ScottK - accept no imitations!
Sunday, September 04, 2005
Well, I'm still alive - if you wondered where I had gone to or if we had slipped-off the face of the world, we haven't...yet.
When I tried to start my consulting business down in the Vancouver, WA area I had no idea that my physical maladies would rear their ugly heads in such a violent fashion:
1) The radiculopathy / neuropathy in my leg does not seem to be getting any better and in fact seems to be worsening, with the muscle twitches, ticks and spasms getting stronger and higher up into my thigh
2) The TENS (Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation) unit - which blocks pain by flooding the affected nerves via electrodes placed on the skin ontop of nerve-root paths and sending electric current through the skin (that's the "Transcutaneous" part) into the nerve-path (with the idea that nerves can only carry one specific kind of impulse at any given moment, and if just raw signal/voltage/current is put into the nerves the pain is masked) - has been working marginally, and per the instructions from both the manufacturer and my doctors that I'm only supposed to use it no more than 1 hour per every 4 to 6 hours of non-use does absolutely nothing for me in the times when I'm not using it. Wouldn't one say that such a therapy is "counterproductive"?
3) I'm now experiencing pain and numbness in my left shoulder and triceps - I'm not sure if this is connected, but I think I might have injured a disc in the Thoraxic or Cervical vertebrae - I'll find out more on that after my first visit with my new doctors...and more on that later!
4) I've been doing some research on all of the maladies I've been experiencing over the last 3 years, like sleep disorders (my circadian clock is all messed-up and I end up sleeping during the day and being up and active at night), constant pain throughout my body but at low & manageable levels, severe migraine headaches, fatigue without exertion and a host of other issues have lead me down the path to learn more about Fibromyalgia ( http://www.fmnetnews.com/pages/basics.html ) and to consider being tested for it.
The Vancouver, WA area used to be a very high-tech place, with new Technology companies popping-up all over the place. Vancouver & Portland is the home to many Telecom companies, one of which I used to work for; unfortunately, due to the "Dot-Com Bust", many people in that area lost jobs - it has ceased to be a "high-tech hub" and is now a former shell of it's possibilities.
Needless to say, I decided to shutter the business and move to an area that was more active in the high-tech sector. The problem I face now is that I've been out-of-the-loop in the Computing and IT industry as I was focusing on the Telecom side of things: so, I now head-off into the unknown.
We sold our house in Woodland after it being on the market and the MRLS for only 2 days, packed-up our lives as quickly as possible and moved from Woodland on July 30th, to re-settle in the Seattle Area. Most of my "networking" contacts have since gone their own ways, so it's almost as perilous where we are now as it was in Woodland. The prospects seem to be better, but I guess it's just the time spent waiting for responses from prospective employers.
We're experiencing the joy of having to try to fit a 4-bedroom / 1600 sq. ft. home that barely fit a family of 6 into a 4-bedroom /1200 sq. ft. appartment - the upside to this is that you have to carefully and seriously consider what you really need and don't need; I miss my recliner, but not as much as I would have missed the couch or the dining room/kitchen table.
I also get to work with a whole new set of doctors & medical professionals concerning my maladies - I'm hoping to get more response from them on my condition than my previous providers.
One huge, nagging problem: my ISP is Comcast and I'm having a heck of a time with them trying to understand why my cablemodem's "Activity" lamp is always lit solid - I'm suspecting that they're sending ARP packets at about 10pps, and I'll verify what's happening when I hook my network sniffer up to it - but it's actually causing packet loss and latency at my end...which is slightly counterproductive (there's that word again!). We'll see how that works out soon.
Anyway - we're here...we're alive...and we're nowhere near New Orleans or Biloxi - which reminds me; If you have *any* kind of resources - money, donatable clothing, hygiene supplies, even blood for the Red Cross, PLEASE donate to your local & favorite charities and specify that these donations are for the Hurricane Relief missions in the Gulf States - regardless of the fact that we may be 1,000 miles away, we're all in this together as Americans.