How much stress does it take to turn a poop into a smashed poop?

(Because a poop never becomes a diamond. Take it from me. No, really, *here*–we have plenty of poop to share.)

26590 / 50000

Not as worried about the stupid plot of my NaNo novel after reading about the incredibly idiotic plot of _I Am Number Four_, the title of which should have probably been _This Is Number Two_

So . . . possibly I mentioned that my husband Don went in to see the doctor on Friday and had blood tests? They also set him up for a liver scan and ultrasound this Wednesday. It’s all because his liver enzymes have been elevated, and quitting Crestor didn’t fix the problem. We spent the weekend worrying about liver problems, mostly focused on “non-alcoholic fatty liver disease,” although they are also ruling out tumors and such. On top of that, the doctor put him on Lantus (via an insulin pen) AND had him continue all four of the diabetes pills he has been on. That did bring down his sugars, though. Not to be outdone, my mother decided this was the weekend that she would start “trying out” her own supply of Lantus shots. Guess who had to do a lot of “it’s OK” and “where are the hard candies?”

Because the major treatment for the fatty liver deal is dieting, we spent a lot of time reading about the Atkins/South Beach diet that the doctor initially told him to start immediately. He has done it before, but this time it seemed to make him nauseated even more often than normal. We wasted Sunday afternoon cooking a number of dishes that were failures (my mother pulled them out of the fridge and threw them down the grinder, claiming a stink.) Never trust those TV food shows and their long lists of ingredients. A particularly expensive (timewise as well as in $$$) failure was a Rachael Ray vegetarian shepherd’s pie that turned out to taste pretty much the same as if you’d just sauteed a skilletful of mushrooms in butter and added some kale on top to wilt (with a sprinkle of nutmeg and a bit of Worcestershire sauce). I hated to see that one go down the grinder, though, because I scraped off the topping and actually liked the taste of the veggie stuff underneath. (The control freak disposed of it anyhow, claiming that I would “eat potatoes with it and get fatter.” Where would the potatoes have come from? Only she knows.)

Well, yesterday morning after I got my own blood work done, the doctor’s office called and asked Don to come in to get more blood taken because they’re going to test him for hereditary hemochromatosis! He got all upset because he does have the symptoms (fatigue, an ashy skin tone, all that stuff) and he panicked because this does cause diabetes and also can damage all the other vital organs. The treatment (and I was thrilled to hear that there is one) is to bleed you! Yes, that’s how they killed many of the greats of the ancient (especially Renaissance-era) world. But if he does turn out to have this, he’ll have to be bled down until the ferritin levels fall. His ferritin is 427, and it’s supposed to be 12 to 100. So they are looking seriously at this. (Although there are other hideous causes and more harmless things.)

I had to take to my bed (actually, my living room sofa) all afternoon with Christmas catalogs and those “Apartment Therapy” midcentury modern decorating books after hearing this and looking the details up online. I suspect his brother and sister might have this as well and/or should be tested. This could be why my niece has that heart problem, and they’ve never thought to test her for this.

Don is mostly raving about how much it might cost to get bled once a month for the rest of his life. (Initially, until his levels come under control, he would have to go up to eight times a month to be bled!) I suggested [sarcasm alert] that he just not tell the Red Cross about this and simply show up at the blood drives. After all, they take winos off the street and pay them to give a pint of blood!

But everyone screamed that they screen for diabetes and what if the extra iron hurt the recipients and all that practical stuff. Ironic that Mama has too little iron (pernicious anemia) and Hubby may have too much (and it really is IRONic.) If only I could take his extra iron and give it to her! The reason he’s worried is that a couple of weeks ago, his project manager announced that their project has been de-funded and that they only have cash to work until the end of the year–unless they get some venture capital. They said the company might hang on to them for up to four more months, but nothing’s guaranteed. His direct supervisor seems to “know something” and expects them to be sold to another concern, but the guy might just be in denial. Who can say? But for whatever reason, most of his group is confident that “it’ll work out.” Their product is, after all, a Bell Labs original product and unlike anything else on the market–and they already have 12 customers they’re supporting and interest from other buyers. I would hate to see all that potential go to waste.

Anyhow, I told him not to worry about the costs of health care no matter what, as we could go to the charity hospital. Surely there still is one.

And we haven’t gotten a confirmed diagnosis, anyway. AND I suppose I should be thankful that it could be somewhat “easy” to treat (for some values of “easy”). He came out negative for hepatitis, which is what Mama was betting on. (He has the nausea and so forth that she experienced when she had Hepatitis A in 1952 and it took them a year to figure out what she had, as it was “new” back then. She got it from eating shellfish in San Fran, they told her, probably abalone. But who knows.)

I really REALLY need something good to happen . . . I wouldn’t want to get DEPRESSED or anything. Everyone thinks “you can just take a mood elevating pill for that,” but that doesn’t fix the problems–just makes you not give a hoot any more. Not helpful or constructive.

*end dump*

There have been some high points in my life over the years, and perhaps I should think on these things for encouragement.

1970-1971: National Spelling Bee, advancing to the final rounds (should have won)
1975 or so: Front row seats at Paul Simon concert on SMU campus, McFarlin auditorium, with best friend Ann. (I went to buy tickets and cried because there weren’t any good seats, and the lady who worked there gave us the tix SHE had been saving for herself) (At the time we were nuts for P. S.)
1980: Surprise birthday party attempted by my friends at church, primarily Marcus. But a tornado warning came up, so I didn’t get there until about an hour after I was supposed to “come over to study”–my mother has always been panicky about weather and she was in full-blown freakout. Still, someone remembered my birthday! The family around here is singularly uninterested in birthdaying.
1984: Wedding. Honeymoon trip. Excitement!
1996: _Dulcinea_ wins first runner-up in the first Warner Aspect First Fantasy Novel contest, although nothing comes of it
2007(?): Would have been a contestant on Drew Carey’s short-lived TV game show “Power of 10”–I had passed the video interview and everything–but they only made 15 episodes, so I never got out there. Still, that was exciting while it lasted.
2008: Scotch Brand Most Gifted Wrapper contest in NYC
2010: Dallas News Christmas Cookie Contest

I’m sure there were others and that I’ll think of them.

~Ook!~ That was a BIG flash and boom outside the window. The way things have been going for me, I might have been the target! [sarcasm alert} Better get off of this computer. Nobody reads this anyhow.


Author: shalanna

Shalanna: rhymes with "Madonna" and "I wanna," and is not a soundalike with "Hosanna" or "Sha-Na-Na." Aging hippie with long hair, husband, elderly mother, and yappy Pomeranian. I've been writing since I could hold a crayon. I started with fiction, which Mama said was "lying." “Don’t tell stories,” she would admonish, in Southern vernacular. “That's all in your imagination!” When grownups said this, they were not approving. So, shamed, I stopped telling stories for a few years--rather, I stopped letting anyone read them. I'm married to a fellow computer nerd who doesn't really like hearing about writing, but who reads sf/fantasy and understands the creative drive. I'm actually a nonconformist/hippie still wearing bluejeans and drop earrings and the Alice-in-Wonderland hair with headbands and sandals. Favorite flavor is chocolate/orange, favorite color is either Dreamsicle orange (cantaloupe) or bubble-gum pink, favorite musical is either Bye Bye Birdie, Rocky Horror, or The Producers . . . wait, I also love The Music Man. Is this getting way too specific and irrelevant yet? Obvious why I don't sell a ton of flash fiction, isn't it? To define oneself, I always say, it is good to make a list. How about a booklist? Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird Frank and Ernestine Gilbreth, Cheaper by the Dozen C.S.Lewis, The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe (all the Narnia books) J.R.R.Tolkien,The Hobbit/LORD OF THE RINGS trilogy Gail Godwin, The Odd Woman F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby J. D. Salinger, Catcher in the Rye (before dismissing it, actually read it) George Orwell, 1984 Kurt Vonnegut, Cat's Cradle Donna Tartt, The Secret History Mark Twain, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn James Allen, As A Man Thinketh Mark Winegardner, Elvis Presley Boulevard James Thurber, My Life and Hard Times The Wizard of Oz, L. Frank Baum Winnie-the-Pooh/House at Pooh Corner, A. A. Milne Peter Pan, J. M. Barrie The KJV and NIV Bible (each translation has its glories)

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