Monday, July 4, 2016

Weaning Myself off Omeprazole

After reading about the side effects of taking omeprazole for a long period of time, I decided to wean myself off of it. I am not a doctor, but I feel strongly that if I can take less drugs and still be healthy, I am better off.
I talked to my doctor about it She felt I was doing ok on this drug and could remain on it without difficulty and warned me about the dangers of sustained GERD and esophageal cancer.

I remained determined to get off this drug. I mean how hard could it be? It is only an anti-acid.

I purchased ranitidine 150 mg to take twice a day in place of the omeprazole.

Day 1
I quit over the counter omeprazole magnesium delayed release tables 20.6 mg acid reducer tablets and switched to ranitidine 150 mg twice a day. Felt ok.

Day 2
Heart burn and indigestion.

Day 3
Heart burn and indigestion worse. Bloating and gas started. Stomach pain started. Went to pharmacy and to buy chewable tablets for relief. Spoke with pharmacist. She advised taking the omeprazole and rantidine every other day to wean myself off and to take the chewable tablets as needed. She encouraged me to keep trying to wean myself off.

Day 4
Took omeprazole in the morning. Indigestion persisted. Nausea started.

Day 5
Woke up at 3:00 am with terrible bloating – like a rock in my stomach. Took a ranitidine in the morning and night.

Day 6
Took omeprazole in the morning. Felt sick all day. Stayed in bed. Nausea. Diarrhea. Looked online for information about getting off omeprazole.
Read several articles about never quitting cold turkey. This may be the most important lesson I learned in this whole process.
One blog suggested taking a whole omeprazole and ¾ of one every other day for at least two weeks and see how I feel.

I cut the pills with a pill cutter that night. It was difficult. I could easily cut one in half but it was difficult to cut a half of a tablet in half again.

Day 7
Took ¾ of a pill in the morning. Felt somewhat better. Still had slight stomach ache after eating.

Day 8
Took a whole pill. Felt ok most of the day. Still a slight stomach ache after eating.

I am now on week 4. I take 3/4 and 1/2 of a pill every other day. I feel ok most of the time and rarely take the chewable tablets. I am able to eat my regular diet, including spicy food.

I don't know how much longer it will take me to completely get off omeprazole, but I will stay on this slow reduction until I am off completely.

Friday, April 24, 2015

I grew this crystal in sixth grade. It was a subsequent attempt of failed experiments. We were assigned to make a super saturated solution of alum, place it in a jar, tie a string to a pencil, and lay the pencil across the top of the jar so the string is suspended in the solution. The key was to not move the jar. It needed to be completely still for the crystal to form.
I did everything as instructed, except keeping my little hands off the jar. Every day after school I searched the jar for my precious crystal, only to be disappointed. I tried again and again. Other kids brought their crystals to school. Jealousy raged. Mom eventually threw out the solutions and that was that.
I wanted to try it one more time. I again followed all of the instructions to a tee, except this time I added blue food coloring. I decided to take the jar downstairs to the fruit cellar and place it on a shelf.
Time went on and I forgot about the experiment. Months went by. Then one day Mom sent me down to the fruit cellar to bring up a jar of tomatoes, my eyes couldn't believe what I saw. This large blue crystal lay in the bottom of the jar. Larger than any crystal grown by my classmates.
Who would know 50 years later my grandsons would play with this same crystal? Who would know it would inspire their mother the help them grow blue crystals? Who would know she would try to grow a larger one by super, super, super saturating a solution only to create a pan caked with crystals?
When I was 12, I wasn't thinking about keeping this crystal all my life. I wasn't thinking about it as a success after failure. My only thought was is was precious to me and placed it in my jewelry box.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Tell Judy I Love Her

He came to me as a voice in my ear. It was just a voice, not a dream. There was no story or context. Just a voice. Tell Judy I love her.

Fourteen months after we moved to Colorado, our next door neighbor passed away quite suddenly. He was the person I chatted with early in the morning. The one person I could say more than a passing hello to. Norm had strong opinions about things that he thought were divisive, and tore people apart.

He spent most of his days in his yard, trimming, mowing, planting. He pointed out that one of our bushes was more like a weed than anything and was crowding out a more desirable bush. It should come out. I cut it back to the ground, but never got around to digging it out. It grew back. One morning I returned from my walk to find Norm digging out the offending bush. I grabbed my shovel and started working with him. We dug and pulled and dug and pulled for a good hour before the bush surrendered to our efforts.

When he wasn't working in his yard, he was biking. For his 80th birthday, he biked 82 miles in the mountains. I was amazed by his strength.

Then he was gone. His widow, Judy, held a lovely memorial service. There were so many stories about Norm. He befriended people easily.

Why then eight months later was he in my ear? When I was fully awake, I knew I had to share this with Judy. I went next door only to find she was out of town for several days.

I waited anxiously for her return. I had a message for her.

When I finally had the chance to share the message, I told her Norm did not say to tell her he loved her. No. He said, "Tell Judy I love her."

She was touched by the message. She said she believed that some people were conduits from the other side. I told her I had had a few experiences such as this, but this my first message. We chatted more about it when she said tearfully that Norm had passed so suddenly that he hadn't told her he loved her at the end. She felt badly about it.

I replied that he must have regretted it, too.

Tell Judy I love her.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012


I love the creative process. It doesn't matter if I am creating a powerpoint presentation for work or decorating our home or planting my flowers or writing. It is all the same process to me. It is another interpretation of who I am.
While creating a powerpoint presentation the other day, I found myself dwelling for long periods of time on the words on each slide and the clip art I should use that would depict what is represented in words. I created a new graphic for the whole presentation. I find this process satisfying. I like doing it. I like creating.
We use our dining room as an office. It is command central in our home. We both spend lots of time there at the computer. For the last seven years, we had a corner desk with two side desks. The three pieces hugged the walls and window.
Last weekend we took it apart and turned it around. We could only keep two pieces of the desk together. It looks like a new room - more like an office and some of the clutter is hidden. I like looking at a space and seeing it differently, not an easy thing for me to do.
Sometimes I get stuck. I may put a decoration in a certain place and there it sits forever. I seem to look past it. Then one day I am struck by how wrong it looks and move it. I try to walk around the house and see it with new eyes.
Last year I had many of our bushes removed. Now in the spring I will create a new look. I already planted an additional tulip bulbs. Can't wait to see them bloom in the spring. The way the weather has been they could arrive very early!
This blog helps me to discipline myself to write. I struggle with this creative process, too. I keep looking for something that comes easily to me, but I can't find it.
Maybe that is part of the creative process - the struggle!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Ode to Farberware

Oh, Farberware, you have been my faithful

kitchen companions of 46 years.

Your shiny aluminum clad stainless steel surface comforts me.

Your slim curved handles lovingly fit into the palm of my hand.

Your tight snug fitting lids intrigue me.

I love the way you nestle together in the drawer waiting for my touch.

You have shared life with me





At every occasion you were by my side ready to serve.




I have burned you. Let you sit unclean in the sink for hours but

YOU never let me down.

I resisted the allure of Le Creuset's flashy red finish,

Rachel Ray's hard-anodized aluminum and Paula Deen's speckled porcelain



I was seduced by Calphalon's dark anodized aluminum complexion.

I brought her home and thought you both could live in the same drawer.

I quickly realized she was finicky and unattractive so I returned

to be faithful to you.

And you took me back without a word of reproach.

How can I show my devotion to you?

Eat out and give you a day off?
Shine your bottoms?

Only say the word.

You know you are the only one for me.

Monday, January 2, 2012


Why is it the media gets all excited when politicians cooperate and work together to get a bill passed that is supposed to help the country? Isn't this their JOB?! Can you imagine any other profession where a big deal would be made out of cooperation? I thought cooperation was an important job skill for the the 21st century! The exception should be shocking, not the expected behavior.

Why is it okay to lay-off teachers and other public service workers when the number one goal of Michigan's governor is to create jobs? Why don't those jobs count? I read other recoveries were propelled by job creation in the public sector. Don't you wonder if this recovery is stalled because the public sector is shrinking? By the way, how are your public services these days? We don't get our streets plowed in the winter any more. We have way fewer county sherrifs on the road. Fewer police and fire fighters. Feeling safer these days?

Why can't we respect each other's role? Public and private sectors each have an important role to play in our society. I think they deserve the same amount of respect. I worked hard as a teacher and served the community. Why should I feel like I am a second class citizen? I did not create this recession or put our country in debt over a trillion dollars. I always paid my taxes and my house payment and all of my bills.

Why are Wall Street and the big bankers allowed to destroy our economy and absolutely no one goes to jail for his wrong doings? Yet my portfolio is decimated and every penny of equity I had in my house is gone and I still have to make my house payment and pay my bills.

Why won't Bank of American sell my mortgage so I can qualify for one of the government programs that were created to help homeowners whose mortgages are underwater? Am I penalized again for paying my bills?

Why can Congress dictate what our health care system can and cannot be, yet they don't participate because they have free health care for the rest of their lives? Why do they get a say about social security when they have full pay in retirement and don't receive social security? I would give up social security, too, for full wages during retirement.

Why is life so damn unfair?!

Friday, December 30, 2011


Life feels quite complete. Our little family is together. The twins have such a strong life force; it carries the rest of along. The highs, the lows.
Their obsessions demand attention. Trucks, cars, airplanes, trains. Sense a trend here? We not only buy trucks, cars, airplanes and trains of all sizes, shapes and colors, we read books about them. Various vehicles cover their shirts, pajamas, and pull-ups. We stop to watch a train go by, observe the garbage/compost truck, and comment on the airplane overhead. We know the difference between a backhoe and an excavator.
Who knows where their next obsession will take us. At 33 months the world is a pretty amazing place.
Watching them develop and grow, I constantly tell myself I am so lucky to have joined the Grandma Club.