Thursday, July 30, 2009

Another joint bites the dust

Friday, I somehow badly subluxed my left shoulder, as well as having the usual slippage in my neck. Needless to say, I was not happy. My housemate mostly managed to get the shoulder back in, and it turned out he has some basic massage skills, so he was also able to relax my neck enough for the vertabrae to slip back towards their original home. Still, sleeping and folding laundry and really attempting to do anything at all during the weekend was likely to be brought up short as my right hand grabbed my left upper arm and I offered whatever curses came to mind, which was a lot. By Sunday night, though, I had pretty much assigned the blame for the continuing nuisance to me handwriting more than usual. What with being left-handed, I figured that, since I wasn't exactly babying my arm, I had managed to inflame the tendons.

But I don't think that now, since this evening, the stupid shoulder seized up again. And this time, with Carapace's help, we figured out that the problem is orginating in the collar bones. Damn things are twisting, which locks up the shoulder, which then makes the muscles seize in the upper arm. It has been so bad off and on this week that I seriously considered seeing my doctor. Why did I not see him? Because experience has proven that any appointment for a subluxed or dislocated joint will coincide with a spontaneous reduction in that joint. I am a desperate woman to even think for a moment that seeing a doctor will be of any use in anything other than lightening my bank account and wasting my time with pointless tests.

So, I don't know what to do. This past weekend my attempt to go enjoy myself ended up with me standing and watching, afraid to put any new pressure on my shoulder as it started acting up again. This weekend has grander plans: road trip, museum, maybe some downtown San Antonio driving during which it would be real darn convenient to be able to steer. So, what to do? Anyone have any bright collar bone ideas?

Sunday, July 19, 2009

A Best Chance

Via Media dis&dat, here's a Dallas Morning News article explaining the problem with the two year waiting period for Medicare for people approved for Social Security Disability. I assume most of y'all that pop by here need no explanation as to why that rule is one of the stupidest regulations on the books, but go on and read it so that you can point it out to non-Americans who want to take a moment to feel superior as well as Americans who live under rocks.

The current push to establish a national health care plan may not come to much at all, but it is also the best chance in years to make needed reforms to Medicare rules. Even my beloved backward state of Texas supports ending the two-year rule (though I don't trust our two Senators to ever do the right thing, even when the state legislature has passed a resolution). So, if you haven't made your voice heard on the health care debate, at least pick up the phone or shoot an email to your Congress Critters telling them to make sure to end the 2-year rule on Medicare.

One point that isn't made clear by the article is the cost of not granting health insurance to people who have already been found too disabled to work full-time. A lot of people on disability could, theoretically at least, work part-time and would like to work. But while they are untreated, they can't work. Pain, seizures, lack of mobility equipment and so forth robs them of two years of productive capability. During that two years, skills rust, licenses become obsolete, and health declines to the point that the possibility of re-entering the workforce becomes evermore remote.

Friday, July 17, 2009

One of us?

Thanks to EDS Alert Newsletter, I learned that a Swiss doctor is speculating that Michael Jackson may have had Ehlers Danlos Syndrome. And if you don't read French, you can read the article in mangled English, thanks to the power of Google Translate.

What do I think of it? Well, not much. I'm not big on following celebrities, so I have no idea if his symptoms really do match up with EDS. But even the speculation is helpful, I think. So few doctors have any clue at all regarding EDS. If a few of them read this article and start taking joint hypermobility seriously, then I will feel that something good has come from the circus that has arisen in the wake of Jackson's death.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Well, then.

I have been very, very boring of late. Perhaps I have fallen off the face of the earth? But, no, terra firma is still firm, even if I do not stand firmly upon it.

You who care will be gratified to know that I am doing well physically. Yes, my joints are still crap, but that isn't likely to change unless the blue fairy gets off her ass and starts granting some wishes. My mental gears have been grinding something fierce, but I think I may be pushing past that now. We shall see. I've been in a state of high distractability the past several months, so I have quite the pile of things I either need to do or want to do but can't remember to finish or can't sustain the drive to finish or whatever it is that one need in order to see things through. On the plus side, I have a lot of projects started!

For one, I have finally begun cleaning out the room that is supposed to be the sewing room and has been cluttered with unpacked crap since I moved to this house. I actually have the sewing desk cleared off and the sewing machine set up. I actually mended something, and have to mend two more things tomorrow.

For another, I am trying to learn Japanese. This is mostly an outgrowth of my latest amusement, which is to go to a Japanese website and run it through Google translate. The resulting hilarity has finally provoked my curiousity enough that I have to know...why in the world would what is obviously "born in" (as in, "born October 5,1982) get translated "made of malt"? I have to know! So I have to learn.

I'm still sketching, though I need to be more regular about it. I am pretty pleased with my progress, even if the constancy of my practice leaves much to be desired. Oh, well. If I was going to let lack of follow through stop me from doing things, I'd never do anything. It would be the same success rate, but with no fun.

Oh, yes! Something I did at last accomplish! Listen up, y'all. I have been having this idea in my head that I could make my lap board actually work well as a laptop board if I just finagled with it. After staring at the limited selection of hardware in our local Mart of Evil, I finally saw what I need. Exactly what I needed! See, going back and forth between two aisles of useless crap and staring sadly at the stock does work! OK, this is what I bought: a roll of two-way sticky foam tape and a package of one foot long square dowels of varied sizes. I went home and put two strips of two-way tape one on top of the other toward the front of my lap desk. Then I got out the largest of the dowels, that just about is the width of the tape, and put tape down its length. Then I stuck it further back on the desk, using my laptop as a guide so it would be about an inch from the back of the laptop. This has been great! My padded lapdesk now can have my laptop on it without the laptop overheating, and I have a nice cushioned lapdesk to keep the no longer so hot laptop off my lap. And I like the angle much better, too! This is better and cheaper than anything I have seen for sale purporting to be a laptop desk. So, if you have a lap desk you like that you couldn't really use with your laptop, now you know what to do!