Sunday, September 17, 2017

When Life Goes Sideways

I'm posting this on all three blogs to save time. I've not posted anything on them for a few months. This serves as an explanation, not an excuse. 

Here we are at the end of September and I can't figure out where the summer went. I was doing rather well at finishing my novel, Hidden in the Mist. In fact, I'm probably less than 2000 words away. It was the 9th of July. The story was going well. I was working on the study/den/dining room to get it repainted and reorganized. I felt pretty good. There were plans to sell books. Things looked . . . bright. The road seemed smooth and straight. 

That's when things always go wrong. Somewhere, in the dark I hit something. 

Actually, in the wee hours of Sunday morning at 3 a.m. I woke up screaming and had to call Mike to come get me and take me to the hospital. My whole left arm was in excruciating pain and felt as if it were on fire. It was also paralyzed. I'm left-handed. I couldn't hold my phone, dial it, or pick up anything. Every move sent me into screams. 

I went to St. Vincent's ER (Primary care is at that hospital) and they did x-rays, gave me a shot of morphine and a steroid, a script for valium, and orders to go to physical therapy. I have a pinched nerve. I went home. 

At 5 a.m. Monday morning I was back at a second ER. This time I decided to use the hospital (Deaconess) where my records were for all my ailments. After CT scan and a couple of shots of something they sent me home with Loratabs and ordered to go see PT. Monday I went to urgent care at the orthopedic urgent care and the doctor said I could shoot myself. Yeah. Scheduled me to go to PT a few days later. 

It would be two weeks before I could see a PT doc but they could do physical therapy before that. I went to my primary care doc on Tuesday and she prescribed steroids, Gabapentin and Skelaxin. Let me just say that at this point, not a single medication had any impact. The narcotics took the edge off to stop me screaming. The Gabapentin made me a zombie who felt pain and I stopped it but it took three days to get my mind back. I had acupuncture the second week and believe it or not, 50% of my pain disappeared in 2 hrs and I could actually hold my fork! Brushing my hair and wiping my butt was still beyond me. 

I won't go into the rest of the last two months. Suffice it to say I alternated between screaming in pain and writhing with gritted teeth and sobbing. Eventually, after a fainting spell in my RA doctor's office, I was sent to a neurologist who did an MRI and found I have a compressed spinal cord. She immediately sent me to a neurosurgeon. Turns out I have a ruptured disc. I have to have surgery sometime in the next couple of weeks to repair it and to fuse some discs. I hope.

And that is how life has gone sideways. 

I was unable to type for three weeks and still have problems after typing for very long. The pain in my arm is bearable but only just. It still feels like it is on fire on the bottom side of my forearm, side of my hand and third and fourth fingers. I'm very clumsy and that is frustrating because I've always been very dexterous. 

Now it is as if my hand belongs to someone else. Thankfully, as a lefty living in a righty world, I'm a bit ambidextrous and I've been able to do a lot of things with my right hand. I'll never be able to write with it and I can't remember to do some of the other tasks with it but it has been easier to let the right hand pull extra duty. As a result, the right hand is a bit more functional. Probably a good thing since the doctor said he couldn't promise my left hand would return to full function with no pain. Apparently, when a nerve is pinched this long (07/09 thru 09/17) it might not recover. 

There's always a silver lining, isn't there?  I'm hopeful because God is good and I've got stuff to do. 

As a side note, during all of this, my son Mike fell off the delivery truck at work (about 4 feet) and broke his right arm and injured his shoulder. So the one person who helps me the most is also incapacitated. 

See, I told you there was a silver lining. 

And that's the way it is as of today, Sunday, September 17, 2017. 

If you pray, put us on your list. 

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

An Update from the Ledge

Whew! What a crazy few weeks it has been and this one isn't over.

I was awake at 5:30 this morning after about 5 and a half hours sleep. I just woke up and I realized after a couple of stretches that I wasn't in any major pain. I lay there a few minutes and figured I'd go back to sleep but my left brain kicked in and told me this might not happen again. I decided to get up.

So, I did.

I made coffee, made breakfast, ate, dressed and got the garbage out of the house. I'll get it to the street soon. Now it is 7:12 a.m. and I'm feeling pretty good. Seriously. And I'm tremendously thankful for that.

It looks like a beautiful day out but I know it will probably be very warm. I thought about cutting the yard but we've had some showers this week and my weed trimmer is on the fritz. It needs a new part and the stores don't carry it. I can replace it myself because it is the line cover but you'd think they'd carry something like that. Duh.

For weeks now I've been having problems with sleep and pain. My sleep has been insane and I finally made a decision two weeks ago to go with my body. Sometimes that's all you can do because you're sort of being held hostage by it, particularly in cases of inflammatory diseases. They're assassins.

Anyway, my sleep pattern seemed to go haywire and I found myself unable to sleep till 3 a.m. On top of that, I was having some pain problems. I really was hurting. The weather conspired to take me down as well, and it did a pretty good job of it. I simply couldn't get up in the mornings at a decent hour.

The other odd thing was that I'd be in pain most of the morning and sleepy but by 3 p.m. I felt really good. Of course, I'd attempted to go to bed before midnight for a while but finally, I realized it wasn't happening so, I just decided to go to bed when I got sleepy. In the small hours of the morning between 2 & 3 a.m. I went to bed.

I set my clock for 9 hrs later so I didn't sleep all day. And it worked for the most part, although I rarely got 9 hours sleep, more like 5-6 hours. Still, I was so tired that I spent most mornings dozing in a chair. Nothing was getting done. Thankfully, my friend Sue, and her daughter/my ex-daughter-in-law, Becca came on different days and helped me with housework. Just because a marriage doesn't work doesn't mean people can't remain friends. These ladies are lifesavers to me. I love them both.

Also, I stopped fighting the clock two weeks ago and started going with it, allowing myself to sleep when I felt the need and trying to do what I could around the house. I gave up a normal schedule and was reminded that when I was young, before children, I often sat up that late writing or reading.

This week, I noticed that my hours were shifting back and I was now able to get into bed before midnight and yesterday was my best day yet. I was tired until afternoon. Then, my energy boost kicked in and I actually painted some in the den. I felt really good. I took it easy last night, watched t.v. and read and went to bed. This morning I woke up on my own, virtually no pain, and I have some energy.

So, I'm about to go and tackle the painting again. I have some mild back pain and my right hand is a bit painful. Since I'm predominately left handed this won't be too bad a problem.

I also got some writing done over the period. Not on what I wanted to write but still on one of my stories. Several thousand words at least and I'm happy about that.

My vacation plans fell thru several times. I planned to go to my aunts in Atlanta, drive to our hometown for a visit, then drive down to see my sister in Florida. I planned it to give me the shortest driving times possible. I simply was so messed up sleep wise and had so much pain I couldn't do it. Then the car battery went and I had to replace the tires. So, twice I canceled my trip: one for pain, the other mechanical. I was going to go this week but I don't think I'm going to make it. I have to pick up Sarah on the 22nd of next month and my sister Phyllis is going with me. We planned to visit our niece in Texas on that trip. If I'd been able to go earlier, as planned, I'd have had the finances to do it but the battery and tires cost me quite a bit.

Now, I've got to get going before this energy wanes. I hope I've learned my lesson and will start letting my body direct me better.

I ordered more books so if you'd like to buy one direct from me, it is $10. You can pay thru PayPal and I'll mail it to you. Or you can purchase it thru Amazon or CreateSpace.


Thursday, June 8, 2017

Dark of Night, Short of Sleep

So, it's late. Yeah, really late. I haven't gone to bed yet. I'm not sleepy. In fact, I haven't been able to sleep since Sarah left. I don't know why since I usually fell into bed after I got her down. I've been sleeping late to compensate for the late hours I'm keeping. Oddly enough, I have less pain after 3 in the afternoon than I do at any other time and sleeping seems to make it worse. 

I have no idea.

Anyway, it's late and I was washing my face and staring into the mirror a moment ago and I had this revelation. I always said I would not be one of those lonely women who talk to themselves and who can't live without the television on when they're in the house. I'm not making fun of them. Really. There is something inherently sad about that kind of life. It is as if when they lost their spouse, they were unable to survive the silence. 

The really odd thing is that after Jerry died I spent six months in my house with no lights on and no sound. Seriously, I did. I came in from work at just after 5 and as it was the dead of winter it was far gone into the dark. I turned on a light only as necessary. I undressed in the dark. I showered in the dark. I dressed in the dark. If I got on the computer, and I lived on the computer for over a year playing Farm Town with people who kept me sane, the only light in the house was the computer screen until bedtime. 

So, back to my revelation. I was talking to the face in the mirror. I had just turned off the television. I realized that suddenly I've become "that" person. Maybe have been all along because I talk a lot to myself. Sometimes I'm talking to God but sometimes it's me. Maybe it's the human need to hear the sound of another voice. I spent 35 years listening to Jerry. But I've got to tell you, I'd rather hear his voice than my own. 

And on the heels of that, I had a second revelation. 

What difference does it make what time I go to bed? Who cares? Why do I feel like I must sleep? I don't feel better after I sleep. I feel worse. They tout sleep as the very thing patients with autoimmune diseases need. Poor sleep is supposed to be the culprit that worsens those diseases. Sleep only causes me intense pain and I'm never refreshed by it. So why should I go to bed early? Why not stay up as long as I want and sleep when I must. I was always a night owl anyway but had to conform to a husband and children and a world that operated on a different schedule. Now, I have none of those restrictions. I'm that woman. The one who talks to herself, who wants sound in the house, and who can't sleep.

These days the sound is a cd of ocean sounds. I sleep with it on because of the ringing in my ears caused by anti-inflammatory meds but it stays on all day. Sometimes I turn it off but most of the time I don't. I hear it softly on the opposite end of the house. I like the sound because I am reminded of home. Sometimes I turn on a YouTube video of nature sounds. My favorite ones have water sounds but there is one that is night sounds exactly like what I used to hear as a child in the summer sleeping with windows opened. There are crickets and cicadas, and other chirping things and it's just this distinctive sound of a warm, southern, summer night. I think I'm going to get it on a cd so I can listen to it at night. 

I'm going to go to bed now. Writing the post seems to have triggered something. I'm suddenly very tired and I think I'll sleep. I'll probably feel like hell in the morning. The devil will wake me with his flaming poker and pour hot liquid acid in my veins. I'll wake up on fire, swollen, and in my own personal agony. I'll roll out bed praying and hoping I can walk.  It is getting harder.


Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Starry Night and Stuff

I sat outside for a long time last night, probably until around 9, and watch as hundreds of fireflies twinkled all over the yard. David's tree looked as if it were strung with twinkle lights all blinking at different times. I don't think I've seen that many fireflies in years.

The evening was cool enough that the mosquitos didn't bother me long. I lit the citronella candles and watched the light show with no book, no music, no computer. That was a peaceful evening such as I've not had in a very long time

The last two weeks have been horrible. I've had so much pain over my whole body. From my neck to my feet: neck, shoulders, back, elbows, hands, hips, knees, ankles, and the bottoms of my feet. They all hurt. I even have a bruise on my right forearm that I can't figure out how I got and it hurts. Nothing I've done has helped. This morning, I woke about 5 a.m. and all I could do was lay there and moan. I don't know when my pain has been that bad but a 10 wouldn't touch it. No one to call so I just have to lie there and take it.

I wish I could say I'm better. I'm not. It is just slightly less painful. I could still moan if I let myself.

The painting is still not done and I realized that I need to move some heavy furniture to do it. So, that is going to have to wait until I'm able. At the moment, moving myself is painful. I'm not tackling a china cabinet just now. I suspect all the furniture will need to be put in the garage but that means packing dishes from the China cabinet.

The last two hours day I spent paying bills and straightening my bank book out. I have to get myself better organized here! I'd never have done things this way in the past. Very sloppy bookkeeping has never been my style but in the last year or so, I've just gotten so bad at posting payments and balancing the thing. Sometimes I just stare at it and say, "I don't care." And I don't!

Now that everything is done I may just get myself to the backyard and wait for the show to start again and relax in the recliner. That or just read something.

My plan is to head south in a few days if my body will cooperate. It is awful to be a slave to this disease. I suppose I could travel whenever but long distances alone bother me. Good grief! I flew to Germany from Atlanta, thru New York at 20 alone and two yrs later I returned with a toddler to deal with! Surely I can drive across a couple of states alone.


Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Three More Days


Wow, it has been a busy week.. and it is only Tuesday! I had a rough weekend. On Saturday I cut the yard and enjoyed a beautiful day. Saturday evening had to go to the ER for a severe case of vertigo. Now some of you who know me will say you always knew I was a dizzy dame, but this was not a joke. I couldn't stand up for fear of falling down. They gave me fluids, radiated me and fed me to the vampires. When they didn't get sick, they sent me home with a diagnosis of unknown. I either was dehydrated or had a spell of.... vertigo!

Either way, I was tired on Monther's day and spent it alone at home. It wasn't as sad as it sounds. Mike took me to lunch so that was nice. I rested all day. The dizziness was gone before I got up that morning.


Monday, I worked around the house a bit, went to the cemetery and walked half a mile. I didn't think I would be able to finish it. I was in a lot of pain by the time I was done. It passed off and I returned to began work painting the den. It hasn't been done in at least a decade and a half. It is time. I'm in the priming stage just now and I hope to get half the room primed by tomorrow and the rest might be done by Saturday. Then, I can put on the top coat of paint. I think it is just going to be bright white.

River City Writers Crossroads
Last night, I attended the River City Writers' book signing at Barnes & Noble. We had a great turnout and a lot of fun. This is such a great group of people and I'm very proud to be a part of this effort. They all worked really hard and I think the book turned out pretty good. It was a lot of fun meeting people who wanted your autograph, too.

Today, I had breakfast with my newest friend, Lisa. She is such a sweetie and it was so nice to be invited out.  This is the second time she's asked me to breakfast and I've enjoyed it so much.  We just sit and talk and when I am done the day seems much brighter. We talked about meeting up to walk. She's just started doing that again. She said she rode 11 miles on her bike yesterday and asked me how far I think I could ride and would it be easier on my hips. Well, I don't know but yes, it would be easier. So I'm considering it. I may need to get my bike out and do a test run.

Now, I'm jotting down this post before I get back to painting. I was going to walk but realize my hips are not happy with me for yesterday and besides, it is over 80 out now and I'm just not feeling a walk. We'll see tomorrow.

Tonight, I believe I have an online meeting with another writer friend. We're sort of our own support group and we try to meet twice a month but with two toddlers, it is a huge challenge for her.

And that wraps up today. I'm stunned at how much  I've experienced in three days. And to think, I have three days to go.

I hope you'll have a great day today. Take time for yourself.


Friday, May 5, 2017

Watery Day Wandering

Rain. All night. Days of it.

I'm OK with it. Really, I am. I've had some really good days during the whole mess. Writing is all but dried up and it is the only thing dry. But I am OK with it. Really.

It is the cold I hate and the dreary rain has brought cold. We had some lovely weather ... a while ago ... what? A week. It was nice and I was not well and so, I could only stare at it from the windows. The way I stare at the gloomy skies from the same windows today. I spent time cleaning the house and putting away that darn laundry that continues to grow, despite constant weeding. I still have some to put away but not much. Of course, I have three loads to wash. Mmmmm.

The wind is blustery today. I can hear the trees fussing in the house.

Did I mention it is cold?

I was contemplating a vacation this morning. I need to go someplace warm, with a pool. Where I can relax and sit by the pool, in the shade, of course, and write, taking a swim now and then. I can dream. Mmmm.

I have no idea why I'm writing this post today. I feel as if my head is stuffed with cotton wool. I think I got enough sleep. I haven't checked the numbers from the CPAP yet but 7 hrs is plenty. Most of this wet week has been a good one for sleep. I've been rested. Of course, I've been on the road a lot and got nothing done at home.

The back yard is a puddle. I really need to have a load of dirt hauled in to fill the bad places. And I need to clear around the garage so the water will drain away from it. it just pools around it and seeps in under the blocks. Very annoying. I can't decide if I need to create a drainage trench or pile dirt up to prevent the seepage. I guess I could talk to someone about that. If you have ideas, please share.

Jerry used to take care of things like this and I simply am stupid in this area. He could find the answers and deal with it. Amazing how marriages work. One part of the couple has one set of strengths and the other has a totally different set. If you can adjust to it and accept that, you can make a marriage work. If it bugs you, you have problems. LOL, we managed quite well. I let him do his thing and he let me do mine. We didn't starve and we accomplished quite a few things. We had some nice arguments, too.

I'm leaving now. I'm good to get in here once a month. I guess I don't feel the need to spill my woes here anymore. Well, I don't have that many woes anyway but seems as if I've gradually run out of rants.





Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Into the Dark


I'm not sure where the road of my life deviated from the one I had planned. Glancing over the map, I could pick a few places where I took roads that weren't the norm but over all, things have been pretty regular. Until Jerry died.

I suppose that's the deviation. One day you're a cheerful person, whistling along a sunny path. The next you've fallen into a dark, dank hole of unknown depths. You manage to land on a ledge but you have no idea where the bottom is and no way to climb back up. You'll have to shred your clothes just to make a rope and hope it reaches the bottom.

And there you are, naked, in the dark, hanging from the end of a rope. Lord knows how far you're going to have to fall. What do you do? What can you do? I mean hanging from the end of a rope is death.

Many years ago a woman in my church made a comment, half joking, half serious. She said, "When you reach the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on." Easy to say when you're not the one on the rope.

Anyone who's skinned a cat on the playground or done hand over hand on the monkey bars, knows hanging on isn't a problem... for about three minutes. After that decisions have to be made. Even then you worried about how far you had to fall. It didn't look far but the impact on your feet is always kind of there, in your head. It just doesn't feel good.

So, sit on the Ledge and wither away or climb down that rope into deeper darkness and hope something doesn't eat you. 'Tis a quandary, to be sure.

Of course, sometimes you get pushed off the Ledge and end up doing a free fall. Those aren't fun either. I've known sky divers. They're just insane. Who jumps out of a perfectly good plane for fun? I've knows a few whose chutes didn't open when they wanted them too. That fall put them in the hospital. Mine may not be so critical in that respect. But it is still painful.

What's my point? I haven't lost sight of it. I've had some good days this week but during those brighter days, I've been depressed and feeling like I should turn around and go back. Impossible to go back, of course. All the bridges burned in the fires I left behind.

Maybe I should have taken a different path. I'd have totally missed that hole if I'd just taken a side road. Or I should have been watching the ground more carefully. Then I wouldn't have fallen in.

And never mind the delays to the journey. Those false starts, detours, and places where you have to stop and wait. Any change to the route would have resulted in a different outcome. Right? Well, maybe but I'm one of those who believe the end result can't really be avoided. I heard a psychology teacher once say that as we age we become who we are. I didn't like the comment then because it sounded as if we had no choice and at that point in my life, I wanted to be more than who I was. I was pretty happy with my life then, but I wanted more and to get there I had to be  more. These days I think the journey makes us who we become and who be become determines where we end up. The course is set for us.

Of course, if you've stuck around all this sounds like the mad ravings of a disillusioned woman. Maybe it is. I think I'm evaluating what I'm doing and who I am and how I got to this state. Paul said in Philippians 4:11 that he'd learned that in whatever state he was in to be content. Paul's state was not Florida. There wasn't sunshine and sandy beaches. He fell in a pretty dark hole and I suspect he ran out of rope long before he reached the bottom. His end was disastrous for him. And yet... he said he fought a good fight, kept the faith, and looked forward to a crown of righteousness.

If you look at it, that seems pretty simple. Stand tall, pull your shoulders back, fight your battles with honor and integrity, keep your faith, and keep going, even if it is into the dark.



Shameless plug follows:

Buy the new River City Wriers Anthology: Crossroads
Try it. I think you'll like it.

Monday, February 20, 2017

13 Minutes . . .


Another Day of Tedium & Follow Up Test Run

It is another Monday and thankfully it is a beautiful day. Unfortunately, it is the day I set aside to file taxes. This is always one of the most tedious problems simply because it bores me. But one does what one must do.

I have several other things I'd rather be doing. I still have a couple of loads of laundry to hang and fold and put away. I'm not sure on a scale of 1 to 10 how the two rate. Is doing taxes worse than doing laundry? It's a close race.

I wish I could say that I've been writing but I haven't. I have been doing a lot of reading and I've been doing a lot of Bible studies using an app called YouVersion. Now, they don't take very long so that's not a valid reason for my not writing. I'm still having trouble with focus, although, it has been better since I began taking Acyclovir. However, I am running out and the doctor would not prescribe it as I mentioned in a previous post. I will use up my supply, about four more days, and see how things go after that.

Things are warming up a bit here. Temperatures have been less cold but we still have lots of gloom. Today is the exception and we've had a few that began calling me and ended with sun. We've also had some that began sunny and ended with rain. I think it's that time of year. March will blow in and leave with a roar and spring will be on us.

I do have to say I'm feeling better. I am taking my Humira shots again so I cannot be sure another infection won't start. The doctor has told me if I continue to get infections they will take me off of it. The medicine is working, so that worries me.

Last month I mentioned that I was doing a test run of typing using voice recognition software that comes with Windows and a headset. It has made a huge difference having the new headset. When I did the previous post I did it on Google docs. This post is being created in Wordpad. I have to admit that Wordpad and the speech recognition software in Windows works better than Google voice typing. There are fewer mistakes in what the software understands. Of course my accent is a challenge for this kind of software. I have to use my finest and most educated speech in order for it to understand some of my words and even then it screws up. However, there are maybe two errors per paragraph, if that. So I will be using it as often as I can. It does force me to move slower as I write but even so it's faster than I expected. That was not true of the Google voice typing.

Speaking slower may be beneficial to the writing. Although I tend to write stream of consciousness, slowing down during editing is necessary. I don't know how I will edit in Wordpad since my text is in Scrivener. Scrivener does not work with windows speech recognition software. This is a drawback. Still, I see the benefits of using this and I realize it is going to my make things easier. But I'm going to have to work hard to make myself use it.

I'm going to stop here because I need to get some lunch and get back to my taxes. I hope to have those done in a few hours and move on to something else.

Have a great week!


Tuesday, February 14, 2017

A Couple of Mice

Tuesday Turmoil

It's been one of those days where anything that could go wrong will. I knew when I got up this morning that I had not had enough of the right kind of sleep. For one thing, my mask was off. I don't know when I took it off but Sarah woke me up at 4 pm and it was off at that point. I believe it was off about 2 hours. I base this on the time I went to bed and the number of hours the online meter says I had with the mask on.

So, I went back to bed as soon as Sarah left. I did not sleep in the recliner. I got back into my warm comfy bed. I slept 2 hours. When I got up I was not feeling well because I had a headache probably because I slept without my mask on during my nap. I should have put the mask on. It was an oversight on my part but I didn't really think I would go to sleep. I felt like I would just rest a minute.

I got up and called Mike to come and change the water filter and the air filter. He came. He attempted to change the water filter and broke it. He successfully changed the air filter. So, now I have no filter on my sink and the water here taste like crap. It comes out of the Ohio River and is processed in a plant using red clay as one of the components. It tastes like mud.

They no longer make this water filter. It was discontinued long ago. I have three brand new filters in storage because they have to be changed every 6 months. So, I Googled it. Lo and behold, on jet.com I found it. It is my exact water filter for roughly $40.00. So I ordered it. It should be here in a few days. I think we can survive the nasty water a day or two. I am not happy but it happens.

It could be worse. Things can always be worse. I'm very thankful for my blessings.

I'm sitting here typing this post on Wordpad with my headset and microphone. I mentioned using speech recognition to type in a previous post. I attempted it using Google docs with mixed results. Since I now have the headset and microphone, I decided to give the windows speech recognition software another shot. I'm pleased to report the result is astounding. Mistakes in the text have dropped to minuscule levels and correction has improved dramatically.
                                                                                                                                                                  I'm sure that my typing is much faster than writing this way. However, this is something I need because there are still days when my hands hurt and I can't type well, so I don't do anything. This feature will allow me to type on days when I don't feel well. I must get in a mindset though to do so. I am used to typing 60 to 70 words a minute when I'm writing. This is slowing me down considerably.

The day is almost over and I hope that tonight I can go to bed early again and perhaps do better on the sleep because yesterday I got a tremendous amount done. One can only hope.

I'd do hope that tomorrow is a better day in more ways than one.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

They're Here!

 If you've listened to the vlog posts (about 6 weeks ago) you know that in January I ordered a set of chairs from Lazy Boy. Well, they've arrived and I'm so excited. I went to pick them up this morning.

As soon as I got out of the car at the warehouse I saw them sitting in the doorway and thought what beautiful chairs. When I realized they were MY chairs, I was overjoyed. They are much prettier than I expected and so comfortable. Sarah immediately laid claim to one and honored me with the other.

My living room is not very large and now it is full again. I'll miss the space I've had without the chairs but it nice to have them. I rearranged some tables and moved some stuff around after I took the photos but I'll probably post a video later on. I just wanted to share my excitement with you.

Now, no more food in the living room. No putting feet on the furniture. There's no room anyway and this stuff has to last me the rest of my life.

That's it for this post. I'll come back later and catch you up.

Monday, January 16, 2017

Happy New Year... Late

We made it! I wasn't sure for a moment there but we arrived, only a little worse for wear.

My I've been away for a while. I've sort of fallen off the grid with this particular blog. To be honest, I've been ill for months, since November, with a hideous cold. I won't go into great detail but NaNoWriMo started in November and things were going well until about the second week. I had a cold that got worse and required antibiotics but despite that, it blew my NaNo to bits. Had it not been for my co-ML and another participant, I don't know what I'd have done. By the first week of December, I thought I was better.

That lasted a week and I was down again with a second round of the cold. This required a second round of antibiotics and I had to come off all of my RA meds for three weeks. I was sick until the first week of 2017. I began to feel human again. But the last several weeks I've battled fatigue that has made it impossible to do anything for more than a couple of hours a day.

I've been trying to write more if I can stay well and awake enough. I told a friend recently I was ready to give up on my writing. It is depressing to sit down and find that you can't think and you don't know what to do or even how to do it. I've been writing all my life and to reach this point is very discouraging.

I discovered over the holiday that Google Docs has a voice typing feature. My computer has a program installed just for that purpose and I've tried it a few times but it just wasn't very good. I could buy a dication program but they are ridiculously expensive and the reviews all say similar things about the inefficiency and need to extensive training. So, this morning I did a short session with Google Docs using the voice typing. I was astounded. It was error free. The biggest drawback was that I am ignorant of the commands to make edits. I'm going to go check for those and see how well it performs. I'm kind of excited about the idea because some days I am not well enough to sit in a chair for a few hours but I think it might be possible to write if I could voice type. We'll see.

As I said, I've done nothing this year so far. We're 15 days in and I've only about 500 words to show for it and a couple of bedrooms switched around. Sarah decided she wanted the full-sized bed instead of the twin. Frankly, it is better in her room. The twin fits better in the smaller room and I'm going to get it set up as a play area for her. She still doesn't like her dolls in her room and they can now have their own space and she'll be able to play with them much easier. They'll even have some drawers for their clothes.

I have plans to do some traveling this year. I don't know about very long trips. My problems with my RA and the fatigue are very inhibiting. I'm kind of afraid of getting off somewhere and being too ill to drive home. Driving with the fatigue is very scary. I had to go someone a week or so ago and it was terrible. I was terrified I'd have an accident because I was unable to focus well. I'm a good driver and never had an accident or a ticket but this was so bad I knew I had to get out of the car. I came home and immediately crashed in my chair for three hours. I slept so hard I felt drugged when I woke up.

Okay, think that's enough for now and it gets me started. I really ought to get a plan for blog posts. I don't think more than a half dozen folks really read this blog but at least it keeps me writing. It was always just a journal and several times I've considered closing it. But it gives me a place to just natter on about the trivial life I live. Sometimes people comment and I  love that. The other two blogs are more directed and I find it easier at times to post there than here.

I hope those of you who are reading have a wonderful new year, wherever you are and however you celebrate. I pray for blessings and grace in your life and may you have only great joy this year and beyond. Thank you for coming by and I hope you'll return. If not, Happy New Year anyway.