Category Archives: stress


Grief, Stress, and fighting your way out of darkness

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It’s really hard being in a dark place. It’s hard to think. It’s hard to function. It’s hard to BE. I knew grief was going to be hard. Believe me. I watch people (face to face and virtually) and I … Continue reading

Thirty Something Days Until Vacation

It’s January.

It’s snowing very lightly. It’s 26 degrees Fahrenheit .

Sorcerer Radio is on my my Echo (I really really want to thank my boss for not getting me a gift card this year. I’m in love with Alexa).

Coffee is… well… everywhere…

Gym is done for the day yesterday (I clocked 7 miles on my “I need 4 miles today” training schedule… today is 11.5… yay). If I follow my Google Pedometer plan, I’ll hit 13.3. Next Sunday the high is supposed to be 18. I’m really really really glad it’s not supposed to be a training day and that we will likely ‘only’ end up at the gym.

In 30 something days we fly to Disney. I think I honestly have to say that for once I’m actually ready for a race (or three). I’ve been watching people post on their races from this weekend (WDW marathon weekend) and I’m so jealous. I never in my life thought I would be looking at a marathon racer and thinking… maybe…

It’s hard to believe that just about a year ago I was watching people run a RAGNAR on From Fat To The Finish Line thinking that I would love to be able to maybe possibly some day do that… but that I would never ever be able to get to the fitness level that they were able to do. I don’t know if I will ever be able to quite get THERE… but… maybe… But here I am, at goal weight (still… I weigh myself almost every morning just to make sure… and I need to lose at least 5 pounds before Disney to give myself a little buffer) and actually hitting a little better than the goal I set for myself for my races, time wise. Maybe I’m okay.

It’s been really stressful lately and I can tell that it’s been playing havoc with my body. A week out from my last infusion and I’m feeling way way more human (otherwise I wouldn’t even be considering a half marathon distance today) but my body feels off. I know that the stress is poking me in the ribs (literally). I have this interesting bump on my elbow. Six months ago my PCP told me it was just a little cyst and it would be fine. Except it’s gotten bigger… and it’s where I rest my elbow on my chair arms or my desk so it’s kind of problematic. So I engaged my Rheumy… who sent me for X-rays (nothing… duh… it soft tissue) who sent me to ortho… who said huh… PCP? Oh wait… I guess we can do an ultrasound and make you an appointment with our ortho-rheumy-surgeon…. it’s probably a cyst.

It’s not a cyst. It’s, apparently, a subcutaneous thickening without a discrete cyst. Not a cyst. Not an RA nodule. MAYBE this could be the result of irritation to the tissue… maybe… or maybe this pea sized lump in my elbow could be my imagination or something… who knows. I almost don’t want to go see the surgeon on Wednesday. I’m terrified at this point. There are things it could be. Surgery would mean 4 weeks no infusion, then surgery then two weeks more no infusion. It would be 6 – 8 weeks without orencia. I don’t know if maybe I just don’t want to keep the bump. The devil you have and all that… but I’m scared.

So yeah, stress.

And I have three races in about 6 weeks from today (half is 6 weeks from today, 10k from yesterday and 5k from Friday). Surgery doesn’t fit into my plans right now.

If something is really wrong, how will I take care of Bear? How will I hold my world together?

Just keep swimming

One day at a time

one breath at a time

For now, it will be daylight soon. Time to work, a little, on my playlists for my races… and pull together a backpack for my ‘run’… I need to get my Starbucks free for January coffee while I’m out… and take some water and some Milk Duds along for the walk. Wish me luck…

Love and Light


Stress… change… parties… doctors… and taking a deep breath

This gallery contains 4 photos.

O-Dark-Thirty… listening to iHeart radio on the Echo Dot my boss got me for Christmas. I was kind of looking for a gift card, but I’ve decided I really like this option better. I don’t have to use my phone … Continue reading

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.

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.

Good Stress

A Day At The ZooStress is stress, even good stress (the stress of having your little boy back where you can hug him for example) is still stress.

I’m sitting here earlyish (Technically way too late for me to be sitting here writing, but I’ve been kind of resting when I need to be resting) with the windows wide open. Stephen King is speaking to me from the Bachman Book “Roadwork” through the computer speakers. The cat is stalking the birds and squirrels through the open window. Squirrel girl is sleeping quietly on the floor a few feet away. Monkey Butt is snoring softly in the living room (he never did sleep in his room). It’s Butler Fair day.

I’m wrapped in my wool hooded shawl and my fingerless gloves warming my fingers. It’s 54 degrees and the damp chill is making my fingers ache.
It’s been a wonderful week. I’ve got pictures, and hugs, and memories of all of us together to hold me through the next few months until my little boy comes back to visit again. Maybe next time he will bring his partner with him.

In a couple days I go back to worrying and touching base with him every couple days, if not every day. I worry about the dough machine eating parts of him. I worry about him taking his pills or not taking his pills. I worry about narrow minded people jumping him when he walks in the dark. I’m the mom. I worry.

It has been an amazingly wonderful week. Peaceful if a little busy and planned. And I’m feeling it. I’ve slept way more than I would like to have slept. I’ve taken migraine pills for the first time in a few months. I’ve taken more achey breaky pills than I like and I’ve been using my Voltaren Gel a little more like hand cream (liberally) than like achey cream.

I’m also running (again) on approaching 5 weeks on my 4 week infusions. I’m thinking that I’m probably going to keep up the five weeks to save a little on bills towards the end of the year… and because there is every chance that I’m going to be in Brazil for week four next time. It seems like there is always something that comes up when I’m supposed to get my infusion. Something that is more important and that gets in the way. Last time it was Ecuador. This time it was Adam. Next time it will be Brazil. I think as long as I keep being able to stave off the aches with a couple Napproxin and some Voltaren, I will not push too much to keep the four week schedule that it’s supposed to be.

This week I have realized that “they” are right (whoever they are) about stress being stress and good stress having an impact on your body the same as bad stress does. By the end of the day (and they have been fun and wonderful days) my body reminds me kind of loudly that I shouldn’t forget that I have RA and I need to save some spoons. I’ve been borrowing on spoons for the next couple weeks. I’m going to need to catch up. And I will.

It’s been so much worth taking the extra naps and sleeping in past when I’m usually up writing. I’ve been remembering that sometimes there are more important things to take the time to do other than just keeping on keeping on.

And Sunday morning is coming way too fast.


Night Creeps In

I’m sitting on the bedroom floor. Tv turned way quiet. Blankets and my trusty afghan piled around me. I’ll bet she never dreamed those years ago when she crocheted it all together how much use it would get… How much … Continue reading


Ah Elusive Sleep…

Up and not able to fall back asleep at mumblemumble o’clock in the morning… My mind races… my wrist is tender… my toes and fingers ache.  I’m thinking taking one of the post-op percocet would be wonderful, just to help … Continue reading


You Should Do Yoga

I have been thinking about a post I read on a Facebook group this week.  Someone with RA was told that they should do Yoga. I’ve been thinking this week.  I have taken the corporate offered Yoga class for the … Continue reading


Hot Coffee, Creativity, and Stress…

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I’m up.  I’m achey and tired (slept on the floor with the dog curled up next to me being a pain in the butt… but a happy pain in the butt.. because I’m “spring cleaning” my closet and right now … Continue reading

Some Days Are Diamonds

Sorry Kim… another song title… but today I’m grasping at straws for how to put anything.

The heat is on 70… The office door is shut (It’s a work from home day) so the heat stays in the office… My fingers and Toes are freezing… I have on 2 hoodies… and I’m nursing coffee and oatmeal.  It is 30 outside but I’m pretty sure that isn’t anything to do with it.  When I walked Squirrel into the doctor’s office I wasn’t hardly cold at all and I wasn’t wearing my jacket or anything…

Stress is an amazing thing.

Today hasn’t ACTUALLY been so much of a diamond.

Squirrel has been following her blood sugar because she has been feeling really really weird and has been showing some of the symptoms of high blood sugar.  I’ve been helping track everything because something just isn’t right… I’m not sure what, but something isn’t.

I am SO tired of the doctor telling me that the tiny dose that she takes twice a day of her lamictal is causing her breathing problems and major headaches after only taking it for 4 months.  Sometimes side effects can happen after a long long time.  Sometimes… Sometimes… Sometimes… Sometimes…

We should be using the meters that THEY use to take readings… because the EIGHT times they TRIED to take the reading with the first meter never did work AT ALL and the second meter took three times to get it to read?  Great… OH BOY…

Squirrel has been asleep for 5 hours… she has eaten a banana today… the black and blue mark from right about Christmas time hasn’t healed yet.  She feels like crap.  But she is at least resting and she should be awake to eat.

Me… I feel like someone beat the crap out of me.  When this kind of stress hits I hurt everywhere… the inflammation fights back and I just feel yuk.  But I’m really glad that I was having a work from home day today so I could be there for her… to support her and to hold her up (metaphorically)