Category Archives: Personal stuff

Where have I been?

I’m not even looking at the date of my last entry; it’s been so long that it’s been tough to even think about putting up a new one, because doing so makes me thing about what I’ve let go by. I’m still alive, no real changes to health besides a run-in with ulcers on some of my fingers when I didn’t keep on top of my Raynauds (my circulation issue that cuts off blood to my fingers, sometimes my toes, when it gets cold). I’ve since figured out a new regimen for the meds that’s taken care of it, but it’s still going to take a while for one of the ulcers to heal. It’s not a lot of fun. Had more bloodwork to make sure there were no serious infections (there weren’t), and the platelets are still in a good place too.

Still been riding, although there have been a number of Tuesday/Thursday-morning rides cut short a bit, lopping off the West Old LaHonda section, because the combination of cold and fog was making the finger ulcers worse. And last Sunday we were supposed to do another ride to San Leandro for Kevin to get his second Covid shot, but the weather looked questionable so we drove instead, and did a short ride afterward, just 30 miles. Of course, it was completely dry in the morning! And by the time we got out… it rained.

But today, Kevin, Colin & I finally got out on a “real” ride. Reverse Pescadero with West Alpine. I crawled up Old LaHonda, over 25 minutes, and on the run to the coast, into a headwind, I passed on taking a turn at the front, letting a very strong Kevin and a very strong Colin do the hard work. Not my proudest moment, to be sure. But I began to feel not-quite-so-bad heading south on Stage, so there was some hope. We did the usual stop at the bakery in Pescadero, fueling up on a Coke, sandwich and pasty, before tacking Haskins from the hard side. Kevin and Colin got a gap on me pretty quickly, and I never could close it. Kind of figured I’d fall further and further behind (like on Old LaHonda), but somehow finished the climb not too far behind.

West Alpine? I finally came into my own. Why does it take so long to get warmed up??? Test of my patience I guess? I held back for Kevin and Colin but we all finished together in 49-something. I can live with that, especially as slow as I’ve been riding lately.

It’s been a while, lots going on

At least we can start with some pretty video of the usual place, West Old LaHonda. This has been an interesting year; “Winter” wasn’t all that bad, but Spring has been much colder than usual, at least on the Tuesday & Thursday-morning rides. Cold enough that it caught me off guard a bit with my Raynauds (a condition that shuts off blood circulation to fingers and toes when cold or stressed), so finally I had to seek treatment for chillblains gone wild.

The Kaiser blood lab
It’s not much fun trying to explain to a new GP Doc at Kaiser that you have something (Raynauds) that some don’t think a real thing, probably largely because it’s largely women who get it, so it ends up being associated with things not typically associated with men. Incorrectly, they’ll associate with being an emotional thing, or maybe driven by hormones. Which, of course, is really a sad state of affairs. She literally told me she didn’t think I had “real” Raynauds because it’s a women’s thing. I had better things to do Thursday than feel kind of imprisoned for a couple hours by Kaiser. But, in the end, I got a bunch of tests done to show my Raynaud’s isn’t related to any sort of auto-immune issues (like Lupus), and a doctor who has learned a but more about Raynauds.

Funny to think that, just a few years ago, I wouldn’t have made an appointment to deal with something like this in the first place, due to my extreme fear of having blood drawn. Now, it’s just this thing I have to do, because of my diagnosis three years ago with Essential Thrombocythemia, a mild bone-marrow cancer that causes my body to make too many platelets. Hard to believe I have no real issues with blood draws anymore. I still can’t look at the needle being inserted, but at least I’ve gotten to the point where I don’t mind seeing the vials of blood after.