Thursday, October 21, 2010


Sorry I have been missing around here lately. I have a whole lot on my plate! That is not a complaint, it's more of an accomplishment, actually.

First, me. I am still fighting something and I still don't know what it is. The headaches are better, but the muscle pain isn't, and the joint pain is worse. It feels like something is attacking my joints on the inside and when it gets tired of chewing on one part, it moves somewhere else. For awhile, it was my lower back, then it moved down to my knees and ankles. Then it moved up to my shoulders and caused me to take months off work. I thought it was pretty well settled down, until last week when my fingers started swelling. I had to pull off my wedding band because I was afraid it would have to be cut off before too much longer. (For reference, my rings used to be too big for me. I had to wear little spacer thingies.) Whatever was going on in my hands also showed up in my elbows and shoulders (again) and it stayed around for three days or so. It hurt to move my arms, or grip a pencil, or even walk.  At one point, the only comfortable position was lying on my back with my hands propped up. I spent my entire weekend like that, actually.

So, in my quest to defeat this, I've messed around with meds, tried cutting out certain foods and ingredients, I have even tried pushing on and ignoring it (yeah, THAT was successful...) Now I am turning back to the docs and letting them have another stab at it, literally. Tomorrow I will go to get the ever dreaded ALLERGY TEST (dun dun duuuunnn.) I haven't had this done before, but I understand that the procedure involves pricking the skin up and down your back with allergen loaded needles and then the doctor watches to see which one of the dots gets most inflamed the fastest. And you can't touch them (because they are in the middle of your back,) and it will itch wherever it shows you are allergic to something, and you can't take anything to make it stop until several hours after the test. I think this has to be pretty close to cruel and unusual punishment. I seriously wonder which backwards torture specialist thought of this thing.

While I am not too keen to do this, and I know there is an easier way to do it, I am agreeing to it because of a few things. First, I love my doctor. She is kind and compassionate (usually,)  but very professional and extremely capable (something I haven't been able to say about many doctors over the last 7 years.) The second reason I am willing to undergo this tortuous procedure is because she is a double specialist in allergies and rheumatology, and she knows what she is doing. She is able to look at things from more than one perspective, which in this case, is highly valuable because so many of the problems are related at the core of it. The third reason I will do this is that I have already had so many other tests run on me, there aren't too many left to do to figure out WHY I hurt so much. If I can figure out that bread and dogs cause an allergic reaction then, I will know to stay away from bread and dogs and maybe I can get back to my life again. (It's good to have goals, you know?)

Beyond that, I am getting VERY close to the start date for college. Today, I will take the Math portion of the entrance exam (yes, I know I should be studying instead of writing) and get measured for my school uniforms. I am so stoked about this! Next weekend I will go to the orientation and receive my books, uniforms, and the tool kit (the knives!!!!) On Nov 8, I will start attending classes at this rather elite, international culinary university and I will be on my way to realizing my dreams!

On the flip side of that, is the mountain of fear that is right in front of me, telling me that I shouldn't even try. If I can't make it through three days without pain, how am I going to make it through two years of classes? My track record on professional endeavors has not been to stellar, lately. There is much more evidence to say I will fail than that I will succeed. Why do I think this time will be different? I have no clue. All I know is that I am running out of options. School is at least a different direction than I have failed in before. That has to count for something, right?

I am also worried about how the kids are going to handle my going to school. When I am home, I have a hard time struggling with whether I am babying them, or neglecting them. In either case, I have at least been home to do (or not do) what needs to be done. Now, I will be gone all day. They will have to make it home on their own (three whole blocks,) and they will have to take care of certain things to make sure the evenings run smoothly (instead of dinner at 9:00 and bed at 10:00 without a bath.) They haven't been very reliable at this over the last few months. Is it because I am doing everything and not letting them take responsibility? Or is it because I have not been giving them the proper guidance to let them learn how to do it themselves? Whatever the reason, I am very concerned that I will come home every day to a disaster.

Now, DH has been able to work from home three days a week since we moved to The Country.  On one hand that means he will be home three out of five days. On the other, that means that he will be working until 7:00pm those days and he has to trust the girls to be absolutely quiet while he is on the clock. If customers hear background noises that point to him working from home (and not the office) then he could lose his work-from-home privileges and we will be back to seeing him only on weekends. I am not sure how the girls will react to him being home, but unavailable, without my being here to referee. Frankly, this worries me quite a bit.

Well, it is time for me to make the last preparations and head out the door to the school. If you are the praying type, I would really appreciate a prayer or two. If you're not, just send positive thoughts my way, or skin a tree and burn a rabbit (whatever it is you do,) for successful completion of my exam and an influx of common sense and intelligence for my girls.
If I make it through this, I will hold a grand feast in your honor!

Deb "The Future Chef"

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