Saturday, November 20, 2010

Update #3: Life & Health

It has to be said: physically, I'm in the worst shape of my life right now.

Ever since I moved to Richmond I've been yo-yo-ing up and down on weight; sometimes I have good months, other times I have bad ones. And this past month has definitely been a bad one.

The mountain of work, the late nights, and the packing/moving/unpacking have added a lot of stress to my life. And when I stress, I eat. A lot. And when I don't have a kitchen to cook things in, I either order pizza or go out and grab something, usually something loaded with salt and cholesterol, which basically just makes a bad situation worse.

Anyway, the result of all this is that I am now as heavy as I was my senior year in college (which, for several reasons including weight, I consider the low-point in my life). My immune system has more or less shut down, which means that my latent allergy to pet dander is kicking up again, and it's getting more and more difficult to breath at night.

I've been coping by drinking lots of licorice tea, doing some yoga stretches before bed, and -most importantly- squeezing every last bit of medicine out of the sample inhaler my doctor gave me at my last checkup 2 and a half years ago. The tea and stretches help me get to sleep, but after a few hours (usually around 3-4 in the morning) I'll wake up and my lungs will be so tight I can barely breath. A shot from the inhaler lets me breath again, and I can get back to sleep for a few more hours.

I could tell the inhaler was running low, and given that I haven't seen him in over 2 years and could use a checkup, I scheduled an appointment with my doctor for this upcoming Monday, thinking that would be enough time to get a prescription. It wasn't. After staying up til 2AM the night before working on a presentation for an exec, the inhaler ran out completely. I went to bed hoping I wouldn't need it, but woke up a few hours later as normal, only this time without any medicine to help. So, at 4AM I got up and walked around the apartment for an hour trying to calm myself down and getting to where I could breath more normally. Finally around 5AM upright posture and exhaustion got me to the point where I could get a bit more sleep, but I still had to get up at 7 and prepare for the presentation with the execs - which, incidentally, went well.

Knowing I really couldn't wait until Monday, I went to Patient First that afternoon for a consultation - they gave me a 10 minute breathing treatment (kind of Darth Vader-ish, but it worked) and also a prescription for a new rescue inhaler, which I filled across the street at Walgreen's immediately. The difference between a brand new prescription inhaler vs a year-old sample inhaler on its last legs is enormous, and I slept like a baby last night. I know it's only temporary and I really do need to change my lifestyle, but still being able to sleep and breath at night has already made a world of difference. We'll see what Monday brings.

Update #2: The House

This past week was my first full week in the new house!

I have to say that, honestly, it doesn't quite feel like home yet. I think a lot of it has to do with the fact that I'm still unpacking, that there are things I know I want to build (like a backyard fence) but haven't yet, and oddly enough, that there's no tv service yet.

When I first moved down to Richmond I didn't even have a tv for 2 years, but this past year I've developed a strange fondness for watching professional football. I never liked football growing up, but now it's one of my favorite sports to watch (playing it is a different matter completely; if I never touch a football again I can't say as I'll be sorry). And I think not being able to watch it last weekend or this weekend has a lot to do with how I feel about the place so far. Odd.

So far I've had a fridge delivered and had 2 contractors out to look at a) replacing the back doors and b) installing central air/heating. Verizon was supposed to come out this past week and install FIOS, but being Verizon they screwed up and now it'll be installed next week instead. Harumph.

Stuff I want to get done before the Thanksgiving Break:
Buy & install radiator covers (so simple but makes a big difference)
Buy & install new doorbell (nothing fancy, just a wireless one)
Buy & install new mailboxes (the old ones are, well, old)

Update #1: India Trip & Work

Wow, what a month.

The big trip to India didn't quite go as planned. We arrived a few days before they were going to announce a verdict in a 60-year old trial about disputed religious land. The last time anything noteworthy happened in the case (way back in 1992) there were riots, and corporate security didn't want us there. So, after a grand total of 26 hours in India, the team was evacuated to London because of safety concerns. We stayed there for 3 days (one of which we were able to tour London, see facebook for pix), and then flew back to the States. Ho hum.

While I didn't get to go to any markets or anything like that, I was able to pick up a few scarves from the hotel lobby. So, I have something from India. Probably made in Taiwan. But bought in India.

The big project that I'm working on has certainly been an experience. A lot of visibility from execs, which is nice, but with that comes a LOT of work, not all of which comes easily. These past couple weeks in particular have been pretty stressful, and it doesn't seem like I'm ever able to get ahead of the work. I've talked to my manager about it a bit and we think we can do some stuff that'll help, but these past few weeks have not been kind.