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Wednesday, October 29, 2014

The Stupid Hat, Almost Four Years On

I have been called a hypochondriac in my life before (hi, Mom!), although my doctor says it's not that I imagine I have these things; it's just that I'm hyper-aware and so every little twinge is call for alarm.

Except when it's not.

And I seem to wear that Stupid Hat when I stop listening and being hyper-aware of said body.

Which is why - when I ran out of my normal medications for hypothyroid (and the antidepressant I have to treat ADD / double up on in the winter) - I just kind of blew it off. And my usual management technique for keeping my head on straight (making lists of things I need to do) got, well, forgotten because I didn't have that other medication, the one for ADD.

Hence the Stupid Hat.

Where I stuck that hat very firmly on my head was that I know that hypothyroid, untreated, leads to fatigue and weight gain and irritability, but I ignored said symptoms and just wrote them off.

Until I found myself shouting at Lizzy for having the temerity to need help putting on her tights.


So I went into the doctor, which is more complicated than it sounds due to temporary insurance and many other factors, and had a basic checkup.

Given my weight (considerable) I'm pretty healthy. Aside from my thyroid being all out of whack of course, because I haven't been taking those meds for a few weeks.

My iron is a little low - not unusual, as the Puget Sound Blood Center knows to its chagrin - and my bad cholesterol, while not over-the-limits high, is high enough that they would rather I not get my iron through, say, red meat.

I'm pretty lucky for someone wearing the Stupid Hat.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Five-o-Something, and All's Well

Miz Liz's surgery went well. And all of you who sent prayers, good thoughts, woowoo, whatever, thank you very much.

We got there at 11:30, as ordered, And Lizzy was remarkably well-behaved (just some whining), given that all she'd had since the night before was four ounces of apple juice. She did spend some time under the table in the waiting room, partly I suspect out of nervousness and partly out of Poor Waiting Patiently Skills.

Yesterday she asked Grandma to help make her a bird costume, she says because she wanted her beach ball to be an egg. It would not surprise me in the slightest if subconsciously she just wanted to be a creature without teeth though.

But she got through it, and the fact that the nurse listened happily to the entire Doc McStuffins theme song (Doc is a toy doctor, so we've been using her shamelessly as an example of how not-scary going to the doctor can be), and assured her that if she wanted to, Lizzy was welcome to sing the other theme song from the show while they used the "sleepy medicine", to see how far she got, and they gave her loveys besides to help her through the scary bits. This sort of treatment prompted the following gem: "Two stuffed animals and a popsicle after? This is like the best. Doctor. Appointment. EVER."

She never did make it to singing the song, however. The anesthesia nurse tells me that she was too excited by the machinery in the operating room ("it looked like two alien flying saucers on the inside, mom!") and got distracted from singing by that. She is her father's daughter in many ways. So they started her counting to ten (just a little struggle over putting the mask on her face, I'm told) and she made it to three before she conked out. They did the procedure(s) and as long as they were in there and she was out, got some more stuff done too.

Two removed teeth, three silver (surgical steel, but they look like silver) crowns because most of her baby teeth are too small for fillings that stay, sealant on permanent teeth. That doesn't even count the x-rays and stuff they took while they had her there and actually still.

So she's done, and home, and it's all good except for a mild sore throat, a tendency toward redness where there was medical tape (she has sensitive skin) and a slightly glassy look around the eyes. She is on soft foods for a week or so, and at the moment she is pretty much reveling in the prospect of My Little Pony: Equestria Girls and unlimited Otter Pops for the evening.

Now I need to finish my paper for school, make lunches for tomorrow and dinner for tonight, and hold it together until the kids are in bed. I'm good in a pinch but tend to melt down afterwards. Although the writing it out seems to help too, as will the chocolate I'll get if +Laston Kirkland got my message.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Ella and Bella...

...and Lizzy makes three.
Lizzy and Abby a
couple weeks ago

No, this is not some bizarre love triangle, first grade style. This is the end result of Lizzy's pulpotomy, nearly a year and a half ago.

So the dentist tells me that the pulpotomy - essentially a baby root canal - is a band-aid measure, meant to stop infection from spreading until the baby tooth can come out.

And now it has become abscessed and they have to take it out, under general anesthesia because of her age and squirm factor and not-hurting-the-kid factor.

Lizzy at her 7th birthday dinner, six weeks ago
She has lost two teeth (and grown an inch taller) since then.
At least her most current x-rays show that the adult tooth is getting itself ready, so we won't have to put spacers in. She always has been early on the teeth (as I remember with pain, because I breast-fed her for 14 months).

She's more than a little anxious (and I taught her the word anxious, so hey, there's that) and asked me if I could please, please ask the nurse if she may being two comfort dollies, because Ella and Bella are twins, and they will be so lonely if she is only allowed to bring one of them! She is nearly as old as her sisters when it comes to the italic abuse in her speech.

I think this might be a tooth worth two dollar coins from Dentitia the Tooth Fairy. Don't you?

So she is going in Monday morning at 11:30 Pacific (it is Saturday night as I write this). I have managed to get the day off, and whether I take Abby to Girl Scouts after school or Grandma does depends on the timing and how much Lizzy wants Mom.

Anyway, I am asking now, if anyone is the sort to pray, send good thoughts, light candles, chant mantras, whatever, please... be my guest.

Friday, October 10, 2014


I remember when Abby was about four, and she asked if Ariel and Hercules were cousins, "because their dads look like brothers".

Of course she was right, because not only were they most likely drawn by the same artists, but Triton is clearly an expy of Poseidon, so... yeah.

And yeah, the story of Hercules has been Disneyfied out of all recognition, but I find that I don't really mind that with myths as much as I do with Pocahontas history.

We were initially going to watch The Princess and the Frog, because Lizzy and I are currently reading Magic Treehouse: A Good Night for Ghosts, wherein Jack and Annie help Louis Armstrong share his (musical) gifts with the world. 

So we were in a Jazz Age kind of mood. 

Couldn't find our copy though, so we went on Netflix (for which I daily thank Google, because we can't afford to buy dvds all the time, or buy movies from Comcast or Amazon Prime) to see if it was available. 

It's not, at least not right now.

So in a Mommy Moment, I had a tiny parental tantrum; I am not going to watch any of the shows we've seen a bajillion times, and recently at that. I gave them a choice for our Movie Night:
  • Hercules
  • Atlantis
  • Treasure Planet
  • Tarzan
We have seen all of these (though I don't think Lizzy has seen Treasure Planet) but it's been awhile.

(And I didn't realize until just now, but none of these are Princess Movies; they all have men as the heroes). We're watching Hercules, which inspired this post.

Then our own hero came home and Oh. My. Google.

We have the proof copy of his BOOK. Copy Me and Other Stories.

I've talked about his books before; these two are available on Kindle and the anthology of them is available in paperback too.

But this book - this book is available in paperback and it's only his,. Not anyone else's stories, just Laston's. That's a Big Deal.

It's not out yet. But it will be. And it will be glorious. I mean, listen to this jacket copy: "Laston Kirkland is a visionary writer; both creative and scathing..."

That's huge.

And while he writes lots of stuff, this particular book has my absolute favorite of his short stories; "Coming Out." It also has one that I can acknowledge as some of his best writing (although I don't care for the content), which is called "Third Time's the Charm."

Further than that I will not speak because when it comes out I want you to read it for yourself.

I'll let you know.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Days Off

Because I have been working a ton of overtime here lately, and when not working overtime I've been working on my schoolwork, I haven't had a lot of time to just Be Jenn.

But Tuesday was my birthday, and I had Thursday and Friday off, and I chose to kind of relax. And my family conspired to give me lots of fun. For a mom as busy as I am, relaxation and pampering are the best gifts ever.

Tuesday Laston and the girls did all the things that are my usual chores, like packing the school lunches and laying out school clothes (in addition to doing all the stuff like dishes that goes round robin anyway).

Thursday Laston and I both had off work so he held down the fort while I slept in, and then he took me to lunch. We did some grocery shopping (which doesn't sound like a treat, but IS, because it's not grocery shopping with children; they were at school). After school we all trooped over to my mom's house for my birthday dinner.

We all ate way too much of my personal favorites - mom's special flank steak, homemade rolls, green salad, grilled asparagus, fruit salad - and then little raspberry or lemon tarts. Gift cards and cash gifts led to today's treat, Friday's.

A full set of acrylic nails in a pretty mauve with flowers on two of them, a good haircut (and an ouchie but effective facial wax), and a massage. And then tonight is game night with out good friends.

All this means I can go to work tomorrow feeling rested and pretty and confident. And that makes work a lot easier. Even if it IS still the tail end of iPocalypse 2014.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

On This, my 46th Birthday, I Learned...

Cards from Abby and Lizzy
...that lukewarm coffee, a pumpkin muffin, and strawberry yogurt with Nilla Wafers is the best breakfast ever.

...that I have more friends online and off than I ever quite realized. And that cannot be discounted.

...that sometimes the best birthday present is a few hours to oneself, even - or especially - when used to take a nap.

...that my teammates are appalled that they didn't know it was my birthday (except those who are my Facebook friends).

...that one of the best compliments one can get from a customer is, "You-all tell your boss that you done earned your keep today."

Earrings from Abby and Lizzy
...that when one wears earrings for the first time in a few months, no matter how lightweight, they hurt one's ears just a bit by end of day.

...that next time I won't take 45 minutes to figure out (with help) that the reason this gentleman's iPhone isn't working is because the customer is on the west coast and the server to fix his issue is on the east, so his phone won't work until midnight Pacific time (when it's officially October 1st).

...that coming home to the chores done is one of my favorite things.

...that the first "regular" day after two weeks of overtime days is practically a vacation.