Blast from the past…

I just got a message from a former overseas colleague of mine who is coming to the States next week. I have not seen them in a few years, and it is going to be great to reconnect. As much as that old job (job-before-last) drove me nuts with the time it took to drive to and from, as well as the politics, I miss the people I worked with. I miss them terribly, and I have to admit I would not mind going back to work with them. It’s crazy to think about it, but I miss them so much, it hurts. And looking at the website(s) I used to manage, I feel a pang of nostalgia.

Actually, when I think about it, the people who really made my life difficult there — the people I worked directly with, on my immediate team, were really the ones who caused me trouble. It was my immediate teammates who constantly undercut and sabotaged me. They were a twisted bunch of operators, for sure. It’s just so strange, thinking about how competitive everyone was. It really started with the director who came on-board not long after I joined. That one was a piece of work, and the poisoned the well, because they thought I was a direct competitor for their job.

That was probably for a reason, because their original boss was a nut-case who had a bad habit of yelling and threatening, and I suspect the threat of promoting me was the “stick” they used to knock my boss around.

Anyway, now all those crazy b@stards are gone, including my peers who were strangely closed and hostile towards me, who were always talking about me behind my back and operating and … oh geez… it makes me ill, just thinking about it.

But with those non-team-players gone, there are lot less reasons for me to keep away.

And I have to admit, I miss working for an international company, interacting with people from all over the world. I miss my international friends, for sure. Even the crazy hours talking to Europe early in the morning and Asia late in the evening… I really invested a lot of myself in developing those relationships, and it paid off in a very big way. I’m not sure I’m ever going to have that level of investment in relationships with people I work with. The good ones, that is.

The rotten ones have moved on. So, maybe it’s safe for me to go back.

Or maybe I’m just distracting myself from this new position I have with a really great company. Maybe I’m just being flighty again. It wouldn’t be the first time.

Back into the swing of things

My garage has now been cleared of all the junk I removed from the basement. The junk guys backed up their truck yesterday and threw the lot of it in. It was about 2 F-150s worth of stuff, and they even took the stuff that I could have taken to the dump myself.

Now I have a mostly clear garage and a half-clear basement, with a major dent put in the most problematic stuff.

To be honest, the worst of it was just plowing through all those old boxes, removing the mouse nests and poop, and re-boxing everything up in see-through containers that let us actually tell what’s there.

Yes, I should have done it years ago. But I could never figure it out before now. I’ve got it sorted now, though. And I’m rockin’ and rollin’.

And it’s good.

Now I can get back to my regular schedule. Back to my regular life.

It’s good to be back.

Wow – That Was Intense

Holy smokes. It”s Monday morning, and I’m now returning to the land of online living.

I’ve been “off the grid” for two days, cleaning my garage and basement, and while I did not get everything done, I made a significant dent in the mountain of material objects that have been sitting on shelves for over 10 years – some of the boxes had not been opened in over 20 years – sorting, culling, and repacking the things I know we will want to keep.

I did not get everything done that I hoped to, but I made a massive dent, and I’m pretty proud of myself.

For years, I have been unable to do this simple thing: clean out my basement. I had boxes upon boxes (sometimes empty boxes inside other empty boxes) that I could not seem to “crack”. It was too much for me – too overwhelming, too unsettling, too emotional. There is a lot of stuff down there from years gone by — better years, and worse years — and looking back on it all brings up a lot of emotion that used to paralyze me when I thought about it.

Now, I seem to have developed the ability to just put that aside and move forward. Really dig in and get the job done – clearing out old boxes full of old things, and transferring them to new containers that are mouse-proof. Looking through old possessions and deciding what I could get rid of, and what needed to stay. Just doing it. Getting it done. And being done with it, once and for all.

So, that was my off-the-grid weekend. A good one, all in all.

In the morning, the junk folks are coming to load up the detritis and haul it away.

And then it will be an all new day.

Clearing the decks

Time to get all that old stuff out of the way

Time to get all that old stuff out of the way

Okay, I have my plan. This weekend, while I’m flying solo, I’m going to clear out a bunch of spaces that have been cluttered and crammed full of old stuff… for years. I’m starting with my garage, and continuing on to the basement.

I’m also going to clean out my study – just remove everything from all surfaces, wipe everything down, and then judiciously restore what I actually want to keep within view. I should probably pick up some shelving, while I’m at it. I’m comparing my choices on Amazon and the local big-box home improvements store, and it actually looks like I can get a better deal at the local store.

So, I don’t have to wait. I can just stop off on my way home from work tomorrow and pick up a bunch of shelves to use. Sweet.

I’m pretty excited about this. I have three days total to get things in order, and it’s way overdue. I haven’t been able to get my act together — I’ve been too focused on too many different things that had nothing to do with each other… too scattered… and too tired… Meanwhile, everything has piled up around me. It’s not as bad as that Hoarders show, but it’s not as I want it to be.

And I’m sure this will bring up a lot of emotion with me, while I’m uncovering relics from my chaotic past. One of the benefits of my TBI issues, is that I can keep my attention focused intently on what’s in front of me at the moment, so I don’t have a lot of emotions and internal drama playing out from other times and places and contexts. I can be squarely in the moment and have no thought for anything other than what’s in front of me. It’s not that I’m “compartmentalizing” and blocking other things out from self-defense. I simply need to focus fully on one aspect of many, many aspects of my life, so I can take care of it.

And then I can move on to other things.

It’s not that I’m blocking out parts of my life because I’m afraid of them. I just don’t have the bandwidth. But then things get cluttered, because I lose focus on one thing and hyper-focus on something else. And then I end up with a lot of half-finished ideas and priorities that pile up around me and block my proverbial view of the world around me.

So, this weekend, it’s time to clear out a lot of the stuff. Just clear it away and be done with that. I have to find some books I put away. I also need to rearrange my bookshelves so that I have more room. And I need to make some decisions about what I really need in my life. I’ll need to catalog everything I’m putting away, because if it’s not in front of me, I forget it exists. So, I need a directory of sorts to remind me where things are. And I need to put that directory in a place where I can see it and remember to consult it.

Exciting times, to be sure.  T-30 hours till the rearranging kicks off.


More low-cost ways to get my act together

I’ve been thinking a lot about what a wreck my life was, for so long.

To this day, I find it hard to believe how messed up I was – from just a bump on the head. Some days, I find it hard to believe that I ever had those kinds of problems.

But I did.

Crazy wild emotional swings. Violent outbursts. Meltdowns on a semi-regular basis.

Pain and light and noise sensitivity and headaches, as though the world were ending.

A terrible, terrible memory, and a nominal level of interacting with others.

Holy crap – things are so much better now.

I am so much better now.

The things that have helped me, have been very low-cost (in terms of money), but they demanded real dedication and discipline.

  • Making up lists for what I was going to do each day, and sticking to those lists.
  • Getting enough exercise by moving as much as I could, when I could – and doing it regularly, so I had a cumulative benefit.
  • Eating good food that I fixed myself. It was cheaper, and it trained me to sequence and handle things in logical orders. It also taught me to keep my cool under pressure.
  • Being honest with myself about my shortcomings.
  • Being willing to try again, each day.

I’m tired. I’m running out of steam.

That’s it for today.

Good night.

Vitamin D3 is your friend

Vitamin D3 is your friend - learn more at Found My Fitness -

Vitamin D3 is your friend – learn more at Found My Fitness –

#1 Takeaway: Vitamin D3 is essential for brain health, healing, and a healthy system. If you read nothing else, please make sure you get enough Vitamin D3. You can get it at any drug store or supermarket. It’s possibly one of the cheapest ways to heal up and stay healthy.

Including brain-healing and brain-healthy.

And it’s made a huge difference for me.

Now, for years my Vitamin D3 was low. My doctor (rest their soul) measured it each year and told me to just take 3,000 IUs a day, I’d get better. But they never explained to me exactly *why* I needed to take my Vitamin D3, other than it having to do with my bone density.  So, I never actually took as much as I needed, and sure enough, year after year, my numbers went down… and down… and down… dangerously low. And I stayed that way in the interim, which can’t be good.

This is the doctor who just passed away last month after an 8-month battle with sarcoma. I really liked them, yet in some respects, I felt I wasn’t getting proper care. And if they hadn’t passed away, I would be working with another doctor. The Vitamin D3 thing is a big reason for that.

All the while I could have been checking intermittently to see how I was doing. But it wasn’t until I’d been low-low-low for something like 3-4 years that they actually scheduled follow-up tests. And then my levels bounced back. Because my neuropsych explained to me some of the importance of Vitamin D3 to cognition and feeling like a normal human being… and I also did some research on it.

But did my doctor (rest their soul) tell me any of this?


And that is a huge problem.

I’m going for my annual physical today. I’m 4 months overdue, because I was waiting for my doctor to return, which they never did. I’m going back to the same practice they were at before, because they have all my records, and I don’t feel like starting from scratch right now. After I have this physical and get my blood drawn and get my numbers, I’ll move on. I’ve found some doctors who look like possible candidates, and I’ll be interviewing them over the coming months. I take my health very seriously, and I am on a preventive care mission, to keep things from spiraling out of control like they have before… and also to make sure I am healthy for a long, long time.

I’ve just now come out of the woods with my TBI issues, and I don’t want to squander any more time on needless suffering and drama.

Vitamin D3 is a big part of it. I take 3,000 IUs religiously each morning – with my calcium-magnesium, B-Complex, Glutathione, Taurine, and a probiotic with 45 billion little bacteria to keep my gut healthy. I started with the Glutathione and Taurine a couple of weeks ago while I was on vacation, and I can’t sense any detrimental effects, so I’m going to keep taking them.

The king of them all, however, is Vitamin D3. I’ve been listening to Rhonda Patrick talk about it on Joe Rogan’s podcast. Here’s a video of it — it’s long — 3 hours. But the first hour has a lot of good stuff in it about Vitamin D3.

Apparently, D3 controls a whole bunch of things, and according to a theoretical paper by Dr. Rhonda Patrick, low Vitamin D3 could be implicated in things like autism. It’s all very complicated, but seratonin is involved, which is also related to gut inflammation, and it also has to do with other conditions where the gut is inflamed.

And I wonder if low Vitamin D3 hasn’t played a role in my brain not functioning properly — as well as often having been taken for autistic by people who just met me. I know I have a lot of abdominal inflammation — that’s another thing that my past doctor (rest their soul) said, every time I went in for an annual checkup. They noted it, but they didn’t actually take steps to do something about it. It’s like they expected me to tell them what to do.

I dunno. So much of the research is new and emerging, it’s hard to keep current, but if there are persistent issues that show up every single year and don’t change over time — and those issues can be connected with other health issues — then it seems like a prudent thing to actually do something about it.


I think so. And after today, I’m looking for another doctor who will take a preventive approach — not treat the human body like an overly complex system that cannot possibly be understood by any one person. That’s like saying, because I don’t understand the minutiae of electricity, I  shouldn’t change the lightbulbs in my house, turn off the lights when I leave a room, or use energy-saving appliances. It’s like saying, because I don’t understand precisely how your car functions, you shouldn’t clean it or put gas in it, or do preventive maintenance. You should only take it to the mechanic when you hear a sound you cannot explain, or you break down by the side of the road.

People take better care of their vehicles than their bodies, by and large. If we know how to take care of our cars, why not apply those same principles to taking care of our bodies?

And why not take Vitamin D3? Seriously, the cost is so low, and the benefits are so immense, it only makes sense. It might even help clear up cognitive/behavioral issues for you — like it did for me.

I cannot say enough about this. And the more I listen to Dr. Rhonda Patrick talk about it, the more convinced I become.

Take your Vitamin D3 people. It is the one thing that will look out for you, when no one else will.



So, that’s that

The new (to me) car is in the garage. I picked up some floor mats to help keep it clean. And I arranged crates in the back to organize my stuff. This car is the best one I’ve ever owned, and I need to do a good job with it.

Traps are set for the mice that I can hear rooting around there.

Various pieces of equipment and furniture have been moved around, to make room for the vehicle.

I have my work cut out for me this weekend, when I clean out that whole space.

I have a dr. appointment tomorrow – my last one at the practice where I’ve been going for about 8 years now.

I’m driving very, very carefully, because unfamiliar cars can be disorienting, and you have to take special care until you get used to the new feel.

Good night.

A little pain… for a lot of gain

The more you put into things, the more you can get back

The more you put into things, the more you can get back

Sorry in advance for the rambling nature of this post. I’m very out of it — haven’t been sleeping well, and lots has been going on.

I’ve been watching videos and listening to podcasts by Dr. Rhonda Patrick while I work out, lately, and I’m learning a lot – especially about the biochemistry of the brain and how to augment it. She talks a good deal about brain health, nutrition, exercise, the benefits of sauna, and hormetic stress (where you introduce a bit of stress to your system to kick in adaptive responses that actually make your system stronger).

I’ve been a big believer in the hormetic approach for years – stress inoculation fascinates me, and hormesis really appeals to me, as well. And then you have the Stoics, who were all about training your system to not get worked up over the things that don’t matter, so you can better attend to the things that do.

It’s just common sense to me, and it’s great to find people online who are on the same wavelength.

I got a good dose of stress yesterday. But it looks like it’s going to pay off in a big way.

I’m kind of wiped out today. Yesterday I bought a new (to me) car — it’s a small 2006 SUV that lets me sit up higher than I have been in my little compact commuter car. It’s got everything I need — which is not terribly much. The biggest change is that it has power locks and windows, as well as A/C. My old car has crank windows, manual locks, and no A/C, and it rides very low to the ground. It hasn’t been a huge problem, over the past 10 years that I’ve had it, but when it’s been a problem… it’s been a problem. There’s only so much you can do on hot-hot days — and when you’re driving through the heat to important appointments, stopping along the way to pay tolls or just get out and stretch your legs, not having any A/C or power windows and locks and having to climb in and out of your car, can be pretty taxing.

In a way, it’s been good for me. It’s forced me to work at things that others take for granted. And it makes me appreciate luxuries like a good view of traffic and air conditioning, all the more.

But it’s also been a pain. Literally and figuratively. It’s so low, that I had to build up the seat with folded towels and a pillow, to keep my hips and legs from cramping in excruciating pain.

It’s become increasingly clear to me that I need a “grown-up” vehicle. And I got one on Saturday. I now have a car payment, after 10 years of being free of that. So, that’s a change. But with the money I’m saving on insurance and other cost savings at work, it’s not going to sting terribly much. It’s going to set back some of my home improvement projects, but that’s okay. I needed a new car.

So, today I need to clean out my old car, find the title to hand over (I’m trading it in for a pittance – but then again, there are a ton of issues with the vehicle that all add up to thousands of dollars of work), get the garage cleared up, so I have a place to park, and make sure money is in the right account(s). I have to shuffle a bit of dough between the mortgage account and the everyday expenses account, which I’ll take care of later this morning when my bank opens at a local supermarket. I love these 7-days hours. It really saves my bacon.

Anyway, that’s the excitement. I’m pretty wiped out from yesterday, because it took a lot out of me. And then I found some pieces of furniture that were on sale at an antiques place for a fraction of what they usually cost. That involved more running around, making arrangements to move them, etc. I got them home, at last, and I need to clean them up in the coming days. But that may need to wait till next weekend when I have the house to myself for 3-4 days.

With all the activity that’s been going on, I am really looking forward to a few days of solitude and peace. As much as I love and adore my spouse, they are a lot of work, and it’s going to be great, not being the one and only person who has to do all that work.

It will also be nice to catch up with myself and kind of level-set on my life. Getting this new car is like another piece of proof that I am getting better, and that I have something to show for all the work I’ve done. I’ve had this car about as long as I’ve been struggling with TBI issues after my fall in 2004, and there are many, many parallels between driving that car and keeping it on the road, and recovering from TBI. All the challenges, the difficulties, the extra work I’ve had to do… It’s been very much like driving a car without any power controls or A/C or reliable heat, and needing to go about your everyday life.

Getting this new (to me) car is yet another sign that I really am getting better, and that I am able to recognize and enjoy that for what it is — real progress. And that’s hugely gratifying.

Best of all, the vehicle is rich gold color, which makes me feel rich in countless ways.

Well, it’s turning out to be another beautiful day. I think I’ll go for a walk in the woods before I run my banking errands.

I physically feel like crap from being so wiped out from yesterday, but I know things are going great, so that balances it out. And I’m hoping a walk in the woods will clear the cobwebs.


Yes, indeed, onward.