Thursday, May 20, 2004

Lime and Garlic Chicken

Lovely chicken cooked last night (with broccoli, corn cobs, and fresh fruit salad - healthy)!

1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp black pepper

1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

1/2 tsp paprika

1.5 tsp garlic powder

1/2 tsp onion powder

1 tsp thyme

2-4 chicken breasts cut into thick slices and then flattened a bit with a meat tenderiser

2 tbsp butter

2 tbsp olive oil

3 tbsp lime juice

1/2 c chicken broth (opt)

Combine all the spices together and coat chicken pieces well. Heat butter and oil (be careful - it will spit!) and add chicken to pan. Turn occasionally till cooked (don't let it blacken), remove to a plate. Add lime juice (and broth if using it), mixing well. Be careful, this spits enormously and set my smoke alarm off. Once it has reduced by about half, put the chicken back in, coating well. Serve with any vegetables you feel like, garlic mashed potatoes work well.

Play with the quantities of the spices, I reduced the cayenne and pepper to the quantities above, and it was still very spicy! (Altered from original source - Saving Dinner: Garlic Lime Chicken by Leanne Ely (SavingDinner.com), page 57-58, Ballantine Books, 2003)

Tuesday, May 18, 2004

Medicine allergies

It seems that I have an allergy to Imovane, or so the doctor believes. At least it's a bad combination with Effexor for me, so back to Normosan to help sleeping.

I've been plagued with long bouts of yawning recently, about 2-3 yawns per minute for over half an hour at various times. Laying down helps, as does eating strong minty things. My jaw is killing me though. A web search (excessive yawning) reveals that it's probably due to not getting enough sleep. Well, duh....

Sunday, May 16, 2004

Backslide

Two days into Imovane for insomnia and I'm back to feeling paralysed, exactly why I started anti-depressants in the first place. There is an ugly taste in my mouth and I'm fairly nauseous and slightly dizzy.

Whether this is caused by the sleeping tablets and will subside with further use, I have no idea.

It might be due to a cold virus that seems to be attacking me at the moment.

It's a dramatic change from last week on Normosan (temazepam) for insomnia, where I was progressing towards cheerfulness and getting many more things done. Bah....

Thursday, May 13, 2004

Psychology

This is more of an essay... long, rambling and uncut.

I had an interesting conversation with my psych yesterday. Being on anti-depressants (while I continue to cut ties with my family), the doctor had recommended I start seeing the psych again regularly as psychotherapy works better when combined with appropriate medications (or so many studies indicate). We shall see. In any case, the catchup session was surface, with little delving as there was so much to cover. At some stage she commented that she was completely amazed that I am still keeping on going on. Still working, still trying to study, still trying new things to help my health, and haven't given up on anything much yet. "Most people with such chronic illnesses typically would not get out of bed, and would be at the ER at least once a week, let alone keeping a house, walking, keeping up with friends (albeit irregularly), working, studying. It's quite incredible, and shows you have so much determination", she said.

Thinking a little about that comment, and the people in the various support groups I have been in for endo and adeno, it's probably completely correct.

Over the last four years I have seen my ability to do things decrease. The pain has increased, I can't walk for long, stand for long, work for long stretches, concentrate for long stretches, etc. But I refuse to push myself past the point where I would collapse and be hospitalised, or at least bed-ridden for a week. I rest when I need it, avoid the computer when I can't stand it, avoid my family for longer stretches, and try not to do as much as I once would have. It's sad seeing that I can't, and for a while I pushed myself to old levels and very nearly burnt out.

I'm dreading second semester and administering the technical documentation subject, as I'm really not capable to handle that in my current state, but I'm sure I'll have help from colleagues when I need it.

Another interesting tangent was about seeing the positive, or rather not being able to see the positives. Due to extensive psychotherapy s a kid, I can too easily psychoanalyse myself in any situation. I can see the positives, I can see the negatives much easier, but I do try to push myself daily to see positives. However, I don't feel them.

Starting about 2 weeks back, I've been able to feel a little, mainly in the smell of cypress, pine and other conifers; watching the desperate attempts at growth in my neglected garden (grr aphids); had fun playing with a stupid dog's mind (stared at her, and she hasn't stopped barking at the driveway since - it was hilarious the first time); smiling at the insane numbers of birds around the house (including the silly minah that taps on my bedroom window while talking to his reflection in the mornings). I sense a theme here, and a reflection of my childhood refuge. Nature is not controlled by humans.

I felt claustrophobic walking over the south eastern freeway today (a 6 lane highway) with all the open space around me, just because it was so barren and frantic. As soon as I got to the other side, I giggled at a wattlebird who was sitting in a tree chattering at me (and didn't fly away when I walked over to it). I think I'm getting somewhere, much better than not feeling anything at all.

Towards the world in general, I still don't feel much - the news of an evening is either filled with meaningless chatter about football stars appealing their 4 game suspension (because they kicked someone in the head), governments being completely stupid, and inane stories showing just how removed from the world most major media corporations really are. The more accurate news channels report atrocity after atrocity - not good inspirational stories. I shan't think about this too much, I'll just enjoy the wattlebirds that are frolicking in the pond outside my window.

The doc is pleased at my progress with the Effexor. Nausea has almost gone, appetite has certainly decreased, I've lost 3kg in 3 weeks! Insomnia is still bad. I can't function continuously on broken short sleep, and am racking up a substantial sleep deficit. Doc reckons Effexor will also dampen pain levels, which I'm looking forward to. The costo flare and period has knocked me around, and it will take a few weeks to recover from it. Being late taking the Effexor only has the effect of some tremors and no concentration, although I can't really tell if that is more due to the lack of sleep. I've had really bad yawning fits the last three days.

Enough rambling.. I'd better find out what the actual time is, then clean up the house for a few minutes... I need more sleep :-\

Monday, May 10, 2004

Survived

I managed to survive the most hellish week I have had pain wise since my last operation, and even then, I think this surpassed the operation recovery pain.

I have a couple of Mersyndol forte, and half a packet of Panadeine forte left. More should be delivered on Wednesday.

I hate being so low on pain killers because if either the adenomyosis or costochondritis flares up badly, I go through them very quickly. Now I just have to wait for the blood to be reabsorbed, which will take about 5 days, give or take 2 days. At least I can walk around fairly easily now. Bending and sitting is still quite difficult.

My new toy helped me pass time in bed, playing scrabble. I even won, once. The Zaurus is very nice, easy to use, but not many applications are on the native ROM. I will probably move to Open Zaurus with a different calendar (I need icons or at least colours for categories!), and extra applications for shopping, inventory, moon phases, games, German-English dictionary (and maybe flash cards or something), ebooks/etext reader, weather plug-in, and Perl.

Wednesday, May 5, 2004

Fizzy...

The combination of pain killers, antibiotics and anti-depressants is very strange, especially when coupled with a period which normally leaves me weak anyway. I feel like my arms and legs are 'fizzing'.

My pulse is erratic (very fast and light at the moment), my torso feels completely sluggish and heavy, and my neck keeps cramping around my throat-collarbone area.

My chest feels extremely badly bruised from the flare of costochondritis on Monday, which had me hardly breathing, and required too much medication to control.

I don't know what is causing my sore throat, or the costo, possibly the virus is jumping into any part of my body that is feeling vulnerable.

Thoughts and vision are jumping all over the place due to tiredness - I only got about 2-3 hours sleep.

Bernd (honours supervisor) bumped into me today, I had been avoiding him as I haven't done anything honours wise. He was quite understanding though, so I shouldn't have any problems just dragging on and getting little bits done here and there, until it's finally finished.

I wanted to make cookies and a cake last night, but didn't manage to get to the shops to get tapioca and rice flour for the cake, and fell asleep sometime in the afternoon, only waking when the boys got there for their usual Settlers game.

A white tail fell out of washing that I was folding up to put away, of course it was squashed and binned immediately. However, I had a weird bite on my foot this morning, with strange discolourations around it. I hope it wasn't another spider - there is a mutual hatred between me and white tails. They jump out and attack me when they see me, and I try to kill them when I see them (after I get past the freeze/fright stage). No one believes me when I mention that they are trying to take over the world.

Wombats are also aiming for that goal (except they always seem to fall asleep).  

If you haven't read "Diary of a Wombat" by Jackie French, you should - it's hilarious!