40 Days of Thankfulness: Day Seventeen

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Today I am thankful for my dog, Mimi.  She’s a beautiful dog, sweet, loving and usually very mild-mannered, but she’ll bark her head off whenever she hears someone in the driveway.

Tonight, she barked at potential trick-or-treaters and we have lots of candy left over.  🙂

Thanks, Mimi!

40 Days of Thankfulness: Day Sixteen

Today I am thankful that the skunk already passed by when  I took Mimi out for a walk!

It’s so not fair!  I can’t smell lots of flowers or perfumes but I can smell a skunk blocks away.

40 Days of Thankfulness: Day Fifteen

I hope I’m not jinxing myself but today I am thankful that I haven’t had any migraines for a long time.

It’s not “just” not having migraines, but the fact that, should I get one, there’s nothing I can do about them anymore.

I used to get migraines quite often, a hormone thing probably.  I spent lots of hours in a completely dark room, blocking out sound, trying to keep my head from pounding.

There was a long period of time that I had a migraine 6 days out of the week for several weeks.  By accident, a friend asked me on a Monday if I had one that day and that started me thinking – why do I have them every day except Mondays?  I figured out that it wasn’t a migraine at all but an allergy headache – I was allergic to the bath oil I was using Monday-Saturday.  I gave that to my Mom and those headaches went away.

I still often get allergy headaches.  Since my Cushing’s transsphenoidal pituitary surgery, I can’t smell things very well and I often don’t know if there’s a scent that is going to trigger an allergic reaction.  In church and elsewhere, my Mom will be my “Royal Sniffer” and if someone is wearing perfume or something scented, she’ll let me know and we’ll move to a new location.

There’s a double whammy here – since my kidney cancer surgery my doctor won’t let me take NSAIDs, asperin, Tylenol, any of the meds that might help a headache go away.  My only hope would be that coffee from Day Fourteen. And that’s definitely not usually enough to get rid of one of these monsters.

So, I am very thankful that, for the moment, I am headache/migraine free!

40 Days of Thankfulness: Day Fourteen

Today, and every day, I am thankful for coffee.  Without it, I would have a daily headache and I’d have even less energy than I have now.

I first started drinking coffee when I had my first job as a waitress at a Hayes-Bickford in Boston, MA.  This was a summer job.  A bunch of my college friends had gotten an apartment near Fenway Park in Boston and most of us were waitresses in various places.  Hayes-Bickford was marginally better than a dive.

I was fortunate that I was the youngest waitress at that Hayes-Bickford, so I got the best tips. This was a l-o-n-g time ago – I’d get out of work sometime after midnight, take the Boston subway alone to our apartment, with an apron full of my tips, mostly in jangly change.  That could never happen any more!  Even without the money, I still wouldn’t wander around the Boston Common area of Boston alone after midnight.

The food at HB wasn’t so great.  Sometimes, a patron would order some type of meat and the chef would say we were out of it, to put gravy on whatever-we-had and tell the diner that it was what he had ordered.  We were usually out of a lot of things.

But the coffee was good and I learned to drink it, lots of it, and black, something I still do today.  If I could do the IV thing, I would!

40 Days of Thankfulness: Day Thirteen

Today I am thankful for my church choir.

I’ve had a long history with singing from the time I was a kid singing in the choir at my Dad’s church.  In High School we had a great choir and it was the time before “political correctness” would have banned us from singing such wonderful classical music like Brahms’ German Requiem.  In college, as a music major, there were choirs and when we finally got to our current home, I joined Sweet Adelines.

I was a member of Sweet Adelines for 10 years, before Cushing’s robbed me of that particular pleasure.  SA takes  lot of energy between rehearsals, performances, competitions, travelling.  I just loved it but I couldn’t keep up.

For a few years, I belonged to a local woman’s group but even that got to be too much after a while.  There wasn’t the travelling or the competitions but rehearsals and performances cut into that energy.

Last year, our choir director opened up the opportunity to sing for just the Christmas Cantata.  No long term committment and only half the rehearsal time for about 10 weeks.

I hadn’t sung anywere outside my car for about 10 years but, with trepidation, I signed up.  Because of my bell-ringing and work with children’s choirs, I knew most of the other choir members and that made it a LOT easier on shy-me.

Christmas came and singing with the choir and orchestra was just fantastic.  There was the invitation to stay, to become a part of the choir for good but I had my Cushing’s Interviews on Thursday nights and I couldn’t see how I could work all this in.

Last spring the choir sang How Lovely Is Thy Dwelling Place from Brahms’ German Requiem and I was hooked.  How could I not join?

So, I moved the interviews to Wednesday nights and Thursdays are free for choir rehearsals.

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