"I should not talk so much about myself if there were any body else whom I knew as well."
-Henry David Thoreau

Monday, June 17, 2013


We had a really nice weekend at home, just the three of us.  Well, six of us if you count the dogs. 

We went swimming on Friday and again yesterday.  Alex is getting a few new freckles and I just love it.  Drew and I have just as much fun in the water, acting like we are 10 year olds ourselves.  Alex thinks we are hilarious.  Who am I kidding?  We are hilarious!  Our pool is only 48 inches deep, so we either kneel or squat in the water to keep Alex’s body in the water and her head & face in the clear.  I didn’t think much of this on Thursday when Cheryl was here, but by Friday evening I was feeling my workout.  It’s not the kind of workout that gets my heart pumping, just the kind that requires sustained strength and control and I was feeling it! 

If we get to do water therapy with Cheryl twice a week then that’s awesome, but I’m going to have to make time to get to the gym also.  I honestly enjoy my gym time and it’s important for me.  Sure, it’s the physical exercise, but it’s also more.  The exercise helps my mental health, but so does the uninterrupted time I spend there.  Let’s say I spend 30 minutes on the treadmill… that is 30 minutes that belongs only to me.  Just Mandy.  That doesn’t exist anywhere else for me.  I can go to the store alone, but I’m still shopping for my family.  I can take a bath before bed, but I can still hear everything going on in the house.  I can walk the neighborhood, but I have to smile and be friendly when I see my neighbors.  When I’m at the gym I am completely in my own bubble and I like it.  More than like it… I NEED it.  My point… I have to make time for the gym.  Drew and I talked about it last night and I have a plan.  Heidi still spends an hour with Alex on Tuesdays for speech, so I still have that time.  When Drew isn’t travelling, he should still be able to work from home on Fridays.  When he takes a break for lunch then I can sneak away to the gym for a bit.  If I add in once or twice on the weekends then I should have 3-4 trips to the gym each week and that is what I need. 

As for Drew, he needs to hit the gym early in the morning before work.  If he goes after work then he misses out on an hour with Alex in the evenings.  He can go on the weekends, but he functions better with a predictable schedule.  So, the next part of our plan is to stop staying up so late.  In the last month or two we have gotten into a bad habit of staying up too late.  10pm turned into 11pm which sometimes hits midnight.  We are too old to do that and still get up early and function all day!  New goal… television off by 9pm. 

That’s where we stand with our own quest for a healthier life.  That and trying not to eat a bag of Ruffles chips with a container of french onion dip every weekend.  Neither of us are taking any medications anymore and I honestly feel much better (I was on Paxil for several years and have been completely off of it for about a month now.)  Our chiropractic visits are still important, but I am continually irritated by our health insurance.  I’ve told you how we have a high deductible plan, meaning it doesn’t cover crap unless we have a major medical incident.  Doesn’t that sound more like sick insurance than health insurance?  The chiropractor is cheaper to pay out of pocket than to file with insurance (significantly cheaper) and we didn’t budget our 2013 health savings account to pay for Drew’s chiropractic care (since he just decided to start going a few months ago).  In short, it sucks.  We will just figure out how to deal with it because it has made such a big difference in how we both feel and function. 

Alex’s health seems to be okay right now.  Putting the scopolamine patch on her back instead of behind her ear is proving very helpful.  It still reduces the amount of drool (and consequent wet breathing) and she can’t reach her back to pick it off.  She does have a new red spot on her right shoulder and Drew & I feel fairly sure it is another pressure sore.  It is not open or infected, so that is good.  It makes perfect sense for it to be in that specific location because she often lays on her right side and uses her left hand to operate her computer.  I’m hoping we can keep it protected and clean and that it will not progress to anything worse. 

Grandpa seems to be doing okay at Dad’s house.  It’s been one month and they are both slowly adjusting.  I am continually thankful that he is there, as I don’t believe it would have been safe for him to continue living alone.  I think I’ve hesitated talking about this because I don’t want to offend him in any way, but the fact is that he is getting a little more confused and making a little less sense these days.  Knowing that Dad will be home from work at 5 every day gives me great peace of mind and gives Grandpa something to look forward to.  Grandpa is driving almost zero now and that has been his own choice.  His ability and willingness to make that decision is a blessing.  I know I shared with you all about taking him to the oral surgeon to see about pulling his teeth last August.  He has finally decided that it needs to be done and I have made a call to the doctor to get that arranged.  I also intend to make an appointment with his GP soon just as a yearly check up and also to discuss the possibility that we are dealing with early dementia.  The earlier that is addressed the better. 

As for Dad, his new role as caregiver is surely an adjustment.  I know he is glad he is able to do this, but the role of caregiver comes with many changes and challenges.  I can only imagine what that is like, but I will continue to be whatever support that I can. 

This has turned into an update of sorts, so let me mention… Sasha is almost 7 months pregnant now.  Baby boy (who has yet to be named) and momma are doing well.  Alex uses her computer to say, “I want to see new baby,” at least 2 or 3 times a week.  Drew told her the baby had to cook a bit longer and she laughed like that was the funniest thing she had ever heard.  If my memory serves me, 6-7 months was my favorite time of pregnancy.  I was big enough to look pregnant and far enough along to feel the baby, but not so huge that I couldn’t paint my own toe nails :)  I hope Sasha is enjoying this stage, too. 

One last thing… as much as I would love to take Alex on a vacation, I’m no longer feeling the urgency.  She is honestly happy with tiny adventures and having the three of us together.  There is no sense in pushing her limits just to feed my own idea of what we should or could be doing.

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