a friend's bridal shower and bachellorette party. I was very stressed and worried about this because it would have meant a second weekend traveling (last weekend was travel to Vermont to see Lyme Doc) and being out and about when I have been very low on spoons, very stressed by new job, and generally not feeling well. I was also supposed to be one of her bridesmaids, a thing that has been worrying me greatly because my ability to stand for long periods of time is pretty much nil. After really thinking about things I called my friend and let her know that I had been sick and would not be able to come this weekend, and also talked to her about my concerns regarding being a bridesmaid. She was very understanding.

TW: Discussions of medical issues, including anxiety and depression, and discussion of dietary restrictions )

Some good things:
  • Getting to spend time with Vermont family

  • My teenage niece and nephew wanting to spend time with me, and getting to have wonderful meandering discussions with them

  • Re-reading a favorite book (will try to find spoons to post about it separately)

  • Flowers (the pollen may make me sneeze, but seeing color is lovely)

  • The many amazing posts at [community profile] poetree this week


If I have spoons I may go see the new Captain America movie this weekend, because it looks awesome and well worth paying theater prices for.
alee_grrl: Picture of a variety of spoons, text reads "never enough spoons" (never enough spoons)
This week was a long one and I am very low on spoons. Herxes are not so fun, though seem to be a necessary evil (byproduct of killing Lyme spirochetes). Yesterday evening was rough. I didn't realize how much I was hurting til I got home and had a good cry. Sleep helped. I'm doing okay today, though still not very up to writing much. Have been watching videos, reading fanfic, and listening to music.

[personal profile] jelazakazone shared this video conversation with the Sleepy Hollow cast. I highly recommend watching it even if you've never seen the show and have no intention of watching the show. The chemistry between the actors is fabulous and they are all so adorable and funny. Warning: Drinking while watching this video may be dangerous to your health.

Watching the above video led me to this amazing interview with Sirs Ian McKellan and Patrick Stewart. Seriously, an hour and a half of two adorable old friends discussing their careers, acting as a craft, favorite/easiest/most difficult Shakespearean roles, how they met, charities they support, and more.

I may feel kind of crummy today, but I am thankful for good friends who diligently help me battle my demons of doubt; warm and comfortable friends; soft, purring kitties; and the internets, because it provides good distractions and connects me to my friends.
alee_grrl: Candle burning next to mirror in a window sill with snow seen through the window (Winter candle)
TW: travel stress and vague mentions of health issues )

tl;dr version--Travel was exhausting and crazy, and airlines kind of suck. My visit with Lyme doc went well and he's happy with my progress. So forward we shall go. My Vermont family is awesome and I loved getting to spend some time with them. The whole trip used up way more spoons than I had expected.

I'm scheduled to start the bar prep course today and I do not want to get behind, so I'm going to tackle what I can today. I may not be online a whole lot in the interim (bar prep is a full time job in many ways). But I am thinking of all my amazing friends here, wishing you well, and missing you. <3
alee_grrl: miniature pumpkin surrounded by fall leaves (pumpkin leaves)
Have been up and down a bit this past week. Mostly things are going well and I had a lovely birthday last week. Got a stomach bug mid-week, which sucked, but am pretty much recovered from that. Got the results of my most recent blood work...and low and behold some things were out of wack. :/ Discussion of health stuff, mental and physical )

Anyway, it has been kind of a dizzying week and I am very, very glad to have a four day weekend. I do have some things I must do this weekend. ::glares at bar exam application:: But I also have some fun, relaxing things planned like watching the shows I didn't get to see in the last few weeks. I'm looking forward to the ridiculous fannish goodness of the 50th Anniversary episode of Dr. Who (after 50 years anyone working on the show counts as a fan and the work as a fan-work in my humble opinion). Might go see Catching Fire with the family on Sunday. So there will be fun-times in with the filling out of forms.

Right now I am off to bed. For my fellow U.S. residents (and American ex-pats or those related to Americans and celebrating Thanksgiving), I wish you a happy and safe Thanksgiving. For my Jewish friends, may you have a happy and blessed Hanukkah. Otherwise may you have a bright rest of the week and a good weekend. Much love to everyone.
alee_grrl: Picture of a variety of spoons, text reads "never enough spoons" (never enough spoons)
Brief discussion of medical stuff. )

Fe: a haikai

limbs slow and heavy
thought fragments bleed through cotton
stuffed brain, bruised bags shine

against pale skin. Not zombie.
Just iron deficient.
alee_grrl: Disney's Cheshire Cat.  Text: You may have noticed that I'm not all there myself. (cheshire cat)
So I recently discovered the podcast series Welcome to Nightvale (all episodes available for free). I listened to the first two episodes on my way home yesterday, and the third and fourth on my way home today. It is a delightfully odd and creepy show, with wry humor and interesting music (otherwise known as "the weather" on the show). The narrator is the cool, and calm Cecil, who is madly in love with the visiting scientist, Carlos (or at least Carlos's perfect hair). But what made me rewind episode three and practically squee with delight was that Cecil also has Lyme disease! Making this the first fictional character that I have encountered who has Lyme disease. He mentions it when discussing the arrival in town of a creeping fear. He mentions that he has been paralyzed and afraid to speak, for fear that they may be his last words and quickly follows this report with an "I'm also battling Lyme." This made me laugh quite a bit because this sort of anxiety has been a common experience for me.

I'm going to need some Night Vale icons, clearly. :D
alee_grrl: Coulson on hold with Natasha, text is the first line of chorus from "Girl From Ipanema" (coulson 1)
It's actually cooler today than it was yesterday, which is a very good thing because our air conditioning broke yesterday. Now I've lived in places that were hot, and humid, without air conditioning, but damn having it is nice. We've done all the things that one can do, and are surviving just fine. It's just an annoyance. But hey, it does remind me of all the things I have to be grateful for.

I'm doing pretty well (very well actually, certainly much better than the past few weeks), which means it will be time for an increase of antibiotics soon. TW: Discusion of medical symptoms (including nausea and related issues), medication reactions, and health things )

I had enough spoons to get errands run after work yesterday (got my car inspected, got my hair cut and treated myself to dinner out). This is amazing since I normally have just enough energy left after work to come home and poke at dinner before going to bed at 9:00. I came home, took a cool shower after discovering the air conditioner was broken, went to bed about 9:30 (the basement was cool enough for sleeping, and the couch down there is comfy), and was able to get up early this morning to go run more errands. Finished the car inspection things (there were a couple of things that needed fixing to pass inspection though thankfully nothing major). Then I spent the rest of my morning at the DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles for my non-US based friends). I have switched my driver's license, car title and registration so that I am now officially a legal resident of Virginia. I am very proud of myself for getting this all done today. The DMV takes a lot of spoons. It's a lot of time standing in lines with others who would rather be anywhere else on their day off. I read fanfic, which was nice. Yay for my smartphone. :D Even more impressive was that I was able to manage a trip to Wegman's (the Disneyland of grocery stores--cool but over priced and over stimulating) for the tortilla's I can eat. Came home, took another cool shower, and have been sitting quietly in front of the fan since. Remarkably feeling okay, if a little tired. Which is wonderful, even if it means I will have to increase my antibiotics and continue the roller coaster of treatment soon. I will enjoy the moment rather than worry about what is to come. Today I feel good and that is awesome. Think I'll go watch a movie in the basement.

ETA: The a/c repair person will be by tomorrow morning. So it should not be too terribly long we will have to go without.
alee_grrl: Eddie Izzard pointing at his head.  Text: In my Mind. (eddie izzard)
Just before the move I had gotten to a point in life and treatment where I was fairly certain of my own ability level and when to say "I don't think I'm going to have the spoons for that." I lived alone, which had its downsides as well as its perks, and my schedule was very flexible.

I may have made the mistake of thinking that because I had it figured out there, I would also have it figured out here, completely forgetting that the two situations are absolutely different and the daily spoon requirements and tasks were also going to be absolutely different. I have been trying to re-learn my own boundaries, and it is not always easy. Add in two antibiotics that affect the neurological aspects of Lyme, including the depression, anxiety, dizziness, and brain fog, and life is a wee bit frustrating at the moment. The duo will make those symptoms much better in the long run, but in the short run it makes them much worse. Lyme treatment works a lot like cleaning your house. It always gets way messier before you're done. ::headdesk::

Further ramblings/whining on anxiety, brain demons/weasels/those insidious little voices of doubt and doom )

So anyway, that's what is going on with me. I apologize for not being around much. It will probably be a little while before I figure out proper spoon management for this new part of my life.
alee_grrl: Bruce Willis holding coffee cup.  Text reads: Coffee fail....caffiene levels dangeriously low (coffee fail)
And I cannot seem to focus. TW: discussion of medical symptoms )

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alee_grrl: A kitty peeking out from between a stack of books and a cup of coffee. (Default)
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