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Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Introducing Jasper

Allow me to introduce Jasper. Jasper is a one year old golder retriever. Mike and I rescued Jasper from his friend Tracy's home.

Tracy and her husband Simon are getting divorced. It is ugly. A year ago, Tracy got Jasper for the kids. Simon did not want another dog but agreed if he could buy another flat screen tv. Apparantly, this relationship has been ugly for many years but has become much, much worse. Huge amounts of fighting in the home and this poor little man has suffered... Initially, the plan was that Simon would keep Jasper for one year, until Tracy was able to buy a house. The townhome she is renting will not allow dogs. A week before Tracy moved out, Simon told her that the minute she moved, Jasper went to the pound. Needless to say, once we heard that - we knew we were adopting a dog.

As you can see, Jasper was a little thin when we got him. He had not been eating and had spent the previous week in his crate in a cold garage (Simon is a cruel man). He is adjusting well and eating like a horse.

He is a big puppy with unbound energy. Fortunately, Mike's yard is big and the perfect venue for a dog to run and play. He has several issues. He jumps on everyone, he is unused to eliminating on a leash, he is in his chewing phase, and he is not aware of the meaning of the word NO. Jasper was brought home to their home when they had no time to train him. So when did things they didn't like, they threw him out on the patio. The patio was also his bathroom and they kept him from eliminating on a leash because they didn't like to carry a plastic bag. He has come leaps and bounds in the 3 weeks we have had him and has probably put on 7 pounds. He is still a little thin but looking better every day.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

At a loss for words

Yesterday was my birthday. It was also the last day of my sister's (Mary Beth) good friends life.

Jules was a unique gentleman with a sharp wit and sense of humor. He lit up rooms when he walked in and brightened many a unhappy person's day.

He will be dearly missed.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Mike's Birthday

Thursday was Mike's birthday. He celebrated by an appointment with the surgeon for a follow up. I celebrated by making dinner and a pecan pie. I was unsure of what to get him for his birthday because he gave me no ideas. Left to my own devices, I gave him: tickets to see the Lion K1ng in NYC in september, two xb0x games, and dinner at Emeril Lagasse's Chop House restaurant on sunday.

He LOVED it all and spent 12 hours playing the one video game on saturday night. Thursday was a long day and we did not get home until almost 8:30pm. I made the pecan pie and let it cook while we watched S0 Y0u Think Y0u Can Dance. Sunday, we went to Emeril Lagasse's Chop House and, let me tell you, IT WAS AWESOME!!!! I wish I had brought my camera with me to take a picture of all the fabulous food. It was a little expensive but well worth it. Emeril, we will be back :)

Monday, July 27, 2009

Weekend Fun

This was a jam packed weekend. My friend Terry got married and we went to A11egria from Circue du s0liel.

The wedding was beautiful. Terry had beautiful weather, good company, and a beautiful reception.
Mike and I had a wonderful time

even though my bra strap is showing in this picture. We wisely chose to stay overnight at the hotel, so that we could have a good time and not worry about the long drive home.

Sunday, we went to Circue du S0liel and had a wonderful time. Unfortunately, we are exhausted today because we ran and ran all weekend. We have just finished clearing off my porch so that the landlord can start construction. Mike is dozing on my couch,the cat is asleep on my feet. Life is good.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Belated Wordless Wednesday (A day late...)

Eeyore has the right idea. It is hot and humid and miserable in PA, today.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

I hated High School....

My sisters agree with me on this. High School was hell. I am not one of those people who expound euphorically about how high school was the best years of their life. Now there were some good times but overall, you can wipe those four years off the face of the map.

There are still some people that if I saw on the street, I would have to resist the urge to sucker punch them. Missy is one of the individuals. We went to a very small, all girl, catholic high school. I graduated with 39 girls. 39 catty girls... In junior year, Adam came from one of the all boy high schools to be in the play. He was funny, good looking, and we got along well. I asked him to the prom. He said yes. I will never forget it, my family was in the kitchen bolstering me to call him and ask. I went out in the hall and called him and he said yes. I didn't say anything to anyone else in my class that I was going to ask him. I was an awkward, insecure female and was scared of ridicule and rejection. Apparently Missy and Adam had been talking but she had not asked him to the prom. When he told her I had asked him, you would have thought the end of the world had happened. She was angry. She and several of her friends tried to talk him out of going with me. I think by this point they were dating. To do Adam justice, he did go to the prom with me and danced with me and all but ignored her. However, the weeks leading up to the prom were pretty awful for me. She was brutal at school; called me every name in the book, had people in the class taking sides.

When I signed up for face book, Missy was one of the people who requested to be my friend. I initially was just going to ignore it but then I thought better of it. I could look into her life by pictures and see whether all my bad wishes had come true. Did she have awful acne, was she fat, maimed in some way? Seriously, I thought it was high school and we were a bunch of immature girls. Let bygones be bygones. Right? No. Today, someone got me with the post this paragraph as your status and everyone posts a memory about you. This could be fun, I thought. I have friends that go all the way back to grade school on face book. Don't you know that Missy posted her memory that I asked Adam to the prom and how upset she was then but it was laughable now.

Now, people, I could lie and say I am laughing about this now. Truth be told, I am not. I still have very strong feelings about this. CLEARLY. I have discovered this: 1. no one is meaner than a teenage girl and 2.the scars of high school run deep and are likely not to fade away completely.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Wordless Wednesday, my favorite pic from the last couple of months

Isis 1995-June 29, 2009. You will be missed....

Monday was not a good day...

My grandmother always said the minute you get a pet, you open yourself up to heartache. But we keep doing it because it is so worth it....

This was not a good weekend at the house. Isis, Mike's 14 year old doberman, has been steadily declining for the last couple of months. We have tried a number of different things: dog aspirin, antibiotics, multivitamins with glucosamine, poached chicken and all natural dog food, and finally rimadyl. She would improve for a couple of days and then take several steps back. All the while she continued to play with her toys and eat well. Friday night, we noticed she was having problems with the front legs. Her back legs have been bad for years but she compensated well. This weekend, she couldn't walk more than a couple of feet without having to sit and her front legs kept sticking. She stopped eating her treats and spent the day sleeping. It just kept getting worse and Sunday night, Mike came to the conclusion that it was time to put her to sleep. I kept hoping she would fall asleep and go that way, but no.

We cried, ALOT. I said I would come back out Monday night and go to the vet with him. I got to the house first on Monday. She clearly had not moved all day and was just wiped out. Mike came home and got her outside and as her final push, she went jaunting across the front yard. I wish my camera had been charged because she ran out of steam and sat down, Mike walked over to her and she got a final burst of steam and jaunted over to him and sat there looking up at him, smiling. The camera was dead, I am unsure I would have been able to take the picture anyway, I was a little bleary eyed.

The vet was wonderful and examined her and found multiple weaknesses in the legs and her heart was not beating regularly. He gave Mike several options but pointed out that they all were essentially plugging the hole of a sinking ship. Mike and I were crying from the time we got her in the car and he choked out that he felt she was in pain and not having fun anymore... They gave her a tranquilizer shot and let it kick in, leaving us alone with her. After about five minutes, her legs gave out and she slipped down to the floor and laid her head on Mike's knee and fell asleep. They gave her the final injection and left us with her. To say that we were a mess is putting it mildly- I had snot pouring down my face, neither of us could breathe or see. But she is no longer in pain and she had her favorite person to rest her head on.

The house is empty without her. Her toys are on the living room floor and her food bowls are still in the kitchen. Neither of us can bear to move them. When I walk through the dark bedroom in the middle of the night, I still step over where she should be on her bed on the floor... We both walked in the house last night calling her name. Neither of us have slept well the last two nights, we both keep seeing her lying on the floor as we left the vet. They wouldn't take her away until we had left. I wish we had brought her blanket with us to be cremated with her...

I don't like dobermans but Isis was the exception to the rule. She was a love and will be missed, greatly. I shouldn't have typed this at work, I am a mess all over again...

Friday, June 19, 2009

Because You Asked....

Several of you have requested more information about the boy. Here it is....

As you may remember, I posted about a blind date back in the beginning of January. That blind date was Mike. Around Christmas, I became determined to shed old baggage and start a new campaign to meet new people. Not "the one" necessarily but get myself back in the dating game. I had tried Match.c0m and EHarm0ny with little success but I decided to give Match.c0m another try. Part of match is Chemistry.c0m. I filled out the profile, determined to be clear about myself and what I was looking for, no hedging on the weight or vagueness about what I wanted from my life or potential dates. I had several matches and I went through the motions of answering their questions and reading their responses but noone struck me as interesting. I was ok with this, though. I figured if nothing else, I would meet new people and regain the confidence I had lost over the last several years.

Then somewhere in between Christmas and New Years, I was contacted by Mike. We went through the motions of the beginning levels of communication for Chemistry and then began emailing and instant messaging. After about two weeks of talking, we agreed to meet for dinner. Dinner was an enlightening experience. Here was this very pleasant individual, exactly as described, who was easy to talk to. We spent 3 hours talking. I walked away from dinner saying WOW. Mike says he walked away thinking I was the one. (I knew on the second date when he showed up at my apartment with flowers and chocolate.)

Neither one of us have looked back. Everything has been easy and natural. It is amazing to find this person, the one that completes the spaces you didn't realize were empty until you meet them. We have looked at rings, he has asked my opinion, but I want him to pick it out. He has seen what I like but also wants me to be surprised. I don't know when it is coming but he says sometime this summer.

Mike is one of 5 children ( the other 4 are half siblings) but is estranged from all but one. His parents each brought children to the marraige, Mike is the only child from their marraige. Both parents have died. He has been on his own for the past three years. He is divorced, having married someone he admits he knew he should not have. They got caught up in the planning and did not know how to reverse it all. They remain friends, although I have not yet met her. She is 5 years younger than we are and it seems that they were immature when they met and that carried into the marraige. She must be a good person because although they were in the middle of a divorce she moved with him into his parents home to care for her mother when they brought her home on hospice.

I am hoping this answers burning questions...

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

The Day After

We arrived at the hospital at 10:30. Mike was registered and ushered into a room where he was handed a paper gown, instructed to wear that and only that, and then subjected to a barrage of questions and stuck with needles. He said he was fine until they made him put on the paper gown; then reality sunk in... We only had to wait about 20 minutes once the admitting nurse was done with him before the OR tech came to usher him off to surgery. In the elevator, he began to shake and when we got to the doors of the OR suite, he started to tear up. I could go no further with him and kissed him good bye, told him I loved him, and went to wait in the surgical family waiting room.

Now, my family has had a number of surgeries and we have congregated in these waiting rooms together. It is a stark difference to be waiting alone. Don't get me wrong. We still worry and watch the time pass but when you are with others, there are a number of distractions. The females are knitting (I think the last surgery, 3 out of 4 were knitting pumpkin hats), Damian is reading the paper and we all are texting brothers 2 and 3. 15 minutes passes quickly. We are all worried but we are bolstered by family. Yesterday was torture. Minutes seemed like hours and I couldn't knit or read, it took too much to concentrate. Someone foolishly had given Mike a time of 1-2 hours for surgery so that when I hit the 3 hour mark, I began to worry. Friends from the hospital would stop by to check but still time stood still, it seemed. The physician came out after three and a half hours. Surgery went fine, he was able to do everything he wanted but Mike would be sore and off his feet for awhile. I would be able to see him once he was moved out of the recovery room, another hour at least.

When I did finally get to see him, he was groggy and sore but he smiled when I saw him and the first thing he said was, I love you. He is swollen and sore and exhausted. The next two days will be spent sleeping on the couch, he has to sleep upright so no bed for him. He can eat only cold soft liquids- my favorite type, ice cream. As I type, he is asleep next to me on the couch, the dog is asleep at my feet and we have Yo Yo Ma playing in the background. Life is good.

Thank you so much for all your well wishes and prayers. They mean so much. I am honored to be among such lovely people in blogistan...

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Tomorrow is the day.

Mike is scheduled for surgery tomorrow at 12noon. I am a little freaked out. Although he is having surgery at the hospital where I work, by a surgeon I trust implicitly, I am still scared. I will feel much better tomorrow night when we are home and Mike is on the other side of the knife....

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Wordy Wednesday

The last month has flown by. I have felt largely like what pond scum scrape off their feet for some time and finally went to have it investigated. What we discovered is: a. I have put on a large amount of weight and my body is not happy with it, b. my blood pressure is through the roof (150/110) and my body does not like that, and c. hormonally I am a mess. What it came down to was being started on not one, but two meds for my blood pressure and restarted on an estrogen based birth control pill. WHAT FUN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Seriously, for the first 2 weeks I was dizzy and lightheaded 24 hours a day. Even driving, when I turned a corner the inside of the car would be spinning. Standing still, I swayed. I apparently scared the crap out of Mike- he just let on to that this week. He kept telling me to lie down and would bring me cooling drinks :) And when I melted down because I was tired of feeling so lousy, he held me in those big arms, kissed my hair, and told me that it was OK. All the while feeling lousy, himself.

We wrapped up our week of finding out what was wrong with me with a ear/ nose/ throat doctor appointment for him. Mike's sinuses are a mess and every one needs cleaning out, his septum is deviated and needs to be corrected, and his adenoids need to be removed. Why all this? Because he has had five sinus infections since February, he has sleep apnea from his sinus disease and enlarged adenoids, and he has constant migraines. Surgery is scheduled for June 15, 2009.

The doctors appointment was enlightening... Mike was filling out the paperwork and I felt him pause next to me. When I looked over at him, he was looking at the paperwork blankly. I asked him what was wrong and he said he didn't know who to put for his emergency contact. I was at a loss for words. If not my parents, then definitely one of my sisters I could list but he has no one. Both his parents have died and he is estranged from his half siblings. I am his emergency contact. It was an easy decision; we are looking at engagement rings and talking marriage but I was sad for him. We take for granted how lucky a family we are. We are many and we are close and would do anything for one another. He has none of this, right now. They will and already are welcoming him to the group with open arms.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Happy Nurses Week to all My fellow Nurses....

It is National Nurses Week. Marybeth has nicely posted this on her blog Which was very nice because the office has not made any note of it. It is ok, the docs think of me during the year (like getting me a ticket to the game 5 world series that the Phillies won!). So, if you encounter a nurse- feel free to thank them. They will appreciate it more than you know. So, I am posting a picture of my favorite nursemaid- she is never far from my side when I am home, always reaching out a paw to make sure I am ok. Here she is clearly testing the bed to make sure it is alright.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Somewhat Wordless Wednesday

Meet Isis. Isis is Mike's 14 year old doberman that he inherited when his mom died three years ago. I am not a doberman fan but this one has my heart. She is a sweetheart that brings me shoes and socks as gifts when I walk in the house. When I leave the house, she brings Mike whatever article of clothing I have left behind as a way of saying, she is coming back- right? Isis is not long for this world. She is eating like a horse, playing, happy but losing weight, has multiple tumors, and frequently urinates blood. This is going to be awful all the way around. Isis is one of the last tangible things of his mom that Mike has. In the meantime, I am determined to spoil her rotten.

Monday, April 20, 2009

A post to make you all go AWWWW!

Mike and I were supposed to go to the Phillies game tonight. It has been postponed due to rain. But not until Mike was already on the road. He is coming to my office. We will have dinner and he will head home. He is not happy.

We have spent the greater part of the afternoon IM'ing as to whether or not the game would be postponed. The Phillies site had the game to be played as scheduled. He was not happy and I knew he was not but I was determined to go to the game- good weather or bad. He was a trooper and never once asked me to reconsider.

He called me from the turnpike and said "Guess what just came across KYW? The game has been cancelled." I mumbled something I will not share. Then I asked if he wanted to come to me and have dinner before going home. He said, yes, a little less enthusiastically. I said "At least you won't be wet and cold, and you get to see me".

His response: "The only reason I was coming down was because I love you. The Phillies are not worth it". That was when I melted.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Happy Easter...

A picture from one of my favorite books, The Country Bunny and the Golden Shoes. A mother rabbit wins a spot from the Grandfather Bunny to be one of the select Easter Rabbits. It is worth finding the book and it will take you all of fifteen minutes to read it but it will make you smile.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Baltimore (updated to include post and title) :)

This weekend, Mike and I went to Baltimore to see Kooza and go to the National Aquarium. Circue du Soliel was incredible and for three hours, all we could say was HOLY CRAP! The show was INCREDIBLE and I recommend it to all. Mike purchased the Tapis Rouge tickets which involved a cocktail hour prior to the show and during the intermission and a picture taken on arrival. The picture is cute but my hair is awful. The curl took over... It was straight as a pin when I left the hotel but it was misty and damp. However, it gives you an idea of the boy.

Sunday, we headed to the National Aquarium with two Flat Stanleys in tow. For those of you unfamiliar with Flat Stanley, it is a paper cut out that school children color and pass onto family members and track their travel. My friend Penny's children, Caroline and Ben, are doing the Flat Stanley routine- both came to Baltimore with me.
The Flat Stanley's stayed at the hotel with us....
Ben's Flat Stanley said hello to the sharks....
Caroline's Flat Stanley said hello to the dolphin (who was saying "Talk to the Tail")...
Then the Flat Stanleys came home to the farm.
In Pennsylvania Dutch country...

where apparantly Darth Vader lives. The kids are going to love it!

The weekend overall was AWESOME and returning to reality was a a huge shock...

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Scary Times

Mike went into work this morning to find out that two men from the IT department were being laid off. They had heard rumors of lay offs but had not seen the rumor come to fruition until this morning. One of the men was Level 3 and from Mike's office in Allentown. The other man was Level 2 (Mike's position) but from the Harrisburg office. For all intents and purposes, it seemed that Mike should have been the Level 2 man to go, since he has been in his position the least amount of time. However, Mike has volunteered to take on call time, stays late to learn new things, offers help whenever he can, and most importantly will go wherever the powers that be tell him too.

It would seem that Mike will now be splitting his time between the Allentown and Harrisburg office. He will need to take call for both offices (2/4 weeks out of the month) and will be living in limbo for the time being. As he puts it, it is gainful employment and only makes him more valuable.

The whole situation is terrifying to me. As an RN, I am secure in a job. I may not always have my position I am in now, but the bedside nurse is always in demand. And although, I may not want to go back to the bedside, I am guaranteed a job there. I cannot imagine the insecurity of not knowing if your job will still be there from one day to the next.

Tomorrow morning at 9am, Mike will meet with the powers that be to discuss his time at Harrisburg. Send good thoughts if you will, please.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Wordless Wednesday- Warped edition

So, in my usual good timing, I managed to tear the ligaments in my left ankle- AGAIN. (This is getting very old, peeps.) I was carrying in my laundry and managed to put my foot into the hole in the driveway and completely turn my ankle. The resulting tearing noise was enough to make me ill. I dragged myself into the house, laundry basket and all, and cried quite a bit while nursemaid piglet tried to make it all better... It sucks to do this at any time but this is the weekend that Mike and I are headed to Baltimore for Circue du Soliel and the Acquarium. We are still going just with me at a much slower speed.

Mike sent the above picture to make me laugh today. It worked. The look on the banana's face is priceless.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Happy Spring

Happy Spring, my fellow bloggers. Of course, it is flurrying and only 43 degrees outside here in PA, but still officially the first day of Spring. March Madness is underway and in an unprecedented move, I am leading the pool. My cynical family was sure Mike had helped me with my brackets. He did not, I did my research and chose not one emotional pick. When I told Mike that they thought he had helped, he snickered and said I should have helped him :)

Tuesday, March 17, 2009


I have become hesitant to post alot because it is such a wonderful journey that I have found myself on and one that is both exciting and intensely private at the same time.

So, I will say this: I am Great, Mike is Great, and together, we are incredibly HAPPY.

Monday, March 2, 2009

My idea of a perfect saturday

630am- get up and let aged dog out (not perfect yet)
645am- climb back into bed and into the arms of the man you are head over heels in love with (now perfect)
645-830am sleep in aforementioned arms
830am- man lets dog out
845-0930am - lie in aforementioned arms discussing anything
0930am -get up, drink caffeine of choice (diet coke) and eat girl scout cookies for breakfast
0930-1045am watch nephew of love play video games
1045am make the wise decision to go back to bed
1100am love joins you
1100-145pm sleep
145pm shower and head out to get food for lunch/dinner
300pm eat phenomenal hoagies from local mom and pop shop
400 - 7oopm sleep on couch with love

This is where perfect ends... Mike was called into work, i headed home and did not sleep much because of all the sleep I had had during the day and Princess P was more than angry with me for leaving her alone... It got better sunday afternoon when I headed back out into the land of open fields to have dinner with the love :)

And then it started to snow...

Sunday, February 22, 2009

A Very Good Day

Today, Mike and I joined my family at the Franklin Institute for the Narnia Exhibit. The ehibit, although smaller than I had hoped, was fun and a good time was had by all. Unfortunately, the museum itself closed shortly after we finished the exhibit and we were unable to see all the Franklin Institute had to offer. Instead, we braved the frigid winds and walked the two blocks to TGI Friday's where we had a fun dinner that showed Mike the family I love and am proud to be a part of...

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Could someone define extravagant? Because I am confused...

So, a week ago I mentioned to Mike that we could ignore Valentines Day because we had only been dating a month and it was a lot of pressure to put on a new relationship. He was appalled that I would suggest such a thing. He mentioned that he was not going to ignore it but hoped I didn't expect anything extravagant. Ok, sounds good. Right? I found a perfect card, made homemade meatballs, and his favorite dessert of pecan pie. Mike started Valentines Day on thursday by sending 2 dozen long stem roses to the office. I was overwhelmed and briefly thought I was behind the eight ball with my efforts but did not want to go overboard. A homemade dinner and dessert takes time, effort, and thought, I was good.

So Mike arrives on Saturday afternoon to find the pecan pie on the table with the card. He paused, seemed upset, and said he didn't get me a card. I replied, yes you did - it came with the roses. That was not good enough apparantly because then he said he had instead gotten me something else and hands me this:

I thanked him appropriately and then told him I was frightened to see what extravagant was if this was not. He laughed... The night went downhill from there. I have fairly severe acid reflux and was taken down flat. I am afraid that our first Valentine's Day was spent with me throwing up and Mike rubbing my back telling me how much he had fallen in love with me. Sunday, I was feeling better and went to Mike's so that he could watch the Nascar race on his 50 inch high def tv while I slept on his couch. Unfortunately, I kept him up all night with continued belly issues of the lower end. As I left in the morning for work, he told me again how much he loved me, had fallen in love with me, and was enjoying himself. I think he has survived the trial by fire...

Today the girls called me to tell me that once again I had something waiting for me in the office. What I found waiting for me was another two dozen roses. Apparantly, the first 2 dozen were not acceptable being 2 roses short and another one being beheaded on the delivery. Mike politely emailed the company and told them he was unhappy. They offered to either refund or resend and since I was not feeling well, he thought they would brighten my day and had them resend new ones. Seriously? This is not extravagant?

Thursday, February 12, 2009

A Lovely Suprise

HTL has left for Costa Rica for 2 weeks. This leaves me with the neurotic GSW for 2 weeks, alone. Work is going to be hell with our normal patient load. On a normal day, we (me, GSW, HTL, and LR) see 20 patients in the office, 20 inpatients in the hospital, and (on average) 6 new patient consults. Today, we (just GSW and myself) saw 24 office patients, 27 inpatients, and 22 new patient consults. I did not think the day would ever end.

At lunchtime, I was drowning in the emergency room and recieved a page from my secretary. "You need to come downstairs right NOW". I went down an hour later to find a huge box on my desk. I opened the box to find one dozen multicolor long stem roses, a box of chocolates, and a card that read- "will you be my valentine? All yours; Mike"

I cried like a little school girl and called Mike to tell him how much I loved them and how, without even knowing, he had made an overwhelming day AWESOME.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Beware the Penquins

I am sure that my faithful readers, all 6 of them (I love you guys), have noticed that the majority of my patients are mental midgets and need to be heavily medicated. Penquin lady was no different.

Penquin lady was my new patient for the day. I came in to find my list of office patients on my desk and heavily highlighted. The girls have a meathod. Green for a new patient, blue for an outpatient followup, and yellow for a hospital followup. I discovered today that purple and green means a really CRAZY new patient. Hard to imagine that one would be able to ascertain that the new patient was crazy by just speaking to her on the phone but they had. AND her daughter called the office to warn us about her.

Let me tell you, my friends, their assessment was not wrong. This woman was certifiable. The reason she came in to see the pulmonologists- TO BE EVALUATED FOR INHALING PENGUIN POOP. Yes, readers, you read that correctly penguin poop... while on vacation in Antarctica, she tripped and fell face first into penguin poop. She has a legitimate concern, bird feces when inhaled can translate into histoplasmosis. It is the tale she told that confirmed her mental instability.

I am not making this up, you can't. APPARANTLY, the patients tall thin stature was threatening for the penguins. (They are short, fat birds after all). She chose to wear a red sweater to the penguin area and that angered the penguins and they pushed her down. Yup, they pushed her down. She proceed to tell me that she intimidates all birds and is often attacked, EVEN when driving.

We ordered the appropriate tests to rule out histoplasmosis and offered her the name of a psychiatrist to help her come to terms with the fact that birds are so threatened by her... Seriously people, I had to walk out of the exam room 4 times, feigning being paged, to keep from laughing out loud in her face...

When I IM'd Mike about her, his response was Beware the Penguins- Dooby Dooby Doo, from one of my favorite bud lite commercials.

A No Good, Very Bad Day

Yesterday started like most days, an irritating drive in to work, a long list of patients, irritable doctors, and a very tired me. Mike and I had talked late into the night, about nothing at all but neither wanted to hang up the phone until exhaustion took over for both of us.

As I pulled up my hospital list, a name jumped out at me. A young patient that I have followed in the outpatient setting had been admitted to the Intensive Care Unit. She had seen us for a benign lung nodule but had a long history of breast cancer and had been struggling of late with multiple health issues. The last time I saw her, she seemed to have plateaued and was beginning to find her way with the new infirmities. But now, here she was.

It became clear, quickly, once I saw her and reveiewed the chart that my friend was not long for this world. The cancer treatments had erroded her bowel and her body was falling apart from the inside out. She was quickly failing and no matter the intervention, her blood pressure remained in the toilet and she was requiring a machine to breathe. Her loving family surrounded her bedside. Discussions of surgery danced in the air but it was clear what the outcome would be regardless of the intervention. As I sat down with her family to discuss what would be our recommendations, my heart broke. This patient and I have had a connection because of similiar ages and angsts; but also because of her placement in her family of 8. She is the youngest of the three girls and her family makeup is the same as mine with the oldest a boy followed by three girls and then two younger boys. And now, I was recommending the withdrawl of life support and the addition of morphine to make her comfortable. At the family's request, I was at the bedside as she passed away and for the first time in 17 years, said the rosary.

I went back to the office and put my head down on the desk and cried. And later in the morning when Mike instant messaged me, I told him about my morning. He was good, he didn't ignore the uncomfortableness of the situation. Instead, he asked about my patient and her family and me. When I saw him last night, he said nothing about it but wrapped me in those big arms of his and held me as I became ugly, sniveling, snotty, and blotchy doing the ugly cry...

So it was a no good, very bad day that might have made me move to Australia that turned into a wonderful evening of discovering that this wonderful man is as mad about me as I am about him. And once again, it was 1:30 am as I was heading to bed because neither one of us wanted to acknowledge the time that would make Mike head home. I am exhausted today but for some reason I can't erase this Cheshire Cat grin from my face...

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Who Would Have Thunk It?

I am afraid that I might need to rename my blog to something referring to Mike....

We have seen each other, now, 4 times and continue to communicate every night. I am in awe, really, awe. I never anticipated finding this connection. I honestly thought I would meet new people and refind the confidence to put myself back out into the world of dating. Instead, I have found a charming, funny, peaceful, gentle man. I am excited to speak to him every night and am staying up late because I don't want to end the conversation.

Sunday, we went to see My Bloody Valentine in 3D. His choice, I had chosen dinner and the movie the night before. The movie was not scary but gory in a campy sort of way; very similiar to Scream. I am not sure why, whether it be to add to the atmosphere of the movie or simple malfunction, but the theatre was sub zero temperatures. I was in a cashmere turtleneck sweater and was freezing. I was wrapping my hands in my scarf and trying not to shake like a leaf. Mike, noticed my discomfort and asked if I was ok. Ever the independant female, I insisted I was fine. He simply reached over and took my hand, wrapping it in his much larger paw. He held my hand for the entire movie, frequently checking that I was warm enough. At the end of the movie, he walked me to my car and hugged and kissed me goodbye.

I have invited him to join me to go to the Franklin Institute to see the Narnia Exhibit with my family. This is big, HUGE. I have dated a bit and my family has met only or two of my former boyfriends. I hesitate to type this, but I sense something different here... I hope I am not wrong. I have been grinning since the weekend. So much so, that the docs (males) are asking to meet this poor man so that they may give their approval. (I have realized that I have 2 fathers and one new older brother that I acquired through this job.) I am looking foward to what the next few weeks, months hold :)

Sunday, January 25, 2009


I have spoken to Mike, either on the phone or through the instant messanger, almost every night since we went out for the first time. I like him, alot. We had our second date, last night. An informal affair, we watched Kung Fu Panda (awesome movie) on my miniscule tv and talked late into the night.

He arrived with carnations for me to say thank you for having him over. We are going out again, today. I think he might be a keeper.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Pleasantly Surprised...

It was a very nice dinner with good conversations and laughs. I had a wonderful time... As we were talking outside, he could see me visually shivering and said "I had a really nice time and would like to see you again, if that is ok with you".

I said yes. I will keep you all updated.


I have been awake since the crack of dawn and have been jittery since getting up. Why, you ask. I have a date tonight, that's why.

His name is Mike. He is from Hamburg, PA (about 20mins west of me) and is a computer nerd. We met on one of the dating sites (chemistry). We have talked several times on the phone, have im'd and emailed for about 2.5 weeks. He is very polite, asked me out on a date formally (i.e. "I would like to ask you out on a date") not just suggest "meeting". He has a friendly face (I know, Mary Beth, so did Jeffrey Dahmer!). We are meeting at the mall at 5:30pm to ensure safety and plenty of people around. But I am nervous...

Here's the deal- It has been a long time since I have been on a date with someone I do not know better than myself. What if he doesn't get my sense of humor? What if I mumble or drool or cackle or talk with my mouth open? There are a lot of what if's.

Wish me luck. I will let you know how it all goes. And if I dissappear, Mary Beth and Helen, you have all the info the police need to go on the site and find him....

Friday, January 2, 2009


Princess Piglet of Pottstown seems to be feeling much better. We are walking on eggshells here but better all the same. Thank you for all your prayers and well wishes.