Monday, 31 October 2011

ok... sort of

Well, a few days have gone by since I wrote out my heart.

I still feel disappointed by people, and it was made even clearer when I saw everyone on Sunday.

'friend' didn't bother coming up to see me. J or L didn't bother either. However, because I turned up on my crutch, pale as a vampire, a lot of other people said hi, and asked how I was.

That helped me a bit.

Today I have already had a good heart to heart with a lovely friend who I often overlook. She is someone I can always speak to, have a good old rant and a cry and everything. It is M who starred in this blog right back at the beginning when she asked me about talking her kids out of school and homeschooling in general.

It was M who I ha the 2 beetroot and cheese rolls with at the beginning of my weight loss journey and the beginning of this blog back in 2005.

M is a very busy woman, and she flies about all over the place and flits here and there, but she is solid. I called her this morning and said I needed a friend and you know what, I talked it all through and she said she had also felt exactly the same. We even went deeper into things that I can't be bothered to write here - little ins and outs of people and their characters as she has known them a lot longer than me etc.

We both had a cry together. We both sat for 2 hours but in the end it comes back to the fact that we all have to find out place. sometimes our place changes and we need to find a new one.

I said to DH last night that it's a bit like going to a charity dinner. There are loads of people on your table and you find the people who you are sat next too and who seemed nice during the first course have bored you to death, so you just move seats and strike up with others.

I think that's the way to play it.

Will write more later as got to go to work soon and am busy cooking a mac & cheese meal for one of my pupils families. Their Mum is having chemo at the moment so I said I would bring a meal for them every Monday when I come to do their piano lessons.



Thursday, 27 October 2011

Dinner Debate

Just trying to decide what to have for dinner tonight.

I have made a batch of brinjal bhaji which is currently slow cooking in the oven. It's quite involved and uses a heck of a lot of oil, which you then strain on at the end, but even so it seems a bit toe curling to use that much oil to start with.

Because of it's time consuming nature, all the different spices, different stages of frying, blending, frying again, chopping and tasting here and there, I am loathe to give it away.

I want that baby for me. I can portion it up and its good band food - even with the oil.

The other option is courgette gratin and roast chicken.

I can get DH to get a roast chicken from Tesco and then we can just serve it on up with the gratin. Courgette cooked in this way is the only way in my opinion. My mum used to chop them up and boil them.

Oh crikey. Awful.

So yeah, they haven't exactly been one of my favorite veg since then. I have 10 of the things though, so I need to cook them. One is half rotten already so I have minus days to use them up.

My recipe is this:

(quantities as per your own fancy!)
1 packet of stuffing mix - Paxo or own brand - which ever - but the sage and onion one or the apple one that you can get around this time of year is also great.
10 or so courgettes
cheddar cheese
butter
salt and pepper.

You actually grate the courgette unto a big bowl. Put in the salt and pepper and mix it all up. Add grated cheese and mix it all in. Make the stuffing in a bowl with boiling water and the butter and then dump in to the courgette cheddar mess and mix.

Put it in large greased glass oven dish - so its about 1.5inches deep all over the dish - sprinkle on a bit more cheese and then back for 20 mins or so until its brown and crispy on top.

This is so unbelievably yummy, cheap and simple you can go wrong.

Ok, I have decided. That's what we are gonna have. I will take a photo when its done.

Today has been very boring. I have had 2 cups of ginger tea. Yum. 1 cuppa soup. One triangle of toblerone (25g) And that's it.

I have bummed around on facebook wasting my life and then I have cleared the kitchen up a bit. I ponced around with the aubergines to make the brinjal bhaji (aubergine/egg plant) for a bit too.

I went back on facebook and deleted my sons account. I have a facebook account that we can all use, so it's better that way. If he wants to talk to someone they can add me and then I can be the all seeing one in the family once again. This was his idea by the way. Freaky. I can't understand it sometimes.

Yesterday, someone added my Darling Son. He already has an alias (no way is he having his real name out there) and there is no one else on the whole of facebook called this alias fake name. He also doesn't have his real photo. Naturally! So this kid added my son. He doesn't even know who it is - obviously - because it is one of the kids who hurls abuse at my son on every occasion and is a horrible little bully. So DS said he can't be bothered with it and its more hassle than use.

Cool.

Band.... hmmm I Get the feeling Albert is not going to toe the line well today for some reason. I can kind of feel him in there which is never a good sign. We shall see.


Wednesday, 26 October 2011

New housemate etc

* Note - I will refer to the word E A R as 'Earole' throughout for security reasons that will become apparent if this gets googled ever!*

Today we had someone come and look at the room and she seems really really nice. She is only 18 and just leaving her Mum's wings and her Mum was also happy that although she was moving out, at least she wasn't moving into a doss house, and that there was a family here and that she would get regular meals!!

Our current lodger has only been here for 4 weeks and lost her job last Friday. She was sacked for using MSN at work can you believe. I am sure there were other things, but that was the biggy.

I felt so bad for her. She really has had a horrible run of it, and it sucks.

Since Al the weird German doctor left (THANKS BE!) in April we have had Stevie for 10 weeks then he moved in with his girlfriend. Then we had 2 dodgy dodgy plumbers for 6 weeks and then Bon for 4 weeks. It will be good if the new girl is here for a while as I don't think I can take the stress!

When we advertised the room yesterday I really didn't think it would be filled so quickly! We had 5 people coming to view and the first one took it. When we were advertising back in April when Al left there was hardly any bites to my ads. Then again in July I didn't bother advertising as I thought I would have a rest for a few weeks. TB rang me though and said she had 2 plumbers from up north wanting a room for 4 weeks while they were on a job. I thought what the hell, hiked the price up and they took it. Brill thought I.

Wrong.

Oh wow. They stank man. They were unbelievable filthy swines.

The eldest one smoked and stank of fags and Boss White or whatever crap they use while plumbing. They got wrecked 3 or 4 times a week down the pub and they were both proper filthy too. Older plumber had a chronic problem with his Earole which made the entrance to it the size of a 10p piece. It was packed with tissues - mine by the way - and slathered over with Vaseline and looked incredibly painful, puss ridden, raw and red. I can't quite describe how awful it looked. It was most definitely 'sign you off work for months' kind of a trauma if you get me? Critical.

They were very quiet the first night. They came in, paid me and went upstairs. The shower went on and that was it.

Sweet thinks I.

The first morning though - the whole house was wide awake with the Older plumber's death rattle. He was hawking his absolute lung linings up. Cough cough cough, choke, splutter. Only a lung cancer victim at deaths door - my grandfather being one - I am sure could make such a row. Actually, I think it was worse that either of my grandfathers ever were.

He was a heavy smoker, only 42yrs old and making that kind of noise! When you consider his Earole tribulation too? Jeeez it would send me to the hospital pronto!

Each and every morning was the same.

In the evenings, the young one had a shower and went to bed.

The older one didn't bother. He had his shower in the morning.

This did not concern me overly, although I did think it was a bit rank - but then again - they were men sharing a room without their WAGS on a building site all day long working 12 hr shifts. It was only when they moved out that I realised the error of his ways.

Things started going a bit Pete Tong pretty much instantly.

The first problems were when the toilet rolls disappeared on a twice daily basis. My kitchen roll vanished rapidly too. So did my kitchen foil, coffee and tea bags  - all of which I let people use but have never seen such rapid depletion.

I hid the foil, and the coffee (which they are NOT supposed to use as they should flaming well get there own), the shower gel and kitchen roll. The toilet roll got changed to tesco value and vanished at the same, but therefore much cheaper, rate.

I also seemed have to be cleaning the bathroom on a daily basis. I don't mean just tidying up, I mean proper cleaning. Dusting, mirror wiping, scrubbing floors and washing the whole toilet inside and out. The sink seemed imperceptibly covered in a fine film of grime daily. Even the window sill seemed to be more dusty.

To be fair to them, I had to do this about 2 or 3 times a week before they arrived. I put it down to just one of those things, although it always bothered me a little in the back of my mind that I was doing it more that I used to.

I was sure that before Al had arrived, I only did a thorough cleanse once a week (if that - I am not that house proud). I figured maybe Sue used to clean the bog - she often helped around the house so, maybe that was why.

It wasn't until Bon arrived that I suddenly found my cleaning didn't need doing. It was clean on day 2, day 3 and even after a week there was no need to scrub the place.

I realised that actually it is having an extra male in the house that makes the mess. Since Sue left (when I didn't have to clean much) we have had males at all times. Al for 1 year, then Stevie and then the 2 plumbers. Having that extra male presence with 2 plumbers made it even more begrimed!

So, yeah they were filth bags, but shoot I was being paid for it.

There were also assorted oddments such as:
In our bathroom there is a little box on the ceiling where we used to have an electric shower on the wall. You used to have to pull the cord on this box to turn on the electric to heat the water... you know the kind of thing. Well, we changed our shower to a thermostatic one and therefore the little box was redundant, but as we had only just had the ceiling re-plastered, we left it up there and chopped off the cord nice and short so it wasn't dangling any more and no one would pull it.

Well I was sitting on the bog one day and happened to notice the little red light flickering on the box. someone had turned it on!

DS didn't do it, Charlotte didn't do it. DH didn't do it and I certainly didn't do it!

I turned it off and left it at that.

Then our front security light didn't go on. Someone had switched off the switch which is high up in the front room out of the way. You would have no reason to play with this stuff.


The lock on the bathroom door was near busted off its hinges. The toilet roll holder was bent so now it doesn't stand up right.

Loads of Crap like this.

Polergeist I hear you ask?
Anyway, other things started happening in the bathroom. In the mornings, after we were awakened by Older Plumber dying daily in the bathroom for 20 minutes at 6am, we used to get up and use the loo.

We had a venetian blind in there. White. Wooden. Nice. Always able to have the sunlight in, but keep peeping neighbours from enjoying the view whilst you shower. We always had the little fan light window open a little to let steam out and have never found this a problem. We have never needed to open it fully right up to its full ratchet, nor have we ever needed to pull the blind up completely and leave the strings dangling on the floor and in the bath/sink/wrapped in the toothbrushes.

This was the state of affairs we found ourselves in on most days.

Here's a pic of our bathroom so you can see what I mean


You can see that next to the mirror, we have a little metal enamelled bathroom ornament of a lady in a bath, then below that are the toothbrushes in a toothbrush holder. The strings that operate the blind hang neatly behind there.

So when I came into the bathroom and saw the blind right up, the window open full ratchet and the strings dangling all over the place and my toothbrishes practicing some kind of bondage, I was flummoxed. I wondered if they needed more light to shave, squeeze their spots, get some air because of the death rattle... I mean, there was no need to open the window wider when you have a shower as it never steams up in there... there just didn't seem to be a reason. It wasn't as if he was even taking in the view as the window is etched to obscure people looking in.

So each morning, I would yank with all my might to close the window, and untangle the cords from my ornament and the toothbrushes and pull the blind down again.

It was a few days later we found out what was going on.

The anus had been smoking in the bathroom!

We were doing DH's tax return and were sitting in the office for ages and ages and it got to like 3 am before we decided to take a break. We made a coffee and sat on the sofa for a bit when I smelled smoke.

I used to smoke years ago, and thankfully have not turned into a sanctimonius smug ex-smoker who tells everyone else they should stop. I frankly don't care what other people do and am just glad I dont want a fag now. I am richer by £40 a week most probably - not that I noticed that bonus ever - I am so over it I could sit in a car with the windows up and you could blow smoke in my face and I couldn't give a monkeys or ever be induced to put a fag to my lips ever again.

Now, because we dont smoke, we advertise our room as no smoking. We have found that most of the people who answer our ads as a non smoker on their profile actually lie however.

After we inevitably find out that they do indeed smoke, we just let em go outside. I dont mind this at all. I couldn't care less about someone smoking outside - Older plumber was aware of this and did it often, sitting talking to his wife and kids etc. on my patio having a smoke most evenings. I was pretty sure that it was fairly obvious that smoking in the bathroom of all places was a no no.

The lazy sod didn't bother coming downstairs to have a fag - he was getting up at 3am and having one in the bathroom instead!

We are usually late birds, but 3am is very late for us.

I said to DH "I can smell fags" and ran upstairs and it STANK. He had had a fag, shut the door and then gone back in his room and let it fester with the window wide open. There was even fag ash in the sink and a butt tucked behind the mirror! He obviously retrieved these in the mornings.

I went about house a bit and made some noise about fags, which they would definitely have heard, and how it stank upstairs etc and I went and got the key to the bathroom window and locked the thing.

That was the last time the blind was up so that had obviously been going on for weeks.

I was incensed. How DARE he. Now, ordinarily I would have said something to the bloke, but for some reason I didn't trust them. I just had that feeling about them (the wierd little things that he was obviously touching around the house and fiddling with being part of the circle of mistrust) and I told them our new lodger was moving in a week sooner than she was to get rid of them.

There were various other issues, but they were going, and that was what I cared most about.

They left and I went up to clean their room so that it would be ready when Bon wanted to come. My Mum and Dad were coming up to stay for a few days too which was nice as they usually have to have our bed and we sleep on the floor in the front room - not good.

Now, I had seen those guys wash their stuff. I have seen the distinctive orange bedclothes go round and round in the washing machine a few times so I knew that even though they were filthy from work on site, and one of them was also rank and diseased, they did at least wash their clothes and bed clothes. It must be difficult being on site, no wives about, pretty crap.

Well... obviously only ONE of the filthy ingrates had!!!!!

I should have taken photos.

This is the bedroom after I had cleansed it:


To accommodate 2 people in this room the desk you see was put into the large wardrobe you can't quite see on the right. The towel rail was removed and put on the landing. The chest of drawers was wheeled into the gap where the towel rail was and then a camp bed was put along the wall on the right.

It was a camp bed, but I made it really comfy for them with a 12tog double duvet folded up on the bottom, then another duvet as extra padding followed by normal sheets on top and then the usual bedding. It was basically then a very narrow but comfortable cot bed. They had absolutely no complaints and one slept in the double bed and the other on the cot. I think they were going to swap - one week on the cot, one week in the bed, that kind of thing, but in the end Older Plumber slept on the cot for 6 weeks.

When I cleared Younger plumber's bed it was nice and clean, the sheets were freshly washed and it was no problem.

Older plumbers bed was unbelievable.

Now, this is totally god's honest truth.

The bed was made. I pulled back the duvet and it revealed a dark brown sheet - the colour of coffee - fading to paler brown on the parts he slept less on.

The underneath of the duvet was spattered with blood and puss stains and there were several cotton buds covered in puss and blood and gunk from his Earole catastrophy.

The pillow was redecorated with stain on stain on stain from where his aural cavern had evidently leaked juice over the last 6 weeks. There was blood, watery stains, grease from the Vaseline and chunks of stuff matted into it.

DS and I stared at it in disbelief.

I told him to go downstairs and get me bin liners and the disposable rubber gloves and the dettol spray.

When I was suitably clothed for the event, I rolled up the duvet, in the duvet cover, and put it in a dustbin bag.

I picked up the pillow to dispose of that too and it was hard. It was actually as stiff as a board from the effluent from his Earole and had soaked and dried multiple times into the pillow over the last 6 weeks.

Trying to stop myself from gagging, I put the other pillow straight in the bin too.

He hadn't even bothered to turn it over or use another pillow. He just slept on it, night after night. I guess for me that was a small mercy.

I stripped the top sheet and that went in the bin directly too.

The sheet underneath, which I had used to cover over and kind of hold together the makeshift duvet mattress, was I realised, my Egyptian cotton bed sheet from my own bed.

I was in a quandry. It had small flecks of blood on it, but if I boil washed it in bleach, would it come clean? If it did come clean could I use it anyway? It cost me £30 for that sheet and I was gutted. Why had I used it????

I opted for the bin.

The duvet underneath my egyptian cotton holding sheet was in a duvet cover and was clean. It just.. you know.. needed a wash.

I put that in another bin liner earmarked for bleach bath and boil washing just in case. I changed my mind later trust me.

The big fat double duvet underneath that which I had used for the bulk padding was next to useless anyway. It was one of the duvets DS uses to make tents and dens in the garden or sunbathe on and it was a bit shredded so I decided to bin it at any rate, filthy or not.

I started to roll it up when I noticed wetness and a horrible horrible smell. It was soaking. From sweat. The bottom of the camp bed was waterproofed, obviously, as it was a camp bed. This meant that because the scummy deadbeat had never changed his sheets or aired his bed it was wet on the bottom. The more I rolled, I saw mold and more mold on the camp bed etc and the whole chunky duvet was just full on damp.

Then I noticed something else - it looked like the remains of chicken chow mein.

Oh! My bad!! It WAS chicken chow mein.

What on EARTH?????

There was, no joke, about 2 tablespoons of chicken chow mein underneath the entire bed between the camp bed canvas and the double duvet padding.

Let me run through the layers again incase you were lost dear reader...
Under the duvet, was a polycotton bed sheet.
Under the polycotton bed sheet was my expensive egyptian cotton sheet.
Under the expensive egyptian cotton sheet was a thin duvet in a cover.
Under the thin duvet in a cover was a big fat double duvet (folded double)
and
Under the big fat double duvet (folded double) there was freaking chicken chow mein.

Chicken chow mein in a bed.

Old

Been there a while.


Marinating in a manky Geordies juices.

At this stage I was, I think, in shock.

How in heaven's name did chicken chow mein get between his bed? How? Seriously?

So you know what I did? I picked up all that bedding, all the chow mein and the camp bed it was on, lobbed it all in double black bags and took it all down the dump.

If only it ended there...

Under the camp bed there was various debris. More cotton buds where he had raked his contaminated cavity out. Umpteen empty cardboard toilet rolls, tissues and tissues and tissues all covered in a rusty coloured chunky horror....

There was a coffee stain on the brand new carpet and a staggering general assortment of refuse for just 6 weeks.

I used 1001 disinfectant carpet spray all over where the hobbit had been sleeping. I also had to wash the walls around where the cot had been because there were smear marks and specks of what I think were aural splatter. I bleached all the walls and around the light switch, door handles and all areas he could have touched.

I dettol sprayed the telly remote control and the little cupboard too.

I cleansed the bathroom top to bottom with bleach and elbow grease and then I had a very very hot shower with carbolic soap!

I was immensely glad that I got rid of them a week early. It could barely have been worse, but I still shudder to think what it would have been like after another week of puss dripping.

When Bon moved in it was like a breath of fresh air in the place. Sweet girl, and lovely to talk to, nice boyfriend etc and generally a restful peace fell on the house. I have already mentioned the fact that I only have to clean the bog once a week now too - so that was also a bonus.

So, sad to see her go, but now we have a new girl. I hope she will be very very happy here.

So ends the story of the 2 Plumbers from up north.

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

1 Year anniversary of my "Window Re-Opening"

Crikey, I can't believe it's been a year since I decided to get myself together.

I have been pretty bad ALL year with my eating, but still managed to lose 11kgs. Practically every month saw a loss which is all I care about!

I know I could have done better, but I didn't.

Hundred of reasons, but the main one being I love wine and take away food too much.

A lot of my time these days I spend drinking nothing before midday (cos I am never up before then) and then drinking tea until about 2pm. Then I grab a couple of cuppa soups around 2-3pm - Mushroom and Chicken and veg being my faves -  and then dinner from 8pm onwards.

I say 8pm onwards because on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday I don't get home until 10pm and at that time I have to then come in, clear up the carnage that no one else bothered to clear up and then finish off my work by updating my files etc before I forget. On a good day, I then have to have several cups of tea - usually a BIG pot - before I can feel the band freely letting fluid pass before I take a bite of whatever has been left for me. This is usually about 11pm. Then it takes me until 11:30 on a good day to eat the dinner. On a bad day it's gone midnight as sometimes the tea drinking doesnt start off too good.

On a bad day I can feel the first glurp of tea sit on my band. If I have it nice and hot it usually goes through and melts whatever gunk is in there although, there seems to be a critical temperature! If it's cold or luke warm then it will glerk. Then I stand between the kitchen and the living room snatching some TV while I constantly microwave and re microwave cups of tea until it starts to move.

I also should mention that it's not possible to sit down during the tea loading stage of my evening. I can only sit down once I can feel the fluid moving. I also have to be 'sans bras'. If, for instance, we are out for dinner, then I have to stand up to drink and eat. Food does not pass through my band if I have a bra on. Sucks to be me.

Anyway, back to a Bad Day - It is often the case that I have to spew the first 4 or 5 sips - and normally this produces a lot of bubbly spittle too which is obviously blocking everything up.  Then get a nice hot cuppa (38 seconds seems to be ideal!! LOL I wish I was joking!) and things start to roll.

I find the band is a constant battle to be honest.

Now I know what you are all thinking. TOO TIGHT!!!!!!!!!!!!

I'm sure I'm not.

Sometimes - rarely but not that rarely - I can eat anything. Drink goes without me noticing, food goes though. Sandwich, pizza, burger, roast dinner etc...

If I had fluid out, I could eat all day long and therefore I would put on weight. If I leave it like it is, hopefully as I lose weight it might get looser.

I am avoiding slider foods so thats at least a step forward from all the currys and stews I used to live on!

We shall see. If I try and behave myself a bit more things might improve. I am off on holiday 2 months today, so I have 8 weeks to be size 8. It's obviously a totally achievable goal! HA!

No, seriously though, I might make it to a size 20 before I go, that would be good and mean I can wear the swimming costume I wore to Sri Lanka which was lovely. I also didnt mind wearing a bikini at that size either, so I would be very glad to lose a couple of kgs before then.

So that's it. Same old crappy crap. But I'm still here. :)

Onto other things, as the lap band theme is getting lame.

My health is a serious cause of concern. You all know I have Cutaneous Lupus (and an off on relationship with SLE too), but I now have another couple of joys.

My foot pain that has stopped me going to the gym - initially diagnosed in June as a Morton's Neuroma - is still nowhere to being resloved. They are thinking that it is actually lupus attacking the nerves in something called a Mononuropathy - or as I like to put it - 1 sick nerve! I am going for Nerve Conduction Studies on Friday.

The reason for this is because:
When I saw the consultant physiotherapist in August, the said it could be 1 of 3 things
1.) Bad gait - needing orthotics (she didnt think likely)
2.) Lupus - Rheumatic involvement/Mononuritis ( she didnt think likely)
3.) Morton's Nuroma - (she thought most likely even though x-ray soft tissue was neg - the squeeze test was +ive)

She said she would talk to the Rheumatologists and ask whether there was any likelihood of Lupus involvement and then would either follow their advice, or - most likely - send me for an ultrasound and see if there was a Morton's Nuroma (small tumor) on the nerve and if there was - Orthopedics for surgery, if there wasn't - Orthopedics for Orthotic inserts.

She did a bucket load of blood work - like several arm fulls - and sent me on my sweet way.

After 2 weeks she rang me.

She told me that after looking at my blood work the Rheumatologist asked who I was seeing for my Lupus. She replied "No one." (Cos apparently I don't have it!!??!! dumb asses) He was shocked and said because I had APS (Antiphospholipid Syndrome) and SCLE (Subacute Cutaneous Lupus Erythametosus) I actually had SYSTEMIC Lupus Erythamatosis. (SLE)

You don't FREAKING say.

Now, I was diagnosed with that in 1998. I was under like the best people in the UK at St. Thomas's Hospital for ages. We moved house and when I had some complications I was then told by some junior Rheaumatologist in a backwater hospital that I didn't have it in 2002.

I actually burst into tears in front of her as I was so gutted. I had been Sterilised at 22yrs old and everything because it was imperative that I had no more children. I lost 6 little babies and my only Darling Beautiful Son survived because I would not terminate and was delivered healthy at 32 weeks by sunroof exit and me and he both nearly dead. We had a 10% chance of survival.

I had so much going wrong with me that I was even near coma at one stage.

So to be told I didn't have this evil thing - and I truly wanted to believe I didn't - meant I could have more kids and I was immediately thinking about sterilisation reversal, and that it would be done on the NHS as they had made a bad judgement and how many kids we could have - 6, 10 However many I could!

Thankfully we didn't go ahead with the reversal (and someone up there must have been looking out for me) because something just didnt sit right, we had gorgeous DS and I had been so terribly terribly ill and we just could not face that again.

And just as well because I was then told I DID have it again in 2004.

Then I was told I didn't again in just June THIS YEAR.

Lupus is the master of disguise and it seems that doctors know JACK about it. You actually have to have your own doctorate to get somewhere I swear!

I have ALWAYS considered myself to have SLE as I have a lot of symptoms etc and the thing often does not appear for the cameras on routine blood reports. So to be told I do have it - from the head Rheumatologist at Addenbrookes is a BIG deal.

I had been praying and praying for this to be sorted and finally things have come to a head.

This is something I have been fighting for to get recognised for a long time, so because Head honcho says I have SLE, they think that the pain is more likely to be from dysfunctional nerves as opposed to Morton's Nuroma (and the X-ray shows no evidence of a tumor either) and are therefore sending me for conduction studies where they send electric shocks up the nerves to see how well they work.

Tragically, all this was the first part of the call.

The other part of the call was to draw attention to my blood work. It shows that I am seriously deficient in Folate or Folic Acid. My serum Iron levels are also extremely low,  although I am not Iron deficient.

Now on the surface that is contradictory. How can I have low iron but not be iron deficient? Well it's to do with the folate. You need folic acid to produce red blood cells and lack of it causes the body to produce abnormally large red blood cells that cannot function properly.
The main symptoms of folate deficiency anaemia are:

tiredness
lethargy (lack of energy)
weaknesses
headaches
heart palpitations
spoon nails

and others!

I had all the above and felt grim. The way my blood work looked I have low serum iron, normal iron available and low folate all indicating chronic illness.

The chronic illness? SLE.

So yeah, SLE is stopping me absorbing folic acid in my gut they now think.

This was all put on a nice letter to me after the phone call and it clearly went to my doc too. It said "please follow this problem up as a matter or urgency" on the letter. I figured they would call me to make an appointment.

Nope.

I waited 2 weeks and went myself. I told the doctor that I had gotten the letter from the hospital regarding the floate/iron crap and I was worried. He was like
"hmm oh yes it's low"
I was like "......(really?????).....yes, so is it the SLE?"
"Oh do you have SLE confirmed now?"
"......(W T F'ing F????)... well.... that's what it says on the letter DOCTOR.
"right.. well I will give you some folic acid tablets. It could take 4 months to settle so come back in January"

Ooooooh Boy.

I feel like setting myself up as a doctor, I think I would at least GIVE A RATS!

Anyway, after sitting with the gormless prat for 5 minutes and wondering why he gets paid a shed load of money for ME to do his work, I took the scripts and I am now taking folic acid tablets and it will take 4 months to see if its making a difference. Which, by the way, I knew it would take before he told me. Sigh.

So, along with my Squameous cell metaplasia in my bladder - familiaraly called my 'pisston pain' I have folate deficiency anemia, SLE and a heap more drugs to take.

I am currently feeling worse than ever with sugar on top. My whole body hurts like I fell down a cliff and my foot pain is beyond hell.

I cannot wait until friday to get the nerve studies done and then I only have 4 more weeks to endure before I see the heamatologist/rhematologists.

Current Daily Drug chart:

Gabapentin 1000mg - 1g (4 tabs) - for Neuropathic pain
Hyroxychloroquine - 400mg (2 tabs) - For Lupus
Detrusitol - 400mg (1 tab) - For Piston Pain
Folic acid - 5g (1 tab) - for anemia

And as if things could not get worse - today my new lovely lodger who moved in 4 weeks ago after the grim plumers just handed her notice in as she lost her job last friday so is going home to Mum. Such a shame as she is so lovely and she fitted in sooo well into our little home.

So now we need a new lodger. Anyone want a room?