Friday, April 25, 2008

It Never Stops

I really do need to remember to update my blog more often. I took Donny for the endoscopy and we should get the results either the 5th or the 13th. I expect that all will be fine, but it's nice to have a doctor confirm it.

On Tuesday afternoon, as I was getting ready for Donny's appointment, my mom called me into the other room to talk to me. I go in and she tells me that she's having chest pains that radiate to her left. She wasn't sure if she needed to see a doctor. As I was working on convincing her to go to ER the nurse from her doctor's office called. After they talked to her doctor it was decided that she needed to go to ER. My uncle was getting ready to take my grandma to see her sister who's in the hospital, so I asked him to take my mom to the ER that she likes on his way out of town. I called my dad and arranged for him to meet her there since I couldn't go.

A few hours later I was waiting for Donny to finish his time in recovery so we could go home when my dad called to let me know what was going on. The doctors couldn't find anything wrong with my mom so they wanted to keep her overnight for observation. She would need her CPAP machine and was not wanting my dad to drive all the way home, pick it up, and drive all the way back again. I agreed to take it to her once I got Donny home since I wanted to go by and check on her anyway.

I got there and my mom was still in ER waiting for a room. My father and I both decided to sit with her for awhile. For some reason the ER had not yet put an IV in her, so when it was time to get her ready for a transfer they had to do that. My dad and I are both squeamish around needles, but for my dad it's almost a phobia, so you can imagine what that was like for us. It sounded like the nurse was finishing so my dad looked over, just in time to see the nurse pull the needle out. From where he was standing it looked like she broke the needle in my mom's hand, and you could see the blood drain from my dad's face. He sat down and recovered some of his color and then he left to go home.

When it was time to take my mom upstairs she decided to go in her wheelchair, so the transport was a lot less dramatic than you usually see. We got to her room and the ER guy helped her into bed and then he left. We sat there and visited for about a half hour before a nurse came in and acknowledged that there was now a patient in the room. I know nurses are busy people, but it seems to me that somebody could have poked their head in the door and said hello before then. Even if all they said was that her nurse would be with her shortly, at least we would have known that somebody on the floor was aware of our presence.

The nurse came in to do her part of the admit and she seemed like a really nice person. She asked all the questions that we expected and seemed to really know what she was doing. She changed my mom's wristband from the one that ER had given her to one that looked like it was designed to last a little longer. That's when she noticed that my mom hadn't been given an allergy bracelet. Since my mom has several drug allergies that cause her throat to close this is an important item. She said that she'd bring it in later. When I left around 11:00 it still hadn't happened.

The next day I went back to the hospital to pick my mom up and was still rather unimpressed with the nursing staff. My mom was told by the doctor around 9:30 that he would be discharging her. Somewhere around 10:00 the nurse stopped in for a moment and said that she'd be back shortly to start the discharge. I got there around 11:30 and the nurse hadn't been back yet. We waited patiently and about 15 minutes later the nurse came in to check on my mom. When my mom asked about the discharge you would have thought the nurse had never heard about it from her reaction. She checked the paperwork and said that the order was in there, then she left.

Somewhere around 12:30 the nurse popped in for a minute and my mom asked about getting her IV and heart monitor removed so that she could take a shower. The nurse talked to her for a minute and they decided that after lunch she would be discharged. Then the nurse said that she needed to go get gauze so she could remove my mom's IV. We didn't see her again until after lunch.

When the nurse finally came in and removed the IV my mom repeated that she needed to shower and the nurse seemed a little put out at the 5 minute delay, but went and got her some towels. After my mom showered we finished packing her up and the nurse came back to finish discharging her. It wasn't until the nurse said something that I realized that my mom's allergy bracelet was still in her chart, rather than on her arm. I was glad that we were leaving, since I started getting really angry at this point. It seems to me that there's a reason that allergy bracelets are used, and it was rather risky not putting one on somebody who has a lot of severe allergies. All in all, I was really disappointed with the hospital on this visit.

Now that mom's home things are settling down again. Which is nice since I seem to be fighting off a flu bug. I'm really hoping for a few more days of calm.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Just a note

It's 1:30 in the morning and I'm barely starting to unwind. I spent my day yesterday closing out my office. My manager, the most senior preparer and I met at 9:00 for breakfast and then we attacked the office. I didn't get done until a little after 7:00, and we didn't take any breaks. It was a long day.

I found out yesterday that I'm not getting hired to work off season. They had a lot of really experienced preparers apply, and seniority always counts. Today Donny and I looked at our finances and realized that we can actually afford for me to take the time off, so I'm not worried. I thought that I'd have to get a job at Burger King to make ends meet, but all is well. I'm really looking forward to the break.

Of course I'm not real good at relaxing, so it won't be long until my schedule is full again. Tomorrow (I guess it's actually today) I'm taking Donny to get the final fitting on his teeth. Last time we tried this he puked on the dentist, so I'm hoping for better results this time. Next Tuesday Donny's scheduled for an endoscopy. He's complained of black tarry stools off and on just enough for me to be worried, but not enough for me to be convinced that I'm right to worry. Which is why I'm thrilled that the liver doctor considers this a routine test for anyone with cirrhosis. The test was ordered and I don't have to look like an overreacting idiot for worrying about nothing.

I know that I thought of something earlier today that I wanted to blog about, but now I'm too damn tired to remember what it was. That must mean it's bedtime.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

April 13th

I've been looking at the dates on my posts and realized that I've had nothing to say for a while. My job must be boring, since I don't even have any good work stories. That could explain the lack of tax blogs available. There really isn't anything exciting about taxes.

Although, the other day I was excited about a test I passed. We're required to do continuing education hours to get rehired next year and several of us started working on our hours already. There are a lot of courses available to us online and we'd do those when things were slow. By taking the same classes we've been able to help each other pass.

There's a preparer in my office who this was her ninth season and she'd been helping all of us. She decided that one of the courses that she wanted to take was unitary theory. This is something that you see mostly with big corporations and is considered a rather advanced class. Half of the text for the class is just citing which court cases had decided the issues. It was not easy to read. This experienced preparer had taken the test a couple of times and couldn't pass it, so she decided to challenge me to see if I could do it. I passed it on the first try. I printed out my results and left them on her desk for her, I was so proud. (I still don't understand any of it, but I passed the test!)

Tax season is almost over and it's a little sad for me. I've become friends with my coworkers and now I won't be seeing them on a regular basis. If the statistics aren't lying then one or two of us won't be back next year. It'll be different and I don't want different. I don't like change, the unknown is my biggest fear. This is strange for me.

One last bit of advice, if you haven't done your taxes yet, HURRY UP!!! There are only two days left if you want to get the rebate that everybody is talking about. Quit dragging your feet and get it done. If you need help, just ask. I love answering questions because it shows me how much I've learned, and how much I have yet to learn.

Thursday, April 03, 2008


This was supposed to post last night, but due to technical problems that didn't happen.

Things started looking up today. I went to the doctor with my grandma and there's no blood clot in her leg. Apparently the swelling is just the normal post-op fluid build up. So she has to wear support hose and keep elevating her legs. The good news was that her kidney function is up to 80%. This is higher than we thought we'd get it, so it's really wonderful news.

The doctor has released grandma to return to physical therapy. The guy who was doing her therapy at home signed her out of his care when she had to stop because of her leg swelling. So instead of getting her back on with that guy she's being sent to a place here in town. The nice thing is that it's the same physical therapist that my mom's doctor is sending her to, so they can get appointments at the same time and save trips.

My mom's liver test came back and they're saying that the whole problem is the weight. As it comes off her liver should improve. Her kidney test is back and they told my mom to drink lots of water and she'll be fine. Again, true improvement won't happen until the weight comes off, but the water will keep her okay in the mean time. This pancreas test came back fine, so they're running another one. If the tests continue to be all over the place then more in depth testing will be done. All in all, I'm not so freaked out about her health now, it's all fixable.

Donny has agreed to continue seeing his regular doctor. I don't know if he came to his senses, or if he's just tired of fighting with me, but I won this round. I called them today for an appointment and when I mentioned that he's having black tarry stools there was suddenly an opening tomorrow morning. I finally feel like we might be able to get him back on track.

This latest ordeal with Donny got me thinking. He absolutely refuses to see the truth about himself in some areas. He has this ideal person set in his mind as to who he wants to be and there's no convincing him that he's different. Realizing that I started wondering if I truly see who I am. I try to be honest with myself, but am I successful? Do I see the truth about myself? And if I don't, would I like the things that I don't see? Are they good or bad? It's something to ponder.