I thought I’d drop in to say hello today. A cursory look at the blog and it’s obvious I’ve not been around much lately. I could beg any number of reasons why, but then this would look and sound like a pity party. And to be truthful, I only throw those parties for myself.
Several posts are underway and in draft form, but they aren’t ready to seek public approval or catch the eye of the appropriate reader. I’m also working on some book reviews, especially memoirs, and hope to have one or two of those up soon.
I also want to share with you that I’m experimenting with the new editor, Gutenberg, that WordPress has blessed us with in recent weeks (note sarcasm here). Experimenting is my honest experience, and WordPress hasn’t really blessed us yet. There are miniscule things important only to the writer that are not readily available in menu bars, etc. I’m planning a post on issues I’ve run into that required me to go digging for “how to” information. Frustration after frustration when preparing a post. And I’ll share tips with you on how to work around some of these things.
For now, you know what I’ve been working on bit-by-bit. And you have a few things to look forward to now.
Experiencing a bit of cabin fever? Government restrictions related to the coronavirus bugging you? Looking for a quick cure for cabin fever? Keep reading!
Today we bring an expert to the blog to share tips for coping with cabin fever. Our expert has four years or more under her belt of being confined. Chronic pain has been her nemesis, but her tips will apply as well to cabin fever patients.
Here’s a list of helpful tips and hints for coping with the frustrating symptoms associated with cabin fever:
Grab a good book and start reading. Need help finding a book? Check out book descriptions and reviews on Goodreads.
Do a jigsaw puzzle. It may seem a bit old-school, but they can be lots of good fun unless you have cats who want to help!
Schedule a movie and popcorn night. Especially popular if you have children around.
Call a friend or two you haven’t touched base with in a while.
Get out some board games or a deck of cards.
Sort through old photos.
Try a new hobby, like knitting, crocheting, stained glass, writing poetry, or Sudoku.
Pour through cookbooks looking for a new recipe to try out.
Start pre-spring cleaning. That way you won’t have so much to do when the good weather arrives.
That home improvement project you’ve been postponing is something you could work on.
If you’re a TV watcher, catch the newest season of your favorite show on Netflix.
Begin researching family history and start a family tree.
Plan a weekend getaway for after the restrictions are lifted.
Enjoy reading aloud rather than alone and silently? Maybe this is a good family activity if you have young readers.
Get some form of exercise. If you can get outside and continue social distancing, take a short walk, say 15 minutes. Or perhaps you have some slightly never used exercise equipment you could put to good use.
Continue to engage your faith or spiritual life through reading and/or prayer, or both.
Think about that spring garden. Perhaps it’s time to draw up a plan for what you want to plant and how.
Give in to that power nap. It’s amazing how much that few minutes improves your attitude.
Plan and treat your family to a picnic. Cook up hamburgers and hot dogs and all the fixings. Then spread a cheerful tablecloth or blanket on the floor and get out the paper goods and plastic forks and knives. Add some chips and condiments and have fun!
If you’re a writer, try writing in a different genre than usual.
And lastly, remember to practice kindness even if you are self-quarantined with your family–may be just you and your partner or spouse, and maybe a few kids, or some other configuration of family. Spread kindness even in these different and difficult times.
On Tuesday, Bob and I spent the greater part of the day at OHSU (aka Oregon Health & Science University). OHSU also houses two hospitals, and my surgery will take place at one of them (OHSU Hospital) on Wednesday.
Tuesday’s schedule contained three appointments, each of which included questions and answers, tests and more tests, and an introduction to a research study I’m participating in. At the time, my head was swimming until we got a stretch near mid-day for lunch and taking a breath.
Everything went well. All of our questions were answered. We also received a detailed description of my surgeon’s plan. The end result came at the hands and compassion of medical staff at the Spine Center.
In the midst of all the negativity around us by the government, protesters, the news media, and more, it was a delight to meet people who were actually soothing souls. Not one negative attitude during the entire day. Not one person who came across as an ego-loaded jerk. Not one shrug or smirk at any of my questions.
These soothing souls provided me with the sense of calm and peace I’ve been seeking as I head into the most complex of the spine surgeries I’ve had to date. Prayers from friends and family helped me along. Coming home felt almost unbelievable when compared to how I’d felt that morning heading out.
Gratitude is lifted to God for the gift of these people committed to working in the field of medicine spreading calmness and peace.
Beginning March 6, 2019, the blog will go dark for a while as I take a medical hiatus. After a long wait, insurance has finally approved the surgery recommended by my spine surgeon. This will entail the repair of a failed fusion from 2011 as well as stabilizing a couple of other areas.
As I come closer to the surgery date, I’m finding that the words don’t come easily these days. Whether or not I post anything else before March 6th is still a question unanswered. However, I didn’t want to go marching off for the hospital gown and socks uniform without letting you know I’d be away.
According to everything I’ve been given to read, recovery will require three to four days in the hospital with six to eight weeks following that at home.
Those who believe in prayer are welcome to offer up prayers for calm hands and minds for my surgeon and his team, for peace and calm for me as I prepare for my surgery, and for a solid recovery.
If you want to be in touch during recovery, you can always use my Contact page to send a note. I’d love to have “mail” to read.
Monday was definitely a Monday. I sat all day and watched patiently for the promised weather forecast–sunbreaks. Yet, they never made a showing. Just one or two would have made all the difference in the world outside my window.
Nothing but gray skies, a chill in the air, reports of freezing fog early morning. None of this aids in ridding oneself of back or leg pain. In fact, it only makes it worse.
Monday’s weather also fed into the slightly depressed, somewhat anxious state-of-mind while you’re awaiting a somewhat complex spinal surgery in a couple of weeks. Winter weather in the Pacific Northwest can bring the happiest soul down a notch or two or more.
The good news is that the weather is looking up–sunny both Thursday and Friday of this week. That is if you believe weather prognosticators!