I have a tendency to speak out and find this quality or curse, more prevalent as I grow older. I have developed the somewhat rude boldness that often comes with old age. I just have to learn to choose my words, the place I say them and apparently the tone in which I speak. If you doubt my opinion on this subject, just ask my husband. I truly believe he plans, after my departure from this earth, to have my tongue pickled, and will set the pickle jar on the TV. He will be able to see it often, be constantly reminded he is not being interrupted while viewing TV and I’m certain, will have the smallest of smirks lurking beneath his lips. There will be no one to disagree with him. Our Yorkie, George won’t. He seldom argues unless it involves his food or a stranger approaching the door.

Thanks to this pickled tongue, I have met some interesting people when out in public places just by smiling at them which often leads to a conversation. Connecting with other people is always enriching, whether it is enjoyable or not, something is always learned. As I cling to a small shopping cart, trying to forget the pain that is constantly with me, I know that is the force which leads me to reach outside myself to someone else. I believe people are fascinating. I find it always makes me forget my pain and embrace life outside myself when I chat with another person. Yesterday at Safeway I met a fisherman who had a cart filled, top and bottom, overflowing with bottled water. I asked him, for fun, if he was heading to Houston. I knew that was an impractical idea. He smiled, caught the humor and replied, “No, I’m a professional fisherman and it’s for our boat.” That was a connection.

I replied, “That’s good because that’s a long way to haul water.”

I then ran into a puzzled looking young woman who was weighing a most peculiar looking fruit. It had the shell of a coconut but since it was cut in half one could see the interior was not coconut but some yellow fruit with round “pods” of white colored fruit within it. I asked what it was and she said, “I don’t know, do you? Would you like to smell it?” I did. It smelled tropical, like pineapple but sweeter. She said, “I’m going to see what it costs before I decide to buy it because it’s so heavy; but I would like to try it.” Another interesting encounter with a stranger, a connection, a touch.

My body pooped out so I went to the car to wait for my husband, Jim, to check out our groceries. While sitting in the car with the door open to enjoy the cool night air, I noticed a bedraggled looking junkman parked two empty parking spots over from where we were parked in handicapped parking. He was loading an old pick-up truck that someone had spray painted with many cans of white enamel. Obviously not a professional paint job but effective none the less. His loads he was tying into place were large plastic bags from the recycling unit inside the store, I would assume. The bed of his old truck was full as he tied all the bags into place through the glassless back window of his truck’s cab. It was obvious he had performed this tying down routine many times before. Another guy walking in the parking lot yelled out to him in a friendly gesture and the junkman replied, “I’m heading up to Portland, now.” 7PM and the junkman had the enthusiasm about his work one usually reserves for mornings. He was a tanned, wiry fellow who exhibited all the signs of a hard-working guy. Since he had noticed me watching him, he gave me a broad grin and a “thumbs up” as he drove off. I smiled in connection. That was just one part of my shopping trip but on other outings, whether it be for pleasure, out to dinner or a trip to the laboratory at the hospital or an X-ray, I have met so many interesting folks, most are usually very kind. Every life has a story. Fortunately, my big mouth often loosens folks up and I get to share and hear many stories. I love that part of being alive.

When I was hospitalized a few weeks ago, I got the weeps one afternoon and a gruff nurse came in, pulled back my privacy curtain and put her arms around me, kissed me on the forehead and comforted me. I discovered her gruff exterior was hiding the pain of her husband at home dying of lung cancer. Of course, being a retired nurse, I have comforted and given it to thousands over the years but less often been on the receiving end of it…a story, a connection, a touch.

I find it’s easier to give comfort and support than to receive it. Many of our fellow humans are going through some episode in their lives in which a bond or human connection would help. I know many of the faithful readers of this blog are in need of compassion, understanding and often, just a touch of caring. Life is hard, painful and exhausting for so many of us.

Haven’t each of us in the USA had an exceptional example of brotherhood this past week as we have watched every age, sex and race come to the aid of those who were in dire need. I didn’t see any rescuers asking some poor soaking wet soul who he voted for in the last election. Flooded out of their comfort, their homes and their memories, thousands upon thousands of individuals have been displaced. As always tragedy is no respecter of wealth, age or color and homes and ranches of all types have been destroyed or badly damaged. Many animals, domesticated and of the forest from the lowly opossum to the loveliest of stallions have been affected and threated by flood and wind. I was not surprised to see that great state of Texas, the home state of my beloved Dad and the home for the last twenty years of my son and his family come through in an hour of great, significant need. People were drowning out there in those waters. Everything they had worked for in a lifetime was being ruined, floating away or otherwise endangered. Many of the elderly and infirmed had to be carried out to a boat, canoe or other mode of transportation by total strangers or neighbors they hardly knew. These actions gave me a familiar feeling, a reminder of the values I was taught as the child of a Texas father, and a child of the South.

Rescue efforts poured in from every one of our 50 states. Uniformed, shirt-sleeved, boots or sandals, shorts or jeans, America went into rescue mode. I’m certain many of those rescuers were thinking of their own families and the way they would feel and react in equal circumstances. Individuals with boats, food, cots, water as well as large stores and small ones were opening up their buildings and hearts to ones in need. Trucks of all sizes, those pulling boats and others loaded with help poured in. Highways that had previously been going out of Houston with those leaving before the hurricane hit, all going in one direction, were over the course of a day now going toward the devastated area in the opposite direction. Loads and lines of help were pouring in. I felt deep regret that Jim and I, as old experienced nurses no longer have the health to travel down there to help.

I have found pain and suffering one of the great equalizers on this road of life. Do you ever wish you could know the story of each individual you see at the market or in a restaurant? I’m sure they would be happy and sad, have loss as well as victory and also be filled with regret, triumph and query. The eternal question which rises on the lips of each of us when faced with sorrow, loss or illness is always “WHY?”

Sometimes there is not time for “why” in our lives. It often comes later when we realize many of our losses are permanent. Those folks in Texas and Louisiana have had their lives changed forever. Millions of our fellow Americans will be going through the stages of grief in their own way and timetable as they react and respond to all that has fallen upon them. Many of us who have chronic illnesses know what that feels like. We are constantly rebuilding our lives, as they will be. We lose function, friendships and comfort. If anyone understands the loss and suffering in the South right now, it should be us.

Please take a moment to pray for Texas and Louisiana and do whatever you can to help.

62 thoughts on “Touch

  1. Sue
    My sister has to touch you when she speaks to you. Some people get offended by this connection, I have always found comfort from someone I know. We were just in the grocery store a while ago. She saw a man she thought she knew and spoke to him. It was his father she knew. But this man stood and talked with us for a while. We didn’t notice until he pointed to us, he had a prosthetic leg. And he told us the story behind it. His wife, a nurse, had to make the decision to remove it, because he was in septic shock. But he talked of how it hurt him that she had to do that. How he has started to walk and loose weight and strengthen himself. He needed to talk. And we listened. But it all started from Judy’s casual word to him. You never know who you will touch with your touch. Physical or eye contact, or smile. It all works.
    And yes, pray for our neighbors. They will need it for a while

    • Tonie, wonderful example thanks to Judy. The world is full of so many people and stories. All three of you benefitted. You heard and he got to share. All were blessed. I’m not always comfortable with people who touch me who I do not know, I admit. Isn’t it wonderful that we all are different? Love, Sue

  2. Sue
    How subtle a writing and wise…and yes I do the same..look for a way to speak and search for a connection with someone.however uninteresting they may appear theirs is a story of which we know nothing
    Those floods have shown the best in people that help…and those faces all have a story to tell us.
    All our prayers I expect will add this one for their safe keeping

    • Chris, thanks so much for praying for our country. We also have massive wildfires going on right now in Montana, Calif. and here in Oregon. Terrible with so much devastation and pain. Air warning here at the coast today. I can imagine you are the kind of person who talks to strangers. I think it’s great and makes the world a more interesting place. Love, Sue

  3. Lyn
    How long will you have to wait now..I think tonie had something similar happen with a Breast scan and had to gave it redone ,and it was ok
    Hope your deck party went good

    • Chris, I’m not sure. I need to be contacted by my doctor’s office with the paperwork. Being a holiday weekend, it could take a bit longer. I am not concerned. Pretty sure it is just a change from starting the hormone replacement. Just one more hoop to jump, you know?

      Sue, I am on both estrogen and progesterone. We are still trying to find the right dose of estrogen. They started me on the lowest. I am on the next higher 0.0375 right now, but am pretty sure I will need to move upward. My main symptom is muscle tension, spasm, and pain. I know, could easily have been from the arthritis somehow. That’s why it took me so long to track it down as a menopausal symptom. Pretty sure it is from the estrogen drop off instead. Prayers appreciated that this be the cause and solution, and that I am able to stay on it.

  4. Sue, I know I responded just above, but wanted to start a fresh comment to respond to the blog itself. I enjoyed how your writing flowed in this one. I enjoy learning people’s stories, too. If we all asked and listened a bit more, think what a better world it would be. Of course, prayers have been going up for all those affected by wind and water down south. It angered me to see petty memes on FB at a time when so many were scared, trapped, and suffering.

    Oh, Chris, I forgot to mention above, my In-laws are coming over tomorrow. Glad I got a head start on some things today. Dealing with some very sore body parts now. Guess my evening will be a quiet one.

    • Lyn, tenderness from estrogen I have heard of but not significant changes in the breast. I know there is some scary script out there about its connection to breast cancer; just ignore that until you have more info. This follow up will give you a base for the future films. MOST changes in the breast via mamo’s are negative. What is the follow up to be for you? Ultrasound? Try to put it out of your mind and don’t let it take up too much of your weekend, okay?
      I saw several things that irritated me regarding Houston but basically thought the coverage was great. So many human interest stories.Love, Sue

    • Lyn
      Yes, no worrying about the recall. I have dense breast tissue so it is difficult for them to see everything with me. But with the ultrasound they will identify whatever the film was showing. Probably glitch or blip on the film. Have a Happy Labor Day

    • Not at all concerned. I understand it must be a common enough occurrence. The asymmetry is within the shots of the HD mammogram. They follow-up with an ultrasound. That should clear me. Just another hoop to jump.

  5. Your writing is superb, Sue. But you must have been told that a gazillion times by now. I find myself thoroughly absorbed in your words,with your mind, and with your ever-so-kind heart. My wish for you is that you be free of illness and pain.

    • Phyllis, so good to hear from you. Enjoy you on FB. Your kind remarks about my writing mean a great deal to me as I always seek to write from the heart. I share your wish for that freedom. In the meantime, life rolls on. Each day it is up to me to find some joy. Some days are harder than others, you know? Remember the old story I have often told about the group of old golfing enthusiasts? These guys were golfing a round of golf when poor old Harry dropped dead. Well, they felt terrible but after all, he was already dead; why interrupt a good game of golf? The rest of the day went well as they hit the ball and on it went…hit the ball and drag Harry, hit the ball and drag Harry.
      Some days I feel like the ball. Other days, I identify with Harry. Fondly, Sue

  6. Lyn
    Well I hope all went well today with your party and weather good

    I have an eye appt tomorrow at the opticians .i saw him last week and he wants to put drops in tomorrow to see at the back
    Then just before having my hair done
    Changed sheets today,. Not done much but it’s taken all day!
    weather cooler gives rain tomorrow
    Did the cake go down well sue I expect it did.and all the family full of news from being away
    Well going to sort myself out for the night my feet are freeing
    You still pickling there tonie

    • Hi, Chris, well, small party. Just DH, his parents and myself. DD had to work, and SB was summoned to his GF’s house – lol. All was going well until I was cutting potato wedges and poked myself with a very long, very sharp knife. I felt a poke, looked down, and realized what happened, uttered an expletive, and quickly ran water over it. Tip went straight in, half to 3/4 inch (sorry, I forget what that is approximately in centimeters) is visible. Started applying pressure right away, reassuring all that I didn’t think we needed to proceed to the ER. It slowed, but wasn’t really stopping, so on the sly I texted a pic to DD. She advised dressing, ice, and elevation. Said she would happily dress it for me at work if I wanted. I said I’d rig something here. DH finished prep and the rest of dinner while I pressed, dressed, iced and elevated. DD stopped after work and did redress for me (although my dressing actually applied more pressure.) I redressed with a band-aid this morning – SB said it looked like I was about to head into a fight with someone – too funny. So far so good. I think it hurt more in my arthritic hand that was applying pressure than the cut itself! It looked good when I changed bandage. A bit more excitement than planned. Good visit with the in-laws. It’s always something.

      • That sounds awful..and the realisation when you look down and saw it….nasty
        Well I hope it’s healing now..not throbbing..good ol DD
        I shall be careful now!

      • Lyn, Oh but that does sound painful. Gotta watch a deep wound like that and let it heal with the deepest part first. Good to have a “nurse” in the family now, huh? This nurse just has one question for you? Have you had a recent tetanus shot?
        Sure sounds like an inconvenient place to have a wound.
        I was sorry to see your niece across the river from us in WA state is near one of the hideous fires. Ash out here and the air has been strange for several days. I’ve had headaches sort of like the headaches one gets from riding in a car and the fumes from the other cars get in your breathing space. Strange, but it doesn’t smell like smoke, just contaminated air. It’s so tragic to see one of the most beautiful spots in OR being destroyed up the Columbia River in the Gorge area. There is another fire over on the coast. Montana, Calif. and Oregon…so much beauty going up in smoke. Ageless trees and wildlife being destroyed. It’s like seeing innocence defiled somehow.
        Take care of you…Love, Sue

  7. Well went for eye test at optician
    And all ok
    Had drops in and all was fine just a lot of black lines that I see showed up.but he didn’t see any bleeding on the optic nerve as before and my pressures were good
    Oh lyn I think in inches too , can’t see it in cms
    DH bp seems ok on small dose of candesartam..2mg..but old one still In system.he feels he can put up with side effects if they don’t build up and good if he neednt take stronger its a very low dose.
    Hope all wellish

    • Chris, good to hear your optic pressure is good or at least much better. Hope DH does better this time on some of the same drugs.
      We have had a run of more heat. Yesterday was in the high 80’s and the house much hotter than that…It stayed in the 70’s all night. I woke up so fatigued and sore it was difficult to move this AM. Air is bad from the fires, also. Cooler today.
      Our dinner with the family was great. I was in a lot of pain but hoped it wasn’t too obvious. Just can’t handle this blasted heat. They all had a great time at DIsney World and Cape Canaveral. Grandson, the birthday boy now 14 was beside himself with joy and they all took so many pictures…and had lots of stories to share. Cake didn’t get any critics and they said it was good. I stayed away from it. Chocolate gives me stomach aches even if I do take Lactaid. Frosting only about 2 inches high…
      Our whole country is going through so much right now with Houston and it’s experiences still so bad and also Louisiana and now a huge hurricane with tornado winds threatening the East coast. Fires all over the west where we are…oh my but we do need prayer and grace for all. Later, Love ya, Sue

  8. Looks like you all were busy yesterday. I rode my bike. Then came home to put together a platter of Sandwich sliders and veggies for a family at church who has lost a sister. The group of sisters who sing. Very sad. Had a heart attack at Walmart, than another at the hospital. Never regained consciousness. She would have been 72 next month. So we went to visit and I was drained afterwards.
    But….I swam today all my laps for the first time since my flying lesson. Yeah ! Felt so good to be in the water again. I have to sing a song at the funeral on Thursday . Busy day. Viewing, funeral, then we are serving luncheon for the family at our church afterwards. Which means I have to put something together tomorrow . Supposed to work with Mrs. Blair, but it may rain so…. I think I will make a meat loaf and deviled eggs, ( I have plenty of those). I was going to make me some stir fry veggies with quinoa, but Judy brought me a couple pieces of pizza. I fed the pepperoni to the dogs and ate the cheese.
    Chris, glad your eyes are good and dh has a new med. Lyn, take care of the cut. Lots of antibiotic cream. I get some that has painreliever in it. Very good on cuts.
    Sue, rest up after the party.
    Love to all

  9. A good morning to all
    Raining cats and dogs here, but otherwise a good day. Sue, you are right, our country needs prayer from coast to coast, bottom to top. THings are coming at us from all sides. Yet, when things like this happen it seems to make us lay down our arms and help one another. Even here, everywhere I go, there are loads of goods being readied for travel to Houston. In the gym yesterday, the front lobby is stacked with them. At every store there are please to donate to the Red Cross when you make a purchase. ( not so sure that is a great thing these days, but not for this blog) Diversity mostly takes a back seat when help is needed. I pray God has mercy upon us as this terrible hurricane comes towards Florida this weekend. If it keeps on projected course, it will hit all up the east coast, including Va. Then it will make it’s way inland and we will feel its aftermath.
    I must cook today, so lazy morning and busy afternoon. Sue I hope you are feeling better today. It was hot here as well. Those hummingbirds have been hiding. They were back out yesterday. Not a lot, but still a few. So, maybe they will still be here when FM arrives, in 14 days !! Got his flight info today. It is ticking away. Butterflies building.
    Love to all

    • Tonie dear, wrote you a long reply last night and somehow hit the wrong button and it all went away. I hate that so much, especially late at night. I was just telling DD yesterday about your countdown to FM landing. A whole new life will be starting for you and I know how much and how hard you’ve been working to have a stronger body and admire you for all your effort and work. Hurray about the hummingbirds still hanging around.
      I know, the tragedies abound right now and seem to be all around us. The folks here, up in the Gorge are doing similar acts as they did in TX, hauling trailers up to rescue animals from the fire and all highways blocked up there now. It will take years to get back even part of the beauty of the vegetation. Oh, we have been following this current hurricane on the news and it’s so frightening. I always wonder why they name them these harmless sounding names when they are so awful. We’ve had so much proof this last few years of what a b–ch old Mother Nature truly can be. I pray all of our friends on the East coast don’t have to face this horrible thing. So many prayers going up all over our country.
      We are having cooler days this week and hope it stays that way. Jim still has the back porch to finish painting and I hope to help him with some of the rails, etc. if it’s cool enough, shady enough and soot free enough to get it finished. You know me…little bit at a time gets the job done. We sold our two twin beds so we will have more room in the house. Don’t know what we’ll do about a guest bed just yet. Grands can sleep on the floor in sleeping bags if needed.
      My flowers and herbs are still flourishing. At least something around here loved the heat. I have to start using more of the basil. Think I’ll make a batch of traditional pesto with olive oil. Don’t have the pine nuts they say are best so will settle for pecans. I made butter pesto last week but harder to spread. Cooking a little but eating vegetarian right now. It’s the only thing that agrees with my gut. I guess meat is just too slow to digest.
      I know how very excited you are and understand. Those butterflies will get worse you know as you fidget around the house trying to make everything perfect but will fly away once you see each other. Much love, Sue

  10. Tonie, scary to hear about the new hurricane. So many effected by that monster. Praying for the safety of so many back there including you…and Judy and all of your family. It’s all too horrible after Houston and all the surrounding areas. Be back tomorrow. Love you, Sue

  11. Sue
    Yesterday was so busy and tiring so I wasn’t on here at all. Yes, scary with all the destruction potential hurtling at us. Nikki says they are leaving if the storm is still bad when it hits the Carolina coast. My cousin in Fla brought his kids to Va while the mother rides out the storm in the hospital with her daughter ( leukemia) she is still in bad shape so please pray for her.
    Yes, 12’days, the countdown continues. He is having dinner with his longtime Dr and his wife, a fellow teacher this weekend. I know he will miss this man who has treated him for many years. He says he is missing me even more as time counts down. Lovely words, but even more so in French. I still have some work to finish before he gets her. Have his flight info, lands in Roanoke at 9:15 pm. Will be a long day that day !
    We had the “Going Home Celebration” for Dorothy yesterday . Such a happy service I have not been in for a long time. My song went well, no hiccups. It was one she used to love me to sing. Merciful Savior. And the meal afterwards, hard work , but received well. Exhausted when I finally got home. Cold this morning, 38′ ! I want summer to continue please !
    Sue, those fires are terrible. I remember when Az was burning, and two of those very destructive fires were set, arson. Destroyed so much beautiful forests and wildlife. And homes. And even for a few years afterwards, when you went to these places you could still smell the smoke. I remember that ash, smoke and all in the Valley. I pray it gets stopped soon. As well as Montana.
    Please take care

    • Tonie, I have been confused. I thought your DD and grands moved to Florida. Prayers for all your family to be safe in NC. What tragedy is heading to the South. SO many good friends and cyber friends down there. SO glad my kids got home from there last week and had a great trip. Fires still burning here, up in the Columbia R. gorge. WA state lost firemen. They are burning all over the west these wretched things.
      I know, I can imagine you as giddy as a schoolgirl with your lover boy coming…Finally!!! Now don’t let Mrs. Blair work you too hard so you’re too tired out for the arrival.
      Prayers for safety for your cousin and her sweet daughter with leukemia. Surely the Lord understands and gives mercy in situations like hers. Sounds like you all gave your friend at church, Dorothy a grand send off. I know it’s been so hard on her sweet sisters. Well, it’s about that time in the mid afternoon when I feel well enough to get a little something done around here. Love ya…Sue

  12. Still here..just its a nothing happening few’s you sue ?
    Just went out for a drive around the coast this evening ,just got back and sitting in the with a cuppa soup and DH with red wine
    Such terrible news from over there with Irma and more..and those fires that keep on going..when will it all stop
    Thoughts of your family there tonie….and the little girl
    Thunder here earlier on today and rain which was quite heavy
    Catching up with all my work .feels good to be sorted and makes a change
    Well gonna pack it in now and head for bed
    Any news on a appt for you for ultra sound?
    There is a big heritage day on Sunday around the uk.places open to see that you can’t see if both well will go see some things

    • Chris, a bit of rain here today, now fog and the news says higher temps and sun tomorrow. Glad you’re fairly well. It seems we are beleaguered on all sides here. Mud, disease and recovery too great to imagine in Houston and surrounding areas and poor Florida, too soon to tell. The largest compulsory evacuation in the history of our country around 5.6 million folks and some decided to stay and see it through. Possibilities frightening for that whole state. Hurricane Irma 400 miles across and Florida is only 100 miles wide. So many gorgeous island already decimated. Already many have died. Horrible time for our beloved country.
      Full schedule for me the next couple of weeks with echo’s, ultrasounds, mammos, still have heart monitor and doctors. Ugh to all of it. One day at a time will get it done. Much pain for me right now with knees very bad. With so much going on it seems selfish to think of my own problems when so many are suffering worse fates. Love you, Sue

      • Sue
        You are having such a time of it prayers for the coming week for you.
        Does the oil help the pain still at all

        Yes the news is all dreadful.its one after another.all those poor people.the Ill and infirm its too awful all of it
        Just woke up don’t know what we are going to do today.out to see some history in a local town.its a heritage day.,or stay close to home…sjogrens is one step worse over the month,and dH bp ..have breakfast and see

  13. Morning
    Sue, probably you are thinking of FM’s daughter. She lives in Fla. he says she is confident in her homes stability and staying. So sad the upcoming destruction and all the fires. God help us. Yes, I am getting quite giddy. One more weekend alone.
    Chris, I look forward to pics from your excursions I have the day to finish my arranging. Just in no hurry to get to it. Ya know ? Got my swim in yesterday. The water feels so good. Wanted to ride the bike today, but I really need a day in between. Sue I lowered my dosage of MTX down to .85. I felt better afterwards not sickly. . My labs were a smidgenoff. Low rbc, high whites. Maybe the lower dosage will help that even out. Don’t worry, I have done this off and on thru the years. If I felt as good all the time as I do the day of the Enbrel I would almost be human again.
    Well I must be getting moving. I need to be in the garden as well, pulling weeds never is over as long as their is sun. And clean the floors. And dust. Ugh never done is it ?
    Love to all

    • Tonie, so many folks being affected by Irma right now. Somehow I thought Nikki was going to FLA wen she first moved but guess not, it was something to do with her ex. I do know FM has his only daughter in Florida and anyone who chooses to stay makes me nervous but frankly I’d also resist leaving my home. So many millions of lives being effected is sort of overwhelming. So many friends down there to pray for.
      Hope you decided to put aside some of that housework; you’ll just have to do it again before FM DAY. I’d love to be a little mouse and see you at the airport. SO much to look forward to right now in your life. I’m so excited for you and happy. You deserve all the happiness coming in your way.
      Hope you do well on the lower dose of methotrexate and the labs get back in the normal range. I would be equally concerned to see your liver labs. The struggle continues as each of us face each day. We can all only do what we know is best and pray for strength each day. Doing a lot of that right now myself. Love, Sue

  14. Well we went out as planned
    Good day out for us..well part of day
    Yes sue good name for the day…FM day..
    Not long tonie

    Not much to report here ,I’m keeping track of that awful storm

    • Chris, glad you had a good day and interesting day out to enjoy more of your wonderful history. It’ s wonderful both you and DH are so knowledgeable. Yes, it’s horrible what hurricane Irma has done to our country and Houston area still trying to recover. It has brought the best in our citizens as they help each other more and more. Love, Sue

  15. Evening all
    Pure fall day here. Cool enough the heat had to come on a few times to warm it up. Got in my swim. Good thing cause this week is off to a busy start. Tomorrow with Mrs Blair, Wednesday at Frans, Thursday I have to drive Judy to have a cyst removed on her finger. Hopefully another swim on Friday. Then…..there will only be 4 days to go. So the housecleaning is to be done. And all the other bits n pieces I see as I go.
    Hope everyone has had a decent day. Sue so hoping your legs and knees are feeling better today
    Love to all

    • Tonie, well, you sure are staying busy. Hope it makes the time pass quickly for you. I saw on FB this AM you are having heavy rain and hope you do not get those winds. SO many FB and real life friends going through so much it’s so sad. Trust your kids are okay and keeping dry in this hideous storm.
      Legs still bad but after staying in yesterday, with GD after school, they feel a bit better today. At least I can make it to the bathroom without hugging the wall or using my cane. SO much depends on the methotrexate day, etc. Going for echocardiogram today, pick up some new shoes I ordered and furniture store to look at sleeper loveseats for our guestroom. That will be enough for me today after a fairly warm day yesterday. Weather changed and will be cooler here all week. Need to prune and clean up porch and deck pots without a lot of sun.
      Hope all goes well with Judy’s finger and you have a safe trip in this crazy weather. Love ya, Sue

  16. Hope you got all done that you wanted sue and no more pain than that with which you had started
    Tonie my goodness the time has nearly come …it’s just suddenly springing up . I’m excited here.
    Winds are being advised here about 3am of about 75 mph. They keep increasing their speed
    It started at 50
    Going for coffee at my neighbors in the morning. Then have to go to town then go for a cheese scone….oh gone for a few days already
    DH bp seems ok dare I say could be the others are still in his system as well at moment
    Well gonna try and get some sleep.
    Oh DD was offered a promotion today .shes pleased she will have to go to London every day and they will pay her train fares.she likes going there. But I’m always concerned when she goes there
    Still she’s happy today and GS is getting on good in his new job . So that’s all to be grateful of for now…
    Well eyes are sore

  17. Chris
    Very good for DD ! WIth promotion comes more money, and responsibility. But the money really helps. And free transport is good as well. Glad all is well with you. Yes time is ticking by.
    Sue, glad you are not hurting so bad. GOod luck with the shopping today. Mrs Blair cancelled on me yesterday, which was just as well. I got about three hours sleep and felt like I was getting flu. Or cold. Still have a scratchy throat. Taking lots of C and drinking lots of tea. But I did rest yesterday and feel better today. Frans house today , then grocery shopping to refill the empties. Just heard the horses taking exercises running up and down the field. Red gets his daily because Sweetie herds him and makes him run. Good for him.
    Well, finish my coffee and must be off and running. So much bad things going on, yet good amongst it. Makes you almost feel guilty by having a safe warm dry home in the middle of all the tragedy. All we can do is pray. SO many charities you cant trust anymore, better to give to the trucks taking it direct to the source.
    Take care all

  18. Hello, everyone, sorry I have been gone so long.
    Tonie, I can’t believe the day’s almost here! I can feel your excitement. Don’t knock yourself out with preparations, now. Exciting time for both of you!
    Chris, congrats for DD! As expected, no big deal with the follow up here. They did a couple of different angle views, doctor reviewed and the assymetry was simply tissue that got in the way. All is good on that front.
    Sue, oh, my, what a lot of studies you have coming up. I’ll be thinking of you. As for my cut, it is healing well. I am not sure if I am up to date with tetanus, which means I probably am not. Guess I should schedule an appt with my doc. ugh. Not one more thing to do.
    So many natural and unnatural disasters over here, and like many, I seem to have friends or family near or at so many. Thankfully, all are ok as far as I know. My brother and his family in Florida did leave their house, but not the state. My sister-in-law has family that have an apartment building in northern Florida, so they stayed in one of the empty apartments, then left once the hurricane was through but before some of the bad flooding there. They drove back down and checked their home – damage was not bad – then went to other family because they had no power. I shudder to think how long the recovery from the hurricanes and fires will take.
    I must be off again to prepare for today’s lessons. Hanging in here.

    • Lyn, as far as the tetanus update, better late than never but it is supposed to be taken within 48 hours of the injury. Indeed our country has sustained a deep injury and will take a long time to heal. I wish the press would show more of the good stories than the bad. SO many folks have gone to both Houston and Florida and many are spending their own money and time to help others. All some of us can do is donate to the charities we know are honest.
      Yes, I have had a busy week and more next week. Echo over and went to foot doctor yesterday who wanted to inject two cysts I have on the bottom of my left foot and I told him, no, I’ve had a bad week and don’t want to deal with anything else. He was great about it. We know they are not malignant, just uncomfortable. Yes, it seems like it is pouring on. Hope to feel a bit better soon with seeing the internist tomorrow. I appreciate all prayers. Love, Sue

  19. Good to hear you lyn and all is ok and the waiting over..good
    Yes it’s awful weather but the living with it will be as bad if not worse
    How you going there
    Come on tell us the date again!
    Ok off to smells in bathroom since March….what I’m saying is I’m not sure maybe it’s nowt…
    Breathing is uncomfortable ,nose sore and blocked…sjogrens appt with dr on Saturday morning
    Ok off to bed eyes sore

    • Chris, I am so sad to hear your eyes and nose problems are still so troublesome. Dreadful disease that. Happy to read about DD’s new job challenge but do understand how hard it is for you to see her travel into London in these current times. Good your GS is okay. Sounds like such a good kid. Hope those winds didn’t do any damage but know they can certainly be scary. As you know we get many high winds in the winter here and are a bit used to them but when the house shakes it is still scary. Must get up and moving and get some laundry done. Love, Sue

  20. Friends, didn’t intend to sorry you all. Bottom line is a couple of bad weeks for me. After I had that pulse of 42 when at oncology and had an ekg, I wore that tiny monitor and sent it in on this past Mon. Then had appt. for an echocardiogram. Dreaded it because of that hard table again for an hour. Did have a narrow pad on it. The tech, after he was finished asked me if I had ever had atrial fibrillation. No, never had that but did often have harmless PAC, premature atrial contractions but often and sometimes in a row which isn’t good. He said I was in atrial flutter and atrial fib. He then went out to call my doctor who wasn’t in. He suggested I talk to their cardio nurse practitioner. I got dressed and went out to the lobby door and asked Jim to come in. I wanted his opinions, support and also his background in cardio nursing.
    The NP wanted to start me on Eliquis, a new blood thinner because he said I am at high risk for a stroke or heart attack. I replied he didn’t know me or my history and I would only consider anything like that after seeing my internist with whom I have an appt. tomorrow. So we compromised when i wouldn’t even agree to the old well used blood thinner Coumadin. I am taking an adult aspirin each day for now as well as going back on the low dose cardiac drug I have been on for years but stopped after the low pulse.
    It is my hope this is why I have been feeling so much pain the last few weeks, due to poor circulation to the joints as well as explaining why I have been so short of breath when climbing our stairs. Extra bad back now recovering from echo, seeing doc tomorrow. All will be fine but will have to go on new drugs for heart and probably a blood thinner. I’ve heard bad things about some of the new ones so we will see. Just hate the thought of having to go into lab every week for clotting test. I’ll see the internist tomorrow. Oh joy, another problem. When I first became ill many years ago one of my first symptoms was rapid pulse up to 140 beats per min. Now this. I will write to each of you on here today. Love and follow your remarks. Sue

    • Sorry to hear this, Sue, but if you had to have something new going on, I suppose this is better than so many other things. Yes, it would explain a lot of what you are experiencing lately. Will be praying and thinking of you. Hang in there!

  21. Sue
    One thing after another..
    DH has AF and Has for many years …he is on warfarin ( coudamin) altho inr tests were frequent in the beginning they are now about once every 4 weeks..depending on any new meds etc
    He tried many drugs to control the af but in the end they put a pacemaker in and ablated some bundle there .it seemed to control it all
    It’s only the bp now for him to work on..he feels better with a regular pulse
    Hope the back improves and you get sorted ok at drs with all drugs

    • Chris, I know Afib is not that all unusual, especially in the older folks. I am just distressed by having to go through on much thing!! The cardiologist I love is in Portland but is getting old so I will try the local ones before I go there unless my very smart internist can handle this. Love, Sue

      • I know sue
        Its something that makes you feel so tired …ontop of all else you have
        And another avenue to have to sort out..and go with what you are taking
        How can it all happen ..
        There is now a reason for you to be feeling tired and all af brings..maybe I hope all will be well to now feel better oh sue I dunno words dont come easy ..
        With your back too…
        I’m lost with it all for you

  22. Tonie, sent you a PM. Hope you’re surviving your very busy week. Thoughts for you as you are on the final countdown for your dear man’s arrival. Love you much dear friend. Sue

  23. Sue
    How’s today seem to you….how did the appt with the dr go..did you feel comfortable with the outcome?
    More rain just keeps on coming
    Dr for me tomorrow morning see what she has to make of all the symptoms
    Hope you bearing up

    • Chris dear, it was a long, somewhat miserable week. Saw new ish internist today and he put me on new heart drug, coumadin, and a pain treatment. It is an opioid so that worries me but he insisted. Guess I looked a mess when there. It is one I have taken in the past so am willing to give it a try. He said there is a at-home test/lab kit I can use at home for the coumadin to save me a trip into the lab. I’m so tired from hanging onto the pain everyday. So pleased to have a weekend to rest, write and clean of bit of vitals.around here. I hope your visit brings some answers for you tomorrow…high hopes. We have to have hopes and search and looks like that is what we are doing, both you and I. We are having rain starting on Sunday and most of next week. Jim wants to get a heavy layer of wax on my car before winter sets in around here. Both of our nice cars sit out in the weather so they need it. I can use a quiet day of rest, keep my sore legs up and get in a bit of writing.
      The extra bedroom where we just sold the twin beds, well I have decided to make a nice little den for myself and have ordered a new loveseat with a bed in it. I look forward to it and will order new curtains tomorrow for it. It will be fun as well as a nice quiet extra place for me to write, rest and have a change without having to go down the stairs. Knees are very bad right now. I see the orthopedic doctor next week, as well as the oncologist, the internist again, mammo and ultrasound. Whoosh.
      I know that latest terrorist attack in London train could have been much worse and so blessed for your country it was not. What a world we have right now. We all need to keep our faith and find our peace within ourselves as we stay safe.
      Let us both enjoy the oncoming rain and feel better, okay? Love, Sue

      • Sue, not sure how to feel about the meds. I know what opiods do to you. Praying they help the pain without too many side effects. You have a very full week ahead. Your den sounds wonderful – a nice “Lady Cave” 😉 Enjoy it!

  24. Your room sounds just for you….all that you want to hand and just right
    I do hope these painkillers do the job with no side effects….and help the knees..I know you haven’t had the inj yet..or did you?
    dD rand me up to say she wasn’t in London that day altho she usualLy goes on Fridays .just dreadful all of it
    Well I went to drs and I have an inflammation of the lining of nose it is all swollen inside.the nostril is all misshapen due to it and one of them so small to breath thru
    Eyes all puffy and ache and cheekbones.ive been trying not to go to drs and using steam,that caused burning inside nose..and Vaseline anyway she has given me some steroid nose spray.see if it heals it…it’s a blimmin nuisance…one spray I reacted to a whole ago so she said to try this one…so we shall see
    More rain here again dull day
    You look like you have a busy one of them weeks again to come sue…..

    You busy I bet..days now to go soon be hours

    • Chris, I have some idea of the misery you are having and feel for you. WHen it’s hard to breathe like that you are probably breathing through your mouth so more problems. Yes, you do have to be careful about inhaling petroleum jelly when it melts from the steam. Oh dear, so much to go through, I know you can’t be sleeping very well. Let us all pray the new spray does it for you. You have never answered me about the lysine. I know it would help you because it has helped me for years. Are they putting you on any oral steroids? Do you have special drops right now for your eyes. FOlks just don’t know what a vicious disease Sjogren’s can be I know. Lots of extra Vit C, but not on an empty stomach, would also help the mucus membranes that are causing so much of the problem. Hugs and prayers for comfort and healing right now.
      It was sweet of your DD to call and let you know she was okay. Oh my, so scary.
      Yes, next week looks as bad as this one and I think I might cancel what I can. I just can’t hold up to a daily trip out that involves sitting, tables, etc. I’ve only taken two of the opioid thus far…afraid to. Feeling very badly also today. Methotrexate day along with new drugs and having trouble navigating the stairs with my left knee. Surely time will help both of us. Much love, Sue

  25. Hello all
    Yes, been busy, but also my internet was down. New system installed out the road from me and the repairman said today he crossed some wires and cut me off. I was LOST without it. How we get used to something. Had to watch DVDs. Watched all of the three Hobbit movies. I do love those .
    Chris, the date is the 20 th. At 9:17pm, if all goes well. I am breathless with excitement. I can’t believe it is only a few more days. He is finishing up his packing, dinner tonight with family saying goodbyes, and tomorrow a horse ride through the wine country. He is ready to go he says.
    Busy and tired. More to do tomorrow, Monday and Tuesday. Wednesday I am going to do my mani/ pedi, facial and all that stuff to feel good about me. Do it all myself. But it makes me feel good. Then early evening, I will start my trip. Takes almost two hours to get there. I need to stop at the store for a few things, then I will go and wait.
    Beautiful weather here and supposed to be in the low 80’s all next week. Happy me.
    Sue I am so glad you got something for your pain. Prayers that it is what you need, so much all at once just overwhelms you.
    Chris, take care of that nose . Hopemthe sparay helps you with no side effects.
    Love to all

    • Tonie, good to have you connected online again. Indeed I am feeling overwhelmed right now. We will see about the pain meds…I am being cautious. I get butterflies just thinking about how wonderful life is going to become for the two of you. Adult love later in life is so special…guess it’s because we’re experienced and wiser. It’s late and we have a big storm full of rain and thunder coming in this week. Hope it improves the air quality in Portland as it puts out the fire in the Columbia Gorge. Late, so will close for now. Much love, Sue

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