Thursday, 13 May 2021

They Shot Me!

Well, I got my first dose of Covid-19 vaccine.  Pfizer as it turns out.

I was nervous going in but the place was so slick and well run and organized that there really was no need to be nervous.  (Spoiler: I still was!)

Didn't feel the shot itself which was lovely.  Sat for the requisite 15 after to make sure I was fine and I was so I headed home.

I expected some arm soreness, as that's pretty much a guarantee with shots.

Came home, iced it, messaged my family and a couple of friends YAY!  I did take Advil (they say that's ok) and I think that helped the arm pain a lot.

Took another Advil around dinner, put on some arnica type lotion... figured I was good to go.

When I got up to go to bed (around midnight, what?) my arm was SOOOOOOORE.  Like, sore sore.  Ouch.  So I took two Advil and went to bed.

Wasn't able to lean/roll onto that side but had a great, solid sleep.  

Honestly, I think the biggest thing I felt was a sense of relief I had not expected.  And that's why I think I slept so well, really.

Because yeah, I felt really relieved to know that in a couple of weeks I will be protected (at least partially) against Covid in a way I haven't been since we found out about it.  I didn't expect to feel this sense of relief like this because I've never had it with a shot before.

Like, I get a shot for... whatever, the flu or whooping cough or whatever and it's sort of like well this is a preventative thing, shrug.  But Covid?  Covid's been right in my face for more than a year now.  And I've gone through a lot lot LOT of anxiety and fear and upset from that.  And now I think it affected me even more than I knew.

So anyway, by the time I woke up the next morning I realized my arm felt way better.  I could roll over on to that side even, yay!

I think I took an Advil here or there the next day but it wasn't that bad.  What I was more taking it for was pain the neck/shoulder on that side.

I wondered if it was somehow a reaction to the shot?  But I've realized since it was probably a reaction to the pain and probably I slept weird the night of the shot and kinked my neck/shoulder.  That makes way more sense than anything shot-specific, right?

So, yeah, I have an unrelated sore upper back/neck thing (which, hello, that gets sore all the time anyway) and my arm feels fine and I haven't yet noticed any tiredness or any other symptoms at all.  Other than a pretty normal for getting a shot sore arm.  YAY!

I am aware that for some folks the second dose carries a bit of a wallop so I will keep that in mind, but for now I'm just happy to be building some safety from Covid and that I haven't seemed to have any reaction to this first shot!

(And no, we don't know yet here in B.C. how long between doses, they've said 4 months, but more recently they're saying "sooner" as we've gotten more doses in so we shall see.  I'm just happy to have some protection at all, I really am.  Same for my loved ones and friends.)

Wednesday, 12 May 2021

Better Now Though

A couple of months ago, I mentioned that I'd written a post note that said "Breath" and I wasn't at that time able to figure out what I was trying to remind myself to write!

Well, last month (or a couple of weeks ago, I'm not sure... I mean honestly last month was a couple of weeks ago so... let's just move on) I think I figured it out and I wrote myself the note "difficulty breathing" which was a much better reminder...

I am 98% sure this has happened in previous years - for sure last year (because I remember being very worried I'd contracted Covid) and possibly/probably the year before and who knows... because I don't seem to have made a real mention of it here before and not talked to anyone health-wise about it so, yeah, not at the 100% sure level... just nearly.

A few (three? four?) months ago I noticed that it felt like I couldn't quite get a full breath.

I'm not sure how to describe it but like the muscles in my back weren't able to fully allow a deep breath???

I never felt short of breath or like I wasn't able to breathe, just... it wasn't quite "right".

My blood oxygen levels were fine.  I pulled out my breathing exercise thing (spirometer?) and it was fine too.  I didn't feel winded on my walks at all.  Just... like I had to really focus to take what felt like full breaths.  It was weird.

Last year, due to Covid, this really freaked me out.  This year, because I remember it freaking me out last year, it didn't freak me out, it just made me wonder.

What was going on?

Was it some kind of allergy to plant/tree pollen?  Probably?  But.. how?

Was it me sleeping funny?  Having bad posture?

All of the above???

I would try, as I was walking, to "force" a full, deep breath, and sometimes it would work and sometimes it would result in what I have come to call my "allergy cough" which isn't an irritated cough but more like a physically based cough (I'm sure that only makes sense to me).

But I sat on the post for a while (as in I made the reminder note but didn't write it) and now it's mid May and I'm not noticing the same feeling of restriction.  So either I was kind of sick/ill in some way, or it was related to Spring allergy pollen stuff.  I don't know.

Or, you know, maybe I pulled muscles.  UGH bodies are so frustrating when you're not exactly sure what's going on!

But yeah, in case next early-Spring I feel like I can't quite get a full breath even though my breathing isn't restricted... I have a suspicion that this is something that happens to me in early Spring, just because.

All in all I'm glad it's better now whatever it was!


Tuesday, 11 May 2021

Go Figure

I had my first "current situation" dream last week.

It was a mask dream of all things.

My parents and I had travelled (that was a safe thing again I guess) to a "fancy" hotel somewhere.  No idea where, could have been just Vancouver, didn't "feel" far far away.  And by "fancy" I mean it was actually kind of like a cruise ship inside, so lots to see and look at.  Like.. the hotel was the destination rather than the location?  Anyway...

So we'd just checked in and I told my parents I was going to go explore the hotel and I went out into the hallway and had taken a few steps when I realized I'd forgotten my mask.  This was upsetting, but luckily I had my mask on me (in my pocket?) so I stopped and put it on.

As I walked around the hotel I realized I was one of the only people wearing a mask and it seemed like they were giving me "funny" looks but I didn't care because I wanted to be safer.  

So, yeah, my first "mask" stress dream... go figure.  I guess in some ways I'm surprised I haven't had any memorable Covid dreams before this, but I'm also curious what worries my brain was trying to "get rid" of with that particular dream you know?

Monday, 10 May 2021

Progression

Here in B.C. vaccinations are apparently "picking up speed".  (Meaning, we got more doses... or at least that's how I read it.)

More people around me are getting vaccinated or getting appointments.  Some through the pharmacy program (AZ) and some through work and some through the aged based rollout which is now hitting those in their 40s (or so it seems by social media posts!)

I got my invite to book a couple of days ago and so am getting my first vaccination shot soon.  I've been a little nervous about it but people near me who've had their first shot only maybe had a bit of extra tired or a bit of a sore arm so I'm less worried.

Plus, Jason got vaccinated this weekend and while I know it takes two weeks for the thingies to do the thing (Science man!) the relief I felt when he texted to tell me "all done" was... well, surprising.  I couldn't stop crying.  I've been incredibly worried about him (and about my parents as they're older) due to his asthma and just having been through some health scares with him the last few years (including the pneumonia that nearly killed him and the hospital trips around that... I did not want to repeat that with Covid, nor do I ever want to repeat it again with anything to be honest.)  It felt like I'd been trying to hold his health together with worry for over a year and knowing he's on his way to being more protected, well, thank you Scientists.

Because really, thank you to everyone who has gotten us to this point.  The Scientists and techs and workers and thinkers and the medical folk who have tried to keep us ok.  To the doctors and public health people who have been working to educate us while keeping us calm.  And to everyone who has been doing their part to be smart and follow health directives.  To everyone who has sacrificed and struggled and dealt with everything this least year plus has thrown our way.  Thank you to the money that was thrown at vaccine development and to everyone involved in that.

So stay well and safe wherever you are and keep doing the best you can to be ok with.... all of this.  Because it's a lot.


Saturday, 8 May 2021

Satisfying

I've been gardening a little at Jason's place.

Weeding more like.  Which, I must say, is kind of satisfying.  As in, you can see the progress and you can see the results of your effort.

Jason's roommate has really let the garden go and so there's an overwhelming amount to do, but baby steps, right?  Baby steps and honest amazement at how persistent blackberries/brambles are.  Wow.

Friday, 7 May 2021

I Watched A Movie

I don't know about you, but for me, sometimes I'll learn something and know something and be aware of something and, like... know better, but even with all that, I still don't do what I think I could/should, until like a final straw of some weird sort.

And so for this right now I'm talking about sugar.

Sugar.  Oh, sugar.

I have always enjoyed sugar.  I assume all my life.  Certainly in my mind - all my life.  Trips to the corner store, saving allowance for candy, all of it.  Sugar.  It's always been my jam.

And I mean it's not as if I've ever been told that sugar was "good", you know?  I've always known it was sort of, I dunno, naughty?

When I was a kid it was that sugar was bad for your teeth.  I don't remember what I was told about it when I was a teenager, but I know as a young adult I started hearing more about it being not great for your health but hey whatever!  

Over the years I have tried to reduce my sugar intake.  Heck, some years I even give up chocolate for Lent, without being religious!  But always, I go back to my consumption.

I'm one of those people who if you have a cup of tea with me, you'll see me putting enough sugar in my tea you'll probably comment.  (And I'll just laugh it off)

And yes, if you've been around here, you'll probably know of my love of Cadbury Creme eggs which are sugar filled sugar blobs.  There are days I'll eat a stupid amount of them.  Really.  Because sugar.

Sugar, sugar, sugar.

I've always had a thing for sugar and most of my adult life I've known it wasn't healthy.

And especially as I started to pay more attention to my health I learned all of the ways sugar is bad for the body.  Like, really.

And then with things in the last year or so in the realm of family heart issues and pre-diabetic blood work levels, I really did think I should work on reducing my sugar.  But... well... sugar. (sigh)

For reasons I've never fully understood, sugar has always been something that settled my stomach too.  So if my stomach was upset?  A sweet would settle it.  Or a can of 7Up would settle it.  And there were days when I thought I'd put so much sugar in my tea I was really just drinking warm sugar water but hey, I didn't want to be out of bed, this was a morning treat, you know?

Last month, Amazon gave me a month free of their streaming video service.  Near the end of that time, I started trying to watch some of the documentaries on there, and one that came to my attention was an Australian movie called "That Sugar Film."

I'm sure I've heard of it before, maybe even watched the first part of it?  But I sat down a few weeks back and gave it a watch.  In the film (super quick summary) an Australian fellow sets out to eat as much sugar as the average Australian eats in a day (they suggest this is 40 teaspoons) and see what it does to his body in two months. (He led a sugar free life before)

Predictably (if you've seen the trailer or been aware of the movie like I was) he gets sicker, fatter (puts on like 22 pounds), less happy, and nothing good comes out of it at all.

One of the things that really hooked me was that he chose in the film NOT to eat the sugar like I do, the chocolate bars and pop drinks, but chose to get those 40 teaspoons a day in so called "hidden" sugars.  The sugars that companies put in their foods to make up for the reduced fat or whatever else (there are some political issues in the background of all this...)  So he gets his sugar from, say, cereal, or yogurt, or sauces, or prepared ... whatever.

And to get his daily amount, he takes the amount of sugars in a label (grams) and divides it by four to give a teaspoon amount.

And this, I thought, is something I can do!

I initially thought I'd just track for a few days to see how many teaspoons I was having, and I looked up the suggested amount and for women, it's suggested not to have more than 6 teaspoons of sugar a day.  Hmmm.... ok.

Well that first morning, I measured out the amount of sugar I usually put mindlessly into my morning cup of tea.

And, well, I kind of had, um, I'm embarassed to say, like, um... all six teaspoons of sugar in my tea.

*hangs head in shame*

Yikes.

And when I put jam on my toast (a treat some days) I just... you know, spread it on.  Spready spread spread!  Well, a teaspoon of jam is a teaspoon of sugar, so I figured I'd start measuring out a smaller portion.

And I told myself that I'd only count sugars in things that were pre-packaged and labelled.  So I decided that for now I wouldn't count fruit (or veg) or anything "natural" and not packaged.  And that I'd start trying to pay attention to how much I was consuming without thinking.  Those hidden sugars.

I joked with Jason and C-Dawg that everything was "betraying" me.  My gluten free bread had sugars in it.  Not a lot, but some... the gum I chew on as a treat (Juicy Fruit!)?  Sugars (duh but not duh).  My mini can of 7Up?  An entire day's worth right there.  Damn.

My protein bar snack?  Sugars.  Same amount as my cookies.  And when something is a third of your daily sugar allowance, you start to re-evaluate.

There have been days where I've tried (since watching this movie) to eat a chocolate bar I had on hand and my brain revolted.   I didn't make it through the chocolate bar.  And I haven't bought sweets like I'd usually do.

A couple of days I've sort of said screw it and put all my teaspoons in my tea.  And then I've tried to pay attention and wondered if that lead to cravings for the rest of the day (I feel like it did.)  And while a lot of days I've either hit or been under my "suggested sugar amount", a couple of days I've hit 20 teaspoons, which is the amount they say most Canadians hit a day.  And this is all WITHOUT eating flat out sweets.  These are on days with no chocolate, no candy, no dessert, no... whatever.  No knowingly sweet item.  These are just days of eating what I would have called a "low sugar" day... sugar in my tea, jam on my bread, maybe a gluten free cookie or two.  (Sure all sweet things, but not sweets, if you get the distinction I've made...)

When I had the sore throat, I allowed myself some orange juice (while gasping at the sugar amount).  And even though I told myself it was fruit and so I wasn't tracking it, I tracked it.  Same as on the day I had fruit cocktail... I tracked it because it was packaged.  Shrug.

I'm not sure where I'm going with this, if anywhere.

Have there been dramatic shifts in my health?  Maybe?

My aches and pains are maybe less?  But that could also be the weather.  Have I lost weight.  Not particularly.  My stomach MIGHT be less upset and sore... not sure.  I've been tracking my sugar for a couple of weeks now and trying to keep it under that 6 teaspoons a day. (I think it's 9 for men FWIW).

I'm not sure what it was about seeing that movie at that time that shifted something for me.  It's not like it was any new information... it's not like I didn't know how sugar negatively affects your body and health and waistline.  But I guess it was the right thing for me to see at the right time.  Somehow.

As I said, I'm not sure where I'm going, and maybe this won't be a long term change, but for now, the tracking is giving me something to focus on and think about.  I've got a list on my kitchen counter that I add things to so I don't have to do the math every time.

And right now my body isn't in love with sugar like it usually is.  And when I do have some and then want more and more it's not like I'm particularly enjoying it... which is weird.

I haven't yet managed to track a "normal" day because I haven't had a normal day since I watched the movie and starting tracking my sugar intake.  

So, yeah, I dunno.  For now it just is what it is.


Thursday, 6 May 2021

Oh, See...

See, right now I shouldn't write.

I've been hit by a wave of angry and I have nothing but feelings and thoughts of "I hate this and I hate that" and well, I don't really feel it's productive right now to type these thoughts out and publish them.  Everything right now is irritating me.  I'm irritable.  Irritated.  Even that has now turned in to a stupid word and I think I should just wish you all a better day than this mood.

That makes sense in my head I promise.  


*grump*

Wednesday, 5 May 2021

So.... I Wasn't Well

A couple of weekends ago, I was over at Jason's (my one person I see during all this) and I decided to have a drink (not something I do often these days) and to splurge and get cupcakes for after dinner.  

We watched a movie after eating and mid way through the movie I started to feel not great.  I was irritated and angry and couldn't get my temperature right and then I sort of had an upset nausea feeling.  Blah.  I went home pretty immediately after the movie and figured the booze and cupcakes had just not been to my stomach's liking, on well.

I felt much better the next morning, I'd slept off whatever stomach issues, and I just had a bit of a sore throat - which I put down as a slightly unusual "allergy" symptom.  No big deal.

The throat (it was my left side specifically) wasn't terrible but wasn't great and I noticed the next day that my energy was off.  Like, I was a little extra tired, but again, nothing to think anything about.

By the Monday, my throat was still not great on the left and I realized I didn't technically pass any of the health checks to go to [workplace] or to the appointments I was meant to go to that week, hmmm... I backed out of things for Tuesday and Wednesday and figured things would get better.  I kept my fluids up and upped my vitamins and on Monday I had a nap AND I slept about 10 hours that night.  I was for sure fighting off this... whatever!

But for that whole week, I couldn't kick the sore throat.  Mid way through the week I remembered my neti pot and how I'd heard it helped with allergy stuff and so I gave that a go and was surprised my sinuses were actually quite (ewwwwww) full... (sorry).

I still didn't pass health checks so cancelled things for the rest of the week, feeling certain I'd be on the mend very soon.

One of the things I noticed that told me I wasn't all well was that my walks and exercise didn't make me feel better.  In fact, after a mid-week walk that would usually make me feel energized or calmer, I felt woozy.  My walks were making me feel lousy, and my sweat didn't feel "clean" (if you have an understanding of what I mean by that... sick sweat vs healthy sweat?)  I must be fighting some cold bug or something.

My temperature never went up and I never had any other symptoms.  Just this mildly sore throat and some weird fatigue when I would exercise.  But see I COULD exercise.  Not like I was out of breath or anything.  I just felt lousy after.  Weird.

I figured I was good for the next week when the throat started to resolve but then that Sunday morning I lay in bed having a more difficult time swallowing, but this time on the right side (which had been having no issues until that morning).

I got up and figured I should probably take a look into my throat and so flashlight in hand, I looked in the mirror and, well, it wasn't pretty.

My tonsils were angry and had, I'm not even sure what, white stuff on them.

Did I have tonsilitis?  Strep?

I mean I've had strep throat before and this discomfort wasn't that.  Wasn't anywhere near that.  But I was clearly unwell in some way and my body was working hard to fight something.  No idea what, but something.

"I should probably get this looked at," I thought.  So I went ahead and tried to get in to a walk in clinic to have a doctor look at my throat (and maybe take a swab?) but it was a Sunday and most of them were already full by this time.  I tried singing up for an online one but they didn't have an appointment for me until Tuesday.  I booked it anyway.

I decided to call 811 (our "nurse" line... to oversimplify).  Unfortunately they were very busy (they apologized a lot for that) and I ended up on hold for two and a half hours (thank goodness for speaker phone.)  It was frustrating, just because I wasn't able to hang up and I kept wanting to give up, but I really also thought I should try to find out what was going on in case I had something serious (or contagious... but like, no way it was Covid... right?)

I talked to a lovely male nurse who asked me all the questions and gave me some home remedy suggestions.  (I was already gargling with salt water, but just once at night - he suggested hourly and man did it help, wow!)  They put me through to a doctor who said there wasn't much she could do over the phone (especially seeing as my pain/discomfort wasn't "strep level" and that I should probably try to get in to get a swab.  They also suggested I go for a Covid test. Sigh.

I called the number, left mine, and got a call back within probably half an hour.

They set me up for a gargle test (yay!) later that day.

There's something about being sure you don't have Covid and then getting sent for the test that suddenly makes you more worried than you were before.

For the gargle test, I looked up the instructions, and also you're not to eat or drink (even water) for at least an hour (or was it two? I think it was one?) before.  So I had to physically put my water away from me so I wouldn't accidentally drink it!

I headed out, the process was quick and fine and everyone again was lovely and kind.

I came straight home and cancelled things for the next couple of days again and started to feel really embarrassed that I might have contracted Covid and given it to Jason and whoever else I saw when I was feeling ok in the days before I wasn't feeling ok.  Sigh.

I also obsessively checked the result site, which in retrospect was a little dumb as I knew they'd text me the results (I signed up last year when I got tested).

I think because it was a Sunday my results took a bit longer, but it was a stressful 25 hours before my text let me know I did NOT have Covid-19.  PHEW.

Such a relief.  Again, even though I really did think it was highly unlikely I had it.... knowing the test said negative was a huge relief.

I kept up my hourly salt water gargles and warm drinks and my Vitamin boosters and I let myself rest... although I did keep up my exercise and stuff.

The Monday morning after the test, while I was waiting for results, my throat did start to feel better.  I also added in a diluted hydrogen peroxide rinse like they had me do at the dentist in case it helped kill... whatever.  And it helped reduce the pain too, yay!

By Tuesday, the white on the left tonsil was gone and the right one was disappearing.

By Wednesday both were almost totally clear and I didn't have a sore throat any more, yay!

I rescheduled things and went back to doing things (they ask you to keep isolating when you're sick).

This week, my tonsils I think are still a bit inflamed (to be honest I'm not sure, I don't look at them much!  I really should take a baseline look one of these days!) so my system is still fighting something, but my walks have left me feeling good again and so the body ick is gone.

So, yeah.  I lost an entire week and then a few days of the next week to something.  Something that didn't test as Covid.

Legit not sure what I picked up.  Maybe it was my body hating on the alcohol and cupcakes, who knows.  Maybe it's being at [workplace] and being exposed to more germs even with a mask and hand washing?  Or maybe it was allergies gone bad.  I don't know, I still don't own a magic scanner to tell me what's going on!

I'm happy to be passing health checks again and feeling better if not perfect.

And with that, I'm off to check my tonsils in the mirror again!  Stay well you guys!

Tuesday, 4 May 2021

Um, I Think I Broke

Honestly, I'm not sure I know how to "human" anymore.

And I feel like I'm too old to like relearn because people will notice?

A friend at [workplace] said we should get together for an outside tea and catch up and I kind of panicked.  I said something about oh not this weekend but yes for sure!  But I'm honestly freaking out.

I feel like I don't remember how to have that kind of a meet up anymore.  How do I hold conversation?  I feel ridiculously nervous about and it and honestly if I told her that she'd probably be totally understanding but you guys it feels so weird.

It's like the time off over the last number of years and really only spending time with Jason, with whom I have pretty intense conversations about all sorts of things, and then the pandemic in the last year or so... it's like I feel like I don't know how to talk about.... things?  I'm scared.

Yes, this is most likely "social anxiety" doing its thing but also .... lack of practice maybe?

I mean at [workplace] I can put on that sort of professional thing and be like OH YES HELLO FELLOW SPY HOW WAS YOUR THEFT OF DIAMONDS TODAY?

But that's not, you know, normal human interaction...

And I HAVE NOTHING TO SAY!!!

I mean I can probably ask about their life and family and stuff but when anyone asks me anything I have nothing at all to talk about.  Um... I haven't had a life in years?  I'm scared of Covid?  I'm volunteering part time at [workplace] but not doing much there to talk about?  OMG I HAVE NOTHING TO TALK ABOUT OMG!

But I mean, do you want to talk about the state of the world?  How the neighbouring country has deteriorated lately?  Want to discuss what changes might be possible for police forces?  Supports for the homeless?  I might be able to, you know, carry on some convo around that because that's sharing feelings and opinions and thoughts.  I don't have a life to share.

I don't go anywhere or do anything.  I have no husband or children to talk about.  No hobby I'm currently pursuing.

I... watch shows, but most of them are old, repeats... comfort shows.  I don't know.  I don't think I have much to talk about and I don't think I can meet for ten minutes and then be like ok then bye!

I think, were this to happen (I'm not sure that it will... fucking anxiety and avoidance) I'd rely on hearing about this person's life and family and I'm sure it'd go well and be energizing and fun.

But damn if it doesn't feel weird.

Sigh.

Monday, 3 May 2021

So, May

We're in May, eh?  I mean, that's a thing that happened.  You know, five frigging months into this year somehow?  When really last year didn't happen at all?  

I'm so time confused.  I am.

People around me are starting to get vaccinated.  Or to book their vaccination.  If you're not from BC, they've been doing them aged based, but also chose to do community (pharmacy based) of the Astra Zenica one (I may have spelled that wrong, but you know what I mean) and a few folks I know managed to get in that way.  And the public health run ones are starting to get closer to my general age group and that of some of my peers and colleagues (and siblings... by the end of next week both of my brothers will have gotten their first vaccination and yes my parents have both already had one!)

I've registered with the system and figure I'll be done in the next month or two with my second dose probably by early Fall.  

Not that it matters terrifically.  I'm not sure how different I'll feel being vaccinated?  It's this weird limbo I'm finding myself in right now of not knowing how it's been over a year of this and yet sort of still not being used to seeing masks but it's not bizarre but no it really is bizarre.

One of the big concerts I was supposed to go to last year (Roger Waters in Vancouver) is rescheduling for next Fall (2022) and I don't know for certain if I'll feel comfortable going over and being in a crowd of that size?  But I am holding on to the rescheduled tickets and if I choose not to go at the time I'm ok at this point with losing the money (or reselling I suppose...meh.)

I have no idea when they'll take away the mask mandate or how that will feel.

They've got travel restrictions in place for us here right now but ironically the zone they have me in is actually larger than I've ever felt travelling before... go figure.  (It's by health authority and the whole Island is one zone, but I've not felt comfortable driving an overnight since this all started.)  Do I feel comfortable trying a camping trip?  I don't know.

I'm honestly already really anxious about Summer and heat.  Last year was miserable for me.  I've looked a little into portable air conditioning units but I just don't know... plus money I don't really have.

And I think last year I was really scared of going out of town at all.  Like even an hour out of town scared me, so I didn't do much.  Will I feel better about it this year?  Not sure.  Will knowing it's "allowed" make me more comfortable?  Maybe.  I'm still just so concerned about possibly spreading Covid (less so I think about contracting it elsewhere, but that's there too).  Sigh.  

Maybe being at least partially vaccinated will make me relax a bit?  I mean that would be great if it did. 

My understanding is that if you're vaccinated you're far less likely to die from contracting Covid or to need hospitalization.  So you could still contract it or spread it but it will be less likely to be as devastating.

But I mean, honestly, I still don't want it.

And that goes for most of the illnesses out there to be honest.

Shingles?  Don't want them.  Measles?  No thanks.  Whooping cough?  Well, got that as an adult actually, it was miserable.  No thank you. I mean you guys I don't even want a cold.  You know?  Not that anyone really enjoys being sick but yeah, I suppose I'm "extra" scared of Covid.  Blah.  And yes, I'll get around to talking about my "probably a cold" from the other week or so.  It wasn't Covid.  I got tested.  And there was a lot of relief when that came back with a negative, let me tell you.

So yeah, May.  A weird month.  Full on Spring... hinting of Summer.

And yet I've woken up in the middle of the last two nights to pull one of my windows shut for the cold.

Go figure.

 


Monday, 26 April 2021

Off

Hey Y'all.

I've been sick this week.

Not terribly so but enough that I wasn't able to do anything as I didn't pass health screenings, so all my things got cancelled.  I wasn't sick enough according to the Covid self-screen to get a test so I have been in a bit of a limbo.

Yesterday morning I was woken up by my throat (not being able to swallow without a fair amount of discomfort) and it was on the other side from the sore throat I'd had all week and so I looked at it with a flashlight and, well, things did not look good.  

I spent most of the morning on hold with 811 (they were incredibly busy and very apologetic for the wait) and they had me speak to a doctor and arrange a Covid test.

The Covid test was the gargle kind (I had the nose swab when I got tested last year) and again everyone there was lovely.

I'm awaiting results (although not too worried to be honest, I don't think I've contracted it, but I should probably knock on wood) and to see how I feel and if no improvement I'll try to get in to see a doctor in person to have them take a look and possibly swab for... er... whatever... strep?  I don't know.

I'm, again, not terribly sick.  I don't have a fever.  I'm tired but not devastatingly so.  I have the ongoing allergy type symptoms of runny/stuffy nose.  It's the throat that's been a little unusual.  I've had strep before and it's not that painful, especially since right now (knock on wood) it's only the one side (at a time?)  So because of the lack of fever and all the folks I've met with virtually don't have much to say other than stay home, stay isolated, gargle with salt water and, er... get better?

So my Sunday was spent dealing with the calls and the call backs and the appointments and the waiting so writing didn't happen and may not depending on how today goes and how I feel.

Looks like I'll be cancelling things again all this week, but hopefully I'm on the mend. (The thought I had Saturday night before I woke up with extra bad sore throat was "I'm sick of being sick" so.... time to feel better please!)

Saturday, 24 April 2021

No, But Seriously!

I keep thinking lately that I want to read while I'm going for my walks!

I can't really explain it other than I'd like to use my time walking while also reading.  You know, an even better use of time!

Not always mind you, but just some days I'm thinking of heading out for a walk and I also think "I wish I could read my book while I'm walking".

I mean, I guess I technically could but.... you know, not safely!  And probably not at a decent speed.

I used to (back when I went to the gym) almost always read while on the treadmill.  But I'm not sure how much of that I processed to be honest.  Magazines usually, so not something I really needed to pay hard attention to.

But never before in my life do I remember having the thought that I wanted to go outside, and go for a walk, but to be holding and reading and paying attention to a book while I did so.  Chop chop, use that time wisely, me!

(Weird)

Friday, 23 April 2021

Health - Mental

Years ago, I read an article about an artist who "documented" his decline into alzheimer's with self portraits.

The article (linked above) disturbed me because you could see him losing his ability and skill as the years progressed and I found that upsetting and uncomfortable.  But yes, also fascinating.

Well, fast forward to today, and I follow a number of artists on their social media.

One has a very cartoony simple style (he calls himself Mr Doodle and has been honest about what I'm about to talk about) and I've followed him and his very distinct style for a while.

Recently he posted that he'd been absent for a while because he'd been diagnosed as having a psychotic episode and the issues and treatment he'd had around and since that.

I bring this up in relation to the aforementioned article because to my eye, his style of artwork has changed dramatically since he "came back" and I can't help but wonder if this is something to do with what went on or is going on in his brain.

I'm hesitant to say anymore lest I come across rudely but I think we know that art and mental health and brain health are related and even though I may be wrong in this case (he may have just decided to change up his style rather than his style changing with his mental health) it's fascinating to possibly be noticing what I've only previously read about.  If that makes sense.

I don't read through the comments left on his work, so I don't know if anyone else is wondering these same things (Did the psychosis change his brain in such a way he now is a different style artist?  Is he suffering still?  Does he notice?  Is it related?  Is it a medication thing?  Did he feel constrained by his former style?) but I am also a little shy to say that I am not enjoying his current works (I feel guilty saying that knowing what he's told us he went through.)

But I am interested and curious, and it has been interesting to be an active part of this ongoing journey in this artist's social-media-life.

Thursday, 22 April 2021

I Come By It Naturally

I've noticed that this year I keep getting my age wrong.  And the extra weird part about it is that I keep getting my age wrong by a year forward.  I'm aging myself?

I blame Covid and the loss of 2020 and a general sense of time being weird and normal things not mattering, but it was my Mom's birthday the other day and I mentioned to her that I keep getting my age wrong (I legit have to pause if anyone asks how old I am) and she said she does the same thing.  "I keep thinking I'm next year's age!"  OH, ME TOO!

So I'm my mother's daughter it seems.  And she's also said this is her last birthday so she's going to technically just keep being this age. (She hits a -0 milestone next birthday)  Ok Mom!


Wednesday, 21 April 2021

Maybe You Already Knew This!

Recently I learned that there is what I like to call "extra fancy butter"!

The term that's used on the package is "grass fed" but "extra fancy" is way more fun to say in my view!

I heard about it on a documentary I watched about (long story short) healthy fats and I mentioned it to Jason (who is the foodie in my life) and he said "oh, yeah, it's really good it's just really expensive"

So I decided a couple of weeks ago to splurge.  And yes, this stuff is much more expensive than regular butter but I also noticed a few things.

One, I feel less guilty about it (because I can tell myself that the cows are happier... ahem)

Two, it cooks differently!  Which is neat to notice!

Like I'll often have a fried egg (don't know what else to call it)  So I put some butter in a small pan, put down the egg, let it cook, flip it over, done.  

I did this with the fancy butter and y'all?  It didn't melt the same way - a totally different consistency.  And when the egg was cooked, there was still a bunch of it left in the pan so it's like the egg didn't absorb it or something?  Which meant next time I could use less!

I think it tastes better too although I'm not honestly sure I can notice a massive difference.

But three, it is spreadable out of the fridge.  Which is something apparently Canadians have noticed about "regular" butter lately... that it is not, and it used to be and it's something to do with something something not so good.

Four, it's healthier.  Like it's got more healthy things in it than "regular" butter.  I could list them all but it'd just be from a google search so, yeah, healthy stuff.  Some of that "good" stuff is the healthier fat and I'm working on more "good" fat in my diet rather than just fat fat.  

I don't use a whole lot of butter myself, and Jason does a lot of cooking for me and I don't think I can afford to supply his kitchen with extra fancy butter but I may see if it's financially viable to keep some in my fridge.

Feels a little bit "back to basics" in terms of I sort of wish I could feed myself from my own magical mini farm with super natural healthy stuff, but that's not my life right now so this is a small way to be a little more natural.  Albeit a not too cheap way.