The situation with Mike’s mother has gotten much worse. I don’t know how she is hanging on and still alive. When we went over there Monday the situation was so grim. She can’t use the left side of her body. She can’t lift her head. She can barely speak a whispery word or two. Her face is all sunken in. She looks way worse than my mother did when she died. It brings back all these horrible memories for me. Annette is in no pain at all. I couldn’t go over there yesterday. Mike went without me. I pray she passes over soon. It’s so terribly sad. It’s like some huge death cloud hanging over.
Wednesday, November 29
It’s 7:18am on Wednesday. Wednesday is trash day. We’ve gathered all the trash and recycling and taken the cans out to the curb. I’m drinking hot chocolate. Later today I’m supposed to go to a neighbor ladies lunch. I don’t feel like going.
Saturday, November 18
Mike’s mom is being released from the hospital this afternoon and will be going home to a hospital bed, hospice care and a full-time caregiver. She’s 85 has stage 4 lung cancer and a brain tumor bleed that is inoperable. Mike has been at the hospital with her about 14 hours a day the last several days. It’s just a matter of time with her and the goal is to keep her as comfortable as possible. They have a very large family so Mike has a constant stream of calls and texts since he is the power of attorney. This has been going on for months but it’s ramped way up the last couple weeks since his mom has gotten so bad.
Saturday, March 25
The wet fluffy snow looks beautiful and magical, clinging in to the tree branches I see through the window. . I had a wonderful sleep last night after getting up early all week. It’s nice to have a couple days now when I have nothing I have to do. Time to recharge.
I was supposed to go to Lola’s soccer game in Canton this morning but the weather didn’t cooperate. The drive might have been okay but I didn’t want to chance it. They canceled this morning anyway. I’m going down there for a few days in two weeks. That will have to do for family visits. There are birthdays and Easter coming up. I have to go get cards today for those occasions. Milo is turning 13, Sarah 35, Hennessy 9 plus all 12 grandkids will get Easter cards with money. Money instead of candy or stuffed toys, of course.
There are quite a few things to be tended to. I’ll get stared later. I need to return an email but I need to reread it a couple times and chew on it awhile before responding. I need to confirm some dates and update our neighborhood calendar. I’m involved in too many groups and am taking a break from one for a couple months. An introvert, I get overloaded and overly stimulated and have to slink back into my cave for a while and recharge. I’m 63 now and I get sick of peoples’ bullshit. Pretentious people and pushy control freaks are the worse for me. It’s hard to bite my tongue so I mostly tend to sidestep and avoid those types.
I had planned to paint my bathroom cabinet some new perky color when spring came but then decided to just clean it really well, get new hardware. Sand it really good and apply clear poly coat. . My bathroom has been cleared out and in limbo the last week as I’ve been going to work every day and couldn’t get to it. Finally this morning I sanded again for the third time, wiped everything down really well and applied the first clear coat. I’ll let it dry and apply another tomorrow. Hopefully by Monday I can put stuff back and have my bathroom back in order.
I did two loads of laundry, cooked breakfast and cleaned up the kitchen, washed down all the plantation blinds in our bedroom and gave Bitzi her medicine. She’s having gut problems again for some reason. I thought she was better but during the night she had to go out a couple times and even had an accident in the laundry room on the rug.
Mike is spending more and more time helping and dealing with his mom as she struggles with depression, anxiety, her cancer and increasing dementia and forgetfulness. Now that Mike is retired that’s his job- trying to take care of her. At least he has his sister and two brothers and they all get along. That makes it a bit better.
I’ve been subbing again the last couple weeks. I also am a neighborhood rep and schedule and organize frequent events. I’m also the vice chair of our lifelong learning lectures committee. I help locate and schedule the speakers our community hosts every Friday. I’m also in our community concert band, chorus and garden club and a couple sub committees too. Our community is a 55+ active adult community of around 10,000 with a larger community of approximately 35,000. I’m around a lot of old people these days in our community at the various functions. Most ,but not all, are older than me. Many are pretty conservative, religious and stodgy. I sometimes encounter residents who seem to think they are entitled to behave poorly and rudely due to their wealth, age or the number of years they’ve been living here. I’ve noticed a lot of the older people keep to the little cliches and aren’t very friendly. When the neighborhood women meet for lunch or dinner the topic is usually aches, pains, surgeries or medications. I try to avoid talking religion, politics are using my normal salty language. I’m not sure what the men talk about. It appears to me there’s a lot of rambling on and on.
Wednesday, March 1
It’s afternoon. Mike and I are going to the pool shortly. I subbed at a middle school yesterday and got really tired and stressed out walking all over the building and up and down ten or more flights of stairs. Last night and this morning I didn’t feel well like I was starting to come down with something. I canceled all my sub jobs until after we get back from Scottsdale.
I have a video interview to complete and send in for a job right here in Sun City. I’m not even sure I want it but I’m going to cast my fishing line out there and see if they bite. I’m fortunate to be considered and to complete the video.
Mikes mom continues to get worse. They have arranged for a home health nurse to start going to her house but it hasn’t started. About everyday she calls crying or hysterical. Mike goes over there several times a week.
Tuesday, February 14
It’s early afternoon. I had a neighbor ladies’ group breakfast this morning at a nearby cafe. It was a nice time. It’s chillier out today, overcast and starting to rain. Being February I can’t really complain. I sill am feeling symptoms of the cold I’ve had for two weeks.
Tuesday, January 31
Good day. The sun is shining brightly on the frigid land outside. It’s much better than overcast gloom, even if it is terrible cold. Also, the wind isn’t blowing so that helps, too. I just did a nice water aerobics class at the lodge. It felt good. Afterward I showered and blew my hair dry. Mike took Bitzi to the groomer. She looks nice. She’s always really tired the rest of the day after grooming for some reason. In a couple hours I’m going to Culver’s because it’s neighbor ladies ice cream social day. We just meet up at 2 o’clock, order whatever we want, push tables together and sit and visit. It’s nice and casual. Some people stay a little while, some people stay a long time. Whatever works. I’m probably going back to the lodge to work out later. The pool class was fun but it wasn’t hard cardio like I’m supposed to be doing. I subbed yesterday and had to walk a lot so was too tired to go to the gym last night. Mike is going to the dentist in a while. He hasn’t been to a dentist in a long time and he’s going to a new dentist today.
My body is starting to feel different with all this extra exercise the last few months. My legs, thighs, abs and back are starting to feel firmer and more solid. I know I’m building muscle. I’ve lost some weight but not a lot. All in good time. Baby steps………..If you build it, they will come…..I have much been endurance and strength than a couple months ago, that’s for sure.
Friday, January 27
It’s a typical January day. We were coming home a while ago and the snow was coming down so hard we could barely see in front of us. We went to the lodge here at Sun City earlier. I had intended to work out on the fitness machines but there was a whole bunch of people in there and the machines I had intended to use were already taken so I worked out in the pool then I went in the hot tub and sauna with Mike. It was nice. I haven’t been working out in the pool the last couple months ( due to rehab) and I can really feel it in my muscles now. I have to be dedicated to working out daily now that rehab is over. It’s a new start for my health.
I just played my clarinet for a bit but I’m really tired so didn’t play very long. In a little while I’ll start cooking dinner. I just ate a handful of walnuts to curb my hunger. I had a little bit of oatmeal for breakfast. I finally got Mike to agree to go on another cruise so we’re going next year in May. It’s a long way away but hopefully by then we’ll both be healthier and he’ll be over his germ phobia. He’s always afraid I’m going to catch something. I’m going to start subbing again next Monday now that rehab is over. Mike is nervous about that too- me being exposed to school germs again. I’m not subbing younger than 4th grade and no special ed- too much hands on with those kids. There’s so much going on from now until the end of May that I had to double check the dates before I accepted jobs. It’s good to be busy physically, cognitively, socially.
I may go downstate to see and visit with an old friend next week - who I haven’t seen in years. I hope it works out. It will be kind of surreal and weird after all this time. We shall see. It’s good to reconnect. I tend to be very sensitive and emotional. I get drippy about things that most people don’t.
Saturday, January 21
It’s Saturday morning. I had a great night’s sleep and made a couple waffles with the end of the mix in the Bisquick box. When they were done I sprinkled the three waffles with a little powdered sugar. On my small waffle I put peanut butter, some mixed berries and a drizzle of syrup. It was perfect with my coffee. I tidied up the house a bit and then took Bitzi on a 1.7 mile brisk walk. Being January in northern Illinois, it’s pretty cold out. I wore a heavier coat with a separate hat, my gloves and my fuzzy hood up most of the time but started sweating after about 20 minutes and took my hood off for a while but then put it back on at the end. Bitzi is so small but she does okay on our walks. She has lots of energy! She of course wants to stop and sniff and do her mini pees a million times. She has really helped get me walking more though. Dog walking, the heart attack and cardiac rehab have really got me much more physically active.
I have four more sessions to go and then I “graduate” from cardiac rehab. It’s been a very good experience. It’s a bit embarrassing that it took a friggin heart attack to wake me up and get me moving toward a healthier lifestyle but now I’m very grateful to be doing better and feeling better. The daily vigorous ( aka panting hard and sweating) exercise is really improving my life. I don’t know it for a fact but I feel like my immune system is getting stronger too. I’m amazed that Mike just got over covid and I didn’t get it being right here in the house with him. Normally I catch everything.
This is the time of year I like the least due to the prolonged days of dreary, overcast skies. I think of it as the “bucket of suck” season from mid January until the end of March. YUCK. I don’t really mind the cold or snow, just the gloomy skies. I still try to spend time outside in the fresh air every day. I have a lot of houseplants to tend, that gives me some sense of nature and growing.
I just lost a lot of my text. This stupid keyboard is driving me crazy with it's jumping all over. Gaaaaaaah!
Sunday, January 15
It’s about noon on a Sunday. I’m doing a couple loads of laundry. I can hear the dryer humming away. I like doing laundry and making things clean and fresh.I took Bitzi out for a shor walk. It’s abrasively cold with the wind. I will take her for a longer walk later.
We had leftovers for lunch. I practiced my clarinet for a while and test drove several reeds. The laundry is done. I’m reading a book on my kindle app. Somewhat interesting and I’ll continue. I have 9 more sessions of cardiac rehab left. I have a neighborhood ladies lunch Tuesday. Mike has Covid. I’m negative. I’m not sure how that works.
Wednesday, January 11
Friday, December 30
I know humans catch colds and viruses. I know some of us are more prone to catch stuff. I know that this too shall pass. I’m just feeling very aggravated with this recent stuff I’ve picked up. Fortunately it’s only some runny nose and annoying tickle-y cough but I’ve tried SO hard to not catch anything. Suck it up buttercup. Pull up your big girl pants and get over it. It could be worse. Yuckkkkkk.
In a little while I have to wake up the 3 boys and get their stuff packed up and loaded and drive them to Lacon to meet my daughter. Arlo (5) has been pretty exhausting. He’s a super picky eater and sometimes he can be a rude whine-y little tyrant. Mike and I have both had to take him aside and talk to him. He’s got 2 rowdy older brothers and a baby sister to compete with. I get it but he still can’t be a rude tyrant. Sometimes he can be super sweet. He’s absolutely adorable so that helps save him. Anyway after four days grandma and grandpa are ready for a rest. We had 8 year old Hennessy here for a week before the boys too. Happy new year. I hope my cough stops soon. I’ll be wearing my mask today when I go out.
Wednesday, December 28
Is 4:22. I’ve been awake since about 3 and couldn’t get back to sleep. For some reason I’m ache-y all over. Yesterday I left home early with Hennessy and drove her down to Norris, picked up Argo, Oscar and Milo and drove back home. As soon as we got here we got our stuff and headed to the pool for 45 minutes until the end of family swim time. I sent the boys to bed around 10 and I went to bed after 11:30. I don’t know what the deal is with me waking up at 3am out of the blue. I haven’t been to cardiac rehab since last Thursday due to the Christmas closing. I couldn’t go yesterday because I was driving. I’ll go today and tomorrow from 8-9 and then Friday I’m driving again. Mike was very helpful with the boys yesterday once I got home. This afternoon I’m taking the boys to this cool retro arcade in West Dundee that has all these old video games from the 1980s plus skeeball, air hockey and pinball. You get unlimited play on all games for hours for one set price. I took them once last summer and they loved it.
I’m trying to decide on my goals for the new year. The list has to be short, important and achievable.
I’m having a cup of coffee. It doesn’t taste that good somehow.
I’m trying to decide on my goals for the new year. The list has to be short, important and achievable.
Saturday, December 24
Here I am pecking away with one finger on my iPad keyboard early in the morning. I’m the only one up and I’m sitting on the couch with my blanket and dog with my cup of coffee with a splash of vanilla almond milk in it. I stayed up too late with Mike watching The West Wing with him. He’s never watched it before. I’ve watched it but have fallen asleep and missed many parts. I fell asleep again last night with my head on Mike’s lap. Some time after midnight I staggered in to bed but then couldn’t go back to sleep for what seemed like a long time. Once I did fall asleep I woke up a few more times and just stayed up around 5:45.
It’s beastly cold outside and last night the fierce wind sounded like an ice age was upon us. It’s pretty quiet out there now. Hennessy watched TV until around ten then Mike told her to go to bed. I was pretty sleepy and out of it by then. Mike always takes the dog out to pee at night. Bitzi only weighs about 7 1/2 pounds and doesn’t like to go out in bad weather.
Yesterday Hennessy and I made some cookies and packaged them up to take to a couple neighbor ladies who have brought us banana bread. Due to my cardiac rehab program and trying to lose weight and get healthier I hadn’t made holiday sweets like usual so we just made a small batch of cookies and packaged them up. Hennessy had two but at least I didn’t pig out on them. I also haven’t sent out any Christmas cards. I have a whole stack of ones we’ve received and I meant to send them one back. It’s too late now. I’ll send a note to a couple people.
I’ve just withdrawn from a lot of people and things. I’m trying to direct my energy on what really matters. Social media has become one big “la-Dee-da look at me “ boastfest or marketing scam. I’m getting pretty grouchy in my old age. I want truth, sincerity and purity.
The Chicago Bears play the Buffalo Bills at Soldier Field in Chicago at noon today. Although I initially had high hopes for the Bears the past several weeks have been disappointing despite quarter back Justin Fields’ displays of excellence. I’ll watch the game today mostly due to the ridiculously cold conditions.
Yesterday I took Hennessy to our Sun City lodge to look at all the Christmas decorations. It is done very nicely and we got some walking in.
I guess I sounded pretty negative before but I actually am very grateful for my blessings. We have have 6 healthy adult children, twelve healthy grandchildren, healthy siblings. Mike’s mom is eighty-four and doing okay despite her cancer treatment. We have all we need. I am so blessed for all I have and I’m absolutely sure I have an angel on my shoulder. She has saved my ass many times!
Hennessy and I took Bitzi and delivered the gift bags with cookies we made to two neighbor ladies. I made a pot of chicken vegetable soup and it’s simmering on the stove. The Bears game is on. Mike is explaining football to Hennessy. I started watching Grumpy Old Men on my IPad with my headphones on. We’re going to the store after the game.
Tomorrow we’re going to my step sons house in Glen Ellen. Tuesday I’ll take Hennessy home to Norris and bring 3 of my grandsons home for a few days.
Henna is in the whirlpool tub. I just mixed up a batch of hash brown casserole and put it in the crockpot for morning. We went to a couple stores then came home and took the dog out several times trying to get her to do her business it’s no luck. She doesn’t like the cold weather. It’s a problem.
Thursday, December 22
Somehow I just deleted everything I had typed. I am so rusty typing, especially on this small new iPad keyboard. It’s early morning and no one else is awake. Hennessy came home with me yesterday and she’s still sleeping in the spare bedroom and Mike is sleeping. in our bedroom. It’s cold and the house is chilly. We’re supposed to get a snowstorm with blizzard conditions and dropping temperatures starting later this morning. I have to go to cardiac rehab at 9:1 and then I have four days off and need to find a way to exercise.
Christmas is in three days and I need to decide what I’m cooking so I can shop for the stuff but so far I haven’t. I’d better hurry up or it will be much harder. I guests I should go today.
I have no clue why there is this gray dot floating around on my screen—no it’s not a floater in my field of vision, it’s an actual gray dot. I must have accidentally hit some key to put on some feature of the keyboard I don’t know about. Speaking about that, Tuesday was the first day of me taking my new Honda Passport for a long drive by myself . We bought it in November and I’ve driven it around the neighborhood quite a bit but whenMike and I go out he usually insists on driving so until Tuesday I hadn’t’t put gas in it or knew a bunch of the buttons and controls. It has lots of new bells and whistles on it so that was interesting. It drives like a dream on the interstate. It feels so solid and stable and smooth- much better than my other cars. I’m happy with it. Yeah, for my birthday we got the new car and new iPad.
I’ve been trying to cut down on exposure to crowds lately with all the colds, flus, Covid, RSV going around. I’ve been on several new prescription meds since the heart attack in OSeptember and I don’t want to get sick and take more meds and get my health knocked down even more.
Shortly I have to get dressed and try to wake up Henna and get her some breakfast. I need to leave here around 9 to drive the 2 miles to the hospital rehab building. I always feel better after .I go . I should have been exercising like this long ago. Things always come up and get in the way. It’s all about priorities. Exercise has to come first.
I still don’t know what the floating gray dot it. I don’t remember seeing it when I tested the keyboard before. Now the bold control keeps coming on randomly. I have got to get used to this keyboard! Okay, face it-I’m old and out of the loop.
I’m not up on all the rapidly changing devices and technology……Sheesh….