Pants

Song: “I’ve Got It But It Don’t Do Me No Good” by Annette Hanshaw

Mood: 6

Nightmares: 0

I didn’t sleep too badly last night. I woke up worrying a few times but not as many times as usual. No nightmares, either.

I did my morning exercises for the first time in two weeks today and it went reasonably well. I had to get up and look into things four times but when I was done I felt better than when I started. Now that I know I don’t need them to get by, I may change them a little bit. Not sure how yet, but I’ll give it some thought.

I have a confession to make: today marks the first day since early May that I’ve worn pants. I know, I know, I’m disappointed too. I was determined to wear shorts until at least October, but near-freezing temperatures and some drizzle hanging in the air convinced me to shake the wrinkles and dust out of a pair of pants and put them on. Even worse, I put on a jacket, too. And shoes. Very sad. The worst part is I have no idea where the summer went.

My walk (with pants) was alright. I still really don’t like being out of sight of the front door, but I think it helps somewhat when I tell myself that the sooner that I get out of sight of the door, the sooner I’ll be able to see it again.

Dr C gave me some homework for our next appointment. I started in on that today and made some decent progress.

DA sent me an email last night about some ideas he had about his cabin. I sent a reply last night but gave it a lot of thought today, too. I sat down with my tablet and did some brainstorming and sketching.

Chased a lot more ghosts than normal today. They’re replacing the driveway a couple of houses down the street and they were pouring the new cement, which was quite loud and went on for a while. I could also sometimes just barely hear sounds that my brain interpreted as voices but were probably caused by the workers using gas-powered blowers and scrapers to smooth out the cement. I tried turning up the music but it just made other sounds harder to identify.

J went wandering around some of her favourite stores after work, and we had supper when she got home. After that, we did our own things for a while before watching some more Parks & Recreation. They’re starting to change some stuff – I hope they don’t ruin it.

For whatever reason, I am really high-strung this evening. Jennifer dropped her phone by accident and it badly startled me, then coughed suddenly a while later and startled me again. Some people were doing stuff outside in the dark and I could hear them thumping around which didn’t help, either. I’m a lot calmer now but every time I hear something I can feel my shoulders and chest tighten up. Hopefully I’ll be asleep soon, though.

Stay safe.

Another Quick Post

Song: “At The Hop” by Richard Maltby And His Orchestra

Mood: 6

Nightmares: 0

Really short post tonight. You know what that means? Bullet points!

  • No nightmares last night, which was very nice
  • Had appointment with Dr C this morning. I took some PRNs before I left (I took a cab to and from my appointment) and it made the appointment a little easier. Great news is that Dr C agrees with me that I can go back to doing my exercises in the morning because they’re not controlling me or feeding my OCD. My next assignment is to write down all of the things I need to work on and sort them by difficulty/severity/how much they impact things. Dr C was also interested in how I was pleased when Dr H said I wasn’t anywhere near a point of concern on the blood sugar scale. Saw Dr P in the hall on the way out, waved and said hi.
  • Tired again today.
  • Worked on the thing for DA, and made the mistake of giving it some more thought than I should’ve. Almost put the stuff aside and started working on something else. No! Bad Mark! Finish one project at a time!
  • Got an email from DA this evening about cabin security stuff. Took me a very long time to craft a reply.
  • FA sent me a link to an article about dogs in wheelchairs outside playing. For some reason it really resounds with me. I wish I worked in a place that made wheelchairs for dogs. They look so happy!
  • J is going to an art show by herself tomorrow evening. I feel awfully guilty that I can’t go with her (she hasn’t said anything to make me feel bad, I just feel really guilty).
  • No appointments tomorrow. I need to accomplish something.

And now I’m heading to bed.

Stay safe.

Got To Get To Bed

Song: “At The Hop” by Richard Maltby And His Orchestra

Mood: 6.5

Nightmares: 1?

Okay, this is going to be a pretty short post – it’s late and I have an appointment with Dr C in the morning.

Today went pretty well. I spent some time writing and also worked on the thing for DA. I need to find a bigger diameter pipe but I think I have some in the garage. One other downside is that the smoke detector that I’ve been playing with needs two 9V batteries to run. I have another one around somewhere that I’m pretty sure runs on one – I should switch to that one. Oh, and soldering a wire to a piece of tinfoil is harder and much stinkier than I thought it would be. Stupid YouTube videos making it look so easy, pfft…

I didn’t go for my walk today because it’s been raining on and off. On the plus side, the sun came out a couple of times today and it was really quite nice when it did.

I have successfully stuck to my plan of not doing my regular morning exercises. I haven’t been constantly thinking about them or yearning to do them. I do miss them, though – the mindfulness, meditation, and dedicated worry time definitely make a difference for the rest of the day. I am looking forward to discussing this with Dr C at my appointment tomorrow.

My mom called today and told me that she has noticed some things in the way that I talk on the phone that remind her of how I used to be and she thinks it’s a good sign. I appreciate her mentioning that stuff because I see myself day after day and sometimes don’t notice if things are changing at all.

My sister called today too and we had a good talk. I even got the chance to say hello to my two nephews. The younger one is doing a project involving leaves and the older one is looking forward to getting together with his friend. I very rarely see my nephews (which is my fault) and have only talked to them on the phone a couple of times so it was really nice. Maybe I’ll get a chance to say hi again next week. That would be good.

Tomorrow is my next Dr C appointment. I am looking forward to talking to her about how not doing my exercises went, as well as figuring out the steps ahead. With winter on its way (oh how it pains me to say that), I really need to be able to get out of the house and do some errands. Doesn’t have to be too far, but J does pretty much everything now and I’d really like to be able to do something to help. I just checked the weather and it’s supposed to be 8C and raining tomorrow. Might be a bit of a tough call for shorts, but I’m going to do it.

Stay safe.

A Good Appointment With Dr H

Song: “Bring Down The Birds” by Herbie Hancock

Mood: 6.5

Nightmares: 1

I’m not really sure how I slept last night. I know I woke up worrying several times, and once from a nightmare, but for whatever reason I don’t know how things went. I do know, however, that I was bagged in the morning. It usually takes me several hours in the morning to shake off the grogginess and (more than usual) dim-wittedness, but I’ve been dragging all day.

I didn’t go for my walk this morning. It rained but after the clouds passed we got a nice sunny sky – the first one in days. It still wasn’t very warm, though, but I was determined to wear my shorts and t-shirt because it’s STILL SEPTEMBER, DAMMIT. I’m not going to be intimidated by a bit of snow or some cold blowing rain. Not me, no sir.

STO was down for maintenance for most of today, so I didn’t get on there during the day to do my banking and crafting and research stuff. Not a huge problem – banking in Star Trek is… well, kind of boring, so I wasn’t upset. Looks like it’ll be down for even longer tomorrow, too.

I worked on the thing for DA for a while. The thing is, everything is ready to put together and I think it all works. I just need to make it fit in the tube, finish up the wiring, and make the base. While I’ve been working on it, I’ve been thinking of the next version, too, and jotting down ideas and notes.

I had a Dr H appointment this afternoon. J came home from work early to take me, and I’m really glad she did – I was having a bit of a rough spot at that time. I grabbed a couple of PRNs, got my stuff together, and we headed out.

It wasn’t 90 seconds after I got there when they called my name to go in. Dr H was along shortly and we got to talking about a bunch of things. I had some bloodwork done almost a month ago and she was very happy with the results. So was I – after all, I think all of my uncles and at least one of my aunts has diabetes and I’m a little curvier than I’d like to be, so hearing that I was neither diabetic, pre-diabetic, or getting anywhere that I had to keep an eye on things was great! And, after my little kidney worry a while back, my kidneys are in pretty good shape now! The only (slight) downer is that she wants to raise my statin from 10mg to 20mg. She says my cholesterol is near the good range, but she would be happier if we were to lower it a bit more.. She told me that the known side-effects of some of my other medications is a rise in blood cholesterol levels.

I hated leaving the house, I hated being at the clinic, I hated getting probed and prodded, but all in all it was a very good appointment. I have tomorrow off but will be seeing Dr C on Thursday. Wish me luck!

Oh, and by the way, my pills are hitting me VERY hard right now so if any ot this doesn’t make sense or is spelled/punctuated very badly, that’s why. I really need to get to bed.

Stay safe.

A Good Weekend And Good Day

Song: “Too Bad” by Doug & The Slugs

Mood: 6.5

Nightmares: 2

The weekend went pretty well. Had a lot of time to hang out with J and I also spent some more time puttering at my electronics bench. Electronics was traditionally one of my winter hobbies, and with the way the weather has been lately, it doesn’t seem like winter is far off…

Woke up from two nightmares on Saturday night and two again last night. The second one last night was particularly bad and I ended up in the basement, taking two PRNs, and, blasting music into my ears to try to break out of a panic attack. About 35 minutes later, I could finally feel it loosening its grip on me. I know I’ve said this before, but it bears repeating – panic attacks SUCK.

There is some bad news from the weekend, though. Usually we feed the fish in the main aquarium around 8-9PM (Lloyd gets his food in the mornings). After we feed the fish, we head downstairs to watch some shows. When we feed the fish, they get very excited and swoop around and sometimes even splash water around a bit. Well, it looks like one of them got too rambunctious because when we came back upstairs later, there were only four fish in the tank and, to my horror, the fifth one was stiff and dry, stuck to the floor mat. Nasty.

Today went well. I didn’t sleep that well last night but that’s okay. I called Dr C to see if I could move my appointment and she said sure. Between the call and two emails, my appointment has been moved to Thursday morning.

After I got off the phone, I started tidying up the house in preparation for FA’s visit. My standards have been slowly but relentlessly sliding over the past months – I hope it doesn’t get to the point where people get grossed out and won’t come over anymore…

Moving my Dr C appointment opened up my afternoon so FA and I could hang out for longer, and we did! We talked pretty much non-stop (I think it was probably the longest it took us to eat burritos because we kept talking so much), had lunch, and played a few games of Carcassonne. I really enjoy talking to her – she has very interesting perspectives on many topics and she’s good to bounce thoughts and ideas off of because she won’t hesitate to say she disagrees. FA was here for a long time today, too, so there was plenty of time for all kinds of topics to come up.

J got home after FA left and we talked about our days and hung out. Her day today went much better than she expected, and I’m very happy for her. I hope she continues to be pleasantly surprised at work!

We watched another episode of Parks and Rec this evening. I would really like to have been a crewmember or even just a fly on the wall when they filmed that show. I wonder how often they had to do tons of takes because everyone was laughing.

Tomorrow afternoon I have an appointment with Dr H. It’s a followup for some bloodwork I had done a month ago and she needs to check out how my butt surgery stuff is healing up. I like Dr H – I think she is a phenomenal physician – but I don’t really want to go. Part of it is that I don’t want to go out to the clinic, but part of it is that I wish that something would happen to me that doesn’t require me to put all of my dignity into a tiny little boat and watch it drift off into the distance. It’s got to be done, though. Better that than getting assthrax or buttulism or cheek-eating disease.

Wish me luck.

Stay safe.

Hanging Out With J

Song: N/A

Mood: 6

Nightmares: 0

J wasn’t able to get to sleep for quite a while last night so we hung out and chatted while she coloured and tried to get in the right frame of mind for sleeping. It was pretty late when we finally got to sleep.

This morning, J wasn’t feeling very well so she stayed home from work. We mostly sat around and did our own things, but I wanted to make sure I was available in case she wanted a cup of tea or a blanket or a pail to barf in.

Since J was home I fit in more STO than usual. It went pretty well but after a while the late night caught up to me and I was having trouble keeping my eyes open. I made sure J was okay and then I climbed back into bed, set a timer for an hour, and took a nap. I’m pretty sure I fell asleep (woohoo!) for a while at least because I had no idea what the sound was when the timer sounded. I couldn’t haul myself out of bed right away so I stayed there for a little while before gathering enough oomph to get up. Fortunately, J was still doing ok.

She was feeling a little better this afternoon and some of her holds came in at the library (I suspect that hearing that things were in at the library helped her feel feel better) so she went to pick them up and brought home burgers and fries for supper. One of the holds she got was the new Jumanji movie. We treated ourselves and ate our supper in front of the TV with the movie on (we used to do that all the time but switched to eating at the table after I got out of the hospital). Jumanji was pretty good – quite a few laughs, a couple of groaners, but overall pretty good. I’d watch it again.

After that, J was wilting a bit so she decided to head to bed early. I made sure she was warm enough and then sat down to write this entry.

I’m not sure what I’m going to do tomorrow. A lot of it depends on how J feels and whether she goes to work or not. I wish she could feel better but not have to go to work!

Stay safe.

It Feels Good To Be Making Things Again

Song: “Thank God And Greyhound” by Roy Clark

Mood: 6

Nightmares: 1

J had a tough time getting to sleep last night so we hung out in the dining room. She did some colouring while I played some more STO. It didn’t take too long before we were both feeling like we were ready to go to sleep, and once my head hit the pillow I was out. Woke up a couple of times worrying about one thing or another, and woke up from a nightmare at 4:17AM. It was another one of the same thing (the tent one this time) and I went out to the living room to sit in the light and watch the fish as they went about their nighttime routine. No panic attack, though, and for that I am grateful.

Checked the thermometer and then went for my walk this morning. There were a LOT of crows out. I’m one of those weirdos who likes crows… everything except their call. It’s annoying. I saw two blue and white flashes as bluejays swooped by, which was nice to see.

Didn’t do my exercises again. Went and started working on the stuff for DA very shortly after I got home from my walk. FA left me a comment yesterday mentioning that I don’t need to solder the wire on, I could use a nut and bolt. I can’t believe I didn’t think of that. I found some round stock in the garage (1/4”? 3/8”?), chopped a piece off, then brought it inside to drill a hole in it and shine it up some. I have bolts that are the perfect size for the hole and I think it’s going to work very well, so thanks FA!

I’m also debating with myself whether I should stick with the smoke detector sound – they’re pretty loud after all… or whether I should put in a marine air horn. Now THAT’s loud.

Anyway, so I spent quite a while working on that stuff again. I had the music cranked up and the afternoon reminded me a lot of what I used to do when I would get interested or excited about a project – hole up in our basement laboratory and enjoy putting things together in such a fashion that they do something interesting or useful. Of course, I had to drop what I was doing to run around the house too much again, but ghost chasing aside, it felt good to immerse myself in DOING something.

I remember back… twelve? Maybe fifteen? Anyway, quite a long time ago, DA was having trouble with flooding in his back yard every spring. He had an electric pump and would turn it on when he left for work, then go back to his house and check it at lunch to make sure it was still pumping water (otherwise it would burn itself out). He would get worried when the water level got low. He had a camera looking at his back yard, and he said he wished he could control the pump over the Internet. I figured out how the camera output signal pins worked, and built him a circuit board that listened to the camera and turned the pump on or off. No more having to rush home at lunch. DA has done some landscaping since then so flooding isn’t a problem anymore but he still uses the circuit board today to turn lights on and off with the camera. It makes me happy when I make something for someone and they like it and it’s useful to them.

When I went out to the garage, I startled our yard bunny. We haven’t seen him for a while and were wondering if he’d met an unfortunate end, but he was flopped out at the bottom of the deck stairs. When I went outside, we both jumped a bit. I’m glad he’s back, I always liked it when he would laze about under the spruce tree with a leg kicked out.

My sister called today for our weekly chat. She had a crazy weekend, with relatives visiting, a function at their church, and the kids have their various sports and activities to get to and from. Since the weekend was over, though, things have calmed down and she’s doing pretty well. It was good to talk to her.

Got a text from FA this evening and it sounds like we’re tentatively scheduled to do lunch and possibly some more Carcassonne or Sequence this coming Monday. It will be very good to see her again!

[Whup – looks like J can’t sleep again. She’s started colouring. I hope she can get to sleep soon, it’s not fun being stuck wide awake]

J and I watched some more Parks & Rec this evening. Watching a good show with my favourite person in the world is a good way to end the day.

My plan for tomorrow is to keep working on stuff downstairs and see if I can get on a roll again. I should probably also throw in another load of laundry. But who knows – anything can happen…

Stay safe.

Keeping Pretty Busy

Song: “Keep A Knockin’” by Little Richard

Mood: 6

Nightmares: 0

I woke up quite a bit again last night. No nightmares, so it didn’t take too long to get back to sleep, thank goodness. I’m dragging a bit today but overall it’s not too bad.

Remembering that the temperature caught me by surprise yesterday, I checked the thermometer this morning before I went out. It was quite a bit warmer this morning – pleasantly cool weather for a walk.

I skipped my exercises again today. I’m pretty sure that they’re not feeding my OCD. I can tell/feel that I haven’t spent the time doing them but I don’t feel like I HAVE to do them. I can get on with my day and do other things.

I sent out my texts again and had a couple of conversations. I enjoy sending them out, and it’s amusing to sift through the Internet trying to find new clips of silly things.

Most of my time this afternoon was spent working on the stuff for DA’s cabin. I’ve got the electronics pretty much done but now I’m stuck on a pretty silly problem – I need to solder a thin wire to a piece of metal that’s heavy enough to pull the wire straight when it’s hanging. The problem is a piece of metal that heavy is too big to solder even with the 100W soldering gun I’ve got, it just keeps soaking up the heat so the solder doesn’t melt. I’m sure I’ve got something in the garage that will do the trick, I’ll go out there tomorrow and take a look.

Played some more STO this evening. I tried out an elite map and spent most of it with my ship on fire, but managed to keep it from exploding. Got a couple of compliments from my teammates about that, and some friend requests. I guess they have pretty low standards. My Klingon character spends a lot of time dead or exploded or whatever, but it’s still amusing to play. Very different from my main character.

J and I watched another Parks and Recreation this evening. Dr W always asks to see if we are still hanging out and watching shows or movies. He says it’s important that we keep doing that, and I’m certainly not going to argue with him.

Not so good at writing this evening. I’ve been working on this post for over an hour now and this is all I’ve got. On the upside, I looked up the Wikipedia entry for “Klingon” and just learned that the name comes from a police officer who served with Gene Roddenberry – Lieutenant Wilbur Clingan. I had no idea.

Stay safe.

Chilly Out There This Morning

Song: “The Passenger” by Iggy Pop

Mood: 6

Nightmares: 0

Woke up a lot last night. I’m not sure what made last night particularly bad but I think I was awake a couple of times an hour at some points. It’s tough to convince myself that everything’s alright and I can go back to sleep when the target of my worries keeps jumping around. It goes something like this:

“Are the doors locked?” my mind says over and over until I can’t stand it. Fine, whatever. I pick up my phone, squint at it, and look through the photos I took on my circuit of the house just before bed. Yes, the doors are locked. I feel better.

Then, my mind says, “Did I say doors? I meant the washing machine. You ran it today. Did you check that?” I pick up the phone again, take a look, and yes, the washing machine was fine just before bed. Something could’ve happened since then, though…

“Nevermind the washing machine – I bet the hot water tank is leaking,” says my mind. Yes, I have a photo of the water tank, and there’s no sign of leaks either up in the pipes or on the ground. But there could be by now – it’s been a couple of hours since I went to bed. And what about the washing machine? I’m starting to get more uncomfortable about that now, too.

I scrutinize the photos on my phone again, taking care to look for strange reflections that would show water where it wasn’t supposed to be. I don’t see any. I hold my breath and listen but don’t hear anything dripping or running. I try very hard to rationalize things like what the odds are that a hose would just happen to blow right after I checked it and would be too quiet to hear. I do some grounding. I listen to J breathing. I start to calm down.

“Okay, I’m glad you’re feeling better,” says my mind, “but I meant to ask you – are the doors locked?”

And repeat. And repeat. And repeat. And repeat.

Usually I only get out of bed for nightmares, but on nights where I can’t shake what I’m worrying about, I’ll get out of bed and do a (hopefully quiet) circuit or two around the house to make sure everything’s okay. Sometimes I take my phone along and get yet another set of pictures. Sometimes that helps, sometimes it doesn’t.

Geez, I spent far too long talking about my nights. Anyway, short story – I didn’t sleep well and I’m tired today.

I went for my walk this morning and hooooo boy, was it chilly. Once I got started it wasn’t too bad, but I don’t think it was t-shirt and shorts weather. I don’t want to give up on summer yet, though.

I skipped my exercises again today. I wanted to do them but went and listened to music and sketched out some ideas for things. I’m not in any kind of dire straits or anything like that, but not doing my exercises is definitely a negative influence on my day. Not the end of the world, though, so I’m interested in what Dr C is going to think about it.

Didn’t do anything with the truck today. That’s okay, there are still six days left in the week.

Got some more laundry done. All hail the Laundry King.

Cleaned up the kitchen.

J and I made mini pizzas for supper. They were really quite good, and I’m pretty sure I could’ve eaten another one (or two, or three…) if there had been more.

Played some Star Trek Online earlier this evening. Logged in a couple of times during the day to do account and money and buy/sell stuff. It sounds kind of boring (and it is) but I can do that stuff while J’s not here because I can get up from my chair and chase ghosts at any time.

We watched two more episodes of Parks and Recreation this evening. So far, so good!

Stay safe.

I’m Sad The Weekend’s Over

Song: N/A

Mood: 6

Nightmares: 0

As with most weekends, this one went by far too quickly. I spent a lot of time thinking. I also did some laundry – I’ve been bad about it lately (and by lately, I mean the last year or so) and J’s been picking up my slack but it’s about time the Laundry King made a return.

Saturday evening, J and I watched Deadpool 2. It was pretty good. Lots of swearing, lots of people getting various parts chopped off, but the feel of the first movie was still there. I know you can’t just repeat the same gags movie after movie but I would’ve enjoyed another Zamboni chase.

I’ve been thinking a lot about some of the stuff Dr C and I talked about on Thursday. She suggested that I pick something to try and give it a shot for a couple of days to see how it goes. I’m also still thinking about what she said about my morning exercises. I decided to not do my exercises for a week or until I can’t stand not doing them anymore. If I get to the point where I can’t stand it, then I know that I’m using them to feed the OCD and that’s not good. If I feel like I’m just a bit out of sorts because I didn’t do them, then I think they’re a help and that’s good. I’m two days in and so far I just feel like my day’s not quite right.

I also decided that this week I will start the truck. To do that, I need to get a new battery. I also need to get a tender to keep said battery charged. I’ve got a little one that I use for the motorcycle battery but it’s not big enough to reliably maintain a battery when there are electronics hooked up to it and drawing current from it at the same time. SO… I need to get things in order and do this. The truck has sat for far too long. I would like to back it out onto the driveway and wash it. Maybe drive it around the block. Who knows.

I am also going to try and focus on the stuff I’m building for DA and stop both scope creep and thinking of other, more complicated ideas. I am going to get it done this week. Once that’s done, if I’m still in the mood, I’ll play around with other ideas.

So that’s my plan. Oh, and there’s probably going to be a lot more laundry in there somewhere, too.

Stay safe.