Friday, August 01, 2008

In Which I Share, Complete With Intimate Photos

Entering dangerous territory here. I'm not a Sharer By Nature here at the Dept. But posts are about to get fewer and farther between, and you need to know why.

Well, it's been a rough summer overall. As you know, the maintenance of EmilyCat had become increasingly difficult, and I was her sole caretaker. She suffered two "episodes", and was losing weight alarmingly, despite the fact that all she was able to do was eat and sleep. Finally, after she became obviously confused--she kept wandering and whimpering--and unable to consistently use her litterbox, we had to put her to sleep. Here she is a few days before Her Final Rest, when we decided to let her have a day of wandering about the garden.

For the first time in 18 years, we are petless. It's a little odd--a little disconcerting. I don't really miss Emily because in her last year or two she was not very...interactive. She was, in a word, bitchy. But I miss the idea of her. I do still actively miss TravisCat, who was very cuddly and funny puppy-like.

The Big Deal, the one thing that is most upsetting and has been affecting me all summer is this:

That is my MRI. It is my shoulder. It is a picture of my torn rotator cuff which has made my life a litany of pain for months now. Thanks to The Insurance Company, I had to suffer through a month of physical therapy--which actually made it worse--before I could even GET the MRI which showed that I needed surgery, which I will now have on August 12th. Right before I have to go back to school. My entire summer has been an unceasing routine of doctor appointments, physical therapy sessions, and pain. ALL OF WHICH COULD HAVE BEEN AVOIDED IF I COULD HAVE HAD AN MRI IN LATE JUNE.

And yes, there is an undercurrent of fear flowing along with all this anger. I. Am. Terrified. I do have absolute faith in this orthopedic surgeon. It is an arthroscopic and an outpatient procedure; I'll be home the same day, thank goodness. I have had orthopedic surgery before, though, so I know about bone pain and rehab. But I am terrified. I hate hospitals, no matter if I'm in them or visiting them. I am scared of hospital infections.

And it's--of course--my right arm. I'M RIGHT-HANDED. I can't even begin to think about what all this will mean when school starts and I'm in one of those horrid goofy slings for six to eight weeks. It's overwhelming.

So! I'm behind on posts--especially at The Tie Report-- because, quite frankly, it hurts to type and I have to rest a lot while I do it. And I'm not feeling like myself. And once I have the surgery...well...I just don't know how it will all shake down at that point.

Sigh. It all sucks. Can I get a Do-Over?


  1. Oh I'm so sorry. I wish I could send you a hug and a drink. (One you can lean over and sip with a straw).
    Good luck!

  2. Oh, that's so unfair of the insurance company - and short-sighted as well. It would have been cheaper to just pay for the MRI!! Keep us updated.

  3. So sorry to hear about Emily Cat. Maybe you can have a bunny to love now?

    You're shoulder will be alright. Jason has a very good looking friend who is a physical therapist, maybe I can get you some private sesssions :)

  4. So sorry to hear about Emily Cat. Maybe you can have a bunny to love now?

    You're shoulder will be alright. Jason has a very good looking friend who is a physical therapist, maybe I can get you some private sesssions :)

  5. Insurance companies are the DEVIL.

  6. That totally BLOWS. I'm so sorry. What you need is a really long straw, one that you can use to drink wine straight from the bottle.

    Did I just say that out loud?

    EmilyCat was beautiful.

  7. j.@jj--Emily was a real cutie. She was a mix of a chocolate Siamese and a Himalayan colorpoint. Very petite and prissy. When she was a kitten, she used to sleep on the answering machine.

    a.l.--they really are. it's rough for control freaks like me to be at their mercy.

    nina--right now, i'm going to try to finally be rid of cat hair and focus on getting this shoulder under control. then, we'll see. believe me, i've thought about The Bunny Option. as far as a handsome PT--no thanks. i don't want any distractions during rehab. LOL.

    mrs. who--that's precisely what I said!! why are they so damn stupid? no logic there at all.

    princess otu--thanks! and glad things are back to normal back at your place. i was a bit concerned...

  8. It seems like it might have been time for EmilyCat, so hopefully it was a good thing.

    Did you see Brian on the Daily Show last night? Just want to make sure you didn't miss him.

    That sucks about the shoulder! Hopefully it'll encourage some pampering from the family. Or even false hope can be enjoyable ;-)

    Call me sometime if you can life a phone.

  9. Oh, I am so sorry for the loss of your dear kitty and the shoulder!

  10. So sorry about EmilyCat. Even though she was a PITA at the end, the loss is still felt. Good luck on your shoulder. How clever of you to stock up on wine beforehand.

  11. I'm sorry about EmilyCat. And your shoulder woes...ouch! I've never known anyone with rotator cuff problems. It's amazing that it's such a short procedure! I hope your recovery goes well and your left arm springs into action.

  12. Will fifty bottles of wine be enough for pet sorrows and shoulder surgery woes? You have all my sympathies. As for tie reports, I sure you could score a guest writer (or perhaps several) if needed in a pinch. Think about it!

  13. Dear Nance,

    I am so sorry you are suffering with your shoulder. I don't know if this will help but my son had the exact same surgery and although the convalescence was difficult he is doing just fine.

    He is a golfer and says now that his swing is better than ever, and he is so glad he had the surgery.I hope you have the same result.

    Also, Nance, I am very sorry about Emily...

  14. nancy--thank you for the encouragement and sympathy. i don't really have a choice about having the operation. the tear is very large and very deep, and if it were much more of either, it would be irreparable. i'm glad the surgery is outpatient, and i'm glad that it will resolve this nagging, lingering pain that i've been battling for over 6 months. and i'm also relieved that emily is no longer trapped in that limbo she was in. it was heartbreaking for all of us, and i was beginning to get so frustrated.

    j.--i definitely have considered guest spots for the tie report once i have my surgery. are you interested?

    simplypink--can i send packages of student essays to you for grading? i mean, it's not like you'll be busy or anything...!

    nancy in A2--bless her heart, little Emily really wasn't herself, either. i can totally relate. perhaps if her dietary requirements weren't so...onerous and odorous, i'd have been more understanding. but she had 18 good years of complete and total leisure here at the Dept. That's more luxury than most pets get anyplace. Ask Nina--she witnessed EmilyCat's "Throne."

    gina--thank you. and it's so nice to see you here at the Dept. again.

    mikey--no, i didn't see him! I'll check out the link. i'm sorry i missed your call, but you called the very moment we returned from the orthopedist, and i was so overwhelmed and upset--not in a frame of mind to talk to anyone. i'll call you soon, i promise.

  15. I'm so sorry about all this Nance. I'm so sorry about Emily and your arm. It seems like things happen in groupings - never just one at a time. I'll be saying prayers for your surgery and recovery. Take care!

  16. It's okay. I figured if you weren't up for talking to me, you wouldn't be up for talking to anyone. Luckily I'm persistent enough that I'll just end up giving in and calling you soon :-)

  17. You know, if you offer me fur coats and diamonds, I'll come back and grade your papers for you ;-)

    I'll be keeping you in my thoughts, and I hope you recover quickly! Is there an official department to which you can submit do-over requests?

    And my sympathy on the passing of EmilyCat, and the general unease of being petless.

  18. I'm sorry to read about EmilyCat, and I understand what you mean about missing the idea of her.

    I'll be thinking of you on the 12th, and after. Here's hoping all goes well before, during and after the procedure.

    Take care, Nance. I'll keep checking in.

  19. Anonymous1:00 PM

    Sorry about Emily.
    Regarding the shoulder, its time to look forward. Enlist your students to help, you know they love that type of crap.
    In a few months everything will be better.
    so. md

  20. anon--thanks. it's the looking forward that i find most scary. but i have no choice in the matter, and for a control freak like me, that's a tough one, too. sigh.

    ck--i hope to be able to keep up with all the Usual Suspects whether i can post here or not. thanks for the kind words.

    jenomena--oh, as if you have the TIME anyway!! ;-)

    mikey--i'll try to call you when i feel like chatting. lately, i've just not been up to much.

    anali--from what i can gather, this has been a tough summer for a lot of people. must be something in the atmosphere. thanks for the help from your corner!

  21. Oh, dear, got here late. I have been nursing Mr. O. who thinks he's one of his workers and not the engineer and sprained his ankle rather badly. And you know how men are when they get sick, lol.

    Really sorry to hear about Emily cat, but considering her condition it was for the best, dear.

    Now, about your arm... I have no idea what a torn rotator cuff is. How do you tear a rotator cuff? And the insurance company... gaaahh! One more reason I regret moving from a country with universal health care. When I fell and sprained my ankle and elbow a few months back, I knew the elbow must have a small fracture, and even the X-ray was inconclusive so the doctor sent me in for a CAT scan. But with all the workers' comp paperwork, and things getting lost or not sent or people forgetting to follow up, I had to wait almost six weeks for approval for the CAT scan which... showed a tiny fracture, by that time, already healing.

    Hang in there, Nance. If you can't type... we'll wait. ((( )))

  22. Anonymous1:54 PM

    Stay tuned for an eloquent and heartfelt sentiment expressed on your behalf:

    "Fucking shoulder! Fucking doctors! Fucking insurers! Fucking rehab! Fucking relentless pain! Fucking sling! Fucking school year!!!! Thank God you can still lift a wine glass with my left hand."

    This message brought to you by V-Grrrl, choosing appropriate verbiage for the occasion since 1963.

  23. Anonymous1:56 PM

    That should be, " can still lift a wine glass with YOUR left hand."

    Fucking typo.

  24. v-grrrl--hey, thanks. exactly how i feel. and, i'd be more than happy to allow you to lift MY wineglass for me, with whatever hand you'd like. come on up.

  25. Nance--I only skimmed this post earlier (sorry--too much in my brain right now) and missed the part about Emily. I am so sorry. I do understand your loss and feelings as we lost our collie not that long ago. There's the relief and freedom from pet hair and responsibilities, but still a very hard loss and missing the pet that she used to be.

    Don't worry about The Tie Report. BW is not wearing any during the Olympics anyway. Plus with his repetitiveness when he is wearing one, you could just about phone in your commentary. Get somebody to make a spreadsheet for you (talk Jared into it), leave it open on your desktop, and then just hit one key to fill the daily box; e.g., T, P, G ... you get the picture. You'd be providing a much needed service, with no effort from your arm/shoulder (just your finger), as we've always been wondering how the statistics bear out. Love the new Axis of Evil designation! LOL

  26. Student essays....that scares the hell out of me. I'm more of a start at the middle line circle around and up, pull down to the bottom line and put on a monkey tail kinda girl. (That's how to make a cursive lower case a, in case you were wondering!) Take care!

  27. simplypink--sounds like a lot of goofing around just to make an "a"!, lost me at "spreadsheet". lol.


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