Archive for December 3, 2010

Bucket List

I’ve gotten so caught up in the sheer drudgery of day-to-day existence in a bureaucracy and the endless maintenance chores at home that something has gone missing from my life. I wasn’t even aware of it until I filled out one of the health questionnaires at the in-house health screening. It asked questions like “how much stress do you feel daily in your job?” Well, considering that being kicked, slapped, having a chair or desk hurled at my head, or being bitten is pretty much a daily occurrence, I’d have to say that my stress level at work is pretty darned high.

Ah, but home life is pretty stress free and makes up for it, right? I’d have to say that right now home life is pretty stressful, too. The livestock part is completely self inflicted, of course, but that part is relaxing for me. Some of it is out of my control, like the economy and family health problems. I don’t really have any time left over for friends. No meeting people to catch up over lunch. No idle conversations about nothing except for touching base over the phone….if you need to talk to me, you better get to the point immediately.

I miss having friends.

I miss waking up in the morning and having a day free to do whatever I want.

I miss looking forward to working every day instead of enduring until the weekend.

My mom’s list of things that she wanted to do once she had time has been cut short by the rigors of cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, and taking care of an invalid husband. It is all she can do to get through the day. Everything that she used to do that brought her joy has been sacrificed.

I’ve often thought that if I were to be diagnosed with a life-threatening illness, that is when I’d do all the things that I wanted to do before I died. I’d drop everything else, all the petty annoyances of everyday life, and just enjoy what time is left. Of course, people with life-threatening illnesses that want actual medical treatment are going to have to continue with their jobs that provide medical insurance. People with life-threatening illnesses don’t really have the energy left to do anything much beyond the activities of daily living ensuring surviving from day to day. Things like sitting in the sun rocking on the porch that used to be incredibly boring now become the high points of the day when pain is temporarily at bay.

If I’m going to do things that I really want to do before I die, I better do them before what remaining energy and enthusiasm have been drained from my body.

Right now, though, I can’t really think of anything. Sitting in a rocking chair on the porch in the sun, rocking, suits me just fine.

Maybe the *very* first thing on my bucket list should be a starting on a *really* high dose of antidepressants.

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Health Screening

Since time changed, I’ve been playing catch up with chores around here. I’ve been getting off late from work (uncompensated, of course) and am outside after dark trying to get feeding done, fences fixed, eggs gathered, and livestock fed and watered (particularly since the water lines out to the barn have been cut off due to freezing weather). Unfortunately, something has to give under those circumstances. What has “given” in many cases has been cooking.

I love cooking. I’m pretty good at it. Unfortunately, by the time I get inside, we’d be eating dinner maybe by 10 p.m. and gulping it down like buzzards on roadkill. So what has been happening waaaay too often is that we’re eating at a fast food establishment two and sometimes three times per day. Not good from a health food standpoint. My blood should be almost solid, right? Well, you might think it from the food propaganda that we receive 24/7. But you would be wrong.

My total cholesterol is well under 200. My HDL is high. My LDL is low. EXTREMELY low. My blood sugar is good despite having a LOT of Godiva chocolates (thanks, friends!) and sweet tea that was mostly sugar about a half hour before screening.

So, if you’re sitting around picking at green leaves in the hopes of improving your blood lipids, I’d look at another strategy if I were you. A strategy like going on a nearly total fast food deep-fried diet.

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