Tag Archives: health

And in the End…Home Trumped Ovaries.

I’m sitting here reflecting on how, right at this very moment, I would be coming out of major surgery to remove my lady bits.  But instead, I am home and able to celebrate the 16th birthday of my daughter.

About three weeks ago, dear husband and I decided that there was no way we could financially survive me not singing or teaching for two whole months.  I thought long and hard about it all…weighed the pros and cons…finally deciding that in order for us to be able to eat and have a roof over our heads for the next year, I had to take one for the team. That makes it sound like I am the bread-winner; I most certainly am not.  I’m more like the crumb-loser.  But it occurred to me that it’s time that we needed to get real about what is really happening to us financially.

Federal Debt

We are in big trouble.  There.  I just said it out loud.  Most people don’t want to hear that.  Many are in trouble too and don’t want to share that.  Some simply just don’t want to know the real story.  “GAH AHHHH!!!!DON”T TELL MEEEEEEE!”

My dear husband has been gently encouraging me to watch motivational videos by different financial analysts, ranging from get-rich gurus to more emotionally connected professionals like Suze Orman.

A really strange think happened to me when I started to watch them:  I would choke up and bawl.  I felt some strange emotions and I did’t understand why i was getting so upset. It was blocking me from really listening to what some of these people are trying to help me understand.  Suze Orman really got me.  She’s good.  She basically pointed out that we are are a bunch of people walking around, not being real and not talking about our debt.  And that’s why we all have it.

We are not a family that has ever had money.  Never since we have been married….we have struggled to stay afloat for 18 years.  EIGHTEEN YEARS. Yikes. We are people that barely meet the needs of our children, much less anyone’s wants.  But they do get to do their sports and play their instruments and we struggle because we try to make that happen.  We get ourselves into trouble “trying to make it work.” We don’t spend money to impress. We don’t care what our neighbors are doing or the other kids at school or even our friends.  But wait.  That’s a lie.  We are trying to impress someone.  Our children.  We want to give them what they need and want to show them how much we love them and it’s killing us.

What is my greatest financial fear?

I have a couple: Losing our house.  It’s very real right now.  Therefore, not being able to provide a roof over our children’s heads.  Another one?  Feeding them.  Getting number three her braces.  Keeping number 2 in therapy.  Making sure they can all go to college.

So, we set our goals.  My first goal is to try to prevent all the scary things I just listed from happening.  Have money on hand for emergencies.  Start saving for things that we need to improve our house like floors and paint.  Build a back paver.  Remodel a bathroom.

Big goals?  Vacation.  We have never brought the kids on a vacation.  No Disney, No Cabo, no skiing.  Any trip we have taken, it’s been to Florida and it was gifted for holidays and birthdays by my parents.  How grateful we are and how embarrassed we are.  That’s honesty for you.

The saddest thing is we work hard.  Dear husband has a great job.  I teach around 25 lessons a week in three evenings and sing at night 2-4 nights of the rest of the week.  I also have a part time day job at a friend’s store.  Darling husband comes home from a long day and he feeds and takes care of our three kids while I work.

And it’s still not enough.

We don’t “go shopping” or “go out on dates”.  We don’t have “credit cards”. We don’t have “cable” or “go do family outings”. Most of our money is spent on our mortgage, bills, food, school and paying the high interest on the loans we need to take out to make it another month.  We are in a huge hole and we will not be OK until we can crawl out.

How are we fixing it?  By being honest.  Here it is.  We are so broke, that I can’t get the operation I need.  But, when one door closes, another one opens.  Or in this case, when one ovary is not removed, we can make a mortgage payment.

We are working with a great budget program and have been analyzing our spending for the last three months.  We are figuring out where we can save and make cuts.  We are setting goals and will try to turn around the way we look at our money.  The little we have.  And we try like hell to make it grow.

As far as my Fallopian Tubes…oh well, stay comfy in there, you goofballs; we get to keep partying together until next January.  Let’s make 2018 the best year ever.  Midol, anyone?

 

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Fallopian Send-Off Countdown…and Go!

I just scheduled my appointment to get gutted.

This moment only took me four years.   But alas, I am here.  I have officially been put in a vaginal timeout by my Lady Doctor and there is no going back.  My last check-up a few weeks ago with him went a little something like this:

(Scene: Doctor’s office follow-up with results, after complete biopsy under the hood.)

Lady Doctor: Besides your endometriosis, your fibroid is growing.

Me: I’m an overachiever.

Lady Doctor: (Not amused.  I start to think: when you look up chee-chaws all day long, I guess humor slowly erodes away like lining of a vaginal cavity.)

Lady Doctor: Last year your fibroid was a lime.  Right now it’s an orange.  It’s time.

Me: Hm.  Ok.  Now, would you classify that as a clementine? I love those little guys.

Lady Doctor:  (Not amused.) Not at all.  The big one.  It’s time.

Me: That doesn’t sound apPEALing! (I laugh too way hard, trying to hide my tears.)

Lady Doctor: (Literally no expression.)

Me: K.

*****

Fallopian-Tube-1

My Trunk Junk.

Friends, meet cervix.  Cervix, meet friends.  In 2 short months, all of these once-overactive baby maker tools will be Jack-the-Rippered out of me.  Sayanara, sweeties!

The saddest part is all the excuses I have made.  I can say that I put these shenanigans off because of “work”. I book our gigs months in advance and I don’t want to screw my musical partner out of months of work=valid.

I can say that I can’t afford to stop teaching and singing for two months=valid.

I can say that I don’t want to leave my students voice teacher-less in the heart of high school spring musical audition season=valid.

I can say that I am scared to get all the weird and non-glamorous side-effects I will adopt, after they rip out my woman bits=valid.

I can even say that I am not sure what I am going to do with myself for two months, because I literally have watched the absolute and complete entire collection of Netflix=VALID TO ME.  And also embarrassing.

But the real truth…the one that festers and bubbles…the one I dare not whisper to anyone, even sometimes to myself…is that I am dreading the pain=The most valid.

But it’s going to hurt me so badly.  Not so much from the relinquishment of my reproductive whozits and whatzits galore, but my actual BODY will pulse and vibrate with breath-taking pain from not being medicated.  I have to go off of my Humira 10 days before and I can’t start up again until 6 weeks after.  During that time, my rheumatoid arthritis will unleash from the very gates of the seventh circle of hell to attack every joint in my body.  It’s a dark place, brother.

I could be all Pollyanna and pretend that it will “not be as bad as I think”, but fuck glasshalffull.  I know it will suck hard, because it happened to me unexpectedly last year.  (Please refer to the past WOUND posts.  It wasn’t pretty.)  It freaking hurt.  I’d rather have 5 more babies, all popping out at the same time.  Oxycodin from my surgery will help, but eventually I will have to stop, to prevent me from being an addict looking for a fix in the parking lot of Mariano’s, Zumba and all the other popular mom-addict drug spots in the surrounding Lake County area.

But it’s time.  Now I have 51 days to really show my ovaries a rockin’ good time.  I’m taking them to Florida.  I am definitely not going to neglect them from any opportunity to enjoy a tall Tito’s and soda.  They can help me decorate my Cubbie Christmas tree this season.  I’m even going to dress them up in flapper sequins and let them sing with me at my big closeout NYE gig this year.  They will want for nothing…..these bitches will be spoiled, but they are going out in style, yo!

Word.

 

 

 

 

 

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I’m Fine, I’m Fine, No Really, I’m Fine.

This is exciting.  I am an empty day nester!  I cried on and off for the first 2 days and now…I am good.  Cracker, Bambi and Alpha are all nestled into their classrooms and I can rest easy.  Cause like I literally have to rest.  I went to my rheumy yeterday and he actually diagnosed me with exhaustion.  It’s making me twitch.  Full truth, people.  It’s made my RA bad and now my muscles have been effected.  And I have had an eye twitch for 2 weeks.  I am NOT winking at you.  It didn’t help that after singing last night, I couldn’t get to sleep until 2am.  I have a million projects and things to do…a house to scrub…but for today, I need to get rid of this twitch.

And so, for those close friends and family that have been worried about me, I am fine.  I am going to go rest.  But not before I share with you todays Heatherevent:

This all started with my dear friend “Sid”.  I call her that because she has undiagnosed OCD.  I am pretty sure I came up with that name after too much Pinot Grigio, while she was scrubbing my floor on her hands and knees.  She is incredibly thoughtful and she picked up some cream for me at the store the other day when I was feeling ill.  (BTW – “Sid” started this whole nickname thing with calling me “Rah”, making fun of my awful auto-immune crippling disease know as Rheumatoid Arthritis.  Love that bitch because laughter is the best med I take.)  I had this really bad, crazy week where I found myself not being able to have a freaking cup of coffee.  I was starting to get a little obsessed with the absence of it.  And I only drink decaf, which makes the whole scenario a lot more embarrassing.

 First, I was out of coffee, then I was out of cream, then I tried skim and it tasted like poop, then I thought I would drive to Starbucks then I was too sick to drive to Starbucks.  Then my sweet dear friend “Volly” from next door came over and bought me some coffee.  Then I was still out of cream so it just sat there. Then “Sid” eventually came over at some point and brought me 2 small creams, instructing me to put one in the freezer and pull it out the day before you need it.  Her mom always did that, she said and I can verify that her mom knows everything.

HELLO “Sid”, who do you think you are dealing with?  It’s “Rah”.  Like I would ever be organized to plan ahead.

Today, I made a gorgeous pot of coffee and I couldn’t WAIT to enjoy some quiet time on my stoop after the bus left…and I go into the kitchen make THE perfect cup of coffee and I am freaking out of cream.

Now, I know what I am going to do next.  And it’s going to suck because it’s not going to work out well for me at all.   But I do it anyway, because I lie to myself that I am an optimist.  I go into the freezer and I pull out the frozen cream.   Frozen, rock hard, frozen, frozen.  I mean like, take-a-day-to-thaw-a-turkey-frozen.  I dropped it on the counter THUNK and stared at it for a minute or two.  I now have time for this, you know.  I decided  to go get a teeeeeennnyyy weeeeeennny little kid’s knife.  I shoved that little knife in there and I scraped and scraped little tiny shards of frozen cream into my coffee cup.  Plop.  Plop. Plop.  Stir it up….and voila!  Outcome?

I’m going back to bed.

 

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And Now For Something Completely Serious…Part 2

The mom of Voxx came on the second day.

She came in like a bat out of hell.  A large woman with the poodle perm and a cane like her daughter’s,  the old gal had a mission: to tell Voxx and anyone else who would listen the exact dollar amount of all their delinquent bills and how much money they do not have in their bank account.  Voxx and Ethan Frome owe over $600 to Nicor.  That’s a lot of gas.  And they are really really late.  But they only have $64 dollars and some change in their bank account.  And not one iota of this is something that I should know.

Our very sweet and patient Phillipino nurse, Bandaid, came in announced Movie Tuesday!  She let us pick a DVD and she ordered us some popcorn from food services.  The mom of Voxx pulled up a chair and the two us enjoyed a little Meg Ryan/Kevin Kline French Kiss, while Voxx shaked with the DT’s.  I actually really enjoyed her company.  She was my second favorite visitor.

The only problem was she just couldn’t stop talking about Voxx and Frome’s financial situation.  I was actually starting to sweat and get he DT’s myself.  I was withering and writhing to hear about someone else’s uncomfortable and unfortunate financial troubles.  And when mother of Voxx insisted on calling Comcast right from the room, I decided to go try to take a shower .  All my trials, Lord, will soon be over.

The shower?  Not successful.  I washed my hair with what felt like nail polish remover and was I really clean?  I mean REALLY?  Was I? I felt like as I was standing in there, little amoebas of germ nasty sprung from the walls of the institutionalized shower and stuck onto my flesh.

But it was fun in there compared to pity payment party in bed area two.

Mother of Voxx left and the damn woman took with her Voxx’s hand lotion.  Shit.  I heard about that for the next 7 hours.  She told me about 9-10 times.  She told Bandaid.  She told One of the many annoyed and perplexed doctors who rotated in and out of our room.  She told the food service lady.  She called a lot of people on the cell phone, too.  In the end, I gave her my lotion.  I think she threw it at her closet later on but that’s okay, she can go ahead and keep it.  I’ll get more.

On Day three, I woke with a migrane.  I have no idea why.  Hm.

I have never have one like that before.  I even rated it a sad face number 10 and I have NEVER picked that one in my life.  Every flicker of light was a BBQ skewer in my cornea.  Every sound was a swinging bat over my head.  It even hurt to move.  So, it was so frickin awesome when Voxx’s Kenyan Physical therapist came in the room for her workout session.   BECAUSE HE TALKED LIKE THIS AT ALMOST SCREAM LEVEL AT ALL TIMES IN A VERY THICK KENYAN ACCENT AND APPARENTLY HE ALSO THOUGHT MAYBE VOXX WAS NOT JUST A DRUG ADDICT BUT COMPLETLY 100% FUCKING DEAF.  FOR ONE HOUR. Who was the one whimpering now?  Me. I did.  I whimpered for 60 minutes.

Again, *sigh*

This was about the point that I realized that this is not really happening.  Like scenes like thisare made for movies or books, just so fucking ridongulous that they are a cliche.

A cliché is a phrase that is so overused that it has lost its meaning.

My existance in that room was a true dead metaphor.  I was worse off than when I got there, but I needed to leave now more than ever.

Here came the groan. I heard her stretch and moan in pain for the curtain.  She ripped it back and then I had to look at her sagging tits again hanging out the sides of her hospital gown and she thrusted a pencil at me with a menu that had a piece of macaroni and cheese on it.  “Write your address on the back.”

THINK MAN, THINK.

WhatnameshouldigiveherwhatnumbercanImakeupcanIgiveherafalseemailaddressbut shewillknowshewillknowandsheknowswhoiambecausethedrsmadeabigdealoutofmebeingaperformer

andwhensheheardthatshefreakedoutandtalkedandtalkedandralkedaboutcomingtoseemeeperformand

whatnumbershouldigiveherifilieshewillstalkmeandcometoashowandkillmeafterwards

I gave her my name.  I gave her my address and my phone number.  I even gave her my email address.  The good one.  Because I had nothing left.

I am home now.  Every time the phone rings, I do a Voxx check.  She hasn’t called. Which…is sad.

And I really hope she is okay.

But I really, really, really need to start taking vitamins so I NEVER end up in the hospital again.

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And Now For Something Completely Serious…

xray

It has been a long time since I have been inspired to blog.

My hospital stay with pneumonia last week was a catalyst for me jumping back on the wagon here.  Actually, it was my prescription drug-addicted roommate that put me over the edge.

It was bad enough that I struggled to breathe with a viral cement in my chest and my out of control asthma, horrible that I was on (and still am)  8 different medications that prevent me from sleeping.  But I was forced to endure three straight days of her moaning and screaming for her next round of meds. It was something out of a bad dream, to be completely cliche.

With every Shirley McClaine/Terms of Endearment rant she went on, I felt the box of hell that I was trapped in enclosing around me in the little corner of Good Shepard hospital room 342, bed one.  At one very low point, I was was in fact begging the nurses myself to not skip her dose and wake her up because when she would waken, she would already be withdrawing and I could not handle one minute more of the mania.

She was actually in there for a week already before I got there, with a torn rotator cuff.  She fell and her daughter found her.  I don’t know why she fell.  She has a cane propped up near her bed.  I don’t know what it’s for.  She pees in a bed chair an arms length away from my head.  Behind the curtain, of course.  In my mind, I secretly discouraged her from drinking any liquids so I didn’t have to lie there and listen to her spray in a plastic container next to my head.  Just to let you know, she hadn’t had a bowel movement in a week.  She told everyone this.  I was actually quite relieved about that.  And let’s call her Vexx.  I will save you the Google: Vexx means Goddess of Pain.

When they initially wheeled me into the room on my gurney, Vexx looked at me and said, “What kinda shit is this?  They told me my new roommate was gunna be a guy.”

Charming.

Fantastic.

Vexx sadly also suffers from internal lupus, fibromyalgia and side effects of diabetes.  Although, one of the many annoyed and perplexed doctors who rotated in and out of our room insisted that she was borderline diabetes and does not need to be on a special diet.  And then she would cry.  Because I think she wanted as many ailments as possible that might qualify her for an extra narco or V.

It is no wonder she is on a lot of medication.  It is NOT her fault that she has a drug addiction.  She is in pain and she needs relief and sadly, the body develops an intolerance, therefore the need for an bigger dosage.  I think pain pill addiction is the saddest because it comes out of a place where you are in physical pain and you need help managing it.  He children probably do not understand this.  They just see that their mother has gone away and probably have stopped wondering if she is ever going to come back.

In some of her more severe withdrawal moments, I could see her sitting up and rocking, hugging herself and screaming, throwing Kleenex boxes and lotion bottles and she would cry that she hates this stupid fucking hospital because gets more meds at home.  She should be home…she should be home…she should be home…she locks her pills in her bedroom so her kids can’t get them.

One of the many annoyed and perplexed doctors who rotated in and out of our room verified that she was born in 1959 and I had to pump up my oxygen when I overheard that.

Surely Vexx was in her late 60’s.  I pegged her for almost 70.  I thought it strange that she rambled about her 14 year old daughter and that she should be at home helping her with her homework.  I knew that something was off: I thought national Enquirer, old ladies having babies, images of elderly women breastfeeding infants swirled in my mind.  She is NOT ONLY 10 years older than I am.  But alas, Vexx very much the definition of rode hard and hung up wet.

He kids did not want to visit her.  In a rant, she told me that they miss their old mom…they don’t like to see her like this…do ya think?

On my medication, my heart rate stays at a constant 108 to 135.  But when she would pass out after a dose, she would drift off and I would see my monitor bump down every once in awhile to 103,102,101…ahhh…sweet relief.

I didn’t have any visitors until I broke down on the second day and called Mike crying to pop in and see me.   I was losing my edge with her, unable to endure much more of her unsolicited conversations through the curtain.  The nurses gave me headphones so I could plug into my remote control and watch 12 uninterrupted sleepless hours of a House marathon on USA network.  I am sure the headset cost me about $100 but worth every penny.  They are still in my purse in case I have to go back.

But let’s discuss the visitors of Vex…

The first night I was there, her husband came in, an Ethan Frome, a sad insurance salesman who is apparently about to get downsized, as I hear from one of Vexx’s many erratic cell phone calls.  He is a little man, beaten down and there isn’t enough Wild Turkey in the world to help him forget that that this woman is going to eventually come back home.  She cried and she whined and said to him, “Why didn’t you call me back, I have been calling and calling you (and believe me, she did) and he said to her, “There is something wrong with my phone, it keeps on going dead” and Ethan Frome and I both knew that it’s dead because he can’t bare to turn the god damn thing back on.

Vexx tries to throw the curtain open for the tenth time to show me the mickey mouse boxers that he brought her from his underwear drawer.  And she has been showing them to me all day.  She repeats herself a lot.  I start to clutch my keegel when I hear her stretch and moan in pain for the curtain.  She would pull it back and then I have to look at her sagging tits hanging out the sides of her hospital gown, shaking sad Ethan Frome’s ridiculous Disney boxers that you know he got for Christmas 5 years ago.  She yells at him for bringing her some of his old t shirts for her to wear: he “fucked up” because they have “baloney pits.”

*Sigh*

all I could do at that point is sit back and wait for the nurse to come in and check my vitals so I can signal her to pull the curtain shut again. I could fffffeeeelllll him trying to leave.  I can hear him saying, “Ok, well..” half a dozen times, he cannot take one more minute with her.  I think about what it was like when they met and fell in love?  She was the outgoing one.  Did he court her?  Were they affectionate?  How long did it take in their marriage before he became shrunken by her constant badgering, nagging, complaining, whining, crying, never ending beat down.  Or did she become that way because he never paid any attention to her?  Wasn’t interested in hearing the sound of her voice?  If I have to hear the sound of her voice one more time, I think that I might stab her with a fork and then we will see how much medication she will need.

Frome leaves and Vexx howls.  I buzz my nurse for an Ambian.  It’s going to be a long night.

But now here I am back home.  I am tired now, really feckin weak and still trying to recover.  I get really short of breath and need to lie down after every little mundane task.  It’s all very Camille.  But I am not cleansed of this experience quite yet.  I still have yet to talk about the mother of Vexx and the gas bill visit.

The world seems to me a lot darker after the time change.

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