Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Saturday's Are for Sing-a-longs

Usually, in our apartment, Ambrose is in charge of the media. I get to make suggestions or pick the show, but only when he decides to give up the remote. Most Saturday mornings, we get a selection of electronic music from YouTube, because that's what he prefers to listen to.

But a few Saturdays ago, I managed to do a little takeover.

I had heard about the whole Tool vs Taylor Swift thing, and I decided I wanted to listen to some Tool. Rather than using YouTube, which would have required me to sign in, potentially wasting enough time to allow Ambrose to usurp the controls, I went to the Vevo app on the Roku player.  But for some reason, every time I tried to select a Tool video, the app crashed me back to the Roku homescreen.

So I listened to some other music, rock mostly, mostly from the late 90's. And then, when the groceries were all put up and it was clear that Ambrose was not going to steal the remote back, I did sign onto YouTube and finally listened to some Tool.

But I also listened to a bunch of other songs, and sang along. It was relaxing for me, and I'm thinking of making Saturday morning sing-a-longs a thing.

All I need to do is distract Ambrose while he's bringing in the groceries...

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Why Headache

I've been trying to figure out my headaches for a while now, and I think I might have reached, if not the answer, then an answer that should help me have less of them. I know that I have a lot of tension in my neck, especially on the left side. I know that I tend to have headaches on that side that radiate from my face down my neck, sometimes including the temple, sometimes including the right side, but mostly just a direct line from facial sinuses to neck and shoulder.

What I didn't know, until my husband told me a couple weeks ago, was that I've been grinding my teeth in my sleep. He insisted that I order a mouth guard online as soon as possible, and I did - though I was tempted to just wait until my dentist appointment the next week. Ambrose considers that the best mouth guards are the ones that you heat and mold to your own teeth, and that the ones from the dentist are probably a rip off.

On the other hand, I do have dental insurance so I might as well use it.

I readily believed Ambrose when he told me that he woke up to hear me loudly grinding my teeth. It's not only the headaches, but that for most of my life, my mom has worn a night guard because she grinds her teeth. I guess I get to blame her for it :)

When I did to go the dentist, it was time for a panographic x-ray. And that x-ray revealed that not only have I been grinding my teeth, resulting in some wear on the surfaces, but I've been grinding my jaw, resulting in a visible difference between my right and left side in the bones. As the hygienist pointed out, on the right, the bone was nice and round, while on the left it was narrower and pointier.

The dentist recommended going with a night guard from them because the one I had was chewy, and the tendency people have when something chewy is in their mouth is to chew it. That logic seemed sound to me, so I asked them to check with my insurance to see if I have coverage for a night guard.

Then, of course, I checked my coverage online, and after about 30 minutes of trying to figure out where I could view my actual dental coverage contract and what the technical term for a night guard is (occlusal guard, fancy), I found that I do have coverage for it, and that it will probably come out to paying the same as for a premium one I could buy online. It depends on how much my dentist charges. But it's nice the insurance will cover something.

Ambrose was pretty pleased with himself when I told him that the dentist had confirmed his suspicions about the teeth grinding. He's been calling me gnasher.

Since I've been wearing the mouth guard that the dentist doesn't approve of, I've been feeling better. Only one headache (on the day I went to the dentist). And it feels like the muscles on the left side of my neck are releasing some tension. And though the headaches haven't gone away completely yet, they don't feel quite as severe as before I started wearing the mouth guard overnight. I'm ready to take the plunge on the night guard, even if it means I'm turning out like my mom.

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Rain Coming Down

Last week, we had some thunderstorms. On Thursday night, just as Ambrose and I were getting ready for bed, the lights flickered on and off. For a moment, it was an annoyance. Then they flickered again, and finally faded. 

We could still hear the wind outside. The rain hadn't started falling yet, so I'm not sure why the power went out. Inside the apartment, it was eerily quiet and dark. You don't realize just how much electronic noise is going on around you until it is all silenced. No humming from the fridge or the computer. No whirring from the fans. I kind of liked it, though I was concerned about the food in the fridge and the freezer. 

I tried to check and see if Idaho Power had any information on the outage, but although I could pull up their website, it had no reported outages. I thought about making a report, but it was bedtime, so I plugged my phone into Ambrose's power bank and put it on my nightstand with two alarms set - just in case I slept through the 4:30 CrossFit wakeup call. The phone probably had enough battery to last overnight, but it was nice to be able to charge it up with the power bank. 

When I woke up during the night, I saw the power was back on, and although I don't like to wake up enough to check the time during the night, I did look at the phone time and the flashing clock time so I could guess that it had been out for about three hours. 

As I tried to fall back to sleep, I could hear noises. Something from outside. It slowly resolved into singing and drumming that I guess was from my neighbors. I didn't have the energy to get up and yell at them. Well, I wouldn't have yelled. Politely asked? Rudely asked. Yes, that's probably how I would have handled it. Instead, I wrapped my pillow around my ears and went back to sleep. 

The wind tore the cover off of our apartment's lamppost. 

These mushrooms sure liked the moisture.

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Diet Confusion

After my solo hike revealed that the bars I bought to have more fiber in my diet made me pretty sick when I abruptly started eating them again, I kind of started to toss my whole diet plan out the window.

What do I mean by kind of? Well, I'm not actively seeking out more fiber in my diet. But I have tossed some of the rules out the window. For example, Ambrose bought some black beans and coconut rice dehydrated meals for our Queens River trip. And I hadn't eaten beans for months because of the whole fiber elimination. But I did alright with them on that trip.

So I decided that I could have myself some blueberries from the farm stand. And I haven't been quite so strict with certain foods. I have found that fresh and frozen pineapple does not sit well with me, though the kind that comes on pizza seemed to do okay. And beer hasn't been giving me stomach problems either.

I am going to move forward with trying to have moderate fiber intake and see how my body does. If I find a food that doesn't sit well, I'll take note and avoid it. I didn't find that the low fiber diet was actually helping all that much. It seems more like I have to work on moderation and pay attention to what I ate recently when I have stomach trouble.

Overall, I feel a lot more in control when it comes to my stomach pain, even though I stopped tracking my food and bowel movements when I went on my solo trip and never really started back up. I'm pooping regularly enough and while I could probably be eating more healthily, I'm not overly concerned at this point with tracking. The tracking itself becomes a stressor and I'm going to try and avoid those as much as I can as the backpacking season has wound down and my opportunities to destress in nature become more limited.