Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Holding Pattern

I found this graphic today going through one of my photo archives looking for something else.  Actually, it's perfect for right now.  I keep having this little false starts when it comes to making plans and wanting to get out.  I can see the light at the end of the tunnel in some respects, but I'm not in the clear yet.

Tomorrow I'll be spending the morning in Sonoma Valley Hospital for medical testing, and that, and the blood work next week, will pretty much determine what the direction is going to be for managing my health conditions (well, at least the digestive portion of them).  I've pretty much resigned myself to the possibility that there is nothing that can be done at this point, and that this is my life, to deal with as best I can.

I've been afraid to go hiking... heck, some nights I'm afraid to go to sleep!... but I think things will be better when my daughter arrives, because she likes to do a lot of the same things I do, and I'd feel a lot safer on the trails with someone who knows (and can respond to) my medical issues.

I think it'll be good for Cay as well, although it feels kinda like a step back to not be living each in our own apartments, it's also going to free us up to do the things we enjoy outside the apartment, and I don't think I'm the only one getting my life back in doing this.

Today, however, I'm spending some down time, getting ready for tomorrow, just kinda coasting. I've got some good books (well, I've got my Kindle) and I've got my paints organized (yesterdays project) if I feel particularly inspired... and I can hold out for a couple more weeks.

Thursday, June 7, 2018

Interesting Times

There is a reason "May you live in interesting times" is a curse.

My time has been interesting, but probably only to me.  I haven't done much except the mundane day to day things: grocery shopping, house cleaning, paying bills, and going to the doctor.  There's been a little drama with the medical stuff which has taken up a lot of my time, but scheduling and rescheduling medical procedures does not make for good blogging.

I feel like I need to get back to myself, and that my entire life has been put on hold while we discover the scope of my medical issues and develop some sort of plan to deal with it all.

My daughter is coming out at the end of the month, and I hope that will help with some of the issues, like transportation, or helping me with the day to day stuff when I'm feeling too sick to do much.  Once she gets here I'll be back to exploring and hiking. Recently I've been living with the fear I could have a medical problem out on the trail alone and there would be no-one around to help me (or dial 911)  She enjoys the same kind of walks I do, and has a lot of the same interests when it comes to visiting parks and green spaces, so I get a hiking buddy who has experience with recognizing my symptoms of low blood sugar.  I'll feel a lot safer.

I'm ready for a little positive interesting times.

Monday, May 21, 2018

Health and Money

It seems that if I'm not sharing news stories on social media, my social media ends up being all about health and money.

Health and money... money and health.  Trying to make ends meet on Social Security.  Trying to get the medical tests scheduled.  Struggling with medical bills that should have been/are/ might be covered by insurance.  Dealing with pain, blood sugar drops, anemia, migraines...

And yet these are the two issues most on my mind these days, and the issues that make me feel so isolated.  I don't socialize as much.  I have no money to go places, and the free places? Well, with the way I've been feeling, being anywhere too long, or sometimes just leaving the apartment is out of the question.  I haven't even gotten the dog to the dog park in days.

Things aren't DIRE.  My rent and utilities (in fact all my bills) are up to date.  I have food in the apartment, probably enough to last until my social security arrives.  What I don't have is money for the iron formula my doctor wants me to take, and money to get a couple pairs of pants (I only have two).  I'm not dying anytime soon that I know of.  I'm pretty sick most nights, and that makes me tired and gives me grief with pain and migraines during the day, but it's not like chronic illness is something new to me... and that I don't expect an increasing share of bad days as I age.

But what this all does is isolate me, and makes me feel even more like an outsider, someone who doesn't belong. 

Here in Petaluma, people have or come from money.  People have much higher incomes, and those who don't have family members (or ex-husbands) who are well heeled and pay for their apartments and give them spending money.  It's hard to explain, "No, I don't have $5, not even in my bank accounts, so I won't be going to senior bingo", or to exercise class, or to any of the other things around here that "just" cost $5.  I gave my last $5 to the senior center.  That day I saw the lawyer and went to a Middle Eastern dance exercise class.  Obviously one of those things they let me in free for.

I don't have people over here. I have limited seating.  My futon is just about it, that and two wooden chairs, and a slipcover chair that currently doesn't have a slipcover on it.  I need to replace the futon mattress (or the futon with a couch!) and get the cover for the chair, then I can invite a few people over.  Of course, it's hard to meet people to invite over when I don't get out much.

Now I'm not one of those seniors with overflowing apartments, with all the walls covered and everything stacked and packed throughout the apartment.  I believe in minimalism.  The one neighbor who came into my apartment looked around for a comfortable place to sit, and said "well, this is nice.  I suppose this is all you really need" but couldn't sit in the too low chair, and was too uncomfortable on the lumpy futon.  My walls are pretty bare right now (at least until I get some frames for some of my prints and photographs) and I do want to get some painting done, but there is hardly room on my little table for my printer AND my little folding easel. 

I know things will get better with time.  I have some medical tests coming up next week that will hopefully give me some answers. I have a financial plan which has allowed me to steadily increase my credit rating and pay off the car repairs, vet bills, and cost of my eyeglasses from last year, and I've got a shopping list of lower cost but still fairly nice things on Amazon.com that I can use to at least make my apartment more manageable.  But so far it's been some of those little things (toasters and the second hand smoothie machine that doesn't smoothie anything, the desk chair from the rummage sale, the spring coat...) that has kept me with less money in my pocket to do some of the things I want to do socially.