Days 12, 13, 14


I’m not even sure what I did Sunday.  I know there was writing, cleaning, cooking, and I took all my vitamins and drank all my water.  What I failed to do was take a daily picture.  So instead, you get to see one of my two kittens.  This one is Charlotte a.k.a Lola a.k.a. Bunny Tacos on the middle tier of the cat tree (that’s literal, btw), and she’s laying on a tribble that’s tied around with package ribbon.

She's very tiny

Charlotte the Mighty

Monday there was even more cleaning, after pap fun and x-rays at my doctor’s office.  I felt so run down, but I kept chipper through the process, showed my daughter that pap tests don’t have to be nightmarish, especially with a trusted doctor, and I kept my nurse laughing.  Isn’t that important?

Awkward and squished

Awkward and squished

My blood work, which I don’t think got tested for everything I wanted (no mention of dairy allergy test, for instance), showed that four out of five celiac disease tests came back negative, one of them is still pending.  My wheat/gluten allergy test showed a mild positive, which I will likely need to address after the holidays as we shift our diet and our pantry to one that honors my body’s needs.  Although, at such a low positive, I have to wonder if a strict no-wheat diet is necessary or if I can get away with the occasional nip as I do with onions (much to my stomach’s displeasure).  For instance, can I have a product with trace amounts of wheat?  Or do I have to live a wheatless existence?

The x-rays of my knees (and they took a lot, I felt all weirded out by the irradiation of my body as I stood on a step ladder), show that I have a lot of cartilage left between my shin and thigh bones, which is good.  They also are free of obvious spurs or signs of arthritis.  What was weird is that my patella aren’t shaped right.  Instead of being round or oval in nature, they had rounded tops and came to triangular points at the bottoms.  “At least it’s symmetrical,” did not cheer me, neither did the fact that he wasn’t sure what was going on.  But I like my doctor because he doesn’t let his own ignorance of a condition deter him from finding answers.

After all, this is the guy who diagnosed my hidradenitis suppurativa when three previous doctors blamed me for my suppurating cysts.  He said that I should give some basic physical therapy exercises a try for a month, and come back to see him.  If they weren’t helping, then we’d start looking into getting an MRI of my knees.  A step in the right direction!  He did warn me, though, that with the state insurance I have, it might be very hard to convince the limited resources that might help me to actually, you know, help me.  If the MRI showed problems, and the chondromalacia is bad enough, then surgery may be in my future.  But that surgery–the one my mom didn’t get–gave our cousin back his mobility after he suffered the same illness.

So there’s a smidgeon of hope, but I still need to test for other food allergies.  It may take me a while to save up enough money to go to Bastyr and pay for the full battery of tests, but I really need to know if my inflammation (and possibly my cysts) can be reduced or even eliminated just by changing my diet.

So, after coming home, napping off my exhaustion, and cleaning like crazy, our power went out.  At 1 a.m.  I was just heading to bed, and my partner, who had seen the lights flickering several times, was logging out of his game.  Suddenly, we were bathed in black, but even when he yelped, I said, “It’s ok.  We’re prepared for this.”  I went over to the front door and grabbed the flashlights, handing him his big black one, and grabbed Ana’s blue one.  We went upstairs, and began lighting candles.  He lit a gas lamp in his room.  I made my bed by the candlelight from my altar, added an extra fleecy blanket, and took my sheepskin to my daughter’s room, throwing that over her shoulders.  Her meatloaf of a cat was curled up next to her head, peering up at me with curiosity.  We got ready for bed, I made it clear to my partner he could climb in with me if he wanted, but his bed gets too cold in winter for me to want to sleep there, so I declined joining him in his.

I curled up under the covers, sat up to blow out the candle, and laid back to enjoy the darkness and quiet.  Except it was neither.  The lamp light carried down the hall to my room, the sky was lit with the distant lights of the city, and the cars, now crawling at 20mph beyond the trees down the wet road cast occasional headlight reflections onto my ceiling.

I paid attention instead to the battering rain, the windchimes whirling and ringing about in the night, and the ringing in my ears from staying up too late.  It didn’t take long before I was asleep, though I didn’t stay asleep much, waking every few hours.  I’d set the alarm on my phone, and prayed the electricity would come back one because we were expecting a guest.

Raven in Banjo shirt, Ana in footie jammies

Raven and Daughter hug before bed

Instead, I woke to a chilled house (though I was grateful it was in the 40’s and not the 20’s as it had been in 2008), took a hot shower (water tank is gas heated), and got dressed.  I’d emailed my co-author before bed from my phone explaining the power outage and that the promised lunch treat might have to be forgotten for the time being.

We welcomed our guest as soon as we managed to find clothes in the shadowy half-light, and sat down to banana nut bread muffins that I’d baked the night before.  After some chatting and a bit of computer talk, Daughter asked to spend time alone with her father.  They went upstairs to her room and talked for a couple of hours while I sang and drummed and looked for my knitting books to try to figure out the abbreviations for a pattern I’m trying to conquer.

When they came down again, we talked some more, and decided that if the power didn’t come back on by 12:30, we’d head out for lunch.  It wasn’t quite so easy, as it turned out, but we eventually got on the road and headed down to the Redmond Chipotle.  My co-author had never tried the only fast food restaurant we ate at, and said, “It’s interesting.  The flavor is different, it has a different spirit.” Indeed, it does.  So we ate slowly and talked, Daughter growing less pleased with that fact that we were talking about our storyline than her, but eventually we left, and she got more attention.

I introduced co-author to Pomegranate, got them a cookie to share, and we returned to the house to find the power was back on.  It was far too late to make chili, even as a to go treat, but we spent more time talking, and basking in the warmth of the heated air.  It must have come back on right after we’d left.

Daughter had brought something down and hid it behind her back.  “Guess what I’ve got,” she said.

I said, “The secret of the universe.”

“No, it’s something sharp.”

“My wit?” I asked.

“No! Oof!  It has nothing to do with brains or minds or anything.  It’s something I stepped on the other day.”

Considering Daughter’s track record for injuries, I just shrugged, and she brought out a clear tack.  I really wish I could find the alarm necessary for every minor hurt, but it happens so often, I wonder if she’s ever really aware of her body or her surroundings EVER.  Still, when it happens, I ask her how badly, make sure she tends it right, and give her a hug.  As long as she’s not bleeding profusely, burned badly, or broken something, I figure it’s not worth getting upset about.

Anyway, we had a good time overall, and Daughter got in lots of hugs and snuggles with her dad.  We said our good byes, and I collapsed in bed as soon as I could.  When I got up, I made the double batch of my special vodka and black bean chili that my co-author misses from when we lived together, and when my partner got home, we gobbled up half the pot, and I froze the rest for our next home visit.

Then I remembered my deadline.

It took me less than an hour to adequately revise my short story–my first erotic short story submission–and send it off the editor at Circlet Press in hopes that it will join a rather intriguing anthology.

Now, it’s 11, and I’m tired again.  I think I’m going to treat myself to another Sookie Stackhouse novel, or at least start one, and prepare myself for tomorrow.  Tomorrow, I conquer the kitchen.  Tomorrow, I return to finishing up the sketches for our third book, so we can wrap it up, and return to the final revision of book one.


2 responses »

  1. great news about many of your tests! strange about the knees. do you remember having problems with them when you were about ana’s age, and i took you to a specialist? he said your knees were behind the growth of the rest of your body, but that they’d catch up? maybe this has to do with that? maybe they didn’t fully? that is a different problem from any i’ve had. btw, your skin is looking healthier in this picture. am guessing it’s all the water? i think you need to get your doctor’s opinion as to what changes to diet need to be made for a mild allergy to wheat/gluten before you overhaul. love you.

  2. I remembered that, actually, and told my doc about the issues I’d had in 6th grade. I told him I’d never felt that my knees had caught up like we’d been assured, since my knee pain never went away, and eventually, it got worse.

    I don’t think my doctor knows much about food allergies, based on prior discussions. I don’t expect him to, it’s more often the purview of naturopaths and nutritionists. I’ll need to save up for it and then beg for a bit more valium and a hand to hold mine all over again, but I’m going to have to go to Bastyr and pay out of pocket for the real deal. It’ll take me a bit of time to save up the money, but it’ll be worth it. It’s not like I’m willing to make dietary changes until two things occur: 1) The holidays are over, and 2) I’ve practiced my knee exercises dutifully for a month without any other dietary changes so we can know for certain whether they work or not. I don’t want to think the exercises are working, when really it’s because I stopped eating gluten and the inflammation went down. Know what I mean?

    As for my skin, it could be the water, and the vitamins, or it could be the point in my moon cycle. Or a combination. At least I’ve stuck with it so far.

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