The (Short) Long Weekend

Most people have a long weekend. I do, sorta. I have to work this morning, then I’m going to go visit my parents. (We’ve had that discussion). Monday I make the all-day trek to the cemetaries. Tomorrow will be spent doing laundry, cleaning, gardening, and all the other things that I try to fit in on a day “off”.

If you have the long weekend… enjoy!

Men: Move Along. Nothing for You Here.- or – Give That Man a Hand

This is to the women in the audience. Particularily those of you who are married or in a long-term relationship. I love my husband with all of my heart. I know he loves me. Somewhere along the line it became the norm to never leave “honey-do” lists. I never ever leave one for him and he never ever ever leaves one for me. If I have something he mentions that needs to be done, I will make a note for myself. If he says, “remind me about this” then I will make him a note and stick it in his boot where he will see it right before he leaves the house. It does no good to leave it under his cell phone or on the counter, he’ll see it and forget about it before he puts on his boots and leaves. IN the boot, he sees it right before he leaves, and, if I’m lucky, he will put it in his filing system known as his shirt pocket.

Today the man amazed me. Totally. Two days ago (two whole days ago) he spoke to a friend that has a tree service about getting some more mulch. This generally costs us nothing but a phone call. As hubs says, I’m “mulch woman”. I use mulch on my gardens – which are extensive, as well as around the trees that are not in the ‘forest’ and in areas of the yard designated as walkways. I put it down at least twice a year. I hate to weed, and it keeps the weeds under control as well as keeping in much-needed moisture. At any rate, my youngest sons’ girlfriend has gotten into gardening this year, too, and she also wanted mulch.

Back to the two days ago. Hubs called and made arrangements to take our loader tractor to this mans’ house today, Thursday, morning. The man is going to load up his pickup that dumps and bring mulch to our houses. He just needed to borrow the tractor to load the pickup.

Jump to this morning. Hubs was up and out the door early to go to coffee. He mentioned he was then going to be trucking today, hauling grain out-of-town. I never thought twice about it until an hour later when I was up for the day. Then it dawned on me: I didn’t leave him a note about the mulch. I didn’t talk to him about it yesterday. He didn’t say anything about it this morning before he left. Oh, damn. He forgot.

Two days. He’s had two whole days to forget. I call him… dreading the cussing I fear is going to come out of the phone when I remind him of this task. I cringe as he answers. I tentatively mention the tractor, the mulch.

What? What am I hearing? He already did it? He delivered the tractor last night before he came home so he didn’t forget? Without a reminder? Oh.My.God. What have you done with my husband?

Give that man a hand…. a pat on the back… a big wet kiss on the … nevermind. Thanks, Hubs. You’re the best!

Working Out the Kinks

It was supposed to rain last night, late, which it did. So after getting off work yesterday and after a grocery store trip, I worked in the yard. I had some parts of the vegtable garden yet to rototill and plant as well as some flowers I’d bought for pots. It seemed to take hours, though I know it was not as long as it felt! I’m am an admitted couch potato. When I do extreme physical labor like this, I feel it. For days.

To my credit, I made it to work today! There are times in the past things like this would put me flat on my back in bed. I consider this progress.

“Trying to Get Back in the Swing” or “Where Did I Put My Brain?”

Don’t you hate when you’ve been gone for awhile – whether it is voluntary, as on vacation, or involuntary? I suppose it could be worse. I could have been incarcerated or something. I just feel out of the loop. The rhythm of the work flow has not come back to me. I have mis-types and brain farts and the motions which are normally second nature are finding me stumbling.

In the good news department…

Okay, I’ll have to think on that one a bit. A have a Happy Tuesday!

It’s ALIVE!

Sorry for the interruption of service here, folks. It’s been a rather boring month…

I won’t get into the area of TMI, but suffice it to say I was having medicine and diabetes management issues and my body was rebelling. It’s pretty sad when you are being GOOD and things go all wrong, I tell ya. At any rate, things are okay for the time being and I’m back to work and feeling like a normal human being (whatever defines ‘normal’). I don’t know how many months it will take me to get caught back up with you all, but trust me, I’ll be trying…

Thank you for stopping by to check on me. You’re terrific.

Happy Birthday Baby!

When I was younger I used to say, “No matter how many children you have, from one to twenty, God makes the last one so you know it’s time to quit.”

Today is my last one’s birthday. As the youngest in the family, he’s also the tallest – topping out around 6’3″ – and a beanpole at that. Don’t ever think he’s “skinny” tho’. He’s as wiry as they come and strong as can be. He’s a gentle giant.

He’s the one who never talked as a baby, just grunted. Everyone else in the family knew what he meant.

He had the ear-infections from hell. All the other kids had an occasional one, and his older brother had quite some trouble with them, too, but not like his. He spent several stretches of time suffering from ear infections and we became stock holders in amoxicillan (or should have). He suffered from asthma, but we could never get to the doctor at the right time to have it diagnosed…until several months where he had suffered from attacks. Tied into allergies, we found it was all related, the ears, the asthma, the allergies. We lived on a farm and he was allergic to dust, oats, grass, trees.. you get the picture. Kind of hard to keep all those things under control living on a gravel road!

Although a late talker, he was phycially ahead of his time. He learned early to climb out of his crib, so we switched him to a playpen. He figured out how to get out of it, so we put a gate on his bedroom door. Not only did he learn to take the gate down, but he would put it back up so I wouldn’t know he was out, until I would find him climbing on top of the kitchen counter heading for the top of the refrigerator! We had to put a hook on the door at the bottom of the stairs, just to keep him from roaming the house after we’d all gone to sleep!

He’s the kid who was diagnosed early with ADHD. He’s the kid who had to put up with trial-and-error medication dosages, special ed classes, and frustrated teachers and parents. He’s the kid who sat in the principals’ office when he was in kindergarten stoic as a POW. He’s the kid who was smarter than most of the kids in his class, but it wasn’t book smart. Give him a welder and some iron and he’s an artist. Give him a motor and some tools and he’s a genius. Give him a stock car to drive and he’s fearless.

He has a smile like an angel and the most beautiful hazel eyes you’ve ever seen. He’s got freckles… and the spirit and temperment to go with them. Despite it all, he’s grown up with a great sense of humor and a giving and loving nature. I’m so proud of him…

Happy Birthday, Baby… with much love.

Common Curtesy

I pose to you a question. Since when did common curtesy go out the window? When did the ease of internet usage take away our sense of right and wrong? Shouldn’t the same rules apply through the cyber world as exist in the real world?

I bring this up because of the current predicament my eldest finds herself in. A high school classmate found her through that incidious website Classmates.com and proceeded to write a “hi, how ya doing” kind of e-mail. Polite and sweet as always, she responded with much information and pictures… never dreaming he would forward it on to others. WTF? What was this guy thinking?

In the real world, people would communicate by telephone or letters. (Letters are those pieces of paper where you use a utensil called an ink pen to scribble your thoughts then put them in a paper packet called an envelope and stick more little scraps of paper on the corner worth money to send them. Those are called stamps and are issued by the almost defunct postal service. Ask them, they’ll tell you.) If you were to reply to said letter by a letter of your own, and included some snapshots of your family, it would be very difficult for the recipient to copy the letter as well as the photos and send it on to many other people. As well as being unheard of to do so without asking.

What has happened to the common cutesy to ask someone before sending on their personal information? Am I just too old-fashioned to think the same rules should apply through the cyber world as it does in the real one? Can you still be polite and technologically advanced?

A Tale of a Chiropractor or How I Came To Love My Surgeon Pt.II

continued…

Many years went by and I continued to have some lower back pain off and on, depending on the weather and the degree of effort I put into doing things. As much as my chiropractor would have loved to keep me on a weekly regime, I could not justify the expense and after the crisis was over quit going.

1995. Mother’s Day. Beautiful spring weather. Farmer’s planting in the field. Hubs planting. Close-up to me, riding in the tractor with him… ah, togetherness. I’m riding on the wheelwell, as this tractor is smaller and has no second seat. Have I mentioned it is rough? It is. After many jigs and joggles and being banged around a bit, I gave up and went in the house. Togetherness can only stand so much.

The next morning I wake with a stiff neck. No biggie. Happens occasionally when I sleep wrong. You’ve probably all had that happen. Another day passes and it’s no better. I consider going in to have it popped by the chiropractor. I wait another day. Now my left arm is starting to hurt. It hurts when I stretch it out and pulls on my neck and shoulder. This doesn’t feel like a stiff neck. By the third day I’m not sleeping. I can only get comfortable when I sit in a chair and keep my arm propped up. It’s weak and tender. I call to make a doctor appointment. They can’t get me in for another couple of days. When I ask for some pain medication to help me sleep, they say no. Hubs comes home to find me bawling from the pain and frustration – as well, I’m sure, from sleep deprevation. He calls the doctor and they agree to some Tylenol with codeine. He must have been persuasive.

Remembering the fiasco the last time, I decide to skip the middle man and go straight to the chiropractor. I know they don’t like medications, but I explain I needed to sleep. He was okay with that. He did his x-rays and exam, and found nothing. Hmmm… This was a puzzle. He could tell I was very stiff and sore, so started me coming 3x a day. You heard me. 3x. a. day. He would give me a treatment and I would think I was going to pass out from the pain. A few days went by and he started by giving me a treatment and saying, “Now, that’s better, isn’t it?”. No matter how much positive thinking you try to blow up my butt, it is not going to make it better if it is not. Trust me. It was not.

I have a pretty liberal physician. Most hate chiropractors. Mine thinks they have a place, so doesn’t object to you seeing one. After two weeks with the chiro I decided things were not improving and I went to my doctor. He took more x-rays. Nothing. He suggested I try a different chiropractor – one with different methods. Now I was being put in traction. I was put on a bed of rollers (those actually felt good!). The chiropractic part was questionable – he’d use this little snapper thing and just thump me in places. I have no idea what that was supposed to do,but he was a very reputable guy so I went along with it. I got a home traction device (which I was warned had been mis-used and caused hanging deaths before. Oh. Goody.). It did nothing.

Back to the doctor. Now we were going to get serious. At this time we had no good neurosurgeons in our community, so I was sent to the big city. I had an MRI. Lo and behold, I had a herniated disc in my neck! I mean, that puppy was outside the box… surgery was discussed and my response was, HELL YES. Let’s do this thing!

A week later I was prepped for surgery. It’s weird, but it’s easier for them to do back surgery on your neck by going in through the front than the back. You have to agree to do this, knowing that you may never be able to talk again as they are right around your vocal cords. Truly, when there is this much pain involved, you’ll agree to anything. I see how torture can work.

The minute I came out of surgery and woke up, I was fine. I had some discomfort from the neck incision, but that was all. No back, neck, or arm pain – I could move my arm! I could stand! I could sleep! Normally, they keep you in the hospital for a day or two, but hospital beds and I don’t agree with each other – we don’t bend in the same place and I end up with lower back pain. So, Hubs borrowed his mother’s smooooth riding car and he took me home to recouperate.

I’ll always remember the chiropractor “cracking” my neck – the pain blinding me, taking my breath, almost making me black out – and his cheery voice saying, “now, that’s better, isn’t it?”.

Fuck you very much.