Sunday, September 12, 2021

September 2021 Update on My Activities

On a future date, I plan to go into greater detail on how my tooth extraction went and how this school year has gone so far.  I also plan to write a post about misinformation on the Internet.  We all know that it's bad, but you'd think that actual dentists would give the right information about tooth extractions.  I have learned that they don't, or at least the dentists that Google serves up in search results don't.  More on all of that sometime soon.

In summary, the last six weeks have been horrific, just awful.  That's all you need to know, but I'll tell you a little bit.

I knew that the tooth extraction would be difficult, and I knew that going back to school with the Delta variant surge in progress would also be difficult.  I didn't realize that I would have some unexpected (to me) complications from the extraction and that the Delta surge would cause massive problems at school, which are still underway.

I've been a bit puzzled about my autoimmune response to all of this, and I will go into greater detail in a future post once I figure out the severity of my autoimmune flare.  I expected a moderate to strong autoimmune flare after going back to work. 

That I am in a flare is not in question.  I am puzzled as to how bad of a flare it is.  I won't be able to tell until I start coming out of it, which is why I cannot tell the entire story at this time.  I think the flare just got worse on Friday after I went through dealing with the new mask mandate at school that began on Wednesday.  It did not go well.  I barely slept Thursday night into Friday, and I was in tears when I woke up on Friday.  I calmed down later.  By Saturday, I realized that the insomnia and tears were caused by an autoimmune attack that came from the stress of dealing with the mask defiance.  Oh, the hostility.

Perhaps I will bottom out this week and start getting better next week.  I hope so.

What has puzzled me the most is that my energy level has held quite well during the last month.  That is not usually the case.  My energy level usually takes a hard crash during the first six weeks of school.  That didn't happen.  I have had pretty high energy overall, which makes no sense.  

I do have brain fog, which was expected and always happens during the first two months of school.  I have said and done some stupid things, and two weeks ago I did hit a curb at 30 mph, which popped a tire.  

I am fortunate that my Achilles heel when driving is hitting curbs and nothing else.  I don't have wrecks with other vehicles.  I just pop tires once every few years, usually during autoimmune flares.  I think this was the fourth tire that I have destroyed.  One was not my fault.  Someone cut me off, and I hit a curb at 40 mph.  The other three times were my fault and occurred during flares.

I should also mention that I sometimes view red lights differently than I should during flares.  I always stop, but if I have brain fog, then I seem to regard the red light as if it were a stop sign.  I know better, but the autoimmune flares cloud my thinking.  I found myself starting to take off at a red light after looking both ways around the time I popped the tire.  I realized what I was doing and avoided taking off.  

So you can see, autoimmune flares are significant and can have serious consequences.

When I was preparing to close my eBay and Etsy stores, I stated that I would reopen in October (fall break) or November (Thanksgiving break).  As it stands now, there is no way I will reopen during fall break.  Thanksgiving is still a possibility, but things are going to have to get better at school before then.

I know how much I can handle, and selling at this time would be too much for me.  Oh, I could do it, but it would take a toll and would make the autoimmune flare much worse.  I must come out of the flare, Oklahoma must be past the Delta surge, and school must start going better before I can possibly consider reopening my stores.  

I have decided that in advance of fully reopening that I will start with a partial reopening where I sell bulk lots only.  I have so far avoided putting books into boxes.  I think I can avoid the boxes completely this time around, but it will get a bit dicey.  The books are increasing (I simply cannot resist purchasing bulk lots...), and in the below photos of some of my extra books,  you can see that I am beginning to stack books on top of other books.

I was feeling quite emotional all day Friday, no doubt from the autoimmune attack that was underway on Friday.  The overarching theme of my thoughts was that I was sick of the "covid crap" and wanted it to be over.  I call what we are dealing with "covid crap."  I am sick and tired of it.  This needs to end.  Unfortunately, I fear that we have quite a ways to go.  The longer this goes on, the more it wears on us.

I keep thinking back to late January 2020.  Pandemics have always interested me, and I have always watched for any sign that we could have a major pandemic.  Anytime there has been a virus outbreak, I have read everything I could, looking for signs that the outbreak could become a pandemic.  I spent hours during January 2020 reading about the Wuhan outbreak.  Once the virus was reported to be outside of China, I concluded that the virus would spread worldwide, that this would be a major pandemic, and that we were going to go through what would be a minimum of a one- to two-year event.

We are now all but guaranteed of this being a two-year event.  I'm glad that I didn't know for sure in January 2020 that it would be two years or longer, as that would have been a bit much to bear.  It is sobering to think of how long this has lasted and how much longer this could still last.

On a lighter note, some good has come from this pandemic.  We have had experiences that we would never otherwise have had.  I tried all sorts of services last year like Shipt and Walmart grocery pickup that I never would have tried under normal circumstances.

This experience has also shocked all of us out of our normal lives and caused us to change our paths.  This is why I decided to begin downsizing my series book collection.  
I also reconnected with my interest in the Bee Gees.  It was always there, but I was annoyed with Barry Gibb for around 10 years, so I put my interest on the backburner.  That may sound silly, but when you are a fan of actual real people, they do frequently cause extreme annoyance.  What Barry wants and what we want are not the same. (This has to do with unreleased demo recordings.  Barry doesn't want them released, and we do.)  Due to the pandemic and reassessing what is important in my life, I have swallowed my annoyance and put my interest out in front again right where it belongs.

So, I am working on my new Bee Gees mirror collection.

I have five of them so far.  My favorite is the one with the green logo.  It is so gloriously tacky.  The mirrors were carnival prizes from back in the late 1970s.

It's also been interesting so see how other people have changed habits.  I continue to enjoy any unexpected fun new developments in my interests, but I do want the "covid crap" to go away soon.  

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