lizcommotion: Lily and Chance squished in a cat pile-up on top of a cat tree (buff tabby, black cat with red collar) (Default)
Hi! I may have subscribed to your journal because you wrote something interesting that showed up while I was browsing dreamwidth or reading my network page. Perhaps you're reading this because you think I wrote something of note. Either way, welcome.

I try to avoid hate speech of any kind on my journal. If I slip up and say something heedless of my own privilege, please tell me - in a non-flaming way. These are teachable moments, not times to whack people over the head with a newspaper.

I could list an alphabet soup of identities, but suffice it to say thatRead more... )
lizcommotion: A black-and-white photo of a Victorian woman (victorian lady)
So this is a thing that has been bothering me for awhile and I haven't articulated it in a written way. (Mostly rants to my partner which she has kindly asked me to stop and share with other people, actually.)

I am sick of my fandoms having bad-ass women being the hero, and then the plot goes down a winding path of "and now her uterus plays a central role in how the bad people are going to take her down!"

For one thing, I have enough of that in my day to day life. I am watching some form of escapism, and I would like to dispense with that.
tw: I am sick of rape tropes, so there's an intricate discussion of rape tropes herein. Possibly also metephorical dragons. )
lizcommotion: Lily (buff tabby) asking for belly rubs on an oriental rug in a sunbeam, whiskers in happy face pose. Head upside down. (cat lily basking icon)
So Lily is on Flagyl for her on-again-off-again stomach upset. (Not the illicit people food, as far as we can tell. Not improved by probiotics. If the Flagyl doesn't help, we're on to food allergies fun times.)

Anyway, fortunately she thinks pill pockets are delicious. Chance is also getting (empty) pill pockets, in the hopes that maybe later he will not find them suspicious. *crosses fingers*

The scary thing is that after a couple days on Flagyl, Lily's energy increased dramatically. I am talking going from a cat who likes to play by running after a toy for...well, I've never tired her out after 30 minutes of her having the kitty crazies (with short rest breaks) for FIVE HOURS.

She ran up and down the stairs.

She galumphed through the house.

She pounced on Chance.

She wrestled with the rug by the backdoor (aka her giant kicker toy).

She climbed up and down the cat tree.

She was basically a giant ball of cat energy and slightly concerned.

Because maybe this is a side effect? Maybe she is just feeling better? Maybe she is relieved that my grandma's stuff is not interfering with her kitty crazy racetrack?

Or...maybe the GI issues have been dampening her energy, and her "normal" is five hours of kitty crazies.

*knocks on wood*

So far today she has mostly been sleeping, but she did try to wrestle with my legs under the covers last night. (She doesn't have the best object permanence, and wrinkles or objects under blankets are clearly to be played with if they move at all.)

Oh dear.

Also, partner informs me that the funk we have been smelling around her occasionally is her anal glands needing to be expressed. So either we are paying for a vet office visit, or we are sucking it up and holding our noses and doing that ourselves.

Cats! Worth it, but sometimes tiring and with gross glands.
lizcommotion: Lily and Chance squished in a cat pile-up on top of a cat tree (buff tabby, black cat with red collar) (Default)
Due to all the snow (or here it's more like snow furor, because it is nothing to write home about unless you are a journalist trying to get web hits I guess), there has been some media talk about emergency preparedness kits and stuff. My brother in law and brother are both big into those disaster kits. My brother in law has a legit reason, because he's trained for emergency response. I think my brother is just into buying survival stuff and without my sister-in-law to keep him in check might end up with some sort of bunker or root cellar full of parachute cord and gods knows what.

Anyway, it got me thinking about other kinds of emergency kits that one could put together that are not all about natural disasters.

I have a box for Brain Weasel Emergencies that has things like pictures of people I love, nice things people have said about me, some really low-key craft projects (think coloring and crayons), lists of people to call and coping mechanisms, etc.

Given the current bought of cold/plague my grandmother has brought upon my house, am thinking when I move I might have a "someone's got a cold" sort of emergency box. It's one thing to know that you have things like cough drops somewhere in a medicine box. But what if you had a box that had a couple cans of a favorite soup flavor, gatorade (or powder that can be made into gatorade), common over the counter medications (cough drops, decongestants, Tylenol, whatever you usually take), your doctor's name/phone and hours, hours and phone for some local urgent care places and a pharmacy, maybe a menu for a local take-out place,  a box of really nice Kleenex that won't make your nose burn after using it…that kind of thing. Not to be opened or raided unless you do actually need it. And then if you are living alone or you and your housemate(s) get hit a the same time, no one is having to go to the store for cough drops when you feel like a literal zombie.

Other possible boxes: chronic pain box (which I would use frequently, honestly). My chronic pain stuff is kind of scattered through the house, but I have things like special bath salts (magic, I tell you); icy hot; topical prescription meds; ibuprofen; hot packs that are the one-time-use kind you stick on yourself. This could also be especially useful if, say, you were going somewhere for a night or just for a longish drive: grab the chronic pain box or travel version, and even if the trip proves a bit much you have things to help you deal. (Whereas usually I have some of my meds in my bag, my knitting which I may or may not have hands for at that time, and have to stop by a pharmacy or gas station which might or might not have what I need).

Lot of government sites also recommend some sort of pet emergency box, which I have though about but am still trying to figure out how to make one my cats can't get into and steal the extra food we have stored. (Seriously, they're good about that.)

Just a thought. Seems like way more useful to me personally than a bag of rations and rope, because if there is some sort of horrible emergency I'm betting the pain stuff I use is going to be super hard to find. IDK, what kind of self-care or "oops I've got to run but I should bring these things with me" kits would you want to bring? What if you had some sort of D&D type bag that could somehow hold a horse and still be carry-able? What if space was more limited?

<---things I find bizarrely interesting. But seriously, gonna make a pain kit. So I don't have to hunt for that shit.
lizcommotion: Lily (buff tabby) asking for belly rubs on an oriental rug in a sunbeam, whiskers in happy face pose. Head upside down. (cat lily basking icon)


The scene: a pink cat bed, placed next to the window, bathed in sunlight. Chance sleeps in the cat bed. Lily sleeps nearby. Mom turns around again and Lily is sleeping on top of Chance; she now has a bed warmer and a sunbeam. Chance's arms (and part of his head) are dangling off the bed as he gives his mom a, "Help!" expression. After mom finishes taking copious photos and enjoying herself, she rescues Chance by giving both kitties treats on the floor so they can re-settle who sleeps where.
lizcommotion: a hand drawn/colored happy cane (disability cane happy)
Hiya! Congress is considering an incredibly wonderful (for me! as well as others) piece of legislation. It is not without faults, but basically...

Right now, because I am on Medicaid and other forms of public assistance for disability, I cannot have more than $2,000 in assets or I lose my benefits. If I get married, my spouse and I cannot have more than $3,000 in combined assets or same thing.

So, you know, all the planning for rainy days and stuff? That cannot happen for me unless I break the law and hide money under a mattress or something, which is technically a felony that could land me in jail.

This new bill would allow me to have a special savings account of up to $100,000! Other people could add to it as well! (With SSI they get really fussy about anyone else giving you money because it's considered "income" and they want to dock your benefits and it sucks.) If the money is spent on medicine or housing, it's tax-exempt. When you die, the money in the account goes back to the government.

It has passed the House because something something fiscal responsibility. It is now in the Senate, so please if you live in the US and you have some spare time could you maybe call/write/email your Senators and ask them to pass it? Also if you live outside the US signal boosting would be awesome, too.

lizcommotion: Cat staring at the camera (cat stare)
I have limited hand usage so forgive me for not captioning these the way I usually would; I am about to go poop out in front of a TV and maybe fall asleep for a long time. But yay, Chance and Lily cuddling and also TOE BEANS especially for [personal profile] tyger!

Eternal cuteness of Chance and Lily

two moar kitty photos! )
lizcommotion: A hand drawn terrier "smiling" and looking slightly cross-eyed, shown from the neck up (dog terrier djinni)
Our (small-ish) kitty rescue has found forever-homes for 93 cats this year (and there are still a few adoptions pending). ALL three of our foster cats, have been adopted (well, except for Ms. Maddy, who we are currently fostering and leaning ever more towards keeping because she is just that adorable and Chance is moving from hissing stage to meowing to get into her room stage so IDEK. She just. She makes *everyone* smile even though obviously having a gangrenous tail amputated is srsly a justifiable reason for being cranky and hiding in your closet as much as you want.)

Also, Ms. Haley, the Border Terrier we fostered for 2.5 months earlier this year, is thriving in her forever home. She has all the tennis balls she wants, goes for 5 mile walks *every day*, and gets lots of snuggles. So that is also extremely gratifying.

P.S. If you use and you don't already participate in Amazon Smile which donates a teeny tiny fraction of your purchase to non-profits so Jeff Bezos can sleep at night, please consider adding our cat rescue as your Amazon Smile designated non-profit. Totally no pressure, but I thought I'd mention it, because cats. You can try clicking here but if that link is not static then you can go to the cat rescue homepage and click on the left hand sidebar where the Amazon Smile logo is.

/PSA, and sorry to pair it with adorable animal photos but I keep having a cat step on my keyboard and try to steal my tea so it's hard to get one post up let alone two (and I still have to do the cat room cleaning/feeding schedule for the week. Did you know Maddy likes opening all the browser tabs ever?)

Animal Feel Good Photos:

seriously all the animal photos ever of our animals and a bunch of fosters> <a href= )

tw: happy-sad message to Rogue who passed away last year, maybe skip this part if you are teary already or if animal passing is hard for you right now

happy-sad message to Rogue )
lizcommotion: Lily and Chance squished in a cat pile-up on top of a cat tree (buff tabby, black cat with red collar) (Default)
So you know how there is talk in US English about "Kitty Crazies"? That thing cats do roughly once a day where they look at you as though they have never seen you before, run around the house, etc?

Well partner's family speaks North African Arabic (also other dialects in other branches of the family). Anyway, there is another name for "kitty crazies". You say that the cat "has tagoug" (Anglicized spelling completely mine because partner is out; note that the correct grammar is not that the cat "is tagoug"). Basically it means that the cat is "possessed" (by a Djinn/demon -- what we call "genies" -- also note that not all Djinn are evil, some are aligned with God/Allah and the evil ones are not; there is a WHOLE area of study around this which not all Muslims and/or Arabs and/or Lots of Peoples I don't have room to specify agree on that I do not even begin to understand so I'm going to stop there). I kind of like this imagery because it ties back to all the ideas of cats and witchcraft and everything. It also kind of explains why cats look so uncomfortable.

Or you could go by my definition, which is that more specific than the "kitty crazies", your cat is just having a short manic episode. (Seriously, not that different from how I feel when fully manic versus hypomanic).

With our dogs, we always called these occasional bouts of RUN EVERYWHERES "racehorse dog" (though srsly they would be really poorly trained racehorses because they did not go in a ring at all). Though once my dog did get hold of the slug trap (which contained beer) and, er, emptied it into his belly before grabbing hold of the container and running round the yard. I think that was a chemically induced racehorse dog. (And don't worry, despite the alcohol/dog poison, he was fine. It was cheap crap beer with low alcohol content, which helped.)

Anyone else have other terminology for such things? Do bunnies have similar bouts of ALL THE ENERGIES? (I'm looking at you for this vital information, [personal profile] shanaqui .) What about other species?

ETA: I wonder if animals have names/thoughts for our shenanigans? Like "omg they are picking out those clothes things again"? Or whatever their idea of our recreational sex is. Or what the hell is the holiday season madness. Or VACUUMING. I mean, basically most of what we do around animals would seem to me to be nonsense to them? IDK. *curious*

lizcommotion: black cat head poking out from behind a wall (cat hiding)
Chance the kitty
Pictured: Chance, an adorable black kitty with green eyes, laying on his side on a blue and white quilt like, "Huh, why are you disturbing me?" Part of the quilt is folded over the lower half of his body

This is why I've been having trouble getting out of bed in the morning. (I mean, aside from the 6 am feeding upon which I stumble back to bed and sleep for a bit longer.) Chance comes and snuggles up next to me with Partner on the other side and I am in a sandwich of warmth and cute cat love and how could I move? Plus when I had a dog I could say things like, "Do you want a treat in the kitchen?" and then he would move and food would commence. Chance does not yet know these words, and so he gives me dirty looks when I attempt to move out from the middle of the sleeping loved ones.Kitty! One photo and an embedded video below the cut )

Oh bodies

Nov. 10th, 2014 01:16 pm
lizcommotion: black cat head poking out from behind a wall (cat hiding)
FWIW, I think I hurt my shoulder playing with cats. I woke up with that horrible, "I slept weird and pinched a nerve," feeling, which I thought was what had happened. Then I went to wave a mouse toy tantalizingly in front of a cat or two and my shoulder went, "Nooooo, there's the pain!"

This is where my frowny face goes.

So, uh, I did play with them this morning because I'd already started and unhappy cats are not pleasant to live with. Amelie went all RUN RUN EVERYWHERE HIDE JUMP BAT RUN on me, which is great. Chance also had a good time. They are good cats.

The other humans in my household better step up their playtime is what I'm saying, because otherwise there may be feline rebellion.
lizcommotion: A hand drawn spinning wheel covered in roses (spinning wheel briar rose)
So I'm on Lithium and hormones for my psych stuff. They are generally helpful! However one of their annoying side effects is that they give you teenage acne skin again. I am not a fan of this.

I have tried several skin cleaners, and the best one was one I impulse-bought at a neighbor's Mary Kay party. I don't really plan on going that route again because too complicated. Currently I have some Whole Foods esque skin cleaners made from plant parts that are not doing their job properly. I am a fan of the whole not tested on animals thing, PABA-free, no stupid perfumes that make me unable to breathe kind of thing.

Anyway, I'm looking for a skin cleaner that:
  • Actually works, like heavy duty. No messing around, this shit is real.
  • No animal testing.
  • Hypoallergenic.
  • No stupid perfumes. Scents that come from actual essential oils/plant parts are okay (though not too strong is better), but no artificial scents or insta-migraine.
  • Easy to acquire in the continental US. Internet is wonderful!
  • Not horribly expensive! I may need to try one or two things before I find the right thing for my body, so if I spend all my money on one thing and it doesn't work I am SOL. (So ideally no more than $15 per thing. Less is definitely better. If I am being totally unrealistic in my expectations please let me know.)
Any ideas?
lizcommotion: A hand-drawn/colored lovely little creature with a knitted cap and piles of yarn behind it knitting a scarf (knitting creature)
Chance and Ameliť
Introducing Amelié, the foster cat my mom might maybe adopt (squee). She is tiiiiny (~7 lbs) and stands up to Chance and likes playing if you move the toy right. She's also been ill lately, poor thing, probably from stress. In fact she is at the dreaded vet right now. I am hoping they do not prescribe more pills because I have several scratches from trying to wiggle away from pills already. Anyway, she is a sweetie. When you are not giving her evil pills, that is. (She is a small black maybe-Bengal kitty facing the camera laying down with her paws tucked under her on top of a soft white mat thing.)

Allllll the kitty pictures; low bandwidth users beware; also beware of cuteness )

Link to a video of a scenic beach we went to earlier this fall; have been meaning to upload for awhile.

Link to a video of Chance and Amelie having happyfuntimes chilling in windows, as cats are wont to do.
lizcommotion: Severus Snape head shot, text reads "Not Amused" (Snape)
Am hoping she is helpful, and we can keep body weight discussions to a minimum because that is not what I am there to talk about.

In related news, I wrote this tirade comment on [personal profile] shehasathree 's journal and it seemed relevant and I am sharing it because I've been thinking about it since that asshole cardiologist last week

This is my problem with #notalldoctors:

If pretty much *anyone else* crosses a big ol' boundary

tw: talkin' about abuse and manipulation )


Sep. 12th, 2014 02:31 pm
lizcommotion: four different colored panels of the MRI image of a brain (brain)
So I have had such trouble finding POTS doctors for, like, ever.

Apparently the key search term is not anything to do with dysautonomia. It is "electrophysiologist cardiologist" or some variation of that.

Also because they think the general public will have trouble remembering that, the professional association associated with that has a horrible website.

BUT there is a website for the Heart Rhythm Society which is basically the same thing, because even though it basically spends the whole time talking about atrial fib and arrhythmias, when I have called any of the doctors that they have IN THEIR DATABASE OF DOCTORS, the receptionists KNOW WHAT POTS IS, they do tilt table testing in house, and they can schedule me with a doctor who specializes in the weird thing I have.

So basically it's a secret society of doctors who treat POTS but don't advertise? IDEK. Like nowhere does it say anywhere "POTS" or "dysautonomia" or "hypotension" or whatever, BUT THEY TOTALLY TREAT THOSE THINGS.

Did I mention that their database of doctors appears to be international?


cynicism about doctors )
lizcommotion: Cat staring at the camera (cat stare)
Awhile ago partner put a cat noises app on my phone. Initially it was a way for myself and various family members who were not so familiar with cats to get a sense of different types of cat noises and what they might mean.

However, it has another very useful purpose, if one doesn't overuse it. That purpose is distracting cats.

For example, when Bubba and Chance were getting a little *intense* in their play (read: Chance mostly was the intense one), sometimes I would play random cat meows from the app. Both cats would stop what they were doing and go, "Wait, there's another cat? Are you making that noise? Where is that coming from? What?" It was enough of a distraction to kind of break the cycle of predator-prey-intensity and kind of reset things.

Note: use sparingly so as not to acclimate cats to random cat noises and render ineffective.

Another useful tool is random bird noise apps or YouTube videos. Your cat may or may not respond as mine has, but there have been times when we've needed to get Chance in a cat carrier or give him meds and he has (wisely) hidden under the bed or another difficult to reach location. Rather than doing the ill-advised move-the-bed or reach-under-to-meet-unhappy-cat-pull-out-of-hiding-maneuvers, at times we have played bird noises on the phone. This has sometimes led to cat coming out to go, "Wait birds? I like birds. Where are you hiding the birds? How did they get in the tiny box?"

Again, using sparingly is key. It also helps if the noises come sometimes not when cat is about to be trapped for medicine or the carrier, but also for fun things like investigating magic bird box or getting food.

I am guessing probably more experienced cat guardians have already figured these things out, but I thought I would share for kicks, in case people find this helpful, and because my memory is sometimes swiss-cheese-like.

lizcommotion: A hand-drawn/colored lovely little creature with a knitted cap and piles of yarn behind it knitting a scarf (knitting creature)
Thought I'd share a couple of Chance pics. J., who heads the rescue where we got Chance, has pointed out that it can be hard to photograph black cats well because they tend to meld into one abyss of ebony. My mom certainly has trouble picking out which bit of a photo shows Chance's head and which is a paw. I blame the fact that she's usually looking on a tiny smartphone screen. Anyway, is it easier for you? We shall see.
three kitty photos under the cut )

Funny thing about Chance and blankets: he has been excellent motivation for us to make the bed. He seems to feel that sheets are lava and blankets are "safety", to reference that one childrens' game. So if we don't make the bed, he curls up in a tiny corner where there is actually blanket, leaving the vast expanse of sheet untouched. Being concerned cat guardians who want our Chance to have maximum napping/frolicking space, we have been trying to ensure bed-making. (But be assured I will also be working on awdddddddddddddddx<--CHANCE'S FIRST KEYBOARD WRITING ahem, um, helping him get used to sheets.)
lizcommotion: word "Hi!" surrounded by all the hi signs from the game Glitch (glitch hi)
You know how they have ball pits?

Well, what about a toy-mouse pit for kitties?

Wouldn't have to be huuuuge, could be expanded, and if Chance went AAAHHHHH THEY HAVE BANDED TOGETHER then we would just have a large stash of toy-mice for when the existing stash went missing, etc.



relates to toy mice but references other things cats do to mice, no mice were harmed in the making of this story )

P.S. My brain weasels keep acting up and it sucks and also this leads me to talk a LOT about depressing news things like the FCC and Net Neutrality or what have you. I think know it is irritating my partner and also bothering me. Can someone link me sites that are cheerful and fun to look at but include sometimes words and not just pictures/video (because often I look at on my phone while twiddling thumbs and bandwidth). Dark humor also very much appreciated (see: The Bloggess).
lizcommotion: Harry Potter in Gryffindor Robes holding a wand with a green glow (harry potter)
So you know how people have been making proto-self driving vehicles? Well what I want is a self-driving vehicle that has detachable escape pods. So, say you're at a party or family event with people. And say they want to stay but you are like rrrrrgh needs must go NOW. You can just get in your self-driving escape pod and jet out of there to wherever you need to go (a safe friend's house, your own house, some sort of ER, etc.) without having to get into a prolonged discussion about who will stay and who will go, who is driving which car, people potentially guilting you for "ruining" the party when that is not actually in your capacity to do to an entire party by merely leaving to take care of yourself, etc.

I think this is a brilliant plan!

Also, maybe the pod could be set up for introverts if perchance you are in introvert, so there could be shades to screen you from the outside world and music of your choice and perhaps a selection of books or a built-in ereader collected to a great library and squishy pillows and weighted know, whatever helps you decompress from THE OVERSTIMULATION and SPOON OVERLOAD.

Please someone use this idea, you can haves it for free! Just make it happen!
lizcommotion: Cat staring at the camera (cat stare)
Buzzfeed Video Link: Things Cats Do That Would Be Creepy If You Did Them

*new video partner and I are referencing fairly often, not always in reference to Chance*
lizcommotion: four different colored panels of the MRI image of a brain (brain)
Has anyone ever had a headache where:
  • no pain if they are laying down (at least, after a couple minutes)
  • immediate stabbing pain if they sit up (only on one side of the head, though the side may change)
  • the pain may dull after awhile of sitting up
  • the pain is only on one side, around/just behind one ear, and feels like pressure or maybe a lance going through the head
  • sometimes there is also inner ear pain on that side of the head
  • it has lasted at least four days
I know all the medical thingies say if you experience a weird headache to go to a doctor, but this one feels SO weird (like, even my nurse-mom is like, "I'll have to think about that one") that I just worry-from-past-experience that if I go to a doctor they will do things like make me have moar brain scans (have had maybe three in the past year? and they were all fine); refer me to a specialist for whom I'll have to wait a long time; give me painkillers that are super strong and also trigger mania which is no good; decide in the end that it is either psychosomatic or a side effect of one of my meds and they can't actually do anything about it, or it will have gone away by the time my appointment with the specialist actually comes.
It's nice when you have confidence in the medical system, see?

So anyway, not expecting Medical Advice (TM) for which I will sue if it doesn't work or something, just wondering if I am the only one this has happened to or if it shares commonalities with anyone else's weird headaches. Because sometimes I really do wonder if I am going "crazy" in the negative, stereotyped-by-the-media sense of the word.


lizcommotion: Lily and Chance squished in a cat pile-up on top of a cat tree (buff tabby, black cat with red collar) (Default)

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