The Five day Lock-in

Today is the first day of my five day seizure monitoring.  I have a ton of leads on my head and they are all wrapped in medical tape.  I also have a camera bag that holds the receiver for the leads.  I can’t take showers or scratch my head.  There is also a taped up mass of wires running off my head and down my back.  It’s really heavy and uncomfortable.  Based off of my description, I hate this.

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The Nightmare

It came out of nowhere from a blank stare.  The seizure gripped me.  Once it release me, I was in a dream state.  I couldn’t see or move.  Every minute or two, I would have another short seizure.  When the seizures ceased, I drifted deeper into the dream.  Reality and time slipped away.  I was beneath shallow, dark water.  My parents tried waking me up, but all I could hear was faint voices.  They moved my body and tried to irritate me out of the dream.  All I could feel was a floating feeling beneath that water.  As time passed the dream turned into a nightmare of darkness.  Nothing my parents could do, would work to wake me up.  Now and then, I would talk in a half awake state, they took this opportunity to give me a pill that my neurologist said would make me sleep, but stop the seizures.  This seemed like 45 minutes into the nightmare.  The medicine set in and I was gripped by paralysis.  The water in my nightmare was getting deeper.  I was trying to swim to the top, but I couldn’t move my arms.  It felt like my breathing was slowing and the life in my body was ceasing.  Then a hand reached down to pull me out of the water.  Just as I was getting to the top, I broke out of the dream, into reality for a few seconds.  to me I was trying to wake up, to my parents, it seemed like I was having a full body seizure.  One and half hours into the nightmare.  My grip on the hand slipped and I fell back into the water.  They tried even harder to wake me, but nothing worked again.  My breathing slowed to a few breaths.  Before I knew it, I was floating into the E.R.  My parents had put me into the car and rushed me to the hospital.  I was floating down the hall to my E.R. room.  The nightmare got worse every time a doctor or nurse tried to wake me.  They tried sternal rubs, but that sent me into a spiral of seizures in my nightmare.  Two hours in now.  Once again, I was sleeping under that dark water.  A hand reached down once again.  This time the hand was clothed in light and gripped my hand with a firmness, that I haven’t felt before.  The hand pulled me straight out of the water and up to reality.  It felt like a gust of wind was on my face as I woke up.  I was shocked, as one would be after a two and a half hour nightmare.  I was finally awake, The E.R. room confused me at first.  I remembered where I was now, back at the hospital.  I had a similar episode a few days before this episode.  Eventually,after a CAT scan, they got me back up on my feet and I left the E.R.  The nightmare behind me now. I was awake again, I was myself, and I was alive.  No matter what this affliction throws at me, I will always rise above the challenges it presents to me.  Eventually this will come to an end and I will be able to move on with my life and carry this experience as a new way to overcome trials.

James 1:2

Preparing for a Five Day Lock-in

The doctors orders are in. After I had a 2 hour episode that I couldn’t wake up from, I’m now having a five day seizure monitoring at the end of the week. I need to get out of this house as much as possible, but I can’t drive. Time to bug my friends and family! This will be an interesting week, probably full of cold brews.

Fear, my Good Old Friend.

I have been living my life in fear from seizures.  Ever since these episodes have been getting worse, I’ve decided to let them fear me.  I am not going to sit around and wait for them, they are going to wait for me. If they sneak up on me when I’m out doing something, I’m not even going to let it stress me out.  Stress only leads to more fear. Fear can build up and bury you alive. Fear is not worth stressing about. And stress is not worth fearing. They go hand in hand. For a while I wore a fake smile to hide both my stress and fear.  Once the long episode seizures began, it would seem that I would be even more fearful. However I flipped the table on the diagnosis. I take these as a challenge. I might sound delusional, but if I let these fears and stresses hold me, I’ll never get out my front door.  I have my Faith that keeps me going, if your not that kind of person, find someone or something to keep you going. You might feel as if there are weights dragging you down. These weights are not real. Let the fears go. Get back into life if your diagnosis is keeping you back.  Keep pushing forward, never stop. Don’t push it and go way to far to cause more health problems. Just remember someone is always helping you along, seen or unseen.

James 1:2

Epilepsy Finds you no Matter What.

Even on this vacation the tendrils of epilepsy have found me.

Even on this vacation the tendrils of epilepsy have found me.  I had a normal seizure, just the muscle contractions in the morning.  Then we spent the day with family from Ft. Collins, Colorado.  We went to see our grandfather, who was turning 80, and played Sorry!

Sorry! with grandpa gets real heated, he tries to manipulate everyone into getting his pawns moving.  I’ve learned to tune it out, but he still gets my younger sister.  Then my younger sister will count her cards when she shuffles if nobody is paying attention.  Lets just say, Sorry! with grandpa is not peaceful..

Right before we were getting ready to go have grandpa’s birthday dinner, I was sitting on the couch and something changed.  I was spaced out and could not control my body, epilepsy had me in it’s death grip.  I fell to the floor with no way to brace myself or stop it.  My muscle contracted for a minute, I fell into a haze.  I could not tell what real or what was not.  I slipped in and out of the nightmare, I was having little seizures throughout this episode.  My mind tried to go to sleep, but every time I shut my eyes I had a seizure.  I would wake up and try to talk but it was a jumble of sounds coming out of my mouth.  Eventually my parents got me up on the couch in the hotel room.  It seemed like the seizure had gone away. I do not know how long I was on the couch.  Time slipped away from my mind and the blank stare started again.  I do not really know what happened, but they got me up on a bed.  My eyes closed, only to be awoken by another seizure.  My eyes opened, time came rushing back.  I sat with my mom trying to comfort me.  Eventually we got dinner and the nightmare that had just unfolded was gone.  The whole nightmare lasted an hour.  I do not know if this will keep happening, but I refuse to let this defeat me.  I will stand strong until this is over.  My faith has given me strength and a reliance on God that I have never known.

James 1:2 drives me forward.

It has Become Apparent, All I do is Make Coffee.

This time the roast is from Kicking Horse. Kicking Horse, Kick Ass roast. It’s very dark and actually has some kick with the richness.

Disclaimer: You don’t need all this fancy equipment to do this. Get a pitcher and a big coffee filter and you can do the same thing.

This time I put it through my favorite coffee maker, the Chemex. Chemex is basically a manual drip coffee maker. I put a twist on it that I found on it’s manual. You put ice in the bottom of the the hour class

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Basically, the process is like making iced tea.

The grind’s should be normal, slightly finer than salt. If the coffee is already ground that is just fine. If you have a grinder, like I do, it should look like this

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After that, put five table spoons in the Chemex filter. Don’t tamp it, press it down. You then heat up your water in a kettle to a cool 175ºf.

Once that’s done pour some of the water slowly on the grinds to cause it to bloom. Don’t use too much water. Blooming brings out the oils and flavors of the coffee.

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After it blooms for about 30-45 seconds. Slowly pour in some more water in a circular motion or side to side. Once that drains out, add more water in the same fashion.

Once all the water has drained out, once again, throw away the filter.

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Let the coffee sit for a little bit. I usually add ice after I pour it into my glass.

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Once it’s all said and done, you can add some ice, milk or creamer or whatever you prefer in your coffee. It always tastes great in the summer!

(I’m not paid by any coffee company to make these posts) (P.S. That would be great to have a coffee company to give me roasts to make home brewed coffee remedies.)

The Grind

This is my assistant (we call him our goblin).

The school IT job is either chillaxing, or 0 to 60 all day. Luckily I just deal with student laptops. The higher ups have the fun part of being system admins and finances. I get to deal with bewildered high schoolers asking me why their laptop doesn’t work. Little do they know, they just need to charge it. It can get stressful, only had one seizure at work (instead of fainting at bad news). It’s easy for me as I am a micro managing kinda person. Just a little window into my job.