Candy Rant

"I killed a rat with a stick once."

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Attitude is Everything

And mine is rotten.

For my entire life, my default emotions have been fear and anxiety. Period. That's my whole spectrum unless I forcefully push one of the ends off it and branch out to something more pleasant. Like dismay and indifference.

I will say that I've, at least, learned how to work on all this. I was making a good start a few years ago, and that became a better start when I met Scott. He was not born a positive person, but has taught himself over the last decade how to chew into the Sandwich of Positive Attitude and swallow it and digest it and make it part of his cells. It is a marvelous skill.

Me? Still a beginner. But now it's crucial. Yesterday at the doctor's office, my blood pressure was high. ME. The girl who has always had LOW blood pressure. Apparently it has to do with some, ahem, being a chick in midlife issues. Everything goes haywire. Hormones, ability to think, and formerly stable bio-systems that have never even hinted at malfunction before. Which I guess means I'm well on the road to hen-dom. The doctor gave me a one-time BP-lowering pill, which I took, then pretty much stayed horizontal the rest of the day out of my brain's hair trigger alarm system which screechs like a hoot owl: "You're going to die! SOON!"

The bottom line is that I have to correct this blood pressure thing. I had NO IDEA that this had anything to do with, as they called it in my mom's day "The Change". And the more you dip your ladle into your fear and anxiety stew (boiling and frothing in a vat the size of Saturn) the more you're probably not going to help your blood pressure. Or any other problem, especially mid-life ones.

I cannot believe I'm writing about this on my blog. These issues that belong out in the small tent of the cursed woman, whispered about, with only one small candle for light. And one small box of Cadbury eggs.

Let me just air ALL the dirty laundry in my life. I sat down yesterday in my fragile condition and watched a full episode of "The Bold and the Beautiful." So there. String me up. By the way, Marcus has recovered from the cobra biting him. And yes, the snake in the shipping box was actually meant for Donna.


  • At 2:30 PM, Blogger participant-observer said…

    Hope those Cadbury eggs aren't from China! I don't know that melamine is the best treatment for what ails you!

  • At 2:38 PM, Blogger Candy Rant said…

    HA! I never buy/eat/use anything from China. Since the whole pet food thing, then the toy thing, then the Heparin thing. Nope. They're dead to me.

  • At 3:56 PM, Blogger Norma said…

    I have high blood pressure too. Am I going through the change?

    Maybe someday, I too will eat from the Sandwich of Positive attitude. But I think Mr. Bill likes me pessimistic.

    Miss ya, I've just been catching up with your blog. I'm so so sorry about your summer. I've been in a batcave for awhile. Please don't think I've forgotten you!!

  • At 5:28 PM, Blogger Candy Rant said…

    Norma, Heck no. You're still an embryo, practically.

    The beauty of the Sandwich of Positive Attitude is that you can eat of it and still be snide and biting.

    Glad you're back. Yeah, the summer blew. I haven't forgotten you either, or our sinister conniving.

  • At 5:42 PM, Blogger Zaroga said…

    I thought blood pressure rose with age. I never knew it was connected to "the change". My blood pressure rises when I get near a doctor's office. So usually I will take my blood pressure at home for a couple of weeks before I go for my six month check-up.

    Take a few deep breaths. Go for a leisurely walk and hopefully things will look a bit rosier.

  • At 5:52 PM, Blogger Candy Rant said…

    Hi, 4of5Z's,
    I didn't know this stuff either. I found a great website with about 20messages from women who had never had BP issues, but then pre-menopause junk started kicking in and their BP spiked. I had NEVER heard this. But lemme tell you, I felt less alone after I read it. I thought I was just doomed.

    It put the scare into me. I've been on the elliptical twice today. I'm not going without a fight.

    Got checked today and it had gone almost back to normal. The deep breaths are actually supposed to help. So is meditation/relaxation stuff and drinking lots of water. I'm in.

  • At 6:53 PM, Blogger Zaroga said…

    I had a hysterectomy many years ago and didn't go through the natural change. So I can't help you with the change.

    I don't think you are doomed just yet. The high blood pressure can be controlled.

    First get a blood pressure monitoring machine. You should be able to get one for about $50 or so. When you get it take it to your doctor's office to make sure it is taking your pressure fairly accurately. The nurse will take your blood pressure with her cuff and with the machine you bring in. Then take your blood pressure as often as your doctor suggest. Write the readings down and take a copy to your doctor when you go for your checkups.

    Next.. take a look at your life style.

    What is stressful? A lot of times if you just recognize what makes you stress out then you will be able to take steps to handle the stress a bit better.

    Are you sleeping well? Is it the lumpy mattress.. A snoring partner?.. Listening to complaining people all day?

    Do you have a lot of physical pain? Pain can cause blood pressure to rise. I'm going through this right now with my back.

    What are you eating? Lots of salty snacks (chips,cracker,peanuts)?.. high sodium soups, convenience foods?.. fast foods from your favorite burger or taco joint?

    Do you exercise? A simple walk or breathing exercises can help calm the aura.

    That's all I can think of to say that might help you at the moment.

    Hang in there and keep expressing yourself.

  • At 7:17 PM, Blogger Candy Rant said…

    Wow, you're a wealth of info on this! I didn't know you could get a BP cuff for that cheap. We'll hit amazon and find one.

    I'm looking at all parts of my life and trying to clean the "clutter" out of everything.

    My goal is to exercise every day and cut down on the worry addiction. It runs in my family. They worry a lot. I'm worried about them. :)

    Thanks for the great list, Z.

  • At 7:49 PM, Blogger Citlali said…

    I hear ya. I'm not looking forward to any of that SHit at ALL. ugh. Life as a woman is hard enough. wa. lol. SO. Don't know if this will make you feel any better but I have to share. It's only been a few years since I recovered my smile. Can you believe it? My attitude was so bad it was about to lose me a really good job opportunity. Miraculously it dawned on me that people saw me as sour and angry. I probably was most of the time. It was a really rough patch. SO I decided to make a concerted effort to smile as much as possible. It worked. I got the job and against every cell in my body it even made me feel better. hhhmmff. No I'm not going to say that you should smile. I wouldn't be as trite as that. You probably smile a lot anyway, right? lol. You watch your soaps and eat your black licorice ice cream. (yuck) Just be as comfortable as you can. I'm commiserating with you on the attitude thing. Frown if you want to. many, many hugs. = ]

  • At 8:26 PM, Blogger Candy Rant said…

    Soaps and black licorice ice cream. I can reach the outskirts of Nirvana with just those 2 things.

    I actually do smile a lot, and I laugh a lot. I just internalize a ton of worry and it's got to stop.

    The thing is, what I've found out is that I never worry about the right stuff anyway. I can worry my gray matter into a slow broil over something and when bad things happen, they're usually out of the blue.

    Thus, worry is not rational. Yeah. Tell that to the worry muscle.

    I can NOT imagine you sour and angry. Congratulations on regaining your smile. Thanks for telling me that story, too.

  • At 10:54 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I have found worrying to be VERY effective at preventing bad things from happening in my life.

    Almost everything I have worried about over the years has not happened, so there's the proof! Worrying works.

  • At 11:29 PM, Blogger Candy Rant said…

    By jove, I think he's got something!

    I can't remember the joke...something about "Well have you ever SEEN an elephant in pajamas?"



  • At 11:48 AM, Blogger Domhan said…

    I'm with banjo on that worrying thing. (I think the "elephant in pajamas" line is from the Marx Brothers. It sounds very Marxist.) My grandfather used to say that onions will kill you. When I protested that onions would NOT kill you, he'd say, "Well, have you ever eaten onions?" and I'd say, "Yes, they are tasty." He'd say, "And you are going to die someday, right?" and I'd say, "Of course. Everybody dies." His answer? "It's because of the onions. They kill you. If you had never eaten onions, you'd never die." Well sh*t, you could've mentioned that before mom fed them to me!

    On smiling: here's something from one of my favorite online cartoons, Toothpaste for Dinner: "it takes 1.72 miles of blood vessels to smile, and 1.64 to frown. it's pretty close. do whatever." The cartoon is posted on my office door.

    But y'know, there IS something about smiling like a lunatic that make you feel better.

  • At 11:56 AM, Blogger Candy Rant said…

    Onions. I KNEW it!

    I thought it was maybe Groucho Marx who did that joke. But it went into the abyss.

    OK, I'm on my way to an afternoon seminar about teaching. I usually smile pretty frequently, but am going to ramp it up today and see what happens. If I get lockjaw, I blame this blog.

  • At 11:57 AM, Blogger Candy Rant said…

    Oh, and I gotta look up Toothpaste for Dinner. Never heard of it!

  • At 3:43 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I haven't watched "The Bold and the Beautiful" in ages! Does Ridge still shuttle between Taylor and Brooke every 20 minutes? Hey, do you remember when Ridge discovered that Bridget wasn't his biological daughter and actually started MAKING PASSES at her? If that won't make your blood pressure spike, I don't know what will.

  • At 5:50 PM, Blogger Candy Rant said…

    YES! Ridge is about to marry Brooke for the SIXTH time, and his ex, Taylor, is daydreaming about him lately.
    This cannot be good.

  • At 5:50 PM, Blogger Candy Rant said…

    Oh, and yes...Ridge decided immediately that since he was not her daddy, only her half-brother, he could nail her.

  • At 8:49 PM, Blogger Carin said…

    Ug, Candy - Soap Operas? LOL. The rec center where I work out had TVs by it's machines, and I ABSOLUTELY hate when on of 'em is turned to a soap. I find I eventually have to simply turn the tv OFF or my eyes will watch whatever is put in front of it.

    Gads. Are those segments of "story" even two minutes long?

  • At 9:11 PM, Blogger Candy Rant said…

    Carin, I can't help it. I love to watch an occasional one BECAUSE they are exquisitely bad. The long pauses when any question is asked, then music going to a commercial, the cringeworthy "acting," the children who age from newborn to junior high in one year.
    And I cannot resist the stupidity of the brothers named Thorn and Ridge. I can't.
    It's the same reason I used to love "Dark Shadows" except for back then I didn't know the acting sucked.

  • At 9:43 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Yeah, but Dark Shadows had a seriously bitchin' theme.

  • At 11:29 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I have always wanted to see "Dark Shadows."

    When I watched "The Bold and the Beautiful" it drove me nuts that Ridge called Taylor "Hunter." Why? Was it her last name? And if it was, that was just weird that he'd call her lover by her last name, like they were football teammates. And she's a doctor. She should be smarter with her life choices.

    I had to stop watching "The B & the B" when I saw Sally Spectra in a teddy. That is burned into my mind's eye forever. And I am NOT happy about that.

    Sally Spectra deserves the cobra. (Insert music and freeze frame on my face with one eyebrow arched, as we go to commercial.)

  • At 11:31 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Yikes. Should have proofread. The kids came in and I was just trying to hurry up and post.

    I meant "his lover".

  • At 2:55 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    OK, so this has been driving me nuts. After I wrote this, J got on to send a friend an email, then we had to leave, so I have been dying to correct myself all this time!

    Ridge did not call Taylor "Hunter" as I had incorrectly remembered. He called her "Logan." If I remember correctly, her last name was Hunter. And the actress' name was Hunter Tylo, which I remember from a Pantene commercial way back when. (This is the kind of stuff that I remember. I don't remember anything truly important.) Anyway, it could not figure out why he called her Logan. Most women would not appreciate being called some other name. And I could not figure out why she would waste her time on Ridge, of all people. Why would Brooke, for that matter?

    And I have been trying to remember who the unlucky fellow was, who Sally Spectra donned the teddy for. I remember he was about half her age. And I think that her daughter, Macy, liked him. Which was why I disapproved of the whole situation there. Sally Spectra always irritated me. She's so dramatic.

    I have had the theme song from "The Bold and the Beautiful" in my head all day.

  • At 12:58 AM, Blogger Candy Rant said…

    Oh man. Let me straighten you out on this, futuresis:

    Ridge called Taylor "Doc" because, wait for it, she was a doctor of psychiatry. Her real name indeed is Hunter Tylo.

    It was his OTHER on again off again true love, Brooke, that he called "Logan" because her last name was Logan.

    When BRooke and RIDGE had a baby, they named her BRIDGET. Get it? A combo? But then they found out that actually RIDGE's father Eric, was the babydaddy. Thus freeing Ridge to try to get jiggy wit' Bridget.

    And just to add a cherry to the top of your pudding, Taylor is now marrying Brooke's son Rick.

    I will now take the deep shame I have for knowing all this, and curl up in a ball of humilation.

  • At 11:35 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    “One morning I shot an elephant in my pajamas. How he got into my pajamas I'll never know.” Animal Crackers. A landmark in American Humor. Like Sister Carrie.

    Groucho should be up there on Mt. Rushmore, right along side the other American Giants. He's even funnier than Sarah Palin.

    Now as for the Dark Infernal Pit of Depression (DIPD) welcome to the Club. Your personal membership card is in the mail. Me, I've found that the answer lies in my grocer's freezer case. Hagan Daz. Ben and Jerry. And even Blue Bunny, in a pinch.

    And I can't say too much about B and R! Except that this is a great country and I'm proud to live in a country where you're free to chose you own fave flavor, without government iterference. If I want Chubby Hubby, I can damn well have it! Hey, it's all there in the Bill of Rights. Ever read it? It's all there.

  • At 3:42 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Wow, Candy! Thank you for straightening me out. Now I remember that it was Brooke that he called Logan. But before you enlightened me, I never knew why. It is hard keeping Ridge's love interests straight. Taylor is marrying Ridge's son, Rick? I don't even remember him!

    Doesn't this show take place in L.A.? Can't these people widen their social circle?

    Don't feel ashamed. This is important stuff. And don't you realize that you have answered one of those questions that would occasionally pop into my mind and drive me crazy? Even though I had stopped watching the show, I had often thought back to that whole story line and wondered about the names.

    I cannot believe that Eric is Bridget's father!!!!! Whoa.

  • At 7:49 PM, Blogger Domhan said…

    You said the acting sucked on "Dark Shadows."

    Heh. Heh. Heheheheheh.


  • At 9:26 PM, Blogger Candy Rant said…

    Tony, I get fudgesicles from a Blue Bunny vending machine at work. There's a big vacuum tube that slithers down into the chosen compartment to suck up the treat and drop it down the chute like a brick.

    The vacuum tube. Sucks. Like the acting on Dark Shadows.

    Which also bit.

  • At 9:27 PM, Blogger Candy Rant said…

    Futuresis, No, the family in L.A. cannot seem to widen their circle. Which just goes to show you that inbreeding doesn't ONLY happen in Indiana.

  • At 9:36 AM, Blogger Jenni said…

    Candy, I honestly think you have the most interesting comments in the whole wide internet. You guys crack me up.

    I'm sorry about the BP issues. Internalization is my own modus operandi as well, and lately I've been wondering if I might have an ulcer. Fun, fun!

    Egad. Talking about physical ailments. It's Bah!

  • At 12:10 PM, Blogger Candy Rant said…

    I truly do have the best group of commenters ever. They crack me up, too.

    And yes: Just yesterday I was trying to pin down the moment when I changed from "living a normal life" to "living like Woody Allen and focusing on all my ailments."

    Oy vey.

  • At 12:10 PM, Blogger Candy Rant said…

    Except for the whole creepy romance thing.

  • At 2:36 AM, Blogger Steve B said…

    The Sandwich of Positive Attitude? Does that come with a side order of Coleslaw of Overall Contentment? Perhaps some French Fries of Inspiration? Pita of Perkiness?

    Me, I want to wash it all down with a Diet Coke of Intestinal Fortitude.

  • At 5:17 PM, Blogger Candy Rant said…

    "The Coleslaw of Overall Contentment" is superb. Thank you.


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