Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Is it really February already?

It's getting harder and harder these days to think of things to write about. Barack Obama as president is pretty much living up to my expectations so far, but I don't have much else to say about him. (However, one statement he made -- that we should be less concerned about how much government costs than how well it works -- was a real eye-roller. How do you reason with someone who can't even seem to grasp the notion of weighing benefits against costs, especially a politician for whom government cannot, by definition, cost too much?)

My sleep habits have not improved dramatically. After we re-arranged our bedroom, I found I had to block the heater vent to ward off a hot-cold cycle that was keeping me awake. I also had to get the medical supply company to switch out the humidifer reservoir for my VPAP Adapt SV machine, because the old one was leaking water around the metal disk that contacts the heating element. However, I'm coming to see that the primary factor impeding my sleep at this point is the air that the machine causes me to swallow and the resulting stomach upset; I think it is what wakes me up early and keeps me from falling back asleep. I'm trying to deal with it without medicating myself, but I can't overstate how annoying it is to be bone-tired and still not be able to sleep through the night.

Darren is still with Elder Rose in the Cerro Grande sector of Tegucigalpa, and they recently baptized a young fellow named Victor (see photo). He (Darren) will hit his 17-month mark in another week, and it's looking more certain now that he'll be able to come home sometime in the latter half of August so that he can return to BYU for the fall semester. He recently consulted with an American doctor about his eye injury (which he sustained on taking a soccer ball to the face), and the doctor told him that his dilated left pupil is a permanent condition; it won't affect his vision, per se, but obviously it will look a little funny. Properly viewed, it is a "war wound" suffered while in the Lord's service!

Not much is going on in our family at present. Kiley has a band trip to Durango, CO next month, and of course she goes to Australia with the Youth Symphony in June. We still need to get her signed up to take the ACT in April. Dorine, Kiley, and I will be going to Utah next month, but I'd like to take a shorter trip somewhere before then; I've been thinking about taking my mother down to Ruidoso to see the Hubbard Museum of the American West, which has numerous items collected by the last wife of one of Mom's uncles. (I'm not sure when Mom will feel up to the trip, however, after she took a fall in the temple parking lot last week, hitting the back of her head on the sidewalk, as she was arriving there to do her usual Thursday afternoon sessions.)

I just finished reading the autobiography of Eric Clapton that came out a couple of years ago. He led a pretty tawdry existence for most of his life before finally becoming clean and sober in his forties and, later on, finding domestic bliss with a young wife and kids (and even kicking a tobacco habit along the way). I don't have much in common with him inasmuch as I have never had issues with alcohol or drugs, have never had to worry about struggling with the trappings of wealth and notoriety, and don't have a tremendous natural gift for music. However, I did identify with his talk of unresolved psychology, his unchanneled-but-undeniable spirituality, and the fact that his music was the one influence in his life that saw him through all the dark times. I found myself wishing I could write songs with him, as I'm sure he could take all the nascent ideas bubbling in my head and bring them to fruition.