Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Being Equal

I know that this is going to be an unpopular opinion, but that is what it is...MY OPINION.

Every day/week/month we have another day/week/month for a special group.  Usually, this involves a lot of pissing and moaning about how this group is not equal.  The thing is, EACH group is 'not equal' to a different group.  My profile makes me 'not equal' to some others, just as most--if not all--of us, in one way or another.  The biggest difference between me and some of these other 'unequals' is this:  I don't demand to be equal.  I am what I am, the world is the way it is, and it is up to me to do something about my situation if I want it to change.  And that 'something' ISN'T DEMANDING special treatment.

At one time, if someone wanted to make something of him/herself, all that person needed to do was work to make it happen.  That opportunity hasn't disappeared...people just find it much easier to be handed things rather than work for them.  When I was younger, I thought I wanted to be a doctor.  For me, it would have been extremely difficult to achieve.  I am female, I am only a 2nd generation American, my parents were neither wealthy or influential, and I grew up and lived in a very rural area.  No one in my family ever went to college, so I had no guide to how or what to do to get there.  I knew virtually nothing about college life or living in a city.  It was almost impossible for me to become what I wanted.  ALMOST impossible, but there would have been a way.  I could have sought out someone who had already been to college and find out what I needed to do to get there.  I could have worked harder in school and been awarded scholarships to attend school.  I could have done everything in my power to make my dream a reality, if I would have worked at it.  And if I had wanted it enough, I KNOW it would have happened.  I just didn't want it enough.  THAT is what is wrong with the people who scream 'inequality.'

Any one of us can do a Google search and find examples of people from repressed, unequal groups who have achieved greatness.  The difference between the 'haves' and the 'have nots' is that one group is willing to work for what they want and the other wants to cry about not being given opportunities.  One group is to be admired.  I'll let you guess which one.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

The Rules

I really, really like simple, so succinct.

Monday, February 22, 2016

And This Will Pass...

The Husband is sick.  I don't know if I ever feel more helpless than when a loved one of mine is sick.  I never know what to do unless the person is undeniably sick or injured and HAS to be seen by a doctor.  Everything that is going on with him points to some sort of influenza or stomach/'flu'...he has the chills, nausea, a bit of a cough, fever.  Most of the time I wouldn't think twice about letting him 'ride it out,' but with his underlying kidney disease, I don't know if we are supposed to aggressively treat any illness.  Of all of the questions we have asked his health 'team,' we never asked about 'normal' illnesses and what he should do if he came down with one.  We will call his doctor's office in the morning and get through this mini crisis...and when we meet with his nephrologist next week, you can be sure we will be asking many questions.

Friday, February 19, 2016

Going Postal

I know that it is very easy to complain about the post office, but, REALLY?...

I do my voting by absentee ballot and have done so for a couple of years now.*  While there are a few 'rules' and instructions to follow, it doesn't take a rocket surgeon to vote, put the ballot in the envelope, and mail it.  This I did a couple of weeks ago for the upcoming primary election.  Done and done.  Except...

Two days later, the envelope that I had mailed was delivered to our house.  It was canceled, it was addressed properly, there was the proper amount of postage on it, but it was returned to me.  NOT, however, as a 'return to sender,' but as a 'here is the envelope that was mailed to you.'  I cannot for the life of me understand the glitch that happened.  It. Makes. No. Sense.

The Husband took the ballot envelope and went to City Hall to deliver it to the clerk's office, as the post office had already delivered it and wouldn't deliver it again.  He explained to them what happened.  They looked at him as if he had grown another head.  No one has been able to explain this snafu.  The clerk accepted the envelope--after making sure there had been no tampering--and will add it to the absentee ballots to be counted.  And, I suppose, that will be the end of it.  Still, I DO continue to wonder what happened...

*When you have the chance to vote by absentee ballot, do so.  It is SOOOOOO much easier than having to go to the polling place.  You get your ballot weeks in advance and have a considerable amount of time to fill it out.  You can take your time and decide on how to vote without worrying about being rushed.  I don't believe I will ever NOT vote absentee again!

Thursday, February 18, 2016

To Sleep, Perchance To Dream

The day after I turned forty, my body fell apart.  I gained 30 pounds overnight, my joints began to ache, and I started to make 'old person noises' whenever I got up from a sitting position.  And every 10 years since, it has gotten worse.  One of the worse problems I have faced with my getting older is the inability to get a good night's sleep.  Yes, I wake up to head to the bathroom several times at night, but it is the trouble trying to find a comfortable position in bed that is the most annoying.  And this is where I segue into this post...

When we were getting ready to move into this house, one of the 'must haves' that I insisted on was a new bed...a KING-SIZED bed.  We never had a room big enough to have a king-sized bed before and I couldn't think of anything more luxurious for our new home.  So, we went shopping.

I haven't slept well for years, so about 5 years ago we went shopping for a new mattress and settled on an expensive model.  I figured you get what you pay for and had always heard that a firmer mattress was what a person should sleep on.  We paid the price and had the thing delivered...and hated pretty much every minute we slept on the thing.  It got to the point where The Husband was sleeping on the sofa and I was in the recliner as much as in bed.  So, when we went to buy our new mattress, we decided to get the cheapest, well-made one we could find.  And then we met Frank, a man who had been in the mattress business for over 30 years.  He began making mattresses, then he supervised mattresses being made, and then he moved into selling mattresses in his senior years.  He talked a good talk and before we knew it, we were on the 'computerized mattress' being 'measured' for the best match for us.  He led us to different beds to 'try out' and left us there.  Both of us were very comfortable and after trying a few more mattresses, decided on the first one we tried.  The mattress cost about as much as we paid for our first car. =8-0

Our bed was delivered shortly after we moved into the house.  And then came the 'break-in period.'  We were told that it would take close to four weeks for our bodies to get used to the new, improved, and perfect-for-our-bodies mattress.  They certainly weren't wrong about getting used to the new bed.  Some mornings I got out of bed feeling as if I was beat with a baseball bat!  But things a certain extent.  My old body is turning against me once again and it isn't letting me get good sleep.  The conclusion I have come up with is that I haven't found the right pillow.  So, I will be shopping, again.

I pretty much think that a good night's sleep is something I will never have again.  While getting older has its perks*, there are many not so good things.  I try to focus on the good and not the bad.  Why not?  Just think of the alternative.

*Perks of getting older:  no periods, no teenagers, retirement, no schedules, being an 'elder' and being able to speak your own mind...are just a few of the good things!  :)

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Bonus Post, Part 2

Several times these past few weeks, we have gotten a phone call where the caller ID says it is from 'FinacialServices.'  Obviously, this is some sort of telemarketer call and we just ignore it.  The phone rings the requisite number of times and then the answering machine kicks in and answers*.  Each time, we then hear this:

Telemarketer:  Hello...this is Grace.  How are you doing?

Us:   'dead silence'  (because she's talking to the answering machine)

Telemarketer:  Hello...are you there?   Hello...

And then 'Grace' hangs up.

I don't think 'Grace' is the sharpest knife in the drawer...

*Our machine 'says' it is a machine and 'asks' the caller to leave a message.  It isn't as if we try to prank our callers by pretending they aren't talking to a machine.  Good grief...

Bonus Post, Part 1

For the first time in my life--and I'm older than dirt--I found an egg with a double yolk last weekend.  I was quite excited.  I need a life...   :D

Yes, I'm Still Alive

It has been a year and a half since I posted and quite a bit has happened.  I will try to be brief.  (HA!)

--The last day of January, a year ago, The Husband put in his retirement papers.  The first day of April, he was done.  He was going to keep working for another couple of years, but things at the power plant changed.  First, we weren't sure exactly how long the plant would stay open and it seemed as if the news was different every few weeks.  Instead of worrying continuously about when the work would end, he just decided to retire.  Also, his oldest niece--a couple of years younger than us--died on the day that he put in his papers.  This was a BIG influence in his decision...why put off til tomorrow, etc, etc, etc.

--No sooner had The Husband retired, we decided to build a new house.  The beginning of May we signed the papers and approved the plans for the house to be started.  We had our old house demolished the beginning of August and the new one was put in place about five weeks later.  (We had a custom-made modular built.)  We finally moved into the house the end of the first week in October.  It was quite interesting to try and pack up and move 38+ years worth of possessions, but we did it--with a LOT of help from our girls and their families.  While we are moved in and pretty well established, the basement is FILLED with boxes that still need to be unpacked.  I hope to live long enough to do the work.  ;)

--And the biggest news of all is that The Husband's health has deteriorated.  In 2006 he was diagnosed with IgA nephropathy and was stable until August.  He has been getting worsening blood test results and he is on the fast track for dialysis/kidney transplant.  We don't know when either will happen, but it looks as if he will begin dialysis probably before summer.  We are hoping to find a donor for a live-organ transplant, but don't know if that will happen...we are just beginning to get things started with the transplant team and aren't very far into the process.  I have been hopeful that I will be able to donate one of my kidneys, but with my own health issues, I don't know if I would be eligible.  We'll have to see what happens.

--Talking about my health:  The scare that I had about my heart a year and a half ago turned out to be nothing.  Things went from bad to worse and worser still before I finally got to see a cardiologist in person, which was about 6 weeks after I first was told there was a problem!  I went in for the appointment and the doctor told me that, after looking at all of my tests, he couldn't find anything wrong with me.  While I DO have some sort of anomaly with my heart rate, it doesn't seem to be anything to worry about and shouldn't cause me any problems.  Then he told me, "Basically, pretend none of this ever happened."  Okay, this was wonderful news, but I couldn't help but be pretty pissed off that I had to go through such stress over, basically, nothing.  However, I have moved on...

--The worse part of all of the health thing with me is the fact that I had to stop all exercising until I was given a cleanish bill of health.  With all of the stress I was under, I turned to my favorite coping method, eating.  That combined with no exercise did nasty things to me...namely weight gain...and got me completely back into old, bad habits.  Pretty much all of the great work and results from my time at the gym are gone.  I have no one to blame but myself, but it is a great disappointment.

--And finally, my Red Wings are doing okay.  They could be doing better and also could be doing a LOT worse.  We are on the downside of the season and just hope they will continue to do well and make it into the playoffs.  I'm really starting to dread the off season...there is no life without hockey.

Hey people, it looks as if I may be back!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

A Different Take on Politics

Once again we have an election coming up.  And if I didn't know it, all I have to do is ride around town and see all of the political signs.  Most of the time, I don't pay much attention to them and don't necessarily 'see' whose name is on the sign.  However, I noticed one name lately and that is because I 'know' him on a personal basis...

When my girls were in school, I did quite a bit of volunteering in the school system.  One year when my youngest was in elementary school, I was called upon by the 'room mothers' several times to supervise/chaperon events.  I didn't really get along with these women--one in particular--because they were SO. DAMN. PEPPY!  Every single time I saw them, they were almost giddy with happiness.  They were cheerleaders about everything.  I think I could have coughed and spit a snot ball the size of a Tootsie Roll in their faces and they would have found something positive to say to me.  BUT, it would have come out as a bit condescending, because I wasn't quite on their social level.  I think we all have known people like this in our lives.

Anyway, one of these room mothers really rubbed me the wrong way:  She had the perfect life, the perfect child, the perfect home, the perfect wardrobe, the perfect side job, the perfect husband, the perfect perfect, etc, etc, etc.   And she was just so happy all of the time--and everything was great all of the time.  And I really couldn't stand being around her.  I don't do peppy people.  But one day, I realized there just might be a reason for all of her peppiness.

I don't quite remember what holiday or special day we were celebrating in the classroom.  I had done whatever it was I had been told to do...probably passing out juice or cookies or something.  I remember going to get some napkins from the other side of the room and happened to stumble upon the peppy mom and her husband standing, hidden from view, in the corner.  While I didn't hear what was going on, I SAW what was going on:  He was berating her in such a manner that I actually felt sorry for the woman.  He had such a bullying look on his face and she was almost cowering over the 'attack.'  Because they had placed themselves away from everyone else, I knew they wanted privacy so I moved on and pretended not to see anything.*  I always imagined that her peppiness was a cover up for an, at least partially, unhappy life.  This was something that I can never forget.

So, imagine my surprise when this same man shows up on campaign posters, asking for my vote on November 4.  Just proves that we have no idea who any of these people are that we are asked to vote for.  I wonder if I want to have a possible abuser represent me even at a local level.  Quite a dilemma.

*I'm sure some people would say that I did a disservice to the woman by not intervening.  I don't how to respond to this.  I REALLY don't know how to respond to this.