Friday, December 28, 2012

Hubby Coming Home Soon...

Hubby was able to come home Christmas Day thanks to the generosity of a couple of readers. He did well and as of now the plan is for him to be discharged from rehab on Monday. What a great way to start the New Year!

I had my nuclear stress test yesterday. I won't know the results until sometime next week. I am hoping that I will get the go ahead to have my gallbladder removed.

We still haven't been able to make a decision about our future living arrangements. There are many things to be taken into consideration. It's very easy for someone reading this blog to advise us to rent out our home and rent another place with that money. However, the reality is that in the area where we live, rent is not very high. The amount we would receive per month would most likely not cover the cost of renting a place in the city closer to the doctors and hospitals. Even if it did, we would still have to pay property taxes on our home and we would have to worry about a renter not paying us causing us to not be able to pay our rent. These are risks that we can't afford to take because neither hubby or I could survive on the street.

I know I have angered certain readers by what they refer to us as "begging". When I post the link to our pens for sale, I don't consider that begging. I am simply asking that people who are looking to buy gifts consider our pens or consider sharing our link with people whom they know who might be interested in purchasing pens. I am just advertising.

Our expenses were already more than our income before hubby's heart surgery. We have cut our expenses to the minimum but things are going to be even harder now with additional trips to doctors and physical therapy for hubby. I am not begging but please keep our pens in mind if you should happen to have need of a handcrafted gift. We appreciate each and every purchase and it helps us out more than you can ever know.

We have more pens available than are currently shown in the catalog and we can also do custom orders so if you want a pen in a particular color, material or style just drop me an email describing what you would like. We will craft the pen, no obligation and email you pictures when it is ready. If you decide not to buy it we will add it to our online catalog.

My son will be staying for awhile to help in the shop until hubby is able to do more.

Thanks again for everything...

Monday, December 24, 2012

Hoping For A Christmas Miracle


I am very upset with the staff at the rehab center. Last week, when my husband was moved to that part of the hospital, he was told that he could get a day pass to come home on the weekend days, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. We haven't been able to go back to visit him since the 20th because we don't have much money left for gas and have been saving that so we can pick him up Christmas morning and then take him back that night. I was talking to hubby on the phone yesterday and his nurse was in the room. Hubby asked her to speak with me and explain the procedure for checking him out for the day on Christmas. The nurse then tells me that before he can go home for the day, we have to come in and attend a family training session. That is the first time that a training session was mentioned to us and hubby has asked about getting the day passes several times. He was discussing it with the doctor when we were there the last time because the doctor has to approve the pass and there was no mention of us needing any training. So if we go for the training this morning, we won't have gas money to bring him home for the day tomorrow. We would all just go spend the day at the hospital with hubby but due to the flu being really bad right now, children under 12 aren't allowed to visit. My granddaughter is only 4 and I don't want my son to miss Christmas with his child. We have decided to just go to the training this morning and hope that we can find some way to get to the hospital and back twice tomorrow.

I am heartsick at the thought of hubby being alone on Christmas Day. We have never been apart for more than a few days at a time in the 36 years that we have been married and have never not been together on Christmas. Christmas is even more special to us because that is the day that we got to take our son, who was born prematurely in 1979 and had only a 50% chance of surviving, home from the hospital.

I know it’s too late for Christmas but pens are still available.

For those who may not believe that we have to attend training or that kids under 12 aren't being allowed to visit right now, you can call and ask. Hubby is in Cape Fear Valley Hospital in Fayetteville, N.C. He is in the inpatient rehabilitation unit. The main hospital number is 910-615-4000. They can connect calls to inpatient rehabilitation. I know that I don't have to prove anything but I am getting tired of the nastiness and accusations.

One other thing, some people have been suggesting that we should rent our home out, get on housing assistance and use the rental income to pay our rent. That sounds like a recipe for becoming homeless and I will not risk that. If we rent out our home and the tenant doesn't pay then we could end up on the street. There are other considerations, also. Our house isn't in the greatest shape and we don't have the money to do repairs that are needed plus we would still have to pay property taxes. I am open to suggestions to help our situation but I think that renting our house out would be a colossal mistake.

I wish everyone a Merry Christmas/happy holidays. Enjoy your family and don’t take them for granted because you never know what might happen.


Friday, December 21, 2012

A Few Things...

Update: You know it's really, really easy to tell someone to sell their home and move. Only one problem; to sell a home there has to be someone who wants to buy the home. I have said more than once that the housing market here is abyssmal and that is the absolute truth. I wish that it were possible to just take people's advice and turn my life around but the facts are that it just isn't that easy.

No one forces anyone to read one word that I write, yet some come here for no other apparent reason than to sit in judgement of me and make rude remarks about me. At a time when I am worried sick about my husband, why do some of you feel the need to do that?

I haven't been able to visit my husband since Thursday. I miss him so much and I am very worried. He wasn't feeling very good when I spoke to him on the phone and he was in a lot of pain. He only talked for a little while and that isn't like him. I know he misses me and feels neglected but I only have a little gas money left and I am saving that so we can visit him on Christmas Day. He could get a day pass to come home on Christmas but we can't afford to do that. I am just grateful that I will at least be able to visit him at the hospital.

To those who will feel the need to leave hurtful remarks in reply to this, go right ahead. You must be very sad and lonely yourself if it makes you feel better to insult me.


To anyone who doesn't like what I am currently writing about, the solution is quite simple. There is an "x" in the upper righthand corner of this page. I suggest that you use it.

Now, to answer some questions and clear up some things. I live in a rural area but there are towns, but no major cities, located about 15 miles away. They have Wal-mart and they also have social services. I have never said that we didn't have a department of social services. What I said is that there are no funds available to help with our situation at this time. There also aren't any Salvation Army or Goodwill stores. Someone asked didn't my husband have underwear. Well, yes, he does but what he has is briefs and the rehab facility requested that he wear boxers so that his movement isn't constricted.

I wish all of the problems that we have had recently were all lies. Unfortunately for us, they aren't. I hope no one here, no matter how rude, ever has to go through the experiences we have had over the past year. I hope that no one ever finds themself with no money, a spouse hospitalized in an ICU 40 miles away and no way to visit them. I thank those here with generous hearts and souls who helped me out.

I wish that we didn't still have financial needs but driving back and forth to the hospital isn't cheap and both our vehicle and my son's use a lot of gas. I talked to the hospital social worker yesterday while hubby was having physical therapy and they couldn't help and didn't know of any agencies that could. I don't know when we will be able to visit hubby again. The doctor came in yesterday while we were in hubby's room and he said that hubby won't be released before Christmas. He said that hubby can go home on day passes Saturday, Sunday, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day but he will have to be back at the cardiac rehab unit by 8pm each night. I would love to be able to bring hubby home for those days but there is just no money for that. I am hoping that we can at least do that on Christmas Day. I have a nuclear stress test scheduled for December 27th so I have to keep money for that. My appointment is near the hospital where hubby is so I will be able to visit him that day, too. I am waiting to get an appointment with a surgeon to talk about having my gallbladde removed so that will be another travel expense. I feel like I am buried under all of these expenses.

I know this angers some people and to them, I say reread the first paragraph of this post. To anyone who may be interested, we still have some pens available.


Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Thank You All

Update: The hospital called this morning. Hubby is being moved to cardiac rehab which is great news. The not so great news is that he needs button down shirts, pants, underwear, pajamas and a terrycloth robe. I checked online and our local walmart doesn't carry men's robes even if I could afford to buy one. Hubby never wears button down shirts. He wears t-shirts and pull-over knit shirts under overalls and sleeps in his underwear. I am about ready to pull my hair out trying to find a way to get what he needs.

Thanks for all the responses to my previous post. I can see that some serious thought and research is going to be necessary. I will probably need to just meet with a DSS caseworker to get truly accurate information.

Hubby is doing well but has no strength in his legs after being laid up for 19 days. His leg braces that helped him walk (he has foot drop due to his back injuries) no longer fit because he has lost a lot of weight in his legs. He also has diabetic neuropathy so while he has the will to walk unassisted the reality is that he needs help. In his head, he knows this but he wants to come home. My son and I plus the doctors feel that he should go to cardiac rehab for a little while but hubby hasn't committed to going yet. I hope he does because we need time to make a few modifications. He may need a hospital bed to help him raise up because he can't use his arms to puish himself to a sitting position. There is so much to do and not enough time to do it.

To top it all off, my son, daughter-in-law, granddaughter and myself have all been sick with a respiratory virus for the past week or so. I also had a gallbladder attack last Thursday night and spent the night in the ER. I was having some heart arrythmia problems while I was there because my blood magnesium level was low and had to be given magnesium through an IV. My gallbladder issues are longstanding but have been worsening for several months. I had told my primary doctor that it was getting worse a few months ago and she said there were some medical tests that I needed before she would refer me to a surgeon. With so nuch going on with hubby's eye problems through the summer and early fall, there was just no time or money for me to schedule those tests. I followed up with my primary yesterday and all she wants me to have now before setting me up with a surgeon is a stress test. I will be having it on December 27th to see if my heart is okay to go under the anesthesia. I hope that I will be able to have the surgery soon because my gallbladder is so sensitive now that I am living on fat-free yogurt, fat-free cheese, fat-free turkey breast and pretzel sticks. I have terrible pain if I eat anything with fat. I have no appetite and have to force myself to eat what I do. I have lost 23 pounds this month.

I know in my head that things will get better but this whole year has been one crisis after another. I know that I have annoyed people who read my blog and that some readers think that I am lying about our situation. I wish that I was but the reality is that things are very bad.

With Christmas fast approaching, I just haven't been able to get in the Christmas spirit this year. Writing here is cathartic for me and whether or not anyone reads or responds doesn't really matter.

Our future as far as where we will live is up in the air and I feel like things are spiraling out of control. I just have to accept that loss of control and trust that everything will work out for the best.

I wish everyone a Merry Christmas and hope that all your dreams come true. My only Christmas wish this year is that hubby will heal quickly and that he won't have any further heart problems. I feel guilty that I didn't even think that the pain in his upper back accompanied by nausea could be heart related since he already had a stent. Please take upper back pain between the shoulder blades seriously because it truly can be a big problem.

Sorry if this post is rambling but I write as things things occur to me.

With best wishes for a wonderful 2013,


Sunday, December 16, 2012

Advice Needed…


I need advice. First, I want to say that I am not asking for money, not asking for anyone to buy pens, I just need good, reliable information about medicaid and ssi. If you leave comments, please be helpful. I am about at the end of my rope and can't deal with negativity at this time. Here is the situation.

My husband and I are both disabled. He receives social security disability and ssi. I receive only ssi disability. We own our home, a couple of sheds and the land they sit on. The value of them is $58000. My son wants to take us back to Texas to stay with them because he needs to get back to work. My husband won't be able to drive for about 2 months and will need help getting up, etc. I am worried that if we aren't living in our home then it will be counted as a resource and we won't qualify for medicaid anymore. That would be disastrous because our medicines cost more than we make per month. Does anyone have knowledge of how this works? Am I right in thinking that we might lose our medicaid? Would we have to apply for Texas medicaid since we will be living there with our son? Please comment or email if you are knowledgeable about how this works.

Thanks, Blade...

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Hubby's Surgery

The surgery went well. They did a triple bypass. I was able to see him before and after the surgery. He was still out of it when we left to come home but the nurse said that was normal. Thanks again to everyone who helped with getting my son here and helping us get to the hospital.


Tuesday, December 11, 2012


Update: Was able to visit hubby today. His bypass was postponed until tomorrow because they had to put an emergency patient ahead of him. We will be heading back to the hospital early tomorrow morning. Thanks for all the help,  prayers, good thoughts, etc. It is greatly appreciated.


My son and his family arrived safely about 9am this morning but we still have a small problem. His truck doesn't have enough gas to get to the hospital which is about 40 miles. It took everything for them to get here. Hubby's surgery is scheduled for 7am and I really want to see him before that. We talk on the phone and I can tell that he feels alone. I want him in a positive frame of my mind when he goes to the O.R. If anyone is planning on buying a pen and is able to do it now, it would mean so much to me.


Sunday, December 9, 2012

Hubby's Status

Update 2: My son will be here tomorrow. Thank you very much for the generous donation that made that possible. I am so grateful that I will be able to be at the hospital when they do hubby's surgery. Please keep praying for him.


Update:  I know that everyone is suggesting that we move to be helpful. The problem is that we live in an area where homes just aren't selling at this time. We may look into renting our home out and using that money to rent something near the hospital but that will have to wait until things settle down. There is no way that I can do all of the things needed to be done without help. My son is trying anything and everything that he can think of to get the money to get up here, as am I. Right now, he only needs about $95.00 to get up here. He isn't concerned about getting back home. Hopefully, we will be able to get that amount soon. I would like to see hubby before his surgery. Thanks to everyone for all the support, advice, prayers. It means a lot to me.


Hubby's condition is about the same from what the nurses tell me which isn't much. My son is still trying to get enough money to get here. I just pray that I can get to the hospital before hubby's surgery on Wednesday. I am terrified and I can't imagine how hubby is feeling. Please keep praying for hubby and that my son will be able to get here in time. I don't want my husband to have to go through this alone. I am able to talk on the phone with him for a few minutes at a time but I need to see him. If anyone is interested in buying a pen the link is:

Thanks to everyone for all of the support.


Saturday, December 1, 2012

Really Bad News

Update 5: Hubby had cardiac catheterization today. The procedure itself went well but his heart has too many blockages for them to use stents. They want to do heart bypass surgery sometime next week to give him some time to get over the pneumonia. He also has a low blood count and they aren't sure why. They said he may need a blood transfusion and they put in a PICC line today. Please continue to pray for him.

4th Update: Hubby had to be transferred to Cardiac ICU during the night. Please keep praying for him.

3rd Update: The cardiac cath had to be canceled for today because hubby's oxygen levels dropped twice during the night and the rapid response team had to be called. The doctors say he had a heart attack sometime in the past week or two but he didn't have typical symptoms. We think it might have been Thanksgiving night because he was in severe pain and very nauseous that night. He thought it was coming from his pancreas because it was similar to what he felt when he had Pancreatitis. I am so thankful that he was transferred to the hospital where he is now because they have an excellent cardiac care unit. Thanks to those who have bought pens. I am getting closer to having enough funds to buy gas for my son to come. I feel so guilty about not being at the hospital but hubby is so understanding. I am just terrified that something might happen and I won't be there. Will update again when I get more information

2nd Update: My husband will  undergo cardiac catheterization tomorrow, The doctors wanted him to be in better shape but his cardiac enzymes had increased when they did his last blood work. I am very worried and I still can't get to the hospital. Please keep praying for him.

Update: I am going to post personal here during this time. Hubby is still not doing well. I spoke to the nurse on the phone this morning and she said that they did an echocardiogram to get an idea of how well his heart is pumping. He isn't breathing well enough to have the catheterization yet. My son is still trying to get enough money to drive up here. I have never been so scared in my life. I can't get to the hospital to see hubby and he has a hard time talking on the phone because he gets winded. Please pray for hubby.

My apologies if this pisses anyone off but I am desperate. Last night, my husband was taken by ambulance to a hospital 40 miles. He has pneumonia and heart failure. I need to raise money to send to my son so he can come to North Carolina from Texas. I am here alone. Our neighbors who helped me the last time he was in the hospital left yesterday morning and won’t be back until Monday. I am worried sick. I talked to the nurse taking care of him and she said he may have a catheterization some time today. Hubby tried to talk to me on the phone but he is too short of breath. Please purchase a pen if you can and please pray for my husband. We have been married since I was 19 years old. He is my whole world and I can’t imagine life without him.
Here is the link to the pen site.