Exact Approximations

Monday, August 27, 2007

You can find anything in clouds.

We've been having pretty sunsets. Amazing, colorful, pollution-induced beauty. Night before last, the clouds were low - they were rainclouds - so they were darker than usual. They were floating through the sky in patches, and, although you couldn't see the moon directly, it was lighting up the clouds below and it made for some awesome sky-watching.

I saw this particular cloud formation that hypnotized me. Glowing so brightly. There was a question mark. A perfect question mark. Just off to the right, there was a girl. I knew she was a girl because she had really long hair. So, o.k., girl or 1980's hair band guy. I'm going with girl.

She wasn't stationary; she was moving. There was also what looked like a slight reflection of her image in the clouds beneath her. She was moving somehow, but I couldn't exactly tell where. She was either falling hard or running fast.

Wish I knew which.


Friday, August 24, 2007

Lamest Diet in the Land.

Upon the advice of my grandmother (GRM), Loony Tunes Aunt and affiliated friends of the aforementioned - I have gone on a "gluten-free" diet. Doesn't that totally sound like something for obese elderly people? Anyhow, this consists of switching to soy and rice milk, and other milk-products have been replaced with soy alternatives. Plus I bought lame special cereal that tastes kinda mushy. I guess it's not that bad. And I actually really like soy and rice milk.

Biggest problem with this diet is that it is in conjunction with my 20-years of vegetarianism. I'm basically left eating soy, fruits and vegetables. Everyone says I should start eating some meat again. GRM told me to get over myself.

Here's the thing - I have no problem with the whole "killing animals for human needs" thing. I rock leather Maddens all the time, we beat the cows (and hence the right to eat them), and if there were a medication that would potentially cure my disease - I would hold the monkey down and drip shit in his eye myself. Of course, when I embarked on vegetarianism when I was 8, it was for all those idealistic reasons. But I evolved from that. Nowadays, I don't eat the meat cause it grosses me out. It's like the people on Fear Factor eating the bugs - they can't do it because it's so nasty to them. That's how I feel about all meat. Hate the texture, the look... ucko for days.

So, what to do, what to do. I've been doing the gluten free + vegetarian for about a week with no improvement. I've felt worse in the past few days than I have in weeks. But that could just be a down period. I have those. Good days and bad. So, even though I've been following the diet when I eat, I haven't really been able to eat much (of anything). I'm pretty much convinced this new diet won't work, but I'll catch hell from my grandmother if I don't try it. I think I need the surgery, "skinning" the inner lining of my abdominal wall and cutting off some nerves, to really help. I've been researching the procedure and it does sound like a better option than the hysterectomy (which, I'm told, only gives me a 50% shot at seeing any improvement.) The new operation has a better success rate, although it is a scarier and more complicated procedure.

*sigh* This is all taking SOOOooooo... long. I have an appointment with the new surgeon next week.

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Monday, August 13, 2007

Advice on Advice

I saw a Legal Recruiter today. Nice enough girl. I wore my standard interview skirt-suit. Recruiter Lady gave me some "tips" for my upcoming Thursday interview:

1) Earrings: No danglies. I was wearing light blue earrings that matched my suit and they hang about 1/2 inch from my ears. She told me to get studs, if I insist on wearing earrings.

2) Hair: I wore my hair down today, after putting it in rollers and getting some pimp wavy glory. She told me to wear it back in a tight, not loose, bun.

3) Suit: The suit I wore today is black, with small, barely noticeable, light blue pinstripes. Underneath the coat, I wore a light blue shell. She told me to wear an all black suit, with a simple white blouse underneath. Also told me to wear nylons, which I already knew. I simply was not about to wear them in 110 degree weather just to meet Recruiter Lady. She was lucky I even wore a suit. I seriously considered nice slacks with a blouse, sans coat.

4) Standard jewelry: Most disturbing tip received. Recruiter lady told me not to wear my engagement ring to interviews. "You can wear it after you get the job", she said in a transparent attempt to encourage my discomfort at this piece of advice. WTF: why would a potential candidate be faulted for being in a serious relationship?

I see the value of the nylons, that one's a given. I kinda see the value of the bun... the earrings threw me. Most of all, the whole "don't wear your engagement ring" thing threw me to a land far, far away.

What does anyone think about this? If you have tips on interview appearance, please, God please, someone share of your wisdom. Because after talking to Recruiter Lady, I am so totally lost.

~~ Freak Out ~~

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Surgery Cancelled...

... for a few weeks, at least =(

I was supposed to go under the knife tomorrow for a hysterectomy, due to ongoing illness that has lasted about two and a half years. My surgeon called me this morning, telling me about a conversation he had this weekend with a pelvic surgical specialist. Both doctors reviewed the operative reports from my last two surgeries, and determined that I need a different type of surgery. Rather than a hysterectomy, they want to do a pre-sacral neurectomy and a peritoneal resection ("skinning"). Basically, they are going to go in and "scrape out" the lining of my abdomen. This is the place where the scar tissue was found during my previous surgeries. And, apparently, the hysterectomy was only going to give me a 50% chance of full recovery - this procedure is supposed to have a higher success rate.

So, it's not all bad news. I'm a bit disappointed that I have to wait longer (my old surgeon, now my referring surgeon, told me 2 - 3 weeks. But I'm guessing it will take longer - since I need to go to Pre-Ops, an initial consultation with the surgeon, and get insurance approval since this is a different kind of surgery.) I also feel bad because Momma, Sister & Niece all came out to help me, and now it might be harder for them to come back when I actually have surgery.

On the plus side, this newer type of procedure will have a better chance of curing me, and will allow me to retain fertility for about a decade (after this surgery, I will still probably need the hysterectomy in about 10 years).

Sensing my agitation, my referring surgeon tried to reassure me. I told him that I would try to focus on the long-term. While I am very frustrated, I realize that my frustrations are short term concerns - I want to get surgery, whichever kind it is, out of the way A.S.A.P., get off these flippin medications, and get back to work (if I have to stay home much longer, I am going to go insane). However, I also realize that if this newer surgery is the better option, it's going to be better in the long run. So, I'm trying to focus on the long-term, but it's kinda hard when you're struggling to get through, day by day.

I realize this is not nearly as interesting as my more recent posts, but a lot of friends and family keep up with me here, and this is the quickest way to get the word out.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Honest asshole.

Speaking of immigration, I was talking to a friend recently about American policies on work permits. Basically, my take is that anyone who wants to come here and try to work should be allowed to. Sign the papers, register with a picture, pay your taxes and come take your chance. Isn't that what America is supposed to be all about?
Friend: "Yeah, I agree. My main concern with illegal immigration is terrorism issues."

Lex: "That one is easy: if you have a turban on your head, you're getting the shit searched out of you."

Friend: Laughing. "Oh my God Lex, that's so un-P.C.!"

Lex: "I don't give a flying. I mean, sure, it sucks, but how many of the terrorists were Muslim?"

Friend: "Well, what about the extreme? Like kicking all Muslims out of your country? Isn't that what China did?"

Lex: Crap, is it? I should know this... "Yeah, that's a bit extreme, but giving up a bit of extra time at an airport or border isn't that much of a sacrifice, and searching all the Middle Eastern people just seems like good resource allocation. Randomly search everyone else and mandatorily search all terrorist look-a-likes. Sensible racial profiling. Like I said, they were all Muslim."

Friend: "What about the Australian terrorist?"

Lex: Never heard of the Australian terrorist. Feeling a bit dumb, but prepared to play it off. "Yeah, that guy and the American Taliban from Marin County. So, o.k., I'll evolve my thoughts here. You get mandatorily searched if you're 1) Muslim, 2)Australian, or 3) from Marin County. There's the answer."

Lex & Friend: Giggle.

I don't care if I sound racist, or insensitive, whatever. If you've got a burka, speak "fla-la-la-la-la", or carry a Koran, take one for the team and quit bitching. Black people had to deal for 200 years, and still do. No pity.


Wednesday, August 08, 2007

The What-If Game

Sadie posted an interesting bit about an ethical dilemna regarding immigration issues. I'm interested what other people think. So, if I have any readers, take a gander and leave your thoughts on the matter.

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Stupid girl.

I've noticed that my brain is not working the way it should. I bet if I took an IQ test, I would score somewhere along the "Socially Retarded" line. I'm guessing I've dropped at least 45 points.

I was talking to CECU last night (yes, I answered the phone), and noticed that in the middle of conversation, I would forget the topic, let alone the many ways in which I disagreed with him. Don't get me wrong, CECU is too smart for his own good - I just like to take the other side of whatever he is arguing and be contrary. I blame this on law school. I was never an argumentative pride-fest before. Family members might disagree, but I stand by this assertion. Anyhow, I know things are bad when I can't even win a silly argument with CECU over the meaning of "delusional"...

So I wonder, why am I all dee-dee-dee? Is it the duffle bags of medication? Side effect of illness? Repercussions of a mind not challenged? (spell check informed me that I spelled repurcussions wrong. Grumble. I changed it. Spell check also says duffle is spelled wrong, but I don't think so, so I'm leaving it as is.)

It's really bugging me. If I were smarter, I would say it's really bothering me.



Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Beauty of the Law.

Having a history in employment law, this just made me crack up.
Hat Tip: Loony Tunes Aunt. I was gonna post the chicken-shit one, but that hits too close to home.


Monday, August 06, 2007

If only I would wake.

I feel awful. I've felt awful for so long now. Part of me wants this over. Not going to do anything about it, but I keep wishing it. The idea of death seems sweet when you don't feel alive. But I don't have to make this mistake.

When I think of my father, almost all I remember is a sick man. I am so afraid that is what Daughter will have. Memories of a mother sick. In bed. Crying. I would rather be gone and have her remember a short time of happiness than to only remember me sick. Her voice is all I hear somehow.

Today the hospital called and said that my surgery has finally been authorized. Still not sure when it is, but I'm guessing early next week. Third surgery; they're gonna gut me. Uterus, gallbladder, appendix. Everything I don't technically "need." I hope this works. So badly I hope this works. I need this to work just to get by. And I don't have to stay this way.

I wanted more children. I always thought I might have a son. And another daughter... Three or four kids, that was what I wanted. I really knew that was what I wanted when I found out it would never be. What I do have is
Daughter and Step-Son. Amazing Step-Son, that I hardly see and whose life I have no control over the course of. Daughter is perfect. So perfect that I don't think I deserve her sometimes. My mother has four kids. Seems like a good number. My theory is that about 1/2 of your kids are gonna be different than you expected, or even hoped for. That ratio goes to me and my brother. My other brother and sister are the golden children. With all my eggs in one basket, I fear I'll pressure Daughter too much to be everything that I need, rather than who she wants to become. I could have lost myself in rough blue waters in her eyes.

Feeling philosophical lately. Thinking of all the possibilities. And the what-ifs. The maybes. I am in love with the maybes. A friend told me recently that anything is possible. I don't know if I believe that. Maybe things are only possible if you chase the possibility, catch it, cradle it, and make it yours. Maybe. But then what happens when things are out of your control? I don't know. I don't know what I believe anymore. I should know who I am by now.

I'll try to make it happen. While I wait.

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Friday, August 03, 2007

"To a man born without a conscience, a soul-stricken man must seem ridiculous."

I hope that's true. I want it to be, so I'll go with. For now.

Today is the day I moved away from Crapsville to begin classes at Berkeley in 1999. Eight years. In some ways it feels like I've come full circle, moving back to another desert and being back in a difficult situation. Hm.

Waiting for a surgery, I've been reading a lot of Steinbeck lately. I'm halfway through The Red Pony and the book makes me a bit sad. First I lost Gabilan and then Galvino rode off into the mountains...

Junius Maltby is amazing. My brother told me to read this short story years ago, and I only just got to it. It is also sad to me how people's ideas on life can be damaged by society.

I'm halfway through The Wayward Bus. Not so into it...

East of Eden might be my most favorite book ever. If I could have more children and had a little girl, I think I'd like to name her Abra.

If I had a library card or ten bucks to spare, I'd pick up a copy of Grapes of Wrath. Never read it.