Tag Archives: Health

The Long Hall

While John and I were having a nice, romantic anniversary dinner last weekend – our 28th – I was thinking of another man. And another couple’s marriage.   And how, when you say those words, “in sickness and in health,” you never really know what you’re getting into.

As anybody who has read a few of my posts knows, John and I have been both lucky and unlucky through the years. I’ve had a lot of health issues that neither of us bargained for – infertility and Crohn’s to be specific. But through it all, John has been with me every step, helping me, cheering me, making me do things I don’t want to have to do.

Illness effects all members of the family, and changes their lives. Some people rise to the occasion, and some are brought down by it. I am delighted to say that I’ve been truly lucky to have this guy with me through all the , ummm, shit. I even nominated him for Sainthood when he survived a particularly, ummm, nasty point in my Crohn’s.

But the other man I was thinking of on our wedding anniversary was Charles Gulotta.  OK, I was thinking about his wife, Jill, too.  So don’t criticize.

Two weeks earlier, I’d finished reading Charles’ memoir, the Long Hall.

The Long Hall by Charles Gulotta

The Long Hall by Charles Gulotta

 

It’s the story of how Charles and Jill met, fell in love, married, and had a daughter, Allison. It’s also the story of a simple twist of fate that changed their lives dramatically, when Jill suffered a stroke during childbirth. It’s the story of how Charles went from a happy expectant father, to a shocked but loving caregiver to two very different people, one infant and one adult, with very different needs.

It is now a month since I read the book. And honestly, I haven’t stopped thinking about it.  The story sounds a wee bit depressing, doesn’t it?  I will admit, there are a lot of rough patches.  But that’s not what I found so memorable.   What stayed with me is a constant feeling of hope.

Often, when I’ve read Charles’ delightful blog, Mostly Bright Ideas, I’ve felt that he’s gotten into my head, asked questions that have been milling around in my mind for years. With The Long Hall, Charles got into my heart as well.  And I really think that this book will stay with me, always.

Read it. It is the most uplifting story I have read in decades.

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Filed under Adult Traumas, Bloggin' Buddies, Bloggin' Buddy Books, Books, Crohn's Disease, Family, Health and Medicine

Not One More

Maybe you’ve seen this before.  Maybe you haven’t.  But it is worth watching.  It is worth seeing again.

 

We do everything we can to protect our kids from possible dangers.  Except when it comes to guns.  Really.  How can we as a country, we as thinking rational people, we as parents continue to let the NRA decide.

Get rid of politicians who won’t stand up to the NRA.  Get rid of politicians who think that it is just dandy that anybody can get a gun.  Or collect enough of them to maintain an arsenal.

Protect your family.  Vote these folks out of Dodge.

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Filed under Adult Traumas, Campaigning, Cancer, Childhood Traumas, Criminal Activity, Disgustology, Elections, Family, GOP, Gun control, Health and Medicine, Huh?, Hypocrisy, Law, Mental Health, Politics, Stupidity, Voting

Self Protection for the Gun Control Crowd

My husband John believes that the whole reason that the NRA is bat-shit crazy about getting everybody guns is so that bit by bit, everybody will become afraid enough of their own shadows and/or that of their neighbors that they will have no choice but to buy their own gun to protect themselves from everybody else in the US who has one and is likely to come a-callin’.  And then, of course, the gun manufacturers would get even more blood money and pay more dues!  It’s a win-win for the NRA and the manufacturers!  The fact that the country will lose is just collateral damage.

John may be on to something.  Because just today I read that there are folks in the NRA who are advocating that non-eagle-eye folks have the right to guns, too.  Not only people who need corrective lenses, but folks who cannot see at all.  In a less politically correct time we might have called them “Blind Folks.”

Now, now, don’t get all worried.  According to Dom Raso, the guy in this video, since blind folks have such good hearing, they don’t need to see what they’re shooting at. 

So the logical conclusion is that they will not just randomly start firing their guns around like irresponsible folks.  (Not that there are any irresponsible gun owners out there, natch.)  That makes me feel much better.

Now I grant you, there is scientific evidence that blind folks can hear better than those with better vision.  Still, I’m really not at all comfortable with the idea that one of my neighbors who is vision impaired might have a gun.  Well, not if he can put bullets into it and fire it, anyway.

But this discussion led me to a brilliant idea.  Now I know how I will protect myself during the apocolypse and/or the rapture and/or when the guvment’s jackbooted thugs come to my house.

I’m gonna make a sign:

Beware of The Jumpy Blind Woman with The Gun 

 

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Filed under Adult Traumas, Conspicuous consumption, Criminal Activity, Disgustology, Elections, GOP, Gun control, Health and Medicine, Huh?, Humor, Hypocrisy, Law, Mental Health, Real Estate, Stupidity, Voting, Wild Beasts

Vive La France!

When we lived in Switzerland and just across the border in France in the late 1990s and early 2000s, one of the biggest problems was finding healthcare.  Now I realize that I worked at the World Health Organization, but the docs there were researchers, primarily, meeting goers-to-ers.  They weren’t your every day heal-the-sick kind of doctors.

In addition to not knowing the ropes of a foreign system, there was the language barrier.  I mean, frankly, it is difficult to describe illnesses in English — I always feared that I would go in with a sore throat and end up without an important body part.  I didn’t realize that that could happen right here in the good old U.S. of A.  In fact, that just happened recently when a man went in for a routine procedure and, ummm, had a life changing event.  Allegedly.

So in 2002, we moved home to the U.S. where I could communicate and get medical treatment for $197,238.73 per word.

Today, though, I’m rethinking that decision.  Maybe we acted in haste.  Maybe we should have thought twice or three times.  Maybe we should go back.

No, I’m not sick.  In fact, with my English-speaking doctors I’m doing quite well.

But there is one thing that I could get in France that I cannot get here:  wine.

French hospital to open wine bar to cheer up terminally ill

PARIS – A hospital in the French city of Clermont-Ferrand is to open a wine bar where terminally ill patients will be able to enjoy a “medically-supervised” glass or two with their families.

Vive la France, where the terminally ill can get “medically supervised” alcoholic beverages.  I hear the wine is to die for.

UPDATE!!!

If I DO go back to die with wine in my hand/throat/tummy, somebody else needs to pick it out.  I have an amazing skill crafted while living inside of or within spitting distance of France.

I can go into any store in France and leave with a bottle of awful wine.  It’s a talent.  A gift.  Not many folks can claim it.

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Filed under Adult Traumas, Crohn's Disease, Hey Doc?, Huh?, Humor, Mental Health, Taking Care of Each Other

Blame Duncan if I Didn’t Respond to Your Comment

Thanks, everybody, for all the nice comments about Duncan.

Sorry if yours was one of the comments I didn’t answer.

You see, I was afraid.  Afraid of what was happening with Duncan.

Yup, things didn’t start smoothly at all.

Twenty-four hours after bringing our new son home, we were at animal emergency, with a dying puppy.

We don’t know what happened or why, but he developed a fever of 106.3 degrees — dogs are normally 99-102.  Our puppy was sick, and possibly dying.

If I am ever reincarnated as a dog, I want to be my dog.  I’m not quite sure how I can work that out, though.

Anyway, Duncan was admitted, treated with antibiotics and IV fluids (at great expense).  We left him last night, certain that he was going to die.

Thankfully he didn’t.  He spent some more time with our own vet, closer to home, this afternoon before we brought him home early this evening (Monday).

So far, Duncan is acting very much like a puppy — he plays, eats, poops and pees.  We are keeping a close watch on him.

I will never let him see this picture of himself during the interval between the ER and our vet.  Because I fear he’d die of embarrassment.

"This is Embarrassing"

“This is Embarrassing”

When I texted this photo to Jacob, he responded:  “When did we switch to Dish Network?”

Everybody was saying sweet things about Duncan — and I just couldn’t answer when I didn’t know if he was going to make it.

We have no idea what caused the problem.  It may be a bacterial infection, a virus.  It could be all kinds of things.  Tests to possibly determine what caused it would have cost $THOUSANDS, and we opted to treat, rather than investigate.

So far he is doing OK.  Keep your fingers crossed.

 

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Filed under Adult Traumas, Bloggin' Buddies, Dogs, Duncan, Family, Pets, Taking Care of Each Other

Crikey! Say “G’day” to Me New Mayte!

OK, I wanted to be clever.

Sorry.  That’s not going to happen.  Nope.  Not today.

I wanted to write something that would make you wonder.  That would keep you at the edge of your seat.  That would make you laugh with joy along with me.

Nope.

Instead, I’m just going to introduce you to me new mayte.

Duncan

Duncan

 

Duncan is a rescue puppy — a mixed Springer Spaniel/Australian shepherd.  He came to us through a program that finds homes for the pets (and their pets’ progeny) of deployed service men and women.  John’s sister found him on-line, sent me a link to him on petfinders.com, our application flew in and it was approved right away.  All of this happened on Monday.  Since then, we’ve been in a flurry of activity getting ready for a puppy.

I’m absolutely possible he will be an angel.  Always.

I will probably be a bit scarce around these parts for a while!

 

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Filed under Diet tips, Dogs, Family, Humor, Mental Health, Pets, Taking Care of Each Other, Wild Beasts

Good Reason to Fear European Travel

Since the Age of Exploration gave way to colonization of the Americas, folks living in our neck of the woods here in the U.S. of A. have feared travel back to the Old Country.

They feared crossing the ocean on a sailing vessel, a steamer, an ocean liner.  It is a big ocean.  (Remember the unsinkable Titanic)

They feared flying over the Atlantic in a dirgible (Remember the Hindenburg)

They feared flying over the Atlantic in an airplane because anything can happen.

But mostly they feared trying to get by in a language they could neither speak nor understand.  That, and they use different money over there!

In recent years, though, more and more Americans are venturing abroad.  Seeing the sights, the art, the scenery, the architecture that Europe is so justly famous for.

But all that will end soon.  Because there is something new in Europe to fear.

Vaginas.  Yup.  Vaginas.  Big ones.  At least that’s what I read over at Talking Points Memo

A Giant Vagina Attempted to Swallow An American Tourist (Photo AP Photo / Feuerwehr Tübingen via TalkingPointsMemo)

A Giant Vagina Attempted to Swallow An American Tourist (Photo AP Photo / Feuerwehr Tübingen via TalkingPointsMemo)

Giant Vagina Sculpture Traps US Student in Germany

An American exchange student who got stuck in a giant vagina sculpture was freed by firefighters in southwestern Germany.

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Filed under Adult Traumas, Conspicuous consumption, Diet tips, Holidays, Huh?, Humor, Stupidity, Wild Beasts