Monday, November 15

He's here!

Last saturday, St. Nicolaas arrived safely in our country. Along with him lots of his helpers, the "Zwarte Pieten"
He's here to celebrate his birthday on the 5th of december with gifts for everyone.
In our family we buy a gift for one familymember. Ofcourse i know whose name came out of the hat for me to buy a present for, but  do not know who drew MY name!
More and more people don't celebrate "Sint", for they say it's only for children and they give eachother presents at Christmas. I think we should cherish this very old Dutch (and Belgian)tradition. Therefor I pinned my button on my coat, saying: "Long live Sint!)

Last week I also got the best envelop there is in my mailbox
Even on a flipped-over picture "Fabric" is the best word in the English language. In Dutch we say "stof"; how boring is that!?
This is what was inside:
Christmasfabric for the backing of my machine pieced (still working on it..) Christmasquilt. I do like the Falala fabric and am humming that song all day long..(The only lyrics I know are "falala..")
The colour is slightly different than the right side of the quilt and so I was in desparate need of RED to bind it all together. I never have to persuade friend C to come along on a quiltshoptrip and there I got these

Ridiculous to run out of red if it's your fav colour!

Wednesday, November 10

The Beep as far as I know it...

I had some emails from people that suffer from Tinnitus and some of those are "new" to the problem and asked questions. It was also asked if "it was all in my head" by others.
So for those who want to know: info on the Beep
I went to a specialist in nose, ear and throat problems. I had a constant ring in my left ear and had some dizzy spells. Perhaps it was Meniere's: a inner ear problem with no known cure. It was not.
I had an E.N.G. to check if my balance was okay. It was. An M.R.I. to enclude any medical problems such as damaged nerves, obstructed bloodvains. All was fine.
I had an audiometric test and though normal, they found a little ditch in high tones, both left and right. The sound of my Beep is exactly the ditch they found. It could be, it is caused by noise-induced hearingloss years and years ago. The brain can react to such hearingloss by producing a sound, one can no longer hear through your ears. The brain doesn't know that the sound is no longer there. Like someone who still feels his toe itch after the leg is amputated.

So, no medical solution possible, but you could try to re-train your brain. I started with a tinnitus masker that produced a white noise. Plan was that is neutralized the Beep. It worked a bit but the thing itself (although tiny) hurts my inner ear ánd not unimportant is very expensive. Besides, I beep in both ears now.

Another part of retraining is the therapy. Wikipedia says: (ignore the highlighted words)
Tinnitus retraining therapy (TRT) is a form of habituation therapy designed to help people who suffer from tinnitus (ringing ears). TRT uses counselling to explain to the patient how a combination of tinnitus retraining and sound enrichment can end their negative reaction to the tinnitus sound, and then reduce and eventually end their perception of it.Tinnitus retraining therapy (TRT) is a form of habituation therapy designed to help people who suffer from tinnitus (ringing ears). TRT uses counselling to explain to the patient how a combination of tinnitus retraining and sound enrichment can end their negative reaction to the tinnitus sound, and then reduce and eventually end their perception of it.

My Beep bothers me the most when all is quiet e.g when you want to sleep. Sometimes it's so loud that I can't hear properly and then it is heard even over loud external sounds.
Depressing is that it'll never be quiet in my head again.
Mostly I handle it well, sometimes it makes me sad (when it's loud) and frustrated. I cried a bit on one occasion when it was really REALLY loud for a week on end.

For those who want to know what I hear: I downloaded the Beep from a cd with 150 (!) tinnitus sounds. Mine is slightly higher but just as annoying

The nasty questions in the questionnaire came from psycho girl, who gives the therapy together with audio girl.
I guess she wants to determine the state of mind of the groupmembers, but if you ask me the questions are for people with other issues than Tinnitus! It can cause serieus depression but hearing voices??

Fellow tinnitus sufferers are welcome to email me: I try not to whine too much on my blog :)

Tuesday, November 9


I signed up for Tinnitus Retraining Therapy in order to coop with my Beep. For those who missed out on this one :Tinnitus is a constant sound in one or both ears, in my case a beep.
The therapy is meant to learn to deal with the given fact that the beep is here to stay.Information will be given about it and ways to relax and ignore your sound will be discussed. I choose grouptherapy. Individual sessions were given by a guy in his early twenties who attended the school where I'm working. No way I'm going to open up to him; I have more to teach him about life than he can teach me.
Groupsessions are given by an audiologist and a psychologist. They sent me questionaires..

Does the beep bother you in everyday life?
Have you trouble falling asleep?
Does noise bother you?
Do you avoid crowds?
Do you  think about death often?
Have you considered suicide more than once?
Do you hear voices in your head,other than your own?
Do these voices tell you to do things? (only in a quiltshop)
Are you afraid someone wil attack you in a crowd?
Does your Tinnitus drive you insane?
Do your muscles ache often? (they do after answering these questions)
Does your back ache often?  (yep, I worked bloody hard!)
 And so it went on..
You had to answer, with the past week in mind. It doesn't count apparently if one was suicidal 2 weeks earlier .

First "class" is 2 weeks from now. I'm so looking forward to it! It's probably best if I don't mention seeing faces (TWO!) in an old pair of pinking sheers...

Monday, November 8

Measure twice, cut once.....

Last week I decided it was time to sort out all of my quilting stuff. I have small wooden drawers on my table filled with craft stuff and need that space for sewing things. After I did those, I moved on to the big lower drawers of the fabric cabinet. Everything that is bigger than a treadspool I toss into those and it was a mess.
Turns out I have a lot more notions than I thought i had, e.g my collection scissors...
I also retrieved my pinking sheers. The big one belonged to my Mum and I think it was the very first pinking sheers that came onto the market. I remember how thrilled we were when she bought it. We couldn't stop cutting up scraps which was by no means an easy thing to do! Look at the size of the thing!!
All off my tapemeasures share a small drawer now too.

And last but not least I needed a new blade for the rotarycutter..When I came across this limited edition at the quiltshop, I couldn't resist. My fav flowers!

(..and with all this equipment I STILL make lots of mistakes whenever I cut up fabric.  I know: it's not the lack off tools but the absent mind of the one who uses them..)

Strange thing is that I knew where everything was, when it was a mess. Now all is organized I have to open every drawer 10 times before I find whatever I'm searching for.