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  1. Flea

    i can't breathe

    Thanks. Yes, I went to an allergist. It's not allergies. There are a number of potential causes for VCD, including environmental irritants, stress, acid reflux, and too much exercise (I wish!) I had acid reflux since 1995 but wasn't diagnosed with it until I mentioned it to my pulmonologist a...
  2. Flea

    i can't breathe

    After roughly a year and a half of chasing my tail and getting dismissed as a Hysterical Female,* I finally have a diagnosis! Apparently it's "vocal cord dysfunction." In short, my larynx and trachea are constricted such that from an anatomical standpoint I'm breathing through a cocktail straw...
  3. Flea

    "Edith's 50th Birthday" article

    Yeah, I can't bring myself to watch it. I saw it once with my mother (I was maybe 8 years old at the time?) and of course came away with SO MANY QUESTIONS. My mother tried her best to field them in an appropriate way, but it left me feeling much more confused and vulnerable. I can't believe she...
  4. Flea

    "Edith's 50th Birthday" article

    This is a blast from the past. Perhaps a little dated, but not by much. If you were a fan of "All In the Family" back in the day, you may remember a 1977 episode where a man forces his way into the Bunker household while Edith was alone with clear intentions. I watched it as a kid (probably way...
  5. Flea

    "... just wanted to talk"

    Some random stranger offering my dog a treat would be all the red flag I needed. My dog's trainer told me about how someone poisoned his dog that way. And while the odds of that are pretty slim, isn't that what Gavin de Becker called "loan sharking?"
  6. Flea

    i can't breathe

    Thanks Tez! It's great to hear from you too. Other than the occasional cameo appearance I have essentially quit martial arts (it's complicated) which has a lot to do with why I've stayed away from the forum. I always enjoyed the community here, but on some level I feel embarrassed about not...
  7. Flea

    i can't breathe

    You asked for an update, so here it is ... Since my last post I've noticed that my chest burns with every inhale. After several meetings with my GP and a pulmonologist came up empty, last week the pain got more concentrated in one specific spot prompting a provisional diagnosis of...
  8. Flea

    i can't breathe

    Thanks Dan! You're absolutely right about them not being fatal. But I don't think this is panic, because it usually happens at really prosaic moments - sorting laundry, conversation with friends, or walking half a block down the street. This started very suddenly after donating blood and it's...
  9. Flea

    i can't breathe

    Thanks everyone. I know about square breathing. In fact, I'm such a big fan that I've taught it to many of my mental health clients over the past several years of my social work career and most of them love it too. What I'm surprised and embarrassed to find is that when the suffocation feeling...
  10. Flea

    i can't breathe

    I've been having a weird medical problem with shortness of breath, and it's taking a big bite out of my quality of life. It started a couple of weeks ago, immediately after donating blood. I came home from the blood bank and sorted laundry, and got so winded that I had to stop and gulp air as...
  11. Flea

    Bizarro neighbor issue

    Ugh! One of my garden beds is swimming in cat markings, to the point that I had to get an air freshener for one room. I think the urine is soaking into the foundation or something. This is exactly why I rent!
  12. Flea

    Bizarro neighbor issue

    "As to booby traps - definitely illegal and I'd advise against it." Truth undisputed. That said, at the end of September the harvest is in. Where I store my own inverted tomato cages in my own backyard is my business. :mooning: :muted: When the trail camera comes in the mail tomorrow, I'll be...
  13. Flea

    Bizarro neighbor issue

    I made my report tonight, and the officer was much more respectful than I expected considering the content. It was pretty funny how the conversation went. After taking my basic info, he clearly had a mental script because he asked me what part of the house was affected. Then "What was taken?"...
  14. Flea

    Bizarro neighbor issue

    No sign of an overnight camp. As for altercations? None that I can think of, or at least not with the kind of person who would turn around and do this. For the last few years I've worked as a mental health provider, but we always take pains not to give out personal information.
  15. Flea

    Bizarro neighbor issue

    Thanks everyone. I have to dash off to work now so I can't respond in depth, but here are a few thoughts. As to the woman in Colorado Springs, it occurred to me to wonder whether inappropriate defecation is the new Viral Sensation taking the place of last year's creepy clowns, and milking and...
  16. Flea

    Bizarro neighbor issue

    Much as I hate to sink money into a camera I think it's a good idea. Is there a website with state laws on filming?
  17. Flea

    Bizarro neighbor issue

    Sorry about the multiple posts - I was having trouble with the website. Mods, please feel free to remove the duplicates.
  18. Flea

    Bizarro neighbor issue

    Hello all, I used to be a regular here but it's been a few years. This morning I was confronted with a very ambiguous situation which ... might be threatening? I thought this might be a good place to turn for feedback. I currently live in a one-story duplex with a tiny backyard that's fully...
  19. Flea

    Bizarro neighbor issue

    Hello all, I used to be a regular here but it's been a few years. This morning I was confronted with a very ambiguous situation which ... might be threatening? I thought this might be a good place to turn for feedback. I currently live in a one-story duplex with a tiny backyard that's fully...
  20. Flea

    A safety plan when you're homeless ...

    Thanks to you both. I work with a lot of homeless folk, and I know they generally do have their own safety measures in play already. I'm sure she does too, but I think it might be reassuring to her to revisit the question. Or it might send her back off the deep end ... one has to tread...
  21. Flea

    A safety plan when you're homeless ...

    Hello all! It's been quite a while since I've posted on MT. Life has been very good to me over the last several months and I've been enjoying a hiatus from the warm blue glow of the monitor. But lately I've come up against an interesting conundrum at work and I knew this was the place to come...
  22. Flea

    The internet really IS made of cats!

    Here's proof! And a little extra assistance for those websites that aren't fully in touch with the impending takeover.
  23. Flea

    Pens as Weapons.

    There's another benefit to using a pen as a weapon. Its a handy way to mark a suspect for identification later.
  24. Flea

    I dont know how to word this... Disabilities while doing MA?

    I have bipolar disorder (and no apologies!) mostly on the down side. The aspect of facing down fear that is universal to martial arts has worked miracles for my anxiety. As has the exercise. And the social stimulation, as mental illness can be extremely isolating. Best of all is the mandate to...
  25. Flea

    Witness Says Naked Attacker was Chewing on Man's Face

    There is a silver lining to this story. Have you seen this? It's good to see people rise to the occasion like this. The guy sounds like quite a fighter.
  26. Flea

    Training is where you make it.

    I got creative and added a new element to my training today. We'll call it ... bus fu? The game is very simple. While riding the bus, stand up and use the hand supports as little as possible. I learned a lot about how my body responds to different directions of inertia (forwards and backwards...
  27. Flea

    So you think you can dance

    Another thing I love about the show is that the judges are very considerate toward dancers who are sincere but don't have the skills ... and save their ire for those who really deserve it. (A hamster suit? Seriously?) That level of respect alone should be used as a model for the whole...
  28. Flea

    So you think you can dance

    I usually try to avoid anything that smacks of reality TV, but my family got me hooked on this one. It's an elimination talent show, but it boasts world-class dancers and top choreographers. I've been loving the audition segments this season because they draw a lot of artists doing brilliant...
  29. Flea

    I need a good flexibility video

    Looks interesting! Do they have something at a beginner level?
  30. Flea

    I need a good flexibility video

    Flexibility is one glaring weakness of mine, and I've been making it a priority. I do a lot of stretching on my own, but sometimes it's good to have some extra instruction to keep me on task. Can anyone recommend a good DVD? I prefer the slow deliberate movements commonly found in Pilates and...
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