So here I am, lolling in bed with my visitor, The Cat. Not sure what her family calls her, we just call her “cat” or “kitty” and since we give her plenty of loving, she doesn’t seem to care that we don’t know her “real” name. She is a serious love bug. She purrs very loudly, makes biscuits even if she’s standing on the floor, and gives love bites. She also likes to get her stomach rubbed. Silly cat.
We don’t see her every day, but apparently she has a particular route she follows. I thought we were her only “other family”, but it turns out she visits everyone in our building. She meows at the door to be let in, then gets her lovings and eventually leaves to go on to the next love dealer. Her jumping up into my lap or up on my bed is a relatively new behavior. I have to be careful about how I let her do that because I am allergic to cats. I can pet them, but then I need to wash my hands–and I have to avoid close contact to my face because my eyes will puff up and ITCH. If she is a little more affection with her long claws as she’s making biscuits, I can end up with a itchy point in my skin. But it is all worth the chance to interact with a loving animal that obviously enjoys my company.
I miss my dog so much. This is a drop of compensation for not being able to have my own pet. Thanks, Landlord. I’m not even allowed a single fish! It’s probably for the best, as the maintenance for any other living thing is additional work for me. And truth be told, I already have my Puppy to care for. (My husband, of course. At least I don’t have to empty a litter box for him! LOL.)
Speaking of my Beloved, we have had our first dental appointment (exam and x-rays) a couple of weeks ago. Since we rely on MediCal for dental work, I had tried to get us into the local clinics–but the one in Eureka is so overloaded, it will essentially NEVER have openings for new patients. Ditto the one in Arcata, due to the students. So we are having to travel to Mad River, about 2 hours south east of us, below Fortuna and down Route 36. Lovely ride, but absolutely no way to use a cruise control as the road is twisted and evil. Or at least twisted. The clinic itself is apparently brand new, very space age technologically. The dentist is very nice and so far, seems to know what he’s doing.
We go back on the 19th for repairs. Beloved is getting some fillings taken care of and they’ll deal with his broken tooth. I have to have some bone spurs filed off to prepare for taking the mold for my new teeth (aka dentures). So that means at least 2 more visits for me for sure–one for the mold and one for the fitting of the new teeth. Then I think there’s a follow up appointment about a month after that, to make sure that everything is sitting snug and doing well. Nothing more than I expected and I’m okay with all of it.
FWIW: MediCal, through Partnership, has a transportation system available for those who do not drive or who cannot drive that distance due to circumstances. We rented a car for that initial drive because we did not know about this until we got to the dentist’s office. We cannot trust our vehicle for the distance (and the type of driving) so our next appointment is set up to have MTM (the transportation company) pick us up and take us, then bring us home. If you have MediCal and are accepted as a patient at Southern Trinity (Mad River), contact Partnership and ask for this transport. No excuses for not pursuing dental health!
There’s also been one fairly major change in my appearance. See, I had terrible scalp psoriasis–like scratch it bloody itching and hurting. The psoriasis itself blocked off the hair shafts, so I had lost about 60% of my hair. With the medicine the doctor wanted me to use on my scalp, I reached the decision that the rest of my long (waist length, sob!) just had to go. So…I got my head shaved. And discovered freedom. I can wash my hair, dry it and “style it” and GO. With dry hair. Instead of waiting 2 hours for all the thickness to finally dry out. This is going to be my look for a while, as I continue to medicate the scalp. I’m also finding that while colder (hooray for hats!), it’s WAAAAAAAYY easier to deal with. And apparently people find it “cute” and “looks good” because I seem to have a pleasant scalp shape that can bear to be bared. I have invested in a set of clippers and actually trimmed it back down to the skin just today. Here’s the first cutting, done by a professional and then on the right, today’s newly cut and groomed look:
On the home side…I am doing more things as I feel so much better these days. I am cooking more often and I am actually handwashing the dishes. We haven’t used the dishwasher in over a month! I have also started crocheting again. Oh I still tire easily–that loss of muscle tone from lolling in bed, the hospital stay and more lolling in bed does take its toll.
We have upgraded our Instant Pot–I had the 3 qt and was using it, but not nearly as much as I had hoped. It’s just too small to be truly useful for us. Beloved found the newest, biggest (8 quart), most advanced Instant Pot on sale for 1/2 price–$150 instead of $300–and needless to say, we managed to pinch out the money to get it. We’ve been using it more or less continuously. It makes chicken Parmesan from start to finish in about 25 minutes. It makes steamed yams/sweet potatoes in 17 minutes cook time; that means in about 1/2 hour you go from raw to eating it. I’ve made Korean Ground Beef Bulgogi (think Hamburger helper for Korean food, but no pasta). I’ve also made the PERFECT hard-boiled eggs in less than 15 minutes from raw to eating. The shells come off like they were never supposed to be there. Each egg is a glistening, smooth ovoid without divots from digging off shells.
This model will also cook cakes, make yogurt, and just about anything else you can think of. I am loving it. They also did some redesigning which makes it easier to use. The inner pot has handles! So that makes it very easy to lift out of the unit–and it can be used on the stovetop or an induction plate as well as in the Instant Pot itself. They added some safety features–like the pot goes directly to “Natural Release” (where it slowly releases the pressure over time); if you need it to “quick release”, you just push a button and remove your hand from anywhere near the hot steam coming out.
Yes, I am enthused about it. Yes, I tell everyone else why they should get one! It is definitely a major part of the change we are making in our diet. We have gone to a modified paleo diet, referred to as the “primal diet”, where we try to eat more like the primal or primitive man did. No breads, no grains, decrease carbs significantly. Eat all the red meat, fatty and all, we want. Vegetables and fruit are absolutely allowed.
It means no more of the bakery items we were eating more than sufficient or wise. I have diabetes now, so it also means we’ve cut back nearly to none the amount of sugary things–candy, ice cream, sodas, etc. Between those two major changes, Beloved and I are seeing weight loss–he has lost 9 pounds in the past 6 weeks, more than he has lost at any other short time span, pretty much ever in his life. And I am also losing about 2-3 pounds every week or two. I have finally broken the 200 pound barrier, weighing in at 196 this week when I checked while at the VA clinic. (They provide a scale in the lobby so that us vets can check our weight more regularly than just at doctor’s visits every 3 months.)
We’re losing weight. And that’s a HUGE thing for us. (Literally.) If I can get my weight down low enough, my diabetes may disappear. (Fingers crossed and hopeful thoughts abound.) And not only is Beloved losing weight, at a slow and steady rate as it should be, BUT he is not craving the sweets he used to. I’ve mentioned before that he is an emotional eater–but the impetus of our diet and the nearly immediate results have given him a better “high” than a Boston cream pie ever did.
We still have “bad” (not on the diet) foods in the cabinets to use up, but since they will be a side dish to our main “good” meals, their effect should be negligible and easily mitigated. Good grief, I’ve even got him eating salads again! LMAO.
So, yes, at this point, our life is more or less revolving around food. We still have D&D games on Tuesday and Friday nights so we’re not completely homebound. I have psychotherapy sessions on Tuesdays which are proving helpful–or I’d stop going. Not quite as many doctor appointments, although I do have a follow up next Monday, as well as a podiatry procedure the following week. But at least I’m not having visit after visit, several times a week like I was there for a while. Guess that means I’m getting healthier.
Oh, I got a new tattoo–after five years of none! It’s a Japanese spelling of my daughter, Jessica’s, name, and it’s near the blue lotus on my arm. It’s sort of a memorial without being obviously a memorial. It’s an ombre rainbow. I am very pleased with the work and the artist. Wish I had the money to get more, now that I know who I’d go to!
That pretty much brings you up to date. Life is going well. I am learning not to overdo it–I am feeling so good that I end up doing more than I should and my back reminds me that I have wheelchair for a reason and I should stop being on my feet quite so much. Sigh.
So go vote on Super Tuesday, okay? And I’ll write again sometime in the reasonably near future. Peace and Light to all, Namaste!