Blog Repairs

Dr Tanya of Salted Caramel asks, “What are you doing to ‘repair’ (re-vamp or update) yourself and your blog during the lockdown?” (https://saltedcaramel670.wordpress.com/2020/05/04/blogging-insights-27-repairing-yourself-and-your-blog/)

I have been really busy during this lockdown and so I haven’t done any “repairs” on my blog. But …

I’ve been working long hours and usually through the weekends as well, but during a recent regular health check-up, I discovered that my blood pressure was extremely high, to the point that I was apparently in “stroke territory,” according to the nurse-practitioner.

I’ve had what amounts to a latent blood pressure concern for some years now and it’s an issue that very decidedly runs in my family. I keep an eye on it, and do what I need to if it starts creeping over to the wrong side of the ledger.

Unsettled waters.

But my, this was a wake-up call. So, I had to take some very quick action to do a repair on me.

I find this working from home to be difficult. In the past, I’ve been able to draw a line around home and more or less wall it off. It was a sanctuary. But now? Work is at home; home is at work. Stressed employees were needing to talk. Many new and unexpected tasks had to be completed. NOW. There were shortages and frustration and fear and uncertainty. Days slid into nights and merged into each other in an amorphous mass.

M did his best to look after me by making wonderful meals and looking after everything else.

But I wasn’t able to “turn off.” Texts and phone calls arrived throughout the day and night, and needed to be answered. The community where I work was having a tough time coping and one of my employees became ill with covid (this person was isolating and so there was no spread, and thankfully, after eight days of ICU, there has been a full recovery).

It has slowed down somewhat now but I also realised that I had to get firm, too, and carve out a space for me to relax and chill and rest. My cardio-vascular system would thank me for it.

M has been baking bread.

So, where does blogging fit into this? Blogging has been, and continues to be, one of the things that takes me out of myself. Some bloggers are sharing beautiful photos, others are sharing laughs, still others are sharing recipes and gardening tips. Reading through the posts I follow has been a very welcome diversion, a healthy brain diversion, so in a way, I didn’t need to repair my blog, because it has been busy repairing me.

Lovely lavender.

Blogging comprises a community, and I don’t think that the countries represented here have ever before been so bound by a common enemy. I hate this virus, but in many ways it’s creating a sort of world-wide bond.

And that’s a repair that has been long overdue.

Any repairs for you?

46 thoughts on “Blog Repairs”

  1. Take good care of yourself during this crisis, Lynette. It’s easy to lose track of other health issues when there’s so much concentration on Covid 19. Follow the professional advice, and get that blood pressure back to normal. My sister is recovering from a massive stroke, so I’ve seen the results at close hand.

    1. Thanks Stuart, and thanks for sharing about your sister. We all need the reminder to look after ourselves. I hope she’s mending now.

      My bp has gone down to “almost normal” and I’m on medication as well. The consensus is it that it was situational – there’s been more than enough stress to go around – but still, with all the focus on covid, it’s easy to forget other medical issues.

      Stay well and safe. 🙂

      1. Yes, my sister, who was a nursing sister all her working life, is recovering far better than anyone thought likely, thanks, Lynette.
        Glad to hear you’re returning to a sort of normal, whatever that is in these strange days!
        Keep safe and stay well.

  2. I’m sorry to hear you’re having issues with your BP, Lynette. I’ve always suffered with “white-coat syndrome” where my BP elevates in a doctor’s office. In fact, yesterday, I went for my infusion at the hospital downtown. It was the first time I’d been out of the neighborhood since March 17th and the first time I’d worn a mask. I couldn’t breathe and when the nurse took my BP it was 176/100! Given the fact that I was anxious being in the hospital with so many people around and not being able to breathe, there was no way to get an accurate reading. Do you check yours at home? I have a device, so I can monitor my BP. That said, take care of yourself and continue to do things that give you peace.

    1. Hi Jill, that’s a difficult one to deal with! Of course, right now hospitals are carrying a particularly dense emotional load. I do have a machine at home and I check about once a week, but with everything that was going on, I simply forgot. What a surprise – 162/121. Yikes. It’s called “the silent killer” for a reason. The bottom number, especially, was really bad. I’m taking medication now and I try to unwind with silly movies, lots of walks and solid breaks away from work. Seems to be helping. Have a good weekend and try to build in some stress-free hours for yourself, too. 🙂

  3. This sharing comes right on time for me. I have had overwhelming sadness and got some great advice today to acknowledge it is ok to feel that way and not to fight it as if there is something wrong with me. I love the idea of bringing reality into my blog. My blog is about travel and since there isn’t any right now, I have been at a bit of a loss on what to post as if it is not interesting enough. Your words have made a difference 🙂

    1. Hi Robyne, thank you for your kind support. 🙂 I started out writing about narcissism (and I still do sometimes) but I began to realise that this is a rich environment that I wanted to interact with more fully. I now do a lot of landscape photography, but I will post about anything, basically.

      I’m sorry to hear that you have been feeling sad, but it really is okay to feel sad and to let yourself feel sad. Sadness is a normal emotion, just like all the others. Whoever gave you that advice was spot on.

      I hope you have a good weekend. 🙂

  4. I’ve been having trouble with anxiety, and I don’t even have to deal with the issues you’re dealing with. I’ve known that you are a hard worker and hoped you were making sure to have off hours from work.

    My husband (who is working as I type this. I hear him on his video chat) is in a bedroom for his office. I’ve been shutting the door to that bedroom after hours to remind him the office is closed. Is there a way that you can limit yourself to a 40 or 50 hour week and make the area where you work separate from the rest of your home? It may seem simplistic since you know how your job works. I just hope you can find a way to take care of yourself and get that BP down.

    I wish I could say that I felt we were coming together in this common cause. Unfortunately, I’m seeing more division here. At least I’ve been able to still recognize nature with my visits from Zeus. You’ll know who Zeus is when you read my latest post, which I hope might bring you some cheer and calm.

    1. Thanks, Lori. My bp is coming down and is now almost normal (high normal) and I’ve started medication. I’ve also made it clear to my boss that Saturday is off-limits.

      NWT hasn’t had a covid case for a month now and so we are back at work on a staggered schedule, but my employees are at various levels of stress, from mild to extreme. Being able to come into work, even if it’s only for a very limited time, has been helpful, though.

      I’m sorry to hear that you’re feeling so anxious. I think it’s perfectly okay to feel that way. These aren’t normal times and the uncertainty around how the world will look after the dust settles (will it settle? I’ve read that a vaccine is a long way off and we’re more likely to be looking at anti-viral drugs) triggers a lot of worry. Anxiety is a part of being human, and given what’s happening right now, you’re definitely entitled. The fact that you’re experiencing division isn’t helpful either. (And also your dear Max … )

      I saw your post about Zeus! Thank you! 🙂 What a great name for your lovely garden cardinal!

      Try to be good to yourself.

      1. Thank you for your kind words, Lynette. I needed them today on Mom’s Day and missing my mom (stood out in the rain with “I love you” signs for her to see from her window in the senior facility).

        I’m so glad to hear that your BP is coming down and you’re able to get back into work. We have a long way to go here. My husband was just told he’ll be working from home for the rest of this year, and it may become permanent! I’m just grateful he still has a job.

        It’s good that you won’t be working Saturdays and that you’re taking care of yourself. Keep it up. 💗

        1. Thank you. ❤️ Yes, having a job is a very good thing right now. I keep remembering that. It’s important to keep balance around it, though. But working from home for the rest of the year or permanently – wow!

          I’m glad you were able to connect with your mom, even if it was just through the window. 🙂

  5. This is a really good post with lots of good observations. Good on you for getting firm with your co-workers. If you don’t, no one else will.
    I wish I could bake bread like that, but you can’t be good at everything, you know?
    The part I like the most is the bit about your blog repairing you. It pleases me to think I may have made a contribution to that, so please don’t tell me if I haven’t. I can be hard and I don’t suffer fools gladly,, even though I am not unkind. The people who comment on my stuff help me maintain balance and perspective, a gift beyond price. Thanks for that.

    1. Thanks Kenny. 🙂

      All the bloggers I connect with have been a part of that. 🙂 I think you are maybe being a little hard on yourself. I agree, one of the best things that comes out of blogging is the exposure to other perspectives. 🙂

      1. Thanks,, you’re a peach. Speaking of which, the peaches around here are just about ready. I sure hope there will be someone to pick them. I’ll pick my own if I must but I’d sooner not. When the fruit starts to fall the bugs are just crazy. Just another lovely spring day down here in the south.

        1. Awww, thank you. 🙂 I love peaches and am looking forward to having some lovely fresh ones when I get back to B.C. I’m hoping there will be pickers as well! I’m jealous of your lovely spring day. 🙂 It has been lovely and sunny here in NWT but hasn’t warmed up all that much yet.

          1. Our last couple days have been cold for here,, with morning lows right around freezing. Still nowhere else I would rather be, though BC makes a strong showing at second. Give us this day…

  6. I fell very fortunate – I feel little stress around this. I left the state about the time VT locked down, to go help my cousin in Baltimore, and being south was able to get the kayak on water a couple of times a week for a few weeks. It makes all the difference in my physical and mental health. Of course, having had to quarantine for two weeks on return, I’ve lost the physical gains made while away! But it’s warming up (not right now, but it did, and it will!), and kayaking will resume the next warm day.

    Keep well, keep active, keep centered.

  7. “kennynines” got there first with my thoughts, but this really is a terrific post. I completely agree that the blogging community has actually helped many of us, and the overall “let’s get through this together” spirit has been a bonding agent in most aspects of society. (Not all, but most. The blind deniers and the protest agitators have been shameful detriments.) Thank you for your words.

    Medical side note: I also have to keep an eye on my blood pressure, although it’s not severe. I take a daily low-dose of Valsartan, and things seem fine. I also have “white coat” reactions, making it difficult to get a decent reading in a clinical setting but, since the medication, even that effect has lessened. At my last doctor visit, a week or so ago, my reading was 121/86, even though I was wearing a mask and a little freaked about being in public. I’m not sure if you are taking medication, but I thought I’d mention that low-dose Valsartan has been just the trick for me…

    1. Thank you, Brian. 🙂 Yes, there are the doorknob idiot types out there; luckily we don’t seem to have very many of them. For the most part, I find the blogging community to be a refuge.

      121/86 sounds pretty good, even if you’re anxious about being outside! Mine isn’t that good yet but it’s heading there. I’m taking a derivative of Valsartsan called Telmisartan (apparently they are very similar) and I have carved out Saturdays as a no-fly zone. I feel better about it at this point, but it sure was a wake-up call.

  8. Hi Lynette – this is so well put. I am also working from home, and although I only have a part time librarian job, I find that there is always something to do and there are no days off. More recently, I have been carving out separate time because it is too stressful otherwise. I’m sorry you are having health problems. I hope you are able to make changes to stay less stressed. My blog has been suffering because I’m doing a lot of computer work from home and I don’t feel like going online after that. But I agree that blogging takes me away from it all. Take care 🙂

    1. Thanks, Bookstopen. 🙂 I am doing better, and the working from home has become a little easier because I can go in to my office to some extent now.

      I agree, there are no boundaries when working from home (or the simple fact is that I didn’t go about handling it very well) and it can eat into every spare second.

  9. Oh my goodness, what a scare you had! I’m glad you find blogging a help. Sometimes I get behind on reading and commenting and get a little stressed catching up, but I never regret being part of this community. You’re right – it gets us out of ourselves and helps us see the world. It also helps keep my creative juices flowing, and I can always use that!

    1. Yes, it was certainly a wake up call, and completely by chance, as I was at the health centre for another matter.

      I get behind as well, but it’s fun catching up and I don’t worry about it if that takes me a bit. Reading other perspectives (esp from other countries) is so important, and yes, gets my creative brain working too. 🙂

  10. I’m finding working from home to be challenging as well. It’s sometimes hard to leave work “at work” when you’re working from home. There is so much uncertainly around the economy that it’s hard not to feel anxious when you think about it. I’m just taking each day at a time. Take care.

    1. Yes. I think the uncertainty together with all the change, has been really difficult, but then I remind myself that I haven’t had to cope with covid, and that might be really difficult.
      Thank you. You take care, as well.

  11. An odd question to you, and a satisfying answer – your blog doesn’t need “repairs” (why would it? it evolves with you, seamlessly), and, as you point out, especially in these strange times, it repairs you — and all of us, together

  12. We would all do well to take care of ourselves and that does include, turning off the Covid info. We always finish the day with a laugh. Just rewatched That 70s Show and that was a hoot, except for the last year,. AS to myself, getting more exercise, riding our bikes and walking where we can. Hope all is well Lynette. Allan

    1. Good advice. 🙂 I have been keeping up with the news to some extent and have also been watching fun movies, dumb movies, silly movies. I’ve also increased my exercise. The bp crisis seems to be over but I need to keep my rules in place because work is crazy – just so busy.

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