Summer Was A Bummer… But Will Fall Have It All?

Hi everyone! I’m crawling out of my hidey-hole to check in. It has been a wicked busy summer here in Florida! 

We began our summer with Hubby’s health issues taking priority. He developed a diabetic foot ulcer on his right big toe. It was deep and ugly, infected and stinky to boot. He’s been completely non-weight bearing on his right foot since July. Our weekly pilgrimages to Sarasota to the wound center are tiring, and I’d be fibbing big time if I said this hasn’t affected me, too. 

My health has been okay on the surface, but I’m suffering with back pain from lugging his wheelchair around from doctor to doctor. The fibromyalgia has been wildly out of control, and my pain specialist hasn’t offered to help beyond recommending the “nerve block” that I should have had last year. But because Hubby is wheelchair bound for most of his day, he could not accompany me to the appointment. Doesn’t that just figure?

In other news, I’ve checked off a HUGE bucket list item this month with the completion of the first draft manuscript for my first romance novel. The creative writing blog I’ve been working on since before my mom’s passing in 2018 has taken off, and with the addition of a truly gifted editor and wordsmith to my blog team, we’ll be working to edit this behemoth of a book. It truly doesn’t have a working title yet, but I’ve been tentatively calling it Generations. With some luck and a lot of hard work, I might look at indie publishers by the beginning of next year. It’s been a very exciting time around here!

I know I’ve written about losing the cat who saved my life, but I’m not sure I’ve introduced you to the little tortie girl who has filled his paws. This is Bella Grace, my semi-permanent hip attachment.

Bella

She loves to play fetch like Pixel used to, and she is as stubborn as they come. But at night, when I’m alone in the living room concentrating on my writing, she’ll come to me and curl up in my arms. She is 110% tortitude, and I love her that way. That is my favorite picture of her, too. 

Besides everything else going on around here, we’ve had a couple of frightening incidents in our home. The first was about a month ago when a short in the electrical box outside our bedroom caused a small fire under the siding. They evacuated our entire building, including our very freaked-out feline charge. The electrical issues now fixed, we’re looking at new windows in our bedroom and living room some time this winter. I can’t wait. 

I should preface this next part by saying we live on the ground floor of a two-floor apartment building. We’ve had exactly three different neighbors upstairs since we’ve been here; two of those have been within the last year. The current neighbors are supposedly two brothers. One works a night shift and is a day sleeper, the other works normal daytime hours. This means, naturally, that there is noise at all hours of the day and night. I have never met either of the brothers, until last night, that is.

We heard a ruckus (doesn’t that make you think of the Breakfast Club?) upstairs; shouting, a loud crash on the floor that sounded like someone falling, and Hubby heard screaming. So I put my shoes on and I intended to go upstairs. I was going to ask them nicely to keep it down. When I opened my door, the commotion was outside; a different neighbor on the steps with a phone, talking to a 911 dispatch. The neighbor who created the noise laid on the deck outside their front door, moaning in obvious pain. A distraught woman cried over him, muttering unintelligible things, but I could make out, “I’ll never forgive myself.” 

I looked around, I’m sure, with a bewildered look, and asked, “What’s going on out here?” I was more than a little annoyed. That was, until the man lying on the deck said, “I’ve been shot in the leg at point-blank range by a .357.” That made the woman cry harder. In the confusion, I heard him say, “She shot me in the leg.” 

I felt sick to my stomach, to be honest. All the “what-ifs” ran through my head at Cat 4 hurricane speed. What if the bullet came through the floor? What if it would have hit one of us? And then later, wondering what type of liability would come from the apartment if someone was killed or shot by accident through a wall or ceiling. 

My opinion on this is probably controversial to some, but I’m going to say it, anyway. I believe in the second amendment, and in the private citizen’s right to own a firearm. But personally, I’ve always been a little squeamish around them. I’ve never owned a gun, and I’ve only seen one up close two or three times. It isn’t the gun I fear; it’s the person with ill intentions behind the trigger, or holding the knife or other weapon, that worries me. 

That said, everything calmed down last night, and after my nerves settled, I felt fine. It’s something I don’t want to repeat. These incidents are getting way too close for my comfort. But rentals are just not available in our area, and affordable ones are even more scarce. We’re stuck in a brand new lease until next year, anyway. Will we move to a different place next year? I’d love to, but it depends on our financial ability to do so. I’m hoping to downsize (much to Hubby’s chagrin) the beginning of next year. Our space issues in this little apartment overwhelm me. 

That’s about all that’s been going on this year. There’s more, but I can’t disclose it. Not yet, anyway. The suspense will just have to keep y’all curious. I know, I’m evil (not really!)

Hopefully, after the book editing gets underway, I can return some attention back here to this poor, neglected blog. If you’d like to see the project I’m working on, you can find it here. I’m getting ready to start my second generation rewrites within the next few days. I’m so excited about it, too!

Stay well, do good. You have my thanks for hanging here, waiting for my next post. I’ll never take you, my readers, for granted. My prayers go with you!

COVID-19 And The Free Market

In many ways, I suppose it’s a good thing I fancy myself a bit of a germaphobe. Long before the appearance of COVID-19 in the States, I began stocking up on alcohol wipes, hand sanitizers, and antiseptic hand wash. If I was even the tiniest bit worried about it and I wasn’t prepared, I’d be rendered housebound in fear from the lack of supplies available in town. 

So where is all this hand sanitizer, alcohol and toilet paper going? A quick look on eBay suggests that people who have scored big-time deals before stores began rationing are making out like bandits. But that is for those who don’t mind throwing down $30 a bottle for Purell. No, that wasn’t a typo.

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Screenshot from eBay Android App

How about rubbing alcohol? Check out this special deal on a bottle of 91% percent isopropyl. 

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Screenshot from eBay Android App

Toilet paper? I have a few amusing deals in this category. Check this out! 

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Screenshot from eBay Android App

Dang, not even Charmin at that low, low price? Cheap, generic sandpaper for $14.95 a roll. Not a pack, a roll. Let that sink in. 

Or this deal, by this enterprising person.

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Screenshot from eBay Android App

 

Yes, you read that correctly. A square of toilet paper. One. A single sheet. And, you don’t get the Sharpie, which adds insult to injury. 

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Screenshot from eBay Android App

At least you get free shipping. But you can take comfort in the fact that three people have purchased one square of TP in the last 24 hours, but only if you were NOT one of those three people.

How about facial tissues? Kleenex, the antiviral kind, the granddaddy of all Kleenex, is available at this fantastic price.

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Screenshot from eBay Android App

What a deal. God bless capitalism. <end sarcasm>

The hysteria over COVID-19 has well surpassed any hurricane prep I have ever seen in my adult life. A friend shared this picture of her local grocery store in the dry ramen aisle. 

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Photo Credit: Rhapsody via Discord at H-E-B Supermarket

Here’s one from the meat counter!  This is impressive. 

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Photo Credit: Rhapsody via Discord and ABC 13 Houston at H-E-B Supermarket

And the bread aisle.

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Photo Credit: Rhapsody via Discord and ABC 13 Houston at H-E-B Supermarket

Not even during Hurricane Irma prep have I seen this kind of hoarding and hysteria. If you are honestly afraid that coronavirus will kill you, why do you need food? Leave some for those of us who simply need to stock our pantries with everyday necessities, please. 

Even Chewy delayed the delivery of our autoship this month because of COVID-19. As far as I am aware, the feline species is not affected by COVID-19. Now, I understand it affects pet owners and that is why delays occur. But Chewy is not a brick and mortar store. They do literally all of their business by mail, so logically it makes zero sense to me why anyone needs to order additional supplies… by mail… for their pets because they might be stuck in a self-quarantine. 

Now, I realize COVID-19 has the potential to be serious and has already killed thousands worldwide. If you live in the United States, please know you are in the absolute best place to be during this pandemic. We have state of the art health care, top insurers have already agreed to waive copays related to COVID-19 and Medicare Advantage plans have made necessary adjustments to their plans to ensure the most vulnerable are cared for. Everyone just needs to step back, take a deep breath and calm down.

All jesting and sarcasm aside, I hope everyone reading this has taken the appropriate precautions for their family. Do practice basic hygiene and disease prevention you already do during cold and flu season. Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds and do so often. And I hope everyone stays healthy and well through the outbreak. And remember, God is in control. He holds each of us in the palm of His hand.

I wish you all well.

I Am Not The Problem!

On Tuesday, a twenty-three-year-old Sarasota, Florida man (and I use that term loosely) gave his nine-month pregnant girlfriend, also twenty-three, a fatal dose of Fentanyl. He now faces two counts of manslaughter. His cry, while his pregnant girlfriend lay unconscious on the floor, was “I went too far.” The local newspaper reported that this young man had no legal access to pain medication and that his girlfriend ‘nagged’ him about her pain from the pregnancy. His first instinct, unbelievably, was to seek illegal, extremely powerful drugs. He allegedly purchased one pill which he split in half. He took one half and gave the rest to her. 

It’s astounding to me that this young man’s first thought was illegal drugs. Not going to the nearest Walgreens or CVS to pick up acetaminophen or ibuprofen, something, ANYTHING but illegal drugs. Something safer for her and the baby. And herein lies the problem with the so-called ‘opioid crisis.’ It’s a mindset. It’s a behavior. This young man is the problem.

Yesterday, I sat in the office of my interventional pain specialist waiting to see my doctor. It was one of the urine drug screenings that is required by law to get the pain medication upon which I rely to keep my pain to a low roar. An easel held a welcome sign for a new doctor in the practice. Under his picture and the list of his rather impressive credentials, a sentence was printed: “Stop opioid dependence before it becomes an addiction.” 

Really? Really?

The sweet lady sitting to my left overheard me talking to Hubby, and she nudged me when she heard me say, “I suppose this is next.” We talked extensively about the injustice that chronic pain patients have been facing since the government has declared war on opioids, and on us by extension. Her story isn’t unlike others I have heard, either from friends or just reading various articles online. And that this is happening to the innocent among us is infuriating. We are NOT the problem.

When I got the inspiration for this column a quick Internet search turned up article after article about overdose deaths from fentanyl in one form or another. Another quick search for ‘hydrocodone overdose deaths’ only turned up information on what dose of it is lethal. The hard truth is that the majority of opioid overdose deaths are from illicit drugs, most of the time laced or cut with fentanyl. 

In 2017, seventy-eight percent of the states had an increase in overdose deaths, and of those states, fifty-nine percent were considered ‘statistically significant’ increases. The CDC released its revised guidelines for opioid prescribing in 2016 so that being the case, why is the rate of overdose increasing? In the meantime, an incredible 18 million Americans who suffer from chronic pain illnesses are undertreated or have been totally denied medically necessary prescription pain medications. Could it be that criminals and addicts never obey the law? When will lawmakers realize or recognize that they cannot legislate morality? We are not the problem!

Where the number of prescription medications that cause overdoses gets confused is in the numbers of people who obtain those prescriptions illegally, either by stealing from, buying from or just being given the drugs by a friend or family member. This pie chart, from SAMHSA (pg22), illustrates the breakdown of where illegal prescriptions are obtained. These people are the problem.

Figure26

*****

The majority of people who rely on opioid pain medications do not abuse them, but we are the ones being abused, treated like addicts, junkies, and fakers when we simply seek help. We have been tapered drastically or discontinued suddenly. The ones who fall through the cracks end up being statistics, the ones who can no longer handle the pain and choose death over suffering. This is the national disgrace. This is the American embarrassment. We are not the problem.

Those who have followed this blog for any length of time remember my voluntary opioid taper last year. My doctor told me it was a wise decision to undertake it on my own because the dose of morphine sulfate I was on 24 months ago is now illegal. One of the reasons I decided to blog my experience with the taper was for the benefit of those who, for whatever reason, needed to taper. There was precious little information about opioid tapering from a chronic pain standpoint, what to expect with withdrawals and pain increase. I believe that if my experience helps just one person enduring this injustice at the hands of unethical laws, doctors, and pharmacies, it will be worth it. 

So I have two months’ worth of pain relief thanks to my co-pay and a practice full of doctors who believe in helping people in pain and are willing to put in the extra hours and absorb the risk. I have jumped through another bunch of government hoops to live somewhat comfortably until February when the anxiety sets in once again. I’m never sure when the day will come that he looks me in the eye and says, “My hands are tied. I’m sorry.” 

I just want to live my life and be left alone. I am not the problem. 


If you know someone who could use the information on this blog, please share it. I do not benefit financially from web traffic to it. I simply want to help those who need the information. 

I am not a medical professional, and as such, I cannot give medical advice. What I can do, however, is offer support, a shoulder to cry on, and a word of encouragement, from someone who has been there. Much love and peace to you.

Writer’s Block, One-Eyed Cats, and Tardar Sauce

I have been wrapped up in another writing project lately, which is why you have not seen much of me here. This week is shot with Hubby’s steroid infusion, fortunately for us at home, so I have much time to sit and plan what, how, why I’m going to write. For those who are interested, this is my other project, and it’s coming along nicely, even if I am close to the only reader I have. Hey, someone has to like it, right?

So tonight, I’m sitting here typing away, fighting double vision from who knows what, and my three-year-old “kitten” jumps into my lap. I say kitten because she is the baby in the family, but in truth, she’s an adult. She’s fourteen pounds of sheer love wrapped in a silky fur coat and only one eye. She lost her right eye when she was a wee kitten of about 8 weeks old. Something had scratched it, apparently, and it became infected. Eye removal surgery was the most cost-effective and healthiest route to take for the rescue that found her, and so that’s what they did.

Mercy was bestowed upon us in late June 2016, a tiny meowing, barely purring, skinny but well-socialized kitten. Hubby fell in love with her immediately and spent the next three days helping me prepare a place to separate her from the two resident ones we had at the time. If he was willing to put in some work, and he did work tirelessly by my side to prep that room, he wanted her. So on June 25, 2016, Mercy Grace joined our family. 

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Mercy “helps” with the laundry. Isn’t she a good girl?

Anyway, as I was saying before I got off my point. She jumped up into my lap and settled down like she does every evening after Hubby finishes his medication. She does the kitty version of tucking in, and I have to admit, it’s terribly cute. And tonight, like many other nights, she spent a good amount of time bathing. But when she stopped, she stared at me, into my eyes. What was she thinking? Only she and God know the truth.

It made me wonder if she misses what she has almost never known: two eyes. I mean, she’s well-adjusted to life as a popeye cat (or as my doctor calls her, “Cindy, with one eye.” I laughed way too hard at that, by the way.) She truly seems no worse for the wear, and I’m so used to her that I believe she might look odd with both peepers. It was the way she looked at me that gave me pause. What is she truly thinking? Oh, how I’d love to get inside her little head for half an hour. I want to know.

Is she happy? I would say yes, she is. My indications of her happiness include the fact that she willingly jumps up in my lap, night after night. She sleeps curled up with me every night without fail. She wakes me and Hubby up every morning with her adorable meows. She has windows to her world, and she sits in them endlessly during the day. Those windows provide her with more than enough stimulation. She’s even come out of the window on rare occasions with a lizard in her jaws, a living plaything that I usually rescue one pawing too late. She has an older “brother,” who she adores and grooms constantly. Is she happy? All indications point to “yes.”

But wouldn’t it be awesome to know? Cats are so enigmatic. Dogs wear their emotions on their faces, in their waggly tails. You never miss cues from a dog. But a cat… a cat can look at you, and it can mean almost anything, from “I love you. I’m hungry. Feed me,” to “I might kill you tonight while you sleep.” You just never know. I’m convinced the only cat who ever lived that wore her emotions was Tardar Sauce, known to the whole world as “Grumpy Cat.” 

Stuff like this is what happens when I hit writer’s block. And you, my friends, get to peek inside my head. Now that should scare you.

Have a good week, my friends. Be blessed.

My Apologies

I know it has been a LONG time since I’ve sat with y’all and discussed things. I’ve had other projects demanding my time lately, and most of my attention has been diverted there. Regrettably, I’ve let this slide for awhile.

This isn’t to say I haven’t been thinking about this. I’ve started no less than five different posts and scrapped each one of them. This one might see the virtual trash heap if I can’t get my thoughts together soon.

Since turning 50 in April, I feel like I’m falling apart. I’ve been dealing with double vision, which requires a visit to a neuro-ophthalmologist (and I will NEVER learn how to spell ophthalmologist without a spell checker!) The issue with this is, there aren’t many in this particular specialty in my area, and none seem to take my insurance. Herein lies the problem. So this is at a stand still as of late.

Since Saturday, I’ve been dealing with a persistent muscle spasm in my right shoulder, which makes everything hurt. I’m in my 20th year with Fibromyalgia, and I swear, I have never hurt this badly in my whole life. You don’t realize how much you use a muscle until you discover it hurts. And every little thing makes it hurt, and throb.

So, I know this is short, but so is my attention span for anything that requires thought or coherence. I just wanted to check in, let you know I’m still out here kickin’.

Things Doctors Don’t Tell You About… Narcotics

I feel like I’m in a whimsical mood these days, with the semi (?) successful launch of my Facebook page for my creative writing blog, and filling up my WordPress account with stories about little people who exist in my PC. What does this have to do with the title of this post, you might ask yourself. And I will tell you. Nothing. Nada. Bupkis. Zero. Zilch. Now that we have that out of the way, we will get into this post, shall we?

I love this post!

Not that post (See? I told you I was in a mood!)

Anywho, I saw my primary care doctor a couple of weeks back, and we were talking about my abysmal failure that I now call my medication taper. He was not all that surprised to hear about it, nor was he terribly disappointed in the outcome. I got to thinking about some of the things I wish I had known about the pain meds. BEFORE I got started with them, because the good Lord knows, if I only knew then what I know now, I would not be in this situation right now. Can I get a witness, y’all?

Maybe, if I can talk myself into researching stuff, because term papers in high school and college were my favorite things in the world (yeah, no.) I can turn this into a series of things that you will never hear from a doctor. Well, almost never.

  • Narcotics Cause Constipation

You have a new prescription for narcotic painkillers, you suspect you might be on them long time. The doctor casually mentions you might experience some constipation. Okay, you think, I can handle this. And for most cases, you’d probably be okay. Hydrocodone and oxycodone, or Lortab and Percocet, have a mild to moderate risk of developing OIC, or opioid-induced constipation. There is an acronym for everything these days, it seems. Some medications are even developed for use with heavy opioid use (Movantik comes to mind right off the top,) Chances are, unless you are taking more than 30 mg of oxycodone or hydrocodone daily, you won’t see the kind of stuff I’m talking about here. I’m talking big league (or bigly) poop problems. I’m talking, I need Roto-Rooter once a week to come clean your personal plumbing, if you catch my drift.

Before I started morphine sulfate, I already knew about the risk of constipation. But with Fibromyalgia, one of our lovely symptoms is IBS-D (see what I mean about acronyms?), or irritable bowel syndrome, with diarrhea. Even with oxycodone, I still suffered terribly with IBS, so I wasn’t too worried about switching to morphine at the time.

I was wrong to not worry.

I will spare you my gory details, but let’s just say I should have purchased stock in whatever company makes Miralax. Without it, I literally do not “go.” At all. And even if I had been able to get off the medication as I had hoped, chances are, my body has long forgotten how to poop on its own. No need to suffer in pain if cutting meds won’t solve one of the worst problems that goes with stronger painkillers.

  • Narcotics Cause Dependence

Given the state of the current environment surrounding the opioid “crisis,” this would seem to be a given. However, addiction is NOT necessarily the same as dependence in narcotic use. Addiction, if I were to go grab Merriam Webster’s definition, is defined as, “a compulsive need for and use of a habit-forming substance (such as heroin, nicotine, or alcohol) characterized by tolerance and by well-defined physiological symptoms upon withdrawal.” (Emphasis mine) Dependence, on the other hand (Well, the term I found is ‘habituation’) is defined as such: “tolerance to the effects of a drug acquired through continued use.”  Addiction and Dependence often go hand in hand, but they can be mutually exclusive phenomena. For example, addiction to opioids will almost always include a physical dependence on them,  but someone who is physically dependent on their pain medications, especially when they are taken as directed, does not necessarily have a compulsive addiction to them. Physical dependence can happen with the chronic use of many drugs—including many prescription drugs, even if taken as instructed. Thus, physical dependence in and of itself does not constitute addiction.snark_warning

I have been fighting against the stereotype of pain patients being labeled as addicts since the legislation was passed last year in Florida. The label isn’t fair, and it isn’t accurate, as the number of overdose deaths for prescription opioids is dwarfed by the number of overdose deaths by other opioids and benzodiazepines. In 2017, the total number of opioid overdose deaths numbered at 86,456, and prescription opioids contributed 17,029 to that impressive, but sickening number. Okay, a little over 19%. Seems like a pretty big number, and it is. But if you take the number of other opioid deaths, heroin, fentanyl, even cocaine and the benzodiazepines, they total a whopping 80% of those deaths combined. But tell me again how chronic pain patients are the problem here.  Okay, time to dial it back, I’m sensing my snark ‘o meter is buzzing.

Dependence isn’t the same, folks. It just isn’t. Addiction = psychological  ≠ Dependence = physiological. That is my summary of the whole debate.  You’re welcome. Anyway, because of the physiological nature of opioid dependence, it is very difficult to discontinue these drugs without some type of intervention, either medicinal or behavioral, sometimes both. It is this dependence that causes withdrawal symptoms. The same happens with caffeine, nicotine, alcohol and other substances we humans find ourselves dependent upon or addicted to. Had I known when I began taking these medications twelve plus years ago, that I would probably be on them for the rest of my life, I would have turned them down.

So, this is what happens when you combine insomnia, regret and a weird mood.

You’re welcome.

 

Happy (Belated) Fourth Anniversary!

I know, I know, I actually missed the true anniversary of the blog, but I just wanted to post a quick note about it.  Things have been busy, so I’m not terribly surprised I missed it, to be honest.

There is no better time than now to welcome those who have joined us here recently, and to thank each and every one of you who has been with me here at Random Thoughts.  I know that I tend to show my gratitude for you all on a regular basis, but believe me, not a word is rote or mechanical.  I am truly grateful for you, and for the platform I’ve been afforded to write what is on my mind.  Most of all, I’m thankful that  you, my readers, find what I have to say worthy of reading.  That means more to me than you’ll ever know.

I am also going to give a shameless plug for my other active blog, The Farmer Stories. I have been very involved in my creative writing these days, and I’m super pleased with how it is progressing.  It’s a niche blog, intended for fans of The Sims franchise, but the story is better than I could have imagined myself.  I have been using my current “Legacy Challenge” as the basis for an ongoing story, which is now almost into its third generation. If that sort of thing is your cup of tea, I invite you to meet Charlie, Fran, and Destiny Farmer, and Destiny’s three daughters, Bree-Ann, Bella and Bianca Atwood.

Be on the lookout for a new recipe from Mom’s arsenal of goodies.  This one is from an old cookbook that I inherited, and it was a family favorite: Chocolate Roll.  Think of a giant Yodel, and you’re thinking in the right direction. Coming soon, so don’t miss it!

Be safe, be happy until we meet again.  Gentle hugs and blessings to you all!

Random Thoughts (How Apropos!)

Hi everyone! I want to make this brief, but I have a couple of things on my mind I need to share, if that is okay. I will warn you, it concerns grief and loss, so if you don’t want to read about a gloomy topic during a joyous holiday season, I will not be offended. But I have a feeling I am not alone in this, especially for those who suffered a recent, significant loss.

That said, and having warned anyone who is not interested in this topic, I’m ready to tackle what is bothering me. As you may know, I recently lost my 89 year old mom to congestive heart failure, and it was very sudden. I knew that she was in heart failure for a couple of years, but when it transitioned to congestive, it progressed rapidly. I saw her on a Monday and brought her a vanilla milkshake from Culver’s. On that Friday, she was admitted to the hospital, and less than 36 hours later, she was gone. This was only the first weekend of October, so the pain is raw and new. My first year of holidays, birthdays and occasions without either parent, and like it was when we lost my dad eleven years ago, I am not much into the holiday spirit.

Predictably, the people in my life who made me feel guilty when my dad passed away are up to their tricks again, trying to force me into something I’m just not ready to do. If we had kids, my attitude would be different, naturally. But since it is just hubby, me and our two cats, I don’t really feel the need to pretend I am okay. I don’t want to feel pressured into celebrating anything when I don’t feel particularly festive. Why is this such as issue?

Here is the thing. Grief is different for every person, and any way you look at mourning, it is deeply personal. Even how a person grieves for two different people can change. There should never be an artificial time limit on how long someone should take to grieve a loss, no matter what that loss is. It could be a loved one, a pet, a job, way of life, health… The way I grieved for my cats is certainly different than how I feel about losing my mom, which is different than how I mourned (and still do!) for the children we never had. There is no right or wrong answer to this question, and no one should ever be made to feel abnormal for their grief process.

Maybe next year, I will feel more jolly and festive for the holiday season. Maybe I will want to put our tree up, and I will feel like wrestling Mercy out of the branches. Maybe I will want to make cookies and cook a big ol turkey dinner with all the fixings. But not this year. Mom’s presence will be sorely missed, and I’m just not ready to say goodbye to everything her passing takes away. If I am being selfish, then I’m sorry, but that is too bad. This will pass, and I’m not normally a selfish person. This one time, I give me permission to feel sorry for myself and be depressed.

Anyway, thank you for allowing me to vent what is on my heart and mind. This is harder than I thought it would be, and getting back to feeling like me is taking longer than I had planned. Thanks for sticking with me. By the way, I see my pain specialist again next week, so I hope to have an update on that whole thing sooner than later.

Have a happy Friday and a blessed weekend.

More Posts Coming!

Hello everyone!  I just wanted to take a moment out of my busy (that’s laughable!) evening and just make a quick post about what has been happening these past two months.  I’ve been pretty removed from writing this blog for about a month or so, and since my thoughts are still revolving around missing my mom, I don’t want to bore all of you with my lamentations.  That being said, I do have a few things in the works that hopefully will be on the site sooner than later, including some of Mom’s old favorite recipes. I can think of no better way to honor her memory than with one of her formerly favorite activities.  Today would have been her 90th birthday, and ironically is the day we are finally laying her to rest. Mix ups of epic proportions have been settled, and the day has arrived. I guess it is fitting to spend one last birthday with her, even if she is only here in spirit.

I definitely appreciate all of you who read on a regular basis, and I appreciate your patience with me as I struggle to get back on track with this and my other two blogs. As always, I wish you blessings today and every day.  Happy 90th birthday in Heaven, Mom.

It Is What It Is

Hey everybody. I know I have been silent over the past week, and to those who follow for the updates on tapering, I am truly sorry. I have been in a rut as of late, in nearly every aspect of my life, and I am weary.

I don’t like to update on the days when I have nothing positive to say, because I would much rather be uplifting than not. But then I remember the promise I made to myself and to you, that I would document the real side of this struggle, even when and yes, especially when it is a struggle. No one warned me about how difficult this would be, because there is no information on this topic from my standpoint. If there is, I just haven’t found much yet.

The truth is, this process has me exhausted, spiritually, emotionally and physically. I am sick of feeling like I will never get better. Like the meme at the head of this post, it just never occurred to me that I wouldn’t get better. Today was an especially rough day, because I woke up with a migraine headache that is only now beginning to dull. My back is painful to the point of being nauseated. Every fiber in my body aches like I have the flu.

Next month, I need to make a decision. Either I will continue down this path of misery, with no knowledge of what awaits, or I will wave the proverbial white flag and give up. Neither choice sounds very appealing when I’d rather just not deal with being ill anymore.

I don’t like to ask, because I realize there are others with greater need than I have, but I would appreciate prayers if you are the praying type. I just need some spiritual uplifting. Even though in our season of need we have been richly and abundantly blessed, I feel as though I am stale. There are some reasons for this that I would rather not blog about, at least not now. I’ll just say I’ve been down this road before, and never thought I’d find my way back to an almost identical situation.

My meds are starting to take effect, so I am signing off for tonight. I just wanted to do a quick post about this, and how I am feeling. I am working on some posts for the holiday season, so we will all have something to look forward to together.

Be blessed, and gentle hugs to you all.