Category Archives: Health & Politics

Discussing Politics

Hi there readers. I’m sort of wordless today. I did make friends with my rosebush today. Turns out she is a great listener.

I wanted to share a link to a post a read on The Coffee Party website. They focus on discussing politics with civility and dignity. Have a fabulous day.

I’m Loosin’ it Man

While this whole pandemic thing has been scary, morbidly interesting, heart breaking, stress inducing, terrifying, thought provoking, etc…It’s also getting boring. I know, I know…it seems shallow to complain, but what the hell, I’m going to do it anyway.

Before you throw your laptop, iPad, phone or whatever at me just listen.. Yes I’m aware that there people dying. Yes, I am aware that there are people suffering horribly, barely managing, or even failing to put food on their family table. People loosing jobs and getting evicted from their home or apartment. People have lost family members, women giving birth in isolation because they can’t have anyone with them.

Then there is the opposite situation about famous, rich people whining away on Instagram while in their enormous mansion, with a pool, tennis courts, helicopter pad, riding stable, paint ball, arena, water park, blah blah.. I have a weird and rather controversial take on this. They are people too and yeah, they aren’t at the bottom of the human heap of suffering, but they are still capable of compassion. And anyone can start to feel cooped up regardless of the size of their cage. A cage is a cage.

I came about this weird way of looking at things when I was talking to my Mother a while back. To those of you who follow my blog, (and thank you if you do) My Mom lost 2 daughters a couple of years ago. Less than 6 months apart. She went from a mother of 6 to 4 living. I went from having 3 sisters down to 1. This tragedy was an enormous shock to the whole family.

Needless to say she has been having a really hard time. She told me that she was still having difficulties, 2 years later. Then she started beating herself up for suffering. “I shouldn’t feel this way. There are plenty of people in the world who are way worse off them me. I should be happy for what I DO have.” And so on and so forth. I got frustrated and told her “Hey, your grieving is valid and real to you, and you have a right to go through process!!” Sure practicing gratitude is a good thing. But, a loss is a loss.

I feel like this whole “who is suffering the most” bit has turned into a social media circus of finger pointing and generalized hateful criticism. This situation is weird and stressful for everyone. So if no one is allowed to complain, become outraged, blurt out inappropriate things in the heat of the moment, demand changes, etc. because there is someone, somewhere, suffering more??? Taken to it’s ridiculous over blown conclusion — NONE of us are allowed complain unless we are maybe a leprous beggar living in a slum, eating garbage from trash heaps.

I think we need to turn away from barking at each other and look at the big picture. A teeny tiny little virus has almost brought the world to it’s knees. I don’t think we are there yet. Maybe staggering around a bit. There is a learning experience here. The entire collective “we” governments and citizens alike, were woefully unprepared.

When I was still a working woman I had the good fortune to be sent to a workshop to learn about creating a disaster plan. My place of work chose to call it a “Business Continuity Plan.” We talked about various scenarios, tornado, power outage, aggressive flu, terrorist taking over our building. Just all kinds of interesting things. We talked about phone trees so everyone could connect and know what the plan of action was, working from home, having paper copies of our plan in everyone’s possession in case there was no phone or internet, even switching to off shore server farms if things got really bad. The one thing we didn’t cover was a planet wide disaster.

All it takes is a quick visit to the CDC or FEMA websites to be instructed that everyone should be prepared enough to shelter in place for at least a week. Who does that? We’re all reliant on being able to get whatever we need or want at any time, if we can afford it.

I’m one of those weirdos who actually did have a plan in place. I’m addicted to dystopian fiction. All kinds of shit hits the fan scenarios. Did I have N95 masks? Why yes I did, but not enough to last this long. I have boxes of rubber gloves, but I can’t find them. I proudly possess 1 key chain sized hand sanitizer which buried in the bottom of a purse or carry on, who knows where. I do however have enough food squirreled away to last at least 6 months. I have enough water to last about 1 month, assuming no showering.

Who am I to be saying what I’m saying? Just me. I can probably plop myself down in an American middle class in terms of economic status at the moment. I do know what it’s like to be dirt poor. Try looking for bottles on the side of the road to cash in for the deposit to buy food. Yeah, I been there as a child.

The point I’m making is that I think we should all channel our outrage and fear into working together and become activists to be far better prepared for the next meltdown. And there will be one. This pandemic has been a huge wake up call for everyone, regardless of their economic status or state of health. It’s been pretty amazing that in the U.S., most of us still have the 1st world basics: electricity, internet, phone, gas stations, running water, pharmacies and so on. It could be worse, yeah, but it’s still totally unpleasant.

So that is my rant for today. Decided to try writing today, because yesterday I spent far to much time on YouTube, watching videos about how to carve a hot air balloon on a river stone, to how to make flowers out of old toilet tissue rolls. I’m even sick of playing the Sims. Enough said.

UPDATE – I’m Not a Plague Carrier!

covid

So just an update if you’re interested. I got the results of the Flu and Covid test. As of today I tested negative for both. Thank you, Lord! And pass the biscuits.

The Covid test does not show if I had the virus when I was so deathly ill 5 weeks ago. There is a test coming out that looks for Covid antibodies in the blood. I will definitely take that test as soon as it is available.

I’m kind of a quandary though. Since I don’t know if I had it…I could still be vulnerable to contracting it. Yeesh. But it’s good to know that I am virus free at the moment. It was kind of creepy and weird feeling like a plague carrier.

I know logically that it wasn’t my fault. I didn’t go to the airport and lick any doorknobs or french kiss someone who just got finished coughing up a lung. But still, I was terrified that my husband was going to get sick. He hasn’t yet. He’s exhausted and freaked out that his wife was so sick. But otherwise OK.

Well that’s it for now, dear readers. Thanks for listening. Talk to you soon.

Social Distancing VS a Mariachi Band

Mariachi BandHuman beings never cease to amaze me. We are the most fascinating creatures on earth. Since I’ve been so deathly sick I haven’t really had an issue with social distancing. It’s not really on the radar while I’m just trying not to pee my pants from coughing so hard.

So anyway, about a week ago, I staggered out to mailbox as my way of getting some fresh air and exercise and what do my wondering eyes behold? About 4 houses down they were throwing a huge party with a Mariachi band….in the front yard no less. I couldn’t believe my eyes. In this neighborhood nobody does anything in their front yard but check mail and grab the newspaper. All parties go on either in the house or the backyard. This is an old suburban housing track with huge back yards.

This was a major statement on their part. “Screw you world and screw social distancing. We’re having a party! Neener Neener! I struggled with whether or not to call the police, but ultimately didn’t. I have a hard time doing that unless there is a murder, assault, or theft going on.

Now that I think about, I wish I had. There could be a death as a result of this blatant disregard for exposing themselves or someone else to the Covid virus. At the very least its an inhumane and callous disregard for the welfare of others.  Yesterday my son informed me that one of his friends lost his wife to the virus. Yep, she straight up died. That’s just mind blowing and tragic.

I just don’t understand how some people can think that it’s OK to put someone’s life at risks just because you don’t feel like staying home. It kind of reminds me of the early days of AIDS when people would have unprotected sex knowing they were HIV positive. At least with aids you could pretty much avoid it by not have unprotected sex and avoiding blood products if at all possible.

With this Covid-19 Virus? Well it’s kind of difficult to not breath. And that’s pretty much the only way to avoid exposure if you are around other people.

I finally got tested yesterday for Covid. My doctor ordered it. It was a rather interesting experience and quite well organized. I was impressed. I was instructed to go to a particular hospital and park in an area cordoned off by traffic cones and call a phone number when I got there. A few minutes later an actual Doctor and Nurse came out dressed in full hazmat gear came out to my car.

I got a full medical workup in my car. The Doctor checked my blood oxygen, listened to my lungs, poked around on my abdomen and listened to my long tail of medical woe. Then he stuck a stick up my nose, both nostrils, all the way to my brain. Yea it hurt. Twice because they tested me for Covid and Flu. He went back inside for a few minutes and came back out to tell me that I was scheduled for a chest x-ray. I walked into the hospital got the x-ray and that was that. The whole process took a grand total of 30 minutes.

Just FYI, my x-ray was clear so I don’t have pneumonia. Yee Hah! That was a huge relief to me, the Hubman and everyone else I told.

I think I like getting a check up in my car. How convenient! I hope this ends up being part of the new normal.

Death and a New Direction

Grief 2020

Grief 2019

Hello all you lovely people. I lost my password to this blog and was too out of it to find it. That pretty much prevented me from posting. The good news is that I stumbled across it the other day. The date next the user info was 2010. Wow! I’ve been at this blogging thing, off and on, for 10 years.

A lot has happened since my last post which I think was in May of 2019. Some good and some pretty damned horrible. The most horrible thing was that my beloved daughter died at the end of July. To say it ripped my heart out with a rusty chain saw would be an under statement. 😥

To those of you who are familiar with my writings about my daughter, you are aware that we had an extremely rocky relationship. She was mentally ill and refused any formal medical treatment. She self medicated with alcohol and some pretty hardcore drugs. I hadn’t heard from her in almost a year.

In mid July her ex husband informed me via Facebook instant messenger that she was in the hospital. (He didn’t have my phone number) Thank God for instant messenger. What he didn’t tell me was that he found her unresponsive with her eyes open.

I immediately hopped on a plane and flew up to Boston to be with her. It turns out that she had been sick with a bad cough for months, but refused to go to the doctor. During this time she had been drinking alcohol non stop and refusing to eat. As a result her weight had ballooned up to over 250 pounds. Her normal weight was about 160.

She had some kind of horrendous lung infection that spread to her other organs. They threw words at me like septic and ascites, which I think means free floating fluid in her abdomen. They tried suctioning the fluid in her lungs repeatedly, but they filled back up within a few hours. They were pumping her full of every kind of antibiotics known to man but it just wasn’t working. After 2 weeks they looked down into her lungs with a camera scope and saw that her lung tissue was completely destroyed. There was no coming back even if they beat the infection.

At this point I had to make the most difficult decision that anyone has to make for a loved one. The doctors told me that even if they put her on full blown life support she was so sick that she would only last a few weeks. So I asked the doctors to take her off life support and switch her to “comfort care.” I guess that’s what the medical staff like to call it. Doesn’t sound as dreadful as “give up and let the patient die.”

They did this at 5 p.m. Without the tube down her throat she was able to talk a little. At one point she asked “why is this happening to me?” I didn’t think it was the time to tell her about all the things she had done to her body. I just told her that she was very sick and that I was there with her.

I kind of went to this other worldly place. I didn’t have any sensation of time passing or any need to go for a walk or even use the restroom. It was really weird. I sat with her holding her hand from 5 p.m. until 5 a.m. Then she sort of breathed out in a huff and that was it…her last breathe. I put my head down and cried for the first time since this all started.

Things were sort of a blur after that. The nurse came in asked me if I was OK. How do you answer a question like that when your child has just died? Maybe they thought I was going to start screaming and ripping my hair out or jump out the window? A doctor came in and did the official time of death and whatever else. I was in shock at that point which was kind of a blessing. Total physical, emotional and spiritual overload.

Somehow I managed to order an Uber to go back to my hotel. I sat there in the back seat looking out at the growing dawn. Even as grief stricken as I was it occurred to me that in a way her passing was kind of a blessing. She had been profoundly unhappy for so long and wasn’t suffering any more. I will wish to my dying day that she had found a way out of her abyss of suffering that allowed her to remain alive and be happy.

So as far as new directions…..floundering around in grief for the last few months I’ve realized some important truths. Truths for me anyway. 1) life is a gift and it’s pretty short. Don’t put up with bullshit, negative people, etc. 2) Today is the day to start doing what you want or dream to do because tomorrow may not come. 2) Tell everyone that you love…that you love them. Don’t assume that they know. 3) It’s time to take myself seriously as an artist. It started out as a hobby, but it has morphed into a full blown love.

The picture above is a painting I did to express grief through art. It’s not totally original content. I searched Google images for “grief” for ideas.

So that’s all for now folks. Love to all and as always…thank you for listening.

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