It’s Wednesday. I had a great visit with my neurologist this morning. It was nice to be able to tell her about all of the positive changes I’ve been making and my lack of MS symptoms. However, I did bring up my concerns with brain fog. A friend shared a really great article the other day about this, and it very eloquently listed what people with chronic illness experience. Sadly, it’s not just limited to people with MS. I am walking great, I have no fatigue, no pain (unless you count the occasional headache), and I’m overall feeling really fantastic. However, every day, throughout the days, I have issues with short term memory loss and cognitive function. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve walked up the stairs and forgotten why I was there. I will often use a wrong word or name when talking with people, and not realize it. Sometimes even, I’ll forget what I’m talking about mid-sentence. And friends and family will encourage me that this is just a normal part of aging and that they experience it too. Which is nice, and appreciated for sure, but I really don’t believe that they experience this phenomenon with the frequency I do. So I told my neurologist about this and she said it may or not be MS, but there are ways to check, starting with testing my blood to see if some of my levels are out of whack. If that’s the case, I suppose it’s a simple fix with supplements. If not, there is always the option of memory testing and exercises. I had no idea that sort of thing existed, so it gave me some hope that this is a problem that has been addressed by the medical community, and I’m not coming in with some sort of weird cognitive mystery.
In other news, I slacked on laundry for one measly day and it magically piled up and threatened to take over my bedroom. I folded (and put away!) five loads of laundry today and now I would love to nap but I need to stay awake so I can answer questions for my grocery shopper, and then be up when she delivers my groceries. I LOVE grocery delivery, people. Love it.
So I think I’m going to make a glass of sweet tea and read a book or do some crocheting while I wait.
So, sooo much you guys. It feels like it’s all going a little too fast for me and I can’t believe I’m keeping up. Am I keeping up? I guess I am. I mean, I’m still here, aren’t I? Let’s break this down for my right brain, okay?
- The son is in baseball. The hubby is coaching the baseball. Sometimes the girls go and watch. I love the game of baseball. I used to really love watching. I’m learning to enjoy it differently now. I can’t see the plays, but I can share in the cheering and I get to converse with the other parents when I ask what happened, or who did what on the field.
- The girl was in a dance. Ballet, to be more specific. She performed in a recital and she nailed it. She was stunning and graceful and she brought some people to tears. And when I picked her up afterwards she ran to me, beaming with pride. I had not seen that level of joy coming from her in quite awhile. It was truly magical.
- And then she got sick. She woke up the next day with a super high temperature, that just wouldn’t go away. We took her to the doctor, received a semi-firm diagnosis and a prescription for antibiotics, and now it’s just the waiting game. She has little energy which is fine because her body needs the rest in order to heal and fight, and I’m happy to be waiting on her hand and foot. Because after all, she will always be my baby girl.
- I’ve been running. A lot. And apparently I’m becoming one who loves to run. Seriously. I woke up this morning at 5:30, couldn’t fall back asleep. All I could think about was getting outside and running while the sun rose. So guess what? I did! And it was wonderful. A bit of a chill still left in the air, birds chirping to greet the day, and the sunrise. Oh how I love a good sunrise. It was a really great way to start the day.
- I’m still seeing a therapist. I tried to get out of going by pretending all was fine already, but she reminded me of a few comments I had made that made it pretty clear I could still use the help. The depression is gone, and I am grateful for that. The anxiety, however, is a bit more challenging. Challenging, but not impossible to overcome. The therapist is giving me tools and I’m using them, and it’s helping. I still think everyone should see a therapist at least once in their life. It’s just been extremely USEFUL.
- I’ve been working at developing daily habits. Intentionally. As in, deciding what I want to be sure to do every day, and then keeping track to be sure I’m doing it. There are so many awesome apps for my phone for stuff like this, it took a few days to decide on just one. My list of daily habits is currently: taking medicine, devotional, prayer, meditation, exercise, and laundry. Because laundry always needs to be done, but in taking a different approach to it, I find I dread it less. It’s just become something I do every day, so it doesn’t build up, and if I miss a day, I just pick up the next day where I left off. This seems so trivial to be blogging about laundry but it feels like a huge victory in my little world, so there. I’m trying to work this mindshift magic with vacuuming but it hasn’t quite worked yet.
- I’m doing a lot of crocheting. I finished an afghan for my oldest nephew and started one for my oldest niece. I’m going to make one for each of the nieces and nephews, oldest to youngest. There are twelve total, assuming my youngest sister is done having babies. So, one down, eleven to go. The blanket I make is a very relaxing pattern and works up really nice. I just hope the cousins appreciate having something warm and cozy and handmade with love by their Aunt Mindy.
- Food. I still eat it, I just don’t think about it constantly. I think this is a positive development for me. I’m finding so many other things to focus my time and energy on, and in between I eat yummy food. So there. Life is good.
What shall we talk about today, friends?
Baseball season has begun for my son and husband (he is a coach for the team). Their first tournament was last weekend and the girls didn’t go because it was ridiculous cold and windy and we are wimps about that. So we stayed home and my daughter watched YouTube for 38 hours while I played around in the kitchen making delicious vegan food.
Dance is in full swing for my daughter as they prepare for their recital in June. I received an information packet about all that is required for the recital and OH EM GEE am I overwhelmed! There is a dress rehearsal and requirements for hair and makeup and this is so out of my comfort zone. I was never in dance and I don’t wear makeup (much). I don’t own eyeliner or lipstick, so how am I gonna know how to put it on my daughter?? I don’t know, but I definitely plan to enlist some help on this one.
I have to mention that lately I am obsessed with this vegan cashew “mozzarella”. It is so easy to make and super duper yummy. I add it to everything I can think of, but my favorite use for it is grilled cheese sammiches! My husband will tell you I make the best grilled cheese sandwiches, and I won’t deny his assessment. I make a lot of them, and I’m always really sad that I can’t eat them, because YUM. But now, with this cheese? I’m in sandwich heaven! I also bought little mini pizza crusts and sauce so I can make my own little veggie pizzas at home. With cheese! So that’s what’s on the menu for today and my tummy is growling just telling you about it.
I’ve been running, sporadically. I have a 5k I’m running with my son Friday night so I had to be sure I’m prepared for it. I don’t think I’ll beat prior years’ times, but I’ll be happy if I can finish in under 40 minutes. I ran a full 3 miles today and dang, why is that 3rd mile so much harder than the first two? But I didn’t fall. My left foot was dropping a little, but not nearly as bad as it’s done in the past. I did have nerve pain in my feet but thankfully I didn’t notice it until I was finished with the run.
I always have some anxiety at these races because strangers don’t know that I’m disabled. So if people are trying to get my attention by yelling or waving, it’s not gonna work. I’ve been bumped around during races because people assume I can see to get out of their way, or hear them coming to move aside. So I bought a reflective running vest that says “Deaf Blind”. It’s really bright and in big block letters so there’s no way I won’t be noticed. I feel a little weird about wearing it at the race but I have to convince myself that it WILL make me feel safer, and that’s all that matters. Maybe I’ll even run a little faster, knowing that I’m safer. I guess we’ll see.
Anyhoo, I’m sure there’s more I’m forgetting but I’ll leave it here for now. I’m gonna go make me some vegan pizza! 🙂
I like taking pictures of my food but sometimes I am so excited to eat, I forget. So here is the aftermath of my lunch today, roasted asparagus with a garlic vegan cream sauce. Made all by myself and it was delicious!! I don’t even like asparagus, really, but you throw on a the right topping and I’m good to go. I found the recipe for the sauce on Pinterest and it looked easy enough to manage so I gave it a shot. I’m so glad it turned out I’ll probably make it again tomorrow.
I’ve been doing more of this, taking risks with food, trying new things, and it’s been kind of fun. I still wouldn’t say I enjoy cooking as a whole, but I’ve discovered one thing I do love making: Soup! With soup you can throw things in and it doesn’t matter how it looks. Timing isn’t super important so there’s no rushing involved. It’s very relaxing, and when you’re done, you have a warm and comforting meal to either share with loved ones (if they’ll touch it) or to supply your lunches for the next week!
Now to find some dessert…
I love most donuts, but if I had to pick the one that never lets me down, it’s the apple fritter. Years ago my kooky family conducted an apple fritter taste-off (if I can find the blog I posted then, I’ll add it here). We each submitted our favorite brands of fritters and then voted based on several criteria. It was very scientific and very fun. I come from a family of food loving nerds. It’s part of why I’m awesome.
Anyhoo, my hubby came home today with a box from Cops & Doughnuts, with two large apple fritters included for me. These things will last me a few days, for sure. They are not as large as the fritters from my personal favorite, Sweetwater’s Donut Mill, but they are right up there with the quality. Cops’ exceeds in the texture – soft and chewy on the inside and crunchy at the edges – but I’m afraid Sweetwater’s has them beat on flavor. I could barely taste the apple, sadly.
I reported these observations to my husband about three bites in, and continued eating. A few more bites of that gooey goodness and I had a startling realization: I think this is better than Sweetwater’s!
I don’t know. It’s been several months since I’ve had a Sweetwater’s fritter so it’s hard to compare from memory. It would be ideal to compare side by side but they are in totally different cities. So unless I can find a fellow fritter enthusiast who would find this cause worthy of driving around the state, I’m just going to call it a tie for first place!
It’s Friday night and the boys are off doing wrestling stuff and my girl, the picky eater, is busy with Youtube. Folks, this means I can fix my dinner with no interruptions or annoying distractions. I’m kind of excited about this one, so I’m sharing while it cooks.
Roasted butternut squash soup, made by yours truly, and Brussels sprouts cooked gently in a pan of vegan butter. All to be capped off with a smooth, dark beer.
I’m very much looking forward to sitting down to this feast.
Now, why is it that Brussels sprouts can smell so awful and yet taste so good?
When you’ve been sick for days and your appetite is coming back, but you just want to lie in bed and snuggle under your cozy comforter, the tummy rumbling is a big nuisance. The super cozy socks you are wearing don’t help. I did manage to get up and fix myself a bagel with peanut butter. I’m still hungry though. I believe that’s a sign of returning health.
My husband says I’m like a fat person living in a little person’s body because all I think about is food. It’s true, that’s pretty much a good portion of my thoughts most days. Food and Jesus, but Jesus first, of course.
I have fresh veggies down in the kitchen just waiting for me to dress them up. A butternut squash to be roasted for soup, Brussels sprouts calling my name, broccoli eager to be dressed up and consumed. Even the carrots are waiting impatiently in line for their appearance on the cutting board. I have been missing you, my friends! Today I will return to you!