Saturday, 13 October 2018


My auntie Fran died last weekend.  I had visited her last September in Bexhill as we thought she wouldn't last long.  Rumors of her impending death were obviously greatly exaggerated.  She was a tough old bird, stubborn as hell and convinced she was right.  She would have been a very difficult mother to have, something her daughters would definitely agree with.  She was also that last of the four girls that made up my mother's family.  There is nobody to ask questions of anymore, no peers left of my mother.  She is well and truly gone now.

The weather here sucks.  It snowed again yesterday and will be gone by tomorrow, again.  It's cloudy and cold and slippery.  I feel grumpy or just down maybe.  By Wednesday it's supposed to be 20C so there's that.

We had a truly ugly day at work yesterday.  It started off with a doc tearing a strip off a patient and ended with me being hit at work.  We had too many recoveries and the day was just chaotic.  An ultrasound machine quit working twice while we were trying to put a central line in a patient and then we had to argue with ultrasound to borrow a machine so that we could finish the line.

I feel beat up by life right now.  It will be better once Katie has been moved out of her present home.  The shoddy treatment by the owner of her present agency sits in my brain and takes up far too much room right now.  When she has moved I'll feel she is safe again, breathe a sigh of relief and make a formal complaint about her present agency and how they treated her.

I drove with Katie in the car, by myself, for the first time in probably five years.  She was wonderful.  She talked/signed non stop but no aggression at all.  Lots of singing, by me, and a constant stream of talk, by me, to keep her entertained and distracted.  She visited her new house, hugged people a lot and was generally amazing.  It feels like a miracle has occurred and given me back my daughter.  I'm so thankful.

And at the end of the day I got hit in the back which I can't go into right now but which shocked and upset me.  I'm making a complaint about that too, so that will be sitting inside my head for awhile too.  I have a crowded head.  I line up worries in a row upon the shelf inside my head, some worries take up more room than they should and some or most of them just needed to be packed away, especially the ones I have no control over.  I've never learned the trick or skill of letting go of things.  I lug my baggage around, holding onto it, why I'm not sure.  Need to think on this.

Wednesday, 3 October 2018


What I really wanted to write about.

I didn't really want to write about my week, or concussions or side effects or the weather.  I don't know why I did.  I thought I should,  I feel remiss when I don't write.  Like I'm letting people down.  And I forgot that the real reason I write is to sort shit out.

When thoughts come out of my head and they are transformed into words, somehow it helps me to sort through things.  The why and the what of things.  But I've forgotten that lately.

I went to work on Monday morning, feeling crappy.  My life is not crappy.  I have a good life.  I have a job I love.  I have friends who love me and whom I love in return.  I have a wonderful husband who loves me, protects me and doesn't let me pull shit on him.  And yet Monday morning I was grumpy and tired.

Some side effects no doubt but other stuff too.  Stuff that swirls around the bottom of the glass and is hard to dislodge.  Sometimes I don't even know it's there except I feel grumpy and like a child who is tired or hungry, I get grumpy and act out.

When I was growing up my father was always angry.  His anger shaped my life and held sway in our home.  Everything was about not making my father angry.  He had his reasons, I understand that now.  Alcoholic mother.  Depression.  Poverty.  The war.  But as a child all I knew was the fear I felt when my father would turn white with rage, ball up his fists and shout and storm around the house until he left in a hail of gravel.  Until the day he died I was afraid of my father, a man who never once hit me.

I learned that anger is big and scary and uncontrollable.  I learned that anger keeps people away so you feel safer, except you're not really safer, you're just alone.  I learned that anger is a bad thing, never a good thing.

So I grew up watching anger give my father power over others.  I incorporated that knowledge into my small body as a child and I became an angry woman.  I did not want to be angry.  I did everything I knew not to be angry.  I read, I took courses, I meditated, I wrote, I saw counselors and still the anger sat there.

When my ex-husband and I sold our house and he "cleaned" it and I went back to get the last few things there, only to find it still dirty, I snapped.  I started angry cleaning, mad at him, mad at the whole world, mad at the dirty floors.  And as I washed the floor, anger seeping out of me, I realized I wasn't really angry, I was sad, beyond sad really, and I had been my whole life.  Maybe my dad was too.  My anger covers up my sadness for me.

My anger scares me.  I don't feel safe with it.  I understand in my head that anger has it's uses, it can protect me in a time of danger for instance but mostly it just feels like an uncontrollable beast that thrashes around inside my head, wanting to be let loose on the world.

So I'm at work on Monday talking to my girlfriend about feeling grumpy and I realize I think of myself as I bad person.  She told me that I wasn't a bad person and I asked her if she thought she was a good person.

My friend has bipolar disorder, both of her parents were alcoholics and her mother abused her and let her be abused.  My friend has every reason to be angry with the world and she is not and neither is she a bad person.  She has a big heart and she loves and she forgives.  And both of us think we're bad people.

How is that?  Who convinced us that we're bad people?  And why did we believe them?

And most of all, how do I love myself as I am?  Sometimes angry, sometimes sad, sometimes lonely, sometimes a mess.  I only want to be good.  I want my dad to be proud of me and I never felt that and still that hurts to this day.  I feel like a disappointment to him.  So there is that sadness, overlaid by anger and then further covered up with humor.  So I guess it's the sadness I really need to deal with, not the anger so much.

The yard is filled with robins flitting from branch to branch, eating berries before their long migration.  Robins were my mum's favorites birds and they always remind me of her.

My middle daughter ended up with a concussion on the weekend.  She was at Whistler for a bachelorette weekend with friends and was knocked down a set of cement steps.  She lost consciousness and ended up in emergency.  The doctor who was called to check her over wasn't terribly impressed by a group of drunk young women, one of whom knew a lot about concussions and he brushed aside my daughter's concerns.  This is her fifth concussion in the past two years.  It started with a car accident and keeps happening.

I did some reading about concussions as I don't really know too much about them.  Apparently if you have one concussion, it increases your risk of having another.  It can take up to 100 days for your brain to recover from a concussion.  You don't have to lose consciousness to have a concussion.  A concussion results in neuron dysfunction  due to increased glucose requirements but insufficient blood supply (according to Wikipedia).  Mostly your brain doesn't work quite right for awhile.

I had a concussion three years ago when I slipped on some ice going into work.  I cracked my head hard and it took about two or three months before my mind no longer felt scrambled.

My middle daughter is coming this weekend for Thanksgiving so I'm hoping she just wants to take it easy and rest.  I'll feed her and she can rest.

I've been feeling blue lately and moody.  My stomach has been acting up so I've been taking Pepcid more and more.  I have a difficult time with side effects from drugs.  So I looked up the side effects of Pepcid again, depression, moodiness, insomnia, fatigue, etc.  Certainly I have been suffering from those four side effects.  So I stopped taking the Pepcid and I stopped taking advil for my arthritis which also bothers my stomach and I'm going to try just tums.  We'll see.  I do feel much better today.

It's still cold here, unseasonably cold.  Two hundred miles south of here they had a massive snow storm which dropped between 40 and 60 cm of snow.  I'm thankful we were missed.  I'm trying to work up the energy to work in the garden today but it's cold and cloudy, not exactly inviting.

The animals are curled up on the chair beside my desk, not looking overly energetic either.  Perhaps I should take a page from their book:)


Saturday, 29 September 2018


No reason for the goats except that I loved their ears and how they looked at my beagle.  I think the goats may have been confused because Lucy's ears resemble theirs;  they found Lucy quite interesting.

We're short again at work.  Three nurses moved on to different jobs.  It will get better again but right now it's tough.  My girlfriend is back to work which is very nice.  She was off for a long time;  she has bipolar disorder.  I missed her while she was gone.  We would meet for coffee but it's not the same as working together.  She's got such a good sense of humor, an evil laugh and is a wonderful hugger.  She makes work better.

Another girlfriend is coming over for supper with her little girl.  I bought a black barbie doll with curly hair because her little girl was sad because she wanted straight hair like all the Disney princesses.  I never thought much about how important it is to see images that look like you.  I have a box full of toys but no black dolls, so now I do.   I have a brisket cooking in the oven, made a cake for dessert and even bought some wine for us.

I still haven't seen my son.  It's been nine months now.  We stay in contact by text but I still don't trust him.  I stay in contact with his girlfriend as well.  We will have to have them over for supper eventually.  I want his girlfriend to know she is always welcome here.  When I got pregnant with my son thirty-five years ago, everybody was angry.  I wouldn't marry my son's father which upset even more people, especially my sister.  It was a time of stress and drama.  It don't want my grandbaby to feel unwanted.  A baby deserves to be loved and wanted.

My middle daughter is coming next weekend for Thanksgiving.  She just started a new job so I haven't had much contact with her;  one of her girlfriends is getting married and she's the maid of honor so she's been busy.  It'll be nice to visit with her and cook with her.  I miss her being so far away.

Miss Katie will be all moved in three weeks.  It can't come soon enough for me.  When she's away from that agency I plan on making some complaints but until she's moved I'll keep my own counsel.




The weather hasn't been all that nice but I did take this photo as few days ago while walking Lucy.  Even when I'm dead tired I have to take the dog for a walk after supper and it's good thing.  I get to spend time with the trees which always lifts my spirits.




Friday, 21 September 2018


The big guy and I met with the new agency today to go through stuff and sign papers.  The people that we've dealt with have all been kind, compassionate, enthusiastic and knowledgeable.  It's such a change.  After that meeting we drove to the south side to inspect the house that has been rented for Katie.  It's nice.  It's really nice.

After that we drove to Ikea to buy stuff for Katie's place.  She had a fully furnished apartment eight years ago when she was first cared for by the agency that is now evicting her.  When I asked what had happened to her stuff I was told by the owner that her "stuff" had been discarded and he didn't have time to argue with me.  So now Katie needs everything again.  I'm keeping all the receipts for her stuff and plan on doing something when she's out of the home she's in now.  Perhaps small claims court, something, maybe social services.  I don't know but you don't mess with my daughter.

Then we went out for lunch and I started crying.  I was so energized, excited, jittery after the meeting this morning that I talked all the way to the new home and then I crashed.  It all seems so good, so wonderful that I have trouble believing it's real.  It's so far removed from what I've experienced with Katie and agencies and caregivers that I don't trust this good feeling.  Isn't that sad?

Even the big guy, he's given me more support with Katie than her own father ever gave me which makes me want to cry again.  He loves his step daughter as if she were his own.  He appreciates her, understands what an amazing human being she is and he fully supports her.  He doesn't see her as defective.

Yesterday was my birthday and the big guy and I went out to see "The Book of Mormon".  I loved it!  It's deeply irreverent and filled with swearing so pretty much right up my alley.

And now we're relaxing.  It snowed again last night and there is more snow in the forecast.  It will be gone by next week but right now it's good to just slow down and do nothing productive for a change.


Friday, 14 September 2018


I'm beat tonight, had a busy, hard day at work.  Yesterday I had a five year old boy that needed an IV started for his MRI scan.  He was so quiet.  It breaks my heart when we have children.  Most of the kids stay over at the U but we get kids for radiation.

One of my patients today ended up with a huge hematoma on her arm from an old IV site.  I asked her if she was on any blood thinners and she started crying and said she had cancer.  I gave her a hug and three warm blankets because she couldn't stop shaking.

Another patient came down at lunch time.  We had put a PICC line in him yesterday at the end of the day and during the night he was hallucinating and pulled the PICC line out.  He felt bad but even worse, he was worried that the cancer had spread to his brain.  What do you say?  A few months ago he was playing golf four days a week and now he's dying of cancer.

I had one patient this morning who is an old drug addict, not that old and not that long off of drugs.  He kept falling asleep as I was explaining things to him.  He actually fell asleep on the table while we put his line in.  Normally I'm fairly patient but he irritated me today, mostly because we were too busy.  On the way home I thought about him.  The man is homeless, he's an old drug addict, he's diabetic and has cancer.  I'm pretty fortunate actually.  I have a home, someone I love and who loves me, I'm healthy and I have a job.

But it snowed here.  So there's that.  Most of it melted today but it's still cold outside with more snow in the forecast.  It will melt but really?

And the dog's back has been acting up.  She has spondylosis which means her discs are degenerating and there are bone spurs growing on her vertebrae.  She doesn't understand this and doesn't understand that the pain is coming from within her body, not from outside of her body.  She looks at us when her back hurts, as if we've done something to her.  She's on anti-inflammatories which are helping.

Thankfully it's the weekend.


Sunday, 9 September 2018



"In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks." John Muir