Sunday, September 12, 2004

What have I been up to? 

About five foot six or so, heh heh. The "project" that has detained me for the past few weeks is finally over and done with for the time being. Now my command center looks as if one of the Florida hurricanes took a side trip.

Anyhoo (don't you hate when people say anyhoo?), with my memory being as poor as it is now, I probably can't recall very much of what has been going on lately (that's why I tend to blog frequently, before I forget!). But I'll see if I can dredge up a few highlights before I have to get started on clearing a path for Dan's family, who is coming to visit next week. I guess this moment is what you'd call a breather.

Let's see...went to the rheumatologist on August 31st. Asked him if I could do a short course of prednisone to give me enough energy to go on my trip, and he said no. But he didn't have ideas as to what else to try. We decided it was probably time for me to get a second opinion on this. I made an appointment with the most well-known expert on Sjogren's syndrome in the area. I won't get in until October 21st, and he rarely gets cancellations, so I've got quite a wait on my hands. I figure one of two things will happen: either he'll be able to think of a treatment strong enough to make me functional yet safe enough to not completely kill off my immune system, or he'll say I really am doing all I can already. If I'm SOL, then I'll need to get serious about preparing to file for disability because I simply cannot keep going like this.

On the 1st, I unintentionally made a dumb move....I had a bunch of boxes on the floor to sort through, and I decided I was too tired to move them to a chair, so I just sat on the floor. That sort of thing tends to be uncomfortable for me anyway, but it got much worse when I discovered I couldn't get back up again. My lower back had gone out alignment (first time in two years), which aggravated the piriformus muscles in my hips, which in turn aggravated the sciatic nerve and sent pain all the way down the right leg. Had to take muscle relaxants, which upset my stomach, apply moist heat, and use a tennis ball to get the knots out of the muscles while I was waiting for the chiropractor and massage therapy appointments on Tuesday. I'm still getting spasms a few times a day, but it's more bearable now.

On the 3rd, I participated in a BBQ contest at work. One of the more aggravating aspects of the gluten-free diet is missing out on barbecue as most conventional sauces contain wheat, so I went online in search of a homemade sauce that would be safe for me. Found a recipe for turkey cooked in the crockpot that I combined with a recipe for apple cinnamon barbecue sauce. I'm more of a fan of the traditional Kansas City style sauce, thick, dark and tangy, but this wasn't too bad. Still, I was quite surprised when I won the contest! Guess I am turning into a cook after all.

Last Thursday, I went to the ENT. I'm almost at the end of my three years of allergy shots, but we decided I would do one more year of maintenance because I generate a histamine response so easily. So I'll continue to get shots but will drop to once every three weeks (I've been going every other week this year). I am going to discontinue the allergy pill but will continue the allergy spray. The doc was pleased to hear of my upcoming trip to Hawaii but reminded me to bring my wearable air purifier so I won't catch anything on the plane.

Yesterday, Dan and I went to see the re-release of the 1970 George Lucas film "THX 1138". Pretty creepy in its subject matter of the necessity of sedating the masses. Also amusing in some aspects such as projecting an expense budget for catching a criminal...but it generates more nervous laughter than genuine.

Have been quite the little spendthrift over the past few weeks. Got the first seasons of "Quantum Leap" AND "Northern Exposure" on DVD, and have bought a TON of music. Found a very nice 2-disc set of doo wop tunes, an older Metallica album, and the greatest hits of 311. The last one was a nice surprise in that I found out I already knew 10 of the 17 songs....I just didn't know until then who the artist was.

Got volumes 1 and 2 of "Rock Against Bush", some 54 songs....good stuff even if you like the president, heh heh. This is part of a campaign to get the younger crowd to vote... I know they'd like you to vote for Kerry, but I'm in favor of everyone getting registered regardless of political leanings. I've also heard some stuff on the radio about hip hop artists generating a similar campaign. More power to 'em.

Got my hair cut today. Decided on impulse while I was in the chair to have a very short razor cut. Want to have something manageable on vacation that I can get windblown or wet without having to worry about how it looks. So it's only an inch long on the sides, longer in the back, and for the first time since my big hair days, I have bangs. I still have enough hair to style if I want....I'll make it spiky when Dan and I go someplace nice.

Just under three weeks until Hawaii! Hope I get a chance between now and then to re-familiarize myself with the digital camera since I seem to have forgotten again how to use it. I'm gonna bring the whole danged instruction book with me just in case.

Good gravy, I think I've been typing for an hour! Time to grab a snack and start think about doing some de-cluttering while I still have a smidge of energy. I'll play some of my new tunes for accompaniament, of course.

Good to be back.

Pain level: 6
Fatigue level: 7

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