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Trick or Treat (and Marianne Update)

October 31-Nov 2
written November 2+
Dear Diary, Friends, and Families,

This is a two-part diary.  First, the easy part: Halloween.
We don't get to see our family grandkids often enough, but at least we get SOME pictures in costume: Sam the tiger, Ava the movie princess, Ryan the wizard, and Sean the reluctant fire truck.  Reports are that he wanted nothing to do with costumes this year.  Maybe next.  No photos from Rich may mean he has gotten too old, or just that parents forgot to capture the moment.  That happens as kids get older!
Back in our Fresno neighborhood, I prepared a pot of candy and tiny tangerines for the visitors, and then put a sign on the door to send gobblins down the street to a neighborhood gathering.  The tradition on Cambridge Avenue is for folks to assemble in the "Commons", a neighbor's yard, and distribute all treats from there, while the residents sip wine and enjoy a pot-luck meal.  Really a wonderful tradition.
The wandering families seem to like the system too, with eight or ten goodies all in one place.
This Frankenstein was voted the Best Costume!
Nice tradition overall.

The second part of this diary is harder.  In the last diary, we provided all sorts of detail on Marianne's saga with a new pacemaker installation.  Semi-public release of normally private information has been a feature of this diary over the years and, generally, it has been a good way to keep family and friends aware of what John and Marianne are up to, for better or for worse.  The last diary continued in that vein, and ended with Marianne weak, but on the mend, with the new pacer.

Today (Friday, November 7), I will update as best I can.  Since the implant, Marianne has encountered chest pains (heart or chest lining inflammation, solved by mega doses of ibuprofen), swelling (being solved with Lasex, a "water pill"), shortness of breath (being addressed with decongestants), and severe headaches.  It is the last that has been the hardest to deal with.  It hits hardest when she tries to sleep at night.  Yesterday, she received a prescription specifically for headache, but when we read the cautions associated with it, we decided it was too complicated to use just yet.

As I write this at 7am, she is asleep, the first time she's managed to stay in bed past the wee hours in a couple of weeks.  I'll take that as very encouraging.

As always, stay tuned.

John and Marianne


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