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January 11, 2018, 7:05 P.M.

My beloved primary care doctor passed away suddenly on New Year's Eve, due to an allergic reaction. What a shock--he was only 68--and the youngest 68 you've ever seen, to boot. And I am going to miss him so, so, so very much. He was a lovely, awesome man, sweet, and funny and smart and incredibly caring.

And I need to find another one fairly quickly, since I need to stay on my Rx and have my blood tests regularly. But I don't even know where to start. It took me such a long time to find him, and he was so absolutely perfect, that I'm not sure I can find anyone who can even come close.

The one of the first things I did after hearing the news was to rush in a refill order on my meds before they cancelled him in the pharmacy system. I had one refill left, and only about a week's worth of pills, and they did refill it.

WITH A DIFFERENT BRAND. So now, on top of having to scramble to find a new doctor, I have to start paying close attention to the symptomology, in case this is a brand that doesn't work as well (or works better--I guess that's possible.)

It is SO damned frustrating to find a pill that works with you and for you, and then the pharmacy can just plop in a substitute without warning, because "it's the same drug". Except, in the case of Levothyroxine, it almost NEVER is.

I went for my eye exam on the fifth, and it was--ahem--quite the eye opener. I found out the full extent to which the last eye center and optometrist had utterly fucked up my glasses. Turns out they never did get them right--which I knew, of course--but here's the thing: ONE OF THE LENSES IS SINGLE-VISION. And I wear no-line progressive bifocals. Not to mention the general wrongness of the prescription in general. I was glad to be back with my old optometrist--she never rushes me and really works to get issues resolved and my vision back to 20/20, and understands what that takes with a pair of eyes like mine.

She also found out that I have some serious dry-eye, and recommended Systane Ultra (and gave me a sample & coupons, too). She said it works well for most people, but if I found I needed something more, she could write me a prescription for Restasis. I doubt that will be necessary, since I was completely oblivious to the fact that I had dry eyes to start with. I do, however, notice a substantial improvement with using the Systane Ultra three or four times a day. For the first time in a year, my left eye DOESN'T feel like I have something in it.

I was pretty happy with the frames I found, too. Similar to what happened when I found my all-time favorite pair, they are another pair of Elizabeth Arden combo frames (metal frame, plastic temples). Rose metal and magenta temples, this time. I had the same experience I had when I found my black and white ones, too--going along, trying on pairs...these are okay...no way...maybe...WELL THERE I AM!!

When you put on a new pair of frames and look into the mirror, and see YOU looking back...you are done shopping.
Spouse has finally changed to his semi-permanent shift: 6-4, Friday thru Monday. Meh. Not great, but it could be worse. My weekends will be quiet and productive, with plenty of "me" time. B will only have one day a week where he has to spend the whole day cooped up, insead of four.

We will have to work out how we want to do the shopping and such, but no biggie. It is what it is, and we will manage. It has been nice this week to come home to someone else making a nice hot dinner.
Finally got to get in for a haircut yesterday--another advantage to having Spouse home on Wednesday's is I can get an after-work haircut, instead of having to rush home to the B. What a relief. I actually suspect my thyroid levels are quite good right now, judging from the way my hair has been growing. Not to mention my Dragon-Lady nails--up until Tuesday, I had a perfect ten, but they are starting to get so long they snap and snag, and I lost one. Again, I haven't had a chance to get to the nail salon, either. So they are just growing righteously along, au naturel.
For 2018, with the bitter cold snap we've had, and the post-Christmas surfeit of cookies, I've turned my baking focus to bread. I found a nice recipe over Christmas that would allow me to use the rapid-rise yeast I had in the cupboard, could be kneaded in the mixer, and wouldn't take all day to make, so on Boxing Day, I gave it a shot. It wasn't perfect, and it wasn't pretty, but damn if it wasn't BREAD! And Spouse just loved it. He had to work that day, and when he came home to homemade vegetable soup and Homemade BREAD--he was delighted. I made two loaves on Tuesday, and they were--I'm serious--completely gone by the following Saturday.

So I baked another batch.

And it turned out even better. This time I froze one, and we had some store-bought, in between loaves one and two. But he's been eating up the last one the last couple of days, and I will probably be baking another batch this weekend. Which is fine, because nothing makes good bread like lots of practice.
I have about given up on getting any sleep after two-thirty in the morning, if I've got to work in the morning. But since I need sleep or I'm GONNA DIE, I have started going to sleep at 7, getting up around 9 or 10 to let the dog out, then going back to sleep until the middle-aged bladder and the anxiety brain conspire to end my night at 2:30 ack-emma. This results in no reduction of the long dragging stressfest between 2:30 and 4:00, but it does allow me to make up the lost sleep time. Uninterrupted would be best, of course, and it feels like I get no actual free time at the end of the day. But it is what it is, and I am feeling better because I'm getting more of the rest I need. (DON'T JUDGE.)
Really, I have not been doing much anyway--although we've had a very warm spell the last couple of days, we spent over two weeks in the deep freeze, with temps below zero and severe wind chill. (And that is supposed to return this weekend).

Spouse and I went around the house New Year's weekend, digging out the draft excluders, putting plastic on window, sealing up the old exhaust fan in the kitchen, and I even hung an old blanket over the front door frame to block the bad draft that blows on me when I sit in my recliner. The furnace could barely keep up, and we bought a second electric heater, so there is one in the living room, and now one in the back hallway.

Which B has adopted as his very own. He would run in from the cold and make a beeline straight to warm himself back up. It's a very nice Honeywell Genius heater, and doing a good job keeping away the chill back there. Lots of nice features like a timer, multi-stage heating cycles, and built in safety features.

Mostly, we've been hunkering down for the winter, eating our way through pantry and freezer, and not going out unless we have to. (It would be the perfect time to binge watch TV shows, if I watched TV shows.) I have been doing a bit more reading, but I can't find too much stuff I want to read that I haven't already, and I've read the old stuff so many times, I don't want to read it again!

Reading: "The Turn of the Tide: The Story of How Margaret Solved Her Problem" (1908), by Eleanor H. Porter. This is actually a sequel, so I was going to hold off until I read the first book ("Cross Currents: The Story of Margaret")--then I started to read the first book and promptly decided I didn't want to after all because it was kind of stressing me. I got enough of the background in the second book to carry me through the plot. The first book is about a five year old girl who gets separated from her genteel and wealthy mother on a trip to NYC, and ends up spending four years basically on the streets. The second is about her life after she is restored to her mother at age nine. And honestly? They are both kind of brutal and triggery and I advise caution if you undertake to read them.

Listening: The National, Collective Soul, Manchester Orchestra, The Fixx

Inked Up: Bexley 10th Anniversary with custom italic nib is inked with Diamine Shimmertastic Blue Lightning, the Conklin Duragraph fine nib with the usual Pelikan 4001 Brilliant Brown, and the Sheaffer Javelin medium with Iroshizuku Momiji (Autumn Leaves)--except I wrote the Sheaffer dry and need to change it out! That Momiji is a helluva drug...

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