Saturday, August 15, 2009

My Health Care Story, Part One

I am joining other bloggers August 20 to support health care reform. I never, ever discuss political matters with people except my husband. I won't here. I do not know the answers, I haven't read the bills, and I know there are pros and cons of everything. Simply I am not an expert. This post and those to follow is my story and my opinions only.

Note: This was originally posted August 3, 2009 on my arthritis blog “Arthritis is a Journey”.

This blog is a very delicate and meant to explain MissDazey dealing with OA and RA. Another “I can cope” post. Actually, I’m not sure when I first noticed I was having signs of arthritis and Rheumatoid Arthritis. I do know I was just barely out of my teens and young mother of five. It was not until years later, probably 10 or so, that a doctor mentioned it during a routine exam. I brushed it off, after all people have more important things to worry about than aches and pains. Besides at that time my life was full of other serious issues, kids, a bad marriage, dire finances, and a few health matters. It’s a long, boring laundry list of “woe is me” time.

Having no insurance or resources going to a doctor was out of the question. I finally divorced, had a few years of good jobs, moved and traveled. I have wonderful fun memories of that time! (Then life came apart, no job, living in my car or with whichever family or friends were stuck with me. I don’t talk about it except with certain special friends.)I like to walk, always have. I could walk miles, and did as often as possible. That and not driving are the two things I miss most. The not walking bit was a gradual thing. I remember the first time my toes swelled so much I could barely get my shoes on, and my boss was coming into town. Yipes, that was in the mid-eighties.

Fast forward in time to January 1998 when I met my Mr. Right. I could do less then, but still drove, walk, and managed a house. By year 2000 my physical activity was cut in half. I remember so well when I could not hold my new baby granddaughter. It broke my heart. (She is nine now, gives big hugs, and has Grandpa and I under her spell.) About this time the RA took over big time, although the OA was trying hard to remain in control. The dreaded fatigue rules now and I am having trouble getting my brain to function. I researched things online, which made me depressed.

When I turned 65 I got on Medicare and starting the saga with doctors. The first one, Dr. J, explained clearly that extensive damage was done; some could be repaired surgery, but not much. Last week Dr. B said the same thing. I have seen many changes in the last 3 years, making adjustments as needed.

Now for the rest of the story as Paul Harvey would say. I am BLESSED! Of course, my biggest, most cherished blessings are family and friends. I have a silly sense of humor, get to travel, have a stable income, and most importantly enjoy LIFE. I have computers and the internet to keep me occupied and creative. I look around and see so many people with a great deal of worst problems, and am ashamed when I complain.

YES, I AM BLESSED! As my favorite saying goes, “If I had my life to live over, I’d pick more daisies.”
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