Home of an Emotional Idiot

While there were times when he wished he could roll back the clock and erase all the sadness, he had a hunch that if he did so, the joy would be diminished as well. And that was something he couldn't contemplate. (From At First Sight by Nicholas Sparks)

Thursday, March 30, 2006

UCLA Study (A Quick Funny)

Too tired to write but thought you'd get a chuckle from this email I recently got. Enjoy.

A study conducted by UCLA's Department of Psychiatry has revealed that the kind of face a woman finds attractive on a man can differ depending on where she is in her menstrual cycle.

For example: If she is ovulating, she is attracted to men with rugged and masculine features.

However, if she is menstruating or menopausal, she tends to be more attracted to a man with scissors lodged in his temple and duct tape over his mouth while he is on fire.

No further studies are expected.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Just A Quick Venting Session

Things being what they are at home, it seems almost absurd to let little things get to me but I am and that's why I'm here... to vent. I'm currently frustrated because while I work Monday - Friday 9 - 5, my mother stays at home. I don't resent her for that, I enjoy getting out of the house and going to work (most days). What bothers me about this arrangement is that she doesn't take the garbage out to the curb. She'll move the trash can so that it's in my way when I leave for work. Even on mornings when she goes to the store before I leave for work she doesn't take it out. Don't get me wrong, I don't mind taking it out. But ask me. Don't gather all the garbage you can and just pile it in my path to my vehicle. As you can imagine, since she doesn't take it out, she also doesn't bring the empty trash can back up from the street. Nor does she get the mail out of the mailbox. She's so concerned about identity theft that she shreds or blacks out names, addresses, etc. from all of our mail before throwing it out but she doesn't think twice about leaving the mail in the mailbox at the curb.

Yesterday morning at around 4:30 or 5, she was awake and the dog needed to go out. Did she put the dog on the leash and take her out? Nope. She woke me up to do it. SHE WOKE ME UP. I haven't been sleeping very well at all since this whole fiasco began and she had the nerve to wake me up when she was already awake.

This morning as I was getting ready for work, she was sitting at the kitchen table doing a jigsaw puzzle. She tells me that there were a few things my father wanted me to bring to the hospital tonight but that she needs to look for them, so could I come home during my lunch hour to get them? I'll be honest, I work close to home so it's not like it's an incredible inconvenience but I'm putting so many miles on my vehicle going back and forth between the hospital that this is just a few extra miles that could really very easily be avoided.

Another thing that bugs me about my mother is that she constantly lies to me about trivial things. Mostly about her smoking. She had quit for a long time and when she went back to it, she was smoking only when I wasn't around. (Like late at night when I was already sleeping, early in the morning before I was awake, etc.) Although I don't and never have smoked, I've lived with that smell for 30 years. I know it. It's familiar. I can place it. But she'll still lie and say she wasn't smoking. Well, the other day she told me she had two packs left and after that she was done. A few days later I commented that her two packs were lasting a long time considering how much she smokes and she told me she had found a third pack. That was a few days ago and she's still smoking. I just don't understand why she lies about it. I mean, when she told me she was going to stop I didn't believe her. I never do anymore because I know she won't and if she does it won't be for long. AAAARRRRGGGGHHHH!!!! Just had to get that out of my system.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

They Say God Doesn't Give You More Than You Can Handle...

About two hours after my last entry, I was walking the dog one last time before leaving for work. As we walked past the shed, I noticed one of her back legs jut out. I knew what it meant and as gently as possible pushed her down so that she was lying down. The seizure lasted, again, only about a minute. The recovery time from this one however was nearly six minutes.

Right before I took her out, mom had called the vet to say AJ had had two seizures during the night. They said to bring her in at 10:30. During the last seizure, mom called the vet back and said we were bringing her in as soon as this seizure was over.

The vet gave her phenobarbital and said we should get her started on a prescription, which mom had filled that morning. They also gave her some valium. They kept her at the vet for the day and we picked her up around 6:45 that night with the warning that she was going to be acting drunk for a week or two, until the phenobarbital is fully incorporated in her system.

With everything going on, I left work at 3 that day so that I could spend at least a few hours with my dad before going with mom to get AJ and bring her home. Within minutes of my arriving, dad asked what was going on with AJ. As I was telling him, I started to cry. It was at that point that he said if she has another seizure, we should say our goodbyes and let her go. He pointed out that she has had a really good life with us, she has given and received a LOT of love and we don't want her to suffer. To bring the point home, he said, "If this is what it's doing to you, imagine what it's doing to her." Unfortunately, knowing doesn't make it any easier.

Things with my dad are also no better. Not really. We found out that he's got fluid accumulating near the bone and they want to keep him in the hospital for 6-8 weeks and then at another facility on the same grounds for another 6-8 weeks where they will administer an aggressive antibiotic treatment. Should the infection get into the bone, it could be life threatening. On the bright side, at least it isn't in the bone. On the other hand, that means my dad will be away from home for another 3-4 months.

Mom and I are holding up as best as possible. We're a little afraid to leave AJ alone so we've been taking turns visiting my dad. I went to see him the day AJ was at the vet, mom went last night when I got home from work and I am going tonight after work.

When mom left last night, I took AJ outside and she was having some trouble with her back legs. She got tired and sat down part way through our walk and then laid all the way down. That was all I needed. I started to bawl. Luckily, we were only in the backyard. I sat down, still in my work clothes, next to her in the grass and just cried and told her that if she was ready I would rather her go at home in her sleep than have to make the call for her. I told her how much I love her, how special she's been to me over the last 12 years and that I don't want to see her in pain anymore. My beautiful, beautiful baby looked me square in the eyes and just started licking my face.

I know it may sound bizarre to some people but she's not just a dog. She's a part of the family. Her unconditional love has been amazing. What can I say? I'm a dog person.

Monday, March 20, 2006

Roller Coaster of Emotions

Last week I was feeling down. Although AIM had come out the weekend before St. Patrick's Day to help me put my table together and I figured that meant I wouldn't see him the following weekend, I was still disappointed when he didn't extend an invitation to me. Why do I do this to myself? I know that I should just move on but I feel something for this man that keeps me from doing so.

Every once in a while, I try my hand at poetry. I only try every once in a while because, quite frankly, I'm no good at it. My latest attempt, on St. Patrick's Day is: Tonight, as Irish eyes are a'smilin, Polish eyes are a'cryin.Not that you need it spelled out but AIM is the Irish eyes and I am the Polish. Anyway, that was as much as I managed to get.

I couldn't muster up anything else for my poem of sorrow as I felt myself move from beneath that dark cloud. I visited my father in the hospital on Friday night and then spent all day Saturday with him. My dog, my faithful companion, has been beside me just about every second that I've been home. She was doing well too. Her surgery (on Tuesday, I'm not sure if I wrote about it) was a success. The growth was removed and I, at least, was hoping it had been the cause of her seizures and that now that it was gone, so too would be the seizures.

Unfortunately, that was not the case.

As it happens, I had stayed up a little later than usual last night to finish the book I was reading, Marley & Me by John Grogan. One of my cousins lent it to me when I was in Florida. It's the story of a man and his dog. I found myself laughing out loud, uncontrollably, at some points and, at the end, crying with an equal amount of emotion. When I finished the last chapeter I blew my nose and pet my AJ. I wished her a good night and told her I loved her. About an hour and a half later I awoke to the sound of a really loud thump that came from the kitchen. I was out of bed in a heartbeat and by her side for the entirety of the seizure. I sit behind her when she has them and pet her and kiss her and tell her that I love her and remind her that she's not alone. For this particular seizure it's a damn good thing I did that because I swear, she almost swallowed her tongue. After about a minute the seizure stopped but it took her a good 4-5 minutes to "come back" from it. She was able to get herself up and empty her water dish and then we took a few short walks in the backyard. I got her back into my room and she laid down but couldn't seem to settle. It was as if she couldn't lay on her side or put her head down. My mother had asked about taking her to animal emergency but I said no. They would only drug her, keep her for the rest of the night, tell us to take her to her own vet in the morning and then charge an arm and a leg. I thought she'd be fine. But back to the tale at hand. She couldn't seem to get comfortable, therefore there was no sleep... for either of us. I tried. I pet her for a few minutes then got into bed and turned out the light. A few seconds later I heard the whining start. Not an excessive amount. Not constant. She's no dummy. It was just enough to get me to turn the light back on, get back out of bed and join her on the floor where she got tons of kisses and pets for the next two hours.

I took her out again at this point and she emptied herself out, in both ways. We went back to bed and miraculously, she settled right away and seemed to pass out. It was like she was saying, "Damn, I am tired. Let's get some sleep". I was happy to do so. Unfortunately, at 5:45, I awoke to her having another seizure. My poor baby. It's now 6:35. I've gotten about 3 hours of sleep and have a long day ahead of me as I plan to leave straight from work to visit my dad in the hospital. The vet doesn't open for another two hours and my baby is looking uncomfortable again, though she is right here at my side.

How foolish and incredibly lucky am I to be among those people that let's such a magnificent creature into their lives. You know the outcome. You know that most of the time, barring unforeseen circumstances, you will outlive the dog. But I am so happy to have her in my life. I can't imagine what the last 12 years would have been like without her. My baby.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

A Late Night Quickie....

Tsk. Tsk. Tsk.

What dirty minds we all have now!!!!

Well, it's been a while since I last wrote so I had to get your attention somehow, didn't I?

Anyway, this is just going to be a few thoughts quickly posted because I am tired tonight and have to be out of the house early tomorrow.

My AJ had surgery today to have a growth removed from her throat. It's been growing for a while but the vet finally agreed that it was time to remove it. She made it through the surgery with flying colors. She could have come home tonight but instead is staying at the vet until tomorrow afternoon.

The reason she's staying there overnight when she was cleared to come home is because the competition between her and my father to see who can get the most attention or the most sympathy still rages on. Dad woke up with a fever around 103 this morning and is back in the hospital. However, he's at the local hospital and is being transported to the veterans' hospital in the morning. Since no one will be home tomorrow morning the vet told my mother to save herself the peace of mind to leave the dog there until someone can be home with her. (Well, duh the vet said that, I'm sure they're going to charge for keeping her the extra time!)

With these things going on, it's no wonder I've been thinking about death a lot lately.

And to think, I was going to post the other day about how boring my life is and that I never have anything to talk about!

Enough for now... I need sleep. More to follow (hopefully pretty soon).

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

He's Back

The guy that approached me in the parking lot at work on Thursday and asked for money, which he said he'd mail back to me... approached a co-worker of mine yesterday afternoon and told her that his car had broken down and that he was in need of a few dollars.

She called the office from her cell phone to inform those of us who park back there. Not wanting to be seen by this man again, I took a stroll out on the roof and sure enough, it was the same person.

At that point I decided that I wasn't taking any chances and I called the police to file a report. An officer came to the office this morning, gave me a case number and told me to call if I, or any of my co-workers, saw this man back there again. At least, he said, they could try to find out who he is, etc.

I left to go and get lunch today with the case number and my cell phone in my hand and didn't see the guy. It figures.

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Paranoid?

Thursday, my first day back to work after my trip, we had snow. The forecast was calling for between 3 and 8 inches. It was cold and nasty outside but I needed to eat lunch so I ventured out. As I was brushing snow off of my windows, a man came up to me. Well, he came within three or four feet of me to ask me for $10. He told me his name was Frank and that he was a physician or physicist (I don't remember which) who had been visiting the Island and doing some work at Brookhaven National Labs. However, as his story goes, he had been dropped off at the local train station 12 hours earlier and just needed another $10.

I've fallen for scams before and didn't want to fall for this. He was well groomed and dressed nicely but his story didn't make sense. Our trains run regularly and even if service had been suspended due to the snow, it hadn't been snowing for 12 hours. Anyway, although he offered to mail the $10 back to me as soon as he got home, I lied and told him I didn't have it on me.

He took my lie pretty well and went off, I assume, to hit someone else up for cash.

It makes me wonder. I mean, I hope it was a scam that I just didn't fall for rather than a true story that I made worse. But honestly, how do you know? I know when I travel I'm really anal about having things. I make sure to have at least my license, ATM card, one or two credit cards and some cash. And that is what I keep physically on me. So it makes me suspicious when others don't do that.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Home From Florida

I am home from Florida.

At this point I'm not sure how I feel about that.

If you want the short version... I had a really great time, the party was a success and I even got a base tan started. If you are interested in the extended version, read on!

My flight was departing from JFK at 1:25 pm on Friday. AIM had suggested I arrive at his house (since he was dropping me off at the airport) around 10:30 or 11 am. I got there just before 10:30. I was feeling strong. I was going to tell him that what's been going on with us is done because I want more than he's willing to give. But then I thought, "he's picking me up at the airport on Tuesday, do I really want to tell him this now?". Going with that train of thought, I didn't say anything. (Okay, what really happened was that when we kissed I just enjoyed the moment of it too much to say anything.) Besides, do I really need to say it? It's not like we see each other often so if I were to just not be open to his touch and his attention when we are together, wouldn't that be enough? Before I digress further... he dropped me at the airport, kissed me good-bye, wished me a good time, asked me to call when I got there and told me he'd see me in a few days. I did call when I got there but not again until I was back in town and looking for him on Tuesday.

When my cousin Tom and I got to his house, where I was staying, his wife and my aunt and uncle were already there. Shortly after we arrived my cousins Patti and Bonnie showed up with Bonnie's husband and step daughter. After we sat down to dinner we were joined by Shannon, my cousin Christopher's bride-to-be. This was the first time I'd met Shannon and I liked her immediately. If it sounds like it was a little crazy at Tom and Andrea's, rest assured, it was! It was great to see this much of my family and to start to catch up but we were all pretty tired pretty quick.

The purpose of the trip was to celebrate my grandmother's 90th birthday at a surprise luncheon. Let me tell you, my grandmother has lived on her own for 28 years, she still drives, works part time and plays golf on a regular basis. She's pretty darn amazing. I don't know if there's even a glimmer of hope that I'll make it to 90 but if I do, I want to do it the way she has!

But back to the story at hand... The party was a smashing success. My grandmother was completely clueless about it. As sharp as she is, it took her a good minute to fully comprehend what was happening. As wonderful as it was for my grandmother, I have to say that it was pretty wonderful for my cousins and I as well. We all had the opportunity to meet family that we had never met and hear stories we had never heard. (One such story was that my great grandfather got a mail order bride from the SEARS catalog after his second wife passed away but his boys, who were teenagers by then, made her so miserable that within two weeks, she was back on a train to the midwest.)

But again, I digress. I won't bore you with the details of each day but I had practically no time to myself since I had four days to visit with a minimum of 13 people. I managed though and had a great time to boot.

Prior to my trip I was contemplating whether or not to go back to Florida in May for Chris and Shannon's wedding but I liked her so much that now I think I need to go! And it has nothing to do, seriously, with the fact that they're getting married on the beach! That's just a bonus!

So, I arrived back at JFK a few minutes ahead of schedule, got my luggage and went outside to catch my ride, who was not yet there. I called, he said to go back inside so I didn't freeze and that he'd call me when he got close (he wasn't that far away). About ten minutes later he called, said he'd be there in about a minute and asked if I had fun. I told him I did have fun but that I'd tell him all about it when I was in the car and told him where to find me.

In the car, I learned that he hadn't been feeling well at all that day. A friend of his had just gotten over the flu and he was wondering if he was coming down with it now. He also told me that his brother and sister-in-law found out that the bundle of joy they are expecting in June is going to be another girl. I also filled him in on my trip. We got back to his house put my bags in my car and then went upstairs for a few minutes. I had a soda, he had a club soda. We chatted. He gave me a few brief kisses. I gave him a thank you card and a candle. I left a thank you card for his brother and sister-in-law too. He told me I was crazy. I told him I didn't care. Then I left.

When I got home, no one heard me. Everyone was asleep. Even the dog. She didn't hear me until I went into the bathroom. She smelled like she does after a seizure but there was no note, no one was awake to confirm and she was acting okay. I learned this morning that she did have another seizure last night, shortly after my plane landed. It's only been a week since the last one. It's pretty scary but I have to wonder if they're not brought on, at least in part, by stress or by sensing the stress surrounding my dad's health.

Today was my day to get back on track with my plans to improve upon me. Since I had the foresight to take today off of work, I went to the track and did a brisk three-mile walk and am now catching up on laundry. Fun, fun.

Before I go though, I want to share with you an excerpt from the book I'm reading. The book is called American Girls About Town. It's labeled as "A Star-Studded story collection featuring America's red-hot women writers." I bought it because it includes something from Jennifer Wiener that I hadn't read. Anyway, the excerpt...

Sometimes you just have to believe that people spend a lifetime stockpiling stupidity, so they can drag it out on special occasions.

Ahh, well, I thought it was pretty funny.