Choices

Life is all about the infinite and seemingly small choices we make every day.  I have been dealing with a ton of stress, a screwed up hip, and smack dab in the middle of it I had to get my Depo Provera shot.

So, I got it yesterday.  Today, I have a massive hormone/tension migraine that makes me want to cut my brain out.  It’s the worst I’ve had in a long time.  I took some migraine meds and thought Depo is going to be the death of me.

But that’s not true, the opposite is.  If I didn’t take depo (I have become immune to birth control pills and yes, that really does happen), there’s a chance I would end up pregnant and that would actually be the death of me… Possibly, literally.

My life isn’t just about not wanting kids, it’s about a stupid genetic problem in which, I don’t make any enzymes to process folic acid.  Folic acid is one of the building blocks of our bodies.  I take prenatals to keep my hair and fingernails growing and the pre-processed folic acid boost keeps my anxiety and some other issues under control.

I want to move.  I really do.  I hate the current trade-off of moving; not being able to do a lot of things that I want to do.  However, as the heat of the day has already started, I can tell you that it is only 15 degrees cooler in my house than outside.  Meaning it’s a little hot already, on the inside of my house.  This place needs so much work, it’d be cheaper to tear it down and start over.  The insulation sucks, some of the subfloors have collapsed from previous water damage, there’s a hole in the duct work, and the roof has a leak.

But I also worry about what moving means.  Not because I am comfortable here, but because it seems like every time I turn around, something new hurts and packing and carrying boxes seems like an interesting way to hurt myself.

I know why the injections in my back are helping my migraines.  That’s awesome!  I have no curvature in my neck, my pain management doctor believes that when he gives me steroids in my lower back, they help with the inflammation in the muscles, tendons, and ligaments of my neck which stay irritated because my natural head position is to look down.

But putting curvature in my neck is painful.  I know he isn’t, but it feels like my chiropractor stands on my neck three times a week.  And all the tension I currently carry around from having to do things like pack, preparing money, etc, for the move is not helping.

Sometimes, I wonder what life would be like if I had made a few different choices along the way.

PS:  for all you chronic migraine sufferers, Botox might be the answer or it might not be.  I have not had any injections since December and yet, my forehead is still mostly paralyzed and I can’t feel a thing in it… something to think about before doing it.

Hobbies

I’m still kinda wondering about this whole hobby thing…  I should point out, I lose interest in things pretty fast – especially if I master it or suck at it.  I’m also a bit color deficient.  I don’t see shades or hues of colors.  Two blues next to each other are going to look the exact same color.  As a result, I have a tendency to hate paintings done in pastels.

This tends to rule out coloring, painting, and things like that.  I can crochet, but it bothers my hands so I don’t find it relaxing anymore.

I can make beaded jewelry, but I can’t wear metal, so I have to either sell it or give it away to people.  Everyone that knows me fairly well has a substantial amount of jewelry I’ve beaded over the years.  I enjoy it, but I think if I continue to hand it out as gifts, my friends and family may cut my hands off.

I’m a fairly voracious reader, but I read really fast and now that I write all the time, I find it less enjoyable.  I keep finding plot holes (Spoiler alert for Fate of the Furious:  No way Hobbs worked with Alana that closely for years didn’t know or notice!) and things like that.

They say if you love your job, you’ll never work a day in your life.  It’s a beautiful saying, but it doesn’t hold water in the real world.  Sometimes, it is a lot of work.  My mood impacts it, this move is impacting it significantly, I just feel paralyzed sometimes when I open the computer.  It isn’t writer’s block, I have tons of notes and ideas written down, it’s more like word block.  I know what I want to do, but finding the words for it has been a struggle.

I am learning about a new phenomenon which is sort of interesting, I do like to learn.  It’s called the Mandela Effect.  And I must admit that I seem to suffer some of the mass delusions as others.  I remember being quite shocked to learn that Nelson Mandela was being released from prison, because I distinctly remember him being murdered in prison in the 1980s.  I also remember Billy Graham’s televised funeral, which is weird, since he is still very much alive.

Ah well, off to work…

D. Joseph Meyer, MD, PhD and a Different Kind of Doctor

For the pain in my legs and now, my hip, I get injections into the joints (spine and pelvis for my legs and the hip for my hip).  I see Dr. Joseph Meyer with Interventional Pain Management in Columbia Missouri.

When I started seeing him a year ago, I had lost hope that my leg pain would be fixed… ever.  I also had no clue what to expect.  I had never visited a pain management clinic because I had never needed to manage pain long term.

When my primary care doctor set up the appointment, he actually told me, he made it with Dr. Meyer because he thought we’d get along.  I can be a difficult patient and weird shit happens to me because I am just naturally clumsy.

It turns out, my primary care doctor was absolutely correct.  I cannot say enough good things about Dr. Meyer.  Today, I went in for a follow up to my injections in April (yep, it’s been a while) and he decided to check out my hip that the ER told me didn’t hurt.

Turns out it really does.  Dr. Meyer worked me in for steroids and numbing stuff injected into my hip.  Tonight, I am mostly pain free.  I still get a twinge when I stand for a long time, but it doesn’t just ache all the time like it did.

For the record, injections into the spine and turns out the hip, are really painful.  I want to scream and cuss when they do them.  The medication burns like liquid fire.  Also, there is a pressure-induced pain where it just feels like your skin and muscles are going to rupture from them pushing the medication in.  In the hours that follow, I have to keep a log of my pain and when my legs stop hurting, but the truth is, all I can think about is how much the injection sites hurt.  Movement makes me feel like the injection sites are ripping open.  I’m just miserable on those days.

I keep doing it because that day or two of pain is soooooo much better than the crushing sensation I get in my legs.  And it has surprisingly really really helped my migraines.  I might have three or four a month now (except right now when I’mm so stressed out that moving my head seems to make it hurt).  So much better than Botox.

Anyway, I  was lying on my left side, with my right butt checked exposed to nurses, nurse practitioners, and the doctor, and I was waiting for the pain that I knew was going to come.  And when it did, I wanted to scream.  I had a moment when I wondered if the pain in my hip was really as bad as the pain from the injections.

As the meds were going in, Dr. Meyer was telling me how he wanted to be a serial killer in one of my books and how he wanted to kill people.  It made me smile despite the pain.  Which is why I manage to make it through the injections without screaming, each and every time.  Dr. Meyer helps keep me focused on other things, things that make me smile and take my mind away from the pain.

And it didn’t just start in the procedure room.  He was using “air quotes” when we talked about my “hip pain” that the ER said I didn’t have.  He was making jokes while forcing my hip to move in ways that it absolutely did not want to move.

He’s thorough, but he seems to remember that sometimes, a smile and a giggle is some of the best medicine.  And he did this with a full schedule when really, I wasn’t supposed to see him today, just discuss with the nurse about my last injections and then she said she wanted to talk about my hip pain…  Sure, because it is killing me.  He just fit me in and got it sorted out to treat me today for something the ER told me I was imagining.  I do have sciatica, but there is indeed pain in the joint that is not going to respond to Tylenol no matter how large the dosage.  Hence why he put anesthesia and steroids into it today.

So, if you live in Mid-Missouri and need a good pain management doctor, I highly recommend Dr. Meyer with Columbia Interventional Pain Management.  He can keep you smiling regardless of how much it hurts and sometimes, that is the only thing that keeps a person from screaming.

Remembering To Breathe

Buying a house and moving has got me so stressed out there are times I actually have to remind myself to breathe.  I know, that sounds strange, but I have an anxiety disorder and even medicated, I do not handle stress well.  Any changes to my everyday can put me in a serious tailspin, even if they are good changes.

I’m entering week two of having indigestion all the time.  I’m living on Zantac and still suffering from stomach upset all the time.  I get a serious tension headache every night.  I’m not sleeping through the night.  I wake up at every sound despite taking my clonazepam and my Flexeril… Speaking of which, despite the flexeril (a muscle relaxer I take for teeth grinding), I keep breaking my teeth even wearing a night guard.  And I wake up feeling like I have been beaten up in my sleep every night.

I have 9 new or worse chipped teeth than I had two weeks ago.  My jaws hurt from the grinding.  It feels like I have lockjaw in the mornings and my jaw pops when I open my mouth for the first time.

I’m having trouble concentrating.  By the time I get to sit down and write, the tension headache has begun throbbing.

I’ve even taken to chewing my lower lip and it is starting to get sore.  In some ways, I feel like I am losing it.  I have ideas for Demonic Dreams but I can’t seem to concentrate long enough to get them down.  I’ve gotten to the point that I am making notes on my phone all the time so I remember them later.

I will be so glad when it is over.  Maybe then I won’t have to remind myself to breathe.

Big Thanks!

Despite a family problem (hope your dad is fully recovered soon, Angela!), Covered Creatively got me the first round of drafts for the Demonic Dreams cover and I picked one to be finalized based on everyone’s feedback (there were 2 I loved).

magician levitating inside a Gothic cathedral

Gabriel

I have a soft spot for certain names.  Gabriel is at the top of the list.  It just rolls off the tongue like a musical note, so beautiful and melodic.  Which is probably why I named Gabriel, Gabriel… of course, in the D&R world, names are about more than their beauty.

To some degree, Gabriel is Aislinn’s guardian angel, it’s a big part of the reason his name is Gabriel.  The angel always seems to get a bad rap in movies (Prophecy, Legion – Gabriel was the douche in both of them).

As I write Demonic Dreams, I know there is one burning question in everyone’s mind.  I know because I keep getting private messages about it.

At the end of Flawless Dreams, is Gabriel dead?

*****SPOILER ALERT***  Scroll down only if you really want to know Gabriel’s fate before the release of Demonic Dreams…

 

Flawless Dreams by Hadena James

 

 

Gabriel is not dead at the end of Flawless Dreams or the beginning of Demonic Dreams.

Lola, Packing, and Pain

Lola is freaking out about all the packing going on around her.  I don’t know if it is general anxiety or if she is afraid she has to go to a new family – the only other time she has seen people pack, she came to live with us and she remembers where she used to live.  I don’t know how to reassure her that she comes too and I feel really bad about it.

For the next month, I have to figure out how to keep Lola from looking like we shot her best friend.  When we start packing a box, she lays down on the couch and just hangs her head looking sad.  The first night, when I took her out to go pee, she hung her head and walked towards the car like she was ready to take her final ride with me.  It made me almost cry.

Night after night, she just sits lethargic on the couch with her head on my mom’s lap and watches us do stuff.  After we stop for the night, she curls up next to me and falls asleep on my lap.  I really do feel bad, bad enough that I don’t want to pack.  I’ve thought about trying to bring in a box into the living room and put some of my stuff in it with some of her stuff, so she’ll realize her toys are going in a box with my stuff.  But I’m not sure that will help.

We have some friends/family helping us move.  Cheapest labor ever, I’m paying them in food.  However, we helped build their house and they paid us in food, so it seems fair.

So… my hip.  I have scoliosis.  To be exact, sway back (you’d think I would have a butt as a result, but I don’t).  I do exercises almost daily to keep the muscles strong, but… the very tail end of my spine has now started to curve to the right as well.  Meaning it curves inwards and to the right.  This has put a lot of pressure on my pelvis and shoved my femur really tightly into the hip socket.  As a result, I have pinched some nerves and it is just one of those things that hurts anyway according to the chiropractor.

He is going to work on fixing it, but it isn’t going to happen with just a few visits.  We have months of plans, a little longer due to the fluke in my neck that they have tried to fix before without success and is probably the cause of the majority of my migraines.  The popping and grinding I’m occasionally feeling is actually my femur rubbing the inside of the socket – fun stuff!

My neck has no curvature in it where it goes from my shoulders to my skull.  Kinda odd, but I was told that in my early teens when I had a sports physical (I did not have scoliosis at that time).  In my early twenties, I saw a chiropractor for several years who attempted to make the spine in my neck curve without any success.  So I’ll cross my fingers, but I won’t hold my breath that this one will manage.  For the record, my father’s neck also doesn’t have any natural curvature and we both have giant ridges on our skulls where our spine enters it as a result.

 

 

Still Going On About It

Recently, someone my husband and I know pointed out we’d been married almost six months and I wasn’t getting any younger, so we needed to hurry up with the baby making. When I expressed my horror at the idea, they told me it would be different if it was my own.

No, it probably wouldn’t.  I can deal with Lola’s vomit, but I don’t clean up her poop and if Jude poops, I try to sneak out of the room before the diaper gets changed.  And it’s not just bodily functions… I was sitting at the chiropractor’s office today when a family came out (mom, dad, 2 young girls) and one of the girls was whining about having to walk the 15 steps out to the car in the heat.  So her mother was trying to get her to hop or skip…

In the minute it took them to leave, I felt myself getting irritated with both the mother and the little girl.  I don’t know what the solution was, but the little girl’s excessively whiny voice was like dagger’s to my central nervous system.  My eye started to twitch, I had to fight a sneer and I think I failed, and yeah.  I don’t actually like children all that much.

I love Jude, but when he is fussy, I want nothing more than to leave.  Why risk having my own children and it not being different?  I would make a terrible parent.  I’m good for like an hour at a time, as long as they aren’t whining, fussing, or being irritating.

Thankfully, my husband chimed up that he didn’t want children either.  Discussion closed.  It reminded me that when a man says he doesn’t want children, no one thinks anything about it, but when a woman does, it’s a huge problem for everyone.

History for the Non-Historian

When I was getting my history degree, I took several classes in Medieval Europe.  My history professor was a fantastic lady who was a load of fun.  One of the books she recommended we read was called The Measly Middle Ages by Terry Dreary and Martin Brown.

It’s not your normal cut and dry history book.  It takes a humorous look at the middle ages.  It was the first time I realized just how PG history classes and most history books really are.

The Measly Middle Ages is actually a series of books that I fell in love with called Horrible Histories.  Eventually, I read the entire series.  Now, I will say that I had multiple professors complain about the books as being inaccurate and silly, but I think it was the less than serious nature of them that raised their ire.  In my research, I found them to be fairly well researched.

I refer to them as history for the non-historian.  I might be able to sit down and read a very long book about the middle ages without any problems, but that’s because I love history.  For most people, I highly recommend these books.

They are some times gross, some times crude, but hysterical and give an interesting glimpse into different periods of history.  For those that don’t read, I have recently discovered that the BBC did an entire TV show on them and it’s available with Hulu Plus (I am loving the series, but it jumps around from era to era throughout the episodes and I prefer to get it all at once).  Meaning I would rather read all of the book The Measly Middle Ages than watch a TV episode with 4 minutes dedicated to the subject.

One thing about packing my books this weekend, I have found lots of books I forgot I had like The Measly Middle Ages and The Rise and Fall of Practically Everybody (Another history book for the non-historian).  When I get my office set up, I’m looking forward to organizing my books by subject.  I know that sounds lame, but I own a lot of non-fiction books and I will finally be able to organize them properly!

Internet Breeds Familiarity

I know a writer who currently set up a GoFundMe set up to pay for a vacation.  I find this weird since they shared it on their Facebook Author page.  I found it even weirder when I told them I couldn’t donate because I was in spending jail until after we close on the house and they told me to go set up a GoFundMe for it.  Um, no.  I ask my readers to buy my books, I am not going to put out my hand and beg for donations to give me spending money.

As appalled as I am by this particular author’s audacity, I sorta get where they are coming from.  The internet breeds familiarity with readers that authors have never had before.  There are several readers that I exchange messages with fairly often and I feel I know them.

I have had readers contact me with some pretty strange requests as well.  For example, one reader asked me if I would be willing to donate my eggs to them because they didn’t want to see my genes go to waste.  I politely declined.  I’ve also been asked for locks of my hair, my used Jamberry wraps, and been proposed to.  Furthermore, readers send me links to GoFundMe pages for different things.  I’ve also been asked to do blog posts to bring awareness to certain things or to use my author page as a platform for a cause.

I did get one very creative charity request; they wanted me to donate $5 for each fictional character killed in the D&R series.  This was after the release of Fortified Dreams and their figure was 117 people had been killed throughout the 11 books.  I don’t know if this is accurate, I don’t keep a running tab of the number of people I kill, but I did kill several in Fortified Dreams, so it’s possible.

Anyway, I digress.  There was a point to this post and I seem to have forgotten… Oh, yes, the thing about social messenger and the internet in general is that communication between readers and writers (and anyone else for that matter) has been reduced to just a click or two.  This makes it easy for strange requests to go back and forth between.

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