Tuesday, July 16, 2013

A Dream & A Goal

When I retired in 2006 I had a dream and a goal. I had money for one but not both, as there wasn't enough to do both. I chose the goal in hopes the dream would fit into the plan. It did for awhile but then  it got to the point I couldn't go any farther without money.

The goal, however, kept costing more than I had thought, more than I had planned and more than I had money. And then life snuck in to steal what extra money I had, to where today the dream is still a dream but it's 2-3 years away before I can even think about it than do anything.

The goal is still a goal, albeit I'm much of the way there but it keeps growing and taking more time and energy, and yes, more money. The business is part of the plan and while it's a legal, licensed one, it's not a reality beyond a name and a few photo products.

And life is still sneaking it and stealing the money away from both the dream and the goal, and all I know is to keep going and survive and hope the dream I've had since I was young becomes real and the goal becomes more a reality and than just a lot of work it is now.

And life will stop stealing my time, energy and money. Ah, we can hope and reality can and will take. It's all I have left that I can call mine and my life.

What I Know

What I know about myself. Being thin is genetics, something I don't have. Getting fat is easy, do nothing and eat, it's my genetics. Getting thin is hard; hard work for my body which my genetics doesn't want to do. So it's the choice, work hard and maybe the body will lose the fat or not and get fatter.

Sometimes you can't fight your own genetics and the best you can do is keep trying. It's all you have.

Monday, July 15, 2013

How Do You Stop

How do you stop your small intestine from bleeding? Really, it's not a hypothetical question. It's one of the effects I have from drugs, food, and occasionally stress. And when it starts I can only suffer the effects and wait until it heals enough to eat again.

Yeah, sucks royal and a small amount of food, two pills or some lingering thought or feeling sets it off, and later come all the blood clots from the bleeding with occasional blood. I wish there was a treatment or I had a cure, but I don't, and now since Saturday I suffer from eating.

How do you stop your small intestine from bleeding? Besides the obvious, don't do what causes it.

Monday, July 8, 2013

I Can Not Change

Things about my life I can not change.

I can not change the fact of my Sciatic nerve has left me with a life I didn't plan and one I lost. I can not change the fact it can worse anytime, doing anything and I lose all the work I've gained and face starting over.

I can not change the fact the only solution is to keep exercising as many days as I can and hope the nerve heals to get my life back, but until then I can't risk reinjuring it doing the things everyone else does and I used to do.

I can not change the fact my digestive system and body is hyper sensitive to food and prone to intestinal bleeding, and I live with a diet, while still healthy and tasteful, is limited and getting smaller than larger.

I can not change the fact that my annuity, although promised to increase with the cost of living, hasn't kept pace and I'm slowly losing and moving into the gray area between a sustainable life and poverty where you have to make financial decisions about the normal things of life.

I can not change the fact I also dug a financial hole trying to build a small personal business and am facing 3-5 years before I dig out of that hole and still keep the business.

I can not change the fact that health insurance and healthcare has been costly the last few years chasing a host of physical problems, and while I know where I am and what I live with physically, it's come at the cost of half my savings.

I can not change the fact, like many people and families, I'm one expensive problem away from financial disaster.

I can not change the fact I made decisions going back 25-30 years which has left me with stuff few people are interested in and fewer want to buy, so it's sits because its interest or usefulness is long behind me.

I can not change the fact my parents made decisions about me and I made some decision about them, both long dead, which we never resolved and caused them to be angry enough with me to cut me from their estate, albeit what it was.

I can not change the fact my Dysthymia isn't curable and treatment is chasing an imaginary solution which doesn't exist and it's a daily struggle to keep it in check, and some days I don't win the battle, and know it's a war I'll fight the rest of my life.

I can not change the fact that this year and the next few years will be about just existing and getting through a period that circusmstances, other factors and I created, and at 63, it's hard knowing better may only be when I'm in my late 60's.

I can not change the fact a personal goal and plan has been put on hold for 2-3 years because of the problems (above) I'm living with and the realities that my body reacts adversely and excerbates other existing problems to treatment for this change.

I can not change these facts and can only make decisions and do things which only slowly improve my life and hope the economy, life and other events don't damage, or worse destroy, everything I've gained by the things I can not change.

I can not change what has happened and can not change the vast number of events which effect my life. I can not change the body and mind I am left with now. I can only change what I am willing to do and strive for with the rest of my life.

That I can change and live with the rest as it happens, hoping I survive and maybe get better, knowing hope and maybe isn't a good plan, but knowing I still have goals.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

I Can't Eat Eggs

I can't eat eggs. I can't eat fried eggs. I can't eat scrambled eggs. I can't eat poached eggs. I can't eat boiled eggs, soft or hard. I can't eat an omellette. I can't eat baked eggs. I can't eat quiche. I can't eat eggs souffle.

I can't eat eggs with ham, bacon, seafood, mushrooms or anything. I can't eat eggs, except eggs in a mix to cook something else, when the eggs are lost among the other ingredients. Otherwise, eggs and I, or rather my digestive system and eggs don't get along.

Much against Dr. Seuss, I do like eggs, even green eggs and ham. They just don't like me. And being sick from eating eggs is no fun. So sadly, I won't eat eggs, ever again.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

A Year Ago

A year ago today (July 2nd) I woke up as usual and when I got out of bed and took two steps my right leg from above the hip to the toes suddenly burts in to pain so intense I couldn't stand or walk and had to lie down on the floor for 15 or so minutes until the pain subsided.

When I went to stand up, after two more steps it happened again and slumped to the floor where the pain subsided. I stayed there the longest time I could remember noting any movement caused pain. It was like all the nerves from the right hip to the toes were burning and yelling at me.

I can't remember now how long it took to just get to the bathroom but I couldn't stand, sit or walk. I did manage to use the bathroom and get to the living room couch where I stayed for some time before trying to get to the kitchen.

The whole morning was like that, lie down for a long time to get maybe a minute of doing something or going somewhere in the house. I did manage to get the air mattress out along with the light sleeping bag to put them on the living room floor.

I spent the next three days there, quietly lying there with the TV on and not moving anymore than I had so there was no pain. But any attempt to stand, sit or walk was met with the intense pain. By the 5th the time window was 3-5 minutes where I was able to get ready and get to the clinic.

They diagnosed pinched Sciatic nerve. Apparently I had pinched it to the left leg a year ago where the leg was weak and numb for nearly two months before going away. I may have pinched it again to the right leg a month earlier when the right leg went numb, but everything else was ok.

It took until early August where I could walk without a lot of pain. I discovered during this that addictive pain killers don't work on me along with drug to induce intense or excessive happy feelings. Those parts of my brain don't work normally so the Oxycodone was useless on me.

I took one pill and waited, and waited some more. Four hours later with the pain barely dented and feeling nothing else but slightly sleepy, I ended up reducing the pill to halves and then quarters to get some sleep but eventually stopped taking them where there's still over half the bottle left.

I wasn't until September I could walk any reasonable distance without pain and could sit or stand for awhile without more than mild pain in the lower back. But it left my front of my right leg from above the knee to the ankle numb.

That part of my leg is still numb and the left leg was left weakend with balance problems which persists today. At this time I can't rely on the left leg for anything which stresses, even small things like running up stairs two at a time. The left knee sometimes wants to buckle.

And while walking has improved the strength in both legs, it has not improved the numbness in the right leg except every now and then some of the nerves wake up to whine and then go back to being numb.

The hardest part is that the improvement is intermittent and sometimes doesn't improve but worsens. Some weeks it's like it was months ago but I know to just wait and sure enough the legs come back to where they are now.

It's just weird but clearly nerve related. I don't lift anything heavy and still find I can do anything which requires carrying anything in front (eg. laundry basket) without the back hurting the next day. And remember pain killers don't work beyond mild relief. Yeah.

The doctors initially said it would easily be 1-2 years before the Sciatic nerve improves and longer to get back to normal, if it does, and exercise is the only treatment. That may not be true as I'm research other methods than drugs or similar conventional medicine.

Anyway, that was a year ago today. A year later, it's obviously better but it has taken its toll on my physically but more so mentally. I still haven't gotten through the lesson of human fragility where one day you're fine and the next you're not.

My goal is still to get back to running (they don't recommend) and hiking with some weight. For now I'm restricted to 15-20 lbs and even that hurts some days for hours afterward, so hiking is out too. And that's the mental side, it changes your goals and plans.

That's the state of affairs a year later.

Monday, July 1, 2013

Mid-year Review

Ok, I've been walking a lot, 140 miles in the last four months of last year and 627 in the first six months of this year. I've almost worn out my 5-10 Dome shoes I bought last January with about 600 miles on them and maybe only 100-200 miles left before I wear the soles.

The upper part of the shoe is still in good condition, but I have an mild underpronation with both feet and wear out the outer heal and toes of shoes faster than normal wear, often where it's through the sole before the shoe is half worn out.

But I've found that 5-10 shoes are the best for wear. They weren't always as I've had shoes wear out in 2-3 months but lately their shoes have been great, especially when I've worn them through a winter, spring and now summer weather. Yeah, from the worst rain and snow to the hot days here.

Anyway, all this has had a significant improvement in the body with the muscle tone, especially the legs and weight, if I ever weighed myself, which I don't but I know in January at the doctor's office I had lost 15 lbs from the first four months of walking.

That, however was probably the easy fat, and over the last 5-6 months, the easy fat is almost gone and I'm left with the fat my body loves, sort of the genetic fat level, which takes more exercise, hence the longer walks with hopefully more weight in the backpack.

That said, the goal was to get to 160 or less lbs from my initial 180+ last summer. I think I'm getting close as the clothes are fitting better but there comes a point the body is so big and won't get smaller, just healthier and fitter. And that's the goal, wherever that weight is but with the least amount of fat.

The second goal is to get back to running. That goal, however, is more a dream or hope for now as I've tried short jogs during the walk home, but never the walk to town as I get shin splints so easily with stress on the legs with running.

This is the reason for the longer walks, for two purposes. The first is to build endurance back into the leg muscles. The second is aerobic exercise, to burn calories and get the body into fat burnning mode. And the distance was to make it comparable to my old running distance of 3+ miles.

I've done that with walking 2+ hours at a 15-16 minute pace with some weight. To get back to running, I'd have to start with shorter distance and build back to the distance I had and maybe longer runs down the road.

But all of that is a goal for now while I walk. And walk a lot, but at least there's a cafe with a coffee drink with my name on it along the way.