Friday, August 26, 2011

itch itch

I cant stop itching. Right now it is just my palms and behind my knees and I am trying to keep my hands off, because if I start itching the whole area will be read and inflamed and I will get these huge welts. I just hope it doesnt get any worse today.

For the past 4 days I have been breaking out in hives. Usually they start on my knees, ankles, wrists, and the back of my neck. Then I get tham on my back, and anywhere I itch turns hot and the "itch marks" swell up and turn white, like big long hives. Yesterday my back was all red with white lines all over it. Chris said it looked like a sunburn, and when touched the skin felt hot there.

Ugh this is driving me crazy. Between the hives and being zonked out of benadryl I have not exactly been a joy to be around. I have an appointment for allergy testing on Wed, so after Sun I wont be able to take any benadryl. I will be an itchy, cranky basket case.

P.S. I really, really hate my body right now. Just can't freaking stand it. Can anyone give me some pointers for that (no diet tips, please), or maybe just a pep talk?

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

In which I go for a walk and am very nearly eaten by a mountain lion/wolf/coyote/beaver.

Tonight I ate a meal at Perkins that I swear took a few years off my life. When we go home, I decided to do something healthy to make up for it, so I went for a walk to explore more of my new 'hood. We live in a sort of a sub-division that is on the edge of Ames. I like to walk in off-road, woodsy-type places, and I was delighted to come to a dead end which turned into a lane between a corn field and a creek surrounded by tall grass, with another field on the other side. There was a sign that said "bridge closed", and I could see about half mile down the lane a faint outline of an old bridge. I was psyched to go check it out. As I walked I noticed the beauty of the countryside. There were butterflies and grasshoppers flying around, tall grass was swaying in the breeze, and once I peeked over the grass at the creek, which was down a steep bank, and saw minnows swimming.
As I walked along I was listening to my headphones, but decided to turn off the music and enjoy the peaceful sounds of nature. It was as I was removing my headphones that I heard it: A low, menacing growl from the tall grass just ahead to my left. I froze, not quite sure if I had even heard it. But there it was again, coming from the grass by the creek bank. I couldn't move. I immediately thought back to my last minute decision to leave my cellphone at home. I had no way to defend myself, and no way to call for help. I realized I could be attacked and mauled by whatever was in the grass and no one would come to my rescue.
I had adrenaline coursing through my body and I wanted to run, but I was afraid that whatever was in the grass would take my flight as an invitation to chase me down. I backed slowly away, then turned and walked swiftly away down the lane. I heard the growling again, and fought the urge to run. As I got further along, I began to look back to see if anything was following me, but the lane was clear. I wondered if anything could be stalking me in the tall grass, but I could see no movement in the grass and thought it unlikely.
As I walked, my mind went back to a conservation exhibit that I had taken the girls to last winter. The conservationist had spent a lot of time talking about how wolves and mountain lions were making their way back into Iowa. Still, it seemed unlikely that I had encountered a mountain lion on the ouskirts of my neighborhood. I could hear traffic from an interstate, and a small engine plane was making it's way noisily throught the sky. Could I have heard a weird echo in the creek bank?
I was glad when I made it to the end of the lane and stepped shakily onto paved road. I was back in civilization; it seemed I was not going to be eaten afterall. As I made my way into the neighborhood, I ran into two women out walking their dogs. I asked them if they ever walked down that lane (they did), and I told them my harrowing tale. I asked them if they ever noticed weird echos in that area, and they said no. We wondered what I had heard in the grass. The ladies told me that there were coyotes out there that howled at night, but it was too early in the evening for them to be out. I was distracted for a moment from my big cat fears as I wondered whether or not I should be alarmed at coyotes on the edge of the 'hood.
I continued on my way home. As I got closer to my duplex, my sense of unreality grew. Less than a half-hour ago I was afraid that I was in imminent danger of a lion-mauling. Now I was surrounded by split-levels and ranch style homes, children were riding bikes, moms pushing strollers. Everything was so normal.
Was I having an auditory hallucination? Or was it an echo playing off the creek? Or did I really come this close to being attacked by a wild beast?
I want to go back and check things out, but I will have to bring someone with me. And I will bring my cellphone. And maybe some blow darts.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Still no internet, so I am sitting in a freezing cold coffee shop and their ceilling fan is blowing on me full-blast. I have a huge headache that started in my forehead. Despite the ibuprofen I took, it has spread to the rest of my head and my eyeballs and I now have a sore throat.

Hey just now the Qwest guy called and he said our internet was good to go. Well, we'll see....

So tonight I am going to the nutrition and diabetic education center at our local hospital to help run an ED support group. Last month I went, and there was no one there but the facilitator, so we just sat and talked for awhile and by the end she had asked me to help out with the group. I guess I was flattered and excited at the time, but today I dont feel like going. I just want to lay on the couch and nurse my headache. But I am going to follow through because this is something I really want to do. I will let you all know how it goes.

Ok so here is the BIG news: I completed my CNA program on Sunday!!!! TO be officially certified and able to work I still have to take the state test, but I am through with the school part and I even got an A! This might not seem like a big deal to alot of people, as it was only a 3 month course. But it is HUGE for me. I attempted college twice in the 90's and droppecd out both times. As I got sicker and more dysfunctional and ended up on soc security, I assumed I would never be able to handle a job or school and just staying out of the hospital was about the best I could hope for in life. I have been on social sec for 11 years now. The past 2 years I have been feeling like maybe I want to push myself and see if I could accomplish an educational or vocational goal, but it just seemed like there were so many barriers. Even the task of applying to school was daunting (and it was only community college!). something as simple as aquiring my high school transcript was very stressful, because it involved tracking down phone numbers and calling people I didn't know and stuff. Then I had to apply, and after that I had to register. I am working with Vocational Rehabilitation, and I really just wanted my voc rehab counsellor to do all this stuff for me, but she wanted m to do it myself. Getting into the CNA program was hard because of all the paperwork. I needed proof of a physical and background checks. Oh, and the school kept telling me the wrong date to apply, and then acting like they had no idea what I was talking about when I called them and they told me something different. Most of the time I felt stupid and humiliated, like I was having a hard time with suff that millions of students do effortlessly every year.
The class itself was not that hard. getting there at 8 am every Sat sucked, though. I am NOT a morning person, plus the 200mgs of Trazadone I take at night make it hard for me to get up in the morning. But I made it.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

well howdy

Hey there! I moved last week and am having problems getting my internet set up. I finally found some Wi-Fi today and am making an attempt to get caught up with everyone. I don't have time to comment on everyone's blogs right now but I am wishing you all well.

SO here's the quick rundown on what is going on with me right now:

Back on the Lexapro and no health anxiety (suprise, suprise). My body image still sucks but I am just dealing with it.
As I mentioned, we moved, and thathas been very stressful. We are mostly unpacked but there are alot of things I cant find. Under normal circumstances I am not the most organized person. I tend to "file" important bills and papers all over the house and then forget where I have put them. Add the move, and I am hopelessly behind on some things. I am in NO way ready for the girls to go back to school this month. Well, paperwork wise. In other ways, I am VERY ready.
They are getting along better since the move. Having seperate rooms is helping, plus we have a big yard and they have made some freinds and ae spending alot of time running and playing outdoors. It's been so good for them!
Woops, it looks like my computer battery is about to die. I had better publish this quick and do a part 2 later.