Monday, May 15, 2023

May 15, 2023 Monday--3:45am

Good middle-of-the-night!

Was a busy week!  Leah came over Monday afternoon.  We hauled out a cart full of donation stuff, went through the donation corner of the garage to make sure all of it was actually donations, hauled my summer clothes bins back to my apartment... 

(Allie is always curious about what is going on in her world)
...and Leah also cut my hair for me!

I told her I had a confession to make. (Wasn't sure if she had noticed...she had, but never said anything.) Confessed that I have become a collector...of Esterbrook book holders.  See them hanging on the fronts of my rolly carts?
This began last spring maybe?  With the very first sight of the brass bee...kept going back to look at her...until I finally bit the bullet and ordered her last summer.  She was even more beautiful in person!  About a month or so later I bought the fountain pen nib one.  (Got the frog on sale as a Christmas present to myself--below.)  Just got the blue enameled butterfly for a belated birthday present for myself.  Excuses, I admit fully--lol!  
The frog isn't shaped like the other ones.  He works like a giant clip.
He has red eyes and sits on a lily pad.  Looks cranky at this angle--lol!  
He's a lot cuter from this angle.  :)
I know!  I know!  I am supposed to be downsizing.  But--my hand to Marie Kondo--they do bring me great joy!  I can't even explain why.  They are totally and absolutely impractical (don't even read real books much anymore that would need to be held open) and no human being would ever likely need one, let alone four of them...but I do so love them.  Have them out where I can see them every single day all day.

Will I buy any more of them?  

Let's just say...I told myself I would I clipped each one to the rolly cart.  I just said no more--again--as I slid the beautiful enameled blue butterfly on to the cart.  ;)

On Tuesday Leah and I met my new regular doctor, Dr. Belzberg.  I tried to fill her in on the last couple years.  She wants me to get a bone density test.  She said my ears were plugged with wax.  I was shocked after having them checked when I thought it might have something to do with my hearing loss back before covid and the guy at urgent care said they were clean as a whistle when I was 69 at the time and had never done a thing to them but clean them with Q-tips after a shower (and they say not to do that).  I made a remark about it being just one more thing my body can't keep up with since cancer treatments...and she remarked something about welcome to old age.  ??

She does specialize in senior care, so I will excuse that generalization...but she knew I had never had my ears cleaned or anything done to them and told her what the young doctor had said before she made that comment.  And I had showed her earlier how I have an old bruise that hasn't disappeared in over a month, still have the shingles rash after over three months, and told her how I am still not recovered from Keytruda as far as the mucositis, sinuses, diarrhea & exhaustion goes, and the head bump is still there after so many months I've lost track...and that this was not normal for me.  Not everything is due to old age.  

She said I needed such-and-such ear drops--two in each ear before I go to bed to keep the wax soft.  But she was listening enough that she didn't want to wait a year to see me again and wanted to see me in six months because I am not yet recovered from the treatments.  So I'll give her a chance.  She's the first person I have wondered about since I transferred to Sanford.  If I don't care for her, though, I can always switch to someone else--so there's that.  :)

Oh, and when we picked up the prescription for the ointment (will explain next) there were no ear drops.  I asked her (online messaging) if they forgot to call it in and if they did could they please do that?  Next day I get a notice from the pharmacy (who mail my prescriptions to me) that I had a prescription coming and afterwards a note back from her that she'd called in the prescription but I had to find out whether my insurance covered it or not because it was an over-the-counter medication.  What?!  Well then why didn't she just say that was something I could pick up at the drug store?  I didn't recognize (and forgot) the name she said but she knew I had never done anything to my ears or ever had them why would she assume I recognized the name of an ear drop and know I could get it at the drug store myself?  *sigh*  She never said anything else about it.  It was so quick Leah totally missed hearing anything about ear drops.  So far, nothing deducted from my account...but not even the usual co-payment?  And the drops haven't come in the mail yet, either.  If they don't come now today I'll call the pharmacy and find out if they have been mailed or what is going on.  (I am not sure I need them in the first place.)

Anyways, she said she thought my head bump thingie looked infected and just dove right in squeezing it.  (ouch!)  Said I needed an antibiotic salve to put on it twice a day.  She knew I had made an appointment a couple months ago with dermatology--but they couldn't get me in till August.  She said she thought they may have to lance it or something if the ointment didn't work.  (It's been getting smaller very slowly--so I hope it disappears before then so I don't have to go at all--lol!)

  Her nurse cleaned out my ears with hot water before I left.  Really weird...I was just fine and then suddenly got super dizzy.  So I had to sit for a while in the room before we could leave.  The nurse said I could be dizzy for up to an hour...and I was for maybe half an hour. Have you ever had that done?  Did you get dizzy?

Something wasn't working (computers?) at the place I'd get the bone density test...and I just realized I forgot to call this week to make an appointment.  It will probably be in July or so regardless because they are that backed up, but there is no rush.  Guess I had best call this week for sure--lol!  (I just made a note--or, obviously, I would forget.)

Wednesday Leah and the boys dropped off groceries.  I asked the boys if they heard the thunderstorm!  It was awesome!    Slept right through it, of course.  I slept like that when I was a kid.

Me--I went from sleeping too much for over two weeks to suddenly being up all night I was awake for the cracking thunder and the ground shaking from about 3-6am.  Loved it!   First thunderstorm of the year!

Even though I was only sleeping a few hours in the morning and was dragging myself about I couldn't sleep for love or money all night long--night after night this last week--despite dozing off earlier in the evening and very seriously trying to sleep during the night.  I laid there one night in the dark for almost 2 1/2 hours!  Stubbornly determined that if I just laid there I would fall asleep eventually.  I even tried having my Hey Google device play meditation music.  No dice.  I finally had to concede and was just up again till morning.  

I've been googling about circadian rhythms and healthy sleep and such.  I may try some things.  Not sure if anything will help.  Erratic sleep patterns is a part of having fibro--so kind of doubtful...but I shall research a bit more.  (I've already tried so many of the suggestions over the years--lol!)

After the storm instead of cooling off it got hotter.  On Thursday it got up to 83 degrees and I finally had to turn on the AC.  As much as I hate the heat I also dread having to close up come summer because we have such a short time in the spring and fall when you can have things opened up, you know?  We went in less than two weeks from snowstorms and high snowbanks to the 70s and low 80s!  Too fast!

 On Friday Dagan stopped by for a brief visit.  He told me about how we can't do the five pocket doors because the front door and the maintenance door would have to roll into the kitchenette wall and we can't do that because of having to attach the cabinets on to that wall.  Makes sense.  So there will be regular doors for those two and they will have to return two of the pocket door frames.  Trent was planning to come over Saturday and Sunday it sounded like and they were going to work on getting the frames installed for the three pocket doors by the studio and bathroom.  We had such a nice visit.  :)

Since I was up all night and had slept 8 hours for once that day...I figured out how to expand my kitchen table (forgot and god love YouTube--lol!) and started on the tower of satchels I had in the living room. 
Worked all night long and got almost done.
Had only one satchel left, but--hey--when I am actually tired I will gladly sleep if I can.  Allie keeps me company whatever is going on.  When I'm actually up and doing stuff she has to keep track of me.  I think she found this more interesting than pen cleaning--lol!  So did I, to be honest.
I got a second satchel box filled...
...and added a few to the empties.
On Saturday I finished up that last satchel of the stack.  Here's Allie--seems to be asking where that tower of plastic went.  You can see the dents on the carpet where it was parked for a couple of weeks.  She was either happy or distressed about the change because she went nutty attacking toys right there--lol!
I sealed and labeled the second box.  Then I moved all of the satchels (with cards in them and card stuff that I don't want to pack away until right before I move) on top of the two satchel boxes.  So, now I have both stacks of satchels I use behind my chair in the living room.  
There are only two shelves in both my tall hallway bookcases that have anything left on them.  I wiped down all the empty ones. 
You can see how Leah and I added extra shelves to the bookcases.  There are also several extra shelves in the studio bookcases, too.

For now I moved all the empty satchels into the bedroom.  Don't want to pack them away yet.  Still have the studio to go through and two dressers in my bedroom filled with mostly writing stuff and some craft stuff.  Might just use these satchels to help with separating small random stuff when I'm packing.
Leah and I were doing a lot of texting Saturday night about things like window well covers (really difficult to keep them snow free--sounds great), possible steps made inside the window wells if I ever did need to escape, how the doors should be hung and open, and electrical outlets.  I just want to be sure I have a strip like I have now (below) on the wall under the window by my art table.

Next weekend McFamily is out of town so no working on the apartment.  They are going to visit Itasca State Park in Minnesota!  I brought Dagan there when he was young so he could walk over the very beginning of the Mississippi River.  Dagan says he remembers that!  I wonder if they will be able to this year with all the snow we had this winter?  Or do they even allow that anymore?  That must have been around 40 years ago when I was up there with Dagan and he was about Ian's age.  It is a beautiful area.  They're going to be gone from this coming Thursday to the following Thursday, I think. 

I will be glad to be useful once I am moved in.  I will be able to watch Blink for them any time they are away.  And when Leah needs to run to the store for something I will be able to be there with the boys so she doesn't even have to bring them with (makes any trip twice as long, as mothers know)--LOL!  Or if they want to have a date night!  Been a long while since I felt useful.  :)  

Sunday early evening I thought--oh no!  I didn't get a picture of how suddenly lush green the lawn was instantly after the thunderstorm.
Just took the picture and here came the two partridges for dinner.  
Well, you can only see the first one.  But these two are the only ones coming to eat on my patio anymore.  So I assume it is either two girls or two boys who couldn't find mates this year.  Everybody else is off nesting.

Anyways, this coming week...
Planning to work on switching my winter and summer clothes...and doing additional purging along the way.  I've kept off the 40 pounds for maybe a year now, I think.  I don't mind loose flowing tops or pull over dresses and nightgowns (in fact, I really love them)...but I finally had to order smaller pants this winter.  You just can't have your pants falling down when you put your phone in your pocket--ROFL!  So now I can check clothes again for things that were quite big (maybe way too big now) and things that were too snug (that might not be anymore).  Should be interesting.  I'm sure I will find a few more donations.

Also want to finish up in the hallway.  Everything on top of all three bookcases is empty.  Just piled around for when I am reorganizing as I purge.  Those will just have to be moved for now into the bedroom.  I still have the two shelves to purge and pack in that tall bookcase...
...and an odd assortment in the small bookcase.
So when I get done with the hallway bookcases--can take pictures and we can sell them.  I want that done before McFamily gets back because that is when Leah is going to start posting stuff for sale and will be dealing with the first donation pick-up from my garage that we went through last Monday.  There will be more.  Which is also why I want to get through all the clothes before then, too.  More donations.  :)  So I have a deadline...which is good for me to push myself...and that won't be overdoing it because I have till the 25th so I think that is doable.  (Of course, I hope to get all that done and more, but I am being realistic and I know I will have some recovery days because I always do--lol!)

In fact, with fibromyalgia I have PEM with chronic fatigue.  PEM or post-exertional malaise is a worsening of symptoms even after minimal physical or mental exertion.  With normal people exercise and physical activity can make you feel better and stronger.  The opposite is true for people like me.  It took me three days to recover from just being to the garage with Leah on Monday and to the doctor's on Tuesday.  I know it sounds ridiculous, but that's just the way it is.  I can feel so weak I can hardly open a ketchup bottle--that was already opened--lol!  But it passes after while.  This is why I say I have truly had to learn all about patience since having fibro.  About how it is okay to just be and not have to do-do-do (like I used to) to be worth something.  It has also been an excellent test of my born optimism being housebound for almost two decades (plus the having stage four cancer--lol!).  There are always silver linings...even if it might take us a long time to be able to see them.  They are always there if you look for them. ;)

And--sadly--they might be learning more about chronic fatigue and PEM and all over pain, etc, because that is what a lot of long-term covid people have so they are studying it.  There are now millions of people with long covid.  I can empathize!  :(

Anyways, I have pictures from Leah!  No clue where they were visiting when the boys were playing on a trampoline.
I do love the pictures of the boys together like this.

Saturday Trent did come over and they installed the frames for the three pocket doors!
This looks like it might be a vent or a fan for the bathroom?
This is why Leah was wondering if I need some steps to get out of the window wells if anything should ever happen where I actually did need to escape.  They are pretty deep and now would be the time to put steps in on the side.
True.  I am not as spry as I used to be and will likely only get worse over time, I suppose.  She wants me to come over and look at the window wells--and to see what all they are doing.  I haven't been there since maybe last summer?

Now you can see the normal size doorways for the bathroom and studio!
And here's the doorway from inside the studio looking to the bathroom.
Framing for the regular door to the maintenance room...and also it's going to be my laundry room.
They did most of that on Saturday.  Then on Sunday they worked on placing the electric outlet boxes.
They had to pull up the plastic covering the insulation to attach the outlet boxes.

Living room.

Looks like I will have enough outlets, eh?
Trent is truly a Godsend!!

Well, I am going to post this now because my sleep is so off and Leah and the boys are coming over this afternoon to plant the geraniums.  We don't want to leave them left in pots until they come back from Itasca.  We'll get them planted now--one on each end of all four planters was what I had planned and Leah agreed.  Then after they get back from their vacation we will make a trip to Baker Nursery and pick up the rest of my flowers (for Mother's Day--sweet!) and get them planted into their new homes for the summer.  :)

Oh, and I will probably pass on the coleus I love this year because they do break off so easily and I plan to sell the planters come end of July.  The coleus would probably snap right off in the moving of the planters.  Some inevitably broke off every fall in the wind.  So I am going to focus on geraniums, marigolds, petunias, etc.  No big coleus bushes this year--lol!  :)  

On Tuesday I have Keanna coming to clean and Leah & the boys will be dropping off groceries, too.  So I'll have to be up and thawed out before afternoon for two days in a row--lol!  Exciting, though!  I am soooo glad I got through the satchels last week.  But--today--after I finally sleep--red geraniums!  And time with the boys.  :) :)  So, I am hoping to get the patio swept before they come.  I hope it is pretty dry out there.  Was still damp from the last rain today--but it hasn't rained any more on Sunday and isn't supposed to today.  Not supposed to rain again till Wednesday, but weather predictions are always guess work--even with all the equipment and such they have these days--lol!  Better guesswork--but still guesswork.

So that is my newsletter for this week.  There should be another good productive week ahead, I hope.  Might be crazy hours and several recovery days--but there will be geraniums!  And there will be something done on my two projects for the week (bookcases and seasonal clothes switching) because I have a deadline in a week and a half.  ;)  

I have to ask before I go--has it been unseasonably warm or cold where you live?  Are you excited about the change in season?  Personally, I hate the heat and prefer the cold so I am not that excited about jumping past spring right into summer in less than two weeks.  Supposed to be around 80F today and 84F on Tuesday--awk!  The heat lovers are thrilled, I'm sure.  Which do you be warmer or cooler?  Hot or cold?

Well, till next week, my friends.  


David M. Gascoigne, said...

For some reason I can't load pictures when I open blogs this morning. Not just yours others too. Perhaps Blogger is having another hissy fit. Seems like your life is busy, the medical news is overall good and the excitement is building as your move gets ever closer. Stay well!

Anvilcloud said...

There was a lot in that week.

Hena Tayeb said...

Sorry to hear about all the doctor stuff.
Those book holders are beautiful and hey if it give you joy then that's that.
The construction is coming together nicely.. it must be exciting seeing the progress.

Divers and Sundry said...

I think there will be growing numbers of doctors specializing in senior care. The ear thing is odd, isn't it! I trust the ear drops work well. Messing with ear cleaning can definitely cause dizziness, but the ear drops ought to keep you from having to have that done again. I had my first dexa scan decades ago, but I have a family history. I hope yours is fine.

So green! That's a bright sight after so long with snow. Pretty :)

Far Side of Fifty said...

I like 72 degrees and sometimes 74! That is perfect for me! Yes they will be able to walk over the rocks or over the plank that goes over at the Headwaters, the boys may get wet feet! I hope they have fun!

DJan said...

That was one of your longest posts ever. I did make it through it all, though. Love the pictures of the new place. You sure do have a lot of stuff to go through! And thanks for the pictures of Allie. :-)

DJan said...

Whew, that was a LOT of stuff. You have been busy, all right.

Victoria Zigler said...

Looks like you got loads done this week. And it's awesome about the progress in your apartment at McFamily's too!

Good luck with that doctor. Hope she works out better than she so far sounds in the end, or you can switch to someone better.

You know I prefer the cooler weather. It so far hasn't gotten much above 70 here, even on the warmer days, which is just fine by me.

Jeanie said...

How wonderful it is to see the progress on the apartment. It's really happening and it'll be great! And YOU! I truly don't believe how productive you have been, especially with CF and the sleeping issue. And yet look at what you've done. You truly put me to shame.

I hope the new doc is OK. Is it debrox that you are supposed to get over the counter? It's only a few dollars and works relatively well unless the wax is impacted; then you might need a specific prescription. Good luck -- ear stuff is SO annoying (says one who knows.)

Jo-Anne's Ramblings said...

I feel that donating stuff is then tossing it in the bin, Allie wanted to make sure you didn't donate any of her stuff. Some nice things you collect. Medical appointments can be so stressful, my ears need a good clean.

It sucks when we have problems with sleeping

Beatrice P. Boyd said...

Another long and very informative post, Rita, and the purging and donating has been moving along. The book clips are interesting and I’ve never seen any, but then I just use a paper bookmark or the library loan slip as a placeholder. You asked if anyone felt dizzy after an ear cleaning. Yes, I had the exact same experience a couple of years ago when a nurse squirted warm water to loosen a wax buildup. The experience continued for several hours and was just as unsettling as you described. Hope to never undergo that again and hope your wax buildup is resolved.

Lots if progress being made on your future home and lots of outlets are always good😀

Beatrice P. Boyd said...

Forgot to answer your last question about climate preferences. Mine is for cooler vs. really hot and in the past couple of days we have had temperature fluctuations from 70s to 40s.

Janie Junebug said...

I'm sorry I'm so late getting here because I know what the OTC ear drops are and could have explained. I hope you have them by now and know how they work. Please don't put Q Tips in your ears. They push more wax in than they pull out. Let your earwax regulate itself. People often feel dizzy after their ears are cleaned because the inner ear has been stimulated. The dizziness also could have been caused by water that was too hot. When I worked in the clinic one of my co-workers had an earwax impacted ear that the doctor and nurse cleaned out for her. She said she felt like throwing up afterwards. Anyway, that's enough about earwax. We'll just have to see about this doctor. She doesn't seem to be off to a great start with you. Maybe she'll be better next time. We've had such extreme temperatures. It was unusually cold during December and early January, and it's been much too hot since February. Your book clips are beautiful and I don't think it's wrong to have some things just because they make you happy. I have things like that--my books, some miniatures, and a couple of Limoges trinket boxes. Allie really does look curious but also looks as if she wants to take charge and do things her way because everyone else is wrong. It's nice to see the boys so close and always together.


Jim and Barb's Adventures said...

Oh my, you have been busy! The construction project looks like it is coming along. I've never heard of those bookmarkers but I can see why you like them!

GrandmaG said...

I get my ears flushed at least once a year. Have a tiny ear canal with a weird curve which makes it tough for wax to exit on its own. Summer came to the midwest early this year. Not a fan of humid heat :(