Thursday, July 31, 2008

A Butler and A Chauffeur

Sitting in the back of a cab this morning on the way to the hospital, I thought if I ever have a big huge pile of money, I will hire a butler and chauffeur (with car) for each and every person I know with MS. OK even for people I don't know.

Wouldn't it be the answer ? Wake up in the morning to a lovely breakfast on a tray,the morning paper next to it, and a vase with a single rose. The mail on a silver tray presented by Jeeves, the butler, ( what else would he be called) .
Have an MRI that day ? No problem. The chauffeur has the car ready at the front of the house ready to go at a moment's notice. While at the hospital, all the errands are done, chores completed, and a meal prepared. Feeling hot and tired on arriving home? No worries, as a bath has been drawn and fresh clothes laid out on the bed. I could go on and on .

In fact why couldn't the insurance pay for an arrangement like that? What with all the money spent on nurses , carers, wheel trans, drugs, and doctors etc. I'm sure everybody would need less drugs and less medical care if they didn't wear out, struggling to keep themselves and their household in order . I bet if a cost comparison were done, my arrangement would be equal or even less than the current system we have, which is certainly inefficient, not to mention frustrating.

Yeah, Butler and Chauffeur is the way to go . Now if I could just win the lottery or be appointed health minister.

The MRI was a breeze I only needed to be in the machine for twenty minutes. It was a good one too with a mirror inside and music. Even though that crazy MRI is very loud it was nice to hear some Beatles playing in the background. The mirror gives the illusion of being less confined and I'm all for illusions if they help me get through a medical.

I went home after wards as I was still not feeling that good. That's the reason I splurged on a cab, to make sure I kept the appointment no matter how lousy I was feeling.

This evening I'm better so it's work for me tomorrow. If my work situation would only improve there , things would be fine. No doubt, the uncertainty only aggravates my symptoms . It's a Friday before a long weekend, so I'm hoping most of the jerks will be off.
Not much to do this evening and it's way too hot to go out . After the barbecue is done, I'm going to waste some time playing the Sims 2.

Here's a link to that show about brain trauma and the DTI scan.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Three Strikes , You're Out !

These trees remind me of pineapples. Put them on here just to cheer me up. As I'm writing this there's a show on about DTR imaging, which can see white matter in the brain. They use it for people with concussions. I'll have to go to the website later to find out more as it seems like it might be something they could use for MS ?

I tried three times to get to work today. Got up at 6:00 a.m. and wobbled over to the bathroom, nearly fell off the toilet. Decide to go back to bed. Got up again at 7:15 still feeling odd, so I went back to bed. I must have fallen asleep because I woke from a dream around 8:30 . Got up, managed to get washed, and partly dressed. Went down to the kitchen to make tea and breakfast. Couldn't manage eating and flopped on the couch. Sipped a bit of tea and realized there was no way I was fit for work. Called up my new boss ( yeah another one) and took a sick day. I wasn't happy about it, in fact I was really down. Vegetated on the couch watching the news till my son got up. Normally when he's around I try hard to rally and cover up how lousy I feel. Couldn't do it this morning, I was so weak. I smiled at him and mentioned that there was tea. He made a couple of comments about me being home , saying it was turning into another wanker week for me( he's joking) . We sat and chatted for awhile . I stayed there all morning like that, sort of watched a movie .

Later I remembered that I had an appointment with the lawyer at 4:30 to wrap up the mortgage stuff. Spent the rest of the day trying to psyche myself to go. I did make it, yet it was touch and go and I couldn't wait to get back home. At least I did manage to make dinner . There was left over raspberry cake for dessert, which finished off the meal nicely.

Well I'm sure not off to a good start working again. Am I ?

Tomorrow is MRI day . I booked a cab as I have to be at the hospital by 7:15 a.m and considering the way I feel right now, it's the only way I'll be able to make it there.
Not looking forward to a new hospital and a different machine. If I ever get this mess sorted at work that will be it for me .No more messing around with MRI's or any other tests. I don't see the point. The question is: When will it be sorted ?

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Too sick and tired to blog tonight. Bad scene at work

Monday, July 28, 2008

Half a Loaf

Busy tonight cooking. I decided I may as well take advantage of coming home early to get some food ready for the week. There should be enough to last till Friday, which I think will be a pizza or fish "n" chips night. Then I have a long weekend thanks to a civic holiday on Monday. I'll do another cooking marathon then. I hate coming home during the week when I'm tired , having no clue what to make for dinner. It's going to be a real hot humid week too . I'm sure to be a rag doll.
The meeting this morning went fine, better than I expected, and similar to what my horoscope said( see post below) . I'm getting a temporary accommodation until the Health Canada assessment is done. The expression "better half a loaf than none", is fitting to describe my feelings about it. It's a relief.
I was so tired from not sleeping last night that I left work after the meeting and came right home. Worry, stress ,and tingling feet , do not make for a good night's rest. Maybe that will improve now.

I get to start a bit later in the morning because my "trainer" won't be in till 8:30.She has to show me how to use a new data base. I could most likely figure it out on my own ,but she's trying to be nice, so I'll just go along with it.

That's it for tonight. Have to go check on my pasta sauce that is simmering away here.
I did get some good stamps from Pakistan, in the mail today, and a cool lightning post card from Oklahoma.
Can't wait for the Olympics and the U.S. elections to be over. I'm so sick of both stories highjacking the news.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

The Day You See a Unicorn

Went walking around the park at Dundurn Castle this evening. Forgot my camera, so here's a photo of it from last year. It still looks the same.The little red circle is around a toyI hosted for toy voyagers.He's still traveling the world. I think he's in Taiwan now.

My son always jokes that when I forget my camera that's when I'll see a Unicorn.

Speaking of my son : He found out last night, that he's been hired as a staff writer for the university newspaper "The Underground". His first assignment will be to cover Frosh week. He also received funding for his independent newspaper "Surface". Good Luck Billy !

Normally I try not to read too much into horoscopes; today's is sending me a message I think.

Libra (Sept. 23 — Oct. 23)

Wait and see. Let someone play his or her cards first and you'll see what your next step should be.

Perhaps it has something with my meeting at work tomorrow ? If you are reading this, send some positive vibes my way please. It would be most appreciated.

My 3 months off was great. Well worth the loss in salary . Now I just have to finish paying it off, ha ha. Didn't accomplish much, like building a bridge or anything( not that I know how to do that).

To have time, precious time , to think, mediate, and enjoy pleasant diversions , was a tonic that no drug, no money, no material object, can match.

I'm wearing shorts to work tomorrow. Knee length, slim leg ones. That's a big deal for me since I normally dress up for work. Not anymore. I'm through climbing the career ladder and if I can't have anything else, I should at least be comfortable.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Darwin and Disabilty

Had to post this link to an excellent article in the Star about the misconception that evolution is all about " survival of the fittest"
Now besides the new dinosaur exhibit, I have another reason to visit the ROM.

Humidty and Bugs I've Never Seen Before

What kind of bugs are these?

You can see that the swan family is doing well. The ducks look happy too.

I've recovered from two days of being in a miserable funk .
Besides that, my wireless internet was acting up, possibly due to all the storms we've had. We had another whopper of a thunderstorm today. At least my basement is dry . There was an article in the local paper about flooding problems in homes because of the outdated sewer system. A wet, smelly, moldy, basement can be very depressing, and certainly unhealthy.

Even though the temperature outside is a pleasant 25C and there's a nice breeze, the humidity is a killer. I came back home from my walk tonight completely soaked in perspiration ( OK sweat).
Had to head straight to a cool shower to recover. Now I feel good, no pains and no fatigue.

Tomorrow is the last day of my time off. I've had family and friends convince me that I should stick it out at work and everything will be fine. They are very logical and sensible. I know it would be better for me to hang in there at least one more year . So why do I keep getting this sinking feeling inside ?

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Refreshing Instead of Cold

What luck today to have the pool all to ourselves. Just us and
dive o saurus .
He's the toy dinosaur I use to practice surface dives. It's my way of checking every summer to see if I'm still in reasonable shape. I stand in the shallow part of the pool, dive down, and swim underwater to the deep end to retrieve him from the bottom . I can still manage it without feeling breathless. Yay!
The water was cold, 20C . The life guard said to think of it as refreshing . Ahh yes, this brain freeze is so refreshing

After that I came home, had some tea, and decided to get out again for another walk . Have to take advantage of the remaining sun lit evenings since the days are starting to get shorter.

Had a call this evening from the hospital reminding me of my MRI appointment . Gee, returning to work and an MRI in the same week. What fun .

Tomorrow I have to go to the hardware store and get a small tin of paint to do some touching up in the living room. I hope the colour I picked is a good match. I sure don't feel like having to paint the whole works again . I'm also buying a glass lined thermos to use as a water bottle. I'm sick of the plastic tasting water from these bottles I have . It can't be good to drink that.

Time to catch up on Email and some other online stuff.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Yeah I'm Crazy and Irrational

Can't post any pictures as I'm using my son's laptop, which is photo less. My own computer is acting up . Sure hope I don't need a new one.

Today I really had to fight hard against the depression demons. Cooking, cleaning, walking , talking, gardening, to distract me. Email, blogging, gaming , trying to blot out all the negative thoughts.

I think it's a combination of missing my friends and worrying about work that has me down.
Also missing the old me. Yeah she's gone and she ain't coming back.
And Oh! Man! I'm so tired !

I also realize that when I think I want advice, it isn't true. I just want others to go along with whatever I say. I want them to agree with all my crazy irrational ideas ( like quitting my job) and I don't want to hear any logical comments ( don't quit your job).

Perhaps tonight is a good night for a sleeping pill. Haven't had one for ages, in fact all the time I've been off. It's a cop out I know, but my head is swimming with a million thoughts, few good ones.

If it doesn't rain again tomorrow(record precipitation this summer) I'll go for a swim
Maybe the cold water will knock some sense into me or at least freeze my brain.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Return from the South West

Here you can see Franklin National Park, El Paso and La Posta, my favourite restaurant in Las Cruces, New Mexico.

I'm back from my trip visiting friends in Texas and New Mexico. It was wonderful ! I miss them already. Yeah I know I'm crazy to go to such hot sunny places . Well the weather is pretty darn hot and miserable here, so why not ?

It's unfortunate that America has such a tarnished reputation abroad . All the people I meet there during my travels are friendly decent folks. My home town could certainly learn a few things about manners and hospitality from them ( merchants , shopkeepers, take note). It's also a shame that there is such animosity toward the Mexicans, they too being some of the nicest, friendliest, people. Not to mention that I love authentic Mexican food. I do understand Americans being concerned about illegal immigration, however, after seeing Juarez Mexico, if I lived there, I'd be jumping the fence. In North America, we really, truly, don't understand the poverty others live in.
What I think the answers are would fill pages and pages of my blog, so I'm not going there.

Went walking in Franklin National Park, which is near El Paso. Luckily, it was an overcast day and there was a nice breeze . They've had lots of rain so the plants are putting on a good show.

How much I want to retire and move down to the South West . Even though it isn't the best place for a person with MS, it is tugging at my heart.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

The Beauty Racket

Didn't go for a walk today and now I feel strange, like I really have missed something.
I feel just as tired and weak too as if I had walked the 5k. Resting doesn't seem to make a difference with Ms. I've had 3 months off work and I don't feel any different.

Today was a day for beauty routines and phone calls . These days the beauty racket takes longer and is more expensive . I remember many years ago I bought a new type of face cream.
The sales clerk realized after I paid that she had charged me double . I hadn't noticed. She felt really bad and apologized . I made a joke saying that maybe in ten years I would have to pay that much . Well that time is here, and no way am I telling how much I paid . Hey! it's another Libra trait, vanity.

Chatting with my mum today I had a bit of a cry (she too is a Libra ) She was asking me about work and I was fine telling her, then suddenly I started crying . She was actually pretty good about it, very positive. Usually she won't tolerate weakness or tears . Tells me I'm too intelligent to feel sorry for myself, which I don't get. Emotions have nothing to do with brain power, I don't think.
Then I talked for awhile with a friend. He told me about an EBay seller he thought had ripped him off. Turns out the woman had been in the hospital for a month and found out she has MS.
You have to be really sick to be hospitalized that long. They only let you stay for the minimum time you need to recover. That news didn't exactly cheer me up.

My son is trying to convince me to go solar. He has a small solar panel in his room that he uses to charge a portable battery . It works pretty good. If I could have one thing solar it would be a hot water tank. I told him to cost it out and I would think about it.

Honestly today I felt like crap

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Cootes Paradise

Why do I feel so much better as soon as the sun goes down ?

Managed to get out for a long walk this evening to Cootes Paradise.
I took a picture of the sign so you know that I''m not making that name up .
I've had a bout of fatigue the last few days and those vibration/mini explosions in my feet and head . Sorry I really can't think of a proper way to describe the feeling.

Here's a sculpture from an art exhibit down at the harbour. Lots of these little things floating about .

As usual the storm clouds followed me . Managed to get home safe and dry !

Pill Popping Pets

Bet you can't say that fast 3 times ? You can read about though. Drug companies not only want to sell you drugs you don't need they want to sell them to your dog

I'm having a serious bout of fatigue so my blogging is limited.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

First Outdoor Swim

Too many ugly grey envelopes in the mail today . Those kooks where I work have now sent my doctor 3 separate requests for the same information . I think it's "covering their backsides " time .My manager also sent me an e mail filled with many "buts" and "howevers", meaning she's not planning to do squat for me.

Decided to lock in my mortgage before the rates go up again and pay off my debts . It won't really cut into my equity all that much . I've already cut up 2 credit cards and will never, ever, get mixed up in one of those don't pay for a year deals again.

Had my first outdoor swim of the summer this evening. The water was cool, but it felt great . Not crowded either, so there was plenty of room to do a few laps and float around with a pool noodle. If the weather is mild this weekend I might be brave and go during the day. Never thought I would have to avoid the sun and heat . I use to be such a sun worshiper .

Tomorrow is Farmers Market in the morning. Maybe they will have Raspberries. Yummy !

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Call Me Sea Slug

No energy today. I felt like a sea slug. Is the heat getting to me already ?

Here's an excellent article in the NYT about suicide
With so many flaky health stories in the news, it's great to read something that is well written, thoughtful, and backed up with facts.

Saw the movie "In Bruges" . I liked it even though there was too much violence. If you're into political correctness don't watch it.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Steven Truscott

To all of you out there who want to get tough on youth crime, remember, one reason we have the Youth Criminal Justice Act, and no longer have the death penalty in Canada ; Steven Truscott
Do we really want to go back to those days?

That's the limit of my political commentary here. I use to do volunteer work with high risk youth and the answers to youth crime aren't so simple.

I was able to contact an intelligent life form at human resources today. I thought I'd take another crack at them and see if I could get some things sorted out. The guy I spoke to was able to answer a few of my questions, certainly more than anyone else has.

So much for the electronic age and a paperless society. Ha! The bureaucrats want forms filled
out, and lots of them. I have no clue what I'm doing anymore. I'm dealing with three separate government agencies . Oh the torture ! The only thing I'm certain of is I won't be reporting for work on July 28th, at least not full time . I wonder in a year from now where I'll be and what I'll be doing.
Things right now sure are different compared to last year.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Chili Dogs and Ice Cream

A few scenes from the Woodland Trail, Royal Botanical Gardens, on the last day of the flower festival.

We had foot long chili cheese dogs and fries for dinner at Easterbrook's. Haven't had a hot dog in years , have to admit it was very good.

Otherwise, it's been an uneventful couple of days with me feeling well below par. My only accomplishment, is that I might just hold the record for most maple walnut ice cream cones eaten in one weekend.

Do I feel guilty? Not after my 5k walk I don't.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Work, a Few Flowers, and Climate Change

Here's a few of my day lilies , roses, and cone flower buds, along with my neighbour's more civilized front garden. Mine is getting that jungle look again, which I will try to subdue this weekend.

After all the whining about my work situation I finally have some good news. Turns out that I qualify for a disability payment that would allow me to continue working part time and still receive about 80% of my earnings. It won't happen over night, still lots of forms and bureaucratic nonsense to get through, including nagging management to do their bit. At least I can enjoy the rest of my time off and know that something is in the works. Now maybe I'll be able to hang in there longer and get a real pension, instead of the half one I would get if I quit.
Yes, after that bizzarre conversation with my manager, I was seriouly considering it.

Not going out celebrating just yet, because these things have a way of unraveling. Stay tuned .

If you believe that climate change will have dire consequences, consider moving to Canada.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Birthdays and a Clinic

No internet all day today. Funny I didn't care.

Three big birthday bashes this week : Canada, U.S.A , and Quebec City, all celebrating. Good article about them in the New York Times today.

Quebec having the biggie, 4oo years since it's foundation. My mother claims direct lineage to the original settlers. We did go to a big family reunion when it was the 375th anniversary and I have a book showing the genealogy. I laughed when I heard on the news it was raining in Quebec, only because every single time I've been there it's rained ! We are too many of us wrecks to have done the trip this time. It's also sad that so many of the family that were at the last party are gone now.

Went to the walk in clinic today to get a prescription for skin cream renewed. Have itchy red fingers again. Stressed related ? The place was empty so I got to see a doctor right away.

The receptionist handed me a list of family doctors who are accepting patients and advised me to get one. Why should I go to a doctor an hour from home when the clinic is around the corner? Besides, I find the idea of a family doctor is a bit out dated. It's not like when I was a kid and they actually made house calls. Now they order tests and hand out prescriptions just like the clinic does, and there's nothing very " family" about it. The only doctor who clued in that I might have MS, was the guy at the clinic . He ordered my first MRI. Compare that to my mother's GP, who told her her pains were in her head and she ended up needing emergency gall bladder surgery!

When I saw the doctor he repeated the exact thing the receptionist said, so maybe the Health Ministry is making them do it . I know the media keeps going on about how many hundreds of thousands of people don't have a family doctor. I'm sure many are like me and don't care.
I think it embarrasses the government though.

Have a great 4th my U.S friends. I"m going to watch the Boston fireworks in high def !

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Flip Flop

Yeah it isn't just the politicians who do it. In the space of two hours my manager back tracked on all the stupid, pointless, things she said and is going ahead with the paperwork to get things resolved . Only thing is she will be gone when I get back to work which means I have to start over again with another person. I have to get in touch with the union rep tomorrow.
How can people lie so much ? Don't they see how they are messing up another person's life ?
23 years I work in a place with minimal problems and now it's all crap !

What really bugs me is how sick I felt this evening I use to be able to handle stress , now I just get stressed out.
Well at least I have another month to recover. My plan is to have no more contact with anybody at work and see what happens. I mean they aren't paying me for my time off so why should I bother .

That's it no more work talk unless something big happens, which it won't.


I don't normally blog at this time of day but I really need to vent. I just had a conversation with a human resources officer who is the stupidest person ever !! That's really saying something too because they are so incompetent and dumb to begin with. I'm stunned and so upset To make things worse I had a call from my new manager and all I can say is I'm doomed. I work with evil back stabbing weasels !! Nothing worse on earth than an inefficient slow stupid bureaucracy !!
OK I have used up my limit of exclamation marks time to quit .