Saturday, January 28, 2012

May You Live Interesting Times...

This year is proving to be more odd and eventful than usual and we are only 28 days into it. On the medical front, the fistula isn't forming and the surgeon proposed a 'procedure' where a catheter opens up the bifurcated vein with a 'balloon' and makes it more accessible and shuts down the errant vein. I worried all night about that one, and had Excy call the next day to make sure no dye would be used (Amy -- dye equals die). Apparently the form you always have to fill out in a Drs. office? The one in my case that takes up three full sheets and about 30 minutes? They never look at them. Despite my writing how highly allergic I am to contrast dye, and a crash cart and a week in the hospital was involved in the past, they were planning to use dye. When Excy explained this wasn't possible because I am allergic to it, the nurse answered brightly that she'd phone in a script for steroids the night before. Excy said it was impossible; I was even allergic to the prep drugs now. Acting like they didn't believe me, they called back to say there was "nothing they could do for me." So a $15,000+ surgery has gone south and there's nothing they can do??! When Emory and NIH won't touch you with dye why would a local hospital feel secure in doing this?

I felt better after talking to a guy who said his fistula took 6 months to form, but since NIH wanted me to have the fistula in place by the time we went up in Feb., and they need to remove the kidney remnant before the tumor metastizes, they are considering options with Emory on how to work around the newest problem. You know the Chinese curse - may you live in interesting times? I am quite sick of it.

In lighter news, I went to the Jan. WOW last night and had a great time. The ladies were on fire. And many were over-served. Quite a few hysterics, funny stories, and tears were shared. After watching B spill a glass of red, and pour 2 glasses of white to over-flowing, I told S that I may not drink at a WOW again it was so amusing to sit back and watch and listen to the carryings-on. (I stop at a half-glass these days to protect the remnant). Not to imply we are all a bunch of drunken sots. It was just a weird night and most of the ladies had tensions that spilled over the end of the week.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Monday Ranting about Nothing Important

Is anyone else rather disgusted (and totally not fooled) by the ubiquitous celebrity interview where the interviewer (typically a male interviewer does this) raves and swears that xx female celebrity is just "glowing....luminescent...line-less...despite not wearing a stitch of makeup..."


Female interviewers seldom write this, because as woman, they know better. They are savvy enough to realize any celebrity worth their salt has long been schooled in the 'art' of creating a natural appearing face.

You can bet their double-digit-carat diamonds some makeup artist has taught them how to apply all levels of looks, from natural to red-carpet ready, with all the tricks to emphasize their individual features. And they either know all the tricks or employ someone who does.

Unless the celebrity is in their 20s,* if they're being interviewed for a magazine, newspaper article or anything else, a trace of makeup will be found on their face.

Period. End of story.

* that is another annoying interview feature in itself -- since most everybody has great-looking skin in their 20s, raving about some one looking fabulously natural in the 20s?? No biggie...and the interviews where they 'bravely' have their photos take sans makeup?? Oh, please...

Saturday, January 14, 2012

A Fateful Day

Yesterday we went to a luncheon given by a local paper. The function was called '20 for 20' honoring 20 people in the community doing good things in the state. Excy was nominated for his work with the wild horses. All we had to do was show up for lunch and get a certificate. Easy-peasy. Everyone was very nice and it was an eclectic crowd. And, they gave me the floral centerpiece at our table!~ which my cats are busily snacking on when they think we're not looking...

Then we ran across town that night for a cocktail/birthday party that evolved into the party that seemingly never ended - we finally left at midnight. The poor host - I think he must've thought he'd have to dig out the sleeping bags...there were still four people there when we made our exit. We didn't know anyone but the host and the honoree, but made several new friends.

I did have an unusual encounter, however. A young woman came up to me and asked if I had noticed that she was the only black person there.
Uh m. Yeah. Not that I cared about such things, but I do notice things.

Then she asked if I knew how many times black people washed their hair. I had no idea, but my black friends have mentioned their hair issues...I told her I had no idea; did she know how many times white people washed their hair? And would she believe I only washed my hair once or twice a week? (Gray hair doesn't seem to get oily).

She asked me why I used a cane, but before I answered she launched into a story about breaking her leg in two places...she was hyper and -- uh -- over-served, but sweet and funny...though I couldn't help wonder what points she was trying to get across when the conversation went off the rails...fortunately our host came over eventually and saved me...and she hugged me and pronounced me one of the few 'real' people she'd met, whatever that means.

Fortunately, I learned I wasn't the only one who couldn't figure her out.

When our host left his condo to walk us to the elevator to see us out and continue our conversation, she locked him out of his own house!~ I'm pretty sure someone unlocked the door, since I heard from him this afternoon and he didn't mention the incident...

Monday, January 9, 2012

between a rock and ...a rock?

Now that the mad dash through the holidays are over, I thought I'd allow myself some time to tread water. It hasn't exactly turned out that way, but at least I am getting things done in the new month of the new year that I've needed to attend to for some time. As I grow older I feel more acutely the energy I deplete that I won't get back, thanks to vHL.

Three days before Christmas NIH sent some bad news via email. I particularly commend them for their timing. They 'can't' pay for Excy's airplane ticket to accompany me up there for my annual tests, and, of more concern, they claim they can't perform the surgery to remove the kidney remnant because they're 'not set up for dialysis.' Since this has been the plan for the past 5 years (since they were responsible for my losing my right kidney), this crushing blow results in adding a $100,000 to the cost of the transplant. (A kidney transplant in this country is $200,000 with an additional $6000 for meds a month until they find the 'right' cocktail of drugs for your body -- NOT covered by medicare). That's a hell of a ho-ho-ho. We are still in negotiation with NIH so not sure -- I do plan to go up there in Feb -- I would like them to look me in the eye to tell me they're throwing me under the bus.

For now, I have been taking it day by day and accomplishing one project a day I have needed to do, and I am trying to keep my pact to myself to do some form of exercise every day, which really helps. I intend to go to everyone's blog to visit, since I haven't kept up for awhile.

I hope everybody has been having a good year so far. Thanks so much for stopping by this blog. I really appreciate you. (Smiley face here). I will get back to my usual snarky posts soon, I promise!