Category Archives: My Favorites

Sandwich bags, falling and senior discount. What?!

It all started with the sandwich bag paradigm.  You buy a packet and it’s over 150 and you’re thinking “these are going to last forever!”  And then you’re packing a sandwich and where the heck did those bags GO?

Much like life.

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Drudging up the hill to 50.

We think we have so much time, so much available and … “Where did it go???”

I ‘met’ someone a few months ago that I’ve ‘known’ since 6th grade.

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I’m conquering my biggest fear to see them, and other friends I haven’t seen in over a decade.

I’m terrified.  Not so much anymore about the flight, but – what could be, what I could fuck up, what might have been – etc. etc.

I have hope. I do!

OK, I HAD hope – because I’m constantly being told I’m attractive and then today – I went to Ross on a Tuesday and purchased jeans for my trip to the Central Coast.

Got to the checkout after feeling very frisky and gorgeous and appreciating my body – size 7 – skinny jeans.

The flipping young girl at the register gave me the “Tuesday Special” discount. Which, is 55 and over.

Really????

Recent Pic:

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I’m not even going to ask if I look 55.

But hey, I got a discount.  Lol.

As for the trip – I’m getting over my fear of flying by reading very positive posts.

I’m adjusting to my new meds and venturing out – the agoraphobiac I am.

I’m looking forward to seeing my friends, and … Honestly?  Mostly hoping things go well with D.F.M.

Because I deserve it.

And because it’s about damn time.

And … Because, if I can fly somewhere, I can get over my anxiety/panic disorder.

 

And I will!

 

 

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Rivers and Anticipation

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In less than 2 weeks, I take the plunge – and I seriously hope not literally.

I will be boarding a plane – which, combined with my fear of heights, is the ultimate fear for me.

I will say, that on my new meds, I DID conquer Walmart!  And not just Walmart, but, Walmart at its most busy. The sign up for the annual River Regatta.

People floor to floor signing up or buying booze or flotation devices.  And I walked it, and I was amongst it, and nobody knew I was terrified.

I kept my head down, focused on being positive.  Focused on being healthy.  AND!

I did it.  What did I buy?  Watermelon juice lol.  But, I freaking did it.

I’m so floored and ashamed of the way our river was treated this weekend.  I don’t ever participate – I think mostly because I’m so pale – but, also, don’t want to be downstream from 30,000 people peeing in the river. Lol.

I spent my weekend loving those I love. My son, My future. And watching WAY too much Netflix.

But, on a side note,this was the aftermath of the event.  Very disturbing. If you come to do this event, flipping clean up!!!!!!!!!

Baby Bunny Update … After the Musing.

OK, if you haven’t caught up, catch up now.  Read THIS post.

Then come back.

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I came home, fed the babies again.

Was speaking back and forth with my mom who is a HUGE animal advocate and thankfully, a huge network of people.

She found someone close who was ready and willing and able to give MY (yes, I totally bonded) babies the attention and love they deserve.

I wavered.

I had bonded.

They had made it through the night!

THEY TOOK THEIR FIRST STEPS WITH ME!!

They really did.  When I found them, they were flopping like fish.  This morning’s feeding had them using their legs, walking up me … I had to swaddle to nurse them.

 

I have finally downloaded the videos I took during my short, short time as a bunny foster mom.

The first video … When I was still trying to find Bunny Mom.

And I did.

I played Alice and searched and searched for that rabbit hole.

As I said in my first post, once darkness fell, and rain was imminent … They HAD to come inside.

Life or death situation. (I’ll speak about that later.)

They survived the night!  I nursed and they lived!

I fed them.  I bonded.  And then … My mom, who is very active in animal advocate circles, found someone close who could do better than I could.

Give them more than I could.

So, my last videos:

One of the bunnies with hiccups:

ANNNNND … My goodbye. 😦

SO! My babies are gone.

The adoptive mom was lovely.  As were her children.

They already have a bunny.   She’s a dog groomer – and as I said before, a huge animal advocate.  I slipped her my email address.

“Please tell me good or bad how they’re doing.”

I had the bunnies tucked under my cardigan, it was pouring rain. I had their little bag ready.

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And I cried, and I cried, and I cried.

Still crying.

I feel like Alice had something to do with my ‘meeting’ of these beautiful creatures.

I went down her rabbit hole.  A healing.  Being of service.  Loving something smaller and vulnerable.

And it happened with my mom.

‘Alice’ knew one of my favorite books (other than Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland) was Watership Down.

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Sensible informative part of my emotional post:

If you see a baby w/out it’s mom … Wait!

Rabbits will abandon (temporarily) their young to redirect a predator.

The babies may not BE abandoned!

There is a LOT of work involved in raising wild rabbits – they NEED the environment for immunities and such.  So, it’s not ideal to try to raise one without doing MUCH research.

Rabbits are one of the few that DON’T abandon their young if you’ve ‘touched them’.  If you give one shelter for the night, and feel it’s safe to return, RETURN IT!

My situation was dictated by a storm, a very dangerous spot that I found them in and the fact that we have many predators … Otherwise, I would have left them alone.

Ok, maybe I would have watched to be sure mom came to get them, but, I would not have taken them inside if there was no other way.

I assure you.

Two babies live today – and wouldn’t have if I hadn’t taken them in.

Of that, I’m certain.

And thanks ‘Alice’ – you know who you are – even though you’re not reading this.  I think you put those babies in my path.

 

From Boy to Man – and About Alice.

Had a squabble with my son today.

It was unpleasant.

It came on the heels of his 21st birthday.

21!!!

I started this blog when he was still walking up a dirt road to catch his bus to school!

He was this little …

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Our squabble?  It was over a bird.

He wanted/wants a bird.

I said no.

We rent – they poop.  We rent – they scratch their seeds.  We rent – he doesn’t pay any of it.

Truth is, I’ve always wanted a bird too.

But, not a caged one.

One I could put to bed after it flew free in my (owned) home with interaction.

We don’t have that to give.

What he DID get for his birthday was semi-impulsive and it dawned on me today, he has more of me in him than I had thought.

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What he didn’t DO on his birthday made me proud.

He thought he was driving later to a friends after his birthday dinner to do college homework – so, he didn’t have a drop of alcohol.

I SO appreciate that.

Respect that.

My son has common sense.

As for the tattoo (of which, I have four) I didn’t love it.

No, I’ll be honest.

I didn’t love the idea of it – because, he HAD a plan.

He wanted to integrate nature and technology and was going to be proud to have that imbedded in his flesh for eternity.

After consulting with a tattoo artist, he was told it would be 5-6 hours in a chair and perhaps he needed a pre-tattoo.  (I’m sure that wasn’t the sentence the guy used – but hey, I’m paraphrasing.)

I felt like he was being coerced into an extra tat.

When Nic sent me a mock up of the tat – and I saw Alice –

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I knew he didn’t have me in mind.  (Although, I WAS hoping for his first to be “MOM” in a heart – just kidding.)

Because, this is what he brought me back from his big trip to England:

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But, he had heard the story over and over of when I was in a bus in India as a child reading Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and the bus hit a man.

No one really cared.

But, when we hit a chicken!!!!  We had to pay for not only that chicken, but the chickens it would produce, the eggs those offspring would produce etc. etc.

One less mouth to feed in a 3rd world country is above food that feeds them – to a degree.

I kept reading on that bus – but did catch a glimpse of hamburger head.

It was horrible.

But, we took him somewhere good – and my mind stayed in that book.

Bottom line, I said:

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And he is honest.  Like me – to the point of discounting himself, if that’s even possible.

We try it, we do – but to lie – it doesn’t lay softly on our chests.  I’m glad he got not only impulsiveness, but HONESTY from me.

And now we’ll both always have Alice.

 

 

 

MY Truth about Anxiety

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“But, I don’t want to be ‘that’ girl.”

“Amanda, anxiety is a medical condition – you have nothing to be ashamed of.”

This was a conversation I’ve had over and over with my doctor.

When did it start?  Approximately 2008 … I had ‘spells’ I couldn’t explain.  Couldn’t lay down – couldn’t breathe – felt out of body, but so very aware of every sensation, as negative as they were.  I was scared, I wanted to sleep – I wanted it over!  But couldn’t and had to wait it out.

To be fair – I was soon diagnosed with Inappropriate Sinus Tachycardia, (Basically, I have an electrical misfire when it comes to my heart – so that makes a very real, and very scary condition hard to distinguish from an anxiety attack)  but also with COPD after a random chest X-ray after a rapid heart beat sent me to the ER.  They caught my lungs on that shot and shared that with my doctor.

My doctor shared that with me and I cried and cried.

I was that kid that every time I caught a cold, I’d end up with bronchitis.  That, or walking pneumonia.

My lungs were enlarged.

OK.  So, we deal with that.

I was put on Digoxin and Metoprolol.

That seemed to help for a while – but then I started having what I call ‘spells’.

Not just heart palpitations due to my heart condition – but debilitating full on attacks at random times.

Anxiety/panic attacks don’t come for me when I’m stressing out – they come when I least expect them and yes, I know the difference between ‘them’ and a heart episode.

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I tried breathing patterns, I tried cooling my pulse points under running water – usually, just finding someone to sit with who wouldn’t ask me how I was would work.   The spells would pass.

My doctor added Alprazalam to my regime.

THAT helped.  Until it didn’t.

I would wake up in the middle of the night, certain I was having a heart attack.  Chest pain, back pain, rapid heartbeat, out of body sensation, clammy palms, jaw pain, left arm pain – total and complete feeling of helplessness and impending doom.

It got to the point I couldn’t ‘walk it off’ (literally, and that’s something they say you should try.). I was too dizzy.  I also couldn’t be horizontal, it made it worse.  With blurred vision and terrified, I’d hit my knees and lean over either my couch or bed (if I was at home) and this agnostic prayed.  And prayed HARD!

Usually these spells happen when they really shouldn’t.  Watching a movie – sleeping – or just working and feeling happy.

Bonkers timing.

No stress I was aware of.

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Fast forward again.

For eight years I’ve been taking 2 Metoprolol, 1 Digoxin and two 1/2’s of Alprazalam per day.

I’ve learned to ‘deal’ with the bad times.

Past month, I’ve been getting goosebumps only on one area of my body.  My left thigh.  That concerned me.  (Mostly because my house is in the 80’s and no, I hadn’t been watching a horror movie at the time.)

Also, my anxiety has upped, big time.

Yes, mostly it’s random.  But, I do have triggers.  Raised voices,  my dog barking,  a car too close behind me …

Then, a new symptom.  I can feel completely fine at work or at home, but trying to run an errand?  I suddenly feel complete and utter intestinal distress.   An urgency that shouldn’t be there.  Because my tummy was fine when I left.

I also can only be in ‘public’ for a short amount of time.  I’ve left a cart at a grocery store quite a few times – unable to find my footing and having to abandon it.

Crowds?  Oh goodness no.  I can’t do crowds.

Add to that driving.  Now, this is something note worthy because, NOW, I’m putting OTHERS in danger.  I accidentally tried to change lanes one day and someone was in my blind spot – they honked.  Since then, I’m terrified to change lanes.  I also feel a LOT of pressure when I’m doing the speed limit and someone is behind me wanting to go faster.

Worst experience was trying to take my fiancé at the time to Vegas – the closer we got to ‘big’ traffic, the more symptoms.  I literally couldn’t feel my hands, couldn’t breathe.  I couldn’t see – I had absolutely NO control over my body or what it was doing!!  The first exit we found with a phone, we called a taxi for him to finish the trip for an absurd amount of cash.

Today – I shared all of this with my doctor.

Today – I received an additional prescription for buspirone (BuSpar) for generalized anxiety, OCD and panic.

It doesn’t work for everyone.  I’m REALLY hoping I’m a good candidate!   Mostly because it’s non-narcotic.  I want OFF of Alprazalam.

I see my doctor again in a month and if it DOES work for me, I can be weaned off of Alprazalam – and I’m SO grateful!

Bottom line – Anxiety and panic attacks are no joke.

My son has spent hours with me telling me “You’re not in danger”  and telling me to focus on things that ground me when I can’t even move.

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Anxiety is crafty and unpredictable and terrifying.

But – If you’re going through this for the first time?  You WILL be ok!

It feels like you’re going to die.  It does.  I don’t think people who don’t have it understand that.

I also don’t think people understand how legitimate the experience is.

Things to NOT tell a person going through it (from my experience, not a medical book.)

“You know it’s all in your head, you’re fine!”

“Just breathe.”  (Although, there ARE some great breathing techniques that DO help.)

“You’re making this happen.”

No.

No.

No!

If you wake up with a pounding heart and can’t feel your phalanges and can’t believe how helpless you feel – YOU try telling yourself to ‘just breathe’ – lol.

And, if you can’t relate.  I’m SO glad.  I AM SO GLAD.  Because it’s fucking awful.

I’ll give you an example that maybe you CAN relate to.

Ever have to be at work and you have an excruciating  toothache or earache that renders you unable to sleep?   Yeah.

It’s sort of like that.  ALL you want to do is have relief and relax, but your body DOES NOT cooperate!!!!!!!

You have NO control.

So – I’ll try this new medicine and let you know, let’s see how my  experience goes.  I already made the mistake of ‘googling’ and reading user reviews.

No wonder I’m a bundle of nerves. LOL!

BUT! But.

Because, I’m tired.  And I’m tired of going through this … I’m willing to try anything.  I’ll be a Guinea Pig.

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