Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Still here

I haven't been doing a very good job at keeping up this blog, I think mainly because all the internship stuff goes on my other blog and I don't have much of a life otherwise, so there isn't much to say! I seem to have found some semblance of balance with my eating, though still I'm not getting enough exercise, mainly because I'm way too tired.

During the week I have been eating very well. I stopped bringing anything with sugar in it with me, and since there are no grocery stores near by I really only eat what I bring. I usually eat a hard boiled egg or two, a banana and coffee or tea in the morning-- usually I can't quite manage to get down two eggs but I try. (I used to always be a breakfast person and now I have trouble-- I guess because I used to eat breakfast when I got to class at 9 or 10 and now I'm eating before 8). Lunch for the past several weeks has been chicken chili over spinach. Last week when I was stressed into no appetite from my horrific ICU rotation I was only eating maybe 3/4 of a cup of chili but this week I'm more hungry so a little more. For dinner every day I have chicken salad and half a yam, or occasionally just chicken yam and cooked greens. I eat a ridiculous amount of larabars (3 sometimes 4 of the sample size ones in a day is not uncommon, never less than two) and usually grapes and half an apple during the day. Once or twice a week I get a soymilk latte at Starbucks. That's it-- I have no other options (well, okay, today I did eat popcorn but that's not the norm and it upset my stomach just like it always does).

I am not sure if I am just tired from stress-- which seems unlikely since this week I have nothing to do, or if perhaps my anemia has returned. Maybe a few days of iron would be helpful-- I have been pretty faithfully taking my multivitamin, but it does not contain iron. I'm thinking next week when the time changes I might try to work out in the morning, since it won't seem like I'm getting up earlier, but we'll see how that goes given that I am not really a morning person. Lately I seem to get to the gym once, maybe twice if I'm lucky in a week. I need to do better-- I'm feeling quite out of shape.

Oh, and then there's the weekend food-- after all that ridiculous perfection all week, I go home and eat lots of gluten free pasta, chocolate cake and other not so good things-- but I actually have lost a couple pounds and my clothes fit better so it doesn't seem to be hurting anything. I have been actually doing a very good job of eating just until I'm full and then stopping without over eating. Getting protein at every meal and much less sugar has helped a lot with that.

Emotionally the whole not living at home with my husband situation is getting pretty old. I have less than four weeks to go until I get to move home and it can't come soon enough. I am extremely lucky to get to live so close to my rotations with a very lovely person, but it's still not the same as living in my own house with my best buddy and my chickens. The only thing I will say, is it has definitely reminded us not to take each other for granted, because our time together is precious.

Five out of seven chickens are laying eggs now. Strangely the two younger ones started laying before two of their big sisters. Roxie is such a greedy girl that if you don't have treats for her when you go outside she'll jump up and nip your fingers. She also will come running the minute you get into her sight and will follow you all over the yard until she finally decides you really don't have food. It's very funny and completely exasperating at the same time. I think it is this desperate search for the best food that makes the yolks of her eggs the darkest and richest orange.

Skittles still insists on trying to sleep in the tree every night. Last Saturday it was absolutely pouring outside and pitch dark. I was making dinner when we suddenly realized we hadn't put the chickens away. Marc went out in the rain to find only Skittles in the tree, her friends having deserted her for the dry chicken house. So stubborn! Normally four of the five older chickens end up in the tree at night when they are let out of their pen and we have to retrieve them every time. Olive stays in the house with the younger two because she is too little to fly that far. The youngest two are by far the fattest and biggest now and I doubt they could fly that far if they wanted, but they never seem to want to anyway.

That's about all that's going on with me-- I drive home every Friday, do absolutely nothing except cook and eat until Sunday morning and then frantically do laundry and cook for the following week. Not the most glamorous of lives, but there you have it. A week from tomorrow is my 30th birthday and I have not a clue how to commemorate it. I might very well spend it sitting on my couch eating cake.

Saturday, October 10, 2009


This was a weird week. Last Sunday I stayed home instead of driving down to Dupont, which meant I had to get up at 4:30 in the morning on Monday in order to get to the hospital on time because I had to drop my food and stuff off at the house before I went to work, as well as get dressed since all my work clothes are down there. I was a little brain dead Monday and then it took two more days to get back to normal. It was really nice having Sunday evening at home though.

I was really tired last weekend and couldn't motivate myself to cook, so I had organic chicken chili from a can every day for lunch this week. I am getting tired of eating the same thing every day (some kind of soup for lunch, chicken, salad and a starch for dinner) but my schedule is about to get more crazy, so I definitely am not going to have time for cooking. The next two weeks I'm going to have to be at the hospital at 7am instead of 8 for ICU rounds, and the two weeks after that I'm driving to Chehalis, Aberdeen or Lacey for Renal rotation (depending on the day)-- about an hour each way on average (Lacey's not so far but the other two are).

In chicken news, the "little kids" are now giant chickens much bigger than the other five. We got one mystery egg this week-- it was kind of light tan/pinkish and we aren't sure who laid it. That's the first new egg we've had, despite the fact the three who are laying have been at it for over a month.

The biggest news-- Marc's dad came home at last yesterday. Due to his surgical wounds the doctor did not want him to fly (apparently if the cabin loses pressure that is very bad) so Marc's mom went down and brought him back on the train, and we went to pick them up. We had a flash of what he will look like in 20 years-- he lost so much weight in the hospital the skin on his face looks slack and loose, and he is still very weak from laying in a bed for 5 weeks and needs a cane for support. We took him home and talked about the importance of protein for healing. He is also anemic and the dietitian at the hospital told him to eat red meat (which they haven't eaten for years and years) so I suggested grass fed beef, which I am off to PCC shortly to fetch for them. I calculated his protein needs and made suggestions for ways to meet them. Then I went through all his medications and we discussed whether he should go back on his blood pressure and cholesterol lowering meds, which were not mentioned at the hospital. I encouraged him to see his doctor right away to discuss those, because especially with the blood pressure meds, not knowing where his blood pressure is right now, taking those could cause him to pass out if he doesn't need them, and he does not need that now. We got him as set up as best we could before we left. A home health nurse was due to come this morning and dress his wounds, so he's in good hands. It's comforting to know he's at home in his own bed instead of 1200 miles away in a hospital. *Note-- the hospital sent home copies of his medical chart and I was unpleasantly suprised. It seems they do every thing by hand, which means that 99% of the chart was completely illegible. The RD had neat handwriting so I could read her notes, but they definitely were not as detailed as the ones we write at Madigan. This is reason enough to type chart notes-- I hope they have very good oral communication and never get sued, because I can't see how you would be able to tell what is going on with a patient by looking at these chicken scratches!

I'm two weeks out from my mid-term, with a ton of vocabulary and reading to review before my ICU rotation begins this week, and all I want to do is watch movies and be lazy-- I don't think that's going to happen.