Saturday, April 28, 2012

"It's a beautiful day"

I've been saying that a lot since I arrived at the hospital on Wednesday. Not because the weather's been especially nice over the past few days (it hasn't been for the most part) or because I've been enjoying the heck out of my time here (I really haven't) but mostly because I've needed to convince myself that every day can be beautiful, at least on some level. I find myself silently repeating the words "it's a beautiful day" in my head, similar to the "Goosfraba" scene from Anger Management.

Cheesy? Totally. But does it help? Sometimes.

The first few days here were a little rough, but things are definitely starting to look up. My fevers are gone and my energy level is on the rise. Morgan and Adam got to stay the night with me last night, I've had the chance to catch up with some good friends, and since it really was beautiful outside today, I was able to get some much needed fresh air and sunshine.

After walking around outside for about half an hour or so, I found myself riding the elevator back up to my floor with a strange man who stood way just a little too close for comfort. Especially when you consider the fact that we were the only two people in the elevator. The situation became even weirder when I took a small step away from him and he followed. I didn't actually see him take a step closer to me, but when I looked at him a few seconds later, I swear he was standing just as close as he had been before. Pretty strange.

That's something I've always been fascinated by - the elevator behavior of strangers. There are these unspoken social rules about elevator etiquette that most people know and abide by. But then there are those people who have either never been taught those rules or purposely disobey them simply to make the people around them uncomfortable. You know the people I mean... I'm sure you've ridden with their kind before.

Here is a list of things that, in my opinion, are pretty common knowledge when it comes to elevator etiquette:

1) When you see that someone has already pushed the button, DO NOT push it again. Doing so indicates that you believe the person ahead of you didn't do an adequate job of pushing it, or that you simply don't understand how the button works. Either way, you look a little ridiculous.

2) Allow other passengers as much space as possible. For example, if another passenger is riding in the front right corner, stand in the back left corner; if they stand against the left wall, stand near the right wall. Clearly this strategy becomes more difficult in more crowded elevator cars, but in any case, try to allow the other passengers as much personal space as possible.

3) Avoid standing directly in front of the buttons. If you must stand in front of them, offer to push buttons for the other people in the elevator. On the same note, never reach in front of someone to push the buttons. Instead, kindly ask someone to push yours for you.

4) If you enter the elevator with your significant other, limit the amount of touching to hand-holding. Do NOT carry on a public display of affection in front of other elevator passengers. Keep it classy. (Note: If you wish to engage in intimate recreation in an empty elevator... well, that's a totally personal decision. I don't judge.)

5) Singing, humming and loud music blaring through headphones are generally discouraged (especially when the music coming from your headphones frequently mentions "bitches" and/or "hoes"... seriously, that's not even music).

6) Allow passengers to exit before you board the elevator. The side-stepping, back and forth dance that ensues between two people when one tries to board the elevator too soon is never fun.

7) If someone is in a wheelchair, holding a baby carrier, etc. they immediately have the right of way. Just yesterday I saw two women shove their way past a man pushing his wife in a wheelchair, leaving no room in the elevator and forcing them to wait for the next car. Incredibly rude!

8) NO farting in the elevator. EVER.

I'm sure there are more, but those are the ones that come to mind. They're pretty simple really, and it's not as if you have to join an exclusive club to get the rule handbook, so I have a difficult time understanding why some people act as if they have never ridden an elevator before (or spent much time around other human beings, for that matter).

Earlier today when I found myself riding next to the man with no respect for personal boundaries, for a second I seriously considered saying something to him. But instead I simply took another small step in the opposite direction and silently reminded myself, "It's a beautiful day. It's a beautiful day."

Saturday, April 21, 2012

It's that time again

After feeling pretty run down for several weeks, today was the breaking point. I battled a fever and shortness of breath most of the day and once evening rolled around, I felt an all too familiar stabbing pain in my lower right lung. It's time to go the hospital again. And as much as I hate the thought of putting life on hold for a couple weeks, I'm ready to get feeling better. 

Last year was a really rough year for me health-wise. I was hospitalized five times within a 12 month period, and each hospitalization brought with it an incredible amount of stress, plenty of arguing between Adam and I (because, unfortunately, too much stress gives us both a pretty short fuse) and a great deal of uncertainty. Just a year later, though my last admission was only three months ago, we're handling the possibility of me being admitted again extremely well. There has been no arguing or stress involved, it simply is what it is and we are both fine with that (this time around, anyway). 

It's a strange thing, this new normal. Part of me resents the fact that this is something we've had to become okay with, but mostly I'm grateful that I have access to the care I need, that the people I work with are so understanding and want me to get feeling better (more about them later - seriously, I have the BEST coworkers!) and that I have a husband who loves me enough to let me leave him for a couple weeks every now and then. 

It's also great knowing that I'll return feeling like myself again, ready to take advantage of the great weather and plenty more evenings at home, doing absolutely nothing but enjoying the company of my loves.  

Unless there is some drastic change between now and then 
I won't actually be going in until Wednesday. I likely won't be 
updating again before then though, since I plan on spending most of 
the next few days cuddling with the adorable trio pictured above. 

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Every once in a while

Checking my email is a daunting task, one I look forward to about as much as I look forward to cleaning my oven. Who am I trying to kid? I don't clean my oven. Anyway, back to email -  I don't dislike it because I get an overwhelming amount that takes me hours to sort through or anything like that. It's because at least 8 out of 10 messages I receive are completely junk. There's rarely anything interesting or worth my time, so I usually open my inbox and briefly glance at each subject line as I'm hitting "delete".

Is Your Child Gifted? 
Of course she is, duh. 

Add Three Inches to Your Manhood NOW! 
I'm just fine with the size of my manhood, but thanks anyway. 

Are You Man Enough to Watch This? 
Darn it! If only I'd replied to that previous email. 

Superman in a Bottle 
I prefer genies in a bottle. 

Optics, Military Supplies and Turkey Hunting 
Ummmmm.... what? 

But every once in a while I come across something so awesome, so sweet and flattering that I read it over and over again. And then I share it on my blog. Like this: 

You don’t know me, but I after reading your blog for some time now, I feel like I know you. First, I want to be sure to tell you, I’m not a stalker... although right now, sending this email, I'm certainly feeling like one. I wanted to let you know that your blog is like a good book I can’t put down. I often find myself thinking about you, your trials and your positive attitude. Your optimism is inspiring. I'm impressed by your wisdom and your great sense of humor through everything. Most of all I wanted to write this email to say thank you. Thank you for putting yourself out there. Thank you for making me laugh. Thank you for reminding me to appreciate the little things. Thank you for your blog.  

Your not so secret admirer/stalker, 
*Name Withheld 

P.S. I hope I didn't creep you out too much.

I know what you're all thinking: I have the COOLEST stalker in the whole world, right? Thanks to my new friend for making me smile. Your sweet words made not only my night, but my whole week! For the record, I don't think that my trials are necessarily harder than anyone else's, we've all just been dealt a different hand in life. And, especially lately, my husband would emphatically tell you that I'm not always "positive" or "optimistic" (have I mentioned those #!%^#@! remodeling projects???). But I'm so glad to hear that you enjoy reading what I write. Thank you

Monday, April 9, 2012

A few reasons I haven't been blogging much lately

1. Have you seen the weather these past few days? If you could see my lobster-red shoulders, you'd realize that I've been spending every possible moment outside soaking up the sunshine. Who wants to be inside messing around on a computer when they could be outside having a picnic with the cutest two-and-a-half year old around?

2. Adam and I started a handful of DIY remodeling projects a few weeks ago. Long story short: knowing what I know now, if I had to choose between a) having bamboo chutes shoved underneath my fingernails while my eyes were being pecked out by a flock of small birds or b) remodeling a kitchen, I would seriously consider the first option.

3. This whole Great Strides thing has become pretty time consuming. I think about fundraising ideas all day long while I'm at work, but I have to wait until I get home before I can really work on things and by then I'm usually too tired or have too much to do around the house (see #2). It's very frustrating. I'm meeting with a lady about team T-shirts on Wednesday and I'll be stopping by small businesses in the community asking for donations over the next couple weeks. I'm still really excited to be doing this but to be honest, it's kind of exhausting.

4. Truth is, I haven't been feeling very well for a while now. I've been battling fevers, chest pain, shortness of breath and one hell of a cough off and on for about a month. I've been spending a lot of time exercising, resting whenever possible and trying to fit in a bunch of extra treatments. Even still, I have a clinic appointment later this month that may turn into a hospitalization if I can't kick this junk by then.

Life has been pretty busy (to say the least) but I hope to start blogging more frequently again in the near future. I've missed it lately. But until life slows down a little, here's a picture of little Gracie. Clearly I'm not the only one who's been loving the nice weather!