Saturday, March 30, 2013

The Hardest Thing

After pinching my Sciatic nerve in June 2011 which left my left leg numb for 2 month, I recovered, but pinching it in June of 2012 and worse in July, I haven't recovered. So the task right now is working just not to get worse and only hope I can get better, but now I'm not what I was a year ago for walking and carrying a backpack.

And that's the hardest thing mentally, working hard and hoping I can get better, but not knowing if I will or make matters worse. The specialist said it would take 1-2 years at best and likely a permanent condition to some degree. That's what sucks, having been better and knowing I may not get back there again, and all I can do is try, which leaves me tired most days.

When they say getting old sucks, believe them.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

An Update

In September of last year I wrote a piece, 307 Hours Later, about shaving my full beard in November of 2001 (actually the Thanksgiving Day holiday weekend) and then getting tired of shaving everyday and starting electrolysis in July 2005.

And 307 hours later, my face was finally, but only inititally, cleared. There always is followup appointments for regrowth which is common, which varies with the electrologist and their technique and equipment.

They can do a really good job the first time, getting the needle right down to the root to kill it, but it's very painful, and tedious, taking far longer to clear an area let alone the face. The other method is to go light with the technique and less deep, but this takes repeated tries as the hair root regrows shallower each time.

In short, it's about the same amount of time, and money, and produces different effects during the time but the same effect at the end. My electrologist, only one I've gone to the whole time, was the second, go lighter and more often. This means more regrowth.

Since September I went twice a month for the rest of 2012 and once a month in 2013. This gives the hair more time in between to regrow and pretty much consumes the hour appointment with less left each time. We expect by next month I'll be clear again and the regrowth will be minimal for a few periodic visits.

I know many people try laser treatment for this and it works too, but the techniques doesn't produce permanent hair removal and is dependent on the type and color of the skin and facial hair. It does however work for the whole face in between sessions and is near permanent for some who don't have a lot of facial hair.

Anyway, this is just an update. I'm at 316 hours now with only a few more to go. And yes, it's still worth it not to shave anymore except the last few remaining hairs, like one swipe of the razor.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Food Envy

Today I stopped by the local REI store (been a member since 1982) to buy a few things and found myself standing in front of two rows of food. First was the camping food, you know the bags of dried food you heat and eat, from breakfast to dinner. Second was the snacks, yeah, from bars to chewy things.

First, I can't eat almost all of the camping food for the ingredients. Some I'd love to try but when you take out all the foods I can't eat, there's nothing really left to eat. You see, most camping food relies on one set of main ingredients, spices. Lots of spices.

The only spices I can eat is salt, and maybe a small pinch of pepper. And when you take out the dairy, the wheat, the meat, and the vegetables, there's no much left except the bag itself. Even pudding or other simple foods are out.

Gee, what's next? Well, the snacks, you know all those bars of some brand and type. I have to scan the ingredients there two because I have to first eliminate those with wheat - really grains, nuts, seeds and most fruits, which includes dates the most used fruit in non-wheat bars.

In short, the whole aisle of all those snacks, which some nutritionists argue aren't really good for you for all the fat, calories, etc you don't need in one food, is like standing in front of Nieman Marcus with $10. It doesn't get you very far.

So, in the end I've been relegated to Clif Shot Roks, which were discontinued last fall and is supposedly scheduled to return soon, and PowerBar Energy Blasts. I found a few other brands today but they don't seem that different and cost more.

Such is life somedays. It doesn't pay to shop when you can't buy and really can't eat the food you really want to eat. But I did get the rest of my stuff.

Better but not Good

I've written enough about my Siatic nerve issue, especially in the last two months when the front of the right leg from above the knee to the ankle remains almost numb, the shin is improving a little but the knee is still totally numb, and the left leg is slightly worse with balance problems which wasn't there before.

The walking is improving my overall health and fitness and slowly rebuilding the leg muscles but it's still the message, it's better but not good. I spent the weekend moving boxes around and carrying bags of stuff to the trash, meaning lots of work for the lower back, and I felt it.

I still walked but both the back and legs were happy I took a day off for errands. That's the problem, on days I walk to town or elsewhere trying to get my 5-6+ miles in I'm usually tired the rest of the day, and with the flu 2-3 weeks of the last month, I've been tired on tired.

But it's still the message, better but not good. I'm still trying to arrange the work and errands around the walking and increase the walking from the now 5 days a week to 6 days or adding 1-2 miles in the 5 days, to increase the total distance for each week.

I'll see what happens, it's just frustrating it's all I can do now without causing more harm or injuring muscles where I can't exercise. Yeah, sometimes life just sucks.