Flu Shot Day

Song: N/A

Mood: 7

Nightmares: 0

Ghosts: Lots

Just a quick post tonight. Things have been going along alright and nothing too exciting is going on, which is good.

The weekend went well but both J and I ended it feeling a little more tired and down than when we entered it. Neither of us is entirely sure why, but it is what it is. We finally got around to starting the final season of Elementary, and so far it’s been pretty good.

I didn’t accomplish a huge amount today. It’s been taking me a little longer to get out of bed lately – I’ve been spending a lot more time just staring up at the ceiling and rubbing my face while cursing myself to get out of bed. No nightmares last night, though, which was the first night in about a week.

FA called this afternoon and we geeked out about project-y stuff. Both of us are quite susceptible to wandering off on tangents or chasing things down rabbit holes, but I think that’s part of why we are good at figuring things out. One of us has an idea and drags the other along until they say “hang on a sec”. It was an interesting conversation.

J and I went and got our flu shots today. I don’t know if I’m getting tougher with age or if the needles are getting finer and finer, but I could barely feel it when I got poked. Way better than the hollowed-out piece of bent rebar they used to give us the DT shots back in high school.

I’ve spent quite a bit of time over the last few days fiddling around with designing parts and printing them up. I won’t dare say I’m even the least bit good at it, but I do enjoy it a lot and a lot less stuff is coming off the printer and going straight into the garbage or recycling now.

No appointments this week but I think I’m going to do some more volunteering on Friday. It’s been working pretty well so far and it gets me out of the house and talking with people, so that’s good. Plus, helping someone out makes me feel good, so that’s nice too.

Other than that, not a heck of a lot is going on. I thought I had another thing I wanted to write down but I can’t remember right now.

Stay safe.

More Nightmares

Song: N/A

Mood: 6.5

Nightmares: 2?

Ghosts: Lots

I’m really foggy on what happened last night aside from two nightmares (lifejacket, tent) and some weird dreams. One of them got me out into the light of the living room again, which sucks. J has mentioned a couple of times that I’ve been restless in my sleep lately, too. The nightmares and poor sleep seem to happen for a few days or a week or so at a time, then go away. I haven’t made any changes to my nighttime medications, nor have I made any changes to my routine or diet, etc. It is not fun to be worried/scared about what’s going to happen when you’re sleeping.

I also had some pretty weird dreams (I don’t count dreams as nightmares unless they wake me up I feel like I’m going to panic). I don’t remember most of them, but one stands out – I was arguing with Willie Nelson over a Popular Science magazine in the checkout line of the K-Mart in the town where I grew up. Don’t ask – I don’t have a clue.

So I’m pretty beat. I didn’t accomplish much today, but I did drive to my Dr C appointment without incident, which felt pretty good. The appointment itself was very tiring and I could hear myself stammering, trying to find words that usually come pretty easily. We talked quite a bit about Halloween and how/why it bothers me, which was quite difficult. We are still working on me getting out of the house, as well as ghost chasing while I’m home, but we are now also working on my sleep. Apparently there is some new research about sleep that… I can’t remember right now, but I do remember it making good sense at the time. Something about how your brain regulates deep sleep vs REM sleep… argh. Anyway, I’m starting in on a sleep diary tonight and will do it for the next two weeks, then we’ll see what we can do.

After the appointment, I went to pick up the groceries J and I ordered last night; that also went without incident, and the person who brought out the order thanked me for the silly comments I put for some of the items in the online order form. Hopefully she was being serious. I should probably go check and see if the eggs are all broken or the condensed milk cans have been licked…

Speaking of ghosts, with the colder weather here, the house is making all kinds of different noises again, and they’re difficult to ignore unless my mind is really occupied with something or I’m muffling or drowning the sounds out somehow. I know what a lot of them are or can figure them out pretty easily, which is good, but they’re still quite a distraction, and another thing that’s worse when I’m tired.

I also got notice of two appointments for tests coming up in the next couple of months. It will be nice when everything’s done and figured out or fixed or whatever.

I forgot to mention yesterday (or Tuesday… or Monday) that FA came over on Monday for a visit and to geek out about some projects she’s working on. We had a good chat (as always), and (as always) the conversation snaked around and took all kinds of odd turns to different subjects. I often find myself amazed at how much ground we cover when I’m reflecting on the day later. Plus, we had delicious burritos for lunch and fit in a few games of Carcassonne!

Tomorrow I plan to volunteer at the church for a little while. Other than that, I think it’s going to be a quiet day. Then, on to the weekend.

Stay safe.

Something Else From Yesterday…

I remember something else that happened yesterday – I was making some eggs and this happened:

Eggs with double yolkI’ve never seen one of those before. Double yolks are supposed to be lucky, right?

Me being me, I wrecked them right after I took this picture because I needed to look inside them to make sure everything was ok and there wasn’t anything gross in there.

Stay safe.

Gotta Be Real Quick

Song: “Country Roads” by John Denver

Mood: 7

Nightmares: 2+

Ghosts: Lots

I haven’t been posting as often as usual, sorry. I’m having a lot of trouble getting a good sleep. Nightmares last night (tent), and for whatever stupid reason, I fell asleep on the couch again so my throat’s been sore and I’ve had a headache all day.

Talked with my folks today, they’re doing well. More renovations (baseboards this time) and they’re quite busy. It was good to talk to them.

J’s aunt drove me to and from my appointment today, bless her little heart. We had a very good chat there and on the way home. It was almost… dare I say it? Pleasant?

The appointment itself was a little harder mainly because it went on for quite some time and we talked a lot about medications. We’re trying lowering the venlafaxine this week to see how it goes. Wish me luck!

There’s a bunch more to talk about (remind me about the eggs I had today) but I’m too tired to concentrate.

Stay safe.

And On To The Weekend

Song: “Mr Blue Sky” by ELO

Mood: 7

Nightmares: 0

Ghosts: Few

Halloween gets me twisted into all kinds of knots, and it’s difficult to calm down. I ended up hiding in the basement with headphones on while J handled all of the trick-or-treating, and even with that, some PRNs, and some grounding, it was still unpleasant. J came and got me when everything was done and over with, and we hung out for a while, talked and watched some shows. It was a long time before I calmed down enough to doze off on the couch – probably close to 5AM. I woke up around 8, hoisted myself off the couch, and went to bed.

Later on, I found this dish sitting on the ottoman by the couch:

Empty cake dishI don’t remember how it got there, or whether I actually ate the cake in it or not, which is a little disappointing because the cake was really good. I’m still not 100% convinced that J didn’t eat it and put it there, knowing I probably wouldn’t remember…

So, not a lot of sleep last night, which made getting up and convincing myself to go to the church to volunteer a little tougher than I expected. I’m glad I did, though, because things went quite well and I felt good about it when it was done. It feels very right to me when I’m able to help someone out.

Otherwise, today has been pretty quiet. J wants to use a phone as her nightstand clock/alarm, so I designed a holder for it and started the print. Before I knew it, it was supper (which was amazing), and then the evening. Now it’s 1AM and I’m not sure what I’m going to do next. Or tomorrow. This coming week, though, FA is coming over on Monday, I have a Dr W appointment on Wednesday, and a Dr C appointment on Thursday. I think so, anyway. I should probably send some emails and look for appointment cards to make sure.

Stay safe.

Yesterday, October 29th 2019

Song: N/A

Mood: 8

Nightmares: 0

Ghosts: Several

Yesterday was another good day. I slept not too badly and woke up slowly.

FA came by around noon, and the three of us had a delicious burrito lunch (thanks, FA!!!) and talked for a bit before J had to head out to get some work done on the car.

FA and I finished up that one project she was working on, we played around with crimping tools and testers to make network patch cords, looked at the stuff I’d printed, and talked about all kinds of stuff again. By the time we were done, the dining room table was covered in bits of wire, scrap paper, insulation, blobs of hot glue, and envelopes that stunk of brush-on electrical tape.

In other words, it was a great time. Apparently, she may have some more things to work on sometime soon and we may be getting together again next Monday!

Yesterday evening, both J and I were pretty tired so we took it easy and watched a couple of episodes of Schitt’s Creek, which were pretty good. We’re going to have to come up with a plan for what to watch soon – we don’t have many episodes left…

I’m very pleased with my new phone. Even just the battery is already a HUGE improvement over my old S7. Not a surprise, considering its age and that the new phone comes with a bigger battery, but still nice to see.

Still haven’t heard back from the lung doctor. I know they’re really busy there so I think I’ll give it until early next week before I call back again.

I’m also hoping to do some volunteering on Friday but I haven’t heard back from them yet. I’m going to wait and see what happens. If they get back to me, great… but if they don’t, I’m going to send them another message saying I want to help but they’re going to have to get their scheduling/etc in order before I go back.

There’s some snow on the ground and I’m starting to think it’s going to be here until spring. Oh well…

Stay safe.

Great Visit!

Song: “Farmer’s Almanac” by Johnny Cash

Mood: 8

Nightmares: 0

Ghosts: Several

My parents came into town yesterday for a visit. We had a great time – I can’t remember the last time we just sat around and talked like that – and I was sad to see them leave today. Mom brought a lasagna for supper last night and J made cake for dessert, the weatherstripping on the front door got fixed (my parents like to do a project when they visit), and everything went great. It was great. Yes, I know I just said that but like I said, it was great.

J has this week off, which is wonderful! She’s got some stuff that she wants to do – namely, sleep in, read some books, and not be at work – but even if we’re at opposite sides of the house, things are just better when she’s home. I guess it’s good that we don’t live in some giant mansion, because we can still talk to each other or hear each other bumping around and doing stuff, and I find that comforting.

Our new phones arrived today and we both got a shiny new Samsung A70. Not as flashy as the S-series phones we used to get but they’re more than what we need and were on sale. It’s going to take me a while to get used to it – the icons are different and the buttons are in different, too.

I haven’t heard anything from the lung doctor’s office. I was supposed to call on Friday if I hadn’t heard anything by Thursday evening, and when I called they said he’d call me back. Called them again this morning and got the same response, which makes me think that one of two things have happened – either he found nothing to worry about and calling me is a very low priority, or he figures that there’s no point in calling because it’s hopeless. Based on how Thursday went, I suspect it’s the former.

It could just be a coincidence, or maybe breathing into all those machines shook something loose (J’s hypothesis), but I felt pretty rough on Saturday… like I had a bad chest cold or something. I don’t know what was going on but I was coughing and breaking a sweat and wheezing just walking up the stairs. I’m acutely aware that I’m fat and out of shape, but I’m not THAT out of shape, so I was wondering what the heck was going on. I woke up on Sunday and felt normal again. Today I’m feeling a little lungy but not too bad. So I don’t know.

Timings worked on on Friday afternoon so I went over and did some volunteering at the church for over an hour. It went quite well, and it makes me feel good to be able to help someone out. Plus, Dr C and Dr W (and J, and my parents, and FA, and my in-laws, and my sister, and Dr H, and the mailman, and the pharmacist, and that lady on the radio) all say it’s important for me to get out of the house. Yes, the church is very close to home, and yes, it’s a quiet and calm environment, but I’m still getting out, driving my little truck there, and talking to people who I really don’t know. I’m interested to see if it’ll work out this coming Friday, too.

FA is going to come by tomorrow and we’re going to geek out/talk/play board games/eat burritos/all kinds of things. I’m really looking forward to hanging out with her, it’s going to be great! I wonder what kinds of ideas or schemes we’re going to come up with…

Stay safe.

I Was Expecting 30 Minutes…

Song: N/A

Mood: 6.5

Nightmares: 0

Ghosts: Swarm

So yesterday I got an email from FA about a device I didn’t know existed called a “Click to Pray eRosary” and that someone had already found a vulnerability in it. Neither of us were too sure about whether the whole thing was legitimate, so I did some digging and found that it did appear to be real. Not content with looking it up, I thought I’d call one of the contact numbers and see what happened. So I made a call last night…

… to Vatican City.

I was calling outside of business hours but an answering machine picked up with an Italian message. I waited for the beep and then left a brief but polite message. So that was the big excitement last night. I think that was only the second international call I’ve ever made in my life. Can’t wait to see what the phone bill says.

Didn’t get much sleep last night. One of the things I try to follow with the sleep hygiene thing is to not go to bed if I’m not tired. Unfortunately, I ignored the corollary that goes with it, which is something like, “Do calm relaxing things. No screens.” So I was up too late and then woke up two hours before my alarm went off and couldn’t convince myself to get back to sleep.

Today, though, was my pulmonologist appointment. J took some time off work to take me to the appointment, and after she dropped me off at home she was going to head back.

It didn’t quite work out like that.

I’ve got to give the doctor credit – he’s pretty thorough. We left the house at about 10:45AM and I was expecting to be home around noon or 12:30. Well, it was after 5PM when we stumbled back into the house. What a day. I breathed into at least three different machines, got dosed with various medications, walked laps in a hallway, and went to another hospital to get two different lung scans with two kinds of radioactive isotopes: one inhaled and one injected. So far, no superpowers and I can’t see my skin in the dark.

A good thing that happened is that – for the first time – I was actually having my symptoms while I was seeing the specialist. Unfortunately, that meant that I was feeling pretty crappy for most of the day. I don’t have the final report yet but I was the last scan of the day for one of the staff and when he spoke with another doctor who took a look at my scans, he was happy to hear that my scans were “beautiful” (the doctor’s words, apparently), instead of ending the day on a scan where someone’s lungs were on the way out. No blood clots, and air is going into and out of my lungs quite nicely. So that was good to hear.

The only downside about it is that I’m still feeling lungy and don’t know why. It’s really bothering me right now, actually, and I can feel my eyes wanting to bulge out. The pulmonologist was very friendly and took lots of notes (and, frankly, almost every tech/expert/staff that J and I met today were wonderful too), so hopefully the scans will still tell him something that will get someone closer to figuring out what’s going on. It’s a really unsettling feeling.

It had been a really long day and when we got home, I was feeling really wrung out so I went and crashed in the bedroom for a while and tried to relax. I think I caught a little bit of a nap, which was good. After that, we had supper and watched two episodes of The Good Place. And now I’m here.

I’ve said this before, but I am so very lucky to have such a supportive, caring, and helpful wife. J wasn’t expecting (again) to have to take the whole afternoon off (again) and miss lunch (again) because I had another appointment, but she drove me around and kept me calm for the whole day. Thank you, sweetie!

We didn’t hear back from the pulmonologist this evening so I’m supposed to call tomorrow morning and find out what’s going on. Aside from that, I don’t have anything else happening so I think I’m going to take it easy. I have a lot more stuff I want to think about and tomorrow seems like as good a day as any to do it.

So far it looks like I will be volunteering on Friday afternoon for a little while. I hope it works out.

Oh, and I’m also printing up lithophanes that I am hoping to light up with neopixels to use as Halloween decorations. We’ll see how that works out.

Stay safe.

Successful Drive Today

Song: “Elenor” by Me First and the Gimme Gimmes

Mood: 6.5

Nightmares: 0

Ghosts: Pack

I didn’t sleep well again last night. Fell asleep on the couch again. I don’t even remember how I got to the couch, nevermind why I thought it was a good idea to move there in the first place. I should set up a camera one of these nights and film what I do in the hour or two before I go to bed. Could be interesting and possibly even useful.

I drove to my Dr C appointment today, and it worked out okay – no chest tightening up or panic, just driving and paying attention to that. Unfortunately the whole place was a bit of a zoo so I could only get a parking spot about 400 miles away but a bit of a walk won’t hurt me. The appointment was alright. We talked a lot about the volunteering that I’m trying to do and some of the other things I’ve been doing lately, and Dr C said, “you like trying to help people a lot, why didn’t you have a job in that kind of field?” I found that kind of funny because back in high school I wanted to be a biomedical engineering technologist and work on things like artificial limbs, but for many reasons it didn’t work out.

When my appointment was done, I went and sat in the truck with music playing for a couple of minutes before driving home. Even when I do my little patrol around the house and take all the pictures to show that everything’s okay and locked up, it’s still a pretty big relief when I get back inside the house.

More designing and more printing yesterday and today. This time it was a picture stand that can also hold J’s glass. I kind of like the design – it reminds me of something from a 1960s-era airport.

Tomorrow I have an appointment with the lung specialist. I’m not really looking forward to it. It’s downtown (which I don’t like), it’s with a doctor I’ve never met before (which I don’t like), and it’s in an office I’ve never been to (which I don’t like). It will be nice to get some answers with that weird lungy feeling I’ve been having, which, after a nice break when I started on the Tamsulosin, is now making quite the comeback. But I still wish I’d just eaten something too quickly a couple of months ago and one of these days I’ll cough up a chicken beak and feel fine from then on. Although I’m guessing they’d probably find a chicken beak with an x-ray and nobody’s mentioned that.

I also spent a lot of time today pondering things, like the volunteering thing and other things I could be doing to help people out. Printing that flexible filament the other day really opened my eyes to the things I can make. Regardless of the actual practicality of it, things like wheels and belts and tracks and braces and pumps… all kinds of stuff. I will be spending more time thinking about it tomorrow, too.

So aside from the lung appointment tomorrow, that’s all I’ve got going on. Oh, a package is supposed to arrive at some point. Hopefully not while we’re out.

Stay safe.