Sunday, December 23, 2007

I'm evaluating a multi-media course on blogging from the folks at Simpleology. For a while, they're letting you snag it for free if you post about it on your blog.

It covers:

  • The best blogging techniques.
  • How to get traffic to your blog.
  • How to turn your blog into money.

I'll let you know what I think once I've had a chance to check it out. Meanwhile, go grab yours while it's still free.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Dick Cheney knew the war would be a mess

I wonder how much it cost to buy a vice president. To cause him to go against his own beliefs less than 10 years later. Watch the video and you will know what I'm am talking about.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

A pleasant visit with a friend

My friend Rebecca from California came to see me for the third time this past week. She visited me on two occasions last year after having known each other for around five years. Our history is a long story after five years but we have become very good friends.

Anyway, she left California on a flight headed for Atlanta around midnight her time and arrived in West Palm Beach around 9:45 Monday morning. Needless to say we did not do anything on Monday except hang out at my house. I am not used to getting up early so I was also tired that day and she was from the flight. Everyone at my house was tired that day. It was quite the sight, I was tilted back in my chair sleeping, she was on the couch sleeping, my mother was on another chair sleeping, the dog was also sleeping and also my father was in the other room sleeping. Not one of us in the living room intended to take a rest but fell asleep with the television on.

We did have a very nice dinner at home that evening. My mother always prepares the best food but then again I am biased. We had roast pork, mashed potatoes, stuffing, and vegatables. Then we just watched some more television and that some catching up and called it an early night.

On the Saturday prior to her visit I had put the Bovina trach back again since I thought my previous problem was just because of the blood. I was wrong. On Tuesday morning the high pressure alarm on my ventilator went off and we could not get a suction catheter into my trach tube. So we changed the trach back to my Shiley before I got into a critical situation. When we look at the trach that was taken out you could see that mucus had started to harden and was blocking the tube. Something about my secretions and that type of trach don't seem to mix. So I have decided to stick with the Shiley until I can see an ENT. I have an appointment with one since I finally found a doctor to take Medicaid all the way in Miami. The appointment is not until October.

So I tried to go back to sleep for another hour after my little emergency what didn't get much more sleep 7:30 in the morning. After I did my morning routine I woke up Rebecca and and had a bite to eat while she got ready to leave for the mall. We went to the mall and had a light lunch at a Chinese place in the food court. We then helped my nurse (I should say she helped her) find a dress for her upcoming trip. After doing that we looked around for maybe another hour and then headed to the front of the mall to wait for our ride. We waited maybe one half hour for the ride. I was hoping we would be back home by 5:30 maybe 6:00. We get in the van and there are two people needing to be dropped off ahead of us. And after we get in they call him and tell him to pick somebody else up first. After all this we did not get home until 7 p.m. almost. I did not let it get to me even though we have plans to go to dinner.

So after I change my sweaty shirt and have a breathing treatment and charge my ventilator for about half an hour we head out. We went to a restaurant called Brewzii's which serves Italian and American food. They have some of the best service I had seen in some time. Rebecca and my dad were the smart ones and only ordered lasagna. I had a very large plate of grilled maui maui (?) With mashed potatoes. And my mother ordered something they called mile high meatloaf. We didn't think they literally meant a mile high. Everything was excellent.

We had just finished eating when the battery low alarm on my vent went off shortly followed by the battery empty alarm. So while my father stayed behind to take care of the bill the rest of us took off to a spot where we knew there was a plug. With this ventilator you never quite know how long it is going to take to get a complete charge so obviously that half hour before we left the house was not enough. So we stayed there for about half an hour to let the battery charge. Luckily we were having dinner at a place downtown where there is always stuff going on so it wasn't like we were just stuck at the restaurant.

When my father caught up to us he said that when he asked the girl for the bill she told him it was already taken care of. I guess the man having dinner a table or two over had taken care of the bill. The girl waiting on us pointed him out to my dad. So he introduced himself to the man and said thank you.

I believe this happened because you get what you put out. Earlier that week my father had hired someone to install carpet in our spare bedroom. This person gave us an extremely great deal since it was carpet that was mistakenly delivered somewhere and they could not resell it. This person was also someone who was having a hard time of things lately. So my father gave him extra money beyond what he was owed. My point is that kindness was rewarded with kindness.

After dinner we stopped at a little nightclub for about an hour to listen to the band and have a drink. There were hardly any people there but what do you expect on a Tuesday night. The band was okay and played a good variety.

On Wednesday we went to the Palm Beach Zoo. I will never do that in the middle of August again. It was so hot that when I got home I had to change my clothes and they were literally soaked. Not much to say about that visit to the zoo. It took us maybe an hour and a half to walk the whole thing.

Rebecca tried to see about getting a later flight out but was unable to so she left on Thursday afternoon/evening. She had a safe trip home.

Until my next post.

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

8 Random Facts

I was tagged by Scott from Scott Sands Alive to play a little game called 8 Random Facts. In this game you are supposed to put a blog post on your blog with 8 random facts about yourself. After you do this you are supposed to tag 8 more bloggers to do the same thing. Since I only know a few bloggers and Scott already tagged these people I am simply going to post my 8 random facts. So here goes. 1. I am a Cleveland Browns fan (please keep your snickering to a minimum) 2. I believe in the power of energy when it comes to healing 3. I was once told I would never be able to eat again but was able to within a few months 4. I once met three actors from the X-Files 5. I usually hate doing lists like this 6. My great-grandmother contacted me after her death 7. The best concert I have seen is a tie between U2 and Roger Waters 8. I lived in Canton, Ohio for 12 years and never once went to the football Hall of Fame.

Monday, July 30, 2007

A scary situation

Since I had had my bronchoscopy I was having trouble with the high-pressure on my ventilator going off. The doctors said I probably just had some plugs that need to break up. I guess when they look around down in my throat and chest there was a lot of old stuff that they needed to get out and not to mention the trauma created by the poking around. And I did get quite a few large plugs of mucus and old dried up blood. Then on Friday things began to get quite a bit worse. It started out with a lot of stubborn suction. Then it became more and more difficult to even use the ambu bag. At one point it would not work at all but luckily I repositioned and was able to get a little air. We figured the trach was probably blocked. On this particular day it was just me and the nurse at the house. My fear was that if she took the trach out and it was something more than simply the trach tube being blocked I would have been in real trouble. So we called 911 and she bagged me with great difficulty until they arrived. At one point my oxygen went down into the 70% range. After the fact my nurse that day said that if the paramedics had taken any longer she would have had no choice but to stop bagging me and just change the trach. So the paramedics come in and one of them takes over bagging me while my nurse gets ready to change my trach. As soon as it was changed it became easy to bag me and my oxygen saturation went quickly back up to near 90. After all that of course it took quite a while to get back to my normal range of the high 90s. After taking the trach out you could see how it was completely blocked in the end. And after sticking something through it we discovered that it was pretty much blocked through the entire tube. We ended up putting in a smaller size trach that I was using before the doctor told me to use the bigger one. I decided to let my through heal and keep the smaller trach in for a week and then I will try to put the larger trach back in.

Monday, July 23, 2007

A successful procedure

After about six months of not being able to get anywhere when it comes to taking care of the problem of my butt everything seemed to happen quickly within a two-week period. Anyway, to make a long story short I went to the hospital on July 12 for an outpatient procedure. I was scheduled to get a colonoscopy, bronchoscopy, and have what the doctor called Sentinel tags removed from my rear. The anesthesiologist had me have a very quick EKG followed by a stick to get my potassium level. The potassium was a little low but not so low that they could not go through with the procedure. The potassium was probably low because the day before I had to take a great amount of laxatives to prepare for the colonoscopy. And the EKG showed one or two irregularities. The one type I already knew about from the cardiologist but the other one was the first I'd heard of it. Because of that I have appointments to get more blood drawn and see the cardiologist later this week. Since it is difficult for them to start an IV on me they first gave me some gas when I got into the OR. They said that way my body would be more relaxed and the gas would dilate my blood vessels to make it easier to start an IV. It only lasted about 5 or 10 seconds before I was out but that gas was pretty trippy. At one point someone walked by and it appeared as if they had a trail behind them. My colonoscopy was clear, they removed the skin on my butt and did a bronchoscopy. When they did the bronchoscopy they replaced my Shiley 4 trach with a Bovina 6. I guess they had some trouble doing the bronchoscopy though. First they tried going through my nose, and then they tried going through my mouth, and when that did not work they finally took my trach out and went down that way. So when I came out of surgery there was a little blood in my nose and my tongue was swollen to the point that I could not keep it in my mouth. They even gave me some sort of steroid to get the swelling to start coming down. I thought that the bronchoscopy would have been the least of my worries given the other problems. The doctor was concerned after the bronchoscopy though. He said cancel I basically don't have any muscle or fat in my trachea, so it is basically just an open hole. The concern he seemed to have is over time possible perforation. Definitely not a pleasant sounding way to go. Since his specialty is not necessarily the trachea area he told me to find a specialist. Actually, all this information is second hand so I will know more when I go to my follow-up appointment on Wednesday. I was still out of it so the doctor explained everything to my family first. Since this is something serious it is a very good thing that I started having trouble with my low pressure alarm right before I was to schedule the procedure. Otherwise, I would have no clue about this possible problem. I do not know exactly what type of position they must have put my neck in but it is still bothering me. It has gotten a lot better over the past week and a half but not back to normal yet. It took me about four days before I was able to finally get my stomach to stop bothering me after the procedure. My digestive system was basically empty so as soon as I was able to get a good amount of food in me things started to get much better. My butt was sore when it came to using the bathroom but today started to get better with less discomfort. Now I just need my neck to completely stop bothering me and find a specialist for my trach. One little bit of good news is that a good friend of mine is going to come for a visit August 6. She is only staying for 2-3 days but it should still be a nice visit. Now I need to plan some things to do.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

I do not have anything new but I just saw the trailer for the new Michael Moore movie which is called Sicko. I plan on seeing it and got a good laugh at some of the scenes in the trailer so I thought you all might like to see it.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

More runaround

I finally got my computer on Friday, June 8. It arrived without a monitor though. I guess they neglected to tell us that the monitor was on back order and would not be available to ship until Monday the 11th. So that part arrived this past Thursday. Luckily the monitor from my old computer worked as a temporary fix even though it made everything appear huge on the screen. It took me all weekend I think to figure out how to do things and get everything just the way I like it. And then it took me another day after receiving the monitor to adjust the rest. It has a nice large LCD monitor which allows me to comfortably have several windows open on the screen. The other day I was even able to watch a DVD in the corner while I was checking some e-mail and surfing the Internet.

On Friday night the 8th the low pressure alarm on my ventilator kept going off as I would drift off to sleep. After dealing with that throughout the night called the respiratory company and they had me turn now down the sensitivity on the low pressure. That helped somewhat but then it started doing it again and we tightened up my trachea ties and finally I was able to get some good sleep.

That seemed to be the end of it but then it occurred once or twice throughout the week and several times I woke up either with a headache or short of breath and also I was having difficulty talking properly. So on Friday I called my doctor and the first thing they say is to have the company check it again (the vent). What they sent to the respiratory company said that my ventilator kept shutting off. I don't know how they got that.

Anyway, the company is supposed to come and check it out again on Monday. But in the meantime all of the problems I have been having have have resolved themselves. On this past Friday I was being suctioned and got a considerably large plug out and after this is when I started to feel better. You would think that that would have caused high pressure to go off. I don't know if that was the cause or a coincidence but I am doing much better.

As far as getting my colonoscopy and tags removed I was told by the G.I. doctor that they were not comfortable doing it on me in my area. They recommended I have it done down in Miami at Mount Sinai Medical Center. I think I have a tentative date scheduled for the end of July but I am still not sure what I am doing and if I doing this. I am looking to get more information as to what type of risk it is that they are or I am looking at. I don't know if they are just being overly cautious because of the muscular dystrophy or if there is something else. This is something I am going to be finding out before I decide to do anything.

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Catching Up

First of all, my father was released from the hospital on the 24th after a heart catheterization found no blockage. He was sent home on blood pressure medication and cholesterol lowering medication. He is now back to his normal activities and now both himself and my mother have stopped smoking. They did remarkably well during the first week using the patch and nicotine gum. But this weekend they were starting to get a little irritable. Still there doing a lot better than the last two times they tried. On Sunday the 27th we ordered a new computer which is to be my birthday gift. Seeing it has not arrived yet it will be a belated birthday gift but I am quite excited about it. It is a great price for such a fast computer. It is using the fastest chip that is made by AMD at the moment. That is due to arrive at the end of the week. On Friday which was my birthday (June 1st) I went out for the evening. We left the house (one of my nurses, a friend of hers and myself) around 3:30 in the afternoon and went to Ruby Tuesday for lunch/dinner. I had my usual which is Creole catch which is just grilled tilapia which comes with rice which I always replace with mashed potatoes. It was delicious. I think I only had one bad meal at the place. My nurse had a BLT and her friend just ate from the salad bar. Altogether the total was only $40, not bad for three meals. After dinner we headed for a local strip club. The last time I was there all the girls seem to be on drugs but we decided to give the place another chance. This time all the girls seemed to be clean. It was still rather early when we arrived and I was not very impressed by the girls. They were all rather rough looking. After we were there about an hour they had some girl from Penthouse magazine perform. It was okay but you could tell she really didn't want to be there. It seemed like after that some better looking girls started dancing. There was only one who I would consider gorgeous, a nice Asian girl. I wanted to get a private dance from her but she was pretty popular and busy. So I got one from a very attractive blond girl. Not really much to write about it was just a typical night at a strip club. The whole thing gives rather boring after several times. Which is why I only go once in awhile not to mention money. It was an early night though we were back home by a little after 9 PM. I had a good time though. I currently don't have any plans yet for the next several weeks besides playing with my new toy. Also, I am still working on getting the colonoscopy and tags removed. I keep calling the doctor's office to make sure documents were faxed. Seems like a bit of a run around but am closer to getting things resolved. Hopefully it will not be as long before my next post.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007


Well, after a busy but pretty good week last week, we are off to a rocky start this week. I am fine but my father is the one having the trouble. On Monday evening he suddenly got a very severe headache to the point of having to lie down. When the headache had not gone away in the morning he decided to take his blood pressure which was close to 180 over 140. So needless to say he went to the doctor who in turn sent him to the ER. What concerns me is the fact that he was nearly in an accident about two weeks ago and hit his head. He was riding his electric bike home (which goes about 20 miles an hour at the most) when he heard a car getting extremely close and moved the bike out of the way. When he swerved the bike hit the curb and he fell off. He hit his head but luckily he had his helmet on. He also had a hole above his lip. The next morning he looked at the helmet and it was dented. But being the typical male refused to go to the doctor. The next morning he had a bad headache but it eventually went away. My mother told me he had a few episodes of high blood pressure the past week or so. Anyway, at the ER they took a lot of blood work, an EKG, a chest x-ray, and a catscan. They also gave him to doses of a drug to lower the blood pressure which gave him a bad headache so they had to give them something else to relieve the headache. We still do not have the results of the scan and they admitted him to the hospital overnight. So we will no more in the morning.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

The Dark Side Of The Moon

Last night I went to see Roger Waters of Pink Floyd in concert. It was a pretty awesome show. It had threatened to rain all day but we got lucky and it was a beautiful night for a show at an amphitheater. I think it may have rained at one point for a bit but our seats were undercover. It was myself, my parents, and a friend of mine Richard who has Beckers Muscular Dystrophy. He met us at the show about five minutes before it started, I guess he had trouble with his ride finding the way to the place plus the traffic was horrendous. What normally takes us less than 20 minutes took about 45. He did mostly Pink Floyd songs but also did about 3 of his own songs from his solo career. There were plenty of visuals that were definitely anti-Bush. Hard to believe that there are actually still about 30% who approve of him but I am getting off track. At one point a giant inflated pig was brought through the crowd. And right around the ass of the pig were the words "impeach Bush now". I think that was the highlight of the show. After doing at least two hours of music they took a 15 minute break and then came back and did the entire album Dark Side Of The Moon. There were supposed to be a lot of lights and things in the audience but I guess they were having technical difficulties. And then after the entire album they did an encore which lasted at least 20 minutes. They definitely gave us our money's worth. It was pretty awesome for me to see all of these songs live since I have heard that music since since the womb. I sure which the band would get back together and do a reunion tour. Too many big egos I guess.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Pain In The Ass

A little background before talking about the day. A few months ago I was having quite a bit of pain from what I thought was hemorrhoids. Was also getting some bleeding occasionally. So I made an appointment with who I was told was a GI doctor. He turned out to be a surgeon. I got the appointment through my nursing agency but I guess after the fact I found out they also wanted me to at least see this doctor in case at some time down the line I would need him to do the procedure if I were to need a G-tube. His specialty is minimally invasive surgery. Anyway, he informed me they were not hemorrhoids but Sentinel tags which I guess is basically small skin growths. I guess they usually grow near hemorrhoids or tears in the skin. His guess was that it probably was caused from bad constipation sometime in the past. His first recommendation was to soak my butt to make sure it is extra clean. Because the pain is caused from the tags being inflamed. That seemed to work for a bit but then went right back to bothering me. I was also getting a few episodes of quite a bit of bleeding and not seeing any obvious reason for it. So I went back to him. After examining me visually he said he could not see any reason to be bleeding externally. So he recommended I get a colonoscopy to rule out any problems in that area and he wanted me to try to have him remove the tags while they had me sedated for the colonoscopy. Which brings me to today's appointment with the GI doctor. That doctor was not sure if they wanted to do the procedure because of the muscular dystrophy and my compromise the lungs and cardiac function. He said also the fact that I am only 31 and ordinarily there should not be any issues but said if concerned about bleeding could do a barium enema. At first they were not going to do it at all because of what they saw as possible risks. But then decided to get all of my records from my other doctors and talk to my other doctors to get their opinions on my ability to go through the anesthesia/sedation. So a lot of things are up in the air still as far as what to do. Worst case scenario I'll just have to live with it. I was late getting out of the doctors office and when I got downstairs there was no van. So I called PalmTran to see if I had missed my ride and sure enough I had. That part was my fault because I should have called when I only had 15 minutes until I had to be ready for my ride and had not seen the doctor yet. What pissed me off though was when I called them they told me that the driver claims to have talked to me three times. Saying that each time I kept saying five more minutes. I did not talk to anybody. I do not appreciate being lied about. So I had to call later to file a complaint. Whatever good that will do. Not my week for confusion with my transportation.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Just A Good Day

Today I had an appointment with my pulmonologist which is basically a five-minute appointment where I get refills on a prescription or two and listens to my lungs. When I have to arrange transportation it is really a pain in ass considering how short of a time I am actually in their office. As usual I got to the appointment so early that the doctor saw me before my appointment time. Which meant I had to sit around and wait an hour for my ride. At least I was a relatively nice day and got a little fresh air waiting. I had made arrangements to go downtown after the appointment and have some lunch. If I would have realized how close the doctor's office was to where I was going I would have not used the van and simply walked. Well actually I guess my nurse would have walked and pushed. By this time we were both starving so immediately went to the restaurant I wanted to eat at only to find out they are no longer opened for lunch. So we went to the restaurant next door which is called Legal Seafood. The prices were slightly higher than I usually pay but it was a nice treat. The food was excellent so worth the price. I also had a drink, rum and Coke. All it took was one since they made it so strong. Definitely not watered down. After lunch we simply walked around and did some window shopping. I checked out the latest expensive televisions and stereos and my nurse looked for clothes (see if you can guess which sex they were). We also ran into this girl who was sitting on her cell phone sending voice messages on some dating service trying to find a date. People she only was talking to for a few minutes she was trying to arrange to meet that day. A little too desperate for my taste. Interesting thing was her name was Hope. Quite fitting I thought. I missed my ride to go home because I was waiting in the wrong spot for them. What happened was the driver who brought us there dropped us off at a different spot than the address I had given. It was just around the corner from the correct address. Stupid me I simply came back to the same location when it was time instead of looking up at the address. Luckily, a van was there picking up some other people so PalmTran had them take me home. We were just a little late getting home.

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