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Monday, December 31, 2012

When everything is quiet, who do you think about?

I think about MS.  I think about what it's done to me and how much I dislike it.

I think about work.  I think about sites that I have a problem at, or sites that need some help.  I think about the staff struggling at the moment, or the kids that are struggling.  I think about everything I have to do on my to-do list.

I wonder if I'm destined to be lonely.

I think about my mom.  I think about the regrets I have, my last times with her, my favorite times I've spent with her, the things she has taught me.

I think about my dad.  I think about his health failing him and how I'm very scared I will one day have to think of him like my mom.

I think about my brother and how responsible and compassionate he has grown to be.  He amazes me frequently.

I think about my sister and her pregnancy.  I worry about her and the baby and I'm sad to be so far away from her during the time.

I think about finances and what bills are coming up. I try to figure out how I'm going to pay them all.

I think about personal things in my life that I need to get done.  Generally, it's cleaning, sending mail, getting an oil change, putting laundry away, taking clothes to Goodwill.

I think about therapy.  I think about the topics that I need to address and I figure out how to bring them up.  I think about how often I think about death in that particular day, week or month.  Then I think about how pessimistic I'm being, and try to put a positive spin on it.

Then I think that I hate quiet time and stop it.  That might be turning on the TV, radio, going online, something, because when everything is quiet, my mind always goes a bad way.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

New Year's Resolutions

I'm not one to make New Year's Resolutions, but I've decided to try and come up with some (realistic) ones to see what I can do in a year.

1. Quit Smoking
2. Take 3 classes at the Y a week (water aerobics, Zumba, etc.)
3. Quit drinking Coke in my home, by June
4. Quit drinking Coke forever by the end of the year.
5. Read one book a month.
6. Finish my sister's scrapbook.
7. Not eat out once during the month of Feb.
8. Pay 50% of the car loan during 2013.
9. Pay off 2 student loans during 2013.
10.  Cook one new recipe every month.
11. Drink 3 bottles of water daily.

2013



If there was ever a time in your life when you wished for a very extended vacation, it's 2013, Sag. The longing for a break from the rat race and constant hustle has never been so overwhelming. You started having fantasies of what it would be like to live your life totally surrounded by tranquility, nature or, better yet, 24-hour room service in a posh hotel. The idea of being taken care of is ridiculously enticing as Saturn and the North Node of the Moon take root in your retreat zone this year. If you can't totally break away from the responsibilities of life, at least plan to book as many moments in solitude as possible. You'll need regular getaways to cope.
Jupiter continues to bless your relationship and social sector this year until June. This brings wonderful luck and benefits through your close associations with others and will also bless partnerships. If you're in a long-term relationship you may experience incredible breakthroughs and wisdom during the first half of the year. If you're single, this could be an incredible opportunity to meet someone you can finally look up to. In any case, you'll not find yourself lonely or wanting for company under Jupiter's abundant influence in your partner zone.
The second half of the year brings tremendous resourcefulness as Jupiter moves into your sector of other peoples' money, sexuality and transformation. Change feels better than ever, so be willing to let go of all that no longer serves your highest. You're simply making way for the new. The more you let go, the more new channels of abundance can flow to you. The universe wants to help you, so don't be afraid to ask for what you need. You'll be utterly amazed at the earth angels that step forward to help you this year. You may come into some unexpected money through an inheritance or a gift before the end of 2103. This is an excellent year to get out of any lingering debt. You'll have the means to dig yourself out and make all-things financial right again.


I love this baby!


I couldn't reach a blanket, but wanted him to be warmed.  So I put him in my hat :)

Saturday, December 29, 2012

snow is falling

I hate snow still, buts its a Saturday.  And it's flu day.  I timed that one so that I would just sleep though the snow.  Tomorrow, the snow ends, and I will go out and about again.

I feel surprisingly good today.  It's flu day, so I have all that going on, but otherwise good.  I guess the lovely lesions aren't doing much trouble now.  My mental space is good.  I can't complain, but I can go back to sleep while watching TIVOed NCIS.  Life is good!


When you are 80-years-old, what will matter to you the most?

80 years old.  Wow.  I can't even imagine that.  What will I be like when I'm 80.  I'm hoping I'm pleasant.  I don't want to be one of those cranky 80 year olds.  That would stink.

When I am 80, I imagine family will be important to me.  Perhaps I will have a partner by then.  Perhaps not.  Either way, I will have nieces and nephews.   Of that, I am sure.  When I am 80, they will be grown, and maybe even have children of their own.  I will love them too.

When I am 80, I hope to be involved with politics and be working to making a difference in this world.  By then, I hope, gay marriage will be legal.  I am sure there will be lots of more things that need working on.  I hope when I am 80, I am still working to making things better, not backwards.  Older people seem to always be more conservative than the younger generations.  I hope I remain liberal.

When I am 80, I hope to be financially secure.  I want to be able to travel if I want.  I want to not have to worry about making it month to month.  If I want to do something, I want to be able to do it.

I hope to still be involved with children.  Perhaps I won't be working anymore, but I'd like to be one of those cute 80 year olds that volunteer reading to children, or doing something special with them.

I want to be actively involved with MS organizations.  I hope I can volunteer time helping others diagnosed with MS and help them move past the shock of the diagnosis.

Scratch that.  By time I'm 80, I hope there is a cure for MS and I don't have it anymore.  I can just tell people stories about how horrible it was when it was around.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Absolutely Disguisted

This article has made me super cranky.

Claim seeks $100 million for Sandy Hook school shooting survivor

Are you kidding me?

Two weeks after this happens, some family is looking to make a buck off of it?  I'm very certain you're child is suffering following this.  I imagine mental health professionals in Newtown CT have lots of new clients.  Get your child some serious therapy.  Get some for yourselves while you are at it.  Move to another town if you need.

But trying to make money because you say the school board was negligent?  Seriously?  This man broke into the school.  It was locked.  He was not let in, he broke in.  Teachers lost their lives trying to save students, perhaps even your child.  Everyone involved was hurt by the tragedy.

Instead of trying to make some money from it, be grateful your child is alive and you can hug and kiss them goodnight.  You can comfort them when they are scared.  You can seek out help for them.  100 million dollars is ridiculous.  I'm sure the parents of the 20 children that lost their lives would gladly give you that much money if it meant they could have their own child back.




Thursday, December 27, 2012

long overdue post about Adam Lanza and mental health

I am Adam Lanza's mother

I think the horrible day at Sandy Brook Elementary School was one of the worst mass shootings in history.  The entire thing, from beginning to end, is not understandable.

What has come out of it, has been an increased debate in gun control and mumblings about access to mental health care being easier.

I am in support of both those things.  I don't believe guns should be as accessible as they are.  There is certainly no reason for a regular person to own an automatic or semi-automatic weapon.

And mental health.  I'm still seeing a therapist.  I'm lucky, I guess.  I have health insurance and they cover me to see her.  Not everyone is that lucky.  I know if it wasn't covered, I could probably look up to find therapists that were low cost, or no cost, but really, that would be a lot of work.  I've started to look before, and the process was so time consuming that I gave up.

Now that I have health insurance, I looked at their website for therapists, found one, called her, and got an appointment.  I feel like I mesh with her, so I keep going.

I struggle, frequently with MS, my mother's death and general feeling poorly about myself.  She would tell you depression, but after working with teenage girls, that word just annoys me now.  I feel like its overused by society, but her use of it is clinical, so I guess it's ok.

Anyway, the thought of people talking about therapy, and making it less taboo, well, I think that's great.  Very few people know I go to therapy.   I worry about what they would think of it - some would be ok with it, others might judge me for it.  With the topic of mental health making headlines is good - to get the topic out there, it always worries me.

What if now, after this conversation, it becomes the norm to think of therapy as for people who will become potential shooters.  What if it seems like it's not just for the normal person who is struggling with something, but for people who are about to go off the deep end?  In my thinking, Adam Lanza must have been stable at some point.  What was it that made it do what he did?  Could therapy and/or medication have prevented it?

I don't know.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Monday, December 24, 2012

Christmas is a necessity. There has to be at least one day of the year to remind us that we're here for something else besides ourselves. ~Eric Sevareid

Merry Christmas to any blog readers out that that celebrate the holiday.

I have to say, this is the first Christmas in a while that I have not seen the big debate on facebook over the name of the holiday.  Some say, "Happy Holidays," to in inclusive, others demand they are only wished a "Merry Christmas" and abhor the phrase Xmas, because it takes Christ out of Christmas.

Me, I don't care so much either way.  I say Merry Christmas, because that's what my family has always celebrated, but I am also appreciative of a Happy Holidays or even Happy Hanukah.  Whatever.  If you wish me one of those, I'll wish the same back to you.

So I wish everyone a happy whatever they celebrate and hope the new years brings peace, love, kindness, and a cure for MS!  :)

Multiple Sclerosis - about as cool as a honeymoon handjob.

That was a new t-shirt I saw today.  I haven't seen that one yet.  It's kind of funny.

I'm feeling very annoyed about MS today, and then I'm annoyed that I'm annoyed.  The only real thing going on is that my left hand is numb.  That's really not so bad in the grande scheme of things.  I guess I'm a bit forgetful too, but that may or may not be MS.

Either way, today is the sort of day where I hate MS.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

"A baby will make love stronger, days shorter, nights longer, bankroll smaller, home happier, clothes shabbier, the past forgotten, and the future worth living for."

On Tuesday, December 18, 2012 Jayce Quinn made his way into the world.

He is the baby of my very best friend in the whole wide world.  I was given the privilege of getting to be in the delivery room.  I guess this is odd in some ways, but not for us.  

I feel like the entire experience has changed me.  I'm a different person today than I was 3 days ago.  I am amazed at how strong she is and how difficult the whole process is.  She was in labor for 36 hours.  They were the 36 longest hours of my life and the only thing I wanted was to take her pain away.  

During it all, I thought the whole thing was totally not worth it.  And then he was born.  It was magical.  It was amazing.  I cried and cried as soon as he came out.  He is the most beautiful baby ever.

I had therapy today.  At the end of last week, I was pretty sure we'd talk a lot about Newtown, CT.  I'm still struggling with my feelings about everything, but it didn't matter.  All we talked about was the birth.  The entire experience was so amazing and full of hope, life, love and the power of the human spirit.


 I love you Jayce Quinn, already and more than you'll ever know.  You make life worth living.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Why is mental health so taboo?

As is everyone, I am thinking about the shooting at Sandy Hook.  I have more questions then answers, and I really wish I could understand why.

Lots of conversation has been going on about gun control, god in school, and mental health resources.

I understand the rational behind "guns don't kill people, people kill people," but I also think guns make the killings much worse.  Imagine what war would be if both sides only used pea-shooters.  There'd be a lot less death in the final number.  I'm in support of tougher gun laws.  I don't believe every person needs to own a gun.  If they do, they certainly do not need automatic weapons or other similar instruments.

God - I saw a post on facebook that said, "Dear God,  Why do you allow such things to happen in my school?  Sincerely, a concerned student.  Dear concerned student, I'm not allowed in your school.  Sincerely God."

I don't know how I feel about that.  I wouldn't want any one telling my child which God they had to pray to or what they had to call him.  I do believe though, that children who wish to have a God to talk to and pray to should be allowed, even in public school.  I wish I had a God I could turn to during times like these.  Seeking comfort in a God would be nice.  I'd like that.

And mental health.  That's a whole different topic all together.  I haven't firmly decided what I think or feel about that.

I do feel that a lot of people died on Friday.  A lot of people that did not have to die.  And I include the shooter in that total.  He did a horrible thing, but hopefully, we can use the knowledge we will learn to prevent something as horrific as this from ever happening again.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Flu day

Ugh....I feel very yucky today.  I think MS is just making me nuts.   I'm having trouble seeing today...even the words on my TV are hard to make out.  Looking around just gives me a headache.  As soon as I keep my eyes forward, I'm good, but I'm super sensitive to any movement.

I think this is a combination of flu day, post steroids, and MS.  Blech blech blech.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Another day of terror

There was a big school shooting today.  At an elementary school no less.  Although not all the details are out yet, the suspected shooter is the son of a Kindergarten teacher at the school.  He killed her, her classroom and another near by.

How tragic is that?  It's horrible.  All those parents who won't have their children home with them tonight.  I'm sure they've already got Christmas presents at home for them.  Life is going to be so difficult for so many people forever more.

The entire thing breaks my heart.   I'm anxious and petrified to continue hearing the news about everything that went on in this man's life to make him kill his mother (possibly father at another location - that's been reported multiple ways) and almost 20 little innocent children.  Absolutely horrible.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Please won't you catch...

I thought I saw a UFO outside.  It was too bright and fast to be a lightening bug.  It was too quiet and low to be a plane.  Next logical step, UFO.

I posted this on facebook.  Turns out there is a meteor shower tonight and tomorrow.  I saw a shooting star.  Then when outside to find another to wish on.  I did.  You have to keep your wish a secret, but I had a very logical wish.

It makes me think of my favorite camp song ever.


An exceptionally well timed letter

I received this in the mail today from a former camper, staff member and the daughter of a friend of mine.  I've known her since she was 10 years old.  We met at camp, but then I became good friends of her family and so I have known her in and out of camp.

As a camper, she was "Suzy Camper."  She was all about camp.  As a staff member, she was kind, compassionate, and then had one major foul up, in which I had to fire her.  She knew it was inevitable and the whole thing sucked, but she bounced back and has since gone to work there successfully.  She's had a rough time of things as she has entered into adulthood, but she had a good head on her shoulders, and I am eager to see what becomes of her.

Anyway, I got this letter from her today.  She's in job corps, which is kind of part job training, but also for kids who've had some trouble in their lives.  It's a little boot camp-ish, but very good for her.

"Dear Heidi,

My teacher gave us an assignment to write a letter to someone in our lives that we see as a leader.  I thought of you immediately because you were the person who taught me leadership in and out of camp.

In my opinion, you were the best director I saw in my time at camp.  You set the rules, made sure everyone was doing what they were suppose to do and ensured every one's safety, but still managed to be someone we could come to, if we had a problem, someone who could always make me laugh.  From the very first memory I have of you, when you took me to Friendly's for my birthday, I have known that there is someone that cares for me outside of my family.

Whenever I fought with my mom, or needed something she couldn't provide, be it a ride to dance or someone to talk to, you have been there for me.  Mom and I frequently wonder where we would be without you.  You have been so many things in my life, camp director, babysitter, mentor and friend.

Most of all, you are are someone I can look up to, someone who inspires me.  You are one of the best, most wonderful people I have ever met, and seeing you struggling with MS is hard for everyone, but you accept the cards that you were dealt, and you haven't lost your smile.  You are someone I admire more than anyone else, and I am so grateful for everything you have done for me.  I would not be where I am without your support and love.

Love you,"

*Name omitted to protect her identity *


Wednesday, December 12, 2012

I am slowly going crazy, 1-2-3-4-5; crazy slowing going am I, 5-4-3-2-1.

I wonder if I'm going nuts right now.  I'm pretty sure its the steroids, but I am on such an emotional roller coaster.  EVERYTHING is getting under my skin.  I'm ridiculously happy one moment, and blubbering like an idiot the next.

I'm feeling sick to my stomach.  I'm seeing things that aren't really there.  I can't focus.  It's ridiculous.

And it all boils down to the fact that I hate Multiple Sclerosis.  I try to down play it.  When folks at work ask how I am, or why I'm at work when I was just in the hospital yesterday, I shrug it off.  I say it's just MS, not a big deal.

I texted my therapist tonight to let her know I might be late for my appointment tomorrow - because infusion took FOREVER today.  Then, before she answered, I was able to move the infusion appointment earlier so it wouldn't matter.  She responded and said she was sorry to hear I wasn't feeling well.

I couldn't even answer that.  My gut instinct was to just shrug it off, but with her, I really shouldn't.  If anyone gets the real feelings I am having, it should be her.  Although, I know I don't even want to share that, but certainly not via text.  It can wait until tomorrow.

I just hate MS.  I think I'd rather have about any other disease, or even better - none at all.  But a disease that predictable, that would be so nice.  One that I would know what to expect, and when - that would be so nice.

Instead, I have this disease that things seem to hit me out of no where.  It effects EVERYTHING, and I even wonder if its making my mood this bad.  I've never felt so discouraged before.  My thinking is slow, my reactions are slow.  My mood is so blessed down, and that I don't even know if its the MS or just the dealing with MS that makes it so.  Either way, MS is the problem, and I really need to find a way to deal with it before it consumes me.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

You always pass failure on your way to success. – Mickey Rooney

I had a doctor say to me today that I was an Avonex failure.  I don't like being called a failure, even if it has absolutely nothing to do with me.  I also don't necessarily agree with him.  I was sick - really sick a few weeks ago.  The fact that a relapse has started is probably from that.

Maybe he is right (which PS, his name is Dr. House), but I'd rather wait for Dr. Dayaw to say it.  If Dr. Dayaw thinks it, then I'll assume its right.  If not, then I'll keep on the Avonex.

Which of course, is a long winded way of saying that I'm admitted in the hospital.  I'm having a flare.  I have a really old roommate, who is scared to go home after what happened to her.  I don't actually know what happened to her, but she's kind of cute.  It's sad, but the nurses and doctors are super nice to her.

And now I'm getting a dose of steroids, and then I get to go home.  I'm not scared of going home.  I'm looking forward to going home.  I have to come back for 3 more days, as an outpatient, to finish the round, but that's ok.  It's SOOOOO much better than actually being here.


Friday, December 7, 2012

wonderment

I've been feeling very mentally healthy lately.  It's even surprised me, but its great.

So this week, I decided to stop taking the antidepressant meds.  I didn't stop taking them because of how good I've been feeling - its more that I keep having lots of bathroom problems.  It started when I was sick and taking a lot of Vitamin C.  So naturally, when the problems started, I ceased the Vit C.

That didn't work.  So then I stopped the Vit D as well.  Doc wouldn't approve of that, cause she doubled my dose because my levels were so low last time I saw her.

That didn't work either.  So, just in case, I stopped the happy pills.  I did this without talking to my doctor or therapist though.  I figured it would be ok though.

Then today happened.  Its been 4 days without the pills.  I've felt so crazy.  Little things are driving me batty and I feel like everyone I'm dealing with is an absolute moron.  That, and I've had a killer headache all day.  I have no idea if all this is related to stopping the pills or just the day, but I think I shall resume the meds tonight.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Irony - or something like it

There is a half day in the schools I work with tomorrow.  That means around 11:30, I generally have to run around a bring some lunches to children who forgot them.  I also scheduled therapy for 11am tomorrow.  

And then, I am meant to go to this time management training from 10-noon.  I can't go to time management due to the fact that I can't manage my time and am already over booked.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

What do you usually think about on your drive home from work?

I'm feeling well again.  Last night, I slept the entire night without waking up once to cough.  It was SOOO nice.  I feel that within 48 hours I will be perfectly back.

So, I'm back to my regularly scheduled blogging.  In the absence of anything real to write about, I've picked a boundary breaker to answer.

On my way home from work, I think about the day I've had.  Sometimes, I can be proud of what I have accomplished, other times, I think of what I didn't actually get done.  I think about whether or not I brought home what I need in order to get that thing done.

I usually think about my mom at some point during the drive.  I wonder what she would say about some news story (like the royal pregnancy) or odd weather patterns.  I'm pretty good at guessing what she would say, or at least I think I am.

I think about what I am going to make for dinner.

I am usually exhausted and calculate the number of hours until it reaches an acceptable time to go to bed.

I imagine I'm a famous singer, singing my favorite songs in the car.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

sick sick sick

I've been ridiculously sick, since Thanksgiving.  It's going on 11 days now, although to be fair, I was only horrible for like 6 days.  Still, 6 days is a long time and day 11 is about over, and I'm still not feeling 100% well yet.

I went to the doctor last Monday.  She said it was a viral flu and I'd just have to let it run its course.  I had a flipping flu shot, so that makes me extra cranky about it.

While all this is going on, I can feel the MS buzzing around, ready to pounce.  I'm hoping and praying that I don't end up with a big flare.  For now, its just some numbness in my hands.  There's some potential pooping problems going on, but I hope that is because of an increase in vitamin C and not MS.  So far, all related to peeing is going fine.

For now, I shall go to bed, before 7pm in order to get up for 7am.  Geez, I hate MS and illness.