Saturday 30 July 2011

Atypical aka WTF?

Just once I'd like my bodily fluids to be normal.  Is that too much to ask?  I didn't think so, but apparently the universe has other ideas.  Because my recent mucus adventures obviously weren't enough fun.  (I think I hate you universe).  Atypical gastro.  Yes, that's right.  Atypical fricken gastro.  Because apparently I can't even get the shits like normal people.

Not that I really know what that means.  Not that I really think my GP knows what that means.  But fingers crossed that the poor unfortunate at the path lab who has to grow my poo bugs will know what that means.    Good lord, I hope he's wearing one of those yellow suits from Outbreak, before he pops the lid on that container.

But I'm looking for silver linings, I really am.  Lets see.

For once I do look sick, according to Mr Grumpy.  So I guess that's something.  Mind you I never really thought of gastro as fitting into the Super Model disease group like Bob.  Something about exploding bodily fluids doesn't exactly scream beauty.

And I have lost those pesky pounds, plus a few, and I didn't even have to go to a single Jenny Craig meeting.  Though that could stop right about now.  7kg down in a little under a week not so good for symptom management and I'm pretty sure I could have just tossed my meds straight into the loo rather than bothering with trying to down them.  But at this rate I'm a shoe in for ANTM, well apart from being an old fart and all.

I got to freak out my GP, which I always enjoy, by having no peripheral pulse.  Though she could get one from the weirdly spasming blood vessel in my stomach that she could both see and feel.  A first for her apparently.

I didn't even feel the large needle in my bum to stop vomiting.  Go the power of SNAFU.

I also managed to gross out my eldest son, again something I enjoy immensely, by pointing out that there was a bag with my foul poo in it, sitting right next to him as he drove me to pathology.   

I haven't had to cook, which is really a bonus all round, as no one wants a gastro-infested woman touching their potatoes.

See silver linings and all that jazz. 

Now if only I could work out how to stop water working like a laxative I'd be pretty happy.  And real food would be nice.  But, that just sounds picky.

So I'll crawl back under my doona and cuddle my pillow, and think about how in a few days I'm sure to get a gig on ANTM.


And because show tunes always make me happy.

Sunday 24 July 2011

One day.

There was a thread on one of the Bob forums I read, that posed the question, " If you could be given ONE day without dysautonomia, what would you do?" It's the sickie equivalent of "what would you do if you won lotto?" but with more answers relating to number twos than holidays to Europe.

It's not really a question that I have thought about, especially not in recent years.  Initially, I was still viewing the world through delusional rose-coloured glasses which told me that recovery was a possibility.  Now, I'm resigned to the fact that it's not going to get better, and, after my Uberneuro visit, that my current state should be viewed as my glory days, as its only going to get worse.  Good lord, that sounds so doom and gloom.  And frankly I'm not ready to process, let alone write about that in any deep and mature fashion.  Bring back denial dammit, it's my favourite of all the coping mechanisms.

Going to my happy place.  
Going to my happy place.  
Going to my happy place.

Ahhhh.......happy place.

Where were we?

It's actually taken me a while to think about what I would do with a day of complete health.  Part of me feels like I should say that I would spend it doing things with my family, because that is the PC answer these days.  Not knocking those for who that is their hearts desire, but for me I'd be lying.  I love my family, I do, but I focus every available shred of energy on them, every day.  Don't get me wrong, I don't begrudge that in any way.  I do it by choice and because I love them.  But should that one day ever arrive I have other plans. 

I would be independent Michelle once more.

I would put on my Dorothy Shoes and favourite green dress, and head into the city.
I would drive the whole 45mins, by myself.
I wouldn't plan for loo or puke stops.  I wouldn't worry that I would get into town and have to turn back.  I would drive without considering any of those issues.
I would wander up and down the many arcades in the CBD, in my inappropriate footware.  
I would savour every blister and would love that initial painful surge of blood back into my feet, when I removed them at the end of the day.
I would try on overly priced clothes in the boutiques.
I would take time to enjoy the beauty of the Block Arcade.
I would sit in a little cafe in an alleyway, drinking hot, rich espressos, and simple watch the world go by.
I would eat tapas and slices of wondrously rich cakes.
I would walk to the gallery and wander through the exhibits.
I would stand on the Prince's Bridge over the Yarra River and watch the boats float by.
I would enjoy the hustle and the bustle, the smells, and sounds of the city.  
I would walk down to China Town and eat Yum Cha and marvel at the glorious golden ducks hanging in the windows.
I would lie, flat on my back, in the Botanic Gardens and watch the clouds scoot over head.
I would have small talk with the lady in line at the coffee stand.  The weather, the crowds, who will win the footy.  No talk of canes or illness.
I would sit in St Paul's Cathedral and soak in the silence, a world removed from the city sounds that surround it.
I would sit in a little restaurant in Collins St.  Eating a meal composed completely of entrees.  My table close to the window to watch the people and the lights roll past.
I would watch the seagulls fly around the spire of The Arts Centre, deluded by the bright lights to think it was still day.
I would stand in front of Her Majesty's Theater and marvel at her beauty in the soft glow of the lights.
I would wander back to my car, my step light and my heart full.
I would drive myself home inhaling the beauty of the string of tail lights strung out before me.
I would open up the windows and let the cool air rush in and tangle my hair.
I would skip up the steps at home, two at a time.
I would snuggle on the couch with my kids and my husband and tell them about my day.
And I would breathe.
I would be normal.
I would just be.

That would be my perfect day.  

No contingencies. No sickness. No dependence.

That's what I would do with my one day.  What would you do with yours?

Michelle :)


Wednesday 20 July 2011

The View From My Couch: Daphne

It's a miserable Winter's day here in Melbourne.  Even loving Winter, there are times when I am simply over our squelching driveway.  When receiving a face full of icy water when the wind catches one of the fern fronds is no longer humourous, or refreshing.  We are in the true heart of Winter.  When the house will no longer truly heat up, and the crispness of the air takes your breath away.  Even our randy and raucous possums are less likely to bash across our icy roof top at night.  Instead, taking their nocturnal frolicking to the warmer realm of our roof space.

I still enjoy the ethereal beauty of the thick fogs that smother sound and shrink the world.  Even yesterday driving home on our windy hills roads and not being able to see the bonnet of the car, was more adventure, than annoyance.  The hills take on an otherworldly beauty in Winter that I would never change.  But wet, chilly days, day after day, and a back yard that is now a bog, does wear on the nerves.

Just as I was ruing the mud that seeped up through my thongs yet again this morning, I caught a whiff of perfume.  Over near our bins, of all places, we have a variegated daphne bush.  It's a resilient little bugger.  It is surrounded by weeds and smelly bins.  It is frequently hit by boxes and bin bags swung by pouting children who feel that bin duty is below them.  It has been chewed on my possums and swallowed by vicious blackberry canes. Yet here, in the midst of this wasteland and a miserable Winter's day, it has flowered.  It's sweet perfume is caught on the wind, and seeps peace into your pours.  It's a smell of my childhood.  Up there with the jonquils and freesias of my grandmother's garden.
Now a little piece sits on top of my cabinet.  The strength of the perfume, incongruous with a bloom so tiny.  Yet the fragrance fills the room.  And I sit in my lounge room, breathing in the sweetness, looking out the window at the mist and damp boughs, and Winter seems wonderful again.

Michelle :)

Tuesday 19 July 2011

And the Winner is.............

I will have to say I've been overwhelmed with the large number of entries and lovely comments for one little pair of Dorothy shoes.  I may teared up a little reading them, or it may just be that pesky hay fever affecting my eyeballs again.  I'm pretty sure I saw some mould spores in my shower so I'm blaming those, okay.

Anyhoo, it has become clear that glittery red heels are the source of all happiness in the world.  They are beloved by all, and coveted by many.  Personally, I think they should be prescribed to everyone.  Not just let them eat cake (although that is a lovely thought, particularly a large rich mud cake), but also Dorothy Shoes for every man, woman, and child on the planet.  And then everyone would be filled with love and joy and we'd all dance instead of walk.  This is obviously the answer to world peace, I'll have to give the UN a call.

I will say I have amused myself making up the entries and thinking through possible ways to do the draw.  My eldest was very impressed with the half hour we spent in the craft store deciding between feathers and little wooden pegs.  I'm sure he told all his friends about our exciting outing.  He was even more impressed with my desire to involve the dogs in the draw.  I am now officially the Crazy Cat Lady, but with dogs.

I wish I could send everyone a pair, but alas I could only pick one winner.

I like my entries.  I don't care how much my loved ones shake their heads.
Thor was equally impressed with being chosen to pick the winner.
And all that training, and mutilated feathers, has paid off as Thor the wonder dog, carefully selects one entry.

 In fact, he was so excited that he needed a little lie down after.

And the winner is..............

 Or as it looked after Freyja broke in, nabbed the entry off the floor, ran off and tried to eat it.

This is why Freyja was not involved in the selection process.

Big Congratulations to Em of

So Em, email me (in the contacts tab above) and let me know your UK size and heel preference, and a little box of glittery magic will be winging it's way across the pond to your door.

Big thanks to everyone who entered.  Best blog birthday ever.

Michelle :)

Monday 11 July 2011

OMG its a Giveaway!!!!

This little old blog of mine has almost reached a milestone, it will soon be two-years-old.  It's a very exciting time as I never thought I'd still have anything to write about two years down the track.   Between my apathy, lack of follow through and difficulty in coordinating breathing and.....well anything, it's amazing that it manged to get past the first sad little post.

I've been racking what little is left of my brain for an appropriate way to celebrate.  I considered chugging margaritas, dancing on the inside, face planting in a large soft mud cake, or, even doing a streak through the lines of shrieking fans outside the opening night of the new Harry Potter movie.  Now whilst a medicinal margarita and a cake of the chocolate persuasion are highly likely, I thought it would be nice to give a little something back to the lovely bunch of readers that have stuck by me despite my obviously increasing insanity.

It's GIVEAWAY time!!!!!!!

I've thought long and hard about what would be an appropriate prize for such an auspicious occasion and such discerning readers.  Of all my posts, there is one that stands out for the joy it seemed to give others.  Even a year later I'm still getting comments, both here and on FB.  I also love my shoes even though I am unable to walk in them.  Just to glimpse their glittery goodness out of the corner of my eye brings me great happiness.  And, as the more astute of you may have noticed, a picture from that post now adorns my header.

My tutorial on making Dorothy Shoes unearthed a desire that seems to have lain hidden in the hearts of women (and not a few men) the world over.  Glittery red shoes are the path to true happiness.  There is magic in them there shoes, and that magic must be shared.

*I also find it highly entertaining that my little post which contains information about unicorn farts has ended up on the Vogue forums.

Hello my pretties.

So in honour of that one little post and those glittery shoes of goodness.

I am giving away 
a pair of Dorothy Shoes 
to one lucky reader.

I know it's hard, but try and contain your excitement people.  Glitter fever is quite overwhelming, and frequently contagious.

And just think you too could be a crazy woman doing Blue Steel impersonations in her backyard.

To Enter:

All you have to do is leave a comment here on the post.
This giveaway is open to all readers, both here in Australia and overseas.
Feel free to Tweet or Facebook the competition to anyone.
If you happen to choose to 'Follow' the blog over on the side, or 'like' the FB page I'll even give you an extra entry (just make sure you let me know, brain challenged remember and I don't want anyone to miss out on an extra entry).

Entries close Midnight Sunday 17th July 2011 and the winner will be announced on the Tuesday.


The shoes can be made in either the traditional high heel, or in flats.  They will be made to the winners size and choice of heel height.

So enter away people the magic of the glittery Dorothy Shoes of Goodness needs to be shared.

Michelle :)

PS Thanks for all the well wishes during my recent tussle with the flu.  I think the delightful phlegm cement is finally starting to move off my lungs and I am hoping to attempt a full day out of bed in the next few days.  Brain may take a bit longer to de-fog as evidenced by my recent new phone debarkle.

Me: "It says that the temp is going to be 11 to 32, that can't be right?"
Youngest: "No Mum, that's the time".
Me: "Oh".
Youngest: walks away shaking head at my growing stupidity.

One step closer to the use of safety scissors. Sigh.

No this song doesn't really have anything to do with the post, well unless you like shoes a little too much. Not judging......much.  It's just an old favourite and it's my birthday, so there.

Thursday 7 July 2011

90% Mucus 10% Whinge

I love Winter I do.  It's cold (in fact it's supposed to snow here today) and you all know how I feel about cold.  It's right up there with giving Johnny Depp a sponge bath or eating chocolate off his belly.  Cold is good.  But unfortunately it also has a dark side.  It's also flu season.  The time of year where people cough on the back of your neck in line at the supermarket, or sneeze all over the produce section.  The time of year where you need a surgical mask and a blow torch to kill the bugapalooza growing on every surface in town.

Damn you sick people who can't keep your mucus to yourselves.  You should all be hunted down and kneecapped.

In case you can't guess, I have caught a bug.  And, I'm not happy Jan.

I have been reduced to a fetid cloud of pestilence, mankifying in bed.

Initially it was somewhat amusing.  Normal sick.  Sick like other people.  Sick that has treatments like chicken soup and Vicks Vapour Rub.  There was a novelty factor, that was somewhat pleasing.  However, that novelty factor wore off the second I went to take a sip of my coffee only to have a steady stream of super runny mucus run from my nose to plop in my mug.  This is not on people.

Since that time my body has been taken over by a ravenous horde of bugs, till I am now composed primarily of mucus.

I am past the point of walking around with tissues protruding from my nostrils in a vain attempt to stem the unending tide of mucus.  I am past the point of sitting miserably in the shower letting it's free flowing grossness be swept away by the shower nozzle.

I am even past the point of uncontrollable full body sneezing.  Thankfully, I have not reenacted my infamous Liverpool Kiss, Kitchen Bench incident (tip for the day, don't sneeze whilst bent over the kitchen bench) as I have been to unwell to enter the kitchen.

I am now at the joyous point where it solidifies in your lungs and produces the ultra-sexy Darth Vader wheeze.  I may or may not have amused myself for about an hour yesterday by saying "Luke, I am your father" in between lung wrenching coughs.

Stupidly, I though I was winning the war against my pestilence and went to physio on Tuesday.  Fool!  I should be studied for my heightened level of stupidity.  I'm pretty sure I heard the bugs in my lungs laughing at me, though that could have been my feverish delirium.

My throat feels like I have been chugging razor blades, and my ears want to burst.  My head is in a vice and even my eyelashes hurt.  Perhaps most distressing to my concerned loved ones, my whinge quota has gone up ten fold.

To say this has played havoc with Bob would be an understatement.  Standing and breathing, is over-rated right?  Who needs a pulse?  Not me that's for sure.  Though I could have done without the tachycardia and stabbing chest pain last night that made me feel as if my whole body was beating.

Impersonating characters from Star Wars aside, I have attempted to distract myself during this time.

Coma sleep has been quite good.  Though waking up to find your face stuck to the couch or pillow by mucus that works better than super glue, is a bit of a downside.

Whimpering into my pillow has passed many an hour.

Watching Zombieland did make me laugh/cough/choke.  And seemed somewhat appropriate given the various disgusting fluids exploding from my body.

Staring blankly at the computer screen for hours on end as your brain tries desperately to decipher those weird black squiggles, is quite productive.

I have redecorated the bat cave.  I'm going for the littered crack house look.  A pile of moist used tissues over there, another over here.  Multiple glasses and dregs-filled mugs.  Casually tossed books.  Throw pillows with suspicious mucus stains and funk coated pjs mutating in the clothes hamper.  Half empty Vicks jars and empty Panadol blister packs complete the ensemble.  Add in fragrance Eu De Sick, and I think I'm destined for cutting edge design magazines.

Luckily my supportive family have been on hand with comments like:

"Hope you get better Mum.  Remember you need to drive me to the movies on Friday", or

"So we're on our own for dinner then?"

Where would we all be without the love and understanding of our families.

So I shall now head back to my snot encrusted pillows, wipe the eye boogers from my tender lids and dream sweet dreams of Captain Jack turning up on my doorstep with a box of super soft aloe vera soaked Kleenex.


PS Any tips for passing the time whilst caught in the less than tender embrace of pestilence would be greatly appreciated.

After looking in the mirror this morning I realise I am truly bringing sexy back, yeah!