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Monthly Archives: January 2015

Vertigo

Remember this?

Well, it’s back. And I am not amused.

My labyrinth is having an -itis again. Again.

Started having a cold last Saturday. I was frustrated because I was finally feeling full of energy again. Oh well. After the weekend I started sniffling a bit, and by Wednesday I was sure any possible actual and imaginary cavity I have in my head was filled with snot. Including my ears. I was on call, and Thursday morning I finally got myself some Otrivin. Still really not sick enough to call in sick at all, but my patients were feeling sorry for me.

Friday morning I had a hard time getting to work, but I figured it’s just my body wanting more sleep.

I started feeling worse and worse, couldn’t figure out why. Just felt really hazy.

Then I started feeling nauseous after taking the turn on the stairs,

And I had noticed that the fairies have started running their diesel engines in my right ear again, but I figured it had something to do with all the snot in there. I’ve been intermittently having some minor hearing loss in the past few days, thanks to snot EVERYWHERE., so it made sense.

By noon I told my preceptor I didn’t know how I was going to make it through the afternoon, and that I was nauseous. I left my bike at the practice and took the bus, grateful that I don’t own a car yet because I’m in no way able to drive right now.

I planted myself on the sofa and remained there, dead tired and dizzy.

Slept for 11h, and today my world still has a tendency to tilt towards the left. Sometimes I actually tilt towards the left, one time the stairs were a bit too close for comfort. But I’m sort of fine. I get around through spotting, you know, like dancers do. I use visual cues. All in all, for a case of vertigo it’s pretty mild.

As long as I keep still and have my head supported I can sit and do stuff. Problem is that I forget, then get up and start floating towards the left again. It’s a bit nauseating.

I think I’m also missing part of my hearing in the lower ranges in my right ear, like I did last time. It got better over time though.

If I close my eyes while sitting up, it feels like I’m slowly falling towards the left.

The whole thing has lost it’s amusement value by now.

And strangely, our primary care guidelines doesn’t mention ‘ labyrinthitis’ , just vestibular neuritis… the difference being the hearing part. According to our guidelines it’s Meniere’s… except I’m too young, it’s too mild and there’s a very direct association with a virus here.

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Posted by on January 31, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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Non-perfectionist baking

Non-perfectionist baking

I tried this recipe from Sally’s Baking Addiction.  It’s ‘Blueberry rolls with sweet lemon glaze’. Yes, sometimes I’m a bit more successful in the kitchen than when I’m making coffee. I may even be -gasp- good at baking. And perhaps, if I applied myself, at cooking. The problem is, me and the kitchen aren’t the best of friends, unless I get to do something new and exciting when I’m in the mood for it.

My rolls turned out good, just perhaps indeed more suitable as a brunch or breakfast sweet -paired with Earl Grey tea- than as something to go with afternoon coffee. Calling them rolls is also perhaps not entirely accurate because they were deformed when I tried to fit them into a too-small oven dish before I remembered that we DO own a round cake tin.

It was a recipe to write down into my personal recipe book. Starting that was an ADHD-management thing and part of my eating-healthier plan originally. The first book is now almost full, but I should toss a few recipes that don’t belong in my go-to arsenal. One rule for getting in that book: it has to be GOOD.

Then the difference between the original recipe and what I wrote down struck me.

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I wrote down the version I ended up doing… well…. minus a few mishaps.

See, perhaps it’s more an Afrikaans thing or a Busy Darling thing, but I like things that work without too much extra fuss.

  • Add the egg and only enough of the reserved flour to make a soft dough. I only needed 1/3 cup, but you may need the full 1/2 cup. Dough will be ready when it gently pulls away from the side of the bowl and has an elastic consistency.

  • On a lightly floured surface, knead the dough for about 5-6 minutes. Place in a lightly greased bowl (I used non-stick spray) and let rest for about 10 minutes.

  • Fill the rolls: After 10 minutes, roll the dough out in a 14×8 inch rectangle. Pour the sugared blueberries on top and gently spread them to cover the dough surface. Roll up the dough tightly. Cut into 11 even pieces and place in a lightly greased 9-inch round pan. I used a pie dish, lightly sprayed with nonstick spray. Loosely cover the rolls with aluminum foil and allow to rise in a warm, draft-free place for 2-3 hours. Here is what I do: heat the oven to 200F degrees. Turn oven off. Place rolls inside oven and allow to rise. *Do not* refrigerate the rolls at any point during or after rising.

Pardon me? Apart from knowing when dough is ready to be called ‘a nice soft dough’ (My grandma is somewhat a kitchen authority!) it works just as well to knead in the same bowl you mixed in, and to use the same bowl to let it sit in. Plus less to clean up! That being said, I do think the explanation of when the dough is ready is charming and gives it  nice passing-it-down feel. Just an example.

I think I’m a lot less of a perfectionist than Sally, and perhaps than most of the household/baking/crafting bloggers I come across. I think I’d have trouble finding enough followers because the main audience probably doesn’t consist of chaotic and somewhat creative creatures like me. “So you just toss in a bit of vanilla (or whatever you like) and knead for a few minutes with a dash of something in the lines of milk” may be a bit hard for others to follow. But that’s how I roll.  I have also already dreamed up 10 variations on this recipe and thought of 5 other uses for the lemon glaze.

Perfectionism seems to be a ‘thing’ amongst women, but I checked both my X chromosomes and that gene was nowhere to be found. That’s OK, TDH is enough of a perfectionist for both of us.

So, here’s how to bake non-perfectionist style:

  1.  Make a list of what you still need, forget to check how much milk there actually is in the fridge. There’s a milk bottle in the fridge, so that counts, right?
  2. Go back to the supermarket because TDH finished the last bit of milk that morning and now there’s no milk left. Ask TDH he needs something else while you’re there.
  3. As a result, start a bit too late, hope the dough rises quickly. Be relieved when your guests let you know they’ll be an hour late.
  4. Do not gather your ingredients beforehand. Rather, just push everything on the counter to the side. Space! Get started.
  5. Roughly follow instructions. Decide to use cream instead of milk anyway, because you’ve got no other use for the cream and it’s milk-ish, right? Also: try to use the same measuring cup for almost everything. Use actual tea- and tablespoons.
  6. When you get to the kneading part, see above
  7. Decide to skip the part where the dough sits for 10 mins, then realise the counter needs to be cleaned before using it to roll on. Clean part of counter, let the dough sit while the counter is wet. No idea how many minutes, but start tidying up and spraying the shower for cleaning in the meantime.
  8. Fail to read the instructions about the rolling, end up with a somewhat less practical thing to cut into 11-ish pieces. They will not resemble rolls.
  9. Use butter as an anti-stick layer for the oven dish, remember how genius this trick your grandmother taught you was.
  10. Squish the ‘rolls’ in the square oven dish. They just fit. Oh well. Put in the oven to rise, like the instructions said, because that sounds like a good idea.
  11. Remember you have a round 9 in cake tin. Look for it everywhere, send TDH a whatsapp asking where it is just before finding it where it was supposed to be.
  12. Apply butter to it, this time thinking about how butter probably has less nasty chemicals than anti-stick spray.
  13. Remove rolls from oven, put them in the cake tin and let them continue their -eh- up-rise. Clean kitchen, living room and bathroom in the meantime.
  14. Make the glaze. Use a kitchen scale to measure the sugar. Use guesstimation to measure the rest.
  15. Greet TDH, who just came home with milk, with a taste of the lemony glaze.
  16. Ponder on the geniality of using the oven to let the dough rise as you simply turn up the oven temperature in order to bake the rolls after they had risen enough .
  17. After a few minutes start wondering if they’re supposed to smell that strong already.
  18. After a few minutes more rush into the kitchen because something’s burning. Turns out sugar/blueberry juice dripped from the cake tin and is now burning on the oven floor.
  19. Switch off oven, clean it, try to google how to quickly clean it, then just scrape it off.
  20. Switch oven on again, this time successfully bake the rolls, glaze them and serve them.

Hmm. Delish.

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Posted by on January 25, 2015 in adult ADHD, Creative Spirit!, Random

 

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How not to make coffee.

How not to make coffee.

Lattes are my thing lately. Especially since I discovered how easy it is to make lovely caramel lattes, vanilla lattes or even maple lattes. (Try it!)

I have this small filter coffee machine, perfect for 1-2 cups. The only problem is that I lost the measuring spoon, so getting the right amount of ground coffee is a bit tricky. I just opened a new pack of arabica coffee which smells a bit stronger and nicer than the coffee I had before, so I put a bit less in the filter than I’m used to.

It turned out to be a lot less, which I only discovered after adding the brew to my hot milk.

Not being in the mood for something extremely pale and milky and probably tasted pale and milky, I decided to run the lot through the coffee maker again, adding more ground coffee.

Who knows, perhaps I would find out a new way to make lattes! How come nobody else thought about this? Just running water AND milk through would be genius, right?

Turns out that there’s a good reason why that’s not how we make lattes.

The milk/water mixture doesn’t run through the filter.

What does happen is the filter overflows and you get ground in your cup, a lot of it. Of course, I only realised the filter was the problem after trying to filter out the ground from my latte using a fresh filter.

Teaspoons aren’t suitable for getting ground out either.

Tea eggs are, more or less.

The whole process probably took about 15 mins, enough for my coffee to cool down. And I only got out half the ground anyway.

In the end I drank half a cup of coffee through my teeth.

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Now I probably should go clean up the mess before the cat gets home and notices I’ve been dancing on the table.

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Posted by on January 11, 2015 in adult ADHD, Random

 

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The Unbearable Boredom of Being.

I am bored.

Not just bored, but a special kind of bored.

I’m that kind of existential and unbearable bored that I think folks with ADHD know too well.

During the past months I’ve had a crazy amount of stress, which I went through without becoming that much crazier than normal. It wasn’t the good type of stress, but it’s stimulation… and generally my type of ADHD does well with stimulation. Chronic over stimulation is not good for me though, and it leads to an interesting combination of functioning extremely well while cracking. I’ve had stress related to school and work and such for a few months. Part of the stress was my own ADHD coping: I need the stimulation. Though, not all was my own doing and it went on for too long. In October I moved house (after some chaos related to having to deal with a leak for weeks on end), moved in together for the first time and I started in my new group at the faculty after the problems climaxed. I still had to work at the old practice, in November I switched to the new place. True, sometimes (ok, at some point more than some times), I was obviously stressed out. At other times I was riding it like a pro surfer. Like I said: cracking while shining.

There’s no way I could go on forever like that. I’ve tried, and it landed me in a depression. So, no, let’s not do that again. Things started to quiet down for me towards the end of December. I dealt with another virus (well done, body, for battling it off instead of letting me become really sick again!). Somewhere, I pulled through the worst of the backlash and then…

I became bored.

My system is used to being overstimulated, and now things have reached a peaceful place…

… and I can’t stand it.

It’s the unbearable boredom of being.

I understand that I’m kind of ‘ hooked’  on that over stimulation, and what I am going through is essentially stress withdrawal, but that doesn’t make it any more fun to go through.

I understand that I MUST do things that are enjoyable, and that I must sit this out and that it will get better at some point… but still.

What I’m feeling is something quite similar to depression, but at the same time not at all similar to depression. I feel very uninspired, or things that normally inspire me just don’t do it for me right now. All the boosts are short lived, and then I’m bored again. I’m then inclined to go for quick fixes, cheap thrills but that doesn’t really help much.

My mind, in general, needs heaps of stimulation in order to just ‘function’. Boredom is torment. Honestly, sometimes I just ‘ switch off’  and whoever is around me is left with a pretty useless grumpy chair filler. Nobody enjoys it, me least of all.

So, why not just go sensation seeking again?

Fatigue.

For my own mental health’s sake I’m in a sort of recovery period. System fatigue makes everything worse.

My goal is nothing else than to have my system respond to my own normal level of stimulation. It’s too tired to do that now. Balance needs to be restored in order for me to get the most out of me.

That’s all.

That’s everything.

And I think, in the end…

dealing with the boredom of being is part of dealing with me.

I don’t care if you want to call it a fault in my character, a fault in my neurobiology… or simply part of being a restless spirit and not a fault at all.

 

 

 

 
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Posted by on January 6, 2015 in adult ADHD

 

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