Monday, April 14, 2008

Where I've Been

In no particular order:

1. Sitting on a towel on the floor of our bedroom, putting on Eucerin cream as my psoriasis gets worse and worse and worse beyond what it's been like for the past three or four years, and spreads like an invading empire across acres of skin I didn't even know I had.

2. Also, taking baths with colloid oatmeal and reading old New Yorkers.

3. On the phone, trying to schedule my orientation and training sessions at the Big Library System where I will soon be an auxiliary (on-call/substitute) librarian. Assuming they still want me once they see me in person looking like a cross between The Singing Detective and a molting lizard.

4. At a doctor's office, trying to qualify for a clinical trial study which, starting next week, will give me 12 weeks of something that will either be a really cool psoriasis drug or a placebo, followed by a free year or so of the cool (and otherwise prohibitively expensive) psoriasis drug for sure, even if I end up on the placebo for the first 12 weeks. But which requires that I go off of all other psoriasis treatment except non-medicated creams like Eucerin.

5. Hoping like hell that I don't get the placebo and become completely and debilitatingly taken over by psoriasis and have to go to the hospital like the guy in the Singing Detective and have hallucinations in which I imagine people from my past and present dancing around me while the mouth the words to 1940's pop songs. Well, not really that last part. And it wouldn't come to that, anyway. But if it got too bad I'd have to drop out of the study.

6. Wishing that this week in which I'm waiting to start the study and not using any drugs at all and watching my skin get colonized etc. wasn't also a) the week before Passover, and b) the week of a very important conference to do with my 2nd job, which requires me to be really together and on top of things and also to gladhand at this conference all day Friday, which is coincidentally the day before our Passover seder. If, in fact, anyone wants to gladhand with me at the conference once they see me in person looking like the Singing Detective etc.

7. Driving across town to the One Jewish Neighborhood in Vancouver, first to buy matzah, then to buy other stuff including Chocolate Passover Cereal with which to bribe the Mermaid Girl into accompanying me in semi-observance of the holiday (lots of matzah, no bread or crackers or cookies, no noodles, no granola, but I think we'll look the other way on peas, peanut butter, and corn syrup. And soy sauce. And maybe some other stuff.).

8. Watching "The Wire" with the Renaissance Woman, with the subtitles on, so that we at least have a fighting chance of understanding some of the dialogue. I catch more than RW, I think maybe because I went to a racially integrated school (thanks, Mom & Dad!), but even so I can't understand half of what either the cops or the drug dealers are saying. I felt a little better about it after watching a special feature where a bunch of teenage actors on the show, mostly Black kids from New York, were saying they couldn't understand half of it either. I guess it's a Baltimore thing.

9. Looking forward to Passover and to seeing my dad and stepmom and also some other good family friends and hosting our very first seder in our new home. Even though due to all the above I am once again reduced to apologizing in advance for the state of the house. I'm just glad they are family and good friends and it's more important that we spend time together.

10. Watching as the cherry trees lining both sides of our street, which were just scraggly arrangements of sticks all winter, have come first into vague bud and then full glorious pink bloom, so that every time I return from those numerous doctor's appointments and Passover shopping expeditions I roll up to this welcoming double lane of blossom like a plane taxiing into a pink cherry-tree runway.

Our view is slowly disappearing behind cherry-blossom petals, but it's a small price to pay.


Blogger Phantom Scribbler said...

I wish I had something funny to say about psoriasis, which, lo, I cannot even spell, but my spelling errors are only sad, not funny.

I have been feeling sorry for myself about my rosacea and zits, but at least they don't *itch*. Oy. Gentle, soothing, oatmeal-covered hugs to you.

Also? You qualify as *so* observant in my book. We have not yet decided whether we will be Sephardic for the purposes of Passover... or Unitarian for the purposes of Passover.

6:02 AM  
OpenID peripateticpolarbear said...

I still think of the kid from way back in my grad school job of being a lunchroom attendant at a junior high (go figure, the teachers didn't want to do it). He ate ham sandwiches on matza during passover----with cookies for dessert.
He'd shrug and say, "well, I'm only half Jewish."

6:24 AM  
Blogger Hugh said...

Els, we were in NYC last week on our Spring Break (major road trip) and on the drive back home we sang the "George Washington Bridge" song with gusto (on the way there we came up from Phila. and I actually visited BMC, but we took the Tappan Zee to avoid traffic). Give my regards to your Dad and Stepmom, Alice.

7:40 AM  
Blogger witchtrivets said...

Skin conditions suck. That sounds awful. Although I am with you on sitting in the tub with old New Yorkers. That is the one bright spot of medicinal baths.

We also watch the Wire with CC on. We are both from the East Coast and have our own hard-to-understand accents. Yet still, we cannot understand those "Bawlmer" accents.

Hope the job stuff goes well and the skin gets better. For non-med lotion I use Cur3l Ultra Heal1ng. It works for small flare-ups -- at least for me.

10:27 AM  
Anonymous rachel said...

Feel better, Els! Cherry blossoms help, but they're no cure-all.

10:57 AM  
Blogger susan said...

Soy sauce was not even on my list of things to consider not eating!

Sending anti-itchy-vibes your way: that sounds awful. I hope the trial does you good.

5:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sorry your psoriasis is flaring up. Have you been tested for allergies? Wheat and lactose intollerances/allergies can cause major skin problems like psoriasis and eczema - might be worth checking out, (or just cut down on milk and bread and see if it helps)

1:17 AM  
Blogger liz said...

So sorry about the itchies. ((Els))

"I roll up to this welcoming double lane of blossom like a plane taxiing into a pink cherry-tree runway." I love this line.

10:35 PM  
Blogger squid said...

Hey Dearie,

Sorry to hear about the psoriasis. Do you think it might be environmental?

Apologies for putting this here, but I have not heard from you regarding various logistics for our visit to your region. Would you mind writing to me?


2:26 PM  
Anonymous JoeInVegas said...

Cherry blossoms - another tree that doesn't grow here. At least we had the pink peach blossoms a while back, the olives are in bloom now.
Good luck on the study and the jobs.

9:10 AM  
Blogger MexicowithKids said...

Just came to check in on you and see how you are doing. Hope the psoriasis is continuing to "calm down already". It was a wonderful seder, cut to the chase and all. We loved the singing, and miss you all.


11:13 PM  

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