Health Journey Update

It’s been awhile since I’ve updated you on my health journey, so I figured it was time to do so.

Concerning weight/composition – I’m holding steady at approximately 190 pounds, which is the lowest I’ve been since about 2014. I was actually thin as a rail then (probably too thin), but when Emily (my most recent ex) and I parted ways I packed it on. When I started my new health journey I was around 200 and some change. I’ve lost a lot more fat than 10 pounds though; I can feel it. I’ve added some muscle, especially in my upper arms (long a source of self-conscience for me). For once I have a fairly positive body image. Never did I think I’d be confident enough to sport swim briefs, but here I am (and oh how I wish pools were open right now)!

(Photo credit – Laina Eartharcher)

I’m also currently addressing nutrient deficiencies – most notably B6 and D, but some others also. I’m on heavy B-complex dosage as well as a heavy D dosage. My lack of these vitamins was a major player in depression and flat affect – I wasn’t making any neurotransmitters. My D deficiency was also a key player in my seasonal allergies.

Some other deficiencies are being addressed with food, most notably by having salmon twice per week, usually with kombucha for good bacteria.

A recent lab panel (the Genova Individual Optimal Nutrition, or ION panel) also revealed some significant heavy metal toxicity (most notably mercury, lead, and aluminum). We can’t deal with those directly yet, but hopefully in a couple of years I’ll be put back together enough and ready to undergo chelation. In the meantime, I’ve converted to all stainless steel cookware and axed tuna and other high mercury fish as to cease throwing fuel on that fire.

Concerning lifestyle modifications, I am now 100% smoke-free. I’ve tried having a cigar a time or two recently and my palate just will not accept the taste anymore. I can’t pull the intended flavor notes out of them anymore and all I’m left with is a pure, burning tobacco taste. It’s very unpleasant. I also don’t really enjoy hard liquor anymore either (unless in a cocktail). I tried having some brandy last week and didn’t much enjoy the taste. About the extent of my hard liquor consumption moving forward I think might be in the form of a green apple frozen margarita from Paloma Blanca here in San Antonio (like OMG – to die for!!!), which my last ones were on my birthday before shit got shut down. Other than that, I think I’ll stick to sorghum beer, wine or hard cider.

Which, of course, leads to the next point – we’re working hard to correct the damage done by the time period I drank very heavily as self-medication. I’m on natural remedies to correct excessive intestinal permeability as well as liver damage (which seems to be working – in 2018 my ALT was 64, indicating a liver in extreme distress; my recent ION measured it at 16). Of course, we have to resolve these before I can tackle heavy metal chelation, but in the meantime just dietary changes as well as the Pure Encapsulations LVR (liver support) seem to be promoting some mild detoxification.

I’m having regular chiropractic adjustments now to correct certain misalignments and such. I feel like I’m about 1/2 inch taller now. Oh, and my left knee? It’s given me grief over the years, but since getting it adjusted I’ve been pain-free. I can squat and lunge to full depth on that knee, as well as increase reps and resistance.

Lastly is emotional healing. I’m continuing to have two sessions of Neuro-Emotional Technique per week, and some stuff that’s surfaced is shit I haven’t thought about in years, even decades. It’s absolutely insane. Who knew it was still weighing me down? Alas it’s good to get those emotions cleared out.

I think that about covers it. I hope you all are well, and here’s to better health.

How I Kicked (Suspected) COVID-19 in 3.5 Days

Disclaimer: I am not a doctor nor a health professional. The information here shall not be used in lieu of advice from a medical professional.

About a month ago, I had a really strange illness. It wasn’t quite like a cold or flu in that I had no runny nose or anything. My main symptoms were fever, body aches, fatigue and dry cough. Sounds a lot like our friend COVID-19 doesn’t it?

Though I was never tested nor confirmed, I do have strong reason to suspect this was the disease I had. I had visited a regional winery in the recent past; and it was packed with tourists from all over the country (and probably some visiting from abroad).

It would be interesting to be tested for antibodies to the SARS-CoV-2 virus just to see, but I bet I would test positive. Of course I can’t claim with 100% certainty, I’m at least 80% certain.

So was it just awful? Hah. Bitch, please. I felt pretty crummy for 3.5 days, but bounced right back and it was much less bothersome than even a common cold.

So how did I do it? I did so by following this simple protocol:

  • Vitamin C – 20,000mg (yes, twenty thousand)/day
  • 65mg Zinc daily
  • Tincture of astragalus – 5 droppers/day
  • Sambucus elderberry syrup – 120mL/day
  • Diphenhydramine HCl for sleep
  • “Warming” foods (as per Ayurvedic and Traditional Chinese Medicine)
  • Avoid alcohol
  • Avoid sugar
  • Avoid exercising

That’s it. No pharmaceuticals, no nothing and I was back to full capacity quickly.

Moral of the story: take care of yourself, stay home, rest up and you’ll be fine. Really. Don’t buy into the media hysteria.

COVID-19 Mass Hysteria

I just have a few thoughts regarding the mass hysteria surrounding COVID-19.

1. The whole thing is way overblown. We didn’t see this kind of visceral reaction with H1N1, SARS, MERS or whatever else. We weren’t banning public gatherings, sporting events, closing school, etc. during those “diseases of the year.”

2. Why all of a sudden with COVID-19? Probably just to make Mr. Trump look bad, as if he didn’t already look bad by himself. Congratulations Dems, between this and nominating Creepy Uncle Joe, you just handed this election to the orange-haired shitgibbon on a silver platter. Great job!

3. The mortality rate is likely way overestimated. Given that most cases are very mild, they aren’t going to be screened for and therefore never reported as confirmed cases. Given that there are more actual cases than reported cases, the relatively low number of the latter will appear to make the virus way deadlier than it actually is. (See here.)

4. I’m very disappointed in IndyCar for falling for the media hype and cancelling its first four races, one of which is COTA in Austin. Judging by the response, most of us (including Laina and myself) were willing to take that small chance to enjoy some racing. We can’t live our lives in fear day in and day out. We’ll go crazy if we do.

5. There is a strong possibility I’ve already had and recovered from the virus. I’ll never know for sure, but it’s very possible, and maybe even likely, that I got the disease at a regional winery. It was crowded and full of tourists. Who knows who was there from where? All I know is it was the wimpiest virus I’ve ever had. Hardly any congestion, some body aches and woke up mildly wheezy for a few days. Ran a low-grade fever with it that broke without the need for NSAIDs. It was a joke honestly.

Anyway, that’s what I have to say about that. I’m not going to succumb to the hysteria and media-induced fear. I’m going to do what I’ve always done.

With that, it’s off to wine country again, disease of the year be damned. Have a great day everyone, and don’t be afraid. Just wash your hands religiously.

My Experience With Neuro-Emotional Technique

If it’s one thing I know all too well it’s pain. Lots and lots of pain. It’s been weighing me down for a long time, to the point it’s taken a toll on not only my mental health, but physical as well. It’s not been fun and it’s been affecting every aspect of my life – work, friendships, relationships, etc.

Several people had suggesting counseling for various demons I carry around, but that just does not work for me. I was forced into counseling as a teenager and it made no difference whatsoever. It was a waste of my time and my parents’ money. I knew that wasn’t an option.

So fastforward to the present. Now that I’ve started a journey to mend my physical health, mending mental health is part of it too as it’s all linked. Counseling isn’t an option, but I need some sort of mental healing. That’s when Laina suggested to me to look into Neuro-Emotional Technique (NET).

I only have limited understanding of what it is or how it works, but what I can tell you is that NET is in no way counseling or talk therapy/psychotherapy. Rather, NET uses elements of Traditional Chinese Medicine and chiropractic care to correct imbalances caused by painful or stressful situations (a better explanation can be found here). You never know what event your body wants to talk about in any given session, but something usually comes up.

Sounds like a bunch of hooey right? Don’t get me wrong, I was skeptical too. VERY skeptical. Alas, I’ve been weighed down by so much shit in my life that I was willing to try anything.

I’ve only had three sessions so far, but here’s what I can tell you – it’s amazing. The experience is incredible. During all three sessions I’ve had some significant event or concept has been “pulled out” – all without telling the practitioner anything major about my past or any painful/stressful memory/life event. One’s body tells the story without much need for verbal cues. It’s almost like an emotional detoxification as it were.

So what do releases feel like? Well they can be varied, but in the end the best way for me to put my experience is that it’s almost like an emotional detachment from that event or memory. It’s still there, but it’s like you’re no longer hurt, angry, etc. about it. It’s just what it is. In the end, I’ve always felt a lot lighter and more relaxed/at peace at the end of a session. Stressful shit does pile up on you and weigh you down after all.

I might not know the hows or whys, but I do know it works and it’s been more effective in just three sessions than years of counseling or talk therapy ever would dream of being. It’s very efficient, and I’m all about efficiency.

So that’s just my experience with NET and I’d highly recommend it to everyone. We all need a good mental/emotional detox as well as physical. I definitely feel better and am in a better place because of it.

Valentine’s Day Weekend (and Other) Reflections…

So here I am, another Monday morning at Laina’s place working and doing my laundry, but after a fun weekend prior.

This was the first Valentine’s Day since 2011 that I have not been single. It’s weird in a way. I guess you can count 2014 as partnered, but that was the day my most recent ex and I split so I don’t know if that even counts.

Anyway, it was the first V-Day in that long that hasn’t totally sucked. Though what we have is the farthest thing from a traditional relationship, it was fitting to celebrate what we have on the day, and that we did. I cooked us a dinner of Salmon, Thai peanut buckwheat noodles (buckwheat is not related to wheat and is gluten-free) and French-cut green beans, after which we went for wine and chocolate at San Antonio’s own Stray Grape winery (review coming soon over on Texas Bite & Sip). It was a night of reflection, affection and looking to the future ahead.

It was crowded so we retired early to my place for a Walking Dead marathon, then continued the theme into Saturday by taking a drive up to “winery row” (US 290 between Johnson City and Fredericksburg) to sample some more wine.

As we look into what lies ahead, of course nobody knows, but I still know I’m in a better place now. To love and to be loved feels great.

Other interesting reflections: my weight is holding steady after a drop, but my body composition continues to change in my favor – to the point I can rock swim briefs at the pool with complete confidence.

I feel even lighter mood-wise also, and would you believe I have completely lost my taste for cigars? I’ve tried a few here and there recently (ones I used to love) and I can’t stomach the taste anymore. Maybe as my body detoxes itself it’s being repulsed by the taste to not introduce new toxins? Who knows, but all I know is I’m pretty much completely cigar-free these days. I’m not complaining – they’re expensive and it frees me up to do other things with my time.

I’m trying to read a novel for the first time since 2017 – Microserfs by Douglas Coupland. So far an engaging read for sure, and this coming from someone who doesn’t get much pleasure from reading novels.

Of course, should a business venture come to fruition, the plan will have to be different moving forward as I no longer smoke cigars. That’s ok – I’m thinking maybe an entirely gluten-free tavern featuring a variety of food offerings and some of the very best wines from Texas hill country (as well as maybe some hard ciders, etc.). That’s still a concept in its infancy, but it’s worth it to explore.

Anyway, that’s what my life looks like now.

Grieving for Gluten (And Other Things)…

When you find out you have an allergy, autoimmune reaction, etc. to a certain food or certain compound in a given food, it’s quite saddening to say the least. Even if you do know it’s for the best, it can really fucking suck.

For me, some days are better than others. Most of the time, I can deal with it just fine. I’ve found gluten-free replacements for all of my favorite foods – Italian, Asian, sushi, pizza, you name it! I definitely do not feel at all deprived on the food spectrum. I’ve found ways to deal with it (as well as my reactions to dairy, oats, amarinth and corn) and still eat all my favorites, using various gluten/grain free breads, pastas, etc.; non-dairy cheeses and ice creams, you name it. In fact, I’d say I eat better now and I enjoy eating and cooking more than I ever have in the past.

Alas, I still find myself sometimes longing for a Bratzel from Flying Saucer (a cheese/beer brat topped giant soft pretzel), a delicious donut, a wood-fired Lucia pizza from Vagabond in my old hometown of Abilene, and above all else, a good stout beer – the last of which still aches my heart that I can’t have anymore. There have been a few times I’ve wanted one so bad I’ve fucking cried.

Last week was a prime example, and I goddamn near caved and cheated on the gluten-free thing. Due to some unfortunate events last week (which were a result of my own doing and I’ll own that – though I don’t want to discuss details), I felt so bad the only thing I wanted was a Bratzel and imperial stout, and I was “this” close to going over to Flying Saucer and getting just that. Luckily, something came up which prevented me from doing that and saved me what could have been days straight of intense pain and suffering (I guess everything does happen for a reason).

The only gluten-free beer I’ve found around here is Redbridge by Anheuser-Busch and it’s no imperial stout. Whether or not you could even brew a gluten-free beer to have the thickness of imperial stout is another question altogether – part of where it gets its thickness is from the gluten itself.

Now, some Google search results have shown some true gluten-free imperial stouts. Alas, most of them are brewed on the west coast, and all of the ones I’ve found contain oats, which lo and behold I also react to. I can’t have those either!!! EFF. EM. ELL.

I guess I should consider myself lucky because I’ve got so much great Texas hill country wine to choose from around here to fill that void, but damn, wine just ain’t the same. I love wine, don’t get me wrong, and I would often choose it over beer back in my beer drinking days, but when you crave a beer it’s just a poor substitute.

My old pipe band is having a Burns Supper in a couple of weeks. I can guarantee you nothing there will be Celiac-safe because of the nature of Scottish cuisine. I can’t even enjoy that anymore. At times it’s just too much to handle.

Alas, I know it’s for the best if I stick to it, and in due time I’ll miss these things less. Taking it one day at a time is all I can do, and I guess I’ll just trudge forward, even if a beer or Bratzel is tempting at times.

I’ll be fine, and I can triumph over my cravings, and I will enjoy better health for not giving in. A little emotional pain now is worth not having a lot more of it later (as physical and emotional pain usually go hand in hand).

Neurotypical For A Day

Maybe it’s just me or maybe it’s most or all of us on the autism spectrum, but do you ever wonder what it’s like to be neurotypical? If you could choose to experience life as a neurotypical for one day (with the guarantee you could revert to your previous state in 24 hours’ time), would you take that opportunity?

By extension, would you continue to exist as neurotypical if you found it easier/more palatable to do so? Or would you choose to revert to your previous autism-afflicted state despite the difficulties that come with that?

While I’m still on the fence if I would accept a cure should one become available (note: I don’t think one will now nor ever), it would be interesting just to see what it’s like to be “normal” as it were. To be able to flow with the way the world is designed. To be the one catered to instead of ostracized.

I can’t be the only one who wonders.

December 19th, 2002 – “The Day”

December 19th is no doubt the toughest day of every year for me. For the past 17 years, I’ve kept why largely under wraps as I’ve not really felt open or comfortable discussing it with anyone. Sure, I’ve mentioned in passing the very unfortunate significance of this day, but I feel I can finally open up more about it and maybe this can help someone suffering from a similar type of feeling.

So the story actually starts a few days before when I contract some upper respiratory illness that was very much like the flu, even though I question whether or not it was actually the flu. I was a Freshman in high school and a manager for the basketball team. We had been traveling for a tournament and I swear I picked up the virus probably in the course of that travel (close quarters and all that). Well, with myself and four others living in a little trailer house, someone was bound to get it from me, and the person who did was probably the worst person it could have happened to: my 84-year-old great grandmother.

Though she was active and seemingly healthy, my great-grandmother had recently been battling early stage kidney failure. Her nephrologist actually wanted to put her on dialysis but she adamantly refused (and quite frankly I don’t blame her – that just sounds like a miserable existence).

Anyway, I digress. The evening of the 18th comes around and I get home from school and my great-grandmother is incredibly ill. Of course, this shook me hard and combined with the stress of upcoming finals in school, I was freaking out probably too much over my own situation instead of worrying about hers. I probably shot my mouth off in the process (as I often do under extreme stress) and my mother got pissed off at me and said I was being selfish because the illness could kill her (as if I didn’t already know that). What she said next are words that have repeated in my head nearly every day for the last 17 years: “and you’re probably the one who gave it to her!”

So then my dad gets in on the action, pulls me into my bedroom and told me if I didn’t shut up he was going to ram my head through a wall (yes, he had physically abusive tendencies in the earlier days and that was starting to resurface given the situation). Anyway, needless to say the evening of December 18th, 2002 was high-stress all around and my nerves were fried. How I was ever going to take a final exam the next day totally fried me.

Anyway, I wake up the morning of the 19th and go to school for finals. I actually only had one final exam – 2nd period. First period was gym and I had chosen to exempt my 3rd period final (biology).  This was good, as I just had this sick feeling within me.

So I was done that day by 10:30-ish if I remember right, came straight home and saw my great-grandmother. Her breathing was very labored and heavy, drifting in and out of consciousness. She asked me for an ice cube to suck on as her mouth was extremely dry. I gladly went to the freezer and got her one.

As the day wore on, I would frequently check back with her, and she asked for a couple of more ice cubes as the hours wore on into the afternoon. I stayed with her as much as I could (balancing that and study time, which was largely unproductive) knowing I probably didn’t have much time left with her. As time wore on, she spent more time in an unconscious state and her respiration was tainted with sounds of sloshing fluid (is that what they call “aqualung?” – I know it’s a medical term and not just a stupid song by Jethro Tull). It was at this point I held onto her hand for the last time, silently saying my goodbyes, then left the room as my dad called 911.

First responders came and wasted no time strapping her to a gurney and hauling her to the ambulance, but it was too late. She died in route to the hospital – DOA. When my parents got back, they broke the news. I was crushed to say the absolute least.

However, I didn’t have much time to dwell as I had another series of finals the next day. I had to shelve my own pain and power through my next round of finals. As such, I never really had a chance to grieve initially, but my mother’s chilling words never left my head. They stung like daggers through my heart, and on some level I came to believe she was right. I felt 100% responsible for her death. The guilt was crippling and would remain so for the next 16 and a half years of my life. Though I’ve kept it mostly under wraps, I’ve largely suffered from “complicated grief” over the loss since.

Fast-forward to Sunday, March 24th of this year. Laina and I had just gotten back from the IndyCar race in Austin and stepped out on her deck for some wine (and a cigar for me, of course). This topic came up in passing. Something I’d bottled up since that awful day. Yet somehow, I felt comfortable opening up to her about it – something I hadn’t felt with anyone else. She felt “safe” to me.

So I did just that, but out of my pain (and it was painful for me to talk about – I will admit that) the floodgates got opened. Floodgates that would spawn something beautiful out of my pain – the bond we share today. Opening up and telling my story to her set the stage for us to bond the way we have.

Between that and going on my recent health journey, I’ve begun to finally come to terms with it. It isn’t my fault. She was ready. She stuck around long enough to make sure I’d be alright before she crossed over (as I had gotten my diagnosis of Aspergers not too long prior and things with my parents were finally starting to smooth over). She made sure they understood me on the level she did before her departure. She was my rock growing up, as I’ve mentioned prior. She stuck around long enough to make sure my parents knew who they were dealing with, and for that I am eternally grateful to her.

It’s been 17 years to the day since my great-grandmother departed this world. Though gone from the physical realm of the living, she lives on in the little things – my tattoo, my peony scented soap, her old clock. As I continue to heal physically, so does my inner brokenness. I’ll always miss her. I’ll never stop thinking about her. However, I’m finally starting to come to terms with it, 17 years later. I couldn’t have written this post even last year. I feel a lot “lighter” finally being able to tell the story without the feelings of sheer guilt coming back.

Well, thanks for those of you who read this post to the end. I’ve gone on for 1,200 words now, which is probably way more than enough so I’ll shut up now, go light some candles and reflect. Have a good day everyone, and always remember to remind those who mean the most to you just how much they mean to you, for they might be gone tomorrow.

A Day For Reflection

So I’m taking today off of work, for a dual purpose. Today is a day of reflection, celebration, and mourning all rolled into one. Two major events happened on this day, 98 years apart.

First things first, my great-grandmother would have been 101 years old today. I think back to my childhood and am so relieved she lived with us growing up. She seemed to be the only person who understood me. Not even my parents understood me nor did they really try to until my high school counselor pleaded with them to have me evaluated for autism spectrum disorder. In that way, my great-grandmother was my rock growing up.

She passed away 9 days shy of 17 years ago, at the age of 84 years and 9 days. Not a day goes by I don’t think about her. It’s the little things, too – the peony scented hand soap I have in my dwelling place (her favorite flower), the tattoo I have on my left calf, her old anniversary clock that I’ve kept even though it quit working years ago, those kinds of things.

Though she’s gone from the realm of the living, I feel her presence still. Her energy is with me. Sometimes at night, when it’s really dark and quiet and I’m lying in bed, I hear her voice calling my name.

It’s been a long 17 years, and I’m still processing. So much of my deeper-seated feelings about the whole ordeal I’ve bottled up all this time as in a lot of ways I’d always felt responsible for her death (contracting a flu-like illness myself, then she contracted it – I assumed from me). Alas, it could have happened anywhere. I’ll never know for sure. All I know is I’m finally to a point I no longer blame myself and can begin to really heal from it.

Anyway, another major event today. Three years ago today I stumbled across a certain blog that seemed to catch my eye. One with a life story similar to mine, yet different in its own way.  I felt inclined so I left a comment. Little did I know what that little comment would blossom into 3 years later.

We started off by having a lovely dialog on WordPress, commenting back and forth, which then found us in the world of Facebook where we messaged each other through the blog “page.” Eventually this led to us exchanging numbers, blowing each other’s phones up by text, friending personal pages, and continuing blog dialog.

We finally met in person for the first time in April 2018 when said blogger adopted two kittens from my family (who have grown up to be quite happy and healthy I should add). We would meet again in person toward the end of March 2019, which set up my move, but something else was happening too – we were falling for each other hard.

Little did I know three years ago today I encountered who I truly believe to be the love of my life. My twin soul. Happy WordPress anniversary, Laina. You mean the world to me and then some.

Here are some pictures from this past Sunday. We went out to the Japanese tea gardens here in San Antonio, very close to the zoo. It was a lovely, sunny afternoon with a high of around 75 degrees so it was something to take advantage of. It was so serene, and though much colder today we might be heading back for a bit today.

All photos credit to Laina Eartharcher. signal-2019-12-08-180020signal-2019-12-08-175955-3signal-2019-12-08-175955-4signal-2019-12-08-175955-2signal-2019-12-08-175955signal-2019-12-08-175955-1

It’s very interesting to note how quickly my body composition has changed in just a few short months, and I haven’t counted a single calorie or struggled/toiled at a gym either. I’ve only changed the way I eat – going gluten/dairy free, more fruits/vegetables, cut processed foods. My Davy Dukes are actually kind of loose now – not loose enough to go down a size, but loose enough to need a belt. Laina swears I’ve aged backwards even.

Anyway, she just dropped in so I better jet – we’ve got some celebration and reflection to do. Have a good day everyone.

Is It Detox?

OK, let me preface this post by saying I’ve felt like T-total shit all week. It kind of started on Monday but took hold Tuesday into Wednesday when I’ve felt just totally gnarly. At first I thought I had contracted another upper respiratory and it was the precursor, but when I didn’t develop any upper respiratory symptoms (nor any GI symptoms for that matter!) I was at a loss.

I consulted with Laina as I always do in regards to these matters, and she suggested my body might have entered into detox mode. I guess it would fit with a lot of what I’ve noticed – fever/chills, heavy/skunky perspiration (we’re talking soak the bed at night heavy and man does it stink), pissing like a racehorse, “power shits,” a headache, you name it.

Yeah, not exactly pleasant but I guess necessary. I was feeling so icky last night that Laina out of the kindness of her heart kept me overnight at her place for medical observation, and she went the extra mile to tend to the little one while I was in only a partially conscious state.

After throwing back some water this morning, some trace minerals and having a good shower, I’m starting to feel somewhat normal again. I’m still not 100% but I’m much better than I was – maybe 80%-ish or so.

The question is what triggered all this? I’ve not started any supplements or anything to trigger a detox, but simple lifestyle changes might have brought it on – going gluten-free/dairy free (the two big food reactions I have), increasing fiber intake, healthier food choices in general, reducing consumption of alcohol, tobacco and caffeiene. If that’s enough to start the detox process, then I guess so be it.

Lord knows I’ve been in a decades-long need of a good detox. I was born with a heavy toxic load. My mother worked in a dry cleaner while she was pregnant with me AND smoked while pregnant. Those two things alone should tell you how many toxins I was exposed to in utero. Combine that with admittedly having a totally unhealthy diet for however long, drinking like a fish for the past few years of my life (starting with my stint in Dallas which was miserable and thus I had nothing better to do), among other unhealthy lifestyle habits, yeah, I was destined for either this or a very early death, whichever came first.

I guess we’ll just roll with the punches for now, as unpleasant as it might be for the time being. Laina swears if I can power through detox I’ll come out feeling better than ever at the other end. Right now it’s hard to see. I am not a person of any kind of faith whatsoever, but maybe it’s time I take something on faith, because I know that’s what I’m having to do right now. I do, however, have some evidence in that Laina has showed me a couple of her driver’s license pictures – one at age 23 and one at age 30. She actually reverse-aged during that time. She swears the same thing can happen with me.

Time will tell, of course, but for now, I guess I have to keep on keeping on.