Wednesday, November 28, 2007

I'm Baaaaack !


The Bubbie is back.
We spent two weeks with my daughter in Virginia Beach.
I miss her and the baby already. I promise to bore you with pictures as soon as I get the time to download and go through the hundreds of pics and video I took of my grandbaby.
I'm busy unpacking suitcases, doing laundry, going through the mountainous pile of mail.
I'm making a list. I need groceries, dog food, meds refilled, phone calls to return....
We had a great time in spite of the disease exchange I took part in with my little booger-nosed baby. Everyone else just had a benign, although quite miserable head cold, while I decided to be more dramatic and engage in a high fever for several days. A trip to a doc-in-a-box had them puzzled as to the source of my fever. I tested negative for flu, strep, chest exray was clear (nasty smoker that I am, that was good news), but urine sample was suspicious. A script for Bactrim either worked, or I was already finished with this drama anyway...who knows. So, go in with Upper Respiratory Infection and come out with a UTI...go figure.
I cooked a turkey and lots of veggies, even a pumpkin and cherry pie. It was a very nice Thanksgiving.
My daughter took me to The A.R.E. for one afternoon. For me that is a "must" when in Virginia Beach. We took in a lecture and an excercise in telepathy and I spent some time in the research library. A good friend of her's works there and led me to a ton of interesting material that I will share with you in a future post.
My puppy is whimpering for my attention. I missed the furry varmint. My birds had two eggs hatch before I left and I now have 2 new babies almost ready to fly. One large vanda orchid is ready to bloom and needs my attention. I don't believe it rained here while I was gone. Groceries to buy...where the hell is my list? I should be back to my "normal" in a day or two.
And..oh! I almost forgot my laundry in the wash!

Monday, November 12, 2007

Thanks

Thanksgiving often reminds me of elementary school days, making construction paper turkey's by tracing out outstretched palms, coloring cartoon pictures of Pilgrims wearing funny hats and big buckles on their shoes. I can honestly say I had never given much thought to the lives of those Pilgrims , their arduous journey to America and the hardships they must have endured. We can only imagine, considering we freak out when the electricity goes out, our cell phones can't get a signal or when gasoline tops $3 a gallon. Even if we were cast on Extreme Survivor, there would still be cameramen and medics a few feet away.





I'm counting my blessings and preparing to fly to my daughter's home for the holiday.



In preparation for this Thanksgiving Day, I have listed my lineage with my ancestors back to the Mayflower. Most of the research was done by a cousin of mine (I met online). I find history to be fascinating. I was very surprised to hear that I was a descendant of one of the Mayflower Pilgrims. Weren't they religious? pious? saintly? My relatives? Dig deeper...



According to Wikipedia: John Howland (c. 15991673) was one of the settlers who travelled from England to North America on the Mayflower and helped found the Plymouth Colony.

Howland was born in Fenstanton, Huntingdonshire, England. At the age of twenty-one, he was employed by John Carver, a Puritan minister who joined with William Bradford in bringing his congregation from Leiden, Netherlands to the New World. Howland, formally considered a servant, was in fact Carver's assistant in managing the migration.
Although he had arrived on the Mayflower as a servant to the Carver family, Howland was a young man determined to make his mark in the new world, arriving as neither a "stranger", nor a "saint" as the
Pilgrims termed themselves. The arduous voyage very nearly ended his life as he was thrown overboard, due to turbulent seas, but managed to grab a topsail halyard that was trailing in the water and was hauled back aboard.



Figures...he was a servant lol.

Figures...he was not a saint lol

And THANKFULLY he WAS hauled back aboard!



Besides Bubbie there are many other notable descendants of John Howland. Franklin D.Roosevelt, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, George H.W. Bush, George W. Bush

( You can pick your nose, but you can't pick your relative's)





So for all you genealogy fans the tree looks like this:


John Howland who married Elizabeth Tilley
Desire Howland who married John Gorham
Shubael Gorham who married Puella Hussey
Deborah Gorham who married Beriah Fitch
Eunice Fitch who married Benjamin Barnard
Lucinda Barnard who married Barachiah Macy
Jonathan Macy who married Hannah Pierce
Mary Macy who married Jabish Luellen
Jonathan Macy Luellen who married Rebecca Margaret Current
Mary Elizabeth Luellen who married William Andrew Symons

Walter Scott Symons who married Helen Vivian Cubby
Leonard Luellen Symons...and
ME

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Through The Looking Glass


And for my next trick, let me pull out yet another weird, who'd-a-thunk-it, MS symptom out of my err......OK, let's say HAT.
We're driving down the road (thankfully I was a passenger) when I notice what appears to be a large wet spot of the windshield in front of the drivers side. The sun must be hitting it strangely, it's so bright. It's not raining. Did a large seabird just pee on us? As my glance turns, so does the shimmery spot. So it's not some unidentified sparking water on the windshield, it's me. ??
I rub my eyes...still there. I close my eyes...still there. Did I eat strange mushrooms at lunch? Now I feel dizzy. I get home and head for bed. Open my eyes....still there. Go to sleep and the next day I'm ...ahhh, normal.
Headaches have been a normal part of my existence lately. I'm never surprised by them, but this was strange. Since then the bright shimmery looking glass has been in my field of vision off and on, along with what looks like heat waves coming up from hot asphalt on a summer day. When walking into a dark room, I sometimes see tiny spots of lights that trail through the dark abyss. My childish imagination calls them little Tinkerbell's or fairy lights. Cool...nothing to be alarmed about. But, hey...I do take a lot of drugs and who knows. I made a note to tell my neuro when I saw him.
Since I already blurted out all of the above weird symptoms to the doc and he didn't look like he was preparing to send me to an asylum, I decided to let another secret out when he asked if I had noticed any other "perceptual" problems.
( Now I just knew my reservation was going to be sealed for the 12th floor psych ward.)
"Well, now that you mention it, sometimes I feel very tall." I paused and then added, "Expansive", like THAT was going to make it sound better...
( I swear to you, I don't do mushrooms)
He didn't seem to be alarmed, only curious. Hmmmm. He said that it is more common in people with certain types of epilepsy.
Yes....curiouser and curiouser.
I had just recently completed a bout with steroids, so he decided to let this ride. He knew I needed to see my neuro-opthomologist in a few weeks, and he would let her check on all things visual.
See you in 6 weeks....
Headaches and weird visuals began again and right on time for my visit with my neuro-opthomologist yesterday. After her very thorough exam of my visual field, she had me look again at the flip book that has pages of mosaics with numbers hidden in them. Well, the numbers aren't really hidden, it's just that you can't find them if you have lost the ability to differentiate between the colored globules. The findings were that my left eye was worse at this then it was six months ago.
Then came the blinding light of the slit lamp. She took her time examining my extremely dilated eyes (it did look like I was trippin') and then explained to me that I was having "ocular migraines". She could call my neuro and decide if I should have another round of Solu or maybe I could let it slide if some steroid type eye drops would help. It was the look on my contorted face when she mentioned another round of Solu that led her to let me off the hook with drops. I had to promise to be back in two weeks or to call if things worsened.
Well, I have the eye drops, and I have pain meds, and I have my dark glasses, so no need to change my plans for the rest of the month. I'm going to visit my daughter, son in law and grand baby for the last two weeks of November. (*insert sound of Bubbie making "raspberries" to all things and person's neuro)
A little Google search brought me to some interesting websites concerning Ocular migraines and what some call the "ALICE IN WONDERLAND SYNDROME". No, I'm not making this up. Cleveland Clinic neurologist Mary Ann Mays says, "Many of the descriptions conjured for Lewis Carroll’s stories were based on classic migraine experiences. Only a person who had experienced these phenomena would be able to describe them."
Auras typically last 5 to 20 minutes and involve symptoms such as
vertigo (motion sickness or dizziness), imbalance, confusion or numbness;
but most auras consist of visual disturbances such as partial vision loss, the appearance of "special effects" and distortion of objects. Sometimes the visual effects can be dramatic, says Dr. Mays—flashing lights, complex color patterns and shapes (e.g., triangles and dots), and floaters (the perception that some tiny foreign object is floating across the eye). An individual might also
see shimmering or zig zag lines in the peripheral vision and blurriness in central vision.Ocular migraine can produce various degrees of vision loss or obstruction.
Some patients, says Dr. Mays, report blind spots or "holes," referring to
missing sections in the normal visual field, or they may experience a shade of
black or gray over the visual field. Some people compare the visual phenomena of ocular migraine to the patterns produced by an old television with faulty reception, says Dr. Mays.
"Others say it’s like looking through watery glass."
Yup, that's it...a watery sparkling looking glass!

Charles S. Yanofsky,
M.D.
wrote: "As
an aside, visual auras have been a topic of fascination for
neurologists for
a very long time. Visual episodes were noted in antiquity. More
recently the
famous neurologist-author Oliver Sacks has written extensively
about them.
Lewis Carroll, author of ALICE IN WONDERLAND, suffered from migraine
and
unusual visual distortions, heralding his headaches still known today as the
"Alice in Wonderland syndrome". Undoubtedly these visions were employed in
his
writings. He might never have been the creative person he was if not for
his
migrainous visions. Undoubtedly migrainous visual phenomena are behind
the
miraculous apparitions in Macbeth, and Ezekiel’s brilliant visions in
the Bible,
and, very likely a good number of other religious hallucinations.
We owe it all
to migraine. To be fair, some of these visionaries had good
imaginations, some
had other disorders causing visual distortions and
hallucinations
such as
schizophrenia, but some undoubtedly were migraneurs."

And Here I thought they were just all on drugs.

Monday, November 5, 2007

SUDDENLY IT'S CHRISTMAS !



Ms. Cheese and I, and probably many of you are on the same page this week. If you have watched any television, or Heaven forbid been out shopping you have been put on notice.
The Season is upon us!
Holy crap Batman, I still have a large bowl of Halloween candy left over! I don't want to think about Christmas yet! Cleaning house, dragging the aged tree and ornaments out of the attic, sending cards, baking all those "special" treats, buying presents! And the lists! What to buy that's thoughtful and special for each one on your list, instead of those last minute generic point of purchase display gifts near the check-out at MalWart.
Why do we put ourselves through this? EVEN THE MOST PHYSICALLY AND MENTALLY FIT AMONG US BECOME STRESSED OUT.
What does this have to do with "Career Moves"?
That's the title of the album ,(showing my age again) CD release by Loudon Wainwright that includes the song, "SUDDENLY IT'S CHRISTMAS". I have yet to figure out how to play a song on the blog that isn't on UTUBE, so I have posted the lyrics. If you'd like to hear it try this link:


SUDDENLY IT'S CHRISTMAS





Loudon Wainwright III





Suddenly it's Christmas,Right after Hallowe'en.


Forget about Thanksgiving;It's just a buffet in between.


There's lights and tinsel in the windows;


They're stocking up the shelves;


Santa's slaving at the North Pole

In his sweatshop full of elves.





There's got to be a build-up

To the day that Christ was born:


The halls are decked with pumpkins


And the ears of Indian corn.


Dragging through the falling leaves


In a one-horse open sleigh,


Suddenly it's Christmas,Seven weeks before the day.





Suddenly it's Christmas,The longest holiday.


When they say "Season's Greetings"They mean just what they say:


It's a season,


it's a marathon,


Retail eternity.


It's not over till it's over


And you throw away the tree.





Outside it's positively balmy,


In the air nary a nip;


Suddenly it's Christmas,


Unbuttoned and unzipped.


Yes, they're working overtime,


Santa's little runts;


Christmas comes but once a year


And goes on for two months.





Christmas carols in December


And November, too;


It's no wonder we're depressed


When the whole thing is through.


Finally it's January;


Let's sing "Auld Lang Syne";


But here comes another heartache,


Shaped like a Valentine.





Suddenly it's Christmas,


The longest holiday.


The season is upon us;


A pox, it won't go away.


It's a season,


it's a marathon,


Retail eternity.


It's not over till it's over


And you throw away the tree.





No, it's not over till it's over


And you throw away the tree;


It's still not over till it's over


And you throw away the tree.

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