Wednesday, August 30, 2017

That time I almost passed out at the doctor's office

Don't let the title of this entry fool you. I have passed out in many doctor offices. But this time was probably my worst behavior to date.

It was after that neck surgery (sometimes I feel like my life is divided...before neck surgery, after neck surgery), and I had been off work for three weeks. I had an appointment to be "cleared" to go back to work. Of course, I was so positive I was going to be cleared that I had already arranged to return to work as soon as my appointment was over. I was so confident that I didn't even have anyone go to the appointment with me - I assumed I would run in, get cleared, and then go straight to work. Maybe I would stop and get a fountain soda, I don't know. But I was definitely going to work that day. I was stir-crazy at home and needed to get back into my routine.

Everything was going well - I was sitting in the exam chair, and about four doctors had already been in to see me. With the position of this tumor, I had several doctors assigned to my case. They were all pleased, and the last approval I needed was from my actual surgeon. He came in with a a few students (Nebraska Medicine is a learning hospital, think Grey's Anatomy) and he was like "Everything looks good, now let's get that glue off."

Yes. My neck was glued together at this point still. Of course, it had already healed, but there was still a mess of glue on my neck. I thought he would just take an end of it and pull - like when you were a kid, and you would rub Elmer's glue on your hand and then peel it off - but this industrial medical glue was a little different. He got a sharp tool, took it to my neck, and began to scrape.

And scrape. And scrape. The noise was too much, he was too close to my neck, there were too many people staring at me. I was going to pass out. I got that feeling and I told him.

"If you pass out, I am not clearing you to go back to work."

FUCK THAT. I tried, uncomfortably, to get my life together. I was all clammy and felt like I could go down at any minute, but I kept my mouth shut.

He finally got done, and said he wanted to take one more look at my most recent ultrasound before he cleared me officially. He and his entourage walked out of the room, and I hit the floor.

I didn't know what to do. I knew if I didn't get a cold compress and some water that I was going to pass out. But I literally couldn't stand up without passing out.

"Hello?" I yelled out, weakly. "Hello, is anyone out there?" The doctor and his brigade had left the exam room door open just a crack. I was softly moaning, because for some reason that helps me when I'm feeling this way.

A receptionist opened the door further and stuck her head in. "OH MY GOD!"

I stopped her. "I know, I know. I am going to faint unless I get a cold washcloth and some water. Can you help?"

She didn't say a word and walked away. She brought me back my requested items and asked what else she can do.

I was already feeling better, but I was too scared to get upright enough to get back into the chair.  "I'm going to lay here and moan until the doctor comes back. Can you stand guard? Tell me when he's coming back."

She stood in the doorway, and I laid on the floor and did my moaning/breathing exercises. Then suddenly she goes "He's coming!" and I jumped back in the chair.

He was fine with my ultrasound, and since he hadn't seen the fucking ridiculous scene that just happened, he cleared me to go back to work.

What the actual fuck, Jen. Seriously. Why did I think that was okay? I have always wondered what was said about me after I left that office. That poor receptionist.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

3 times my face scared me

So far in my life, there have been three times my own face has scared me. I will not post pictures, as 1. I don't have any and 2. I never want to see it again.

1. When I was working at Kaplan, we had an evening event where we were kind of showcasing the school. I was in the Criminal Justice room, where we had a video machine thing - it showed crime scenes, and there was a gun (very realistic - weight and size) and the student acted as a cop with the gun. Kind of like Duck Hunt, but with a more realistic gun and people rather than ducks. There was a lull in the action, so I took the gun to play but my finger got stuck in it. It instantly started bleeding, so I ran to the bathroom, and then I got that pass out feeling. I quickly went into a stall to lay down until the feeling passed. (Yes, I know how gross it is to lay in a public bathroom. When I am that close to passing out, I do not care.) I realized I had been in there forever and needed to pull myself together, so I crawled out of the stall and to the sink to wet a paper towel. I pulled myself up and looked in the mirror and HOLY HELL. My face was as white as a ghost and I seriously thought for a minute that I had actually died.

2. After I had my neck tumor removed, (I wrote about it here) I was in the hospital for five days. So five days with no shower, no hair brushing....thinking back, I don't even think I brushed my teeth (I can't remember if I could put a toothbrush in my mouth). I was DISGUSTING. And the worst thing of all - my neck was leaking so I had a tube coming out of it, collecting the...stuff? Liquid? Blood? Puss? It collected into this little suction thing that the nurses kept tucking into my gown pocket so I wouldn't have to look at it. I turned away when they came in to empty it. I avoided mirrors for a few days, but then I finally peeked - and HOLY HELL. My hair was matted to my head. I don't even want to go into the tube. And my scar was DISGUSTING.

3. A few weeks ago I was kickboxing at the gym. I had taken a few days off, and I was loving being back on the mat. I was pounding on the bag - punching as hard as I possibly could. I had been fighting a cold (one of the reasons I hadn't worked out in a few days), and my nose started running. Being disgusting and too stubborn to leave the mat, I brushed my sleeve against my nose to wipe it away. It kept running, so I kept wiping. Finally, I went into the bathroom to blow my nose. I looked in the mirror and HOLY HELL. My face was covered in blood! I was facing out on the mat, so none of my fellow kickboxers could have seen my face. I seriously looked like a MMA fighter. I started wetting paper towels to wipe the blood off, and then I got that familiar feeling that I was going to pass out. I wetted a bunch of paper towels and headed into one of the stalls, where, again, I laid down. This is where I begin to evaluate the situation. I was laying on the floor in a bathroom stall, my feet up on the toilet. I had a pile of bloody paper towels next to me. Seriously?! Luckily I got myself together and hightailed it out of the gym.

Monday, August 28, 2017

Brace Face - Tray 14

I had another dentist appointment during this tray, where she had to "grind" or "shave" my teeth to shape them better for the movement. It's still one of the worst sound in the world.

I am loving how my teeth are looking, and I still have 14 trays to go! I need to start thinking about after this - I have two teeth that need replaced, and I either need to do a bridge or an implant. I'm not sure which route to take, but I am honestly thinking price will be the deciding factor. 

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

A Cable-free Summer (I was published on!)

Over the fourth of July, I went out of town to go camping with some friends at Rathburn Lake in Iowa. I took my time getting back to Omaha, and was just crossing the river when I got a call from my landlord. She told me they were doing construction on all of the patios and I needed to take my satellite dish down.
Um…what? I asked how long I would be without a satellite dish and she said at least a month.
Um…what? A month without cable? Nope. Not going to work.
I need cable. For so many reasons. The most important being I am a total news junkie and I need to have access to CNN, MSNBC, etc, at all times. However, if there is a time to experiment with a no-cable lifestyle, I suppose the dog days of summer is the best time to try it out. So I called my cable company, suspended my service for six weeks (just to be safe, since I’ve never actually witnessed a construction project stick to a deadline), and started my new life.

Monday, August 21, 2017

Brace Face - Tray 13

Tray 13 didn't really give me a lot of trouble. Or maybe I am just getting used to the discomfort by now.

I hate the way my mouth feels when I don't have my trays in. But at the same time, I cannot wait until I never have to have these trays in again!

Friday, August 18, 2017


Oh, my Alex. My sister's middle child. I just love him so much.

Last Tuesday (which seems like months ago, and just yesterday at the same time), he had an accident at his grandparent's house and burnt the bottom of his feet to a crisp. He has now spent two nights in the hospital (separate occasions, different reasons) and has his feet wrapped up like a mummy.

I have never been so stressed out or worried about another person in my life. I love him SO much. I would have gladly taken his place and had the bottom of my feet burned off. I cannot stand the thought of someone I love so much being in so much pain.

And then there's my sister and brother-in-law. If I'm feeling this way, multiply that by infinity and you have their feelings. I will never birth a child, so I will never know what it's like to watch your child suffer like that. Being an aunt is hard enough, I don't know how moms and dads do it.

I know Alex will be fine. Yes, he will have to have surgeries during his growing years because as his feet grow, he will need to be worked on. But it's okay. He will be fine. And when he isn't thinking about how much his feet hurt, he sure is a positive little guy.

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Two nights = two concerts

On Friday night, I went to Lady Antebellum with my friend Erin. I liked Lady A, but mostly I was going to hang out with Erin (Ebbs, as she is more commonly known) (at least by me, that is). But then the concert started, and it was amazing! I am now obsessed with the group.

The next night, Missy was going to Shawn Mendes. She's been slightly obsessed with him for awhile, and I've been making fun of her about it for awhile. But lately I've been hearing Shawn on the radio, and I've been thinking about how it would probably be a fun show. By the time Saturday rolled around, I was officially jealous Missy was going and I wasn't. So when she called Saturday morning and had an extra ticket, I jumped at the chance to go with her.

While I didn't know all his songs (like Missy did), I did know a handful. It was amazing being in that room - it was just this kid (he's only 18 or 19), on stage, showcasing his talents. No crazy lights, no fire, no confetti - just a kid with his instruments and his voice. He is a real talent. And the girls who were screaming ALL NIGHT LONG - I commend you for your passion. It's fun being in a room where that many people are having the time of their lives.

Friday, August 4, 2017

Brace Face - Tray 12

I'm seriously so sick of wearing braces this week.

I know it will be worth it but come on..............