This was last year's to do list. I completed the ones in bold.1. Half marathon.
2. Oxfam 100km challenge.
3. Travel overseas - went to New Zealand
4. Pay off car loan.
5. Attend Young Entreprenurs seminar, and get something out of it.
6. Take dance lessons... not sure which ones yet.
7. Change jobs.
8. Save 50% house deposit.
Scratch number one off, because I will admit I hate running and only wanted to do this because I thought I would grow to like it, there more I did it. WRONG. I still hate it. And doing it for 21km won't make me like it more than before. The Oxfam 100km will stay on the list though.
Car loan could be paid off if I use the deposit, so those two are interchangeable. It can be one or the other. Dance lessons never eventuated, but that might come later. I am not too fussed about that one.
I changed jobs though, which was excellent. That happened in May and it was the best one to come through this year.
I tend to write down what I want to do throughout the year, so this isn't always the final list. What else did I do this year?
1. Setup a company and separate business finances and personal finances.
2. Upgraded my camera and my computer (to something a bit more professional that will help me out in the new year). Costly, but it will help me out a lot.
3. Changed my diet completely - with the exception of an auto immune disease, and the extra weight I am slowly working with I am healthy. Blood tests reveal I am extremely healthy on the inside, and I am slowly getting fitter.
4. Learnt a considerable amount on building websites (one of the reasons I left my job, I was feeling out of date).
5. Helped my sister start studying animation.
6. Kept up my blog. I should finish the entries in the draft box.
Things I would like to do in the next couple of months...
1. Setup all my photography equipment - lights, backdrops and lenses.
2. Update my website with a journal, tutorials and downloads.
3. Make some side money on stock photography websites and stock design websites.
4. Increase my business earnings - at the moment I am matching my old salary. Now I want to be in a much better position come tax time in 2012.
I don't think New Year's resolutions are completely useless. It gives some people a rough outline to what they want to achieve. I think it fails when they don't remind themselves, or at least start something. Those who don't do th
Lucy decided she wanted to get up at 5.30am today, because she felt like it. After trying to get back to sleep, she started having a focal seizure (where she is conscious, but her hind legs spasm from localised areas being affected in the brain). She's okay, but every 5 seconds or so she bursts into a jump or a run, and around the house she tends to end up face planting walls or objects and gets herself tangled up in god knows what. So I thought I would stay up. She's been going for about 45 minutes now, and is trying to go back to sleep.
My original subject line was titled 'So tired' but after a moments consideration, I realised I wasn't. Which was a nice little moment, because it means the medication I have been on really has helped. 3 months ago, there was no way I would have been up at this time of the day. If I had managed to do that, I would have been a zombie. I am meeting a friend today to take some photos, so it can only be good that I have lots of time to prepare and get my stuff together, haha.
Because it's Christmas, and lots of good things happen at this time of year, the fridge has decided to die. We noticed last night, and this morning when making my coffee, realised that it was still not working. Lucky, I think mum and dad have a spare one out in the garage somewhere.
I had to joke to the hubby that it was his bad luck encroaching.
Last night, Lucy managed 7 seizures within a 24 hour period - a new record. 2 focal seizures and the rest grand mal. I was sitting on the internets, looking for new information (as you do, even though you've read everything a million times) and I couldn't help but think that most of the websites look awful, and they're so hard to follow. It's great that people want to share the information, but sometimes I wish it was more common knowledge that there are better ways of doing your own website. It does not have to be a page of 10pt text on a maroon background.
Because I was up so early, I saw part of the sunrise. I was too distracted to get my camera, but I might get up early tomorrow and take some photos. The joys of being in the country - it's not spoiled by buildings or pollution. Almost as good as the sunrise over Christmas Island, 30,000 feet in the air.
I am finally in Inverell, and here until January sometime. The reason I am posting is because I now have my new work laptop in my hot little hand. This means, no rushing - I can work in Inverell, on the basis someone does not insist on seeing me in person!
Only a couple of days until the big day. It hasn't been as busy as I thought it would be. Inverell traffic is no where close to Sydney traffic, and so navigating my way around town to pick up some last minute things isn't any trouble.
Unfortunately the hubby hasn't had much luck. His precious hobby car, which was a month off being sold was wrecked last week, and a couple of days afterwards he scratched his brand new sunglasses - $200 worth. So the topic of conversation over the next few weeks will be the car and his bad luck.
The weather here isn't ideal, but I believe there is a cyclone brewing in the north and Sydney is receiving it's fair share of rain so it's not too bad. Overcast with bouts of rain and sunshine. I actually got sunburned this morning, sitting out in the sun at a friend's place. Now I will be trying to amend the tan line with fake tan before going out on Christmas Day and the Boxing Day races.
Saturday I am going out taking photos around town with a friend - to catch the Christmas madness.
I feel like eating my weight in chocolate right now, but I know I will regret it.
My poor little Lucy dog is still having seizures. Thankfully, I have been keeping a diary and it seems she has clusters (between 2-4 seizures) twice a month. Roughly at the beginning of each month and in the middle - the dates tend to be 1st - 4th and the 13th-16th each time.
The vet said originally, it was idiopathic epilepsy, which means cause is unknown. She was given some anti-convulsion treatment, taken twice a day and sent home. 2 months later, with the same pattern of seizures we were sent home with an additional medication (bromide) to see how that would go. That was roughly at the start of the month and it seems the pattern keeps reoccurring.
Each blood test to check levels and kidney function is $66.00. I can live with that, no dramas. Unfortunately, we didn't have pet insurance before we found out so we can't claim treatments for an existing condition. We decided we were okay with that too.
At the end of the last visit, the vet causally mentioned that if she continues to have episodes, that they may have to investigate other causes. Which could be anything from Hypothyroidism to brain tumors. I doubt she is being poisoned by a plant in the back yard like clockwork, so I have ruled that out. The vet also casually mentioned that it could cost up to $3,000 for blood work and scans. God knows what treatment would cost. At the time, I ignored the comment as we were starting a different medication that could possibly work.
Well, yesterday I came home from the hairdresser and she was having a partial seizure. In Lucy, this means she involuntary bucks (like you could imagine a bull would) and has a brief moment where lunges forward, like she's trying to escape it. Sometimes this means she will run full force into a wall, a couch or off the deck, because she can't help it. These last about half hour or so, and sometimes eventuate into a grand mal seizure, sometimes not.
Well unfortunately it did. She bolted straight into a golf bag, and hit the deck. If you have ever seen a dog have a seizure, it's not a nice thing to see. Her whole body convulses and her head snaps back with teeth bared, which makes her scream. My only comfort is I know she's unconscious and she isn't in pain. An okay episode lasts about 30 seconds to a minute, and a bad one 3-5 minutes. Usually, she tends to shake them off okay - she paces for about 15 minutes and then she's okay again. Yesterday it was 3-5 minutes, before continuing on with partial seizures. After 15 minutes I was almost ready to rush to the vet before she started slowing down and started her 'end of episode' routine - panting and pacing.
After a seizure she gets hungry and thirsty so I let her be with some water. The only funny part about this is I came back to find her on the dining table, sniffing the fruit. It's like her brain just wants food and does anything for it. That was such a strange sight.
Last night she slept on the end of the bed, and I knowing they tend to cluster I spent half the night tossing and turning waiting to feel her have another. 6.30am rolled around I was woken up by her second seizure. As bad as yesterday, it took almost an hour for her to recover completely.
Lucy's condition, 95% of the time is good. She's still hyper and happy and normal. The only way I can tell something is being fried in her brain, is that occasionally, her toilet training goes right out the window. I used to think it was just a memory lapse (which is common for epileptic dogs). Now I think she has mini seizures during the day - loss of time sort of thing. Occasionally I'll catch her, standing stock still and staring off into space for a couple of minutes, and then she pees.
One night we were on the couch, laid against each other. I felt her stretch (what I thought was a stretch), moments before she peed all over me. She did it to James too, while she was asleep across his feet.
She's not once ever been aggressive. Not when she's having a seizure, or at any other point - to me, hubby or Charlie. That is a good sign apparently
I know that as the condition deteriorates, that there is only one option. Mum has mentioned it and so has hubby. I hate this because I'm not stupid, and fully aware of what will need to happen eventually. But I keep bargaining with myself that it should only happen when her quality of life seems to be bad more times than it's good. So far that's not the case.
I know that you can have pets cremated. I went as far as looking it up the other day and I felt so guilty. Even thinking about it makes me feel like I've given up on her, and I'm betraying her. If she was seriously ill, or in pain I feel like it would be a different story. I feel like everyone's saying that if it's not easy, you just get rid of the problem. How awful is the thought that you're unwanted because of something you can't control?
It makes it harder knowing that when she's about to have a seizure, she comes running to me to help her. Every single time. I know she'll have one at night because instead of sleeping at my feet or on the floor, she crawls into bed next to me and sleeps alongside me, because she knows it too.
Thousands of animals are abandoned in Australia, because they're unwanted. They don't fit within the little ideal someone thought they would. So people dump them or have them put down.
Someone I know, who had an old dog of their own would often lament that they couldn't wait for the dog to die, and would wish it would hurry up. I can't wait to say that to them when they're old. It broke my heart, and I almost took the dog home with me.
I get to live for 80 years. She'll only be around for a couple. I won't regret ever looking after her, and making sure she's safe and happy. Anyone who tends to put me down about it, has to realise that it's the same compassion that will probably end up looking after them when they're old or sick. But they never do.
I feel like I shouldn't give up on her, because it's the easy option. And I feel like I'm the only one looking out for her at the moment.
11 sleeps until Christmas!
I had to Google that because I was too lazy to count it. I miss Christmas as a kid. Now I just look forward to food, not having to work and catching up with friends. If I could do that at any other time of the year it would be fine with me.
I was at the doctors the other day, getting my regular 6 week blood tests (which is funny, because 6 months ago I was TERRIFIED beyond BELIEF when it came to needles) when I decided that I would try a new GP. My old GP was no one special, but someone they continued to book me into after I had the first blood test done. I didn't warm to him, because he seemed to just want to be the middle guy when it came to tests and treatment. He was quite happy for me to pass on instruction from the Endocrinologist and do whatever I needed. Which was good and bad, as I could get anything done but I couldn't bounce any ideas or questions off him (and at $260 an appointment, the Endo is reserved for special occasions).
So I picked someone else on my last appointment. Which meant the entire run down of my history (which I thought they had on file, but seems not). He seemed very good to start with, asked all the right questions, took notes. I told him I needed my TSH, Free T4 and Free T3 checked (as usual) and a new prescription of T4. He agreed, wrote up the note for the pathologist and added in a kidney and liver function test as well and said he'd write the prescription when the results came in. Excellent.
I decided to bring up, that I was having trouble losing weight. At 150mcg of T4, I should have been able to shift it easily, but instead it was staying the same. He asked about my diet and exercise. Diet consists of meat, vegetables, little fruit and a few nuts - total 1300 calories a day. No dairy, wheat, rice or sugar. Fat from meat and nuts. Exercise was walking/running dogs, weights 3-4 times a week.
He looked confused. Decided to weigh me and take my height. Proceeded to fall off his chair when he calculated the BMI. I noted quickly that the BMI was NOT an accurate measurement for me, as I tend to build lean muscle very easily. Although I was overweight, body fat percentage was not huge, but still in the average female category. I told him I am aiming for 22% body fat (down from 29% now) and a size 8-10 which will keep me around the 70kg mark (a BMI of around 27, technically overweight).
He didn't care about this, and gave me a dressing down about weight. Wasn't happy, and left really miffed, thinking I needed another GP. On returning to collect my blood results he proceeded to tell me that I needed to cut my calorie intake to 800 calories a day.
To give you an idea about how LITTLE food that is, here's a few items:
Apple: 54 calories
Whole Egg: 177 calories
1/2 Chicken Breast: 142 calories
Oh well. I eat really well at the moment so I thought I would ignore that piece of advice from him. I also did my insulin, cortisol, cholesterol, triglycerides tests and they were all p-e-r-f-e-c-t. Other than my slow metabolism and the whole autoimmune thing, I'm a picture of health which was great to know. Blood pressure is excellent as well.
I think I'd be stuffed if I had to go that slow. I have to eat brazil nuts for the selenium, and 6-8 of those is about 207 calories. A mini binge on that would stuff me.
So after months and months of eating like a caveman, I cannot wait for Christmas Day when I am going to spurge. Then on Boxing Day, I am going to have KFC, because I haven't had that in months and months also. Every other day will be back to boring eating and exercising, but those two days will be glorious.
I still have not done ANY Christmas shopping, which I might do today. I have a couple of catch-up-with-friends to go to once I go home and a photo session with a friend who's bribed some poor girl to be our dummy for the day. THAT I can't wait for because we're going out to some really pretty locations around the area, and back to a cool abandoned fuel depot which I wanted to go back to.
So I have discovered Crossfit. My brother started following the exercise plan a month or two and found it to be to his liking. Curiosity finally took hold, and I had my first one on one session today.
I think I love Crossfit.
CrossFit is a strength and conditioning idea that combines weightlifting, sprinting, gymnastics, powerlifting, kettlebell training, plyometrics, rowing, and medicine ball training.
It is completely different from what I have done in the past. It's so refreshing to be handed a 20kg barbell (which I lifted fine), rather than a couple of 2kg free weights. I liked hearing about 40 year old women who went from not being able to do a pushup on their knees to using gymnastic rings and climbing ropes.