Thursday, May 14, 2015

Thoughts on Current Events in our Nation

In my lifetime I have witnessed and been affected by different types of discrimination.

Discrimination doesn't have a color, or a race because we can be just as discriminative towards those who are larger than the average, smaller than the average, smokers, disabled etc.  I've seen so many types of misunderstanding or ignorance.  Recent events brought to my mind and heart a need to speak MY mind and exercise MY right to free speech.

My heart hurts at what has been happening in Baltimore and at Boston University.  Racism has no color, to assume that someone can not be racist because they're black, white, Chinese, Japanese etc simply is not true.  Anyone can be racist, anyone can be full of hate against one or another or multiple races.  The atrocities committed against one another in Baltimore are hate filled and hate fueled.  To try and explain them away as "frustrated" people acting out is severely skewed thinking.  I'm frustrated a LOT, I'm mad a LOT at how we treat one another, at how we disrespect one another, our nation, other people's beliefs and rights.  I'm downright PISSED to think there's only ONE northern white rhinoceros male left in the world because they've been hunted to extinction for black market "superstitious" fueled "remedies".  I'm ANGRY that we've been given a world full of miracles and wonders to care for, created by a God that wanted to thrill us every day with so many wonderful things to behold, and we poop all over it.  I'm angry and sad because there are people attempting to hunt whales to extinction right now.  I'm sad because we've been given a world to care for and we're killing it.  But guess what?  As ANGRY, FRUSTRATED, or sad as I may be about these things, I don't go around looting and burning other people's businesses, homes or taking violent actions against others because they're a different "race" than me.  I'm a human, from the human race....guess what, you are too!  I love you because GOD created you to be unique and brought you into MY LIFE so I might learn what lessons you have to teach me.  My father taught us that every person is worthy of our love and our time for just those reasons and I love him for teaching me that.

I don't care what you look like.  I don't care what you wear, or what designer you do or don't follow religiously.  I don't care what size you are, or what your personal habits are, though I may not choose to live that way in my own life.  I don't care who you do or don't have sex with.  The fact is, that if you are in my life, you're there because you are meant to be there and I love you.  I may not like what you do sometimes, and I may have different personal values, but guess what?  I don't judge you because I have NO right to do so since I'm not an omnipotent being.  And I don't expect to be judged by you either.

My heart hurts because #SaidaGrundy has made some generalized statements about race/gender and refuses to recognize that this is in fact a sign of racism.  It doesn't matter if you're black, you can still be racist and to believe otherwise JUST because of the color of your skin is of itself a racist notion.  I cried when I saw the statement she made about not going to "white businesses" to honor Martin Luther King.  I cried because this is NOT what Martin Luther King stood for.  He didn't say, we need equality so we can bias ourselves against the white man.  He SAID  I have a dream that we will ALL be equal, that white/black won't have lines separating them, because we will know you are my sister/brother.  You are created by GOD who gave you to ME and me to YOU as a member of a GREATER family.  My words are not his words, but are my interpretation OF Martin Luther King's words. Here are his words in total.  It's a dishonor to remember this great man through bias and self segregation or boycott based on race.  What would honor him would be me and YOU, whatever color you may be, going into the world as friends to remind everyone that his words were one of hope that we can all be friends.  That we wouldn't act in violence like those in Baltimore, but rather act in love towards one another.  We don't choose what color of skin we're born with, but we can choose how we live our lives in whatever skin we're given.  Male or female, black or white, Asian or Latino  it shouldn't matter.  We're all a part of a greater whole.  Martin Luther King's speech primarily spoke about black and white, and I know during that time there were other lines drawn out for different races such as Asian, Latino etc.  Then again he spoke about "Man/Men", which oddly enough, those other than white as males were given the vote and freedoms not enjoyed by women of any color until later.  BUT I KNOW he didn't mean give men freedom and withhold it from women, I KNOW he meant MAN/MEN in the mankind sense, including ALL God's children.

Unfortunately, segregation, discrimination etc is NOT uniquely known or tied to the U.S. but history has repeated itself over and over in many cultures throughout the world.  Ms. Grundy was incorrect in her assumption that slavery was only an "inherited" condition in the U.S. as illustrated by examples in antiquity.  see, the entry marked Egypt for example.  Granted this doesn't mean that I condone slavery, because in my family's personal history passed down to me from my father, we believe now and in the past, what the Bible states about how we should treat others, and it does state that you shouldn't hold others in bondage......don't believe me....look it up.  History keeps repeating itself and we must be horrible creatures of habit, because we always seem to find some or another type of person or thing to be discriminatory about.  Sad but true, and it makes my heart hurt to see it.

It seems to be common to think that racism is OK if it's against white people.  It seems to be OK to be prejudice or discriminatory against people that are larger than the average and to assume that it's because they over eat.  It seems to be OK to say it's not right to have personal moral values if someone holds to Christianity.  It seems to be OK to assume that just because someone in a category doesn't agree with your lifestyle, life choices, sexuality etc that they're discriminatory.  That assumption is far from true.  I know people that believe firmly in the Bible, when it speaks on certain matters such as LGBT, but have people in their families that they love just like any other in their family.  They don't discriminate against their family members and I can only imagine how difficult it must be to try and explain why they love their gay uncle so and so even though the Bible seems to tell them they should not like the way he lives his life.  I can only imagine they feel torn between their personal love for God and their faith and their love for family members.

While looking up things to try and make sure that someone reading this can be fully informed, I did run across something of great interest.  I found it among tweets regarding the above hash tag  and if I had the honor to be friends with this woman I would have to give her a bear hug.  She seems to be VERY intelligent, deep thinking and logical.  I also found on her twitter account a link to her blog and got sidetracked a little bit reading it so I will probably be following it just because I like to read how she thinks things through.  I put it here too in case anyone else was also interested.

Granted I do think freedom of speech includes allowing others the opinion that one or another group of people is not ok, even if it makes me sad to see people thinking that way.  It's ok if you don't like me because I'm a woman, or straight, or white, or whatever other reason you choose to dislike me.  I served my country and I, along with those who have done the same for eons past, fought and served our country to give that right to're welcome.  In fact, while I was in the military I worked with a young man who told me on my first day at a new duty station that he didn't like white people, that we wouldn't be friends etc.  I was a little sad to hear that from someone basing like/dislike on something so trivial, but I like to think that maybe I changed his mind a little bit, as he taught me a lot about life too.  I sincerely hope that he and his family are doing well, wherever they may be.  I also hope, that God put me in his life for a reason, and that he learned you can't judge someone just for the color of their skin but for what is inside their hearts.

I acknowledge Ms. Grundy's right to speak out on whatever it is in her heart.  I know that she said what she said for whatever personal reasons she had.  But what makes me sad is that her statement, like so many others before her of different colors, generalizes and focuses on one group.  I would encourage her to open her heart and mind to see there is good and bad in every gender, race etc.  One can't judge an entire race or gender by the actions of one, a few, or even sometimes many when there are many many MANY more that don't believe or live that way.  In the Bible, when God wished to strike Sodom and Gomorrah to the ground, and destroy all and everyone within, even He relented when Abraham asked would You destroy the righteous with the wicked?  There are righteous and wicked in EVERY group of people.  You can't assume that everyone in whatever group is alike.  All I can say is that wickedness must be a heck of a lot of fun, because it seems very easy to get people to follow if you want to do harm to someone else.  People seem to find it to be a lot of fun to follow someone who willfully slanders others with the intent to harm, and though their hearts may tell them it's wrong to treat others this way, they hush it up and follow anyway.

This is the human condition that makes me sad, and I fear I won't see it change in my lifetime.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Hearing results

It appears that I must wait and appeal yet again.

I finally got word from the court date in January.  I'm wholly disheartened to see that the judge either took license to change my testimony, or he ignored it or simply got it mixed up with another case.  All I know is that this is a very humbling experience.  I would hope that no one would ever have to go through this process, and I feel for anyone that does let alone a parent trying to go through this on behalf of their children.

I called my lawyers reference the inconsistencies I noticed in the first several pages, along with the fact that it's stated that one or more or all of my disorders can prevent me from being able to work, and then the judge goes on to make an unfavorable decision.  The lawyers said that judges are allowed to change our testimony to justify their decision.......I'm sorry, but since when are judges above laws pertaining to purjury?  If I were to go to court and purjure myself, and I were known to have lied I'd be fined, jailed or whatever they deemed fit.

I can't get far in this massive letter before my PTSD rage and anxiety take control and I have to put it aside.  Any progress I thought I was making as far as my insomnia which has been getting better with the doctor's and phsychologist's help, seems to have been destroyed.  I was making such nice progress and not staying awake for days at a time only to fall asleep when my body finally crashed to stay asleep for 24 hours or close to that.  I would not advise that if you can avoid that at all, since you feel HORRIBLE after so much sleep at once.  You wake feeling groggy, disoriented etc. and you're completely dehydrated.  I was taking hours and hours to fall asleep, but the progress was that I WAS falling asleep, so I might have fallen asleep finally at 6, or 7 or 9 am, or whenever my body finally said FIIIIINE you can sleep now, but I fell asleep.  Now I'm having a major setback in that progress.

I don't want to increase or add medications since I have no more room in my medicine cabinet so I'm hoping that this setback is minor and quickly remedied.

I don't hold any grudge against the judge since I'm sure he has a very difficult job and has to try and do his best to figure out who really needs help and who doesn't.  But I DO hold it against him that he changed and added things to my testimony that I never said, or said differently.  I was so angry seeing these things in there, and then it goes on to say that he calls my credibility into question when of the two of us, I was the one that told the truth.

I love the fact he feels the need to state that subject showed with above average intelligence or however he put it, and states my age, as if age has ANYTHING to do with disability.  I'm sorry but there are children born with them, and there are people of ALL varying ages that end up with them.  I didn't ask for this, and I certainly didn't want all this crap to happen.  My highest dream was NOT to have to go through our country's nightmarish disability process.  Why the hell would I bust my ass working 3 jobs, getting my BS in 2.5 years when most do it in double the time if this were my ultimate goal?  MY goal was to go on for my PH d in Psychology and help others.  I've ALWAYS had an affinity and talent for healing and I view people as a whole.  Every part of them should seek to be happy, healthy and whole.  Obviously, my earning potential would be far greater were I able to overcome all this crap, get back to school and get into my chosen field.

I don't know the machinations of all my sibling's hearts, but I do know at least one has taken the path of agnostic.  I wish I could comfort them and convince them of God's existence, but with all that's going on with me, I'm not sure they'd understand my faith.  All I know is, I'm going through this for a reason, and I apparently must continue to go through this until it's finished.  Perhaps I'm being told to CHANGE to a different path when all of this is finished and advocate for others, I don't know.  All I know right now is life is hard, making ends meet is hard and I'm tired.  I'm so tired I just want to quit but I can't I have to continue fighting.

All I can say to my siblings is God has ALWAYS answered my prayers even when it wasn't what I wanted to hear.  As a child my mother told me pray with an open heart and seek your answers in the Bible.  So being an odd and precocious child I did, I had told my mother since I was 5 I was going to have lots of children, but I wasn't going to get married I'd just buy an orphanage.  So, naturally when my mother told me this, I had to test it.  I prayed and asked God if I would have children, then I picked up my Bible and opened it, when I looked my eyes fell on "and Sarai was barren".  I knew then I'd never have children.

That didn't stop me from trying, when I got married I even went through years of fertility clinics before finally years later being diagnosed in the 97th percentile of PCOD.  Don't get me wrong, I don't always get along happily with God and never question him or what he deems a good path for me.  I've had my moments of anger and screaming matches, during one of them I vehemently said well what the hell......can I even GET pregnant?  Again He answered but I'm sure most people wouldn't like the answer.  I did indeed get pregnant, and my body didn't produce the necessary hormones to support a pregnancy and so, I miscarried.  God's answer was I can do ALL things for I am God, but this is not your path.

Now, I ask God please to help me in this, because I need the help.  I needed the judge to see with open eyes that I was asking for his help to finally get some stability back in my life so I could try to effectively continue to fight against what I'd been fighting against for the past 20 years alone.  I couldn't do it alone any more, but I guess the time isn't right for that help and I must stay humble and hopeful for longer.  Ends don't meet easily, but when I look back at all the time that's gone by and see that ends met, barely and logically they never should have, I know that God still has his hand on me guiding me through this.  I just can't fathom for what purpose I am meant to go through all of this, and I definitely can't fathom WHY SO many medical issues.  Wouldn't one have sufficed just as well as many?  I don't have the answers to all of these things, but I know my life has been changed significantly.

I read in the judge's response to our court date in January, and see moderate moderate moderate, over and over, and I sit and rage, if this is moderate, then what the HELL is your idea of major?  I went from a woman who held 3 jobs, full time school, family, friends and a very full life with sometimes difficulty managing time for everything and everyone because I was busy.  I went from a woman that could attend church, and even sing solo, to one that can't enter a church without weeping profusely, so I just don't go.  This has no affect on my faith, I know God exists, I have heard his answers my whole life, I simply can't go.  I'm a woman with so little in her life right now, even the grocery store is a challenge.  I go, and start to get light headed and feel faint from the anxiety.  This is worse at busy times of day so I simply don't go or try not to go during these times.  I see my mother 3-4 times a month assuming my anxiety, insomnia or some other thing doesn't flare up and take even that from me.  Basically I have little left in my life, but what I do have I hold on to because it's dear to me.  I would call this a major change.  I do try to do things occasionally, like walk around the mall on days when it's not busy because people are at work, the anxiety gets to me, and so does the pain from standing or walking, but I try.  This is rare, but usually I try to go once a month or once every other month if I can bolster myself up for that.

I don't go alone, I take people with me in case I do end up fainting, passing out or end up in a full blown anxiety attack.  It takes a LOT of self preparation to go to places like the mall, grocery etc.  I have to try and keep myself calm, not let the chest pain start indicating that a bigger attack might be on it's way.

I know it would be so easy to assume, or rage or blame God that this keeps going on and on and on, but that's simply not so.  I know everything happens in His time and for His reasons.  I just have yet to find out why I was stopped from my path.  Why my body said NO MORE, stop, sit, stay, watch, listen, hope, hurt.  I know this is a time of learning, but I'm not sure WHAT it is I'm supposed to learn.  I don't know why every medical issue came crashing around me all at once.  I don't know why further school wasn't God's plan, though it was mine.  I guess all of this will be revealed when it's revealed, but for the life of me I can't fathom how long it might be, or why it must take the slow train.

In the meantime I just have to wonder, why God closed the judge's eyes or heart and no help was forthcoming to me yet.  I'm wanting stability to continue to fight all these medical issues, and need the stability to do so effectively.  Whatever the reason is, I hope that all of this helps my siblings keep faith and my one that's declared being agnostic to see, God does do things, he just doesn't do them necessarily how or when YOU want them to happen.

Monday, March 16, 2015

Good News Bad News and God's Little Pranks

What do you do at 5 a.m. when you can't sleep because you have things on your mind or heart?

I think what I end up doing is obvious, though not always, sometimes I toss and turn, then turn and toss looking for that all too elusive rest.  I haven't updated things for a while, not because I haven't had things to say, but because what I did have to say wasn't complete.  It may still be incomplete but now I just have to empty my head and hopefully then I don't have to break out the q-tips for a brain poking session........."HUSH UP IN THERE!"

So, what you don't know, I had a hearing in January for all the medical things going on with me, I have yet to hear back about it, but for some reason I think they simply like to keep people waiting.  In the meantime, I graduated from my CPT therapy, and I'm toying with a booster session because I've had some minor setbacks as you can see by me posting at the God awful time of morning and have yet to sleep.

So, the doctor being curious about what was going on with my back sets up chiropractic appointments, a PT assessment, appointment with a Neurosurgeon and we've kicked around ideas for different therapies, among which were swim therapy, and Yoga, to see if that would even be feasible or beneficial for me.

The chiropractor was a really great experience, and he's very empathetic and a straightforward person.  I only had 6 or 8 sessions with him, and though the back pain was still there, I do think I was able to do a bit more after adjustments.  I'm not sure if longer term would have helped further, or if my spine is just a lost cause.

So the setbacks causing lost sleep etc.  The court hearing was trying, and of course my brain thinks of all the things I should have said but didn't, or could have said better, or with more description, but all in all, the lawyer and the judge's assistant said they both felt it went well, so for the most part I thought about things, lost a little sleep and let it go.  I mean, one thing, and I'm sure you'd find it trivial, but I'm a weirdo so I don't, was that the judge asked me about hobbies, and when I named some he said oh what kind of books do you like to read.  Well, I like all kinds of books, and when he asked about authors in case he knew them too, my mind came to a blank.  Now, normally, I'm a visual thinker, so what happens for me is, I'd think of a book or books I liked, and the cover comes to mind, complete with artwork, title, author etc.  But for me with the PTSD affecting thinking, the covers came to mind, the titles were there, I could remember what the books were about, but NO AUTHORS.  I was VERY frustrated.  I suppose had I thought of it at the time, I could have explained this to the judge and said this is a good example of ONE of the things that PTSD does to me and my thinking.  But all I could think of was why can I not think of authors I love, books I've had to buy numerous times because they're so good that people borrow them and someone borrows from them and so on and so on.  Before you know it your book has circumnavigated the world and crossed the equator.

The second setback was during the PT assessment.  The guy doing it, I could just slap silly and say HOW DARE YOU MAR MY MEDICAL PRACTICE!!!  I can NOT NOT NOT stand people in any area of medicine that do NOT listen.  Who go into ANYTHING with a preconceived notion of what they will see/find etc and completely disregard what the patient/customer etc tries to tell you.  First of all, that's REALLY poor bedside manner.  Second, who the FUCK spent the last 45 yrs of life in this body?  I DO believe it was ME!  You pompous, assinine, moronic idiot!  DO NOT ask me a question and then cut me off when I'm telling you the answer to state what YOU think because of some OTHER patient or patients experienced.  THEY DO NOT have the same body as me, they DO NOT have the same spine as me, THEY DO NOT have the same symptoms or trials as me so don't tell ME how the fuck MY body feels or assume YOU KNOW what I am going through.

Every time I think of that experience, my chest hurts (a precursor for anxiety attacks).  The dumbass was TOO stupid to even take note that my bp was off the charts for 4 hours during the evaluation and ONLY came down when I saw the clock and knew it was nearly time for me to leave him and his stupid ass in his stupid establishment and go HOME.  Then and ONLY then did it come down because he had my anxiety so high, and even now my chest hurts, my head hurts etc.  I'd like to find the spikiest heel in all the land and put it right between his smug eyes!  And now you know another affect of the PTSD, I do tend to get VERY angry about stupid people doing stupid shit at stupid times to others, which is why I can no longer watch the news.  I simply can NOT be rational or impartial towards the dumbasses that land themselves on the news.

Ok, so now for the latest.  My last visit was to the hospital on base near me.  I saw a neurosurgeon who decided he wanted a full spinal x-ray to look at as well as my discs with the other x-rays and mri's.  So, here's how this goes.  He was REALLY nice and for a surgeon, he was completely down to earth and honest, which you don't always get.  I've worked with a few that had God complexes, and it was just the complete opposite with this one.  I was very fortunate.  Then again I've also worked with my share that were just amazing, so I guess I've seen both sides.  Anyway, he tells me that I've got a few things going on, and that IF we were to do surgery, we'd have to pick one, but he wanted to see the x-ray to see what's going on in a full view.  The x-ray staff was nice and efficient so the x-ray got done in short order.  They also added my discs to the system so that should we need them, the military hospital and the VA would both have access.  I went back to the area after the x-ray to wait.  Not too long after, the doctor comes for me and I'll try to say things as he did.  He said, I have something called Scheuermann's Disease on top of having two different scoliosis curves.  He said I must have German in my ancestry, which I do on both probably 70% or so.  So I gather this is something primarily seen in German DNA, spines or whatever.  He said well, you just got some bad genetics.  He then said if we were to do a surgery to correct things, we would have to choose one of the things to correct, and that would likely have a very bad effect on the other things going on in my spine.  In other words, correct one you make the other things worse.  He also said that one surgery would likely for ME turn into numerous surgeries over sevaral years, and that IF I saw any benefit it would not be for 2 to 3 years, and with my other spinal issues he doubted that there would be any benefit since it would likely make the other issues worse.  I told him that I was a little relieved to hear him say that surgery wouldn't be the best answer for me, because back surgery is SCARY, but at the same time, I was also sad, because I want to be as mobile as my mom when I'm her age, and that would take a miracle or one heck of a fix.  Don't get me wrong, I'm happy my mom is able to do all that she can do, but at the same time, it's a little depressing that I know she can do more than me and I'm still young.  I can only imagine what that means for me in 30 years.

So now, I have 4 siblings, I know my sister has scoliosis, but hers is one long graceful curve, rather than my here, there, and everywhere one, and I don't believe she's got Scheuermann's, her posture is way too good for that.  The one I'm MOST worried about is my older brother, we look the most alike of all of us, though you can tell we're related, so he and I share the most genetic markers.  I want to ask him if he's had a spinal evaluation, because he doesn't have the issues I do, BUT I also have other things like the PCOD that is gender related, so that may have had an effect on the overall progression of things.  If he has any hint of Scheurmann's he might not get to the point I am now if he takes some steps to avoid it.  I mean, how do you suggest to a manly man, hey, maybe you should swim or do yoga for future back health......LOL  Besides, I think he thinks I'm a bit too much like our one aunt that's a hypochondriac.  I think he thinks all of this is in my head, and I can tell you, life would be much easier if it were.  I already have a great therapist!  Unfortunately, she's seen my medical record so I doubt I could convince her to hypnotize me and make me believe I don't have any medical issues LOL.

You know, I thought elephants and giraffes were God's greatest jokes, but here I come to find out it's me.  Honestly, if I'm the only one of us 5 to have so many medical issues, I will be happy. I'd rather see them all be happy, healthy and whole.  It's just mind boggling though.  I told my mother about some other things going on that I didn't want to be seen for because if the doctor gave me ANOTHER diagnosis, I already had too many, and here, I went to the neurosurgeon thinking I had all the diagnoses I'd get, only to get another one tagged on me.......REALLY.......REEEEEALLY?  Kind of funny and ironic that only two days before the appointment I told her I didn't want any more things added on BUT STILL!!!   I guess statistically we've been really fortunate so far as a family, so I guess a bunch of health issues isn't the worst thing that could have gone wrong.

I'm also curious where the heck I got these spinal issues!  I know my maternal grandmother used to go to a chiropractor, but I never did know why.  I'm sure I or someone asked her and she probably just waved it away and changed the subject.  Both my maternal and paternal grandmother's lived a good long time, which also scares me because I'm not at all sure what shape I'll be in if I do.  I did ask the neurosurgeon what he thought being the expert on spines, about if I may or may not have any benefits from swimming or yoga.  He said, well, with your spine, I don't think it could hurt, and if it does help so much the better.......I think that's a nice way of saying we can dream can't we, but hey, it's worth a shot!  I think my YMCA has both a pool and yoga, so the only thing I need to do is get over the anxiety and stop in to get signed up so I can try it out.

I just pray and pray that no one else in my family has to go through so much medical poo.  It's a little hard and overwhelming to have SO many seemingly unrelated issues, but I can't stop myself from thinking that somehow they're related or affecting one another in ways that we don't yet understand.  Honestly, if does make you feel a bit crazy to think ONE person with SO many medical things, it's improbable.  Obviously, it's not impossible, but statistically, it's just a one shot in a million kind of thing.  At least I can say I'm TRULY unique.  Think I'd rather be the other million people though.