Prepare to Launch

Surprisingly, all of that mail that I was dreading… it wasn’t as bad as it could have been. πŸ€¨πŸ€·πŸ»β€β™‚οΈ I can’t say yet if any of it is actually good, but the information that came in over the past week or so was of a type that at least keeps me optimistic and motivated, and that’s something that I really need in order to keep fighting the never-ending WC game. 😟 Like I told Dad, even if a lot of it ends up falling through, at least it’s helping to keep me going right now.

My attorneys are still working from home for the most part, so I don’t think all of this information has trickled out to the ones that need it yet. πŸ€”πŸ˜’ So tomorrow I’ll be calling in again to see if I can find someone to talk to before my doctor appointment and possible stop by the Social Security office. 😞 With all of this stuff going on, of course SS is gonna perk its ears up and wanna know what’s going on (Like a cat that hears the cat food bag crinkle, or a dog that hears when his squeak toy get stepped on… 😏) so I just wanna make sure they’ve got all of the information they need as well.

And ironically, my neck has been extra janky today, so I’m hoping that my condition doesn’t improve before my appointment tomorrow. 🀨 It doesn’t usually work out where my “worst moments” coincide with the time and date of my appointments, but it’s nice when the doctor can actually see the true extent of the suck. I think it’s because I was folding so much laundry over the past couple days, along with several other small chores that I forced myself to do while the energy was there. πŸ€·πŸ»β€β™‚οΈ Meh.

Oh, and regarding my attorneys… there’s a good chance that I am gonna have to go to the main office to either give them copies of what I’ve gotten, or perhaps start signing some different things if they did get these same papers and have already begun working on them. πŸ‘¨πŸ»β€πŸ’ΌπŸ‘©πŸ»β€πŸ’ΌπŸ€“ But their office is located downtown, and that hasn’t been the most car-friendly area over the past couple of weeks. 😯 I’ll have to check the different news sites tonight and see what they say about protests / areas, and maybe start looking for a “back way” into the nearby parking garage so I can sneak in and out if needed.

I’m not looking forward to tomorrow though. πŸ˜• Basically all of the things that are great at stealing my energy… that’s the stuff I’ll be doing all day. Visit with my doctor, impromptu SocSec office stop, phone calls with my attorneys (w/possible trip up to Columbus), stopping by my insurance agent’s office for some things, etc. 😐 But it’s my choice to glom all of this shit together this time, because I’d rather do it, have it hurt and/or drain me, but then have it all (hopefully) out of the way for a little while.

Calling it a day early though. 😴 Gonna go dark, find a movie to watch, and hopefully sack out soon. πŸ‘πŸ»

Pretty Good Evening

Forced myself out of the house for the second half of the day. Had a bit of normal running (grocery/bank/etc) to do, but for a change I also hit some thrift stores while I was out. πŸ™‚ Helped to calm my nerves as I was out among the humans, as well as keep my thoughts free of any of the “bleh” I’ve been dealing with lately.

Found an OSU shirt for me, along with a couple of big bowls for salads or cereal or whatever, and then saw a white poofy coat with a fur-lined hood and “sparkle” along the seams / pockets – so I grabbed that for Cassi, since I knew she’d have liked it if she was there. 😊 I also found something for Genesee. With her being a Snoopy fan / collector, I went ahead and grabbed this giant Pez dispenser with a Snoopy head. 😳😯 Figured it would make good decoration for a shelf somewhere if nothin’ else. 😁

Stopped by and saw Dad on the way home, and ended up staying there longer than I thought I would. He had the Roku fired up so I was able to introduce him to Daily Dose of Internet and the benefits of the YouTube app. πŸ€“πŸ‘πŸ» I only recently discovered that channel myself, but we ended up watching an hour-long compilation followed by the better part of an hour-and-a-half one that followed. πŸ˜… It was nice though… and like I said to him, there’s all kinds of awful stuff we could have been watching or talking about, but these little videos just kinda “take you away” from everything in the real world while you’re watching. πŸ€·πŸ»β€β™‚οΈπŸ˜Œ

It’s funny… as I was getting up to leave, Dad mentioned something about the WC stuff, and I had actually totally forgotten about it at the time. πŸ™„πŸ˜„ But I did wanna update him on everything that was going on, so I’m glad he reminded me. It’s a lot to take in all at one, but I think I got him up to speed, and he’s on the same page as me when it comes to what seems fair and what doesn’t. 🀨😏 It worked out good though, being able to get all the info across without accidentally having spent the entire visit talking about it.

Am I Ready For This?

I burned out early today. Woke up and began work on a bullet list of questions and concerns regarding the settlement talks that may start soon. Plus I banged out a quick letter to go along with it, basically expressing my concerns about some of the things that have been suggested so far, and making sure that this upcoming meeting is one where we’re going to further discuss things – and not one where they’ve got papers that I’m expected to be ready to sign.

So I dropped that off in the mail when I went in town to hit the pharmacy again. Half-success this time. One of my two workers comp medications was approved and covered, but I had to pay for the other one in order to not go without for who knows how long. Luckily I dealt with the two people there who are probably the most familiar with how I get jerked around, and they were both great and did everything they could to help.

That doesn’t sound like I did much, but starting on that stuff when I woke up, spending a good amount of time making a list of all the things that stress me out about the idea of a settlement, along with making it clear that I’m not super enticed by the whole thing yet… I obviously don’t want to appear “difficult” to my attorneys, but I’m also making sure they know from the start that I don’t want to get stepped on.

So working on that, trying to make the letter and list as brief-yet-effective as possible, and then immediately going in and dealing with the continuing stress (that happens each month) of trying to simply get my normal medication. When there’s three different WC related trajectories that are coming to a head, and I focus my thoughts and energy on just those things for several hours… heh… I just can’t really do that. Not if I want to be of much use in the later afternoon and evening. All of the “ugh” just wears me out.

But I completed the important things today, so I’ll let it slide that I wasn’t able to do much more than that for the rest of the day. Reset tonight and start again tomorrow. Hopefully they get that letter tomorrow, before anybody gets ahead of themselves, and before he calls me to set up that meeting. I’d just prefer them to be at least close to “on the same page as me” before I go up there and potentially waste anybody’s time.

In this situation, I imagine that a settlement requires concessions from both sides, where the final product isn’t necessarily something that either side is thrilled about… but with as much unneeded stress, anxiety, delays, hearings, pharmacy difficulties, etc that they’ve injected into my life (and it’s still ongoing…) nobody should expect me to come to the table and be an agreeable broken person that’s just gonna be happy with whatever scraps they may be willing to give me. I want my team to lean on these people with a force stronger than they might even realize they’re capable of. 😠

Got My Stuff Done

Well, that seems to work. If I don’t promise myself or anyone else that I’m gonna do something on a particular day, for some reason that makes it easier for me to do those things… even if it’s on that particular day. πŸ€·πŸ»β€β™‚οΈπŸ˜

(Don’t ask… I don’t get it either.)

My knee, shoulders, and neck are extra fucked today, but I guess the best way I can describe getting ready for today was how a diver psyches themselves up and takes the deepest breath possible before sinking into the water. 😚 That’s kinda what I mentally do when I have to go out and do a bunch of stuff when I’m not feeling great. Heh… actually, any time that I have to go out and deal with the humans for too long. 😏

It was a productive few hours though. Stopped by the pharmacy and managed to get my money back (finally) from one of the more expensive meds that WC was giving me trouble with… then I picked up my new glasses and a few other things from Walmart, dodging all the trashy looking people as best as I could. πŸ˜’ I mean, I try not to judge, but my gosh… the things that some of these people wear when they go to Walmart. I think it must be some sort of ironic thing that they do on purpose these days.

After that I grabbed some things that Genesee requested, along with some Chinese take-out for me and Dad, and then I headed over there for a visit for a couple of hours. πŸ™‚ I’ll say one thing… it’s good that Dad and I share almost identical views on how things are going with our government at the moment. Heh… the conversations would go a lot different otherwise. I also got to explain a little more about what’s going on with my WC case, even though I’m still basically in the dark regarding the half that’s going through the actual Ohio court system, or at least soon will be. πŸ˜πŸ€·πŸ»β€β™‚οΈ

He asked if I ever wondered if WC people every tried to watch me. πŸ€”πŸ”­Β And the more that I think about it, man do I wish that they would. Because 90% of the time they’d be paying someone to sit somewhere in my neighborhood to document that my ass rarely leaves the house. πŸ˜„ There’s an easy job for someone, eh? But I don’t know, I suppose anyone that wanted to find fault in something that an injured / disabled person was doing – they could probably find it.

I don’t mow my own grass anymore, but I once did. (On a riding mower) It caused my shoulder to be all jacked up that night and the next day, which is the reason I stopped and started paying someone to do it, but anyone that saw me would have been able to “Look, he’s mowing his grass!” me. πŸ˜•

One of the few “extra” things that I indulge in every now and then are concerts with friends. And while the disability in my neck / shoulder doesn’t have anything to do with whether I can physically “attend” a concert or not, let it be known that those concerts are never without their own unique form of punishment afterwards. Even that rather limited physical activity screws me up for days. 😟 Hell, I didn’t even go to the Skillet concert a few months ago when they were in town… basically because I didn’t want to feel beat up afterwards.

But like I told him, I don’t worry about it too much because everything about my case is real. I don’t try to exaggerate anything, and I don’t make it a secret that I sometimes do things that end up causing me extra pain in the affected areas. πŸ€•πŸ€·πŸ»β€β™‚οΈ I’d wager that my doctor’s notes have quite a few remarks from where I’ve told him about things like, I dunno, going to the fair, walking around, taking pictures of the day… because the days following that sort of thing cause me added pain, which is something I want him to know.

So it just is what it is. 😐 Most of my time is spent avoiding things that cause me additional pain, but sometimes I do things that I have to do that cause me pain – and sometimes I do things that I want to do that also cause me pain. I’d hope that anyone who was genuinely, fairly judging me wouldn’t hold it against me that every now and then I wanna pretend like I’m not as damaged as I am, whether it’s a random task I have to do myself or if it’s an occasion where I just wanna do something fun for a change.

I just do me. If anyone decides to follow and takes notes, I don’t have anything to hide. πŸ€·πŸ»β€β™‚οΈπŸ™‚

Trying To Be Productive

Cassi and Steven came down for a visit yesterday evening. πŸ™‚ It was kind of a short notice thing, and they ended up staying a couple of hours, so it had my brain wound up to where I wasn’t able to fall asleep until around 2am. 😴 Me and Steven ended up talking about car stuff almost the entire time, so that was nice to pick his brain about this and that… but they’re getting ready to move, and they’ll be busy with all of that for a good bit – so after last night it’ll be a while until things get settled enough for me to drop in for a visit.

I woke up again after only about an hour of sleep, so I tumbled out of bed and I stumbled to the kitchen… to get myself a bottle of water. 😏 Heh… I used the “9 to 5” lyrics for the previous sentence, but “tumbling out of bed” was exactly what ended up happening. πŸ˜…πŸ€¦πŸ»β€β™‚οΈ I nodded off with the water bottle in my hand, still sitting up, and (likely) a short time later I woke back up as my dumb ass was falling out of bed. Not my most graceful moment, that’s for sure. I’m surprised I was able to fall back to sleep so easily after that. πŸ™„πŸ˜

Despite that, today started off well… if a bit later than originally planned. Went in town and grabbed some burgers for a visit with Dad around lunch time, and then after that I finally… finally… made it to the Walmart vision center and got my new prescription and glasses ordered. πŸ˜ƒπŸ€“πŸ₯³ I’ve only been “planning” to do that for about a year now I think? I tend to be rough on my glasses, so I spent a little more to get titanium frames with double hinges on the temples. πŸ§πŸ‘πŸ» More of a squared off look than my last few pairs, so I’m excited to get them to not only see how I look, but also to actually be able to see with 20/20 vision again.

They did do eye-health tests along with just getting the Rx, since it’s been a few year since they last saw me, but everything apparently looked good. πŸ€·πŸ»β€β™‚οΈ However, the combination of the glaucoma test and then the drops to dilate my eyes… 😳 I ended up with a huge headache which still hasn’t gone away. Luckily I only had to run through the store real quick to grab some cat food, litter, pop, and some other grocery essentials – but then I was able to head straight home, pull the curtains, and turn off all the lights. πŸ€•

Since my IC hearing got postponed, that leaves tomorrow free for me to call (or go visit) the pharmacy to get this month’s WC med situation taken care of… 😠 plus I’ve gotta make a call regarding a stray insurance policy that’s taking far too long to process. (Another thing that I’ve been meaning to do for months.) Those calls will be mildly-annoying at best, but it’ll feel good if I’m able to get these things handled. 😎

Okay, headache is starting to flare up again… time to get away from my screens.

Delayed Reaction

It’s been an up and down week. I had those two or three pretty good days right after being sick for a day and a half… but like I said, probably not so much that I felt any better than normal – but the relief of not puking every few hours for an entire day and night just makes you appreciate a normal “bleh” mood a bit more. 😏 But then right after that, it was the strangest thing…

Mom has been gone for more than a month… and of course the first week or two after she passed was filled with well-wishes, company, and general “fuss” (I don’t mean that in a bad way at all) that one expects after such a thing. Then I took some time to really isolate myself so I could just feel it… adjust to it… I dunno… I just wanted nobody around so I could react however I needed to. πŸ€·πŸ»β€β™‚οΈΒ And my dumb ass assumed that after all of the above, my brain had processed and handled it. Heh… nope. 😟

I don’t even know what triggered it, but man… a couple of days ago – it finally really hit me. 😒 Or finally hit me for the first time, because Genesee said that she completely understood what I was trying to explain to her, and she says it was by no means a one-time deal for her after her daddy passed away several years ago. I think what happened was I crossed the line where I was just happy and relieved for Mom, that she was no longer struggling with a mind and body that were fighting against her… and I hit the point where it really sank in that she was gone gone – and then I was worthless for the better part of three days, feeling indescribably sad about everything that her being gone made me think and feel. πŸ˜” Gawd this is such a difficult thing to explain…

It’s probably all selfish, but understandable emotion… but the thing that wouldn’t leave my mind is that from this point on, any “new” person that I meet or that comes into my life… they won’t get to know her, and I can’t explain how unfair that is for all of those people. 😠 For those few days I just lost the ability to be happy about all of the happy memories and experiences, and it was all sad, mad, bitter, etc. Then I finally decided to talk out loud to her… the first time that I had done that since she passed.

I’m sure some people might think it’s strange, but with all of my grandparents gone, a couple uncles, an aunt, some friends… at one point or another, I’ve spoken out loud to them as I sat in the recliner, did my laundry, walked around outside, fed the cat… whatever the case may have been that made me want to say something to them. πŸ€·πŸ»β€β™‚οΈπŸ™‚ But I hadn’t been able to do that with Mom until just the other day, and I was actually feeling guilty about it. That I had so easily done it with the others, but for some reason wasn’t able yet to do that with her. But I’m glad that I finally did, because that’s what started pulling me out of that awful mood.

I reminded myself that she’s now up there with her mom and dad, among so many other relatives and friends that I may not even remember myself – but who were all waiting to greet her when she got there. 😊 And then I told her that I knew she wouldn’t want me to just sit in the house and feel how I was feeling, and I told her that I was going to try as hard as I could to get out of that funk and focus on the happy rather than the negative feelings. I don’t want her checking in on me, only to find that I’m a useless, crying, angry mess. I can’t let it mess me up like it was messing me up for those few days.

I talked for probably fifteen minutes or so… heh… and again, I know, it does sound a little weird… but with every thing that I’d say, I could feel the weight being lifted off of me… at least to when it comes how I was feeling about Mom being gone. (More of the “other stuff” in the next entry, coming fairly soon.) It’s weird though… not only did I feel guilty for not talking to her sooner, but also a little bit guilty for that horrible feeling not hitting me this hard way before this point. 😟 But again, Genesee helped… saying it was roughly a month for her as well, before she got the real “gut punch” feeling that you almost expect to feel the day of, or day after it happens. Of course I missΒ Mom… but I really do think I was just getting past my feelings of relief and happiness for her, and on to feeling sorry for myselfΒ – and everyone else that no longer gets to have her as an ongoing part of their life.

I’m sorry if this comes off as gloomy… but what I’m actually trying to say is that yeah, it hurt… then it really really hurt… but then you find a way back from it. 😌 I’m not looking forward to this becoming a recurring “surprise” thing, but I do know now that that’s just the way it works. πŸ₯Ί But I think each time that it happens, it’s gonna be easier for me to talk to her, remember all of the good – and there was a lot of good – and not let that awful feeling consume me like it was during these past few days.

Where To Even Start?

This is probably the fifth or sixth time since last Sunday that I’ve opened up the blog editor and just sat here, staring at the blank screen, unable to come up with “the right words” that would end up being the first post that I’ve made since Mom passed away. I think I just need to accept that right now I just don’t have the right words. If I waited until I could come up with something exceptionally eloquent or thoughtful, there’s a good chance I wouldn’t even update this blog anymore.

Mom’s passing wasn’t unexpected, so a person might be tempted (for that reason) to think that they’ll be ready for it when it happens… but nope, that’s not how it works. It’s been almost a week now, and my brain still hasn’t decided how it wants to handle it. Nothing is “normal” about the days immediately following someone’s death, so we probably won’t really start feeling it until we all settle back into our normal routines.

I was there to support Cassi when her aunt passed away, I was there for Genesee when her dad passed away, and I was there for Brianna when her mom passed away just a few months ago… so of course they’re all being super supportive for me now. And as you’d expect, all of the family has been texting, calling, talking, and supporting each other… but with all of that fuss (which I absolutely appreciate) it doesn’t really let you feel how your brain will eventually decide that it wants to feel. That’ll probably start happening a little more around the middle of this coming week, in large part due to Genesee (who came to Ohio almost as soon as she got the news)Β returning home around that time.

It ends up being kinda perfect though. Having all of the company and support has actually been a good thing for me… but I’m also looking forward to things going back to normal, because I know I’m gonna have days where I want to be absolutely alone, to feel however I wanna feel about it, and without feeling like I have to act this way or that way, or appear strong for someone else’s sake when maybe I don’t want to.

I dunno… that’s all I really care to say right now. Not because I don’t have a billion thoughts and feelings and memories that I could talk about, but because my goal for this post was to just finally acknowledge it and put it out here. Besides, no matter how much I might talk about Mom, there’s simply nothing that I could say that would do her the justice that she deserves. So rather than be awkward and weird and possibly ending up saying the wrong thing due to my brain being a little fried, I’m just gonna leave it like this for now.