2022/05/18

Fifty-Six

Da Goddess @ 00:01

I am in utter disbelief that I’m now 56 years old.

There are days when it seems nigh impossible for that to be accurate. It was only yesterday when I was sliding down into the canyon (now just more houses, natch) to go make a fort with Michelle, Kecia, and/or Laurie.

We had the perfect place for our fort: on the bank of a hill, behind a huge bush/tree. Scrub bushes grew big in the canyon. This one had branches that gracefully arched overhead. Any that didn’t were summarily removed. Big boxes were broken down, used to slide down the hill a few hundred times before becoming the base of the fort. If we could manage to sneak a blanket out of the house, it would most definitely find itself an integral part of our refuge. Pads of paper, pencils, pens, crayons, and various cast off toys enjoyed a cushy life at the hideaway, too.

We never needed to phone one another to set a meeting time. Each of us ran through our Saturday chores (or homework if was a school day), made ourselves some sandwiches, and then hightailed it to the fort. If you got there first, you were responsible for making sure there were no spiders or rattlesnakes around. Stomping and waving cardboard about, nothing could sleep through the racket, and most definitely nothing stuck around! We once chased a javelina family from our sanctuary, but that’s about as exotic as our visitors got. Garter snakes, lizards, and tarantulas were common and became favored captives for short periods of time. None of us wanted to remove them from their homes or families for too long. Mostly, we just enjoyed their company before we released them back into the wild. We played Marlin Perkins and his trusty assistant, Jim. Or we took turns being Joan Embery visiting with Merv Griffin or Mike Douglas and presenting our latest finds to the host. (One guess who got to be Joan Embery most often.)

While we loved the canyon and the freedom we experienced there away from the prying eyes (and the beckoning calls to come home) of our parents

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, our days there were numbered. The same is true of childhood. However, the loss of our fort was due to discovering a real live adult human being we didn’t know taking up residence in our spot.

For once, Michelle and I met up at the corner across from my house before we made our way down the hill and over the uneven terrain to the fort. We talked loudly and stomped our feet in our normal “dangerous-animal-be-gone” manner. Unfortunately, it didn’t scare away the man we found. In fact, I think it’s safe to say it merely served as an alert for him to strip down and begin masturbating, because that’s exactly what we found upon arrival. We both yelled at him and began kicking dirt in his face, throwing wood and rocks and whatever else we could find. When he failed to stop touching himself, we left in disgust. We never returned to that spot again. Instead, we explored further afield and always with a buddy. It was just safer that way.

About a year later, the big machinery arrived and curtailed our adventures further. We just got a little more creative with the how and what of our play. On weekends, when the site was abandoned, we scrambled up and down the diggers and dozers and other vehicles. We yelled and ran through the giant concrete pipes that would someday serve the expanding neighborhood. We also caused minor mischief by hiding loose materials whenever we could. We didn’t go too crazy with it because we knew that anything major would only bring in security guards. We knew this because Michelle’s brother and his friends had caused that very thing to happen at another site.

In the end, the timing couldn’t have been more apt. We were nearing the age of more “serious” pursuits as we went from preteens into full-blown adolescence. And while we would occasionally make our way down to the canyon, it was less about play and more about sneaking cigarettes and maybe increasing the quality (and quantity) of our creative obscenities. No prying ears or eyes to limit our newfound endeavors.

I’m not entirely sure how this turned into a major nostalgia-fest, but I suppose it beats the other direction I could have gone. I was going to mention all the heartbreak of the past year and all the ways life has changed in that time. I’m actually very glad for the “remember whenning” about my childhood as it feels more relatable and somehow more comforting — and definitely healthier — to reflect in that manner.

So, here’s a great big “I’m so glad I’m still here at 56” shout declaration from my tiny corner of the internet. I hope I can do this again next year.

TTFN!

2022/05/16

Twentieth Anniversary — 20 Years, Baby!

Da Goddess @ 00:01

I started this blog twenty years ago today.

I can’t believe I’m still posting, if I’m being completely honest.

At various points over the years, I’ve considered quitting. Instead, I just didn’t do anything. I let the blog sit idle for long stretches. I posted nonsense (still do). Yet I kept coming back.

What’s kept me here? A number of reasons, but mostly the people I’ve met because of this site. I also like writing, though I’ve done precious little creative writing lately, it’s here where I’ve played with ideas and created character studies. I want to do more of this. I’ve also been known to post the odd photo or seven. I want to do more of that as well. But, mostly, it’s the people.

You. Yes, you! Even if you don’t comment any more, I’m glad you swing by from time to time. When you do comment, it’s a thrill to see your name, to see what you have to say, and, if you’ve used a working email, it’s just so great to catch up.

I know blogging isn’t what it once was. I know there are a lot of other options to keep in touch with friends, to post your thoughts, and hang out, but this is where I met the vast majority of people online and this is where I’ll be. At least another few years, I think.

The community we’d built with our blogs was like nothing else. For those of us who helped shape and grow the blogosphere, it’s a bit sad to think about it in terms of what it used to be. I miss those days

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, of course. But I don’t miss the fighting and dirty play that could crop up now and then.

Going from a fairly high-traffic blogger to one who is practically invisible, eh. I don’t mind. As I said, there are so many choices these days and I’m as guilty as the next blogger who’s done my share of posting to them. And still…I keep coming back here. Go figure.

Thanks for 20 years of memories, my friends! As Carol Burnett used to sing, “I’m so glad we had this time together…” I hope we have more time, too.

2022/05/13

Adulting

Da Goddess @ 11:13

Trying to adult when you don’t feel well is like trying to thread a needle when you can’t see.

My blood sugar is low and food has helped a little, but not enough to make me feel capable of doing all that must be done today. Plus, any and all energy I had yesterday (it was a very good day!) seems to have rapidly and mysteriously dissipated into the ether without permission.

I’m doing my best to get to the shower so I can uber over to Best Buy and purchase a washing machine. Ours is a total piece of non-functioning shit. I spent most of yesterday looking everywhere for a replacement. Thankfully

, I have a friend at BB whobis going to help me find a good deal I can afford.

Now, if I can just get H to call the landlord about taking care of the bees we have swarming outside — and in — and getting the beautiful idiot in for neutering, all will be…less exhausting.

I do believe I’ve reached my limit on just about everything. I cannot be the only responsible adult in this house. I just can’t.

2022/05/09

Nostalgia

Da Goddess @ 07:55

Back in the early aughts, there lived an obsessive who would use computer games as a means of stress relief. Nothing fancy. Whatever came with the computer or was easily found doing a quick search.

Her favorites were Minesweep, Tetris, and Solitaire. Just the normal stuff.

Until she discovered Hoyle Games. Mancala was a game she’d already taught her children after making them a set with an egg carton and marbles (or sometimes dried beans). But on Hoyle, she could go up against a computer and have a real challenge! (Although, it must be said her daughter was a fine opponent.) Dominoes was another game she had also played with her kids, with her daughter — once again a formidable challenger — a frequent player. Still, the computer offered her a different level of competition.

Her absolute favorite game from Hoyle was Word Yacht. As one might guess

, it was a variation of Yahtzee played with lettered dice. The object was to roll ten dice and make as many words possible with the letters from a single roll. The timer could be set at 180 seconds, 120 seconds, 90 seconds, and 60 seconds. Eventually, the obsessive found Hoyle had the same game available online, where one could play against others in real time. These were heady times, indeed. A community of people who loved words playing word games, people who also sought respite from the pressures of everyday life, people who just wanted a chance to challenge their brains in a way that made them happy, who wanted to play and chat with like-minded people. The community was strong and fun and inclusive and just all-around comforting.

The ability to escape the daily grind brought about a feeling of bliss. And so it was here the obsessive found her place of refuge. Her friends here were great listeners who offered thoughtful observations and who valued her thoughts and observations as well. The reciprocal nature of their exchanges meant they weren’t constantly laying their burdens at the feet of their partners. It was an arrangement most partners, spouses, families, etc., found beneficial. A few hours of a computer game meant a more peaceful person in the home. In between work, school, and childrearing, there was the pressure valve release in game form.

Oh, what a time to be alive!

Yacht, or sometimes Word, as the game was commonly called amongst the players, was a world of letters and laughter. It was a world of challenges and cheeky repartee. It was heaven for those who reveled in the randomness of a roll of the dice. The scoring was important, of course, but the camaraderie was a lovely bonus for those who regularly played together.

Our favored grouping played 90 second rounds for 30 minutes, followed by 60 second rounds thereafter. We were good. Very good. When tournaments became a thing, we regularly placed in the top three. Out of hundreds, we were the elite. We wore our victories with pride.

Hoyle became part of another game community and we, naturally, went obediently. This led to a larger collective of word junkies and many more friendships. Tournaments continued apace, but now prizes were awarded. Nothing big, just things like mods for avatars (which were able to be crafted to surprisingly accurate likeness). The modifications allowed for whimsical additions like crowns and horns and silly hair. Though it might sound a bit trivial, these prizes made great incentives to rise through the ranks of the Word Yacht tournies.

And then it all disappeared. It was just gone. For many of us, we quietly, but grumpily, returned to the game played against sims. We had our Yahoo groups, emails, and instant messaging to keep in touch (some of us even called one another on the phone — a radical concept!), but it wasn’t the same. We tried to find other games on other sites with diminishing returns in the way of enjoyment and, most frequently, quality of play. Our Yahoo groups grew quiet. Our IMs gradually faded to just names on a list. Phone calls stopped. Life without Yacht returned to its previous state of being and partners and families were once again burdened with the troubles of the obsessive and her ilk.

Occasionally, I find myself googling the game or popping in at the Yahoo group page (though it’s been inactive for quite some time, the rare “I just wanted to say hello” appears). I don’t do it often, though, as it tends to make me sad all over again from the loss of it all. Yes, I miss the people, but I really, almost desperately, miss the game.

Wordle and Concludle are fun diversions. But rarely do they offer the thrill of Word Yacht and never do they give the sense of community.

Perhaps I was one of the lucky ones. I found blogging early on. I built my own little world and made new friends along the way. Some of those people challenged me to be creative and express myself in words and photos instead of scores against a timer. Still…

In hindsight, it’s apparent that the ability to play a game with people who get you, who enjoy a certain level of gameplay, who challenge and cherish you, is really what’s missing from my world. I keep thinking of how much I would have loved to have my Yacht friends during the early months of the pandemic, how we would have been a comfort to one another, how our games would have provided the perfect diversion to the isolation, loneliness, confusion, and boredom so many of us felt and continue to experience.

What I wouldn’t do for a way to mash a bit of the past with a bit of the present.

Ah, well. If wishes were fishes, we’d likely be complaining about having to clean the aquarium.

2022/04/29

Ugh (a.k.a. When the Cure Sucks)

Da Goddess @ 12:21

One of the worst parts of being sick is getting treatment that feels as awful as the illness.

While I

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, no doubt, am benefiting from the treatment I’m receiving, the “cure” is making me feel sicker than a dog who eats rancid trash straight from the bin.

One of the new meds has, unfortunately, some side effects that are making me sick. Not that I’m regretting my decision to do the study or anything. I’m just hating the adjustment period that sometimes comes with new medication. I also really, really, really hate throwing up. I loathe it.

The upside to meds that make me feel sick can be summed up thusly: I may lose weight. If I’m going to be nauseated, vomiting puking my guts out, appetite suppressed, etc., I should see some weightloss. However, there’s a good way to do it and a decidedly not so good way to do it. I’m getting the not so good way.

Take yesterday. I woke up, didn’t have any appetite. I knew I should eat something, but nothing sounded appealing. So I stuck with water. Water I had to mostly force myself to drink (yet another fun side effect of the one med). But it felt good going down and I was happy to have done the right thing for my body. About three hours later, I decided I was ready to try some food. I grabbed something from the freezer (I’ve filled it with homemade happiness over the last few weeks), nuked it up, grabbed a cold coke (my blood glucose has been remarkably and steadily toward the low end — occasionally too low, in fact), and began eating. Halfway through, I started feeling queasy. It seemed to abate easily enough, so I continued picking my way through. Then the severe nausea hit in earnest (as if it would do so mildly!) and I raced to the bathroom. I barely made it, despite the bathroom being all of ten feet away. Everything I’d just eaten (not a great deal) came violently spewing forth. Oddly enough, it looked as though I’d eaten four times the amount of what I had managed to get down. It made no sense. Oh well. I guess it was better than just bile. In my experience, if it’s just bile, it hurts more coming up. It’s as if your entire body is straining to get that little bit up and out. That said, the force of this particular vomit sesh left my arms and hands in pain and tingling. It was…awful. Why does vomiting make you hurt sometimes? I have no idea and can’t recall that ever being discussed in nursing school or at any job. Weird.

It took a nap and many more hours before I was ready to attempt eating again. I opted for an English muffin. Sourdough, to be exact. With butter. And cold water. Nothing sweet, thank you very much. It stayed down. Well enough so I tackled two small pieces of leftover pizza. That stayed down as well. Thank God!

Look, I really want to get to a much healthier place, not just from a post-Covid standpoint, but also with weight and everything else. I don’t mind appetite suppression, but can I please have that without the nausea and vomiting? I’d greatly appreciate it.

2022/04/26

45 Days

Da Goddess @ 12:00

I got accepted into a long Covid study. Forty-five days of monitoring my symptoms on medications and various other treatments.

It looks like it’ll consist of twice weekly checks on me, how I’m doing with meds, and if there’s any improvement.

I didn’t think I’d qualify based on the fact that they weren’t monitoring me from the beginning of the infection, but that’s kind of the point for the study. That’s fine by me. Anything that helps raise the profile of long Covid is worth doing. If it helps to refine the process of treatment for others, it’s a good thing. If it helps to identify the signs and symptoms as well as the need for treatment of long Covid sooner, that’s even better.

There’s no stipend, but I get free meds, free appointments, free monitoring at home, it’s going to help track the effects of the disease process, and maybe even help stave off more serious complications from Covid.

With more and more people discovering they’ve developed long-term health problems from the virus (any variant), it’s comforting to know there are teams out there putting time and effort into making life easier for those who’ve found themselves on the losing end of this awful illness.

I can’t stress enough how fortunate I feel that I had a mild case and didn’t end up in hospital, on a respirator, or losing my life from Covid. If not for the vaccine, I don’t know that I’d be here or be in good enough shape to write this.

Yes, I still got sick. Yes, I still ended up with long Covid. But at least I’m still here and able to contribute to the development of protocols for others.

If you’re not yet vaccinated, please consider doing so. We have no idea what the next variant will do or when it’ll hit…but hit, it will. There are so many places where hospitals are at capacity once again. The airlines are already seeing a loss of flight staff since declaring an end to mandatory masking. As more people feel emboldened to eschew masks

, travel more freely, and return to pre-pandemic behavior, this will only get worse. We’re not done with Covid and it’s not done with us.

Please protect yourself and your loved ones by getting vaccinated and boostered. Mask up. Wash your hands like they’re covered in shit. Sanitze the house like you just discovered an Ebola outbreak. It’s our best defense against prolonging the pandemic.

And please, remember that I wasn’t out and about when I got infected. It was brought home by someone who thought he was safe because he’d had it before and had been vaccinated since. Covid’s gonna Covid. There’s no grace for those who don’t believe in the virulence of it. It can happen to anyone. It happened to me.

2022/04/21

WTAF? Too Hot

Da Goddess @ 03:09

Today is supposed to be hitting 97°. That’s just bonkers

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, if you ask me.

It’s late-mid-April. It doesn’t need to be that hot already!

H’s brother-in-law is a weatherman here and I’ve already cussed him out about it.

What’s the point of having friends in high places if they can’t pull a few strings for you?

Test results should be in today. Not sure if I really want to know. However, I know in my heart of hearts it’s better to know and start treatment if that’s what is needed. The earlier you catch the problem, the earlier you start treating it, the better the outcome. My nurse brain accepts this wisdom, yet my denial meter screams “NOOOOOOO!”

Fingers crossed!

2022/04/13

And So It Goes

Da Goddess @ 23:45

There’s nothing standing in the way of Long Covid around here. Nope. Not a damn thing.

Vaccines? Boosters? Masks? Handwashing? Hand sanitizing? Staying home? Cleaning every surface with the intensity of a obsessive compulsive? Check × 7.

But! And this is a HUGE BUT! Without the vaccine and boosters and all the other measures

, I’d have been sicker and could’ve been hospitalized. Thus, I’m exceedingly grateful for all the steps taken to ensure my infection was mild and short-lived.

What I didn’t expect was ending up with Long Covid. The pulmonary effects, I understand. The headaches, I think I’ve come to terms with them. The odd sleep patterns have been part of my life for ages; they’re just different these days. But now there are palpitations and other nasty little bits of cardiac complications that may never go away completely. Oh, and a funky bunch of kidney/urinary things that have cropped up. Whether from the meds, the infection, or a combination thereof, remains to be seen.

I’m being treated for all my symptoms, being worked up for the new ones, put on medication — hopefully — temporarily. I just wish I could see the light at the end of the tunnel for a change.

Basically, it’s been party city all the way ’round.

Omicron has been a nasty motherfucker. I don’t want to meet the newest version of it or any other version of Covid. Ever. I highly recommend you do your best to avoid all strains as well. I wouldn’t wish this shit on my worst enemy.

2022/04/02

Variety is the Spice of Life

Da Goddess @ 22:49

Consider this a big ol’ melting pot of stuff. Instead of a bunch of short posts, I’m tossing everything in this one post. Bam! Consider this thing spiced!

Post-Covid: I’m still having flares every week or so. Fevers, sweats, coughing fits, chest tightness, etc etc etc. It got so bad, I ended up in the emergency department one afternoon. Came home with inhalers and a nebulizer and more potions than you can shake a stick at. I mean

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, you could shake a stick at them, but it would just be a waste of time and energy. I do not have energy to spare these days.

The only good thing about this lingering nonsense is I’ve had a bit more sleep since getting medication to suppress the cough.

Social security: money has finally started to hit my account. Oh, and I had to get a new account. It’s all good. Opening a new account took 20 minutes from beginning to end. And that was a revelation! Once done, I had money in less than a week. It’s going to be a while before the next installment of back pay comes, but I don’t mind as long as my monthly payments show up.

Food: I’ve been using my time to play around with recipes. I’ve done everything from a lemon loaf to Mexican to Chinese to Polish to a little French to good old American fare. I don’t have a ton of energy, but I make what I have work. Thus far, it’s all turned out well. H appreciates the results, as does the adorable idiot who has stolen more than any animal I’ve ever known. Unless the food is in the oven, up on a high shelf, or in the fridge, he’ll find a way to it and steal it. He has no remorse. None. Cookie just looks at DJuke like he’s the dumbest thing on earth, especially if she didn’t get any of the food. Otherwise, she pretends she knows nothing about the heist.

Art projects: I’ve started collecting for another art project. Yes, I’m still collecting bread tags of all shapes, colors, and sizes. I’m also now collecting the stopper clips from nasal spray bottles. (See photos below.) I’m not basing everything I’m doing on items normally thrown away, but these two projects in particular are using things that one would toss without a second thought.

If you have any either of these things, please save them for me and let me know. I will pay for the shipping. It’s actually very inexpensive and it’s nice to know I’m repurposing things that would either end up in a landfill or the ocean.

Stopper clips

Bread tags

That’s all there is for this round of What the Hell is She Up To?!

2022/03/21

Memories, Nostalgia, and Obsession

Da Goddess @ 00:33

I started a walk down Memory Lane one recent night that quickly led to a case of nostalgia for my very early years on this earth. It didn’t take long for nostalgia to become obsession.

I was overwhelmed by memories of my maternal grandparents: Grandma and Grandfather. My Dad’s parents were Grandma and Pappy (though Pappy married Grandma Eleanor or Lenore [who had A PINBALL MACHINE IN HER BASEMENT!!!] after Original Grandma died). Anyhow, I was thinking about Grandma and Grandfather this particular time. They were the ones who: had an enchanted garden, a magic mirror in the bathroom, the electric organ, and neighbors with the little girl burned to death (Bernadette). Their house was the second one from the corner. That detail I distinctly recall. How can I be certain? Because the cars would have to slow down for the stop sign at the intersection. We kids slept in the front bedroom and we could hear the telltale clickety tickety of the slowing tires and watch the headlights as they rolled past. I remember Bernadette’s house being on the corner. Grandma and Grandfather’s house was a single story, whereas Bernadette’s house was two stories. These are important details, as you’ll come to appreciate shortly.

For some reason, as my nostalgia gave way to curiosity (oh, shit! I left out that part of the grand journey to obsession, didn’t I?), I started to think maybe I could find their house by googling the road. That’s the only part of the puzzle I had firmly in my mental grasp. No street number, just the name of the street. Should be relatively easy, shouldn’t it? Google maps could lead me down this path and I’d magically (technologically) find a piece of my childhood and live happily ever after, secure in the knowledge that something so precious to me still exists.
If only. All I have to do is find a single story house next to a two story house, second from the corner, on a specific street, and BAM-A-ROONY! Mystery solved.

As if.

I spent no less than three hours trying to find the house. That night. I’ve since revisited the oh so (not) helpful maps of Googleland. My quest, apparently, has no end.

At this point, I should mention that I’m working with a very fickle Bluetooth signal. (Predictive text tried to turn fickle into fucked, which is not only kinda funny, but also a whole MOOD…and an accurate one at that.) So, of course, while I have to my Google map groove in gear and hot on the trail of MY QUEST FOR THE HOLY GRAIL of childhood memories, the Bluetooth signal keeps crapping out on me. I think this is how memories become nostalgia becomes curiosity becomes obsession. Curiosity can become victory pretty quickly if you have a solid connection to the world wide web. Denied that solidity? Curiosity becomes obsession. The itch to continue your search leads to a jittery and frantic dance as you toggle between windows/functions. Just as you think you’re on the precipice of a MAJOR BREAKTHROUGH, you get a wee dinosaur and the notice of “lost connection”.

This. This is when you realize you can no longer just drop the search for a bit and get some sleep. Oh no. You’re far too keyed up for sleep. You’re at peak wakefulness now. You. Must. Continue. The. Quest.

So, three hours and multiple “damnit!”, “fucking hell!”, “shit on a pointy stick!”, and other utterances of frustration (are there any other types of utterances?) later, you finally give up — ¡temporalmente! — because your already wreck of a body can’t take any more spasms and teeth-grinding madness. There’s only so much a body can take. I don’t care who you are. There’s a point where you simply must decide that shitting yourself during the marathon just isn’t worth it. I’m all for not shitting myself, figuratively or literally. And my back and neck will attest to the fact that I can no longer spend hours tied up in knots of anticipatory stupor. I just can’t do it.

And thus, I’ve reached the end…so far…of my QUEST for the house my grandparents owned when I was a wee bairn. I shall let you know when — not “if” — I am triumphant.

Wish me luck.

P.S. I blame this all on Covid brain

, lingering paroxysmal coughing fits, and my ever present insomnia. But, mostly Covid brain and the coughing. So, basically, Covid.

2022/03/19

Chicken Soup for the Belly

Da Goddess @ 00:05

It’s that time again. Chicken soup is my jam. Whenever I have the energy and the back cooperates, I make chicken soup. I’m going to attempt dumplings again, too.

Currently on round three of the Covid battle. I’m not contagious

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, just extremely run down, coughing, night sweats, headaches, chest pain from all the coughing, and generally tired. I’m lucky to get a couple hours of sleep at a go. I’ve decided if this goes on much longer, it’s off to see a doctor because I just can’t seem to go more than a week or ten days before it starts all over again. What’s the deal with that???

2022/03/18

A New (to me) Song

Da Goddess @ 14:45

I have a new song I listen to frequently when I’m in one of those moods. It helps me wash away the cobwebs and sadness.

And there you have it: the sweetest mind and heart cleanser.

2022/03/08

International Women’s Day

Da Goddess @ 17:30

I wish I had photos of all the amazing women who’ve influenced my life and helped me get to age 55.

Barring that, here’s a few of them.


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2022/03/02

It’s a Boy!

Da Goddess @ 18:56

In the past week, while I’ve been cursing the slow progress toward recovery from the dreaded Covid, Mr H got himself another dog.

He got drunk one night and, while on Facebook, looked at the local lost and found pets page, saw a dog he couldn’t resist (this is actually the second one; the first was with a woman who wouldn’t deliver*), and agreed to take if the rescuers could bring the dog to the house. They agreed. And the very next day, voila! Another dog.

It’s a boy.

His current name is Duke. Or Juke. He answers to both (because they sound the same). He briefly answered to Rex. He was also temporarily Billy Joe, after Billy Joe Shaver — he seemed to really like “Live Forever” and so we tried that. Prior to that was Bubba. H calls him Buddy more often than not. He also refers to him as “her” because he’s used to having a female dog around. He’ll be paying for DJuke’s therapy for years.

This beastie is young. He’s totally untrained and, boy oh boy, he’s doing his best to resist learning the basics! I think he was abused before he was abandoned because of the way he reacts to a hand placed on his rump. If you slide a hand down while petting him, he’s okay. Try touching his hind end otherwise? He’s jumpy and he tries to squirm away. So, teaching him to sit is a very slow work in progress. I’m doing my best to capture the behavior and reward him for it while repeating the word “sit”. It’s pretty much the only way to get there from here. I’ve also resorted to asking Cookie to sit and rewarding her for doing so in front of DJuke.

I haven’t worked with many abused/abandoned dogs in the past

, but I’m willing to put in the work while I can because I really love this goofball. Already. Yeah, it’s a sickness. I fall for animals very quickly.

DJuke fell in love with the Mr Piggy toy. The weird, deep squeal it had turned into a a funny, higher pitched squeal. Then it went silent. The pig has lost some of its appeal without the sound. According to the dogs, that is. Maybe according to the humans, too. Maybe. Maaaaaayyyybeeee. Possibly.

Now it’s time for me to go slather purple dye on my head again. I have errands tomorrow afternoon with H’s sister and I’d like to look presentable. Ish.

* H’s car has died again and he needed to have the first dog dropped off. The woman agreed to it, but flaked. I was secretly relieved because the dog looked less-than-healthy. With DJuke, the young couple who found him had taken him to the vet for a once over and a chip check. He was deemed healthy and unchipped. And thus he was posted to the Facebook group. The couple also delivered.

2022/02/27

The Covid Chronicles, Day Something or Other

Da Goddess @ 03:42

I really have no idea what day I’m on numberwise with my Covid recovery. It’s been more than three weeks, for sure. Maybe four. Beyond that, no clue.

The coughing continues unabated. Ugh. My voice is coming back. The headaches are much less frequent, which I greatly appreciate. Boy do I not miss the headaches! The fevers and chills are (mostly) a thing of the past. And I’m no longer positive!

Honestly can’t believe I was testing positive for as long as I did. And while I’m so glad I was vaccinated and had a mild case, I feel badly for anyone who isn’t vaccinated and/or has had a worse time with the plague called Covid.

I truly had a few days of feeling like I should’ve been put out of my misery — and misery it was! When everything hurts as much as my body hurt (from my split ends to my tips of my toenails)

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, fever, chills, coughing, congestion from head to chest, and every other malady, I simply cannot comprehend the whole “it could be worse” concept. Except, I kind of can. I mean, I survived sepsis, right? Covid and sepsis had a couple features in common: nipples feeling like they were on fire, bleeding, or just ready to fall off; body pain (body “aches” won’t cut it when you feel like I felt); the chills (I know my fever didn’t come anywhere close to what I experienced with sepsis — 105+°, anyone?); the overall regret that I had to deal with any of it.

Anyhow, I feel for anyone who has experienced Covid in any capacity, especially those who didn’t get a mild case. I can’t urge you enough to get vaccinated. Really, truly, I beg of you: get vaccinated!!! This shit is nasty.

Some stats (for those who like that sort of thing):

Cough drops: let’s call it 190+.

You may think I’m exaggerating the number. I am not. I started with a bag of spearmint cough drops, approximate number 30. H brought me two bags of cherry cough drops, each count of 80. I’m already on my second bag. So the approximation of 190+ is more than valid. My tongue may be permanently red at this point, but I don’t care because these damn things are precious (kind of like the One Ring, as opposed to the other nineteen) and have saved my chest, throat, back, and gut from taking an even worse beating than it did (has, continues to endure). Just a few minutes ago, I was coughing up what’s left of my lungs. Thanks to the cough drops, it hurts less than expected because I’m constantly sucking on these drops made from the nectar of the gods. I cannot encourage you enough to always keep cough drops around! They help clear phlegm and the like, reduce throat tickle, and generally keep things loose and easy to hork up. It makes all the difference between paroxysmal coughing that’ll kill you — or at least make you pass out — and the coughing I have now. It’s still unpleasant, however, I’m not going to pass out or die from what remains. I will not miss coughing. Let’s hope I’m celebrating soon.

Tissues and tissue-adjacent materials: 1000lbs. Or, that’s what they’ve been asked to contain! Lots of congestion means lots of clearing the entire body of all this snot and it snot fun. (Make pun of me all you want. I’m glad I can get this deathbed humor off my chest!)

I have no idea what prompted me to stock up on tissues a couple months ago, just glad I did! When combined with the toilet paper, napkins, and paper towels, I think it’s safe to say I’ve used a half ton of soft, thin, pliable products to catch the ick out of my nose and mouth.

Gallons of water and other beverages I’ve choked on and/or spit out and/or puked up: close to 30 gallons, I’m confident in saying. In fact, the entire reason I started this particular post comes down to me choking on a teeny weeny, itsy bitsy, microscopic amount of water! Forget any other reason I may have previously given. It was choking on half an eighth teaspoon of water that got me reaching for my phone to share the near death experience with you. That’s the God’s honest truth.

Compared with the huge numbers of everything else thus far, 30 gallons seems like child’s play, doesn’t it? Except, it’s actually a significant amount of fluid one’s body very much doesn’t want in one’s lungs.

It was awful. My glasses are now covered with the dried tears of my efforts to clear what’s left of my lungs of the deadly invader called water.

Loads of laundry: More than I can remember. Between sweating, not wanting to keep breathing in anything viral, and the result of the next item, I was doing laundry every few days. Blech.

Number of times I almost pooped/did poop myself while coughing: THREE. Okay, FIVE. Fine! Damnit, a whole bunch!

One of the ingredients in the cough syrup acts like a stool softener for me. So, as much as I needed the cough suppressant feature, I absolutely hated taking it because I didn’t want to end up crapping the bed/myself. Thankfully, I didn’t have many actual soiled drawers. There’s only so much laundry one can do from one’s sick bed. Y’all know I’d never leave something like that unlaundered beyond the time it takes to shower off one’s own ass and get into fresh, clean clothes. Add to that the whole lack of energy and you got a perfect storm of shittiness.

And here’s the final entry. Cough syrup: less than you’d think. Three or four (maybe five) bottles. I tried to take it just at night in order to help me sleep. Mostly didn’t want the poop situation happening every time I started coughing, sneezing, breathing, or blinking. The more I take, the more likely to have a code brown. What a conundrum, right? Thus, a truly unique situation presented itself. It reminded me of a George Wallace joke about the time he and his wife had the stomach flu. “Sleep tight took on a whole new meaning. You puckered up, but not how you’d think.” (I’ve tried to find a clip of him saying this on the Tubes of You and had zero luck.)

Okay, I’m off to sleep. I desperately need it.

Please take care of yourselves and each other. We’re not out of the Covid woods yet and I’d really would like all of you to remain healthy and alive!

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