Thursday, February 22, 2007


Me again. That old proverbial hole again. This is the first time that I've sat down at the computer since my last post. Which means that I haven't been paying bills either.. so I've done that first. I'm not sure why I'm the one in charge of the bills, but I've always been and now it's so routine that Rob just assumes that it's all looked after. Ooops. Better late than never.

Was at the doctor yesterday to see if he could help along the LTD application. Every time the case worker calls he says they don't have enough information to go on and grills me on what my symptoms/problems are that keep me from working. He has my entire medical record now.. what more than MS, Chronic pain and extreme fatigue does he want? I end up in tears, frustrated and humiliated after each phone call. Finally I told him that my husband would talk to him next time, so I had to wait for him to mail me a release of information/confidentiality form to sign (because my verbal consent wasn't enough for him and I couldn't just pass the phone over - good grief).

I also told the doc that a friend of ours, an RT has offered to fit me for a mask for R's grandma's C-PAP machine. Rob has noticed that I stop breathing in the night quite a bit. The doc jumped on that, said he's refer me to a sleep lab right away. Possibly that could be all that it would take to get back some energy. Wouldn't that be wonderful? Wouldn't it also be frustrating that it could have been resolved sooner if I'd only thought of this before?

I also need bloodwork drawn to check thyroid, etc. God, I'll feel stupid if I've just been putting up with the fatigue as another MS thingie if it turns out to be another totally treatable medical problem.

Oh, yeah, we've sold the house! We did some frantic (well, Rob did) fix-ups - new bathroom, fixed wiring and ductwork, new furnace, painting.. then put the house on the market. One day later, we had 3 groups come through and 3 offers over asking price that night. We accepted the best offer the next day. Now we have to be out by May 1. Homeless..

I thought our house might be on the market forever because of the granny flat, but apparently not. We plan to build, but won't even be able to lay a foundation until spring, so we're, well, screwed. We'll probably have to move in the R's parents in the meantime. Haven't told them that yet.. They have a large unfinished basement, so R is considering finishing it quickly and we'd use it as our own private family area. We'd still share the kitchen and sleep upstairs, but would have a spot to get away on our own. Maybe. We'll see.

We have an offer in on a little power of sale house that R thinks he can flip quickly. Its cute, just needs some touch-ups and a new kitchen. If we get it, we'll turn around and list it again in 3 weeks. R has some time right now with the winter slow down, and we might as well make some extra money if we can. I'm good for the paint/decor decisions, R does all the contractor work.

Best get the oldest ready for the bus.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Craving sunshine

I miss sunshine. Maybe it has a lot to do with the fatigue. Whatever the reason, it wouldn't hurt to start taking vitamin D. Didn't I read somewhere that a study was done on giving larger than normal doses of Vit D to people with MS and had a positive effect? I'd forgotten all about that until just this moment. Then certainly it can't hurt to at least take a normal dose of the vitamin.

Another day and I'm up and dressed and showered by 9am. That's an absolute miracle after the past few weeks. And I've been able to function almost normally for 4 whole days in a row. ~s~ I do feel like the exacerbation is waning, but I still need rest in the afternoon if I don't want to go narcoleptic in my soup.

Maybe I won't have to wait for the LTD. Wouldn't be great if I felt well enough to go back to work? I've been pretty much a shut-in since before Christmas. I crave outside interaction. I shouldn't say shut-in, because we have gone out to friends houses on occasion, I've made it out of the house a few times to do some necessary grocery shopping and of course Christmas shopping. I've also not left the house in 3-4 days at a time some weeks. It's weird, the way fatigue and depression feels like I'm imprisoned in my own body. As far as the depression goes, it's managed by meds for the most part, but a little shadow does creep through occasionally. The suicidal ideation only creeps in as a passing thought rarely. And my little voice of reason is working much better at beating the crap out of those thoughts. Wish it could beat the crap out of the gremlins mining for gold in my arm, but what can you do, eh?

Today it feels like they are attempting a new tunnel through my wrist and down into my fingers. And every few minutes one of the little buggers sticks a dagger into the side of my right breast. Brilliant. Cheers.

In other words, life as usual. I wonder if I'd miss the pain if it suddenly disappeared? It's been a constant companion for almost 12 years now.

The one pain that I didn't mind and couldn't really even call pain was L'Hermittes sign pain. It was kind of cool - any flex of my neck would cause electric shock type feelings to run down my spine and both arms and into my fingers. People used to look at me funny when I'd forget and bend my neck and get a particularly good shock and yell "Oooooh!" However, that only lasted for a month and was replace by a vicious pack of feral gremlins who made their home in my right arm and liked it so much they stayed. Yes, I know that makes me sound crazy, but its just something that my husband and I use as code. As in, if I look somewhat pained while we are out, Rob will ask, "Gremlins?" and if I say yes, then we cut it short and leave if I need to.

We have Mom and Robbie and the olds coming for dinner tonight. It's mom's birthday - or it was yesterday, but she was busy then. Rob will treat them to another small feast. He's been pouring over his cookbooks for something new to do to pork tenderloin. ~s~ He's really looking for an excuse to use his morter and pestle that I bought him for Christmas.

Oop, time to go, the kids are streaming in the door, back from church with Mom and Robbie. I don't do church myself, but having been brought up with it, I have no problems with my children learning about God. They can make up their own minds when they are old enough.


Saturday, January 20, 2007

I'm back in the saddle again

Thank you for all the comments!

As you probably noticed, I've been absent for a few weeks. You might say that a hole opened up and I fell into it. The fatigue suddenly just became overwhelming. And I mean that I was sleeping 18 hours a day. That, and my body has decided that if prefers to be stiff and spasm-y to nimble and agile. Not that I was too much that way before, but you know what I mean. The pain didn't help, but for once it took a back burner.

The last 3 days have been encouraging - I actually got out of bed in the morning and didn't return to it until bedtime. Well, sort of. Yesterday afternoon I was overtired and fell asleep in my chair while reading Charley a book, so Rob sent me off to bed for a couple of hours rest. Then I was up again and managed to stay awake until 1:00 am. I'm not normally a night owl - except in December, owing to the amount of time I spent in bed during the day..

We went upstairs to visit the olds last night (my grandparents have the upstairs apartment in our house) and break the news that we are putting the house up for sale. They took it very well, but are upset that they won't be living with their great-grandchildren any more. Mom is going to help them find either a seniors apartment building or a retirement home that has apartment style rooms. I was worried about telling them, but aside from some minor whining on Grandma's part (that's just grandma, she loves to whine) they were cool about it.

Now to figure out where we are going to live. We have a few choices: we could build a house on a lot we own and live in it, build on the lot and our in-laws move into it and we take over the farm, or buy the house next door to the farm, providing the owner comes down in price. I would prefer to buy the existing house, but he is asking a ridiculous price, as in nearly $200,000 more than he bought it for. Granted, he bought it as a bankruptcy sale from the bank, but it still isn't worth what he is asking. And he hasn't made any improvements. In fact, the house is looking tough and needs a lot of work. Fortunately I'm married to a contractor. Anyway, if he is willing to come down in price by $80,000 - $90,000 we would be interested. Given time he might, but depending on whether our place sells fast or slow, we might not have the chance to wait him out. The real estate agent has told us that he'll never sell it at the current price and his own agent has told him that, but that is the price he wants and he says he won't come down.

What else is new.. Obviously I'm not working right now. Having luck like I do, I'd managed to use up all my sick leave during the year (and we get 15 weeks) because of a few other relapses. So, since I couldn't hang on until Jan, when the full sick leave amount would have been restored, I am forced to apply for LTD and UI. LTD has a 15 week waiting period, which is normally covered by our 15 week sick leave, but not if you use it up in bits and drabs during the year. In the interim, I applied for sick benefits through UI, which has a 2 week waiting period from the time you apply and then a 4-6 week processing period. Sucks.

Rob's grandma died the first week of January. She was 96. I really believed that she was going to make it to 100. At 96, she was healthier than someone 20 or 30 years younger and her mind and memory was still sharp. She had a fast growing cancer, primary unknown.. it took 2 months from the time they diagnosed it to take her life. There was no wake or funeral, just a memorial service at the retirement home where she lived. It was more a review of her life, which really was amazing. Can you imagine having lived nearly 100 years and witnessing history that we have only read about. Think just of the inventions that have happened since she was born.. cars, planes, phones, computers.. not to mention countries made or fallen, wars fought, governments come and gone. It was incredible how many things she remembered and the detailed stories she could tell. I'm sorry that Charley and Molly had so little time with her. Molly doesn't grasp that she is gone. Charley is quite upset, she was close with G.G. (for great-grandma). If they had been older she would have loved to tell them her stories and they would have loved to listen.

Time for my nap. My neck is getting stiff, so I'll give it a rest for a bit.

It's beginning to feel like I'm getting back into the swing of things after effectively taking a month off. Rob, the miracle husband, didn't even blink, but picked up the slack and offered comfort when needed.

Forgive me if I jump from subject to subject with no segue. I write whatever my mind wanders to.

Until next time -