Squeeze play

Good morning! It’s Wednesday in The Coachella Valley and I saw the neurosurgeon that performed my lumbar laminectomy yesterday. Oh joy! No really, he is a nice dude. He had ordered an MRI and a CT scan in December as he did my surgery a year ago and really I am not much worse than I was last year but not any better. I am just now getting to see him to find out what is causing some of the issues I am still experiencing since surgery. PSA coming: If you are doing research and thinking about moving to the Coachella Valley and you have an HMO that is quite big here in California, there are NO hospital facilities for that HMO here in the valley, the nearest is in Riverside. If it is serious enough illness and you have to be treated by either Desert Regional or Eisenhower, you will fall into the out-of-network mumbo-jumbo. Frankly, it is like medical purgatory. Some one could die (Joking, but really…) waiting for authorizations to get coordinated. Anyhow, he went over the results and noted more stenosis and suggested surgery. However, he was honest and said that even going back in may not help, in fact, it probably wouldn’t. Glad to hear that, as I really am fearful of any more surgery. One thing I have noticed since my surgery and I can thank this doctor for is that he listens and doesn’t dismiss my questions or concerns. He is a surgeon, and as I remember from schooling, most surgeons are pretty matter-of-fact. They after all were residents for few years, being watched and molded to become specialists or Chief residents. I have never once had a surgeon that has examined me ever candy-coat an explanation. When I did my surgical rotation at MLK as a surg tech student in the late 90s, I remember being in the rooms when the Chiefs were berating the residents as well as any staff that was in the room when things did not go as planned. You know something, most of the time, they were correct to be so angry as it was a matter of life and death. So, to all of you surgeons, especially, the ones that have personally worked on me, bravo and thank you for choosing to be you in your chosen profession.

Yesterday, I took the Sun Line from Palm Springs to Palm Desert. It was exciting, really. Hubby dropped me off at my appointment at 10 am and he had to go back to work. Anyhow, I decided that I need to do more for myself and looked up the bus schedules and after my appointment, I walked to the bus stop and made it to meet hubby. I know it may not seem like much for most people but that was a major accomplishment. It was liberating and I look forward to planning another trip before the summer heat is back here. I had my camera with me but didn’t take any pics. I do want to drive again but know that I can get around by public transportation. Now, I can plan a photo-walk. I really do need to just shoot. Even with the issue from last week, I am still not deterred. No, this does not mean I will be a renegade and keep trying to sneak around. Really, I am going to be 50 next week and I am tired of hiding or trying to conform to invisible standards that many of us try and live up to or emulate. I still would like to do some portrait work but maybe I need to start from the beginning, before IG started clouding my thinking. I used to follow lots of photographers but I stopped as I was trying to work their ideas into my own instead of letting my imagination run wild. Like this self portrait I did in 2017.

This one is titled “Wasted” and was taken as a self-portrait in 2017. I know that I could not get into that position again comfortably.

So, one day in Fall 2017, I set up my tripod and camera in the back yard and got dressed up. I have always wanted to do a boudoir shoot but never had the courage to actually have another photog capture it. I knew that if I wanted to get go photos of others, I would need to be able to experience what it was like on the other side of the lens.

Then I wanted to try the woman falling apart look and this is what I captured. What conveys merrily skipping into a breakdown like blowing bubbles while wearing a evening gown. So, I did a few self-portrait shoots as it helped me get to know my camera.

This is titled “Lost”
I have the remote hidden in my right hand. I cringe looking at my swollen legs.

As I mentioned, I am going to be 50 next week. Yikes! I still feel as I did in my 20’s and 30’s. I would like to do another self-portrait to commemorate this milestone. The last one posted below is one that I use as my Avatar. So, I have a week to figure it out…

Self-portrait 2017

Really though, I need to be true to me and just shoot. I started wondering around our complex yesterday and took some random shots of leaves.

I spent about 10 minutes doing this activity. Today, I took a couple of things that I had for almost as long as I have been alive. My Dad used to give us stuffed animals for some holidays. In last 50 years, I have moved several times and lost so many things but I have managed to hang onto my two prized possessions. A ratty, worn out, heavily loved stuffed blue bunny and a Fisher Price 1964 Merry-Go-Round. The bunny is mine, all MINE! The Merry-Go-Round I am sure has a story. This exact toy was manufactured in 1964. So, this may have been a gently used, hand-me-down, as I was born in 1970.

The bunny has lost it’s button nose and is bald in a few places but to me, it is like a diamond, as it was gift from my Dad. The MGR has survived, me, my nieces and nephews and my own children have played with it. It used to work up until a few years ago. I just looked up the item on Ebay and there are still plenty of these in way better condition that I could purchase but this one hold memories. I remember this played my first favorite song! I used to wind it up and let it play as I drifted off to sleep when I was little. It later got replaced with a music box and then a radio. Here is the song it played: Emile Waldteufel’s The Skater’s Waltz. I posted the sound of the toy and the Skater’s Waltz below.

Now, I can add this to my playlist of favorites!!

So, it felt good to just shoot. I know I need to do it more and stop listening to the negative noise in my head. Maybe I should just turn the music up and drown it out. Oh yeah, I forgot to mention, yesterday as I was my surgeon was wrapping up the appointment and ready to leave he hugged me! Yes, this may be why I trust him so much. He could easily treat me like a number or chart but no, he treats me as well as the other patients that he sees like humans with kindness and compassion. I know he can feel my pain as I never have to over embellish it with him. He always listens to me talk and most importantly, he looks me in the eye while he is speaking. What this has accomplished has made me not be a worrier about my health. No longer am I in urgent need to see some one when ever my pain is intense. I have spent less time in this last year even taking MRI’s and such getting medical treatment than I ever can remember. Until yesterday, the last appointment I had was in December. I will not embarrass this man by mentioning his name but if you are in the Palm Springs area and you have been treated by this kind man, you will know who I am speaking of…feel lucky.

Well now, thank you for making it to the end! I appreciate you! Have a lovely day and hugs to all those needing it. Yes, hugs really are a dose of good stuff.

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