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Um, NOT streaking

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

This is one of those times when life is just bulging. My trip to help care for my dad (& his wife, who has mild MS) in the wake of his heart surgery has been put off, as the doctors are still trying to get his heart rate stabilized & waiting to see whether he'll need a pacemaker. Two other family members are taking turns with him this week at the Cleveland Clinic, & I'll be going to his home in Arkansas in mid-August instead. Working this out involved making many phone calls to relatives over the weekend.

The shift in plans allows me to be here for my daughter, who is getting ready for her move to Colombia on August 4. Sunday & last night I spent good chunks of time unpacking & repacking some bins she is storing in our basement, looking for her college diploma, which it turns out she needs to get her visa. Finally I found it, at the bottom of a bin holding mostly sports trophies & plaques. She is driving into the city to pick it up right now & is VERY grateful.

Also, I'll be able to attend her farewell party this coming Sunday afternoon without getting up at an ungodly hour that morning to drive north from Arkansas to make it.

Last Friday we finally closed on our refinanced mortgage, which nabbed us a new lower (& FIXED) interest rate. The process had dragged on for months & brought lots of stress at different points. It is a huge relief to have it done.

Last week I also finished my editing of the grammar chapter of the Manual of Style--& was complimented on my many good suggestions & "elegant fixes."

So good things are happening, but it's a lot to handle. At some level my body is in rebellion, with insomnia & tiredness & relative lethargy, which then becomes yet another Thing To Deal With. I'm too tired to track even the bits of exercise I've managed to do. My shoulder continues to hurt & I really should call the doctor to get a PT referral, but I can't imagine how I could add those sessions to my week.

I'd like to keep up with all my Sparkfriends, but I'll probably be slow getting around to your pages & leaving comments. Now you know why.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PJBOKC 8/20/2009 10:23PM

    I fully understand about your busyness. Ruth, take care of yourself. You really need some PT. They could give you some exercises you could do at home so you wouldn't have to go for some many sessions in the clinic. Sure hope you're taking care of that shoulder. If a shoulder is painful for a long time, people tend to avoid using it to full range of motion and can get a condition called "frozen shoulder' (adhesive capsulitits), which can limit movement of shoulder to a significant degree. It's very painful, and the PT for it is also very painful. That's what happened with my shoulder in 2002. Sometimes they give you anesthesia to move the shoulder and get some of the range of motion back, then follow it with PT.

I feel like the grim reaper here, but want you to take care of that shoulder, girl. It's important.

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CZARINA_TV 7/29/2009 9:30AM

    You definitely have a lot going on! Congrats on just holding everything together and just keep pushing forward. You'll get through it all.

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TINKMCD 7/29/2009 8:03AM

    {{{{{{{{{{{{{{Ruth}}}}}}}}}}}}}}>
Insomnia and persistent shoulder pain can't be making it any easier to cope with all the challenges you're dealing with.

Please take care of yourself, and don't let concern about keeping up with your SparkFriends consume even a millisecond of your energy.



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SHANSHE 7/28/2009 3:00PM

    WOW! It sounds crazy! Just be sure to take care of YOU, that is most important, we will still be here when life's burdens have alleviated some!
Shan

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PITTMAN09 7/28/2009 1:36PM

  Kudos to you for even logging in with that schedule! :)

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Streaking!

Monday, July 20, 2009

After my success at dragging myself out of bed to go on a run/walk this morning (later & shorter than I had intended, but much better than not going!), AND at digging out my PT shoulder exercise pages & doing some of those over my lunch break, I decided to add a nudge & motivation by starting Sparkstreaks for both.

Today's exercise doesn't show up on either streak on my page because I started them after the fact, but hopefully the numbers will increase steadily in the weeks to come.

And hopefully my left shoulder will get stronger & stop hurting when I try to do simple things like reaching slightly behind me to pull the signal cord on the bus.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PJBOKC 8/20/2009 10:16PM

    I hope the shoulder if fully rehabilitated now. You're definitely doing the right thing - and will probably always need to do some shoulder stretching and strengthening.

I had a shoulder injury (torn rotator cuff) in 2002. I rehab'd totally with exercies and PT - no surgery. Some of the patients in PT with me had surgery for the same thing. I actually did better than they did - but even now, I have to stretch my shoulder and can really tell when I haven't done so for a while.

Keep it up!!!

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SHANSHE 7/24/2009 4:14AM

    WOO HOO for you! Keep the streaks going strong Ruth, you are an amazing strong and wonderful woman!
Shan

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CTEMPLE 7/21/2009 6:31PM

    emoticon
Claudia

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CZARINA_TV 7/20/2009 8:35PM

    Good luck with your new SparkStreaks! I set up a few and it's definitely helped me reinforce some of my good habits.

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BABY_GIRL69 7/20/2009 6:16PM

    emoticonTake care!

Blessings,

Dee emoticon emoticon

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Poetry helps me recombobulate

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Yesterday was a kinda disappointing day. I slept in because of having insomnia various nights in the previous week, & then instead of going out running I started right in on my weekend cooking. Made muesli, dhal, a batch of brown rice, & a new recipe for chili with soy protein instead of meat. For supper I invented a yummy greens dish--orange pepper, oregano, kale & lamb's quarter (a weed harvested by our CSA!), & pine nuts sauteed in olive oil. I also did a lot of dishwashing--but by the time supper was done I didn't want to wash any more dishes, so the pots from the day's cooking were left to soak.

I did a few hours of freelance editing too. And I did all the final planning of the upcoming church service, which took an hour or so. But none of it felt like enough, & I never did go out running. I went to bed kinda down--but I knew it was mostly just my mood, so I prayed for perspective.

When I write it out, I see that I actually accomplished quite a bit. If I had pulled myself together to run, it would have been a VERY productive Saturday.

Church today was really lovely, even though some of our struggles with a not-exactly-perfect leadership transition were aired publicly. It feels good to be in a community where disappointments & frustrations with each other can be expressed & are not death-knells.

This afternoon I relaxed a bit, washed up the pots from yesterday, & then spent a few hours with poems. I did some revisions & sent out two batches to journals. Later my husband & I went out to try a new ice cream shop & did a couple of errands on the way home.

It is amazing how much calmer & happier I feel now. Worship steadies me, & so does poetry--working with the words themselves & also making submissions for publication. Now I'm facing the new week with a fresh sense of focus.

I'm going to get to bed by 10:30 tonight, & tomorrow morning, even if I haven't slept very well, I'm going to get up at 6:30 & go running on the campus track.

My other promise to myself: I'm going to start up PT exercises again to help my shoulder heal from that nasty fall in May. I will program a daily reminder at work so that I don't forget.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PJBOKC 8/20/2009 10:12PM

    As I was reading through this blog, I was thinking how much you were doing in one day, then was so glad to read you realized how very much you'd accomplished. You certainly have no cause to feel down about missing a running session when you've accomplished all you did!

Hope all is going well with your church now. Change is always difficult, but can also be exciting to have a NEW future.

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SHANSHE 7/24/2009 4:13AM

    Mood can really throw us for a loop sometimes! Worshiping our Creator DOES have that calming, renewing quality to it!

Glad things turned out well.
Shan

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TINKMCD 7/20/2009 12:56PM

    Yay for getting recombobulated! (And for inventing a word for it!)

Hope your week is wonderful!

emoticon

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CTEMPLE 7/20/2009 5:22AM

    Dear Ruthie glad you worked your Saturday out it wasn't bad at all, purely mood sometimes.
Nothing better than food for the spirit like poetry and faith if you have the privilege of having it.
emoticon Claudia

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My work, my appetite

Thursday, July 09, 2009

I love my work. Since I was a small child I have loved messing with words, & as an adult I get paid to do it! What a privilege.

Nowadays I work for the company that puts out the Chicago Manual of Style, which is the go-to "editor's bible" for most book publishers in the US, including all I have ever worked for. And a new edition will be out next year, & I am one of the editors of it! That's a huge honor AND a huge responsibility. I am editing the grammar chapter, which really MUST be absolutely accurate or we may be sneered at by reviewers. And I actually am finding things to correct or to argue about with the chapter's author, so it's going more slowly than I would like . . .

It makes me want to eat. Fortunately there is not a vending machine on my floor! It also makes me want to sip a beer, because I am concentrating so hard that I start to get tension headaches. Needless to say, beer is not available in the building. emoticon emoticon emoticon

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PJBOKC 8/20/2009 10:06PM

    Ruth, what an honor!! I know you'll do a great job.

I "hear" you getting in touch with your feelings and how they affect eating.

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TINKMCD 7/10/2009 7:15AM

    Having edited or proofread a number of grammar textbooks *and* a student dictionary, and knowing the responsibility I feel to make them "bullet-proof," I can well imagine the awesome added pressures of working on CMS's grammar chapter. An entire generation of North American editors will be influenced by what's in that book.

Here's a saying that has helped me curb stress-related eating in the past: "If hunger is not the problem, food is not the solution."

P.S. Are you keeping your water intake high? Tension headaches are sometimes about dehydration, no? And even if they're not, the fact that it'll make you get up more often to go and pee may give you a little mental and physical break: on your way to and from the loo, you can concentrate on loosening your shoulder and neck muscles, breathing deeply, and repeating some calming mantra (or visualizing a place/activity that relaxes you).

emoticon

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CZARINA_TV 7/9/2009 9:22PM

    Good luck! My old job always had extra cake and cookies around and it was hard to not take a slice, especially when it's a hard day and need a little pick-me-up...

I wondered if that's what you did! I have a friend who works for the MLA... You should have a West Side Story-style rumble with sharpened pencils.

Comment edited on: 7/9/2009 9:24:40 PM

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CTEMPLE 7/9/2009 8:08PM

    Pity! I feel like that too when under a bit of pressure.
Claudia

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SHANSHE 7/9/2009 7:43PM

    Glad that all the things you want to do to deal with your stress are unavailable, but... what can you do to relieve it without those things? I think you did it, with a blog!

I hope the editing comes along at a faster clip!

Hugs,
Shan

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BABY_GIRL69 7/9/2009 6:55PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon have one on me.

Blessings,

Dee emoticon emoticon

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Two posts in a day--but I have to celebrate this somewhere!

Friday, June 26, 2009

My daughter C was very happy in her job at a suburban YMCA until a new director came in recently to head up her program--& sure enough C was fired a week & a half ago. She was excited to get a phone interview with a Y in another state; that's coming up this Monday. But . . .

This afternoon she was offered a job in the country of her birth, Colombia!!! She will (if everything works out) be a PE teacher at a bilingual school where she served as an assistant teacher in an internship after she graduated from college. Her work would start August 10! The principal has already offered her the position & wants her to call this coming Tuesday at a certain time. It's great that she can test out her inclination to choose the Colombia job by first going through the Y interview on Monday.

Even though I'll miss her a LOT when she goes, I am just thrilled for her. This is not just making do; it represents growth for her, & a clarifying of her sense of calling. Yay!!! emoticon emoticon emoticon

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PJBOKC 8/20/2009 10:04PM

    We can always be comforted that there is a plan much bigger for our lives than we can imagine. God is in control, and he has a plan for C.

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SHANSHE 6/27/2009 11:10PM

    Sooo happy for you and your daughter! Great that she could do this and you would CERTAINLY miss her, but it is nice to have some celebratory news in the midst of everything else, right?
Hugs,
Shan

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CZARINA_TV 6/27/2009 4:04PM

    Congratulations Ruth! I'm sure she'll figure out if she's up for it, but it really sounds good.

emoticon emoticon

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CTEMPLE 6/27/2009 4:36AM

    Oh Ruthie, so good and so far! What a bag of mixed feelings.
Colombia es tan dificil.
Claudia

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