A transplanted Southern Californian living in North Dakota, with some insights on life with deaf dogs, a gluten free spouse, and the occasional mischievous garden gnome. Thank you for visiting and I hope you enjoy.



Monday, December 9, 2013

I Have Diseases

Huh?  Well I do have diseases, but that's not what this is about.  This is about Alycia's diseases.  Don't worry, I won't get too graphic or too personal or embarrass Alycia.  Well not much. 

Last winter Alycia was diagnosed with Raynaud's Phenomenon, which is essentially poor circulation in the fingers and toes during the cold months.  This wouldn't be a big deal if we lived in say...San Diego, but here in North Dakota, it gets surprisingly chilly.  She had spent the previous three winters with undiagnosed poor circulation in her fingers and toes and had essentially low grade frostbite for months at a time.  It had to have been painful and uncomfortable and we're both glad that now she has medication to help mitigate the poor circulation. 

Quick tangent - don't worry I'll tie everything together.  Last year Alycia's Dad had separate successive surgeries on both his thumbs and during the months of recovery he was unable to play golf up to his previous high level of performance.  Partly out of need and partly as a joke, he got his surgeon to write (on an official prescription form) "Due to recent medical procedures, please grant Tom Cummings an extra stroke per golf hole and extend to him every possible courtesy on the golf course".  Alycia's Dad is quite proud of this doctors note and shows it off to just about anybody. Alycia quickly realized the importance of having a doctor's note.
Figure A shows arteries in the fingers (digital arteries) with normal blood flow. The inset image shows a cross-section of a digital artery. Figure B shows fingertips that have turned white due to blocked blood flow. Figure C shows narrowed digital arteries, causing blocked blood flow and blue fingertips. The inset image shows a cross-section of a narrowed digital artery.
How Raynaud's Syndrome affects blood flow.
After her diagnosis Alycia spent a few months reminding me how special she was (having a "Phenomenon" and all), then quickly realized that she could play this card to her advantage.  Along with medication to help improve circulation, any and all clothes/shoes/accessories are now also considered a "medical necessity".  She no longer sees a pair of shoes or boots and remarks how cute they are, but rather how well they could help her manage the symptoms of her legitimate medical condition.  Sigh.  This leads to endless derivations of the following exchange:

Alycia - "Look at these SmartWool socks, they sure look warm.  I bet they would really help mitigate the terrible effects of my officially diagnosed condition."
John -  Sigh.

Alycia - "This homespun alpaca yarn would be perfect for me to knit into a nice warm scarf that could alleviate the symptoms of my legitimate medical syndrome."
John -  Sigh.

Alycia - "Oooh, look at these boots, they're cute!!  I mean, I bet they could sure help with my cold feet, which are brought about by a genuine medically diagnosed syndrome and for which I have a doctors note."
John - "Those are pretty expensive."
Alycia - (Sad puppy dog eyes) "But I have diseases" (continued sad face and a sniffle for good measure).
John -  Sigh.

2 comments:

Jennifer said...

I guess I am lazy, because I don't even bother with a medical condition as an excuse to get what I want. I have a weakness for scarves and always confess my purchases to hubby by telling him that it was a "scarf emergency".

Lindsay said...

This is a real classic John-I read and reinacted for James and we were both in stitches (and no not the kind required for more scarves!)

We do love Leesh and her diseases, but this post deserved a good belly laugh.