Archive for February, 2007

Driving is a pain

Tuesday, February 27th, 2007

Sunday I drove from here to Port Costa to visit my father and his wife. It’s about an hour trip. I left at 1pm. By 1:30 I was in the East Bay and in so much pain I couldn’t stand it. I was whimpering like a dog. I had whimpy tears streaming down my cheeks. I debated pulling over but what would that accomplish? I wanted to go home but it was 30 minutes either way and Anne is a nurse so even though I knew it wasn’t anything that needed fixing, she would probably understand and not get irritated that I was a ball of whaa when I showed up. So, I showed up with my jaw on both sides just SCREAMING. Again, nothig to be fixed, but why on Earth was it so painful? What had made it so angry? Was it the bumping up and down of my car? Oh! I had a coke. I thought maybe it was the caffeine…so I thought Shelby you are lame. You knew not to drink caffeine…so I vowed not to do that again and at 9pm I mustered up the nerve to drive home and I don’t remember if I was in so much pain on the way home so I think I thought my conclusion was correct. No caffeine.

Monday I drove to work and 20 minutes into my drive in the rain and traffic my jaw started screaming again. Same spot. By the time I got to work I was absolutely miserable but everyone was so excited to see me I couldn’t really say I felt like poop (no one wants to hear that) so I did the best I could (CJ could tell something was NOT good) and then went to see Dr. Li at 1 to confirm that yes, I have gained weight. (heh) He asked how the pain was and I didn’t really think to tell him about the jaw stuff because I don’t think he really wants to hear that either…he just wants to make sure I’m healing well and getting better and the rest of the stuff is kind of my deal. I mean, I did tell him about Sunday but then I said I thought it was the caffeine. No biggee.

This morning I got in my car. No rain. Not bad traffic (except at Stanford University exit as always) but 20 minutes in (somewhere around Stanford) the pain became constant again (I have pain intermittently throughout the day on a regular basis, it’s when it just keeps going that it drives me batty). It stayed at it’s same level of ow as I parked and moaned in my car, happy no one could hear me. I had an appointment I was going to attend with C in 5 minutes but I could not bring myself to get out of my car. When I finally did I gimped into the office where M said “Do you want to go join C?” to which I said in one abrupt word: NO. She did a double take and realised I was in a lot of pain and encouraged me to go home but there was NO WAY I was getting back into the pain causer and driving another 30-40 minutes back home. An hour later I felt fine. I knew I would. So I stayed until 4 and did evals and all that good stuff…but why in the world did it hurt so bad? Have I now come to the conclusion that I cannot drive more than 30 minutes? Crazy.

I think actually the problem may be that I clench my teeth while driving. It’s a possibility. And since my teeth don’t touch in the back the muscles just get really stretched and tight and annoyed. Nathalie thinks maybe I wore my hair wrong which is also valid because maybe I kept my neck in a funky position which led to jaw pain. It also might be that stres makes it hurt and when it hurts it stresses me out more so it just kind feeds itself. Who knows. All I know is I am erring on the side of this: mornings suck. So now my schedule is noon go to work. So there.

Best part of today? An excited Nicholas popping out of nowhere in the cafeteria to give me a huge non-chin smashing bear hug. Now THERE’s a warm welcome! Made me fell all warm and fuzzy in a non-molding sandwich under the bed kind of way.

peace out.

Today Kicked My Butt!

Monday, February 26th, 2007

I went to work today. Can I tell you how difficult it was to get up this morning? Well, it was. Oh my gosh. The more I thought about going to work, the less motivation I had to get up. So, of course I ran late since once up I have a myriad of tasks to perform.

Morning ritual:

  1. Get up
  2. Go to bathroom (do bathroom things and emerge very damp)
  3. <—— Longest part: Get dressed as few times as possible and try not to cry at large reflection…good thing most mirrors are fogged up from shower
  4. Give Mommy pill
  5. Give Mommy 1 spoonful wet food heated in microwave 15 seconds (first wash previous day’s plate)
  6. Put scoop of dry food in each cat’s bowl
  7. Scoop litter box (oh yeah that’s a pleasant good morning)
  8. Make some sort of food for myself
  9. Take naproxen and vitamins
  10. Hope keys are in purse, get purse, throw baby food du jour in purse, go to car

Visually that doesn’t seem like much, but when I am about to dash out of bed and try to get to my car asap, I have to add that extra 20 minutes of mandatory prep. I forget that every day. Hence, tardy. However. I had built in a big fat buffer for myself. So I was technically A-Okay except when I got in my car…well, people just ganged up on my and got in their cars too and it was raining and the metering lights were on and human drivers just get on my nerves expecially when they are on the phone without a headset and it’s raining and there’s traffic and people zig and zag and water is involved and all I want to do is get to work in under 40 minutes and it JUST DIDN’T happen for me today with the world traveling at an average of 40mph.

On top of it all, I forgot my badge and had to park next to an idiot who decided his right wheels belonged on the RIGHT side of the white line…and you may ask why I parked there and I will answer that it was the only spot in the lot (because of the moron parking job) and I was about to be LATE on a day when I was going to be EARLY. I washed the moron’s car with my new pants butt as I squoze past, and had a fight with both my and his sideview mirrors who laughed at me when I approached and reflected at me that I should see before attempting that I was rather large to attempt THAT squeeze. But I did it. So there. And I now have a new pair of wet drying rags in which I walked in the rain to a far away building to trade my driver’s license for a contractor day badge before making an apprearance in the ergo lab for the first time since before my surgery There was a line at security. WHy?!?!?!?

So… I think I was supposed to be happy and healthy and excited to be back in the land og ergo there, but I was already on my own back about not being as early as I’d wanted to be, and how do you really tell people in an upeat positive way that you are in a constant state of discomfort on the seriously precarious border of bone aching pain with the occasional everybody join in Burning hot ice pick to the face nerve pain. I don’t think I was able to give a good first day impression. But I was there and dammit I was going to kick some ergo butt!

Until that ergo butt sat on my head and squished me among other things that butts do.

I was in the ergo lab but 2 minutes before Caesar and I embarked on a long lovely journey around 2 very large buildings – in the rain – to the corner where we have to wait a rather long time – in the rain – for the Beep-Beap noise and the white blinky walky person to let us know we can cross the first (of two) streets that will get us closer – in the rain – to the building (two buildings down from the corner and only one floor up) where our very nice dry warm client was happy to see us and to whom we imparted great ergo wisdom and made her happy and hopeful and then we left and had to follow the whole treppid path back to the ergo lab where we could sit down for a mome? Have a sip of water? A spoonfull of gerber’s banana goop? NOOOOOOOOOOO Where we stood for a moment and drip dried, took a deep breath, and got to see our next clients.

Here’s where I have blog guilt. I really don’t know who reads this, and please know that anything I say is mostly me trying to vent and I probably don’t mean half of it…and I am going to be wrong in so many ways the PC police will roll their eyes at me…but I write what happens and I am going to write and hopefully get some feedback regarding my second evaluation. We will call him William. William arrived ontime in our building (from a block away). I turned to greet him, but was immediately more than concerned, The way he stood there…not moving, not even looking around. I think the whole trip took 50 times more out of him than he was prepared for. I didn’t know how to proceed, so I asked if I could get him anything. He was standing in the middle of the lab, stock still, with a pained look on his face, and he was panting and brearing very heavily and he was sweating…a lot. A wet paper towel would be nice he says. So I dash (guess I can dash now) to the nearest restroom halfway across the building to get wet paper towels and some dry ones just in case.

William was still standing there when I got back. He used the damp paper towels on his face and sat down. I immediately knew that our standard chair was way too small for him. So here’s what I have not mentioned.  He is extremely unhealthily obese and that’s the only word I can use for it because it is textbook.  And all I want to do is help him, but he’s having so much trouble talking because he’s still out of breath 10 minutes later from that walk. I ask if he would like some water. Yes that would be nice. Ice or no? Ice please. Another dash (In my wet pants of joy and comfort) to the cafe for ice water and NOW…Now we can do the ergo evaluation. But what is that smell? I have been cursed with a super sensitive nose, and after Dr. Li fixed my deviated septum, well, it got a sensitive promotion. And that new ultra sensitive “I must have been a hunting dog in my last life” sense of smell was not feeling compatible with William’s natural body odor. This is not rare. I meet people every day whose scents I’d like to stay back from. I have even had to hire other professionals on occasion to evaluate someone who wore scents that made my throat contract. But William had not put this scent on. This scent was his own. I have a very good friend whose breath I am not fond of. I don’t know why. It’s the way he is and it’s not offensive, it just pokes my ulfactory senses the wrong way. I have a very very good close friend who is practically family and there is something he does when he is masticating (that’s chewing for you who thought I was being gross) that makes me eat in a different room. I dunno. I guess he’s okay with it because it’s not him…it’s my reaction to him…

Do I need psychological help? I hate hearing people chew. ugh. Makes me sometimes throw up. now don’t get any ides. OOh! Now I know how to make Shelby spew. Tequila is much more pleasant on the front end if you’re going to do that. I’m not inviting you to do this.

I am inviting you to help me figure out the strong emotions I had while working with William. I wanted to take care of him. I wanted to know why he was like that. I wanted to figure out if I could do ANYTHING to brighten his day which seemed full of huge amounts of effort expended just to be there. I wanted to know what it was and why I was so averse to his smell.

That being said, I got William another glass of water so he could prepare for the trek back to his office. I almost wanted to go get my car and drive him over. I kept thinking about the jerk parking job though and how William wouldn’t be able to get into my car so I would have to pull it out and then pull it around and give him a ride those 2 blocks…but then here’s where I am even more of a bitch. He was sweating so much and it smelled like it did that I was afraid my car would smell like that nd then I would have to drive home in wet weather with that. Bitch. Bitch. Bitch. I guess I’m not a real nice person. Just a nice one. Should I have offered him a ride?

Next stop: Dr. Li. Dr. LI oh, Dr. Li…There was a song on the soundtrack of Stand By Me that I sing when I think of my doctor…Mr. Li Mr. Li…Oh Mr. li! Mr. Li Mr. Li…Oh! Mr. Li!!!!! I walked into my 1pm appointment and was greeted with big smiled and complimments regarding how I look and one person said it didn’t even look like I had surgery…and I wanted to say “Now, let’ shoot for FEELING like I haven’t had surgey” but I didn’t want her to take it wrong.

I sat in the Li chair and waited only a few moments before Dr Li. POPPED into my room. He did. He did a little POP entrance. It was cute. And he said I was still swollen in the jowels a little (good to hear since I think I would like a not so fluffy face) and then he said “You look great! You have a glow…” and I said “I have a tan. I went to Mexico” and he said in his insolent kid voice “_I_ wanted to be the cause of your glow!!! I want to have something to do with that. So I immediately corrected and said “Oh yes, if it weren’t for you, I would nevber have gone. Because of you I was able to go to Mexico without my cpap machine and breathe on my ow,” He said proudly “That’s right.” He’s cute.

We reviewed where things stand with the othodontia. He stuck his favorite tools the long necked q tip into my mouth and made some uh huh grunting noises. He told me to do jaw opening exercises. I said I wasn’t sweating as much in my sleep as I had been and he said sometimes your body does weird things while adjusting and drugs can play a role (though I have been off any prescription drugs for weeks now and I was still waking up all ucky sweaty) and I said I still scream at night…and he got a twinkle in his eye and said “I’m not going to touch that.”


Well, I do still scream at night. Hopefully that will go away. I also found out when I got home and PASSED out after some of my friend Nu’s stellar broccoli cheese soup) that I was wrong. The sweating when I sleep is definitely still around.

I will leave you with my favorite part of my meeting with Dr. Li.

Dr. Li: The swelling will go down and your facial features will sharpen up.

me: It doesn’t help that I’ve gained a lot of weight.

Dr Li (without missing a beat): YEAH you have!!!

Oh, Dr. Li. I shake my head…and I still thank you thank you thank you for saving my life and giving me a new one…which will involve a diet plan when I can chew food again. Yeah! I hear losing weight is possible when you sleep at night. SCORE!!!


Saturday, February 24th, 2007

Scanned over 100 pictures in with my new scanner *joy*…and got nostaglic. I miss my friends. I’ve missed them for a while, but I have been on a big stinky pity pot for a long time and thought I was “protecting” them from the epic saga of my life. Made a bunch of phone calls today. Found out some people’s #’s have changed. That’s how long I have been out of touch with people. I don’t even know they’ve moved. Or maybe I knew…and I forgot since I never talk to them or see them anymore.

Let’s get this straight: I appreciate the friends I have. I love the people in my life. I am not tracking down random people just to see if they remember me. I am calling friends from only a few years back…and I am pretty sure they are not going to call me back. Have I pissed people off? Do they just not care? Did I “resurface” too many times and too briefly in the past nd they just gave up? Those three options…I feel that way about myself. If I didn’t have so many wonderful people in my life, today would be a very very very sad day. As it is, today is just very sad. I removed a couple very’s in case someone returns my call. Pitiful.

Most of the people I lost touch with got married and had kids. I have not felt comfortable visiting babies for years, and I don’t know how many times I cancelled on Gramps because I was afraid I’d give him whatever I had that day. When I had sleep apnea I got every cold that passed by and mutated it into something horrendous since I couldn’t sleep and heal. Sadly, I didn’t know that was why I was so sick all the time, so neither could they have known, and my lack of attendance to weddings, showers, and post birth visits just came off as indifference on my part.

I am super snobby about sickness. If you feel sick, DO NOT come to work. DO NOT come to my house. DO NOT visit old people and babies. DO NOT go to a movie…try not to get on a plane even! COVER YOUR FREAKING MOUTH when you cough, and don’t use your hand to do it unless you have sterilizing goop or a sink nearby. Take care of yourself on the front end so that you both recover faster and don’t spread your ickness all over the place. I feel strongly about this for two reasons. First, selfishly, I know I will get your cold and second, I know that I have MAJOR guilt issues regarding calling in sick, so when I do get your cold, it will not only make me physically ill, but my mental health will suffer because the words “Sheby, you freaking SUCK” will echo in my head every day I have your cold and I will really really debate breaking my own rules. I have my rules, but geez, when one day a week is a sick day because the sore throat I woke up with EVERY MORNING OF MY LIFE finally cultivated some random bacteria and I feel worse than normal, I really wondered if I was only psychologically sick and called myself all sorts of names. Here are some: Lame. Lazy. Selfish. Annoying. Irresponsible. Not worth it. F*ed up. Horrible. One who should die soon and rid the planet of self. Pitiful. Irritating. Waste of space. Stupid. Dumb. Moron. Incompetent. Now look all thos up in good old Roget’s Thesaurus and I used all the synonyms as well…on a thrice hourly basis. When I got tired of hating myself, I would take a nap. When I woke up, I’d just start over.

So I didn’t attend weddings or bridal showers or baby showers or post birth visits because I didn’t want to get anyone sick. I didn’t tell them that because I thought it was a cop out even though I really did feel awful. And now they are not in my life anymore and here I am crying about it. UGH! Yet another pity pot. I’m getting off. I guess I have to get used to people being gone and appreciate when they were here.

All my love,


back to work…

Friday, February 23rd, 2007


I decided to try the work thing again. We’ll see how people getting ergo evaluated like being slurred at and spit on…in a good way of course. I will only do a couple hours on Monday and try out my choppers in public. I know the Yahoo! cafe has refried beans so I can refuel. Always important to know where the nearest refried bean station is. That’s my motto.

Of course Court will be out of town at some convention in boring old New Orleans (read: jealous!) so I will have no one with whom to share my post-op work stories…guess this blog will come in handy. Before he leaves though, I think we’re going to go buy a new scanner…teehee. I have way too many pictures…I’m gunna have a scanner party. Me and my scanner…oh yeah, you may get to suffer through that too, since the many photo requests I have had have dictated I go back into the archives and show what I looked like pre-braces the first time, post braces the first time, pre-braces the second time (which also equals pre-surgery pictures) and then I will update the photo blog. I thought no one was looking, but I got a number of requests, and who am I to deny the public humiliating pictures of my profile throughout the years? Such a martyr I am.

While Court is gone I will raid the fridge and eat leftovers galore.  Have I mentioned how incredibly accomodating our favorite restaurants have been?  We go to  Chinese restaurant down the street called Gin Mon, and every time we have gone after my surgery, they cut up the tofu axtra small so I can chopsticks that stuff right in.  The owner also recommended I try the eggplant since it is so soft, and lo and behold!  I can eat it!  It’s yummy.  Court hates eggplant.  More for me!!!  We went to Sushi monster a couple nights ago and mmmmm…..I was in heaven.  It was a feast!!!  I cannot do nori, so I got my two dishes sashimi style, and they had fresh uni and ankimo…for those without weak stomaches, I ate sea urchin and monk fish liver.  *sigh*  I was in absolute ecstacy.  Ask Court.  He was kind of embarrassed.  Saffron Indian Bistro let me eat the sauces from all the dishes on the buffet and Pinky even brought over some fresh saag (spinach) from the back.  I feel very privileged.  Unfortunately, with great privilege in my world, comes occasional mind numbing stabbing pain…but only sometimes.  The rest of the time it’s just annoying.  The price one pays.  I say thank you to the local restaurant owners though!  Life savers they are.

Oh man.  Now I’m hungry.  Here come more of those post-op pounds back onto my waistline.  Elastic band pants.  It’s all the rage.

SF Ballet Nutcracker pix

Friday, February 23rd, 2007

Pre braces…I’m guessing this is about 1985?



Soldier boy, no girl…I dunno

I have a new blog site…please update rss feeds

Thursday, February 22nd, 2007



Subscribe to Blog

Thursday, February 22nd, 2007

Court decided I asked too many questions so he made his life easier by making my life easier. *joy*
Poor guy. I believe he may have had “real work” to do as well…suckah!!!
Okay, so this is my new blog site. Let me know if you want things to change. I can’t do anything about it, but you can let me know.
<----Court says "Put this into your RSS reader." Yeah. Um...this is a work in progress. subscribe RSS feed

Back in Time

Thursday, February 22nd, 2007

I hope Tara doesn’t hate me for posting this. I just thought it was awesome. This is us before going to some dance where we inevitably ostracized ourselves by dancing in the back of the gym with each other a la Romy and Michelle before that movie even dreamt of being made. 
Yeah. We were rockstars. Did I say “were”? Correction: ARE. 

Family Photo 2003

Thursday, February 22nd, 2007

This was taken at my sister’s bridal shower.

From left to right: Jauntie An, Mom, Me, Erin

12/6/06 We got a Wii!!!!

Thursday, February 22nd, 2007