Is it Party Time? No.

None of this to clean up this year

For the first time in like 5 years, we have no plans for having a gathering at our house for Labor Day. R’s birthday usually falls sometime during the weekend, so it’s a celebration for him and a last hurrah for the pool most of the time.

But people are on vacation. And have plans. And are too far away. And in the end, we can’t afford it anyway.

It’s not like we have caviar and lobster at our gatherings (though we have had lobster a few times, thanks to Doc T). But all the snacky stuff and dips and side dishes and main courses all start to add up and we have more important things to spend that money on, like our electric bill or water bill or the dreaded housing tax bill.

I’m sure we’ll barbecue ourselves, and my parents will probably stop by because they’re so close, but otherwise, this will be the most low-key Labor Day weekend for us in a long time. I always enjoyed it as an excuse to gather everyone together to hang out before the commitments of fall began, but it does not seem to be in the cards.

So I hope that everyone has a safe and happy Labor Day next weekend. We’ll just be floating in the pool, trying to enjoy the end of summer.

Ridiculous

Any woman who TRULY loves bacon does NOT have a figure like that.

Holy Crap! I just made $60 doing absolutely nothing!!! (or why I hate Pharmaceutical Companies, Insurance Companies, and the FDA)

I know this sounds like a scam, but I swear it’s true. All I had to do was drive to my local pharmacy and pick up some prescriptions and WHAM – $60 extra in my wallet.

$60 is not a small amount of money. Not with the rise in gas prices, the cost of food and anything associated with owning a home. You and I both know this. Do you want to know who apparently doesn’t know this? The FD-fucking-A.

They still maintain that “A brand name drug has to go through 10-15 years of research and testing in animals and people before it can be sold to the public… All of this testing can cost over $1 billion.”

I call shenanigans!

We’ll use my case as an example. My husband and I both use Singulair for our allergy and asthma problems. There have actually been periods in my life when I was miserable because I couldn’t afford the drug, even WITH insurance. Our current insurance charges $40/30 day supply for most name-brand drugs. That means R and I were spending $80 a month on this medication and now with the generic available (FYI – it’s called Montelukast SOD ), we’ll be able to cut our costs to $20/month, which is a BIG deal when money is tight.

But even though R and I were paying $40 a month (as were millions of other Americans), our insurance companies were also paying additional money at the same time. And for 10-15 years.

And for what? Why is the expiration date on a patent a certain amount of time? Aren’t some drugs easier to develop than others, like extended release versions? Don’t some drugs require less trials. I’m not an idiot and I know the pharmaceutical companies pour investment money into hundreds of medicines that never make it to market, but I don’t see any of these companies crying poverty.

But I am. And it has a HUGE impact on my health, and I’m sure my story is not unique.

I have been having problems with my depression lately. Medicines that used to work, no longer do. So Doc T started raving about this awesome new med that she wanted me to try. I was a little reluctant to add another $40 to our monthly costs, but my mental health is more important, right? Well, it’s not more important that nearly $100 for ONLY 25 pills. And that would be EVERY month. I can’t afford that. So instead we’ve been trying a mixture of generic drugs to get me through until we can figure something else out.

Maybe this drug would help me, but I’ll have to wait 15 years to find out I guess unless we hit the lottery.

And the insurance companies are no better. In addition to my depression, I have a severe problem with migraines. Luckily the main treatment med (Imitrex) has a generic version available (Sumatriptan). The problem? I can ONLY get 18 pills per month. Huh? Do you know what migraine treatment meds do? They constrict blood vessels. That’s about it. They’re not addictive and they usually don’t have severe side effects. You know what I can get TONS of? Vicodin. 60 pills is $4.06. An addictive narcotic is not a problem with the insurance company, but a medication that has an extremely specific use is limited. And as any migraine sufferer knows, when things are at their worst, you can get migraines more than 18 days a month AND it can take several doses to finally kill the damn thing. And then they wonder why there’s a prescription drug problem in this country?

I don’t know. I guess in the end, it’s all a scam after all.

I’m in a crappy mood at the moment, so now for something completely different

When all else fails, Monty Python

Positive Thinking vs. The Writer’s Creed

If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all. That statement usually refers to speaking about other people, but I find it’s a good idea for life in general. As someone who spent way too much of their life bitching, complaining and moaning… I have recently decided to try to only put positive energy and positive thoughts out in the world. This doesn’t mean I am personally always in a positive place, but when you focus on the positive in life and try to only share things that are positive, you’re more apt to notice the good things in life.

But a writer must write. And therein lies the problem. I know that I need to write, but there’s nothing cheerful coming out of this keyboard these days. I have had one medical issue after another, some ongoing for quite some time and I continue to be in a very dark place. This means I don’t communicate at all. No FB posts, no blog posts, no twitter updates. I re post silly pictures I see elsewhere and that’s the extent of my “communication” with the outside world right now.

I know that eventually all of the medical problems will be solved and I am trying to focus on that. But in the meantime, I am in constant emotional and physical pain and I’m exhausted from the whole thing. R is tired of it too, I have definitely not been a fun spouse as of late.

Hopefully today will have less pain than yesterday (my strained pectoral muscle and shoulder will start to heal again so it doesn’t hurt when I cough, sneeze or breathe hard). I will start another medicine tonight for the ongoing medical annoyance that has been making me miserable for almost 4 weeks now. And once those 2 issues are out of the way, the next item will be finding the appropriate antidepressant.

My birthday is in 4 weeks and we’re having a party to kick-start the summer party season. I don’t think it’s too much to ask of the universe to have these short-term medical conditions fixed by then. The thought that they may be is one of the only things keeping me going sometimes.

More positive stuff coming soon, I promise…