Archive for the ‘personal’ Category

Like CD Stuck On Replay

Patty called yesterday afternoon wanting to get together. It wasn’t until after I agreed to meet her after the gym that I found out her relationship with her boyfriend had been put on hiatus in the morning. I hadn’t heard from Patty since before Christmas. Now I was stuck meeting her and I was sure she wanted to talk about her relationship. I met Patty at her house and we talked for while and then went to dinner. As I suspected, most of the conversation was about her relationship being put on hold until the boyfriend can finish grieving for his late wife. Doesn’t this sound familiar? When we stopped by the house on the way to dinner she asked if the Mini Cooper was at the airport. Patty was so consumed with talking about her relationship that she didn’t even notice that she was in K’s new Audi. I told her K sold the Mini four years ago when he bought the truck that was traded for the Audi she was sitting in and that I traded the Acura for the BMW. Perhaps guys pay more attention to cars than women. Soon the conversation turned back to her relationship. The relationship was also the main topic of conversation at dinner. I wanted call her on the fact that she only calls when she has relationship issues but I was tired and didn’t want to open that can of worms. So I listened to her talk and missed all of the Super Bowl commercials that I wanted to watch. I got home just as the game ended.

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The surgery went well today. I didn’t feel anything during the procedure. The doctor managed to get all of the cancer with the first cut. I was home by noon. That’s when the fun started. The anaesthetic wore off soon after I arrived home so I followed the doctor’s orders and took Tylenol. About two hours later I was still in pain so I broke out my stash of Percocet. That seemed to do the trick. I’ve been napping and watching TV most of the day. I need to rest for the next forty-eight hours. I get to remove the big bandage tomorrow but need to keep the smaller bandage on for a week. The post-op instructions include not working out for two weeks. That will be tough!

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Oh No, Not Again!

I went to the dermatologist this morning. It looks as if my skin cancer has come back. I was treated for skin cancer on my nose back in 2003. The doctor took a biopsy and I should have the results next week. There are three types of treatment depending upon what the biopsy analysis uncovers. One option is to freeze the area with liquid nitrogen. The second option is to use a cream that acts like a chemical peel. I’ll have an ugly red patch on the bridge of my nose for several weeks. This is how the skin cancer was treated in 2003. The final option is surgery to remove the cancer. The doctor assured me that if surgery were needed she would refer me to a surgeon who will take great care to minimize the scaring. It’s a good thing I have health insurance.

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SF #1

The trip started out a little rocky. K lost his wallet, the plane was delayed, K’s luggage got stuck in the baggage system and the hotel reservation started on the wrong day. Yesterday I spent the day in Union Square doing my best to help the economy. Last knight was a nice dinner with two of K’s employees. Today, K and I are going to Ted Baker and having lunch in the city. I’m not sure what is on the agenda for tonight.

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K is so good to me. We went to Cherry Creek Mall on Saturday because K wanted to buy a new pair of shoes. At first I didn’t want to go because I wanted to avoid the temptation of the post holiday reductions. But K thought it would be good to spend time together since he was going snowboarding on Sunday. He offered to buy me anything I wanted. At first I was tempted to push this to the limits. A found a pair of Ferragamos on sale at Nordstrom’s for $450.00. Then reality hit me. Was I crazy? I liked the shoes but I really didn’t need the shoes. I got caught up in the excitement because the shoes were marked down from $875.00. We moved on to other stores. K finally found the shoes he wanted. K once again offered to buy me something. I looked around and found several things that I liked but really didn’t need. I couldn’t let him buy me anything. I’ve been taking care of myself since I was eighteen. I find it really hard to depend on another person for my needs even though K is my life partner. I want to be frugal and economize so that no unnecessary money is spent. I don’t know why I find this so difficult. Perhaps it is a control issue. I’ve always been in control of my adult life. K is now the primary breadwinner and I am depending on him to carry most of the financial burden of the household. I fear that means I’m no longer in control.

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Unsettling News

I found out this morning that our friend Mary is having a bilateral mastectomy on January 13th. This will be followed up by several reconstructive surgeries. I’m stunned at this news. The last time I talked to Mary the plan was for a lumpectomy. Additional tests determined that this is not the case. Now she is losing both breasts. Aimee, Mary’s daughter, told me that the only things Mary likes about her body are her hair and her breasts. Now she will lose both. Granted the hair loss in only a temporary side effect of chemotherapy but it is still unsettling. K and I will see Mary tomorrow night when we build gingerbread houses with her grandchildren, Max and Eliot. It will be fun but bittersweet. I can’t wait to give Mary a big hug. I wish she didn’t have cancer. I wish Mary didn’t have to deal with this trauma. Why can’t they find a cure for breast cancer?

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Show and Tell

This morning I played show and tell with my colon rectal surgeon. I show her my rectum and she tells me if there is any irregular tissue, or, if I need another biopsy. I’m all clear for now. I’ll see her again in three months. There’s nothing like a rectal exam to start your day off on a high note.

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A Dose of Reality

Today I went to see my financial planner, S, who manages my IRAs, 401k and one of my brokerage accounts. Clearly this man know what he is doing because the accounts S manages did not fall in value as much as the accounts that he does not manage. It was a dose of reality. Even though the accounts did not decline in value as much as the market I’m still hurting. Looks like I will be seeking gainful employment soon if I want to have any resemblance of a decent life when I actually retire. Retirement has been pushed from fifty-five to sometime in my sixties. My dream of having a fun lower paying job supplemented by my pension and retirement savings does not seem to be possible at this time. The market is poised for a recovery but if I move all my investments into income producing vehicles at this time I will miss out on the inevitable market gains. I will be in a much better position if I move into income producing investments after the market recovers. The recovery could take several years.

After meeting with S I headed over to T Gallery to see the Damien Hirst + Jeff Koons show. I got reacquainted with Ron, the gallery director, whom I have known socially. He sold two of the Hirst pieces while the Koons have not sold. The Hirsts are $24k while the Koons are 50k. I saw a Williams Stockman drawing that was priced at $15k. Ron told me the Stockman’s we own have substantially increased in value. I thought about investing in Art rather than the financial markets. I came to the conclusion that I don’t know enough about the contemporary art market to make wise investments. I should stay with the guidance I’m getting with the stock market.

I’ll be meeting with my other financial manager on Monday morning to see what he has planned. It will be interesting to see how his proposal differs from what I was presented with today.

Tonight I’m forgetting all about this mess and will be enjoying the holiday cheer at K’s holiday party.

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The Party’s Over

Last night I went to a holiday/pre-construction party at Aimee and Steve’s house. Aimee is the daughter of our social worker friend, Mary. Aimee and Steve are renovating and expanding their Park Hill bungalow. Construction starts on Monday so they hosted the party in their empty house. People were invited to write on the walls and even take a hammer to the walls that will be demolished. Guests were encouraged to dress in construction attire. I wore jeans, a shirt and K’s hardhat. I had a good time but soon grew tired of standing. I was home by 10 p.m.

Today I’m in a blue mood. I ran into Gigi this morning. I had not seen her since E’s funeral. She started crying when I told her I was unemployed. I didn’t expect that result. I started feeling sad when I got home. I then made the mistake of reviewing my investment statements for the last quarter. A broker from Smith Barney wants to review my portfolio in order to make suggestion on changing my investments at his firm. I started looking at all my investment and soon became horrified. The losses are staggering. In a fit of anger I threw the folder containing my investment statements on the floor. It’s laying here next to the desk in a mess. Now I’m full on depressed. I’m going to the gym to do cardio.

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A Mixed Up Post

I had a great weekend with K. Thanksgiving was an especially wonderful day. The dinner turned out to one of the best we have ever hosted. It was great having our friends over and spending the day with them. The last guests left at 9:30 p.m.

K and I spent the rest of the weekend together. We saw Milk on Saturday and Australia on Saturday. It was great having K home for the weekend. K flew back to St. Louis today. He’ll be in Festus until December 23rd. I miss him already. Since I’m unemployed I’ll be chauffeuring him to and from the airport for while. No more car service for K.

I went to the gym today for a chest and tricep workout followed by cardio. Mr. Jones, of the Ted Haggard scandal, came into the locker room as I was stowing my backpack in a locker before my workout. Rumors were circulating that he was not treated well here after the scandal and was contemplating moving away. I not sure why our community shunned him. It must be tough getting one’s life together after the media exposes the details of your life.

Ambien has once again become my friend. I’ve been having trouble sleeping lately. It seems that when I go to bed my mind starts reviewing recent history. I toss and turn for hours unless I take an Ambien at bedtime. I don’t want to make this a regular habit. I would love to be able to sleep without medication. I need to find a way to clear my mind so that I don’t drive myself crazy thinking about what I could have done and what I should be doing now. I hate only sleeping three hours a night. My friend, Ambien, lets me sleep at least eight hours, sometimes ten hours. I need to exercise caution with this drug.

Today has been as mixed up as this post. I’ll try to stick to one topic going forward.

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