Archive for March, 2014

Settled in

Posted on Saturday, March 29th, 2014 at 11:51 am

Doing well in Austin.  Got one of the cats to sit with me on the bed for pets, which is unusual, as the cats tend to be quite aloof.  No problem with the Tootoo Sisters.  They are enjoying my visit.  Gracie loves playing tug with the rope.

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Eating well.  Chinese, thick pork chops, ribs, and more.  Lots of leftovers, which should last me for at least a week, possibly more.  But a week is all I have left here.  So I’m well set for the week ahead.

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About to start burning DVDs.  I have about 40 to do, as I’ve been negligent for quite some time.

Multiple Crashes

Posted on Tuesday, March 25th, 2014 at 2:53 pm

Crash #1 – Body is in rehab.

Crash#2 – Cell phone died.

Crash#3 –

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The party was a rowdy one.  Everyone was bouncy, full of energy, full of music.  The food was quite good, as always.  I thought my boudin was going to be unique, but there were six others presented.  It all got eaten.  I didn’t play as much music as I expected, but that’s okay.  I wore myself out anyway.

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Got to Austin, settled in.  In the morning, the cell phone died.  It’s the phone, not the battery.  Replacement unit is in Brenham.  So I’m without a cell for 11 days.  I’ll survive.

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There were other crashes, but I’m not in the mood to discuss them.

Shifting gears

Posted on Thursday, March 20th, 2014 at 8:13 pm

Funds became available Tuesday, so I was able to get into business mode for a change.  Convalescence lasted long enough, I hope.  This weekend will tell.

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Went to Bryan yesterday, got the license sticker and insurance slip for the truck.  Also played music for several hours, giving my pads a pre-party break in.  Good music.  Ended up getting a break on some expenses to boot.  It was fun, to say the least.

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Figured the belt on the pickup (newly replace belt shredded part of its width) is a matter of pulley alignment.  I’ll see if I can align the pulleys before putting on the new belt (virgin).  For the time being, the narrower belt seems to be working okay.  A  job for April, or at least post-party, by my estimation.  I hope it won’t be a roadside operation.  But I can handle it if it is.

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Tomorrow kicks in the Fling.  I’ll pack tomorrow morning and scoot.  I was hoping to get laundry done today, but logistics dropped that idea.  I have enough clean clothes to last me through the party and to south Austin.  I’ve got the boudin, 12 pounds worth.  Got it on special, so financial serendipity there too.  (Got a Lone Star card today, to complete the trifecta.)

Sitting tree 2

Posted on Sunday, March 16th, 2014 at 5:28 pm

The first sitting tree was a little wimpy, and not very shady, so I made another one with more tree.

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sittingtree2

Sitting tree

Posted on Friday, March 14th, 2014 at 2:23 pm

A tree with a bent trunk, where one mgt park oneself in the shade for a bit of a rest.

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sittingtree

Window shade

Posted on Thursday, March 6th, 2014 at 4:33 pm

In modo.  The texture is from my old serape pack, still in the CG section, #6.

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shade3

Platter

Posted on Thursday, March 6th, 2014 at 12:09 pm

Another piece of tableware.  In modo.

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platter

Square bowl

Posted on Thursday, March 6th, 2014 at 2:08 am

Square bowl, modo.

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squarebowl

Late Frozen Rain

Posted on Tuesday, March 4th, 2014 at 11:59 am

Well, it was looking like spring.  Then we get a night in the mid 20’s and frozen rain along with it.  Everything is drooping badly.  And outside, as it climbs above freezing, is the sound of dropping ice.

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frozenrain

Rats!

Posted on Monday, March 3rd, 2014 at 6:01 pm

Rat, modo.

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rat

Agave

Posted on Monday, March 3rd, 2014 at 12:49 am

Agave, sans thorns, in modo.

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agave

Finally med free

Posted on Saturday, March 1st, 2014 at 1:07 am

Well, I had to go back on a reduced level of metoprolol, because I was having too many class 2 hypertension episodes (>160), with a too strong and too fast heart beat.  So it delayed the final departure for a week.  But I have been off for four days now.  And as long as I keep the physical stress down, I am staying in class 1.  It is easy to get the body to become too active, kicking the heart into overdrive.  So I’m having to be careful.

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But I am free of drugs and mostly staying on safe ground.  It still wants to creep up at times, but I can guide my brain to bring it back down.  I’ve become pretty good at dropping the systolic forty or more mlHg in less than a minute.  The diastolic takes a little longer.  But the mental feedback that I have found, trying to mimic what the clonidine did, seems to be rather successful in bringing down a raging heartbeat.

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My hope is to be free of medication long enough to train the brain to adapt.  I am losing some of the capillary dilation.  My skin isn’t as red, a little more normal.  So it will be a while before I can bring the pressure down close to normal.  But I am doing pretty well in keeping it down out of the danger zone.  I’m seeing fewer of the class 2 events than I was having during the full medication period, especially at the end.  My body was adapting to the meds, and when they would wear off before the next scheduled dosage, I would get class 2 events.  So they are actually decreasing by going off medication.

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I do have confidence that I will be able to bring the levels down.  I need to take the mental routines that are working and make them a full time habit.  Easier said than done.  But it is getting easier to implement, I’m finding less resistance from the medula.  It’s not as shielded, to use a metaphor.  Or perhaps, it is decreasing in density, it’s easier to begin the influence from the cortex.  This is the goal, to train the heart beat controls and ease them back from post-op levels, where they’ve been for 21 months because of constant medication.

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The medication is pretty much a brute force approach, and the body resents it.  When the medication wears off, the body over-compensates, rebelling against the suppression.  What I want to achieve is to lead the brain down to a proper level of regulation of its own accord.  Ever since surgery, my sub-brain control center has been panicking.  Instead of sedating it, I want to train it.  I have spent a lot of my lifetime exploring the interaction between the brain and the body.  I was interested in many of the eastern arts of meditation when I was young, and I learned a great many things, ways to guide the body, to keep things in balance.

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After the surgery, the panic was too intense to corral.  I needed the drugs to keep my heart on an even keel.  The clonidine patch was way out of my price range, but I returned to clonidine in pill form when I started using the clinic in Austin.  I feel that enough time has gone by since the changes in my body structure for things to settle on their own.  The side effects of the medication were the kicker that led me to this tactical shift in this time frame.  I think that I can now get my system to find a new unassisted balance that stays out of class 2.  The ultimate goal is normal, but I don’t expect it over night.  For now, in this brave new world I’m facing, I’ll settle for class 1 as the norm.  After that finds a stability, I’ll start working on getting it down near or to normal ranges.  Elderly, a spare tire, and the recent suppression will make it hard to hit 110/70 on my own.  But I hope to get there in the long run.

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For now, it’s being careful not to exert myself, keep myself in a low key state of mind, and try not to deal with major emotional issues.  Fortunately, the latter is fairly easy.  I don’t have many, and none are local.  I’m keeping touch with my circulation and being active in adjusting it when necessary.  I want this to become the subconscious routine found out of habit.  So I’m working on the habit of touching the sub brain with the right types of thoughts.  If I’m going to return to some semblance of normality away from interfering medication, it’s the path I need to pursue.