Don’t Look At The Ground If You Want To See The Sky…

Perspective is an important part of life. Most of us have a perspective that’s based on a combination of our family values, personal experience and occasionally religion. Perspective can guide our actions. Determine our choices. perspective can even lead to our thinking that something is negative when it seems perfectly normal to someone else. And that’s where the problem comes in. Perspective can cause us to view others and their respective beliefs in a negative way.

Peoples’ perspective, especially when based on personal beliefs, can lead to serious misunderstandings, fights and even criminal behaviour. This is where the firm understanding that empathy, understanding and the ability to see things from someone ELSE’s perspective comes in handy. Especially if one hopes to avoid the unnecessary confrontations that can result.

Let’s take the example of an infant, as an example. When an infant whose just learned to walk bumps their leg into a table, or becomes hungry, sleepy or uncomfortable, they start to cry. Seems pretty ridiculous, doesn’t it? Imagine if you started crying every time you got hungry or bumped your leg on a table? I’m pretty good at shooting off a string of profanity when I somehow kick a wall that’s been in my house since I moved in, but it doesn’t get me crying.

I guess my point is simply this: Your perspective is unique to you. You shouldn’t expect others to understand or get in line with your way of thinking. If you’re lucky enough, you’ll have people in your life that at least respect your perspective, even if they don’t agree with it. And you should respect others’ perspectives. So long as their way of life brings no harm to themselves or others, everyone’s journey is unique and should be respected. Food for thought…☯

Booze Is Bad, Mm-Kay?

If none of you have ever watched South Park, you may not get the reference in the title. There’s a character called “Mr. Mackey,” and he’s big on using the line, “Drugs are bad, mm-Kay?” If you have time to Google or go on YouTube to hear how he says it, you’ll get why it’s funny. But i digress…. Today’s post is about alcohol, as it relates to Diabetes and the difficulty that can be associated with trying to enjoy an adult beverage without sending blood sugars and one’s overall system into fits.

I don’t usually endorse specific products, services or items here, besides talking about my pump and the fact that it’s manufactured by Medtronic. It’s a little hard to hide that fact and STILL talk about it, which is why I allow it. But in general, my blog isn’t a platform to advertise for others. But when it comes to my personal use and review of something, especially if it makes Diabetes easier for me.

As most Type-1 Diabetics are aware, consuming alcohol can be a difficult concept for a number fo different reasons. If you’re a beer drinker, you need to consider the amount of carbs you’re consuming and be able to bolus accordingly for them. The biggest issue is knowing how many carbohydrates are in any particular alcoholic drink. For example, the average 355mL can of beer contains between 6 to 12 grams of carbs. Interestingly enough, “non-alcoholic” beer contains anywhere between 9 to 17 grams of carbs, as well.

Wine is certainly a better option, considering some of the anti-oxidant aspects and the fact that an entire bottle of red wine is only between 10 to 14 grams of carbohydrates (not that I’m suggesting you drink an entire bottle at once, mind you). And keep in mind that pure spirits that haven’t been mixed with anything else have absolutely no carbohydrates. There are some exceptions, of course. Because why would life be simple? Here’s a chart by Diabetes.ca for some basic reference.

This brings me to the product I tried last week…. While visiting my in-laws last week, my mother-in-law introduced the above-shown product as “something new” for my father-in-law to try. He had a can, but preferred his beer. I decided to try one, since it boasts zero sugar and zero carbs (a discernment that ins’t always made). I tried a can and I have to say that considered its ingredient content, it was pretty good. It became my vacation go-to beverage for my week away.

Sitting at 5% alcohol content, this is a vodka-soda drink that’s light, refreshing and easy to drink. There were a variety of flavours that included lime, lemon, raspberry and grapefruit. I tested my blood prior to drinking the first one and was sitting comfortably in the 5’s, and was still sitting in that range after two cans and a couple of hours’ elapsing. I was tickled pink (the vodka MAY have had something to do with that) and it was nice to find something that ACTUALLY allows me to enjoy a drink without affecting my blood sugars.

The can you see above is one of a case I purchased once we got back home to Regina. Sitting at 7% as opposed to 5%, these come in three flavours: black cherry, blackberry and raspberry. they’re pretty good and the added 2% DOES make a difference. But I once again, they seem to have no measurable effect on my blood sugars, which is nice. While looking for a case of this stuff, I realized that there are a few of these drinks that fall into the same category. I’ve spent so much time getting on the “making fun” bandwagon against White Claw, I never stopped to recognize that a can of the stuff is only 1 gram of carbs!

Anyway, I wanted to offer up this brief review of this product. As anyone with Type-1 Diabetes is aware, enjoying a drink is painful at the best of times, so this is definitely a helpful aspect that allows T1D’s as much normalcy as possible. One simply needs to remember all the other fun details, such as the consumption of booze ties up your liver as it processes the alcohol, so it can cause your blood sugars to drop, carbs or not. No matter what your plans or what you’re drinking, remember to make certain to check your blood sugars regularly and have a safe plan for administering some fast-acting carbs if needed. ☯️

The Universe Owes You Nothing…

I’ve always worked very hard at trying to help others and make a difference in my small corner of the world. This has come in different forms; volunteering, helping random strangers and even my chosen careers have all gone towards trying to eliminate my own suffering as well as the suffering of others in the world. It hasn’t always been easy, and sometimes I’ve had to be selfish in that I can’t help others if I don’t myself myself, first and foremost. This is a concept I’ve often tried to instil in others, usually with very little success.

“I Think The Galaxy Owes Me One…”

– Captain James T. Kirk, Star Trek: Generations

Karma is based on one’s intent. You can’t perform good deeds with the hope or the intention that life will provide a positive or easy outcome. That isn’t how karma works. If you seek to help or ease suffering in a positive way, with only the best intentions in your soul, then karma will do the rest. But it isn’t intended on being a cosmic judge, jury and executioner. People make mistakes. This doesn’t mean your karma will be bad. People will make bad decisions. That doesn’t mean you’re destined to spend your next life as a dung beetle. But you need to do what’s right for the right reasons. THAT’s where karma plays an important role.

I’m guilty of having misinterpreted karma on more than one occasion. There have been times in my life where I’ve spoken the words, “I think the universe owes me a few…”. This has usually been associated to the fact that I’ve saved lives, located missing persons and prevented or solved crimes in different ways. On some fundamental level, I have no doubt that at certain points in my life I felt as though the universe owed me one, given the sacrifices and efforts I’ve put into life. But the reality is that the universe owes me nothing.

I think it was Mark Twain who said, “Don’t go around saying the world owes you a living. The world owes you nothing. It was here first.” The same can be said of the universe. It owes you nothing. And it was here first. DO good for the sake of doing good. Work to eliminate suffering in the world. It’s not about owing. It’s about why you’re doing it. If you do good in the hopes of getting something back, then you aren’t really doing good. I’ve learned a lot since the last time I assumed the universe owed me one. And boy, was it quick to show me the error of my thinking. Maybe take it from me as opposed to trying it for yourself; the universe owes you nothing. But you owe it to yourself to do good in the world. Food for thought…☯️

Pain Is All In Your Head…

No, really. That’s not just a title…. Pain really IS all in your head! That’s not just me, trying to act like a tough guy. Pain is basically the body’s way to let you know that something is wrong. Either you have a visible or unknown injury, you’ve caused damage or something has caused damage to you, or you’ve been exposed to something that causes damage to you tissues.

According to an article by Medical New Today, pain happens when a signal travels to the brain for interpretation. Once there, the brain sends back a signal telling the body to respond. I’m paraphrasing there, but you can read the article. The point is, something hurts you, a signal is sent to the brain, the brain says, “that’s not good, stop doing that” and your body respond by feeling the unpleasant sensation we know as pain.

For most pains, like touching a hot surface, our body has a reflex system that forces us to pull our hand away from the heat source. This can apply to a number of different sources of pain, but I don’t want o dive too deeply into this aspect. Like I said, you can read the article. The article describes the types of pain as acute or chronic, with the former being sharp, intense pain that goes away shortly and the latter being long-lasting in some way or another. Both types have sub-types of course, because nothing is ever simple.

According to another good article that I found on HealthLine.com, the types of pain can be described as acute, chronic, nociceptive, neuropathic and functional. The articles describe all of those types in detail, so once again, I won’t get into it, but you can read the article. The important ones to remember are nociceptive and neuropathic, especially if you have Type-1 Diabetes.

Nociceptive pain is the one that’s caused by injury. Cuts, bruises, tissue damage… that fun stuff. This can be important for someone with Diabetes because those wounds need to be treated quickly and may have difficulty healing, depending on how well your Diabetes is controlled. Since folks with Diabetes are also prone to infections, treating and caring for nociceptive injuries becomes doubly important, from a health standpoint. It’s important not to ignore these types of pain.

Neuropathic pain is particular to folks with Diabetes as well, since it’s caused by nerve damage, which can be a side effect of Diabetes. Neuropathic pain is particularly unpleasant and since it’s associated with tissue damage that the patient generally can’t test themselves, almost always requires medical intervention. Other conditions can cause it, as well. My father has a degenerative spine, which causes neuropathic pain that’s also chronic, meaning he is in a constant state of pain. To add insult to injury (no pun intended) he’s also Type-1 Diabetic.

But now that we have the science stuff out of the way, let’s discuss the types of pain that you CAN ignore… Are there any? Since pain is the body’s way of telling you there’s something wrong, should you really ignore any of them? My thought is that there are forms of pain that you can work through. For example, if you’ve had a particularly rough workout, you’ll feel “the burn,” or an aching of the muscles.

When you workout, you cause micro-damage to your muscle tissue. As this damage is healed, you can experience passive aching and bruising and that fun feeling of being unable to use those muscle groups to do little things like, oh, I don’t know… get out of bed gracefully without looking like your limb has been lopped off in a bad Monty Python sword fight. Have at thee! This type of pain is temporary and will usually pass on it’s own, but you can certainly help it along by maintaining good blood circulation to those tissues, eating an appropriate diet containing protein and fibre that help heal and build muscle tissue and even icing.

If it’s particularly bad, you can wuss out and take something over-the-counter, like ibuprofen or acetaminophen. But those are bad habits you don’t want to start unless you really have to. If any pain resulting from fitness is sharp, debilitating and isn’t going away, you may need medical attention. Muscle and ligaments tears are no joke and can sometimes be mistaken for an after-workout burn to some people. Whether internal or external, an injury requires medical attention is there’s blood involved, seeping out or pooling beneath the flesh.

Other situations that would require immediate medical attention are bone protrusions, whether they break the skin or not, hanging appendages (like an eyeball popped out or something) or paralysis of a body part. Learning and recognizing the acute pain associated with things like a heart attack, or “referred” pain. This means something like sore neck and arm when experiencing a heart attack.

Hopefully, your workouts aren’t extreme to the point where you’re dealing with protruding bones and heart attacks, but knowing the difference between these types of pain can mean the difference between maintaining one’s health or facing some serious problems. Different people deal with pain in different ways, as everyone experiences pain differently. What seems like a passive after-workout ache to one person may seem debilitating to another. So, it’s important to know your limits and how you experience things.

Pain is all in your head. Literally. This doesn’t mean that certain levels of pain can’t be managed and others should be ignored. The healing of injuries can be difficult for Diabetics, so it’s important to pay close attention, clean and bandage any injuries you get and get to your health professional if they don’t heal within days. Eat well, exercise regularly and keep your blood sugars in check and healing will be all the easier. Have you ever noticed that those three things (diet, exercise and blood sugars) are repeated through most of my posts? It’s almost like they’re important, or something…. ☯️

You Ever Try To Kick The Sky?

Martial arts is comparable to your favourite recipe; many will have a similar process in preparing their recipe, but most will have some slightly different ingredients and amounts that make their recipe unique and specifically theirs. The same can be said of martial arts. Different styles will have different ways of accomplishing the same goals and/or executing the same technique. As an example, what my style calls a crescent kick and inside crescent kick is referred to as the opposite in the Kenpo dojo I currently train with.

It can be a bit convoluted and even confusion to the non-practitioner, especially if they’re trying to choose their own style. But what’s important to a practitioner is to refrain from judging or evaluating another style’s methods, even if they may seem odd or useless from ones’s personal style. I’m certainly guilty of this; I’ve written entire posts on why I WOULDN’T train a certain way or use specific techniques. But that doesn’t mean it doesn’t work for THEM.

I follow a certain number of martial arts pages, mostly because they’re fun to follow. But once in a while they lead to small nuggets of wisdom or open my eyes to something I may not have considered before. The reason I bring this up is because of a couple of posts I saw yesterday, where a young woman in a black shirt and yoga pants executed several kicks straight up above her head, and a second post with someone in a karate gi doing the same. I made the mistake of visiting the comments section. Big, big mistake.

Setting aside some of comments related to the first practitioner who was wearing yoga pants (who the fuck cares? You should be able to execute your techniques in any clothing you wear), some inevitably commented how useless the kick was, as there’s no practical application to kicking straight up. While I can admit that I would never, in a real-life scenario or in the dojo, execute this technique, I can also freely admit a fact that most of these armchair commentators won’t; I couldn’t execute that kick to save my life!

Okinawa Karate is a pretty low-technique style. We don’t employ many high kicks, favouring kicks at or below the belt and using punches and arm techniques for anything higher. But there’s no denying that there are a number of measurable benefits behind executing such techniques, even the practical applications are few our far between. Unless you happen to be fighting against a giant or someone twice your height. Which could happen. I guess. If you’re living in a video game world.

Here’s the thing: Doing high kicks may not serve a practical application. But what they do provide is the ability to work on precision, balance, muscle strength and agility. These are important benefits to someone studying the martial arts. In Okinawa karate, we always focused on doing halfway splits to help with flexibility and reach for the kicks we DO perform. But to this day, I still can’t do a full split, whether this means lowering myself to the floor or doing a high kick. In my hay day, I could execute some pretty solid roundhouse kicks against someone’s head, provided they weren’t three feet taller than I was.

What surprises me, is how any time someone posts a video of them selves doing a kick straight up in the air, there’s always some negative fucker who needs to comment about how it’s a useless kick. Agreed, it may not be useful in an actual fight, but consider how flexible this person is and how precise they may be while using an actual kick against an opponent. You don’t learn to punch properly by striking a punching bag once. By the same token, your flexibility and reach isn’t accomplish simply by kicking ONLY as far as you want to go. One will usually train to exceed that reach in order to allow for a more efficient technique. To most martial artists, this is what would be considered a common training practice and also “common sense.”

I continue to be impressed by practitioners who execute high flying techniques and show remarkable flexibility, a flexibility that I’ve never had. I can easily say that I would never use fancy spinning kicks or use a kick where one strikes straight up above one’s head. But that doesn’t mean these techniques aren’t impressive and useful in their own way. It’s important not to judge too harshly, when one sees some of these techniques. Although they may not be included in your style, they still hold some use and practicality from a training standpoint. Instead of commenting on how useless the kick is, why not recognize the balances, strength, precision and agility involved. This is the true martial way. ☯️

Longer Life Or Happier Life…

There’s a particular trend that seems to take place where people usually fall under two groups: those who take their health and fitness in hand in order to be healthier and live a longer life and those who claim to only live once and they’d rather spend a short time being happy, enjoying the many indulgences of life. Although the latter would seem like the easier way to go, it doesn’t necessarily equate a happier life; especially when you’ve been “living” your happy life and time and health has caught up to you…

I’m a big fan of the occasional indulgence. Many of you may have read about my occasional meal that contains enough carbohydrates to kill a small army. Although I make an effort to control my carbohydrate intake, sometimes a person’s just gotta have their damn burger! But outside of wolfing down a patty of meat with cheese, toppings and a soft, toasted bun (great, now I’m hungry) I try to focus on lean proteins and salads in order to help control my overall weight, energy and blood sugar levels.

Having enough discipline to maintain ones health is not always an easy thing. But uncontrolled Diabetes can lead to a host of very unpleasant and debilitating conditions that will make your shorter, “happier” life more torturous than it needs to be. When you consider blindness, loss of limbs, organ failure, not least of which includes the kidneys (you may have heard that you can’t live without these) circulatory and heart issues, it rather seems as though throwing caution to the wind is an unreasonable way to live.

I used to have a friend back home… I say “used to” because I haven’t spoken with him in almost 20 years and if I’m being honest, I don’t even know if he’s alive. But I remember he used to take really bad care of himself, eating sugary goods with abandon and never testing his blood sugars. He was in his 20’s and had been diagnosed as Type-1 early in his teens. I’ve seen this trend a lot; where a diagnosis late in life can be more difficult since the person has already developed bad habits.

I was diagnosed when I was 4 years old and my household was already pretty limited diet-wise, due to my brother. So I can see where he was coming from. But I was the manager of a local pharmacy back home and we had a special on soda products (I’m sure you know where I’m referring to). He walked in and grabbed a cart. He grabbed four, 2-litre bottles of sugared cola and added them to his cart. I walked over to say hi and asked him if a family member had sent him out on an errand. He replied that no, the soda was for him.

Free choice is also an important aspect to a happy life, folks. And I hate feeling the need to ask a question of someone that borders on being intrusive. But a once-over of my friend showed him to be pale, sweating profusely and looked as though he hadn’t slept well in weeks. He had his hair cropped close enough to his scalp that I could see scar tissues from the bed sores he developed from his many Diabetic comas. Based on his current condition, I could tell he was running extremely high.

I asked him if he felt he should really be drinking that stuff, to which he replied, “It’s all good, man. Just gotta take more insulin.” Oy vey… Are you serious? I totally get that one should be able to eat what they want in relation to taking insulin. After all, that’s kind of the point. And that’s what a non-Diabetic body does. But what about miscalculations? What about consumable products that may not necessarily match up with the carb levels indicated on their nutritional labels? There’s a HUGE margin for error.

Not least of which is the aspect that all of this can be aggravated if you have a shitty or non-existent control of your blood sugars. That was the case with my friend. He had no control over his blood sugar levels and was always running high. I can’t imagine the pain he was in and the uncomfortable existence he was in. Maybe in his mind, since he was suffering anyway, his indulgences were his only little form of happiness. But it’s kind of a “chicken and the egg” scenario…

They say we only have one life to live. The problem is that no one knows for sure. That being said, a person owes it to themselves to try and take the best care of themselves and their health as possible. Not only do you deserve a long, happy life but there are ways to be happy without letting go of your fitness and eating like a trash receptacle. Enjoy the “occasional” treat and know how to bolus properly for it. Exercise consistently but don’t look at it as a chore. Do something physical that you enjoy. I LOVE cycling. And it’s excellent cardio and exercise. It doesn’t have to be difficult, you just need to break the cycle of apathy.

Diabetes doesn’t discriminate. And while you may lie on your death bed claiming you got to enjoy yourself for the short period you lived, wouldn’t it make more sense to live twice as long AND be able to say you enjoyed yourself? Even controlled Diabetes will still shorten your lifespan. If you give Diabetes an open door, it’ll squeeze its way in and mess you up. And like the image above says, not only will it kill you, it will hurt the whole time you’re dying. Take care of yourselves. ☯️

Stress? We Don’t Need No Stinkin’ Stress…

You guys may recall that I posted a video back in May after my first doze of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine. I posted the video in the hopes that it could be of assistance to other Type-1 Diabetics who were considering doing the smart thing and getting vaccinated against the virus. Now, I’m not here to debate the merits of vaccination or to argue about what any individual person’s choice may be. Based on my life and my thoughts on the matter, vaccination was a smart thing for my family and I. I have no regrets.

Without writing out the entire content of the video I posted, I’ll briefly describe what happened after my first dose. I walked into the pharmacy about ten minutes before my scheduled appointment. My blood sugars were relatively normal. Bear in mind, I wear a continuous glucose monitor. I get the injection. Less than an hour later, my blood sugar spike to above 22.0 mmol/L! A couple of important details to point out include the fact that it climbed from a normal range to that level in about an hour and that it happened SO fast that my pump didn’t even register and have time to set off the “High” alarm at 14.0 mmol/L like it’s programmed to. Still with me? Good.

I’m used to having things screw up on me on occasion, so I drank some fluids and slowly bolused and brought my blood down to a normal level before going to sleep. It wasn’t until a week later when I was at the pharmacy filling out one of a bajillion prescriptions, that the pharmacist asked me about any symptoms after receiving the vaccine. I told her I hadn’t suffered any symptoms that I knew of. My blood sugar had spiked, but nothing vaccine-related. She was shocked at the spike and asked me fill out a form for the health authority as she felt it may have been a side effect of the vaccine.

It took a few weeks for the health authority to get back to me, but their determination was that the spike in blood sugars were a result of “stress associated with getting the COVID-19 vaccine.” Wait. What? Are you fuckin’ kidding me? So, I’ve been getting near-constant injections and needles almost since the cradle, I’ve had scores of vaccines and immunizations and I used to work a job where my life was genuinely in peril on more occasions than I can count, and you think getting this particular vaccine “stressed” me out? What a joke! By that definition, why didn’t everything I listed above cause a massive and rapid spike in blood sugars? None of it ever has…

I was pretty pissed off at this response and I made it clear to the caller, who wasn’t a doctor or health professional but simply passing on the information to let me know I was good to get my second dose. I explained that I was in no way stressed about getting the vaccine and that the health authority’s assessment was inaccurate. In fact, besides being a little tired I was quite relaxed and chatting with the pharmacist while getting the vaccine. I explained that I felt that it would be foolish to write this off as something trivial, considering Saskatchewan has somewhere near 100,000 people with Diabetes and it could potentially be dangerous for someone with less control than I have. The caller assured me that everything was documented. Great.

I can just imagine that if I DIDN’T wear a continuous glucose monitor and had as much experience as I do with managing my own blood sugars without an ER visit, the night would have turned out quite differently. I would have easily gone to bed, given that I was sleepy from the extreme high. Without any monitoring, the pump would have continued with nothing more than the base rate of insulin and I could have faced some dire results.

According to article posted by Diabetes UK, “common ingredients in the coronavirus vaccines include sucrose (a type of sugar) and salt.” Well, ain’t that a bitch??? That would have been nice to know. The article carries on by later indicating that the body produces an immune response because of the vaccine. The “body needs energy to produce this immune response, so it may release some extra glucose (sugar). This is what leads to your blood sugar increasing.”

Setting aside the fact that I can’t help but feel that this is something that perhaps I should have been warned about, the combination of existing sucrose in the vaccine (however minute the amount) mixed with my own body’s immune response resulting in the release of glucose into the bloodstream is what resulted in my spike in blood sugars. I would have liked to assume that the health authority should have known this. Unless the immune response is what they meant by being stressed. Who the hell knows?

I attended Coronavirus Vaccine 2: Electric Boogaloo, last Friday and this time I was ready. Extra Gatorade and fluids were available and I watched my blood sugars like a hawk. I’m happy to report no issues, besides the typical crap one feels after getting any immunization. I felt exhausted for a couple of days afterwards, but since I made a point of incorporating my meals around the vaccination, there was no reflexive release of glucose by the liver and my blood sugars stayed consistent. But this just goes a long way towards making it clear that when I complain about how Type-1 Diabetes affects EVERYTHING, I’m not exaggerating. ☯️

Vacation, Why Not? Day 3

The day started out pretty nicely; waking up in a cozy hotel room with “Just For Laughs Gags” playing in the background on the television. The day is especially chilled, with a combination of smoke hanging in the air and a light rain falling. We had the choice of a complimentary breakfast or $8 off a full breakfast. Considering the size of me and the fact I’m on vacation, which do YOU think I chose? If you think I would be satisfied with a muffin for breakfast, you haven’t been paying attention…

I had a work commitment that I couldn’t skip, despite being on vacation, but as soon as it was done we were off to do some light shopping. We had a watch belonging to my mother-in-law to repair and a couple of clothing items I needed, as well. (And wanted). After those few shops, we opted for an easy snack-based lunch of a soft-baked pretzel. Yes, it’s high carb but this is a vacation, damn it! And I have a fresh infusion set in.

Look at that fat bastard!

Our afternoon turned out to be a tribute to the level of relaxation that should come with being on vacation: we took a 2-hour nap. And it was glorious. Now, if you’ve read some of my posts from way back, you know that I’m a huge fan of naps and consider them to be integral to good health. And this one was no exception. I woke myself from the occasional snore, but slept pretty solidly before my wife’s alarm went off.

We had supper with my wife’s sister and her new husband. And in keeping with my personal policy on not photographing or naming people without asking first (for various reasons), I’ll limit this paragraph to saying we had a fantastic meal and some good conversation and were all carb-loaded and exhausted by the time we left the restaurant.

Then, we capped off our night with some cable television in the hotel room, coupled with some gaming on our devices and reading. Wild couple, right? To be honest, a vacation is only as fun as the company you keep. And I think I can speak for both of us when I say that my wife and I have had a great few days. Tomorrow, we head back to Kindersley to see how much of grandma’s house our boys destroyed. We’ve missed them, but it was definitely good to get away for a few days and recharge our batteries.

We still have a few days of vacation left, which will be used to celebrate my mother-in-law’s birthday and kick back a bit before travelling back to Regina. I promise that the days that follow will go back to some regular content. But it was nice to have a few days to relax and to chronicle those few days. Everyone needs a bit of time to rest and recharge. ☯️

Vacation, Why Not? Day 2

The morning started the way one would expect when not sleeping in ones own bed; with children waking in a strange environment and seeking out mom and dad. My wife and the baby shared a bed in one room, while I used another. Nathan has his own room at grandma’s. The baby woke early but might have almost gone back to sleep, if not for Nathan’s insistence to come “help” the baby off the big bed and off they went.

After a much-needed infusion of caffeine, my wife and I hit the road for the almost three-hour trip to reach Saskatoon where I would be getting my bimonthly eye injections. Not exactly the ideal couples getaway, but we got to do a fair bit of stuff when we hit the city. The ride up was uneventful, with some good conversation and the mandatory road trip stop at Tim Hortons for coffee. The Smokey air was a bit of a grim reminder of the wildfires burning in the north.

We enjoyed a wonderful lunch at a Vietnamese restaurant before walking the central area of the city prior to my eye appointment. It was a welcome change with only silence and calm guiding our actions. A far cry from the usual “I’m hungry” and “I need a potty” that usually accompanies our two little rug rats. Although we missed them, we were quite certain they were having fun with grandma and grandpa on the farm. Plus, my wife’s mother hadn’t texted or called in a panic yet, so that was a good sign.

My eye appointment went as well as one could expect it. You know, for having steel needles jammed into ones eyes. My wife took advantage of my appointment to enjoy a brief nap. Then we had supper at my favourite watering hole: Finn’s Irish Pub. We shared an appetizer platter and some fried and I had my customary burger and pint (I may or may not have enjoyed a highball as well, since they were on special).

We capped off the evening with a soak in the hotels whirlpool, where we met some interesting people and got hear their story. Every once in a while, some random person feels compelled to chat with me. It’s kind of neat. Then we curled up in the room for some Big Bang Theory and a horror movie. This is actually starting to feel like an actual vacation…☯️

Vacation, Why Not? Day 1

Vacations take on a significantly different tone, once children are in the mix. And of course they do; as opposed to laying on white sand with a cocktail, you need to see to the enjoyment of little ones as opposed to focusing on rest. Granted, I’ve never really had much of a vacation that didn’t involve training or working.

It didn’t take long after we arrived at grandma’s house to want to rush out the door and go to the park. There happens to be one located about 30 seconds down the sidewalk from my mother-in-law’s house. After over three hours cooped up in a car seat, he needed to blow off some steam.

Yes, the boys need to be entertained, but hopefully we get a bit of respite over the next couple of days. Despite the bimonthly requirement for eye injections, my wife and I will be enjoying a couple of nights away while grandma looks after the boys. She may need more of a rest than we do, by the time we get back. ☯️