Grattitude & Attitude: Brain Tumors and Sunshine.

My apologies, people of the world, I have been tardy in posting this latest G&A because I have a lot of stuff going on lately and can’t seem to find enough time in the day to get blogs posted. 😦

Before, G&A, here’s a little somethin’ somethin’ about what I’ve been up to lately in my down time!

I revamped my website and gave it an entirely new and fresh look. It took almost two months because I had to collaborate with my website gal quite a bit and get it just so. If you would like to see it (and give me some feedback, hint, hint), click here. If you think it sucks ass crackers and you don’t like it at all and wish I would have kept the old site’s look…uhm…bite me! That is all.

I have also taken a few workshops in the last six weeks to improve my game, so to speak! I’ve learned more about boudoir than I’ll probably ever need or use (which is a good thing!) and also a few new shooting techniques to use during weddings that will make my reception shots about a thousand times more awesomesauce! Who doesn’t like awesomesauce???

Strangely enough, even though I swore I would never do it, I broke down and finally offered a basic course for operating a digital SLR camera. I’ve had so many people ask me to run one that I thought I’d give it a go. The response has been amazing and my learning curve for teaching photography is going up, up and up. The last course is tonight, but since it’s going so well, I may offer another set of them in a month or two, just for fun! After tonight’s class, there will be 22 people in my city who will be applying the basic techniques I’ve taught them to taking pics. Dang!

Aside from this, I’ve also been dealing with the recurrence of a pesky Pituitary Tumor that my neurosurgeon removed almost 11 years ago. DANG! For months, I’ve been assuming that my health issues were all grief related – insomnia, being run down and tired all the time, mood swings, manic episodes, etc. Turns out, it was actually a tumor. Who’d-a-thunk? And, even though I only had half a Pituitary gland left, it was somehow enough to allow the growth of another stinking tumor. Double Dang! This tumor is what the docs call a NonFunctional one, meaning that it’s just the size that can affect a person. Mine is just itty bitty right now, only 4mm, so it’s not quite big enough to warrant surgery to remove it. It is definitely pushing on my Pituitary gland, though, and seems to be causing havoc with my body’s ability to make all the good hormones a person needs to function properly – sleep through the night, fight off sickness, etc. No worries, though, I have put a plan into action and will fight this bad boy with an arsenal of Traditional Chinese Medicine, acupuncture and regular ole Western Medicine all at the same time.

After losing Cora, this ain’t nothing!

The only thing that really sucks, is that I was ordered to reduce any kind of stress and strenuous exertion in my life for three to four weeks, so my body can rest up enough to allow any treatments to work and boost my immune system and hormone production. This, of course, means NO DERBY and NO CRAZY WORKOUTS. Boooooooo. It had to be done and my body is already seeing the benefits of not beating the crap out of it, but I have to fight every day to stay positive about not being able to skate, hit people, and work out to the point of feeling like I’m going to vomit (because, in my mind, that is an enjoyable activity!!!!!).

I have to keep saying to myself,Chin up, lame ass! You’ll be 100x better when you do get back at it!

Sometimes I detest how logical my inner self can be!

That’s what’s new in the life of Jo.

Let’s get on with this already…

Today’s Attitude goes out to:

  1. My genes. Most likely all of the crap inside my body comes from my mom’s side since my dad’s family is pretty stinking healthy and they all live to be really old and, for the most part, with it. Mom died at 47. Her brother died at 60. Her dad died young as well (although I can’t remember his age). Her mom died at 84 after an entire lifetime of health issues. My uncle was born with a bum heart. Etc. It’s a good thing I have my dad’s genes to balance me out or my entire system would probably be much,much worse. I get my athletic genes from both sides, though, and that’s a good, positive thing…maybe I should put that in my Gratitude section…
  2. Wind. Oh wind, how I detest you. You prevent me from enjoying the beautiful sunshine outside because you make it FREEZING cold out and blow sand in my eyes and mouth when I’m at the beach.  Go away already.
  3. Juno’s shitty knees. Last year it was a major surgery to replace ligaments in his left knee. Today, he’s limping heavily and favoring his right leg. It had better not be the ligaments in his right knee. That dog is much too full of sunshine and lollipoops to have to go through that again. No crazy exercise for him for the next week either, it seems. Sheesh.
  4. My ridiculously short attention span right now…look, a shiny object…uhm, what was I doing? Oh yah…You try to do anything or finish anything in a timely manner when you haven’t slept more than three hours per night for almost a year and see how well that turns out. I dare you. You should see me try to keep my house clean or to keep my attention on the computer when I’m editing. It has taken me hours to get this blog written, over a span of days and days…

Okay, enough whining…

Today’s Gratitude goes out to:

  1. All of my derby peeps who have, seriously, shown me some incredible love – not just since I shared the news of the tumor, either. I am touched by how many people have been checking up on me and offering to do anything that needs doing. It really makes a girl realize how blessed she is to have something as large and powerful as a derby league behind her! The Derby community is a fascinating entity and would probably keep an anthropologist (like our very own Flying Fox) enthralled with the study of it. In many ways, it’s a giant family – we love, we fight, we make up, we ostracize each other, we gang up on others, we band together, we fall apart – all of the things that large families experience. Sometimes it can be too much to take, others just what we need. It’s been all of those things for me, and more, but lately it’s been more of what I need than anything else. I love derby and all of the crazy shit that goes along with it.  Yesterday, I spent some time with some of my derby peeps working on a little project for our first home bout of the year. Here’s a sneak peek…
    Yah, derby is that fun!

    When I headed out to shoot, I was feeling like pure crap. Run down, tired, achy, super grumpy, etc., but by the time I spent an hour with these ladies, I was feeling pretty good again. Laughter really is the best dang medicine ever! I’m grateful for my derby family – even on the dysfunctional days!

  2. Sunshine. Oh Mr. Sunshine, I cannot even begin to explain how good you are for me. I’m stoked that this winter has been so mild and enjoyable. Yesterday, Greg, Juno and I crossed the river to play on the beach at Rabbit Island. It was good for the soul (even though I felt like poop). Just look at how much Juno loved it!

    This slideshow requires JavaScript.

  3. Greg. He marches to his own beat. Even though it drives me CRAZY that he insists on bringing home old bottles and other weird crap he finds in the river, this is a part of who he is and I love that he has such a curious streak in him. He found a purse in the river yesterday, with a wallet in it and cards, etc. He is taking it to the cop shop so they can track down the owner. If he didn’t enjoy throwing on hip waders and looking for river junk, that would not have happened. 🙂 As an aside, he also found a really ancient Coke bottle which has joined his crazy collection above the cupboards in our kitchen. We may be one of the future episodes on Hoarders if his Pack Rat tendencies continue. *sigh*. LOL
  4. Impatient, ignorant, judgmental, cruel, petty, and generally jerkish people. Thank you for reminding me to keep my own asshole tendencies and attitude in check! Without you, I would have to remind myself to be more kind and compassionate and that takes more energy than I can muster up right now! Even though you are not my favorite people, I appreciate you almost more than I do my favorite people!!!
  5. Christa Meola and Sue Bryce. Thank you for participating in the CreativeLIVE movement and teaching me how to nail down my price lists, based on my target market, my vision for my business and the logistics of what my time is worth. That has helped me more than anything I’ve learned in years about my photography business. I appreciate that more than I can say!
  6. Jody Martens. Seriously, how can I thank you enough for all that you’ve done for me lately? You are a very selfless, giving person and I am just very, very grateful that you have come into my life. 🙂
  7. Beccs. You make the best muffins and we couldn’t really be more alike if we were, in fact, really sisters! Love you cuz!

Hokay, it’s time to get this party started and get on with the day. 🙂

Have a great Monday ya’ll. I wish you all enough…

2 thoughts on “Grattitude & Attitude: Brain Tumors and Sunshine.

  1. Jo, you continuously amaze me with your positive spirit. The world would be a better place if we all saw the world they way you do. You deal with more crap than anyone I know but you handle it all with such confidence. Thanks for being such an inspriration.

  2. …aaah thanks Jo. That is really nice. Let me know if there is anything else I can do to help!

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