Friday, July 31, 2009

In the beginning...

Nah, I am not going to quote the Bible or anything like that. I just want to talk about my life with MS in the beginning. It seems so different from now.

In the beginning my diagnosis was a long, lonely haul. It took me a good year to get a real diagnosis and it was no surprise when it came. I had long since diagnosed myself after my MRI had come back with lesions on the brain and I had been having some symptoms that fit that criteria. It just took months for another neurologist to believe me and correlate my findings.

My family was not very supportive in the beginning, meaning my parental units. They could have been worse but they could also have been a lot more kind and understanding. I mean, my mom didn't even believe me when I told her the doctor officially diagnosed me with MS. She thought I was making it up. She believed me to be a hypochondriac of sorts throughout my life. As an aside, my mom is a nurse who also turned her face away when I was a very sick and thin bulimic.

In the beginning, I turned to online sources such as There I found people in my same situation, people who could relate to me and answer my questions. That site was my home away from home for months, for probably a solid year or two of my diagnosis. I spent so much time there that it did feel like a safe place for me to be and to talk about MS. I encourage anyone who wants more information about MS or multiple sclerosis meds to stop by their message boards.

That was my life in the beginning of this mess. I'll write more later about what it's like now.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Another Facebook meme: Get to know me more

Here's another meme from Facebook that some of you bloggers may want to use on your own page. I love reading these from other people so I hope you enjoy mine.
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1. What time did you get up this morning?
The first time was 5:59 but then I went back to sleep eventually.

2. How do you like your steak?
I know people will think I'm a freak but I don't like steak; I'd rather have a hamburger. If I was forced to eat steak I would want it well done.

3. What was the last film you saw at the cinema?
At the cinema.... Confessions of a Shopaholic. At home, from Netflix.... Dedication.

4. What is your favorite TV show?
Right now, it's America's Got Talent and Wipeout. I love Survivor and bought some buffs a few years back..

5. If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be?

6. What did you have for breakfast?
Umm, I dragged my fat arse to McDonald's and went through the drive thru. (I did make fabulous veggie soup yesterday in the crock pot!)

7. What is your favorite cuisine?
I don't think I have one. I do like a good barbecue with some burgers, dogs, corn on the cob, salt potatoes, salads, and deviled eggs.

8. What foods do you dislike?
Mushy peas, organ meats, kielbasa, cube steak because my dad told me it was turtle tongue when I was younger.

9. Favorite Place to Eat?
There isn't one but I do like Applebee's, Olive Garden, and Red Lobster.

10. Favorite dressing?
I use mostly low fat French/Catalina and Italian. I like full fat Ranch the best.

11. What are your favorite clothes?
Shorts, T-shirt, and sandals

13. Where would you visit if you had the chance?
To Europe to see my brother in Germany and then to Italy to make my trip to Frances Mayes's home.

14. Cup 1/2 empty or 1/2 full?
1/2 full

15. Where would you want to retire?
Somewhere in Maine maybe so I can hang with my best single friend

16. Favorite time of day?
Just waking up after a long night's sleep

17. Where were you born?
A small town in central NY

18. What is your favorite sport to watch?
College hoops

19. Who do you think will not tag you back
No idea

20. Person you expect to tag you back first?
no idea

21. Who are you most curious about their responses to this?
Everyone's responses are always interesting

22. Bird watcher?
Nope, not really unless I am at my parents' house and see their bird feeder

23. Are you a morning person or a night person?
A morning person, not that you'd know it

24. Pets?
One, Franklin the wonder cat

25. Any new and exciting news that you'd like to share?
Nope, nothing exciting going on

26. What did you want to be when you were little?
I wanted to be a teacher when I was very young and then that moved to author.

27. What is your best childhood memory?
Playing with my friends at their houses, especially KH

28. Are you a cat or dog person?
like cats but prefer dogs....

29. Are you married?
Nope, happily divorced

30. Always wear your seat belt?

31. Been in a car accident?
Unfortunately, yes.

32. Any pet peeves?
Ignorant people, rude people, crazy drivers, parents who think they are better teachers than I am, parents who don't teach their children respect or manners

33. Favorite pizza topping?
Hmm, I do like a good meat topped pizza.

34. Favorite Flower?
Lilacs (love the color and scent) and carnations (ditto)

35. Favorite ice cream?
It does change but I love soft vanilla ice cream now whereas I was a choc kiddo when I was younger.

36. Favorite fast food restaurant?
I love BK Whopper Juniors and Coke icees.

37. How many times did you fail your driver's test?
One and it was traumatic. I almost had an accident.

38. From whom did you get your last email?

39. Which store would you choose to max out your credit card?
I'd rather have the money to pay off my credit cards!

40. Do anything spontaneous lately?
Yes, started going out with friends for drinks and being more social. I went to my 20th reunion after saying for months that I wouldn't!

41. Like your job?
I do even though it runs your life during the year.

42. Broccoli?
I like it with ranch dressing (raw) and on a baked potato with cheese on it (cooked)

43. What was your favorite vacation?
Going back to D.C. on my own with a tour group a few years back

44. Last person you went out to dinner with?
I went out for drinks last night with some people from work

45. What are you listening to right now?
The TV

46. What is your favorite color?
Blue and Green. Blue is the color of the lake I live by and green is such a wonderful color of spring and grass and new beginnings.

47. How many tattoos do you have?

48. How many are you tagging for this quiz?
Don't know yet.

49. What time did you finish this quiz?
2:58 p.m.

50. Coffee Drinker?
Nope. Hot choc in the winter or sometimes tea.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Hi ho Hi ho, it's off to work I go

I have to work the next two days so that means setting my alarm and waking up at a reasonable hour. It also means showering before three p.m. I cannot shower the night before because I wake up looking like Medusa.

There will be drinks after work on Wednesday; I think at a new locale. It supposedly has inexpensive daiquiris and margaritas. Yippee for that.

I walked tonight for 30 minutes and then put up my legs on the couch in a restorative yoga pose. It's supposed to move the lymph in your body more efficiently because you're basically upside down. I'm going to use the heating pad on my legs before I go to sleep. I've got the air conditioning on to balance that.

I also need to get to the post office and grocery store so I can make some beef stew and veggie soup. Yummo.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

All things in moderation?

I don't think I mentioned this earlier but a few of my friends came in to see me while I was getting my last Tysabri infusion. One friend brought me some socks, workout socks, (very cute) to encourage me to get my big booty up and moving. I had mentioned at drinks after the last day of school that I wanted to start walking again. This friend knew I had not done so so she had come bearing gifts that day.

I've walked three times since then, twice with her socks. But here comes the dilemma. Every time I start to pick up a regimen, I pay for it. I walk for about 30 minutes in my house with a walking DVD. Last night was a walking night and this morning I woke up with muscle twitches in my right calf.

This is the kind of thing that happens to me every time I start to do something exercise worthy. I start to move and then my body starts to rebel almost always in the form of leg cramps. This morning even with an added in Klonopin and three rounds with a heating pad, plus some walking around, there was no easing up of the twitchy cramps. For hours.

I don't know what to do. Every time I go to sleep I worry about leg cramps a little bit. They can turn themselves into something evil. Fortunately, the ones I am talking about are minor.

Does anyone else have issues like these?

Saturday, July 25, 2009

What to write about?

I feel as if I have been neglectful of ye olde blog readers and I have been. I just don't know what to write about. My get up and go just seemed to get up and leave. My summer vacation has been a total staycation with me mostly sleeping and reading it away.

I mean that. I am sleeping and reading my life away. Most days I don't hit the shower until 3 or so. I am the ultimate in lazy.

Some days I think it would be better to be back at work. I can't believe I just typed that. I've been on vacation for about a month now and I don't know what to do with myself.

I do have to work for two days this next coming week. Two days and then we're going out for drinks. We're supposed to be trying a new place with cheap daiquiris and margaritas. I'm all for that.

I have not been drinking for several years because of all the meds that run through my system. I followed the rules and played the good girl. Recently I have been going out with some friends and having a drink or two or (even once) three. I don't feel any worse for the wear and I always space my drinks out so I never even get tipsy.

Is there anyone else out there in the MS community who drinks or doesn't drink based on medical concerns? Tell me about your experiences if you'd like.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

30 Things You Wouldn't Think To Ask

This comes from my Facebook page. I thought some of you might get a kick out of it so I am also posting it here.

30 Things You Wouldn't Think To Ask

1. Have you ever been searched by the cops?
Pulled over, yes. Car searched, yes. Ticketed, yes. Personally searched, no way.

2. Do you close your eyes on roller coaster?
I don't go on roller coasters anymore. Loved them as kids but not now. I would be screaming like a little girl with eyes wide shut.

3. When's the last time you've been sledding?
1993 when we were snowed in at college in VA. My ex and I sledded on lunch trays.

4. Would you rather sleep with someone else, or alone?
Depends on who the someone else is but I prefer having the entire bed to myself now that I have been divorced so long.

5. Do you believe in ghosts?
Yes, but I don't want to admit it.

6. Do you consider yourself creative?
I can be when I am not being lazy. I like decorating my classroom and scrapbooking.

7. Do you think O.J. killed his wife?
I think he could have fit his hand into the glove if he actually pulled it down over his hand.

8. Jennifer Aniston or Angelina Jolie?
I feel bad for Jen but think Angelina is cooler.

9. Can you honestly say you know ANYTHING about politics?
Yes, I know enough to teach my students about what they need to know.

10. Do you know how to play poker?
Nope, but I could kick your @ss in Go Fish.

11. Have you ever been awake for 48 hours straight?
24 hours straight for medical testing but not 48.

12. What's your favorite commercial?
I chuckle at the commercials with the Jimmy Dean breakfast sandwiches with the sun and the moon and the planets!

13. Who was your first love?
My wasband who was a REALLY bad choice.

14. If you're driving in the middle of the night, and no one is around, do you run a red light?

15. Do you have a secret that no one knows but you?

16. Boston Red Sox or New York Yankees?
Don't throw a ball at me but I couldn't care less about either team.

17. Have you ever been Ice Skating?
Not real ice skating with actual skates. I used to "skate" around with my boots. One year when I was young, my parents did buy me real skates which I had begged for as a Christmas gift. That was a nice thing they did even though they knew I would never use them.

18. How often do you remember your dreams?
I almost always remember something about my dreams. Some of them are incredibly life-like and I wake up confused!

19. What's the one thing on your mind?
Right now it's finishing this because I am growing tired.

20. Do you always wear your seat belt?
Yes, I do.

21. What talent do you wish you had?
Singing well and/or playing many instruments. I enjoy music.

22. Do you like Sushi?
I have never had it.

23. What do you wear to bed?
Pajamas, duh!

24. Do you truly hate anyone?
Nope, not even my wasband and my reunion snubber.

25. If you could sleep with one famous person, who would it be?
I'd rather stay awake and talk with Will Smith. He seems like such a fun and down-to-earth person. He's also cute but I wouldn't want to mess with someone's marriage.

26. Do you know anyone in jail?
Not personally, but usually there are students in my class with a parent in jail.

27. What food do you find disgusting?
Organ meats

28. Have you ever made fun of your friends behind their back?
I don't think so, but to their face sure!

29. Have you ever been punched in the face?
Nope, but my wasband punched me in a lot of other places.

30. Do you believe in angels and demons?
I believe in Dan Brown but that's off topic.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Reunion rehashing

We (Jack Tripper, Chrissie, and I) arrived early, the first people to get to the reunion site. I ordered a strawberry daiquiri and settled in at the bar. A few minutes later the reunion head honcho arrived and we were giddy and hugged each other after ten years of not seeing each other.

There was yummy looking food to be had but I didn't partake. I did, however, down a rum and diet Pepsi as more people arrived. A lot of Facebookers were there and they knew of my dilemma to go or not to go. They all said hello and seemed genuinely glad to see me.

We had a class picture taken out on the steps and BJM floated me a loan as I didn't bring enough money with me to drink and get a photo. (Don't worry, I paid her back yesterday when we went out for lunch.)

There was ONE person who snubbed me intentionally. I know that because I tried twice to talk with her and both times she completely ignored me. She can take her smug @ss back to where it came from for all I care now. I have discovered that I am worth all the good stuff that came out of the reunion and her crappy attitude can stick to her like glue.

I stopped being self conscious about 30 minutes into the reunion. I wasn't deliriously happy at the reunion but as BJM put it, "It wasn't terrible either." I only had two alcoholic drinks. I smiled a lot. I talked to people I hadn't seen in 10 or 20 years.

I'm glad I went.

Friday, July 17, 2009

It's almost time ...

I have my helmet of hair sprayed tight and my mani and pedi is done. I just put in my contacts. Now I need to go change into sandals and my shorts and flowy type top for the REUNION.

I cannot believe I am going y'all. I'm nervous but dare I say excited even.

We're going early to help set up and then settle in for a drink before everyone starts coming.

Bye for now!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Tomorrow is the day: Reunion time

I am going.

To the reunion.

I know that last bit wasn't a sentence but I don't care.

I am sucking up all my insecurities and going with BJM and her hubby tomorrow. We're going to pretend he is Jack Tripper and we are Chrissie and Janet. I'm Janet. Wish I had her figure.

There may be some drinking involved to ease my concerns. I will keep that to a minimum.

I am so nervous already and will be more so tomorrow, but I am going.

Twenty years is a long time for people to change so I must not be the only one who has issues. At least I hope so. It's better to be with a group of people who all have their own issues instead of being the only one with issues.

Don't you agree?

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Working, some walking and the Wednesday cleaning lady

Okay, I walked for a little while tonight. Not much but a little so that makes two days out of a handful of days where I actually moved my body.

I also cooked up some pasta for some pasta salad. I cut up a cucumber and a Vidalia onion too to mix in with some salad seasoning, fat free Italian dressing, some tomato, bacon bits, and some sharp cheddar cheese. That will make a nice dinner for Wednesday.

I had to work today and I have to work tomorrow at school. We're doing some ELA work, not the most exciting stuff but we get paid really well.

The biggest news is that the cleaning lady is supposed to come tomorrow after I get out of work. I pray that she does come this time and she really does a good job of cleaning. I reeeeeeeeeeeeally want to walk into a sparkling clean bathroom.

Oh the things a girl dreams about on her blog.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Second thoughts

I am having RSVP remorse about my twentieth high school reunion. Should I go or just stay home and be safe?

How could I be unsafe going to see people I knew when I was seventeen? All my old insecurities could come flashing back. All my new insecurities can come flashing forward. That's how.

Now I am not going into this totally alone. BJM and her hubby are going to be there with me. I have to tell y'all that she is my oldest friend, err friend that I have had the longest. But I am still nervous and worried what if no one else likes me or talks to me? What if everyone talks about me because I used to be thin and I am definitely very unthin now? What if people laugh at me?

I posted about this on Facebook and had some awesome replies from schoolmates and other pals. Everyone has been super nice and positive and suggested that I go because we all have some insecurities. I guess my biggest insecurity is different because my body change is so obvious. I'm not one of those people who say they are bigger and they are 5 pounds bigger. I am one of those big girls that everyone hopes doesn't sit next to them on the plane. (It's okay if you snicker; I can't hear you.)

I still plan on going (most likely) but all those insecurities are there. Sigh, I guess I need to pull up my big "big girl" pants and tell myself positive things. In the meantime, I am going to go do some walking, something I have been ignoring. Keep pestering me to get in my movement. Just because I have MS and am really fat doesn't exclude me from moving my body around. It's all the MORE reason to get moving again.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Who's got a clean house? Not me!

I have been so excited about the cleaning person coming. For days I have been waiting for the goddess of clean to come and work her magic on my apartment. I set my alarm so I had time to take my shower and pick up the stuff off the living room floor and swept the kitchen thoroughly.

I then waited for the agreed upon time. And waited. And waited some more.

First, she was a little late. Then thirty minutes late, then an hour, then two hours.

I called her cell phone and (surprise!) no answer. I left a message asking her to call me back so I knew what was going on.

She hasn't called back since.

Who has a clean house?
Unfortunately, not me.

And I am majorly bummed about it.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

I'm baaaaaaaaaack

I'm sorry to have left this space empty for so long. I've been enjoying not working. Don't hate me for typing that.

My dad is slowly improving from his surgery. I went over for the fifth of July for barbecued chicken and I brought my deviled eggs. We had a pleasant time together and I was there for about four hours. My parents have had the house re-sided, a new front door put on, and central air put in.

My parents looked older to me for the first time. They both are eating less and they both look a little frail in their own way. They're not old really; my mom is in her mid 50s and my dad is in his early 60s.

I have also hired a cleaning service that starts tomorrow. They are to make the bathroom sparkling clean in every way, will vacuum upstairs and down, do my windows, and will also scrub my kitchen floor. All for the bargain price of fifty dollars. I am so excited to see my tiny place look clean okay.

Remember the high school reunion I mentioned a few months back? It looks like I am actually going to go next week. I may be stepping out of my shell more and going out to see some of my old friends. Yep, I am still fat but why should that stop me from doing something that might actually bring me some joy?