The Cure For What Ails You(or at least me)

I rarely get sick, but when I do, I do it right. I get the kind of sickness that makes you want to lie down and die, but I am a mom and lying down period is usually not in the cards.

Friday afternoon I started to feel a bit under the weather. Sore throat, headache, over all body not feeling well, but my kids had a snow day(did get more than 5 flakes), so that meant lots of book reading, playing of the Wii, cooking fun foods and lots of silliness. Then I ran duty with one of my instructors. It was mighty chilly with a nice wind, so the 3 car accident we were called to was not as much fun as you would think. Fortunately there were no major injuries. By midnight I was sitting in the back of the ambulance and going down hill fast.

Saturday I woke up with an unbelievably sore throat and glands swollen to the size of golf balls, but it was our last practical session and our instructor does not like people to miss class for any reason. As for the I should have stayed home and not infected anyone else theory…not a good reason. All of our instructors have come to class with illnesses. Coughing, fever, all kinds of gook and they pretty much ascribe to the theory  if I can make it here feeling like this, so can you; therefore, I did. I was drugged up pretty well with Alka Seltzer(which for me is a miracle drug) and did OK most of the day. The biggest issues was doing 8 hours of non-stop talking with basically no voice.

After class I came home, hung-out with the kids for about an hour then crawled into bed. I messed around on the computer for about an hour with plans to watch a movie but I didn’t make. I was out by about 15 minutes into the program. Tossed and turned until about 4am or so.

My kids, who love me and get very excited about taking care of me, came in my room, woke me up to ask if they could get me a hot water bottle, juice, medicine, make me breakfast…

I am not as excited about being woke up or their enthusiasm for care taking. I can’t really process any thoughts, my head hurts and I am not the least bit hungry, but I say sure, that would be great.

TSM gets me some meds and coffee and the kids bring me this…

2013-01-27_08-29-03_487Cheesy eggs, ham, fried Chinese ribs, and lots of love.

I am feeling better already…


Social Norms

Kathy Jackson writes a piece that I think is one of the most overlooked(and very important)aspects of self defense.

It is crucially important that each of us think about “The Rules” of society and actively think about breaking them. I don’t mean in an act of rebellion,(although that might be OK too) but a part of our mental training to deal with potential and or imminent. danger..

I am positive most people think that they will become the mama bear or the great protector and will do whatever it takes when the wolf comes knocking and surly no social norm will stop them, but the evidence does not bare that out.

Usually, in high stress situations we revert back to what we know. Often not being able to think at all. We have to actually think about and do(either by the act or visualizing) that which we hope to do in an emergency.

One day while walking in the mall with my 14 year old, one of the guys at a kiosk asked me if I would like a sample of something. I looked him in the eyes, smiled sightly, said no thank you and kept walking. I never paused or stopped for one second. My daughter thought I was being rude. When I questioned her about what exactly did I do that was rude, her answer was, “Well, it wasn’t that you did anything rude, but you probably hurt his feeling.”

Now, he was not a bad guy and had I chose to stop and chat no one was in danger, but the point is my daughter was so concerned and embarrassed that I didn’t stop. Not because I was actually rude, but because the perception she had in her head(likely one I put in there years ago) about not stopping and talking to someone, even someone you don’t want to talk to.

That is the exact behavior that could get you in trouble if you are, say in a parking lot and someone you don’t want to talk to approaches you and you stay at talk.

Please take the time to read her entire article and take the time to see where your own adherence to social rules might need to be evaluated and possibly reprogrammed.

As a side note, Kathy brings up Caleb Giddings who has an article up on his site about the colors of awareness or alertness. I have spoke to Kathy about this many times. I have not only stated that I do not live in yellow all the time, but that it isn’t even a goal of mine. Caleb brings up some good points that I think tie in well with Kathy’s article.

One Of These Days…

Ever notice that I am a conversation starter?  Well, I am . I get re-posted, quoted, tweeted all the time. Of course it is always after I do something or experience something less than desirable.

We have the whole reason this blog was started(pesky little mugging), then the broken ribs thing(if you don’t know, don’t ask) and now my blood donation(fine, but not ideal).

Brigid, Jennifer and now Old NFO shared their points of view on the subject. Really good view points too. Right after I posted about my trip, my friend Barron texted me and shared with me the very important reasons why we should all be giving. Many members of his immediate family have benefited from such gifts. So, if you can give a pint or two. It really does matter.

As I told Say Uncle once, I am just glad that something I did/do gets people thinking and talking, but I am looking forward to the day that, that something starts with a good thing:)

That Was Fun

A few months ago some folks came to class, well not folks, EMT’s and asked the students to sign up for their blood drive. TSM can’t because of some funky stuff he contracted in Somali, but I signed up.

Last night was the night. I have never donated blood, but needles do not bother me nor does blood. I am healthy and so I went without much thought. When I got there several of my fellow EMT students were there and some were quite nervous(especially the boys), so I did my “You will be fine” “Don’t worry” “It’s not a big deal” pep talk thing I do and then went off to donate.

I sat in the chair and they plugged me in. No biggie. Everything was smooth sailing. I was chit chatting with friends and listening to music when all of a sudden things got fun.

And by fun, I mean not fun.

The man helping me was taking the very last vial of blood when I felt the tiniest bit of nausea.  I said in my head, “Wow, I fell, nau…” Before I could finish the thought I noticed the ladies in front of were not only blurry, but also I could not define there shape. I looked at the man and said, I think I might have a problem. By the time I got that out, I was extremely hot, sweating profusely and my hands and feet were tingling, but not like a normal tingle. It felt like I was holding a jackhammer. I am kind of out of it at this point, but I feel someone lean back my chair and another start to fan me. The other man is stopping the blood. Someone asks me if I am alright which I hear, but can’t answer. In my head I was thinking, I don’t know am I. He keeps keeps asking me to cough, hold my breath, the breath.

Eventually, maybe 20 minutes later, I start to come back around. I am still dizzy, but can see. My hands are still tingling, but no where near what they were. I am now freezing and wondering why my back was wet. Apparently at some point they put ice packs on me. I sit there for another 15 minutes are so and decide I was fine.

My plan was to drive home, but when I went to leave a paramedic who doesn’t me and didn’t know what happened said, where are you going? I said home and she said, “No, you are as white as a ghost.” “Did you give blood?”  I said yes and she said sit. I ate some pretzels,  a doughnut(yuck) and some 7-up. My hands remained cold and white for about another hour, but by about 8pm I felt pretty much fine except for being very tired. This morning I felt dandy!

I have no clue why on earth that happened. I ate a good breakfast and lunch plus I had lots of liquid. My blood pressure was 120/80(a little high for me), pulse was 68, temp was 97.something and my iron was 15.

I was very calm which again I am not sure is a good thing because in a crisis I tend to be very, very calm but I don’t do anything. Not that there was anything for me to do, but still.

I am not entirely sure I am up for something that sporty again and the Red Cross probably isn’t gonna ask AGirl to be there next spoke person.

FPF Training

I have had a surprising number of folks contact me and say “Ahh, you are no longer at FPF.” “I was going to take a class.”

I am assuming most of these are new shooters and might have been coming to FPF because they know me or of me and felt a certain amount of comfort knowing I would be at the course and I understand that. A few are referrals and wanted a female instructor and were unaware that coming to FPF was not going to get them one.

I was never the face of FPF Training and I never was the primary instructor. Regardless of when you took the course, John would have the instructor. My contribution was minimal.

If you are looking for a course to learn how to defend your life with a firearm against a mortal threat then you should take a look at FPF Training. Everything I have ever said about it is still a 100% true and I had no nothing do with it. Your life is worth defending and you deserve good solid training. Don’t let fear, or uncertainty, or pride, or excuses(not attending because I am no longer there is an excuse and not a valid one:) keep you from taking that step forward.

All the course are well worth your time and money, plus this year some very exciting guest instructors will be visiting.

Train often. Train Hard.

“There’s no point really in me right now being sad or wondering what if.”

There are so many things about this story that bother me. That disgust me. That make me sick. That make me angry.

The fact that a child was living in a very abusive home for years and no one bothered to notice or if they did, care. That her life was so horrific that she is actually thankful that she was kidnapped and tortured. Raped. Terrorized.

Stop and let that sink in for a bit.

What a horrific world we live in.

I am tempted to make this into an argument about the state of our country, but I will not.

I find her bravery inspiring. So much can be learned from her. From her courage. From her attitude. From her, well, from her.

I fear the tendency for people is to read a story like this and think, I have suffered, but not like this; therefore, I have no right to feel what I feel or to hurt the way I hurt.

I do think we can all look at those who have sacrificed or suffered in unimaginable ways and perhaps gain a bit of perspective, but pain is not so easily quantified. The lesson is not in the crime or in the amount of suffering, but in the healing.

“I want to be able to help people who might not know where to turn,” she explained. “To see that there is a road to recovery.”

There is, indeed, much to learn from her.


I have received a fair amount of inquiries about who is Arete and what kind of training do I do with him. As the amount of readers increase I guess I am going to have to do a better job of explaining things that the rest of you have known for a while. The family is growing, so as a very quick refresher here are some old posts to bring you up to speed.

I Like Boys

Delusional Bravado

I Need’nt Have Worried

Training Video With Arete

Knife Training

Conversations With Arete