My Life Abbreviated

My Story Goes Something Like This:

I have recently been diagnosed with an incurable disease. In my journey to this diagnosis which feels like a final diagnosis amongst many abbreviated diagnoses’ lead me to feel like I needed to reach out to others. This condition is an invisible illness, one that makes me a member of the chronically awesome crowd, a spoonie, a silent sufferer if you will. These too are terms I am just now learning. This is not my first blog and although it will repeat a lot of what I have already written, it will leave some out. Because there are some parts of my story that I have told which required me to remain anonymous. I no longer want to be unknown. So, I suppose I should edit some parts out.

Please note: If there are any people close to me who read this blog and their feelings get hurt in any way, it is not my intention but simply the way I felt at any given time. I think if nothing else in this country we live in, we are still allowed to have our own opinion and we are still allowed to voice them. With that being said let me start.

HallmanFamily

First of all, let me do something I have yet to do in this writing journey which is introduce myself. My name is Melissa and I am a proud mother to 5 great children. (See picture above of a rare moment which we ALL smile for the camera together) I love them with every fiber of my being, but if you are a parent you will understand my repeateded need to vent about them from time to time. Parenting alone is enough to drive many people crazy. I’m just wingin’ it here. Hopefully I don’t mess them up in any way because in this life I think it is the most important thing I’ll ever do. Raise them to know they’re loved, to be able to love themselves and others, to learn hurt and how to recover, to learn hard work, and to learn to have fun in life. And since they are mine, they’ll have to learn to learn from their mistakes. Lord knows, I’ve made many. But I think those mistakes are the ones I learned the most from.

This blog is about my daily struggle with mixed connective tissue disease and all of the other abbreviations I have been diagnosed with along the way. Isn’t it crazy how we abbreviate so many things? Like, is it really too complicated or too much work to just come out and say the words? My son has started this new thing where instead of laughing, he says, “LOL”. Really son? Isn’t it easier just to actually laugh? You know, OUT LOUD? He’s 14 and thinks he’s really cool so when I say things like that to him, I’m just not cool enough to know that saying “LOL” is cool. One day when he’s much older and wiser he will realize how stupid some of the things he does at this stage in his life are and he will look back and LOL about it.
So what lead me to decide to start a blog? Well, abbreviations of course. I’ve been given many. Some stuck, some have not. But almost every single one that I have been given has been a struggle.

 

It all started in elementary school when I was given a test for ADD/ADHD. I passed this test. Or some would say failed it. I guess it depends on whether or not you see it as a glass half full or half empty sort of thing. I mean, failing tests was what caused me to be tested in the first place, so this time I considered myself having passed this one. I had an answer, or at least in my little mind, I did. I knew now why any amount of studying I did wouldn’t show in my test and why my friends had better grades than I did even though I never saw them study.
I was going to finally fit in I thought. This magic medicine will solve everything. Boy, was I ever wrong?

 

My principal wouldn’t even accept that I was ADD. “She doesn’t have ADD, she’s such a pretty little girl” she would say. “You need to have her retested, they got it wrong”. Being diagnosed with ADD in the 80’s was a different ballgame than it is today. Note that I didn’t say ADHD. Yes, friends, I have never had a hyper bone in my body. I wish sometimes that I did. That way I didn’t procrastinate as much as I do, or maybe I would have the energy to do the things my mind wants to do, but I just can’t. I have no reason as to why, but I just don’t follow through with things as I should. I’ve been wanting to write a blog for the longest time and I just haven’t. And I don’t have an excuse.
This blog is going to cover so much more than ADD. This is just where it all began for me. So this is what I am going to start with today. I can’t cover it all in one day. My body will no longer allow me to sit and type for too long and my mind jumps from one thought to another so keeping up with me from a reader’s standpoint may prove to be challenging if I didn’t keep each post short and sweet.

A.D.D. Attention Deficit Disorder
L.D. Learning Disability
GM General Manager
SR Sales Representative
TMJ Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction
DSM District Sales Manager
C.O.P.D. Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
G.E.R.D. Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease
FM Fibromyalgia
A.D.H.D. Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder
R.A. Rheumatoid Arthritis
FM (again) Fibromyalgia
M.C.T.D. Mixed Connective Tissue Disease

As stated before I am almost positive I have left some out, but you get the gist of it. Those last three have been the hardest thus far and they are what have led me here to write this blog. Because I don’t know anyone else who suffers with this right now, I kind of feel alone with it. And I don’t want a pity party, but I do want to know what is normal. Am I normal? I know I’m not, but am I kind of normal? These are the questions you ask yourself when you have been doubted by so many. Even the very doctors that eventually came up with these diagnosis’. Sometimes, even my own family. So why wouldn’t I question myself?

 

Writer’s Block

I will make this short and sweet. I haven’t blogged much this month. It has been an eventful month, but not much to talk about.

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You may have noticed my last blog was a rant. I’ll be the first to say that it wasn’t even a grammatically correct rant. I was pissed. I still am, but I have calmed down just a hair. I’m not sure if it is because time has passed since I wrote that post or if it is because my GP felt the need to up my Zoloft to 100mg a day. Whichever the case, I’m tired of fussing with it. It does absolutely no good.

It is starting to look like that is all I do when I blog. I fuss, I post about pain, I post about being sad, mad, hurt, etc. I know that gets old for my readers to read over and over and over again.

 

I’m very sorry if my meltdowns, rants, wines, and for the most part, saying what I wanna say out loud but cant offends you. I’m sorry if it is hard to read. You should try living it. I’m just saying.

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I should add in here that another reason, aside from my broken foot, football season, and dealing with doctors and insurance and mixed connective tissue disease, is because it’s also TV SEASON!!! All kinds of new, GOOD, shows are coming on. Along with the returning greats that we spend the offseason wishing was on.

 

Here is a list of my all-time favorites:

 

Grey’s Anatomy

The Walking Dead

The Talking Dead

This is Us

Law & Order SVU

Chicago Fire

Chicago PD

Once Upon a Time

Vikings — which I hope is soon coming on even though with Ragnar gone it will never be the same

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But let me let you in on a secret show I found which I absolutely LOVE!33497f8ffe9b554ee4ae1d693b4b15ee--season--fangirl

 

It’s called Offspring. It is about a woman who is an obstetrician in Australia. She has a sister and a brother, both trying to find their way in the world since they didn’t do the college thing,  Nina is her name, She is trying to find love. She is married to a man who is creepily obsessed with her, And then her Mom’s house is a madhouse at all times. Her father knocked up a nurse that works with Nina and her parents are still married, but it appears to be an off again, on again sort of thing.

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I would love to tell you it is a nice family oriented show like Parenthood or This is Us because it is. BUT (and this is a huge but) there are some very adult words and a good bit of sex that goes on. It is a great show to watch when your kids are away or paying no good attention to what you are watching. You can thank me later if you try to watch this show, I would have to say it took me the entire first season to decide if this was my new go to show. And by the end of season 1, you are hooked. Hooked to the point that you are dedicated ONLY to watching all 7 seasons. I finished them in about a week.  And now I want more, and I want it NOW!b41252aed7d3ed8084361b7583fec174

 

My Ambien is finally starting to kick in and I have spent much of the end of this post to stop and backspace my typo’s out. So what I will do here is save what I have written, add photos tomorrow. and proofread it before I post. I do this often so that I can make sure I make sense anymore.

Health “Care” Don’t CARE

insurancelottoThis is going to be a rant and for those who don’t agree with my views here can just keep the little opinions to themselves. Unless you have a way to combat the situation I am in, don’t tell me I am wrong about the way I view insurance in this country and my states ability to figure the stuff out. I am not, nor will I ever be, a politician.

 

Here’s the thing. Obama “Care”, in theory, is okay I suppose. But it lacks all of the loopholes and what-ifs criteria or knowledge to keep it going or to have ever been rolled out in the first place. Sure, we all want free healthcare. Who doesn’t want free stuff? Here’s the thing. I don’t care how bad you are at Math, free doesn’t add up any kind of way when you are talking about healthcare. NONE!!  People need to understand that if there is something they are getting for free, it’s only free to them because somewhere someone is working their butts off to pay for it. That may be in the form of taxes, donations, or just anything else you can think of that one would use to fund programs which help sick people.  But it isn’t free.

 

So in my fine state of Alabama, the Republicans fought the whole Obamacare thing tooth and nail and they won. But still, its people lost.  We lose every day.  The Alabama Republican party said they won’t raise Medicaid to cover the ones living in poverty. No, in fact, they would like to take more away from Medicaid and Medicare. But they think that by us not expanding our Medicaid then we aren’t on the Obama”Care” bandwagon.

 

That would be fine and dandy you would think. But no, instead it is worse. Worse than worse. Worse than most other states in these United States of America. Let me tell you what the insurance company does.

insurance

So Blue Cross says their rates are going to skyrocket because of Obama “care” and because of all of the preventative services that they are now going to have to cover free of charge. Not only will your rates go up, but so will your deductible and out of pocket costs.

 

Here is a breakdown of how this goes down and you tell me that it shouldn’t be illegal to do people this way and I will tell you what I think about you.

 

My BCBS Bronze level Family plan which is provided to me through my husband’s employer who pays an estimated $800/month for the premium doesn’t cover diddly squat. Nothing, I mean NOTHING, is free. Not even preventative. Last time I checked, colonoscopy’s were preventative procedures, but not anymore apparently.

 

I go to the doctor more than most people. I take more medications than most people. And if you have been keeping up with me, I am clumsier than most people as well. This makes for a fairly hefty dollar amount of bills for my needed health care.

 

It is now. At a minimum, I have been to some doctor somewhere at least once a month, usually far more than that. So imagine my surprise when I found out that I still owe nearly $12,000 of my deductible. We were told in the beginning that our deductible was $14,000 for the two of us. Now I am learning that it is more like $20,000. The break down on that is $14k for me and $6k for my husband.

So even with those high deductibles, I was under the impression that I should be nearing the end of that given my frequent flyer miles. Again, wrong. Wrong again! You see, the insurance companies have it rigged to where you will NEVER go anywhere near your deductible. They do this clever thing.

deductible

Let me explain:  If you have ever looked at a statement from BCBS You will see where they tell the providers that they only approve for certain procedures to be billed out at x dollar amount rates. Then the rest is between you and your doctor. They can either bill you the difference or they can just change the charges to only bill for what the insurance company approves. But here is another catch, unless you have met your $20k deductible, you will be being billed no matter what. So now, not only is your health probably in the gutter but so is your credit.

And here’s another kicker, those discounted rates that you think are the only thing that saves BCBS a little face are really the devil in disguise. They have them discounted down so that you will NEVER reach that asinine deductible which would be when they actually start to pay a little bit of your health care. It really should be illegal.

 

Just this week I got a letter in the mail that they will no longer cover Methotrexate along with other medications I require. They don’t have a reason why it is just not going to be covered. So bam, there goes my little life. This methotrexate keeps me alive people. It keeps me from killing myself. Not in a suicidal way, but physically, That’s what autoimmune disease does. Methotrexate is supposed to be a medicine used to stop your body from thinking that your immune system should be battling it out with the rest of your body.

So I could go on and on and on and on about this because there is more. But it is bed time. And I have worked myself into another tizzy being mad about this. It is just such a hopeless feeling.  Your body is crapping out on you, you break a foot, you can’t afford to fix it, and NOBODY cares! Amazingly the word “care” is included in almost every phrase you can think of when it comes to health care today…  Ironically, NOBODY CARES!

 

Footloose, NOT Fancy or Free

I haven’t been able to do a blog lately. This week or two has been plum pitiful. On all fronts.  IMG_4311.JPG
I think the last time I wrote I was writing about bleacher butt and I told ya’ll about how my son tore his UCL. Well, he has been doing therapy and is getting much much better. The first week of therapy was last week.
Last week started off with the entire Hallman clan coming down with what I thought was a stomach virus on Monday. By Tuesday everyone else felt okay and Bryant, my youngest, was worse. He started running a fever that would not respond to Tylenol or ibuprofen. So off to the ER we go with him. They thought it may be strep, but he didn’t test positive, so that was ruled out. So we get a breathing treatment in the hospital along with antibiotics and steroids. We get sent home with the same. He is supposed to be able to return to school on Thursday but he wasn’t because he hadn’t yet been 24 hours without a fever.
So, it’s Thursday and things are looking up because he is back to his somewhat normal self and plans to go to school tomorrow. Over the course of everyone being sick and me off and on convincing myself that I too am sick I have lost a considerable amount of much needed hours of work. Not only is it much needed because I am getting behind on my daily basic job duties but because I am also missing out on hours I need to be paid.

stuntin
As you know I work from home. I also have chronic pain that I deal with all of the time. This week was no different than any other week when it comes to pain level. I had a makeshift desk set up in the recliner in my room which I would sit in with my little lap desk and peck away on this laptop until I decided it was time for a break. Well, for whatever reason, that day I felt like setting this lap desk on the floor in front of my bed and it would be fine. For most people, it would have. IMG_4348
For my extremely forgetful, excessively clumsy self, it was a recipe for destruction. Sometime after Greys Anatomy was over I decided to hop out of bed and high tale it over towards the closet. To this day, I have no idea what I was going to look for. Not one. All I do know is that after my left foot hit that lap desk and bent in places feet are not meant to bend I blacked out and when I came to I hurt all over. Mostly my left foot which is already riddled with rheumatoid arthritis and bunions and traits that make me look like I am walking on Leggo’s for the first few steps that I go anywhere after sitting for a while.
This same left foot has made its debut on my blog before for its ability to turn green when it isn’t the perfect degree of not too hot, not too cold. This foot has now taken on a different color. Black, blue, and a little red, oh, and A LOT swollen.IMG_4347

I can’t imagine what my whole falling incident looked like to my husband who was sitting on the bed at the time of tumble, but I guess it was a laughable moment for him. I will laugh about that now, but at the time, it was a lot of things but funny wasn’t one of them.  If I could’ve gotten up, I would’ve knocked him out.
But see, it’s hard to get up when A) Your left foot doesn’t work at all, B) Your three loving (obviously more than my husband at this time) dogs are worried about you and they are all crowding around you trying to help. C) The throbbing and constant pain you are in combined with the disgust you have for yourself for being clumsy enough to allow this to happen causes you to hyperventilate. Full on, sweat, can’t breathe, can’t-do` anything! I was finally able to get myself up from the floor with the help of my husband and lie down on the bed while he took a shower and I tried to calm myself down.
It was at this time that I knew that the only thing that would help me was a prescription drug of some sort to take the edge off of the pain. So back to the ER goes another Hallman.

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After a shot of Toradol I was sent to x-ray and when I told the ER doc that I have MCTD and RA with the worst of the RA being in my feet he came back into the room and gave me a shot of Morphine. He tells me that he believes I have a Lisfranc tear and I need to see ortho first thing in the morning.
So by the time I get home and bathe and try to find any sort of comfortable position to sleep I have almost been awake now long enough to watch the sun come up. Finally, I slept. I got up Friday and got into the ortho who told me that I have two places that are clean breaks and another that is cracked. He’s worried about my Lisfranc and possibly a ligament in my ankle but can’t even attempt to check on them until my bones have somewhat healed.

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Each passing day deems my foot blacker and blacker and my body wore and worse.

There is NO relief to be found. There is no comfortable position. I am mad, sad, aggravated that along with all the other BS I go through daily with regards to pain, I still needed to bust my butt and add to that pain with some more pain.

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I’m Good, How are You?

I’m Good, How are You?

It is something we all say every day. Someone asks, “how are you doing?” And I almost always say, “I’m good, how are you?” And as those words are coming out of my mouth I always think to myself, why are you saying this. You aren’t good, you’re a wreck. You hurt ALL the time, the medicine sucks, you want to do things that you can’t, you’re down on yourself because of that, you don’t sleep good, you’re just plain out not good.howudoing

 

So why do we ask people? Why do we take their reply of “good” as truth? Most of the time the questioner already knows you are involved in some type of battle if you indeed are. But when we say we are good the conversation moves on. Or if it is brief in nature a simple “good, so nice seeing you”. And you both move on.

 

Sometimes I change my reply up because I am simply sick of telling people that I am fine when I am NOT.  Let me tell you when you unload all of the details of why you’re not fine the look on the other persons face is always like a deer in the headlights. The result of this is that we feel like raging idiots for having just dropped all of that out of our mouths.

 

I think we need to try to get out of our feelings one minute and the next I want to shout it from the highest building. Silent sufferers be silent no more. Enough is enough, ROAR!!! We should do that but we don’t.

 

painInstead, we turn to WordPress or the like and become avid writers in hopes to get some things off of our chest. We also want to search for someone else who is suffering the same way that you are. We want validation that we aren’t crazy. This is another side effect of disease or medications.

I think it is a great way to do this. But even then, times get low. Your readers aren’t reading, you have no new followers, you aren’t even interesting anymore. -Maybe. Or maybe life just gets in the way.

This past week has been filled with life getting in the way of writing. Work, being Mom and caring for my son who has injured his arm. He pulled his UCL. It is torn slap in two.

 

As of now, he won’t require surgery. They say that because he isn’t a pitcher or a quarterback, he won’t need his UCL. He is going to do rehab to learn to use the other muscles to compensate for the broken ligament.

 

I understand what they are saying. I realize surgery usually causes more damage in the long run. I have had ligaments repaired myself. I don’t wish that pain on anyone, especially my son. But don’t tell me that because he isn’t the QB or a pitcher he doesn’t need it.

 

He needs the dang ligament or it wouldn’t be there, thank you very much. And he isn’t less important because of the position he does or doesn’t play on a football field. He is one of the most important people to ME!  He may not be using that arm to toss balls around, but he has already signed with the Army. I am pretty sure his service there will be more beneficial to everyone than throwing a darn ball around would.wolffelling

 

So this is the rant I have for the week. I am dealing with a ton more pain than usual as well. Swelling everywhere, pain everywhere. And toughening up my outside so that I can hide this pain like a champ and not unload on anyone who asks me “how are you doing”. The art of hiding this is a job in itself.

But I’m doing good, how are you?

 

 

 

Bleacher Butt

footballmomAs I posted last week, and a lot of you may know, FOOTBALL SEASON IS HERE! Our 3rd game is tomorrow. I have searched every nook and cranny of the world wide web for the perfect bleacher seat and I am at a loss. The ones that look appealing also look far too heavy to haul around from car to field. I have already dropped the purse. It was just too much to carry around and no matter how much I would try to lighten the load, random, heavy, usually of no use to me, items kept collecting in it.

 

I guess a case of bleacher butt is something I will soon miss. My boys are growing up so fast. I know it beats the alternative, but it is sad.  I can remember not so long ago when all of my elders would tell me to enjoy them while they’re little. They grow up way too fast they would say. I would uncontrollably roll my eyes.

 

I thought I was miserable. I thought they needed to hurry up and grow up and get out. I thought my elders didn’t know what they were talking about. I thought I was a terrible mom for thinking this. I thought and I thought and I thought WRONG. They’re not even gone yet and I already miss them. I miss the time that they actually liked me. I miss the sweet hugs and the freak out now, laugh later accidents they would make. Be it their pants or a spill. I miss it all. How am I going to feel when they are gone?

 

littleParenting is a roller coaster of feelings. Sometimes there are days that I am so ticked off at my kids. There are days that I just wish they would give me a rest. There are days when I feel sorry for them because I remember how hard being a teenager was.  Thinking you knew and could do anything in the world, not wise enough to realize that Mom and Dad are right. Not knowing if what you wear will cause people to look at you differently or thinking that name brands were all that is important and feeling sorry for yourself because you didn’t have as much as the next kid, only growing up to find out how ridiculous that was and feeling bad for putting your parents through all of that wasted money.

 

I get it. I just don’t want my kids to already be going through it. I want them little. I want to preserve them that way. I want this, but I won’t get it and that is a good thing. I just hope that one day these little boys understand how much I do love them even though we seem to argue daily. I know they will because for the most part, hopefully, I am raising them right and they will have values when they are fully grown. Fully grown is something I am likely to never consider them being, I must admit.

 

So with that, I guess I just want to say, to any of you young parents, enjoy them while they’re little. Let them be little. I know it sucks sometimes. But It is seriously going to be gone very soon. Even if you can’t see it. From one eye rolling parent to the other, ENJOY it. Laugh at the accidents. Love on them and steal hugs excessively. They won’t make up for the ones you aren’t going to receive in just a few years, but at least you will know you tried.

It’s Football Season Ya’ll

lovebamaMy favorite time of year is finally here. I have to admit, I hibernated at the end of last years football season.  I take Alabama football seriously.  And by seriously I mean, insanely so.  I have a selection of lucky shirts, socks, pants, blanket, underwear, and even where I choose to sit and in what position is of great significance to whether The Crimson Tide wins or loses.  If the combination of attire and position isn’t working and we are doing badly in a game I have to change something, if not everything. I get mad at anyone else who isn’t playing along with my mind games too. Alabama performed badly for an entire half of one game last year and ya’ll, it was entirely my husband’s fault. He wore the wrong hat.

tidecomingI am fully aware that all of these shenanigans are insane. I don’t care. It is something that I have done for as long as I can remember.  And I know I’m not the only one who does this stupid stuff. I mean one of the things that my husband and I really hit it off on when we first started dating was Alabama football and our silly rituals. One of us got stuck watching the remainder of a game in the bathroom.

So, this year I am in the market for a new “lucky” Alabama shirt. I am guessing the luck wore off of all of the other ones in the final game of the year last season. The national championship game. The cause of my hibernation for a little while. I guess I am a sore loser. Alabama fans, myself included, have become spoiled. God bless Nick Saban. I don’t know what we will do if he decides to retire anytime soon. Being a hard core Bama fan has had it’s up’s and downs. Prior to Nick, we had several Mikes to enter and be ran out of the Alabama family. None of them would ever add up to Bear Bryant.  We had some good coaches and we came through every now and then, but not enough to make National Championship t-shirts and memorabilia expire.  Our 1992 National Championship car decals and shirts were good for 17 years. (mine weren’t due to size issues)bamacrew

If you are a football fan then you either love Alabama or you love to hate Alabama. That is part of the deal that comes with being legendary. I am good with it. What I am not good with is losing and knowing we should have, could have, would have won a game that we lost. The BIG game. The one that determines who is the best.  It was decided last year that Alabama was not the best. And that chip on the shoulder of those big boys will shine this year. It won’t (I hope) happen again! But I must do my part. I must find the winning combination attire.

alabamaweekAlabama football is not the only favorite of mine. My Choctaws started their season with a win Friday.  My teenage boys both play. They didn’t play this game. The youngest is having to pay his dues as a youngster on the Varsity team and the oldest hurt his shoulder in a scrimmage game week before last. He is okay, he will play this week. So, I have a dilemma… Alabama’s first game is against FSU. FSU and my Choctaws have the same tomahawk chop and chant. I know that if I partake in this Friday night, my luck significantly changes for Saturday night.  OH MY GOODNESS, I AM CRAZY!

flareflareIn other news, I feel like crap. T-Total, poo. I guess I am having a flare. The pain associated with these abbreviations is constant. It’s hard to tell if the pain is just getting on my nerves or if I am having a flare which is more painful than the constant pain I experience. Last night, winter came. I have been waiting on winter for 7 seasons now. It finally came, and now we have to wait an entire season to see what else winter does.  And guess what fellow Game of Thrones fans. Now that winter is here and leaving us hanging for an entire season, we now know that the next season will be the last. What the what? I realize the budget for a show such as this can get pricey. I realize the actors now demand better pay. I understand every drawback HBO seems to have. But what I don’t understand is the business decision to end the best show HBO has ever produced. I guarantee they have gained more subscriptions solely because of this show. I know that HBO is NOT cheap. I know they’re making money and significantly more because of GOT!

Last night, winter came. I have been waiting on winter for 7 seasons even though the raven and John Snow can go back and forth from Winterfell in one episode. It finally came, and now we have to wait an entire season to see what else the slow walking, dead winter does.  And guess what fellow Game of Thrones fans. Now that winter is here and leaving us hanging for an entire season, we now know that the next season will be the last. What THE wha—-at?

I realize the budget for a show such as this can get pricey. I realize the actors now demand better pay. I understand every drawback HBO seems to have. But what I don’t understand is the business decision to end the best show HBO has ever produced. I guarantee they have gained more subscriptions solely because of this show. I know that HBO is NOT cheap. I know they’re making money and significantly more because of GOT!

They better have some huge, expensive tricks up their sleeves to appease the humongous fan base for their final season. HBO, you have been warned. got

Homie’s Jewels

spay-neuter-2Well, today is a good day. The past 7 days have been something. If you are following my blog you know about my best friend, my Homie, my dog.  You know that I have expressed that I will lose my marbles if anything were to ever happen to him. Well, I lost them last weekend. I need to explain.

Homie is a wanderer. He will slip off if he is left outside unattended. He’s an escape artist who can smell a woman’s musk from miles and miles away.  He is a ladies man. I don’t have a fenced in yard. I have wanted one, but I honestly do not think there is a fence around that would keep him in. Boxers jump. HIGH.  They also dig deep if need be. So to have a fence which would be large enough to hold him in and give him plenty of room to run would be outrageous. He loves to run circles around our house and he needs that. He is so full of energy. And I am so unenergetic and unable to take him for runs like he needs. I am just very vigilant when it comes to him. When we go out, multiple times a day, I have to watch his every move. He can not get out of my eyesight. And he knows he can’t and things are okay.

Saturday I was working in my bedroom and I asked the kids to take him out because he had been begging to go. They did and he came right back in. I assume he didn’t have enough time to do whatever it was he needed to do. At some point, later on, he slipped out with one of the many kids or their friends.  It wasn’t until nearly 4:00 pm that I took a break from working and decided to take the dogs outside. I quickly noticed Homie wasn’t home. I panicked. I went up and down the roads in our neighborhood and the neighborhood beside us screaming, “Homie” out of the window. This went on and on and on until after 11 pm. I just knew that this time was different. This time he was gone. This time I had lost my best friend.

I cried, and cried, and cried. Ugly cried. I cried so much that my eyeballs stung. They hurt. I didn’t want to take my night time meds because I was afraid there may be a small chance he would come back and I would be asleep and unable to let him in. I felt like I was to blame for his leaving. I should have had him neutered a long time ago. I should have checked to see where he was earlier in the day. I should have done this. I should have done that. It is, and always will be, my fault. Then I found myself also feeling as if no one else in this house cared about things that I value. Nobody else noticed my best friend was missing. How is it that they have lost him? They must not even love me. These are the erratic things that go through your brain when you are losing your mind. And I was losing mine rapidly and on a grand scale.  At one point I was even mad at my other two dogs for not consoling me during my breakdown. Homie would have been all up in my grits during a fit like that. He would have been there for me. Why aren’t they?

I had planned for this. I knew that this day would come. I just didn’t think it would be this soon while he was still so young.  I’m not sure if other people keep the loss of their pets in the back of their mind the way that I do. I have lost a lot of good dogs in my lifetime. And the loss of them has always been so overwhelmingly miserable for me. I think that because of this I seemingly try to prepare myself in hopes that it won’t hurt as bad. I know that isn’t going to work but, irrationally, I do this anyway.

Finally, around 3:45 am, I decided to take my Ambien. I decided to call it a night. I decided he was really gone. And I laid down on the living room couch to cry uncontrollably one last time before I went to bed. When I got up to go to bed I decided to check the back door one last time.  To my surprise, Homie was there!!! I couldn’t even get on to him for having left. I was over the moon. He stunk, he was muddy, he was slobbering and panting something fierce yet all I could do is hug him and tell him how much I love him.

So flash forward to Monday morning. My first order of business was to call the vet and schedule him to be neutered. At some point during my fall apart my mom told me to make him an appointment when he got back to get him fixed. She would pay for it. Thank the Lord above for that. Because after all was said and done, it cost $364.30 for him to turn in his prized jewels.

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Homie’s last night with his manhood.

 

He went in Tuesday morning. He went happily. He is such a sweet dog. He had no idea what was about to go down. He just trotted his big self right back to the back with the vet tech with absolutely no worry. He thought we were going on an adventure I suppose. He spent the night there after his surgery so that they could give him pain medication for 24 hours. Wednesday morning when I got there to get him that same trot was not there. The vet wanted to explain to me all of the medication and wound care I needed to do for him in the coming week. She felt like I couldn’t hear her because of Homie’s loud overjoyed panting. So she asked the vet tech to go ahead and take him to my car so that I could hear her. I have never seen a dog stand his ground the way Homie then did. He was planted on my feet. He wouldn’t budge. As if he was saying, Nope, I’m not going on any more of your adventures, thank you very much, I have my mommy.

So, there you have it. That is what my week has been like. A roller coaster of events that were game changers for both Homie and me. Piper is scheduled to be spayed on September 5th. I will have all dogs accounted for at that time. I can not stress enough to people how important having your pets fixed is. There are so many unwanted puppies in the world and so many being euthanized. I am to blame for taking such a long time to have Homie fixed. I didn’t want to take his youth away from him. I felt like having him fixed would, in some way, make him a different dog. I see how stupid that was to think now. And if I had it to do all over again, I would’ve had his jewels removed as soon as they were able to be.

Today, as I said, is a good day. Homie is home and his balls are gone and he is on the mend. I hope you all have a great weekend.