Friday, February 25, 2011

Life Has Settled Down

My mom is speaking to me again. She doesn't want me to discuss her PMS so much here, so for now I will need to humor her.

I love my dad. Even though he is at times irrational, he is kind to me when no one else is.

The pseudorelatives are dealing with whatever life throws at them. I'm glad they're no longer angry with me, because I hate it when they are. This is especially true when I am living with them, but I don't like being on the outs with them under any circumstances. Some really strange happenings went down tonight, but I don't think they would want me sharing most of them, so I won't. PseudoUncle has been highly stressed by medical school, which surely must be uncommonly stressful. It is also stressful to be in the way of medical students when they are feeling stressed. In a small condo it is sometimes difficult to find a place to be that is sufficiently far out of the way to avoid being hit by the residual fallout of that stress. Being part of a family sometimes means I have to take the good with the bad.

PseudoAunt mentioned tonight after PseudoUncle went to bed (he was REALLY exhausted) that I had never asked any questions about her recently diagnosed condition of cystic fibrosis. She was diagnosed with it at twenty-three, which is very unusual. The condition is usually detected in neonatal screening. The fact that she had it for twenty-three years before anyone realized she had it is a good sign, but it's still not as though she was symptom-free all those years. She does have the same long-term effects that any CF patient would have, which is, namely, lung scarring from repeated infections.

I told PseudoAunt that my dad had instructed me specifically not to ask questions, and that I hoped she didn't think I was unconcerned because I hadn't asked her about it. My reasons for not asking were that I didn't want to pry or be nosy in the event that there were things about which she didn't want people in general or me in particular to know, and also that I didn't want to be in trouble with my dad if he found out I had asked questions after having been told point blank not to say anything.

PseudoAunt said she appreciated both my and my dad's respect for her privacy, but that I should feel comfortable asking her anything I want to know. It can remain between the two of us, and she won't even mention it to my dad. She said that she never mistook my silence on the subject as a lack of concern; she correctly assumed that I was following orders. She said if there is something she tells me about her CF that I shouldn't share in a blog, she will tell me. Anything else can be shared. I suppose that negates the part about her not telling my dad that we talked about it, but since she brought it up, it's probably OK.

I was curious in a concerned way about her prognosis. She said she really doesn't know other than the obvious answer that no one expects her to expire anytime soon. Her specialists will have a better answer in about a year in terms of how rapidly her illness is progressing or if it's in some sort of remission or holding pattern.

I also asked about childbearing in relation to her condition. She's not yet certain, but at this point her doctors are saying that chances are she'll be able to bear a child or two. They don't want her to get pregnant until they have enough of a handle on her condition that it is safe for her to go almost a year without invasive diagnostic procedures. She said a large obstacle in terms of her having children will be to convince her husband that it's a safe bet. Under the very best of circumstances a pregnancy will take some toll on her; pregnancy typically impacts even perfectly healthy women to at least a slight degree. Her husband feels strongly that a life without their own biological children is preferable to a life without her. Even if the doctors OK pregnancy and her husband is convinced it's safe, fertility could be an issue. It's typically less an issue for women than men with CF, but PseudoAunt has so much difficulty keeping weight on that her cycles are affected. A woman can be too thin to ovulate. PseudoAunt has been thin enough for her cycles to be interrupted for quite some time. Until her CF diagnosis in December, she didn't know why. Now she's trying hard to gain weight, though not just for fertility reasons.

PseudoUncle asked my dad for the formula for my growth shakes. I immediately felt very sorry for PseudoAunt when I learned of this. I have been plagued with having to drink the disgusting growth shakes for several years, and I wouldn't wish the experience on my worst enemy, much less one of my two favorite relatives in the entire world. PseudoAunt says it's OK and I don't have to feel sorry for her in that regard. She says the shakes are not THAT disgusting and that they are a quick source of major calories and nutrients. I still feel sorry for her. I try to be a positive influence on her by drinking the shakes without excessive whining when I am with her, but I don't always succeed.

This may seem out of the blue but, for what it's worth, smoking is really stupid. Anyone who would consider taking up the habit now in the face of all the available information of just how harmful the practice is has to be a total moron.


  1. Wow. Alexis has finally figured out for herself what the church has been saying for maybe one hundred and seventy years, that smoking is bad!
    Oh I forgot. Alexis is a frigging genius. This is proof positive I suppose. Some people think they are too smart to learn from the wisdom of leaders and others and have to learn everything the hard way on their own. I guess as long as they learn it is Okay. When you are through reinventing the wheel Alexis maybe you will have time to learn something.

  2. Alexis can say anything she wants but she lies a lot. I refuse to believe that she's never sneaked a smoke. John and Erin are fools if they really believe it.

  3. Bristow, why would Alexis be interested in the teachings of your church leaders? She's not, nor has she ever been, a member of your church. Does your mission president know you're using the Internet? Anonymous #2, do you have first-hand knowledge that Alexis has smoked beyond your anonymous allegations?

  4. Annonyclod,

    you made a rather strange error. An error of ignorance, obviously, or else you were deliberately dissembling, which is bad.

    You said:
    Wow. Alexis has finally figured out for herself what the church has been saying for maybe one hundred and seventy years, that smoking is bad!

    You seem to imply that The Mormon Church (or TSCC, The So-Called Church as it is known to many ex-Mormons) was the first organisation to claim that smoking is bad for you. This is arrant, palpable nonsense. Or utter rubbish, as we British would put it.
    This link takes you to a book that King James wrote, pointing out the dangers of smoking tobacco, or A Counterblaste to Tobacco, as it was called.

    This was published in 1604, 407 years ago. Makes your 170 years look puny and pitiful.