Thursday, June 22, 2006

Frustration in health care..but pushing through.

Hey everyone. I am proud to say that today marks a week and 2 days that I have been a faithful diabetic as far as shots go. I am so happy for me learning to take care of ME! Yesterday I had a day of hell at the free clinic. So here goes the story...I went there at 12:30 for walk in time because they would not let me set an appointment with it being my first time there. I was there promptly at 12:30 with the knowledge that I would have a 1-3 hour wait. I was prepared for that. At about 4:00 I finally got put into a room to see a doctor. That is 3.5 hours already that I had sat in a hard chair in the waiting room. Oh well, it's free right?

Then, I was in the room for 45 minutes waiting to see any face at all before a nurse's aide came in and did a finger stick and asked for some urine. That led me to another 20 minutes or so of waiting before an actual doctor came in. Then, a nurse practitioner came in and assessed the tests and said that my sugar was high (400 ish) and she needed to do an emergency injection. Well, that took another 20 minutes to get together before the nurses aide did the injection. That puts us at about 5:15 or so. Ok, so after the injection the nurse practitioner came back in and said I should return to the main waiting room to wait for the pharmacy to get my insulin together. She gave me a bag of syringes and lancets and nudged me to the waiting room. I sat in the waiting room forever and finally thought I should take a walk back over to the pharmacy area to find out what the hold up was since Chris was still waiting at school and I hadn't eaten since 10 am. I walked down the ramp just in time to collapse and pass out from low blood sugar.

Finally when I was all back to normal, *after 6 glucose tablets and some juice* I was told that they didn't carry my insulin in there. I had waited for nothing. They said they would have to write me a prescription that would cost me about $50. I argued with them due to my wait and of course, the negligence that had me passing out and they agreed to write it off to their account. I angrily took my prescription and the name of the pharmacy and headed out the door. At some point, I lost the prescription and now, I am back to square one. You can be sure, I won't be visiting the free clinic again. It was scary and took me until 6:00 to actually leave which means I was there for 5.5 hours of my day! OUCH!

So, now the idea is to find a low cost clinic in my area that will see me and prescribe insulin and I really don't care if it costs me money because you get what you pay for ..I find. I am a bit nervous about finding somewhere before I run out of insulin but it can be done and I am going to try to do it. Rest assured, I am not giving up on myself again. I am also going to start looking for a place that is affordable for me to get an eye exam and new glasses. As a diabetic, I want to make sure I am not damaging my eyes.

Anyway, things are going well. I registered for my classes so I am on my way to starting my Masters Degree. All is well at home and work (same thing) and I am getting to know a few new gentlmen so that should be interesting. I hope you all have a great day and weekend! Enjoy your thursday!


Monday, June 19, 2006

Catching up!

Hello everyone! Today is a day of catching up. I feel like there are so many things to do around the house, in my life, toward grad school, toward my job, etc...that I am overwhelmed. As I have checked my emails this morning I have a piece of paper beside me to jot down things I remember that I have to do. The list is starting to get kind of long. There a number of things I haven't even paid attention to for weeks that NEED to be addressed. A great example is registering for my classes in Grad School. I start Grad School very soon (August 30th) and I am super excited to become the therapist God wants me to be! I really can't even wait to start on my first class and my first reading assignment. Ask me if I feel this way in year 2? :)

The program should take me about 3 years to complete and believe me, year 3 is looking wonderful. I am really ready to get into my career and start climbing to my dreams. I am also ready for whatever God has for my family. When I say family..I mean husband and children. I really want to meet the man God has for me and establish a family that is healthy and happy. I know that right now, I am just not ready for that. I wish I was but I really think that career is going to be first for me.

Well I should start attending to my to-do list. Have a great day and a great week!


Sunday, June 18, 2006

Kidneys, Weddings, Love, and beyond

Hey everyone. I hope this Sunday finds you all in a restful state honoring the Sabbath. It finds me exhausted, thoughtful, and inquisitive. As I had last posted, I have been having some problems with my kidneys, diabetes, etc..lately. On Monday my friend and I went to the emergency room to get everything checked out only to find that I had another acute infection in my kidneys and that they are taking a nose dive yet again. You may ask me, isn't this surprising Erica? I would answer...not at all. See, when you are a diabetic who doesn't properly care for yourself, you should never be shocked at the news of damage being done. I know that many of you are frustrated with my constant lack of self-care and I feel your pain. I am frustrated with me too.

Since Monday's appointment, I have taken all of my meds including insulin, worked out every single day, and eaten moderately well. I would lie to say that the eating is under control because it isn't just yet. Next week I am working on getting a lot of things taken care of but mostly, I am going to a clinic to get some insulin prescribed plus syringes, looking into buying a new glucometer, and starting up a diabetic program that is more geared toward my life..than my demise. I have tried a number of times before to truly take care of myself regarding diabetes. I have made plans, kept journals, saw doctors etc..and never really stayed true to the plan. I am not here today to make some empty promise that I will care for myself every day for the rest of my life. I am here to say..I am working hard on loving me right now. I am taking steps that are difficult and profitable to heal and be ok with having diabetes.

I am also finding that healing is coming from other areas as well. Yesterday my friends Hannah and Aaron made vows to each other for life. I was honored to be asked to be a part of the wedding party (a bridesmaid) and it blessed my heart to know that Hannah loved me enough to allow me to stand at her side as she said vows, sit at her table to eat with her, and be a part of the most memorable day of her life this side of having children. As well as being honored, I was terrified. See, 5 years ago in July I had a wedding of my own planned. I had the dress, the tuxes, the cake, the dj, and everything else down to an art. I had the whole thing going to the very last single day of my life when my groom backed out. I was not only desperately upset but also mortified. Weddings, needless to say, are not my favorite pasttime.

When Hannah asked me to be involved with the wedding, I said yes without even a second thought as to my own healing or lack thereof. I am glad I did because healing came last night in a small dose. I was in the wedding and I didn't die. I danced and I didn't break. I was in pictures and I didn't collapse. I am stronger than I thought! I truly feel like this is a step in the right direction. Also, I came to a new place by wearing a dress in public. That was one of my 2005 resolutions and I didn't suceed in 2005 but 2006 brought the victory. I looked ok, I think and I tried my best to feel comfortable in it!

Now I say to God, where is mine? Where is the man that I so long for? Where is the man who can honor my intelligence, quirkiness, failures, successes, and beyond? I want to get married and start a family but God has other plans it seems. Please pray that I can come to some sort of peace with that! I wish I could just be ok with today. It's hard at almost 26 and no man who I can honor enough to marry.

Have a great day and Happy Father's Day to my father, your father, and my wonderful grandfather who has been gone for 6 fathers days now. I love you all!


Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Brown is a beautiful color

As you all know, I have been writing things I love about California and yesterday reminded me even more how much I love it here. I have some of the best friends that you could ever have. Yesterday, I had to go to the emergency room for some new and fun kidney issues and found out not so good news yet again. I am to the end of my rope of dealing with diabetes and kidneys. I have to start taking care of myself. I was able to be cared for by such great people yesterday that I stand in awe at God's provision for my life. I also realized who my true friends really are!

Today's thing I love about California is two fold. One is that I love my friends and "family" out here. The other is the BEACH! I have added some pix of people I love and of course, the beach! Enjoy

Here is Oscar and Christopher together cute brown boys!

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And the beach....

This one is just from me standing on the beach after I went for a bit of a jog this morning.

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and so is this one...

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This one is my new pet seagull...scuttle! Just kidding, I left him at the beach. (or her?)

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This one is looking down onto the water over a rest point in my walk.

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This one is what I like to call "White with foam"

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This one is a look over to the houses on the hill, kinda dark..sorry

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And this last one is free..a stang I saw on the way home. It was soooo hot!!!!!!

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I hope you enjoyed my California love for today. More to talk about tomorrow. Please keep me in your prayers for good health. Love you all.


Monday, June 12, 2006

Life..taking shape

I sit today in retrospect. I think about how much my life has changed and I am amazed. I think about living in Indiana just surviving and living in California now and really living! I have no idea what changed when I made a move other than getting away from unhealthy relationships but I became a different woman. Today there are still remnants of Indiana-Erica but they are slowly fading away to a girl who respects where she came from but loves where she is.

Today I emailed a resume to a company in Santa Ana called Recovery Assistants Foundation which takes calls from clients and coaches them through hardship. I am hoping to gain a position there as it is good experience, good extra money, and fits my schedule. I start grad school in just a few short months and I am so excited about starting the new phase of my life. It seems that life certainly is taking shape.

I decided today that the thing I love about California is Palm Trees. This one is especially beautiful and is located by one of my favorite breakfast spots. A hole in the wall location called "The Omelette Parlor" in Costa Mesa, California. Enjoy the pic and have a beautiful day!

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Sunday, June 11, 2006

I am a woman who wears many hats!

So today I went out with my friend Heather with a new look for things I love. We decided to go and browse which is just shopping without money. We had some good lunch at the corner bakery and I started thinking about what my "I love California" blog would be about today and indeed it is the shopping. I decided that I love how California's shopping fits every person..young and old, punk, goth, preppy, surfy, etc...and we all fit in. We have so many different styles around us at all times and everyone's welcome. I love that about our beautiful state.

Today I tried on some rad fedoras which I adore. I ultimately enjoy hats anyway but these two take the cake. I'll let you decide if black or white is my color.

The black one....

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The white one....

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We went into a bunch of different stores today and these were the images I captured. I think California is full of style and grace and let's be honest...amazing shopping. To the Irvine Spectrum..I salute you.

Signing off...


California..and how I love it

Hello and good morning to you. I am just doing a few things before my sunday begins. I hope you are all having a wonderful weekend. I have been pretty lazy and had plans to attend a bachelorette situation but ended up spending the day with my sick friend Heather. Heather has not been feeling well so we have been laying low. This morning I woke up with a fresh perspective and a motivation to change the way I think. I have been so gripy lately about life and to be quite honest, just bitter. I have been hurt a lot lately and it's made me into a negative nelly so to speak and I don't like that. I hate being negative so I have decided that for a while, I will remember what's good about my life and my surroundings. I am going to start with California in general.

Last night when Heather wasn't feeling well and we just wanted to do small things, we went and got dinner and afterwards my favorite dessert.....

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Golden spoon is a great little frozen yogurt place here in California that has all these different toppings. It is really healthy because it is frozen yogurt and is low in sugar. It also always has different flavors available and my favorite thing about Golden Spoon, it's cheap. Last night mine was free because I had a punch card that was filled up! YAY! I just think that there are some things in life worth talking about and Golden Spoon is one of them. Today, as I live my day...I am going to try to capture something I love about California on camera so you can continue to enjoy it with me. Have a great day everyone and thanks for stopping in!!


Saturday, June 10, 2006

The Miracle Child

Last night I decided to stay in the house and enjoy a few items that make my night pleasant. Those items are a strawberry cosmopolitan wine cooler, kettle corn, and a movie. I had all these movies in my closet that Heather's mom had let me borrow before she passed that are G or PG-13 rated. I enjoy a good animated feature so I popped in "Joseph; King of Dreams." If you aren't aware, that movie is based on the story of Joseph in Genesis. You know, the guy with the coat of many colors. So, I sat in my bedroom eating my kettle corn, sipping on my cooler, and watching Joseph go through some pretty hard trials. I started to think about how my story parallels that of Joseph's.

Now, this is not to say I am a "Miracle Child" or have a coat of many colors or that I have saved an entire land from famine. None of those things are true. The thing that I can see in me though is that what "they" meant for evil, God meant for good. Everyone that reads my blog is fairly aware of the childhood that I endured. Most also know that I am fairly resilient and have done things with my life that one should be proud of. You would find it sad to think that I really don't see the accomplishments as much as I really should.

There is a scene in this movie where Joseph sees his brothers again for the first time. He is angry and just wants to punish them for the things that they did to him. In this moment, he doesn't think about his accomplishments, his new family, or even his new position as 2nd to Pharaoh but just wants to retaliate and spew his anger. How many times could I relate to those feelings? Over a million I am sure!

Right after he punishes one of the brothers by putting him in jail, accuses another of stealing from him, and overall just messes with thier heads...he is finally ready to embrace them and forgive them and realize what God's plan was. In my life, it's very hard for me to just forget and embrace the abuse that was inflicted on me as a child. Joseph was sold into slavery! Why can't I understand that if God made good out of that situation, he can also make good out of mine?

I think that one of the hardest things to accept in my life is that my parents really can never love me the way that I envision parents loving their children. They won't love me the same way that my mentors love their children or the same way my friends parents love them. It's so frustrating to feel that way every single day of my life and realize that for the long haul, I am mostly alone. Then I realize....we are all alone on this journey. We are all individuals searching for the big plan or the main purpose in our lives.

I believe with everything in me that I am one of God's miracle children. I believe that although he didn't stop the abuse that was inflicted on me, he loved me nonetheless and planned to use it to not only bring others healing but to bring me success, hope, and a future. I have decided to put a verse to my calling in God and how much he wants from me in the field of psychology and it is Jeremiah 29:11 "For I know the plans I have for you" declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."

After watching the emotional and amazing transformation of Joseph's story, I am reminded that it isn't just an animated feature. It is reality. It is written on the pages of Genesis in scripture. It is a fact that he was abused, sold, left for dead and completely used his hard times to create beauty, passion, and prosperity for an entire land. I am moved and inspired by Joseph's story today. It's sad that I had to be reminded with the animation instead of the words in scripture but God will take the lesson anyway I get it.

I am ready to start storing up my grain and bringing my "land" some prosperity. Thanks for reading my lesson for today. Hopefully we are back to having our eyes open and learning things at every turn. Have a great weekend and God bless you all!


Friday, June 09, 2006

My last weekend and on to this one!

Hey everyone. Today is Friday, Thank God and everything that is holy! This week has been a long one of new projects, new responsibilites, and new emotional trauma. The blogger website has been acting up for a few days so today is my first opportunity to write about my very relaxing weekend *last weekend* and a few other choice topics. First of all, let me tell you how we have a porta pottie in our front lawn. I know that is random but there is a good story here.

We are in the middle of a huge landscape project of our entire front lawn, driveway, etc... and it is a mess. We have been under construction for 2 months and it looks like it's going to be even longer as our yard is a giant dirtpile. I have spared you the carnage but since the porta pottie has a purpose in this story, I have included a picture below. I have noticed that people use porta potties in people's yards. I have had two different people come into my yard and help themselves to our facilities shall we say. Isn't that strange. One of them is a very close neighbor. Why isn't this man attending his own bathroom I wonder? The other was a teenager walking through. I have no idea what these people are thinking when they meandor into my yard to use our toliet *in our yard* Oh my..anyway, here is the pic!

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Ok, so anyway, last weekend was my only weekend in June that I would truly be able to relax and enjoy so I did just that. On friday night me and Heather went to deidrichs just to kick back, have some Joe, and apparently listen to some mexican music. There was a live little band in there creating some fun tunes while we enjoyed our Mayan Mochas. Here are a few pics from that.

Here is Heather thinking hard about life...

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Here is one of the overall environment and a small peek at the band in the corner.

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This one is special. This is my Mayan Mocha and the plate which one held the delectable Raspberry white chocolate Crumble cake or something like that. YUMMMMM!

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Ok, so on Saturday I went over to Heather's house and we went swimming. Yes, I enjoyed a relaxing day in the pool with Heather and a few other loved ones and we had a blast. Most of my day was spent with the cutest 3 year old that you could ever know and enjoying our attempt to not be scared of the water. It was a lot of fun until some stupid girls *teenagers* decided to drop the "F" bomb in front of cute little Jayden. NOT OK! I told them so though and man, I hope I wasn't that disrespectful to elders and my environment when I was younger. I can guarantee you I wasn't!!! Oh gosh, I am officially old to have just ranted about that.

On Sunday, I went to church, crown class, and then enjoyed the day with Heather shopping at good old thrift stores where there was some cool finds like the cool brown pumas I bought and a great Gap bag. Yes, did good for my $20. I love finding great buys and feeling like I am getting something new when I am not really. Budgets stink!

This week has been ok. I spent one day with my favorite guy friend Oscar. Here is a picture of him (cute as it gets).

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I have severed some bad situations and spoke my mind and have been getting ready to be in Hannah's wedding. Oh man, this weekend is her bachelorette party and it's so weird to see one of my own totter off to the marrying field yet again. When is it my turn? Oh, I need to give up on that dream. Next weekend is her wedding so that is why my last weekend had to be relaxing with all I had to do the rest of June.

Also, big news, my friends *Carrie & Paul* are coming out to visit the last week of June for a few days and I couldn't be more excited. I love them both and it will be great to see them and have a little home come to me! I love you guys and I am stoked!

Anyway, to end my post. Here is a face I have been making a lot lately...I am exhausted and overwhelmed and just frustrated at the world around me. This face says "SHUT UP!"

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Thursday, June 01, 2006

Goals and aspirations ...indeed

I sit today in awe of how much stress is going on around me and how I used to get all caught up in the conflama! Conflama = Confusion and Drama. I don't engage in it anymore. My house has been pretty hectic the last couple of days with Chris and his being 13 years old. We are having so many problems with him lying, cheating, not completing assignments, bailing out, etc... and it's so frustrating. I should start by saying that Chris is very much ADHD and a lot of these behaviors stem from that but a great deal also stem from good old puberty I am sure. I have a very hard time remembering my junior high years and it's very hard for me to empathize with Chris a lot of the time.

Today a friend of mine was also involved in losing a great deal of money by robbery. I am so sad for him and really feel horrible about his loss but I also can't engage in his anger or frustration. I used to think that being a great friend was allowing yourself to get 100% pulled into the mess and I have learned that living stress and drama-free is so amazingly better for everyone involved.

I have so many goals and aspirations in my life that I recently recognized that I have to get back on track with them. I have to really dig deep and decide what it is that I want and start to really pursue that. Some of them are going to be harder than others. Some of them I can't control and some of them I can. Some of them are realistic for now, others are realistic for later. Mostly they are all important to me and need to have some attention directed toward them.

Lately I have allowed my vision to be fogged. I have allowed others to get in the way of my real desires and also have allowed the things I can't control to control me. I have a tendency to get into those places and never let go but now I am recognizing that and trying my best to turn my gears toward the life I want for myself. I decided to blog my top 5 desires today and really make a committment to me to start to make steps daily toward those 5 goals and blog/journal on them daily or almost daily.

Erica's 5 big desires:

1. To become a successful therapist/professor/writer/etc... *to be successful in my psychology career*

2. To be a healthy individual in every aspect *Spiritually/Physically/Mentally*

3. To have great relationships with family members *if possible*, friends, and romantic interests

4. To become completely financially independent in the sense that I have no outstanding debt and pay my bills on time and in full.

5. To become a wonderful wife, mother, and overall woman

These are goals I should be moving toward every single day in some way and that is my new focus. I have so much to live for..I need to start doing it.

I love you all!