Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Footie pajamas

The last couple of weeks have been really hard. I'm trying to finish up a couple of big projects at work that have big problems, and combined with the time that I've had to be off because of my knee, I'm staying at work later and later. Last night I didn't leave until about 8:30. I went out at 7:00 and moved my car around to the front of the building so I wouldn't be walking down to the (sort of) scary parking lot after dark.

I got home, microwaved some leftover macaroni casserole, talked to Bob for a little while while I ate, sat down in front of the computer and went to Second Life for an hour or so, and was in bed by 11:00. I had a few places written down that I wanted to visit, so I was pretty focused.

I went to the Sprint Center and got a free t-shirt:

One of my favorite places to shop at Disney World is Mitsukoshi, a huge Japanese department store chain. I ran across a brief mention that they had a presence in Second Life. I can't remember now where I saw it. (Edited to add: Just found it: New World Notes) Anyway, I went there last night.

There wasn't really a whole lot there, but I got a free kimono.

And then I found an extremely cool store called Pushbutton Industries, where I bought this extremely cool sweater:

And blue footie pajamas:

Good night.

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Thursday, July 19, 2007

What I've been doing lately

What I've been doing lately:

  • Working
  • More working
  • Going to physical therapy
  • Second Life

And that's pretty much it.

Work is moderately insane right now. I can't stand to look at the whiteboard in my office because there are 15 projects on it that I'm in charge of, several of those with multiple items. Work is fine, it's just . . . busy.

My knee -- well, it's better, I think, but definitely not ALL better. But then again, it's not cancer, like my friend Liora is dealing with, so when you look at it that way, it's not bad at all. Like my dad says, "It's not bad, as pain goes."

I've been going to physical therapy twice a week for a month. They do all kinds of things to me there -- biofeedback, muscle stimulation, icing, heat, ultrasound, exercises. I ride the stationary bike, and today I practiced my balance. It's actually fairly enjoyable. I like the people there, and, except for the parts where I'm actually having to exercise, it feels kind of like a spa day. I actually fell asleep this morning while my leg was being iced. Well, you know, a spa day where they sort of torture you a little bit.

After I went on Tuesday, my knee felt pretty good all day. Bob and I went out to eat, and it felt fine, just a little pain (not bad, as pain goes). We got home, I went upstairs, sat down on the edge of the bed and took off my shoes, and when I stood up, had the WORST pain I think I've had so far just SHOOT through my knee. I could barely walk after that, and it hurt all day yesterday even though I wore an elastic brace on it.

I talked to the therapist about it this morning, and he said he thinks it's probably an endurance thing. He says my leg is getting stronger, but I'd probably overdone it, and it just gave out on me. So today after therapy, after my leg warmed up from being in the ice machine, I put the neoprene thing on again, and it's feeling better.

I've been taking some fairly strong anti-inflammatory medication. I'd like to stop taking it, because I know it isn't good for my stomach, but the therapist thinks I should keep taking it for about another month. So I called the drugstore to refill it, knowing I didn't have any more refills left, and they called the doctor, but he wouldn't give me a refill without seeing him. So on top of having two physical therapy appointments next week, I also have a doctor's appointment. Lucky thing my boss is understanding about that stuff. I've been staying most nights until 7:00 or 7:30 to make up for it, though.

Also on Tuesday, the therapist fitted me for orthotics. He says that should help get me back in alignment and fix my knee; they ought to, they're expensive enough! And insurance doesn't cover them. Why would that be?? I guess they'd pay for knee surgery if I ended up needing that. I was telling the PT intern that it's only recently that insurance started paying for mammograms. They would, of course, pay for breast cancer, if you got that. I guess the thinking was that if they paid for mammograms when you didn't really need one, every woman would get one. But the odds of getting breast cancer are pretty small, and even if they had to pay $100,000 or something, they'd probably still be ahead.

Don't get me started on insurance. It's a racket. You have to have it, but when you need it, they think of any way they can to not pay. Grrrr.

By the time I get home at 8:00 or 8:30, I don't want to do much other than sit down in front of the computer and play Second Life. Well, not play -- mostly shop.

I got attacked about three weeks ago. As "attacked" as a little pixel person can be, by another little pixel person. I was in an isolated area and some guy ran up to me and knocked me down and shouted "Take off your clothes!" In retrospect, yeah, it's ridiculous, but at the time it felt threatening, and I couldn't teleport out of there fast enough.

It happened again over the weekend, only this time it was two guys. They crowded me up against a wall and were basically just making fun of me. I should have told them to f*ck off or I would report them, but it made me uncomfortable enough that, again, I ran away.

In talking to a friend about it, he thought maybe it was because I still looked like a newbie. I kind of liked the way I looked, but most of the people who've been around awhile have customized their avatars a great deal; it's pretty obvious who's new and who's not. (He also said if it ever happened again, and he was online, to let him know and he'd come defend my honor, which was sweet.)

So anyway, I gave myself a makeover. I bought a new skin, got new make-up, bought new hair and clothes, and now, even though I keep walking into walls, I don't look like a newbie anymore, even though I really am:

New Harry Potter tomorrow!

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Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Pink Moon

Further to my last post about happiness, when I think of it, I've been writing down a list of things that make me happy, sort of like a gratitude list (I do that sometimes, too). One of the things on my list should be a husband who knows when I need to get out of town, and makes it happen.

He got Saturday and Sunday off last weekend, so we went down to Bennett Spring State Park on a whim. He had to work until 10:00, so we wouldn't get there until after midnight, and he had to work on Monday, so it would be a short trip. But a short trip is better than no trip.

When I got home Friday night I packed my stuff--Bob had already done his packing that morning before he went to work--and got everything ready to go. He got home around 10:30, packed up the van, and we took off. Remarkably, I stayed awake for most of the trip, falling asleep only toward the end, when Bob woke me up to look at the moon. It was huge, and pink! I don't know why, exactly, but it was definitely beautiful. We got to the park about 1:30 a.m. Everything was quiet and dark. When I called and reserved a cabin, the woman on the phone said they would leave a map on the door of the store, and would tape our key to the cabin door.

Bob got out and studied the map, then we drove over to the cabin. As we passed a picnic area, we saw three deer standing as still as statues. Such a lovely welcome! Our room was small, but fine. We never sleep very well away from home, but since we got in so late, we intended to sleep in anyway, so it didn't really matter. I woke up in the middle of the night needing to go to the bathroom, and I had a very disorienting moment of not knowing where I was.

My first thought was that yeah, I was at Bennett Spring, then I changed my mind and thought surely I must be dreaming, that I was at home, then I realized my first thought was the right one. So funny. It was pitch dark. I couldn't see anything at all, it was like being in a cave when they turn out the lights.

I knew basically where the bathroom was--Bob woke up and said, "turn right, then turn right again," but I knew that I would probably run into something on the way. I was close to the dresser, so I opened a drawer and rummaged around in my purse until I found my flashlight, and was able to light my way to the bathroom. The next night, I left the flashlight next to the bed!

When slept in, then got up and went over to the dining lodge for a leisurely breakfast, then Bob put his waders on, and got his fishing equipment together, and I grabbed my bag and my folding chair.

We walked down to the stream, where Bob fished for a few hours, and I sat on the bank, and read. I was well supplied with all the things I needed--my tote bag with knitting and snacks, a hat ("Life is Good"), a bottle of iced tea, and a book:

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Monday, July 02, 2007

How to be happy

I really loved this Daily Om article: Be Happy Every Single Day

I have a friend who always comments that I seem to be able to find happiness in the smallest things. I'm not sure if it's something innate in me, or whether it's something I've cultivated over the years, but as I look back over my life, it seems to be something I've always been able to do.

Saturday was a miserable, rainy day, and I must have gotten in and out of the car a dozen times. And my knee was hurting, and all the climbing in and out of the car didn't help. But in the midst of the usual errands -- drive through the bank, stand in line at the post office, return the library books, buy groceries -- I found time to do a few things that truly make me happy: browsing through the bookstore, visiting the bead store, having a quiet lunch at Subway while reading my book. I spent, I think, $6 at the bookstore on a magazine, and I bought about $20 worth of beads and findings, but all in all, a fairly inexpensive day, but a fun one.

I don't always think of it as such, but I know that it is truly a blessing to be able to find happiness in the small things.

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