Kimberly (kimberly_a) wrote,

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Dictating another journal entry. It's kind of fun.

My next surgery is only about a day and a half away, which is very exciting. Things have been kind of inconvenient and disconcerting in the interim, so it will be nice to have things out of this in-between place so I can start figuring out how it's all going to shake out moving into the future.

In the meantime, my depth perception sucks big time. Using scissors, hanging up laundry, maneuvering through a room crowded with furniture ... walking around tight corners ... it's all quite a challenge right now. I'm taking the bus everywhere instead of walking, because I've had several frightening—though thankfully not damaging—encounters with curbs in the past few days. I can't wait to have two good eyes!

Speaking of which, I bought two more pairs of reading glasses today, because I saw that they were very cheap at Walgreens—only $3.99—and I can't explain what a huge relief it is to not have to worry about where the reading glasses are. Seriously. It was causing me a ridiculous amount of stress these past few days, and in just the few hours since I bought the two new pairs, my stress level has gone down tremendously.

The reason we had been hesitant to buy me more than one pair right off the bat, even though we saw that it was causing me lots of immediate problems, was because the doctor told me that my vision is likely to fluctuate over the course of the next week or two, and so the glasses that I get right now might not actually be the prescription that will work best for me in the long run. However even if these reading glasses only work for me for the next week, it's worth $8 to me to be able to just walk around the house without constantly worrying where the glasses are & constantly encountering the frustration of not having them close at hand.

I am keeping one pair upstairs, right next to my computer in my office upstairs, and another pair downstairs, on the coffee table where I tend to watch TV. The third pair is in my backpack, so that I will always have a pair handy when I'm out ... to read price tags on reading glasses at Walgreens, for example.

In the past few hours, I have walked happily around the house, care-free as a little bunny in a meadow, and I have read my email without having to go up or down the stairs to look for glasses ... I have prepared my frozen dinner without having to roam the house in search of glasses ... I have done dozens of things that—a few days or hours ago—would have really stressed me out, and now they cause me no stress at all.

SIGH! What a relief!

Sure, it's kind of like extravagantly renting glasses, since I'm paying money for a product I may never use again after a short period, but it is TOTALLY worth $8 to me to lift that constant fog of reading-glasses-related stress off my shoulders. And you never know ... they may end up being a prescription that works long term. Even if they don't, though, it's WAY worth it to me.

(Yes, I know I sound ridiculously defensive about the "necessity" of spending $8 on these possibly temporary glasses—What is "necessary," after all? Is relief of stress necessary? Is comfort necessary? Is happiness necessary?—but I'd rather not get into it.)

In other eye-related news, I decided that I really liked having Shannon with me in the recovery room after the first surgery, so I asked Julia—who had originally agreed just to provide a ride home on Wednesday—if she would be willing to come early to pick me up at the second surgery so that she can come into the recovery room and be with me while I'm at my most vulnerable. Don't laugh, but I was actually too embarrassed to ask her at CWC today in person—It seems so silly! I'm a grown woman!—but I asked her in email this evening ... but, I must admit, only after Shannon prodded me about it.

She agreed to come early and hold my hand (metaphorically) during my recovery from the anesthetic, and I actually got a little bit teary when I read her email because she also asked me to let her know if there was anything else she could do ... and I just felt like I'm really lucky to have such good friends. This whole surgery thing has really made that even more obvious to me than I'm usually aware. And I'm usually pretty darn aware of it.

I have truly great friends (including an amazing husband, who is also my friend). This means a lot to me, because it hasn't always been true in my life, and in fact had never been true before I moved to the Bay Area 25 (or so) years ago. So I am very conscious of how extremely lucky I am. I haven't always been this lucky, so I'm in a position to be very aware of it.

If this journal entry seems disjointed, it's because I'm dictating it again & that still feels very awkward. The Dictation program doesn't seem to like contractions, and it starts the next word with a capital letter every time I pause too long before continuing my sentence. Also, I use a lot more commas when I'm dictating & a lot choppier sentences & more fragments. It's interesting to see one's spoken language written down exactly as it's spoken.

But just in general, I have always felt that I expressed myself more effectively and more comfortably in writing then in spoken words, and so this is very discombobulating for me and I will probably spend a lot of time editing in order to feel like I'm expressing myself well. Funny how one would expect the immediacy of spoken language to better reflect what's really going on in the mind, but it doesn't. At least, not for me. My brain is much more eloquent than my lips, and writing helps with that.

Due to my recent health insurance changes, I am down to therapy only once a week now—after some months of twice a week—and it feels really strange. I feel like we aren't able to really get deep into stuff and spend too much time catching up on the "Here's what's been going on since I last saw you" kind of stuff. I need to figure out how to just skip that stuff and get to the meaty issues instead, if I want to keep getting at the meaty issues ... and I do. I'm sure I'll figure it out & get used to it.

As for art, there is a new person at CWC who is also doing collage with text as a visual element. As far as I can tell, she doesn't seem to be influenced by my work ... she seems to just be using the text organically in her own stuff. I'm embarrassed to admit that I feel a little put-out, like I am not so special anymore, like the art I'm making is "common." (I don't mean "common" in a class way, though ... just in an "I'm such a special snowflake! ... Oh wait. No. I'm just a common, everyday snowflake" kind of way.)

Like I said, embarrassing.

As for TV, Shannon I have been watching the BBC's "Orphan Black" recently, and it is amazing, just absolutely amazing. TV by the BBC is often just tremendously more interesting and complex then most American TV—except some of the stuff being done by HBO—but this show is that in spades. The plotting and directing and acting and writing ... all of it is just phenomenal. If it weren't for Shannon wanting to mete it out one episode a day, I probably wouldn't be able to hold myself back from watching the entire season over the course of a few days. Of course, only the first season is available on DVD & the second season is currently airing in Britain, but I would watch all of the episodes I could ... as quickly as I could. I can't wait to find out what's going to happen in the next episode … and I feel that way after every single episode.

And in the personal grooming department, I'd forgotten why I don't like to keep my hair short: it's because it grows so frickin' fast! When I got it cut into this current style (see icon), I found it very attractive and convenient ... and now—less than 3 weeks later—it is already long enough to constantly get my face and annoy the heck out of me. I've decided to grow it back out as soon as possible ... once I'm headache-free enough to keep it pulled back. (I've been using a clip occasionally for brief periods when I get so annoyed that I can't stand it, but I don't like to risk the headache that always seems to threaten when I do so.)

I'm waiting until after the surgeries are both done, to see if they get rid of the headaches once I have binocular vision again & get used to using reading glasses & everything starts settling down, but if I'm still not able to wear hairclips or headbands a couple weeks from now, I'll probably get it trimmed back into this style and continue to work with minor allergist (Ha! That's Apple's Dictation interpretation of "my neurologist"!) on getting my brain into a place where I can let my hair down, as they say.

Speaking of my brain, I've only taken 1 1/2 Tylenol #4 tablets so far today, which is again an improvement. And that isn't because I've been stoic and suffering ... it's because I haven't had constant headaches. Hurrah! But I've got a bit of one right now, so I think it's time to go take another half tablet & make for a nice round day's dosage of 2 Tylenol #4's.

And it's also time to start winding down for bed. It's a long and winding road that leads to my sleep.
Tags: art, asking for stuff, assertiveness, bay area, central nervous system, collage, depth perception, dictation, friends, glasses, hair, headaches, julia, meds-codeine, meds-tylenol, money, self-esteem, self-image, shannon, sleep, stress, surgery, therapy, tv, vision, vulnerability, writing

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