Sunday, July 27, 2008 goes

Alright, let me take a few deep breaths here. In....Out...In...Out...

Oops, forgot the Xanax. \_/ o ----- A few more breaths... now I'm ready.

Some of you know that my sister has been sick for a number of years(4+) with a progressive "muscle" disorder that a gazillion doctors could not diagnose. We've been calling it 'the disease with no name', for lack of anything better to call it. She has been through useless and unnecessary surgeries; treatments from A to Z including one where they infuse a blood component called IVIG (and charge her insurance $5000/month); diagnosed with ulnar nerve compression, carpal tunnel syndrome, herniated disks, ms and various other muscle disorders, arthritis, lyme disease, tumors, a number of different autoimmune diseases and everything around, about, and in between except for what they have now decided she really has (and what she says she knew in her own mind that she had all along and had asked MDs several times about).

ALS, sometimes called Lou Gehrig's disease. And now that they took so long to come around to giving her the correct diagnosis, she is near the end stages of the disease where it has started progressing faster and we will be lucky if we have another 18 months with her.

It is never easy to hear about terminal illness of a loved one, but this is a particularlarly insidious disease. I have provided a couple of links above in case you don't know much about it.

She does have a live-in boyfriend, but she will be requiring an enormous amount of caregiving. I am not really in a state of mind to make major life decisions, but I am 99% sure that I will be moving to Seattle to help him care for her AND to spend as much time as I can with her, for however long she has. Besides being my sister, she is truly my best friend, and if it were me who were ill, I would want her near me.

I'm worn out, and the Xanax is kicking in and I'm falling asleep. I'll post more when I can.


I think I'm numb now

I made it through the day, kind of. We planned a phone call to arrive so that I would be there with my mom while she received the news. We cried together, my mom and I, and then I plodded through the rest of the day. Remarkably, one foot fell in step with the other, time after time. Air filled my lungs, though I had thought I would suffocate. Sounds came out of my mouth, and they resembled words, but I would be at a loss if I had to remember anything that I said or heard during this day, while I watched other people in amazement, going about their normal lives as if the world had not just ended.

One day at a time, Cat, one day at a time.......

What is my mood today? SAD

I received the most shocking and devastating phone call of my life yesterday. It makes every other thing that has ever happened in my life seem insignificant. I can't even speak of it without crying, and as I write this I am crying yet again.

I have to process this news, wrap my head around it, make myself believe it. I don't know how I can ever accept it.

Hopefully, over the next few days, I will be able to share it with you, my friends. For now, just please pray that I will have the strength to be there for those who will need me.


Thursday, July 24, 2008

McDonalds Math

I went to MickyD's today to buy a sandwich and a drink. The girl rings it up and tells me my total is $5.95. I'm just about to hand her my money when I realize that the amount is wrong. So I tell her that can't be right. She says it is. The conversation continues....

me: The chicken sandwich is $3.79, right?
her: Plus tax, it's $4.04.
(oh, yes, let's not forget the tax)
me: And the drink is $1.00.
her: Plus-
me: Right, plus tax. But $4.04 and a dollar plus tax does not equal $5.95.
her: Well, that's what it says.
("it" being the cash register, I suppose)

So, now we're at an impasse. She is just staring at the cash register, waiting for me to hand over $5.95 and I am just waiting at the counter for her to give me the correct total. Finally she calls another girl over (the manager was too busy standing in the corner eating an ice cream). The other girl shows her what she did wrong, apparently there was some kind of an override on the drink because it isn't always a dollar. The first girl is in in complete shock that the register could possibly have given her the incorrect amount to charge me.

What kind of education are our kids getting when they can't even add 4+1? What a shame!