Sunday, October 31, 2010

Celebrating Samhain

Tonight is Samhain, the final harvest festival.  Before the advent of Christianity the country dwellers would come together to celebrate bringing in the final harvest of the year.  All the preparations for the upcoming Winter would be completed and a feast with dancing would finalize their struggles to survive.

For many people growing their own crops and tending animals was a necessity back even one hundred years ago.  With modern technology many of us have gotten away from understanding where that meat comes from in the supermarket, where the vegetables are brought in from, and where the base material for our clothing comes from.

I wonder, on today of all days, a day of remembering my ancestors, that if we took more care of where our stuff came from then we just might treat it better and make it last longer.  That will be a rant for another day.  I'm getting too far off of the subject of today's post.

Samhain is when I place on my altar a photo or two of the ones that are nearly and dearly departed.  This year I placed a photo of my familiar on the altar, though he's been gone for six years he is still in my dreams and thoughts.

Oh, did I forget to mention that I'm pagan?  I'm actually a Wiccan.  More than just that too, I'm a Wiccan with credentials.  I took the time to take an approved course, one that the military actually approves of, to further my education.  If we ever have need of another DFGL on post I can raise my hand and state that I could do it in a pinch.  DFGL is a Distinctive Faith Group Leader.   I also am an ordained deaconess and reverend with all the same privileges to marry a couple that a justice of the peace would be entitled.  The Army has a shortage of qualified personal to cover the minor religions.  There are no Wiccan Chaplains in the Army.  I wish there was a Wiccan Chaplain as we would have better representation.

I wish more people would keep open minds.  Most folks love to celebrate All Hallow's Eve but if you call it Samhain to some it becomes something dark and dirty.  Last year I had a child come to my house dressed in black with a large pentacle, a five-pointed star with a circle around it, hanging from a chain on his neck.  I asked him what he was and he respond, "I'm the emperor of evil".  Oh, joy.  I look back to his parents and wonder what they've taught him to allow him to walk about so misinformed.  I wanted to ask them but I didn't.  In retrospect I probably should have asked them and gently informed them that I was in no way evil and I often wear that particular symbol.

I'm not a crackpot.  I won't tout abilities that I don't have nor claim to have ones just to get attention.  I remember that I live on a military installation and I strive to blend in with the rest of the family members and soldiers here.

For me, Wicca is about learning to love our planet, respecting all that dwells on it and within it, yes including the smallest creatures.  I've been known to squash a bug if its is going to do me harm.  I have allergies and would prefer not to reach for benadryl.  I do draw a line.  I like to refer to Earth as Gaia.  Gaia gives us life.  She provides for us.  However, if we mistreat her she will react and try to reclaim to heal herself.  If we blast holes in her she will collapse under us to cover her wound.  If we try to wipe out another species she will take away our food source...well duh you can't make that species reproduce if there isn't a mating pair left.  No brainer.

This Halloween when children come to my door for treats I'll gasp in surprise at their costumes, laugh with them, and on occasion try to scare them too.  Nothing scarier than waiting by the door with the lights off and the door slightly ajar, yanking it open quickly to scare the kids.  Tonight is about having fun. I've still yet to decide what my costume will be for tonight but I'd best make that decision soon.

Enjoy your Halloween or Samhain whichever you decide to celebrate.  I know I'll be getting my party on later tonight with my group.  Let the feasting and merriment begin.

Blessed Be!

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Showing Me Love

Last night my husband went out with one of the guys for pizza.  I like my once a week alone time.  Its time I get to think, read, day dream, just in general vegetate.  He came home early with our friend and presented me with lilies and irises.  Several different types of lilies.  He kept fairly quiet talking D&D with our friend through the night in another room.  I watched some television in the living room.

I say the guy is our friend because I met him first at chapel and knew right off he'd be a fun friend for my husband with similar interests besides the Army.  Sure enough they had a good night generating characters and discussing  escape plans with what is allowable for items.

I love my geek husband.  I really do love the nerd in him.  I too enjoy playing D&D.

Since tonight is our date night I'm going to keep this post short for today.  I think this is my first short post in a while.  I realize that my life has been rather mundane of late but I rather like the ordinary life.

 Sunday we head out to our chapel here on post for our late night Samhain celebration.  More about date night happenings tomorrow if I get the chance.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Finishing touches

 Husband's pumpkin
My pumpkin

The Halloween or Samhain, if you will, decorations are finally finished and put in their proper places.  It took me several hours to carve my pumpkin and I'm not sure its as good as it could be.  My design is one I modified from a photo of his units design. Its his patch with the arrowhead in the back ground and their number above.  Last year was the first year I ever carved a pumpkin so I'm still learning about designs.  I love how my husband just dug in with a knife and started carving away after the guts were removed.

I'm on my fourth load of laundry right now, that makes at least twelve loads this week, my husband sure does dirty a lot of clothes.  Tonight if things go well I'll probably get around to making pumpkin bread and roasting some pumpkin seeds.  Last year I kind of burnt a few of the seeds, but it was my first time with that too so I'm learning.

I got a call early this morning from the staffing place asking if I've yet chosen a new respite care provider.  I explained to the guy on the phone that the one I tried out yesterday just didn't work out.  He said that I'm listed as having the following three providers: TL, AS, and JJ.  I told him I've never even heard of TL, I fired AS for being lazy and wanting to only sleep when she was supposed to be working and that I still have JJ but she lives rather far away to be at my beck and call.  So he noted the changes.  I'm still wondering who the heck that TL gal is.  I've heard the name as in her first and middle being as such but only in my past.  The TL I knew is actually TLS and she is a crack head now.  I would not use her for several reason; the crack being the first, the second would be the distance as she is on the opposite coast, the third is that she is a thief.  I guess the thief part could be on account of the crack addiction too.

On a different subject now, I have about another week to go until I can test to see if I'm pregnant or not.  I have to test before I start the next round of the fertility drugs.  Its too soon to tell if I'm pregnant or not right now.  The clomid is still messing with my body as the breasts are sore, pelvis is sore and I'm still getting nausea.  The nausea could of course be from my other medical problems.  Hopefully Quan Yin will have answered my prayers.

I opened a new box of Flovent today and read the instruction sheet.  I will finish up my last puff of the Flovent inhaler I have open tonight.  Turns out that Flovent shouldn't be used on women that are pregnant or are trying to get pregnant.  I guess that is just one more medicine I'll have to go off of cold turkey.  I think I'll still be allowed my rescue inhaler as breathing is a necessity.  I only use it when I have an asthma attack.  I'm wondering why I wasn't told I should go off it at the last visit with the PA (physicians assistant).  I shouldn't even wonder because this was the PA that messed up my last EFMP (exceptional family member program) form and neglected to complete and sign one page of the four pages that had to be signed.

I'm supposed to be seeing a real doctor once a month and I should be assigned a real doctor as my PCM (primary care manager).  But the clinics here have seen fit to move my PCM Doc to another clinic of which I'm not allowed to go to because I can only go to the one I'm assigned to.  Well that is unless I change out my PCM to an off-Post clinic.  The paper work involved in changing to off-Post care is daunting.  Last time I tried to change out of my clinic I got the routine of go to this other office which then they sent me to yet another office, and that one didn't have a clue then sending me back to the first one.  Next duty station I can only hope it gets better.  For now I'll have to deal with the crappy care they give us family members.  The last time I saw a real doctor was when I saw a specialist.  PAs and NPs (nurse practitioners) are great for dealing with the small stuff but when you have a patient with several autoimmune disorders and other medical issues its usually out of their knowledge range.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Epic Fail

Okay I should have known better than to have hired this woman.  Yes, the one I mentioned in the post earlier today.

She comes by today and tells me, after being dropped off, that she won't get paid for today because her paperwork has yet to go through with the staffing place. She doesn't even know when she'll get approved or if she will get approved.  She said she was working for her sister.  With this staffing program you can have a family member work with the staffing company without getting certified.  I'm wanting to know why the staffing place even gave me her number when she is not my family member.  Without their approval she isn't covered by the insurance, should something happen to her on the job.  I sure as heck couldn't afford her medical bills if she worked under the table for me and not the staffing company, nor do I want to get sued.

I had her clean the bathroom.  I guess she did an okay job.  I could have done better.  She didn't clean the shower/tub out, nor clean the floors or mirrors.  I was going to have her dust but I thought better of that since she wasn't getting paid for today.

 I asked if she would rather just sit and watch a movie with me.  She was all over that.  So I put in Shrek 2 because she had yet to see that movie.  My dvd player is slowly dying as of today.  The disc is in near new condition as I've only played it once and it has no scratches.  The dvd player starts skipping and stopping and pixelating.  I had just cleaned it prior to watching two other dvds last week.  I guess its time for a new player.  Ten years I've had this dvd player.

For now I'll just switch over to using the XBOX or my husband's dvd player.  As for the respite care provider, I guess I'm back to calling the people on the list.  I'll get started on that tomorrow.  After the dvd player failed I asked if watching television would be okay, I needed something to occupy the hour and a half until her sister picked her back up.  She wanted to watch her soap opera.  I too used to watch the same soap but haven't in about a year having given up the drama.

When my husband was deployed I didn't watch but two hours of television a week.  I found a lot more real life things to keep me busy.  I wouldn't watch the news either as I didn't want to know about the war.  War is too close to home when your spouse is deployed.

She told me that she's willing to keep working for me without pay as she doesn't want to possibly lose the job.  What job?  There isn't a job if you aren't getting paid.  I need someone qualified to do the work.  I don't think I'm being to picky.  I just want someone that is going to do the task I set out for them and do it correctly.  I cleared off the top of the sink of all possible impediments.  I put the chemicals on top with a sponge and paper towels.  I removed the towels from the bars and the bathrobes from the back of the doors.  I even opened up the shower curtain and told her how easy it is to clean the tub.  Sheesh.  What gives?  Am I too much of a marshmallow to get someone to follow my instructions?  I don't want to pull out my drill sergeant attitude, my dad claims that I'm a natural born one and he should know being prior Army, because I don't know if I could put it back on the shelf before the spouse comes home for the day.

Before leaving my house today she asked if her sister could come in for a few minutes to meet me.  Her sister I found was a bit of a flake.  Her sister wants to know more about my religion and if she can incorporate it with her own.  I don't have an organized religion.  I did tell her about the chapel on post and that all are welcome.  The sister lives on post.  My husband, when home on lunch today, gave the respite care provider directions to the chapel.  I don't go to chapel that often, as I find its like the majority of other chapels, with too many gossip mongers and back biters  and not enough folks there for the right reasons.

Should I keep going down the list of people tomorrow?
Should I give her another chance?
Am I being smart about wanting to find someone certified to work in my home?           
Any ideas folks?
Any advice?

Repairing It All

Just finished eating my Fage with honey and I thought that perhaps I should post now before my day becomes hectic.  I think I'll work backwards from now through yesterday where I last posted about what went on to secure the title of this blog post.

Today I break in a new respite care provider.  I know I shouldn't judge the gal by the way she dresses, nor the way she talks but like most of the population of the Earth I still do.

I swear this new provider is just as broken as am I.  I'd just like to know why she's even on the list of service providers when it seems doubtful she could pass the physical let alone a written exam.  Oh I know it seems as though I'm implying that she's not too bright, well she isn't.  This is the gal that said she needed to run to a "meglo-mart" type store and would be right here after.  Well three hours later she shows up for the interview.  I had all but given up on her.  But I might be pleasantly surprised, though she is very coarse, to find that she is in fact able to perform the tasks given to her.  Today I'm just asking her to dust and clean the bathroom.  The bathroom was cleaned this past weekend but since its almost a week it could use it again.  I'm wondering if I hired the person out of pity.    She tells me she's had a stroke, is asthmatic, and has a bad back.  Oh geez, I wonder if this means I'll have to keep 911 on speed dial for when she is here.  She told me she doesn't mind doing housework and loves to iron.  I just need someone to help with the chemicals of cleaning and the moving of furniture so that I can vacuum.

This morning I baked cinnamon rolls for my spouse for breakfast.  He deserved a little treat.  I've been a real brat with the hormones of late and felt the need to make reparations for my bad behavior.

 0740 hrs, I was just settling back into sleep for a short nap before my spouse got home from PT when the phone rang.  It was the ENT office calling to schedule an appointment for my husband.  I was fine with the first date they gave me and had just penned it on to the appropriate date on the calendar when they told me to hold.  Okay rather odd I thought.  V from the ENT office gets back on the phone with me and says she needs to move it up two days.  I explain that the time they've now changed it to won't work out because he has another appointment scheduled for shortly after.  V insists that I have to take this one.  My husband gets home right after the call ended and calls them back.  He wants the first appointment they offered.  Get this, its no longer available.  Really?  Less than five minutes after they wanted to give it to him?  So he is now stuck with the one that might conflict and he might have to reschedule the other appointment just because the ENT office had no other openings.

 Last night we had microwave lasagna for dinner.  My husband got home to find the gas oven in the middle of kitchen floor with the bottom drawer blocking a door way.  Yup the repairman had torn it all apart.  The broiler wasn't functioning and one burner wasn't working properly.  Dinner would have to be something nuked.  The oven was back in place just before 1800hrs but by then I said to heck with it and opted for the quick dinner which meant going to the Commissary.  The trip to the Commissary worked out well because we were out of milk and we needed more yogurt too.

The repairman might have finished the oven but he didn't finish the tiles.  He tore one up and said he'd have to order replacement tiles.  I asked how long before the new tiles would be in and he had no idea.  Great.  These are the same people that do the repairs for all the housing on our post.  One of my friends is still waiting to get the hole in her living room ceiling repaired.

Even though the sky is grey, and its raining I can carry with me the memory of the smile on my husband's face as he bit into his cinnamon rolls this morning.  I like making him smile.  Hopefully the rest of the day's events will keep me smiling.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Trying To Find Some Me Time

I guess I got up too late this morning.  I wanted to get a bit more sleep, sleep that has been alluding me most nights due in part to my fertility drugs and a spouse that snores like a freight train.

The third load of laundry is now in the washer with the second in the dryer.  I've still yet to get a chance to grab some much needed food.  Breakfast and lunch have now passed by.  My spouse came home for breakfast in-between the morning PT and his work call.  Spouse came home for lunch and got his lunch while I cleaned out the fridge of the left overs he's not been eating.  Leftovers that I can't consume because of food allergies.  While he is eating his lunch I'm cleaning up the stove top of what he fried earlier and didn't clean up.  The repair man is coming today to work on the stove top, broiler and replace a few broken tiles in the living room.

Because the repair man is due at any time in the next few minutes to several hours, they never give an exact appointment time,  I don't dare start to use the stove to warm up something to eat.  I guess my chance to eat was in the am but I wasted it trying to get some sleep.  Yes, sure its a woe is me my life sucks today.  I'm cranky but I think most of you would be if you hadn't eaten in sixteen hours too.

Right now I need some me time.  No phone calls in the am, no phone calls in the pm, no one wanting a thing from me.  I want to be able to curl up with the book I've been trying to finish for almost three weeks and some sort of food.

I need to remember that I take care of me.  So I need to take time for myself daily just like my spouse does when he gets off work for the day.   I think I need a day at a spa.  Last time I went to one was sixteen months ago and it was only an hour treatment.  I'm tired.  I need some breathing room, some screaming out loud in frustration time.

Back to the laundry.  I'll stop day dreaming now.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Baby Costs a bit of humor not to be take seriously

Most of you know by now that I am trying to conceive.  Some of you might know me well enough to note that I am a research junkie.  I refuse to make a life time or long time commitment to anything without doing the proper research.  Babies are costly and here is a link listing those costs.|20759|cost%20of%20baby||S||5906383416&gclid=CJa9tvSX8aQCFQk8gwodgU9U0A

 With so many cribs being recalled I decided to research options yesterday.  More than one place suggested fixed, non-drop, side cribs.  I guess the drop side cribs are kind of wobbly or if you get a sixty pound baby in there that likes to throw themselves against that drop side it will drop off on its own accord.  Most cribs are safe up to a sixty pound weight limit.  I found a few suitable not overly expensive cribs, then I had a thought.  I was thinking of going to the lumber yard.  Why not by some plywood, sand it down smooth and apply some non-toxic paint.  I've seen the beds for adults that rest directly on the floor, the Feng Shui style.  Why can't I make a crib of plywood with a false bottom that is weighted.  This way the baby can't tip its cage, err I mean crib, over.  Oh come on now how many of you have noticed how much  cribs look like cages?  Its just missing the top.  They even have metal cribs.  One step better, empty out a dresser drawer and pad the bottom inside.  Great for a few months.  But if you are desirous of that baby cage look and have a dog in the family you could borrow its crate for a while, I'm sure the dog loves sleeping in your bed anyway.

When it comes to a bassinet, a great idea for hauling a kid from room to room, they have the Moses baskets.  Very cute straw baskets that are flexible.  Not sure I like just how flexible they are but they do have material liners that come out for laundering.  Hmm, laundering....makes me think oh yeah I've seen the same thing in laundry baskets.  Perfect.  With my sewing abilities I could whip up a nice liner for the laundry basket and purchase the thin mattress you buy separate for the bassinets.  Even a crib doesn't come with a mattress.

Baby toys are costly.  For those of you that are already parents you'll note that all those pretty toys often go to waste.  Most kids just want to play with your car keys, toilet paper rolls and empty boxes.  Go to yard sales, flea markets, and consignment stores if you must buy them toys.  You could even wash off Fido's Kong toy and let the use it for a chew toy.  Why not?  Its good for the dog.

Babies grow way too fast to be paying full price for clothing in the store.  Unless you are going to be taking a family photo why would you need to be buying a brand new outfit for the baby?  Again go to the yard sales, consignment stores and flea markets.

There are some unavoidable costs of raising a pet, err child.  You have to feed it and make sure you clean up after it.  I like the idea of cloth diapers but I'm thinking that the Medieval folks had a better idea.  If you wrap the kid in swaddling, hang it on a peg on a wall with a slop bucket under it you'll save on the cost of diapers.  Besides if swaddled tight enough the baby won't cry in hunger.  Can you believe they actually did this?  No wonder population was under control several hundred years ago.

Feeding the baby can be problematic, if you opt not to be a member of the dairy club.  Just like not everyone likes chocolate, some sick, twisted people don't like chocolate, not every baby will like the formulas out on the market today.  If you want your kid to like that powdered or canned milk I suggest adding something sweet.  How about some rum?  Am I kidding?  You decide.  My parents would rub rum on our gums when we were teething just to keep us quiet.   Rum, honey, grape juice, non pasteurized cow's milk are all no-no's for the baby under the age of one year.  Note that they don't tell you if you should pasteurize your own breast milk  but I bet they'll soon make a Federal Mandate on that too.

Disclaimer:  I am not responsible for any of my readers using the alternate suggestions for baby gear.  Also note I would not hang a kid on a peg as its child abuse by our modern day standards.  If you have taken seriously what I have posted you might need to seek immediate psychiatric help. This post has been one of humor for me to write today.  Oh and I don't have a pet, so there is no cage.

Monday, October 25, 2010

My Day Thus Far with a bit of weekend review

Friday I secured a list of Respite Providers and started calling them.  One called back but her schedule would not have worked out with mine.  Today I awoke to a phone call, it was the staffing place wanting to know if I had found a provider, of course I  haven't yet.  I find it totally rude that when I take the time to leave a message the recipient of the message does not call back in a timely manner.  Who would not want to be employed for twenty dollars an hour just to help me out around the house?

Today on my second phone call I finally spoke with a human.  This woman seems very excited about the prospect of working with the staffing place and being out sourced to me.

Maybe I should back track a bit and explain how I am able to qualify for this respite care.  The respite care is not actually for me but for my soldier.  Getting up at 0500hrs five days a week and not getting home most days until 1800 hrs tends to tire him out.  Geez I wonder why? (sarcasm)  Because of these hours he is usually too tired to do much more than vegetate.  But the house has to be cleaned.  When the weather is bad with cold wind and cold rain my body aches too much for me to be doing the light housekeeping.  This is where the respite care comes in handy.  I qualify for twenty-eight hours a month of help because of my debilitating conditions.  So with any luck I'll have a respite care provider by the end of the day.

Over the weekend I was moved a few things about the house and picked up stuff that had to be put away. Picking up the four hand weights, two five pound weights and two three pound weight, that had been used and left out was a bit too much for my carpal tunnel issue.  I now have a bruised left foot and holes in the tile floor from dropping  the hand weights.  This morning I called in the work order to have the tiles replaced.

Yesterday I went to chapel.  My husband and a few others carved pumpkins.  Four were set, one at each direction, two others were placed in front of the altar.  This week some time we will get around to carving our own two pumpkins.  For now the orange fleshy globes reside out-of-doors awaiting their timely slaughter.  I love carving pumpkins.  I would buy more decorations than what I have now for this fun holiday but with the Army I must remember to keep my decorations for each holiday to a minimum or risk having to give them all away each time I move.

So fingers crossed that I'll have someone to help out around here with the little projects that involve chemicals at the very least.  I prefer continuing to breathe.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Clomid Hell

Clomiphene Citrate also known as Clomid is the name of the fertility drug I'm currently on.  The side effects of this fertility drug can include: mood swings, weight gain, bloating, cramps, irregular menstrual bleeding, headaches, nausea, blurred vision, ovarian hyperstimulation, and twins.  I wouldn't mind conceiving twins however, I do mind the mid cycle cramping and bloating.  The pain I'm in today from the cramps, well it feels just like I've been kicked in the pelvic region.  It hurts to sit, it hurts to stand, it hurts to bend.  I had totally forgotten the clomid hell I went through the first time around.

This past week I had the mood swings and my husband had no idea how to deal with them being so bad.  My mood swings on PMS are mild compared with what Clomid has done.  Its not bad enough he is dealing with a pregnant soldier at work but then he has to come home to a wife that is so moody she could kiss him one minute and bite his head off the next.

I'm hoping that being at mid cycle the mood swings will abate for a week.  Right now I think I'd rather have the mood swings than the pain.  Oh I know I'm being a big cry baby but I'm the one in pain.  I'm the one wearing my fat pants right now because my pelvic region looks like I'm in the fifth month.  I don't feel like eating because of the headaches and nausea.  I feel like taking a nap but I can't find a comfortable position, a position without pain.  I want to cry in frustration because I can't take pain killers.  Okay so I can take non-asprin but it doesn't help much, if at all.

I think men should have to go through child bearing, menstrual cycles, mood swings and pain that come with being a  woman.  Though my husband is a dear he looks with askance at me as if saying, "you know that I can't do anything for your pain so why are you angry with me".  Of course I'm looking back and will sometimes also verbally tell him, "if only you could feel what I feel, then perhaps you'd be more understanding!".  But he does try.  Maybe its just him fearing me yelling at him or perhaps him actually wanting to help.

Yes, his First Sergeant was right, men do become the enemy when we are in our mood swings, especially when pregnant.

 I've had one pregnancy on clomid but miscarried.  I'm hoping that this time around I'll carry to term.  At my age I don't care if its a boy, girl or multiple babies I just want a healthy one.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Shopping With The Spouse

Today my husband and I went shopping.  We started off at a bookstore.  I love to buy used books especially when I can trade in my old ones.  My spouse heads off to the Sci-fi section, I head to the classics then over to the cookbooks, romance and finally end up in the Sci-fi section myself.  I enjoy Marion Zimmer Bradley's Sci-fi novels as much as I enjoy any other genre.

Next stop is to a hardware store to look for a replacement lawn mower blade for our inherited Briggs and Stratton.  No luck at the hardware store.  We decided to drive to the next town over and get a blade at the same place we've been purchasing replacement parts for this mower.  But before we head out to the next town over we stop at a Bed Bath and Beyond because I wanted to purchase new bed sheets.  Much to my amazement bed sheets are now coming with warranties included in the purchase price.  I thought only electronics and appliances had warranties.  Less than an hour in the store and we are headed to lunch at, of all places, a pancake house.  My spouse had already had an egg mess for breakfast but he was craving pancakes and an omelet.  This place was busy today.  It actually took an hour to get our food.

 With lunch under our belts we headed out to the lawn mower and go-kart repair place for the lawn mower blade replacement.  We get there and find out our much damaged blade is a craftsman.  I'll have to ask my manflesh later if he thinks it might have a warranty on that too.  Still chuckling thinking of warrantied sheets .

Our shopping trips are still not done.  Off we go again after a quick trip home to drop off the packages and lawn mower blade.  We stop by the dry cleaner and seamstress shop to pick up his class A jacket.  He had to have more patches sewn on; this time combat and service stripes.  After securing his jacket in the suv we drive off to a sporting goods store.  Now we are getting to the promised land, well at least for my spouse.  I had asked him last night if he wanted a firearm for a holiday gift.  Of course he loved that idea.  So this turned into a fact finding trip and not a purchasing trip unless you count the fudge we bought at the store.  We were at the hand gun counter for no less than two hours.  I looked at my watch after he walked away from the counter and said, "Hun, did you realize its almost 6 o'clock?".  Time to eat dinner and so I'm keeping this post today short and rather boring.

Time to get the frozen pizza into the oven.  Maybe we'll find something good on the television tonight or maybe we'll just pop in a dvd.

Forgive my typos and punctuation error...I'm tired.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Finally Friday

I'm wearing red today because its Friday.  Some of you may recall why folks wear red on Friday, others might have no idea at all.  I'm not exactly sure how long ago the tradition of wearing red on Friday started but I think it started when we went to war.  I will try to remember to wear red on each Friday until all our troops come home.

Yes we are still at war.  We might have ended the sending of comabt troops to Iraq for now but it doesn't mean we stopped sending our military over there.  We still have a war going on in Afghanistan.  We are still fighting the war on terrorism.

The work week is coming to a close which means I'll get some much needed time with my spouse.  A year ago I couldn't say the same.  A year ago my spouse was one of many deployed to the Middle East.

Friday reminds me to be thankful for all the freedoms that I enjoy and often take for granted.  I am thankful for my dwelling no matter how humble it might be because it is not a CHU (containerized housing unit) that leaks when the rain comes down hard.  I am thankful for the food I have to eat because I can just go to my refrigerator or cabinets and select a decent meal that hasn't been mass produced as in an MRE or sitting in warming trays drying out.  I am thankful that I can go to a restaurant to eat a meal and be able to complain if the service is not to my satisfaction.  I am thankful that I can get up in the middle of the night without having to don boots and camouflage clothing  just to go use the bathroom.  Heck, if I get the munchies in the middle of the darn night I can get in my suv,  drive the 0.9 miles to the nearest convenience store, then walk through isles of junk food selecting the perfect snack to settle a craving.  Most of those deployed don't have options I get to enjoy at a whim. When the tiny AAFES at their location does have options they go quickly.

Yes, I realize we have an all volunteer Army.  I am thankful that these men and women did volunteer so that I can exercise my freedom.  I like being able to say what I want.   I like being able to own a gun.  I like being able to worship any god any way I want.

So today I'm wearing red.  It doesn't matter if anyone notices, I'm not here to be noticed.  I'm doing it to say thank you and that I value the sacrifices our military has made with the hope that they will come home soon.


Thursday, October 21, 2010

Legal Issues: Today's Headache

Here I am sitting and waiting.  Twenty minutes has past and five more additional.  My lawyers are giving me a headache.

 I had my phone conference scheduled for today.  I called at the appointed time.

Me:  Is D there?
Receptionist:  No she isn't in today.
Me:  I had a phone conference scheduled for now.
Receptionist:  Who is this?  (I had told her before but they don't care)
Me: (states name)
Receptionist:  Let me try to get D on her cell.  Hold please.  (I hold)  Can she call you back in twenty minutes?
Me:  (as if I have a choice)  Yes.
Receptionist:  Can I get your number?  (OMG! Seriously I've been dealing with this law firm for three years and they still don't know my number.  I give her my number again without being obnoxious.)

Now I'm sitting here waiting.  Five more minutes have passed making it now thirty minutes since I was told she'd call me back in twenty.

 I just want an update on my case.  I want to find out why the TENS unit company has yet again stopped sending me the pads for my TENS unit.  I want to find out why the local folks have yet to call me.  The local folks said they'd call me when they got the correct medical fees schedule.  So far they've only been sent a link and nothing in hard copy from my lawyers.

How am I supposed to go see a doctor using my out-of-state Workers' Compensation insurance without a fees schedule?

How am I supposed to get paid for being out-of-work if I can't see a doctor who will file progress reports on my behalf?  I haven't been paid in twenty-seven months because I moved out-of-state due to a military move of which my lawyers and the insurance company were warned well in advance of the move.

Workers' Compensation doesn't like the fact that the military medical providers aren't willing to testify as to my progress in rehabilitation therapy for my injuries.  Because they are military and most of the doctors are not civilian contractors that I would see for my physical therapy they too move around a lot.

So I'm calling them back to find out why forty minutes later I have yet to receive a phone call from my lawyer.  Speaking with the receptionist right now, she says, "one second", after I explain that I've yet to be called back...mind you its never just one second.

Finally, I got through.  I got to state to D what I needed.  She was appalled that I still wasn't receiving treatment.  D took over my case when B left the firm and country to get married.  So I'm starting over from the beginning with the whole mess.

Two years on the same orthopedic inserts, same sneakers, same leather compression boot, same everything.  Everything is worn out.  Heck even my cane needs a new rubber stopper on the bottom of it, the shaft is rubbed clean of paint in spots from long forgotten falls.  I think I'm deserving of some new medical equipment.  But we'll just see what Work Comp has to say about what I deserve.  Funny how you pay in for the "other tax" insurance on your paycheck and when you have to use it the insurance company for the company you worked for doesn't want to pay out.  Not like the "other tax" was optional.

Hopefully none of my readers have ever had to deal with this particular headache. 

On a happy note, spouse is doing well with work.  Co-worker is being put in their place for not being productive.  Spouse is very happy that he got noticed for picking up said soldier's  slack.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

PTSD, A Nightmare In Itself

****Warning what you are about to read is not suitable for all audiences nor is it intended to be.  This is after all my blog about my happenings.

 PTSD is a term heard often on military installations around the globe.  It can be seen on the banners "got nightmares?" with information on whom to contact if you do have the PTSD.  I'm not sure many of us fully understand what Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is in fact. Many go undiagnosed.  For me it was diagnosed once the rape kit was sealed up and sent out to the crime lab that awful night of December 2002.   I too was sealed up and sent off but it was to see a shrink in the crime victims unit.  I'm sure I had PTSD before that night as I lived in a very abusive relationship for eleven years.

"What is PTSD?  
Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is an anxiety disorder that can occur after you have been through a traumatic event. A traumatic event is something horrible and scary that you see or that happens to you. During this type of event, you think that your life or others' lives are in danger. You may feel afraid or feel that you have no control over what is happening.
Anyone who has gone through a life-threatening event can develop PTSD. These events can include:
  • Combat or military exposure
  • Child sexual or physical abuse
  • Terrorist attacks
  • Sexual or physical assault
  • Serious accidents, such as a car wreck.
  • Natural disasters, such as a fire, tornado, hurricane, flood, or earthquake.
After the event, you may feel scared, confused, or angry. If these feelings don't go away or they get worse, you may have PTSD. These symptoms may disrupt your life, making it hard to continue with your daily activities."

I awoke early this am to a nightmare.  A PTSD Nightmare.  This time I woke up gasping for air and in a panic.  Once I realized I was no longer in the nightmare I was able to gain control of myself.  There are times I awake from the nightmares angry, crying, screaming or like this morning gasping for air.  Not all of the nightmares are about the rape sometimes they are about the abusive eleven years of my past.

I'm still not sure why I stayed.

It had to be fear.

I knew that some days I had to be extra careful especially when he'd start drinking as soon as he would get home.  When he'd drink anything could set him off.  Usually he'd make sure to hit me where clothing would cover but, towards the end of the relationship he got sloppy.  I had to avoid my own mother for a couple of weeks until the bruises healed enough so she wouldn't get suspicious.  I was totally dependent upon this monster. I had no sense of self worth nor the understanding that I could leave. One day I learned to fight back.  That was the day I escaped from that relationship.  I filed an Order of Protection with the court, of which he violated.  He must have had good lawyers because they always let him go without jail time.

  Unfortunately, for me it wouldn't be the last time I'd be sexually, mentally or physically abused.  No that last time was in December 2002.  But that final time wasn't by my ex.  That final time was by a friend, someone I thought I could trust.  I was a fool.

 I've had therapy and therapy training.  I've learned techniques to cope with the situations when it feels as though it might bring on an episode during the waking hours.  When I'm awake its so much easier to get that grasp on reality.  Its when I'm sleeping and the nightmares creep in that I feel helpless and hopeless.  Thankfully over the years the nightmares have been less frequent with only one or sometimes two a week now.   Time does heal some thing but not all things.

Now I tend to live by my own motto of "Life is what you make of it."  When I get up in the morning I set goals.  No, not goals like I was training for a marathon but simplistic goals of keeping my guard up but not to a paranoid extreme.

 I could have gone into more detail,  a lot more detail about the PTSD nightmares but I'd rather not give any of you readers a nightmare.

 It just feels good to be able to write about this in my blog.  It does sadden me to think that a few of you might actually know how this feels.  I'm sorry too that you know because it doesn't ever go away.  PTSD affects more than just the individual it affect the families too.  Our loved ones don't want to see us suffering from ghost images of memories past.  The loved ones would rather have something tangible to fight as would I.

On an unrelated side note....soldier co-worker refuses to clean weapons.  My spouse told me, just this morning, the reason  stated was that  "doesn't want to get toxoplasmosis".  You cannot get toxoplasmosis from cleaning weapons unless they are in the cat's litter box when you clean them.  ......Hope this gives you a good chuckle after the above seriousness.

 Thanks for taking the time to read my madness.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Voting Absentee If Possible

This year I'll be voting again with an absentee ballot.  Two years ago when I moved out of my home state to my spouse's new duty station I voted absentee ballot for the primaries.  This year I was hoping to vote the same way again. Somehow I doubt I'll even see the absentee ballot.

I found out through an email that my home state is one of those being sued for not sending out the absentee ballots nor updating their addresses.  Yes my address did change but I did update it.  I was told this would take care of the problem.  I went online today and found out that I'm still listed as the old address!  So much for updating the physical and voting address through the DMV, that was a wasted call.

 Taking matters into my own hands I researched my options.  I decided to go to the home state web page for the voting registration.  After finding a pdf file where I could type in my responses online then print, sign, stamp and send it out I did just that.  My husband came home on lunch today and I had him update his registration as well.

 Folks voting is very important, not just to the military but to every one that has that right to vote.  I'd rather know that the candidate that I voted for didn't get elected then to just complain about who is in office knowing that I didn't vote and could have changed who is in that office right now.

 According to what I read in order to vote absentee I must have my registration paper work in the mail 25 days before the voting.  I don't think its going to make it at all as I'm way past the 25 days.  But at least I can honestly say I tried.  My home state is the one that screwed me over but next time they'd better send me the ballot option.

 On a side note the friend problem still exists.  The soldier co-worker is now talking about getting out of the Army after getting married this time. I can only hope.  As for the EFMP paperwork to ACS, well they emailed me today stating that my spouse had to go in there and fill out some paperwork which would take about 15 minutes.  So why they gave me a whole new set of forms that a doctor had to fill out I have no idea, do you?  I can't figure out the military paper work system.  Finally the lawyers in NY I mentioned a few days ago...I have a phone conference with them on Thursday to see how my case is progressing.  Don't ever get hurt at work because Workers' Compensation will fight you tooth and nail for a single dollar including the medical.

 That's my update for today.  Off to go finish up the second load of laundry now and try to get in a shower.  Finally a day without drama.  YAY!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Emotionally Drained

After last night's episode of "he's not my friend" I'm totally drained.  I didn't sleep much before the alarm clock went off at 0522hrs.  We were up talking until 0104hrs about the problem.  I can only imagine just how tired my husband is today considering he had to do PT this am.

 I know that my husband's day has gotten worse due to a surly co-worker.  This particular co-worker has been giving him a hard time since he arrived at the unit almost two years ago.  What's ironic is that its a person of less rank than he when my husband got to this duty station.  They met at AIT where the soldier was in a different cycle from my husband. (Cycles are like college classes that start at different dates)    Now they are equal rank and this soldier is still being intolerable.  The soldier sleeps in the office, cries that about not  being treated fairly and likes to back stab.  I really wished that when they got re-deployed this soldier too would have been moved out of the section.  I mean this fsoldier used to message me on facebook and tell me about  hating my spouse and was going to make trouble for him when he got back stateside.  Mind you I kept those messages just in case this soldier does try to start trouble for him.  Well it seems as though me keeping those messages was a good thing, almost 20 pages of messages give or take a page.

 I just would like to know why someone doesn't straighten this soldier out.  Its not my job.  I want to stay out of it but like most wives in a committed relationship when someone tries to rip apart our husband's blossoming career with petty disputes we come out with fangs bared.  I'm going to have to bite my lip on this problem most likely.  I'm sure this soldier is going to play the medical card yet again to the fullest. Mind you this soldier has already turned in two other guys for cursing and teasing  when this soldier was the first to start cursing.  What happened to the rules applying across the board?  If this soldier was a civilian they would have been fired for sleeping on the job, or should I say sleeping around on the job?, and the above annoyance wouldn't be happening because this soldier would no longer be an employee.

 Sheesh folks this soldier is there to do a job just as much as the next soldier.  That job does not mean you bring your emotional baggage to work with you.  It means check it at the door. I'd like to tell the soldier this, "I don't want you taking your bad mood out on my spouse just because you broke up with your significant other and hate all of humanity.  Grow up  act like an adult and treat the others around you with the respect they are due.  They didn't break up with you!  If you didn't sleep at home its on you to work to stay awake so that you do your job not leaving others to pick up the slack."  But like I said I'm going to have to bite my lip on this one.  So I'm posting it here without names, unit numbers or locations. 

Okay I know it just bugs the heck out of me but I had three soldier friends that went through similar without sleeping at work and making work life a living hell for their co-workers.  So why can't the soldier just "suck it up"?   The US ARMY is after all mission first family last.  Soliders aren't issued families or emotions as they just get in the way.  The families are the silent ranks because if we put our noses where they didn't belong nothing would ever get done.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

He's Not My Friend

Okay hopefully this doesn't turn into a rant but I can feel one coming on.

 I'm sure there are many of you out there that will see both sides to this post tonight.

 My husband made a close friend while deployed.  I applauded this friendship as in a war zone everyone needs a close friend of whom to confide when the chips are down.  Now that they are both home where it is no longer a war zone I feel as though this friend shouldn't come first and me last.  Sure, sure I know I'm not really coming in last as he still comes home to me each night and never drunk however it seems as though when I'm settling in for some possible cuddle time that is when this friend decides to call and off the husband unit goes.  What am I chopped liver?

From the previous post, those that took time to read it will note I was thinking of some fun time tonight if the chance arose.  HAH!

After four loads of laundry with a bad back, gardening, and foraging for food for myself today I still managed to keep a smile on my face with the hopes of some alone time with the manflesh.  During the daylight hours my spouse decided to mow the lawn, we mow our own front, back and sides unlike a lot of post residents, and of course dig more holes.  Meanwhile the Honey Do List has grown and grown.  Oh its not big things on the list just small ones.  Please hose down the car floor mats of your coffee spills.  Please finish the shelving unit.  Please pick up after yourself and so on.  Hey I'm disabled and can't afford a maid.  I realize that he has a job away from home but I'm not the sit-on-my-butt, bon-bon eating, soap watching Army Wife that some soldiers think their wives are; I cook, clean, do laundry, accounting, and secretarial duties most week days.  Weekends I want a bit of fun time with my mate.

So last week this friend called and got totally insulted that my spouse didn't want to spend but two hours away from me because I was sick.  I have asthma and when I get a bad cough with lots of green mucus production it can mean I'll stop breathing.  I had already been taking my rescue inhaler for a day or so when I was too short of breath.  The friend cut my spouse off on the phone and hung up.  For the past week the guy has been in a snit and has even turned his back on my spouse.  Sheesh talk about IMS (irritable man syndrome) throw the guy a cow part already some one, please!

Tonight the friend calls.  So my husband left all worried about his friend, like the guy was suicidal or something which he wasn't, but the way the conversation was going one would have assumed he was from what I heard my spouse saying to him on the phone.  Turns out the friend just wanted to talk to my husband about why he was upset and wouldn't speak to him for a week.  This friend told my husband tonight that normal mucus is yellow or green and its only bad if its red.  WTF? Seriously?  I've been sick enough that my PA wanted to add another asthma medicine to my daily regime just this week!  So he was not talking to my spouse for a week just because my spouse decided it was best to stay home last week Friday to make sure I would continue to breathe on my own.

I have bent over backwards to make my husband's friend feel welcome in our home.  I've cooked for him.  I've had him stay over three nights.  We've taken him out to dinner.  Heck when the friend's dad was in town I even invited him over to dinner.  I made Sauerbraten that night, a dish that takes three days to prepare.

 I think that I've truly put in a lot of effort and I'm putting my foot down now.  He's not my friend.  He has no intention of trying to be friends with me obviously.  Its as though he looks at me as if I were something in the way of his friendship with my husband.  I do understand that the friend misses the daily chats, work outs, meals and movie time with my spouse that the last year has given him but my spouse is home now and married to me.  Get a life dude.  Better yet get a girlfriend and you'll find out that couple time is precious.

I'm at the end of my rant.  Thank you for reading.  Hope you'll find some humor in the above and a better understanding of what can upset an Army Wife.

Sunday Brings Changes

Every Sunday always brings with it new changes.  Just yesterday we were having fun acting like kids and today its four loads of laundry for me and mowing the lawn for him.  Today we have to be adults.  Can I have yesterday back?

 I haven't been sleeping well for the past few nights.  I'm not sure if its the fertility drugs or just the cold weather.  Turning the heat up isn't an option because its central heat which means it blows dry air around the house and causing my asthma  to flare up.  So instead I sit in the cold, damp air with the heat set to 62 F. 

 This morning I woke up at 0500 hrs with really bad back pain.  The L3-L4 and L4-L5 are the site of the bulging and herniated discs.  Due to the fertility drugs my body temperature has been running a bit higher than the  98.6 F so my husband's hands are like a soothing ice pack to a fresh injury.  Most mornings I can well tolerate the pain but this morning I was writhing in pain for almost six hours before finally saying to heck with it and getting up.  Downward Dog wouldn't fix this type of pain today got to love Fibromyalgia (sarcasm).   If you are unfamiliar with Fibromyalgia or would just like a bit more information on the topic go to that website.

Tomorrow I have to try to remember to call my lawyers in NY.  Tomorrow I need to get my butt to ACS for my EFMP renewal paperwork.  Tomorrow I...well I'll wait until tomorrow to see what tomorrow is going to have in store for me.  For today I'm just going to do my laundry and try to relax without thinking of the stuff that needs to be done tomorrow.  After all its still today and the government offices are closed on Sundays.

Maybe tonight I'll get one last chance for the weekend at being a kid with my spouse.

Date Night

Tonight was date night.  Once a week no matter where we are in the world or even if we are apart we try to take time to be with one another.  While he was deployed my husband would once a week call me for a date night.  After our phone call I'd go to the movies and he'd go get pizza.  Tonight we had pizza together and watched a movie at home.  To some this might seem rather dull but for us its all about getting to know one another again.

Being married doesn't mean we stop dating.  Being married means that we should still treat one another  like we are dating and always try to be our best around each other.  Not as easy as it seems especially with me on fertility drugs and the hormonal roller coaster that comes with them.  Its like having bad PMS without the onset of a new cycle.  I really feel bad for my husband with the cravings and crankiness.    But hey men get IMS (irritable man syndrome) so I guess he understands PMS. So for his IMS I can just throw a steak at him, letting him have at it like a guard dog with all the associated growling.  Its rib-eye steaks tomorrow night for dinner and I'm still thinking of getting him that dog bowl with his name on it that he's actually been wanting ever since I read him a passage from a novel I was reading.

That's all for today folks.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Serenity and no its not the Sci Fi tv show

 The Serenity Prayer

God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.
Living one day at a time;
Enjoying one moment at a time;
Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;
Taking, as He did, this sinful world
as it is, not as I would have it;
Trusting that He will make all things right
if I surrender to His Will;
That I may be reasonably happy in this life
and supremely happy with Him
Forever in the next.
--Reinhold Niebuhr
 The above prayer is the one my mother would often recite to herself when things just didn't go as she had planned.  I chuckle now seeing the actual words written out above and how they can apply quite well to the life of an Army wife.  I'm not the religious sort, more of the spiritual type leaning away from any organized religion.

The Army life brings with it many challenges.  Just yesterday I get a phone call from my husband, after 1700 hrs, stating that he wasn't sure what time he'd be home.  Our routine is forming.  Before he deployed to Iraq last year he was home all of six months and we had barely had time to form any routine.  Before Iraq he was in Korea for a year and before that he was in BCT and AIT which took up eight months.  I'm still adjusting to Army life with my spouse actually being home.  For the better part of three years I've been living alone, eating alone and in general going about my own daily routine without interruptions with the exception of doctor appointments.  Now I'm learning about sharing my time with a guy that has a very busy lifestyle.

Before Army life my spouse was an outdoorsy type of man.  He would teach snowboarding at a NY ski center.  I tried snowboarding once and had lots of fun falling.  No seriously I laughed when I'd fall and try to get back up.  During the warmer months he'd work as a journeyman landscaper.  He loves being in the outdoors.  So it should have come as no big shock to me that when he got home from Iraq he started digging holes in the yard.  Not just one hole to enlarge a garden but several holes.  He has now installed a drip edge and filled in the low spots in the lawn, front and back!

So as I roll up his laundry into the style he has become accustomed to since learning it in BCT I'll roll this up as well for today.  I'm learning to accept this new lifestyle and all that it brings to me with friends and new experiences. Tomorrow is a new days with its own challenges that I'll learn to accept as they come my way and hopefully not complain too much about but that is still to be seen.

To those of you that read my blog, many thanks!

Thursday, October 14, 2010


Since this is the very first posting to my blog I figured that I would introduce myself a bit for those that actually decide to read this blog, here goes nothing.

I'm an Army Wife.  Yup, that's right.  I've been an Army Wife now for just over three years and yes I'm counting.  No, I'm not counting the days until my husband leaves the Army (I'm married to a great guy that wants to make a career of this job) but I am counting the days so to speak with the experiences and friends I've made over the past three years,  five months and several days.  I won't give the exact dates or names in this blog as I need to remember the rules of PERSEC and OPSEC.  Yeah, okay, sure.  But truly its something as an Army Wife that I need to remember so that others are not put into harm's way.

I've been married for a touch over five years and most of that five years has been spent apart from my spouse.  Army life isn't easy by no means on any family member whether its the spouse sitting at home dreading that phone call that tells you your spouse has been injured or if you are the parent of a soldier hoping for some communication from your child letting you know they are alive and well.  But there are the joys of being part of the Army family too.

In this blog I will be hopefully telling my readers more about both ends of the Army life.  I will include even the mundane part as well as the exciting bits as most of the Army life is just the ordinary routine.

Before I get too sidetracked I'll give you bit more about me besides the obvious that I'm an Army Wife which means I'm a female.  lol duh!  I'm also approaching middle age fast, trying to start a family and coping with my disabilities as well as trying to maintain an air of normalcy.

I'm going to have typos and grammatical mistakes I just ask that you readers bear with me.  Hopefully you'll laugh with me, cheer me on and geez, I hope you don't cry but I can't promise a single thing as Army life has its ups and down.