There is a rapture on the lonely shore;
There is society, where none intrudes.
By the deep sea, and music in its roar:
I love not man the less, but Nature more...

-Lord Byron

Definition of Walkabout :

a short period of wandering as an occasional interruption of regular work
Showing posts with label damn health. Show all posts
Showing posts with label damn health. Show all posts

01 June 2010

Allium update

So while the rest of America was enjoying a three day holiday filled with BBQ's, parties, drinks, and fun outdoor activities, I sslloowwllyy tried to recuperate.

The heart monitor was removed this morning ( causing more unintentional chest man-scaping) and I should have the results of that soon. I also get to visit a cardiologist ( Happy Happy Joy Joy!) on Friday.

After seeing Dr #1, I went straight to Dr. #2 to get needles put into my spinal facet ( it's like acupuncture without having anyone of Asian descent in the room). My back actually feels somewhat improved.

After that, I tried to keep myself calm the rest of the day with work, waiting for the results of my blood work. That call came about 4pm. I was just waiting to hear the news " sorry buddy, but you inhaled a nasty fungal spore while in the AZ desert. Looks like no trip to Africa for you this year", or God forbid, it was something even worse....

But everything was normal. I didn't quite know how to take the news. Could it be possible that my subconscious mind triggered my lungs to not function properly? And if so, why the hell would Mr. Brain do that?

Or it could be my heart. On one of my many ER trips last week, they did mention that something did not look quite right with my atrial valve. But they didn't seem to think it was too serious, or that it would cause my other symptoms.

So with me feeling better today, I thought I would try a more natural approach, Garlic.  Garlic promotes the well-being of the heart and immune systems with antioxidant properties and helps maintain healthy blood circulation. One of garlic's most potent health benefits includes the ability to enhance the body's immune cell activity. Besides, I love everything about it...taste, smell, texture, mmmmm. And.....
  • Builders of the ancient pyramids were said to eat garlic daily for enhanced endurance and strength
  • Roman emperors couldn't eat enough of it, as it was considered an antidote to poisons which were very popular in certain political circles of the time.
  • The Spanish have long used garlic as a preservative which helps to add creadence to it's anti-bacterial properties and whole books have been devoted to the health benefits of garlic.
  • European beliefs once considered garlic a powerful ward against demons, werewolves, and vampires. ( just in case I've been cursed or had a spell put upon me)   


 I don't really use recipes. I felt like having my homemade salsa, and made a bean dip for dinner with my natural home remedy ( copious amounts of garlic to the dip). Threw in fat free refried beans, organic black beans and a little cheese.

It's what's for dinner. What can it hurt, and maybe, just maybe, it will help.

30 May 2010

amateur movie reviews take my mind temporarily off my current health situation, and to help pass the time ( 3 day weekends drag when you are feeble), I watched the following yesterday :

Arlington Road ( released in 1999, starring Jeff Bridges and Tim Robbins)
This is such a thought provoking movie about trust, terrorism, and how one interprets the meaning of freedom for one's self and one's family. I've seen it several times, and I'm always left blown away at the end. Any movie that leaves one thinking is a good movie, in my opinion.

The Cove ( released in 2009) is a truly fascinating, yet disturbing documentary about the annual killing of dolphins in a National Park at Taiji, Wakayama, in Japan from an anti–dolphin-hunting campaigner's point of view. I first read Dori's review about this on her blog, and how she and her BF went to a private screening, and were silent driving home because of brutal imagery and thought provoking nature of this documentary. A must see.
Eastern Promises ( released in 2007) is a Russian crime drama. A realistic portrayal of the Russian mob, and the violence is hard to stomach, but the story and acting is top notch. I'm also a Naomi Watts fan, and she is superb.

So that's it. My Saturday. I'm not complaining. And thank you to all who has sent me their 'get well wishes'. It helps lift my spirit more than you'll know.


28 May 2010

Unintentional manscaping and other dilemmas

Where do I start?
Since my blog is a personal journal of sorts and my way of documenting events in my life ( both good, bad, and indifferent) I'll recap the highlights since last Friday.

  •  Last Friday -While hiking here I became really short of breath. So much so that it took me over an hour to walk about a third of a mile to my car. I thought to myself, this is a strange new and unusual symptom to my chronic back pain. Made it back to the hotel, and flew home in the morning.
  • Saturday/Sunday - Had a great weekend full of festivities. Still had back pain, but managed it with western medicine.
  • Sunday night - At the 'rents for dinner, and back pain was worse and slight shortness of breath was noticeable.
  • Monday - work was work, but shortness of breath was more noticeable while just trying to have conversations. Went to gym, swam OK, but after getting out of the hot tub, almost fainted.....later that night, was busy packing for work trip, running up and down the house stairs. Bro and sis-in-law came to pick up an extra BBQ that I gave to them. They made the comment about me being so "winded". I blew it off, and told them it was just a new symptom in my battle of my seemingly incurable back pain.
  • Tuesday - went to get another spinal facet injection. Could barely speak. Doctors cancelled injection as they were very concerned. Ordered tons of tests.
  • Wednesday - Had Venous Doppler ( negative), chest X-ray ( nothing to be overly concerned about) and MRI ( nothing). Went back to Dr. with results. Could barely stand up and talk. They admitted me to Davis medical center ER. Had blood drawn, met nasty nurse, had EKG ( normal). Doctor said that my symptoms were "weird" and sent me home ( four hours later).
  • Thursday - Sitting at desk at work. Felt terrible. Couldn't breathe. Stood up and the world went fuzzy. Made it home for lunch, but laid on couch trying to hopefully feel better. Looked at clock and it was time to go back to work. Stood up, grabbed the wall, and the world went dark. Don't know for how long. Scared in a way I have never been before, I drove back to work. Stumbled into my boss's office and collapsed on the floor. Massive panic ensued from my very concerned co-workers. 911 called. Rushed to hospital. Had another EKG, ECHO of my heart, then a CT scan. All tests showed nothing significant. Given sedative medication. In ER for 5 hours. Preliminary diagnosis of hyperventilation syndrome and volume depletion, but was told ( and I appreciated the honesty) that my case was "weird" and they quite frankly didn't know what was wrong. Prescription given for Zanex. Parents took me home. Passed out for the rest of the night.
  • Friday ( today) - Work told me to stay home and rest ( Thank You!). Woke up and felt weak but OK. Thought I should shower. Did my morning routine ( shower, brush teeth, get dressed) and started to feel the dizziness and shortness of breath again. Laid on floor and called my doctor. Dad came to pick me up. Doctor very concerned. Blood work showed elevated WBC and neutrophils. Possible infection. ( maybe Arizona Valley Fever????) Prescribed a Z-pack ( what they give for Pneumonia and Bronchitis) Also put me on a heart monitor. But to do this she had to shave parts of my chest for the leads to stick....
 I also have had both arms drained for blood work several times. They look like a heroin addicts arms.

So now, instead of my awesome holiday weekend adventure I had planned, I get to lay in bed all weekend, drink all the vitamin water I want ( thanks Costco and 'rents) listen to music, watch bad TV, catch up on movies I want to see, and try not to freak out. But at least I have this little bit of advice from Trudi, which always makes me smile.....

If anyone reading this has a clue to what might be happening to me, I welcome your thoughts. I see a cardiologist next Friday. Stay tuned.....

12 May 2010

because I don't own a gun....

How can it be 630 in the morning, and I’m running late?
I search for my alarm, but it’s nowhere to be found.

The morning routine is just that. I arrive to work late….
I have no coffee, so the morning is a dull aching fog I swim thru
Until my time comes.  Doctor to see. First time since 1983?

Arrive on time to piles of more papers. She smiles at me as she hands me a pen.
 I think the smile was for show.

In a cramped, tiny room with a stranger, trying to make polite conversation.
I try, but she saw right through me, and I her.

Doctor, please help me, are the words that escape my lips. The pain!

Lie down. Stand up. Shirt off. Pants down.

How are you, he asks? He doesn’t wait for my reply, but looks at my paperwork.
I usually wait until forty to do this exam, but since you are here…

Shouldn’t you at least buy me dinner first, I think? Then close my eyes and
Let my mind go blank.

I hear a glove snap, tells me he’ll call me
And the door closes.

Back to work. It seems like all the clowns wore their ass hats today.
Why wasn’t I notified?

Sometimes I feel like a termite, choking on a splinter.

31 March 2010


Healthcare is no laughing matter, it's a joke. Having not been "officially" to a doctor's office since 1983 ( when I snuck out of my parent's house late at night to go reek havoc in the WB, and upon returning forgot to put the window back in it's proper place, so the window fell on my head later that night while I was sleeping causing me to black out, bleed profusely, almost end up a vegetable, and get many stitches in my head) I thought I would document the experience this time around.....

Part 1 : the waiting room ( 15 minutes)
Part 2 : more waiting ( 21 minutes)
( shouldn't this be occupied?)
     ( apprehension, pain, wonderment, stress,
all outlined in my expression)

Part 3 : Preliminary Diagnosis  - T11-12 Polyradiculopathy is what the Doc tells me as he non-chalently points to the object below.... ( 1.5 minutes)
But what does it all mean, I ask thru fear and pain filled eyes? That is a good question, he responds.......( 30 seconds and I was out the door....)
more to come.....