Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Day 7 - Fear

Day 7, Tuesday: The thing(s) you're most afraid of

After missing a couple of days (though, I did post about LASIK), I'm going to get back to the blog every day in May challenge to tell you a little about my fears.  In this previous post, I mentioned a little bit about that and how I deal with it.  Prayer and devotionals and scriptures are the best things for me when fear starts to take over. 

I'll just go ahead and be completely honest and admit that my biggest fear is that I will never have kids.  As irrational as it may be, you try being unmarried at 35 with no kids and tell me you don't have the same fear.  With Mother's Day fast approaching and people having babies all around, I have to try very hard to keep this fear in check.  I know that if it is God's will for me to have children, then I will.  Trouble is - I'm not fully clued in to God's will for me.  That's when my attempt at patience has to kick in.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding.
Proverbs 3:5

Monday, May 6, 2013

I Can See Clearly Now...

...thanks to the miracle of LASIK!  I'm now 4 days post-op and have 20/20 vision.  I have no clue what it was before, though.  For memory's sake, I would like to journal a little bit about the experience. 

Thursday, May 2 - LASIK.  My very generous sister, Brandi, graciously agreed to come stay with me and be my nurse/driver.  We arrived at the doctor's office at noon.  I had a series of test and exams, then waited what seemed like forever.  Thankfully, Brandi and I talked and kept each other entertained.  By that point, we were both starving.  I had eaten breakfast then a banana mid-morning and didn't eat lunch just in case something made me feel queasy.  Brandi was allowed to be in the exam room with me and even got to watch the surgery.  A little while before the surgery, an assistant came in with a Valium and a Tylenol.  I took those then went into a quiet, dark room to lie down and let the drugs do their thing.  After a while, the doctor came in to get me and took me to the surgery room.  I laid down on the table and they gave me a beany baby to hold.  At that point, I couldn't really tell if the Valium had kicked in or not.  I was feeling pretty anxious.  They started with my right eye.  Since I was awake, I could "see" everything they were doing.  As she was doing things, the doctor explained what was happening.  As I was "watching" what was happening on my right eye, I felt pretty sure that the Valium had not worked.  I was too aware of what was happening.  I had a death grip on that beany baby.  The doctor seemed to be taking a while doing something and said she was trying to "smooth out some bubbles."  She scraped my eye for what seemed like forever.  It finally stopped and they moved me over to prep the left eye.  I took a deep breath and the doctor asked if I was OK.  I said yes, but it must not have been believable.  She said "are you scared to death?" and I said yes!  I didn't know if I would make it through having the left eye done.  Thankfully, there wasn't the same bubble issue as the right eye and the left eye was done in no time.  They took me back into an exam room to sit for a few minutes and sent Brandi downstairs to the pharmacy to get my eye drops.  I pretty much just kept my eyes closed and, when I did open them, everything was hazy and bright.  The doctor came in for a quick check and said they had put a contact on my right eye to act as a bandage since there was so much work done on it.  They gave me another Valium to take when I got home and said just to try to sleep for the rest of the day.  They sent us on our way with instructions to come back at 8 am Friday morning. 

Brandi and I stopped at Dairy Queen on the way home.  We got some chicken fingers and fries to share.  Once we got back to my place, I took the other Valium and two Tylenol and went to bed.  It was about 3:15 pm.  By about 4 pm, I as awake and not doing too well.  My eyes were burning and hurting and watering profusely.  Nothing was helping.  I tried sitting up for a while with a cold cloth over my eyes.  That would soothe them for a second then the burning took over.  It really upset me and I was feeling very anxious.  Brandi called the doctor's office and told them what was happening.  They said it was all normal and the best thing would be for me to go to sleep.  Easy for them to say.  Brandi found some NyQuil in my medicine cabinet and told me to try that.  I took it and went to sleep.  Note to self:  Valium doesn't work well on you!  Brandi woke me up and while later and said it was time for drops.  It was 7:30!!  I was shocked that I had slept that long.  I was already feeling/seeing much better.  We did the drops, ate a little dinner that a friend brought over, then I went back to sleep.  I woke up at 10 pm and was feeling/seeing even better.  We did the drops again and I took some Benedryl to help make sure I would sleep.  I slept till about 7 am the next morning and woke up feeling/seeing great.  If only I had been able to sleep through that rough part, everything would have been perfect! 

Brandi and I headed back to the doctor's office for a checkup.  The doctor looked in both my eyes and said everything looked OK.  He did ask the assistant to get the surgeon to look at a "spot" on my left eye.  She came in to look.  She said it was OK to remove the contact on my right eye and that she needed to do something to that spot on the left eye.  The assistant put some sort of drop in my left eye and the doctor pressed (or something) to the spot.  She told me to stop by this morning for them to recheck that spot.  None of them were acting like it was a big deal, so I tried to just go with that attitude.  They added a 4th drop to my rotation and sent me on my way. 

I took it easy all weekend and put drops in continuously.  When I went back this morning, the spot on my left eye was fine.  There was some "loose tissue" on my right eye that the doctor scraped off.  Again, no one acted like it was a big deal so that's what I went with.  My right eye has felt a little weird, but maybe I'm just being overly sensitive about it.  I have to go back for another recheck on Thursday afternoon, so I will just continue with the drops and taking it easy until someone tells me to do otherwise. 

Overall, it's been an interesting experience not exactly as expected.  I think I would feel differently if the Valium had worked and the Thursday afternoon/evening experience had been a little different.  I would definitely do it again and recommend it - though, I would advise that you have something you are positive will make you relax and sleep. 

I'll update again after my next recheck.  Cheers to 20/20 vision!

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Day 4 - Favorite Quote

Day 4, Saturday: Favorite quote (from a person, from a book, etc) and why you love it

Oddly enough, my favorite quote is from the TV show Gilmore Girls.  I absolutely love that show and watch the re-runs on ABC Family all the time.  I'm in awe of Lorelei and Rory's relationship.  I would love to have that same type of relationship with a daughter someday.  Fingers crossed! 

The quote comes from one of the characters, Lane, who is being forced to go to a 7th Day Adventist college.  She says:

I'm going to look on the bright side, find the silver lining, and make myself some lemonade.

I think of this phrase all the time and remind myself to make the most of what seems like a bad situation.  Like when I mentioned in the post about myself, divorce was bad - but not the worst thing that could have ever happened.  When I sat a group of friends down to tell them the divorce news, one girl let out a huge sigh and said "Oh goodness, I thought you were about to tell us you have cancer or something."  Exactly - I'm still alive!

I also have a phrase of the day calendar and this was one of the messages:

So very true.  Hope has gotten me through some tough times. 

Friday, May 3, 2013

Day 3 - Comfort, or lack thereof

Day 3 - Things that make you uncomfortable

Another day in May, another blog post challenge.  Things that make me uncomfortable.....well, at this moment, that would be my pants.  I've put on a few pounds and everything is too tight.  I refuse to buy new clothes because I want to fit into the ones I have.   In an effort to do that, I'm doing pretty much nothing.  I'll go to the gym occasionally and eat healthy once in a while.  I know that I need to do both regularly and I have literally no excuse for not doing it.  Not sure why I can't get my head and my heart together on this.....any motivational tips or advice?  Donuts were brought into my office the other day and I ate an embarrassing number. 

On a completely different note, another thing that makes me uncomfortable is public nose blowing.  Especially if there is food present.  I don't get it.....who has to blow their nose so suddenly that they can step away a few feet from other people/food?  I have pretty severe allergies and blow my nose more than your average person.  I always easily get away to a bathroom or somewhere else for privacy.  Even when I'm at home, I go to a bathroom.  I don't even feel like this is a weird thing to be uncomfortable about.  There is an older man at my office who will blow his nose in the kitchen, walking down the hall, and even in meetings.  Craziness!!

What are some things that make you uncomfortable? 

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Day 2 - Educate Us - Tax Refunds

Day 2, Thursday: Educate us on something you know a lot about or are good at. Take any approach you'd like (serious and educational or funny and sarcastic)

Since I'm a tax nerd (see the girl in the glasses?), let's talk briefly about tax refunds.  But first, a disclaimer.  I am not giving you tax advice.  I do not claim to be any smarter than anyone else.  I will not do your tax returns for you.  Turbo Tax is good enough for me and it's good enough for you.   Now, read this carefully: 

Getting a big tax refund is not a good thing

I realize I've just blown a few minds, but it's true.  If you get a big tax refund every year from your tax return, you need to change something (most likely, contact your employer and adjust your withholding in your paycheck).  Most people don't like giving their hard earned cash to the government in any circumstance, but how about loaning a chunk of it to them interest free?  Wouldn't you rather have that money throughout the year to do with as you please rather than waiting till April 15th-ish for it?  

Now, having said all of that, I realize that people handle money differently.  If having your withholding a little high is your "saving" mechanism since you wouldn't otherwise save money, I think that's acceptable.  Many people fund vacations and home improvement projects this way.  However, don't do this if you don't need to.  It might take a little work to figure out, but it's worth it to be in control of your own money.  

The IRS, of all places, has a withholding calculator on their website that you can use.  Check it out!

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Day 1 - The Story of My Life

Day 1 - the story of your life in 250 words or less (or one paragraph... no one will be counting your words... probably)

I sincerely hope that no one is counting words or reading too closely - this is going to be a dull story....

Hi, I'm Cassie.  I was born and raised in small-town Alabama.  I moved from that small town, to college in Tuscaloosa (Roll Tide!), to begin work after college in Birmingham.  Except for a brief stint in Philadelphia, PA, those are the only places I've ever lived.  I enjoyed my time in Phila and am happy to have had the chance to experience living somewhere else.  Ultimately, though, being that far from home just wasn't for me.  I am an accountant and I work at a real estate company.  I have an older sister who is my best friend and two super cool nephews.  I am a Christian (Methodist) and am active in my church.  While I wish it wasn't an important detail, I feel that I must share that I am divorced.  I was married for almost 10 years and have been divorced about a year and a half.  I do not have any children.  I kid you not, divorce is the hardest thing I've ever gone through - which, if you think about it, is actually not that bad.  I survived it, learned from it, and moved past it.  I am strong-willed (stubborn), independent, loyal, and wear my emotions on my sleeve.   I love being with friends and family, but also treasure my down time.  Currently, I'm enjoying being done with busy/tax season and gearing up for a fun summer.  I love being at the beach or pool or lake and like to get in as many lounge chair naps as possible.

I think that's enough about me for now.  Day 1 done!  I'm excited to read others' posts about themselves.  Go check out the links on Jenni's blog.