Get your flu shots while you can

August 31, 2011

Shots are very controversial.  I get that.  But for those who want shots, and who are at high risk (if you’re reading this, there’s a good chance you’re high risk) then it’s a good idea to get one.

Also controversial is the government’s role in healthcare.  That’s a topic for a different day.  Or maybe for 10 different days (I have a lot to say on that topic).  Regardless of what you think and believe, the government does play role in healthcare.  In this case, it plays a role in flu shots.

I just read that the state of Massachusetts is going to offer fewer shots this year.  In fact, it’s going to offer fewer than half as many shots as it did last year.  If you have health insurance, you won’t really be affected.  If you don’t have health insurance, you’re probably more in need of the shots, and will have more trouble getting them.  Great job guys.  Really, good going.  I get that times are tough.  They had to make budget cuts.  But when people are dying of the flu this season, maybe the idea of throwing that extra cash into the rainy day fund won’t seem so brilliant anymore.  I hope I’m wrong.  I hope these 14,000 shots suffice for all who need them.  I really, really hope I’m wrong…..

How private is too private?

August 30, 2011

After 5 weeks of posting almost daily, suddenly there’s been silence.  Is it a coincidence that this happened when I moved to a new site?  Nope.

I was so excited for this move.  I immediately told two of the only people in my world who know that I write this blog, and asked them to share the link to the new site.  I should have been more specific, because one person shared the link with mutual friends who would of course figure out that I am the author.  One figured it out immediately and emailed me.  I was so upset, I was ready to shut down the site on the spot.  Luckily, a friend gave me some good advice, and I waited.

Now, I know I was a bit overly emotional from the Prednisone and Plaquenil and the resulting lack of sleep – who wouldn’t be?  Still, it went deeper than that.  I felt so exposed.  How would you feel if someone posted a naked picture of you up at work?  I might be ok with that, but I couldn’t handle this.  This was much more personal.  So I’ve been wondering, why is privacy so important to me?  And how private is too private?  What’s not private enough?

I’m always shaking my head at the fools who post very inappropriate things on the web for all to see, then are surprised when it reflects negatively on them.  If your personal web site has pictures of you drinking with friends and flipping a car, then sure, you might have trouble getting a job.  But this site isn’t like that.  This site is a place for me to vent my frustrations, and for others to find the comfort of seeing that others have similar experiences.  This site is constructive, not destructive.  Still, what I write is very personal, which is why I chose to set it up anonymously.

I always knew someone might figure out my identity at some point, but I didn’t expect it to happen to soon.  I’m starting to get used to the idea of these few people knowing, but I still can’t write under my own name.  My friends and family know about my illnesses, of course, and know many of my symptoms, but I keep a lot of the real, deep fears to myself.  We all have things we keep private.  I know I’m more private than most.  But am I too private?

I suppose there’s no real answer to this question.  I have to tell myself it’s ok to not know.  But I still wish I did.

Welcome to my new site!

August 28, 2011

I am so excited to finally own the domain!  I have also moved my web site over to WordPress, so I need to do some tweaking to get everything just right.  Please comment to let me know any changes you think I should make.

Thanks for your support!

Hurray for good docs

August 26, 2011

I’ve had a lot of bad doctors.  A lot.  “Bad” can be defined in a lot of ways.  For me, these include not taking me seriously, not fully listening to me, refusing necessary tests, and prescribing treatments that are unlikely to work.  And then there was the one who said I shouldn’t complain because there are people worse off than me.  I was in pain 24/7 at that point.  Oh, and I was 16 and scared.  What a jerk.  But I digress….

So I’ve had bad doctors, but I’ve also had some really good doctors.  The good ones make such a huge difference.  I spoke to my rheumatologist yesterday and was reminded again of how fantastic she is.  When I started the new med a few weeks ago, she told me she would be going on vacation, and to call the day she returned.  I left a message and she called me back later that day.  She took her time with me and didn’t rush, even though she must have been very busy.  She listened to everything I had to say.  She was surprised by a side effect I’m having, which she had never heard of.  I told her I’d found evidence of it online.  She assured me she’d look into it.  Based on past experience, I know she will.  Otherwise would brush it off, but she takes it seriously.  I told her I’d like to take a new Lyme test I’ve heard about.  She didn’t know about it, but promised to look into it.  Again, I’m certain that she will.  Her treatment suggestions are always well thought out and specific to me and my situation.  She orders every test that she thinks is necessary and skips the ones that she thinks aren’t (Checking vitamin D?  Yes.  MRI?  No need this time.)  This is how I would like every doctor to be.  She’s not perfect; she’s human after all.  But she does a great job, and does her best to improve my health.

So here’s to all the great doctors out there, who do all they can to make us feel better/less bad!

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