Especially when I didn’t get ear infections as a child. I know my ear drum burst once, but I don’t remember it, and I don’t remember ever having another ear infection.
I remember constantly having pink eye, but not ear infections.
WebMD has taught me more than I ever wanted to know about the physiology of the head and face, to the point where I’ve decided that I need to focus on clearing my nose and throat, rather than worry about my ears, in hopes that in doing so it will allow the gunk that’s making my ears hurt to drain in the way they’re supposed to.
In the mean time, I’m feverish, tired, and it hurts to open my mouth to eat or talk.
But I’m actually feeling better. I guess that’s what happens when I was actually able to breath and sleep all night long.
I’m know this is a mild thing, but it’s what’s consuming my life right now.
So the allergies/head cold is totally kicking my butt, to the point where WebMD is telling me that I have an ear infection. Or thyroid cancer. But probably just an ear infection.
I’m considering it karma because I’ve known that Lulu’s had an inflamed ear for a while, but haven’t done anything about it*. Do you think the wipes I’m using for her ear would work for my ear?
I’m hovering at that annoying point of feeling good enough to y’know, actually do stuff, rather than spending the day in bed.
I got up this morning, got ready, took the dogs out and saw I had a half hour before I had to leave for church, so I sat down on the couch with a book, and promptly fell back asleep. And didn’t wake up until church was over. Whoops.
I feel horrible about this too. I have a friend, who I first met about three years ago, soon after I moved into my house/ward. He was on crutches at the time–he was a marine, and had been injured in Iraq.
The story loses some of it’s drama when, after talking to him for a bit I found out that he was an explosives expert, and had been hurt in a training exercise.
A year of crutches/physical therapy later, and Phil went on a tour of duty to Afghanistan. Which, happily, he returned from, and decided that his time in the marines was up.
So, what does a good Mormon ex-marine boy do next? He goes on a mission. His farewell was today. In my ward.
And I missed it.
Phil, if you are reading this, I am so sorry. I wanted to be there, I really did.
You are going to be an awesome missionary.
*I am not an awful dog mom note: The inflammation in Lulu’s ear is more like a hot spot that happens to be located on the flap of her ear. She’s not showing signs of vertigo or nausea. She just scratches her ear. A lot. I’m treating it with some OTC wipes, and they seem to be helping–except now she runs away when she sees me coming, because she doesn’t want me messing with her ear. Sigh.
I was thinking about it last night, and it kind of makes sense that my allergies are a) the worst I’ve had in years, and b) a couple of weeks behind schedule.
We had a warm, wet winter followed by a cold spring. So while the grass (what I’m really allergic too) has grown prolifically, the cold spring delayed the growth.
So, a dozen benadryl (not at the same time!)coupled with psudophrine to keep me awake, a hot shower, and enough Vicks VapoRub to knock out…an animal notorious for a poor sense of smell later, I’m actually feeling ready to rejoin the world of the living.
I’m not sure how the stuffy ears fit into all of this, though.
I’m notoriously bad at checking my mailbox, and apparently, my email as well. At least the one that I primarily use for bills. I opened it up this morning, and found a note my dad sent a few days ago, pointing me to a geocache. (GC29C5X) (You don’t have to be logged in to see information about the cache, but you do to get the specific location and download it to your phone/GPSR)
The story associated with this particular cache made me laugh. It reads:
This is a Cache at the old Sinks Dance Hall. It was opened sometime around the end of World War I. 1919-1920. It was a place to go to Dance and have a drink or two. The Railroaders in Lynndyl Opened a Club so they could go to a private place to drink and party. It worked pretty well until around 1925 Shell Nielson got into a fight with one of the Railroaders, They had both been drinking. Shell took a swing at the guy and hit the potbellied stove and it knocked it over. He thought the guy was real solid. The stove tipped over and caught the place on fire and it burned to the ground.
Shell Nielson is my great-grandfather. (The son of August, who needed dynamite to dig a grave before he was buried.) He died in the 60’s, so I never knew him, but from stories I’ve heard–not to mention various uncles and cousins that I do know, it seems perfectly in character for him.
Another cacher (my dad has told me several times who the handle belongs to, but I don’t remember) commented upon finding the blog:
I talked later in the day with some Oak City old-timers who couldn’t recall or were unaware of the dance hall, but did remember Mr Nielson from the story. One of them said, “Yeah, that sounds like him!”
I’m choosing to imagine my very proper Great-Grandmother, who I did know, at the dance hall at the time of this incident, and how she would have reacted. It’s not pretty. Hilarious to observe from the safety of 85 years away, but still not pretty.
Apparently unrelated story #2:
I was chatting with my sister this morning, and she mentioned that she was going to take the kids to the aquarium, and asked if I wanted to join them. As I love my nephews AND the aquarium, not to mention the fact that E’s grown a tooth since the last time I’d seen him, I jumped at the chance.
For the record, E LOVES the aquarium. He refused to stay nicely in his stroller, and would grin whenever he could be right up to the glass. He was even brave enough to touch the sting-ray, or probably more accurately, didn’t comprehend why it would be scary too.
G loves the aquarium too, but it’s more a matter of being able to run around, and splash in the tide-pool exhibit (as long as the sting rays aren’t too close). While Sis was getting E’s stroller ready, G and I went in ahead, and promised Sis that we’d wait for her at a certain point. G got bored, and ran on ahead, with me following behind.
The layout of the Living Planet Aquarium is such that the first two big exhibits you see are the jellyfish and the octopus. However, before the jellyfish exhibit there is a small tank that has a few eels in it. G LOVES those eels, and stopped to look at them. They were hiding under some of the rocks in the tank, so they took a little bit to find. The eels also share there tank with two yellow tangs.
While G and I were looking at these eels, another family came up behind us. They glanced at the tank, and the mother tried to draw her son’s attention to it “Look at these fish!” she said, “They’re yellow!” The son didn’t respond, and they moved on. I wondered if they thought it was strange that they had just payed $9 a ticket*, and the first tropical tank they saw only had two fish you could by at any pet store.
G lost interest in looking for the eels, so we headed into the jellyfish display. The same family was there. I heard the mom say “Last time we were here, they had a gross octopus.”
At this point, this mother was starting to get on my nerves. I was wondering if she payed attention to anything?
Of course, I’m the kind of person who likes to study things in minutia. But still, you take you’re kids to the aquarium so they’ll learn something, while they think they’re having fun. For me, anyway, the best way to learn something is by paying close attention to it–from figuring out why an aquarium would have two common fish in a largish tank, to paying attention when the education guide teaches why octopi are, well admittedly gross looking, but unbelievably cool.
TLP doesn’t change their exhibits around that much–the animals are all too delicate to undergo that kind of stress, but every time I go, I see and learn something new.
So, the point of the last thousand or so words is simply to remind everyone, but mostly myself, to pay attention.
Of course, y’all are smart enough that you figured that out for yourself.
*I’m all over The Living Planet, and I feel like I need to spread the word as far and wide as I can; a year pass costs only a couple of dollars more than two individual tickets. It’s a great deal, and if you go more than three times in a year then you’re money has been well spent.
So, my sister has a problem.
Well, really, my parents have a problem.
And if my sister and my parents have a problem, so do I.
My parents bought a used camp trailer last year, and it was in pretty rough shape. It is now in worse shape for the winter, as my sister discovered as she came down yesterday to prepare it for the season. Bad enough that the roof and at least two walls will need to be replaced.
And, as I don’t have anything else to do at the moment, I was drafted into helping.
I got to do deconstruction.
I genuinely enjoyed the drive down. It probably had a lot to do with the fact that it’s now legal for me to drive my car, so I wasn’t as paranoid about cops, but I’m going to claim it had everything to do with the time of year.
I spotted several largish patches of wildflowers–indian paintbrush and globe mallow. I could see meadowlarks singing their hearts out on fence posts, and saw perhaps a dozen hawks and eagles. I could smell the sagebrush, and the alfalfa that’s ready to cut, and the rye just starting to bloom.
And then my nose stopped working and my eyes started to swell shut. Ahhh, spring.
I came into town a different way than I usually, do, mostly because I wanted to stop and take pictures of wildflowers if I saw any more, and I had a car pass me, that I later passed, and I didn’t want it to see me stopped on the side of the road. Yeah, I’m insecure like that.
I drove though what I consider my real home town, the place where I lived until I was 8. It’s been more than 20 years since we moved, but it still feels like home.
I figured, since I was already there, and my eyes were already swelling shut from the rye, I might as well swing by the cemetary, to find the grave of Clayborne Elder. (You can read about him here)
So, here’s the thing. I know the Leamington cemetery. I know a lot of people who are buried in the Leamington cemetery. Heck, I’m related to perhaps half of them. But I’ve always known that. I’ve always known that my Mom’s ancestors settled the area, and I’m still related to at least a third of the population in and around this community.
But that’s all my mom’s side. Clayborne Elder is–different, somehow.
I found his grave, and discovered that it’s very well taken care of. There’s a fence around it, and the old sandstone headstone was replaced by a granite one at some point.
When I saw it, I started to cry.
My roots in this area run deep. I always knew that they did, but when I was standing there, realizing that this was my family–from my paternal line, surrounded by maternal ancestors, I felt them go even deeper. It’s weird. I felt the family connection, and also the connection to place.
This is where I belong, and I can’t imagine living anywhere else.
I am really starting to hate 8:30 am.
8:30 is the arbitrary time that the dogs and my body have conspired to be the latest I can sleep, no matter how late I stayed up the night before. In bed at midnight? Up at 8:30. Finally getting around to going to bed at 4? Up at 8:30.
I’m not complaining. I learned that lesson when I tried to complain to Sis, and she started mocking me. “I wish I could sleep ’til 8:30. I wish I could go back to bed, and then get up at 8:30!”
I don’t know what it is about Sundays that makes me feel all shy and tired. Yesterday was spent in hiding. Yes, I could blame it on sinus problems that caused my entire face to hurt from the inside, but really, that came after I decided not to go to church.
This morning, I found a text on my phone from a member of the bishopric asking if I was coming to church. Whoops.
The sinus thing, and the generic Sudafed I took to allow me to breathe at all kept me up to the wee hours. Late enough that I caught myself narrating my life again:
“The slight breeze carried the sickly sweet smell of glaze from the donut shop. Life had settled down, to the point where all was quiet. I decided that I needed to take the dogs out one last time before it got too late. Max ran down the stairs–unusual for him, not matter how neglected the chance for a walk is. Lulu paused on the second floor landing, sniffing at a rail on the balustrade. Even I, with my weak human senses could see where a dog had marked. Odd–I didn’t think there was a dog on that floor. Was it Max? That’s not the kind of place he would normally mark…”
I decided that rather than simply narrate, I should be doing some writing. After getting a few paragraphs down, I figured I better work on my story. Which meant that I needed to review what I had written the last time I was up in the wee hours of the morning writing.
Long story short, I kept a single page. And that…well, I’ve decided that I want to tell that part of the story from a different point of view, so it’s more just reference material now.
I’ve been thinking about the advantages and disadvantages of going back to school. Pretty much constantly for the past little bit, as this blog can well attest. One thing that’s moved from the disadvantage column to the advantage column is the idea of elective classes. I realized that I could take creative writing courses, to hopefully help focus my writing, and help me with the all-important plot. I love my characters, and I feel like I know them like my best friends–better, actually, because I created them, their personalities, strengths, weaknesses, and I even know the secrets that they would never dream of telling another soul. I just don’t know what they are doing. I know how they interact with each other, but I don’t know why.
And these are kind of important things to figure out if I’m ever going to be an author.
My body has apparently decided that breathing is optional. I disagree.
I really don’t feel like I can bitch about allergies, because I know the pollen count here isn’t as high as in the south and east, but still, they seem worse this year–and a month too early.
A combination of not being able to breathe and worry over my dad’s oldest brother who was in a serious car accident yesterday kept me from sleeping much last night, so this morning, I didn’t feel up to spending the day with Sis and her family. Instead, I sat around the house trying to breathe.
Anyway, lately, I’ve noticed that I’ve started narrating my life. I can’t really think of a better way to describe it. For instance, this morning, while I was walking the dogs, I noticed a bird hopping from branch to branch inside a bush. Instead of just watching it, I thought:
“She noticed a little bird, a sparrow, flitting around in a bush that hadn’t had enough spring growth to hide its movements. She was only a few feet away, but was very careful to stand still. She wondered if the bird knew she was there. The bush, she supposed, sparse as it was, would give the bird ample warning and protection if something untoward were to happen.”
I’m not really sure what to do with this new development. I guess it’s good practice for actual writing, I mean, if I even have a character ponder a little bird in a bush, I’ve got the scene down, right?
Writing would be so much easier if my life had an over-arching plot. Maybe it does, and I just can’t see it. Characters rarely do.
It’s been a bad day. I’ve felt like crap both physically and emotionally. Nothing I’ve tried seems to help the allergies. I feel helpless and hopeless.
I’m going to bed now. Hopefully, tomorrow will be better.
If the way my hit counter exploded yesterday, there are a lot of people out there as adverse to the idea of growing up as I am. The problem is, there is a time and a place for everything. And yes, it’s fun to do childish things every now and then, I know I also have to be a responsible adult. Dangit.
My family has a big Easter party, and today, as part of being a responsible adult, I went to my parents house to help get ready for it. The plan was to shampoo their furniture, but after vacuuming, we decided to wait until after the party to shampoo.
I was helping my mom organize her freezer, and I commented on a bag of frozen fruit, saying it looked like it would make a good smoothie. So we tried it. Well, in this particular bag of fruit, there is more pineapple than anything else, and, as you may or may not remember, I’m allergic to pineapple.
I carefully picked out the stuff that wasn’t pineapple, and we made a really good smoothie–at least I thought it was a really good smoothie until I finished my glass and then started to feel my throat close up. Crap, I guess I hadn’t been as careful about the pineapple as I thought.
Now, I’m not THAT allergic to pineapple, and I could take a Benadryl to help clear things up–except I forgot the reason I take Benadryl at night when I can’t sleep. Yeah…
So I’m sitting here groggy, with a sore throat from coughing so much–but I can breath, which is always a good thing.
And I learned my lesson, frozen strawberries, peaches and mango that have been packaged with pineapple, while delicious, are definitely to be avoided in the future. I don’t know if I’m getting more sensitive to pineapple, or if the other fruit was soaked in pineapple juice before it was frozen, or if there was something else going on.
Either way, it sucks.
It was a really good smoothie though.
After I had gone to bed last night, but before I fell asleep, I was thinking about what I wanted to blog about today. I had two or three good ideas–but I was too tired to jump out of bed to write something. Of course, this morning, I couldn’t remember any of them.
The head cold is still kicking my butt, and despite what weather.com says, I think it’s starting to be taken over by spring allergies. All I know is that it is way too early in the year for my nose to be this chapped.
Spring seems to have decided that it wants to stay, I’ve been hearing meadowlarks and red winged blackbirds in the morning, and have been watching a sparrow build its nest in one of my neighbors dryer vents.
I’ve been turning the heat off during the day, and opening the windows to air things out. My downstairs neighbors already have their air conditioning running. (I wonder if I should be concerned about what they are doing, they get even less sunlight than I do, and I’m freezing to death, and they’re running their air conditioner. I’m just glad I don’t have to pay their electric bill)
So what have I been doing this fine spring day? Have I been out enjoying nature? Have I been getting my patio garden ready? Have I been following the instinct that women have had since we decided that we had enough of sleeping outside and moved into caves, and been deep cleaning in preparation for the warmer months? Yeah, not so much.
I’ve pretty much been laying alternately in bed or on the couch, chained to a box of kleenex, and trying to convince one dog or the other to lay on my lap in such a way as to act as the perfect heating pad, and trying to overcome the fact that Oprah and I have very different tastes in literature.
This is usually my favorite time of year, when the first signs of spring appear, and the days start to get longer, but before allergies come. This year–well, granted, it’s only been a few days, and I am sick, but not so much.
I did finally get my Christmas lights down, though.