Saturday, December 03, 2011

Random thoughts I was having one day, been stuck in the drafts box for ages....

There are a lot of things in life that are difficult to accept when you are young....

1) That you are not uber smart and have many awesome original thoughts every day and if only someone would recognise you for your brilliance and pay you simply to share the amazing ideas you have.
- I'm pretty sure that I did have amazing ideas at one stage. I look back at my university essays and wonder who that person was, and holy fuck did I own a theasaurus back then? dang girl you was erudite. I can't remember the last original thought I had.

2) You are not going to live forever, in fact you are going to die very very soon. Life is extremely  extremely short.
- oh cruel world. you sucked up the last ten years of my life. I can barely remember any of it! Futher proof I am living in a simulation. Everything is rushing by so quickly, I need more time!

3) That every person you meet will most certainly not care about your uniques transcendent pain about whatever life crisis you are having.
- Essentialy we are not unique flowers. We are mere motes. But knowing this can help you to be happy.

There are a few things that I find hard to accept now that I am not so young.

1) TV fooled me (and certain friends I had) into thinking that it was natural to have close relationships with your siblings. I don't think either of my brothers even know where I live. They live nomadic lives and I have no idea about either of them. I love them both, and I really enjoy them but I'll be lucky to have one conversation with them when they are in the country.

Things feel apart as we grew up, I was jealous of their sporting achievements and social successes. They lived in a completely different world than me. During our teenage years we barely related. I bailed and left as soon as I had an offer of a way out.

How do you bridge that gap as adults? We have little in common (Apart from a fondness for the drink).
I am so proud of them both. They are awesome young men, I hope they at least know that and that I think of them often.

2) I always thought adults had all the power. Truth is they are often locked into their lifestyle as much as a child is fated to theirs. It takes extreme courage and tenacity to break free. I did not know this as a child. I thought everyone chose where they ended up in life. Its just not that simple.

3) I still find it hard to accept that no one really cares about strangers or acquaintances, but its true. If I turn up to work in a shitty mood because my life is falling apart and my shoulder hurts and I can't bare another day on the space out medication no one cares. They see a grumpy shitty co-worker all they care about is how my grumpiness affects them.

Lets face it, I'm the same. Its difficult to transcend that immediate reaction to someone's mood, as humans we always make it about ourselves too e.g. "Gawd that person is being so shitty, what did I ever do to them, they are make me feel awful for no reason, I wish they'd just cheer the fuck up"

Its a bit contradictory but if we could get to a place where other peoples moods and behaviour didn't affect us or hurt us so easily we could actually become more caring human beings. If we don''t let anyone dictate to us what our moods or feelings should be we can become islands of happiness much more capable of caring and seeing others true pain.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Learning to Crochet

I'm learning to crochet, I'm starting with granny squares, these are a bit flower power.

Another couple of designs.

I'm not super driven to create, I am more of a consumer of culture, but I always enjoy learning a new skill. I've done 9 squares and I hope to have enough to make a blanket eventually. There will be a mixture of flowers and plain white squares, its going to be proper grannyish!

Thursday, October 06, 2011

Steak Tartar

So I knew I had an evening home alone and fancied cooking ...uh er.. I mean making something a little different.

First stop, the butcher. I went to the butcher in Milford just down the road from the hospital. Eye fillet was selected and a piece cut from a whole fillet. 133 grams worth, which was actually quite a lot. I would probably use only about 100g next time.

Once home I finely diced the meat, added the following

1 tablespoon Dijon Mustard
1 teaspoon Worcestershire Sauce
2 splashes of hot sauce (tabasco or similar)
1 tablespoon of Spanish capers
1 tablespoon of chopped parsley
1 tablespoon of chooped red onion.

I arranged the meat in a thick patty shape and made a well, then bam, cracked egg, got yolk free with bare hands got rid of yuck egg white and La de da - Steak Tartar!

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

View from the tenth floor

More stair climbing in my break. This is the view from the main stair well on the tenth floor. You can go up another floor but it narrows to single file and  some nurse was trying to have a private conversation on her cell half way up and by the looks of things didn't need my heavy breathing ruining her day.

My calf muscles are a wreck. Stairs fuck you up. big time.

After work I went to the gym for an upper body work out. Shoulders, Back and chest, with a smidge of bicep work. I hates biceps, I cant see the point in isolating a teeny muscle. Boring. I struggled a bit as I have lost quite a lot of strength over the last two weeks. I should have just gone to the gym sick and spread my germs around.....sigh... maybe zed will buy me  a power rack for christmas.... I'll settle for a dodgy import trademe version! Or even an ex gym  version covered in ten years worth of bro-sweat.

Monday, October 03, 2011

View from the top!

So in my break, instead of lounging around drinking bad coffee and listening to the inane gossip about princess beatrice getting married and OMG dan carters groin and didn't she lose a lot of weight blah blah blah (woman's magazines should be banned, I'm not for book burning per say but I would be happy if I never saw another woman's day, new idea or woman's weekly in the tea room ever again.) 

I seem to have gotten distracted. Anyway I decided to climb all the stairs, Yep all the stairs to the top of the North Shore Hospital tower block and above is le view from le top. You can see the concrete monstrosity that is the new parking building. Once its completed our free parking privilege is terminated, but hey at least I will be able to park undercover and about 200 metres closer, see that car park in the distance, that's where the plebs (aka me) have to park. 

It only took a few minutes, but god damn my heart was skipping by the time I reached the top. Its a good tea break work out. I even suffered a little jelly leg afterwards. I stand to do my bench work and I was feeling a little weak on it straight after! But its worth it, for buns of steel!

But wait there's more. I came home and ran 3.3km and managed to avoid serious down pours! Running gods did bless me today.

Sunday, October 02, 2011

100 days of something.....

A friend of mine is doing a wee project for 100 days. 100 days of Alfred Mao which is a cat by the way and who doesn't love cats?! Weirdos, thats who.

Anyway, I am encouraged to do my own 100 days project. I like the idea of trying something consistently and how much is a 100 days really? I mean I probably spent that much time alone on the internet just looking at crap in the past year....

I've never been sporty, and the habits hard to get into, I could try 100 days of being sporty? Athletics every day!
Would I, should I blog it? Is the internet ready for pictures of me doing athletic type things everyday? Hmm pictures not probably necessary.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Don't skip the FAT!

A good friend recently directed me at a NZherald article which pointed out that due to our low fat dietary choices many adults are missing out on essential fat soluble nutrients (mainly vitamin A but probably D,E and K as well!) I've been reading lots about fat over the years and its not the big evil doer its been made out to be. There are a lot of benefits to be gained from fats, eliminate them from your diet at your peril.

So here's my super fat weekend breakfast salad thing.
1/2 avocado
2 strips of bacon
Poached egg
Tablespoon of cream fraiche to hold it all together.

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Running should be free

I've taken up jogging again. I dream of being athletic and having confidence in the fitness of my body.

I dream that one day I will be able to join that spontaneous game of volleyball, that last minute hike through a national park, a fun run will be fun and at no point in time will I drop red faced to the ground gasping for breath pleading for everyone to "go on without me".

In the pursuit of that dream I run. I run slowly. I fly down hills, I inch up hills. I slowly pace along the flats.
All my favourite songs keep me company and the nike+ lady informs me how terribly I'm doing every 500m. Oooo I'm getting slower with each passing minute! Thanks for the update :D But its like having a running buddy, a mathematically gifted, slightly anal, robot running buddy.

I've been reading books about ultra marathon runners. My 5km circuit feels pretty ultramarathony to me already. But its inspiring stuff, as soon as I put down the book I went out for my most enjoyable run yet and even managed to plod all the way up mt doom (the last hill in my run, its about a kilometre of hell). I saw heaps of birds and even found myself smiling while running.

Turns out the runners that suffer the least amount of injuries have cheap shoes and do it for the love of it. Don't know if I'll ever Love it, but I think I can do the cheap shoes bit.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Bad Gym guy, Bad!

My gym is far too crowded at 3:30pm. DON’T ANY OF THESE PEOPLE HAVE JOBS!
I want to lift heavy, heavy weights. So this new gym I joined has a weight room, but its full of bro’s. Am I the only female in there? yes. Scary.
Any who,  when they showed me my program it was only demonstrated to me on this one adjustable rack, and today it was being used, I wandered around and looked at the other stuff, but honestly I have no idea how to use it. Thankfully a gym worker sees me and offers to help. He takes one look at me and and says “lets go to the womans gym” I frown but maybe it has the same equipment.
He then proceeds to tell me how to do all my new mega weightlifting moves using machines instead. THAT’S WHY I QUIT MY LAST GYM they only had machines, oh instead of the deadlift you has just do a leg press. pffft whatever. Oh and here are some 5kg dumbells for you to “bench press” with. Whatever patronising gym guy.
I had to have a minor tantrum, get all shitty and explain that I wanted BARBELLS in the BIG BOY GYM, just show how to adjust these freaky looking racks and stuff. 
So I go lift the heaviest weights I can, and feel like a dick cause I’m surrounded by big strong men. But WHATEVER. I will chest press to failure (that wasn't as humiliating as I thought). I will deadlift pathetic amounts of weight, BUT I WILL GET STRONGER!!!!
Afterwards I had a super long hot shower at the gym, HA I’ll get my value for money out of you yet. Even if its in HOT SHOWERS.
Afterwards I had a sugar free protein shake, like a boss.

Saturday, July 09, 2011

Anniversary Fun

After completely forgetting how long we'd been married we finally figured out (after digging up our old Vegas photos and looking at the date tags) that we have been married for 5 whole years.

So off for some fine Japanese dining to celebrate. Musashi in Milford is a small bustling restaurant with excellent food and service.

Where else can you get your grilled eye fillet nigiri torched table side?
Or super tender Beef Tataki
 Or Asahi beer served with a chilled mug

Prices we very reasonable and after 5 shared dishes, a bottle of sake and a beer we walked out of there only $94 dollars poorer. A small price to pay to celebrate our shared years. 10 years ago we were flatting in Hamilton, now we have our own house in Auckland. Who know what the next ten years will bring. :)

Sunday, July 03, 2011

Waiheke Winter Fun

Many moons ago I got some vouchers on grabone for 1/2 price Waiheke ferry and lunch at Stonyridge winery.
My dear Nina also jumped on this deal so we were all set for a girls day out on Waiheke, Sadly the lunch vouchers were only 1 voucher for two people, so we were stuck with an extra voucher.
I'm on a ferry
So we're on the 11am ferry and Nina (an ex waiheke native) runs into some friend and yay, we are suddenly a party of four and can use our extra voucher for lunch. I liked there ferry ride, the weather was calm and I had a nice coffee. I was still half asleep but we amused ourselves with watching befuddled tourists.

Note if you have a bike or a dog you can still go on the ferry but you have to sit outside.

Thanks to the joys of NZ being a stupidly small space we now had transport on the island, a car was aquired from a friends dad after a short bus trip to surfdale and island exploration began.

Stoney ridge was packed so we booked in for a late lunch and went for a coffee and strolls on the beach at onetangi.
OMG sunshine
Met up with another friend with delightful dogs who chased  balls and dug holes till everyone was starving.

Return to the Vineyard for foods and wines yay!.......except there are a lot of very young waitresses at Stonyridge and our order never made it to the kitchen. We were starved and sad, so a complimentary bottle of wine was produced to ease our troubles, and bread and a lamb dish.  So a million hours later we finally got our meals but there were very tasty and they were very nice to us so we will forgive them.

After yakking all afternoon we were still thirsty so after one soul popped off to the ferry we hung out at the Lazy Lounge and had beer and THE BEST GODDAMN PIZZA I've ever had. Seriously, it was very good.

Then another beer on the ferry and me running my drunken mouth non-stop at Nina, who is such a good listener! Finally home for cups of tea and some pre-recorded British comedy. All in all an excellent midwinters day out.

Monday, June 27, 2011

To dear friends I have neglected.

Tea all the way from London.

My previous blog post was a bit depressing, I blog so little these days and I had largely put the post out of my mind, when in the last week I received an unexpected phone call and a long distance old timey actual hold in hand letter. Two old friends, one I am lucky to see once a year and another whom I haven't seen in a very very long time.

I was deeply moved by the concern of both these friends. It bought a god damn tear to my eye reading the first page of that letter (there was more than one page, it was an epic letter!).Funny how kind words can shake the self declared stoic.

Old friends are a funny thing, I remember recently meeting an old friend from high school for a coffee. I had ordered a coffee, but she didn't want any because she'd already had several coffees that day even though she knew she was meeting me later for coffee. (Damn we should have met at the pub). So it was an awkward start. I think she expected me to be as exactly as she remembered and seemed really "weirded" out by me. Anyway I did some stupid stuff with a boy during my last years of high school and it clouded a lot of what should have been true lasting friendships. I am always surprised when old high school friends want to add me on facebook. Especially people I haven't spoken to since 1997. 

Another old "friend" emailed me after leaving the woman he left me for. He mentioned being lonely, I think I emailed him back a much more polite version of " I really don't give a fuck why on earth would you think I would?" I got a reputation for being "cold". Although I think in versions not related back to me perhaps it was "cold hearted bitch".

Life goes on and people change a lot. And sometimes maybe it is only the memory of glorious summers of friendship that keep it alive over long distances and even longer years.

Sometimes I wonder about these long distance old time friends, I feel like my voice is like a ghost of Christmas past, reminding them of a person they no longer are, and just by my presence alone I remind them of events they would rather forget. Its as if I am the personification of the part of your brain that makes you remember humiliating events just as you are drifting off to sleep.......I'm a dirty old piece of nostalgia intruding on a shiny new life. Personally I am not big on reminiscing, the old me doesn't exist any more. I've learned from the awful things I've done and have "done my time" on them, as it where. You don't notice the day when that movie reel of regretful actions stops playing on a daily schedule in your head. Just the rare occasions when a spontaneous encore screening begins. I turn out the lights and wonder how I managed to watch that day in, day out.

So its part fear and part shame at my youthful nonsense that I don't stay in touch like I should with people from my adolescence. (Also it was a pretty shitty time family wise and these memories are very intermingled. Its hard to compartmentalise and not dreg up too many carcasses from the deep)

Regrettably (and it is with genuine regret) I am guilty of not tending to the precious friendships I have from that time. I am not a super great friend, I am a hermit of sorts and decline or postpone invitations and never get in touch, but I don't mind listening to troubles and pouring you a tea or scotch. or sitting in on a winters night eating curry and watching some ridiculous movie together. I pay attention to the snippets of your lives leaking onto facebook and twitter, wish for more news and think of you often. But if my friendships were plants they would be withered, in need of water and sustenance.

Perhaps this is the winter of greater effort, to find if I can have a small place in the hearts of other people, and let them know of the secret place in heart where they have always been.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Painkiller Addiction? I am now a crazy person. Warning - rant ahead. Don't read.

I'm really struggling with the use of certain painkillers at the moment.

On days that I take them I find I am relaxed, happy, pleasant towards my co-workers. I feel as though they let me be my normal happy self, free from the constant pain that otherwise leaves me irritable tearful and generally unpleasant to work with.

Some days I don't take them. I do this very deliberately, to see what its like without them. To try gauge how much I really need them. Those days have been difficult. I am slower at my job. I don't stay a second past my knock off time and I find I am in pain all day.

The pain killers I take are effective for about 4-6 hours, so even in the afternoons as they are wearing off I don't feel worried, because I know I am going home soon.

I don't take them at home or in the weekends.

I only seem to have needed them in the last two weeks as I have returned to the dreaded machine that caused my over use injury in the first place.

Anyway, I know this type of painkiller can become addictive. So as I am down to my last two, I find myself nervous about asking for more. The occupational health doctor never perscribes anything on  repeat. And I have to go and ask (beg) every month for the next lot of anti-inflams, nerve calmny things, losec to take with the harsh anti-inflams and quality painkillers. The nerve calming things give you dry eyes and dry mouth but are supposed to help dampen the pain signals. The anti-inflams turn my stomach hence the need for losec. The only things that I feel work without side effects is the painkiller.

The pain killer feels like the only effective thing I have in my arsenal. They still haven't approved my acc (private acc type insurer actually, my work doesn't use acc) claim, its been months (since October 2010) and I got a letter two weeks ago saying they were still deciding. Perhaps they are afraid I want money? I don't want compensation, I want to keep working! I want effective treatment! Lack of acc approval means I am limited to what treatments I can afford. I can get physio at the hospital for free thank goodness. However some of the treatments I have received have been less than ideal (juggling therapy anyone?) 

 My private health insurance wont cover anything unless its absolutely sure work insurance/ACC (whatever) wont cover it. I end up with little choice into how my injury is actually treated. Its dis-empowering and depressing. I am just about ready to cash in my meagre savings for some private treatment and second opinions. 

My occ health doctor, who does he work for? His main job is to keep hospital staff off acc and in work, or so my boss says. So what does that really mean? He doesn't work for his patients best interests? Perhaps Occupational health doctors should be independent contractors because I don't really trust him. (It turns out he's part of the panel that approves/disproves my claim.)

I have never had a proper diagnosis. At first it was definitely muscular, when I laid down for my first physio treatment it was obvious which shoulder was in pain, without even touching it. A swollen and raised shoulder blade was fairly obvious. Now they say its just a pain issue, Just a PAIN issue? wtf. I think I damaged my subscapularis muscle.Sprain or tear or aggravation I don't know. Anyway all the exercises they gave me in the beginning made things a lot worse. Imagine having a sprained ankle and being told a couple of games a of tennis a week should fix it right up. I think it should have been immobilised and rested. But in the beginning I was advised to continue as normal.

My right hand grip is now weaker than my left, for a right handed person this is highly unusual. I cannot do a lot of my normal activities. (This leads to sadness.)

I just pretend at work that I feel fine, I try anyway. Chronic pain can't be "seen" I suppose and is difficult to sympathise with. I just tell my co-workers I'm fine. People get sick of hearing anything else. The correct answer is "fine, thanks"  and finish with a smile.  Sympathy only lasts for a short amount of time in the work place anyway. They are kind people, and they ask after my shoulder, "How is your shoulder?" but why should I burden them with the truth? They just want to be kind and asking shows concern, but beyond that.... what can they do or help with. I appreciate it every time they ask after me. But I refuse to unload my pain onto them any more. I sound like a broken record. (A crazy broken record)

This whole thing has turned me into a crazy person. I feel emotionally weak, I have lost all my resilience. 

I am not me any more. I don't think I have been for some time.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

I havent blogged since my shoulder packed up.

A repetitive movement at work, that I have been doing for 11 years now finally caught up with me. It caused a burning pain that just got worse and worse. Constant stabbing and burning, no position would relieve it, many sleepless nights were had.

Through the Occupational Health dept  I was able to get a couple months respite from doing the movement and treatment to heal the injury. I busied myself with doing all the other tasks there are at my job. I was not sitting around with my finger up my bum.

I have now reached a place where I can live with the pain. Its pretty good, with the right drugs. Some days its not even there at all. Sure there's a few side effects but its a small price to pay.

Now that the two months is up I want to slowly ease back into this motion. I used to do it for 5 hours a day. I suspect if I went back to it at that level the nerve would flare up again and I would be back where I started.

So I suggest to my boss that I start off slow, maybe just do it for an hour a day, building it up over several weeks. But that went down like a lead balloon. Its all or nothing apparently (yay cliches!) Well one day of doing this task from 7am till 12:30pm (with a break for a cuppa!) has flared it up. Its okay for now, but a couple weeks of this and I might go back to where I was. I have to hope like hell I'm healed and my body adapts to this movement.

Its been made clear to me by my boss that there is no place for me in the lab if I can't do this one task. I am devastated. I am dedicated to my job, but totally unsupported by my boss and have been thrown on the scrap heap already. I know that legally I can't be fired for getting a work place injury. But I love working where I do. I am really worried about what's going to happen. Maybe I'll be shuffled off to file medical records in the basement.

Its a stressful time.

The months and month of chronic pain had taken their toll on my emotional state and now this. I got to say my emotions are very close to the surface these days.

Probably start crying at NZ post ads now.