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Sunday, July 20, 2014

The Past Week.

What an interesting week. My boss did indeed ask to see me in his office - to tell me what a great job I'm doing, that I've taken over the job much faster than he thought possible and I'm an asset to the team. That blew me away - how many jobs do you have that the only time you ever get feedback is when they need to tell you something negative? So yes, I admit it, that made me feel really good. I've also rejoined Weight Watchers, my weight is completely out of control which I"m sure most people who have seen me in the past year are aware of. I don't know if it was all the stress from past jobs, menopause, or what have you but I'm closing in on 200 and that is the last place I want to be. I have tried dieting, exercising, etc... nothing works. But when I was in Weight Watchers a few years ago that did work for me. The issue of course is my job - if I go to a meeting near my office I won't get home til after nine, if I try for the one near my house I'll never make it in time. But with a little scoping around I found a meeting that is exactly halfway between work and home - so I can make it there in plenty of time and not be home too late. They've changed the program and I'm glad I rejoined. It still drives me crazy that I need something to regulate my diet and behavior, but right now I'm open to suggestions. The other thing that happened  is we developed a leak in our main line - oh how that sucked. David and Adam started digging a trench near the driveway and back towards the house - the next late afternoon I was downstairs doing laundry and noticed the wall seemed to have stains on it. I turned on the light in the corner and it was stains - water stains. The bad news of course is the leak was at the opposite end of the trench they had started - of course! - the good news is David fixed the leak and they didn't have to dig anymore . Our neighbor next door that is obsessed with the ditch in front of the house noticed of course. I have talked about this in the past - he is convinced the water in the ditch is from our septic system. Never mind that it's a small amount, that it just rained and frogs live in it, he is still sure that our septic system is leaking uphill. Sigh. We call him Mrs. Kravitz because that is exactly who he reminds me of. So, he saw David digging the trench and slowed down, drove his motorcycle to right in front of the ditch and peered into the ditch meaningfully. He didn't ask Adam or David what the problem is because he and his significant other have not spoken to us for over a year because of the aforementioned ditch. Actually, we're not even entirely sure what the problem is but I think he feels we did not do enough. We had it scoped, did a dye test and David finally cemented it off in an attempt to unbunch Mrs. Kravitz's underpants to no avail, he continues to be afflicted with twisted knickers. David got pretty upset and told me he was going to  buy a donkey with explosive diarrhea to tie next to the fence but I nixed that. I am encouraging buying sheep because apparently their poo smells. I don't care! I"m all That's Right, Teach Mrs. Kravitz A Lesson Buy Sheep! It can get quite tiresome as their behavior borders on bizarre, I've seen him sneak over when he thinks no one is looking to peek in it(one time it was him, his wife and the grandchidren all peeking in the ditch), he comes away disappointed but continues. I just wave when I see him - life is too short to waste on such petty nonsense.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Barefoot and Pregnant.

I usually don't address topics on my blog, but the recent issues over birth control have me a bit rattled. In high school - many years ago for me, we had a wonderful teacher Mrs. Brisel. They were not allowed to teach birth control in class, but she would announce during health class you could see her after school. She probably single handed prevented more teen pregnancies than anyone I know. She would tell you what was available and where to go, and would give you the number and address of  the free clinic in Riverhead - she was non judgemental, she only cared about YOU. I will be forever grateful for her advice and information. About that time we had Roe VS. Wade, laws were passed and birth control became available for everyone, insurance covered it too. And now, the executives from Hobby Lobby are opening the doors to the 17th century. It opens the gates for other companies to follow suit,drop kicking women back to the dark ages I've had people tell me that women should pay for their own birth control - why? If people smoke or drink should they pay for their own cancer? If they drive a car should they pay for any injuries they incur? And if the insurance will pay for you to have a baby, why not pay for you not to?And like the executives from that chain, a great deal of those against birth control are religious people and men. I love the "God Said" approach - REALLY? I don't think so and even if you can squeeze that one out of your religious text let me remind you they also stoned people, fed them to the lions and hung them from crosses - you could also go around counter eye poking -if those things don't apply now, why should the restrictions on pro-creation still be here?.. You can't just go around picking and choosing what God Said and what you choose to follow.  And that is THEIR beliefs - if I work for a Muslim should they be able to dictate I wear a burka? If your boss is a Buddhist should you put the ham sandwich down? Times have changed drastically changed since the dawn of religion. You cannot have 8 or 9 children and hope to support them if you don't live on a farm and produce your own stuff - and you're successful at it.. Women WORK for the same reason men do, we have to  - I mean honestly, what guy has the means these days to support umpteen kids on one salary? And  survival wise, you don't need that many anyhow, one of the things that has very much improved is our health care, especially in pediatrics. I love old graveyards but the next time you're  in one take a close look at the stones, you'll see multiple children from one family.I was in one recently from the 1800's and there were five little graves from one family.Very few children survived childhood in those days - that  particular family got hit six times total (one was a double headstone). If you really want to reduce unwanted pregnancies and abortions, pass laws that EVERY man must be 100% responsible for any offspring he produces and be willing to  take them full time at the mother's discretion. And before you holler Foul keep in mind that's how it is for women now, isn't it? If the father refuses to pay child support or makes the choice not to have anything to do with that kid, you can chase him around legally but the bottom line is there are a large number of men that do not pay or see their children and there are plenty of women struggling with that. When the baby comes unless a woman is willing to give the child up for adoption and never see it again, she does not have that option to drop out of financial and parental responsibility and be able to just show up years later when she feels like it.Let's face it, birth control has done far more for women than limit the amount of children she has - it's given us educational and financial freedom, the right to live our lives the way WE decide, not the Moron Squad from Hobby Lobby or any other institution.  I had a patient years ago, an elderly woman who asked me how many children I had  - I said two and asked her. She said seven. I told her I was so impressed!, I could not imagine being able to handle that many kids. She gently placed her hand on my knee and looked at me, she said "Sweetheart in those days we didn't have a choice, you had to have the babies". She went on to say she loved her children very much and would not trade one of the them, but given the choice she probably would not have had so many. So, I have no problem at all paying for birth control and will continue to speak out. And anyone with too many children - feel free to drop it a the home of anyone at Hobby Lobby, I'm sure they won't mind.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Settle In, Settle Down

My  boss emailed me that he wants to meet with me this week - but just to see how things are going and if I need anything. Things are going well thank you and I don't think there's anything I need. I am very much enjoying my job these days - it's not perfect and there's the occasionally snarkiness, but it's not serious snark and very little at that. I am navigating around the city pretty well, have my favorite shops and plan my grocery shopping around patient visits. I'm a huge fan of Whole Foods and a not so huge fan of Trader Joes - which is OK but not my favorite. I've been taking more pictures you might have noticed, getting the hang of it and the lay of the land so to speak. There's so many great pictures but no where to pull over a lot of the time. Or I have weigh whether it's worth since I'll have to try to get back into traffic, at certain times of day not an option. The construction is a pain - they've closed the Liberty Tunnel til the end of the month for painting so all the traffic is funneled into little side roads. I sat on route 51 for an hour yesterday, not a happy camper. After all, there's only so long you can watch Netflix and not get bored. But on the whole it's a fun place to scope out. David is busy with the houses, no bites on the Clarksburg house yet - if I hear one more time That Should Sell Fast I'll scream - no it won't. We are giving it another month and if there is not movement that will get rented and the Fairmont house will be sold. We always have a backup plan. We got a little break in the weather today, it's not chilly but cooled off enough to be comfortable. We have all sorts of things going on at the moment but nothing too tragic. I am trying to plan out things for the fall, we are hoping to get to Long Island at some point, a trip to Norfolk in October (maybe), NJ for Thanksgiving of course, maybe maybe maybe.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

What Do You Want?

I had a short day this week, since I had worked late the previous day and had patients in a very beautiful area. I took a bunch of pictures, including one of a brick, weather beaten home with a large porch, it sat on a large grassy hill with a tilted road sign posted beside it and I thought to myself - that is what I want. When you drive a lot, you tend to wander around mentally, you'll have one thought and it will segue way into an internal conversation. I started thinking about how we all seem to think we should have this Ultimate Goal, What Do I Want Out Of Life sort of thing. Doesn't it always seem like everyone else gets there - and you don't? But on further reflection I think we do obtain our goals and then move on to a new one. When I was ten, my deepest desires were Jay Osmond, a dog, a bike with sissy bars and a banana seat and above all, to feel safe and to be left alone - the last being a life long ambition. In my teens I wanted Steven Tyler BAD, a car with bucket seats, to move to NY to be a writer. I wanted a walk up loft in an artsy neighborhood and ability to ride the subway without having to make fourteen phone calls to the Palominos. As I hurtled toward my late teens I wanted to be free of some of the people I had hung around with, to get away from the drugs and find a way to live with memories of childhood and myself. Going to my twenties still wanted to Steven Tyler but wanted David worse, no more studio lofts or apartment, no writer, but I did get the car with bucket seats - and a cat, my first, I wanted a child - and then another.  As time marched on I wanted to be a baker, ended up a nurses aide due to financial collapse and finding myself the breadwinner of the family for a period of time. Then finally college, to be a nurse - who saw that coming? Not me, I can assure you. Some of my goals have been fulfilled - just not the way I saw it. I do work in the city, but the city is Pittsburgh, not NY and the only things I write are supervisory notes and Letters Of Medical Necessity. But I am a writer, aren't I - I've had this blog now for exactly ten years. If you look, my first entry was in July of 2004. I don't earn my living that way, but I enjoy it and given the counter on the top that I started a year or so ago, so do some other people. And I do feel safe, finally. We don't have huge property but we have almost six acres, I have about 3 wooded acres to work in. I have old chairs scattered throughout to sit and read quietly, I have to say that is where I'm most content these days. My two Fearless Companions snort and snuffle their way through the brambles and have learned to stay within earshot. I've always been a bit of a loner, had brief periods of not being one, but for the most part I enjoy my own company, I enjoy the quiet of me. So in retrospect, maybe my goals have been accomplished, well maybe not all of them, but some of them don't need to be accomplished and others have turned into new goals. Life is static, ever changing.