Thursday, February 2, 2012

See that wagon? It's empty.

SO. I am on day 4 of my juice fast and I fell off the wagon. haha. I decided I was strong enough today to make TJ's work lunch...and it ended in me being taken down by a turkey sandwich. Here's the thing though...I don't feel bad, or even feel like I failed. I decided yesterday that for now, a juice fast is not for me. Not because it's too hard, mind you, but because it quickly changed mentally from me doing it for health reasons, to being more focused on the weight that was dropping off so quickly. I've been down that road before. MANY times. I spent the whole last year changing the way I think about food, and focusing on the other effects it has on my body, not just weight. And in 3 days of doing the juice fast, my brain was headed right back to all those unhealthy places. The excitement of losing weight so fast, the worry of it coming back just as quickly, wondering how much I'd lose if I walked a few miles on the treadmill too. As exciting as it is to lose 9lbs in 3 days (probably mostly water weight anyways) is not what I want for myself anymore. I am so excited to have started juicing, and I can't wait to incorporate it into eating clean!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

What a day.

Today I need to blog just to get the last 20 some-odd hours out of my head and into the head of others. Last night I had a mini breakdown. I was experienceing one of those "I'm too mentally exhausted to eat healthy or do anything else that I know is good for me that takes any sort of effort." In response to my moms encouraging words, I dragged my pitiful self into bed and grabbed the book she sent me, "Trusting God. Even when life hurts". I started reading it and instantly started feeling like less of the world was on my shoulders. I went to bed thinking that maybe I would be ok if I just got some good sleep.

Then the craziness started. TJ came home and decided to start some pork in the crock pot overnight. He wanted to check on it during the night a few times, so he set some alarms on his phone. I woke up to cody doing cody things... like waltzing around, hitting the blinds to go out, and trying to get comfy on the bed. I can't remember which was first, because he did all those things several times in the course of the night. As soon as I started to fall back asleep, TJ's alarm went off. He turned it off quickly because he was already up but it still buzzed longer than I would have liked. A minute later I was drifting back into sleep when TJ's fork hit the side of the crockpot, sending all 3 dogs into a frenzy, jumping up and off the bed pulling off my blanket and waking me with a start. I finally fell back asleep but awoke not much later to the smell of urine. OH NO.. did one of the dogs pee on my pillow? I smelled my pillow, my blanket, all before realizing the pee smell was the pork. Apparently, cooking pork with vinegar and various other spices is not a very appetizing aroma. I woke up on and off for the rest of the night to the smell of urine and to either Cody moving around, or all three dogs simultaneously jumping up and running to the kitchen hoping to score some pee pork.

Finally things settled down....and the next thing I know my alarm is going off to get up for work. "Crap!" Snooze. 5 minutes later... "Crap! Why is it so dark out?" Dismiss. 15 minutes later I woke up on my own, realizing I fell back asleep and could have been majorly late for work. I now had no time to shower. I brushed my teeth, put on deoderant, grabbed a home-made meal bar from the freezer and stood in front of the Keurig trying to will it to go faster. (I'm so spoiled... "go faster Keurig!") I grabbed my travel mug as soon as it was done brewing, put on the lid and went out the door. When I got to the end of my driveway I saw the neighbors dogs walking down the road, as if they chased his car as he left for work. Hmm... Brian doesn't usually leave for work the same time I do... he must have been running late today. Need.Caffeine. I take a big gulp of coffee before realizing it was boiling hot and burning everything from my teeth to my tonsils. ( full disclosure... I had my tonsils out in 4th grade, but if I had them they would have been boiled to death today anyways). I turned on some music and just tried to relax to some Depeche Mode.

A few minutes later, I drove by a school. I thought "why are the lights not flashing? am I running late? Then I noticed there weren't many cars in the lot and I thought "maybe it's an in-service day or they are having their spring break later than most other people" I drive on.

I'm almost to kellys house and that's when the last clue finally breaks through my cluelessness. I see a schoolbus on the street, and bryce running down the driveway to get on. I'M AN HOUR EARLY. That's why it was dark when I got up, why the neighbor dogs were in the street, and why the school zone lights weren't flashing. How could I be so dumb? After an already horrible night, I cheated myself out of a full hour of sleep. Luckily, I work for great, flexible people. I called her as I pull into the driveway and she laughed and told me to come on in. I took a big breath and sighed as I turned off the car. I started to walk toward the back door and thought 'what a crazy day already', and then I walked my tired face right into a spiderweb.

UPDATE: I should have known the day was not over. I had a good evening with a couple of friends discussing all things crafts. Afterwards I got chicken fried rice from my favorite japanese place and headed home. I was in the middle of eating it when I remembered I left the dogs out and they probably wanted in. As soon as I was settled back into my seat and with chopsticks lifted I smelled something RANK. I couldn't put my finger on it but it smelled like a barn. A barn... hmm... and that is when I remembered I let my neighbor put his horse in our yard to eat our grass. That is also when I remembered my dogs love of eating and rolling around in poo (and dead things, like birds). Upon closer optical and smellical observation I saw horse poop smeared and dried in Stewards fur, and olive smelled like what I would imagine a dung beetle would. Anyways... two emergency baths and a tub scrub down later, and I was back on the couch calling TJ and telling him to tell our neighbor, "Sorry, but you can't put your horse in our fence anymore. Our dogs are to horse poop, as Scrooge McDuck is to piles of money."

UPDATE UPDATE: As I was writing the previous update, tj came to me with his pork/apple chutney creation to try. I tried a bite and it wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. Good Job TJ! I might actually have a sandwich! I headed over to FB and started posting that I editted my blog and at that exact moment I heard a sound that strikes dread into my heart. Gagging, vomitting dog. I look over and Cody is by the back door throwing up, but his head is obscured by the couch. I yelled to TJ to take Cody outside. He ran over and said "what IS that? Oh my gosh it's horse po.. RETCH. RETCH RETCH RETCH..." This is when he ran to the bathroom. I started hysterically laughing while running to get plastic bags and paper towels. While getting the paper towels it finally hit me and now we were both gagging violently. TJ eventually went outside to look in the yard for more horse stuff, and I cleaned up the horse manure vomit. I haven't even had my coffee yet.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Bugs are People Too

I haven't written on here in quite a while, and even then, it was super lame. I freely admit, I'm not a writer. I have terrible sentance structure, grammar, spelling, punctuation, and pretty much anything else that could be terrible, is terrible. I've decided I just don't care. I'll never get better if I don't practice. So here goes.

Growing up, I always cringed when I killed bugs. Most people do, I suppose, but not for the reason I did. If I saw an ant crawling on the counter, I would have an internal struggle. Do I let it strut around like it owned the place? Crawling on surfaces where my food is? Or do I kill it and risk ant vengance by loved ones?

I blame cartoons where bugs are given personalities and feelings. If someone killed my brother I would seek revenge and blood. I also blame words like, swarm, and army, which give the allusion of organization. If they can organize, they can fight and kill.

I didn't want any blood on my hands. I didn't want to be traced back to the death and be held accountable. I would try to explain to friends why I didn't want to kill the bug on my backpack, but would realize how ridiculous the words sounded as they came out of my mouth. By the end of my explanation I would already be trying to find a way to prove I wasn't insane, and it usually came down to me laughing, saying "just kidding hah" and squishing the bug...muttering a low apology and request for mercy.

Realizing no one would ever quite understand my fear I stopped explaining it, and asked others to do the deed for me. When I was alone, I would bargain. " If you don't hurt me I won't hurt you and you can go on living your little life, but here are the rules. 1. Stay in your corner, or I will assume you are running towards me to hurt me, and that breaks the contract and it will be your own fault. 2. If you do break the contract, your friends and family have no claim on my blood." This usually worked out pretty well.

The south is pretty much a nightmare for me on a daily basis. I see hundreds if not thousands of bugs daily and I know, I just know that they are all connected and watching each others backs. We have ants up north, but these ones BITE. We have spiders up north, but these ones are POISONOUS. You can imagine how this could complicate an already stressful situation.

I kill ants/spiders/moths, etc on an almost daily basis and none have never been avenged, but that truth does not placate my fear. Irrational as it may be. I didn't write this all for nothing, I wrote it because if I'm ever found dead of an unknown cause, please don't forget to investigate the ants.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Not the best night.....

So last night I woke up feeling all barfy. I opened the bathroom door so I would have a clear shot to the toilet because I was quite sure it would come to that. To my surprise, later (quite a while later) I feel asleep with my innards still intact. I woke up and spent the day with a stomach ache,and super tired for that matter, but thought that maybe I had just handled the beef improperly that I made for lunch. Well, on my way home from church tonight I started feeling a little sicky to my stomach. I came in and took some tums... and that was rough, because I absolutely hate chewing that crap... and started doing the dishes. A few minutes into it my stomach started swelling and feeling sicker and sicker. I didn't end up finishing the dishes because it got so bad I decided I needed to get into my PJ's and lay down. I put my hair in a pony tail (thank heavens) and got out my pj's. All of a sudden I started salivating a ton and had a weird taste in my mouth. I got to the toilet just in time! not fun. I really hate throwing up. So anways, that was about an hour ago. My stomach felt a little better, but in the last 30 minutes i've been getting barfier and barfier. So now I sit, with a pot and a roll of paper towels (incase of one of those -I won't make it to the bathroom- moments) waiting for tj to get home. The very worst part of all of this is, I have a cleaning job tomorrow. I just started last week and I already have to cancel, at the last minute too since it's too late to call tonight. The family just got over the stomach flu last week so I would feel terrible if i came over and spread it all over their house and they got it again. UHG that sure makes me look like a great reliable worker right? I hate when I can't win

Friday, February 5, 2010


It is over! I had so many fears and doubts and those are all gone and I couldn't be happier, and all thanks to God

Like I said in my previous post, endometriosis can only be diagnosed through surgery. It can't be seen by ultrasound or CT scan or anything of that nature. My obgyn and fertility dr all were pretty stinkin certain I had endometriosis because I had pretty much every major symptom. I say this because after my surgery, my Dr. said I DON'T HAVE ENDOMETRIOSIS!!!!!!! Let me start from the beginning.

I got to the surgery center at 6:30 and got bloodwork. I then got prepped for surgery, which included slippers (i'm still wearing and loving them) a cap for my hair, and a gown. They got my IV hooked up and got my mom and tj back there waiting with me. They told me I was going to have a tube in my throat once I fell asleep and that the surgery should take an hour to an hour and a half. I was so scared not knowing what i'd hear when i woke up. i had a test called an HSG done a couple months ago and it looked like one of my tubes was blocked and the other one might be damaged.

I woke up suuuper groggy and nauseaus.... my dr walked by with a big smile on her face and said "you're a perfect woman, we found no endometriosis and were able to fix the tube that was coiled up and kinked" She was so surprised to not find anything there and so was I!! She said that my pain is probably caused by some nerves that are getting inflamed every month and making the pain so bad. All I could say was "God is soo awesome!"

I woke up around 11 oclock and my recovery was only supposed to be 1hr... but I didn't get to leave till almost 4pm. I layed in bed at first, drifting in and out of sleep. Every few minutes my moniter would start alarming and a nurse would say "Grace, wake up and take some deep breaths.... you're breathing too shallow and not getting enough oxygen" It was so annoying. the second i stopped taking deep breaths it would just drop drop drop and then beep and i'd have to start all over again. After a little while they took my to a recliner where my husband and mom got to sit with me. That was before noon. I again drifted... in and out.... and the nurse would come in with a wheelchair and carry my IV bag and take me to the bathroom where I would sit. I didn't feel like I had to go, but they said I had to go before I could go home. I would sit there, start to fall asleep, and finally just pull the cord to get the nurse back in. I did this 4 times. I drank gingerale, had 3 big bags of fluids, and even drank some coffee to try and get myself to go to the bathroom. It just never happened. Eventually, after a few hours they told me I needed to get a catheter in to empty my bladder. Not. Pleasant. They did the cath and i have to say, my bladder was FULL.

As I was getting up, the nurse said, everything that could go bad or be uncomfortable after surgery, you got. I told her that it doesn't even matter, that what mattered was that God took care of me and let me get the best news ever. Much better than I, or any of my doctors expected.

You want to hear a theory? I think God gave me all the symptoms of endometriosis so they would do the surgery and be able to fix the tube. Here's the thing, the HSG I had showed my tube was obstructed... but if we had done surgery just for that, insurance would not have paid for it and tj and i could never have afforded it. But beause of all my symptoms of endometriosis they were able to do the surgery for that, which IS covered by insurance! God really orchestrated this whole thing amazingly. I now have a 50% higher chance of getting pregnant because i now have two working tubes!!

Anyways, I am really hopped up on darvocet right now so please excuse the crappy everything. SO HAPPY!!!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Body Breakdown

So I haven't written in here for quite a while... partly because I didn't have anything interesting to write about and partly because I forgot my password.

I figured I'd write about all the crappy health things i've been going through, so here goes

About two weeks before christmas, my friend Sarah and I decided to play tennis! It was below the freezing point and windy but who cares, we'd be running around right? It was fun, but after a few minutes my legs were numb. A few days later I started noticing my right knee swelling when I was walking on it. I decided to take it easy but a girls gotta walk! This went on till after christmas, getting so bad at times that I was walking around like frankenstein, and avoiding my right knee so much my left knee was hurting as well as my back. I came home from erie and stayed off it as much as possible. All of a sudden it stopped swelling! I was so excited... I fixed it! I was sad to realize it wasn't fixed as much as it was just... different. Now, I would go to extend it to stand up or lay down and it would crack so loud tj could hear it across the room and it felt almost as if it were snapping back into place. I didn't go to the gym or work out at all because I was afraid of irritating it or causing permanent damage. As many of you know, I am out of work right now, so thinking of dropping 20 dollarinos on a copay was out of the question. So I just waited, and rested. Well a couple weeks ago I got sick. pretty darn sick. Fever, sore throat, cough, labored breathing, and general ickiness. Well I haven't gotten completly better and I have surgery next friday (just be patient, I'll get there) so i figured, if i need antibiotics I have to see the Dr. now.

For the last 3 years I've been seeing the Nurse Practitioner at our office. I can't stand her. I could go in with a broken leg and she'd say "there's just a bug going around". Several times I've had to actively pursuade her to actually look into a problem I was having, and each time MY diagnosis was correct and hers was wrong. This time I requested to see the REAL doctor. You know, the one with the PhD. He was great! We had a conversation. That's right, I talked, he listened, he talked, I listened. It was like a breath of fresh air. He told me I had an upper respiratory infection and prescribed me some antibiotics and said I should be fine for surgery(see next paragraph) if I take them. Next I told him about my knee and he put one hand on my knee, and with his other hand moved my leg in all sorts of positions that would be uncomfortable for even the most talented contortionist. As he did this he was talking about that fun popping sound that knees do. He stopped mid sentance and said something along the lines of "Oh wow, listen to that. That is pretty bad" He continued to tell me about how the socket of my knee is all ridged and grindy instead of smooth like it should be and that my knee is in pretty bad shape. So basically I have osteoarthritis in my knee and he prescribed some anti-inflammatory medications and said we'll see how they work. I'm not to play tennis or anything that has me moving like that... you know, all squatty and running sideways type of thing. I have some exercises to do to strengthen the small muscles around my knee cap. In general the visit was nice because he addressed all my concerns, but I am slightly upset to realize I have a problem with my knee that will only get worse with time. OK. Next.

Next friday feb 5th I'm getting laparoscopic surgery for endometriosis. You can't see endometriosis with any sort of ultrasound or scan so to truly diagnose it you have to see it through surgery. My two doctors both believe I have endometriosis due to my symtoms, but like I said, you can never be sure until the surgery. They're going to go in through my belly button and a few other places and look into my pelvis and clean out any scarring and adhesions they find from the endometriosis. They will do a few other things while they're there which may, or may not, be successfull. I have known that I would probably need this surgery for over a year now... and now it's here. I am very excited to get it done, and hopefully there will be some great things that come from it. I am mostly hoping for decreased back and pelvis pain, but there are many things this surgery will affect, such as my ability to get pregnant! Here are my fears... I don't know what I'm going to hear when I wake up. There is a wide spectrum of outcomes. I could wake up from the anesthesia and my doc could say "We went in and found nothing!" Or I could wake up and hear "There was a lot of scarring and adhesions, your tubes (of the fallopian kind) are ruined and will need to be removed. We tried to remove as much as we could, but had some bleeding and had to go from laparoscopy to an open procedure" You see.... when I got my gallbladder out, my dr and I pretty much knew what we were getting ourselves into. In this case, neither of us do, and I won't know until I wake up what my fate is.

OK so I get it, this was boring, and long. Here's the thing, it's too late now... I'm not going back through and deleting things just to make your life a little easier. I'm too tired and taking approximately 4 new drugs to spell check or clarify. I promise I'll get better with practice. Next time I'll tell you about my new "diet" and how happy it makes me. Sound interesting? check back.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Day 1

WARNING: This will be less like a 'blog' and more like an online journal. This is not only for you, but for me and my sub-par memory that needs any little reminders it can get.

OK... so day one started early, with complimentary breakfast at the hotel. We got in the car and programmed our little british lady with all the cities we wanted to go to, and in what order. I have become a complete believer in navigation systems by the way. I must confess I used to be completely critical of them and worried some day one would send me over the side of a bridge or onto the wrong side of the highway. Ours has been a complete blessing... along with that and the autobahn we have been able to see so much and not waste hours and hours of driving time. Our first stop was a town called Rothenberg ob der Tauber. We drove under one of the towers that is in the surrounding city wall and were greated with an adorable town with beautiful houses and shops and plenty of flowerboxes and ... flower houses? I guess that's what you can call a house that is almost covered in flowers and vines. We parked our rented audi and walked up the stone steps to the city wall. We walked along the wall for a while, able to see down the towns small roads. We went in a few shops and saw things we liked but didn't buy anything (you must be careful not to buy too much at the first place you go, you never know what you'll find the rest of your trip!) After soaking up the towns charm we went to our next "intermediate destination" as our navagator sweetly told us in her english accent.

Nordlingen was the next town we were set to see and it didn't dissapoint!

While en route, I looked in the travel book on Germany we had bought at B&N and read that Nordlingen was built on a crater that was caused by a meteor 'millions' of years ago. Interesting. It also had a church, St. George that had a tower called daniels tower that if you climbed it you could get 360 view of the town. Interesting. The town itself was also very charming, but much harder to find a parking place. We drove around for a while before finding a spot we could slip into that was near enough the church. The church was beautiful of course but we weren't sure how long it would take to climb the tower so we quickly headed to the entrance. The first set of stairs were the stone kind that went into a tight spiral....not too bad. On a scale of one to ten the flimsiness was about a zero but in terms of me feeling claustrophic, it was a solid 9. They seemed to go on and on until I was slightly dizzy and slightly freaking out. Finally it opened up... to more stairs. These were made of wood and creaked as you walked on them and had slots where the wood just didn't quite meet up and you could very much see through them. Now started the hyperventilating. But I kept walking. TJ started walking behind me incase I passed out. I am just going to say this was rough.... I don't know why but sometimes I can force myself to handle heights and sometimes I feel completely hopeless. I once had a panic attack over having to climb an 8 foot ladder. We walked and walked and walked and at one point the hyperventilating went away but not the fear! When we got to the top we paid the man 2 euro each and climbed outside the tower. It was beautiful. You could walk completely around the small tower although the walkway could basically only fit one person. The fresh air helped me a bit and I got out my camera and snapped some photos of the buildings, wall, and distant fields. I wanted to take one straight down but there was no way I was leaning over that wall so I grabbed the tower with one hand and reached the other over the wall and took a photo, not knowing what was below. This was the resulting photo.

The walk down was better but not great, I stared at my feet 100 percent of the time and had both hands grasped on the rails and walls to ensure I wouldn't plummet to my death if one of the stairs fell through. We finally made it down and I was happy to sit in our car and take chill pill. All in all, glad I did it, and glad I didn't cry. hah. pee-ess... I looked it up later and there are 365 stairs!

Our final stop was in a town called Fussen where the grass was an intense green, the likes of which I have only seen in one other place, Ireland.

We instantly loved the little town at the foot of the alps and drove around trying to take it all in. We followed signs to take us to the castles. Neuschwanstein castle was beautiful, nestled into the mountain above us looking old and intricate and beautiful.

The sun was going down soon and it was foggy so we didn't take the time to park and walk up, but did take some photos of the castle with the fog around it that did turn out quite nice. We went back to the town and parked and walked around and found a cute place to eat dinner. TJ order something called a pork knuckle and truly, when they set it down in front of him it still had bits of pig hair sticking off it. Tj scraped the fat off it and said the pork underneath was "good... sortof like pulled pork in memphis" I have to admit If i saw animal hair on my meat I wouldn't be able to scrape it off and pretend it was never there! Luckily my food came, quite normal looking and good tasting. It got dark as we sat there next to the window listening to people walking around town. We decided to drive back up to the castle and see if it was lit up and it was! Tj got some good pictures but they aren't loaded up yet. My camera died soon after turning it on to try and so I really have nothing to offer you considering this.
It was getting late and so we headed home. It took us a little under 4 hours to get home but it was all very worth it and we decided we had a very successful, fun day!