Two Cent's in your Mail

Friday, June 21, 2013

~Karmas Photogenic Memory~

Being a parent is more than some realize, and it truly is more than most take seriously. There are those that believe, honestly understand in their own mind, that if they provide shelter, clothing, food, and the child doesn't grow up to be a serial killer, well, they have done their job, and deserve a big pat on the back. The responsibilities of parenting can be daunting to some, and overwhelming at times, but building a house of cards is easy, and the results gain just as much stability. Build a house of bricks, and metal, and concrete, and have a firm, solid foundation, with plans, sketches, measurements, etc, and you get a much different result. One that will stand for many years, some for hundreds of years. The effort you put in, determines the results you will receive. 

No parent has done their job with absolute perfection, and anyone that claims such is delusional. Having a child is a monumental responsibility, and one fact always seems to escape the minds of so many, and that is you are bringing up a future adult, a person that will be part of this world, and if you choose to take the easy way out, leaving your child to be taught by Xbox, television, babysitters, social media, cell phones, and their own devices, well, you have no right to complain about the results. Never more as this been so apparent in our society as it has recently. People are desensitized, cruel, cold, relentless in their desperate needs for attention, popularity, adoration, maybe even those 15 minutes of fame. Being dismissive, judgmental, callous and "brutally honest" seems to be not only acceptable, but encouraged. Often, the acts that are offensive are quickly followed with excuses, which are just as awful, when you really begin to think about it. "I was drunk", "I had a poor childhood", "I was brought up during a different time", "I have friends that are black", (or Gay, or of different faiths, whichever fits at the time)"Everyone else does it". All bullshit answers meant to detour from the truth, which is that the action, words or behavior is recognized as wrong, but.......

One thing that my parents did right for myself and my brothers, was they never taught us any form of racism at all. It never occurred to me growing up that there was any difference in my friends in their race, or their religion, or their wealth. My parents had friends of all races, all genders, backgrounds, etc, and I am quite sure that had much to do with being a military family, and I really don't care. The point is, they got this one thing right. People were just people, and I definitely grew up with this strong belief. As I got older, and became aware that some didn't feel this way, I became very aware of who I chose to surround myself with. I never cared to be in the "popular" crowd, and I was also targeted for my choices. I dated guys that I liked, and have often explained that when it came to my preferences in men, I was "an equal opportunity" type of girl. White, black, hispanic, phillipino, poor family, well off family, great family, screwed up family, it wasn't what I put as a priority when I would hang out with anyone. This of course, led to me marrying out of my own ethnic group, I guess you would say, and having 3 kids that are the most gorgeous and beautiful creatures on this planet. (Don't even attempt to argue with me on this kids are beautiful, for tons of reasons, so there.) :-)  

I made a very conscious, very determined effort from the time they were born to make it very clear, and extremely important that my children understood that prejudice, racism, hatred of those that are different, would not be tolerated. Living with their father, my biggest battle was teaching them that the use of a disgusting word, one that he used in their presence often, was not acceptable, not allowed, and not tolerated. Stopping their father was a battle I couldn't win, but I didn't raise him, and he knew of my hatred for the word, and actually, would not say it in front of me. Slipping at times, the reaction of his friends, or of he himself, was enough to realize that I made a slight amount of progress, but the true priority was that my kids knew, and that they would not partake in the use of the word. I don't, and never have used it, and even though some people who date a black person, or have friends that use the word, or those idiots that have now convinced themselves that it is okay, and cool, to use it, I still refuse to utter the word itself. To me, a person that uses the word, helps to keep its ugliness alive, and I don't want any part of that. 

"Be the change that you want to see in the world." 

The change I wanted to see in this world is that my children would grow up and not ever think about what color their skin is, what box they "have" to choose when filling out an application, what music they are "supposed" to listen to or enjoy, or that they are defined by their DNA and the pigments in their skin, but they are not defined at all. I wanted, more than anything, for them to grow up and know that they were free to be who they wanted, enjoy life to the fullest, and celebrate their eclectic heritage knowing they are the best of so many. They are the beautiful melting pot of different countries, different races, different ideas, thoughts, beliefs, and they will define their own lives, no one else. 

Bringing up children to understand that they are individuals, and never should be confined to any "label" or "stereotype" is exactly what I wanted to do. If I had any affect on them at all, I wanted, more than anything, to instill in them the confidence to ignore labels, ignore pressure to "belong", to stand out, to take risks, to find out what it is that interests them. Their beliefs are theirs. Their lives are their own to live. Then, they too, might one day decide to have children, and hopefully, they pass along this belief. 

You see, negative words, negative beliefs, hatred and fear of what we don't understand, can all go away. It really can. Just sitting by and saying, "well that is how it is" is a pathetic excuse for not trying. So many people spend so much time and effort and so much money.....ugh, disgusting amounts of money, trying to be accepted. These same people will discriminate against another, without one thought of the hypocrisy that they are living. You don't want anyone bashing on your religion? Then don't judge and discriminate on others. You don't want anyone judging you by your race? Then don't judge others by theirs, and don't use negative words in regards to race, not even your own. You are a hypocrite if you do. You don't want anyone telling you who you can marry, who you can love? Don't spend so much time trying to stop others, trying to enforce beliefs into law for ignorant assumptions. If you were plain in school, and now you have money to buy clothes, and surgery, and so many nice things, don't forget that you once were the one being bullied, and now take a long look in the mirror. You are judging people that are just LIKE YOU, just in a different time. 

Everyone is all in an uproar that a television personality was fired today from a cable network. Specifics are not being released as of yet, but some clear facts have surfaced, and this brought me to writing this today. It is not "endearing" for anyone to use racial slurs. It is not "funny" to suggest that degrading employees by dressing them up as slaves during the Civil War was a harmless idea, and thought to be a "cute" idea for a wedding reception. Tormenting a childhood playmate, who was of another race, then making light of it in a book, with the paraphrase, "I don't know why I thought it was funny, but I did it, and was punished." and forgetting to mention that your parents had the babysitter arrested and jailed because you physically attacked her daughter, but she was black, so, of course, being in Georgia, they had HER arrested. Casually testifying in a lawsuit deposition, in which you are being sued for racism, harassment, creating a hostile work environment, and saying that your use of the "N" word was alright because, well, honestly, the excuses are all bullshit. People grow up, and that is why it is pathetic, and this person deserves to be fired. This isn't 1897 anymore. Working with peers of all races, there is no way that you didn't know or weren't aware that you were being offensive. No, you are not fooling anyone. You are only attempting to apologize because you are being sued, and you want to hold on to all that money. 

"Be the change that you want to see in the world."  

Until people start taking responsibility and start making changes, this society will not evolve. Do not get upset when another uses a word that is derogatory to you if you use that word yourself. Do not thrash others beliefs if you are immediately on the defense if anyone does the same to you. Hypocrisy seems to be a common thread that is all to familiar now, and it too, needs to fade away. 

Parents, please take time to teach your children. Tolerance and acceptance will be needed in their own lives at some point or time. How can they receive it if they never allow themselves to give it back?   

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Its been awhile since I posted on my blog. There have been many things going on, and to say that I have been overwhelmed would not even begin to cover my emotions and stress. It is now down to day to day. I wake up, and the first thing that I realize is the level of pain. I hate that. I despise it. It is, however, a fact, at the moment, so I have no choice but to deal with it. The back issue was enough, but you know, my life has never been so simple, so of course, I got tossed the curve ball. A severe headache, combined with my husband and my sons reactions and concern, had me going to the ER for some relief. I didn't want to go, and was honestly having a severe anxiety attack while we were driving there. The triage nurse confirmed my worries, has he immediately began with the condesending remarks, like, "How do you know you have a migraine and not just a headache?" and "are you SURE that you have migraines, have you seen a neurologist?". All of the usual "this is a drug seeker" questions that must be endured. I understand it, because I grew up with one. However, I avoid going for a shot. I loathe shots. I would rather breathe and rock my way through the headache. This one though, had me slurring my words, taking away all of my ability to think, and I was feeling very stunned. The pain was so intense at times that I simply became idol. Meaning, no breathing, no movement, nothing. It all hurt so intensely, I just froze.

In walks the "doctor". He casually leans against the wall, and says, "So, tell me whats going on". I try, but the words just won't come out of my mouth. My husband tells him I get cluster migraines, and he responds with "cholesterol migraines?". NO, idiot, cluster. I wanted to tell him, "google it, read it, understand it, because it SUCKS". It is like have labor pains in your head, but no pause, no inbetween break. Just constant, non stop pain. He never examined me, he never came near me. He said, "so what do they usually give you?". I respond, "Toredol, and phenegran for the nausea. But the toredol never works, and it makes me feel very uneasy, and the pain doesn't leave." He nods, says, "alright". Leaves the room. A male nurse returns rather quickly, and I am surprised by that. Usually, ER rooms take forever, and when you have pain like this, even 2 minutes is eternal. He begins to prepare to give me a shot, and I ask, "what are you giving me?" He says "Dualidid for your pain". I look over to my husband, and I say, "I don't know what that is." The nurse then lifts my sleeve to give me the shot in my shoulder. I have never, and I repeat, never had a shot for my headaches in this manner. They always give me the shot in my upper hip, or in an IV, with saline, which helps hydrate me quickly. This too, helps the headache, since all of the throwing up means I can't even keep down water. Nope, this sadist slams this shot into my shoulder, and hit.

Now, I have had relative
ly severe pain on different occasions in my life. My husband is always saying how high my pain tolerance is, and I myself, don't know if that is true or not. I don't know if it is tolerence, or just adjustment. If it is there, well, there really aren't many options, so, I deal. This pain, however, was something I had never experience in my life. It hit so severely, and was debilitating. I was stunned. It began to move down my arm, and not just burn, but felt like I had been stabbed, and my arm was being ripped off of my body, inch by inch. I cried, and I mean, wailed in a way that shocked myself, and my husband. The nurse didn't say anything, just wiped the cotton swab, left the room. I continued to cry, and I mean loudly. I was what I refer to at times as "snot bubble crying". That heaving, horrible cry that any listener knows is serious. I couldn't move my arm. I couldn't understand why a shot would hurt like that. It took me a few minutes to calm down, and be able to breathe without hyperventilating. I asked my husband what the hell just happened? I asked him to google the shot, because I had never heard of it, and now I was worried. They always return in about 10 mintues to check for any allergic reactions, but this nurse......never came back. The doctor, never came back.

Google is a occurring joke in our home, and I can't deny its usefulness. Upon searching out this shot, we discovered that Dualidid is a synthetic form of Morphine, only much stronger. People posting their reactions to this medication state that they got "instant relief" along with "I don't remember anything, I passed out immediately" and "this worked so well for my broken leg" and stuff like this. I was still in agony. I felt nothing, no relief in my headache pain, and my arm was hanging, useless, and throbbing. More reading lead to discovering that the medication is to be administered in and IV, diluted with saline. Yeah, now the panic sets in. Further reading led to discovering that people who have recieved injections improperly have not only had the pain I was experiencing, but damage. Damage to the muscle, the tendon, the nerves, and the damage was not temporary. Long term, permanent, chronic, all of the words that you never want to hear.

Our furious exit, after being openly offered "any prescription you want" from the "doctor", we went home, having received no relief for my headache, but added pain in my arm. It subsided after about an hour, and I tried my best to sleep. Fast forward to about three days later. I awake to a pain in my arm. Limited movement. I can't put on my shirt, brush my hair, I can't scratch my damn nose. Great.

I send an email to the hospital. I file a form with VAERS, for improper injections, and now, it has been over 8 weeks. Every morning I wake up hoping this has run its course, and that is dissolved immediately. It is now a pain that is constant, not just when I move my arm in certain ways or positions. I am having so much trouble sleeping, even if I use a sleeping pill, or hot tea, or all of the methods common to assist in a good nights sleep. Maybe, if I am lucky, I get 2 hours in a row. I am woken up with the pain, and have to administer more Sombra. This is a topical cream with a slight amount of heat, and a little numbing solution. It is, of course, a temporary fix. I use it on my lower back, first thing in the morning, and right before bed, and it helps tremendously. My arm however, is pretty much getting more severe. I have tried stretches, ice, heat, massaging it, everything I can think of.

Being in constant pain, makes you very cranky. No matter how happy you wake up, the pain is a constant reminder that today, I won't be able to reach into the cabinet for a coffee cup, not with this arm anyway. If I try to get up off of the couch, I can't use my left arm, or the pain is so searing, I am stopped in my tracks. Even now, just sitting here, typing, I have had to stop, about 4 times to walk around, try to move my arm, rub the shoulder, because the pain is intense today. I am going slowly insane, being so debilitated. I can't go to the doctor, because my wonderful job is not reporting my hours to culinary for my FMLA, that THEY requested I obtain for my leave. I did so, I had to pay the doctor for it, and they are NOT reporting my hours to culinary, which now resulted in culinary stopping our insurance coverage. Now, I am left without insurance, income, movement, pain relief.......options are gone.

Stress is not good for anyone, least of all a person who is injured or sick. It does not help the healing process. I have absolutely no idea how to solve any of these. Applying for disability has been stalled, because my job is absolutely ridiculous, and pretty much just being difficult so they can have a reason to let me go. I can't go to the doctor, I can't exercise much, I can't, I can't, I am at the end.

Anger, frustration, depression, isolation, fear, anxiety, stress.....small moments of comfort when I am covered with our pups, that constantly want love and attention. They seem to sense when the pain is more intense, and I feel horrible on days when I stay in bed, because they remain with me. They lay all around me, patient and attentive to my every move. Even when I need to take it very slowly to get out of bed to go downstairs and let them outside, they stay right beside me, watching me, stepping next to me. They look up at me with those eyes, like they understand, but don't know what to do either.

I have never been in this situation. I have never been at home for so long, no work, no ability to do what is needed. I feel useless and pathetic. I feel alone. I know I am not, but it doesn't do much good to answer the constant, "how do you feel today?" because I feel the same. It never seems to end, or get slightly better, and lets face it, who wants to hear that all of the time? I certainly don't. I look to future days with a sense of dread and despair. This is a new area for me. I always say, "don't worry about me, I always bounce". I think my bounce is drained and gone now.