Saturday, January 31, 2009

The Most Awesome Part of Being Sick

First, I should say that I don't aspire to being sick. I don't like it at all. There are some perks, though.

I took a sick day yesterday and didn't do anything at all around the house. No cleaning, no laundry, nothing. All I did was hang out with my equally sick Munchkin, watch Disney movies and take a nap. Oh...and I made the most awesome soup ever. Lots of chicken, lots of broccoli and a moderate amount of was so yummy. It was even better because I used some leftover hard rolls to make miniature bread bowls. But the soup was awesome in a regular bowl, too. See?

Over the past two days, I've gotten more sleep than I have in the previous eight days combined. That is my very sad reality, but I'm still grateful for the rest. I'm hoping the trend continues. It feels good to get restorative sleep!

Today, I went to Trader Joe's on a produce run. I've been on a pear kick lately and T.J.'s has the best, juiciest pears. Picked up some carrots, broccoli, potatoes, apples and such. Ran to Wal-Mart for a few other odds and cold medicine. I can count on one hand the number of times in the past five years I've taken cold medicine. I don't like putting anything foreign in my body if I can help it, but this cold is so bad, my poor body was screaming at me to get some help. It seems to be helping--I'm not coughing so hard and my sinuses don't hurt as badly as they did earlier. I think I'll take some more at bedtime with a cup of hot tea. I need to pause here to go make dinner...

I'm back! I started this post a few hours ago and I'm just now getting back to it. I think it's about 9:30pm now. I made a loaf of banana bread a little while ago. I think it smells pretty good, but it's hard to tell because I'm still so stuffy. It's not "real" banana bread. It's one of my homemade concoctions. It's banana bread with chocolate chips and a peanut butter/brown sugar topping. It looks yummy. I hope it tastes good!

And, of course, there's the obvious fact that I fooled around with my blog template. It's so hard to find something to stick with for any length of time, but I saw this one and adored it from first glance. I really like green and tulips are my favorite flowers, so it seemed like a perfect fit...for now. You know, until the next time I change my mind!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Is My Head Stuffed with Cotton?

My kiddo and I are in a race to see who can use the most tissues and the contest is on to see who can cough louder and harder. Ugh. Being sick is bad. Having a sick kid is bad. Being sick together is really bad, but it's also a great excuse to lay around on the couch all day. I'm so congested, it feels like my head is stuffed with cotton--hence the lame-o title of this post.

Oh, and here's a fun little tidbit of information. I'm no longer a Starbuck's virgin. I went into Starbuck's yesterday to pick up a gift card for a co-worker who helped me out with an issue two weeks ago and it smelled so good in there that I wanted to get something for myself. I thought that since I don't drink coffee, I'd give their hot chocolate a try. It was okay. I feel like I should have been bowled over by it--the girl making it really talked it up, like it was some sort of gift from the gods, made with four kinds of chocolate and whipped cream, for goodness sake! But I have to say that it was just okay. It was warm and felt good on my sore throat, but I think I prefer my own, homemade hot chocolate. In fact, I think I'll go make some now. I took a sick day from my full-time job, but I'm trying to pull it together so I can teach tonight. I hate having to cancel class, especially when we only meet twelve times. It's too hard to catch up once I'm behind, so I'm hoping if I get some rest and don't talk too much today, I'll be able to get through most of class tonight. I'm sure the students wouldn't care if I cancelled, but I'd feel guilty about it. Ah well.

More nonsense later...

Monday, January 26, 2009

Prayer Request

I'll get back to my usual posting in the next few days, but today I have a special request. Because I believe in the power of prayer, I'm making public my request for intercession for Sue, who is undergoing a Gamma Knife Procedure this week. Sue is a wife and mother and has courageously battled cancer for years. I will be lifting Sue in my own prayers, but certainly the more prayers for her, the better. I also found this prayer online that I'd like to share...perhaps you know someone who needs it as well.

A Prayer to St. Peregrine for Sick Relatives and Friends

O great St. Peregrine, you have been called "The Mighty", the "The Wonder Worker" because of the numerous miracles which you obtained from God for those who have turned to you in their need. For so many years you bore in your own flesh this cancerous disease that destroys the very fiber of our being. You turned to God when the power of human beings could do no more, and you were favored with the vision of Jesus coming down from His cross to heal your affliction.
I now ask God to heal these sick persons whom I entrust to you:

(Here mention their names)

Aided by your powerful intercession, I shall sing with Mary a hymn of gratitude to God for His great goodness and mercy.


Saturday, January 24, 2009

Good Saturday Morning!

It's about 8:25am here--I've been awake for over two hours, but I laid in bed until 7:30. That was NOT easy for me. Once I'm awake, I have an overwhelming need to get up, get moving and be productive. Today...not so much.

I do have a lot to get done. I have to go grocery shopping, go to Target, return some books to the library, hang up some new picture frames, mop the floors, catch up on laundry, dust the dining room and vacuum everywhere. I think my Saturday is going to fly by.

Hope everyone is enjoying the weekend!

Friday, January 23, 2009

The Week From Hell...Frozen Over

So, as if the lack of sleep, falling asleep at the gas station, water in the smoke detectors and a mouse in the basement weren't bad enough this week, I now have a weekend (today, Friday night) starting off with a sump pump motor that is running constantly and NOT pumping water away from the house. It's running and not doing a freakin' thing. There's got to be a frozen spot in the line somewhere, which is a bad, bad thing, because there's almost two feet of snow in the backyard that started melting today because the temperature was above freezing. My own personal hell...frozen over.

Did I mention that I'm having a party on Sunday afternoon and I'm supposed to be cleaning the house?

And now I have a three year old telling me that she feels like she has "throw ups" in her tummy.

Pray for me. Please.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Mid-Week Madness

After a nice long weekend, my schedule got back to its usual craziness, and I didn't realize how many days passed since I last posted. Yesterday was the worst day of the week so far, but today wasn't much better. It's one of those things where things could be worse, but it's bad enough that I just want the week to be done! Here's the scoop...

Tuesday=mountain of work to catch up on after the long weekend. Couldn't sleep that night, just restless and grumpy. Less than three hours of sleep. Grumpy most of Wednesday morning and afternoon. Taught late. Had to stop for gas. Dozed off at the steering wheel while the tank was filling (please don't tell me how stupid and dangerous that was, I already know). Got home. Water in smoke detectors. Yes, you read that right. WATER in the system that's supposed to alert me to fire. Looks like it was a problem with some frost in the attic that melted and ran down the conduit, into the smoke alarm. Now I'm worried about the overhead light fixtures. Slept better last night, which is good, but still not long enough. Dead mouse in basement...eeeeewwwww! Work was completely crazy today, I taught a class tonight, and now I'm eating leftover pizza and typing this.

Holy smokes, I'm glad tomorrow is Friday!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

The History of Dating

Do you ever have days where your mind just refuses to be quiet? That's me, pretty much all of the time. It's exhausting. I don't ever remember not having a busy mind. It doesn't bother me for the most part, unless it's interrupting my sleep (which it has been lately). The only other time it bothers me is when my thoughts about everything get really jumbled and I find myself doing a lot of second-guessing and wondering about the "what ifs" in my life and from my past.

The one thought I've had lately that's been sticking around is whether I missed out on anything by not dating more when I was younger. It's not necessarily that I would change my current my life, but I just wonder if I would be different if I'd gotten out a little more and had a bit more fun than I did in my teens and early twenties. I was thinking about it, reminiscing and laughing to myself as I thought about my dating history.

Like most school girls, I had those silly elementary school crushes, which rarely amount to anything. I had my fair share of them and they were fine. None of them left me with any serious longing for "what might have been." Well, maybe Jason, who was my first boyfriend in kindergarten. He was a cutie.

I dated a boy in high school for--gosh, I don't even remember how long--maybe a year and a half or so. By high school standards, I guess that's kind of a long time. I'd like to say he was my first love, but I don't think he was. There was some excitement, sort of the, "Ooooh. I have a boyfriend and he plays football," kind of excitement. In the end, though, he was kind of a butthead. His "experimenting" with alcohol and cigarettes became a problem for me. It wasn't something I wanted to be around, and then he got a little weird and possessive for a while. In between that, there were the rumors of him getting buzzed and then, um, getting involved with another girl. When I asked him about it, his response was that he couldn't remember anything like that happening. Ri-i-i-i-ght. I remember patiently and methodically packing up every gift he'd given me and returning it all to him. I ran into him years later and he said it took him by surprise, that he didn't think I had that kind of mean streak in me. Whatever.

I went out for a short while, maybe a couple of months, with another boy toward the end of my junior year, but it wasn't anything major. We went to our junior prom and had a nice time, but that was about it. I stayed happily single through my senior year. I was busy every minute, studying and working, and there was little time for anything else.

By the time I got to college, I was interested in dating again, but it all seemed so complicated. There was the super-hot guy in my history class, but I was always too dumb-struck to say anything to him. (And yes, he was THAT hot, at least to me.) There was the cute but "nerdy" boy who I liked a lot, but he practically went into spasms and turned purple every time I tried to talk to him. (I think he wasn't used to being approached by girls.) There was a friend who maybe could have been more than a friend, but neither of us thought about it at the time. There was a single date with a guy named Raj--he was a foreign exchange student and he just wanted to tell his parents that he actually went on a date with an American girl. That was his pick-up line after class. "I'd like to go on one date with an American girl. Can you help me with that? My parents will be quite pleased with me if I do." He was friends with my friend's boyfriend and he seemed harmless enough, so we went out on a double date. There was a single date with Dave, a former male model turned police officer, who turned out to be almost ten years older than me (I didn't know it when I agreed to the date). I thought he was an undergraduate student--turns out he was a grad student. At 19, it freaked me out a little bit. There was a single date with a former military man named Jason from my economics class, but he turned out to be a little bit creepy. Or a lot bit creepy. There were no kisses or hand-holding or anything on any of these dates. Thank goodness!

I dated one guy named Randy for a while, but he was a hopeless player, destined to be a bachelor for the rest of his life. There was a short relationship with a guy named Dave (not the male model/police officer, but a different Dave), but I realized there was no hope for that when he came to pick me up for a formal date at my parents' house, and he went to the neighbor's house instead. Funny times, I tell you.

The guy I went to the junior prom with resurfaced and we dated again for a short while, but there was no hope there. He kept pressuring me, talking about marriage, hinting (and later insisting) that I shouldn't go to graduate school. He talked a lot about settling down, but he had no plans for himself and no desire to work full-time, so that ended pretty quickly.

Then I met my husband. Nice guy, pleasant, decent sense of humor (okay, pretty dumb sense of humor), treated me pretty well overall and we got along. It wasn't a head-over-heels falling in love. Of course, I didn't know what that felt like, so maybe it was and I just didn't know it. It was more just being comfortable and genuinely liking this person who I'd hung around with a few times and got to know through mutual friends before we ever went on a date. The rest, as they say, is history.

Did I miss out on anything by making a choice not to have casual sex? I don't think I missed anything there. I don't think there's anything wrong with people who do, but it wasn't for me. I saw too many relationship casualties, both in guy friends and girl friends who had to deal with the devastation of breakups, and sex just seemed to complicate everything.

Did I miss out on anything by not "playing the field" per se and getting more relationship experience before settling down? Maybe. I think about it and I suppose that there are things I would have liked to experience--being whisked away on a spontaneous, romantic vacation. Making out in the back of a movie theater. (Wait. Do people still do that?) Fire, passion, romance, all that good stuff that I read about and hear about. I think what I missed out on is the opportunity to feel what it's like to just sort of sit back and be the girl in the relationship. Does that make sense? I'm not afraid to have an argument, cut the grass, shovel snow, change a tire, hang pictures (and then spackle when I swing the hammer too hard...), sand wood, paint walls, cook, clean, work, raise a child, bring home the bacon, fry it up, then clean it all up and put everything back where it belongs, only to fall down exhausted and get up and do it again the next day. I am a little worried about missing out on the things that I long for--things that maybe I would have experienced if I had done more dating. But who knows?

I suppose at the end of the day, it doesn't matter too much. And that's probably the most important thing--being content and knowing that I can write this and that *someone* might read this, but won't be fazed by it. He probably will ask if I want to go make out in the back of a movie theater. (To which I will promptly reply, "No!", because in our whole relationship, we've only been to three movies and I'm too old to make out in a theater anyway!)

Monday, January 12, 2009

Jazzy January

I couldn't come up with a better post title. "Jazzy January"? That is pretty bad!

I've got a bad case of the Mondays today. Just dragging myself out of bed to get to work took all my energy. I actually slept three straight hours last night with no interruptions, so there's at least some progress, but I know it's not enough. (Cheryl, I think I'm going to take your advice about seeing the doctor. This whole insomnia thing has taken on a life of its own and I need help.) Anyway, the three hours was actually better than the four broken hours I've been getting.

Yesterday, I took my little Munchkin to a local theater to see Sesame Street Live: Elmo Makes Music. Now, I honestly have more grown-up tastes when it comes to theater productions, but I have to say that this was really cute. There's nothing like seeing 6+ foot Sesame Street characters doing The Hustle. Yeah. Then Bert went disco crazy in a white leisure suit. It was hysterical. There's no video recordings allowed, but of course, you can find anything on YouTube. You can see them below, but really, the videos don't do it justice (you'll have to pause the music at the bottom of my blog to hear the groovy disco tunes on the videos). It's way, way funnier in person. It was a great way to top off the weekend!

Friday, January 09, 2009

And For My Next Trick...

...I will come up with a magic way to stop the obnoxious snoring of my husband! TA-DA!

Hey, it didn't work. Aw nuts.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

A Bit of This, A Bit of That

The sleep situation is not improving. Not at all. It's getting worse, and I'm turning into a rather unpleasant, grouchy, nasty version of my usual self. I have no patience for anything right now, not even the things I enjoy. My insomnia hasn't been this bad since...early college, maybe? I remember it went on for weeks, and then one night, my body just couldn't take it anymore and I crashed one night for 14 hours. After that, things settled down and I got back into a regular sleep pattern. I keep hoping to avoid another situation like that, but I think it's looming...ah well.

Other than that, things are just kind of same old, same old. My kiddo still isn't 100%. It's been a rough few months for her. She's still on a few meds and we just made some dietary changes to handle her low iron and low hemoglobin. I don't know how she's low--she's such a good eater, but it might be related to her meds, we're not sure. We go back to the doctor next month and we'll see what the blood work shows.

Work has been super busy lately and on top of that, classes are starting next week and I'll be teaching two classes. It'll be back to the business that has seemed to define my life for the past few years. I don't mind the hard work--I do mind missing my daughter on those seemingly impossibly long days. At first, it was just about expanding my career experiences and making a few extra bucks, but with the economy these days, that "extra" money has become a critical part of the budget. I don't know how other people are making ends meet. It's pretty bleak these days.

So...that's about it. I'm just sort of rambling tonight. I skipped my workout. That's not a great thing, but I can't quite seem to get my body to work. I'm pretty sure it's the chronic lack of sleep. I keep getting dizzy and it's like I'm trying to walk through mud. I'm not sick, just exhausted. On that lovely note, I think I'm going to take an obnoxiously hot shower and (try to) crash for the night.

Monday, January 05, 2009

In Desperate Need of Some Zzzzzz

I. Am. So. Tired.

I was on call last week for the crisis line--it's an important part of my job, I know, but it kicked my butt this time around. Those 2:30am calls are brutal, especially after a 14-hour day. There's nothing like trying to wake up from a sound sleep to help someone with a crisis--it's a good feeling for the most part--but then there's the brutal part of not being able to go back to sleep. Argh. I was happy to pass it on to the next staff person this morning.

I haven't been sleeping well, even aside from that. I'm averaging about 4 hours a night, and it's not even a continuous 4 hours. It's more like 20 minutes here, an hour there, 15 minutes, etc. You get the idea. My brain is in a constant fog. I can't take any sleep aids (due to a husband who sleeps like a stone and is apparently incapable of waking up with a sick three-year-old in the wee hours of the morning, unless I physically shove him off the bed...), and I really wouldn't want to anyway.

I feel like I've tried everything...avoiding television and computer before bed, not bringing work into the bedroom, working toward relaxing earlier in the evening and changing my workout time so I'm not getting revved up an hour before bed. I don't drink alcohol or caffeine. I stopped late night eating. I've tried journaling and creative visualization. I've done everything I encourage my insomniac clients to do and none of it is working.

Does anyone out there have any ideas? Anything you've tried that's been helpful? I don't like warm milk, but I'm getting desperate. I'm open to suggestions...