Sunday, May 29, 2016

That moment when...

That moment when your hubby spots the FB posts about all your erstwhile friends' field trip. 

I feel so missed. Not. Loyalty is a figment.  What delusion ever made me expect it? No matter. I won't ever go through this sort of disappointment again. You can't be disappointed when you expect nothing.

Friday, May 27, 2016

Windows 10

I found out earlier this week that Microsift had embedded a stealth agreement to upgrade to Windows 10, in their pop up "nag" window. If you close the window via the red X, it schedules your machine to upgrade. So I figured it was time to update my parents' 8.1 machine, while we still have some measure of control over when and how it's done. 

I eventually ended up taking their laptop home with me, as the download was taking eons. Boy, I sure got spoiled by the speed of FiOS, lol. 

While I waited, Karla called my phone to ask if Mark and I were coming on Sunday. I agreed to go, as I really am only hurt by one person who will be there. Why should I deprive myself of everyone else's company?

I do wish I'd hear back from people now and then. But I'm done worrying about it. If someone calls or returns my call, hooray. If not, I absolve myself from the need to fret over it. Mattering is overrated. Acknowledgement is a bonus. IF it even happens. If it doesn't, I had no business expecting or presuming it'd  happen anyway. I've learned. Like the book of Ecclesiastes says,"vanity, vanity! All is vanity! ... It's all chasing the wind."

This is the lesson I should've learned two years ago, the last time I went through this. I came out of that experience still with faith in people. No more. I learned.Expect nothing of others and you'll never be disappointed.

Why would anyone do this?

As I scan documents, including consent forms for medical procedures, one question occurs to me time and time again. And the question is this: Why on earth would anyone sign a legal document with what amounts to a random scribble?

I don't know about the rest of the world, but when *I* am signing a document, particularly one that is detailing what medical procedures for which I do or do not grant my assent, I want it to be CRYSTAL CLEAR that I have signed the document. Not only is my handwriting going to be recognizable as characters belonging to the Roman alphabet, but I'm going to take extra care to ensure that the writing is legible.

Judging from the scrawl on many of these consent forms, I am decidedly in the minority. And I don't merely mean "horrendous penmanship that resembles a signature jotted down in great haste". I mean "squiggles that resemble nothing so much as a freehand approximation of a sine wave". It just astonishes me to no end, every time I see it. 

Fortunately, there are printed stickers on 99% of the forms, so I don't have to rely on deciphering that which is utterly illegible. And on the ones that haven't got a sticker, normally I can go to the doctor's schedule for the day and figure out whose form I'm looking at.

Mind you, the DOCTORS also often sign in shorthand. But at least the marks they make are relatively consistent from one form to the next. I've learned to recognize a lot of the doctors' personal hieroglyphs, just from seeing them on so many forms.

But as for the patients... let's just say that any time someone's handwriting makes MY penmanship look good, it's quite a feat. ;-)

Monday, May 23, 2016

Oh well

That moment when you think you've heard from someone on Facebook for the first time in months, only to belatedly realize that Facebook was showing you a memory from 2 years ago today.

Mattering is overrated.

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Happy Anniversary to Us

Today is Mark's and my 17th wedding anniversary. TIme flies when you're having fun! :)

We saw 1776 in Media, PA, followed by dinner at Spasso's Italian Grill. It's been a fabulous day. :)

Friday, May 20, 2016

Adding value

I think I've hit on the formula for who cares and who doesn't. There are, of course, certain relatives who care, regardless, fortunately. But outside of those, it seems to be the folks for whom I am doing something who take the greatest interest in my existence. If I'm not enhancing their life actively, then at best, I'm just some nice person relegated to the periphery. Or I'm just "out of sight, out of mind". Everyone not related to me is fitting into this pattern neatly and consistently. It suddenly makes sense. How did I take so long to understand something so basic?

Now that I get it, I can acclimate to it and adjust my expectations accordingly. Then I won't feel hurt or disappointed anymore.

One positive to report: this is the first time in forever that I've gone through a grieving process without ONCE pondering how and when to cash in my chips. That's more significant than I can express in words. Maybe it's that I no longer feel I'm dragging everyone down with my presence. To drag everyone down, I'd have to matter (albeit in the negative sense of the word). And... well, an electron microscope wouldn't find evidence of that whole "mattering" thing. So I guess I'm in the clear. There's no need to make everyone's life easier by applying a drastic solution, because everyone is already doing just fine without me around. It's all good, now that I understand life better. 

Thursday, May 19, 2016

The Drawbridge

Still sitting shiva for my old worldview, here. Time passes and sadness diminishes while resignation develops. At some point, the drawbridge that leads into my inner sanctum sanctorum is going to be shut; even now, it slowly rises as the wheels turn. Once it's closed, I'm not entirely sure what would inspire me to reopen it to admit new, unproven people. If four decades' worth of friendship wasn't enough to stop me from being thrown in the trash, what's to make me believe that some new person who arrives in my life would be reliable over the long haul? Or even the short haul? My feelings might matter to a very, very select few (and I've learned that it's fewer than I thought), but *I* happen to be one of those few who cares if I'm hurt. I don't need to be covered in footprints from other people's cleats, TYVM.

In other, more upbeat news...

I am seeing on the PAWS mailing list that there are two new kittens at the PetSmart site. If they're still there on Sunday, I look forward to meeting the widdle guys. Space was created because one of the kitties who was sneezy was sent back to the Grays Ferry clinic where there's a vet. When a kitty is adopted or goes back to the clinic, there is no shortage of available felines to take its place at PetSmart.

Mark and I have to go buy a microwave oven tonight, as our 18-year-old one bit the dust this morning. If we go to a store near the PetSmart, maybe we can swing by and have a look at the kittens then. If not, I'll see them on Sunday.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

After a day

After a day, or has it been two? of cogitation, I've come to realize that mattering is overrated. Seriously. Why should I even care if I matter to anyone else? That's just letting my happiness depend on what someone else does. How long have I been declaring that other people's opinions of me are none of my business, but it took this situation to really, truly internalize that lesson. 

So I'm just going to be myself. If other people like it, fine. If they don't like it, also fine. I can't keep banging my head against the wall and thinking, "Oh, but if I do this, they won't LIKE me anymore?" Minus one text conversation, there are people I haven't heard from in over two months, and they seem to getting on just fine without me. Okay, then... If that's how it goes, I accept it. At least it didn't come as a surprise this time, as it did two years ago when I was pushed out of the group. Everybody got on just fine without me around then, too, so why should this go-round be any different? I didn't expect it to be, and so far, I haven't been disappointed.

There's a verse from a poem, The Indispensable Man, that about sums it up:

"Take a bucket and fill it with water,
Put your hand in it up to the wrist,
Pull it out and the hole that's remaining,
Is a measure of how much you'll be missed.
You can splash all you wish when you enter,
You may stir up the water galore,
But stop, and you'll find that in no time,
It looks quite the same as before. "

So I'm looking into other ways of making a difference in the world, not because I expect anyone to remember me... I've already learned that lesson: that's not gonna happen... but because I'm determined to leave the world a better place than I found it somehow. Who cares who remembers me after I'm gone, unless they're having a Mass said for my soul. I hope at least someone remembers to do that.

Monday, May 16, 2016

Hide it in plain sight

It amuses me to think that the things I post on the blog are most likely going to go unnoticed by the very people who might actually give a hoot about what's being said here. But that's OK. Maybe someday, someone from IRL will click the link in the signature of my emails, and be surprised about what's actually going on between my ears.

Like today, for instance. The grieving process for that spat of some months ago still rears its head now and again. It's just like a grieving process for someone who has died... you can be fine for days at a time, and then something crops up and you get another wave of it. But who has died? Is it the person I thought my friend was? Or is it the old me that had a more trusting worldview? I kind of think it's a bit of both. I miss that old me, and I don't honestly know what to do to get her back. And the person I thought I was friends with must have been a figment of my imagination, because if he was real he would never have spoken or turned on me like he did. 

Which, of course, opens the door for me to question my own abilities in judging people's character and motives. It should come as no surprise that as I write, I am singularly disinclined to invite new people into my life's circle, lest I accidentally misjudge someone else and bring on another round of this sort of thing. It's not safe to let new people in until I have finally, completely, gotten it through my thick head that unless I'm perfect and never make a mistake in the other person's eyes, I am subject to rejection and banishment. That's how people are. If your 42-year friends will do that to you, what hope is there that new people will behave any better? The less emotional investment they have in you, the quicker they'll cut you loose. Best to keep interactions to "hello", "goodbye", the weather and everyone's health. Then nobody gets disappointed.

But enough depressing stuff. Let's move on to the positive. I started volunteering at the PetSmart yesterday. They have nine kitties on the site, and one is cuter than the next. I made sure they were all fed and watered, and have clean cages and litter boxes, and then embarked on giving each kitty some time outside the cage, for those who wanted it. One cat had no interest in leaving her cage, but the others were more than glad to explore and get doted upon. I also showed a few kitties to interested parties, and the cats in question were more than glad to turn on the charm. :-) But just one person filled out an application on the spot and gave it to me. I think the other two (a mom and small daughter) may have taken a blank application to fill in at home. When someone fills out an app, I then photograph both sides and email the images to the person who processes the applications. It can take a few days to get approved, depending on things like being able to contact the person's vet and obtain vet references. 

I will be going every Sunday. I am hoping to get word of at least one of the kitties being adopted by the time I get back there next week. They're all so cute and they all love attention. They deserve loving homes where they can doted upon all day, every day.

Thursday, May 05, 2016

Ruminations

Every once in a while, I have a minor mishap that causes my left knee issues to flare up. I had one of those this morning; I think I hyperextended the knee a bit. Ouch. Phooey. It's a few hours later now, and the knee is starting to curse and swear. Pain relief ointment, here I come. Fortunately, I bring my cane with me when I commute now, largely because I have discovered I can no longer safely stand on a moving bus without something to lean on. That goes double for the fact that any of the buses I take will, at some point, make a turn. Standing unsupported on a TURNING moving bus is just asking for an accident to happen. Hence, the cane.

Having said all that... I scanned some medical records for someone whose lists of allergies and current prescriptions was three typed pages long. I think I'll stop complaining about the knee pain now, lol. My list of medical gripes pales in comparison to that! 

In other news, I had a volunteer orientation for PAWS on Wednesday night. I will begin volunteering at the PetSmart near my home, where PAWS has got adoptable cats. Need I say that I want them all? They're just too darn cute. Most of them are VERY amenable to getting doted on. One seems a little shy and doesn't want a lot of interaction. I'm now on a Yahoo mailing list where volunteers summarize their shifts, and they have remarked the same about that kitty. Here's hoping he warms up to attention once he's settled in a bit more, so potential adopters can dote on him and fall in love, as he deserves. 

Photos of Adorable Adoptable Kitties will be appearing in this blog. Watch this space. :D

Happy BLOGday to me!

Most people celebrate this day as Cinco de Mayo. I celebrate this as the anniversary of starting to blog. Yes, on 5/5/2003, I wrote my first blog post.

I shall have to give myself a BLOGday Present. :)

Wednesday, May 04, 2016

St. John's Wort

Not only was yesterday a productive day, in terms of the amount of records I got scanned into the system, but I spotted a typo in one of the forms that patients must sign in order to give consent to a particular procedure being done. 

On the form, patients are advised to avoid particular meds and herbs that could cause bleeding, including "St. John Warts". I think that an Autocorrect Gremlin made a stealth change to the text, because that name should read "St. John's Wort". I forwarded this information up the chain of command, and I hope it will reach the person(s) who have the authority to edit the content of the form. Right now, the form was last revised in 2013. We'll see how long it takes before the update goes through, and we start seeing a revision date of 2016. :)