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Fentanyl and fusion

I have a lot I want to write about, but I’m in too much pain (no surprise there) and am too tired (also not much of a surprise) to focus long enough to compose the words, so I’ll leave this entry with these three bulleted items:

  1. I blame the increase on doing too much yesterday, and cold, wet weather today


Do you believe in blessings in disguise?

On Tuesday my PCP of eight years abruptly dumped me, leaving me without medical care and the medication that brings my pain from an agonizing 8 to a barely tolerable 5.

Yesterday a pain management doctor gave me the Fentanyl patches my now former PCP wouldn’t, along with the Oxycodone I’ve been taking; and connected me with an equally reputable group of PCPs who will take me, my complex health issues, and need for narcotic pain relief on without batting an eye.

For months numerous people — friends, neighbors, many medical professionals from many different specialties/practices (some not even mine, but doctors my mother went to see!) — have been telling me to ditch my current PCP and find one who would be more willing to work with me and not leave me to suffer in needless pain.

Maybe I should have listened to them sooner…

In any case, if all goes well with insurance and whatnot, within a few hours I’ll be able to start testing out transdermal Fentanyl patches, and hopefully reduce my dependency on Oxycodone for pain relief. Up until now I have been taking 45mg of Oxycodone per day (+ 4000mg of Tylenol and up to 90mg of Flexeril). The goal is to use 12mcg Fentanyl patches (and go up to a 25 or even a 50 if needed) and get that Oxycodone usage down to about 25mg per day.

I’ll let you all know how it goes! Please keep me in your thoughts… I’m so tired of the “if something can go wrong, it will go wrong” mentality that has been applying itself to so many aspects of my life.

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Caught in the crosshairs

Today a medical director, who has never met me, and probably never took more than a cursory glance at my medical history, decided their office couldn’t “handle” my pain management needs. I was abruptly, without notice and without support, “fired”.

The so-called War on Drugs? More often than not it’s capturing people like me — people living with and suffering with very real, very debilitating chronic pain — in the crosshairs. And statistically, valid prescription-holding individuals are the least likely to abuse opiates. It’s the non-prescription users — the ones buying / borrowing / stealing — who make up the majority of addicts (please note that I wrote addicts, not dependents – there is a difference between physical dependency, which happens with many types of medications, and outright addiction) and ODers.

Fortunately my now former PCP — the same PCP I’ve had for the past eight years (and yes, the same one who inadvertently tried to off me with Toradol), who had the gall to seem surprised when I told him I would never be seeing him or returning to the practice or network again, made calls right then and there to the pain management clinic that evaluated me in January, and since I am now without a PCP, that clinic will immediately take over my pain management needs – including prescribing the transdermal Fentanyl patches my former PCP couldn’t/wouldn’t. This is a silver lining, as the patches were suggested as a way around my significant mal-absorption issues that led to first an increase in dosage and then a change from pills to liquid in the first place.

And to think it’s been suggested to me that I need “better coping skills” (I have a tendency to cry when I’m stressed)…
Perhaps if my support system wasn’t abruptly yanked out from under me I’d be able to better cope…
Perhaps if on a good day my pain would be lower than a 5 I’d be able to better cope…
Perhaps if it isn’t always such an uphill battle to prove my pain I’d be able to better cope…

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Buying Your First Family Home Together: Important Things You Both Need To Do

Buying your first family home together is an exciting step forward in your relationship. Whether you’ve been together six months or ten years, it’s a step that shows real commitment and loyalty. Deciding to start a family and moving into a house you’ve bought together is a dream come true for many couples. But your dreams of a perfect family home can turn into a nightmare if neither of you is prepared for it. You can end up in the wrong house or location. Or be unable to keep up with your mortgage repayments or paying off your outstanding debts. This can put immense strain on your relationship and could end up in a breakup or divorce. Which is obviously not the outcome you want when your goal is to start a family in your own home. This guide highlights some important things you need to do before you make this long term commitment.

sold family home
photo credit: Pixabay

Check your credit scores

Unless you’ve had it checked before, it’s unlikely that your know what your partner’s credit score is. They may have had some financial issues in the past that you don’t know about and vice versa. Outstanding debts and late payments are just a few things a credit report check can pick up on. So is one or both of you have poor credit scores, this can significantly affect your chances of getting a mortgage. Your credit scores gives banks and lenders some insight into your financial state. It also somewhat predicts what your future behaviour will be like. If you are considered a high risk, they will be less inclined to give you the money you need to buy your family home. Many couples fail to check their scores beforehand and then feel crushed when they are rejected for a mortgage deal. So before you start looking online at potential properties, you both need to have your credit score checked. If neither of you get the score you were hoping for, don’t panic. There are things you can do to improve it and get your dreams of buying a home back on track. You could look at sky blue credit repair reviews, talk to a financial adviser and pay off your current loans and debts.

Try to be supportive of one another. It may seem like the end of the world, but in reality, it is a momentary glitch that can be altered. Sorting this out as soon as possible will also give you more disposable income. Which you can then put towards other house related savings and expenses.

credit card
photo credit: Pixabay

Discuss your finances

Another vital thing you need to organise and discuss is how much you both intend to spend per month on your new property. Otherwise, you may have an unpleasant shock later on. Many couples prefer to split the costs in half. But this is not always possible due to differing incomes and the rate of the mortgage. Both of you need to sit down and analyse your monthly spending by checking receipts, bank statements and invoices. Include utility bills, monthly date nights and miscellaneous items such as clothing and shoes. This will be an eye-opening experience for you both as it will show you exactly where every penny is spent each month. Your and your partner may find neither of you has a lot of money saved up or that you spend too much unnecessarily. Once you have done this and factored in how much you earn, you need to determine how much you can both comfortable put towards the new house. You may want to split the repayments equally or decide that one of you can pay more than the other. It may also be beneficial to visit an accountant to discuss your financial options further. This will reduce the risk of arguments later on and shows a mature approach to the home buying process. Don’t feel ashamed that you can’t contribute as much as your partner can. Never agree to pay more than you can afford. Otherwise living together will become challenging and you’ll be more prone to arguments and falling out.

couple kissing while drinking coffee
photo credit: Pixabay

Decide upon a suitable location

It’s crucial that you both have some input into where you want to start looking for your new family home. Maybe you want to be near to family and friends or want a short commute to work each day. As you’re intending to start a family, being located near to shops, schools and transport links may also be something you want to consider. Use Google maps and online real estate agent to find possible locations that cater to both of your needs. It’s always better to have this conversation with your partner before you start your search. Otherwise their needs and wants may come as a shock to you and vice versa. Being in a house in the wrong location can be a costly mistake that can make one or both of you miserable. Long commutes and being apart from loved ones can put an enormous strain on you both. Making you feel stressed and vulnerable. So compile a list of vital things you want and compromise slightly if you need to. Remember to factor in the cost of extra travel too to make sure you can afford it.

It’s important to keep in mind that location can also have a tremendous sway on property prices. So keeping an open mind is often the best tact. You may realise that your dream location has properties that are out of your price range or that your search for suitable homes is limited. Moving to an area, you don’t know very well can be daunting. So talk to local estate agents and visit surrounding areas to see if they could give you what you desire instead.

After you have talked through your options and have the necessary checks done, finding the right mortgage and home should be easy. It’s something that needs both yours and your partner’s input and opinions and should never be one sided. That way you can find a home, you both feel comfortable and make it the perfect place to raise your children together.

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Just me.

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