Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Know Thyself

Before I start, watch this TED Talk. It's enjoyable and is basically what I want to talk about:

Have you ever tried this? I do it all the time.

I have spent a little over half my life being sick. Downer, yeah. When I was 11 or 12, I started having problems with my heart and with my stomach. Through both issues, I kept journals of how I felt day-to-day, symptoms, episodes, etc (Not much fun for little Harpo). When I outgrew my heart condition at age 20, I could tell when things were changing because I had been keeping track of my body. And, at age 23, when I wound up in the ER with acute pancreatitis, I didn't realize that this "data" (because it wasn't really numbers) would end up being incredibly helpful. 

After my initial hospitalization, when I told them the problem was recurring, doctors would test my blood levels and find nothing. They did scans and scopes and tests and found nothing. They did not believe me that my problem was a recurring one, even though I had been keeping track of my symptoms and episodes since I was in my teens. Eventually I found a doctor who was willing to believe me, and together we found evidence (numbers, pancreatic enzyme levels) that proved that I had been keeping track accurately all along, and we were able to fix the problem.

Since then, I have been a personal advocate for keeping track of your body. When Sam and I started trying for a baby, I forgot about this, and we tried unsuccessfully for a while. But then I found out about Kindara, a cycle-tracking app. 

I find Kindara incredibly interesting. I tracked temperature and the other stuff for a couple of cycles, and I learned enough about my body to be able to optimize my chances of getting pregnant, and it eventually worked.

Even after all the baby business, I have used Kindara to track my body. I have several months' worth of new data that has been incredibly useful for various purposes. I know when something isn't right because I know what's normal. And I know when something *is* normal.

I highly encourage all of you, male or female, to pay attention to your body, and track things that matter, especially in conjunction with any health goals you might have. What better reason do you need than to be the expert on your body?

I also feel the need to briefly advocate for rounded education on specific health topics relevant to you. Be wise about your body. Study nutrition, fertility, pregnancy (if relevant), blood type, metabolism, etc, anything pertinent to you. Don't let your doctors tell you what's good for you if you feel they might not have the whole story.

The best health tips:



And goodnight.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

All I Can Say Is That My Life Is Pretty Plain

I lied earlier.  I mean, yeah, my life is really boring and such.  But we have actually done a couple of "interesting" things lately.

I realized I never reported on the AFSP Walk last month.

We had a pretty fun time.  We walked the loop in Sugarhouse Park a few times.  It seemed a little bit unorganized, like the start wasn't really announced, nor the number of times you were supposed to walk the loop, but there was a huge turnout, and it was good exercise.  I also had the chance to have a nice long chat with Adrien, who lives far away now and works a lot, so I don't see her much.  Sam's mom and my parents also came, and I think they had a good time too.  I worry that my efforts didn't really make a difference, but I feel in some small way they did.  So that is good.

We also did a few hikes lately, trying to get out and enjoy the mountain air before it gets too cold and the inversion makes it impossible to breathe.

Sam and I hiked to a glacial outwash in Wasatch State Park, which is down the street from his parents' house.  It was a longer hike than we anticipated, and hot because there wasn't much tree cover until the end, but it was quiet and very pretty, and the huge pile of boulders was really fun to explore.

We also did a hike on conference weekend to Lake Solitude in (you guessed it) Solitude ski area.  That was a beautiful hike, and pretty easy.  I think when I'm in better shape, I want to go further and summit the mountain behind the lake.  There wasn't a path that I could see, but I saw people hiking around way up in there, and it looks like a lot of fun.

This past weekend I also had the opportunity for an impromptu hike of Stewart Falls just past Sundance.  My mom and Adrien and Eric went too, along with about 5,000 BYU students.  It actually got really annoying, but the aspens were in full Fall splendor, so it was very pretty.  After the sun went down behind the mountain, it got pretty cold, and I felt bad, because it had been hot earlier, so the baby was just in a shirt, socks, and her diaper.  She doesn't have teeth, but they were chattering.  But she got all toastied up once we got into the car to head up to Midway.

I also try to go on lots of walks.  It's easier when we're up in Midway, because there's more walking areas and more to see.  In Springville we sort of just have the one paved walkway that winds through the neighborhood, which isn't bad, but it does get a little old, and it's lousy with little kids on bikes that have no respect for pedestrians.  Harumph.

Other than that, life is basically just work and taking care of the baby.  Sam is gone a lot working in Midway, but I try to get up there as often as I can (which is usually a day or two, since the baby doesn't sleep as well if she's switching beds every three nights).  This week in particular has been harder since we're taking care of Sanjay while Sam's parents are out of town, and I have work and appointments, so Sam will have been away for over a week by the time this is over.  Ah well!  I'm grateful for opportunities to grow and get stronger.  But I do long for the day when we don't have to be apart half the week, every week.  And I'm grateful it isn't worse.

Side note: I miss archaeology.  And travelling.

Tra la la.  I promise to update if anything interesting ever does happen!

I've Got My Head, I've Lost My Leopard

It feels like the same old story, but things around here aren't that interesting.  It's kind of just life on repeat, know what I mean?

Since today is the glorious day of Rosalind's 9-month-mark, here's a little update on her.  She's the only thing that changes around here, anyway.

Today we went to the doctor and got her exact measurements, which I've been curious about for a while now, because this lady is a beast.  Anyway, it turns out she's just under 22 pounds and is almost 29 inches tall.  So there you go.  She still only has two teeth.  She still has rolls to end all rolls.  Actually that's a lie, I've seen way fatter babies.  But she doesn't smoke cigarettes, so at least there's that.  Does anybody know what I'm talking about?

Oh and her hair is getting thicker and longer.  She also has a couple of curls coming in behind each ear and it is the cutest. You can sort of see it in this picture except that it's blurry.

I promise it's curly.  I think this might be the only trait Sam contributed.

I also am trying new things with her diapers. I'm sure I am the only one that this interests. But we've decided to explore the world of prefolds and wool-- and in the meantime have found an absolutely fool-proof and leak-free solution for nighttime! Woohoo!

Prefolds are actually super easy to put on.  And way easier to get clean.  And are way cheaper. FYI.

Wool: the secret to no more nighttime diaper changes!

She can't crawl.  She can't army crawl.  She can't even really scoot-- just an inch or two.  She's certainly mobile though.  She rolls everywhere and gets into trouble discovering things, like cords and plugs and that the mirror will fall on your head and the distance to the floor via the edge of the couch (that was a scary episode for both of us).  In fact, Rosalind hasn't really changed much in the last 5 months or so, but she seems to be making up for it all in the past few days.  Story time!

This morning during breakfast of eggs and banana, I saw out of the corner of my eye that she was doing something with her hands, and lo and behold she was signing "more"!  That caught me off guard.  She did it one other time during the meal.  And she did actually mean "more" by it, I'm pretty sure, because she isn't very good at that sort of thing by accident. Even though she'll probably never do it again.

My little Jezebel.

A couple of days ago, she was standing up leaning against a little side table with a book in one hand.  She looked at the book, looked at her other hand, then pushed off the table and stood ALL BY HERSELF for a second while she transferred the book to the other hand!  Then I did a cartwheel (not).

Stand and deliver

She also apparently learned to clap as part of "Patty Cake" while I was at work yesterday, but we haven't been able to get her to replicate it.  And she also waves "hi" and "bye" (more often "bye") most of the time.  It usually takes coaxing, but she's done it completely on her own too. Here she is waving "hi" to Sam in a picture I sent him (he is away a lot).

All I said was "Say Hi to Dad" and she started me.

Other things of note to the nit-picky are that she thinks blowing your nose is hilarious, she still loves animals and most soft things, and tags (who doesn't), and going outside-- that's almost a guarantee to calm her down if she's ever upset.  She also picks at her teeth, which is actually really, really irritating.  She still doesn't like sleeping, but she's getting a little better at it.  She also loves food and eats everything we give her, even moderately spicy stuff.  Except raspberries.  Those are apparently too much for her.

Early mornings when Sam is gone, she comes to bed with me.

And now you know everything interesting in my life. Yay!

E'erbody's hands go up...and they stay there.

...And here she is squinting when I was waiving a flower in her face:

The end.