Long Time, No See

Hello there, friends!

If you have been following me on The Thousand Teeth, please adjust your bookmarks/rss feed/whatever you are using. I’ll be blogging over at http://lisaholcomb.net from now on. There are a few new posts over there already and another one will go up later today specifically about RA. Go try it! 🙂

Jaws

Some mornings I get up, pour myself some cereal, then can’t eat it because it hurts my jaw too much. That same jaw pain will keep me from talking on the phone, flossing my teeth, and even smiling as much as I normally do.

Insurance and payment woes

I’ve spent the last couple of weeks hanging out on the phone talking to various people at Orencia, and Caremark Mail Order Pharmacy, the local hospital, and two of my doctor’s offices.  Back and forth and back and forth.  “Please will you give me this information?”  “Please will you put this information into my account?”  “Please will you just let me pay for Heaven’s sake?!?!”  It’s been such fun.  Delightful, even.

 

For one of the annoying things, my doctor’s office held onto my Orencia support card, promising to give Caremark the info when they called in the prescription.  Alas, they did not.  Caremark was not paid by the support people and I was not paying them because I thought the support people were and the doctor’s office people said that they never hold onto those cards and have no idea why I thought they had mine. “I have a note on my piece of paper from that appointment.  I wrote down that you took my card.  I can’t help that you no longer have it.”  So onto calling Orencia, where I was transferring three times and made to recite my entire lineage practically to get the numbers…well, two of the three numbers.  I didn’t have an actual card in hand, so I had no idea there were supposed to be three, which the Caremark lady assured me that there were.  So again with the song and dance and transferring around to get the final number.  Then calling back Caremark yet again with the numbers, only to be told that I called one day too late and that my shipment would never arrive by my next infusion appointment.  So I call the doctor’s office again and find out that mysteriously my appointment is not until next week, contrary to the appointment card I have in my hand (and also, I’m the second one mis-scheduled  this morning).  So yay?

 

The other annoying thing was at another doctor’s office.  This particular office houses many doctor’s, more than they have office clerks for out front.  There are always lines, always delays, and they always tell me that they’ll bill me by mail because there’s a line for the one and only credit card machine in the building.  Seriously, I will buy them another machine myself, it is so very annoying.  Anyways, I only see this doctor about once a year for my annual exam, so I don’t think about them much.  Until the phone calls start.    Someone called and wanted me to come into the office to pay.  No, they wouldn’t take payment by phone; they weren’t the billing office.  I needed to COME IN.  So I got in my car, drove up to the still ridiculously busy office, and attempted to make a payment…where once again I was asked to pay by mail.  I even offered cash.  They don’t like cash. *sigh*  So I go home.  I get another call from the same woman asking me to come in and pay.  At this point I’m feeling testy.  I refuse.  I am not driving up there again to be thwarted by the office staff.  No.  A few days later a woman from the billing office of the main hospital calls me and asks for payment.  I say “Really?  You’ll let me pay?  Please let me pay!”  The woman laughed hysterically at that.  I told her my story and she was astonished.  She also said she’d investigate getting that office another credit card machine.

 

Anyway, that’s my crazy month.  What’s going on in yours?

 

Do you read…

….my personal blog? The one not about RA? I have a particularly lovely post over there today, if you’re interested: Little Rituals

Everyone’s got something wrong

English: Hand sanitizer with aloe.

 

“Bad times have a scientific value. These are occasions a good learner would not miss.”

 Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

It’s been one of those weeks where you just know the universe is trying to teach you a lesson.  If only I knew what it wanted me to know.  My husband’s sciatica has gotten much much worse, so he’s limping around and in so much pain he can hardly sit down.  My eldest son had a light cough last week and this week is having to have breathing treatments because it’s looking like he has walking pneumonia.  I have a double sinus infection and an ear infection and I’ve started coughing, too plus I can feel my last infusion wearing off already.  Now our youngest says his throat is very sore.  Only my middle son is left unscathed.  You don’t want to come to our house this week. 😦

 

What’s a wife/mom to do?  I’m too exhausted to think at this point.

 

  1. Sent my husband off to the massage therapist and now on to the chiropractor.  Next it’s back to the doctor.
  2. My eldest is seeing the doctor again today for more special breathing treatments (though we had to get him up at 11pm and 5am to do them at home, too).  We’ll find out today if this is bronchitis or pneumonia.  I’ve already got emails out to his teachers to send missed schoolwork home to us.
  3. I’ve given up hope of having my infusion next week, though I need to call in and let them know so they can give my appointment away.  I’m using hand sanitizer by the bucket-full.  I’ve canceled as many of my commitments this week as I can.
  4. Sent my youngest off to school with throat lozenges in his pocket for lunch time.
  5. Pray that my middle kid remains germ-free and remind him he has hand sanitizer in his backpack pocket (and maybe put some in his lunchbox tomorrow, too).

 

Throat Lozenges

Our other new best friend (Photo credit: incurable_hippie)

 

TMI update

Heard back from my lady doctor, who I didn’t even have to see!! Her hospital got an app that let’s us email questions & get email answers & test results. It is fabulous! So anyway, my hormones are out of whack & I’m doing a low dose birth control pill to see if that helps. It’s been funny having people try to explain BC to me as if I’d never experienced it before. In the past I’d have blushed, but I have finally gotten a bit more mature and just moved on with a breezy “Oh yes, I know about that.”

🙂

Another sinus infection

I’ve been fairly fortunate with my Orencia infusions insofar as side effects go.  I’ve been on it since October and this is my first sinus infection.  I’ve felt a couple trying to start in the past few months, but I’d been diligent in the past about rinsing my nose out as per the doctor’s orders and resting up.  Not so, this time.  I was super busy last week with book fair (oh how I love talking to kids about books!) and PTA events (serving BBQ at the Fine Arts Night my kids were singing, dancing, and signing at) and a kindergarten field trip to the planetarium (Did you know there are kids out there scared of outer space?!  I had no idea.) and the church’s regional weekend (I signed on to do crafts, which is far and beyond easier than working in the kitchen), so I wasn’t really ever home long enough to do more than eat, sleep, and change clothes.  Hence the sinus infection.  😦  So tomorrow I go in for yet more antibiotics and hope that this clears up before my next infusion.  I also finally get to check in with my OB/GYN about the menstrual issues.  I had blood work drawn last week for this appointment.