7 Quick Takes: Last Week’s Thanksgivings Edition

7 Quick Takes

I was discharged from the hospital last Thursday afternoon and replaced my laptop that afternoon as well. (Thanks go to my mom for picking it up for me.) Here are my thanksgivings for things that went well in the hospital.

— 1 —

We discovered the anemia before it got worse. Seriously, I was lucky. My hemoglobin was at 6.6 g/dL when they transfused me and normal for women of my age is 12.0 g/dL. (7.0 and below is the threshold for transfusion.) I’m pretty sure my mom is still rolling her eyes over my comment that “this explains the ice-chewing” when the doctor told me. (One of my classmates actually commented earlier in the quarter that ice-chewing is a sign of anemia and that the hospital has the best ice. She was right on both counts.)

— 2 —

Someone donated the blood that was given to me. Seriously, I’m incredibly thankful for blood donors because this is the SECOND transfusion I’ve received. (The first one was during my first week of life because I’m a preemie.)

— 3 —

Every IV placed was done so without too much pain. I’m quite shocked at how well the ER nurse placed both IV’s in my right arm because it was almost painless. When both of them leaked on Wednesday, my hospital nurse called IV therapy to place one in my left hand, and the young man doing it put some lidocaine in first which made it almost completely painless. Given that it usually takes 2-3 tries and I usually end up in tears, I’m incredibly thankful to them.

— 4 —

My church jumped in to take care of me pastorally. My priest came twice, our prayer person came once, and the Eucharistic visitor came (though he didn’t bring me Communion.) In addition, I had people calling and checking on me as well as multiple messages and cat memes devoted to me on the church’s Facebook page. 🙂 (I’m very spoiled loved.)

— 5 —

Mom and Dad were able to take care of Daniel. Neither of my parents are trained to tube-feed him, so they had to get him to eat… and they did. (Kiddo did not lose any weight while I was in the hospital.) Additionally, they had to get him to take his two inhalers… so Dad taught him how to be a fighter pilot. 🙂 (I was impressed.)

— 6 —

I got a really good ER doctor who took me seriously. When I had the mutant death respiratory thing last January, I got an ER doctor who refused to treat me because I refused steroids. (He also forced me to talk, which wasn’t necessary because I had everything he needed to know written out.) My ER doctor this time took me at my word when I told him that I couldn’t have oral steroids, and he remembered me from treating Daniel in the past. He was incredibly compassionate, asked good questions, and was gentle with his exam. (He also asked how Daniel was doing, which made me even more willing to trust him with my care.)

— 7 —

I had good nurses and student nurses. All of my nurses, student nurses, and CNA’s were delightful. This really does make a difference.

For more Quick Takes, visit Kelly at This Ain’t The Lyceum.

Taking a Surprise Break

On Monday, I ended up in the ER with what I thought was just some asthma exacerbation. I didn’t know until I was triaged that I had a fever of almost 102F, and the EKG they did showed tachycardia. They tentatively diagnosed me with pneumonia, and the ER doc came back 5 minutes later to ask when I started bleeding badly because I was severely anemic.

Wait… severely anemic? I joked that this explained my ice chewing habit, and the doctor told me that he was definitely admitting me now.

They gave me a blood transfusion yesterday morning, and have been doing extensive bloodwork and ultrasounds to try and figure out what is going on.

Adding insult to injury… MY LAPTOP DIED, which means I can’t do any homework until I get discharged and can borrow my mom’s computer. (I’m typing this on my phone.)

So… I’ll be taking at least a week off from blogging until I can get another laptop.

7 Quick Takes: Dispatches from Snowmaggedon Edition

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

Understatement of the year. So, it’s been kinda snowy here…

Winter finally came.

— 2 —

Super Bowl Sunday. It started snowing the morning of Super Bowl Sunday and didn’t stop until the next day. I blame Tom Brady. (Everything is his fault.)

— 3 —

Snow days. It was forecasted to be a very warm and dry winter (as El Nino is up here), so everybody understocked all the ice melt stuff. As a result, none of the towns and cities were prepared to deal with all the snow and street clearing that needed to happen. Monday following the Super Bowl was a snow day for both Daniel and me. Tuesday brought a 2-hour delay for the kid and another snow day for me because the college was having so much of a problem clearing the parking lots and walkways.

— 4 —

Freezing things off. A large problem is that it was so cold so that instead of melting away as it usually does here, it stayed around. My dad was shoveling like heck and trying to source some ice melt or something to keep the driveway and steps clear. Unfortunately, there was almost none to be found in western Washington, and Amazon wasn’t going to be able to deliver until Monday. Thankfully, my uncle had 100lbs of it sitting at my grandma’s house because she hadn’t wanted it used on her driveway.

— 5 —

Snow panther. Minion thought watching the snow was AWESOME and wanted to go play in it. He would try to sneak out at every opportunity. I finally put him in a snowbank during one of his trips out and covered him with snow, thinking that he might get cold and not want to go out again. Instead, the little demon thought it was the BEST DAY EVER and has continued to do it since.


— 6 —

More snow days. It started snowing again this Monday, and campus closed early. We got another two inches on top of the six that we already had. They announced a snow day for Daniel on Monday night and called me at 5:30 am on Tuesday to let me know that the college would be closed. I blame the L.A. Rams.

— 7 —

Melting. It’s been above freezing for a couple days, and all our snow on Monday night was wet so much of it is melted now. It meant that Tuesday and Wednesday were like walking and driving through a gigantic Slurpee. I blame the Dodgers.

For more Quick Takes, visit Kelly at This Ain’t The Lyceum.

The Simple Woman’s Daybook: February 12, 2019

For Today… February 12, 2019

Simple Woman's Daybook

Looking out my window… 34F and snowing.

I am thinking… about my design project for this week for my Publisher class.

I am thankful… to not have to go out today unless I want to.

One of my favorite things… quiet.

I am wearing… charcoal-colored shirt and khaki capris as I am in the house.

I am creating… business sets for Publisher

I am listening to… classical music coming from another part of the house.

I am hoping… we don’t have another snow day or 2-hour delay tomorrow. Today is my third snow day in two weeks and my paycheck will suffer as a result.

I am learning… design principles.

In my kitchen… defrosting something later.

Post Script… some fun stories to read.

Shared Quote… “I’ve never fooled anyone. I’ve let people fool themselves. They didn’t bother to find out who and what I was. Instead they would invent a character for me. I wouldn’t argue with them. They were obviously loving somebody I wasn’t.” — Marilyn Monroe

Hosted by The Simple Woman.

The Simple Woman’s Daybook: February 3, 2019

For Today… February 3, 2019

Simple Woman's Daybook

Looking out my window… It’s in the low to mid 30’s F, and we are getting our first snowfall of the year. Woo.

I am thinking… about my design homework for my Publisher class.

I am thankful… that Target had stuff to melt the driveway. I hate my local Target (it’s filthy, there is no pharmacy, and they rarely if ever staff their checkout stands appropriately), but I don’t have rednecks trying to pick fights with me like I’ve had when I’ve gone to Walmart in desperation. I think I’d rather slip and break a hip than brave Walmart.

One of my favorite things… watching the snow from inside rather than being out in it.

I am wearing… jammies. I finally got a shower.

I am creating… Publisher projects and my church’s Lenten devotional.

I am listening to… classical music coming from my room.

I am hoping… Tom Brady has been badly pounded into the field at least once. (It’s part of my sports philosophy — I always root against Tom Brady even when I am cheering for neither team because the teams violate other parts of my beliefs like not rooting for Cleveland or LA teams because they are eternal losers.)

I am learning… about the color wheel in designing publications. I just wish the demo mailer I’m working through in the book wasn’t so bleedingly ugly.

In my kitchen… probably some stacked eggplant parmesan or something.

Post Script… if you need nature pictures, go here.

Shared Quote… “The ego is incapable of seeing the world as anything but a zero-sum equation where if something good happens to you I have somehow missed out. The Spirit of God will always call our ego’s bluff.” – Father Paul (my priest)

Hosted by The Simple Woman.

7 Quick Takes: CPAP FAQ, Ranting at the School Nurse, and Other Merriment

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

Ranting at the school nurse. Lest this be added to the “reasons not to homeschool send your kids to public school EVER” list by my current troll reader, I enjoy a really good relationship with Daniel’s school overall, and this problem wouldn’t exist if the school district hadn’t cut the funding for school nurses to the point that they are covering 3 schools on average. (Teachers at this school nurse’s other campuses and at Daniel’s elementary school has explained that this individual is “special.”)

School Nurse,

For some odd reason, you couldn’t be bothered to actually get my young prince’s individual health plan written/signed in SEPTEMBER, so I now have to remind you again that the only information you need on his G-tube is DON’T [EXPLETIVE] TOUCH IT, per the request of the General Surgery nurses at Seattle Children’s Hospital because they don’t want the integrity of the stoma compromised. That sucker is being held in place by a water-filled balloon UNDER HIS SKIN, and it is not coming out without that bubble being drained or someone pulling pretty darn hard on it with needle-nosed pliers.

If it does for some odd reason fall out, CALL ME DIRECTLY ON MY CELL PHONE AT 867-5309 (not at the first random number you see) as my sweet babu will probably be in a buttload of pain (again, that thing is NOT falling out on its own) and there will probably be damage to the stoma that requires an ER visit to Seattle Children’s. If you can’t reach me, call my parents (whose numbers you have) and they will get in touch with me PDQ. Again, DON’T [EXPLETIVE] TOUCH MY CHILD’S G-TUBE OR YOU WILL BE IN DEEP FECES.


— 2 —

The back storyregarding the above take. Dumb@$$ School Nurse (“DSN” for short) decided to call the first number their eyes came upon, and it was my parents’ landline. (I live with them, so it’s the back-up number. However, EVERY piece of school paperwork contains the words “call Jen on her cell phone at 867-5309“, and DSN seems to be the only person who has ever ignored that.) Thankfully, I happened to be home, but DSN managed to get my dad first… who was not amused by some random person calling and asking seemingly personal information about my kid. DSN finally explained WHY he was calling, and Dad called me to the phone.

When I picked it up, DSN apologized for “upsetting my husband”.

I rolled my eyes and told him, in a voice dripping with saccharine, that the gruff gentleman who answered the phone was my FATHER, and that he was not amused to get a call from a strange person asking seemingly personal information about his grandson. When I got off the phone (after giving him a bunch of information that he ALREADY HAS in various documents and emails), I told Dad that DSN thought he was my husband. Thankfully, Dad found some humor in THAT, even if I was spitting fire at DSN’s idiocy.

/stomps off to fix the student health plan for my critter AGAIN

— 3 —

CPAP Take #1. Kelly (our hostess with the mostest) asked to see a selfie of me with the CPAP mask on, and I’m obliging because I live to make Kelly happy. 😀

CPAP selfie!

— 4 —

CPAP Take #2. Kelly asked to see my mask, so here it is along with the strapping on it that holds it to my face. (The white things in the bottom corners are the things that fasten the mask to the strapping, and they attach to the mask magnetically.) My nose rests on the top of the mask on top of a hole that allows me to breathe through it. Otherwise, I breathe through my mouth. I opted for the full-face mask instead of the nasal pillows (similar to a nasal cannula but with a fatter base) because I couldn’t breathe well with them in. (They force air into your nose, which works well if you’re a nose breather… which I am not.)

Not shown in the second picture (because I’m dangling the mask from) it is the clear tubing that feeds the hot air into the mask, so I took the third picture to show the mask tubing and how everything is connected. The whitish stuff attached to the mask is rubbery and flexible tubing, and it goes on top of my head. The greyish tubing is a little firmer and what brings the heated moist air pressure into the mask framework. Most masks have the greying tubing coming out of the front. Mine comes out of the tubing on the top of my head.(I apologize for the quality of the pics — I’m taking them on my webcam in not-great light because it’s late at night.) I sleep on my side usually with the greyish tubing trailing behind me. If I’m on my back, it comes out the top of the rubbery thing and trails off my pillow and to my right where my machine is.

CPAP Strapping
CPAP Mask Framework

— 5 —

CPAP Take #3. Kelly asked about my machine, so here are some pictures of it. (Our email conversations are FUN! We also both believe in educating people on scary health issues, so I’m happy to answer questions.) Mine is made by ResMed and adjusts the pressure going into my mask automatically. It also has a modem in it which sends data to a website that my doctor, my home health person, and probably the Illuminati can see. The rule is that I have to be using my CPAP for at least 4 hours a day in order for insurance to continue to pay for it (it’s usually 8 hours for me and up to 12 if I go back to sleep once Daniel is off to school).

Here are the front and back. (I blacked out any personally-identifying information.) The clear thing at the right side is a removable reservoir where I put distilled water to make the air moist. I clean it out and refill it every 2-3 days. The tubing that brings the air to my mask attaches in the back.

The front of the machine.
The back of the machine.

— 6 —

CPAP Take #4. Kelly asked what it feels like to have it on. It was a little weird at first, and I’m really glad they had me try out face masks in the hospital before they attached all the wires to me during my alien abduction sleep study so that I would know which one felt most comfortable for me. When I put it on, I breathe into it to start it (provided it’s plugged in) and it feels warm and moist around my face. It’s been good because using it forces me to breathe deeply, and that deep breathing helps me get sleepy quicker. I tend to sleep better and deeper, which helps with the daytime sleepiness.

It doesn’t make an annoying sound — it’s designed to be white noise. And yes, my little ball of black fury has investigated it and rolled his panther cub eyes because Mama bats him back from it every time he tries to eat the tubing. #housepantherproblems #meanmama #mustbiteallthethings

— 7 —

The Superb Owl. (Yes, that spelling was intentional.) I honestly don’t know who to root for this weekend. I can’t root for the Lambs Rams because they’re from LA, and I hate on southern California teams as a moral rule. I can’t root for the Patriots because I take great joy in seeing Tom Brady lose. (The 49’ers of the 1980’s and early 1990’s are the best football team in history, y’all. C/S.)

I’ll probably just go on SuperBowl.Com and watch the commercials or something. I mean, isn’t the Superb Owl is just fabulous commercials with annoying interludes of football and obnoxious Halftime entertainment? #stateyourunpopularopinion

For more Quick Takes, visit Kelly at This Ain’t The Lyceum.