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He’s Gone July 17, 2010

Posted by Rusty in Uncategorized.
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My friend/former patient passed away last Thursday evening, the day after I had spoken with him.  Doc called to let me know, and we planned to go to the funeral or memorial service together.  Unfortunately, our friend had already made arrangements with the funeral home to be immediately cremated and “NO services what-so-ever.”   This is typical of his personality, and I believe he had mentioned to me before that once he was gone, he was GONE, and didn’t want any kind of fuss made over him.  I would have liked to honor him by going to his funeral, however, he knows how much he meant to me, and paying tribute after his passing wouldn’t have made a difference.  Rest in blissful peace, “Hard Luck.”  I love you and will miss you, always.

I’ve got an old high school friend from Indiana (Rival school, at that!) coming for a visit in two weeks.  We are really looking forward to seeing him and meeting his daughter.  We’re going to go tubing on the Salt River, something I have never done before.  I can’t wait!  I’ve always wanted to go tubing.  There are a few other things he wants to do while he’s here (He lived here for 5 years after high school, but hasn’t been back since ’85.  He’s not going to believe how much it’s changed.) like go up to Camelback Mountain – the lookout point, and see if the Mexican restaurant he used to frequent is still down on Camelback Road.  Other than that, I’m sure we’ll find ways to occupy ourselves and get into some kind of trouble.  Haha.

I’m still plugging away at my HCG diet.  I had a bit of a stall, as I wasn’t eating enough (It’s a 500 calorie diet, how on earth could I not eat even 500 calories a day?!) but I’m back on track now, trying to eat a bit more, and back to losing weight.  It’s day 15 and I’ve lost 14 pounds, so I am well pleased with the results so far.  I’m not looking forward to my next piece of dry chicken though.  Ugh.  Only 8 more days on the diet, before my two-week break, then the last round. I can do eight days.  I can.  Really.  (Can’t I?)  I should be done dieting by Labor Day.

Did a bit of side work for my old boss on Friday.  He’s getting ready to move to Missouri and his wife called and asked if I could help him out with something specific, and said she’d leave me a check.  The job only took me five minutes, (We all thought it was going to take much longer, but, hey, I’m a genius and figured it out rather quickly.) so I made a nice chunk of change for that 5 minutes of work, and felt guilty taking pay for it.  The rest of the time we sat and chatted about his move,the kids,  life, and other things.  It was nice.  We’re going to try to go out to lunch next week. 

I’ve got to make my infamous cake truffles for a co-workers birthday next week, and then the week after that is our oldest son’s :::G A S P::: 26th birthday.  He and his wife will be coming over for his birthday dinner (White chili and homemade rolls – no dessert, per his requests.  He says we always eat too much chili and have no room for dessert, anyway.  I wonder if a candle on a roll would suffice??)

In August, for Kristen’s birthday, we are planning on renting a cabin up in Flagstaff for the weekend and celebrating with her and Gunnar.  His moving out has been hard on me.  I still haven’t gotten past the point of thinking I’ll see him when I get home from work.  We text frequently, but it’s just not the same as sharing time with him.  He’s an amazing kid, and I know they all have to leave the nest sometime (They WILL all leave, won’t they??) but it would be so much easier if he had moved to an apartment here in town, rather than 2.5 hours away!

It has been unbearably hot and humid here the past week.  The monsoon is trying to move in, though it has alluded my neighborhood.  Last night parts of the valley got some rain.  To our east.  To our west.  To our north.  I swear we live in a no-rain zone!  I know, I know,  it’s ironic for a girl from Louisiana to rant about humidity, but I’ve lived here for almost 13 years – I am not used to humidity any more.  Now I’m wondering if I would survive should we ever move back home.  (I must admit, we loved the Flagstaff area, and wouldn’t mind moving up there!!  It’s so … green!  I could have an actual garden!)

I was watering what’s left of one of my tomato plants this morning, and the resident Praying Mantis was not amused.  He actually chased me!  Yes, leapt off the plant and jumped at my feet in a rage!  I knocked him back with a gentle stream of water, but he was not to be deterred.  I backed up quickly, but he was not going to stand for that mess.   He ran towards me, I felt like screaming like a school-girl, but instead blasted him with a stronger stream of water, stunning him into submission.  Come after me, will ya, when I am trying to keep your habitat alive.   I should let your non-producing tomato plant of a home die for that little stunt.  Bastard.


He’s Dying July 9, 2010

Posted by Rusty in Uncategorized.
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Doc K texted me yesterday and told me that the patient I mentioned in my last post was dying, and it was time for me to pray.  Well, I ALWAYS pray for him, and had been praying especially hard since I visited with him on Wednesday.  Now I am left to wonder if I should pray for survival or a peaceful passing?  He hasn’t wanted to live since his wife died a few years ago.  There’s nothing he looks forward to.  He has no children.  I think he’s ready to die, and really, he’s been ready for quite some time. 

I believe that I will pray that he comes back to me in his next life, so we can be friends once again.  It’s so sad, and I have to keep myself from crying about him every time he crosses my mind.   He wouldn’t want me to cry, though.  He’d just want me to go on with my life and forget all about him. 

I won’t ever forget him, though.

Today is a big day in our household.  My husband won civilian of the quarter out at his job on the base, and won a ride in an F-16!  Today is the big day!  I’m going to go out and take pictures of him (In his sexy flight suit!!) with the plane, and in the cockpit before they take off.  He’s like a school kid on his first day of summer vacation.  He’ll be grinning from ear to ear.  I get butterflies for him when I think about it!

I have started my second round of HCG for weight loss.  The first time I took it for 43 days and only lost 20 pounds (Well, thirty if you count the ten pounds in water weight I lost, too) and I was a little dissapointed that was all I lost.  I lost it all in the first 2.5 weeks, then … nothing.  I had read somewhere that the HCG program might not work as well for people who are on insulin (Hey, that’s me!) so I was not expecting to lose as much weight as the patients in our practice have lost.  (We have one patient who has lost 100 pounds in 4 rounds!)  This time, however, I’m doing stellar!  I started the diet on Monday and I have lost 8 pounds so far!  Yay!  I’m really excited about losing the weight, and I didn’t gain any weight back in the interim between the two courses, either.  I have to eat low carb for my diabetes, so it’s not like I have a huge caloric intake on a daily basis, anyway.  (As a matter of fact, I’ve been told I don’t eat ENOUGH.) 

This time, though, I am only doing a 23 day course, then taking a two week break, then continuing with the rest of the round.  If I continue to lose at this rate (And I am not going to bank on that, though it would be wonderful should that happen) I will be at or below my goal weight.  Right now I weigh  less than I did in high school, though childbirth and “Older age” have totally changed the shape of my body.  I think I looked better back then, of course, but if I get to my goal weight I should be pretty happy with the resulting body.  I’m really psyched!

I’ve been exercising daily in the pool using a form of resistance (A rubber ball) for my arms, and doing many, many leg kicks.  I tread water for a time, which is one of the best calorie burning exercises you can do.  The exercising really makes me ache while I am doing it, but I never hurt the next day.  I’m not sure if that means it’s not doing me any good, or if “Water aerobics” is just a kinder, gentler means of excercise.      As soon as I garner up a few milk jugs I will be using those in the pool as “Weights,” to help with my arm toning.  Hints, tips, ideas for water exercise are welcome.  C ‘mon, don’t be shy!

Gun is home for the weekend, and since Bub has moved their bed into his room, he’s grounded to sleeping on the couch.  Poor thing.  The grandkids were up at five thirty this morning, totally voiding out my (and Gun’s) morning “Quiet time.”  I tend to get up extra early just for that quiet time.  Didn’t get any of that this morning.  Sigh.

I forgot to mention I am trying phentermine for the first week or so that I’m on the diet.  I was so paranoid about taking it, I waited until I got to work yesterday before I swallowed my first pill.  (You know, just in case I was going to have any major problems with it, I’d be at work … with a DOCTOR!  Haha!)  Oh.  My.  Heavens.  I am loving this stuff.  I could hardly sit down all afternoon, got a lot done around the house, even though I should have been laying/sitting down with my foot elevated.  (More on that in a minute.) 

Yeah, I am usually so anal about my medical appointments, I think about them for days before, to ensure I don’t forget to go to the appointment.  I was thinking my podiatrist appointment was next Wednesday.  So I am sitting at work, and my phone alerts me of an appointment.  I had ten minutes to get across town to my appointment.  Impossible in Phoenix to get down the block in ten minutes, much less across town!  I managed to get there in 15 minutes, though – someone was watching over me and gave me all green lights on the way) and ended up sitting in the waiting room (How appropriately that area is named) for a good 15 mnutes before my appointment.  I was only supposed to pick up my new orthotics for my shoes (Talk about feeling OLD) because I have a fallen bone in one foot, and plantar fibromytosis in the other, the inserts will help with the pain, and keeping a callous from forming under the fallen bone.  He actually cut out the callous again this visit – no anesthesia – because it had grown so much in the past three weks that it was painful to walk again.  Last time I didn’t feel any pain when he cut it out, but this time?   Ouch!  He dug a little deeper and my foot bled for a few hours afterward.  I think I left the top of my head n the ceiling of the exam room.  Ah, well, I probably wasn’t using that portion of my brain anyway!

I am wanting to finish the job of shampooing the carpets that I started yesterday (Because I was cleaning the new bbq grill grates and dropped one on the carpet, leaving several black, greasy spots … they came out, thank goodness) but Gun is still asleep on the couch, so that option is null and void.  I suppose it’s going to have to wait until after the F-16 flight, now.

It’s Been Too Long … July 7, 2010

Posted by Rusty in Uncategorized.
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I don’t even know where to begin.  It’s been about 18 months since my last post, and life has gone on, some things have changed, and some things never change.

Mostly the reason I am writing today is that I need to get something off my chest.  A little background is in order, else everyone will be confused.  I left my job with Doc K in January of this year.  More on that later, but it’s kinda relevant to the story.  Doc and I have kept in touch and are still friendly, and we get together every couple of weeks to talk and meditate and trade treatments.

This morning I was waiting for one of my favorite patients to arrive for his appointment with Doc K.  I have missed him terribly, and I am always busy at work when he arrives for his appointment down there. (My new job is in the same bldg.) This morning I was actually waiting on him to arrive so I could say hello.  He was always prompt for his appointments, and he wasn’t showing up, so I texted Doc and asked him if he had an appointment today.  Doc actually came down from his office to talk to me, and said he indeed was scheduled to show up. 

He finally did arrive, half an hour later via a caretaker/driver, using a walker and looking extremely frail.  He was literally a skeleton covered with skin.  When I touched his back, all I felt were bony protuberances.  He wouldn’t look at me, and he wouldn’t answer me.  He was embarrassed for me to see him that way.  I wasn’t sure if he even remembered me, he was in such a sorry state, but I asked him if he did, and he replied “Oh, yes, I remember you!”  I couldn’t bear it any more, I was about to burst into tears because of the state of his health.  I bid him good-bye and went straight into my office and cried.  He’s dying, and I don’t want him to. 

My heart feels so heavy.  He was a curmudgeon when I first met him.  He wouldn’t say hello, and if I had been dying of thirst he wouldn’t have given me a drink.  Just the kind of guy he was.  I broke through his barriers, though, and he became very friendly, even sharing stories of his life with me.   He looked like a miniature version of my own grandfather, which is probably why I was drawn to him, and they both were railroad workers.  I looked forward to seeing him every week – and I believe he looked forward to seeing me, as well.

I fear today will be the last time I ever see him alive.

Excuse me now, the lump in my throat is beginning to swell.