|The Big Update
||[Jun. 17th, 2009|12:07 am]
First, thanks to everyone for the kind thoughts, positive energy and help that you all have directed our way over the past several months. It has been much appreciated.|
Rather than dribble things out, I've decided to update the three big threads of recent life in one place. For lack of any better ideas, I'll tackle things in the order they occured.
My Dad's Prostate Cancer
Late last year my dad was diagnosed with prostate cancer. Early this year, he had radioactive seeds placed in his prostate in an attempt to kill the tumor.
The treatment appears to have been a success. His PSA level is down into the no cancer range. His doctors are very pleased, and he's pretty happy about it as well.
Laura's Heart Attack
On March 30th, my wife had a heart attack, caused by a rare condition: spontaneous coronary artery dissection. She spent a week in the hospital and had six stents placed in her right coronary artery.
Laura's doing quite well now. She's back at work, pretty much full time. She has cardiac rehab three times a week, and she's making good progress there as well.
We're still adapting to all the changes in lifestyle brought on by her being a heart attack survivor: can't eat that (or that or that or that or that), need to eat more of this, check the medication chart to make sure you didn't forget to take something, remember to put on the medical alert bracelet on the way out the door, and oh, we have an appointment with her cardiologist (we're too young to say that, right?) and so on.
We're also dealing with the various frustrations. Some are common, such as the seemingly never-ending stream of incoherent insurance statements and hospital bills. Really - can we just get a combined total, please?
Some are unique to the oddity of being a young woman who has had a heart attack, such as a cardiac rehab staff that so rarely deals with premenopausal women that they overreact to the cyclical weight gain common in women still in their child-bearing years.
Laura's still processing the events, the changes, and their meaning. There are some sad days. But those are getting fewer. Overall, things are getting better across the board.
My Rotten Teeth
The day we finally got Laura home from the hospital for good, I broke a tooth on a Sweet Tart. That sent me to the dentist to start a painful, expensive odyssey of root canals (2), crowns (2) and replacement fillings (2).
The good news here is this part of my dental rehab ends in early July, when I get my two permanent crowns installed. I spend 4 hours on the dentist's chair this morning getting the last filling replaced and the last root canaled tooth shaped into a post. I skipped my morning coffee, so I was able to half-sleep through most of it.
I still have that bag of Sweet Tarts. And when I get those permanent crowns in, I'm going to finish it off with a vengeance.
Of course, the memories of all this medical fun will be with us for a long while to come. We're going to be about $4,000 out-of-pocket for my wimpy teeth, not mention our out-of-pocket for Laura's heart attack (no total yet), so Hello! payment plans.
We had been talking about a trip of some sort for our 10th anniversary this September. Those plans have been scaled back - we're going to celebrate by going for a walk and chewing gum. :-)