Wednesday, March 18, 2015

TV Day

I'm getting ready for knee surgery next week, so I'm not doing much the next few days. I can't afford to do any more damage to it. That means, some quality time in front of the TV On Demand. First up, past episodes of Amish Mafia. Yes, you read that right, there is really an Amish Mafia (well on Reality TV, that is) and has ben on TV for 4 years.

This episode shows them trying to get the Amish into politics because former (and current at the time it was filmed) PA Governor Tom Corbin taking a stand against the Amish. I live in the far northern part of the State, so I never read about it, but they had real news footage of Corbin and his security showing them in no uncertain terms that they are not wanted or even going to be tolerated in the public sector. Really frightening to see Constitutional Rights stripped away.

The rest of the show is pretty funny. Who, in their right mind, would shoot and blow up things with a news crew following them? Anyhow, it's funny to see how these people act for the cameras. We get to see Amish Lebanon Levi, Merlin and Mary go against the law and Mennonite advisory Devil Doug. I do my best to translate the Amish~German they speak, but it's not the high German I learned in college. I can keep up a bit, enough to get the just of what they're saying, but it doesn't translate directly to English.

The sickness that got me in 2006, that destroyed my body. Yeah, I was a size 14 child again for a few years and got to wear my favorite clothes, but it took the vitamins and minerals out of my body and now my bones, hair, teeth, etc ... have lost everything they need to stay healthy. I know it's happening again because I can't keep more than a few bites of food or drinks down. It hit over the weekend and yesterday was the worst ever. I can stand to lose a few or more pounds and get back to my fighting weight.

I'll update as soon as I can, but I'm sure I'll be ok. I'm use to having  3 or 4 surgeries a year. It hurts a lot, but I guess it's just my time to pay the piper for the glorious results of a mis~spent youth.

UPDATE:  I just finished Mountain Monsters Season 2, Episode 2 that is supposed to be our merry gang of rednecks hunting monsters in the Appalachia Mountains. (Hey, I love the paranormal) Anyhow on this one, the group is after the evil Chupacabra, only they got the facts about the creature all wrong. I can forgive that, but at the end, they "capture" the monster and just give brief glimpses of it in the "trap." They need a better film editor because it was painfully obvious that what they had in the box was not a large, hairy black cryptic with 2 inch long fangs, but a cuddly blonde dog with a green collar with the name of the trainer on it. SIGH! Please, now I love a good fairy tale and really love to see them get all worked up and curse a bit, but it is not ok to show me a Labrador Retriever and tell me it's a monster. I may get confused, but I can still see. Producers of Mountain Monsters on Discover Channel: You really need to hire someone to watch the show to make better edits, unless the who purpose of your show is be an hour~long joke with an expanded cast of the Three Stooges. If it's the joke, then you have a real winner here. I'm not sure I'll be able to watch it again and I love shows like this. I even watch In Search of ... knowing at the end it will be, "We didn't find him this time, but next ... "

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Happy Mothers' Day! (UK Version)

I quickly popped open Facebook this morning before I got in the shower and there was all these "Happy Mothers' Day" posts. In my sleep~deprived mind, it doesn't hit that it's only March and we celebrate in May.

After my shower, I call my mother to wish her a Happy Mothers' Day. She was really wondering if there was something she didn't know because my brother had just called her to do the same thing. She was laughing when I told her it was in the U.K. where it's celebrated today. She was going to call my brother later on to let him in on the joke.

That got me thinking. Why can't we celebrate the love of the ones who mean the most to us while we have the chance? We aren't guaranteed another breath in this horrid veil of tears we call "life." Athena knows I've been slapped upside the head with that enough to last several turns of the wheel. I've lost more of the ones who I've loved the most than I can even bare to think about. The snap of a finger and it could be more.

I'm having surgery again next week. It's supposed to be a simple same~day procedure on my knee, but it was scheduled several months ago and since then, I've had a few nasty spills and one put me to the floor because my knee would no longer support my weight. I'm not afraid to leave hell. I know where I'm going. I see it so clearly in my mind, it seems like I can just take a step and be there. The ones I love are waiting for me. My place in the Summerlands is assured. My little cottage in the woods, covered in vines and filled to the top with all my furry friends are waiting at the Rainbow Bridge for me to come get them.

I had a near~death experience once. I don't tell too many people about it because people don't know how  to take it. Some will believe, some will say it was my oxygen~deprived mind just projecting images from the past, but I know the truth. I was in ICU after a massive surgery. I'm very claustrophobic and kept taking the oxygen mask off that was keeping me breathing and pushing the pain-pump as often as possible. I can hear the skeptics from here, but give me my moment. My mother was at my bedside, she rarely left me. I knew she was there on my right side, but I felt a presence on the left and looked over. There was my precious, beloved Adonis. My faithful companion in life and now it seemed he was keeping the faith and was ready to lead me away from all the pain and torture. He looked the same as this last photo of him, right before I betrayed him in the worst way.

I turned to him and tore off the my face and turned to him and just starting talking. I was begging him to forgive me. I had to make a horrible decision earlier that year and had to let him go to the Bridge. I still feel like it was the worst betrayal in the world. He trusted me completely. He was looking in my eyes when he took his last breath. It was my essence he breathed in, my eyes he saw, my hands holding him and stroking his silky head. It was my voice, telling him how much I loved him and hoped he could forgive me. Then I went into our daily routine. I trained him in German and that's what I spoke to him at the end. "Ich leibe dich, meine leibchen."  I begged him not to leave me and to stay or take me with him. I was so sorry, I wish it didn't happen. He just looked at me with his beautiful eyes and put his head on my bed and just waited. I heard my mother crying. She knew I wasn't talking to her and there was no one else in the room that she could see. She doesn't understand any German. She knew who I was seeing and knew I was failing. All of that was in the back of my mind, but the pain was so great, I just wanted it all to stop.

I've been in constant pain for over 20 years, after a botched spinal nerve block, during an emergency C-Section. Since then, the pain in my head rarely goes away. I have spent so many days in the hospital, hooked up to pain pumps, just to keep my head from exploding. Then the daily medicine and emergency rescue shots. I can't give myself shots, so my husband will give them if he's here. If he's not around, my son has to come and give the shots. He's only 20. He had to learn how to give his mother injections when he was only 10 years old. Far too young for such a huge responsibility. He's not like other kids his age and never has been. He has a genius IQ, but we don't have the "right" name, so they thought he needed Special Education and was put in with the kids with lower IQs. He hated going to school and begged me to take him out and homeschool him because his sister was homeschooled. I went to the school and they had me sign a paper that it was against "Professional" advice that I removed him from special ed and I knew the risks. The funny part, if it was so sad and pathetic is, the next week, he was given an IQ test and immediately put in the Gifted Program. He wasn't given an apology and neither was I. The local school has been a total nightmare for us. I was never so happy as seeing my son get his diploma and know he never had to deal with those "professionals" again. When he was asked to be a pallbearer at his cousin's funeral, I asked him if he could handle that and he didn't have to. He was only 10 years younger than the man he would carry on his last trip. He had held my hand when his cousin was taken off life support, so I knew his strength, but even a diamond can break under pressure. He looked at me and said, "If I don't do it, who will?" Two days later, he helped carry Bobby to his final rest. That was our Thanksgiving last year.

I suppose for those who have made it this far and thinking I'm a bit nuts by now. Probably a little, but in 2015, who isn't?  I'll wrap it up with this: Celebrate each moment, live life to its fullest and never forget to tell the people you love just that. Don't wait til they are gone. Bring flowers for no reason other than you love them. Call, text, email, send smoke signals, whatever you have to do to let those you love the most know it and celebrate every day. That's what this whole rambling post is about. Just remember to say I love you, in any language, just say it. Standing at the bedside of an empty, broken shell is too late.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Tax Reform Needs Done NOW

Another day, another demand letter from a tax agency. It would be funny if it weren't so sad. I haven't been able to work in almost 2 years. I'm disabled and just waiting for the State to send the paperwork that shows they believe I'm disabled.

I went through the hearing. Their own expert, who is there to tell the judicial hearing judge that there is work that a person can do and go out of their way to keep people like me to get disability. After an hour, which my husband wasn't allowed to attend, their occupational specialist stated quite clearly that there is absolutely nothing I can do either full or part time to earn a wage. The judge looked stunned because the purpose of this is to keep people from getting the help they need. My doctor told me at least 6 years ago that I need to stop working because it was killing me. I didn't listen because I didn't want to be "one of those people." Not one of the kind they show on TV and demonize in magazines, TV shows and especially the news. A person who is just too lazy to work and expects the government to pay me to sit home on the couch, eat bon bons and watch Oprah.

Nothing could be further than the truth. I kept fighting until July of 2013. My last story was a murder preliminary hearing. The girl was my son's age. They went to school together and I was one of the mothers who would always volunteer to help out for anything the school needed. I've gone on field trips everywhere in the State. One morning, I was dropping my son off for a trip to a gifted competition. I pull up at the school and my son gets out. I tell him to call when they get back and I'd come pick him up. His teacher came running up to my car, asking if I was ready to go. What? I didn't know I was going, didn't know they even needed a chaperone. Luckily, I had my camera in the car ( I never go anywhere without a camera), so I parked the car and got in with the rest of the students and the teacher and we went to the trip. I had to call my husband to tell him where to find the car because we had other plans for the day.

That is the person I was. I covered court, meetings, local events, all things that you find in newspapers and magazines. At one time, I had 7 jobs. Yes, you read that right, 7 jobs. I wrote for two newspapers, a radio station and took meeting minutes for four different government bodies. It finally took it's toll on me and I spend more time in the hospital than at work. I had been hired as a full time staff reporter for a newspaper. It killed me to turn in the paper's camera. I called home and he told me to go wait at a  convenience store. He and my dad met me there and dad drove me home. I was crying too hard to drive. I took a year off until another newspaper called and asked if I could go to one event for them. My head was exploding and I couldn't drive, so my father drove to the event. I covered the event, wrote it up and sent it to the paper. That sucked me back into the reporter's life. I never missed an assignment. Even when I couldn't drive, one of my kids or husband would drive me. They'd go with if it was a meeting where there was food or they'd take a nap til I was done.

When I had to sit through that final preliminary hearing for the poor girl who was slaughtered by her ex~boyfriend, I knew it was too much. I had been dealing with the pain and even got the paper an exclusive  ~ an interview with the alleged murderer's best friend. The editor couldn't say enough about how wonderful  it was, but the next day tells me he wanted someone who wasn't as dedicated to their family. What a joke. I missed so many family events for my job. He just doesn't like women and wanted to hire a "man" It was for the best. It made me see that there is no loyalty and I was killing myself for nothing.

My doctor was pleased that I finally listened. He sent in at least six inches of paperwork on my health conditions and surgeries to Social Security. That was two years ago come July. Now I can focus on my health and not have to worry about being called out to some fire or wreck at 3 a.m. in the middle of a snowstorm.

Why does the government make it so hard for the truly ill? It seems that the frauds get approved immediately because they are depressed. Don't get me wrong, depression can be debilitating, but it's also easy to fake. I don't want to need help, but there is not choice. My son is in college and is transferring to a larger college this fall. My husband doesn't make enough on his own to keep us going.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

The Walking Dead

This show came out at just the right time. The paranormal is hot and zombies are some of the hottest creatures, next to vampires, of course. I'm positive people didn't expect it to explode and become one of the top, if not top show on cable TV.

The cast has changed over the years, but the core group has a only become more like a weekly visit.  I believe Rick was meant to be the top dog and sex symbol. How did Daryl become the absolute favorite person on the show? He's a redneck bad boy who has gone from being a loner to second in command. Everyone loves Daryl. He's on all the tee-shirts, posters and everything. The most popular phrase is, "If Daryl dies, we riot!"

It's time for everyone to enjoy a show that lets people know we can survive anything.

Sunday, March 1, 2015

More Hospital Time

This time it isn't me though. My son called me Wednesday and said his chest was hurting him. I told him to come get me and we'd go to the hospital. He didn't like the idea because he's been in the hospital far too often as a kid.
Three years ago, his left lung spontaneously collapsed. I was holding him when the surgeon put the chest tube in. Let me tell you, it was not a fun experience. He was in the hospital about a week and I stayed on a tiny cot beside his bed. When it came out, we were told it wouldn't happen again. Well, a week later it happened again. The hospital where he was the first time wouldn't touch him again and he was sent to another hospital 45 minutes away. They refused to allow me to be in his room and I could only be in there for 20 minutes every few hours. That can't happen anymore.
So we get to the hospital on Wednesday and after a CT and Chest X~Ray, he had another lung collapse, so I was standing there holding his hand while the tube was inserted. It kills me that, as a mother, I wasn't able to protect my baby. He's 20 years old, but he'll always be my baby. Mothers understand that.

It's now Sunday and I have been out of here for less than an hour. Yesterday, I had to go home and shower. I could smell myself and it wasn't pretty. :(
The chest tube was crimped yesterday and his chest e~xray today looks good. When the surgeon looks at him, he'll pull out the tube and if it looks good enough, he'll he able to go home. We're hoping that happens. It's been a very long week.
I've been here too long and I'm starting to lose my mind. I think I'll be going home today, whether or not he is released today or tomorrow. I need a break, it's time for Daddy to sleep on this lumpy couch.
I missed the Ridgway Chainsaw Carving Rendezvous for the second year in  a row. Last year, I had just had knee surgery and couldn't walk around. I'm having the knee fixed again next month because the first surgeon really did a lot of damage to me. I can't forgive that. He knew he wasn't qualified to fix my knee but did it anyhow. I would never allow him to work on my pet rock.
The snow is really coming down hard. I'm not looking forward to driving home in this. I rarely drive anymore. The pain and other health problems have takeaway my ability to live a normal life. What did I do in that previous life to deserve this punishment? I hope I at least lot of fun doing it!
Will update this after I talk to his surgeon. Have a good day, all!