Saturday, September 28, 2019

'scrips and horses

I spent over an hour on the phone with Blue cross, CVS pharmacy, and the physician's assistant for my ortho doctor all because the new script was written "either generic or brand" for the pain killer Ultram.  The nephrologist I saw said, oh no, brand only.  He told me that the generic was not the same as the brand; that the generic is a steroid and hard on the kidneys, where the brand was neither of these things.  So when the ortho doctor was about to write the drug, we explained what the nephrology doctor said, and  so he wrote his script.  And damned he wrote "either", and BC/BS sent me this vague letter about coverage for the brand, since the generic was available.  Therefore, phone calls.  Hopefully the ortho doctor will re-write the order.  Meanwhile, what was used to fill the current  supply?  I dunno.

I have had a very sore pair of knees, after my jaunt at the mall.  I am in terrible shape from my last surgery, and it is hard to do much exercise solely in the bedroom, (no jokes, please)  I do them, but I don't see the progress the physical therapist says is there, in small increments.  So I keep doing the ones he told me to do, as well as the ones from the original therapists.  There are subtle differences, but I just do them all.  And seeing the mall nearly empty, of both customers and stores, was sad, although my daughter had told me how little was surviving there.  I got to admit, I buy everything on Amazon or eBay, instead of chasing around trying to find things.  The only exception is heavy stuff, like furniture.

God this is a poor post, whining on about my ailments.  I will tell a better story.

When I was about 12 years old, my grandfather borrowed a horse from the next neighbor for me to ride while we were there (WV) at the farm, on vacation.  I couldn't have been so happy before then, being a horse crazy girl living in a big city (Miami).  He was fun to watch even when I wasn't riding, and he apparently learned what I carried when I showed up (grain).  But toward the end the owner showed up to claim  him again, to move some of his cattle.  The thing was, he was hard to catch.  After Dan and my grandfather had chased him around a bit, I stepped up to the fence (me on the outside) he ran up to me, and I took hold of his halter (a bad thing to do, really).  And so the men came and claimed him, and were suitably impressed with my skill.  All due to horse food.  And my grandfather, a real tightwad normally, indulged me enough to buy a horse brush, and so I learned the old adage, that the outside of a horse is good for the inside of a man (or a girl!).

Grandad borrowed the horse every year for 2 or 3 more visits, I thought of him as mine.  Until he was sold.  And so I learned (from Ben Franklin) the truth of " neither a borrower nor a lender be ".

Come to think of it, that horse was a blue-eyed paint, much like my Blondie horse.  I had her from 4 years old, to 26 years old.  The only equine I ever sold were the little pony and her two foals.  She was a mean pony, until you had a grip on her, when she gave up until the next time.  And neither of my kids could care any less about horses.  My son even told me he would never have horses because they were too much work.  He has a point.

Sunday, September 22, 2019

Silence is golden

Our land-line telephone doesn't work.  It has a dial tone, after dialing it rings once, then silence and some pops and buzz, and nothing after that.  I called the phone company (on the cell phone), and described the situation.  The agent checked the line from her end, agreed that there are "issues" with the line and said she would send an email with information about a technician visit.  When the email arrived, it set a visit for this coming Tuesday, but there is therapy scheduled, and C's jury duty may raise its bumpy head, please no.  We won't be able to plan our schedule until we know about the jury call on Monday night.  All those idle citizens that leap at the $40 a day for every day they are on call, not everyone just postpones things and trots off to the courthouse.  Anyway, the lack of robocalls is amazing, no jumping up to catch the phone before the answering machine picks up.  Very quiet.

The damn stink bugs have once again put in an appearance, clinging to the windows (outside! thank god) and making crunch sounds when they are stepped on.  Hopefully I can get in the car and shut the door before they arrive in the car.  I have a horror of them, the only saving thought is that they are very slow and stupid, easily caught in a tissue, and although they fly, it is done very slowly and with much noise.

The old grey cat has still not been seen, I guess for certain she died.  I just wish we knew for sure that she is not suffering.

I am trying to straighten up the room, but not being able to carry much as I use my walker.  I don't need decisions, only someone to carry things from here to there.  So I sort on the bed, trying to avoid "churning", where what is in A goes to B, B things go to C, and C things go back to A.  Net result; zilch progress.

I wonder, if I donate stuffed animals to Goodwill, will they see the ear tag for "Melissa and Doug" and know this isn't a run-of-the-mill toy?  The single 10 inch rabbit cost $25, and I hate the idea that it will be dragged around by one ear.....

So hard to give things you love to someone else.  I should have thought this through when I bought the rabbit.  Maybe I will donate my new winter coat instead, never worn because it is brown.  Just...brown.  Very warm and puffy.  I'm pretty sure there is an unworn blue coat in the coat closet too, but I can't get upstairs to look.  We didn't have much of a winter last year.  At least, I didn't.  I was in rehab and nursing homes from July 2017 until February 28th in 2018.  My only trips out were in an ambulance to doctor visits, if the weather was cold they left the heater in the ambulance running while they packed me up.  I don't remember snow.

Now I will leave you with a more cheerful item:

Saturday, September 21, 2019

Touch ID

I have finally (I hope) mastered the use of the touch pad on my MacBook Air.  I am so very tired of tapping my ID every time I move from one app to another, this fingerprint method on identifying myself is one of the main reasons I got this new MacBook.  When I first started working out the how-to for this feature, I messed it up and shut down all access to everything.  C finally got it sorted, but I became leery of trying again.  But I really had no choice, I changed by MacBook password and didn't apparently write it down correctly (sigh) so off to youTube to find a fix.  It was a breeze to do, I really didn't need all the stress I felt, getting myself into the hole.  So I thought I would re-attempt the fingerprint ID, and it seems to be working, so far, fingers crossed (my it is hard to type that way ).

My site counter just went over 45,000.  I realize there are lots of blogs that get 45,000 in an hour or less,  but I bet there aren't many with a running blog for 15 years.  So if you are just browsing along here, you won't run out of posts to read very soon.  Whether what I write is fun or even OK, give it a trial.  My therapist says this isn't a blog but (jokingly) a memoir.  I re-read them myself, and sometimes correct or add to them too.

Why do I have so much time to devote to this?  Well, back in June of 2017 I made one of the stupidest decisions of my life; I decided to have my knee replaced because it was so painful, I couldn't even completely go around the grocery store without medicating beforehand.  I went home after a week in rehab, and that first night I fell, getting tangled in the wheelchair pedals, and ripped several stitches inside my knee.  So back to the ED to get surgery #2.  With it, I fell at least once a day, and sometimes more; the problem was that my knee buckled, and it moved forward or to one side, while the rest of me headed for the floor.  I had a new physician for surgeries #4, 5, 6.  But here it is 2 years later, still getting therapy twice a week, still falling (tho less than before) and still unable to walk without a walker.  My current goal is to get to using just a cane, that doesn't seem so hard of an accomplishment does it?  Most of the time between surgery #1 and #6  I was in the hospital getting IV antibiotics for the infection I caught.  Number six placed a new knee that works pretty well.  My first physician was caught in a prescription sting, and has more things to worry about than my knee.  My current osteo doctor is terrific, especially having to follow another doctor's mistakes.  Anyway, that is why I have so much time on my hands; I still can't climb stairs without great assistance, and am therefore relegated to the ground floor bedroom.  There is just so much reading, writing, sewing, knitting, and so on, I can do, thus I also sleep a lot.  No pain meds unless I am in dire pain.  If you are considering a knee or other surgery, ask yourself what you will do if you need 2 years of rehab?  And then think again.

Most of the above is detailed in earlier posts, but this is just a paragraph and if you find it boring you can just hop past it.

One of our old old outdoor cats has disappeared, and our guess is that she has gone somewhere private to die.  She must be around 16 years old, ancient for an outdoor cat.  We had made the garage a sanctuary for her and her buddy cat, cool in the summer (not too cool) and warm in the winter, as both of the outdoor cats were drop-offs, just appeared one day at feeding time.  I have only touched them a few times, and no one can pick them up.  We still have 4 indoor cats, all 4 pound kitties, 10 years old now.  When these are gone, and so is the horse (26 now), no more pets.  N used to call the horse a four-legged lawn ornament, which is pretty accurate these days.

Still no calls for C for jury duty, thankfully.  No repair on the Subaru, Monday is the soonest they can work on the brake, so I extended the rental car until Monday (instead of this past Friday).  The logistics of getting all three vehicles where they belong, reminds me of the fox, hen and corn puzzle.

Only more expensive.

Monday, September 16, 2019

Pill catastrophe

We have two cats, unrelated, that have hyperthyroidism that need to be pilled twice a day.  One is not happy with the process, but resigned.  The other cat is a pain to medicate, writhing and struggling, but maybe getting a little better as time passes.  I had a cat several years ago with what I believe is the same diagnosis, but she was impossible to get a pill down at all, never mind twice a day.  In the end, I had her put down, damn it.  It is always the one most loved that goes the first.

We had a car problem.  On Friday, as C was driving home, all of a sudden one of the rear brakes started shrieking.  He called the dealer as soon as we made it home, and they said to bring it in at 3 pm.  They checked it out, and determined that the rear pads, rotors, calipers, drum, is there any other part of a brake system? were in need of replacement.  But, of course, they lacked one of the parts.  C asked if it was OK to drive, and the tech said, "as little as possible".  When C told me, I said "rental".  So we now have a Nissan Rogue 2002 for the week.  Not willing to take a chance with brakes.  It is damned hard for me to get in, as the seat is higher, but getting out is a breeze.  Many visits this week that can't be rescheduled.  Sigh.

Dinner time, bye for now...

Sunday, September 15, 2019

attic and trash

We (mostly C) have been stripping the attic.  It has taken place beginning with
Christmas of 2018, with the credo of "anything that comes out of the attic doesn't go back in".  So as the boxes and whatever makes it down, it goes in one of three piles:  keep, pitch, donate.  Donate is mostly bound for Goodwill, but nothing that is nasty, which rules out clothing.  The pitch pile is the largest, and three trips to the transfer trash site have already made the pick-up truck handier than the trunk of a dozen cars.  The keep pile is very small, and goes into the storage unit nearby.  Eventually it will end up in the other two piles, but not now.  Here are examples of what went where:

Keep:  microscope, brass weights for a balance in a lovely wooden box, a small
Christmas tree,  a rocking chair, a section of a modular couch; one of my mother-in-law's oil paintings, surprisingly nice; photo albums; tons of yarn; wreaths and wind socks; old functional cameras that have slowly been sold to KEH camera store; my collection of fountain pens; the cross stitch kits; ceramic glazes; sewing machine and fabric, thread, etc.; taxes, computers (at least 5); for now, R's stuff, until they can be winnowed.

Pitch:  all the baby furniture and car seats, that don't conform to modern safety regs; school books, notes, awards; ( and the books cost a fortune too); 8 track tapes; paperback books; ancient sleeping bags; tents in awful shape; all the nasty clothes; my wedding dress (45 years old), an evening dress (was I ever that thin?), all yellow and Krispy; most of the toys and games and stuffed animals; bowling trophies, all my riding ribbons (photo of the pile); bowling shoes; boxes of "stuff" that were never opened when we moved here 35 years ago; film cameras that are broken; do-dads and souvenirs that I don't even recognize; the list goes on and on.

Donate:  stuffed animals that are still in perfect condition (and there aren't very many);  a few (3) collector's dolls, that were my mother's weak spot and I wish I had given them to my aunt, and then it would have been out of my hands; guitar; keyboard; a huge electric oven, used once; a reel-to-reel tape recorder with tapes; a vinyl to CD machine, used once; all the vinyl records (4 boxes) to a collector in town; books and books and books, to the library (hardback only); the other oil paintings, they are in nice frames; bowling balls (eventually); jigsaw puzzles, never opened; it is hard to find stuff that isn't worn, damaged, or not intact.

It makes me tired just looking over this list.