Monday, November 30, 2009

Overnighting in Ottawa Tonight

I'll be overnighting in Ottawa tonight.
My little chickadee has to be away with her job for a few nights and I was called into duty for one of them.  I get to pick up my beautiful boy after school and hang out with him and help him with his homework  (that takes about ten minutes -- only two if I don't help him).
I'm fairly well rested today, although I woke pretty near every two hours all night long.  I did manage to make it 'til 5:30 am before giving up the fight and getting out of bed for the day.
My legs are their usual sore today -- I guess this is my new normal so I may as well get used to it!
I have physio this afternoon so that will fix me up good to put me in fine form to deal with my beautiful boy -- I just love teasing him and rough housing with him.  Prior to taking Lyrica, I couldn't rough house with him but now that I can, I love it!  And he has no qualms about giving right back let me tell you; the boy has no mercy for his grandmother (sort of)!
To fill in the time between my physio and his pick up time, I'll visit a good friend whom I haven't seen in a while.  She runs a day care out of her home so I often stop in for a quick visit after my physio but with all the medical appointments I've had lately, it's been a while since I've been able to see her.  Today, I should be able to stay for about an hour (amidst the chaos that is her work -- five children under five make a lot of racket).
Then once I pick up my beautiful boy, the fun starts.
You see, today is Report Card day.
And he tells me that it will be a good report card.
Worthy of a reward, he says.
We've already talked about what we're doing for dinner (McDonalds, naturally!) and he knows that his homework will have to be done.
And he knows that we are going to my hairdresser's place (it's haircut time again!) before we head back to his home.
So while he's eating his burger or whatever he eats at McD's, I'll examine his report card (probably while on the phone with his Mom) and determine if it's truly worthy of a reward (which it will be -- the only requirement is that he did his personal best).
And then we'll discuss the reward.
And I will steer the discussion toward a particular book that I know he's been wanting.
And once he identifies that, yes, we really should go to the bookstore after we leave the hairdresser's, so we can get that very much desired book, we will agree to do just that!
He'll finish eating, salivating over the book he knows he's going to get later, and thinking what a cool grandma he has.
We'll get in the car to head over to our 5:30pm appointment, he'll get in his seat, and I'll hand him his book -- just like magic it will appear and he'll be able to read it while I get my haircut!
You see, we talked about this particular book the last few times I've been there, and I actually bought it a while ago, intending to give it to him the next time I saw him.
And then his Mom told me that this visit was falling on Report Card day.
So I figured -- Voila!  A perfect excuse to give him the book!
I don't actually need an excuse to give my grandson a gift.  But  a while back, when I expressed the desire to have something for him with each visit (which is not something that I usually do), he said to me, "You don't have to bring me anything." 
So of course, his psychology worked.
Now I WANT to bring him something with each visit (but I still don't because it's never been my habit so I'm having difficulty establishing it as one).
Can you tell that I'm looking forward to this evening with my beautiful boy? 

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Rest & Recovery Day Today

Well, yesterday was a success.
It's always fun when my little chickadee visits with her family -- loud (he's eight!) but fun.
I love to tease my beautiful boy and as he's getting older and catching on, he's able to give as good as he gets -- and that just makes it sooooo much more fun!
We had a lovely visit.
John took their "family portrait" and did the retake of my beautiful boy's Grade 3 School Photo and then I had him do an update of my three generation photo.

Bonnie with her Little Chickadee & Beautiful Boy
November 2009
I figured it was about time I had a more current photo of us.  My beautiful boy was getting a little antsy by the time we were taking these ones -- he had had just about enough of the smiling for the camera business so we were lucky to get this one!
After the photo shoot, we had "dunch" -- early dinner, late lunch -- meat loaf, corn and mashed potatoes; (ok, some of the diners -- beautiful boy included -- also had a feed of shrimp), followed by lemon cheese cake for dessert -- which was a particular hit with the little one!
I truly love these visits but they really do take a toll on me.
So today I have no choice but to take it very slow and easy.
Which is exactly what I plan to do.
Thus far today, I have poured cereal into bowls and placed them on the table and called that breakfast (works for me).
And I've taken care of my bookkeeping (which task had fallen by the wayside due to seasonal preparations so I had a few days' worth of postings to make -- and it's month-end in the Fowler household).
I folded the rest of our Christmas cards while I watched Question Period which airs at 11:00am every Sunday morning (ever the junkie, yes I still watch all the political talk shows).
Now I'll just veg for the rest of the day while I watch some of the canned shows that I've collected through the week.
They don't call them lazy Sundays for nothin' ...

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Ready and Waiting ...

Dessert came out of the oven at 8:30am -- not bad huh???
Hot oatmeal breakfast placed in front of John at 9:30am.
Almost finished reading my morning paper and then I hit the shower.
Cuz my little chickadee and her family are due to arrive 'around noon' she tells me.
Gotta go ...
Seems like tempus is always fugiting ...

Friday, November 27, 2009

Alright, alright, I'll update ...

Please stop nagging.  I've been busy.
You see, while yesterday's post might not have sounded like a lot to have packed into five days, it was for me because I have to rest after about every 15 minutes of activity.  (I also forgot to mention that on one of those days, we entertained so I really did all that other stuff in four days, not five.)
As I finished posting yesterday's contribution, I had to rush off for my bi-weekly massage session (for which I was almost late because I didn't notice the time while I was busy posting).
My massage therapist and I spend the hour laughing -- uncontrollably -- about everything and anything.  The session is equally therapeutic for each of us; nothing gets the endorphins going like a good belly laugh.  She always tells me "thank you" when I'm leaving because, as she says, she always feels so much better after my sessions.  I guess I should be charging her for my time!
And in spite of the benefit I derive from those sessions, I still woke up this morning feeling "unrested" and my hips hurt like a bugger. 
As I came to consciousness this morning, my first thought was that I was tired.
And I realized that I was just about to start another day and I was already tired.
And then my brain received the message from my hips.
Burn ... burn ... burn ....
And then I got up (gotta make that beeline for the washroom you know).
The pain in my groin was such that I thought my legs were going to buckle right out from under me!
Luckily, there are lots of things for me to grab to help support myself en route to the washroom. 
Anyway, it didn't get any better as the day progressed.
I had some shopping that I wanted to do so I slapped on my trusty  hip brace and off we went.
By the time we got back here, I was done like dinner!
But before we had dinner, I took the time to prepare one of my famous meat loafs for tomorrow's lunch with my little chickadee and her family (my beautiful boy is going to say, "Why do you always make this for me?").  He's actually going to have frogs legs and shrimp and other yucky stuff that he likes to enjoy with his grandpa John.
They're coming over so John can take their Christmas family portrait and he will also take my beautiful boy's school photo (his Mom never likes the one that is taken at the school so John does the retake for her -- it has become a tradition of sorts).
In the morning, I'll make a lemon cheesecake dessert that my little chickadee has been anxious to try -- she keeps complaining that she's heard about it but has never tried it.
Well, tomorrow, she'll finally get to try it.
And if she reads this blog, she'll actually know before she gets here that she's in for a treat!
But now, I have to go to bed because I'm exhausticated.
And I have a very big day tomorrow.

Good night.
Sleep tight.
Don't let the bed bugs bite.
If they do,
Squeeze them tight.
So they won't bite
Tomorrow night.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

What a Difference Five Days Can Make

Can you believe it?
I can't.
On November 21st, my post here was titled, "I'm Running Out of Time" because I was hitting near panic mode about my not having done any preparations vis-a-vis the approaching festive season.
And here we are, a mere five days later, and I can sit back and wait for the season to catch me!
That's right.
In the past five days, I have:
  • Decided on a photo to use for our Christmas Card (that is a decision that is usually made in January for the following November's production);
  • reviewed, corrected and updated our recipient list so I would know how many cards to print;
  • ordered and received office supplies that would be required to complete the card project (the order arrived at my door 19 hours after I hit the "send" button -- it reallly is that "EASY").
  • printed and cut 120 Christmas cards;
  • folded 60 of those cards (have to work in batches you know);
  • hand addressed over 100 envelopes, separating them by destination (UK; USA; Canada - o/s province; w/n province; local);
  • reviewed our gift list and identified ideas for all but two names (yes, my husband is one of those names for whom I still don't have ideas);
  • placed the order for special chocolates that I bring in every year to give to special people (that order will likely arrive here today or tomorrow).
Of course, there were still household chores that needed attention during those five days.  Dishes still have to be loaded / unloaded from the dishwasher; laundry still collects; and the cleaning lady always has such interesting stories to tell.
And I had to find time to deal with my e-mail.
And I had to update my blog (my fanbase gets cranky if I'm away for too long).
So many demands, so little time.
But here we are.
Five days later.
All done.
Now I can concentrate on this site for a few more weeks before the season takes over again.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

I Can Take a Break Now

I am so ahead of schedule it isn't even funny.
Half the cards are printed and cut -- ready for folding.
The other half will be printed maybe later today (the new cardstock supply that I ordered yesterday has already arrived -- I thought it might take longer, buying me a little more time to procrastinate).
All the envelopes are addressed and separated by destination category.
The chocolates have been ordered.
The house is clean (OK, only cuz the cleaning lady came today but what's your point?)
Christmas will not be "put up" until two weeks from now -- the next time the cleaning lady comes.  I prefer to wait 'til she's done her rounds and then make the mess (silly, I know, but there IS a good reason for my doing it that way).  As I said in an earlier post, I don't put up a tree, preferring now to assemble my village.

This is my village when I first started building it.
It has grown considerably since this photo was taken.

I've never liked decorating a tree and always said that if I had my druthers, I'd have put the tree up on Christmas Eve and taken it down on Boxing Day.  When you have children, of course, you can't be so scrooge-like.  When my little chickadee was young, she would be on my case from mid-November about putting up that darned thing!  It was all I could do to hold her off until the 10th of December (that was our 'compromise' date).  BUT it came down on Boxing Day along with all other evidence of Christmas, with the exception of our Creche.
The Creche has to remain in place until the 6th of January ("Little Christmas") and, although I no longer have any little ones in the home, I still to this day re-enact the story of Christmas.  Mary and Joseph only arrive on December 24th; the baby doesn't join them until the next morning and the shepherd doesn't get there until the baby has arrived. The three Wise Men are moved ever closer along the path toward the manger until they finally arrive on the 6th of January.
And only then can everything be packed up and put away until the following year.
I've done this every year since my little chickadee was, well, very little, because I wanted her to understand the true meaning of Christmas.  We weren't a religious household, per se, but I taught her many "rules to live by."
One Christmas, when my little chickadee was about seven years old I think, I had already put her to bed for the night when she came running downstairs in a flap.  She just had to take care of something very important.  We had carefully placed Mary and Joseph in the manger that afternoon, the couple having ceremoniously arrived and been refused a place at the inn (yes, we went the whole nine yards).  Anyway, she came running downstairs and beelined for the Creche.  She gently took Mary and laid her down, explaining, "She's going to have a baby tonight you know."  Then she promptly went back upstairs to bed. It just cracked me up!
Every year since and still, when I close up the house on Christmas Eve, I just HAVE to lay Mary down because she's going to have a baby that night you know!
The Creche I use today is the one I bought the year of my little chickadee's third Christmas and it is very special to me.  It's really starting to show its age now but you can't find ones like it anymore.  It is very much like the one my mother had when I was growing up.  Now, my beautiful boy gets to re-enact the story of Christmas and he loves to move the wise men closer, just as his mother did when she was his age.
I still leave the Creche set up until January 6th but almost always have taken the rest of Christmas down long before then.
Sometimes I think John must think I'm a regular nut bar (OK maybe not just John).

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

I Am So Ahead of Schedule

Wow, even I can't believe the progress I've made today.
I managed to review and update our Christmas card list and print it out for John's review before using it to address envelopes.  When I pulled the file, I noticed that I had done that job on the 26th of November last year -- so I'm two days early this year!
I figured out my annual "Stratford" chocolate order and got that all sorted out too (and even placed the order).  When I pulled the file, I noticed that I didn't place that order until the 26th of November last year -- two days ahead of time on that project too!
I even went downstairs and started the cards printing today -- and found out I don't have enough cardstock to do the complete job.  I probably don't have enough ink to do the complete job either since John likes to print photos to that printer too (we have many printers in this house).  But I did print as many cards as I could with the cardstock supply I have and I managed to get half what I need.
So, I placed an internet order for the supplies I need to complete the job -- the stuff will come tomorrow and I will be able to finish right on time!
How's that for good management -- and I didn't even  have to leave home.
As to the envelope addressing project that was on the agenda for today?
Right down to the last name on the list.
All separated by destination (UK - USA - Canada National; Provincial; Local).
And we even have postage for a good lot of them.
So tomorrow after I cut and fold the ones that have already been printed, we could actually sign and have some ready to go.
But we won't.
Do them tomorrow, I mean.
Because Canada Post says that December 1st is the deadline to put cards in the mail destined for the UK.
And it just happens that Monday is November 30th and that's the day I'll buy the postage I need to round out this project.  So that's the day the cards will go in the mail that are going across the pond.
The others will follow accordingly.
Don't want to be too early for the season you know.
People will think one is anxious (or organized) or something.

Schedule Re-Jig

So I'm going to do a bit of a schedule re-jig.
I'll still achieve the same end result in the same time line.
Just going to get there using a different path.
We did finish the design of our Christmas card last night so we are ready to go to print.
Instead of printing cards today and addressing envelopes tomorrow, I'll do those tasks in the opposite order.
Today will be envelope addressing day; tomorrow will be printing day.
Here's why (not that it really matters to anyone but I needed a topic for today's post).
My cleaning lady comes tomorrow.
Naturally, she spends considerably more time on the main floor of the home than on the lower floor that houses the office.
I usually try to schedule errands out of the home for those mornings that she is here just so I'm not under foot because invariably, I no sooner get started on a task and I have to move so I find it easier not to be here.
Anyway, I sit at the dining table to address Christmas card envelopes while I watch my canned television programs -- the task takes a very long time!
But when I'm printing the cards, I have to be downstairs in the office since I need to supervise the feeding of the cardstock through the printer.
So, I'll spend today with the television turned around to face the dining table so I can watch whatever I can find on the idiot box while I address however many envelopes we are sending this year (we average 100).
The addressed envelopes will then be separated into appropriate groups for eventual mailing (outside North America; USA; Canada -- Local / Provincial / National).
And tomorrow morning, while my house is being cleaned upstairs, I will be downstairs in the office printing the requisite number of cards that will then have to be cut and folded.  The cutting is done down in the office but the folding task is moved back upstairs to the dining table and is spread over many days.
On Monday, when I go into Ottawa for my next physiotherapy session, I will buy whatever quantity postage stamps I need so that we get the cards in the mail according to the announced Canada Post deadline dates for each grouping.
John will have between Thursday and Monday to sign the cards that are destined for out of the country since they have to be in the mail by December 1st to meet Canada Post's deadline.
Sounds like this project is coming in ahead of schedule in spite of starting well late of previous years -- is that a sign of good planning or better management?
Gotta go and get started.  Tempus fugit!

Monday, November 23, 2009

We're Getting There

OK, John's computer is all nicely repaired (hard drive crash -- 23 months into a 3 year warranty!) so he's back in business now.
We've decided on our Christmas card photo so that project will be finalized tonight, ready for printing tomorrow, right on schedule!
I managed to cross another name off my shopping list today -- but only one unfortunately.  I just didn't have the juice to make any more stops.
In fact, I made my one pit-stop en route to my physiotherapist and then I went for John's computer before heading directly home.
And I'm pooped.
Right out of gas.
Totally and completely.
So now I'm gonna rest.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

I'm Almost DONE !

Yes I am!!!!!!!
I know, I know.
Just yesterday I was whining that I was waaaaaaaaaaay behind in my that-time-of-the-year shopping.
And here we are.
The very next day and I can honestly say, "I'm almost done!"
You see, I'm a person who makes lists.
And I've just reviewed my Christmas shopping list.
I actually have a suggestion against every name on that list with the exception of two -- ok my husband is one of those names for whom I have no gift ideas.  Some of the names have already been crossed off.
Anyway, having identified what I'm getting most everybody, my shopping is nearly done.
Because, to paraphrase the great Yogi Berra: "Shopping is 90% mental; the other half is physical."
I have to go to Ottawa tomorrow for a physiotherapy session so I will be able to make a couple of stops on my way home and will probably cross a few more names off that list.
I've also short-listed the photos I want to use for our Christmas card this year.  So by the end of the day today, that project will be well  under way and with luck, I should be printing the cards on Tuesday (I'd love to be printing tomorrow but I have to go to Ottawa tomorrow).
I figure I'll spend Wednesday addressing Christmas card envelopes (yes, I still hand-address every envelope -- if the person is worthy of receiving my card, they are worthy of my taking the time to address an envelope).
So I guess I'm on track to get my Christmas cards in the mail on time after all.
Now I'll look at the calendar and see when I'm going to schedule "putting Christmas up" which in my home does not involve decorating a Christmas tree.
Rather, I assemble a Christmas village complete with a train running through town as skaters play on the pond and shoppers rush to get home etc etc etc.  There is a "tree" at the edge of town and gifts are left "at the foot of the hills."
It allows me to indulge my love of trains ...  

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Yikes -- I'm Running out of Time

Here we are almost 1st December and I'm not nearly approaching ready for you-know-what.
Normally, in years gone by, I would finish my Christmas shopping on Remembrance Day.
Because that day was a holiday for us from work but the children had to go to school, my sister and I used to take that afternoon to run around like mad fools and do our shopping without kids in tow.
In more recent years, while I didn't always finish by November 11th, I was usually well on my way by that date.  But that has always been by target date.
You see, I don't like the crowds of December shopping, so I try to stay away from the stores at that time of year as much as I can.
But I guess that won't be happening this year.
I have barely got my list made and it's already November 21st (although I DID buy a couple of gifts while we were in Halifax)!
I'm thinking I'd better get busy.
Gotta go.
I have to decide on a picture for our Christmas card.  I really should get that project under way too!

Friday, November 20, 2009

This is Just Stupid !

Here it is 1:30 in the morning and I'm unable to stay in bed another minute.
My hips are screaming at me.
I've already wakened at least four times since going to sleep at about 10:00pm.
And I took an extra pain killer before I went to bed because my hips were so bad yesterday.
Now my bowel will pay the price for my having taken that codeine.
It obviously hasn't worked in the pain relief department.
So I'm going to pay the price for naught!
Oh such fun!
As someone said to me just the other day, "This getting old business really isn't much fun."
"No, but it IS better than the alternative don't you think?"
As bad as my pain is, I do know that there are very many people much worse off, in far worse pain.
I should really count my blessings.
And I have many to count.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Where / When Does It End?

Will it end?
I am getting soooooooooooo tired of this nonsense.
All I did yesterday was go into Ottawa for my physiotherapy session.
And then I had lunch with my sister-in-law.
And on the way home I made two stops to pick up stuff that we needed.
OK -- the stops involved those over-sized super stores that require walking 1,000 miles just to pick up that bag of milk (which is deliberately located at the furthermost point of the store for strategic purposes).
I even took a sleeping aid last night to ensure a good night's restful sleep because I knew that I was getting behind in that department again.
I slept -- sort of.  Only woke up once and went right back to sleep.
Yet today, I wake up feeling like I've been run over by three mack trucks and my legs think that I ran a marathon.
Now I know that the reason for this phenomenon is because of the reduced Cesamet dosage.
I am simply not getting the benefit of the drug and I really don't see the point of staying on it at all.
My doctor doesn't agree with that reasoning.
He opines that I am in fact getting some relief from it and if I go off it completely, my pain level will be much higher.
He's right of course.
But if I'm in pain anyway, what difference does it make if that pain is moderate-severe or severe?
I can't continue to function at the moderate-severe level which is where I seem to be right now.
It's wearing me out -- fast.
So why not just go back to where I was prior to going on the Cesamet -- and eliminate any questions we have about what else the drug might be doing to my physiology?
And I will simply have to step up my pain management activity involving the many other tools at my disposal since it seems that non-medicinal techniques work very well for me.  It's also much safer to manage pain by applying the Acupen or the TENs unit or wearing a brace than popping a narcotic every twelve hours.
Now, I'm facing a day of doing nothing because I have to recover from yesterday.
And I have to recover because tomorrow I head back into Ottawa to see the endocrinologist about my eating problems.
Here we go again!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Will Canadian Government Apologize Too?

Australia has apologized
Britain is expected to extend its apologies.
But will Canada apologize?
I've never quite understood the point of government apologies being extended several years after the actual persons responsible for the decisions have long since departed.
Yes, the decisions were made as a government and that I guess is why governments are apologizing.
But really, the elected officials of the day -- the people who actually made those bad decisions -- are long since dead.  They are the people who were responsible for the consequences of those decisions -- not the governments that followed.
But historically, governments have found it appropriate to issue apologies, and in some cases, even paying significant compensation to victims' descendants.
I simply don't agree that the government of today is responsible for the consequences of decisions taken by the government of yesterday.  The government of today is responsible only if they don't change whatever policies allowed the horrific action to take place in the first instance.  Then they would have something for which to apologize.
But if today's government didn't commit the injustice, why is today's government apologizing, and in some instances paying out huge amounts of money? Acknowledge the injustice; sympathize, maybe even empathize. But apologize? I just don't get it.
Put in simple terms, do you apologize for something you didn't do?
I don't; I apologize for stuff I've done, and only for stuff I've done.
I can't apologize for something my great-grandparents have done.
How then do I expect an apology from my great-grandparents' government?
What their government did may have been horrific; but that government doesn't exist any more.
And the government of today didn't DO it, so what would an apology today really mean?
Today, the news is bubbling over with the story of the Australia government's having apologized to the child migrants for the abuse they suffered as a result of the migration scheme.
OK, I get that.  The government is apoligizing to people who are living today who were actually wronged by the deed because some children were still arriving in that country as late as 1969!
The British government is expected to follow suit for their role in the exchange.  That is the government that should be apologizing because it is Britain that devised the scheme in the first place.  Dating as far back as 1816, England would clear its streets of undesireables - including children - by shipping them to the New World, or sending them to penal colonies for misdemeanors. 
There is nothing in Canada's history books about the British Home Child scheme; it's what I call Canada's dirty little secret.
Over the past 20 years or so,  descendants of British Home Children, as they've come to be known, have been very vocal about their history, or shall we say their lack of history.  Websites have cropped up on the Internet; specific sites have been provided for descendants to seek out their genealogical roots.   And it's only because descendants of British Home Children have been so vocal that anything is known about the scheme in Canada.
The children themselves never spoke of it; they were ashamed of their backgrounds.
When I first started researching my family tree, I knew that three of my grandparents had originally come from England.  What I didn't know 25 years ago was that they all three were British Home Children

My paternal grandfather was in fact orphaned when he was sent to Canada as a 15 year old farm hand.  He was first sent to a farm in Quebec, where he reported having been abused so he was moved to a farm just outside of Ottawa.    He never had further contact with his older brother who stayed behind in England (we never knew what had happened to that brother in spite of my uncle's efforts to find him).  My British Home Child grandfather eventually married a French Canadian woman and my father was their third child.

The photos above are (left) my grandfather, Thomas and (right) his older brother John William.
My father longed to find his "Uncle John Willy" whom he never knew.  On the other side of the ocean, John William's son, whom he named Tom after his brother who went to Canada longed to know the family that he knew he must have in Canada.  My research made the connection in 1999; sadly Tom (John William's son) died in 2001.  His widow and family have since visited Canada and we continue to enjoy contact with our British cousins through the Internet.

My Paternal Grandparents c1952

My maternal grandmother was an orphan who was sent to Canada when she too was only 15 and she worked as a domestic in the home of a loving family where she was very well treated.  My mother remembered being taken back to that home for visits as a child.  My grandmother maintained written contact with her sisters who had stayed in England, so we grew up knowing of this British family.  I continue to be in contact with various descendants today through the Internet.

In 1974, my parents took my grandmother back to England where she and her sister were reunited after a 62-year separation; she met her extended family for the first time. 

My maternal grandfather was also sent to Canada as a 15 year old farmhand, and he was settled outside Ottawa in the Kingston area.  I have yet to prove that he was orphaned when he was brought to Canada.  My research only recently turned up proof that he too left an older sibling in England, someone we certainly never heard tell of.  Today, I am in touch with descendants of that older brother -- again, they had no idea that they had Canadian relatives until I contacted them with proof of our relationship.  My British Home Child grandfather eventually married my British Home Child grandmother, and my mother was their sixth child.

My maternal grandparents, c1961
They both came to Canada as British Home Children

These two couples, my paternal grandparents and my maternal grandparents -- three of whom were British Home Children -- are responsible for over 275 Canadians and several American citizens roaming around today.
I think that's quite an impressive contribution for three young British children who left their families behind for a better life in a better land.
But was it better?
How could it have been?
They never talked about their pasts.
They were too ashamed of it.
They never told their own descendants about their history.
Child emigration to Canada was discontinued in the 1930s when the Great Depression created a labour surplus in Canada.   It is estimated that up to to 100,000 children had been transported to this country.   Yet the Canadian government has been so ashamed of the British Home Child scheme that there is no record of it in our history books. 
I know.
Twenty-five years ago, I went looking.
I searched everywhere.
Nobody wanted to talk about it.
Even today, very few people have even heard of it.
Try it.
Say "British Home Child" to someone.
Does that person know of what you speak?
So how good a life could it possibly have been to which the government was delivering these children?
The government knew then that it was a bad idea -- that's why there's no record of it!
Canada can't apologize for it's part in the child migration scheme because it must first admit that it happened.

I Must be Feeling Better

How do I know?
Because when I see recipes that look scrumptious, they actually look scrumptious again.
For quite some time now, while I've had not any appetite, when I saw recipes in magazines I was quite ho-hum about them.
And that is quite a departure for me.
Usually, I'm all over new, interesting recipes.
Provided they contain ingredients that I will eat (I am supremely fussy).
Yesterday, I went on a quest to find a recipe for Pudding Chomeur -- a favourite dessert from my childhood for which I never knew the name until the other night when my daughter-in-law was over and our discussion turned to French Canadian food fare.
And the description of Pudding Chomeur exactly fit the very simple dessert that I remember having at my French Canadian grandmother's place.  Of course, my mother often made it too, she having learned to cook from her mother-in-law.  I loved it!

My paternal grandmother, c1952

I often wonder if my love affair with all things caramel and/or butterscotch stems from my enjoyment of that dessert.
But I never knew the name of it, and I never knew how to make it.
Over the years, I have attempted many times to replicate that favourite dessert that I remembered from my childhood.
I knew the sauce was brown sugar based, but I just couldn't match the delight of my childhood memory.
I could never get the cake quite right.
And I sure couldn't get the sauce right.
Today, a neighbour is over helping John bring the wood in and they will be coming in for lunch soon.
Their dessert will be my first foray into attempting to make a Pudding Chomeur.
Of the several receipes I found yesterday, I took the one that sounded most like what I remember from my childhood.
If it isn't quite right, I will on another occasion, try one of the other recipes (I found mucho many).
And I will go down the list until I've found the one that most closely matches what I remember being served as a young girl.
It may well turn out to be a combination of a couple of the recipes; the pudding from one with the sauce from the other; or the complete recipe from one with the technique from the other.
We'll see.
In any event, I'll let you know what the verdict is.
And to get back to the subject of this post?
We know I'm feeling better because for the past two weeks, I didn't have the interest in any recipe nor did I have the energy to make a dessert.
The fact that I both went in search of a recipe and then got up this morning and actually made something tells me that I am feeling much better than I have in weeks.
And that, my friends, is a good thing!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

I Actually Slept!!

I did, I did!
I slept -- right through the damned night.
All night long.
From about 9:00pm last night, right through to just before 5:00am this morning.
That, my friends, is a record.
I'm fairly certain I did not even wake up to go pee.  If I did, I don't recall having done so.
How did I do it, you ask?
Well, you could say I cheated.
Sort of.
My doctor would say, "about time you idiot" or something similar (he would just be a tad more diplomatic about it).
You see, way back when I was originally sent to consult with a pain management specialist, the first thing she told me was that I HAD to start taking a sleeping aid EVERY NIGHT.
And she said that I would have to do that for the rest of my life if I wanted to ensure a proper night's sleep.
Because I have fibromyalgia and if I don't get a proper night's sleep, I would not be equipped to cope with the pain.  Period the end.
She made it quite clear that if I didn't follow the sleep advice, no other advice would be worthy.
I filed the information in a back drawer of my mind and proceeded to investigate other ways of dealing with the pain.  (I knew the hip pain had nothing to do with fibromyalgia but I could not convince any member of the medical profession of that distinction -- they saw fibro and that's what they were treating.)
Hence my collection of non-invasive, non-medicinal items of useful pain relieving tools:  TENs unit; Acupen; massage tub; back rolls; heat pads; ice packs of various sizes; heat/massage seat pads; exercise ball; the list goes on.
As my massage therapist said the other day, I could probably open my own treatment centre with all the stuff I have and my knowledge of their various applications and benefits.
Anyway, prior to my going on the Cesamet, I had started using a sleeping aid because my doctor had by then convinced me of the need for proper sleep and I simply wasn't getting a restful sleep because of my hip pain.  But I refused to use them on a nightly basis (I am absolutely paranoid about taking anything that I don't need), and would take them only when I felt like I was losing the battle.
Once I started taking Cesamet, which greatly enhanced my sleep, I had no need to use the sleeping aid even occasionally, so I dropped it from my regimen entirely.
I've been documenting here how painful my hips have been becoming lately.
The reduced Cesamet dose has only made it worse.  I don't know that the pain itself is any worse than it was; I just know that I am feeling it a lot more than I was earlier this summer when I was enjoying the benefits of the higher dose of Cesamet.
On  November 2nd, as a result of sitting outside for two and half hours waiting for my H1N1 vaccine, I was plunged into a major fibro flare-up.
Since then, my sleep bank has become seriously depleted.
So last night, in desperation, I took some of my sleeping aid.
And finally, I slept.
All night.
I will do the same thing tonight.
And perhaps again tomorrow night.
Because I have to get back on track.
I cannot climb out of this fibro-hole unless I have the energy to scrape my way to the top of the hole.
I can't get the energy to make that climb unless I get restful sleep.
Period, the end.
That pain management specialist knew of what she spoke!  I just wish there was another way to achieve the same means.

Friday, November 13, 2009

They Shoot Horses Don't They?

That's what keeps going through my mind when I try to figure out what to do next about my hips.
When I'm lying awake yet again, feeling the trobbing pain in my hips, and wishing that sleep would come.
But knowing that restful sleep is almost impossible.
Last night was worse than most.
We went out to a local establishment last night to meet some friends for dinner before attending a book launch.  We had a very enjoyable evening.  Unfortunately, it was quite drafty in the room where they held the book launch and I sat and shivered through most of the presentation -- not good for my sore musculature, especially right now since I'm still battling this fibro flare-up.  Anyway, I had a Caesar Salad and a very large glass of milk (my new white wine, as my daughter-in-law christened it the other night), followed by coffee and a mouthful of a sickeningly sweet dessert.  I guess the food didn't quite agree with me.
By the time we got home, I was experiencing mild nausea, which is something that I've started noticing the past couple of evenings (another new manifestation of ????).
So last night, I had the added joy of dealing with the nausea -- and then my gut decided to get into the act.
Between 10:30pm and 12:30am, I probably woke up four times and spent a great deal of time in the bathroom.
By 1:00am, I gave up trying to go back to sleep and I had to break down and take a Gravol to combat the nausea.
My gut decided that I should probably move into the bathroom.
So I stayed near-by.
I watched television (thank God for DVRs and canned programs).
Finally, some time around 3:30am, I slept.
And I only woke once between then and 5:45am when I got up for the day.
But I am so very tired.
"To sleep -- perchance to dream."
I keep telling John that one solution for this damned hip pain is for him to just take me out back and shoot me -- that's what they do with horses isn't it?  He says that they only do that when a horse's leg is broken.  I remind him that both my legs don't work!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

I Got My Seasonal Flu Shot!

Yes I did.
And I was not required to take an oath of secrecy about it -- so I'm sharing.
I saw my doctor yesterday.
We dealt with the purpose of my visit.
Then we discussed the matter of my not eating (we still don't know the cause and it continues to be of concern).
A requisition for an ultrasound of my abdomen was handed to me.  And a referral to an endocrinologist.  And instructions to increase my anti-heartburn medication to see if that helps in the interim.
No, I cannot increase the Cesamet dosage -- not until we have some answers to our many questions.
No, I cannot go off the Cesamet -- what are we going to replace it with?
"But, why stay on it at all?"  I asked him.  This dosage of Cesamet isn't helping; I'm not sleeping; the pain is becoming unbearable, yada yada yada.
I told him that once again in discussion with my physiotherapist, she said that I'm describing classic degeneration in the hips and she doesn't understand why it isn't showing up in the tests.  He agreed that every examination of me would support degeneration but the x-rays indicate no osteoarthritis.  He's confused!  In flipping through my file, he noticed that back in June of 2008, an X-ray did in fact report evidence of slight degeneration (although the X-rays taken in April 2009 reported none).
It wasn't difficult to convince him that my pain is much worse now than it was even a year ago.  Something has changed.  Perhaps we should do another X-ray to see if there is further degeneration since June 2008?
He studied the two reports and decided that an MRI would tell us more than X-rays and he claims that he can get an MRI done within six weeks!  We'll see if it happens that quickly!
So that's what he's ordering -- an MRI of my hips and it will tell him a lot more than an X-ray.   It'll be interesting to compare the results of the new MRI to the one that was done back in 2002 when there was "no degeneration of the hip joints."  I don't even want to think of what the options will be should the diagnosis be confirmed now; or how long it will be before anything can or will be done about it.
He left the room and then I remembered the last thing on my list -- so I accosted him outside the examination room.
"I suppose I won't win the seasonal flu vaccine fight with you?" I asked.
"The seasonal flu vaccine?" he queried.
"Yes, you told me that I had to have the H1N1 shot first because I'm under 65.  But I guess you're still not going to give me the seasonal shot anyway, are you?" I said.
His shoulders slumped ever so slightly as he said, "I guess we can slip one in.  Go sit down and I'll tell M to give you one."
So, my doctor, in his wisdom, could see the silliness of the Health Ministry's edict and he gave me my seasonal flu shot.
I really thought I would have had more of a fight on my hands though.   Perhaps, after all these years of dealing with me, he just wanted to avoid the argument that he knew would ensue.  Or, after the discussion we had just had about my "issues" he determined that my risk factors are such that I really should have all the ammunition I need, as soon as it is available (saving me the need for making that very argument).
I don't know what motivated him to apply common sense to this situation; but I trusted that he would because he is such a reasoned person.
And once again, he didn't let me down.  That's why I continue to trust his sage counsel.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Lest We Forget

Remember our Veterans.
They served for us.

Percy E. Gibson was an uncle whom I never knew, but I recall hearing his name often.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

I Just Got a Phone Call ...

The Ottawa Citizen is considering using my latest letter.
It usually takes "seven to ten days" before it appears (that's interesting, I see letters in the paper all the time that are so topical they could ONLY have been sent the day before).
Anyway, NOW they're thinking of using it.
But if it does take a week, by the time they do print it, the issue likely won't be an issue because I'm thinking that the province will have seen the stupidity of the policy by then.

Why Can't I Get My 2009 Seasonal Flu Vaccine?

So I had a most interesting discussion this morning.
I called a local doctor's office just to make sure that they too are being told NOT to administer the seasonal flu vaccine to anyone under 65 years of age.  And sure enough, they too are operating under that policy. I already know that my doctor's office is taking that position.
During the discussion, it was agreed that the nonsensical policy would just needlessly cause line-ups for the seasonal vaccine right after the line-ups for H1N1 finish.
AND I picked up an interesting piece of gossip.
A patient who had been into that office last week had already received his seasonal flu shot.
But he's not yet 65 years of age so he should not have got that shot yet.
He was asked if he was sure it was the seasonal shot and not the H1N1 etc but he insisted it was the seasonal shot that he had received.
So, he was asked how he managed to get the seasonal flu shot.
Turns out he works a couple of days a week at The Ottawa Citizen.
He told her that The Ottawa Citizen held a seasonal flu clinic for its employees -- and anyone who wanted the shot got one.
I guess that explains why The Ottawa Citizen isn't publishing the letters I'm sending to the editor on this issue.  They don't think there IS an issue.
They don't understand that, outside the walls of The Ottawa Citizen, those of us who are under 65 years of age are not being permitted to get our seasonal flu shot.
And it IS a serious issue for some people.
Makes you wonder how many other "illegal" clinics have been held for the seasonal flu vaccine?

Had a Better Night Last Night ...

It really is amazing how much benefit I get from that physio session.
I actually slept through 'til 2:30am last night -- that's a record for me of late!  Then I went right back to sleep until what has become my normal wake up time -- 4:30am.
But I woke feeling rested for the first time in a very long time.
My physio session, as I've mentioned, is really a neck-to-ankle acupuncture session (we get a lot of consultation opportunity during the needle insertion and removal time).
I lie on the table, face down, arms over my head, with ice packs under my groin.  Acupuncture needles are placed in the appropriate positions from top to bottom.  Then heat packs are placed on top of the needles across my upper/mid back and my lower back (the needles under the heat packs, of course, are inserted on an angle to allow the heat packs to be positioned over them).  It feels marvelous.

I am then left to bask in the effects for up to a half hour (keeping in mind that it often takes up to fifteen minutes to put all these needles in since there are sometimes interruptions during the process).
Once the needles are removed, my therapist attempts to do some traction on me.  Some days are better than others and my hips almost squeal with delight as she pulls my ankles.
But not yesterday.
Yesterday was a no-go; I couldn't bear even a gentle pull.
But I was sure aware of the benefit I had received from that acupuncture session!
From there, I went for my "booby squishing" test (mammogram).
Interestingly enough, I arrived about twenty minutes earlier than I needed to be there and they actually took me about that much ahead of time!
I walked out of the place about ten minutes after my scheduled appointment time.
Not very often that happens with a medical appointment!
Then I went to have my snow tires installed and for an almost-time-to-get-anyway oil change.
I arrived there a half hour earlier than I had anticipated so they too took me early.  I was on a roll!
Until the mechanic came over to tell me he would have to replace my air filter.  He was carrying the oil filter that he had taken out of my car -- complete with a sizeable mouse nest attached.  It was a very interesting display; too bad I didn't get a photo.
So much fun living in the country!
Finding evidence of mice activity in my vehicle is a perennial problem!
Back in about 1999, I had to replace the heater fan assembly because a mouse had nested in there and broken the whole damned thing -- which I found out on the first cold morning when I had no heat as I tried to drive to work!  Another time, my mechanic lifted the hood for the oil change and he was greeted by a dead mouse peeking up from the centre bowl of the engine -- nicely tucked into its nest!
Why do those mouses love my cars so much?  Back to the "mouse be gone" treatment in earnest.
Today I'll take it easy because I don't want to undo the benefit I gained from yesterday's treatment.
My therapist gave me another hint of something to try for extra help with my hips, which I will try because every tip she's given me so far has been supremely beneficial. When I described what the pain is like in my hips, she said (again) that I'm describing classic degeneration and she doesn't understand why it doesn't show up in X-rays.  She isn't alone in being puzzled by this.  For fifteen years specialists have told me that my symptoms and their examinations of me absolutely support a diagnosis of degeneration -- but the tests do not bear that out!  Ergo, it must be bursitis!
All I know is, whatever it is, it hurts like hell.
All the time.
And it's wearing me down.

Monday, November 9, 2009

A New Day Dawns

And all I can say about it is, "Big deal."
So, it's another day.
And it starts out just like all the other days.
I'm in pain.
I'm tired.
I lost count of the number of times I woke last night.
Finally, at 5:15am, I dragged my sorry ass out of bed because I couldn't lie there any longer pretending to be asleep.
My hips are screaming in agony.
They are back to throbbing like toothaches all the time.
And now the left hip has reached a point where it's as bad as the right hip; that didn't used to be the case.
At least before, I could rely on my left side to support me.
Now I don't know what to expect when I stand up.
As a child, it was drilled into me that it was important what the neighbours thought.
I've resisted that mindset all my life.
But apparently those little messages that one's parents instill really do get ingrained into you.
So when the outside world witnesses my attempts at stability, I'm thinking they could assume intoxication.
And that causes me distress.
I know it shouldn't; I should rise above it.
But when your chips are down, it's difficult to rise above challenges.
And when you're in constant pain, every little challenge becomes a very large challenge.
Right now, even the smallest challenge is huge for me.
For example, let's assume I want to sit down to read the newspaper.
Before I do that, I had better make sure I have everything I need.
Why?  Because it takes such tremendous physical effort on my part to get up and down from my reading position if I forget something.
Sometimes, I've just settled my butt into my seat, all ready to open the paper when I'll remember that I had wanted to put a hot pack on my back or neck while I was reading.  Have to get up to get that prepared.
Then I just get settled with that, ready again to start reading the paper, and I realize that I really should be applying ice to my groin at the same time (if I'm going to be sitting for an hour reading, why not use that time to also gain some therapeutic benefit?) -- up I have to get again to get the ice packs.
Now that I'm settled with all my physio paraphernalia, I lift the paper to start reading, and oh, look, the remote control is over there -- on the coffee table -- just beyond my reach!  Damn!  I've got to get up again!
Once I have the remote control, I have to arrange the heat pads and ice packs in their proper places and get seated properly again.
So essentially, by the time I finally get started reading that damned paper, I'm exhausted.  I've used up all my energy reserve for the day just getting up and down from that seat!
And it could be as early as 7:30am when this level of frustration has already set in.
If your day starts with its energy and frustration banks already depleted, it's only downhill from there!
Today, I head into Ottawa for my weekly physiotherapy session, after which I go for my mammogram.
That's always fun.
Several years ago, when I went for my mammogram, I was asked if I wanted to participate in Ontario's Breast Screening Program which would monitor me every two years without my having to go through my doctor for the test, but my doctor would receive copies of the results.
I liked the idea of not having to request the test through my doctor because we would surely have lost track of the timing and may not have done the test as routinely as was desireable.
So I signed on and every two years like clockwork I get a notice that it's time for me to go back for my next mammogram.  I call it the "booby smashing" test cuz that's what it feels like.
When I'm finished there, I'll stop at my mechanic's shop to have my snow tires installed.
One more task checked off my worry wheel.
I will be leaving home at about 9:30am -- and expect to return by about 4:00pm.
Makes for a long day when you start out tired and in pain.
This reduced Cesamet level is for the birds!
Chin up old mate.  One thing about being this down -- it can only go up from here!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

It Just Doesn't Compute

Someone, somewhere, is lying to me / us.
In this morning's paper, I'm reading an article which is singing the praises of the success of yesterday's H1N1 clinic at the local hospital. 
Several hospitals held clinics specifically for pregnant women because of their risk factor for this dreaded virus.
Anyway, in the body of the article, the following statement was made:  "... many women have built up an immunity to the common, seasonal flu, the H1N1 is a new strain against which most people are not immune."  
The statement was attributed to the Vice-President of Medical Affairs with the Ottawa Hospital.  One would expect that someone in that position would know about what he speaks.
So, what does not compute?
Well, waaaay back when, before Ontario decided to go viral and offer the seasonal flu vaccine to every resident of the province, my doctor convinced me that I needed to take the flu shot at the start of the flu season every year.
I needed to do this because I was so susceptible to respiratory illnesses.  As my little chickadee managed to put it, "someone sneezed in Montreal, her Mom got sick."  (We lived in Ottawa.)
So, I used to pay for the privilege of receiving my seasonal flu vaccine at the earliest opportunity every season.
Don't get me wrong.
I still got sick; I just didn't get as sick as I used to get in the years prior to taking the flu shot.
Then back in the spring of 1996, I got really sick with a respiratory infection (I used to call my annual spring infection my version of the flu).  But this one was a super duper infection.  And it was the third year in a row that I had caught something similar (someone passed it to me in the supermarket?).
About a month later, I noticed that I could no longer smell John's aftershave (it is powerful).
That was odd.
Then I realized that I had not smelled his aftershave, or anything else, in quite some time.
Off to the doctor.
Who sent me to a specialist.
Who tested me exhaustively.
Turns out that as a result of the most recent respiratory infection that I had suffered, my olfactory nerve had been damaged.  It was essentially dead.  Kaput.  I could not smell!
The specialist's parting words to me as I left his office were, "Let me know if you ever get your sense of smell back because I've never heard of it happening in a case like this."
Now, when someone can't smell, someone can't taste.
So, for the past twelve years, I've been unable to enjoy the foods that I know I love.  I can't enjoy them because I can't taste them.  I have no idea if they are good. 
At first, I used to go by memory of how that Thanksgiving Turkey smelled as it roasted in the oven.
Or how good that apple pie smelled sitting on the counter.
Or the fresh baked bread.
But as the years passed, I've forgotten what those things smell like.
I only know that I loved those smells.
I've learned how to compensate for the lack of smell as it relates to my food.
As long as the spice is hot enough, the kick is hard enough, or the bite is sharp enough, I can get a sense that I'm eating.  So essentially, I look for foods with kick.
My point?
I paid a huge price for my respiratory ailments of the past.  One should not take these things lightly.
Now back to my problem with this H1N1 vaccine vs the seasonal flu vaccine.
Let's look at the many conflicting statements we've been hearing from our health care officials:
  • Each year, the seasonal flu is different from the previous year. (Suggests you should get vaccinated with the new seasonal vaccine each year?)
  • Most people already have immunity to the common, seasonal flu virus. (No adult should ever need to get the seasonal flu vaccine then?)
  • The H1N1 virus is a new strain to which most people are not immune. (Then everyone needs protection from this one, don't they?)
  • Both vaccines can be given concurrently, just use a different arm for each. (No confusion here -- concurrently means at the same time.)
  • It makes no difference which vaccine is administered first, or how long one waits between vaccines. (Still quite clear:  no need to worry about putting any length of time between receiving the two different shots.)
  • Anyone over 65 years of age has immunity to the H1N1 virus so they should get the seasonal flu vaccine as soon as possible (So apparently someone DOES have immunity to H1N1; but they apparently don't have the immunity to the common, seasonal flu that many others enjoy.)
  • Anyone born before 1957 probably has some immunity to the H1N1 virus so if they leave Canada before getting that shot, they're most likely OK.  They should, however, get their seasonal flu shot.  Ooops, that group can't get the seasonal flu shot until after they get the H1N1 shot because they're still under 65 years of age -- sorry.  (Yet another group who COULD have immunity to H1N1; but they too apparently don't have the immunity to the common, seasonal flu that many others enjoy.)
  • The "second wave" of the H1N1 virus that we are seeing in Canada is actually at its end.  We are hoping that its "third wave" will not have any strength left.  Thank you for clearing that up.  So all Canadians who "need it and want it" will be inoculated by Christmastime for a virus that by then will have been gone for six weeks  -- how comforting!
  • The common, seasonal flu season is currently upon us.  (And remember, each year, the seasonal flu is different from the previous year so the vaccine changes to reflect that.)
I'm under 65 years of age so I have to have my H1N1 shot before I can get my seasonal flu shot. I did that.
I was born before 1957 so I may have immunity to H1N1; I probably didn't need to get that shot.
I apparently didn't need to get the H1N1 shot first in any event.
So I sat outside in the cold for two and half hours, waiting for the H1N1 shot for why?
I knew that I was going to have to pay the piper for having sat out like that.
But I thought the cost might be a day or two of extra pain.
I forgot that I am still on a reduced level of Cesamet and am therefore not enjoying the pain relieving benefits nor the quick recovery benefits that I was noticing when I was on the higher dose.
But this is downright ridiculous.  Today, six days later, I am still suffering, because the event triggered a serious fibro flare-up that I could have very nicely done without.
So why did I make the decision to sit outside and wait for that shot?
Because my doctor told me that he could not give me my seasonal flu shot until after I had received my H1N1 shot because I was under 65 years of age.
So I got the damned shot!
I am still extremely susceptible to respiratory illnesses.
How does it make sense then, that I still can't get my seasonal flu vaccine?
I want it.
I need it.
I fail to comprehend why I can't get it.
It just doesn't compute!

Friday, November 6, 2009

We the People ...

... appear to be political pawns.
Dr. Arlene King, Ontario's Chief Medical Officer of Health, informs us that the provincial priority groups for distribution of the H1N1 vaccine have been set by her and the Ministry and were issued in mid-September.
She further states that everyone in Ontario who "needs and wants" the vaccine will get it.
The provincial Minister of Health is seen on television pleading with people to respect those priority groupings, regardless of economic or social status.  She wants to ensure that those people who need it most get it first.  That's all well and good.
We're seeing these people making these statements because the three levels of government involved in this "pandemic" don't seem to understand what the prefix "co" implies when placed in front of a word.  Each level is busy pointing fingers at the other two; luckily there are three levels so each one has two at which to point.
They keep saying that they had to develop a "co-ordinated" plan.
Yeh, that's it.  Co-ordinated.
That's why every region in Ontario is applying the priorities in the same way.
Hell, that's why every Health Care Unit within our immediate region is applying the priorities in the same way.
Right?  Co-ordinated.  Yes,  That's what the provincial Ministry of Health has managed to implement.
Anyway, what about those of us who "want and need" the seasonal flu vaccine?
Am I the only one who noticed that the screening form at the H1N1 clinic asked "Have you received the 2009 seasonal flu vaccine?"  Presumably, if you're under 65, that answer could only have been NO.
Why is the Ministry of Health preventing us from getting seasonal flu protection at the earliest possible opportunity?
Apparently, they expect everyone to wait until after the pandemonium of the H1N1 clinics ends to start all over again in another round of line-ups for seasonal flu vaccines.
Are they crazy?
By what authority is any doctor being prevented from giving the seasonal flu vaccine right now to a patient who wants and needs it, especially if that patient has already received the H1N1 vaccine?