Welcome to the Misadventures of Widowhood blog!

In January of 2012 my soul mate of 42 years passed away after nearly 12 years of living with severe disabilities due to a stroke. I survived the first year after Don’s death doing what most widows do---trying to make sense of my world turned upside down. The pain and heartache of loss, my dark humor, my sweetest memories and, yes, even my pity parties are well documented in this blog.

Now that I’m a "seasoned widow" the focus of my writing has changed. I’m still a widow looking through that lens but I’m also a woman searching for contentment, friends and a voice in my restless world. Some people say I have a quirky sense of humor that shows up from time to time in this blog. Others say I make some keen observations about life and growing older. I say I just write about whatever passes through my days---the good, bad and the ugly. Comments welcome and encouraged. Let's get a dialogue going! Jean

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Falling Apart and Getting Together


I am lucky that I don’t have a major health issue but that’s not going to stop me from writing a whiny post about all the little stuff that’s keeping me from popping out of bed each morning with a great attitude and my arms outstretched and singing Sound of Music style. Why can’t I be like that? Maybe if I could throw open the windows and listen to the sounds of spring it would be different. But the furnace still runs, my winter coat is still needed and we’ve even got a chance of snow back in the weather forecast! The Canadian Geese haven’t even been by yet on their way up north. Skip the robins, honking geese is my signal that spring is on the way. Come to think about it, I haven’t seen a robin either. They’d have to have microwaves to defrost worms for their dinners. I want spring and if it doesn’t show up soon I’m going to have a hissy fit!

I have so much to be grateful for yadda, yadda, yadda and yet it’s a collection of petty stuff that’s dragging me down. Remember the Popeye’s Elbow (Olecranon Bursitis) I wrote about a month ago? It didn’t go away on its own like Dr. Google predicted happens in most cases. It got bigger and redder and I called the doctor’s office. They got me in the same afternoon to see the nurse practitioner. I’m allergic to some of the (shotgun type) antibiotics commonly prescribed and the one she put me on has this written in all caps on the bottle: IT’S COMMON TO HAVE DIARRHEA WITH THIS DRUG! Yippy I oh, won’t that be fun! I also have to use heat on my elbow four times a day and go back next week to get it aspirated if it’s not gone. It’s not going to be gone. My Lucky Human Being Card is expired.

Then there are the hives I’m starting to wake up with again. This has happens like clockwork every 4-5 years my entire life. So I’m taking Zyrtec to limp through until I see my internist in April. I blame him this time for messing with my thyroid meds. It’s a balancing act. According to an autoimmune specialist I saw a few years ago, thyroid antibodies are causing the chronic hives aka I’m allergic to myself. Also going on: I broke off the side of a tooth and I’ll probably need a cap. Thankfully, that doesn’t hurt because I don’t dare to make an appointment with the dentist until after I’m finished with the round of antibiotics for my elbow. Same goes for the foot doctor that I need to see about two different issues going on that interferes with me falling asleep. And speaking of sleep, when I wake up in the morning I have an eye that’s getting crusted over and doesn’t want to open without a warm compress. I feel like a one-eyed minion from Despicable Me. And if anyone brings up the fact that a year ago I was preening about going to the gym and losing the weight I gained back over this past winter, I’m going pitch a probiotic Activia cup at their head. On the good side, a split fingernail I’ve been trying to grow out for over a year is nearly to the point where I’ll no longer need to put a nylon patch on it every Sunday. See, I can still appreciate my first world blessings. 

The complaint department is closed. Now on to some fun I had this week at an Irish Pub with four of my Gathering Girls friends where I had a great corn beef sandwich and a decadent chocolate dessert. They still had green beer but I’m not a beer kind of person. Though I miss the days of having a designated driver because I would have loved having a grasshopper, if people even make those crème de menthe drinks anymore. We laughed as if we’d been drinking, though. Boy did we laugh and I managed to dig out my rusty flirting skills and practice on a couple guys who were going by our booth on the way to being seated near-by. One of the guys paused and said, “We could just sit with these ladies. Their food looks pretty good.” “I’ll slide over and share,” I said, “I can’t eat it all.” He bantered back, “You’re not shy. I like that.” I took a little teasing from one of the ladies about talking with strangers. “Quiet Jean! Who would have ever guessed you had that in you?” Answer: Almost anyone who knew me in my twenties.

We were still there laughing and talking when the guys left after their lunch and the friendly one told us to “behave yourselves, ladies.” He got ten paces away, then turned back to say, “No, don’t do that. Have fun!” We always do. The funny part is that “behavior yourself, ladies” line is one I often use on young service people---at the hair salon and in restaurants---but it’s the first time someone used it on me. Ohmygod, it was a match made in heaven and I let the old guy walk out of my life without a second thought. Just kidding. I caught up with him in the parking lot and slipped him my phone number and if you believe that, I’ve got a bridge in Brooklyn to sell you. But sixty years ago? ….well, I might have done that. It's fun to remember what it was like to be young. I just can't be it anymore. More's the pity and disappointment in that admission. ©

29 comments:

  1. I can see why you are complaining, its the little things that wear you out isn't it.
    Briony
    x

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    1. They do and they remind me that I'm not young anymore.

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  2. I, too, have just about had it with the weather. We are back to not getting above freezing during the day and Tuesday it was minus 2 when I woke up. I really did want to crawl back under the covers. It’s enough already and I am really tired of the snow boots, heavy coat and scarf and gloves. But it is a bit more hopeful here because we are seeing the geese returning, and robins and red wing blackbirds have been spotted. They think it is Spring by the light and not the cold. It will come...I keep telling myself...it will come!
    Regards
    Leze

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    1. I finally saw a robin this morning! So that's a good sign, but I do hear a lot of people complaining about our unending cycle of winter and cold temperatures. When I got my last gas and electric bills I was so grateful I can pay them. So many people struggle with those when winter drags on.

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  3. No one likes a Perpetual Pollyanna (at least I don't), so go ahead and let it out. My Personal Mantra for getting over it all is "Bitch A Lot And Wallow A Little And Then Move On."

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    1. Well put. I don't mind a pity party once in awhile in myself or others as long as we don't sit on that pity pot long enough to get a ring on our butts.

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    2. I really like this response---and I totally agree.

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    3. Feel free to borrow it any time you need it.

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  4. We all complain as we get older and then we laugh. I can't wait until April so that I can take out my Camero, my Bumblebee. In April I have my pedicure, my massage, my physical that I get every year, and the I have 4 golf lessons and April 2nd I bring the Camero in for an oil change and tire rotation. My car has been sitting in the garage for 4 months. It's raring to go but it has to have a physical. Ha,ha,ha.
    I think once the sun and warmth comes back to both you & me, we'll be OK and that I can get out and play some golf. Have you ever played golf Jean?
    Well Spring has Sprung ( it;s still freezing around here ) and our life will go on. See ya my friend in Michigan.

    Cruisin Paul

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    1. We have something in common. I get my physical in April, too. Part of my birthday present to myself. If we were neighbors, seeing your Camero coming out of storage would rank right up their with robins as a sure sign that spring is here.

      Yes, I've played golf, even took lessons and all I really learned is how much I hate the game. LOL

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  5. That is why we blog. We can throw these irritants out there and no one gets hurt and you do get a bit of sympathy back. Enjoyed your flirting. Sorry he got away. You can consider him a refresher course.

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    1. I told the girls I was just proving old ladies still know how to flirt, but in reality I consider banner with strangers just being friendly. I used to have a quick wit and once in a while it still comes out and that makes me feel good when it does. I like making people laugh.

      I know what you mean about why we blog. We can write stuff we wouldn't tell to our friends and families. They'd stop coming around and calling if we did. LOL

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  6. Oh my! I used to get hives all the time for no reason - or so I thought. I even got them from drugs after surgery like vicodin. I got them because it was Wednesday. Who knew? I feel for you Jean. I so understand.
    Yes, I too have hypothyroidism. My thyroid doc said it was partly from that but she felt it was more. She is the one who tested me for celiac. At first we just went with gluten intolerance and I gave it up. No more hives. I haven't had them once since going gluten free. I also had severe allergies. Got shots for years. Everything caused me allergy reactions. Hayfever and more. But they too stopped for me. Now if I could just get the joints to not hurt I'd be all set. That and my nails. My nails have permanent ridges vertically and rip at the ridges like crazy. Any ideas? No one else does.:-)
    I love that you women have so much fun! Great to have friends like that. Good for the soul.

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    1. We have similar allergy histories. My first one was to cow's milk in my first few months of life and to grass the first time my skin touched grass. Yadda, yadda, yadda. Tons of testing and shots over the years. I've been thinking about getting the test for celiac and you've helped me make that decision! I've also gotten obsessed with the vertical fingernail ridges! They seem to come and go. I'm guessing for me it's vitamin deficiency but when you show them to a doctor, they just brush them off as unimportant. https://www.healthline.com/health/ridges-in-fingernails

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  7. BTW, why can't you do that in your 60's and ask for his number? There is no age limit for that!!

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    1. I wish I was still in my sixties and you're right... at any we could be that forward to ask or give a phone number out. I'm really not interested in starting anything with a guy but it was fun to pretend otherwise. LOL

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  8. I totally get it ... one "little" health problem might seem inconsequential. But 20 of them could bring you down in the dumps! OUCH on that elbow deal. I got that once while visiting my parents ... I would stop the screen door with that elbow so it was caused by repetitive bumps. Took a while to go down .

    UGH on hives. Especially with no known cause? I have to take antibiotics before dental appointments or anything to do with teeth or bones ... since knee replacement. So hard for me to remember that!

    I have several friends who were tested by naturopathic doctor ... and once they learned what their bodies were "sensitive" to, all allergy symptoms disappeared. My gourmet food friend gave up gluten, eggs, dairy and cane sugar ... and enjoying dinner with her you never miss any of those items! I think most people are sensitive to gluten ... just so expensive to switch to gluten free ...

    I can see by the sparkle in your eyes that you would be able to flirt with the best of them! It's a natural talent!

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    1. Have you ever forgotten the antibiotics before getting your teeth cleaned? I have and they sent me home and re-scheduled. A real pain in the butt. Now, I write that in my day planner.

      I really wonder if people are really sensitive to gluten or to something in the processing of grains. People didn't used to have so many issues with them as the do today. Who knows what all they add to them to give them a longer shelf life.

      It's fun when two strangers like to banter back and forth and not take it seriously. When it happens it brighten up you day. It's not sexual, it's having a sense of humor that plays off each other...well, unless someone mistakes it for sexual interest. Which of course it can be but most people can instinctively tell the difference. And I just talked my way around in a circle, didn't I. LOL

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  9. PAUL in CANADA: I'm not going to publish your comment and maybe add more fuel to the fire in case we have some cross readers on our blogs. I will say that I'm not surprised by what you reported. I've lost the same two readers, and probably for the same or a similar reason as you did. Since it really matters to you, I hope they'll accept your apology but try not to take it personal or to heart if they don't.

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    1. P.S. PAUL: Now you know what the Facebook 'fights' and unfriendings have been like down here in the States. Too soon to joke?

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  10. If this dang weather would just decide to be spring and not keep wandering back to winter, we'd all feel better. Isn't it fun to flirt? At our age, when you know it isn't going any further? It makes me feel good to know I haven't completely lost the quick repartee' I had when I was younger. LOL

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    1. I know! I'm afraid will go from winter to hot summer and skip my favorite season.

      I love it when you blog about your flirting. We are totally on the same page about this topic. LOL

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  11. Oh, my! If I had hives, you'd hear me complaining all the way up there. How miserable that must be. I was going to say the same thing that Crafty Cat Corner wrote, "It's the little things that wear you out." I swear, it's true. They affect quality of life, which is a big deal to me.

    Weather! Ugh! It's crazy!

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    1. I hate the hives! The last time I had them the allergy doctor had me on four different drugs at the same time and they didn't do a thing but make me feel drugged out. I spent a ton of money that summer on the hives and it was like pour water down a rabbit hole.

      We finally got two nice, sunny days in a row but still too cold to ditch the winter coat.

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  12. Daylight savings time seems particularly out of place this year as it remains light until 7 PM but continues to seem like winter here on the Oregon coast. Me no likee.

    I followed the link to read about nail ridges even though I've never worried because both my parents had them. I love looking at photos of skin problems (not)!

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    1. The best part about the debate over the time change is there is less time to get bent out of shape over more serious stuff in the news. LOL

      I don't remember if my parents had the fingernail ridges. I kind of think of them as the canary in the coal mine warning me that something is wrong inside, so I get more careful of my diet and in a few months they disappear in the same mysterious way the appeared.

      What did we ever do before the internet made it easy to google skin problems!

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  13. All the niggling body things are wearing and annoying! My plantar fasciitis has been bugging me since mid January and there are days I moan out loud when I step down on that heel. Cold packs, medications, exercises, shoe inserts all to no avail so far. Then there are the out of the blue morning headaches that feel maybe like a migraine because they make me nauseated and I have to lie down and close my eyes. Then a little "stitch" in my knee since I slipped down the stairs in November that acts up about the time I try to run across a crosswalk just as the time is running out on "WALK". Grrrr.....

    I'd love to hang out and watch you flirt!!!

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    1. The day you slid down the stair case still makes me shutter!

      Foot pain and migraines! Both can stop you in your tracks, can't they. I don't think I'd like to trade "body things" with you.

      We need to come up with a different word than 'flirting.' It is flirting but without the sexual intent that some people like to assign to just being friendly and playful with strangers. You watch if I get the opportunity again.

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