“The Hunger Games”

I am really tired tonight, and I decided to spend my blog-writing time doing productive work instead.  I will return to Adventures with BigEye tomorrow.

My message to you today is this:  Read The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins.  Quinland has been recommending this book to me for about a year, and I finally read it this week.

My alter ego (“Semantica, Warrior Princess of Grammarica,” as Ward Ferguson dubbed me back in St. Agatha days) believes the book could have used a few dozen semicolons.  Despite this repeated distraction, I couldn’t put it down. It was a very compelling story.

  • {Clutter} released: Processed a huge pile of newspapers.
  • {Procrastination} released: We worked on the Europe itinerary and even wrote a draft information-gathering email.

Adventures with BigEye

Eye 9
Photo by Oyvind Solstad

Quite a few days last week, when I needed to write a blog post, I found myself wandering around the house looking for something to get rid of.  There were things everywhere, but nothing jumped out and said, “Set me free!”

Tonight, on the other hand, I decluttered things without meaning to do so.  I had decided to sort through my old makeup bags to see if there were any good makeup brushes for Quinland’s future use.  I found myself throwing away old mascara, testing eye pencils to see if they still worked (they didn’t; too old and dry), and just clearing out everything ridiculous.

Except for dress-up events (and my own wedding), I haven’t worn makeup since 1991.  That was the year I was diagnosed with BigEye.

When my left eye first started to get big, I didn’t realize it was BigEye at all.  I thought my eye was drying out — it felt like one of David’s old twenty-sided dice, all corners and edges — and I started to put drops in it during the day to keep it moist.  Pretty soon, though, the signs were obvious: small children would stop me in the supermarket and say, “That eye is going to fall right out of your head!” or “Look at me with both your eyes!”

You see, by this time, my right eye was reduced to a slit.  As most people know, the muscles in your eyelids can move involuntarily (blinking), voluntarily (winking), or reflexively (closing your eyes when you see an object coming toward you).  It is a little-known fact that, when it comes to involuntary movement, your brain must send messages to both your eyelids simultaneously.  If one of your eyelids is really wide open (because it can’t close properly over the BigEye), your brain is screaming to your eyelids, “Close! Close!”  The one over the BigEye can’t — it is trapped — but the other eyelid does its job efficiently and well.  It may even do its job a bit too well…

So I had one eye trapped open wide and one eye dutifully answering the call to close.  At this point, I visited an ophthalmologist.  His pronouncement: “Protruding eyes are usually caused by a condition called Graves Disease, which manifests as a result of severe hyperthyroidism.  However, you can’t have Graves Disease, for two reasons.  First, you have hypothyroidism, the exact opposite condition.  Second, you only have one protruding eye, and Graves Disease affects both eyes. (He was wrong about this, incidentally.)  I suspect a tumor behind the eye is pushing it out.”

Tune in next time for more Adventures with BigEye!  Hear about the weeks-long wait for an MRI to rule out a tumor!  Ponder the mysteries of orbital decompression!

  • {Clutter} released: A decent pile of old makeup.  There’s something that was taking up space that will never be missed!  (I did find a few nice brushes to set aside for Q.)
  • {Perfectionism} released: It is David’s birthday.  I have not done anything remarkable for him, but I have let him know I love him.

Mind the gap

Mind the Gap
Photo by Larry Johnson

gap (noun)
1. a break or opening, as in a fence, wall, or military line; breach

I believe this is the kind of gap they are speaking of at Paddington Station.  I am referring to some other definitions of the word.

2.  an empty space or interval; interruption in continuity; hiatus

Let me illustrate with a little picture of my morning today.

We arrived at the camp kitchen only to find a fork and knife clearly left by my troop the night before.  I gave the girls a short lecture on keeping track of their possessions, though no one stepped up to claim the utensils.  They were, of course, mine.  I followed the girls to the breakfast table to be informed by them that my sit-upon (the name of a traditional Girl Scout handmade thing-to-sit-on) was up at the front of the dining area.  I had left it at campfire the night before.  After breakfast, I checked a lost-and-found area for anything left by my troop.  There was only one thing that belonged to “us:” the sunscreen I had brought to the boat dock the previous afternoon.

3.  a wide divergence or difference; disparity

There is a great disparity between what I believe I can do and my actual behavior.  I do not feel that I am blithely skipping through life leaving belongings in my wake (although my dad used to say that I could never be a criminal because I could be too easily traced).  I see myself as responsible with my things, and as someone who tries to practice what she preaches to the Girl Scouts!  But — apparently — this is not the case.

4.  a difference or disparity in attitudes, perceptions, character, or development, or a lack of confidence or understanding, perceived as creating a problem.

Throughout my life, there has seemed to be a difference between how others perceive my attitude and perceptions about my organization and time management issues compared to how I perceive them.  I feel strongly that the gaps in my day-to-day functioning are real and that they impact my life in a negative manner.  Others seem to trivialize my difficulties without realizing how very serious they are.  I definitely lack confidence in myself when it comes to organization and time management; perhaps people act like it is no big deal as a way of supporting and encouraging me, but somehow it seems like the opposite.

In any case, I need to work on fixing the gaps in my mind, because I do mind them.

  • {Stress} released: I had a calm and relaxed weekend, and gradually went from feeling terrible (Friday night) to feeling pretty well (tonight).  Off to bed!