We had a lovely taste of spring a couple of days ago, when the daytime temps jumped up to nearly 60. It was pretty warm in our house for those few days, but I refused to open a window or completely lose my mind and turn on the A/C, because I wanted our house to absorb as much warmth as possible in preparation for the inevitable cold snap. And here we are…in the midst of the cold snap. And right before the snap, we ran out of propane. February was a bitterly cold month, and we have some drafts in our house, which explains why our propane did not last the 8-9 weeks we projected it to, and instead only lasted 6 weeks. Fortunately, the house has stayed pretty warm, and even today, on day 3 of no propane (the propane delivery truck comes tomorrow, yay! I miss my oven, haha. But we get by with a slew of electric appliances, including a double burner, an electric skillet, two griddles, a crock pot, a turkey roaster, and a toaster oven on steroids), it’s still not bad – about 65°. Once upon a time I loathed warm weather, but now I’m all for it because warm weather means not having to worry about heating the house.
Luna is staying in Alyssa’s bedroom until her spay and vaccination appointment on Monday. I’ve asked the vet to please scan her for microchips, but I won’t be surprised if nothing turns up. As I explained in my last post’s comments, puppy mills and unwanted cats are a big thing around here. I would be very, very surprised if Luna has an owner, especially since we’ve all seen her roaming around the neighborhood since late fall (it wasn’t until this past week that Luna would allow Alyssa and one of her friends close enough to pet her). We’re not happy about going back to a 6-cat household…more like resigned. Dan and I both believe in people needing to take more responsibility for stray, unfixed, and unvaccinated cats, and we’re instilling these values into Alyssa and Ryan, too. Hopefully Luna is the last stray… aside from the indoor/outdoor cat next door (the one that would beat up Felix before we took him in) we haven’t seen any others. It’s taken a couple of years, and the euthanasia of dying kittens, and more recently a dying mother cat, but slowly and surely we, with the help of our next door neighbor, are cleaning up after the irresponsibility and heartlessness of other people. At least in our neighborhood. :/
Today I had my post-op follow-up appointment with my surgeon. When she came into the room she immediately exclaimed over how good I looked in comparison to when she last saw me. She said she was shocked at how sick I looked, how dehydrated I was, and overall just how bad off I was. She explained more about the surgery and what all they did (cut out about a 2″ section of perforated intestine; re-connected the top of my small intestine (jejunum) to the bottom of my stomach pouch; did a “leak test” on the new connection; and washed out my abdominal cavity several times to prevent infection and abscesses from the leaked gastric contents). She said she was honestly surprised that I didn’t end up with an infection, but of course was relieved: obviously her thorough washing of my abdominal cavity combined with the four days of IV antibiotics and then two weeks of a daily regimen of two different oral antibiotics did their thing. And it was a blessing that all I had when my intestine perforated was a tiny sip of water, and nothing more after (I remember now the doctor at the first hospital ER telling me, “DO NOT EAT OR DRINK ANYTHING! YOU CANNOT SWALLOW ANYTHING!”).
After amusing anecdotes about operating on me in an ophthalmology OR, and having a team of somewhat incompetent nurses, and a complaint from one of the techs accusing her of being too “mean”, she prescribed me more Pantoprazole – a six month supply, so I can just refill it every month until my next follow-up rather than pay out of pocket for costly office visits each month in order to get additional refills. She also prescribed me additional painkillers. As it turns out, the reason I’m STILL in significant pain despite being three weeks post-op is due to her and the other surgeon having to cut through a lot of muscle on the right side of my abdomen in order to access my abdominal cavity and shove all of the necessary tools in there. And, it was a 5 hour surgery. I’m still really swollen and bloated on that side (I can practically rest my right arm on the right side of my abdomen), and the pain sucks… it’s constant tenderness and achiness that gets a lot worse some days, and it wakes me up at night. It’ll be nice to sleep comfortably tonight – I’m really looking forward to that.
On the subject of medications: the whole healthcare system is so confusing and infuriating. Please tell me why I would pay $175 out of pocket for a 1-month supply of Pantoprazole, and $24 for 30 Dilaudid tablets. But, if I have a prescription discount card (not an insurance card, just a run of the mill “prescription discount” card), I only have to pay $28 for that same Pantoprazole prescription, and $14 for the Dilaudid prescription. Arghhhh. Don’t get me wrong: I’m relieved that I had the card, remembered the card, and that it reduced the total so significantly. But seriously, one little card can do all that?! The prices of medication should be the same across the board, regardless of what health insurance or prescription discounts you have, if you have any at all.
Man, the ending of Daylight Saving (NO S ON THE END! AHH! *twitch*) is messing with us. We didn’t have dinner until 7:30 (normally we eat no later than 6:30), and it’s now 8:07pm and the kids aren’t in their bedrooms yet (they go into the bedrooms for quiet time at 8, and bedtime is at 8:30).
Speaking of kids…Ryan is back to blue again. :)