Thursday, October 31, 2013

Just Out of My Grasp - Aquagenic Pruitis AquaWHAT????

10/31/2013
Ahoy Fellow Fathomers, I’ve decided to use my blog not only to writing, music, and other facets of entertainment, but, also to share my journey. I found out on June 19, 2013 the reason for many of my ongoing health problems is because I have systemic lupus, also known as SLE.
Thank you for listening, each week I will have a new installment chronicling my journey. Please, please feel free to comment, write, share. I hope to use this forum as a help to all of us, no matter what pain you are experiencing. You may also send stories to me via finlessbook at gmail dot com. I will respect your privacy and maintain your anonymity, if you so desire.
Hugs for today …
Aquagenic Pruitis
Huh?
A few posts ago I talked about this horrific sunburn itch that wreaked havoc with my body for a few days. I thought nothing could top that incredibly debilitating sensation. Until this past week…when I developed this mind ripping itch from taking a shower.
What? Am I allergic to water now? This is nuts.
Before all you problem solvers offer solutions, and I’m all for anything that works for someone else, I will tell you that I’ve not changed soaps, shampoos, laundry soap, water filtration systems, yadda yadda yadda. With all things remaining the same, every time I’ve showered for a week now, I develop this itch unrelated to a visible rash or other skin disorder. It lasts at least an hour and this most recent time, I’m still itching several hours afterward. It makes me want to scrape my skin off with a power washer. It’s intense. Have any of you taken pain medicine such as morphine and experienced the dreaded morphine itch? That’s what I’m dealing with, but even more painful.
With the help of the internet I began my usual research. It seems that along with a diagnosis of #SLE, there may come many unusual side effects that may or may not be medication related. My favorite place to start comes from the many chat forums, especially in the medical community. Almost right out of the gate I found the phenomena Aquagenic Pruitis. From the sometimes accurate Wikipedia it states- Aquagenic pruritus is a skin condition characterized by the development of severe, intense, prickling-like epidermal itching that is without observable skin lesions and that is evoked by contact with water.[1][2]
I’m not making this up- The name is derived from Latin: Aquagenic, meaning water-induced, and Pruritus, meaning itch.
Several websites supported the use of anti-malarials, such as Plaquenil, may cause this condition. Which concerned me because finally, after four months, my body actually feels better and I’ve returned to a more progressive workout schedule. I’m finally feeling more normal and would hate to go back down the road I’ve already traveled- and I fear that would happen if I have to stop Plaquenil.
Today, I sit scratching my scalp, arms, and the occasional fire-ant-feeling ping in random places over my skin. I keep going back to the internet, trying to figure this out. The further I dig (no pun intended), the more specific some symptoms seem to be, indicating other origins of the itch symptom. One that particularly caught my eye- this incessant itch of my female skin areas. You know, the external nether regions where no woman wants problems. Several years ago I had a similar problem and actually had surgery, a partial vulvectomy to be exact. After surgery, my doctor determined I had a pre-cancerous condition but, after he excised part of the tissue, the margins were free and he removed any cancerous skin.
Thank goodness! But, could it be coming back? Why am I so itchy once again down there? Could this all over body itch be some type of blood disorder?
Well…of course when taking a shower I wash all of me, but I can’t have some itch reaction that lasts for days just because I shower or bathe. From further reading, this even creates a shower “phobia” that keeps people from washing regularly. That can’t be me either.
Some forums describe taking a warm bath and it prevents this itch, others swear by cool water shower, some say the hotter the better.  Some folks swear by a menthol cream, or something like Gold Bond, but, prescription strength. From everything I’ve read, I didn’t find just one answer to solve anything. Some of this could just come with lupus territory, and that fills me with dread. This itch could really drive me insane, it’s THAT ghastly. It’s affecting my concentration and last night I slept by doubling up on Benadryl, and I can’t do that daily and be a sharp-functioning individual.
I have an appointment tomorrow with a new –gist…this time a hematologist. Maybe I’ll get some answers.
Have any of you experienced this? Maybe if you have Sjogren’s, SLE, other autoimmune disorders, or health conditions you have firsthand knowledge? I could really use some help here before I invest in that power washer or bring my electric sander to work with me.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Tuesday Tales - The Sweet Scent of....Blood?


Ahoy Fellow Fathomers! For this week's Tuesday Tales, we are writing to the word prompt, "Sweet". Please see another excerpt from my paranormal thriller, Jerky.
 “I’ve seen the near impossible happen right before my eyes so you know I believe you Jo, and it’s hard to imagine some mortal human was capable of something like this.” Wylder pointed to the scene below them. “I’m going to make my way down there, just in case someone is hurt.”
“I’ll follow you, just be careful, I don’t trust this rickety walkway.” Joelle slid both arms into the backpack straps of her crime scene go-bag.
Wylder tentatively pressed with increasing weight before he finally took each step. The wood groaned and creaked, almost speaking the horrors of the room. A musty odor wafted from the dank wood railing to which they clung with gloved hands. The sweet, metal scent of blood lingered in the heavy air. Joelle closed her mouth tightly, breathing exclusively through her nose to keep from tasting the carnage.
Finely spun cobwebs clung between the rail and the high ceiling. Their spider inhabitants hid in the dark corners, occasionally flexing their black legs, prepared to scuttle away. It made Joelle’s scalp itch to think of one dropping into her hair and she reflexively swiped at an imaginary arachnid on the back of her neck. “Wylder, please say something, anything, my mind is running away with me here.”
“Jo, when we are finished with this case, what do you want to do? We can go anywhere on a mini break, a road trip away from this madness. What about the beach? I can see the waves crashing into a sandy shore and feel the warm sun. I can rub suntan lotion on your back, the coconut kind. How does that sound?
“We can share that big blue fishbowl drink and dance under the night sky.” Joelle smiled and the thoughts briefly stopped the phantom itch up her spine.
Wylder encountered another loose board under his foot. “Jo, this one is loose, so, take your time, we are almost there, just a few more steps and we will make it to the stairs leading down into the room.”
“Okay, I see it, I’ll be careful and stay right behind…” Joelle screamed when the rotted board gave way and she slipped through the gaping hole left behind.
Now that you've my contribution for the word "sweet", please visit our main blog Tuesday Tales for more great fiction starring the word "sweet". Happy Halloween!! 

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Saturday Sippers in The Locker Fitting for Halloween! Say Bloody Mary 3 Times.....

Saturday Sippers in The Locker
Ahoy Fellow Fathomers! Welcome to the feature here in The Locker called Saturday Sippers. Each week I’ll post a new, sometimes, skinny cocktail recipe for you to try. Many thinks to my Cali Bestie, Rhonda, for providing me with the deck of cards recipe book. J
A good Bloody Mary is sometimes hard to find. It takes more than a splash of vodka into a glass of V-8- the best Bloody Mary’s leave a lingering blend of flavors on the tongue and is almost as filling as a light appetizer. I like to garnish with pickled asparagus or pickled green beans for a change of pace. I also add a bit of the pickled juice to the recipe itself.
I haven’t yet tried this recipe, but, if I did would probably add a healthy dose of Louisiana hot sauce and some Cajun seasoning to the glass.
BLOODY MARY COCKTAIL!
Ingredients
  • 1 ½ ounces vodka
  • 6 ounces tomato juice
  • 1 t lemon juice
  • 1/8 t celery salt
  • 3 drops hot sauce
  • 3 drops Worcestershire sauce
  • Dash pepper
  • Pinch horseradish
  • Garnish of your choice
Mix vodka, tomato juice, and lemon juice. Add the flavorings, adjusting to taste. Add ice cubes, and garnish.
129 Calories per serving

Friday, October 25, 2013

Flasher Fiction Friday - A Tainted Vampire?

Ahoy Fellow Fathomers, this Friday I return to my first recurring blog contribution, the Friday Flash Fiction. A group of writers will write exactly 100 words, no more no less, to a picture prompt. After you read my contribution, please read what the other writers have to say, the links follow. Happy Friday!



“I’m not sure how much of a role I actually had, but, wow, I’ve seen a transformation.” Sarah didn’t want to reveal the heartfelt discussions of the past few hours. “I’m trying to marinate everything I’ve been through. When I met you, and you chose me, I can’t tell you what it did for me.”

“We chose each other, love, everything between us is a mutual act.” Isaac stood up from the couch and walked toward Sarah.


Sarah began withering in his presence, drawing away like desiccated fruit. “You don’t know what I’ve done in my life, Isaac. I’m tainted.”


Please visit these other authors for their creative, and possibly edgy, interpretation of this gorgeous netherworld couple. 

Michelle Howard: www.michellehowardwrites.com
Raven McAllan: http//www.ravenmcallan.blogspot.com

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Just Out of My Grasp- How High is Your Pain Tolerance?

10/24/2013
Ahoy Fellow Fathomers, I’ve decided to use my blog not only to writing, music, and other facets of entertainment, but, also to share my journey. I found out on June 19, 2013 the reason for many of my ongoing health problems is because I have systemic lupus, also known as SLE.
Thank you for listening, each week I will have a new installment chronicling my journey. Please, please feel free to comment, write, share. I hope to use this forum as a help to all of us, no matter what pain you are experiencing. You may also send stories to me via finlessbook at gmail dot com. I will respect your privacy and maintain your anonymity, if you so desire.
Hugs for today …
Although most of you do not know me personally, I will share something with you that you can accept of your own personal volition against the strength of my word:
I have a high pain tolerance. A regular momma grizzly. I also have a low complaint tolerance. Therefore, friends, I could be in pain and not gripe about it. My mom taught us that unless we had a high fever or bleeding, we plow through our daily commitments. Period.
Lupus has challenged my commitment of no complaints. Never before in my life have I felt like such a “hypochondriac”. It is still very difficult for me to believe the daily barrage of physical, mental, and physiological reactions my body randomly takes is legitimate. I still believe a pill or the right doctor can cure my ills. (Doctor, Doctor, give me the news I’ve got a bad case of lovin’ you, no pill’s gonna cure my ill….Wait a minute, really??) sorry for the ear worm. I also still believe it is something I’m doing wrong (eating badly, not exercising enough, not enough vitamins….etc etc)
I can honestly begin my day feeling one way and in a matter of an hour, completely have a different state of physical or mental being. For example, I’ve awakened with a killer headache and through the process of getting up and around, taking my meds, drinking water or coffee, and moving ahead with my day my headache improved or went away entirely. Yay Me!
The other extreme is I awaken feeling fan-freakin-tastic and somewhere around feeling-fabulous-on-the-dot crash harder than ever with muscle aches, joint pain, blurred vision, dizziness, nausea, and the overwhelming urge to remove the axe from between my eyes (not the first or last time the manner in which I’ll describe my headache pain).  Ugh, insert expletive here Me!
And, you would never know from looking at me on the outside. I get quieter and more isolative and sometimes my eyes give something away, making it hard to tell a mental dilemma from physical illness. I’ll plow through, even grinding my teeth (which also hurts by the way). I’m still trying to make it till a regular bedtime instead of melting into bed before the sun goes down. (you guessed it, lying down also hurts sometimes too)
Don’t get me wrong, not trying to be a chronic disease martyr, but, I don’t want to give up, or give in, because the old adage “if you don’t use it, you’ll lose it” is entirely correct (and not the first or last time I’ll say that either). Thankfully, at this moment in my life I have more good days than bad. And, although switching up my routine to accommodate a few added wanna-be debilitations, I will still do everything I want to do. It just might take me longer. So, stop honking and just pass me! I’m in the slow lane sometimes. But, dammit, I’m still on the road. Remember the tortoise and the hare?
*** UPDATE since I wrote this original post. I had the Biote pellet procedure. Because I desperately want to feel good again, I decided to take the plunge. Basically, I met with my OB/GYN and we discussed a type of hormone replacement therapy (HRT). My concern, especially with the SLE, is the risks of blood clots, stroke, cancer, and high blood pressure- which most HRTs carry an inherent risk for- potentially compounding my existing health threats. But, with the pellet implanted within the skin, the risk is not the same as with oral or topical HRTs.
My doctor used my lab results to determine the ratio of estrogen and testosterone. My Biote implant includes a high dosage of testosterone and a low contribution of estrogen, which is what I need. I’ve experienced fatigue, weight gain, low libido, and feelings of depression (among other things). Some of this could be from the SLE, but, it also could be from the peri-menopausal time of life I’ve entered. Hopefully, my personalized dose will relieve some of these negative effects and restore my spunk.
On the way out of the office, I spoke with one of his office staffers who so far had taken a couple of rounds of Biote. She said it gave her so much energy and restored some of her inner vitality from her 20’s. She has been quite pleased with the results. I want to do all I can to feel good and restore even 2/3 of what I had before I started getting sick. Sometimes, that means taking risks…
So, now I sit with a bandage on my backside to protect the healing of this new part of me. And, everything I have from my body in pairs is crossed for luck.

Lupus Foundation of America

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Tuesday Tales - Railing Into Hell

Hello Fellow Fathomers and welcome to Tuesday Tales. Each week our group gets together and writes to a word prompt or picture prompt. You never know what you might come across but, it's sure to entertain you. This week our word prompt is "railing" and I went with a Halloween theme. This will be from Book Two of the Blue Ink series entitled, "Jerky". I hope you enjoy...


"Holding onto the railing for support, Joelle’s stomach lurched. The macabre scene in the room below her tested the very limits of humanity. Wylder reached his hand around her waist to steady her uneasy stance. “I need to call for back-up, are you going to be okay?”
“Dear God, just when I think I’ve seen it all, something even worse happens.” She gagged at the end of her sentence. The smell of decay and chemicals finally wafted up to her sensitive nostrils.
Wylder reached for his cell phone with one hand and pressed a speed dial button. “I’m here, Jo, and you can go outside anytime you need to. It’s fine.” He began to speak into the mouthpiece. “Yea, it’s McKinney, it’s bad here, send the team.” Wylder finished giving the directions to their location then disconnected.
“I’m staying and will see this through. I might take longer, but, this is my job now and I must learn to deal with everything.”
“I’m proud of you, Jo.” Wylder bent and kissed the top of her head. “I’ll save any further affectionate displays until we are off duty.”
“Good plan…” Joelle smiled tentatively, then, looked around the expansive space below them once again. She stepped to the right, straining for better visual position. A weathered wood plank creaked unpredictably then loosened under her weight. “Damn, I’m not sure about this floor.”
“Someone gets down there on a regular basis, I don’t see another walkway, but, doesn’t mean there isn’t one.” Wylder used his toe to press against a plank further up from her location. “It feels sturdy.”
“These old homes are built for durability, not silence. I think you’re right, we should proceed. I want to get a better look at everything before the crew shows up. I’d prefer to register as little shock as possible in front of them.”
“Jo, if you’re ready, let’s go, I understand you want to show a strong face, but, it doesn’t mean you’re weak because this affects you so deeply. This is beyond horrific, I mean look at these bodies! Who in the hell would do such a thing?”
“That’s just it, I think it’s someone from hell who did.”

Please visit our main blog Tuesday Tales for other creative contributions for "railing". Happy Tuesday!  

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Saturday Sippers in The Locker time for Hayrides and Fires!


Saturday Sippers in The Locker
Ahoy Fellow Fathomers! Welcome to the feature here in The Locker called Saturday Sippers. Each week I’ll post a new, sometimes, skinny cocktail recipe for you to try. Many thinks to my Cali Bestie, Rhonda, for providing me with the deck of cards recipe book. J
Getting close to Halloween, hay rides, and bonfires!  Here’s a drink to warm your tummy and bring that glow to your eyes.
FIRE GLOW!
Ingredients
  • ½ ounce spiced syrup*
  • ½ ounce orange liqueur
  • 2 ounces bourbon
  • Lemon slices and twist for garnish
Combine first three ingredients, stir, and strain over ice into glass. Stir and garnish with lemon slices and twist.
*Spiced syrup: Mix equal parts water and sugar. Add clove and cinnamon. Place in airtight container to infuse the syrup with flavor.
194 Calories per serving

Friday, October 18, 2013

Flasher Fiction Friday Do These Daisies Cover Me Well Enough?

Ahoy Fellow Fathomers, this Friday I return to my first recurring blog contribution, the Friday Flash Fiction. A group of writers will write exactly 100 words, no more no less, to a picture prompt. After you read my contribution, please read what the other writers have to say, the links follow. Happy Friday!



“Did you know some people put flowers in their salad?” He took a large bite of endive and arugula. He put the bowl down and picked his video camera up.

“Are you gonna share that? I’m starving, I’ve been going over these notes for hours and can’t find a single common denominator in the case.”

“Sure, I’ll share, but, baby…” He began unbuttoning her blouse, “There is a caveat.”

She smiled, “Which would be what?”

“You’ll get naked and let me put this vase of flowers to a better use.”

“Will you eat daisies from my nipples?”

“Most certainly darling.”


Please visit these other authors for their creative, and possibly edgy, interpretation of this gorgeous woman.

Michelle Howard: www.michellehowardwrites.com
AuroraRose Andromeda@yahoo.com: http://rollingmuseintheroses.blogspot.com
S.J. Maylee: http://SJMaylee.com

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Just Out of My Grasp - Two Less Common Forms of Lupus

10/17/2013
Ahoy Fellow Fathomers, I’ve decided to use my blog not only to writing, music, and other facets of entertainment, but, also to share my journey. I found out on June 19, 2013 the reason for many of my ongoing health problems is because I have systemic lupus, also known as SLE.
Thank you for listening, each week I will have a new installment chronicling my journey. Please, please feel free to comment, write, share. I hope to use this forum as a help to all of us, no matter what pain you are experiencing. You may also send stories to me via finlessbook at gmail dot com. I will respect your privacy and maintain your anonymity, if you so desire.
Hugs for today …
The third and fourth types of lupus I’ll explain together, as the first is usually not a permanent condition and neonatal lupus is so rare.
Drug-induced Lupus Erythematosus
Drug-induced lupus is a lupus-like disease caused by certain prescription drugs. The symptoms of drug-induced lupus are similar to those of systemic lupus, but only rarely will any major organs be affected.
The drugs most commonly connected with drug-induced lupus are hydralazine (used to treat high blood pressure or hypertension), procainamide (used to treat irregular heart rhythms), and isoniazid (used to treat tuberculosis). Drug-induced lupus is more common in men because they are given these drugs more often; however, not everyone who takes these drugs will develop drug-induced lupus. The lupus-like symptoms usually disappear within six months after these medications are stopped.
Neonatal Lupus
Neonatal lupus is a rare condition that affects infants of women who have lupus and is caused by antibodies from the mother acting upon the infant in the womb. At birth, the infant may have a skin rash, liver problems, or low blood cell counts, but these symptoms disappear completely after several months with no lasting effects. Some infants with neonatal lupus can also have a serious heart defect. With proper testing, physicians can now identify most at-risk mothers, and the infant can be treated at or before birth. Most infants of mothers with lupus are entirely healthy.
We have much to learn about the different forms of lupus and how it affects the body. For that, we always need funding for research. As this holiday season approaches and you evaluate your charitable giving, would you consider the Lupus Foundation?
Lupus Foundation of America

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Tuesday Tales and a Pet Cemetery

Ahoy Fellow Fathomers! This week's Tuesday Tales prompt is the monthly picture prompt. We write 300 words to the chosen prompt. Please see how I use this photo in my new WIP sweet Young Adult romance, Finding Love in a Black Lagoon.  Our heroine, Pearl, has secrets. Will she ever let Owen in on them?


“Just down that lane is a pet cemetery.” Pearl pointed in the direction of a heavily treed road.

“A pet cemetery? I’ve buried my fair share of pets, but, always on my property. Seemed more personal that way.” Owen reached down to pet his dog, Aggie.

“It’s a beautiful place, serene and sacred. It’s the only graveyard for pets that I’ve ever seen.”

“I think we have one back in Oklahoma. The guy that runs it is weird, so, I stayed away from him.”

“Weird is in the eye of the beholder, Owen.”

“Weird is a guy who spends too much time studying death.”

“Maybe he is trying to learn about it, solve the mystery of the great beyond.” Pearl knelt to pet Aggie behind the ears. “What if I told you I go to our pet cemetery to do my best thinking?” Mysteriously, a gust of wind blew across Pearl’s hair, breezing it out of her eyes.

“Yea, but, you ain’t weird, you’re thoughtful and stuff. Plus, you’re a girl- girls always think more than guys do.”

“Don’t you dare try to tell me you don’t think about things, Owen Guthrie, you have a pensive mind and way smarter than you pretend to be.”

The tang of crisp autumn air coupled with dried leaves gave an earthy sense to the trees, filled Owen’s keen nostrils and sparked a response. “I do my best thinking in a tree stand deer hunting or out in the river fishing.”

“What do you think about when you’re out there all by yourself? What’s your best thinking?”

“My best thinking includes anything that makes me forget the past.” Owen tugged on Aggie’s leash and they started walking down the road. “C’mon, show me this super cool pet cemetery.”

“I’ll do that for you, Owen.”

  "Now that you've read my contribution to TT, please visit my creative friends over at our main blog, Tuesday Tales for their take on our beautiful fall picture prompt. 

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Saturday Sippers in The Locker

Saturday Sippers in The Locker
Ahoy Fellow Fathomers! Welcome to the feature here in The Locker called Saturday Sippers. Each week I’ll post a new, sometimes, skinny cocktail recipe for you to try. Many thinks to my Cali Bestie, Rhonda, for providing me with the deck of cards recipe book. J
Fall continues to stir cravings of soothing, filling drinks. Always a sucker for a good martini, this one sounds delicious.
VANILLA VODKA CREAMTINI!
Ingredients
  • Cocoa powder
  • 2 cups ice cubes
  • 1 cup vanilla vodka
  • ½ cup Irish cream liqueur
  • 1 T orange liqueur
  • Chocolate shavings for garnish
Coat glass rims with cocoa powder. In a cocktail shaker with ice, combine ingredients. Shake vigorously. Strain mixture into martini glasses. Garnish with chocolate shavings. Serves 4-6
232 Calories per serving

Friday, October 11, 2013

Flasher Fiction Friday

Ahoy Fellow Fathomers, this Friday I return to my first recurring blog contribution, the Friday Flash Fiction. A group of writers will write exactly 100 words, no more no less, to a picture prompt. After you read my contribution, please read what the other writers have to say, the links follow. Happy Friday!

"Andrew jumped in the shower in time to soap Bea’s back and massage her shoulders. Bea took her turn to scrub his manly chest with a soapy pouf and stood on tiptoes to shampoo his hair. Andrew slathered conditioner all over her wet trusses and helped rinse her clean. Before he attained a full erection, room service knocked at the door. “Their timing sucks.” Andrew kissed her full on the mouth.
“Think of it as fuel for later, Andrew. We need it.” Bea’s stomach growled in Pavlovian response to the door.
“I’m coming, hold on.” Andrew rushed on rumpled shorts..." 

For a variety of takes on this picture in just 100 words, please visit these other authors. Heat levels will vary from warm to erotic. 


S.J. Maylee: http://SJMaylee.com

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Just Out of My Grasp - My Personal Journey with SLE


Ahoy Fellow Fathomers, I’ve decided to use my blog not only to writing, music, and other facets of entertainment, but, also to share my journey. I found out on June 19, 2013 the reason for many of my ongoing health problems is because I have systemic lupus, also known as SLE.
Thank you for listening, each week I will have a new installment chronicling my journey. Please, please feel free to comment, write, share. I hope to use this forum as a help to all of us, no matter what pain you are experiencing. You may also send stories to me via finlessbook at gmail dot com. I will respect your privacy and maintain your anonymity, if you so desire.
Hugs for today …


This autoimmune disease that takes on several forms and can affect any part of the body.  I found the following information from the Lupus Foundation of America-
The four main types include:
  • Systemic Lupus Erythematosus
  • Cutaneous Lupus Erythematosus
  • Drug-induced Lupus Erythematosus
  • Neonatal Lupus
I will talk about each of the four main types in separate blogs. I begin with SLE, the type that affects me.
*Systemic Lupus Erythematosus
”Systemic lupus is the most common form of lupus, and is what most people mean when they refer to "lupus." Systemic lupus can be mild or severe. Some of the more serious complications involving major organ systems are:
  • inflammation of the kidneys (lupus nephritis), which can affect the body’s ability to filter waste from the blood and can be so damaging that dialysis or kidney transplant may be needed
  • an increase in blood pressure in the lungs (pulmonary hypertension)
  • inflammation of the nervous system and brain, which can cause memory problems, confusion, headaches, and strokes
  • inflammation in the brain’s blood vessels, which can cause high fevers, seizures, behavioral changes,
  • hardening of the arteries (coronary artery disease), which is a buildup of deposits on coronary artery walls that can lead to a heart attack”
I knew that I had more sticky notes, lists, and doodles than ever before just to remember simple things like needing milk at the store. I would leave a room not remembering what I left for. I realize many of you will say, "I do that ALL the time." well, I literally do it ALL the time and even began forgetting words or the names of things. 
I also had chest pains for several years and after periodic visits to cardiologists, they never detected anything abnormal on the tests.
It's very difficult to explain how you feel like you're falling apart piece by piece when you cannot distinctly verbalize what exactly is wrong. In a way the SLE diagnosis was a relief of sorts, but, I didn't feel that way for long.

Lupus.Org

Monday, October 7, 2013

Tuesday Tales Among the Evergreens

Ahoy Fellow Fathomers! This week's Tuesday Tales writing prompt is "evergreen". Please see how I use this in my new WIP sweet romance, Black Diamond Hearts are the Most Difficult. Our hero, Matthew, faces a difficult and sad task.

The drought left the pasture as dusty, dirt colored cement.  Huge cracks revealing a depth of at least a couple of feet spread here and there across the barren surface.  However, Matthew Hughes prepared for his grim mission, expecting success no matter the difficulty.  His friend deserved his full attention this one last time. He looked out upon the barren meadow and blinked back a few tears.

He normally enjoyed his visits back to the family ranch in Oklahoma. Although Matthew’s parents raised him in the grandeur of the Rockies-granola hippies who loved the crisp smell of the evergreens and bluebird days on the fluffy slopes of snow.  He enjoyed the best of both worlds as his grandparents and various aunts and uncles lived in Oklahoma from birth on. They maintained the family legacy of ranching established many years before his time.

He lived part time in Colorado with his successful career as a ski racing instructor. In the off months, he spent weeks in Oklahoma, assisting his family with the ranch. Both places would always be home.  He wanted his best friend buried close to his home roots, the last place they shared good times. family ranch for the solemn occasion. No other place would do.
me among beloved evergreens, ironically, I'm highly allergic to them


This type of thing was happening too often, it already made an indelible mark upon his psyche, and he was unsure he would ever recover from the events of the past few years.  Life was making him hard and untrusting.  He refused to call it fear, as his feelings were truly not born out of terror.  Bravery is actually one of his strongest traits.  Being brave is sometimes synonymous with being fearful, if the person is also wise-, which he is.


In the past few years, he lost two friends in a horrific skiing accident, three in car crashes, and one to cancer.  Of the six, five were easily avoidable.  It was this fact that gave him increased heartache. Being young and carefree does not mean young and careless. If only they had checked the snow conditions, if only they had answered that text later, if only they remembered just how treacherous hairpin turns actually were-they all might still be here.  No, damn it, they would all definitely still be here. Their untroubled lives, feigning fledging responsibility for their actions, ended at fourteen, the culmination being the Little League World Series baseball tournament in Omaha, Nebraska. Beyond that, it had been time to grow up and learn about the real world and how to be successful. 

"Now that you've read my contribution to TT, please visit my creative friends over at our main blog, Tuesday Tales for their take on our word prompt of  "evergreen". 

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Saturday Sippers in The Locker

Saturday Sippers in The Locker
Ahoy Fellow Fathomers! Welcome to the feature here in The Locker called Saturday Sippers. Each week I’ll post a new, sometimes, skinny cocktail recipe for you to try. Many thinks to my Cali Bestie, Rhonda, for providing me with the deck of cards recipe book. J
A bramble brings memories of a hearty cobbler made with peaches, berries, and other yummy stuff, so, the name of this drink intrigued me.
JALISCO BRAMBLE!
Ingredients
  • ½ ounce lime juice
  • ½ ounce grapefruit juice
  • ½ ounce agave nectar
  • 1 slice ginger
  • 4 blackberries
  • 1 dash peach bitters
  • 1 ½ ounces tequila
  • Lime wedge for garnish
Pour lime juice, grapefruit juice, and agave nectar in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Muddle ginger with liquids then strain. Add blackberries, bitters, and tequila. Shake with ice and strain, add crushed ice and garnish with lime wedge.
120 Calories per serving

Friday, October 4, 2013

Flasher Fiction Friday

Ahoy Fellow Fathomers, this Friday I return to my first recurring blog contribution, the Friday Flash Fiction. A group of writers will write exactly 100 words, no more no less, to a picture prompt. After you read my contribution, please read what the other writers have to say, the links follow. Happy Friday!

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Just Out of My Grasp - My Personal Journey with SLE




Ahoy Fellow Fathomers, I’ve decided to use my blog not only to writing, music, and other facets of entertainment, but, also to share my journey. I found out on June 19, 2013 the reason for many of my ongoing health problems is because I have systemic lupus, also known as SLE.
Thank you for listening, each week I will have a new installment chronicling my journey. Please, please feel free to comment, write, share. I hope to use this forum as a help to all of us, no matter what pain you are experiencing. You may also send stories to me via finlessbook at gmail dot com. I will respect your privacy and maintain your anonymity, if you so desire.
Hugs for today …
The second type of lupus is:
Cutaneous Lupus Erythematosus
“Cutaneous refers to the skin, and this form of lupus is limited to the skin. Although there are many types of rashes and lesions (sores) caused by cutaneous lupus, the most common rash is raised, scaly and red, but not itchy. It is commonly known as a discoid rash, because the areas of rash are shaped like disks, or circles. Another common example of cutaneous lupus is a rash over the cheeks and across the bridge of the nose, known as the butterfly rash. Other rashes or sores may appear on the face, neck, or scalp (areas of the skin that are exposed to sunlight or fluorescent light), or in the mouth, nose, or vagina. Hair loss and changes in the pigment, or color, of the skin are also symptoms of cutaneous lupus.
Approximately 10 percent of people who have cutaneous lupus will develop systemic lupus. However, it is likely that these people already had systemic lupus, with the skin rash as their main symptom.”
For a few softball seasons, I sat down from a mother who always had an umbrella present when the sun was shining. She had a beautiful dark complexion, yet, seemed obvious she wasn’t tanning to achieve her tone. I never asked because it really was none of my business why she always sat under the shade of an umbrella during games. I myself get too wound up watching my daughter play and jump around quite a bit, sometimes pacing.
However, after I received the diagnosis of SLE, in talking with fellow moms on the team, I found out she also had lupus. She has the type of lupus that becomes aggravated with sun exposure. Something else clicked for me at that moment.
Last summer I was working in the yard and got a sunburn on my lower back. I didn’t think much of it except for the usual burn and stinging and chastising myself I was stupid enough to burn my pale skin again. On day 3 of recovery, IT HIT- the ITCH. I sat at my work computer, minding my own business when I felt a twinge just beneath the skin in one spot of my lower back. Like some little alien was inside of my poking me from the inside out with an ice pick.
Seriously, it was THAT bad.
I grabbed my metal letter opener and began to dig into my skin on my lower back. Arms contorted backward at odd angles, I could not reach every offending spot at once. I jumped up and like a monkey against a palm tree, I connected every possible inch of my lower back against the edge of my cubicle and slid side to side and up and down in an attempt to allay the burning assault.
When I realized life wasn’t getting any better and all reason went out the window, I approached my supervisor, letter opener in hand, still scratching, and said I had to GO. Blinded to anything else but the purchase of some Solarcaine and aloe vera gel. Driving through the rain in city traffic, I alternated between crying and cursing all the way to the Wal-Mart 20 miles away from my job. I ran like a mad woman to the first aid supplies, back to the self-checkout and skipping a bag, almost shed my shirt in the store to apply what I hoped would be relief.
NOPE.
Long story short, I ended up itching, braless, wearing a loose tank, clutching a letter opener in the emergency room, clawing at my back and practically howling like a feral cat with mange. The doctor had no good advice and feeling sorry for me actually DID NOT charge me for the visit because there was nothing he could do. Time had to literally heal this wound. Oh, and he recommended Benadryl.
I took lots of Benadryl.
Suffice it to say I no longer regard the sun with such little respect. Never again wanting to experience the pain of corrosive inside out hives again, I use an umbrella now and sunscreen regularly.
I also have many sun damage spots and the discoid rashes of my own. I visited a dermatologist for a suspicious spot on my back, he performed a biopsy and sent to the lab and it thankfully came back benign. These many new strange rashes and lesions are common for me and and another symptom of my lupus.





www.lupus.org