It’s been a lovely six weeks. It started with laryngitis, moved on to a kidney stone, and then the flu. I hoped it was done but now I have upper respiratory crud which includes crud in my lungs. Breathing takes a lot of effort. The alternative – well not acceptable.
My frustration is I want to write! I have recently finished two manuscripts (they are in the editing pile with two others). I have several other stories all pushing at me. All I want to do is write but when I’m struggling to breath and coughing so much everything hurts, I struggle to put words together.
I’ve done the responsible thing – gone to the doctor and gotten antibiotic. Now I’m have to give myself time to heal and rest. I’ve got stories pushing at me – one I thought was going to be a light and easy story but it very quickly turned into a much more complex story than I expected. I’m not sure I like it. In fact, I considered deleting everything I’d written beyond the opening scene but I found myself hesitating.
I’m always telling people – I write the story the characters tell me. If that’s the case, I have to go with the story the characters are telling me. It’s another assertion of trusting myself. Ultimately, I have to go with what I’ve got and if I hate it when I’m done, I’ll rewrite it.
I’m going to get better. This upper respiratory crap will go away and I’ll feel better. In the meanwhile I’m going to let the characters whisper in my head and see what stories wind up on the pages. The worst that can happen? I have to do a rewrite. With any luck by the time I shift back to crochet mode, I’ll have finished several manuscripts and I can work on editing and publishing.
For the last few days I’ve been unable to talk – lovely laryngitis. During a busy time at my day job, this is not conducive to getting work done. Yesterday I had a hard time eating which for me is an indicator the laryngitis is going away.
After supper last night (which was soup), I got this pain in my back and side. I’ve had three kids and gallstones. This was bad pain, bend over double, take my breath away painful. Vicki and Ken were already in bed so I took myself to the ER.
After giving blood and urine, they gave me delaudid – one of the two pain meds I know I’m not allergic to. It was mostly ineffective. Eventually – after they paired it with a muscle relaxant – the pain eased enough.
Now they gave me the delaudid, which I’ve had before and have driven with no problems. However, they told me I’d need a driver to go home. My problem? No one at my house answered their phones. I tried, my two daughters in Georgia tried but Ken doesn’t keep his phone by him and Vicki often turns her sound off.
Finally after many attempts to reach them, I called my sister and asked if she would be willing to drive to my house and wake someone up. She did – thankfully. She also took Ken to the ER so he could drive me home (I had my car).
We got home about midnight. I was still in pain but I put the heating pad on my back and tried to sleep. I was up and down a few times but somewhere around two, I passed a 4 mm kidney stone. I slept from 2 to 5:15 and then went back to sleep around 6:30 and dozed till 7:30.
If you are given a choice – don’t pick kidney stones. Gem stones are pretty and sparkly choose them instead.
It’s been a rough year for us with urgent care and emergency room visits, doctor’s appointments, tests, and procedures. Last year our co-pays were lower and a few years ago, we rarely saw a bill with our insurance. We paid our premiums and co-pays and the insurance paid the rest.
Unfortunately that isn’t the case. Ken had a kidney stone this year. The emergency room visit cost us nearly $7K. The procedure they did to blast it was about $23K. We paid our co-pays but we’re still going to be left with $715 to pay.
One of the benefits for my job – a flex plan. I set aside money every year for medical expenses. This year we were going to do eyes and teeth. That was the plan. It won’t be happening. My flex plan funds have been eaten up with co-pays, prescriptions, and tests. I don’t have enough left to pay the hospital bill for Ken’s procedure. I’ll be budgeting that in – somehow.
We aren’t done either. I’m supposed to have an allergy test and sinus surgery this year. I’m waiting on approvals from the insurance to be able to do these things in the hopes I won’t spend six months on antibiotic.
I guess paying off bills and loans is going to be slower than I hoped. I look at my budget and wonder how I’m going to fit in yet another bill and the continuing costs. I start to wonder if I should put off some of the procedures, cut back on prescriptions, and so on. All in an effort to save funds. But aren’t I supposed to put my health first?
Next year the state is going to self-insure. If I’m paying this much now, how much more will I be paying? I already have a lot of money taken out of my check for benefits and insurance. How will we manage if I need to set aside more? These are some of the questions weighing on my mind. It makes me wonder if I should cope with my health issues and not have tests done. The allergy test is $1000 if the insurance doesn’t cover it. I won’t be having it done if the insurance denies it. The question becomes how much will the insurance cover? Same with the surgery. They’ll be knocking me out which means a full day in the hospital if there are no complications. How much of it will the insurance pay? How much will go on our ever growing bill? Makes me wonder if it would be better to wait. Antibiotics are less expensive but the stress on my body is unbearable.
We’re lucky in that we have good insurance. I cannot imagine how bad it is for those who don’t have – or won’t have – good insurance if ACA (Obamacare) goes away. I’m also very concerned with what happens next year with my own insurance. With self-insurance, I’m betting we will end up paying more – probably a lot more. This is one of the reasons I am going ahead with the tests and surgery this year. It is an added stress for me, especially since working for the state means raises are rare and small if you do get one. I’ll hope we don’t go too far into debt in order to get these things done.
The one good thing – I believe I’ve finally made the last payment for last year’s medical bills. Now I have to figure out how I’m paying this years. Anyone want to buy a book?
It’s done! I finally finished the big blanket for my youngest daughter. It took a lot of work and time but her Packer emblem corner to corner graph afghan is done. In the picture on the left it is laying on top of my king size bed and a few inches hang over on the left and right side. At the bottom you can see the G better. With it across my bed, it hung down about a foot on each side. It was a big blanket.
It feels odd not having a BIG project to do. I’ve started an afghan for one of my nieces. I have a couple of other projects but I’m starting to wind down on the crocheting.
It might be time to work on writing again. I’ve started the next Wayfarer novel and am looking forward to where it will take me.
It’s been an extremely busy few weeks. The two daughters in Atlanta came home for a weekend. We celebrated the youngest getting her master’s degree. We are really proud of her. We had a family gathering at our house over the weekend.
It was good to have them home to get after Ken for doing too much. He still hasn’t passed his kidney stone. He has good days and bad days. I’m hoping it passes soon so he is out of pain.
I did the middle daughter’s taxes while she was home. This weekend I have more taxes to do. I’ll have to tackle ours as well as doing two other people’s taxes.
This month is zooming by with one thing after another. One of the things I’d like to stop is the ER and Urgent care visits. It would be nice if everyone could be healthy for maybe two or three weeks in a row so we don’t have to go to either ER or Urgent care… I’m not holding my breath.
Apparently I’m getting to know the people at urgent care. Yesterday Ken had an attack of kidney stones. We spent three hours dealing with urgent care and then getting him prescriptions. It was a long day. He and I both napped when we got home. His and my list of things to get done – didn’t get done.
A good thing from yesterday – yarn arrived in two boxes. One box was my order from Herrschners which was part of my Christmas gift. The other box was yarn to finish a project I ran out of yarn for.
Last night after my napping and general grumpiness about the day, I organized the yarn. I got projects organized for taking to work (for lunch hour and training crocheting) as well as got the yarn organized for the project I ran out of the yarn. I even managed to get a couple of rows done on the project. It has 15 or 16 balls of yarn attached to it. My plan (and we know how well plans go in this house) is to work on the computer for a bit this morning and then go back to crocheting. The blanket I’m working on is for my youngest and she will be here in a few weeks.
It was a bad night for me with waking up a lot of times. The weather is also very damp which means I’m aching a lot. My gout and arthritis are not happy right now which makes me want to do nothing but sleep. However, I have to go back tomorrow so I’ll try to stay awake.
Once I’m done on the computer, I’ll work on a crochet project and hope to find something interesting to watch. I may have to resort to DVDs rather than tv. It might be a good day for movies as Ken will be wrapped up in football.
The blanket for my daughter is heavy and warm – which means I sweat a lot while I work on it. Each row is different so I can’t just crochet and crochet. I have to stop after each row to determine how many stitches of each color. It’s turning out beautifully but it is definitely time consuming. The nice thing – I’ve got two more like this planned and I have already taken the time to write up one of them so I have the color changes already written up. I am working on the second one in the hopes of making it easier to work with.
Hopefully my plan for the day works. If not, I’ll go with the flow. However, it would be nice to have things happen the way they are supposed to – for a change.