Somebody asked me this. Yes, I still blog, I thought, but then realized this one has been neglected. And since I am once again sitting at Beth Israel for my semi-annual check in with Dr. Steinman, I have a lot of time to catch up.
First off, Haiti was, well, Haiti. People keep telling me I need to write something up about it, and I did some blogging about it on another blog, and kept friends and family updated through facebook while I was there. But every time I sit down to really write about it, I don't know where to start. Do I start with the heat, the humidity, the sheer physical difficulty living in a place where there is no break from the stifling weather? That proved harder than I thought, and I even passed out once when I was particularly dehydrated and badly sunburned. Do I start with the trash, the goats eating aluminum cans, the smell every night when people set fire to their trash piles? Or do I talk about the people who were living in a make-shift shack on the median in the middle of a highway? There is so much to talk about, so much to absorb, so much to sort through, that 6 months after I went, I'm still processing. So I don't have something awesome to offer those who want a write-up. Sorry. But it was, without a doubt, an amazing trip.
I was going to go back in January, but the cholera stopped us. Yes, because a place that has come literally crashing down needs to deal with a deadly disease, too. And then the hurricane hit and flooded Leogane, the city where we were going to work, and along with the political riots and the airport shut downs, I suppose a trip seemed a little crazy.
So I'm in Boston instead.
I did my MRI and blood work today, as well as met with Dr. Steinman. I have to stick around another 12 hours or so as they collect a 24 urine sample, and then hopefully I'll have some free time to tool around the city, if it's not too cold. What can I say, in my old age I've become a wuss.
Everything still seems to be going well--my BP is low, and I'm feeling pretty good. The MRI was more difficult than I remember. I got overconfident and didn't really mentally prepare. I mean heck, this is my 4th MRI, piece of CAKE. That didn't help much when they pushed me in the tube, and I utilized a time honored relaxation technique to keep my panic attack at bay by chanting in my head, "CALM DOWN CALM DOWN CALM DOWN CALM DOWN CALM DOWN CALM DOWN CALM DOWN CALM DOWM CALM DOWN".
I should totally market that. That's relaxation gold, right there.
My body must have been super keyed up though, because once I finally did calm down and focus on relaxing into the cushy table (and cushy it was), I was actually jerked awake by the tech giving me instructions through the microphone.
Going from panic attack to asleep in 15 minutes flat. That can't be good for you.
Dr. Steinman discussed cutting my BP meds in half, because it's getting so low, almost too low for the control group I'm in. That makes me happy, not because I want to screw up the study, but because it means that I'm still doing something right. Maybe the exercise is making a difference after all.
Speaking of which, I did the same half marathon again this fall, and knocked a full 15 minutes off my time (can I get a small woo-hoo, y'all?). It was a great race, and a lot of fun to run the course again, knowing I was stronger and faster this year. I've backed off the running, though, because I tweaked a hamstring (there's always something, isn't there) and am going to try to ramp up my swimming. Plus, I started a new exercise video, Jillian Michaels' 30 Day Shred. That woman is of the devil, but she sure know how to plan a workout. I couldn't walk right for 2 days when I started it. Sadistic witch.
(I'm sure she hears that a lot, and I'm sure she doesn't care. She gets paid to be sadistic. Heck, maybe all personal trainers are just wannabe serial killers, and get their aggression out instead by doing personal training. You can't TELL me they don't like pain....)
My daughter is almost 4 (I know, I can't believe it either), and I talked to her on the phone today. She kept asking where I was, why I wasn't home, and I had to start to explain everything to her. It made me remember that my son was this age when I first talked to him about PKD, when we got out my anatomy book, and I showed him where the kidneys were, told him what they did, why mine were bad. I realized I'm going to have to go through this with her, too, as she starts to figure out that mom goes to the doctor a lot. She knows about doctors now too--she's old enough to remember (and be scared of) shots. So the cycle of education begins again, as we deal with this disease as a family.
At least the trips to Boston will help them grow up as Red Sox fans.
And at least this time I got my own personal copy of my MRI scans. I can gross out my husband with pictures of my diseased internal organs.
Good times, my friends, good times.