Guess what? Times are hard! Physically, financially, emotionally. I'd get in line except that, at the moment, I eschew the queue.
Monday, my first eye operation has been scheduled -- it's finally definite. There were some weird shenanigans around getting information to the right people at the right time, but, as usual, it all worked out.
It will likely be a two-fer: replacement of the lens in the right eye and poking a little hole in the back to help with drainage, thereby treating both cataract and glaucoma.
Because of my spasticity, it will be under general anesthesia, which does not make me happy.
Oddly, this bit of news cheered my new pain managaement doctor immensely. He said,"O! Maybe they will use propofol. I think you will enjoy that."
I do a lot of just looking at this man, and wondering.
My previous "health care professional" at the PainDude's office will not be returning following maternity leave. I wish I could say it was because of her simple (profound!) love of being a mom, but it's more driven by the fact that the baby has Down's Syndrome and needs lots of care. She's a lucky baby to have been born to such a mom.
But it's my loss! We had just hit our stride, after a rough start last year -- I met her just after freeing myself from the confinement of the Long Term Acute Care Facility, otherwise known as a place to hide the sick and disabled until they can be permanently stashed out of sight. So when Natalie and I first met, I was a snarling beast, ready to run, trusting no one, and very, very debilitated.
We worked our way through it. She was smart and reasonable.
This extremely trained and brand new physician who was supposed to just sub for her... is smart, very compassionate, and close to being idiotic. He knows a bunch of stuff and knows hardly anything about what to do with it. He's cost me beaucoup bucks already in the pursuit of dream treatments, and has given me advice that proved faulty -- prompting a phone message that bordered on hysteria. "Disregard what I told you..."
Not to worry!
He is very sweet and extremely over-involved. He has never seen anyone suffer as much as I suffer. Do you think I need to hear that? Would anyone garner anything positive from hearing that?
Anyway, he thinks I will get a kick out of general anesthesia, being unconscious and all, thereby not feeling my usual pain. I'd love to point out that scoring me a dozen or so joints and letting me smoke them at my leisure would be something more likely to be remembered as relief.
"Hey, man, I really loved being unconscious. That was great."
I'm sorry. He'll grow. I'll grow. It'll be touching and rewarding.
The second surgery will be on the 26th. After each surgery, we have to drive every day to the eye doc's office to have my pressures checked, because any eye surgery causes a spike in intraocular pressures. For most folks, no biggie -- but since I have a pretty nasty case of glaucoma, it could wreck my optic nerve and so on and so forth. The surgeon asked me if I could handle extra "emergency" surgeries. That, again, is a weird thing to say/ask to someone. Were I to say "no," what would that change? As it was, I told her it was a familiar scenario, albeit never before with my eyesight at stake. Usually just limbs.
She's very cool -- about as tall as my knees, hair down to her ass, lovely, lovely high-heels, beautifully tailored clothes, tough as nails, focused, super technical and precise. If I had only followed my intuition a few years earlier and ditched the old fart who was following the glaucoma earlier... I'd be in better shape.
He also had a love for reuben sandwiches and garlicky things that did not endear me to him overly much as we communed face-to-face during eye exams.
But the purpose of this ramble -- the first decent photo of Ms. Marmy Fluffy Butt in close to five years. She appears before you recently groomed by moi, willing to be seen (ears to the front, the "i tolerate you" stare), and knowing that the "boys" have been getting all the photographic glory.
Without further ado, here's my girl:
|Marmy, August 2013|
She remains feral, usually during the daylight hours. When darkness descends upon our segment of the planet, she becomes a fur ball of flaming love, head-butting for pets, offering up her tiny, warm, round belly.
She's remarkably small, never crossing the 8 pound mark, except for the one vet visit soon after we first took her hissing and ack-ack-ing self in, when her stomach almost hit the floor due to the five kittens she unwillingly harbored. Only eight months old at the time, you could tell she was hoping to meet the Law and Order: SVU team.
Today, I need to capture her, as she got into it with Buddy the Outrageously Large Maine Coon, and he slashed her face, managing to leave a large puncture wound near her mouth. She's going to love me -- for capturing her, as well as for cleaning what looks to be a painful wound. But we are not having any abscesses around these parts. Not right now.
My other plans to get me through the weekend without going bonkers? Well, first, I am not naive. Well, not too much. The Spaz Attacks have been BRUTAL. Fred says I've turned part pretzel. When the Spaz Attacks hit, and they no longer have predilections for the night alone, I darken the room, take meds, put on my earbuds and try to get lost in music. Still, I end up screaming in 15 to 40 second intervals, with a string of curses to follow. I have taken to getting very mobile in bed. Sideways, with legs hanging off. Head at the bottom of the mattress, allowing me to press the spasming leg into the black metal headboard festooned, festooned, I say, with pillows of various densities and shapes. This goes on for hours at a time.
Dobby and Buddy are my little saviors. Marmy would be, as well, but Buddy is so freaking territorial, he chases her -- and not at all playfully or gently -- away. I will be moaning, attempting to sing along with some 1950s classic on my sweet Sansa Clip player, or belting it out with Nina Simone -- my God, I'd have gone crazy months ago without Nina Simone -- without Mary Black, without Bob Dylan and Neil Young, without, even, Deadman. Definitely without my darling dead Townes Van Zandt. I know Nina's dead, too, and that kills me, but Townes... man, did he fuck up. Bonnie Raitt, JT, the Stones, Michelle Shocked, Sweet Honey, Paul Simon. Even the soundtracks to The Sopranos, God bless "Tony"'s soul.
Anyway... I'm laying around being a moaning unsalted pretzel and I will feel a rough tongue tentatively flick my forearm, or forehead. And it's one of the boys, registering their solidarity. It's a real crap shoot for them as when I move from side to bottom to top to catty-cornered, they get no notice, so there is no deep cat snoozing possible, not without risking a major bonk attack from a spinning dystonic.
Marmy is different. She would nestle in, and ride me like a broncin' buck.
I should not forget John Prine or Art Garfunkel, solo. Jackson Browne. The Raveonettes. The Roches. Phil Ochs.
When was the last time you listened to Phil Ochs?
Anyway, again: It still takes a boatload of drugs to stop the jerky jerks, and why I don't just take the boatload of drugs first thiing, I cannot explain. It can't be good for me. But neither can all that suffering.
The risk of respiratory depression, euphemism for death, versus the risk of insane pain, forever? What a battle, fought in a truly fevered pitch.
© 2013 L. Ryan