Friday, August 31, 2012

No-Good Under-Insured Freeloaders

It's a little late for me to be blogging.  One of the 11yo twins is on her way to the emergency room with an ear infection.  This is the first time she's been to a doctor sick since 9/10/01 when she was six months old and had to have a hernia repair.  I remember the date because it was the day before 9/11.

She's had terrible hay fever this week.  So have I.

I worry about my 'little girl'.  And I worry about her being taken seriously at the ER.  I didn't want to ignore this and have her suffer some kind of damage.  But our family has had a bad track record with this sort of thing--I'm afraid the doctor won't take it seriously and then we'll end up taking her in again the next day.  I've given kids tylenol for an ear infection before, but my motherly spider-sense tells me this is a bad one.

And then....

Our medicaid is due to have been cancelled by now.

We haven't been notified yet.  But we certainly don't have the money to pay for this.  Thank heavens hospitals in this country have to treat you whether you can pay or not.  Yep, we could once again be some of those 'freeloaders' I've read about in the news.  My husband could be in the ER right now finding out that the medicaid card is worthless.  We do have tricare, but there would be plenty left over after they pay their share.

And I'll just try not to worry about me being held responsible for my child's illness.  The general consensus among half the population seems to be that I should never let any of my children become sick.  Fortunately, my girls have been mostly extremely healthy.  One was sick off and on for a few years, but she seems to have mostly grown out of it.  We've had, I think, three or four stitches a total of three times.  So we've been lucky.  I could even take some of the credit for trying to provide a decently clean environment with regular baths and three meals a day and vitamins. 

This has been the worst day for hay fever this year.  I'm tired, but I probably won't go to bed until my 'baby' is back. 

My husband wants to invite somebody (he doesn't seem to care who lol) over this weekend for barbecue, and I've had to insist that I'll be staying inside if that happens.  I was out for only a couple of minutes this morning, and I was sick for three hours afterwards.  I'm not thrilled at the prospect of visitors when our yard hasn't been mowed for maybe three weeks, either.  It's been growing like it's springtime, and I haven't run the weed whacker or pulled a weed.  I send the kids out to get the mail.  I stay inside.

I love to be outdoors.  It's no wonder I like autumn--I get to go back out.

And I need to realize that there are two kinds of people in this world--people who would judge me for the longish grass with a few dandelion puffs sticking up, and people who wouldn't mind me putting my health somewhere near the top of my priority list.  These days I am feeling a strong urge to avoid people in that first group.  I've met too many of them already.

Not to be melodramatic, but, yes, I could easily end up in the hospital if I tried to mow right now, and how stupid would that be?  More freeloading.  Not to mention how much it simply sucks to be sick.  Antihistamines don't touch this.

Well, we've had school every day this week.  I've cleaned, I've exercised, I've played the piano, and one of these days I'll break a million on Bubble Blitz.

The second movement of my sonata is coming along.  I'd thought I was almost finished, and then the next thing I knew I was dismantling it and trying to shuffle the pieces around until they fit.  I did everything except cut pieces out of the sheet music and lay them all over the table.  The thought did cross my mind.  But I think I've just about got it now.  And I'm liking the beginning of the third movement.

I'm tired.  I hope I'm at least making as much sense as I usually do.  Think I'll go play more Bubble Blitz.  See ya!

Oh, wait, here's my newest Desktop Pic Award--the picture is on my laptop right now.  This one is also from Aurora Borealis--one of my recent favorite places to get pics, especially since Bing has apparently fixed is so that I can't 'get' their daily pictures any more.  Boo!  Hiss!  :(  Anyway, here it is.  Good Night Moon.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

I am NOT a ghoul!

Well, I'm drinking up some of that diet Dew today.  Everybody left for church, and I was going to finally record some piano music for this blog, but instead I found myself parked in front of the Weather Channel playing Bubble Blitz.  There's a hurricane, you know.  Jonas Quinn and I would be happy sitting in a room somewhere for a few days watching the hurricane.  In some women's fantasies, Jonas Quinn would be shirtless.  In mine, the hurricane has just been declared a cat 5. lol

So anyway, I kinda wondered why I was feeling so lazy this morning.  And then the migraine hit.  Fatigue is one of the symptoms that one is coming.  I get them every month--regularly.  Maybe I would have seen it coming if it weren't for the foggy brain that comes with it.  So it's Advil and Dew today--I'm not feeling great, but I'm functional.  I've been playing some piano (and wanting to play everything pianissimo) and going through stuff upstairs.  I am honestly trying to clean up around here--but we've been out of the house a lot lately.

Here's an article that interested me: .  It makes my life make more sense, the idea that immune disorders and autism are related.  My mother has rheumatoid arthritis--it raised my odds of having autism.

I'm playing SongPop with my 13yo right now.  The twins are out in the camper (their new home lately) and the oldest went with Dad to a church youth meeting.

The twins made chocolate chip cookies earlier and left the batter bowl next to the computer.  I must tell them not to do that in the future.  It's just like having unprotected sex--if I have food next to the computer, I am planning to eat it all.

The blog is back!  One of my favorite all-time blogs: .  This is the blog I used to take a virtual vacation while I was sick this winter.  I am really excited!  It's such a different culture--it's fascinating to read about.

Cool video on TV of trees being whipped by the wind and rain.  And New Orleans has now declared a state of emergency.  So has Mobile.

You know, that storm we had this summer had 90+ mph winds.  Only for a short time.  That was very destructive.

I've tried to tell my girls that when they have homes of their own they should prepare for a week with no electricity and no outside help.  Everybody should.  I was just reading an article the other day that said that one thing many people neglect in their planning is water.  Do you have a week's worth of water stored?  I have six dozen 2-liter bottles of water ready to go.

And we're probably going to have some rain tonight, which the crops could certainly use.

And New Orleans is not going to open shelters.  My 13yo has just accused me of being entertained by other people's misfortune--not the shelter thing, the whole hurricane.

Well, it's time to go scrounge up some dinner.  Good luck to anyone reading this down south.  After this summer, I do have some understanding--every storm after that, we were on high alert here, and that wasn't any fun at all.  I love a good disaster flick, but I don't really want anybody to get hurt.  I'd stop it if I could.

Bet that would pay well, too.


Friday, August 24, 2012

A Waltz Inspired by Chopin


We netflixed (it's a verb if I say it is) the Six Million Dollar Man this week.  TV sure used to be slow.

I've put the sheet music for my first waltz and the first movement of my sonata to the right.  One of these days when I have some peace and quiet I'll have to record the other two pieces.  I'm still working on the second sonata movement.

I finally got the paperwork to send to my husband's former employer today.  He hasn't worked there for eight months, but the FSSA wants them to fill out another form.  It's Friday today, and the form has to be back to them on Wednesday, or else.

And nothing else much is going on here, so I'll just go quietly....

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Some More Picture I Liked...Aurora Borealis

Here is my Picture of the Day:

This was on my desktop for a while.  It's from 'Aurora Borealis' .  And here's another Picture of the Day:
It's my current desktop pic.

How about another one from 'Aurora Borealis':
And another one:
And another one (from a fb group I belong to)--I sent a copy of this to my mother, who has Rheumatoid Arthritis:
Not much else happening here.  Our Medicaid paperwork is due this coming Wednesday, and we haven't received one of the forms yet, which has to be mailed by us to someone else and then faxed (hopefully the same day?) to the FSSA.  None of which matters anyway because it will take them a month to process the rest of the stuff once they get it.
It's been a busy day--homeschooling, catching up on chores after having been so busy lately, playing some piano, printing out a bunch of English and spelling worksheets.
Good night. :)

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

The Indiana FSSA thinks the National Guard is a New Job Every Month

This morning I drove to my parents' house, because at my rural house the phone signal isn't strong enough to continue a long, unbroken conversation.  I called the FSSA (the people who handle Medicaid, food stamps and welfare) from there.

First I learned that their computer system couldn't find our file.  Then I spoke to Julie.  Julie seemed like a nice person.  But she's just another powerless cog in a big, seriously messed-up machine.

I found out that my paperwork from the week of July 9'th wasn't processed until August 16, which was waaay after that 10-day deadline.  Julie told me that the storms this summer delayed everything.  So of course, we must be punished for this. (my words, not Julie's)

I was told that when my husband goes off to guard, it looks to the FSSA as if he quit his old job, got a new job, and then quit that.  They have no understanding of how the National Guard works, in spite of the numerous times I've tried to explain it to them.  The good news is that Julie said I do not have to turn in the National Guard paperwork.  The bad news is that they want me to turn in every Guard pay stub from now on.  I'll be sending a note explaining the situation with each pay stub.  But I'm really concerned that every time they receive something from me it will trigger more paperwork.

Meanwhile I've got a couple of kids that I would like to take to doctors and dentists, but I can't until this gets straightened out.  And once we get cancelled, they'll assign us a new doctor again, and it will be another protracted fight to get our old doctor back. 

I am also going to have to wait for them to send me more paperwork, because they've screwed up on that.  They can't figure out who my husband's civilian employer is, even though I have told them.  But don't think I'm going to get an extension on that time limit.  Julie said that they can always go back and pay our medical bills after I get reinstated, but this happened once before and they never did pay off the dental bill we were surprised with.

Once the 29'th hits, and we get cancelled, I'll probably have to reapply all over again, and send all sorts of paperwork--all of it in ten days, of course.

This is what it's like to be poor.  Filling out endless reams of paperwork, trying desperately to get a little help, spending hours and hours on the computer and telephone, copying everything, sending the same forms and copies of documents over and over again.  It's like begging.  Please give me a little money so my children can go to the doctor.  It's demeaning, constantly trying to prove my husband's employment status, our household income, my disability, how many children we have.

How many times can we send the same birth certificates and social security cards?  As many times as they demand them.  We wish we could tell them to go to hell, but we have to have that medical and dental care for our children.  The FSSA holds our children's health hostage.

Wait until my husband gets deployed one day and they immediately cancel the medicaid.  I'd bet the media would eat that up.

Anyway, after the phone call, the girls and I went and got the groceries we hadn't been able to find time to get yesterday.  Yesterday was busy--we did the dollar store, the dentist--

--our dentist is a nice guy.  I've been with him a long time, and never regretted it.  He numbed me up really well.  But my metabolism does not allow that to work.  So after waiting for it to take effect, I finally had to get another round of shots and wait some more.

After that it was lunch time, and then I dropped three girls at my parents, and another girl and I went to the doctor.  Now I'm wondering--will her bill get paid, or will we get stuck with that?  Anyway, after all the paperwork and doctor's visit, I had to go somewhere else and get blood drawn for an entire slew of tests.  It was late when we got home (and my parents had taken us out for dinner) and then that paperwork was in the mail and I literally spent the rest of the night dealing with that so it could go out in the mail the next day.

So, today....after speeding through some of the more important chores and going to my parents' house to use the phone, the girls wanted to go to Wal-mart, so I bought a couple of things there and checked out a few of the more expensive items on my grocery list, in case anything was on sale.  I'd already checked out Kroger's sale prices for the week, so I didn't buy much at Wal-mart.  Wal-mart often has great day-old bread, though.  Our deep freeze pays for itself.  And I saved $35 with coupons today at Krogers--that might be a record for me.  I saved another $30 with sales, not to mention how much I probably save in general just by buying cheap generic staple food.  For under $200 I had the cart so full we had to carry a couple of things.  Chicken was on sale, so I bought eight large packages--meat's supposed to go up eventually, so I'm starting to prepare.  Chicken is starting to be cheaper than beef.  And it's healthier anyway.  I'm also not afraid to take advantage of sales where you get a great price if you buy ten of something, as long as it's something that will keep and that I know we'll use.  So we have a lot of Alfredo sauce and a lot of diet Dew.

Monday, August 20, 2012

My Children's Medicaid is Going to Be Cancelled Again....Because of My Husband's Indiana National Guard Duty

I put that in the title to help the search engines find it.  This is ridiculous.

A quick recap--feel free to skip ahead if you're one of my two regular readers:

We were cancelled the first week of my husband's January 2009 basic training.  This was the first time we'd had any real trouble since my eldest started medicaid in 1996.  The Indiana FSSA decided that my husband must have been undergoing basic training in Oklahoma, while at the same time sneakily continuing his full-time job in Indiana.  Those of you who are acquainted with US geography might be skeptical, but the government was certain that this was what was happening.  No, really, they were.

We were cancelled again the first week of his 2010 summer two-week stint, and again in 2011, first week.  This year we got paperwork but apparently avoided cancellation.  Until now.

My husband had one day of guard duty today, outside of his normal one-weekend-a-month routine.  And that was enough to trigger IT again.

We have a form that has to be filled out by the National Guard in Indianapolis.  This form will have to be mailed to Indy, then mailed back to us, then mailed to the FSSA (no, we're not allowed to cut out the middleman--that might make too much sense), and then go through the all-important several-days-long processing procedure, all before the 29'th.  Yes, we have nine whole days before our children's medicaid is cancelled.

I'm glad that we at least have Tricare now.  We didn't at first.  But we still have to pay 15% of a lot of things.  If a child were hospitalized, that could add up very quickly.  And we like being able to take them to the dentist....

Another form has to be taken to my husband's employer--but--get this--they put the wrong employer on the form.  So another form must be procured, through the mail, and taken, probably by hand at least, which will be quicker, to the employer, and then sent back to the FSSA.  Oh, and don't forget processing.

I must also send them copies of the Tricare cards.  It doesn't matter if I sent them the second week of July.  They want them again.

I've just spend hours on this, filling out paperwork, swearing, making copies, starting a binder, whining, writing state government officials, posting on facebook, and contacting the reporter who expressed an interest last year in knowing if this happened again.

All this after getting an old filling replaced this morning, taking the bill to my parents, and going to my old GP to get started on the medical part of my Social Security appeal.  I had blood drawn at the nearby hospital.  I filled out a lot of paperwork.  I even impressed myself by doing the dollar store portion of our grocery shopping when I had the time.  I also impressed myself by actually finding the dollar store on my first attempt.

Oh, and when I went to the dentist, I found they'd re-paved the road in a new color and posted orange signs everywhere, which confused the heck out of me.  Suddenly my 13yo daughter piped up in a small, discouraged (one might have almost said disgusted) voice.  "And you just missed the dentist."

Fortunately I know that area and was able to find it again.  Kinda sad that I drive like that before they give me nitrous.

And now I've got to go--it's getting late--good night!

Friday, August 17, 2012

Homelessness or Suicide, That is the Question

I have no intention whatsoever of committing suicide.  I have many good reasons not to--four children who need me, family who would mourn me, pets, a roof over my head--mazurkas yet to write, books to read, trees to walk under.  Not to mention a fairly normal fear of pain and suffering.  But....

A couple in a city not far from here committed suicide a week and a half ago.

Many people have judged them for their selfishness, and/or stated with absolute conviction that this couple will rot in hell for all eternity.

The Kinzers were my age--mid-to-late forties.  They had no children.  They apparently had no relationship with their families.  They lived in a trailer park.  They both struggled with ill health and were unemployed.  Their bills were piling up.  Their lights had recently been turned off.  And they were about to be evicted.

They thought about it, and made what seems to me to be an almost logical decision.  They wrote a fourteen-page letter explaining their decision to their families.  And then....the husband shot his wife, and then himself.

They may have reached out for help--we don't know--from the government, from charitable organizations, from family and neighbors.  Some people have assumed that they never reached out, and wondered why.  But....

We've reached out.  Repeatedly.  We're not getting unemployment, Social Security, welfare, food stamps, Medicare, Medicaid, CANI, help from a health clinic--you name it, we are not getting it.  My husband is looking for a full-time job and not finding one.  I am looking for work online with no education or job experience, and for government benefits of any kind.  My family is all that is standing between us and homelessness.  Even if we lost our home we would have somewhere to go.

If I had no children and no relationship with my family, if I was facing homelessness this winter--and I would quite likely not survive winter homeless with the disease that I have--I would probably give the idea of suicide serious consideration.  Especially after all the times I've been told how poor and worthless and lazy I am, how I'm not really sick and I should get a job, all the times I've reached out....

I might decide that it would be better to die at home, before I lost what little I had left and went off to die in the cold somewhere.

Please don't worry--I haven't even thought about suicide, and if all else failed one day, I'd still be a mother with children living at home to whom I could never dream of doing that.  And I'm lucky--I have at least a handful of people who would drop everything if I even hinted at it.  But I think I've caught at least a glimpse of the despair and loneliness that would drive someone to it.

I hope I would keep talking, to family members and friends, acquaintances, a suicide hot line, a church....surely somebody somewhere would help....

Thursday, August 16, 2012

It's a Pulley! And it Moves!

I learned another lawn mower-related word today:  "Pulley".  It's those round things above the "deck" that the belt kept slipping off of over and over again today, making an hour and a half or so of mowing take three hours.  I mentioned it on the phone to my father, who said the belt needed "tightening"  (is there a buckle or something?).  After I explained my terminology issues, he explained what the "pulleys" were and that one needed to be moved further away from the rest of them.  When I heard this involves a crescent wrench, I decided not to do it myself unless I have to.

You really do learn something new every day.  It's just like the computer--every time it breaks I learn something.

So I mowed the lawn, trimmed with the weed whacker, clipped with the hedge clipper, pulled some weeds, and then it rained.  After it rained, I pulled at least a gross of ragweed--they're pollinating now, so after a rain is the only time it's safe to touch 'em.   I focused on near where people would walk, because they'll get it on their clothes and bring it indoors.  But the hay fever isn't bad this year.  Maybe the drought killed hay fever season.

So here it is, August, and I'm mowing and weeding every week.   A few plants are putting forth a weak showing of spring flowers.  They're confused, too.

I also tidied up the camper by our front door.  I picked up everything, dusted, wiped the table, and swept.  The twins have been sleeping out there a lot.  We have a TV with no reception and an old VCR, so they watch movies with one of the dogs and share the sofa bed.

OK, here's today's Picture of the Day:

No, wait, this is better:

This is Scooby, one of our dogs.  He's actually been on a diet and lost a fair amount of weight since this picture was taken.  He's even more handsome now.  He's enjoying his physical fitness.

Here's the picture I was going to show you:

It's from!/pages/AccuWeathercom-Astronomy/178186248887910 .

They follow the solar activity a lot--I remind myself slightly of Jonas Quinn and his 'thing' for the Weather Channel.

Here's another of their pics:

We live in a marvelous time--this is a sunset on Mars, courtesy of the Curiosity.

Change of subject....

I've found a new weight-loss website, called .  It's free.  You can enter everything you eat into their search engine and it'll keep track of calories, carbs, fat, and protein.  It will also keep track of your exercise.  I've been eating like I always do, and exercising, and it says that it may actually recommend that I increase my caloric intake because of my activity level.

How many times in my life have I heard that I might not be lazy enough?

I figured this is worth a try--it is free, after all.  I'll keep you posted. (Posted?  That was unintentional.)


Monday, August 13, 2012

658,450 on Bubble Blitz! It's a new record!

I'm back.  It was just too depressing to write about religion/poverty/disability for a few days.  So now I have catching up to do.  Let's see....

My husband is back to work part-time, his boss apparently having exacted enough retribution for his three-week guard stint.  Yes, I know it's illegal.  It's been my experience over the years that when you work at the bottom, they can get away with anything.  Maybe even murder--I heard of a former co-worker with lots of complaints murdered--not raped, not robbed, just murdered--after I was let go for not sleeping with the boss.  Nothing would surprise me.

Anyway, we had a lot of fun Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday.  My sister, bil, and niece Hazel came for a visit.  Hazel is three, and she couldn't be more fun.

On Wednesday my sister and I went to the lawyer.  She seemed very competent.  The lawyer I mean.  Not that my sister isn't competent. lol  Where was I?  We went over my disabilities (there's that d*** word again) thoroughly.  Yet another stroll down memory lane.  Afterwards (it was my sister's suggestion, honestly) we went to Atz's for ice cream.  I highly recommend chocolate ice cream with hot fudge sauce and oreos on top.  My diet took a little vacation those three days, but I was pretty good--I had a grilled chicken salad for dinner and no dessert--not that I had room for dessert.  It had been nice to have a long chat, just my sister and me, over ice cream.  And then we pretended we hadn't done it.  For some reason my children and husband did not believe we'd stopped for coffee. lol  I think it might have had something to do with my passionate hatred of coffee.  I also got to spend time chasing Hazel up and down my parents' hallway, jumping out at her and pretending I wanted to eat her toes.  I think she's ninety percent certain I wouldn't really do it.  I can still hear her--I'm at one end of the house and she's at the other:  "Aunt Deeeeb!  Aunt Deeeeeeeeb!  Aunt Deeeeeeeeeeeb!

On Thursday we went to the Fort Wayne Children's Zoo.  This is one of the top ten attractions in the country.  I don't even get paid for saying that.  We visited Africa, Indonesia, Australia, and a farm.  We rode a sky ride, a log boat ride, and a train ride, and my niece rode a pony and a merry-go-round.  Afterwards we had pizza at my parents' house, where my sister and family stayed while they were here.

On Friday we went shopping at Glenbrook Mall.  My sister bought us all clothes, and lunch.  I bought a couple of bargain books at B&N--a book on geometry and a book on chemistry.  I might be a geek after all--I'd much rather buy books than clothes.  We had dinner Friday night at the last of the three restaurants that my parents know exists. :)  We had a lot of fun playing with Hazel at dinner time--we played 'Who took the cookie from the cookie jar?'.  And of course (later) my girls and I promptly ganged up on Hazel when she said, "Say everything I say"--we all repeated dutifully, "Say everything I say" which screwed it all up right from the beginning.  I think she might have wondered if we were stupid. lol  Then we went to a Tin Caps game--the Tin Caps are another of the top ten country-wide attractions.  We have two of them because we're better than the rest of you.

It was a pleasant vacation from reality.

By Saturday it was over, and at my house we were all in a state of collapse.  We've all had a small cold.  It had rained during the ball game and it had been chilly.  My 13yo started in on the first asthma attack she's had in quite a while.  It was still going on Sunday, and today.  We think she's going to be okay now.

On Sunday I whipped through a to-do list:

#1  Make to-do list.  Check.
#2  Research Tricare.  Check.  We have Tricare Reserve Select.  $50 deductible and 15% copays if I understand correctly.
#3  Email sister.  Check.  Several times.
#4  Fill out lawyer's papers.  Check.
#5  Ask for hearing online.  Check.
#6  Call old (I meant, I haven't seen him for a long time) doctor for appointment.  Check.  Did this today.
#7  Fill out form for congressman.  Check.  Would you believe I actually got a response this time.  Maybe they can find out why my Social Security was cancelled in the first place.
#8  Post on facebook (seriously, spellcheck doesn't recognize facebook?) CVID group and ask for advice.  Check.  If I'd only known--I'd have thirty binders right now full of every report card, failed assignment, doctor's appointment, neurological test, journals for every job.  A lifetime of failure well-documented.
#9  And I wrote a letter to the editor--more on that another day, perhaps.

Well, it looks like my politely savage emails may have saved our children's medicaid.  We didn't get cancelled this year.  Perhaps it's been my fault in years past for not having reached the end of my rope sooner.

And goodnight, I'm going to bed soon.  After a few more games of Bubble Blitz.

P.S.  I just posted a link to a one-chapter fanfic in the Candy Jar (scroll down on the right).

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Money & Power & Religion

I just saw the news.  Seven people shot and killed in a Sikh Temple in Wisconsin.  The theory is that it was an act of 'domestic terrorism' in which a man killed his fellow human beings because the men were wearing turbans and he mistook them for muslims.  This has happened before.

It seems to me that it doesn't really matter all that much which religion you practice--what really matters is how you practice it.  This statement would make some people I know very upset with me.  But in my somewhat ordinary life, I've seen people motivated by religion to give money to the poor, feed the hungry, take care of the sick, care for children and old people, and offer encouragement, many times, in different places.  I've also seen people go on power trips for the sole purpose of controlling their fellow practitioners, insist that the only way into heaven is their way, beat their wives and children, blame the poor, sick, and hungry for their lot, and argue endlessly over who's right about the most insignificant matters, all in the name of religion.  Then again, I've seen people who don't formally practice any particular faith behave in many of the same ways.

I guess I'm just lucky to live in a neighborhood where people don't routinely shoot and kill each other in the name of God.  Although apparently no place is completely safe.

Religion is a very powerful thing.  It can be used for a great deal of good, or for a great deal of evil. Like any other tool, it's how you use it that really matters.

I've been somewhat disappointed recently--in my recent study of Kabbalah, I feel I've learned a great many things, looked at the universe from a different perspective, and been inspired.  So after some research, I approached one of the main organizations teaching about Kabbalah in an effort to learn more.  I'm trying not to jump to conclusions, but it seems that as soon as the discovery was made that I have no money to offer, I was dumped.  It's not the first time.  A couple of churches have treated me the same way over the years.

Money is another very powerful thing.  I can see why people would do just about anything to get it.  I'm starting to feel desperate myself.  What would I do to be able to keep my house and my trees and my pets and my stuff instead of moving back in with my parents, I find myself wondering.  Over the years I've refused to lie, cheat, or steal for money.  The times I refused to sleep with bosses probably cost me a couple of jobs.  Being honest doesn't seem to have ever gotten me anywhere.  Being disabled means I get accused of lying all the time anyway.

I wouldn't want to seriously hurt anybody to keep my home.  At least I have somewhere else to go if I have to.  I wonder what I would be willing to do if my children were going to be homeless, or hungry.

I can see the temptation--even for someone whose life is going reasonably well financially--to use spirituality for financial gain.  Who doesn't want to be rich?  Not to mention well-respected.  A 'pillar of the community'.  Powerful, even.  And it's all perfectly legal.

Perhaps religion and money should be separated completely.  A church (and don't ask me how we'd finance the building) where money is not allowed, except to be given in its entirety to charity.  A place where one could go to seek enlightenment and inspiration and self-improvement and learning, and community, and opportunities to serve humanity.

Although I doubt it would stop the bickering.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

A Very Depressing Blog Post

I got some bad news yesterday--my husband has apparently been fired--his boss has simply stopped having any work available for him.  It was probably because of his National Guard duty.  So our household has no income.  My parents are supporting us totally now, except for some help from my sister.  We have no unemployment (after all, he was only working part-time anyway), no social security, no food stamps, no welfare, nothing.

I can only hope that my meeting with the lawyer this coming week is productive.  My prediction is that she won't take the case, because she can only get paid if she wins--this is the way Social Security is set up.  The lawyer would get a percentage of the back pay.  But I don't have any recent medical records.  It may be that my sister will pay for me to see a couple of doctors, and then back to the lawyer we would go.  This could take a very long time.

We had to go into the Social Security office yesterday to get those replacement cards, and I asked for the CD.  They gave it to me, no problem.  So last night I perused that.  The neurological test I took--the Wechsler Memory Scale--showed that I have an extremely poor visual and spatial memory, and an auditory memory worth bragging about.  This is no great surprise--I could tell how well I was doing on those tests.

The doctor I saw for my physical said that I was 'partially credible'.  They should have taken a blood test and given me a pneumonia vaccine and tested that--I would assume that the results of those blood tests would have been 'entirely credible'.

I'm trying not to be anxious/angry/depressed/frustrated today.  I spent a couple of pointless hours this afternoon looking for work I can do online--as if I haven't looked already.  No, you just can't make thousands of dollars (or any dollars) taking surveys online.  As if I didn't already know that.  Desperation is making me dumber.  Very soon my parents will have to start going through the money they've been saving all these years for my children's college educations.  That might last us until spring if we're lucky.  At some point we'd have to move in with them.  Then their retirement money will have to feed and shelter all of us.  They don't deserve this.

There just isn't any point in worrying about it, other than that it's motivating me to spend more time going through the clutter around here in case I have to pack.  I try not to worry about what this will do to the kids, or that our two dogs might have to be separated from us to go live with strangers.

I'll just have to think about today.  And now I'll go back to looking for work online and going through our stuff.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Another Word for 'Disabled'

Drum's Picture of the Month:

This is that volcano that erupted in Iceland several months back.  And now it's been several days since I found this picture, and I've slept, and I forgot where I got it.  Bing, probably.


We're watching 'The Happening' by M. Night Shyamalan tonight.  I definitely would NOT let children watch this.  My youngest are eleven and it's scaring the heck out of them. :)  It's a bit gory, too.  A lion rips a guy's arm off, and I pipe up, 'It's just a scratch'.  (Monty Python is too funny.  Half the people in the room thought I was funny.  Half of them thought I was gross.  Probably the same half who didn't think Monty was funny.  I think some British humor is hysterical.  I loved 'Red Dwarf'.)


I've decided I want a new name for 'disabled'.  It just hit me the other day.  I am tired of being 'disabled'. 

'Crippled' would be silly--it's not as if I can't walk.  Handicapped?  No.  Not today, anyway.  Sick?  Ill?  That doesn't seem to do it justice.  People with the flu (and people who say "it's just a scratch") are 'sick'.  And don't even get me started on 'differently abled'.  Not only is it an unwieldy mouthful, but it sounds as if I'm just fine, no problem, just 'different'.  It doesn't give any indication of some of the struggles people like me go through.  As if we can just pretend everything is fine.

It's just like changing from words like 'idiot' and 'moron' to 'retarded', which then becomes a pejorative so we say 'slow', and then 'mentally challenged'.  Actually, 'mentally challenged' might apply to me pretty well if it weren't already taken.

The problem is that any word with which I replace 'disabled' will just become another word with negative connotations.

I'd like for that to disappear one day.  I will very likely never be well, but I would like to be O.K.  I'd like it to be acceptable that I'm not well, and that my brain doesn't work like everybody else's.  I'd like to be just one of the guys.

Warning:  I am about to whine.  I am tired of being disabled, and I am tired of trying to prove that I'm disabled, and I am tired of apologizing for being this way.  I'm tired of being poor.  My husband hasn't worked in a week, and I can't work, or get food stamps or social security, or find even a part-time job online (just spent last Sunday afternoon looking again out of desperation).  Tomorrow we all are going to the Social Security office to get replacements for the cards that had to go in person to another government agency and never came back.  I'm going to ask for my CD of info for my disability appeal.  I am tired of dealing with this.  I wish I could just go on with my life.  There must be more than this.

I know some people have bigger problems.  Although when I look at the possibility of having to move back in with my parents some day, that seems big enough.

Someone asked on a Kabbalah thread if people would say what their greatest problems were.  So many people worried about their finances or their health or their interpersonal relationships.  I guess this is just the way it is.

Anyway, I've started (just barely) the third movement of the sonata.  The second is still getting finished up.  It's funny--I was sitting at the computer writing the music for the second movement, and I heard the beginning of the third.  This isn't unknown for composers--I sometimes hear music, like an auditory hallucination.  Sometimes I can do it on purpose now.  So I stopped everything right in the middle and started writing the beginning of that third movement.

And the movie's over--time to go!  I've got things to do tonight.  Bye!