This life of mine
Wednesday, March 29, 2006
  Jab, jab, jab ...
I just got back from the hospital, where I'd expected to get the results of the core biopsy they did 3 weeks ago. Instead the doctor (a different doctor each time, of course, it would be too easy to see the same one each time) said she needed to repeat the core biopsy, but take samples from much deeper in the tumour than the previous tests.

So I had the local anaesthetic again, which was the only part that hurt, and then she took 8 or 9 samples in all. I get the results in three weeks (at least that's what they told me. Or maybe this is some new money-saving technique, where they are actually removing the tumour, but in tiny pieces, every three weeks.)

It looks as if this mass will have to be removed anyway, so why not just do it? I could really do without the worry of this. But worrying won't change anything.

It was fun driving home with my gear-changing arm still numb from the anaesthetic. So I expect I can add the cost of a new gearbox to this year's car bills :-)

And now I'm waiting for the numbness to wear off. Last time they told me I could expect "a little discomfort and slight bruising", but I found out that they had actually been talking in a different language, Hospitalese, and what they really meant was two days of pain so bad I could barely move my arm and bruising that went from my collarbone to my elbow. At least this time I know what to expect and I've already called into the office and told them I'll see them on Monday.

And now I'm cheering myself up with a healthy, nutritious lunch of blueberry muffin followed by chunky peanut butter KitKat, washed down with creosote-strength coffee.
Sunday, March 19, 2006
  Bucky rawks!
I'm hooked on American Idol. And this week, I developed a big crush on Bucky Covington.

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He's got no chance of winning, being a Southern Rocker, but damn, that boy is hot!

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Funniest thing this week? When Ryan said that Ace or Kevin were in the bottom three and the look on Ace's face when it was him. He covered it up quick, but for a couple of seconds there was this look that said "Excuse me? Is there some mistake here? I got less votes than Kevin?"

Ace knows he's handsome, but comes across as really insincere. Lisa leaves me cold. Katherine is good but seems a bit smug. I think (hope) it'll be between Taylor, Elliott, Chris and Mandisa. If music fans vote, then that's how it'll be. But I suspect we'll end up with Kellie, Lisa, Paris and Kevin because of the teenage vote.

But if you're so inclined, and you're in the US (we can't vote from the UK), vote Bucky! Keep an old lady (me) happy!

Thursday, March 09, 2006
  I'll have the ...
Best laugh I've had in ages.
Wednesday, March 08, 2006
  Tests continue
I had a core biopsy today. Not the most pleasant thing in the world, but a damn sight better than the mammograms I've had recently. Apart from the jab for the local anasthetic, I didn't feel a thing, but the "snap!" sound the needle/gun thing made was horrible. Results in 3 weeks.

So I'm feeling sore, looking bruised and I'm going to spend tomorrow wrapped in a duvet watching trashy TV and eating things I probably shouldn't.

In the meantime, because it's raining outside and I need some cuteness, here's a kitten. Marvel at his little stripey-headed sweetness.
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Sunday, March 05, 2006
  Pretty damn lucky
I just got back from lunch with 10 friends at the local Toby Carvery. Not the most upmarket restaurant in this little town, but great value for money and we all rolled out of there like Jabba The Hut.

I'm blessed to have such a good crowd of friends around me. They've helped me through some hard times over the past five years, when I split up with my (now)ex-husband. I've had some big life stuff happen since then - an episode of depression, major surgery, falling in love, George's death and some recent hospital tests. These people have been there for me through the good and the bad times.

I know when I was drinking, I had no real friends except for Denise, who moved back up north 15 months ago. She was never a drinking buddy, which is probably why she stayed friends with me. I was evil when I was drunk. I really miss her, and wish she could have been there today. We had a lot of laughs, too much food and I was glad for the walk home so a few calories could evaporate.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006
  A chance meeting
Thanks to everyone who sent me birthday wishes for my 7th sober one. I know that it's only thanks to the miracle of the AA programme that I'm sober today. In my last few years of drinking I couldn't stay sober for 7 hours, let alone 7 years!

This afternoon on my way back to the car from the Barking lunchtime meeting, I passed a pub. A taxi was waiting outside and a man and woman came out. He was walking with a stick, and she was saying to the cab driver "he's not drunk, he's just got a bad leg". I looked at him and realised that it was a former boyfriend of mine who I hadn't seen since 1988.

He was a chronic alcoholic even then, and I know that the few months we were 'dating' (if you could call it that) my drinking escalated. It was a very unhealthy, alcoholic relationship, a cycle of abuse and dependency on both sides.

He does actually have a bad leg. A long while ago he'd been a pillion passenger on a motorcycle and had been badly injured in an accident. He'd been awarded a huge settlement - £58,000, which in the early 80s was a lot of money, probably the equivalent of around £150,000 (about $270,000) in today's money. Within months he was broke after spending it all on drink, clothes and holidays for hangers-on. When I met him he was living on state benefits.

But despite what the woman today said, he was also drunk today. Well, he was coming out of a pub at 3 o'clock in the afternoon and, knowing him, he was probably in there at 11am when it opened.

I said hello, and it took him a few seconds to focus his eyes and recognise me. He grinned, and we exchange a few words "good to see yous", etc. and then I went on my way.

He could be the sweetest, funniest, most charming bloke you could meet, and then in a second turn violent and abusive. We split up after he beat me up at a party we were at. Nobody there came to my aid. It was the norm amongst the people I was mixing with. As it says in the Big Book, the unacceptable becomes acceptable. Thankfully I was able to get myself away from that particular crowd.

To be honest, I'm astonished he's still alive, he was drinking 2 litres of Bacardi a day when we were together, as well as whatever drinks he could get people to buy him in the pub (people felt sorry for him because of the leg, and there were also a lot of people who enjoyed his hospitality when he had money and he called in every favour he could.)

He looked like hell. He's probably 45 now, but looked at least 20 years older than that. I hope he gets sober one day. He carries a huge burden of grief and resentment over the loss of his baby son over 25 years ago and even in our brief exchange today, I could see that nothing had changed in him. But as long as he's still alive, there's hope that one day he might find this blessed gift of sobriety.

Rantings of a sober madwoman

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Location: Essex, England, United Kingdom
February 2006 / March 2006 / April 2006 / May 2006 / June 2006 / July 2006 / August 2006 / September 2006 / October 2006 / February 2007 / February 2008 / May 2008 / August 2008 / October 2008 / November 2008 / March 2009 / May 2009 / June 2009 / July 2009 / August 2009 / October 2009 /

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