16 January 2002
lawn is covered with leaves that have fallen off of the tree in the front yard. They lay
scattered about, each one having its own special look. They aren't the brilliant colors of
fall, but the dead, shriveled look of winter, but still they are everywhere, epecially
after the high winds we've had today.
That's kind of how this entry is writing itself--like falling leaves, each with its own
different look and its own different feel....and perhaps with a dead, shriveled look as
As I sit here, the chill of winter is seeping into my bones. I am wrapped up in a
jacket and my fingers have shriveled so much I've had to remove my engagement ring because
it doesn't fit on the fingers any more. Whether this is a winter thing or whether this is
my new slim fingers (after a whole week on my new eating regime) remains to be seen!
But speaking of that "new slim fingers," four and a half pounds does not make
a skinny me, but it is definitely a beginning. Today I went to my first weigh-in since
starting Weight Watchers last week and have lost 4½ lbs.
This new eating plan is so easy to stick with, especially since I don't care. I
care so little what the actual weight is that I don't even plan to wear
light-weight clothes or remove my shoes before stepping on the scale. I even wore heavier
shoes today (so maybe I lost more than 4½ lbs). The purpose of this new eating plan is
just that...a change in my eating habits, getting healthy, controlling my newly diagnosed
diabetes, getting my blood pressure under control (it's borderline), In the process weight
will inevitably come off, but that is not my #1 priority at the moment.
Regarding blood pressure, I've had a lot of dead women this week. Dr. G keeps asking me
to take blood pressures, and I keep not being able to detect anything. However, my patient
today had a prominent vein and I was sure I'd be able to get something out of that sucker,
and sure enough--there was a detectable blood pressure. I congratulated her on being the
first patient this week to live.
I am certainly learning strange things on this job. For one thing, I'm surprised at how
many women have breast augmentation. (I'm not sure why--they all look so phony--like
balloons with skin over them). But the pair that I saw yesterday were absolutely amazing.
The amazing thing was not the size or shape or appearance, it was that there was no scar.
Even Dr. G was surprised. He asked if it had been done by wishful thinking. The patient
explained that it was a new procedure where they go in through the naval, of all
things, and push a tube with some sort of pouch attached up the inside of the chest and
when it's put in place, they fill it. I can't quite imagine it, but it only took 40
minutes to do both breasts, she said, and I had to admit that as enlarged breasts go,
these were the nicest pair I've seen in my limited experience.
While I may be getting better at taking blood pressures, and bolder at checking out
body parts, outside of the exam room, I am a real wimp. I'm very disgruntled with the
woman whose job I have taken. She is still there, working for the nurse practitioner who
rents a room in the complex. When I began this job, I bought a pound of coffee beans to
put in the small refrigerator. It's French Roast and it costs $11 a pound. I have made 3
pots of coffee since October, but when I went to make some yesterday, there was almost
nothing left in the bag.
I discovered this on a day when she does not work, so I left a note for her saying I
didn't mind her using my coffee (not true), but I had purchased it myself and it was not
cheap and I would appreciate at least a contribution for use of the coffee.
She was in today and completely avoided me. Did not look at me, and raced out of the
office while I was on the phone. Did I confront her? Of course not. I am the biggest
wimp when it comes to confrontation.
But I certainly am not bringing any more coffee into the office, that's fer shur.
And from the pages of "What dumb thing has Steve Schalchlin talked Bev into doing
now?" I have agreed to go and see him playing the lead in The Last Session
next month. Now you may think that doesn't sound so dumb, but he's playing it in Rochester,
NY. Think about it. Rochester in February. Doesn't that sound just yummy? Oh, but it
gets better. I wasn't going to go after I found out it would cost me $500 for the week
end, but Steve found me an affordable fare. It involves four, count 'em--four,
plane changes. I leave here at 6 a.m. on Friday the 15th of February (which means I need
to be at the airport at 4 a.m., you realize). I fly from Sacramento to St. Louis, then
change planes for another flight to Baltimore. Change there for another flight to
Philadelphia and change planes in Philadelphia for the last leg to Rochester. I arrive at
11 p.m. Rochester time. I see the show on Saturday, and then do the whole trip in reverse
on Sunday, spending the entire day of my birthday changing planes and hop skipping across
At least Steve is planning a slumber party in his room for the night I'm there--which
should be fun, if people show up. If not it will just be the two of us and we'll have our
own slumber party. I think he definitely deserves a pillow or two tossed at him, don't