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Month: August 2000

Look Ma. I’m on Steroids!

The good news is the medical establishment has come up with some answers for me and my neck/shoulder problem. One of the answers – steroid injections. And, yes, I am, at least for the moment, relatively pain free. The bad news is – the steroid injections.

The steroid side effects are many and have made my life very exciting recently…

So you know you’re on steroids (and, therefore, no longer have use of your brain):

When physical labor for 12 hours straight is the only way to avoid a panic attack;

When that physical labor includes gardening without brains, gloves or skin protection (I don’t see any poison ivy, do you?);

When that gardening takes place BEFORE the poison ivy/oak leafs out;

When the resulting case of poison ivy ends up requiring more steroids (oral) to prevent a full body breakout;

When normal impatience with those #%&@ drivers leads to abnormal road rage;

When the mouth won’t stop running;

When one’s vocal level increases about 25%;

When you have a fight with your husband who you never fight with;

When the need to itch and the need to keep moving result in many weird, private gyrations;

When you are unable to focus long enough to get started on a task;

When writing columns requires more word and sentence formation than possible;

When any waiting at a retail store is too much, leading to leaving and never accomplishing anything;

When you become incredibly articulate;

When you become unable to talk;

When you fall (literally) into the Chamber of Commerce meeting as if you were drunk;

When you feel super human one day and helpless the next;

When your mouth offends people (is that new?);

When housekeeping sounds like fun;

When murder seems to be an acceptable answer to your problems;

When you get too much done and run out of stuff to keep you busy;

And when time spent with a 13 year old and a 3 year old is absolutely the most fun you’ve had in months.

Once I get back to normal in a couple of weeks or so, then maybe Oglethorpe County will find out who I really am. I mean, I will get back to normal, won’t I? Oh, dear, but what is the definition of normal any way?

I’m Home

The darnedest thing happened to me recently and I have just now sat down to make sense of it all. We moved. OK, now I have done this before—over 30 times in fact as an adult. This time, though, is different. After 4 years in Crawford we sold and then bought a house in Stephens. Actually, not in Stephens, but 2 miles out a dirt road between Maxeys and Stephens!

This city girl is now on a well, septic tank, no governmental trash pickup and no visible close neighbors. My husband thinks he’s in heaven with 2 acres in this quiet spot. I was just glad to start my next remodeling project in this 100-year-old folk Victorian farm house.

He made me promise that, barring some dramatic change in our lives, we would stay here. ACK! Our last two homes, one for 5 years and one for 4 years, were both aberrations for me–the former military dependent, the world traveler. And now we are going to stay here?

We started moving on Saturday–you know, the day before the ice storm. We moved on Saturday with the sleet, Sunday in the ice and Monday during the snow, and it went downhill from there. No power on Sunday, no candles or flashlights (packed somewhere), no heat, no water (oh, for city life!).

In my distress and discomfort, I insisted on a motel for Sunday night. Well, we and the three dogs stayed in a fine establishment in Athens that accepts pets (no, I didn’t volunteer how many pets we had). I could overlook the cigarette burns on the tub, the worn carpet and threadbare sheets, and even no towels (the motel hadn’t washed due to no power that day). It was warm!

The next day we met the Rayle Electric crews on our way home and made sure they knew where we lived. Everyone else had power back that we could see but not us. By 2 p.m. we had power. That night I sat in my recliner underneath the afghan trying to stay warm (the heat doesn’t work right). I was reading a bit when suddenly I heard a noise. I looked up to see sparks arcing from the water heater. I duly noted its death.

During the 2 weeks that followed we continued this streak of bad luck through various mishaps and problems. Now my shoulder is inflamed and I can’t do any of the work I moved here to do. By last Thursday I was depressed and frustrated and regretting ever moving.

And then it happened. That darnedest thing. I suddenly had a feeling that I had come home. Not only did I not have to go anywhere, but, yes, we are here to stay! I don’t know exactly when it happened. I just realized it today—following a Saturday morning at the Commercial Bank. I talked with the president, Bill Cabiniss, (my friend!—I remember telling him 4 years ago that I wanted a personal relationship with my bank.) I spoke to Gradine and other bank employees; I was hailed by a coworker from Greater Georgia Printers; I ran into Donna Meyer Disque who bought my house in Crawford; and as Bill suggested, spoke with the ladies from the women’s club as I was leaving.

After I got home, I began thinking about Ralph Maxwell’s invitation to write for the paper, about how folks were getting to know me and about how they would be getting to know me as a writer. I began thinking about Rachel’s column and what I would like to write about…and here it is.

I’m home, Oglethorpe County.