Bye Bye Appendix!

So I figured I’d write about having my appendix out.

I had a general malese feeling all last week. I was generally weak and tired, but not too bad from Sunday on. Low grade fever, chills, just had what I figured was a general run-on-the-mill infection. By Wednesday I felt fairly crappy, and didn’t even fold most of my laundry by the time I did and just chucked it in the laundry basket. I muddled through thanksgiving and felt worse and worse as the day went on. I woke up on Friday feeling terrible. I spent most of Friday arguing with my friend about if I should call the doctor or not, and she finally convinced me to at least email the nurse advice line. I emailed, and they told me to call. I called, and they told me to go to urgent care. We couldn’t go straight to UC as we still had to finish up some things in Hastings, so we did what we needed to do, then headed to the Highland Park clinic.

The clinic sent me straight to the ER, telling me not to eat or drink anything, that it was likely my appendix. I didn’t believe them as I’d been told this before and figured it has to be kidney stones or the flu or something. It couldn’t REALLY be my appendix this time, could it? I wasn’t running a high fever or anything, but after I got triaged and into a room at St Joseph, they ran a CT scan.

Not long after, Anna and I hear the words “something something really appendix.” We don’t know if they are saying it’s really my appendix, or if it’s not really my appendix. I’ve been seen in hospitals before with suspected appendix issues, but clearly it’s never been. Welp, this time it was. And that’s when the downward spiral started. Pain meds, antibiotics  I quickly got sicker as the night went on because I got my diagnosis as 1:30 am, into a room a 2:30, and surgery was at 6 am. However, appendicitis is very fast acting so I was a sick young lady by the time the surgeon saw me (who commented on how sick I looked). I remember being strapped down on the OR and being given an oxygen mask, but not much after that! The next thing I remember is absolutely flipping out in recovery because I didn’t have any friends there (Anna had gone home to sleep until after my surgery) and they hadn’t allowed me to bring my bear or blanket with me. I had no comfort objects in my general vicinity  They did give me some pain meds, and I calmed down I guess. I was completely maxed out on pain meds (I remember being told I’d stop breathing if they gave me more, and I was really suffering post op!). and eventually, I’d stabilized to the point where I was returned to my room. When I of course got on my smartphone and made pain and drug induced smart-phone posts all oer the internet. I even emailed professors, concerned about making up course work. Ever the good student, I am.

My friend Susan contacted the church pastor, and he and my roommate actually arrived at the same time. We talked for awhile, and then he left and Anna and I just hung out for awhile. After Anna left, CJ came for a bit. We’e made up as friends and that is a good thing I think. 🙂 We played Pokemon and talked and stuff. I didn’t sleep much because I was up all night in a combo of in pain and coughing. It sucked. Steph kept me company when I was up in the middle of the night coughing my lungs out and watching Inuyasha, even though I was a crabby Pikachu. She is a good, good friend.

Sunday was similar with visitors (Susan and Aaron, Anna and her Mom, then later just Anna), doctors, smartphone posts, and watching anime on my laptop. And me freaking out to my professors about ALL THE WORK I HAVE TO DO, and them trying to tell me to just worry about recovering and once I’m healthy we will cross those bridges. Spent a lot of time talking to friends (Steph!) on Messenger too to keep me company. 🙂

Anna and her parents rearranged the room. Set up Anna’s old bed for me. YAY! My stuff got rearranged so I’m in the process of trying to find all my stuff… that’s kind of interesting… I’m still running fevers and I’m dizzy.

I did learn a valuable lesson. I’m lucky I was in the ER/hospital as I quickly got sicker. I know that appendix issues can be stress induced and I know I have been stressed lately. I know it’s also not very smart to put off going to the doctor when you are sick and I saw how quickly after I got diagnosed the downward spiral happened – even the surgeon commented on how sick I looked. I still don’t look all that great. I can’t keep putting off going to the doctor because while things worked out this time… I could have wound up with a ruptured appendix and gotten very very sick. I’m still sick (feverish – but it’s only 100.8 and the call the doctor point is 101) and dizzy, but this time if it doesn’t go away, I will call the doctor even if they think I’m being weird and paranoid for bugging them.

My health is a far too valuable thing to lose. I need to keep myself healthy. I’m horrible stubborn and wanted to do my homework while in the hospital – neither Anna or Steph will let me (nor will they let me do it while recovering at home, how rude!). Perhaps getting so sick is my body’s way of telling me that sometimes, it’s okay to cut myself some slack and I don’t need to set such impossibly high standards for myself. That it’s okay to LET myself be sick. I mean, who emails disability services and their professors mere hours before their surgery to arrange make up work? And then follows up just a few hours after, freaking out about how they are going to do everything? Disability services kind of ripped my head off and told me that getting my appendix out was a perfectly acceptable reason to take a break and I really need to take care of myself before I worry about all this. 🙂

I think I’ve learned a lot from getting one small body part taken out.

I found a reason for me to change who I used to be

Or: 100 reasons to live, part 3. See part 1 and part 2

20. Neil Patrick Harris. He’s cute, my first true celeb crush, he can sing, he and his partner may be the most ADORABLE gay couple ever. Look, NPH doing a scene from RENT, my favourite musical!!!

21. BUNNEHS. LITTLE BABY BUNNEHS.

the bunny, the bunny, whoah I love the bunny, i don’t love my mom or my dad just the bunny..

22. Texting. I like texting. Texting is fun. Dead people can’t text. 

23. Jimmy Johns.   Yummy sammichs. GF options. Win!
24. “Math, science, history, unraveling the mystery, that all started with a big BANG!” Come on, I’d miss Sheldon. Well, I can’t miss anything if I’m dead because I’m not able to miss things. But, you know, I could never joke about sitting in Sheldon’s spot. Or making fun of his Trek-ness. And Sheldon is a fun person to joke about. 
25. There’s still a lot of video game consoles I need to own. I can’t die before completing my mission of having a ton of old skool and new skool consoles, plus another Commodore. 
Iz floppy. And fun to play with. And just flop around. And get awesome looks for owning.

26. I have to defeat the odds and prove I can overcome all this junk. What a story I’ll have!

27. Shiny things. I like shiny things. Not just shiny pokemon, but other shiny things! 
28. Sunsets. Sunsets are beautiful, and it’s such a calm, peaceful time of evening.
29. The ocean. I’ve only seen the Atlantic. Gotta see the others! 
This is from one of my trips to Miami

30. Making random happy faces in random places. It’s fun and who knows? Maybe some sad person will see the happy face and then smile, right?

Y U B SAD? HAZ HAPPEH! 


100 Reasons For Living: Part 2

See part 1 here

11. BACON. Bacon is really, really yummy. It smells good, it tastes good, and HEY IT HAS PROTEIN. PROTEIN IS GOOD.

This little piggy will be my breakfast some day….

12. Psychology. I love studying it, I love learning about it, I love putting it into practice. It drives me, it makes my blood run, and it makes me so happy. Dead people can’t study psychology.

13. SCRUBS!!

14. Playing on playgrounds. Pretty sure the kiddies would be creeped out if a corpse went down the slide or if a zombie was swinging…
15. I am loved, I am accepted, I am wanted.
16. I have a story to tell and it hasn’t been told yet. Maybe I can cheer people up, inspire people ,leave a legacy with my story.
17. I haven’t been overseas yet. Gotta be alive to do that. Well, unless someone drops my ashes out of an airplane crossing the Pacific ocean. But that’s kind of morbid.
18. I’m still in college! I need a degree!
19. MARIO!! 
20. Dead people can’t ride horses and I want to ride horses again. 😀
U ride me, plz?

100 Reasons for Living: Part 1

1. Pokemon. After all, dying before I catch them all would just be depressing, now wouldn’t it?

That car is kind of badass.

2. Finally getting my drivers license! It may happen this summer!

3. Getting my own apartment for the first time. With an awesome friend.
4. My friends. They would be very sad pandas if I died suddenly. 
Steph says I can’t die until I’m in my 90s. 

5. Video game soundtracks. Seriously. They’re beautiful.

6. The feeling of walking barefoot outside. In the grass, in the sand, in the ocean… in the mulch. Anything but mud. Ick.
7. The feeling of the warm sun against your skin after the chilly spring.
8. Laughing so hard I cry.
9. I won’t be able to do this with a kitten anymore IF I’M FRICK FRACKING DEAD
10. It’s not my time yet. I still have so much to do in these world.

He’s the only friend who ever peed in a cup for me

Nick was my friend. I was an idiot for letting petty disagreements get in the way of our friendship, and completely lost contact with him – even being childish and deleting him from my Facebook friends. Which, in retrospect, was stupid and pathetic, considering that he was one of the people who was there for me in one of my darkest phases, when I just needed a friend the most. He’d stay up with me when I was sick. He once skipped Streetlight to watch A Little Princess with me after taking all my sharp objects from me, so that I not only couldn’t cut myself but so that I would have a friend. He helped me lobby for the back surgery I so badly needed and he was there (along with other friends, but this post is about Nick :P) when I was having medical drama. He helped me process some things, and showed me God in a way I hadn’t seen him until that point. We enjoyed watching Scrubs on random nights for no reason other than, well, we felt like it! Thanks, buddy, for introducing me to the awesomeness that is Scrubs.

I’m bitter and angry about myself for the way things played out, and  I suppose I need to let that go. I’m sorry, Nick, for being a stubborn idiot. I don’t think that you were right in that series of three slightly heated convos, but Lord knows I wasn’t fully right either. I’m sorry, I’m sorry, I’m sorry for being such a buttmuffin.

But all and all – Nick was the only friend who ever peed in a cup for me. Out of context, that’s a really awkward quote. It was June of 2010, and I was living in the hotel-turned-dorm at Northwestern. It was previous to my gluten intolerance being diagnosed, and I was incredibly sick. Nick gave me a ride to the University of Minnesota Medical Center ER and stayed with me (well, on my computer. I later hijacked his Facebook status *grin*. Buddy, you never did learn to log out on my computer :P) during it. Problem: they demanded a urine sample and wouldn’t leave until I gave them one. Problem 2: I don’t pee on demand. Solution: Nick takes the cup out my hand, goes into the bathroom, and PEES IN THE FRICK-FRAKING CUP FOR ME. Me: “O.O NICK YOU CAN’T DO THAT!” Nick: “I just did.” He then goes and hands the cup to the nurse. “Here, she went.” Me: “NICOLAS!” After the nurse left, he turns to me and asked me if they could tell he was a boy from his urine and if they’d find me. Me: “Um, not sure?” We were very relieved, let me tell you, when the nurse came back and announced I wasn’t with child. Naw, really?

The funny part? The next day I got a phone call from the hospital, telling me that my urine sample showed a kidney infection and to see my primary doctor. Me: “Um…”. That was an awkward text to Nick, let me tell you.

I don’t think that Nick peeing in the cup was the right thing, and I do feel kind of bad about it. But, how many people can say someone would pee in a cup for them?

I’m sorry I was an idiot, Nick. I’m sorry that I let our friendship fall due to my stubbornness and slightly idiotic streak. I’m sorry that I wasn’t there for you the way you were there for me. You were one of the few people who truly understand my medical stuff as while not all our disorders were the same, we had many similar ones. I wish I could have shared with you stories of my surgery recovery. I wish you could have seen my morphine-ridden poetry that I wrote post op. I wish we could have traded spinal fusion/back rod stories. I’m sure we will one day in Heaven. I’m sure it’ll happen one day – on that glorious day when we ALL are without our bodily pain and we can celebrate in that freedom together at last.

I love you.

Every lament is a love song,
yesterday, yesterday,
I still can’t believe you’re gone
Every lament is a love song,
yesterday, yesterday,
So long, my friend, so long. 
-Switchfoot

Every lament is a love song

My dad’s dad died in 1975.
My Grandma Dixie (dad’s mom) died when I was eight.
My Pawpaw (Mom’s dad) died when I was nineteen.
My Mawmaw (Mom’s mom) died when I was twenty-three.
There was my great uncle, my great aunt, etc, etc, you get the picture. I’ve been to more funerals than weddings in my lifetime.

I’ve had various friends die over the years. Most were ones I used to be close to but then fell out of touch with. One I used to be close to, then we had a fight and never made up. Others, I just got busy and selfish with life and we just didn’t talk anymore. And it sucks. I have various memorials set up in my room to various people: a stuffed pee cup for Nick (LONG STORY), the teddy bears Rachel sent me long ago, my grandpa’s beanie baby lady bug, the list goes on.

Hell, I just don’t grieve well, I don’t think. I stuff and I stuff and I stuff and I stuff. My puppy (Pirate wasn’t even a year old when he died) died 10 years ago and I still haven’t fully processed it.) But my biggest fear is that I am going to die young. I’m plagued by health problems. What if I die young? What if I leave friends behind asking the same questions I am asking now? What if it isn’t my health that takes me, but a car accident? Something else? Will I leave behind a legacy?

I just can’t help but wonder these things. I’m terrified of dying.

Mrs. Tanner: Sweetie, I’m seventy-four years old, I’m ready to go.
J.D.: Yeah, but with dialysis, you could live another…eighty or ninety years.
Mrs. Tanner: I think you’re being a little irrational.
J.D.: No I’m not.
Mrs. Tanner: Everybody dies sometime.
J.D.: No they don’t.

***

Dr. Cox: (In mock crying voice) But what about our duty as doctors? (Back to normal voice) Look. This is not about Mrs. Tanner’s dialysis, this is about you. You’re scared of death, and you can’t be; you’re in medicine for chrissakes. Sooner or later, you’re going to realize that everything we do around here, everything is a stall. We’re just trying to keep the game going, that’s all. But, ultimately, it always ends up the same way.

***

I’m terrified of death, which is odd considering I was hospitalized in 2006 due to being suicidal and in a crisis home for the same reason in 2009. But I’m terrified of death. It scares me senseless. and that’s just… I don’t even know. I’m out of words to describe how it makes me feel. But I know that my health is falling apart. I know I’m not a healthy 24 year old.

And it breaks my heart that one day, likely while I’m still young, my friends will be wrestling with the same gut-wrenching questions that I wrestle with.

Every lament is a love song,
yesterday, yesterday,
I still can’t believe you’re gone…

Because a thankful heart is a happy heart

“I give thanks for this day, for the sun in the sky!”

It’s Thanksgiving 2011. As I sit in northern Minnesota watching The Big Bang Theory wearing pajamas and mismatched socks and a mug of Nutcracker Sweet tea, I realize that I have so much to be thankful for.

I am thankful for funny TV shows, such as The Big Bang Theory, Scrubs, and How I Met Your Mother. They allow me to laugh and just enjoy things.

I am thankful for friends. Friends are family, too. I am thankful for friends that make sure I am no alone on holidays and that send me random texts throughout the day. I am thankful for random facebook wall posts, random emails, et al.

I am thankful to be alive. After the epic medication fail right after back surgery, after being diagnosed with an eating disorder, after medical test after test, I am grateful to be alive. Even though days are difficult and things like fibromaliga suck, at least my doctors are trying are to give me answers.

I’m thankful for video games! They are fun to play and give me an escape from life. And they let my mind wander and explore things.

I am thankful for gluten free food and that companies are getting better and making gluten free food.

I am thankful for comfy clothes.

I am thankful for my honey dew shampoo that makes me smell awesome.

I am thankful for the Tea Gardens! Mmm, bubble tea.

I am thankful for going to a school where there are disability coordinators who work with me and don’t belittle me.

I am also really thankful for a break from school. I was approaching a nervous breakdown and about to totally fall apart from stress. Which would be bad. I don’t think exploding and randomly falling apart is generally advised. I am still stressed to high heaven but hopefully the break will give me a chance to breathe.

I like writing out this thankful blog post! ^_^

have you ever heard of a greater love?

This is the day 6 years ago that I decided to write about a youth retreat I’d gone on the previous weekend. It was junior year of high school. To set the setting: I was still living with my father and I was homeschooled. I was attending the Church of Christ. I was full force into self injury, and starting to lapse into an eating disorder. I am not editing grammar or words, but to think the day that my faith was strengthened was six years ago, only to be shattered less than a year later. Only to be torn to shreds. That year I started to climb out of depression, to see the light, to see HOPE. But then senior year happened, and it all fell to shit.

*****

This retreat..blew me away. and I shall share it with you. Because you are all cool people..and I can.

Friday wasn’t much. It was Friday. Not much happens on Friday. Just cause it’s Friday..’ya know?

I watched soccer tournments on Saturday..fun stuff..and attended an elective Saturday afternoon..which was great…

Saturday was the day. I broke. I’ve been breaking for awhile, and I just totally broke, and I didn’t tell anyone what all was going on. I mean, I can’t even talk about it. I’ve never shared this part of my life with anyone. I’m Angelique. I’m strong. And I made it through the morning fine. Had a blast watching soccer, and eating, and just being a kid, just hanging out and goofing around and hanging out. Which isn’t something that I do often. Finally, it happened. The floodgates broke. And I mean, I was to the point where I was crying so hard, that I couldn’t talk..or sing the words to the worship songs. And I just felt so totally empty inside. And I was. I was empty and broken. and I just sat there and cried. and cried. for at least fifteen twenty minutes…it started out as nothing then got harder…and I was so tempted to walk forward, but let all my fears ingulf me. Kinda like the morning message, when he was talking about fears. I let my fears consume me.

And why? Everything. Like they showed a video of Christ on the Cross…and I lost it. I’ve cut myself when he died for me? Come on! How could I be so lame? How could I turn to myself, when he died for me so I could have life? How could it be? And I’ve felt so empty inside lately, even when singing the worship songs this weekend, and I can’t make myself belive the Bible, like I know what it says, and I know it’s true…and I can’t make myself believe it.

And you know what amazed me more? I was sitting there with two other friends. My youth pastor and the rest of my church was way behind me. A sponser from another church came over to me and asked me if I was alright. And he prayed for me and told me he would be contining to pray for me. It just amazes me. That I’ll most likely never see this guy again (unless I’m at other local Ohio events and see him)..and it’s just..wow..and he also came over to me on Sunday and told me he was..and it’s just amazing..it blows me away..that someone who doesn’t even know me can care about me and want to pray for me. That someone who knows nothing about me, my bitter past, my unknown future..and want to help me. And it hurts..and it heals.. ‘ya know?

On Sunday..I broke. Again. I’m tired of breaking..but I realized that I do. It’s true. I just like God. I don’t really love him, I don’t really have the burning passion I should. I have so much in my life eating up at me. But I’m too scared to recommit. Which is why I didn’t this weekend. Cause I always blackslide. I always fall back into my old habits. So why should I even try to change when I know I’m going to fall back into what I once was agian, ‘ya know?

And I feel so empty inside. And broken. And I like God. I don’t love Him. and I hate it. Both times..my youth minister asked me if I was alright and if I needed to talk. I told him I didn’tknow if I was alright and that I didn’t need to talk..orthat I din’dtk know if he could help..becuase I’m just hurting so much..hurting beyond words I guess?

My elective Saturday night was just plain out spiffy. Chris is so crazy and great. God forgives me, and I really need to forgive myself. I’ve sinned against God, and I need to realize that. I need to realize that God’s given me forgiveness, and I need to let it go. I just can’t sit there staring at my sins, and just be like..whoa..that’s cool…and not do anything. I need to get in gear, and do something wtih it.

I didn’t eat much on Sunday…and so of course, I got told I needed to eat..but I still didn’t, and I really don’t care. I didn’t take communion either. And I feel bad about it, because I attend a church that believes you should take communion every sunday. But my heart isn’t right with God. And eveything is broken. So..I can’t take it since everything is so wrong..

And I look at the bracelet I got. I didn’t even get it when everyone else did..I was crying too hard to go up front..so I dashed up after it was over and grabbed one, but that’s ok. Sure, it’s too big, and just dangles on my wrist..but hey. I wear it for a double reason. Livestrong. They livestrong through cancer. I support that cause. I am a surviour. I dunno how many of you know that. But I’m a surviour. I had a tumour removed when I was four. Of course, everyone has friends and family members who suffer from cancer, I don’t think there’s a single soul on planet earth who hasn’t been touched in some way, shape, or form by cancer. And in the same way, I can livestrong without cutting. I can livestrong in Christ.

And I’m seriously shutting up now.

****
I see this post, and long for that childlike faith to return. I’d already seen hell at that point and had no clue of the further flames of hell that would lick me again. How I wish I could stay innocent and naive. How I wish I could stay hopeful for such beautiful things.

Just take eveything down to highway 61


I hate how my theology class is taking over my blog! So, I’m taking a break from that to do some REAL blog writing. After all, we know I love to write. And babble. And ramble. But that’s okay, because that’s me, and who I am, right?

My friend and I went up north for the weekend. And I realize how much I fully LOVE nature! I love it I love it I love it. I mean, it’s hard for me because it’s hard to get around, but gosh, I love it. I loved walking around the outside of split rock light house. I loved walking around and seeing Lake Superior. I LOVE BEING OUTSIDE. I love nature. Even though I hate the cold, I love the feeling of the wind whipping my hair around. Being outside just makes me so HAPPY!

Granted, it’s difficult with crutches. Walking is painful, and my weak leg makes things difficult, as well as my off kilter sense of balance. But it doesn’t make me not enjoy nature any less, it just means I have to enjoy it differently. I can still climb trees with just my arms (I love climbing things!), and I can limp around and enjoy it.

But gosh, nature gives me such a sense of happiness. It doesn’t judge me for being depressed, it doesn’t judge me for not being as physically nimble as other people. It lets me take my own pace (until it gets too bitterly cold for that, but you know what I mean). It makes me HAPPY!

but I can’t have that happiness often, but for those few glimpses I get to grasp of nature,
for those for moments outside,
it’s peace. it’s happiness.
it’s where I’m meant to be.
I’m able to be outside and see lighthouses (I’ve always loved lighthouses) and think of how the same way the light saves the ship, there’s a light shining head for me, that I’m reaching for, yearning for, leaping toward, that’s just waiting for me.

And in that same way… maybe hope, love, grace, joy, peace, all these things I yearn for and dream of are waiting for me.
Waiting to accept me.
Waiting for me to just walk out into them.

Every lament is a love song.

“I close my eyes, and I see your face. If home’s where my heart is, then I’m out of place. Lord, won’t you give me strength to make it through somehow? I’ve never been more homesick than now. “

“Memories surround me but sadness has found me, I’d give anything for more time. Never before has someone meant more, and I can’t get you out of my mind.”

Grief is a funny thing. When we lose a loved one, a family member or a friend or even a beloved pet, it’s like a suckerpunch to the stomach. Loss hurts when we expect it, but it also throbs when it blindsides us. It aches deep within when it’s a young life, when you’re left with the “Why him? He was so young and held so much promise. Why her? She had such a passion for Christ!” It throbs when it’s an older person, as you look at all they’ve accomplished in life and you’re left with just your memories, treasuring each one but yet longing for more.

It’s funny, because from the moment you get the phone call that they’re gone, from the moment you get the email, the text, the Facebook message, your heart stops. Everything, for that moment, end. And you’re plagued with regret. For one friendship you regret falling out of touch even though many times you felt the tug to get back in contact. For another one, you’re plagued by the text message and Facebook argument that was never resolved and you completely fell out. It doesn’t change the pain and anger from a life loss, and the flood of memories from the good times.

The different types of grief are difficult. The fresh, raw grief that is like a sudden sharp knife, and the dull, aching grief that remains once the initial wave has worn off. No matter how you slice it, it sucks and it hurts.