Saturday, February 22, 2014

Joy and Sorrow

"It was the best of times, it was the worst of times; it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness; it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity; it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness; it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair; we had everything before us, we had nothing before us; we were all going directly to Heaven, we were all going the other way."~ Charles Dickens
This has been a very hard time period for me.  One morning my husband came in from outside and said "your rabbit looks dead".  My response was "what?".  She was fine last night when I saw her.  So my husband and I proceeded out to Thumbelina's cage and there lay a very stiff dead rabbit.  My husband reached down to pick up Thumbelina and I saw blood, which was unusual since she was in a self-contained cage with a lid to protect her from various creatures while still having access to the outside.  As my husband picked up Thumbelina I saw three little creatures wiggling underneath of her and I croaked out "what are those?".  Those turned out to be three baby rabbits from my two "girl" rabbits.  Sigh.  I had my suspicions several times when Cadbury had shown "her" love for Thumbelina, but several people that I knew that had raised rabbits had assured me that Cadbury was a girl.  I couldn't care less about my rabbit's sexual orientation, my concern was babies.  I didn't want baby rabbits especially knowing how fast rabbits multiply.  So now I had three baby rabbits with no Mama.  I used a lifeline to call a friend, two of the girls I work with are phenomenal with animals, of any domestic and some exotic species.  So after advice about the delicate nature of rabbits, especially baby rabbits, and the fact that they probably wouldn't survive per my rabbit experts and that I am more comfortable and knowledgeable in the field of geriatrics than pediatrics, I began my struggle.  I picked up Kitten Replacement Formula and a hooked oral syringe on the advice of a coworker who had to nurse baby hedgehogs on one occasion.  Between my husband, myself, and a coworker of mine we were able to keep the babies alive for four days.  There was no sign of trauma, no signs or symptoms of infection noted, and the heat had always been consistent with the babies, but for some unknown reason the runt of the litter died first and the two other babies followed suit very shortly.  Given the sensitive nature of rabbits a mother rabbit is required in my opinion for baby rabbits and could give the babies something that I as a human replacement mother could not.  This was even with nursing them every two hours a little bit, and since their digestive tract didn't function at this point, a warm washcloth was used to wipe down their body to stimulate it to excrete the waste from it's digestive system.  My best assessment is that something triggered the runt's death and the others passed away from failure to thrive where they simply gave up the desire to live.
    It has been a horrible winter for germs.  Another respiratory infection and another gastrointestinal bug spread through our area again.  This time I had been drinking an 8 oz glass of Kefir every night after one of our employees went to a training on the importance of probiotics and educated us on them.  I only had Bronchitis for a week and a half, and a secondary sinus infection that I took an antibiotic for; far different than the twelve weeks of Bronchitis in the Fall/Winter without probiotics.  I had never had a sinus infection before (again all of my respiratory problems seem directly related to my lungs) and it was awful.  I had been working to much and not resting and caught Bronchitis due to a weakened immune system.  I had been battling the bronchitis and felt fluid and pressure in my ears.  I ignored it for a few days then noted my eyes to be watering, and then woke up three days into these symptoms with my gums, teeth, and jaws aching like I had ground my teeth all night.  Again, I ignored it thinking it was viral in nature and then my eyes started watering and my cheekbones hurt from the inside out.  I told the doctor that I was pretty sure that if I were to beat my head into a wall that it would hurt less than it was hurting now.  I was prescribed an antibiotic and am on the mend and feeling much better with the approaching Spring.  Hopefully this week I'll be able to catch up on some things.
    To end this post on a positive note I share with you a poem that I wrote when I was feeling very happy recently.

Painting The Sky
If I could, I would paint the sky with every shade of happiness. I would paint it with little children's smiles and laughter, with sunlight to brighten the sky and the warmth of the first day of Spring after a long Winter. I would paint the sky with all the colors of the rainbow from pale pastels to rich, vibrant hues. I would create a beautiful melody for my sky highlighting the sky with a harmony sung only by the angels. I would color it with all the blooms of the world, breathing in their heady fragrances. I would paint it for you, for all my friends and for myself. I would paint it so that you might understand and share my happiness. 

Saturday, February 8, 2014

The Long Winter

“The real things haven't changed. It is still best to be honest and truthful; to make the most of what we have; to be happy with simple pleasures; and have courage when things go wrong.”
~ Laura Ingalls Wilder
Snowmagedeon has hit the Pacific Northwest again.  The last "rough" winter that we had around here was back in December 2008.  I remember it clearly as I had graduated from College and was going to Portland with a friend of mine for the testing exam for my license for my new career.  I had at the time been suffering from an awful cold, horrible lungs and immune system I tell you.  I remember being sicker than a dog, and running a temperature.  My friend and I had consumed several pots of STRONG coffee between the two of us and I went in and took my exam and passed even in my sickly, actively contagious, fever induced state.  We had made the mistake of agreeing to meet my niece at Loyd Center, a mall supposedly only a short drive from our Hotel.  This was before GPS was actively used and we had our cell phones and "local" contacts or friends of ours that could "give" us directions to drive where we needed to go and neither my friend, nor myself have ANY sense of direction.  Think the blind leading the blind in an unfamiliar environment.  I think we had left around 5:00 that evening and finally made it to the mall around 8:00 long after my niece had left, after various wrong turns in the city of Portland and numerous more cups of coffee.  Then we had to venture out and back to the Hotel.  Somehow, and to this day I still have no idea how.  We made it back to the Hotel via several journey's to Vancouver, one to Lake Oswego, and several places that we didn't know where.  Keep in mind that this was all the while calling my dear friend Red's "friend" who was having a party where all of the occupants were laughing at our ordeal, and kept asking us where we "were" and how we got "there".  I have to be honest, if I knew those answers I wouldn't have had to call that "friend".  Finally, between my friend are I who are very smart we devised a plan of action; desperate times call for desperate measures.  The whole problem had been that we had not been able to find when I-205 turned into I-5, no matter where we turned there was I-5 taunting us and not able to get on it and back to the Hotel.  So we drove up to where I-205 turned into I-5 which I believe is Woodland Washington.  So 6 hours into our ordeal and numerous tanks of gas later (the same amount of time it would take to drive us all the way home) we were back at the Hotel.  To this day it was still a wonderful, hazy (remember fever induced and my friend was sleep deprived) drive where we were fully caffeinated, horribly lost, and in that so tired, you're rummy point.  Yes, Hollywood could probably make a movie out of this, and to this day we are still teased mercilessly, but now we have GPS.
    I had scheduled a check up with one of my health specialists on Tuesday in Portland, but if this snow continues, I will cancel and reschedule.  I have also been working a lot at my work and my job description has been absorbing new duties, but took several days off this upcoming week for my drive to Portland so if all else, a mini-vacation.
    Today I only work five hours this evening so have spent the day relaxing, the girls and I painted our nails and I caught up on some of my reading and planning for Spring when the snow stops.  Check out my current reads.  So inspirational for Spring, now only to make all those ideas affordable.

    On the finances front things are tight, tight, tight.  This whole year is about my family's financial future.  Learning ways to pinch a penny enough ways to make a quarter.  More investments keep cropping up that require LOTS of money, at the same time things that are necessary such as clothes for growing girls, lawyer's fees for little girl's adoptions and Dr.'s appointment's for yearly check ups.  I have been doing some reading and will post some of the better books and websites that I find on Finances.
Until Next Time Take Care,