Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Damn vampires.

A couple months ago, I had a DO appointment, then a endocrinologist appointment.  My regular doc has been trying to find something--anything--she can do to treat the chronic fatigue syndrome, or at least help me manage it.*  And she ordered a CBC, a liver function test, and a test that shows RA that may be hiding from the more common test.  And said I could just get them all done when the endo ordered another TSH blood workup. 

Well, the endo appointment came.  She did, indeed, send me down to the lab.  And their computer system shat itself, and refused to pull up the print command for the labels for the vials.  So, they wouldn't do the bloodwork ordered by my regular doc.  And something went funky with the TSH, and it read really low--which means that the thyroid dose I'd been doing as well as I ever did was too high.  Don't know if it was stress, or me managing meds and diet to wring every last bit of energy out of my meds for the last couple of months of teaching actually succeeding past where I should have, but still.  She flipped out, and ordered another in two months (i.e., yesterday). 

So, yesterday, I went to the lab at the DO's office.  And asked for her bloodwork, and could they please do the rest, too. 

They offered to go ahead with DO's, but not endo's, or let it ride until I went back to the lab in the endo's building, which should do all of it. 

Yeah, not after last time.  I asked that they went ahead with the draw for the DO. 

Turns out it was a really good thing I did.  They got plenty. 

Odysseus helped me get all the way across town (about a twenty-minute drive) to the lab.  They got me in, and the little phlebotomist tried her damnedest.  Three times.  She finally got just barely enough to run the TSH test that the endo ordered. 

*Managing it is not overdoing it, sleeping a lot, eating a lot of beef, and drinking coffee.  Pain management is a little more complicated, due to allergies, and involves a good bit more alcohol than I really want to be drinking on breakthrough pain nights.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Deep breath...

Crack knuckles...and write. 

I have the project for March finished in first draft form.  It's a collection of short stories (and I am planning on adding one more, when I can get it out).  I'm fairly happy with it. 

I've also started the next project.  It's one I started about five years ago, but stalled on.  I couldn't find the right music for it, and I didn't know why I couldn't move the plot forward.  I recently got a lot more music--like, four CDs, three of Avenged Sevenfold, and In This Moment's Rituals--and the latter proved to be perfect.  I pulled up the 10K words I had of the project, and read through it four times while listening to the music...and figured out that I'd not set things up right.  I've got to build the trust between the characters before I can set the plot rolling.  Duh.

I had 10K words.  I had to cut 2K words to get back to a point where it would move again.  And once I did, I added 3K words.  Yes, the project that stalled for five freakin' years is alive again.  And it's coming really easy, now.  

Last weekend, I discovered a couple things: thing the first, my headphones had died.  Again.  The wire had broken on the plug end.  Thing the second, I can't cheap out on fixing thing the first and expect it to last.  I'd spent $50 on three pairs of headphones, last year. 

So on Saturday, I spent $50 on a pair of headphones that are capable of Bluetooth connection or of using a wire...which was the fail point on ALL of my other headphones...and which fully detaches and is easily replaceable on this set. 

Hopefully, this pair lasts me for a good while longer. 

This morning, I finally felt good enough to move my work station back from my recliner (with heat pad and blankets and all sorts of comfort stuff) back to my desk.  And I went to plug my USB accessories back in to print my tax info and to get back to using a keyboard that's a lot easier on my hands.  And come to find out, the keyboard won't see the laptop, or vise versa. 

I panicked.  And went looking for a spare (which we don't have).  And then decided I was going to go get a new one.  Asked Odysseus if he could grab me one, or if I ought to go to a local overstock and return store that often has some really decent stuff marked a lot lower than it should be.  He suggested plugging it in and trying a hard restart.  So I did, and went to do the restart, accidentally put an elbow on a key...and the damn thing obeyed the input command, and shut down my browser. 

Yes, ladies and gents, that's right: I threatened to replace a piece of equipment that wouldn't work, and it started working again. 

We really ought to do things like this more often with cashiers that won't do their jobs and go on strike demanding a skilled worker's wage for unskilled work. 

Back to work.  I'll bang out this new project's first draft, then get to work revising March's project. 

Friday, January 19, 2018

It's a couple weeks later than intended, but...

 ...it's done, and published.  You can buy it, or you can use the Kindle Unlimited program to read it for free.

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Life happens.

Last week, the kids' Christmas Break ended (on Tuesday--the teachers' break ended on Monday).  The kids had a four day week, last week, and I got quite a bit actually done that I hadn't managed to get done while they were off (Mom-ing is a full-time job, especially when the weather's awful, and the kids are stuck inside, and leaves no energy of any type for anything else). 

Sunday, I made chili, and had the imp's godfather, and the godfather's new girlfriend over for supper.  She's very sweet, but I really think it's not going to work, long term.  The imp's godfather is a conservative leaning libertarian Christian, and the girlfriend is a hard-left leaning pagan feminist that's so open minded she's in danger of losing her brain.  The cats and kids liked her, and liked her kids, so she's not totally a lost cause, but...yeah.

And Sunday through Monday...it snowed.  A lot.  We got an inch or so on Sunday, then four and a half more on Monday.  And school was cancelled on Monday, and the local PD declared emergency road conditions (rightly--the salt trucks and plows couldn't stay on the road).  And through the course of the day on Monday, the temperatures plummeted. 

Monday night into Tuesday, it got down below zero.  We broke a long-held record for low temperatures.  Tuesday, we also broke a long-held record for coldest high temperature (mid single digits).  And local schools remained cancelled, but I had hopes for school being in session on Wednesday, so cut off the imp's TV viewing, and sent him off to play after lunch. 

I got them both chased through the shower and put to bed on school night time, and then collapsed.  Checked my email.  Cussed.  Because school was cancelled for Wednesday, and they announced it while I was chasing the kids through bedtime routines. 

So, yesterday morning, I was trying to sleep in a bit, whilst Odysseus was getting ready for work, and Odysseus uttered an expression of shocked dismay. 

Our hot water had frozen overnight. 

Finally got that thawed around a quarter to 11:00 yesterday morning, then realized I was hearing water running under the house. 

I don't know where the house shutoff valve is, assuming we have one, but I do know where the breaker box and well breaker is.  Flipped that off, and have been trying to avoid needing to use the bathroom. 

The plumber is supposed to get to us sometime today. 

Needless to say, I've gotten very little done this week.  Life has very much happened, and continues to happen.  And all of this has been going on while the weather has my joints hurting enough that I'm dreaming in shades of more and less pain in my hands, knees, ankles, hips, and (as of last night) one shoulder.

I'm about ready to give up and do my best to get drunk tonight (after the plumber has been here and fixed our water issues).  Works better for pain management than most of my other options.

Monday, January 8, 2018

End of break

I can see the light at the end of the tunnel.  The kids have been out for a bit over two weeks (they were out halfway through Thursday of the week before Christmas, and are still out as of today. 

Tomorrow, they go back.

I suppose that, had this break had normal weather for this time of year in this part of the state, it wouldn't have been so bad.  Unfortunately, it got really cold just before Christmas and stayed that way for most of the break.  The weather only got tolerable outside a couple days ago, and the kids have spent part of today playing outside.

They have been absolutely miserable, trapped in the house by dangerously cold temperatures, and shared that liberally.

They desperately needed the space to go screaming and playing like crazy...and they didn't have that.  They're not allowed to bring toys out of their rooms (because they don't take them back to their rooms), and aren't allowed to run, yell, scream, or roughhouse inside the house. 

I tried taking them shopping...that wasn't what they needed.  They needed time and space where they didn't have to control the play and noise impulses more than they needed to just get out of the house.

And I'm not taking them again when they're only out for a week or two.  I won't be taking them with me on the grocery shopping trip again until I have to.

Tomorrow, though, they go back.  And I can get to some jobs that really need done.