Friday, July 21, 2006

Update Explosion

FIRST THINGS FIRST: Can I please indulge in a moment of gushing public pride for my husband? Seriously? Because, and everyone should know this, living with a mood disorder absolutely STINKS. It stinks for the person with the disorder, and it stinks for the people who love and live with that person. Bipolar disorder, the Beast we live with, is a real demon. It denies its own existence, it is resistant to treatment, and even when you do manage to hit it with a successful treatment "cocktail," and that (Glory, Hallelujah!) WORKS, guess what? Then it either morphs and changes so that the medication no longer works, OR the medications themselves do something to your body that is so heinous that they must be discontinued.

Many of you already know that Alex has Bipolar Disorder, and that it's not of the "lite" variety. Without continuous medication, he would be unable to function, or enjoy much quality of life at all. It's no laughing matter. At the same time, the medications that save your sanity have some pretty harsh side effects, which further contribute to many bipolar people being resistant to taking them. In fact, it's widely accepted that fewer than 20% of those diagnosed with bipolar disorder are even capable of having the insight to recognize that they do, in fact, have a disease--and that is PART OF THE DISEASE, to deny its own existence. Those are some hard statistics, folks. We are very "lucky" (That word is hard for me to write, because this illness is hideous, ugly, and terrible. Understand that I use it only in the context of people with bipolar disorder.) that Alex is one of those "fewer than 20%." Even so, if he happened to somehow hit the manic phase of the cycle without medication, he would quickly lose that insight for the duration of the manic episode. It's just not pretty or EVER easy, is what I'm saying.

And my point? Getting to it. Way back in December, Alex had to discontinue one of the mood stabilizers in his treatment "cocktail"--a cocktail which was working for him very, very well. It was killing his thyroid gland, you see--so much so that he's been on thyroid replacement medication ever since. And since then, his doctor has been unable to hit upon any treatment combination that is comparably successful, and he's been suffering the effects of inadequate medication. He had a very rough spring, and is going through a similarly difficult patch even now. And HERE'S THE POINT: My husband--my smart, strong, capable husband--is not just bearing up bravely under this burden that he never asked for; he is KICKING ITS BUTT. Understand that I am NOT saying "he's doing fine even without proper medication," because I'm NOT. Oh, Lord, no. Bipolar disorder cannot be overcome by sheer force of will--if only. But I am saying that he is holding up to the enormous pressures of me being ill, having a house to work on and sell, picking up my slack in our current household, and just doing the regular 9-to-5, all while suffering the harsh effects of a significant illness himself, and he is not just "holding up," but shining through.

Can you get behind that, people? Give him a high-five, my "stud-muffin" husband. Alex, I love and appreciate you, more than you can imagine. Thank you for being so much tougher than me.

MY HEALTH: Not great. I am in enough pain now that I pretty much stay rolled up in a wad in my bed most of the day. Interesting thing is that now, it's not the regular endo pain that is disabling me; it's G.I. pain. I dread eating, and mostly avoid it, because it just hurts too much. The only way I can eat anything is to have several Lomotil first, and even then I pay a price. The upside of this is that I've lost close to 10 pounds in the last week. And hey, it's not like I'm in any danger of wasting away. I hope to hear soon just what the doctors here think they will be able to do for me. The only thing I know for sure will happen is the hysterectomy. My prayer, and yours, if you're so inclined, is that there's not a bunch of endometrial growth on my bowel, because, honestly? I'm terrified of the risk of incidental colostomization during bowel surgery. So let's avoid that, eh, God? Please.

WEATHER: Good gosh, it's hot. And the Humidity Pods are out in full force. You all know I love Arkansas, but this is the time of year when I could be talked into relocating to British Columbia without much trouble. But we have a huge thunderstorm coming through tonight, which hopefully translates to a much cooler weekend. Like, you know, mid-90's.

BLOGHER: It's official: I can't go. I mean, please--I can't keep myself in an upright position for more than 20 minutes at a time or hold down any appreciable amounts of nourishment, so a cross-country trip and 2 days of revelry and fellowship is just beyond me. And I'm assuming that our tickets are non-refundable (Right? If that's not the case, someone please let me know, because we could really use that money.), so I'll be happy to donate mine to a deserving BlogHer. Just drop me a line at ninjapoodles at gmail dot com. And also important to consider, the considerable folly of the cost of such a trip at a time when we still haven't sold our other house and are making two mortgage payments. Hello, adult responsibilities! You suck!

So, I'm counting on all of you who do get to go: Someone PLEASE get Arianna Huffington's autograph for me, stalk Alice and then throw yourself prostrate at her feet in my honor, sit on JenB's lap, and lick Mocha at least once. And if Erin flashes her boobs, AVERT YOUR EYES. That's what I'd do. And please, PLEASE...keep me updated. I will be curled in a wad, clutching my laptop, looking for live updates from the conference all next weekend. Don't let me down.

DOGS: Can I just say how thrilled I am that so many of the suckers--er, Respected Members of the Impulse Poodles Family who have our puppies are blogging about the experience? It is just such a wonder, this Internet. I love you, Internet! And I'm grateful to have been blessed with such great homes for each one of these pups. I know that the way most breeders do this is to have all their puppies out the door at 8 to 10 weeks of age, but WOW, can I ever not do that. In the first place, it takes me a few months to figure out which ones I want to keep to show for myself. And beyond that, the actual act of letting them go? Excruciating. I've yet to be able to bring myself to advertise, instead relying on word-of-mouth, and of course that slows things down. But honestly, every home we've found so far has just been such an amazing, "meant-to-be" act of Divine Providence, that I do not in ANY way regret hanging onto these furbabies for a longer period of time than is "normal." Now that the adorable "Tate," henceforth to be formally known as "Impulse What About Bob," is in his new digs in Chicago, we're left with only one beautiful black girl to place in a pet home. We won't have any more puppies here until probably late 2007 or early 2008, so it's been kind of nice to take our time placing these three.

ENTERTAINMENT: Having a lot of time in bed means a lot of reading and television and movies. I might as well pass on some finds.

Books--The Know-It-All: One Man's Humble Quest to Become the Smartest Person in the World, by A. J. Jacobs. Jacobs is not the best writer in the world, but he's not trying to be. If you enjoy the "conversational" way that many blogs are written, you'll appreciate his style well enough. I read a good deal of this book, which chronicles the author's attempt to read the entire Encyclopedia Brittanica, out loud for Alex's benefit on our trip to Tennessee, and we were cracking up at the intellectual rivalry between A. J. and his overly erudite brother-in-law. This one is just fun, and worth the time, and maybe a nice choice for folks who aren't normally "big readers."

The Opposite of Fate: Memories of a Writing Life
, by Amy Tan. I'm just a huge fan, and when one of my favorite authors writes some non-fiction that is somewhat autobiographical, I tend to geek out a little. This book is a treasure.

The Well of Lost Plots: A Thursday Next Novel
, by Jasper Fforde. The latest in the series of mystery-stories-set-within-other-books, featuring literary detective Tuesday Next. If you are a "book person," I can't tell you how delightful you'll find these books. They're impossibly difficult to describe, so just trust me and try one. You don't have to read them in order.

And a BIG dishonorable mention to The Devil Wears Prada, by Lauren Weisberger. I could write a huge post all about how terrible this book is. Easily one of the worst books I've ever finished, right up there with The Bridges of Madison County. Why finish it, you ask? Good question. I think that the whole of this novel's appeal lies in the gossipy, roman-a-clef nature of the story. The context of the story is interesting, if that makes sense--who isn't fascinated by, and likely digusted at the excess of, the world of high fashion? There is a voyeuristic appeal to it. But the thing is just SO poorly written. I could waste a LOT of time quoting passages from it, to show you, but take my word for it, this thing sucks eggs. I'm not saying it might not be good for passing the time at the beach or on an airplane or something, just that it is so incredibly badly written that you will be distracted from the bad story BY the bad writing. It's that bad. Did I mention "bad?" Weisberger's syntax and style fall into what I will forevermore refer to, at least inside my head, and the "tilted puppy" style of writing, thanks to promising new blogger (and GOOD writer) Lauren--no relation--and her Epistolary Blog. Heck, I'll even quote Lauren here, writing of her experience attending a reading by author Anthony Rapp:

"You read a passage which leads up to the death of Jonathan Larson, and I knew from the moment you described him as having “his head tilted to one side like a puppy” that I was in for some tardy tingles. Your simile, after all, is not only clichéd but also nonsensical, as it implies that puppies in their entirety, and not just their heads, are often tilted to one side."

Check Lauren out; she's worth the time, and don't be surprised if you find yourself adding her to your blogroll, like I did. It's definitely time better spent than if you were reading "Prada."

Movies: Pickings are slim, here. Obviously, I haven't gone OUT to any movies lately, because, hello? OUT? Nope. BUT, here are a couple of gems now available on DVD:

"Kiss Kiss Bang Bang". Robert Downey, Jr. and Val Kilmer. *sigh* If you love movies, you can't NOT love this one. It breaks the fourth wall in an innovative and delightful manner, and the dialogue is snappy and clever and rapid-fire, like those great old high-pants-fast-talking movies of the 1940's. It's just a fantastically smart film, and one you really have to pay attention to--I love that. And yes, I have a tremendous soft spot for Downey ("Restoration," anyone?). He's a ferocious talent, struggling most of his life with bipolar disorder and addiction (they go hand-in-hand in as many as 65% of patients), and I root for him with all of my being with every film he makes. YOU HAVE TO WATCH THIS MOVIE.

"Transamerica". Just good. Felicity Huffman's got some chops.

Television: I know WAY too much about what's on T.V. right now. Way. Too. Much. Try not to be sad for me. But if you have cable, and are bemoaning the lack of fresh network programming during the summer months, you do have some options.

"Psych". USA Network, Fridays. We're getting a kick out of this one, at least so far. It follows "Monk", which is also airing new episodes, and is still managing to keep us around, though it is getting a bit stale around the edges. I'm hoping for some renewed energy in "Monk" this season. Anyway, "Psych" is about a guy who, after being raised by a controlling cop/detective father (Corbin Bernsen), has developed extraordinary powers of observation, but because no one can believe that he's just that observant, he pretends to be psychic in order to solve crimes. Cute.

"Hell's Kitchen". FOX, Monday nights. Yeah, this is a network show, but I have a serious thing for Gordon Ramsay. Not as a sex symbol, as many people obviously see him, but as a chef. If you don't know this about me already, I'll admit to favoring great chefs with the type of adoration normally reserved for rock stars and famous actors. I've watched "Boiling Point" and "Beyond Boiling Point" on BBC America, as well as all the seasons of the fantastic (to me) "Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares," in which Gordon takes on failing restaurants, figuring out why they're tanking and trying his best to set them aright before they go under forever. It's a fascinating look behind the scenes of running a restaurant. And every time he's abusing the "Hell's Kitchen" contestants, I can not help but think of our dear, intrepid cooking student at Poodlevania. I really hope she's not going through this kind of treatment! HK is easily my favorite television moment of the entire week right now, and I look forward to it with a near-rabid anticipation.

Eureka. Sci-Fi Channel, Tuesday nights. Only the pilot has aired so far, but it was intriguing enough that we've set our TiVo to record all upcoming episodes. Plot centers around a U.S. Marshall who finds himself assigned to the "secret" town of Eureka, which is home to a cadre of hyper-geek super-genius scientist/inventors who work for a mysterious, apparently government-funded "company," developing incredible machines that do seemingly impossible things...worth a look.

Flip This House. A&E, Sunday nights. This is my second season following the home-remodeling adventures of Richard and Ginger and the rest of the Trademark crew. I have NO idea why I'm so fascinated by this house-flipping, but dang it, I am. I can't look away. I love it when there is negotiating and haggling...the episode in which the landscaping contractor tried to convince Richard that he was paying each of his 20 migrant workers $20 an hour for their services was priceless. If you watch this show, you will most likely, like me, become convinced that you, too, could be a real estate speculating genius. Or not.

And that catches us up, for the most part, for now. *whew* I am so very sad about missing the BlogHer conference, after looking forward to it for almost a year. Please don't forget about me. *sniff, sniff*

28 comments:

  1. That took, like 15 min to read... Must have taken much longer to write! A few things: Kiss Kiss Bang Bang was pretty good. Another thing, STAY AWAY FROM MY CHEF HUSBAND! (ok, technically, he doesn't have his red seal, but he's basically a chef)

    And, I hope you get better soon, and I'll see you at BlogHer NEXT year!

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  2. Chefs are *hot.* ;-) Alex cooks a mean meal, when he takes a mind too, but he never duplicates them. So, if you really like something, you never know if you'll get anything like it ever again! I've been begging for 5 years for a repeat of his marinated, grilled salmon, with herbed grilled corn on the cob, and amazing marinated, grilled artichoke hearts. Mmmmmmm.

    And that post was, except for the first part, a bunch of notes I've been saving for a "catch-all" post!

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  3. i have the bipolar "lite" kind and i could not function without medication either. in fact, higher suicide rate in us type 2s! weeee! Alex is a trouper AND a studmuffin. i keep reminding myself your mom reads these so i just censored something for Alex. tell him to make something up that i might say.

    we will miss you tremendously at blogher. i cried a little when you announced you weren't going fer certain, even though i knew you could not. i have a fabulous care package for you that i am mailing tomorrow. i hope that helps some.

    mucho love from me

    jen

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  4. I'll certainly miss you at Blogher. You were on my list of people to meet. ;)

    Bipolar is tough. My SIL and my step dd have it, and it's a tough row to how. big squishy kudos to your hubby for hanging in there!

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  5. What a post! I'm sorry to hear about Alex. I know you have talked about this before and I hope they can find some meds that work for him soon (that don't mess his body up either).

    You are developing quite a blog group of puppy owners:o) It is so nice to know that your puppies are in loving homes.

    I am going to have to look for some of those books. I am a read-a-holic and go through books, like umm, fast. The Tuesday Next novels sound interesting.

    I rarely get to the movies, although we did see the new Pirates of the Caribean movie, a little bit of a cliffhanger so hopefully the third will be out soon.

    I love Monk, but don't have cable or local right now (for the past 2 years) and borrow the series DVD set when my parents buy them.

    My sister keeps me updated on the Hell's Kitchen series and I also think of Poodlevania when she tells me about it. I hope her chef's aren't like this guy, it would make school very hard.

    I hope your weekend is much cooler. We have been in the high 90's here with a humidity to match it.

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  6. Mmmm...but MY favorite chef on TV is Anthony Bourdain.

    He can come visit ANYTIME.

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  7. Um, if you post at Blogher that you have tickets for sale - they WILL buy them, trust me.

    Aside from that... I love you, and I love that you and Alex and Bella are so wonderful together. Posts like this (and many others you've made) are proof of what families should be. You pull together when most couples fall apart. Even with Bella, she paints herself and the bathroom in mascara, you take pics and show us how adorable it is - most parents scream yell stomp punish, and gripe about the experience later (myself included!)

    If ever there was a family that could make it through the roughest parts of bipolar disorder, the hell of endometriosis, a 3 year old, 2 mortgages, and a variety of animals ... it is yours.

    *hug* (pass that along to Alex... and yeeeees Alex, I still think you're a hunka hunka!)

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  8. Yay for Alex! What a trouper that man is, and he seems to maintain his droll sense of humor throughout it all.

    I'm worried - your symptoms sound horrible! I hope they figure it out and get you back up and running soon.

    The silver boy is really a cutie, and how neat that the owner flew down to stay with you a bit and pick him up!

    The Devil Wears Prada movie is even worse than the book! Horrid.

    What an interesting post this was - I feel all caught up on all aspects of your life.

    Hope you feel better!

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  9. Feel better.

    There WILL be a blog meet-up for all of us one of these days. :-)

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  10. First I'm so sorry that you are still in so much pain that it has now made eating hard. Goodness, i hope your doctor finds a solution ASAP!

    Second - high five to Alex - I admire him so much, there are a lot of husbands out there who would not be able to handle not only their illness but their wife's as well. He rocks!

    Third - What?! You didn't like Devil Wears Prada?! I thought that book was so good!! Yes, its a bit fluffy and chick lit for sure, but its interesting and funny and if you have ever been a personal assistant (as I have) lots of things in there you can relate too. I suppose we will have to agree to disagree on reading styles, cause I love books but can't stand those fantasy Jasper Fforde Tuesday Next book, boring and weird.

    Sending you good health thoughts. : )

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  11. VG--I would trust you and read anything you thought was good. Like I say, I finished "Prada," so it wasn't bad enough that I chunked it. Like you say, it's the whole "personal assistant to boss from hell" and peeking inside an exclusive industry that I think make it fascinating. But I'd WAY rather read an account of such a life written by YOU than by this writer. And she was soooo hypocritical. Supposedly exposing snobbery, but the main character was such a snob herself! Made fun of "the clackers", not even giving them names, and ruthlessly mocked Southerners, and considered herself so much above everyone...I just didn't like it. BUT, it read so easy, it wasn't really painful. I mean, it's not like getting through "War and Peace," you know? ;-)

    dave2--YESSSSSSS. I wish we could have all gotten together for the premier of "Clerks II" tonight! I anxiously await your review.

    erin S--he may not be perfect, but gosh, he's doing the best you could expect, and more, with what he's been dealt. And yes, we LOVED meeting Jules. She was just divine, and like she said, fit right in, like part of the family.

    erin--(you and erin are going to have to work on separating your comments) Believe me, it's not a rose garden, but...well, you know.

    adena--I kinda like ol' "Tony", too! ;-)

    carmen--DANGIT! I'm missing so many people! Shoot, shoot, shoot.

    jenB--you are my favorite kind of crazy. Please go on vacation with us next year. Bring Char. We're taking Mochaaaaah to Haiti, but how 'bout a cruise?

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  12. Belinda, so sorry you can't be there. Sorrier you're hurting so badly. Sending lots of love and prayers to you and Alex. Damn bipolar disorder. I freaking hate it.

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  13. You've given me nearly too much to respond to, darling Belinda. But I was missing other posts of yours this week (I check in DAILY, I'll have you know) so I was fine with an explosion of sorts.

    Bipolar - You are brave and amazingly honest about just how sucky this is to have, but I applaud you and Alex for getting all the help you need. God is good. He made us DRUGS! Yay, God!

    Endo pain - All I want to do is chop off the "o" in that to "end pain" for you. I also want to chop off your pain, but don't let me near your girly parts or even, heaven help us, your colon. This is why I'm not a doctor. I shouldn't be near sharp objects. Hurry, hurry with relief. I am the praying type. For you, I will.

    Chef Ramsay - Why am I turned on by this foul-mouthed monster? Gosh, he's hot.

    Devil Wears Prada - You confirmed my suspicions. Anytime a book is that popular by the masses, it's because it's a ridiculously EASY read with no meat to it. Which is why I don't read popular books. The last one I read proved me wrong (and I fear won't be repeated with consequent books) was Bridget Jones Diary. At least Fielding was clever and created a flawed character with whom I could relate.

    How come JenB gets a cruise and I get Haiti? I envision a picture of ME sitting on JenB's lap with HER licking me. Whaddya think?

    I'll be updating you. Promise. I love you tooooooo much not to include you.

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  14. Belinda, you have all these women drooling over your "Hunka Hunka" husband. Are you sure you want to stroke his ego THAT much?? ;-)

    You WOULD still have Halle (aka Rob's favorite pup) to tease me with!

    Okay, I have to admit...I liked The Devil Wears Prada...but only because at the time I was looking for a no-substance or theme, don't have to think, LIGHT kind of read. However it won't make the list of Melissa's Favorite Books.

    I really hope you get to feeling better soon. Call me if you need ANYTHING!!!

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  15. Interesting what you say about taking medication being psychologically tricky for the bipolar sufferer. The conundrum/catch-22 around schizophrenia is also fascinating: the typical paranoia makes it almost impossible for some to take their medication because they're convinced they're being poisoned by someone -- which wouldn't happen if they'd just take their medication... Good on you and Alex. And I sure hope the hysterectomy does the trick.

    And PS you don't want to live in BC right now either. It's damned hot right now (95F is hot for here)and since we live in a 'temperate' climate almost the only way to get A/C is to go to the movies. Excellent idea, actually...

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  16. I'm so glad and sad for the way things are going for you. I'm sure you're happy that there are positive things along with the negatives...

    And? The Thursday Next novels? LOVE them. A lot. All of Fforde's books actually, so very funny.

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  17. andrea--it's VERY much the same as schizophrenia; the med thing, I mean. And what commonly happens is the meds work, patient feels better, patient says, "See? I feel fine. I don't need these meds." and stops taking them. Thank God we don't have to deal with that. I don't know how other people do it, but I know that we would not have a marriage.

    And I heard about the BC hotness from Cece--what's up with that?

    melissa--HA! You know you want that puppy. Hee, hee. And yes, Alex has the big-head now. Actually, has ever since Jules called him a "stud muffin." Oy.

    Mochaaaaah--Yes. Yay, God, thanks for the drugs, and are you sure I can't have another baby? Really? OK, then. How about my colon left intact? Please?

    And let's see...Haiti was a joke, but you know where I really wanna go? Corsica. Could you pick up the tab?

    Karl--thankya. The end is in sight. Wait, I don't like the sound of that. You know what I mean.

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  18. Belinda, I'm so sorry to hear that you won't make it to BlogHer, but I understand completely. I just want you to feel better. And yes - Alex deserves major props.

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  19. Ooh, I was going to say what Julie just said. I hope I get to meet you and Alex next year, and give you a big hug and a smooch!

    On a serious note, I am SO SORRY to hear that the pain is so bad. Is the G.I. pain related at all to the endo problem, or is it something else entirely? And then for Alex to be having a rough time as well-that is just a lot for you to handle. I've always thought Alex sounded like a pretty special guy, but hearing how he's handling all this confirms it for me.

    I'll be thinking about you at BlogHer. I would LOVE to get Arianna Huffington's autograph, but what exactly do I ask her to sign?

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  20. Ick...sorry to hear that you are in so much pain. Got my fingers and all the paws crossed at our shack that you get relief soon. Tell Alex to hang in there, and kudos to him for soldiering on for himself and you.

    Thank goodness that our chefs are not like Gordon Ramsey so far. One of our chefs did mention that the contestants on that show were extremely unprofessional, and we do compare notes in class on Wednesdays about what idiot things they did...and they're supposed to actually have experience!

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  21. Would it be bad if we all woke you up to talk to you from blogher? Would you be happy we were all thinking of you and wanted to include you...or would that make you sad?

    Just wondering. For no real reason...really.

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  22. Yay, someone else who loved Kiss Kiss Bang Bang. Just watched it a week ago and loved it. Even put it on my iPod, I loved it that much.

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  23. As a Gordon Ramsay stalker, I love his shows, and I'm so glad you do too. They just had an article about him in People magazine, and I was glad he was still married, because that Virginia chick looks like she's trying to get him lost in her breasts!

    I'm really sorry you aren't going to BlogHer. Hopefully next year we can all go and meet up and have a blast. I would love to meet you in person!

    Thank you so much for putting your health issues on your blog for us to read. I have learned so much from your writings. You guys are really one awesome family! Keep strong!

    Shash

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  24. Shash, I'm fascinated by his wife. I can't imagine being married to someone like him. It's probably good for their marriage that he's gone a lot. Oh, and...yaaaay, Garrett's gone! Next up on the block, SARAH. PLEASE.

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  25. MGM--thank you, you sweet thing! Live it up right for me at the big show, OK?

    elizabeth--same goes to you. Have a blast, meet EVERYONE, take lots of pictures, and tell me all about it!

    poodlebugz--I'm dying to know if you discussed the failings of this week's ejectee in class: SERVING RAW CHICKEN. And he tried to excuse it by saying he cooked it the way he did because "it was faster." Thanks, I'll remember that on my way to the hospital.

    erin--what makes you think I EVER get to sleep? Yes, wake me up. I dare you. ;-)

    kevin, wasn't it great? What a good, good movie. I just loved all the dialogue, especially the direct narration ABOUT the movie.

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  26. Thanks for the plug, Belinda. And thanks for the heads up on Devil Wears Prada. I was actually thinking about reading it because I just saw the film and thought it was really pretty good. Meryl Streep is sooo good at acting impenetrably icy. Now I know to steer clear of the book. So far my most embarrassingly cheesy chicklit-y summer read has been Rebecca Wells' Ya-yas in Bloom, the sequel to Devine Secrets. While it's been marketed as a novel (its listed on Amazon as "Ya-yas in Bloom: A Novel"), it's clearly a series of linked short stories, much like her other "novel" Little Altars Everywhere.

    My thoughts and prayers are with you.

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  27. Wowee! You can cover a lot of ground in one sitting! No pun intended. Heehee!

    I guess it's no secret that I am bipolar myself, and it stinks when you have to change the meds to avoid unpleasant side-effects, especially when it is otherwise working! I can't stand the weight gain effect I've been having, but except for stress-related mania, I've been good. Hubby gets a high 5 for staying on meds and for actively trying to get better. It's good that he has family around who understand the true nature of the illness.

    As for the weather, we've been over the century mark wayyyyyyy too much this month. If we weren't already in the middle of relocating within the state (TX) I would seriously be considering a move to Canada myself! Seriously! If my husband didn't get the job in Fort Worth, he was going to apply for a job he saw in Toronto. But, alas, it was not to be. I will miss the hills and trees (and architecture!) of San Antonio, plus all my family is here, but I will get to know some of my in-laws better. And hubby is making more money. I guess it's a good thing.

    I hope you have good news with your health soon. I worry, you know.

    Take care,
    R

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