Grateful

It’s Thanksgiving again.

I’m sitting at the kitchen table, Hallmark Yule Log is on… Christmas music, dogs, pigs, cats and ducks are enjoying a toasty fire. It’s still way early. I’ve got a cup of hot coffee and four dogs by my side. It’s quiet… at least until they decide to start horseplaying with each other.

One of us is far away this year. He is being very missed.

Sunday was “Thanksgiving” in my house. We had 22 people around the table all enjoying each other’s company. Today will be ham and yams and stuffing and potatoes. Has to be early because squirrel girl works retail and has to be at work for 12 hours starting at 4 pm. Once upon a time it was a day to spend with family. Now it’s a day to spend.

There have been times over the past year when I have been terrified that we would not all make it to this time this year. There will be many more times that I am terrified that we won’t all make it to next year at this time.

It’s been an enlightening year.

I’ve discovered just how broken everyone is and just how each person’s brokenness can complete everyone else’s. I’ve learned that I’m not the only one who has been feeling so much less than adequate and I’ve been learning that it’s okay to open up even when you are terrified. Sometimes it’s hard to remember that people are just people.

I’ve discovered how much I can miss a soul that was a nearly constant companion for well over a decade. Peanut was such a precious little girl and I miss her scratching at the side of the bed when it was time to go outside. I miss her snuffling. I miss her so gentle nature. I get that she is no longer in pain and she can eat all of the nummy white bits that she wants at the other side of the rainbow bridge, but she still is missed and I still talk to her daily.

I’ve discovered how much I can love the cast offs, the misfits, the other beautiful souls that other people have discarded. Pain changes people. I think pain changes animals, too.

I have learned that depression and stress can have a hugely horrible effect on how much you care about what you do to yourself and how much care you take of yourself. I’ve learned that I need to find the time and the place in my day… in my whatever… to take care of myself because sometimes it is easy to forget that your why has to be bigger than your but.

I’ve found treasure in simple things. I guess maybe not entirely simple, but simpler. Pictures… coffee cups given just because… a hat that warms not only the head but the heart… surprise cards that come and bring happy tears… a set of dishes that came from their own adventures… a box of buttons…

I’m so grateful for today.

I’m grateful for all of the todays.

I’m scared of the tomorrows and what tomorrow may bring.

But for now, I have today. I have coffee. I have the wind and the heat and the music. I have love.

Love and Light
AprilJoy
11/28/2019

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Believe

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When you realize just how much you over extended yourself

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When you finally stop giving a d@*& what people think

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Akron Great Pumpkin Run Review… Just my race

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RA uses a weighted blanket

So, I had done quite a bit of research on weighted blankets. I toyed with the idea, for a while, or trying to make my own… but… yeah… maybe not so much.

Yesterday I spent most of the day trying to figure out how to cope with stress… anxiety… life… and I realized that I had read in the past about weighted blankets and how they can help in life.

I don’t know how much store I put in what articles say… but… I also know that my niece has one and loves it but is thinking she might be not quite heavy enough… and that she wants a heavier one. My sister is thinking about buying one. That speaks way more than simply googling it all up.

There are many studies that people with RA hurt more when they don’t sleep well and that when they hurt they don’t sleep well so they hurt when they don’t sleep well. It’s an ugly circle. It’s also something that I can attest to personally.

So… last night I bought my first weighted blanket. And last night I used my first weighted blanket.

It’s different. First night… It’s not good… It’s not bad… It’s different. I didn’t sleep completely well. It was warmer than I thought it would be. The 15 pounds left me feeling like I had… well… lifted weights. It felt good but it was heavier than I thought it would be. I know that it will feel better and better. I know that to such a degree that I’m going to figure out a way to buy one that is lighter to use as a shawl when I need it with me.

I think I’m going to need it with me.

I think it will help when my hands ache. And my hands ache… often as not.

Weighted blankets are supposed to help with anxiety. I think that is going to be a big thing for me coming too.

I think this will start to be a saga.

AprilJoy

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Finding the right doctor.

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Morning Coffee August 22, 2019

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On NOT being able to see the doctor…

So… Wednesday is infusion day again. I’m SO looking forward to being on the receiving end again. I can always tell when I’m getting close. My hands ache… my feet ache… I’m physically exhausted. There are months when right before infusion it is all I can do to stay awake at work. And if we happen to have to drive on the less than stellar roads… there are times I toy with how much it would add time to the drive if I opted to get out and walk. Bear thinks I’m finding fault with his driving. I’m not. I know that it is my body being all pissed at me.

Some people figure that, since I’m down 50 pounds, I shouldn’t feel as shitty when it is infusion time.

Wrong

I don’t hurt as bad when I do races (depending on where it is in my infusion ‘that time of the month’… ironic that I look forward to that time of the month since I had my hysterectomy… when I race). My hips don’t scream. My knees either. I’ve actually been toying with trying to run in my hobbit feet again since I am less heavy. But when the Orencia is wearing off… I still feel it.

And, yes, I know I’m way more crabby… bitchy… short tempered… when I’m nearing infusion day. I’m way less apt to shrug off the BS. I have gotten better about not saying what’s running through my brain… but it is way way more apt to be running through my brain now.

But what has really started to get to me… Cleveland Clinic has decided that I no longer ‘have to’ (read get to) see my doctor’s physician’s assistant every time I have an infusion.

Before, I HAD to see her or I couldn’t get my infusion. Sometimes that was a bit problematic (particularly because they are ALWAYS short staffed and they don’t usually have coverage for vacations) when my 4 weeks ended up landing on when someone was out of the office. I should be relieved that I don’t have to work around her schedule. But… now I can only see the PA once a quarter and my actual doctor once a year.

I am thinking there might be some interesting middle ground here. I mean… on one hand I don’t have to worry about my appointments coinciding with vacations. But I do have to worry about the fact that now they have scheduled my PA and my Dr to be at three other locations that they didn’t used to cover. That means that if I happen to actually need to see someone, my best shot is likely to be holding my fingers up to my phone camera so someone in a web-ex can say…hm… yep… you have fingers.

The “second best hospital in the country” has a funny way of showing that patients matter a tenth as much as $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$.

Yeah… I realize that I’m bitchy. See above… my hands hurt enough today that they are making my stomach feel crappy.

Sigh

Love and Light
April
July 29, 2019

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