Wednesday, February 27, 2013

How do you NOT know you're getting braces?!

Some days just take you by suprise.
For me it started on my way to work. It was a cold rainy morning. I'm at the light - daydreaming waiting for the green. I wasn't thinking about anything in particular or anything significant when suddenly I'm rear ended! The car behind me overshot their breaking distance against the slick wet road and bangs into my rear bumper. I instinctively check my rearview mirror to see what's going on. Its just me and the other car on the road.

I get out of my car to check things out. Clearly it was a minor hit with neither car suffering any damage. The adrenaline rush was the most outstanding part of the hit. I walk over to the other car and a woman looking disheveled is apologizing profusely! She has her window rolled down and I touch her hand asking if she is ok. She shakes her head yes. I return a smile to reassure her that everything is alright and tell her to be safe and have a better day.

I go back to my car and wait for the light to change. Now I'm back on my route to work a little shaken and very aware!

That was enough to get my attention however it doesn't stop there. That was just the start. The rest of my day looked more like a chapter in the novel, Lemony Snicket's - A series of Unfortunate Events...
At work I was faced with multiple deadlines and had to unexpectedly drive across town running errands for an upcoming school event.
And then once back in class the paper mache zebra I was making fell apart before my eyes.  The kids were sympathizing over the sick looking animal. I had to just quit and take the thing home for major surgery. (That NEVER happens...frown)

It gets better....
It was lunchtime and I was on my way home to rest and regroup when the alarm on my phone screams its time for my orthodontist appointment. This visit was supposed to be the last of a series of visits to fix a tooth that was falling forward. 

Instead of being signed off with a great smile the doc is very concerned with a troublesome tooth that won't budge and suggest drastic measures.  Some technical garbidy goop talk later my mouth is being pried open. I must have been in a daze cuz the next thing I know there's a wire being afixed to my teeth. I honestly didn't realize I was getting a bonefide set of braces put in my mouth! The doc then rattles off  (almost as an afterthought)  all the foods I can't eat and how now my food needs to be cut into small pieces! That was the only preparation for my new metal mouth!

Who does that...wake up and not know they are getting braces that day?!

I at least got to get the hot pink elastics!

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Art & Fear

"Writing is easy:
all you do is sit staring at a blank sheet of paper until the drops of blood form on your forehead."
- Gene Fowler

I'm instantly and magnetically drawn to a new book I borrowed from an artist friend of mine.
The book is titled, "Art & Fear - Observations On The Perils (and Rewards) of ARTMAKING" by David Bayles & Ted Orland

I'm barely through the first chapter and I'm jumping out of my skin with excitement! There are books that seem to be written JUST FOR ME!  This is one of those books.

The book is about getting artists out of their own way in order to produce art. Its about learning how to tear down any barriers that prohibit creativity. Its about finding yourself as an artist in the face of rejection, "...finding nourishment within the work itself.". It is about Art & Fear.

I'm giddy with excitement!

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Saying what people WANT to hear.

I'm almost embarrassed to admit that in this phase of my life folks are still able to pull the wool over my eyes.  I've managed to maintain some of my gullible innocence of my youth. Sometimes to my detriment.  I tend to lead a fairly open life (what I choose to show).  What you see is what you get with me, trying to choose my words carefully to mean what I say. My openness however does not mean the people I deal with are going to play with their cards facing up too.  In some cases I have been bamboozled!

I'm slowly learning that true integrity is a hard characteristic to come by. People tend to play word games to protect themselves from potential confrontation. Saying what you mean and meaning what you say leaves you exposed.  There is nothing to figure out. Truth is laid bear for all to just deal with. That's no fun.  Its as if we like a little mystery in our interactions no matter how great or small.  It is my contention that an honest response is the best response. No matter how raw and honest the truth is, you're able to deal with it.  There is something real about the statement, "the truth shall set you free."  It really does. After the truth is revealed all that is left to do is accept it and move forward. You can try to fight it all day but in the end you can't dispute it. You can't change it . You can't take it away. Conflict comes when you try to resist truth. You will never win. Truth is so real and final it stands alone and doesn't need your approval.  It is so final that it actually frees you from anything binding you to it, so you can just accept it and move forward. Then only thing more final than truth is death.

However being human we think we can outsmart truth, bend it, hide it, turn it, twist it to suit our needs. We think we are so clever because we have picked up the tactic of saying what we think the person wants to hear so we get what we want. Little white lies they're called. On a small scale, we cause harm by saying things like, "It'll only take 20 minutes." knowing full well the duration could be well over an hour. In the end this leaves the person frustrated and may trust you a little less.  However, you may not get what you want if you go right in saying, "This may take over an hour."  You could run the risk of the person choosing to change the course leaving you in the inferior position. We like all costs.  We want to keep them in control with our watered down truth, to keep them from moving in unpredictable ways. So saying something slippery seems solid. (say that three times
Now on a larger and more harmful scale proclaiming, "You are the love of my life." to two separate people on two separate occasions is really exercising our ability to cleverly control lives. Is there truth in the statement? Sure...for the moment they are saying it. However the person on the receiving end assumes its all about them.  Keeping things at bay seems to get us what we want.  I'm sure you can imagine how unpredictable someone would move once finding out that truth. The white lie here seems to keep things calm and smooth and predictable. However let the floodgates of that one get out and its tsunami city!

In both cases the person is being told what they want to hear and the person delivering the message knows it! The flaw is that although that may be desirable for the person to hear, what they really need and want is the truth. Let's give people the real options to respond to our truths, no matter how challenging the truth may seem. Morphing truth will always come back against us no matter how big or small. Living by integrity is a hard choice unless we really believe in the benefits and freedom of truth. You live free when you accept truth and move forward.

I'm actively trying to adopt the words of my best friend,  "Accept what you are given and resist nothing".

Monday, February 18, 2013

Milestone - (in vitro 2nd cycle)

Things are moving along quickly this cycle.
I've been on Lupron for just about a month. Trying to track my body's response to the medication is tricky. Initially I did not feel any different. This week however, I had some symptoms I'm not sure if they were caused by the medication.

I had my baseline ultrasound and bloodwork on Wednesday, Feb. 13. My lining was a perfect 3mm thick and blood levels right where they need to be. So right now the plan projects embryo transfer on March 4. There are two multicelled embryos ready to thaw and implant. We will implant both embryos.

Ok...February 1 - 12  I was on 10 units of Lupron. Throughout that time I did not feel any affects of the medication.
February 13 I dropped down to 5 units of Lupron. Still normal.
February 14 I continued with the 5 units of Lupron. My movement at school was typical, however, I developed a slight headache in the morning and by 2pm it turned into a full blown migraine. I ended up going to bed by 4 pm until the next morning.
February 15 I added 1 estrogen patch along with the Lupron. My head was pounding in the morning but had subsided to a normal headache by the afternoon.
February 17 I put on a fresh estrogen patch and continue with the Lupron. My headache never went away but its only slight. Nothing to stop me from my everyday tasks.

I'm excited about this cycle and a little anxious. I have a list of things to accomplish before March 4th. Typically I will be on bed rest for about three days after the transfer so I want to make sure things are in order at home and school before then.  Plus I want to respect Shelly's feelings. She definitely wants me to do the least amount during this pregnancy. That can be a challenge for me as I am used to having multiple projects going on at the same time. Time to s-l-o-w down.
That's why I'm making a mad dash until March 4th!!! Smile

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

You are what you eat...and think.

What motivates our dietary choices?

Let's say for the last 5 years your doctors visits have reaped the same result: high cholesterol, high blood pressure, over weight, diabetes and lets throw in asthma!

Sounds like alot right? But is it ENOUGH to have you change your lifestyle? If you really like chocolate cake, what's gonna stop you from eating it? Who's thinking, that one piece of chocolate cake is really all that harmful? We have selective memory. We don't think about how many "one" pieces of chocolate cake we've had over the years over the amount of carrot sticks!

It seems to me that unless a life threatening EVENT occurs, all the warming signs in the form of numeric physiological tracking does nothing for a person....just as the term "numeric physiological tracking" does nothing to get us closer to really understanding the problem. Who understands all those bloodwork numbers anyway...other than the doctors themselves?

So lets throw in the mix another term to help confuse things even more.  What about the bioenvironmental factors (those little external forces)? Lets say as a child your parents were really good parents and to show their sweet affection for you they would bake your favorite dessert....chocolate cake. Seems harmless enough, right? Chocolate cake now is no longer just a yummy treat. It represents all the love and affection of your youth! Every yummy bite is jammed packed with sweet memories. A constant reminder that you are special and you are loved.  And you are special....every clogged artery, labored breathing, imbalanced sugar insulin ratio, and fat cell in your body is special.
How do we "put the fork down"?!

Why wait until things get so bad they land us in the ER? We suffer...our loved ones suffer. Somewhere a shift in thinking is necessary. Its not only our life that is affected. Taking care of ourselves and eating healthy is a consideration not only for us but for the ones we care about the most.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

A wise person once said....

Sometimes people say things to you or about you that you don't like. If it is from someone you love and admire, the words can cut deeper than a two edge sword, crippling you.  The real challenge is getting to the truth...the heart of the matter.

There is a grain of truth in even the most gruesome of lies. Its hard to see that truth if your vision is blocked by emotion.

I recently was told I lack perspective, unable to control my emotions, insecure, abusive, unstable, unappreciative, just taking and wanting more and more and more. From this angle I am hideous and unworthy of any kind of friendship or grace. That type of wordplay could cause someone to ponder, "What drawer did I put the razor blades?".
What someone sees in you as the core of who you are is a reflection of your actions they witness and judge. It is not the whole picture. It is a side of the truth. Whatever incidents lead to that opinion it is best to keep the incidents isolated. Sweeping Generalizations are damaging. Taking the depth of a person and reducing them to a harsh word is meant to destroy.

I am all those things at different times. Its not who I am as a whole. It is not the core of my existence. However, to hear it in the context of ---that is who I the point where dread befalls the person in hearing from me...the lines of truth can get blurred if my lense is clouded by emotion.

So back to the heart of the matter...the truth. For my own sanity and health I need to be better in all those areas. Even if to stay consistent and be above reproach. To learn and grow. To have what I believe reflected in my actions. Watch my life and doctrine closely. And continue to openly look at myself honestly even in the light of the most horrible of opinions. An ample amount of humility is always good to have around too!

I'm learning that 'perspective' drives opinion. Its where the person sits that guides their words. However, angles are askew.