Monday, October 27, 2008

What? Another Blog?

Yes. I have been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes and hypertension. I want to write about it. Heck, I even want to find the humor in the situation, but I don't want it to take over this blog, so I've created another one. You can follow the link below:

Subterranean Pancreas Blues

or you can click on my profile and at the bottom you'll find a linked list of my blogs.


Sunday, October 12, 2008

Boobies! Boobies! Boobies! Boobies!

Did you see what Dustin Penner did earlier tonight? Holy cats!! That was a thing of beauty. Okay, I'll settle down now.

So. Boobies. Okay. Let's get back to task here.

Earlier this week, I had to get a 2D echocardiogram. I asked a number of people what it was like and Stanley, Terry, Kevin, Howard and Dave all said some variation of "It's nothing. They smear some goo on your chest and then run a wand over it." I have two words for all of them: "Ouch!" and "Ouch!" One for each breast. But you know? This oversight might not be completely their fault. Let's take a look at that list again, shall we? Stanley, Terry, Kevin, Howard and Dave... What do all of these people have in common other than knowing me? None of them have boobs. None of them. Have. Boobs. Okay, maybe a couple of them have moobs (man boobs) but none of them have what Fergie once called "lovely lady lumps".

If any of those guys had boobs they certainly would have been sympathetic to my not being happy about my tech seeming to feel that my boobs' tendency to get in her way somehow behooved her to try to push them around to my shoulder blades. She also tried to push the little marital aid-looking thing up under my sternum. People just don't bend that way! Okay maybe other people bend that way and I'm a freak. I don't know, but it hurt. Seriously, I was very sore for three days.

To her credit, the tech did attempt to keep me engaged. At one point while she was trying to grind my ribcage into powder, she pointed to the screen and said, "Look! There's your heart!" On the screen was a murky, twitching thing that made a "shploosh-shoo" noise. I smiled and said "hmmm". In my head I was screaming, "No! Ack! Getitout! Getitout! Getitout!" Now, here's the thing, there was no reason for me to be so squicked out by my own heart. I know it's there. I've got a degree in anthropology. In order to get this degree, I had to take A&P, handle human remains and observe an autopsy. I managed to do all of these things without a problem. However, none of them entailed seeing my own internal organs at work. When I saw my heart, it was all I could do not to beg the tech to see if Sigourney Weaver was in the lobby and if she would come hold my hand in case that thing tried to burst out of my chest.

As of this writing, I'm still waiting for the results. This might be a good thing. I am also being very nice to my boobs by giving them an exam. For those of you who haven't gotten the word yet, October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. You can get more information here. You owe it to yourself and the people who love you to take five minutes this month (an every other month) to make sure your boobies are okay!


copyright 2008 jas faulkner

Monday, October 06, 2008

Sometimes the Only Way to the Other Side of Something Is Through It

Hi. I'm okay. Thanks for asking. That may scan as me being more flip than I intend to be and I apologize for that. Please take it for the plain statement that it is.

So what happened? The short version is that I've had some health scares over the past few weeks and have been on meds that didn't play well with each other. Before I could get a handle on what was happening to me, I got very sick. It's a shock to me, too. Twelve years of working with people who are usually on meds of some sort and learning about them by both design and osmosis should have given me enough insight to know that bad interactions can slam you even when there isn't a psychotropic or inhibitor in sight.

It's one thing to know on an intellectual level how much your physical health can influence your state of mind. It's another entirely to see it work and accept it on a more primitive, experiential level. Knowing the effect the meds had on me together and then working out by process of elimination which one was knocking me flat was pretty amazing. BTW, it was my BP pill. Taken by itself, it caused me to get dizzy, foggy, anxious and eventually throw up everything but my shoes. Buh-bye big horse pill.

I should have known better. After all, I calm people in distress and fix bad health care situations for a living. Why didn't I see this? If it's any help, I have been missing the big picture for years. I didn't see (or maybe didn't want to see) that neglecting my emotional and physical health was taking a toll and probably lost sight of that at least two years ago. Things that would have never bothered me that much, things that I could have been zen about, things that I would have laughed off after finally getting some perspective and emotional maturity were suddenly the very triggers that seemed to get me down and keep me down. I know my friends and family noticed this. Somehow I missed it, or ignored it. Whichever it was, I was too busy to care.

What is scary is how easy it is to get accustomed to not being well. I didn't realize just how much I had manifested that in my life until I decided to get in shape to play hockey and found out that I was not only out of shape but scarily unhealthy. That was the first time in a long time I had paid any attention to my body and found out I had been depriving myself of everything that was good for me for a long time. My biggest fear is that I have let myself get as sick as my father did before he died. I love him and miss him but he was never willing to do what it took to stay healthy. It seems like over the past few months I've thought back to the decisions he made and then ran as hard as I could in the opposite direction. I hope it's enough and yet fear it won't be. There's so much that I still want to do and want to be able to do it before I'm too old.

So. I have a lot to think about. I have a lot to do. Most important of all right now, I need to say thank you for caring. If you wrote me, I will answer you. Please be patient and don't think your letter was deleted. And I'm sorry to have caused anyone to worry. Everyone has their own set of things to deal with and adding to those lists is not something I want to do. Hey, I'm a fixer, not a fixee.

As we used to say at the end of every Latin class:
valeo valui valiturus

Jas Faulkner