Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Half full

Being positive is hard. See? I was just negative about being positive. Oops. I've been trying to be more positive lately, and it's been a challenge. It's alerted me as to just how negative I am. I can't imagine that I'm all that pleasant to be around, what with all of my complaining and my negative attitude and such. I'll keep trying, but no promises. I mean: I'm sure it'll be great! I'm also trying not to swear, and it's really tricky, that one. I've tried before unsuccessfully. I think I may have been a sailor in a past life, and I brought the mouth with me.

Anyways, I'm getting out of town for a couple of days and I'm so excited! I haven't been out of town just for fun in quite a while. I think it was in late May when I went to San Francisco for a conference and stayed 4 extra days for a mini-vacation. Which was awesome and incredible and briefly made me want to be a northwest coaster. Then, I looked up cost of living info, and that's just not gonna happen. I've got student loans. And a habit of eating. Plus, I'm a tad nervous about earthquakes and giant wild fires. But that's just me.

So, NY here I come! When I get back, I'll review the MVP bus company (supposedly there's wifi on the bus for those of us who have panic attacks when we're away from the internet for more than an hour at a time) and all of the delicious food I eat (vegan Thanksgiving and veggie dim sum!). I won't review the couple of friends I'll get to see, as that might be inappropriate and anyways, I expect that seeing them will be a five star experience. See, I'm all about being positive.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

It's baaa-aaack.

And I'm not talking about the snow. Rawr.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Descriptions of some things that are pretty and some that are not

Dear Internets,

Today it snowed. It was AWESOME. I woke up, fed the cats, went to put the cat food can in the recycling, and there it was right outside my kitchen window. Snow. Giant, fluffy, white flakes of snow. Gore-gee-us. More please. It made me happy all the day long.

Also today, I went to my orthopedist to follow up on my infected surgical incision (see below for whining). It was quite a surprise when he decided to clean it out with pointy tweezers and sharp scissors. It's amazing how deeply those implements can go into a completely un-anesthetized leg. Did I mention that the pointiness? And the sharpness? And that there were no drugs involved? Not even a good knock over the head with a blunt object so as to dull my senses, particularly the one of pain. Why why why? There was bleeding and gagging and hurting and gnashing of teeth, and that was just the doctor. Ba-dump bump. Any-who, there is no longer any visible white or yellow grodiness on/in my leg, thanks to pointy instruments and the weird fascination my ortho has for gross things. Hopefully, it'll be all healed up soon! Just 5 more days of crazy antibiotics.

Fingers crossed! You know -- for more snow and less pus.

Yours in the spreading of unsolicited information,


Wednesday, November 19, 2008

The Ice Man Cometh

Did I miss fall? Did I sleep through it? I mean, I know I like a good nap, but I'm no Rip Van Winkle. I remember a couple of breezy days, noticing that the leaves were changing colors. One day, I relished the canopy of red and orange that I drove beneath on my way to school. The next, I became downright giddy when I turned a corner after driving to a friend's house (to pick her up to go to school -- do you see a pattern?), and there were leaves covering the street and the baseball diamond in the city park to my left. Gorgeous fall. And then it was gone. Now, today, a high in the low 30s. A wind chill of 15. Nearly all of the leaves have been blown off of the trees. How did that happen so quickly? The saddest part? I only got to crunch through the leaves once. There's always next year, right?

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

My, but you've changed.

Where have I been (when not oversharing about leg grossness)? Not procrastinating! I've surprised myself, my friends, and my advisor by actually doing some work on my dissertation. Weird! I might actually finish the program one day. A girl can dream...

I've also been doing a hella lot of cooking. I think it's fall motivation. Soups galore, blueberry oatmeal crumb bars, and plenty of other yummy stuff. Yay for fall!

Well, I think I'll go do some laundry and draft a general cover letter for job searching purposes. Ah, the exciting life of a grad student.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

The never-ending saga of Leggie 2.0

I was so proud of myself. I didn't whine when I had my two leg surgeries. Sure, they were uncomfortable and they inconvenienced me, but they really were far easier than I had expected, and I was grateful. The right leg (the first surgery) has healed amazingly! The scar is small and is bound to fade away to almost nothing. All in all, the whole experience has been pretty positive. Below is evidence of smooth-sailing.

That's all over now. One word -- infection. Yup, the site of my second surgery is infected. It's runny and gross and, according to my orthopedist/surgeon and his new physician's assistant, it smells like feet. Apparently, that's a sign of a particular bacteria.

Here's how it went down. Skip this paragraph if you're easily grossed out or are eating dinner. Okay, I went to the doc Monday for what was supposed to be my final follow-up appointment. I even brought some muffins for my doc and his awesome receptionist to thank them and say goodbye (I've been their patient for over a year now). BUT, when the doc took the steri-strips off of the cut, it exploded. Goo everywhere. The looks on the doc and PA's faces were a touch worrisome. They were seriously freaked out. They stammered amongst themselves, squeezed it, smelled it (what a horrible job!), squeezed it some more, pulled the edges apart (the whole length was open and you could see down into my leg -- the incision had basically not healed at all), and discussed some options. They mentioned giving me an immediate antibiotic IV, mass doses of drugs (varying depending on what kind of bacteria it was), and scheduling me for surgery the next day to open it and clean it out.

Thankfully, they went for the relatively most conservative approach -- drugs. So now, I'm on a crazy huge dose of Augmentin (1000 mg twice a day! Thank heavens I don't have a negative reaction to amoxicillin -- I hear it can be pretty awful) to try to knock out the nastiness. I go back to the doc on Friday to get it checked out. If the drugs have done their duty, yay! If not, I "get" to go back into surgery Tuesday to get it opened up and cleaned out. Charming.

Meanwhile, I'm taking photos once a day when I change the dressing so that I can track the healing. My doc called today to check on it/make sure Wound (its nickname) hadn't exploded again or begun attacking small animals and children.

I wasn't prepared for this stuff. And I'm afraid that I haven't handled it in the best way possible. I have become super grumpy. Yesterday, I was so whiny that my office mate brought me lunch to try to cheer me up. I can't deal with the idea that there is this extended family of bacteria hanging out in my leg. It's just really disturbing. So, fingers crossed that Wound makes a hasty farewell, never to be seen again. Goodbye, and good riddance!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Things I thought about last night when I couldn't sleep

1. Games to play at a bar or in your nearest hipster hangout:

Hipster or lumberjack?
Hipster or Matt Dillon's character from Over the Edge?

2. How delicious would it be to pan fry patties made from vegan cheese grits and serve them with collards and red-eye gravy?

3. I really need to get a back-up drive for my dissertation stuff.

4. OBAMA!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The end.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

It's for your own good.

I'm taking a brief hiatus from posting. I have a cold and am quite whiny about it. Apparently, leg surgeries I can handle; congestion and sore throat makes me into a tiny baby. So, I'll see you when I'm well again. Which may be never. Did I mention the whininess?