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Wednesday, November 26, 2014

I'm on RANT! Give me my SOAPBOX!

As y'all know I'm typically a happy-go-lucky kinda' Gal. But with recent medical issues and law changes I'm finding myself quite frustrated.

First of all, our insurance decided it will only approve Farmer, Jr's prescription for his ADHD med with the name brand. The name brand is more expensive but I wouldn't mind if covered by insurance. However most if not all pharmacies, at least in our area, do not even carry the name brand. Generic only. So, now we have been in a battle regarding insurance coverage of FJ's medication.

We finally had to pay the entire amount of one month out of pocket as changing the medication type isn't a preferable option. I have spoken with numerous parents who have tried various ADHD meds and their children have had HORRID side affects. So, if it is working - risking change shouldn't be a consideration.

On another note, the laws have changed in the last two months regarding narcotics and prescription medications. I myself prefer not to take a pill unless I have to. Although, I have found myself on blood pressure medication, thyroid meds and the little happy pill for anxiety. But, I'm speaking primarily about pain medications. (I also prefer NOT to take an antibiotic unless I know I really need it. IMO my body's immune system needs to stay as strong on its own as possible.)

But over most of this past year I've developed severe chronic pain in my right hip. At first I thought it was my sciatica, then I thought it was popping hip syndrome which I had as a kid. Then I thought arthritis and lack of exercise (which is what exacerbated it in the first place. I go to the gym to get in SHAPE and I end up in PAIN and unable to exercise).

I went to my chiropractor, I went to my MD, I went to a personal trainer to work on my core and range of motion and mobility. Finally, I went to a hip and joint specialist. I tried a steroid injection but it only lasted two months instead of six. Turns out? My hip is degenerating.

The bone is not getting enough blood flow and thus it is dying. Apparently, as a child it grew in a more flattened shape rather than a well rounded ball. Which was cause of my issues as a child. So in the end after researching and finally meeting with a fantastic surgeon out of Austin, Texas, I have scheduled myself for a full hip replacement. I'm actually quite optimistic about it, knowing that come a few weeks and a few weeks of PT I will have relief from this constant chronic pain.

The RANT? Pain medication. I can't get it! Hardly. And I NEED IT. A few months ago the first specialist I saw that diagnosed me as needing a hip replacement. He prescribed me Hydrocodone. Normally, I wouldn't want that medication. I haven't taken in it years and years since I was having serious back issues when the kids were little. Even then I only took it at night.

The specialist prescribed me a months worth. When I finally returned because the shot had worn off and it was obvious that I wasn't going to be able to put off the surgery with injections twice a year like I had hoped, he was unable to prescribe that medication to me to get me through until my surgery.

Hardly anyone can. So, I have been prescribed Tramadol (which does nothing), and Tylenol-Codeine 3 (which I have to double up on for any relief). Even my surgeon has a letter to his patients understanding WHY these medications are now being so regulated but at the same time frustrated because patients like his who really need it can't get it. Those doctors who over prescribe and those patients who abuse medications leave those of us whom they were designed for still sitting in pain.

Awful, chronic pain. So, as requested by my surgeon I wrote our congressman. Hubby in fact, had a chance to meet with him last week regarding agricultural issues. And as I suggested, he brought up the issue about managing pain and the issues regarding prescribing it to those who truly need it.

It is SO frustrating that I and others are penalized and forced to suffer chronically because others are disrespectful and abusive and inconsiderate to those of us who actually need and deserve relief to function.

My dad is having the same issue. If my mom were to lose her pain medication she would die from the pain. I have a new understanding for those with chronic pain. Although I have always empathized, now in that same situation I have developed a new understanding.

So write your congressman. The deserving and in need shouldn't be penalized by the jack-@$$es who abuse their medications.

Off soap box…for now anyhow. On a side note, tomorrow is Thanksgiving! Find what you are thankful for. No matter how down and out things can seem, there is always a seed of hope if you just look for it. :-)


Monday, November 24, 2014

See? I told you I'd be back!


See, told ya' I'd be back. Today I've been pretty lazy. This morning I just felt like I had no juice flowing. Morning came too early me thinks. Part of it is frustration from constantly feeling like I'm not whole.

I haven't even showered yet (bad FW, bad bad). Lil'Gal has an appointment with her urology office so I'll be jumping in pretty soon. I HATE having to get the kids out of school early though. With all the state mandated testing I just hate for the kids to miss any instruction. While I understand the purpose of State Mandated testing I really think they are taking it too far. Kids are doing math one to two grades ahead of their actual grade level. Which makes me wonder, what is the point of even having a 'grade level'?

Anyhoo, enough about school. Thanksgiving is coming!!! Who's ready!?


Originally we were going to spend it with my brothers in Houston but things fell through. Poo. Not that I'll starve by any means. MIL makes a fantastic bounty of food. Well, we all pitch in a little here and there. This year I'm totally going to have to tighten my belt though. I've been doing pretty well about dropping some weight before my surgery date on the 10th of December. It takes a lot of restraint. And Thanksgiving will be a test of determination and will power. Especially, since I can't really do any type of cardio or exercise other than a few core routines.

I'm down an average of six - eight pounds and have another ten to go so that I won't be puffy faced and have this horrible ring around my waist. I have to say that I'm physically feeling better as I drop a pound here and there too. *pats self on back* A big part of this is having to give up my cheap koolaid. It's a sacrifice I'm willing (okay, begrudgingly) to make for the betterment of myself :-).

Okay. So, not much to put out here today. My wonderful blogging wit and humor that y'all have so fallen in love with are still a little rusty. But the important thing is - I'M HERE!

And it's only Monday… Make it a great week y'all!


Thursday, November 20, 2014

Where I've been and where I'm going… And how I'm getting there.

Sorry I've been away, yet again, for so long. Although Facebook has been a wonderful 'in the moment' way to keep up with my friends, followers, family and bloggers I have come to find that I miss blogging. Because with FB my life, thoughts and stories are shared in bits and pieces.

So, I'm ending my hiatus and coming home. I think blogging is also good for my attitude.  I miss the interfacing I find here in my Optimistic world.

So, what's new you ask? Grab a cup of coffee or a glass of wine.

Both my kids are in middle school now. I'm really proud of how well they have adapted to juggling 8 classes and extra curricular activities. Unfortunately, I haven't been ableo substitute so far this year for reasons listed further down in the post. :-(

Lil'Gal is in band. She plays the flute and she's actually pretty good! [She has the lips for it ;-) ] She's also in theater arts which, as y'all know she has dramatics cornered, and she LOVES IT! And she's a Junior now in Girl Scouts - be looking for her cookie sales pitch come mid January. ;-)

Farmer, Jr. has been pulling in great grades! Both of my kids are! I'm really proud of Farmer, Jr. because he has been working really hard to do his best in school and he isn't allowing his dysgraphia to hinder him. The school counselor and teachers are really great and work with him and myself. We are so lucky to be in a district that takes learning disabilities so seriously.

As for extracurricular with Farmer, Jr., hunting and fishing are his life. And of course driving the tractor or anything on the farm.

Both kids are still active in 4-H and preparing for this upcoming livestock show.

Which brings me to…… BUNNIES!!!

Midnight as a Junior Buck

I FINALLY got my BUNNY BARN! It is air conditioned so the bunnies aren't stressed by the summer and often even winter heat. I'll have to try and get a picture after the kids sweep and clean up in there. I just love it though! Hubby did AWESOME!

We currently have four polish, fancy show bunnies, one breeder buck and the of course the pets. Pepper and Paprika. (Pics to come in another post) We pick up our Californian meat pens on December 6th! Pretty soon we will  bunnies EVERYWHERE! 17 cute little noses and 34 cute little ears are just too irresistible!


Those of you who follow me on Facebook know that I have had difficulty with my hip. It started in the spring when Hubby and I joined the gym. Well, actually I had a serious issue as a kid and off and on it would bother me here and there over the years. But never severe. 

Anyhow, it was time that both of us get back in shape. I was really kickin' it, or should I say spinning it, in spin class. I LUUUUUVED spin class! I also participated in the 'Muscles In Motion' class. I was finally feeling good about myself and dropping some of the excess weight that found its way around my waistline.

I started having severe issued with my hip. It rapidly went down hill to the point that driving was a painful issue, walking hurt, trying to sit down or trying to get back up. I literally found myself crawling to the restroom in the middle of the night. Which I refer to as the crawl of shame.

I  saw my chiropractor thinking it was caused by my sciatica. I met with personal trainer three times a week to work on my core and my range of motion. Finally I saw my regular practitioner who referred me to a joint specialist. After an x-ray it was determined that I have necrosis in my hip. Which means the bone is dying due to a poor blood supply and it is basically crumbling.


I have to say, I have a new understanding for people with chronic pain issues. I've always been empathic. But, being in this situation myself? Totally changed my perspective. Where I thought I was being supportive before I now realize no one has any idea of what chronic pain is until you experience it.

The specialist stated that I could try a steroid injection but that ultimately I am a candidate for and am going to need a hip replacement. I tried the injection. After about a week it kicked in and I was on top of the world! No more waking up in pain all night long. No more limping around. No more falling down. (I fell down a LOT. My body looked like Hubby had been beating me.) No more crawl of shame. I thought, "Hey! If I can get one of these every six months then I can put surgery off for a couple of years!) NO GO.

About two months later I started going down hill - fast. I was back to falling down, limping around, howling in pain when I tried to sit down, waking due to extreme chronic pain, and the crawl of shame.

The GOOD NEWS? I found a fantastic surgeon in Austin do to word of mouth from friends who have had similar issues. His surgical group is one of the best (if not THE best) in the nation! He's is state of the art in his field! I'll have my own SUITE in the hospital while I'm there. And, I've been told by former patients that the food is wonderful. Like a 5 star hotel!

So while I was somewhat depressed for months knowing that the inevitable was ahead of me, I'm now optimistic and excited to have this done. I'm schedule for surgery on December 7th! I should be healed in time for Christmas and the bonus is the kids will be on winter break so I don't have to worry about school, etc. The recovery is about three weeks with physical therapy.

So come mid December I will no longer be Glass Half Full Gal. I'll be BIONIC Glass Half Full Gal!

Happy Thursday and thanks for reading me!