By, Patty L. Fletcher
September 18 2016
I woke up early on Sunday with my heart pounding, and ears ringing. I knew before my feet ever hit the floor that if I did not get a handle on my stress level my blood pressure was going to go through the roof. I also knew that another outburst like the one I’d had the night before on social media could not under any circumstances happen again.
I’d been working extremely hard to clean up my image. The last few years had taken a real toll on that, and I was not going to do myself any favors if I slid back into that old pissed off argumentative attitude.
When I finally sat up and stretched, Campbell, who had been curled on the foot of my bed, when he was not snuggling with me throughout the night, leapt down and snuffed at me. I turned and said playfully, “What?” He pounced forward on his front paws, making a stomping sound on the floor, and barked a playful happy bark at me. We had the house to ourselves, and he was enjoying the heck out of it. I have to say that went a long way toward getting me thinking in the right direction. I knew I had to pull myself out of this funk I was in. I was determined not to let myself get all worked up over the last couple of days. The issues I’d had on Friday had somehow really upset me. The way the whole thing happened really had messed with my psyche, and I was going to have to put forth a bit of effort to bring myself up to where I’d been on that Friday morning.
As we went through our morning routine together I began to really feel badly. My head continued to pound with every heartbeat, and I was sweating and feeling just a tad bit feverish. I knew these were all signs that my blood pressure was up. I managed to get a cup of coffee after I’d fed Campbell and taken him out, but I was still feeling so very tired. Finally after I’d looked through some email and Facebook postings, I decided I needed to simply lie down and meditate. I knew I needed to relax, and maybe even go back to sleep for a while. Campbell had already done just that, so I decided to join him.
I curled up on the bed, and after rearranging my pillows, so I could lie at the foot of the bed with him I began to listen to soft meditation music and work toward slowing my breathing. As I wrapped my arm around Campbell he sighed, and soon we were breathing in perfect slow rhythm with one another. After a while I truly began to relax, and as the 30 minute meditation track cut off, I was drifting away.
About an hour or so later I woke, and was feeling somewhat better. My head had stopped pounding with every beat of my heart, and I no longer had that hot sweaty feverish feeling. My ears had stopped ringing, and I thought the day might have some hope in it after all.
I made my way first to the bathroom, and then the kitchen. I got a big glass of water, and stood at the sink drinking it. Then I ate a hand full of grapes, and poured another cup of coffee for myself, and made my way to my favorite chair. I sat drinking my coffee, and going through more email and Facebook postings, and soon was beginning to feel hungry. I made myself a bowl of cereal and after eating it and listening to a couple of chapters from a book I was reading, I made my way outside.
Just as I was beginning to settle in and enjoy my book, I heard Campbell’s bell ringing.
“Dang! Just like a kid. You think you’ve got a few minutes to rest, and Poof! They’re back up and at’em again. Campbell and I are close, and he requires a lot of my attention, and although there are some who say I spend too much time with him, and I’ve even had one person tell me that the fact that Campbell doesn’t like to be separated from me is sad, I think it is great that he loves me so, and wants to be with me as he does. I think it makes him do his job much better because he cares about the one he is guiding, but who am I?
I went to the door and called to Campbell. He came trotting across the room and poked his head through the open door at me, licking my hands all over as I reached for him. We loved together for a few moments, and soon he was snorting at me and letting me know he needed to go out.
I came inside, and deciding I wanted something sweet to eat said, “Just a minute Bubba I want to put a pop tart in the toaster oven.” I went quickly to the kitchen and after putting a pop tart into the toaster oven we were off. As we made our way happily round the house he scented the air. There was an awesome breeze, and Siri told me it was 77 degrees out. It was cloudy and it felt wonderful. We began to really enjoy the cool breeze and the lack of burning hot sun.
As we walked I began to sing. I was trying to write a new verse to the song I’d put into Bubba Tails From the Puppy Nursery At The Seeing Eye (Seen here on this blog) I would soon be writing a new section of that series and needed it to be just right. I became totally involved with that, as well as playing with Campbell as we went along. Soon he’d finished doing his business and we were headed back inside. I smiled as I thought of just how horrible I’d felt not but a few hours ago, and thanks to a bit of relaxation with my pup, some breakfast, and a walk my mood was truly starting to pick up a bit, and I was sure that my blood pressure was dropping.
As we reached the driveway I smelled a funny smell, and suddenly remembered the pop tart I’d put into the toaster oven a few minutes earlier. “Well, Bubba I believe all I have managed to do is make Chocolate Charcoal.” I laughed as we went inside and said, “You know? I don’t guess I really needed that anyhow. I really need to eat more healthily, and if I am going to donate even one day a week I should really watch what I eat and drink more carefully. Who knows? I might lose some more weight, and this will surely help keep my blood pressure in check. Long as no one else gives me crap about my dog.”
So instead of a pop tart I decided to simply have another glass of water and leave off the sugary sweets for now. My meals on wheels would be here soon and there were always cookies or some kind of cake in the Sunday ones so I decided I’d just wait for it.
After a time I decided a bath was in order, and so I made my way to the bathroom. After starting my water, and casting the morning prayers, I went to find clothes for when I was done. I picked out an old frumpy T-shirt, and jeans, and made my way back into the bathroom, leaving my phone lying on the dresser as I went. I decided I’d continue my prayers and meditation in the tub. I was not disappointed with the result I got, but at first it was very hard to put the events of the last couple of days out of my mind. As I sat in the water trying to relax while taking slow deep breaths I remembered something I’d read about simply allowing your mind to do is it will, and that once the thoughts that were troubling you had been purged you would be able to truly relax into your meditation work, and so I decided to give it a try. I leaned back against the tub behind me, stretched out my legs and simply ran through everything that had happened to cause all this upset, and how it had made me feel.
Flash Back To September 16 2016
I went to our plasma center here in town to donate for the first time. Upon arrival I learned that it would be noon before they could
Receive any new donors. Please? Keep in mind that I had the dog with me when I asked about donating to begin with. They simply told me to have a seat and
Come back to the window at 12 and they asked not one question concerning the dog!
Thinking nothing was out of the ordinary I went and took a seat as told. When I came back to the counter at noon I was immediately asked if I had proof
Of Campbell’s authenticity. I explained to them that I needed no proof told them the two questions that they could ask and waited for them to ask them.
They however did not do that. Instead they chose to send their assistant manager and a nurse out to remove me from line and take me into an office. Once
There I again explained the law to them and they again argued with me. Finally when I saw I was getting nowhere I called The Seeing Eye. Asked to speak
To our advocate and when she came on the line I let her know of the situation and ask how I should proceed. She had some information on a similar issue
With another similar plasma center and a settlement which she passed on to me and I passed onto them. Finally, after much discussion and round
And round bowl shit during which I never lost my temper raise my voice or said one nasty word I was allowed to continue. Once I was away from the administration
Things went well Campbell and I were treated very well, and I left about an hour or so later
Back To Sunday
After about 30 minutes or so in a good hot tub, and some great prayers, and meditation time I was really starting to feel lots better.
When I got out of the tub and dried and dressed, I decided I needed just a bit more to eat. Making my way back into the kitchen with Campbell hot on my heels I rummaged round in the fridge until I came upon a half eaten cantelope. I cut and pealed the remaining half and cubed it up into a bowl. After this was done, I poured myself yet another glass of water and made my way back into the living room with a book ready to read and Campbell trailing behind in hopes of a bite or two.
As he and I sat together with me reading and eating, and giving him tiny bits of the fruit, I truly began to feel even better than before. I knew things were going to be OK for me. I’d simply gotten myself all worked up over the last few days and the events told of in ‘Bubba Tails the King Speaks (also seen on this blog). And it was time to really work toward bringing myself back up to a good level both physically and psychiatrically. I was determined to not let myself become as upset as I had the previous night, and I was doubly determined to not slip back into my old angry patterns.
I decided that if I were going to donate Plasma that I was going to use it just like everything else. As a positive tool for great things to happen in my life. I knew that this could be healthy both physically and mentally. To be truly successful with donating I needed to avoid fatty foods, drink lots of water and eat things like fruits and vegetables. I was going to make this work to my advantage in more ways than just financially. I also knew that I needed to recover myself socially as well. I decided that I would publically apologize again, and make a true effort to be kind and peaceful for the entire day. I decided that I was going to enjoy my quiet time in the house, and writing was in the near future.
So here I am. Writing and hoping to make it a great day. I know it is my responsibility to do so and that no one person can make it bad. My reactions to others, decisions etc would determine how my day went, and it indeed did turn out great. My roommate Victoria and I put our money and skills together and made a great dinner and desert, and we all enjoyed a rather pleasant evening. I was a bit stressed due to a writing project I had to do but otherwise the meditation and mindfulness work I’d done earlier in the day had done the trick. I was hopeful of a great Monday to come, and as I got ready for bed late on that Sunday night I found I was beginning to feel more and more like my old self.
September 19 2016
I woke early on Monday morning once again feeling well, and like it would be a great day. My friend Janeen and I were to meet and go back to the plasma center to donate, and then I planned to treat her to lunch. I spent the morning as usual, drinking coffee and reading email and Facebook posts, as well as listening to the morning news. Once I’d had a good breakfast, and nice hot shower, I got Campbell awake, and we were on our way.
Soon Campbell and I had made our way to the bus stop, and when we climbed onto the bus a few minutes later we were both happy to find that our friend Janeen, one of our very most treasured friends was already on and waiting for us. We chatted a bit, and I soon realized that we were both feeling a bit nervous about what might or might not happen when we got to the center. I have to tell you that the fact that she was willing to go back there with me really was a great comfort, and is to me a fabulous gift. When we got there we found we had nothing to worry about at all. They were more than willing to assist me, and soon I was all signed in and ready to begin. Everyone did all they should have and more. The procedure went without a hitch until I tried to leave.
When the donation process was over I simply lie still a few moments letting my body take its time getting regulated again. Then I slowly sat up and spent a moment or two petting Campbell and chatting with the lady who was assisting me. Other than feeling a bit tired, which is to be expected after such a procedure as a plasma draw, as well as feeling so very hungry I was almost ready to take a bite out of Campbell I felt fine, So I expected no trouble at all. That as is sometimes the case for me was not to be. Just as I was getting ready to catch the bus the bottom dropped out of my blood sugar. At first I thought that the bit of nausea I felt was from the Anti-Clotting agent that they gave me during the procedure, but very quickly we both realized that was not at all the case. I’d begun to sweat and shake, and was feeling rather weak. My friend went and got help and soon the staff was there, and taking me back to the center. I healed Campbell and walked with one of them on either side of me, and as we walked I began to become very weak and continued to sweat. As we went they placed ice packs on my neck and back and as we came to the center door someone was bringing a wheel chair out, and soon I’d handed Campbell off to one of them and was allowing them to push me the rest of the way. At first Campbell was a bit unsure of just what was going on, and what to do, but I coaxed him along from the chair, and I truly believe having him to focus on helped me to keep from passing out. For this, I have to say I was truly thankful.
We made our way into a quiet room, and soon they were busy getting liquids into me, and I ate a pack of peanut butter crackers. After a bit I began to feel better, and after they got my sugar back to a reasonable level one of the staff drove me to meet my partner in crime at Burger King. The funniest thing that happened was when Campbell discovered he could move the wheel chair. He thought it was great fun to stand up and walk forward or Belly creep and make my chair roll, and even though I corrected him for it, I found it to be a welcome bit of humor during a rather embarrassing and frightening time.
The doctor on staff will order fluids after my draw from now on, and I have been advised to have my doctor do a thorough check of my blood sugar when I see him next. I have an appointment with him on the 8 of October, and I can promise I will not forget to have this done.
I have to tell you the way I felt during that event was quite disconcerting. I have had my sugar drop before, but never quite in that way. I’m sure I was a bit dehydrated as well. I don’t think we realize sometimes just how much water is in our bodies and how important it is to keep ourselves really hydrated, especially during the summer months. I have become more aware of my body during these past few days, and again I feel this has been yet another step in my becoming more mindful, and will help me as I continue my journey to being as well as I can possibly be.
I was very pleased with all they did for me, and I made very sure to let them know.
I also was able to hand out info about The Seeing Eye, and answer some questions before and during the procedure, and even with the bit of sickness I endured I feel it was an extremely good outcome after all.