The game was on and it was time to take a break! The dogs were all fed and had just gone out, Taco Bell was our dinner (and doubled as our “game snacks”), thanks to finding our very last Taco Bell gift card (thankfully, sent by an angel). I was intending on making chips and onion dip and veggies and ranch dip as Someone requested but well, time these days, time is more precious than eating.
Two dogs have become critical in the past few days–which begins to take a lot of time and energy away from everything else. Charlee Barlee–the center quarterback in the above pic with his now angel-friends Chula and Penny–a black and tan Min Pin–has right side congestive heart failure. That causes water retention in their tummy (his becomes rock hard between treatments) and the water begins to cause respiratory issues.
In addition to two heart meds and an antibiotic, I use epsom salt gel or solution to soak his tummy which causes the water to leach out of the tissue into his urine, relieving some of the tummy pressure. Rubbing the tissue also helps move the water out. Also, a no salt diet is paramount. That means cooking everything since finding ‘no salt anything’ commercially prepared is nearly impossible to find.
Pasha Dasha, the other dog in early distress, had a skin tag on her rear area. It was just something that we had to keep clean and watch. Suddenly Friday night, it was as round and swollen as a bursting plum! Until she can see a doggie dermatologist early this week, I have been washing “the plum” in Hibaclens, rinsing it with Povidone Iodine and slathering it in Neosporin. The idea is to keep it as clean and covered as possible so it doesn’t get infected. I am hoping that the specialist can remove it with a cauterizing loop and a local anesthetic. Being nearly fifteen years old, Pasha is not a candidate for general anesthesia surgery. (I am concerned about this sudden change in its size which could be something much more serious now.)
As if caring for Charlee and Pasha’s extra needs wasn’t enough today, Someone managed to accidentally get his healthcare cancelled. (I am going to have to lock up the phones soon. The docs think they already should have been put away.) Sigh.
Almost a year ago, someone picked up the phone and was correct in his understanding and concern that he was being charged over double what he should have been for Medicare but he mixed up his words. While intending to ask that the extra premium be cancelled and retroactively refunded, Medicare processed it that he wanted to cancel Part B Medicare (OMG). Not only did he get it cancelled but they did it retroactively–leaving over $108,000 in 2018 medical bills now being rejected and sent to me to pay in full.
I just found out about all of this recently when bills from his end-of-the-year surgery began to bounce back as not paid. This is just an example of constant problem-solving of lliving with someone with Lewy Body. Sometimes big issues like this one, sometimes many smaller ones arise but there is hardly a day when you just can relax and have a normal day. You are always trying to prevent things from happening or having to band-aid those you didn’t expect.
After sobbing for about three hours this morning about the magnitude of this issue, I knew deep inside that there is no one coming to the rescue and I just have to pull up my “big girl pants” as my mother used to say and fix the situation myself with a little help (a lot of help) from Above. During those three hours, I talked to God a lot. Without my faith, I would not be able to handle this or many situations in my lifetime. I kept hearing, “What would you do if you knew you could not fail?” a famous quote. And so, I will succeed, God willing!
Eventually, after letting the Chihuahua twins–little tiny Chippie and Sissy–make me laugh and kiss my tears away, I was able to pick up my laptop and begin the lengthy, many-day process of writing what will be tantamount to a thirty page thesis with supporting documents about why this was not intentional, how Lewy Body affects people, and requesting that his Medicare be restored retroactively. His doctor also wrote a letter for me to include for which I am grateful. (Please say a prayer that my words reach someone at Medicare who has mercy on us.)
In Texas, to protect your home from creditors, there is a homestead declaration. That said, in this situation, I think that you have to have lived in the home over 4,100 days. We are OK on that front, thankfully, but for a year now, I have been sorting out closets and clothes, etc. etc. etc. in order to downsize and intending to move near a ‘locked memory care facility’ in case, or for when, I can no longer physically help Someone. My thought is that at least we would live near enough to visit often (hopefully I can alternate dogs visiting, too) and make sure proper care is given. (I am supposed to be touring these facilities but I can’t bring myself emotionally to do that just yet.)
Now, with these medical bills hanging over our head, until Medicare is fixed (God hear our prayers), we cannot move or risk putting the house in jeopardy. Plus, Someone’s doctor thinks now that I should not move at all until and unless Someone goes into a care facility first so as not to confuse him. Interim moving tends to speed up the progression of this illness and shortens their life span. Bins and boxes all over the place need to be organized and put away for the time being, I guess.
Well, the Superbowl started and I put the computer down to eat my bean and extra cheese nachos and to watch the beginning of game Normally, I would happily watch the entire game since every year we’ve been together, we make this a “date” of sorts–this, the World Series play-offs and the Kentucky Derby. But, after being up so early and getting so emotionally and physically drained, after dinner, I brushed my teeth and when I sat down again, I just passed out during the second quarter. I even missed the half-time show!
I woke up when the news came on wondering what quarter the game was in. I was so disappointed that I lost that time together but Someone didn’t even notice–or notice that I had not shared the cinnamon sticks slated for dessert. He said he just figured that I ate them all (and was happy that I had enjoyed them.) LOL.
Thank you for stopping by and for caring. Especially for caring.
If you are a caregiver dealing with someone who has any of the dementias or a serious illness, please reach out to others for support. Find online support groups, support groups at your local hospitals or even private groups or ask friends and family to step up to the plate and help you. The caregiver is the person who actually takes the brunt of these illnesses and is devastated physically, mentally, emotionally and financially so please take care of yourselves first and foremost. Maybe start here to find resources: https://www.google.com/search?client=firefox-b-1-ab&q=caregiver+support
If you are thinking of adding a wonderful animal to your life, please adopt an animal in need–and rescue a life. There are special groups for each breed of dog and cat, even hamsters, chickens, horses, snakes and more. They have newborns to seniors, animals in good health to special needs. The animals only have a limited time to find a forever home or they are being killed or “euthanized” in ways you don’t want to have nightmares about so I will spare the details but please try to adopt one–or two–or add another one to your family. https://www.petfinder.com/
“Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; but trust also in me.” Jesus Christ
Please become an angel and help me to care for the Rescue Ranch special needs dogs (they have a safe place until God calls their name) and now, finish caring for my special needs Someone. On call 24/7, it is not possible to do anything else. Thank you for blessing us–for in blessing someone else, you are really blessing your own life. Think about it!
“Whoever brings blessing will be enriched, and one who waters will himself be watered.” Proverbs 11:25
Sending prayers…Helen, the mother of one of our angels (helpers), passed away in the past few days. She had a long life and was ready to go, to move on to a new phase. Please say a prayer for her family and for so many others who lost a loved one, for it is hardest on those left behind.
Those who have passed, are instantly surrounded by love and are not in any pain of any kind but are filled with understanding, optimism and happiness. I believe that we will see them again and it will be a joyous reunion. Looking forward to that day helps me smile through my tears.