Monthly Archives: March 2015

Brushing My Hair

20150314_141350As often as not, we of the great RA club, hands have issues.  Sometimes they hurt.  Sometimes they are just really tired, or have limited range of motion.  Regardless of why or what or how, hands tend to be a little more of an issue than some other pieces and parts.

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While being a part of the club also often means that (thanks often times to the drugs that work to keep the rampant inflammation in check) we might have thinning hair, it is important that we can work to maintain at least appearances the best we can.  You really do feel better if you can find a way to make yourself look a little more human.

Something I’ve always enjoyed doing is brushing my hair.  I also like brushing my kids’ hair but they are kind of getting old enough that they don’t need me to do that for them anymore.

I have discovered the usefulness of animal brushes.  Not all brushes are easy on my hands, but the ones that don’t actually have “normal” handles are much easier on my hands and wrists.  Some of them remind me a lot of the horse brushes we used to use to brush out the horses when I was growing up.  Those brushes are REALLY big, compared to a human head, but the idea is really neat.  You put your hand inside the strap and you don’t have to actually hold onto anything. The other alternative (the ones I found this morning that are a lot like the one that my daughter lost in Sequine when she went for drill team) has a kind of handle on the back of the brush that fits between two fingers on your hand and you don’t have to hold onto them at all.

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Granted, these brushes aren’t cheap.  The blue ones are <insert OOOOOOOOoooooo here> are Martha Stewart Pets brushes and are 13 dollars a piece at PetSmart.  The others are ConAir Pro Dog brushes. They are smaller and lighter and roughly half the price.

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There are several different styles, several different “tooth” styles that are effective on different styles of hair.  Today one I found was Boar Bristle (with Nylon) and it feels really comfortable.  One of the ConAir ones that I found today was just srpingy wire and I thought it was probably going to be too hard on my head.  I might be wrong, but I really didn’t want to take the chance.  I have a variety now, some I can just toss in my bag when I go to work or on a run.

While I do understand that there are people who have a very great aversion to combing their hair with a dog brush even if it has never been through a dog’s coat, I also know that I’m learning more and more that I need to not worry about what people think about what I do.

These brushes help even when I’m having big issues with my fingers.  I’ve used all of them today, to see the differences.  I’m glad I found them.  I’ve been looking for the replacement brushes since 2011 when my last one went missing.  They help.  And they are very much worth the money I spent to be able to comfortably brush my hair.

At least they are worth considering if you are willing to take the chance.

What? It’s Only Wednesday?!?!

First  RobinIt’s been a really long week, and it’s only Wednesday.

This morning I am sitting wrapping cold hands around my big handled Disney mug of coffee.  And I’m trying to figure out if it REALLY is only Wednesday.  I’m pretty sure it is.  No matter how many times I look at the computer or my phone or my watch, I can’t get any of them to say it is later than Wednesday.

I went to sleep at 6:30 last night.  I was utterly exhausted.  It’s been a long week.

Monday I worked till noon then took my little (okay okay… he’s 23 and 6 feet tall, he’s still my little boy) to Cleveland Clinic for his Tilt Table Test.  It was 4 hours of sitting in the waiting room trying to figure out how to do Entrelac Tunisian crochet.  I really like the pattern but I’m still working out the details or turning around tto do the “next” row. It is challenging enough that it will keep me thinking for a while.

Now comes the waiting game to get the results of the test…

Got home to find out my canine baby wasn’t peeing (again).  We tried everything to get her to pee and she wouldn’t/couldn’t.  The bladder stones that she’s been peeing out… a couple got big enough that they wouldn’t pass on their own.  Last year (March apparently isn’t fabulous) it was emergency surgery to the tune of $4000 to save her life then.  I was sure we weren’t going to be able to save her this time.  I spent Monday night crying myself to sleep and waking up to check on her and repeating the process.  She didn’t pee through the night and by first light she was so uncomfortable that she walked around the house every 4 steps trying to pee and not being able to.

So Peanut and I took a trip to Akron to her emergency vet to see what we could do.  It was one of the longest days I’ve ever spent.  They felt around (external as well as a rectal exam) and felt the stones… they put her back in her cage and all of a sudden (the rectal exam dislodged it just enough) she peed out the most massive stone I’ve seen.  More crying (this time in relief that I wasn’t going to have to watch my hairy little baby die) and a long talk with the vet.  There were more stones… more stones of hugeness size… and she WOULD need surgery, just would it be emergency there (it’s an emergency pet hospital, and emergency is all they do even if it’s not) or at my vet.  I like my vet, and I knew not emergency would be less than half the price (turns out a quarter of the price).

So… off we go, back to home town to see HER vet (who thank goodness had open hours yesterday).  I like Peanut’s vet.  She reminds me a lot of Mrs Sutherland from back home… but her diction is way better.  We discussed her diet and it turns out that Hills Science Diet isn’t the only brand that has the kind of food that will help prevent the stones.  Royal Canin does too and THIS stuff (both the dry and the canned) Peanut snarfs down like she’s starving.  Last night I chalked it up to the fact that she was really hungry and needed to eat but this morning it was a repeat of snarfage.  Looks like I’m not going to have to doctor dog food for her and make it less efficacious.  So we are on a rather pricey diet now, but not as pricey as surgery.  She still has to have the couple of stones that are still in her bladder and that are still big enough she probably can’t pass them on her own removed. March 18 we will be having surgery 1/4 of a mile (through the hundred acre woods behind our house) from home.

PetSmart for the dog food on the way to pick up the boys at school and Amandya at the Dr’s office… off to get Amandya’s paperwork ready for her new job at Vitamix (I hope with all my heart that she makes it there with the temp agency and gets hired on full time… it will be so good for her).

I found (at PetSmart) brushes that I love.  They are ALMOST what Amandya lost at Seguine that I have been hunting for nearly 3 years to find a replacement for.  I will post pictures and an explanation on an upcoming piece, I promise (this morning requires more writing).

And last night, I crashed and burned.  I can’t believe how exhausted I was.
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And today is a grand new day.  I got up and fed the besties (go figure, they both like the obscenely expensive food), made a cup of coffee and used my big handled cup to warm my fingers, and now I’m ready to start my day.  I know it will be a long day… I have to stay later tonight for Happy Hour with my project team… but it IS wings and I can try not to back myself into a corner but to talk to the team.  I really don’t do social situations much, but it is for the greater good.