It's been a few days since I had the chance to do anything but my regular memes, so it's time for me to play catch up. Let me tell you what's going on in my world.

Betty's condition is improving. Because she can't eat by herself, a feeding tube was inserted through her nose and into her stomach. Even though she was seriously drugged for the pain, she didn't like the tube and managed to pull it out a couple of days ago. Rather than put it back in, the vigilant nurses have been feeding her whenever she's awake and alert. It worked like a charm. She is now alert and talking, which means that she will be moved from ICU to a regular room once the chest tubes are removed. That should happen today or tomorrow.

I had some real excitement on Thursday afternoon with my retirement paperwork. In the midst of Betty's illness and my going back and forth to the hospital, I received a letter from the retirement agency indicating that they had received my application and asking that I contact the university's HR department to request that they not remove me from the insurance roll while the application is processed. So on Wednesday afternoon, I did as instructed. Much to my surprise, I got a response from the HR person who helped me take care of the retirement paperwork indicating that the university can't do what CALPERS had requested. It took several phone calls and faxes for me to learn that although I should have been removed from the insurance roll on July 1, a mistake that I made has worked in my favor. Because I turned in the application paperwork directly to CALPERS, the university doesn't know that I am retiring; therefore, I am still on the books, so to speak. No lapse in insurance coverage, which the only reason that I took an early retirement in the first place! Big sigh of relief.

The sorry state of my state has gotten worse. I didn't think it was possible; I was wrong.
  • California still does not have a budget.
  • We have no money to meet our financial obligations and such a bad credit rating that borrowing is not a possibility.
  • Unemployment is now just above 10%.
  • Our sales tax was recently raised to help raise funds but since so many people are worried about losing their jobs, they are not shopping enough for it to do any good.
  • We're in the third year of a drought so bad that water rationing will likely happen before the end of summer.
  • Just yesterday, I heard on the local news that the consistent increase in water temperatures on our side of the Pacific Ocean have made 2009-2010 officially an El Nino year. Rather than go into all the details now, I'm going to use the Thursday Thirteen meme to talk more about El Nino and its effects on the Golden State. Let's just say that it gets really ugly around here when El Nino pays us a visit.
  • Our fire season, which normally starts in September and goes through October, has started early. The dry brush, thanks to the drought, on the hills and mountains surrounding Los Angeles, coupled with the outward sprawl that occurred over the past decade, has set up ideal conditions for a far more threatening fire season than normal. It doesn't surprise me that the hills have started burning three months earlier tha usual.

My headaches seem to be under control for the time being. This is a very good thing. Does the absence of headaches mean that everything is well and good? This is my life, peeps -- nothing in it is well and good at the same time! The stress factor is currently high and with stress comes headaches, seizures, and eczema. It's been several days since I had a headache, but The Brain doesn't like to play understudy to my life for very long; therefore, It makes its presence known through seizures. Thankfully, the four that I've had in as many days haven't been too bad. Now the eczema, my body's stress-o-meter, isn't doing as well as the headaches and seizures. I'll save you the gory details and say only that my hands are covered with a rash and blisters that itch like mad. And now, add to the seizures and eczema a sciatic nerve issue that is giving me grief at the area of the right hip. Yesterday was w complete waste because the pain was so bad, I used a couple of Naprosen to help me get out of bed and later, off my chair. In spite of all this, things could be so much worse.

Here's wishing everyone a great weekend!

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3 Responses
  1. Anonymous Says:

    Glad to hear Betty is recovering so well. I can relate to your eczema problems -- had it all my life but until about 5 yrs ago it was always around my ankles and feet. It appeared on my hands and there's nothing that works for it. I've tried a bazillion prescriptions from the dermatologist and was allergic to them all. So I use eucerin aquafor - it looks like vaseline except it soaks into the skin and doesn't leave any nasty residue to get all over stuff. It does make the itching and scaling stop if I use it every couple of hours throughout the day. At night I mix it with vaseline and a concentrated hand cream and slather that stuff on really thick and wear those little white cotton gloves (plastic gloves or plastic wrap is suggested by the doctors but I can't stand those).

    Glad to hear the headaches are under better control! And great news about the retirement and insurance.

    Appreciated the update!!

  2. Anonymous Says:

    WOOT...Let's hear it for Betty...You go girl! Now get yourself much better so you can get home and spend your money so that bastard as son of yours can't get to it :)

    Glad to hear the insurance worked in your favor. That certainly doesn't happen very often. Good things happen to good people :)

    Glad the headaches have been under control Zip you just need to be positive and put the Brain in it's place. You are stronger than she is. I so people in the power of positive thinking...that and a good support system with family and friends. You know I've noticed that since you got the oxygen it just seems you've been doing better. I'm happy for that.

    I don't know if you can do this, but for your eczema my nephews daughter had that from birth. Ocean water seemed to really help. Maybe if you could go to the ocean and soak in it might help. I know that sounds crazy but maybe worth a try. Maybe the AED could even go get some for ya or your daughter?

    You da bomb my friend :)

  3. Carleen ~ Really good news about your friend Betty, glad you are still covered with your benefits at the university. Hope things will move along smoothly for you soon with them. Sorry to hear that you are having more seizures, but glad to read that the headaches seem to be quiet. I've said another prayer for you and your friend Betty.

    Oh at Midnight MDT another Close Up will be published. Go have a look and see if you can guess what I took a picture of.

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