January 3, 2016

The Best Things I Did For Myself in 2015

Before looking forward and making my New Years Resolutions for 2016, I wanted to take a peak back into 2015 and share some of the better changes that I made in the last year. I don’t think these were technically “New Years 2015 Resolutions” – but they were promises that I made to myself as 2015 went along.

1. Getting more sleep – This was a hard one because I am more of a night person, and not a morning person at all.
So to remind myself to go to sleep earlier, I did what I do in the morning – I set an alarm to go to bed. Just like I set an alarm to wake up.

So at 9:30 pm, by cell phone starts ringing. I am usually in the middle of something – doing dishes, watching a tv show, creating my artwork projects, there lots of stuff to do. But that 9:30 pm alarm tells me to “slow down”. Its time to make sure I am in my pajamas with my teeth brushed. Its time for the electronic devices to get turned off. Its time to mellow out and relax. I can sit and watch a little more tv, but the lights need to be dimmed.

Sometimes I do stay up a while longer, but its at a very slow relaxed pace. Usually sipping decaf tea or wine curled up on the sofa with a tv show on low. If I am not sleeping, I am resting.

I don’t set an alarm on Friday or Saturday night because I don’t have to get up early the next day. But I am noticing that my bedtime on Friday or Saturday is a bit earlier than normal just naturally, due to my schedule on other days of the week.

2. Waking Up Earlier – See above. Setting an alarm at 9:30 pm to tell myself to go to bed, has given me a ton more energy. I am not up earlier all the time. But there have been many days that I just naturally wake up a half hour before the morning alarm clock goes off. And I feel well rested.

3. Getting Ready for the Week – this is an organization skill that I picked up from a friend. The friend told me that they couldn’t go out on a Sunday night because they spend that time “Getting ready for the week”. With a hectic job schedule, social life, church, hobbies and other things going on, it made sense.

On Sunday after church, I usually stop off at the grocery store so I have everything that I need for the week. On Sunday evenings I make a point to cook both my breakfast and my lunch for the next few days. They go into the fridge in glass containers ready to microwave at the office. Organic Oatmeal with different fruits, and hard boiled eggs for breakfast. Usually some type of low sodium chicken dish with roasted vegetables and rice or potatoes for lunch. I make sure I have my fruit, nuts, snacks, yogurt, whatever, in a bag and ready to go to the office in the morning.

I also pull out a couple of outfits from the closet, so they are hanging right where I can see them. The office is casual so I can easily mix tops with jeans or black slacks. But I also take into consideration any after work plans for the week so I have those clothes out where I can see them. This eliminates a morning of not knowing what to wear.

So these are the changes in that I made during the year 2015. They made me more rested. I am eating healthier. I have more energy. And have helped me eliminate some stress.

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April 19, 2015

Panic Attack I Got Stuck in an Elevator

ElevatorOne of those days where you say to yourself “I had no idea this was going to be such a bad day!”
I had just come back after a few days of vacation. I had a nice walk to the Sushi place down the street to pick up my lunch of a Sushi Combo.
I arrive back, thinking of all the things I had to get done, and I get in the elevator. I press the button to go up, and the elevator starts going up.
Then around the 4th floor, it decided it didn’t want to go up any more. So it went back down.
But it didn’t like the 3rd floor either – so it went back up to the 4th floor. No, it didn’t want to stop at 3, so it went back up to 4.
I bounced up and down between the 3rd and 4th floors like this for a long time. 5 minutes. I was pressing the buttons, pressing the alarm – which was a dinky little “ding ding”.
I was all alone, trying to get the elevator to stop bouncing between floors.
And I realized I didn’t even have my cell phone with me to dial 911.

Finally, the elevator decided to let me out at the 4th floor. I ran out and was clinging to the walls. Some people were there, and I said “Don’t get in the elevator.” I was dizzy, and feeling faint, and holding on to the wall.
The people said “Lets take the stairs.” And they left me there – at no time asking if I was ok. And how stupid of me not to ask them to call 911 – I wasn’t thinking, just clinging to the wall.

I stood there for a few minutes, and realized I was in no condition to take the stairs. I was so dizzy. I pressed the elevator button. The other elevator opened, and there were people in there that I knew. But they thought they were on our floor. I grab them and said “No, no – I’ve been stuck in the elevator! I thought it was going to fall!”

When we got to my floor, I finally sat down. Everyone said my face was as white as a ghost. I ate my lunch, but I was still shaking.
After about an hour, I decided I wanted to go to After Hours Urgent Care and see a doctor. I was worried I could have had a heart attack or a stroke from such a frightening experience.

The doctor at Urgent Care said my heart rate was normal. He said my blood pressure was “not great, but not horrible” – which is pretty normal for me. Thank heavens I take two mild blood pressure medications, very low dosages of Lasix in the morning, and Metoprolol at night. I think they really kept me from having a heart attack.
I didn’t feeling like my heart was racing, just shaking and dizzy.

The doctor took an EKG just to be on the safe side. He said that the EKG was totally normal. So just go home this evening and try to get some extra rest, since I had had such a bad experience. Try to go home and relax.

One thing I learned is to always have my cell phone with me. The elevator emergency alarm was pretty dinky and more like a chime. I wish I had the phone to dial 911. I will always have my phone with me from now on.

And I am glad I decided to go to the doctor. After having a terrifying experience, it is good to get checked out just in case. Especially if you are on medications, or have health problems. It is best to be safe and not take a chance. If you think you should get checked by a doctor, just go. You want to be sure you didn’t suffer a mild heart attack during your ordeal.

I have taken elevators since them. I am not panicking when I get on them, so that is good too.

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Image Credit of Elevator, public domain, MorgueFile

April 11, 2015

Pardon the Dust …

Pardon the dust while I start to remodel and fix up this old rusty website. Hope I can turn it into something more new and modern.
I forgot when I first started this website, and purchased my domain name. It was some time around the year 2000, give or take, when I had just finished my self-produced CD “Impatience” – and like many people with a CD back then, I wanted a website.

From that point on, after it was done being about my music or poetry, it turned into a blog about Acting when I was acting, then a personal blog about my problems
with Cancer. Then it became just a spot on the internet to post my art and gifts that I was creating on Zazzle or Cafepress.

Now I am at the point where I want it to be a “Real Blog”. I mean, I am all over the place – Yelp, Facebook, Twitter, etc… I might was well make it a Real Blog.
I post all my stuff on other peoples “www” presence . Maybe now is the time to make my own web presence.

But it has not been easy. Of course when the reality set it, there was the general panic of “What am I going to write about?” “Do I make it personal or keep it private?”
Maybe its time to sign up the writing class. And that general feeling of “there is never enough time”. But if I want to find the time to do something, then I will make the time for it.

I still have not decided what I am going to do about the “comments” section. If I will turn them off totally, or if I will allow comments for the first 5 days, then they will turn off. They really does become a chore to clean up because there is so much spam. So if you are unable to post a comment, sorry, but I will be figuring this out in a bit.

So “pardon my dust”, as I recreate this old website, and try to turn it into something a little bit more new and modern.
Donna
www.donnagrayson.com