Monthly Archives: June 2012

A little nibble from Netwalker Uprising

Just a little cut from what I’ve been working on today, raw and unedited.  Melanie meets the mysterious artifact Gizmo, during her investiture to the Executive Council of the Corporate Courts.  It looks to be just a typical oath swearing but, given who Melanie is….


Bright green light flared around Melanie.  White-hot pain shot through her, ten times worse than anything she’d experienced in a situational oath.  Sharp needle points pricked up and down her arms while mild electric shocks twitched through her.  Steady.  Steady.  Breathe.  Relax.  Don’t fight.  Melanie closed her eyes, doing her best to think about skiing the High Reach on a bright bluebird day with fresh powder.

            <INTRUDER ALERT!> flashed across her eyes in bright flashing red text.

            Crap!  Enforcer alarm!  Forced virtual!  Her eyes snapped open and she stared right into the green glare.  A shadowy male figure reached for her.

            “NO!”  she yelled, projecting every ounce of Enforcer compulsion she could summon into her voice.  “Back OFF!”

            The shadow-wrapped figure startled back.  It poked at her again, but this time she fended it off with raised hands.  It stood still for a moment, then shot a ray of green light at her.  She bounced it back.

            More lights came at her.  Like the dance game.  One grazed her cheek, and it burned.  For real!

            Only this time failure meant injury, or worse.

            “STOP!”  she finally screamed.  It never worked in the game, but maybe here it would.

            :Submit:  the shadowy figure intoned.

            “No.  Not until you reveal yourself,”  Melanie gasped, bending over double.

            The shadow moved closer.  A single ray beamed from its hand and took on a rapier shape.  The tip touched just under her chin, the point burning and poking at the same time.  Pressure increased until she stood, chin raised.

            :Submit:  the figure repeated.

            “No,”  Melanie breathed, shaking but standing steady.  “Reveal yourself first.”  Could I use the blue light as a parry?  She’d never used that blue light as a weapon before, but if those green lights had that power in this virtual setting, maybe her own tools might have a power they didn’t have elsewhere.  She began to breathe the codes.

            :Stop that:

            “No.”  Damn it, did that break the code cycle?

            She repeated the last sequence.  The familiar tingle that meant she had blue light in her hands began.

            :Submit or die:  The point began to trace a line from her chin to her throat.

            “Never!”  Now how could she shape it into a tool?  I just need something long and solid.  Staff.  Think of it as a staff of light.

            Just as she thought of it, she felt the staff in her hands.  Thrust it up, like she’d practiced with Nik.  Knocked the rapier away from her body, slid her hands together and swung hard at the figure, sending the rapier flying.


            Bright white lights around her.  She knelt on the floor before Gizmo, gasping for breath, blinking hard.  How the hell did I get here?

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Slowing down on the blogging because of Revision Deathmarch

I’m not sure why I’ve been slowing down on the blogging.  A lot of it is probably because I’m spending more time on actual writing these days, y’know, including some self-imposed deadlines on a really tough rewrite.

It’s not for lack of ideas.  I get them when I’m riding the horse, when I’m running errands around town, even when I’m working on, y’know, the rewrite.  But when I get to the computer, instead of opening up WordPress, I’m opening up Word and doing the writing thing.

We’ll see what happens when I get done with the rewrite.  I am devising a writing process post because I’m using a different technique that I couldn’t have done before the iMac came into my life, and I may end up adopting the process for future long-form works.  Having a chapter outline open while I work on the MS is turning out to be rather productive and I can make my notes about a rather complex plot structure and what I need to do in future chapters/modify outline right there and then rather than scribble ideas on PostIts and scraps of paper that I can never find when I need them.

But yeah.  Netwalker Uprising is possessing my brain right now.  When I’m not writing or doing house stuff, I’m reading Anathem.  For some reason I bounced off of it before (probably because like all Stephenson’s work except for Zodiac, the first third is world building and slow, and I tried to read it during the school year).  Between the two, there’s not a lot of extra stuff available at the moment.

The last Allan Schore seminar blew my socks off as well.

I am not quite at the point where I need to list posts I’m planning here.  For one thing, I’ll lose them.  But until July 1, I’m pretty much in the state of “possessed by Uprising” brain murble.

On to the Revision Deathmarch

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Ugh. Somehow I expected better with weather heat transitions

So I thought that losing all this weight would help me deal with sudden transitions in PNW temperatures during the summer.


Yesterday we had a rapid swap from cool and damp to sunny, humid and warm (80s Fahrenheit).  I had plans, including taking in a yoga class at a new studio, working on the novel, and other things.  I took DS to the doctor’s office to start up the new medication (Humira).  We came home, I realized it was too late to get started at a new yoga place, so I ate lunch and began work on novel revisions.  My office is in the back of the house, which gets hotter during the day than the front.  Despite all of my preventatives, it got warmer.

I finished the rewrite section, then started walking around the neighborhood to do my errands.  Halfway through, I started feeling sick.  Ruh-roh.  Came home, did chores, and then collapsed, feeling shaky and sick, my gut cramping and showing all the other symptoms of heat problems.  Damn.

It doesn’t appear to have lasted very long.  I did the smart thing, remained hydrated throughout, and simply faded onto the bed and read a book.  Well, two books.  Today, the lingering result is a little bit of fatigue and a little bit of gut spasm.  Fairly typical.

But this is dang annoying.  I’ve never been good at quick weather transition changes from cold to hot.  In the past this difficulty might have been attributed to weight.  But considering I’m pretty much at where someone of my age and height should be (by one calculation I’m probably at 7.1% body fat with a BMI of 20.9), that’s not a factor now.  So the issues run deeper than that.

Part of the problem is that I am such a stereotypical Northern white girl in body type that it isn’t funny.  Born strawberry blonde, now bottle redhead.  Burn easily, stay pale compared even to other white folk.  Much over an hour in direct sunlight early in a hot summer, and I start feeling shaky, upset gut, and light-headed.  Even later in the summer I have to pace my exercise and seek the shade.  Needless to say, I’ve never been a sun worshiper.  For me the sun really is a bright hurty thing.

It doesn’t work that way in winter.  I can caper all over the slopes on a bright sunny ski day in temperatures below freezing and, as long as I’m properly layered up, I do fine.  As long as the temps stay below 50 degrees F I’m pretty good–heck, I’m good even up to the low 70s.  But 80 degrees F and above?


Humidity is also a factor, as are allergies.  I do better in hot and dry (though not in Las Vegas three digit temps, BTDT.  No.  Freaking.  Way.  Even with AC).  Hiking in Tucson on a warm winter day brought on the beginnings of heat issues and humidity and allergies weren’t raging then.

Grr.  It’s annoying.  Clearly I’m a creature of the Pacific Northwest, especially the wet side.  Looking at a temperature map of the past spring, what area’s been below normal for temps and above for wet?  Yep.

Oh well.  Eventually we’ll get past the see-saw temperatures and settle into a warm pattern.  After a week or so my body will adapt and I can resume an active life without worry, as long as I wear a hat, take frequent breaks in the shade, and don’t sit out in direct sunlight.  It’s just freaking annoying that I can’t use weight loss as a solution.

Of course it wouldn’t be this easy.  Of course.

And, of course, I own a horse who loves this hot weather.  Damn.

(And, please, I’m not really needing advice.  This is a grumble, not a request for advice.  I’ve tried a lot of things, and I still can’t get past the initial reaction to heat.  We do have AC in this house, temperamental as the damn thing is.  I stay hydrated.  I’m careful with what I eat, though in retrospect I suspect I ate too much fatty food yesterday which contributed to my issues.  Still, this is a regular pattern and trust me, I’ve tried a lot of stuff.)

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Of writing, and horses, and maybe a wee bit about teaching.

So I am deep into the Netwalker Uprising revisions, and I’m not sure yet who’s winning, me or the story.  Part of the challenge is that my editor (freelance, since I’m indie publishing the Netwalk Sequence I’m paying her for the edit and MS preparation) came back with some serious suggestions about story revision.

They were spot-on.

And then, in the creative frenzy that happened during the snow day this winter……

(remember this?  Yeah, this is that project)

I came up with a sweet little twist which carries across the whole damn series and pulls things together that I didn’t realize fit into my world’s backstory.  It explains one hell of a lot that happens there.  It gives the whole McGuffin solid legs.

Yeah, I like it when a Cunning Plan finally comes together.

But damn, the execution of said plan can be a challenge.  I have been wrestling with Chapter Three for dang near three days now.  Not the little half-hour grabs I do during the working year but solid, multi-hour sessions where I sit for the duration of a Pink Floyd CD (Momentary Lapse of Reason) and write something, scroll back to cross-check, write more, delete, accept changes, chew on my lip, add something, scroll back….get up at the end of the CD, brew more tea, stretch, stare at the birds, check e-mail, get back to writing something, delete, accept changes…..

Meanwhile, I also have the chapter outline I wrote to help me whip this MS into some semblance of order also up on the screen (I’m writing on an iMac so the screen has room for two documents at once without having to tab between them.  So.  Freaking.  Cool!) and I’m editing later chapters on the fly as new thoughts occur.

And trust me, this is a painful slog.  The two earlier chapters weren’t this hard, but this chapter, this Chapter Three, this one is foundational.  It sets the rules for what comes after.  It has to be coherent.

Plus I’m not just establishing and extending the McGuffin, this chapter turns out to have a LOT more character work than I expected.

And, well, fireworks!

Oh yeah, I finally did conquer Chapter Three.  I split it in half.  That section was easy.  The foundational chapter is now Chapter Four.  Too much for one chapter.

And then Chapter Five will be All! New! Material!

We shall see how that plays.

Meanwhile, Miss Mocha was in one of her–ahem–energetic moods.  Not like the picture above, where she’s relaxed.  I rode her indoors because, well, monsoons (we don’t get that necessarily in Oregon but the June Damp is still holding on desperately).  Additionally, I don’t want to ride her too many times in a row on the hard outdoor footing.  She’d started to pussyfoot her stops and that’s a clear sign it’s jarring her hocks.  The softer indoor footing gave me a more energetic horsie, for sure.

I also worked on myself, focusing on sitting up, dang it, and visualizing a string pulling my head to the roof.  When I collapse my core, part of what’s going on is all about me rounding my shoulders.  Amazing how much difference thinking about position, visualizing the string pulling me up, and imagining my heels dragging on the ground can make!  That gave me a softer horse in the hand.

We had a long work, doing string of pearls at all three gaits with flying changes for the direction changes at the canter.  We schooled figure 8s.  We two-tracked.  We did a few baby two and three-tempi changes in S curves and I was able to get them in a somewhat straighter line than before.  Part of the challenge is convincing The Girl that the lead does NOT always have to be the inside lead (after all those years convincing her otherwise, sigh, but neither one of us was ready for this earlier).  She’s understanding the need for change when the line curves a little.  I figure once she comprehends the rhythm of tempi changes, she’ll like the feel of it (she’s that kind of geeky horse) and then it will be easy to cue her off of seat and leg.  I’m steadier in cueing these things off of seat and leg and leaving the hand as a support, not a leading cue.  Timing’s better.

Then we went down the road and she had a Brain Fart Moment.  Luckily, Brain Fart Moments in twelve-year-old cowhorse mares looks like halt, raise head high (instead of low head surfing for possible munchies–she’s very much like a Shetland pony in this one), and stare in the direction of what worries her.  Give her a moment to figure it out, then ask her to move on.  She might stop after a couple of steps but giving her time to study and think about it is key.  I figured out that one thing was someone working in a yard who she couldn’t see clearly, just see the movement and hear her walking around.  Another part was the low hum of something–whatever it is, it’s connected to the city’s waterline that runs through the area.  But there were other things going on that I couldn’t see.

When we turned back to the barn, she started walking faster than I’d like, almost a trot.  So we spent time walking, then turning back, then walking, whoa, back…until she got sick of it and relaxed, approaching the Difficult Section with lowered head (though still tight).  I got her to slow her pace slightly, though she still walked fast.  Then we crossed over to our regular stroll and she relaxed further and slowed down.  So yeah, more stuff was worrying her than I could see or hear.  Probably something she smelled, possibly elk, coyotes, bear or even cougar.  All have been spotted in the area.

And that’s it for tonight.  The only teaching comment I’ll make is that I’ve been musing over the stats on teacher turnover.  Still thinking about that.

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Ugh. Pictures tell all in horsey world

DH came to the barn with me yesterday and took pictures while I rode.

Gotta say, my immediate response was…UGH.

Here’s a palatable one:

So what’s wrong with this picture?

1.) Elbows.  Too straight and forward.  More of a bend creates an effective line from elbow to bit.  Also brings elbows into shoulder/hip/heel line–more effective signalling.

2.) Legs.  Pushed forward, heels not under hip.

3.) Midsection.  Collapsed.  No strength in core, ergo, legs forward, shoulders rounded, causing more of a back seat/chair seat position.  Also means I’m not supporting myself effectively on Mocha’s back in this sitting trot, ergo, wee bit of hollowing in her back.

And here’s what it looks like at the canter:

Well, the elbows have improved slightly.  But to the previous sins add:

4.) Looking at the ground

5.) Leaning forward too much

6.) Heels wandering up.

The core is at the root of these sins.  I still haven’t rebuilt strength after losing it as a result of being so sick for two weeks that I literally got up, went to work, came home, went to bed.  No workout, no strength…means the core muscles have softened a little bit.

You need core to ride a horse like Mocha well.  Strong core=horse rounding into bit, light contact, minimal signalling.  Weak core=heavy on the bit, sore horse, sore rider.

Guess I know what I need to do to get back into shape.  In my defense, it’s only the fourth ride since I’ve been sick.  But still….

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Some years the garden comes together.  This is one of those years:







This isn’t the whole thing (only 1/3 of the deck flowerbeds and not the climber rack).  But for once, we’ve managed to get things started in a timely manner, and the regular beds are such that all we need to do in early spring is turn the soil over, let it rest, then redig when we plant.

The timing of rain this spring and the way my schedule fell together allowed me the time to get out and muck around with the flower beds around the deck.  DH taking out the Norfolk Pine meant the trellis frame became usable again (it was blocking over half the frame):







Hard to see in this shot, but there’s sweet peas, California poppies, and Monarda in and around that framework.  Should be pretty rather soon.

The apples are looking right nice as well.  Here’s a Grimes Golden shot:







And a Gravenstein shot:







I picked about a quart of edible pod peas and took half of them to a sick friend.  The peas came off a patch that’s about 3 feet by 4 feet:







We also have a healthy batch of mullein plants growing by the deck:







In other words: we had a plan for the garden and now it is coming together nicely.  Planning to put together pieces like getting the garlic in the ground sometime during the fall, turning over the soil early in the spring to get rid of early season weeds and start working it loose long before planting, early weeding of flower beds and the like make such a big difference at this house.  Some places those maintenance behaviors aren’t a big deal.  But for this place…a bit of planning, a bit of forethought…and a nice garden comes out of it as a result.

I’m happy.  This looks to be a lovely summer to have a nice garden.

And now, time to go about the day.

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And now, we resume our normal horsey blogging

One side effect of being so dang sick and then having all of the end of the year stuff going on is that it took over two weeks for me to make my way back to the barn.  Fortunately, it’s a full care setting and I don’t worry (too much, of course I’ll worry, horses can do strange stuff to themselves).   When I can’t make it out, Mocha often ends up getting taken out and groomed by the college classes and she gets regular turnout.  Not a lot of turnout, but then again the weather’s been crappy and the paddocks have been soaked.

The first ride back, on Tuesday, I took the time to clip her up and primp her a little bit.  Girl likes that.  She stretched her head out for me to clip her jaw and got a soft, blissful look in her eye.  For some reason or other, she likes to have that area clipped.  Something about the vibration must feel good.  Then we did a light ride in the barn (short, both for her back and for my legs and core).

Today was a somewhat longer ride.  We went outside and she lined out eagerly for the big outdoor ring.  Spent quite a bit of time working in and around the railroad ties, mostly walkovers but some sidepassing and turns.  We also did some chained canter circles with flying lead changes when we changed direction.  Add in a little bit of schooling on rollbacks as well as a two track session and some other stuff and it really was a rather intense schooling session.  Still in the snaffle because she’s having some problems with an inside bend going right, right lead canter is also a little rough.  But that could be a slight bit of deconditioning as much as anything else.

We ended up with a long rein lope in one-handed snaffle.  At the very end, when she was picking up a bit of speed on the right lead, I sat back and breathed “whoa.”  No contact on the rein at all.

Her head went down, her shoulders came up a little, her butt sat down, and we stopped.

When I walked her off, I saw that her front feet had kicked up a little bit of loose dirt.  And the hinds…well, let’s just say that while there was about a foot of slide, the divot she dug in was about an inch and a half deep.

And that’s barefoot.

If I put sliders on…actually, I need to get bell boots on her first.  If she were to slide anything at all like her daddy does in his stallion video….eeek.

Needless to say, I didn’t have a camera.  Of course I didn’t have a camera.

Oh well.  It was still sweet, nonetheless.  And she swaggered off pretty nicely from that one.

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Netwalker Uprising revision outline DONE!

I just finished the outline for the Netwalker Uprising rewrite.

13 pages.  But I am done, done, DONE with them (is it a coincidence that I couldn’t get through it until I had more than an hour or so in the morning to do it?  I think not!)!

Now let the mad rewriting begin…tomorrow.  After I eat some lunch I am taking myself off to the barn for a well-deserved riding time with Miss Mocha.

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Winding down the school year and a skill development rant

8th grade promotion is always one of those defining moments of a group of kids.  No matter what, when you look up at those kids on the stage getting ready for their big moment, or when you watch the class video (if, indeed, your school does such a thing), you realize that sense of potential in a manner entirely different from a high school graduation.  Or an elementary promotion.  The changes that go through a middle school class from sixth grade to eighth grade begin to foreshadow the kind of adults that group may turn out to be.  High school may polish off the edges, but still…those nervous guys guiding the highly dressed girls teetering on their heels are still going to be who and what they are four years later.  As are those nervous but poised girls.

Our little middle school is somewhat traditional in that many of the teachers attend promotion.  The interim principal was pleasantly surprised when she asked how many of us planned to be there, and the entire 7/8 team plus two specialists told her we’d be there.  The much larger school she used to supervise didn’t have anywhere near that degree of turnout.  Oddly enough, I remember some teachers at my son’s middle school promotion.  But even though that was a bigger school in the main city, it was also a middle school with a strong associated community.  Part of that community association means that the teachers are there to help celebrate a landmark in the lives of kids they may have spent anywhere from one to three years supporting and guiding.

The school year winds down.  It’s been a rough, rough year this time, not just personally but throughout the district and state.  Financing coupled with major ideological attacks upon the nature of public education takes a toll not just on staff but on the kids and their families.  The new Common Core standards will require, for example, that eighth grade algebra will become the norm for a regular diploma.  That’s going to be rough on kids who are moving at a slower cognitive developmental pace than others.  Algebra readiness isn’t just about numeracy, it’s the ability to think abstractly and understand that the placement of the variable does not always have to be to the right of the equals sign.  As adults, we think that’s simple.  But as adults, we’ve also acquired at least the rudiments of abstract thought.  Middle school kids are only starting to move into the ability to think abstractly.

Do I think we should be less rigorous?  Oh no, hell no, absolutely not no.  But what worries me about demanding more and more higher level thought from these kids is that we end up spending less time on the fundamental basics underpinning that higher level thought.  Those holes show up later with a desire for quick results (including only wanting to learn only what’s on the test), taking short cuts, and dependance on tools such as calculators and spell checkers.  Automatically practicing skills has the purpose of ingraining the knowledge/skill until you don’t have to think about it consciously.  It’s a lot easier to think about the multi-step processes that go into solving algebraic equations or determining the volume of a cylinder if you don’t bog down on the math that goes into them.  It’s much simpler to write an essay if you know how to construct a sentence and paragraph correctly without having to puzzle it out.  Understanding an assigned reading goes more smoothly if you don’t have to puzzle out the meaning of several words per paragraph.

Why do we think it’s okay to spend the time developing the skill set needed mentally and physically to be a professional football player but turn around and expect high academic performance without sufficient years of practice beforehand?  Yes, there are differing needs and skill levels cognitively, but you also encounter that in athletic performance–and those guys still spend hours in practice and conditioning, no matter what their athletic talent is.

I don’t know what the answer is.  It’s easy to reach back into the past and hold that up to be perfect, when in reality it wasn’t.

But what is encouraging, is that I went to bed last night thinking about ways to make my classes better for next year, and looking forward to sharing that somehow today with the kids I’m planning to have as TAs next fall.  I’ve not had that energy for a long time.

I’m happy to have that back in my life.

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[asthma] When breathing becomes the major focus

I had undiagnosed asthma years before anyone, including me, figured out that I had it.  One factor was that my asthma, silly thing that it is, didn’t present itself as wheezing but as coughing, otherwise known as cough-variant asthma.  In my teen years I had what appeared to be a nervous throat-clearing/coughing tic that annoyed the heck out of my family and elicited comments about knocking it off but was, in retrospect, asthma.  I’d also wake up in the middle of the night, coughing and gasping for breath (sleeping on a feather mattress with feather pillows) more nights than I care to admit, panicked and afraid because I Just.  Couldn’t.  Breathe.  At the time we thought it was just sinus stuff (at this point I was also presenting with allergic nosebleeds) and I took a lot of Actifed and Chloro-Trimeton, both of which addressed the sinus allergies but didn’t do squat for the asthma.  In fact, one doctor’s dosing schedule overdosed me to the degree that I couldn’t stay awake for classes after lunch, which included an algebra class.  And the drying action of those meds only made the asthma worse.

The only time I showed up with classic wheezing asthma was the day I started wheezing in the junior high PE locker room while changing after class.  Fortunately my teacher at the time realized there was an issue and stayed with me.  It had been a hot, stuffy and polluted day and I’d gone out and run hard in class.  Eventually I stopped wheezing without the benefit of rescue inhaler, rescue meds, or anything of that ilk.  I was lucky.  Other people have died in similar situations.

Eventually I got diagnosed in 1992, after multiple attempts to try and figure out what was going on.  Cough-variant asthma is wickedly difficult to initially identify, especially when it turned out that food (wheat, dairy, eggs) was as much of a trigger as were my other sinus respiratory triggers (smoke, some scents, mold and pollens).  It took the use of peak flow meters and mucus production to the degree that my lungs felt awash in liquid to get the diagnosis.

The diagnosis turned my life around.  I’m more active now than I used to be, and the addition of Singulair and inhaled steroids (lung and nasal) means that 95% of the time, I’m able to keep on top of things and can tolerate small exposures to triggers such as cigarette smoke which used to send me reeling (I had to give up going to indoor music venues for many years and even outdoor venues used to possess a pattern of negotiating with smokers around me because people Just.  Didn’t. Get. It. that lighting up might be a right for them, but was depriving me of a pleasure that I’d paid just as much money as they had to enjoy.  Moving away from the smoker was not a solution because then I’d just find myself next to another one.  The current nonsmoking trend has done wonders for my social life).

Still, springtime with pollen is always a dangerous time.  Add in the nature of the current Day Jobbe (middle school teaching), and, more often than not, I get clobbered with an end-of-the-school-year respiratory crud.  Some years I can manage to hold the crud at bay until after my last day at school (I can’t even begin to describe the excruciating negotiations with the body that can take sometimes, the delicate balance of OTC/prescription meds as well as various teas and such to help things along).  Other years the combination of pollen blooms, end-of-school-year stress, and virulent bugs means I get pulled down before the end of the year.  Nonetheless, any year where I can manage to a.) survive without taking time off from work (absolutely rotten time of year to get sick because of the need to wrap up all the paperwork, end-of-year-sped assessments, close files, grading, etc) and b.) go without a Prednisone burst is a win.

This year I think I earned a semi-win.  I really started having problems about Wednesday, but struggled through that day.  Thursday and Friday were colored by the darkness of “oh hai, breathing Is. Not. Good.” (cough, cough, cough, barely swallow, ears closing down).  When the breathing starts to go, the mood crashes.  Lack of oxygen and all that, y’know.  The dance between antihistamine, rescue inhaler and decongestant became more urgent. My mood got darker.

Friday night I came home and collapsed.  At that point I knew it was a dance between keeping the stuff out of my lungs (i.e, keeping the lungs as asthma only and not an infection) and the eventual gut revulsion (unfortunately, at some point in the dance my gut will rebel.  Decongestants upset it.  So do antihistamines.  So does albuterol over a certain amount).  Until the gut rebelled, I planned to attack the system with the stuff that would clear the ears and keep the lungs open.

Eventually the gut rebelled on Saturday.  But by that point I’d also managed to crest the worst of the infection.  The rains also kicked in to reduce the pollen.

I was worthless all weekend.  Well, I did get three volumes of Poul Andersen’s Polosotechnic League stories read, along with some other good stuff.  But for the most part, I spent the time from about 4 pm Friday until now flat on the bed, coughing and moaning like a zombie.  Still, I appear to have recovered enough to function this week, albeit at about half-speed (which means I might visit horse tonight but no riding, no working out for a couple more days).  Hopefully the Scotch Broom around work will have diminished in pollen vigor over the weekend (Scotch Broom and cottonwoods are the last big seasonal triggers and both were clobbering me last week).  As long as I can keep infection at bay, I might just have a fighting chance at making it through the next week and a half.

No guarantees about the degree of collapse that will happen when it’s done, though.  But by then it’s my own time.  Just gotta make it through until then.

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