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"How's John doing anyway?"

Updated: 2018-03-06T04:33:07.176-05:00


out with the old (sick reminders), and in with the new age (literally, an age)


so this is totally not my place but, ... it seems that i am sick of the 'john's sick stuff' around the house. i threw it all out.

insulin. gone.
instructions on how to read the blood glucose monitor. gone.
blood glucose monitor, musteriously missing and i'm not looking for it.
medical receipts from cleveland clinic. gone.
the freaking green rubbing alcohol he'd have to use before giving himself a shot. gone.
maybe, soon, this blog. ...gone.

'08 was the year of illness and crisis.
'09 was the year of post traumatic stress disorder.
2010 has got to have a different tone.
i'm not 100% sure what that means but i feel a stirring in my soul to figure it out.

they will not say that a vasculitis patient is in remission until they are 'symptom free' for 18 years. EIGHTEEN YEARS. serious.
and, to that end i ask, define 'symptom free'.
does that mean just the spots? just the hospitalizations and lying in fetal position and unable to care for one's self? all the dramatic stuff that people pay attention to?
or does it also mean the little day to day things that are not obvious to the naked eye? the non-stop pain, the swelling, the joint aches? bc if that's what it means, ... then john's 18 years hasn't even started yet.

so, today is john's birthday. he's 39 and it's been a wonderful day.
i overheard him tell his sister today that he was turning 38. i thought he was kidding but when i asked him about it he said, "the year i was sick does not count".
i couldn't agree more. here's to that. cheers and mozeltof!
this fits in perfect with my desire to set a different tone.

so, today is john's 38th birthday. i am suddenly married to a younger man.
oh lala.



today is john's 2 year anniversary since getting sick. i know i have not posted lately. i apologize to those of you who check this and pray for john. we truly do appreciate it. he's ok mostly, coming along pretty nicely, and to be honest there is stuff going on in my head that has led me to start thinking that now is almost the time to end this blog.

i'm not going to just wrap up that quick, i think a few more posts to update you on the last 2 months including the trip to the naturopath would be good. but, for the most part, what it boils down to is this:

i am tired of focusing on illness. it is time to focus on health.
i am tired of worrying about parasites. it is time to revel in good theater tickets and fine wine.
i am tired of waiting for the other shoe to drop. it is time to learn to polka in the one fabulous shoe that i have on.

not that john is 'healthy', but really it's all relative isn't it?

so, stay tuned for some interesting updates on zappers and parasites and my change in professional direction based on all this. i'm certain it'll be riviting night time reading. ha.

thanks for caring,

half full, ... to over flowing


i could lament about much these days. i have consciously decided not to.

it's amazing what you start to notice when you do that.

-i live in a house where i find a bow (minus the arrow) on my kitchen table, a random package of instant hot cocoa on my bedroom dresser, a violin on my steps, a mini trampoline in the middle of my living room, and fluffy pink slippers on a chair in my dining room.
i do not know why.
i have stopped asking.
but isn't it cool?
they're like tiny little pain in the ass blessings all over my house.
i genuinely think it's fabulous.

-i live in a house that somehow, over the years, has accumulated pictures and pictures and pictures of the 5 of us, framed and hanging or setting everywhere.
it's like little snapshots of love adorned with fancy edges all over my house.
how cool is that?

-i live in a house that rivals the Biblical ark. (we even have an in-house Noah, haha). max the dog, otis the cat, spike the guinea pig, a mystery number of nameless fish (correction: mary name the red one 'rosey') and we apparently have extended our jurisdiction beyond the walls of the house and now have a salt lick in the yard for deer, something small most definately residing in the garage not counting the baby mole we caught there and released at the river, two bird feeders, and peanuts for the squirrels.
it's like my kids are learning compassion for living creatures all day every day.
that is marvelous.

-i live in a house where today mary drew a fanciful work of art on the chalkboard (did i mention i live in a house that has a family chalk board complete with colored chalk at all times?) and as noah was walking by he stopped and, unsolicited, said, "nice picture".
i saw mary's heart beam.
i live in a house with sibling love.
(disclosure: they also have been known to threaten to poke eachothers eyes out sometimes too, probably with the missing arrow from the kitchen, but it's all good).

-i live in a house that's dusty.
i know there's gotta be a blessing in there somewhere. i'm holding out faith on that one or i may need to buckle and pick up a dust rag sometime soon. oh, i also want to add that i live in a house where the phone rings but no one seems inclined to pick it up. i'm adding that to the 'there must be a blessing in there somewhere' list before i beat someone's blessed arse.

-i live in a house that last night mary said was, "perfect". that's what she said. and i quote, ...
"ya know, our house is (with arms held up to the sky as in exasperated disbelief) perfect!".
how absolutely wonderful is that?

-i live in a house where somehow, i do not know how, we play musical beds at night. no one, with the exception of isaiah, ever wakes up in the same bed they went to sleep in.
it's a phenomanon.
what pain in the ass exhausted fun.
seriously. i don't know how to change it and by this point i don't think i want to.
heck, we should set up some kind of rules and someone should win a prize.

-i live in a house that's too small for us. we bang into eachother and fight over who's on the toilet too long or used up all the hot water in the shower. mary has no door on her bedroom bc we don't have enough bedrooms so she's been in some random space at the top of the stairs since she was 6 months old. we don't all fit on the couch so someone always gets the crap seat where ya gotta tilt your head to see the tv. it really is too small.
... and it forces us to communicate, see eachother, and fight, and work things out.
how's that song go?
"love grows best in little houses with few walls to seperate where
you eat and sleep so close together you can't help but communicate
and if we had more room between us think of all we'd miss.
love grows best in houses just like this"
...that's us.

my cup runneth over.

"oooh it's shocking! it's electric! boogie woogie woogie!" (the electric slide song)


so, i'm not sure even how to broach this so i'm just gonna put it out there for all of you to roll your eyes at and wait for the onslaught of emails telling me we are crazy. though, i'd like to formally request, don't bother. i do not have much to say regarding what you do with your spouse in the name of health when he gets almost fatally ill and stays chronically sick and would not dream to comment on it, so please do not comment on what i do with mine. thank you. we now return you to our normal programming.

long story short, we have begun using what we lovingly call, 'the zapper'. it's a small electrical device that has wrist straps (or you can put them on your ankles) that puts a small electrical current into your body with the purpose of 'zapping' critters (primarily parasites). it doesn't hurt and you can leave it on for just a few minutes or up to all night, depending on your health levels and what it is you're trying to accomplish. yes, studies have been done that show efficacy in patients. no, those studies are not FDA approved. wow. stop being such a buzz kill.

hahahahahahaha. get it?! "buzz" kill?! hahahaha. i am so funny i crack me up pretty routinely.

i wore it all night along with john to see what it was like. i don't like him doing stuff w/o me at least at first knowing how it makes a healthy person respond, yet alone a sick one. there are three settings. i kept mine on the lowest but i've noticed that as john gets more comfortable with it and sees that he's not exploding, he has been wearing it at the highest level (which, do not fret, is exceedingly low even at highest).

we both got small blisters around our wrists when we wore it there, a healing crisis that was to be expected, and switched to our ankles where we've had no problem at all. we've been doing this since just after the halloween spots incident, so, about a week i guess. john has also been experiencing fatigue and grumpiness, both are symptoms of a healing crisis. his body needs to work some things out.

i heard about this from a friend of mine who's daughter was diagnosed with a pretty fatal type of cancer and after zapping (and yes, eating well, removing toxic cleaning products, participating in traditional western allopathic medicine along with some eastern medicine) she is in remission. i am not silly enough to believe that any one thing got john sick. i will not be silly enough to think any one thing can get him well. it is like anything in life, it is a mystery, a puzzle, a formula with many variables. it is science and it is art and it is biology and it is faith all in one ball.

the last time we saw the naturopath there was a decrease in parasites based on his supplements and diet changes alone. when we go back at thanksgiving time it will be interesting to see if this has helped at all beyond that.

i know i know, it's crazy. whatever. roll with it. you needn't be concerned unless you catch me slipping it on you as you sleep. until then, sorta not your bees wax. so then why do i share? for the same reason i blog, ... for documentation of a chain of events in case he gets sick again and also for those who know we are crazy already and love us anyway. to those people, this will come as no surprise. townsons try anything at least once.


what spots? i don't see any spots?


marc anthony woke up sunday morning (after absolutely DANCING THE NIGHT AWAY on saturday night) with spots on his neck, and in pain.

we ignored it.
we are still ignoring it.

the pain has decreased but the spots are still there.

still ignoring.
lalalalalalalalalala (fingers in ears).
so there.


absolutely not.


this cannot happen again. no way. no.

john has been on and off in increased pain for a few weeks now. i haven't mentioned it too much i think bc i was in denial. then, night before last, his leg swells up (the one that had the blood clot last year). the whole thing sweels up and hurts him and when you press down on it, it does not pop back up. like squishing down a wet dishcloth that's under plastic wrap. or really soft playdough.

and then, ... he gets a spot.
one. lone. spot.
of vasculitis.

we know what it looks like. we know how it all started before. this cannot be happening again.
he has had one lone spot here and there before over the past year, and pain here and there, and swelling and squishyness here and there.
he has not had all 3 at one time though. not like this. maybe milder. but this swelling and squishyness were pretty bad, and then the spot...

he did go play basketball last week (i think i told you that?) and he tried to go last night despite his leg but there was no game scheduled. i was quietly thankful bc i feared in his attempt to be 'normal' he would have made what ever this is that's lurking, worse. he needed to rest more than he needed to pretend he was fine.

there are days you pretend. then there are days you sit your ass on the couch.
he will be sitting his ass on the couch tonight too.

we have a halloween party to go to on saturday night. it is the one that we went to last year and he danced with me and it landed him in bed for days. he is much better this time around than he was last time but still i'm concerned that the timing of these symptoms combined with dancing will pose a set back. please pray that the man can just catch a break and go have a nice normal time on saturday night without suffering debilitating consequences. that would be really nice.

thanks for caring.

chemical free is the way to be, ... unless you're trying to hide your grey roots


ever so ever so ever so slowly, ... i have been trying to get rid of chemicals in the house. of course, no house will ever be chemical free, ... what with the chemicals in even the drywall and the paint and the carpeting. i mean, geesh. but it seems to me that every little bit helps and while i can't control everything, i can control what i can control.

so, i set out.
on a journey.
to be (sorta) chemical free.

it is hard.

why is it hard you ask? well, first, it's expensive. also, it's kinda inconvenient. then, there's the old habits that are harder to break than you think. after that, there's the husband who sorta thinks the whole thing is poppy-cock.

let it be known, i do not think it is poppy-cock.

i think that vasculitis, along with many other ailments in life, have an environmental component to them. i have allergies, as do the kids. and yes, we have a cat and dog; but we also have a house full of toxic chemicals that are desguised as lemon scented and meadow fresh. i think it all plays a part.

i've managed to switch to naturally made soap (the skin is the largest eliminatory organ of the body after all. if it allows bad things out, ... it would make sense that it lets bad stuff in too) and shampoo and conditioner (or as naturally made as you can reasonably find). i've stopped using dryer sheets and we're switching to dryer balls. we've switched to natural lotion (my dry elbows and heels let out a sigh of relief that i didn't give up lotion altogether) and purchased a water purifer to get out the flouride and other city water junk. i've switched to naturally made cleaning products and my kitchen and bathroom smell like essential lavendar oil and eucalyptus already.

there have been challenges, ... as evidenced by the fact that aluminum free deodorant does NOT deodorize, despite what the "naturally fresh" label says. i tremble at the thought of giving up my face products and do not get me started on the "natural beauty of grey". i scoff. i will dye my grey until i am dead, ... even if what ultimately kills me is the hair dye. i know i know, i contradict myself.

baby steps i say.

well it's about time.


i am finally starting to get better. almost 3 weeks. geesh. tests for everything under the sun all came back negative. i have 2 more tests i'm getting results on tomorrow and then i'm cleared to go back to work provided the fever stays down. i've been so sick i did not even have the gumption to blog anything. luckily, john stayed well and there was not much vasculitis blogging to do anyway.

he has been mentioning some odd sensations but i think while i've been sick he's been keeping symptoms to himself. i catch him grimicing sometimes when he thinks he's alone or i'm not looking. he's been drinking soda again which is c-r-a-z-y bad. we shall be addressing that shortly. for the next few days though, i still don't have much fight in me.

we go back to the naturopath in november. usually when i mention that he gets his act in gear. i'll wait until i have a little more spunk and then i'll casually mention it.

he says he wants to go play basketball with they guys tonight. he has said that for a few weeks and then not gone. tonight he admitted to me that "the last time i went and played basketball with the guys i woke up with vasculitis".
i said, "you realize that basketball didn't cause the vasculitis, right?".
he said, "yes. ..... (long pause) ... no. i don't."
"basketball doesn't cause vasculitis, babe."
"i know, but physically intense activity can bring it on, so in the back of my mind that keeps coming up."

ok, i have to respect his fears. it takes courage to face your fears. he has a ton of both (courage and fear). he may or may not go tonight, but i know that eventually he will. he is strong. i admire that about him.

thanks for caring.

this week i learned...


that i simply cannot blog while i have the flu and a temp of 104 for 3 days. i am now on day 6 and the temp is down to 100. 2 of 3 kids have the runs and a low grade temp. it is fun times at the townsons for sure. it is not H1N1, i do not have the necessary symptoms. and to that i say hall-lay-lu-ya bc if this is the 'regular' flu, H1N1 would have killed me.

john and isaiah are fine. so no worries there.

i will blog again when i do not feel like my eyeballs are going to pop out of my eye sockets and onto the laptop.

Johnny Appleseed


God met me in the apple orchard yesterday.

The whole family went apple picking. It's an annual event for us involving fresh hot cider donuts and cider, picking fall vegetables, wild flowers, and this year there was a labrynth to walk. The sky was pretty clear and the view of the hillside was breath taking and the air was crisp and the wind was just enough to be refreshing and not threatening.
...and John was healthy. (relatively speaking).

Remember, last year when we went apple picking, things were grim. The doctors had pretty much sent John home to be perpetually ill and early death still was a pretty good possibility. That's us in that pic over there to the right, 3rd one down. We look pretty happy except that we're all actually stressed out and pretending no one notices. John was still swollen from the steroids and still on insulin from the steroids and had just come off the chemo. I'd change the pic except I don't want to forget. I want to remember to live every day like it matters. I want to remember that I have an exceptional family that genuinely pulled together when things sucked ass. That's us pulling together over there, ... picking apples and valuing the time we have together even though we are all stressed and exhausted and worried. But I digress, which seems to be my way lately.

Anyway, so we went apple picking. And as John and Noah went one way (they like green) and Mary went another (she likes any apple that is small) and Isaiah went another (he likes MacIntosh) and I stayed right in the middle so as not to lose any of them, ... it happened. I wasn't alone. God was right there. S/he said, "you didn't think you'd be here this year, so how 'bought them apples?' (God's pretty funny). And as the birds flew over head and I heard my family bellowing to one another and my favorite season, ... a season of thanks, ... starts for yet another year, ... I was met in the orchard by God.

I love when that happens.
And then I cried. But of course they think I'm a big sap so they don't know. Don't tell.

All that having been said, all that peotry in motion, I just need to pepper with a dose of 'sometimes families are crap to deal with'. Isaiah climbed a tree and impaled his knee such that it spouted blood for about 20 nonstop minutes with not a tissue in sight to apply pressure. Mary declaired in the middle of the orchard, the furthest point form the entrance (where the restrooms are), that she needed to go to the bathroom (bc of coure she had not gone when we first arrived like i asked her to). The boys got into a pushing match over, ... I'm not sure what, and I had to spend the last quarter of the trail explaining why pushing and name calling are not acceptable options in this family, ... for the hundredth time this month. So, ya know, sometimes families are crap to deal with.
...But I'm thankful for the crap too.

And ps John is still exercising daily. Ony 20 minutes but it's a hard 20 minutes and is the start of a long road he has to go. We were in church today and he looked so handsome and HEALTHY, oh my, he has his color back. But when we sat in the pew and I held his arm it was startling how much his arm muscles have atrophied. It will be a long haul but at least he's on the road. I am so grateful.

He is at his office interviewing a potential new employee as we speak. Let's hope he finds someone today that does not have an aversion to actual work.

Keep praying please. Prayer is powerful stuff. Thanks.

random updates


string of random thoughts by kim:

so john has been working a bizillion hours due to low staff numbers. he is trying to hire but people either a) don't show up for the interview or b) don't take the job b/c they say it sounds like a lot of work. huh? i don't get people who schedule a job interview but can't be bothered to call and cancel if they've changed their mind. i don't get people who lament to him that they can't pay their bills but then turn down a job offer b/c "it sounds hard". uhh, yes. work is hard. but unemployment is hard too. whatev. i digress. anyway, point being, he has been working a lot of hours and not seeing the kids at all and overall just tired so, prayers for strength (and staff!) would be greatly appreciated.

speaking of working so many hours, ...he did not start this next round of parasite cleanse. i can't emphasize enough how important it is that he complete all 4 rounds (only 1 is done) before we see the naturopath again in november. but i understand that he feels like doo-doo when he's doing it and, working so many hours, feeling like constant doo-doo is not ideal. (again with the request for prayers for staff). it really is important that he complete this 'treatment'. until he gets the parasites under control everything else is sort of diminished (strength, health, patience, etc).

speaking of naturopathy, i am 9 days out from completing my first term of school for it. needless to say, ... finding time for that has been challenging. i'm fighting for it though b/c as much of a pain in the arse as it is to find time for school, the knowedge that i am getting may truly help john's health (not to mention the kids and me). so, i forge on. (insert dramatic battle music here).

speaking of dramatic battle music, ... ha. no i really don't have anything to say about that but it'd be funny if i did. oh no wait, let me try...

speaking of dramatic battle music, ... i feel like i should play some when i work out to jillian michaels '30 day shred' workout dvd, which john has been doing with me for the past 2 days! (now THAT was transition, baby!). ok so really, john joined me in exercising yesterday and today. while that may not sound like a big deal, it is. it absolutely is. vasculitis can be exacerbated by physical activity and until just last week the doc would not clear john to exercise for that reason. last week though he got the ok and at first i noticed that he was kind of pensive, and who can blame him. but then yesterday i found him using my dvd and today he did it with me. i am so proud that he faced his fear and now i seem to have, in all my codependent glory, adopted that fear for him. yup, i picked it up and am nursing it like a little bundle of worry. that's no good. so, i am giving it to God. i have to. john has to. we cannot live under this purpetual cloud of impending gloom. chronic illness/pain sucks. it just does.
...and then you have to learn to live anyway.

worrying does not empty tomorrow of its troubles, it empties today of its strength.
(i have no idea who said that but i have it on a bookmark from barnes and noble so it must be good stuff).

so, today, john and i did not worry. we were strong.
please pray that we maintain that. it is hard work to say the least.




john remains cancer free.
his doc will only run cancer check once per year now (for the next 3 years), instead of quarterly.
he has the ok to begin exercising slowly.

can i get a woot-woot!!
can i hear an AMEN from the balcony please?!

God is good.

head's up: this post is not about john


i know i know, this is john's blog. i blogged about him last time and i'll do it again next time. but right now, ...this weekend, ... i have something else to say. and, in a way, it does tie in to his illness. it ties in in the way that his illness has taught me what's important. brought it to a head. a clear focus. i notice more now. now i live life more, ... aware. conscious.
let me tie it all in.

so this weekend i was laboring, ha, on labor day weekend. three days of cleaning, gleaning, organizing, throwing things away, getting things ready for donation, etc.

here's what was brought to my attention: life speeds past me whether i like it or not.

here's what brought that to my attention:

  • donating the baby monitors
  • throwing away the fat crayons, the kind that toddlers use
  • donating the baby blankets
  • sitting on my porch and looking out over a sea of adult sized bikes in the yard. not a training wheel or kid bike in sight
  • receiving the letter that told me what 'homeroom' isaiah would be in on wednesday
  • taking down the winnie the pooh decorations and planning to put up sports ones
  • getting rid of the tubby toys
  • noah saying, 'we could probably get rid of half of what's in that toy box, we don't really play with those anymore'

i didn't think i could take one more 'grown up' thing and then mary brings me her dora the explorer blanket and says, 'you can donate this. i don't need it anymore. i don't like dora now that i'm older'.

i was just about to fall into a pool of 'parent of tween' despair when she added, ...'it'd be diffferent if it was like, ...holly hobby. holly hobby is waaaaay more grown up.'

phew! i just about did a happy jig. =)


ps: john's working a 14 hour shift today. please pray for strength. he is feeling weak and is due to start a second round of parasite cleanse tomorrow.

that's enough for one day


i was going to blog but then i answered that last comment and now i'm spent.

have a super long weekend.

finger tips


john keeps mentioning that his finger tips hurt. by hurt i mean, like really hurt. it makes him sort of grimice and suck in his breath.

his finger tips?


i swear this illness is the oddest illness i have ever heard of. it makes him hurt in the most random places.

other than that, the last two days have been pretty pain manageable. (side note: i've noticed that he's been taking his MSM regularly. it's amazing what happens when you proactively stay ahead of the pain instead of trying to reactively catch up to it).

jump around! ...jump around! ...jump up jump up and jump down! (insert screetchy bag pipe here)


anyone know that song? it's irritating as all get-out but the reailty is that when it is played at a wedding reception, ... you simply must jump around. and such is the way of this evening's events.

so, we were at the wedding of sweet friends of ours tonight and john danced like nobody's business. and he jumped around. alot. it's like his brain forgot his body was sick.

when we went to pick up mary afterwards he got out of the car and said, ..."wow. my legs hurt."

in normal life, pre-january 1998, i'd make some comment about him needing to get more exercise if a little jumping had his mucsles feeling the burn. now, though, ya just sorta wonder is that it, ... the normal burn that comes from bouncing up and down like a crazy jumping bean? or is it more? is it the cloud of vasculitis that hangs over our heads?

i guess we shall see.
(ps: i stil hear that song in my head. ugh. it's one of 'those' songs. it'll be there for days. 'jump up jump up and jump dooown!')

back to life, back to reality


i've returned from the land of the rising sun and have to admit that my 10 day trip was one of the most enjoyable times i have ever had of my life. different culture, new food, excellent friend, relaxing time, sleeping in, seeing sights, feeling loved, shopping, learning new stuff, ... i could go on and on. we went to hiroshima, china town, a temple with zen gardens and a bamboo forest, himeji castle, i got comfortable with chop sticks (i do believe i will be eating with them more often just for fun), i rode by train, taxi, bus, street car and bullet train. i can't tell you how it refreshed my soul.

john and the kids spent time at his sister's house in PA and went to the beach and and amusement park. mary spent a week at girl scout horse camp. so, they filled their time without me just fine.

so all that's the good news.

then reality sets in, ... jet lag, catching up at work, inordinate amounts of housework and laundry, falling behind in school, etc. ...all the normal stuff; which is fine. i'll handle that fine. what's not fine is john. i returned home to find him swollen, in pain, limiting his activities, and over all not doing well. he says he took his vitamins and such while i was gone but also sorta hedged on the whole deal. i suspect it was inconsistent at best. his MSM is what helps keep his swelling and pain at bay the best and he admitted that he forgot to take it to his sister's with them. oy. also a possibility, however, is the fact that he claims (and i believe him) that he has not missed a beat with his parasite cleanse. the cleanse that he is doing is pretty heavy duty stuff without much of a break between cycles. so i'm not sure if what's happening is the result of inconsisent supplements or a healing crisis brought on by the cleanse. in any event, he is fatigued, has swollen joints, and overall is not feeling well.

this chronic illness deal sucks royal ass.
seriously. the guy needs a break.

so, please pray for a break.
he needs one.

also, just a side note, i was skipping ahead in my day minder and noticed that sept 15 is the next quarterly cancer check he has scheduled.
which also royally sucks ass.
cancer checks every quarter for bladder cancer or leukemia caused by the chemotherapy, ... for three years. geesh.
sucks ass.

that's all i have to say about that. thanks for allowing me to rant.
i still believe, however, that God is good. so, we'll just keep truckin' along and countin' our blessings.
now where'd i put my chopsticks?



i am leaving for Japan tomorrow morning for 12 days without my family. i wanted to explain the coming lack of posts but also to ask you to pray for:
  • my family while we are apart
  • john's health to stay positive
  • my safe return

this is a fabulous opportunity to see my friend and experience new things but i've never been away from them this long. mary is at girl scout horse camp this week and then next week john has a full schedule for them all to visit family in PA and go to an amusement park and such; so i'm sure it will all be fine.

nonetheless, pray anyway please.


nervous nellie

see ya later alligator


john lifted 20 pound weights yesterday, just a few times, ... and it didn't hurt.
he did 6 minutes of ab work today, ... and it didn't hurt.

PRAISE BE. and phew. it's about time.

as i was cleaning out old stuff i came across all the printed materials they gaved me when he was first diagnosed on various chemotherapies and different types of vasculitis and on and on.

i promptly chucked them all in the trash and am not looking back.

not to argue you but...


the following post has foul language so if that offends you, please come check us out another day. thank you.

so i'm at this gathering recently and there's this woman who knows john from the playground and she asks how john is. now, my standard answer is, "he's improving. he's not well, but he's improving". which is true. actually, with him on the parasite cleanse he is going through a bit of a "healing crisis" and experiencing the return of some old, painful symptoms. he is tired and in pain and often reports to me random numbness, tingling, stiffness, etc. he is going through a challenging time right now but is a total trooper about it. the parasite cleanse seems to be exacerbating symptoms lately but we hope it's for the best in the end and we pluck on.

so, she asks and i say my standard answer and she, in front of this whole group of people, says, "well he looks fine".
uummm, ok.
i say, "yes, he does", and think that will be the end of that.
but in the next breath she says, ...real loud, (insert snot-ass tone)
"ya know, not to argue you but i JUST spoke to him a few days ago and he 's fine. no, ...really. he's fine".

is he now?

seriously, she said that. those exact words, "no, ...really. he's fine".

really? REALLY?

well, not to argue you but i JUST slept with him so i think i know him better than you do.

man o man. i know i know. people are dumb. but geesh lady, chronic illness is a deceptive thing sometimes, so how about you shut your pie hole.

note to self: never assume another person's health or wellness based on their appearance.
even more so, never publicly argue the validity of a person's health with their spouse. you just end up looking like an ass.

"Only bad witches are ugly." -Glenda, the good witch


So i've been doing studying and reading for naturopathy school and i have to admit, i keep thinking all i need is a cauldron and maybe some frog legs and i'd be a witch.

the stuff i'm working with is crazy: worm wood and licorice root and senna leaf and cascara segrada leaf and acai berry and hemp and some pod i don't remember the name of which sucks b/c i paid a lot of money for it at the health food store (note to self: get a better labeling system) and wheat grass and magnesium oxide and bee pollen propolis and ginsing and prolacto acidophilus and nutraflora and cloves and black walnut green hull extract, ... and frog legs.

see? doesn't it just sound like frog legs fits in there? i'm not using frog legs of course but i'm only in term one so who knows what will come.

i'm hoping by graduation i know how to fly on a broom.
that'd be cool.

when in doubt, read the directions


so john started his parasite cleanse. it's pretty intense. it's a drop of wormwood stuff and a pill of clove stuff and another pill of something or other stuff, ... it's just a lot. it's complex and some stuff you take with food and some you mix with water and some is every day but some is only every other day and some have increasing doses and some are mixed with citric acid and on and on.

needless to say john is pretty disintersted in the whole thing.

i have not yet figured out why he is so less than excited to rid himself of the parasites. i sort of think he's in denial about the whole thing. i mean, parasites, eww. who can blame him. and it's not as obvious as the vasculitis spots or the insulin meter when he had the steroid induced diabetes. all that's pretty 'in your face', so to speak. this, well, ... it's more 'in your blood' aka: easier to ignore.

but he did go ahead and start it while sort of half listening to me as i tried to explain what the regiment would be for the next 18-20 days. he sort of uh-huh'ed me until i stopped talking.
oooo-k. you're a big boy. it's all yours.

he promptly accidentally overdosed himself on wormwood tincture and got some odd red ring under his lower lip and a pretty good case of the runs. ("i thought it said one dropper full, not one drop").


i am pleased to report that he is now totally on board with undersanding the sevierity of getting rid of the parasites and the importance of following the instructions on the label.

Prayer request


John seems to not be doing very well lately. He still takes care of the kids and works and such, in essence he still has everyone fooled, but he is not doing very well.

He has been reporting more and more pain in his joints, swelling, numbness, etc. He even went swimming thinking that maybe some non-impact exericse may help, and instead it made him hurt worse. He's such a trooper but the reality is that he seems to be at this plateau where nothing's getting worse but nothing's getting better. I know that such is the reality of living with chronic illness, and yet still i find myself digging my heels in, unwilling to accept that.

He is just finishing a 7 system organ cleanse and will begin the parasite cleanse this week. The naturopath told him that he has gone as far as he can go without addressing the parasite infestation. So i'm hoping that that helps.

I am also pretty positive that God can do all things and hold tight to the power of prayer. I'm asking that you please throw one or two, or 50, up for john. He is struggling right now.

So i went back and re-read what i wrote. I said it's not getting worse but not getting better. That is not true. It is getting worse. There is definite movement backwards. Now, as i type that, it dawns on me that john has been eating like crap lately. So, let's tag team him shall we? I am proposing that while you bombard him with prayer, i will bombard him with nutritional information. i am at a loss as to what else to do when nutrition really could be the culprit here. but, after thinking about it, i have to say in his defense that i've been slacking too. so, i will try to move forward by example instead of words. i will bombard him with good role modeling and positive support. after all, no one likes the food police.

reality check


while i am genuinely touched by the many kind words you all sent me about running with God and becoming a naturopath, i nonetheless feel compelled to disclose the following:

this weekend i drank wine from a coffee mug at 10am, downed half of a bag of crap doritos at 10pm, and ice skated on the edge of cursing like a sailor in front of my kids when i had simply had enough of their "he touched me! she's in my space!" antics.

so, thanks for all the nice messages, but i always want to keep it real.

i should say something about john before i completly take over his blog.
ok, john is good. not great, but good. he's in the middle of a 7 system organ cleanse and is taking it better than i did (rememeber how tired it made me?). keep up the prayers please. it's powerful stuff.

rock on,

yesterday i was visited by God. and she wore a pink hat.


so, i have started running again. i had to stop b/c of a hip injury and i am a happier person when i jog so i have started up again effective yesterday. but that is not my story...i was at the outdoor community track yesterday morning and was running for the first time in months. i was honed in on time, stride, breathing, etc. I was mentally contemplating my daily, never-ending to do list. i was noticing who i was lapping and wondering if the grumpy power walking nun was always grumpy or only when she power walks. i was, in essence, ...not, let me say here that you may be thinking, well this is about kim, not john. and this is john's blog. but, i have to tell you, that it is through john's illness last year that i have learned life lessons and come to a place where i know better than to not 'be present'. i do, i know better. sudden possible death of a loved one grabs your attention. and living with a chronicly ill spouse begs you to hold that attention where it matters most. it forces you to reprioritize. but for some reason it is a skill that i have to repeatedly remind myself to practice. buddhist zen i am not. and at that moment, lapping the grumpy nun and trying to figure out when i was going to find time to reschedule that skin doctor appt i've cancelled three times, i was NOT present. i am running lap 4 and all the while so damn driven and focused (momentary rewind: this is not my usual way. for years my time running is time spent with God. it's where we commune. it's where we communicate. it's where we disagree and then make up. it's where i pray in every capacity. it's where i pretend i am not listening to Him b/c i am stubborn and He patiently waits for my sanity to return. it's where i apologize and i soar and i listen and i am replenished. it's where i give my heart to Him over and over. it's where i am most reminded that if i look, i can see His signature across the seal of my life. it's where He paints me splendid sky art and conducts beautiful bird call symphonies just for me just b/c He loves me. all this in the span of a few sweaty miles) and suddenly i see up ahead a little girl with her grandfather.she is wearing a pink hat.and as i get closer, she talks to me..."don't step on wormie!""oh. ok. i won't" i smile and sort of try to run by. but i can't. she is still talking to me."he is a wormie"."yes he is"."where you going? look! i have a shadow!""yes you do.""have you looked at yeeeer shadow? see, it right there!" (insert squeels of surprised delight while pointing to my shadow).at this point her grandfather is just smiling, walking behind us. he has absolutely no concern about us walking together, me and ..."uuh, what's your name?"(insert garbled sounds here)"hum. ok. has anybody ever taught you about stranger danger?" i ask half kidding, half not.she giggles and promptly takes my hand.she takes my hand.and we walk.for the next mile she and i walk and look at wormies and look at shadows and skip and pick daisys and point at clouds and trees and cars and colors and grass. we talk about "pop pop", still silently walking a quarter mile behind us as if guarding our time together.for the next mile she and i ARE PRESENT.and i am exceedingly is the most precious mile i think i have ever's odd, looking back now i realize that from that point on there was absolutely no one else on the track. no joggers. no nun. no dog walke[...]