Friday, November 30, 2018

Health Update: Well, Shit.

It's been a difficult month. I've been prepping for surgery for the last two and a half weeks. Lots of logistical loose ends to tie up, everything from assigning various theater duties to minions and/or training them, to dealing with insurance companies and the vast sums of money that prop up the medical health profession, not to mention my own normal fears about doctors, needles, surgery, and body invasion that have been hounding me for as long as I've been aware that I will need surgery.

I've done my best to embrace the change: "This is a good thing," I told myself, over and over again, usually whilst rocking in a a near-fetal position with a glass of bourbon. "These are necessary for your ongoing health, wellness, and recovery." I've used every moment of physical discomfort or an inability to lift something as a way of reinforcing the idea that soon, this will be addressed, and then you'll have some mobility back as well as a quality of life that you haven't had in years.

Phase One, I've been calling it. These twin surgical procedures are the end of Phase One. I've still got Phase Two and Phase Three to get to, and they will take at least two years to complete. I have a long-term goal that is predicated on getting to the end of Phase One.

My disgruntlement is palpable and obvious.
My surgery was scheduled for Monday. Note the use of the word "was." We went to Wichita Falls today for the pre-admit, that wonderful gauntlet where they take your blood and a lot of your money and then scare you with questions like, "Do you consent to let us give you blood in order to save your life?" Who says 'no' to that, I wonder? The Hulk? After all, She-Hulk was created via a transfusion. But something tells me I wouldn't get Hulk blood if they needed to pop the top on some O-Negative to save my ass. I'm sure I'd get the blood of one of the two driving instructors that have taught the entire city to Wichita Falls to either drive their car as if they are playing Mario Kart, or as if they are a merchant carrying a box of goods from Assassin's Creed II. Talk about a town that is convinced that they are actually driving in the Metroplex instead of a sleepy city of of barely a hundred thousand people. Think Waco without the Branch Davidians. That's Wichita Falls. I've never seen more people in such a god-awful hurry to get to an El Chico's in my entire life.

What was I talking about? Oh, right. My not-gonna-have-it surgery. That's not quite accurate. My surgery has been postponed. Merely put off until all of the insurance dance is done. I wish they had figured that out before they drew about a gallon and a half of my blood and left me pale, in shock, and quite close to the end of my life. I have mentioned before that I have a problem with needles, right?

I am, of course, deeply grateful for what coverage we do have, as it is the only thing that has kept us from living in a cardboard box this year. But the fact that me and Cathy now have to bird-dog both the doctor's office and the insurance company to get them to just partially cover the removal of my panniculitis (and thus stopping the infection that it is causing) is galling, appalling, and frustrating beyond all.

I'm a wreak right now. I've been working myself into a docile state so that I can walk in like a Hindu cow into a kill chute on Monday. Instead, I've now got to jettison all of that so that I can be a functional adult again, and I don't know when I need to start re-knitting that particular sweater. Later this month, they tell me. Hopefully soon.

To end this on a positive note, our GoFundMe campaign is about to crest the $12,000 mark. This is huge, as it means we are nearly two-thirds of the way to our goal. If you have not donated and would like to, I am offering a small token of thanks in the form of our digital wedding comic. You can see the details here. Thanks everyone for the ongoing support, well wishes, and love. I'll keep everyone appraised of the situation. I will update y'all on Cathy's ongoing battle when we get some news. Stay tuned.

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