3

Have you ever had a day like this: you’re productive, just not productive on the task or project that you really should be focused on?

Hmm, productive procrastination, maybe?  That’s how I was a couple of weeks ago.  I don’t know if I was still processing the news from my doctor’s appointment, or what, but I could not pull myself to write.

My doctor’s appointment was Monday morning, July 14th.  I received good news in the form of numbers to which I will focus on for a while.  The numbers? 115. 267. 365.

One hundred fifteen is my current CD4 count.  That’s up from the 80 that I was told in April, which was up from the 70 reported in January, which, thankfully, was up from the 17 I had in October.  The doc switched my meds in April since it was clear that what I was using wasn’t working for me.  

I was on a one-a-day cocktail named Atripla.  A one-a-day is a bunch of medicines combined into one pill rather than the split cocktail I’m on now.  Cocktail is the nickname given to the number of meds one has to take to combat the various faces of HIV.  The split cocktail I take is Viread, Reyataz, Tivicay, & Norvir, along with three antibiotics.

So, a one-a-day is like drinking a Long Island Iced; the gin, tequila, vodka, rum, & coke all representative of different meds.  Instead of being able to drink a Long Island, I now have to throw back a shot of each of the liquors to get a buzz. ; )  

Hope I didn’t lose you there!  Wait… Are you kidding me?  You’re going out for drinks later because of that!  A mess.

I swung by one of my favorite “mom and pop” health food stores - Pearly Gates - to grab some vitamins and such.  I ended up with Magnesium, Super C Complex, Selenium, Niacin, Senna, Chlorophyl, Apple Cider Vinegar, and Aloe Juice.  I also bought sprouting jars and a few seeds to sprout: red clover, alfalfa, mung beans.  I also grabbed a bag of chia seeds, raw almonds & walnuts, dried cranberries, echinacea, and kelp.

Two hundred sixty-seven is my weight!  EGADS!  I knew I had gained weight, but…GEEZ!  This is the heaviest I’ve ever been.  I’ve already begun to battle the bulge, both physically and mentally.  More mentally than physically, though, because I know that there is a mental breakdown when it comes to working out.  What exactly?

As crazy as it may sound, I have these notions that if I’m husky, borderline jiggly, that it will keep romance at bay because I won’t be as attractive to people.  And, I won’t be as eager to seek it because I’m not pleased with my appearance.  The lies we tell ourselves. {chuckling}image

Plus, with the extra weight I don’t look sick to me or anyone else, and if I do succumb to an opportunistic disease again (like I did last summer) then I’ll have weight to lose and still look okay.  Last year, I dropped from 230 to 200 in less than a month due to the fungal infection in my lungs.  Yes.  It was rough.

But, again, that’s all just mentally screwing myself.  It has no basis in reality.  I’m probably doing more damage to myself as a flabby 267, than I would as a muscularly fit 210…two hundred. image

THREE HUNDRED SIXTY FIVE days is what I’ve given myself to record those numbers again.  I still go to the doctor every three months, so you’ll get an update quarterly.  My next appointment is in October.  I’ll give a CD4 update as well as a weight update.  During the next three months, I’ll keep you abreast as to my lifestyle changes and regimens.  I think that will help to keep a clear view on the numbers.  We want the CD4 to increase and the weight to decrease.  Okay?  Okay.

Thanks for your encouragement!

- this post was loosely inspired by the gLee version of 3 by Britney Spears

This is waaaay late.  I forgot I started this post.  It was buried under a timeline of other drafts. : )
Monday, MLK day provided a great day off.  Joel hung out until about 5p.  We talked, went for a walk, ate at Olive Garden, and then waved him off back to Nashville.  Such a great dude.  
Jazz class was amazing as usual.  Geez, I missed it so much!  I’m looking forward to ballet on Wednesday night.  I don’t know what I did to my back but it has been killing me.  I could barely do a lot of the stretches and dances because it was hurting so badly.  Maybe by Wednesday the pain will have subsided.
Tuesday, back on the grind today.  I got some good news at work.  I will now be the construction loan portfolio manager.  That is the title spin I’m putting on it, of course.  It doesn’t have a title, but the duties that I have would fall under that.  I am all things construction now.  How about it!  Stoked!  One of my friends asked did I get more money.  I said, “No, but I will when I go somewhere else.”  The crazy thing is, I don’t know if I will be going somewhere else.  I really feel that I’ll be leaving banking soon.  Watch in three years I’ll still be blogging about my banking career. {shaking my head}
Wednesday, here’s what I don’t understand.  How is it that you have someone totally incompetent and lazy doing an assignment horribly wrong and incomplete; the assignment is passed on to someone you feel is about their business, yet you give that person an unrealistic goal when the assignment has to be corrected and damn near redone?  Why wasn’t that same pressure put on the turd that had the assignment originally?  Company execs… sometimes I just don’t understand them.  I’m trying to pull a report together for the construction loans we have and also kick off our new construction lending procedures.  This may be my last great hoorah in the 8-5 workforce.  It’s gotta be great so that they will have something to operate with and build on.
Ballet was agonizingly wonderful!  I enjoy the teaching style of the director greatly.  He’s challenging enough to make me want it and on my level enough not to let me get overwhelmed.  I hate that I took last year off.  I didn’t know what else to do, though.
Thursday, worked kermit out
Friday, Is every day at work going to be like this?  Is every day that i walk into that joint going to grate my nerves?  Before 10a I was ready to turn in my resignation.  Why do we let dumb people be in charge of things?  Why do we allow people to get away with laziness?  Why do we make the responsible workers, the ones that pour their all into their positions suffer?  I read a great article just yesterday by Mike Myatt about why businesses lose good talent. Within the first two paragraphs I was screaming inside, “Yes!  Exactly!  That’s me!” I’m so ready to go that I’m finding it hard to contain myself.  I got so angry today, though, that I had to step back, look at the situation and say, “okay, that’s how they want to run things. You don’t agree, just make sure you’re covered and blameless.”  I went to lunch with my little brother, bitched out my frustration to his sympathetic ear, then prayed on my way back to work.
What I decided to do is to write the dip dum at work a letter.  Yes, a personal letter that will go to him personally.  I’m all about growth.  Let me spell out the issues for you since everyone else is tiptoeing around you and talking about you behind your back.  I’m doing the same thing, but I really want to pull you aside and blast you.  Not the way to go of course; so a letter seems like the best move.  
sis spent the night
finances and new gig
Saturday, anger subdued
Sunday,

This is waaaay late.  I forgot I started this post.  It was buried under a timeline of other drafts. : )

Monday, MLK day provided a great day off.  Joel hung out until about 5p.  We talked, went for a walk, ate at Olive Garden, and then waved him off back to Nashville.  Such a great dude.  

Jazz class was amazing as usual.  Geez, I missed it so much!  I’m looking forward to ballet on Wednesday night.  I don’t know what I did to my back but it has been killing me.  I could barely do a lot of the stretches and dances because it was hurting so badly.  Maybe by Wednesday the pain will have subsided.

Tuesday, back on the grind today.  I got some good news at work.  I will now be the construction loan portfolio manager.  That is the title spin I’m putting on it, of course.  It doesn’t have a title, but the duties that I have would fall under that.  I am all things construction now.  How about it!  Stoked!  One of my friends asked did I get more money.  I said, “No, but I will when I go somewhere else.”  The crazy thing is, I don’t know if I will be going somewhere else.  I really feel that I’ll be leaving banking soon.  Watch in three years I’ll still be blogging about my banking career. {shaking my head}

Wednesday, here’s what I don’t understand.  How is it that you have someone totally incompetent and lazy doing an assignment horribly wrong and incomplete; the assignment is passed on to someone you feel is about their business, yet you give that person an unrealistic goal when the assignment has to be corrected and damn near redone?  Why wasn’t that same pressure put on the turd that had the assignment originally?  Company execs… sometimes I just don’t understand them.  I’m trying to pull a report together for the construction loans we have and also kick off our new construction lending procedures.  This may be my last great hoorah in the 8-5 workforce.  It’s gotta be great so that they will have something to operate with and build on.

Ballet was agonizingly wonderful!  I enjoy the teaching style of the director greatly.  He’s challenging enough to make me want it and on my level enough not to let me get overwhelmed.  I hate that I took last year off.  I didn’t know what else to do, though.

Thursday, worked kermit out

Friday, Is every day at work going to be like this?  Is every day that i walk into that joint going to grate my nerves?  Before 10a I was ready to turn in my resignation.  Why do we let dumb people be in charge of things?  Why do we allow people to get away with laziness?  Why do we make the responsible workers, the ones that pour their all into their positions suffer?  I read a great article just yesterday by Mike Myatt about why businesses lose good talent. Within the first two paragraphs I was screaming inside, “Yes!  Exactly!  That’s me!” I’m so ready to go that I’m finding it hard to contain myself.  I got so angry today, though, that I had to step back, look at the situation and say, “okay, that’s how they want to run things. You don’t agree, just make sure you’re covered and blameless.”  I went to lunch with my little brother, bitched out my frustration to his sympathetic ear, then prayed on my way back to work.

What I decided to do is to write the dip dum at work a letter.  Yes, a personal letter that will go to him personally.  I’m all about growth.  Let me spell out the issues for you since everyone else is tiptoeing around you and talking about you behind your back.  I’m doing the same thing, but I really want to pull you aside and blast you.  Not the way to go of course; so a letter seems like the best move.  

sis spent the night

finances and new gig

Saturday, anger subdued

Sunday,

Track

Whatever Lola Wants - Gotan Project Remix

Artist

Sarah Vaughan

Album

Verve Remixed 2

This version of Whatever Lola Wants by the Gotan Project was my jump off point for the post, Whatever Lola Wants.  I first heard this remix on my absolute favorite dance show, SYTYCD.  It was Season 3.  Contemporary dancer, Danny, and B-girl, Sara, danced an Argentine Tango to it. Yes, hit the link.  I think you’ll like it.  ; )

Track

Brand New Me

Artist

Alicia Keys

Album

Girl On Fire

I neglected to give you the inspiration for the post, Brand New Me I wrote a couple of weeks ago.  I’ve always wanted to do this: when a song strikes me, I use the title of that song as the jump off for a post.  Sometimes I hit shuffle on my Spotify playlist and the first song (if I haven’t used it already) is what I have to use as piggyback material.  Other times, as the playlist pumps, if something jumps out at me, then that’s what I use.

Whatever Lola Wants

People have long called me a brat when it comes to my relationship with God.  I can see where they’re coming from.  It is upsetting when things don’t go the way I think they should.  That being said, however, God has blessed me because usually I’m running after something that I think is good for me spiritually.  Somewhat presumptuous and a bit impetuous… thankfully, my heavenly Father has worked on those two things with me and now I try harder to truly operate out of faith.  

     You’re an example of that.  You came to se7en shades to see what was up with me and I’m glad to know that we were thinking of each other around the same time!  When i think of reciprocity among friends, I smile.  It’s comforting to know you’re thought of as much as you think of them.  The little things, you know!
     My co-workers told me that they were guessing what I was going to do now that I’ve resigned and I’m chasing my dreams.  Their Top Two guesses: (1) TEACHER, (2) YOUTH PASTOR.  [chuckles]
     They weren’t too far off with the teaching/youth pastor guesses.  In truth, what I’m doing involves both of those.  I used to think that I wanted to be those two things, but, through trial and error, I found that I enjoyed teaching by way of counseling much better than teaching in a classroom setting; likewise, I enjoy pastoring by way of counseling much more than being a fixed YP under some organization’s thumb.
     My writing will be built on and laced with the power of God’s love, the strength of his forgiveness, and the protection of an experiential relationship with him.  That’s what I’m mainly trying to portray: God isn’t this stuffy guy, stuck to a throne, waiting to have his ego stroked in order to give attention to his subjects.  The God that I know (and I pray you will if you don’t know already) is a doting father, that truly loves his children and wants the best for them.  Yes, He reprimands and directs, but he still leaves the choice ultimately to us, even when he knows that we’re going to collapse at his feet in tears because of the suffering we’ve caused from some of our decisions.  He still inclines his ear to us and grants us his peace.
     Those intimate times with him are what I want people to see.  I’ve arranged for each of my characters in each book to have moments that most of us don’t want to talk about.  Those late nights, lying in bed then slowly slipping to the floor, or padding softly to the living room to cry and petition him for a resolution… for some peace! Or, calling out on behalf of someone else because things don’t seem like they’ll work out in their favor without Adonai’s mighty hand; the i’m-your-child card ends up being played while asking, “Can you reach my friend?”  That’s what I’m working on.  I just want people to see that he cares and that it’s great to serve him and be called his.  And, although it’s frustrating sometimes, and although we, like David, may have to trudge through the results of our foolishness, Jehovah still cares about us more than anyone else, and will protect us for his name’s sake.  That’s huge!
     When your name is on the line, you’re going to pull out all the stops to make sure that things work out, right? It’s even better when there’s a willing participant on the other end!
     Well, as you can see, i love to write.  And, you’ll soon find that I like to talk. {laughing} Would you believe I am an introvert? Not so much shy, but I get charged by being alone, and my preferred method of spending time with people is one-on-one.  I often tell Jesus, “I don’t know how you had all those doggone people around you all the time.  No wonder you were always dipping off to the mountain or a quiet garden! Having Lil Man around 24/7 drains me.  You had twelve with you constantly.  And those are just the ones mentioned by name!” I’m praying that I will be able to handle the attention.  Seriously, if I’m in a setting with more than five or six people I quickly become more reserved. 
     I believe that’s a major reason I enjoy writing & counseling, I get that one-on-one feeling.  When people read, you usually have their undivided attention because they have chosen to listen to what you are saying.  Intimate conversations are the same. When you’re chatting with someone, if they respect you and are interested in what you’re saying, you usually have their undivided attention.  You’ve just been “held captive” for however long it has taken to read this post.  Plus, I was invested the entire time I wrote it.  Reciprocity!
     I’ll end here with my word to keep you updated on my progress.  The websites are up and running already.  They aren’t the final product but I needed something for people to get a taste. Of course, se7enshadesofrafe.tumblr.com is my personal blog.  ifdonutscouldtalk.tumblr.com is my publications blog.  reidklos.com will be my “holding company’s” website.  I’ll also have a site for the group home, for the school, for the magazine, and for the outreach facility.  I’m nailing down names and working towards registering each entity according to its purpose.
stay tailored! -ers