lunabee34: (Default)
1. Fiona started Pre-K! She is thrilled. On the very first day only, the school allows parents to park and walk the children in to their classrooms. I asked Fiona if she wanted me to walk her in or drop her off at the car-riders' line like I'd be doing the rest of the days of the school year. She said, "I want to do it by myself." She was grinning when I let her out and grinning when I picked her up. She doesn't have an ounce of anxiety about anything in her. I didn't even have time to tear up at all; I bawled like a baby when we dropped Emma off for kindergarten. I think some of that is because it's a second child, but mostly it's because Fiona was too happy and chill about it all for me to get a tear in edgewise.

Emma started high school! At orientation earlier this week, we were both flummoxed at her schedule which had her taking Advanced Band (without ever having had any kind of band whatsoever). We asked to have her moved to a different class, but I didn't have much confidence they'd do so. The middle school forced her to take the same exact class with the same exact content two years in a row and forced her to take chorus when she has no interest in it, so I was worried we'd run into the same thing. Fortunately, they switched her to Intro to Health Care. Georgia has a handful of career paths they make HS students choose; naturally, none of them map on to what Emma wants to do. There's art, agriculture (which is the one she chose; there are a couple classes in it that seem like they might be at least tangentially helpful or related to the marine biology she wants to pursue), health care, and a couple more. The health care one is really cool because if you know you already want to go into that field, when you graduate HS you will have a certificate degree (like an LPN or something like that) that will allow you to immediately work. It's just weird to me that they don't have a separate college prep track and that they force the kids into these tracks they're not going to use. Oh, well. It's not advanced band. I hate to be That Parent, but I didn't want her stuck in some class that's guaranteed to lower her GPA. (She's probably not going to be Valedictorian, but she *could* be, dammit.)

2. One week with onions and no problems!!!! Now I'm getting antsy to try something else, but I will be good and remain committed to my two week trial period for each new food.

3. Josh's physical therapy is going well. I think he's feeling a lot better.

4. Screw you, pants! I am having such an issue with pants. cut for talk of weight and clothing sizes )

5. Finally, Downton Abbey is looking up! SPOILERS )
lunabee34: (hp: snape trouble by so_severus)
1. We just got back from a trip to Josh's parents in Jackson. I took the girls, and Josh stayed home because shortly before we were to leave, he developed a sudden and rather severe case of TMJ. He's never had it before, and it seemed to hit him like a freight train (which is weird to me because I also have TMJ, and it always starts gradually for me and builds to an agony). He stayed so he could get treatment started (x-rays, mouth guard, topical gel, physical therapy) and thus be ready for classes to start back on the 14th. He is much improved, and his first physical therapy appt is on Thursday.

Trip was good. Josh's mom is definitely struggling with memory issues. She got screened this summer, but as I feared, she went to her regular GP who she's known for years, and he didn't think anything was wrong with her. She's extremely intelligent and charismatic, and I just don't think he could be objective enough to ferret out the issue. She also went alone because none of us could be there. Sister-in-law was also at her parents for that week, and she agrees that we need to move forward with trying to get her diagnosed. SIL is getting married in October, and they are footing the bill and doing all the planning for it, so I suspect MIL's issues will wait until after then, and I don't blame her at all. Let's get the wedding over with, and then deal with it. Unfortunately, much of the onus will fall on SIL. She agrees with me that it's not my place to bring it up but to be supportive, and Josh's parents will react to this discussion better from her than from him. SIL is the golden child and less likely to be dismissed.

2. Fiona has cavities. I am so distraught. Emma has never had cavities. We took her to her first dentist appt yesterday, and she has several cavities. I thought it would just be a pro-forma visit. So Josh is running her up to Macon this morning to a pediatric dentist to get the ball rolling on that. *sigh*

3. Naturally, we depleted the HSA mid-July. LOL Let us not discuss how much that mouth guard costs. *boggles* At least fillings are relatively inexpensive.

4. I am starting to reintroduce problem foods today! I begin with onions. I'm going to eat onions for the next two weeks and see if they screw me up. Wish me luck, my friends. Next on the agenda: apples.
lunabee34: (fancrone by chinashop)
1. I'm not really sure what to do about LJ. Most people seem to be deleting their journals. That seems probably not necessary to me, but maybe I'm wrong. I have to admit that I would prefer having only one social media platform to check; I also don't have any super attachment to LJ anymore. IDK

If I delete, I lose access to club-joss, and I think I saw someone saying they're going to delete communities with no activity for a certain number of days (Is that right?). I could make a new DW account and import that community, right?

I have a question about how importing works. If I import my LJ to my DW, it will duplicate posts that aren't crossposted, correct? Will it just tack on the LJ comments to the end of the DW comments or intersperse them?

What do y'all think?

2. Walking Dead season finale was awesome. SPOILERS )

3. Into the Badlands has been good. I just wish it wasn't on so late at night. I have so much trouble staying up that late now. It ruins my sleep; it's like there's a window in which I can fall asleep easily, and if I stay up too much past that, I'm screwed.

4. I'm going to stop taking the Elmiron for my IC. It causes night sweats, and I'm finally getting really fed up with it. I'd gone six months with zero night sweats, and taking this medicine made me start having them again. They've gradually gotten worse the longer I've taken it as well. Last night I changed shirts three times. It's really affecting my sleep. I've got about 3 weeks of the med left before I need a refill, and part of me feels like I should finish it out since I paid for it, but the other part of me despairs at three more weeks of terrible sleep laying on cold wet sheets and getting up to change my clothes every few hours. *sigh*
lunabee34: (Default)
1. Downton Abbey watch continues. I'm put out with the latest plot development. spoilers )

2. Weight loss seems to have slowed down. cut for talk of weight loss )

3. IC stuff is going well. I'm not really having any side effects from the Elmiron. I'm not having any flare ups. I feel pretty good. *crossing fingers*

4. Josh's colonoscopy/endoscopy is on Friday. I hope we find out what's wrong and don't need any more tests.
lunabee34: (spn: dean at end by secretly_to_dream)
1. My dad is not doing well. He's been feeling physically bad for the past two weeks, including one ER visit. They uploaded the latest results of blood work to the portal yesterday, and his cancer markers are rising again. This is not good news. Mom is extremely depressed; she's trying to wait to completely give in to despair until she speaks to the doctor, but she's losing her optimism.

2. I feel guilty being upset about my own health when Mom and Dad are going through something much more traumatic, but I am really bummed out. I've been having some low level twinges this past week from my IC which pisses me off because if I am giving up eating everything I truly love then I better damn well not have any IC symptoms, you know? I also had to strike another thing I'd been eating frequently because it has soy in it; well, may have soy in it. The ingredient list says something like "vegetable oil (corn, soybean or safflower"), so no way to tell for sure. *sigh* At least I'm not having any side effects from the Elmiron; I did have night sweats a couple times since I started taking it, which is annoying but not on the level of losing my hair or feeling like I have to throw up all the time. So at least there's that.

3. On a more positive note, I have replaced some of my underwear with the correct size and bought several pairs of yoga pants and a pair of pajama pants in my size. I hope to buy a few more pairs of underwear and yoga pants this weekend and close out those categories of wardrobe building. My friends and I are going shopping on the first weekend of March, and I hope to get some nice dresses at that point. I'm going to see Mom and Dad that week, and I hope Mom and I can go shopping. cut for discussion of weight )

Home sick

1/2/17 12:02
lunabee34: (Default)
1. I have finally succumbed to whatever sickness has been going around our house. I almost never get respiratory stuff, so when I do, I am always astonished by how terrible a cold feels. I really should have stayed home yesterday instead of driving an hour each way to teach on the satellite campus, teaching here, and then driving an hour each way to go to the urologist in the afternoon. By the evening, I could barely speak. I feel somewhat better today. I had to go get medicine that's gluten free *and* meets the IC diet requirements. I didn't have any on hand because I almost never get colds. And don't even get me started on how many medicines have citric or ascorbic acid in them.

2. I've decided to start taking Elmiron, the drug for IC. I cannot have another flare up like the one last week if I can help it. I was pretty much laid up and unable to do anything. And immediately catching this cold on the heels of that flare up waning has made me extremely unproductive in the last week.

I don't really want to take Elmiron. I am not comforted when the doctor tells me that they don't know exactly how the drug works. I am also not comforted by the potential side effects which include GI issues and hair loss. But we'll see. The doc says that GI issues usually diminish if people can stick with the drug long enough. Now if I can just get the prescription filled. He supposedly called it in yesterday, but the pharmacy didn't receive it.

3. I have found myself becoming more and more anxious as our political situation in the U.S. deteriorates. Being sick doesn't help as the two main ways I combat my anxiety are through exercise (which I've been largely unable to do in the last week) and through being productive (which has also fallen by the wayside). I think I'm going to have to put some limits on myself. I want to be an informed citizen and do my part in the Resistance, but the way I've been feeling in the past week is counterproductive.

So, as Bill Maher would say, New Rules:

A. I will not watch Fox News at the gym even though it is the only available program. I will move to a machine that makes looking at the TV difficult.

B. I will only read NPR once a day.

C. I will continue to listen to NPR when in the car.

D. I will stop reading the US Politics thread on FFA.

E. I will stop rehearsing conversations with my family members that I will never have. I actually tried to look up their Facebooks this weekend just to see if they'd expressed any regrets (WTF, self?!) and was unable to see anything because I don't have an account (which is for the best). I even looked up Southern Baptist responses to this latest executive order and was surprised to see that it's being condemned even from that quarter. I am pleasantly shocked, but it's too little too late, of course.
lunabee34: (writer by sukibluefiction)
1. I've been having some pretty intense IC flare ups over the last week and a half. I've gone back on the super strict elimination diet, taken some more things out of my diet that I hadn't realized were potentially triggering, and quit taking my vitamins.

I started taking vitamins every day when I got home from Christmas because I'm concerned about vitamin deficiencies on this diet. Now, this should be completely obvious, but a bunch of those vitamins (and not just the multi but also the fish oil and the calcium) have ascorbic acid in them. *headdesk* I've gradually been feeling worse and worse since we got home from Christmas, and now I am convinced it's because of those damn vitamins.

For after only three days without them and back on the elimination diet, I am feeling pretty good. I'm not hurting nearly as badly as I was. I'm not 100% but so much better. Whoooooo!

This just underscores how important it is for me to thoroughly scrutinize everything I put in my mouth and not just food but medicines too.

I've been doing some more IC research, and I think that in addition to sabotaging myself with vitamins and popcorn with ascorbic acid in them, I didn't stay on the elimination diet long enough for the damage to heal. What I'm reading now says 3-6 month minimum. I also read some things that suggest that if I eliminate a trigger food for long enough (a year or more), it may cease to be one. I also tried to introduce new foods too quickly. So, learning stuff here.

2. Thanks for you input on remembering to take my meds. I've put up notes under the TV (which we usually eat in front of) and on the cabinet. I've put the meds on the coffee table where I usually eat, and I've set the alarm for dinner time. *crosses fingers*

3. Thanks also for everyone's input on how to approach a Write Every Day Project. I'm going to set a goal of 200 words daily but might revise that upwards after I've done it for awhile and get a sense of my capabilities. I also might take [personal profile] sholio's advice and change it to a weekly rather than daily goal. I'm definitely going to keep track of it so that I can see progress over time (probably in one of my super cute notebooks with big milestones recorded on DW). [personal profile] executrix pointed me to Written Kitten which looks like an awesome motivator. So, I think I'm going to set a start date for tomorrow!

4. When I asked for advice about writing a book about my autoimmune disorder experiences, [personal profile] executrix suggested that one way to go about getting a publishing deal is to write a popular blog on the topic which agents and publishers can use to see that you have a built in audience. I know this is an avenue that works because I'm seeing people all the time in magazines and etc who started out with a blog about a topic and then turned that into a book or a product or a store or some other kind of business.

I've been doing a little bit of superficial research about blogging to be popular and gain followers, but I'd like to hear your perspective:

a. If you have a blog that you use to promote your writing or your business, how does that work for you?
b. What's the best blogging platform to accomplish this? I'm thinking Wordpress, but IDK.
c. Do I really have to get on Facebook and Instagram and Twitter and etc?
d. How much work is this approach likely to be? The writing content part I don't think I will struggle with. I've looked at a few tutorials that talk about having a good profile page, having lots of banked content before you go live, how to title posts for better search engine results. But the getting readership part sounds super involved. Thoughts?
lunabee34: (writer by sukibluefiction)
1. My parents weathered the storm okay; they'll be out of power at least through Monday (probably longer) but since surviving Katrina, they are mother-fucking prepared. Nobody I know died or was severely injured although some people in my parents' church had extensive property damage. /gratitude

2. Our roof is leaking. Naturally. Thank the baby Jesus in his golden diapers that we are renting and it is somebody else's problem.

3. I need to take a medication right as I start eating, and I keep forgetting to do so until after I've eaten. Help me figure out how to remember to do this. Josh has suggested setting alarms, but I don't eat lunch at the same time every day. It would work for dinner time because we always eat at roughly the same time. Suggestions?

4. I really want to explore the writing idea I had about interstitial cystitis. If I never write anything, it'll go nowhere. So I want to commit to writing daily. What is a good daily word count minimum to set? I want it to be substantial enough that I take it seriously but not so much that it's intimidating and I don't do it. Anyone who's ever had a daily writing goal wanna weigh in? What did you do? How did it work? Any other suggestions that you'd make for someone who's wanting to start a big project and needs to figure out how to generate consistent forward momentum?
lunabee34: (Default)
1. Dealing with my interstitial cystitis is going okay. I did a very strict elimination diet in December that I hope to never have to do again. Between the celiac and the IC, the number of foods I was allowed to eat (that were appetizing) was vanishingly small. I think some measure of physical discomfort is worth not having to eat like that. But in the last couple weeks I have started to add foods back: onions, yogurt, apples, sour cream, chocolate. I keep adding something every few days. Yesterday I ate sour cream and chocolate (which I knew as I was doing it I should just have done one), and then I forgot to take the prelief until after I ate, so I don't know exactly what's up there. I'll probably have to take it easy for a couple days.

I have started taking aloe vera and marshmallow root, and Josh found me this stuff called Prelief that you take as you eat that neutralizes the acid in your food. I discovered that sex and the menstrual cycle can also trigger IC (which is so damn depressing), and I think I am just going to have to deal with a fairly constant low level of discomfort if I want to live any kind of a normal life. I've only been taking these things for a short time, though, so hopefully their effects will build over time.

I started taking one drug for IC and quit taking it because it made me too sleepy during the day. I declined to take the other drug they use for IC because they don't know how it works (WTF!) and it has terrible potential side effects.

2. I am continuing to lose weight. cut for talk of weight loss )

3. Meeting my reading goals! Already read 3 books this year.
lunabee34: (i feel so suicidal by jjjean65)
So, I went to the doctor on Wednesday to see if I have interstitial cystitis, and I've been waiting to post about it because I wanted to calm down a little, but that doesn't seem to be happening, so I thought I'd just go ahead.

So, the doc does think I have interstitial cystitis, albeit a mild case. Okay, that's pretty much what I thought was going to happen. He told me I'd need to follow the IC diet (that's the main form of treatment), gave me a medicine to start taking, and told me I would only need a cystoscopy if the condition worsens or doesn't respond to treatment. So far, so good.

Then I get home and really start looking at the diet guidelines, and it's so much more restrictive than what I was finding online. I had pretty much resigned myself to not eating citrus, chocolate, caffeine, and carbonation. I miss those things, but I've been doing okay without them.

Here's the food list I was given: cut for length )

When I saw this list, I really started losing my shit because between this and the celiac, what's left? Am I doomed to a lifetime of dry salad, dry meat, dry veg? No hint of brightness to my food ever? No fruit? How do people on this diet not get scurvy or extreme vitamin deficiencies? What can I ever eat at a restaurant ever again? How can I ever eat at anyone's house again? Am I never to consume anything I enjoy eating again?

My plan before I examined the diet closely was to strictly do the diet for a month and then start adding back potential triggers one at a time, consuming each one every day for a week (unless triggered, obvs) and then moving on to the next. But now I don't know what to do after seeing just how many foods I'll have to eliminate. The thought of eating like this, living like this for the rest of my life, makes me so full of despair. Like, I was upset about going gluten free, and it took me a while, but I got over that pretty quickly all things considered. I can't see getting over eating like this.

I will have to take all my food with me everywhere I go. I'm not forcing my family to eat this way. It's hard enough going gluten free and not cooking with citrus and tomatoes. This takes it too far. Almost all our spice blends, for example, have citrus in them. So it's going to be a lifetime of cooking my sad, dry chicken breast on its own or my pot of soup with no onions or tomatoes or whatever, separately from theirs. It's going to be a lot of me eating a bowl of cereal and some dry fucking salad leaves while everybody else gets to eat real food.

I am picking up the medicine today; I didn't get it Wednesday because nobody could tell me if it's gluten free, the internet was singularly unhelpful, and the manufacturer didn't call me back until today. So I have no idea what effect the medicine will have (although the doc did stress that the meds are in addition to the diet; they don't take the place of it).

The doctor acknowledged that not everyone is triggered by the same things, so it's possible I can eat some of the forbidden items on the list. I can eat like this for a month, but what if I start adding these foods back, and I really am triggered by lima beans or apples or salad dressing?

What should I do? Should I keep eating as I have been (no citrus, caffeine, tomatoes), maybe lay off the vinegary stuff a bit, and see if I'm okay doing that plus the meds? Or should I go the whole month strictly on the diet and then start adding back foods to know for sure what triggers me?

I ate some sambal olek right before Thanksgiving and I know it triggered me. I woke up the next morning with intense symptoms. But a week and a half later, I drank a few glasses of wine which seemed to have no effect. So IDK.

I'm just really, really upset. I've already had to give up so many things I love to eat. The idea that I pretty much have to give them all up and am resigned to eating just to stay alive rather than to enjoy myself at all is a really bitter pill to swallow. I'm sure I'm being overly melodramatic. After all the IC website did tell me I could make my own salad dressing by blending up cottage cheese with herbs. *gags and dies*

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