Tag Archives: neuropathy

Where Did the Day Go?

10 Oct

Yesterday started very early. Charlie didn’t feel well so he woke me up around 3:45.  He apparently hadn’t slept all night and his equilibrium was very off. He was stumbling when he tried to walk. He laid back down for a while and then felt a bit better.  He decided to go to school anyway and thankfully as the day went along the problem lessened.  The day felt like it sped right by but when I stopped and looked at the day we didn’t really do anything different.  The only thing I can figure is that we started the day an hour late.  That caused us to miss the one hour break that we usually have between the first two classes.  I suppose that could be what made it feel like it was a little rushed.  It was a good day and ended with us at an open forum with the President of San Antonio College.  Charlie had several questions that he presented to the president, all of which seemed to be answered pretty well.  After that it was off to the church for dinner, prayer meeting and Bible study.  We were both so tired that we fell asleep when we got home.

Today was dialysis day.  Nothing remarkable happened.  Thankfully he did not bleed today. After dialysis it was lunch and then a nap.  Then dinner and we watched X-Factor and then Glee (not very exciting huh?).  Amazing the talent they find on the shows like X-Factor, American Idol, and America’s Got Talent.  It’s also amazing how many people go to those auditions believing they are really good and are upset when they are told they aren’t. I sometimes wonder if some of them aren’t just planted there.  Glee was kind of sad.  It was a memorial episode for Cory Monteith. Everyone said their goodbyes.  There was some good music tonight. It made us stop and think about the fact that you just never know when your time is going to be up.  It’s important to remember that while we are here we should live our lives to the fullest and not worry about the little stuff.  Life can throw a lot of junk at you but you need to know how to handle it and then throw it right back.  Charlie and I have both lived through a lot of crud in our lives, we are both very thankful that we know God and that we can rely on Him for what we need.

Many of you have been with us since the first post on March 27, 2011.  All of you have become like family and know what we have been through in just the 19 months of this blog.  We appreciate all of you and those who are new to the blog – Welcome to our family. Please take the time to read what’s happened since the beginning.  It’s been an interesting life.  Charlie and I love each of you and really appreciate all of the prayers and the encouragement you have given us. Please continue to keep them coming because both of us need them.  Y’all are great!

Today we pray blessings for each of you.  Take care and keep visiting.

Blessings to all,

Charlie & Sherrie

 

Sensory Detail

12 Sep

This week in Charlie’s English Composition class he turned in one Essay Quiz which was on Micheal Montaigne, the person who created the Essay.  Now we know where essays came from and what they are supposed to be used for.  The assignment yesterday was to write using sensory detail.  He has to write two paragraphs, one describing a food he HATES and the other describing a food he LOVES.  I thought it would be fun to share one of the paragraphs today.  The idea is to describe the food using the five senses: Sight, Sound, Smell, Touch and Taste.  Here is the paragraph on the food he hates.  Let me know what you think of the description.  🙂

I hate okra.  The solid pods boil in the pot and look all  green and slimy, reminding me of nasty green boogers. It’s nearly impossible to pick it up as the gooey mess slithers out of your fingers and you hear it plop on the plate like a frog flopping on a lily pad.  The smell reminds me of vomit. It tastes like snot running down the back of your throat.  I really hate okra!

Okay, there is the sensory detail paragraph on the food Charlie hates.  We had a good time writing that paragraph.  Does it create a picture of the food he hates most?  I think we used all 5 senses.  Now we are working on the food he loves – rib eye.  We are stuck at what it smells like.  I’ll post that one when we finish it.

The whole exercise is to get everyone ready to write a narrative essay on “a moment when you truly learned something”.  That one should be interesting too.  There are so many moments that he can choose from.  It has to be 3 to 5 pages long.  It should be an interesting assignment.  The English Professor is the same one that Charlie had last Spring when he had to withdraw from the class because he had been ill and missed too much school.  He loves her and has a great deal of respect for her as she is pushing forward against a second bout of cancer, but she is still teaching and moving on.  She is determined not to let it get her.

This week Charlie also had his first graded assignment in Music Appreciation.  He did well.  He is having a problem with the concepts and definition and listening (okay, no comments from the peanut gallery).  Listening to music for music is not an easy thing if you have never done it before.  He is having to listen to the musical pieces and try to pick out instruments, styles, and textures. I didn’t realize how much I already knew until we started doing homework and I could answer the questions as they printed.  I guess that’s because I started singing in choir when I was in second grade.  I don’t know how to read musical notes as far as their tone but I do know what they are and what the beats are and I do understand the styles and stuff so I feel comfortable trying to help Charlie through this challenge.  He has been able to recognize a few instruments while listening, it’s just going to take some practice.  His Professor for this class is wonderful.  He’s a priest and it was great to talk to him on yesterday and have him use an analogy using God to make a point to Charlie about music.

His first quiz in his introduction to theatre class is next Monday.  This class is his favorite, it is also one from the Spring Semester.  His Professor is amazing.  He takes time with the student and really cares about how they are doing and takes the time to listen to them.  It is impossible to get bored in this class.  The professor is always up and always funny, perhaps it is the actor in him but  the compassion for his students is very real. The class will be doing a project, which I believe that it begins next week.  They have to come up with an idea for a Broadway show and present it to the class.  It will be a group project so we shall see how it goes.  Charlie is the oldest one in the class, we could be parents to everyone in this class.

Charlie has also been in touch with the school newspaper and has a meeting with the Disability counselor next Monday.  I believe I wrote about the giant hill that they want us to climb to get him into the handicapped entrance to the building the Music Appreciation class is in when I last posted.  This has definitely been a challenge.  The first week of school there were tables set up with representatives from different programs and departments at the school.  One of them was the school newspaper.  We talked for about an hour and a half with one of the new editors about all of the access problems we had encountered on just the first day of school.  The issue about the access to that building, the problem with the handicapped doors not working, non-working elevators, cracks and missing bricks from the sidewalks….all of these are real issues to people who are visually impaired and/or in wheel chairs.  The newspaper came to the building and took pictures of me pulling the wheel chair up the 12 stairs to get to the cat walk and then the 5 stairs to get to the classroom.  They wanted people to see what Charlie goes through to get to class.  It really is not right.  There is talk (there has been for several years) of building some kind of ramp but it hasn’t happened yet.  We did see them repairing one of the door openers yesterday and we were told that it would be working when we get there on Friday.  He is meeting with the counselor to discuss creating some kind of a Disability Advocacy group for the campus.  He wants to hold a rally at the flag pole for anyone who would be interested in getting a group together.

Let’s see, what else has been happening here?  Oh, there is another important thing.  Charlie is an advocate for the American Kidney Fund.  Last month he got an email because they were looking for people willing to share their story for the Annual Kidney Walk, which will be held at the AT&T Center here in San Antonio, on October 6th.  We wrote back to them saying he was willing to help out. I also included a little of his bio and then the address to the blog.  Well, on Monday morning we got a call from the American Kidney Fund in Washington, DC.  They would like to have Charlie share his story.  She said they will send the information to the media and they will be in touch with Charlie.  Could this be a start of his public speaking??  Could this be the time when someone will hear and have that long awaited kidney?  Who knows.  We shall see.

The other thing that is coming up is my Social Security hearing.  Charlie and I will be going on September 19th.  Hopefully this will be it and I will be awarded my Social Security Disability.  The lawyer is very positive and said that we have a nice judge.  We had a meeting with the lawyer last week.  He said that my age, my inability to do a whole lot anymore, and my work history are all pretty positive indicators that I should get it.  We are praying and covet your prayers that this does happen as it will make things much easier, financially.  We have a very hard time right now but God has seen us through these last two years and I know that as long as we remain faithful He will be there for us.

Well folks, I guess that’s about it for now.  As usual, thanks so much for your support and your wonderful words of encouragement.  You all mean a great deal to us.  Please continue to pray for:  Charlie and school (two quizzes on Monday). Charlie’s tooth (still have not been able to get the one that broke fixed.). A Kidney. The success of the Kidney Walk (there are so many people who benefit from it). Finances. Fundraising. Social Security hearing.

Blessings to each and every one of you,

Charlie & Sherrie

Second Week of School – Challenges

5 Sep

Well, last week was interesting.  First it was Charlie’s tooth. It had cracked and the filling fell out.  We went to the dentist and they want $3000 to do work.  He needs to have a deep cleaning of his gums  done and needs a root canal.  They can’t do the root canal until after they do the gums and to do just the gums is $977.  They tried to run a credit check under both of our names but could not get anything to come up, therefore they want $300 for a deposit and then they will be able to work on payments with us.  That all happened on Tuesday so we missed Music Appreciation class on Wednesday.   We left the house at 6:30am that morning and got home at around 7:45pm. It was a very long day.

On Friday we woke up early (me at 4 and Charlie at 4:20).  I noticed a problem hearing but went about making a sour cream coffee cake for Charlie’s Theatre class.  As the morning went on I noticed the hearing was getting worse.  At 5:40 we decided to take me to the Emergency clinic down the street.  They looked in the ears and did a CT Scan. The brain looked good and they didn’t have the equipment to do anything else.  I was told I needed to go to an ENT doctor.  I have an audiologist and called the clinic.  I was referred to the ER at University Hospital and told to ask them for the on call ENT doctor. We did that and they got the doctor.  He checked both ears (the left one is already deaf- I lost hearing in it about 4 years ago – went to bed one night and was fine, then got up and was deaf on the left side.) and then decided to do an MRI.  We did the MRI and then we went to the Audiologist’s office which was across the street.  They did the hearing test and confirmed that there was substantial sudden hearing loss in the right ear.  They set up and appointment with the ENT doctor for Tuesday (Monday was a holiday) where the plan was to inject the ear with steroids.  The injection would either make the ear better, do nothing and it would stay the same, or it could make it worse.  Not exactly what either Charlie or myself wanted to hear.  On an up note, Charlie walked most of that day and did well.  His foot looked great after that.

We got up on Tuesday and I went to Dialysis with Charlie.  We left the house at 5:50am.  We were picked up from dialysis at 11:15am and they took us to to the clinic. Now any other time they would have other pick ups and drop offs but we went directly to the clinic.  The paper that was given to us at the ER said the appointment was for 1:30, we got there at about 11:45.  When I registered at the clinic they told me that the ER scheduled the appointment without calling to see if there was an opening and that the actual appointment was scheduled for 2:30 but they would see us as soon as they could. We went to the cafe and got a sandwich then back to the clinic.  At 1:00 they took me back, Charlie decided to stay in the waiting room (after about 20 minutes he changed his mind and he was escorted to the room I was in).  We were in that room from 1- 2:30.  At 2:30 they took us to the Ear room.  Kind of a scary looking place with all the surgical stuff in it. We waited until 3 and then I went out to the front office and asked if anyone knew how much longer it was going to be.  The nurse was surprised I hadn’t had the injection done yet. Charlie and I were really tired of waiting – Charlie especially as he had had dialysis and had not been able to rest yet. The nurse came in and said the doctor would be in in about 20 minutes and that the procedure would last about an hour, including the recovery time.  That didn’t make either of us happy.  We then asked for the clinic director.  She came in and then low and behold, so did the doctor.  She told us what was going to happen then she disappeared for another 10 minutes.  We lodged the complaint with the director who is following up with the ER and the clinic to see where the problem started.  I did have the procedure and we finally got out of the clinic at 5:30 with a prescription that was to have prevented blood from crusting at the injection site. I called the pharmacy to find out how much the prescription was and was told $164.00. Needless to say that wasn’t going to happen.  The pharmacy said they would contact the doctor int he morning to see if there is anything else I could use.  We left the clinic and then we called for the ride and were on hold for about 15 minutes.  The ride showed up and we were on the way home when the cab company called (the Via Trans people called them) and said they were waiting for us at the clinic.  Was a VERY LONG day!!!!   Both of us were exhausted by the time we made it home (7:15pm).

We went to school yesterday.  I got up at 4 again and made the cake and we took it to the Theatre class where it was eaten up.  It did come out good if I say so myself!  Made it through all of our classes and were heading out to the pick up area when we realized that we didn’t cancel the Transportation people when the Wound Care clinic cancelled Charlie’s foot appointment.  They never come on time when they come so Charlie called them as I was walking him to the pick up spot.  We had arranged with a person from Church to pick us up so we could go get my hearing aid from the Via Trans lost and found.  He was going to call us at 2 so we could give him directions.  The van was already there to pick us up and they said they would take us over to get the hearing aid and then take us to church.  Charlie had the phone and was on hold with the transportation company and the friend from church called.  Charlie felt so bad about him coming our  way because the van was there.  He explained what was happening and thought it would be easier to take the van because we had the wheelchair and he thought the friend didn’t know how to get to us.  He is concerned that the friend is now upset with him.  It wasn’t his intent to do that.  Sometimes life is kind of hard and it’s hard to know what to do in situations like this.  God blessed us with this friend and his wonderful wife.  They have both been a great blessing to us.  We sincerely hope and pray that the friendship has not been damaged by this.

So now we are waiting until next week for another appointment at the Audiologist and then with the ENT doctor. I have already decided Charlie will not be going with me.  He will go to dialysis and I will go to the doctor.  Just got to find a ride there now.  I think the plan is for them to make the appointment for Thursday so that I only have to go to one building.  We will update when we have more hearing information.

Today was dialysis again Charlie had a good session and then went in for a nap.  I, for one, am very glad that this week is almost over, it’s been a very long one.  School tomorrow and then on Sunday Charlie and I are responsible for the donut social at church.  We are not having donuts as it is less expensive for me to bake a couple of sour cream coffee cakes and some Kolaches.  It will be different but it will be good.  🙂 Charlie will start choir again this Sunday and has a Deacon’s meeting so Sunday morning will be busy.

All I can say is thank God for being there with us through all of life’s challenges.  He is the only way we both keep going. He gives us challenges so that we can overcome them and use them as a testimony for Him and all He can do for us.  Thank you God.

Praying a good weekend for all of you.  Thanks for the prayers and words of encouragement, please keep them coming.

Pray for the following:  1. Charlie at school. 2. Charlie’s walking.  3. A Kidney.  4. Finances.  5. Fundraising.

Blessings to all.

Charlie and Sherrie

Really???

27 Aug

So, we made it through the first day of school.  It hasn’t rained all summer but yesterday we had to have an umbrella to start the day off with!  I have really gotten good at driving the wheel chair one handed.  I was able to maneuver it with one hand as I held the umbrella trying to keep myself and Charlie dry.  Worked okay until we got onto the sidewalk.  You would think with all the money they are collecting from the new parking fee at the school that they would have enough money to replace the cement and the bricks at the handicapped drop off but apparently not because we made a complaint about it back in May and it still hasn’t been fixed.  It’s probably going to take one of the blind students to trip, fall and get hurt before something will be done.  So sad.

We got to school and went to the student center.  Charlie loves the Mexican hot chocolate so we got some of that and a breakfast taco and waited for the bookstore to open so he could get his books.  It was due to open at 7:45 so we got on the elevator at 7:40 and went down stairs.  Well, 7:45 came and went….and so did 8:00 and 8:10.  Apparently the manager was stuck in traffic (People here haven’t seen rain in so long that they just forgot how to drive in it) and there was no one else with a key.   They finally opened and I went to the office to pick up the books.  We had placed the order online so it would be ready for us to pick up when we got there, of course no one could find his books and they weren’t in the alphabetical notebook of all of the orders pending pick-up.  Someone finally arrived and was able to find them in a pile on the counter.

Once we were done there we went over to Disability Services to see them and pick up the paperwork that had to be signed by each instructor so that they knew I was officially Charlie’s note taker.  We had a good visit and then we looked at Charlie’s schedule again before leaving.  It was then that we realized that the Music Appreciation class was not in the same building as the Theatre class.  I wasn’t sure how to get to the other building.  I knew that there was a catwalk between them but wasn’t sure how to get the wheelchair over it.  I asked about an elevator and was then told there was only one way to get to the handicapped ramp for that building.  I would have to walk down a street and up a steep hill (pushing the wheelchair).  I thought about it and talked to Charlie about it and we decided that we didn’t want me in the hospital on the first day of school.  So, Charlie walked up 12 stairs and God provided two absolutely wonderful people who took the time to carry the wheelchair up.  We got to the top and put Charlie back in the wheelchair to walk across the catwalk, got in the door and there were 5 MORE stairs.  Charlie walked those also and those wonderful people carried the chair up them too.  Luckily the class was right there.  So we got into the class and all was well.  Then we had to get back over the catwalk.  This time Charlie walked down the 5 stairs and I rolled the wheelchair down them, put him in it and walked across the catwalk and then…….Charlie did the 12 stairs and I SLOWLY wheeled the chair down them.  Narrow stairs, not easy to do a wheelchair on, but MUCH BETTER than the down the street and up the hill thing.

So we also encountered an elevator closed for PREVENTIVE MAINTENANCE (seriously…on the first day of school?????), and every Handicapped automatic door that we had to use did not work.  Between that and the poor condition of the sidewalks I definitely got my cardio workout for the day.  My feet were really tender this morning but it was okay.  I am very pleased to announce that Charlie wasn’t hurting at all after his exercise!!!  Maybe that will be his PT.  🙂

The classes seem like they are going to be fun.  The only one he is really concerned about is his English class.  LOTS of reading and writing in this class.  Drama will be fun, he has a great professor.  Music Appreciation seems like it will be interesting. His Professor is a priest.  He told the class they could call him Father or Brother or Professor.

All in all things went pretty well.  Today he had dialysis, no bleeding, thank goodness.  They decreased his heprin and that seems to have stopped the bleeding problem  He bled for  full hour last week and they decided perhaps his blood was too thin.  Hopefully this will be a permanent fix.  Other than that no real excitement today.  He is napping right now and we will do homework after dinner.

Praying that all have a blessed week.

Please pray for:  School.  Charlie’s tooth (it cracked and the filling is falling out.  He is going to the dentist tomorrow). Kidney.  Finances.  Fundraising. Movie Ministry.

Blessings to all.

Charlie & Sherrie

Here We Go!!

24 Aug

So in the last week or so we have had a lot happen.  Charlie’s foot has FINALLY healed!  He got his new shoes and we have an appointment with the podiatrist to start talking about physical therapy to learn how to walk again.  Charlie starts school again on Monday.  Please pray for a successful semester.  He is a little worried right now but all will go well.

I only have about 7 minutes before I have to get off of the computer here so this is just a short note.  I will be back on early next week to make sure and update everyone on what’s happening here.

Blessings to all.

Sherrie

 

 

Moving Right Along….

14 Aug

Good Morning to all.  Hope each of you are having a great day!  Been a while so let me try and bring everyone up to speed.  Let’s see, the last time I wrote I believe we had just gotten home from the Pacemaker surgery.  Charlie is doing well things seem to be in order.  He did have one mishap yesterday at dialysis when he was walked into a corner of a counter, as a result of that the pacemaker area seems a bit swollen.  He had a visit with a nurse yesterday and they checked the pacemaker.  It is functioning well and the wires are all still attached.  So things are okay in that realm.

On Friday we are supposed to go and get the new shoes.  Hopefully this visit will work out better than the last.  I called and asked them to please check the shoes, to make sure they were not defective, BEFORE we came down to get them.  They were to have done that last Friday and then call us to set up the appointment to go get them.  As usual they didn’t call so I had to call them on Monday.  When I called I asked to make sure the shoes had been checked….low and behold, NO ONE had checked them yet.  They put me on hold and checked the shoes, assured me that they were okay and then they scheduled our appointment for Friday.  This morning I got a call from the Shoe place asking us to call and rescheduled our MISSED APPOINTMENT?????????  I called back and all I could get was a recording saying they couldn’t take the call and to leave a message.  I left a message and they didn’t call back in 30 minutes so I called again.  I spoke with the young lady who left the message and she said she was confused too because she remembered rescheduling the appointment with me but no one had it any where!  Grrrrrr.   Are all orthotic places like this??  The last company we dealt with was just as frustrating, that’s the whole reason we switched.  This one is just as bad.  Guess  I need to really research for a new one for the next time we have to get new shoes for Charlie.  Anyone know a good company?  One that really takes the time to care about the customers?  The last two were EXTREMELY lacking in customer service!!!

So we are also preparing for school for this semester.  August 26th will be the first day for Charlie.  We thought we were only going to have to purchase one book this semester but nope….the English class that he started last semester changed books so there are two.  The books are so outrageously priced.  He has a Music Appreciation class and the text for it (actually it’s 5 CDs) is $190.  Crazy huh??  The English text is $81.  You could go broke just on the textbooks alone!! Sad thing is we now have all of the texts from last semester and they can’t even be bought back.  If anyone knows any good book places please let us know.  Thanks in advance for the info!!!

Well, I think that’s pretty much it for now.  Please pray for the following: Charlie’s health.  Our finances. The shoes.  The new semester. A Kidney.

Thanks for sharing this with friends and family.  The more people that know about Charlie the better.  Eventually we will get the kidney he is looking for.

Blessings to all.

Charlie & Sherrie

 

Where to Begin (Part 2)

23 Jul

Well, we did wait for word from the doctors so that we would know what the next step would be.  We finally heard from the Cardiologist on Tuesday.  I explained (again) what happened.  He listened and then said there were two ways to handle it:  1. we could go to the hospital and do a direct admission OR 2. we could come to the office and see him.  Bet you can’t guess which one Charlie chose!  Yep, we went to the doctor’s office on Wednesday afternoon.  We arrived at 12:30 and we were finally seen about 4.  The doctor came in, we discussed what did and did not happen at the hospital (everyone was under the impression that the electric doctor saw Charlie at the hospital.  He did see him, but he didn’t evaluate or examine him).  They then called a new electrophysiologist who was up the street from the Cardiologist and one of the nurses from the clinic drove us up there.  The doctor there asked that he be put on a 24 hour monitor to see if they could detect any changes.  We got the monitor, then left and went to church.  

The next day was another dialysis day so Charlie wore the monitor as requested for 24 hours.  We took it back at 4pm that afternoon, I also scheduled a doctor’s appointment for him so that we could discuss the results and everything else with this doctor.  Charlie will see him this Thursday.  Hopefully he will have some answers for us.

Hopefully we will be able to resolve all of this and we will hear about Charlie’s shoes before the end of this month.  All I can say is I am glad that Charlie and I both have strong faith, without it I just don’t have any idea how we would be able to make it through all of this junk.  

I know I have said often how much we appreciate your prayers and words of encouragement.  Right now we need both more than ever.  Thank you for sticking around even when the posts have been so sporadic.  I will be trying to get online every other day until we can get internet back at the house.  I come to the apartment business office and do research and hopefully can keep y’all up to date with any new happenings.  

Until next time we pray blessings for each of you and thank you again for your prayers and words of encouragement.

Blessings,

Charlie & Sherrie

 

Where to Begin….(Part One)

23 Jul

Good Afternoon Everyone.  So much has happened I don’t know where to begin.

Let’s start with the shoes.  As I stated in the last post, Charlie was being fitted for his shoes and inserts.  We did go to that appointment and he did get fitted for his shoes and the new molds were done for the inserts.  We should be hearing from them by the end of the month.

After that we called to make the appointment to have the steri-strips removed.  Set that for Wednesday after wound care.  All was well.

Wednesday came and we went to wound care.  After being seen we were waiting for our ride.  After an hours wait Charlie started feeling bad.  He said he had a fullness in his chest and didn’t feel right.  I carry a blood pressure meter and glucometer with me so I put it on him.  It gave a blood pressure reading of 95/67.  The pulse was only 34.  I felt his pulse manually and then his graft and it was extremely slow.  I took him right back in to wound care and asked the nurse if they could check it for me.  She took the pulse via his graft and got 40, then she put the pulse ox meter on him and got 37.  Needless to say I immediately took him to the ER.  They put him on monitors and hooked him up to the defibrillator.  That’s the first time they had ever done that.  The doctors came in and they said that his EKG was abnormal.  They contacted his cardiologist and then they admitted him.  The Cardiologist came in and talked with him and said they were going to do a heart catheterization  on Thursday morning at 8, if it was clear they were going to have him see another doctor about the heart’s electrical system.  He then remembered that Charlie had something similar to this (except it was just low bp and heart was skipping beats) after his open heart surgery in 2011.  He stated that there may be a need for a pacemaker. Shortly after that Charlie’s nephrologist came in and talked with him. He felt that the problem was probably his heart meds, but also said that there was a possibility that he may need a pacemaker.  As we were taken up to Charlie’s room the electrophysiologist followed us.  Once in the room he stood at the end of Charlie’s bed and asked him what happened.  Charlie described everything and the Doctor said it’s your medication,  you don’t need a pacemaker. No tests, didn’t even listen to the heart or anything and he already had the diagnosis made.  Amazing huh?  That was the last we saw or heard from him.  So we stayed the night watching the BP and heart rate.  Charlie got a bad case of shakes that night which blankets didn’t help.  I asked if they could check his dilantin levels and the nurse put in the order.  They gave him his night meds (which included Dilantin) and he slept well.

Thursday morning they did the heart catheterization and all was clear.  So the next step was supposed to be the electrophysiologist, but he never came.   Charlie went and did dialysis and then we anticipated we would go home.  Well, the house doctor came in and said that his dilantin levels were back down to 3.2 which was what they were at 4 weeks ago when he had the seizures.  They put him on IV meds to bring it up and kept him one more night.  No explanation as to why the levels dropped, except dialysis.

Friday afternoon they finally discharged Charlie.  As we waited outside for the ride home he told me his chest was feeling funny again.  I immediately took him into the ER so they could check and make sure we weren’t having a repeat of Wednesday.  They did EKGs (two of them because the original had a slight variation from the one Thursday) and bloodwork.  They couldn’t explain what happened so they let us go home.  At that point we were going home to a reduced amount of blood pressure meds that were called in to our pharmacy.  We would get them on Saturday.

When we arrived home on Friday we found the phone/internet/tv were off.  At this point we just went to bed and would deal with everything on Saturday. On Saturday I called the pharmacy to get the blood pressure meds delivered and was told that the person who called it in had not given a doctors name so they were unable to fill it.  I told them I would contact the cardiologist in the morning and if they wanted him to go back on it I would ask them to call it in. (I guess it was a good thing we didn’t spend the money on it in the first place.)

Saturday was a dialysis day. Charlie did well, he was a little dizzy but it wasn’t anything unusual.   He came home, napped, and we did Bible Study and watched a couple of movies.

Sunday morning we woke up.  Got ready for church and Charlie said he was feeling a little funny but then it passed.  As we went to go out the door he went to the floor, didn’t pass out.  He waited a minute and then said he was fine.  He got up, we went to the car and off to church.  When we got there he got in his wheel chair and all of a sudden felt like he was going to pass out again.  His pressure was a little low so we got him some coffee (so he could have the caffine to help raise it.)  He felt a bit better so we went to Sunday School.  We made it through class and then I took him to the front doors so he could greet people.  Someone else took him in to the sanctuary as I was working in the food pantry.  Next thing I know they are yelling to me that Charlie passed out.  Sure enough, he did, right in the center aisle.  He was out cold for about 5 minutes. They called the ambulance and we were off again to the ER.  Wish they would give frequent flyer miles for hospital visits!

This time they did EKGs again, then more bloodwork.  Nothing again.  The doctor never consulted the cardiologist about anything.   He consulted with an associate of Charlie’s nephrologist who said it was probably circulatory.  They gave him compression stockings and sent him home.

Monday morning I was very frustrated.  I began calling all of the doctors for follow-up appointments.  I started with the cardiologist because I also wanted him to know what had transpired over the weekend.  He was on vacation.  I explained what was going on to the nurse and she said someone would be calling back.  I then called the neurologist/PCP.  They took my number and would page him.  He called back and I explained to him what we had been through.  He then said it sounded like Charlie needs a pacemaker.  He said he would contact the Cardiologist’s office and consult with them. After this I contacted the Electrophysiologist’s office, they had no record of Charlie because the doctor never SAW him.  Later that day I got a call from the cardiologists office and was told that they had contacted the elecrophysiologist’s office and they would be calling me.  The Nephrologist also called and said he had consulted with the on call Cardiologist and he would be calling me.  So now we waited………………

(To Be Continued)

God Sent Us some Angels

29 Jun

This has been an interesting week.  After posting the last entry I received an email from someone who offered to help us with the doctor bill so that Charlie could get in to see the Endocrinologist.  The appointment has been made for Monday.  He will be able to get his thyroid prescription, Insulin prescription and shoe prescriptions written!  This is such a blessing.  It takes a load off of my shoulders.  Once the shoe prescription is written they will come out and do molds of Charlie’s feet.  Then the new inserts and shoes will be ordered.  Hopefully they will be here within a couple of weeks of the appointment.  If they are then Charlie can start wearing them and perhaps will be referred to physical therapy.  It would be so wonderful if we could start the new school year without the wheelchair!  We shall see.

God also sent us another angel who took the time to send out the word about where we are financially right now.  She was wonderful in that she spread the word.  She also has sent me some really good websites that provide help for people who are in situations like we currently are.  I have begun contacting some of the contacts at these sights and hopefully will be able to connect with some of the programs.

There is also another angel who has sent us information on a cream for Charlie’s feet.  Hopefully it will help him.  His feet are very painful and very dry from the diabetes/thyroid and his neuropathy.   This cream will be a blessing.

Another angel sent us a check which we were able to us to get Charlie’s meds for the month.

And one more angel has offered assistance to us too.

God is truly awesome and has blessed us with some wonderful angels.  I can’t tell you how much we appreciate the help and the prayers and the words of encouragement.  We are still in need of things but some of the weight was definitely lifted this week.  May God bless each of you who came forth to help us.  You are indeed a blessing.

The other good news this week is that Charlie’s foot seems to finally be closed.  We have changed the treatment in that I am no longer putting collagen on the wound.  We are just padding it with foam.  We are to see the doctor on Wednesday to make sure it is still intact.  So far so good.  We will go see them right after Charlie’s hernia surgery.  It will be a long day but it is necessary.

I think that is pretty much it for now.  Please keep the following in prayer:  1. Charlie’s surgery on Wednesday.  2. Charlie’s foot.  3. The Endocrinology appointment.  4.  A kidney.  5. Finances.  6. Fundraising.

Blessings to all of you.   Please continue to pray for us and keep the words of encouragement coming.

Charlie & Sherrie

Surgery Next Week

25 Jun

Hi Everyone.  Well, let’s see if I can catch everyone up in this blog.  I have not been well health wise, and we have begun babysitting for our grandchildren a few days a week.  (That part of things has been great!)

So, let’s start with the foot.  We are still trying to heal the wound on the left foot.  It looks great, but the diagnosis is that the shoes are causing the problem.  We owe money to the doctor that handles Charlie’s diabetes and they won’t see us until the bill is being taken care of right now that’s not something we can do.  The new Medicare regulations state that he has to be seen by the Diabetic doctor within the last 6 months.  So, we are searching for some one to see him who can wait until after September to get the 20%  copay.  Until then he will continue to have problem with the wound on his foot as the inserts and shoes he currently has are not wide enough.  It’s all really frustrating.   Currently I am doing daily wound care and then we see the doctor every two weeks.  Please pray that we can find a resolution to this issue so that we can get Charlie back to walking again.  He is very frustrated.  He doesn’t walk much but the little that he is walking is creating pressure and causing a callous to reform where the wound is.

Two week ago we were at wound care and they were fixing to bandage the wound.  The nurse went out to get supplies and as she came back in Charlie started seizing.  He had 2 seizures.  We wound up over at the emergency room (thank goodness the two buildings are next door to each other!).  They did bloodwork, and a CT Scan of the brain.  Charlie has not had a seizure in about 8 years.  He has been on medication for them for quite a while.  On this particular day his dilantin levels (which should be 10 or 11) were 3.2.  No idea how they got that low.  So they upped his meds and he seems to be doing well with them.  No seizures since.  I’ll tell you that this was something that I don’t want to have to deal with again.  We had a tough time getting Charlie to come back.  He was not able to speak for quite a while, and when he did he said he didn’t want to go to the ER.  I told him he had no choice.  He wanted to go to dinner and Bible Study at the church (he was upset that he was missing fried chicken that night).  For some reason he always goes to the ER on Wednesday nights.  Not sure if it’s just because we already have transportation or if it’s just that’s his hospital day preference.  🙂  Either way I think we can stop that before it becomes a tradition!

Tomorrow we go to wound care, but before we do that we have to go to the hospital and do pre-admission paperwork for Charlie.  Next Wednesday he has to have surgery.  He has a hernia just below the sternum.  Apparently when they did his bypass there was a small tear in the tissue that didn’t heal correctly.  He had a bad bout of bronchitis and wound up in the hospital, the coughing from that tore the tissue more and it developed into a hernia.  It has gotten bigger and now causes him pain, so they decided to take it out.  It’s normally just a day surgery done in aan outpatient setting but because of Charlie’s ailments and medical history it will be done at the hospital. That’s next weeks fun.

Finances are still an issue.  We did finally hear from Social Security regarding my hearing date, it is September 19th.  I am a bit nervous, but I will be okay.  We are meeting with my lawyer to discuss what will happen at the hearing on September 5 (I think).  I will then be able to see what Social Security has on me.  Should be interesting since the original file that we got had wrong dates, wrong clinic names, incomplete hospital records….it was a mess.  Charlie and I will both be glad to get this hearing over and are praying that they grant the social security to me.

I also have been having vision problems, turns out I have cataracts in both eyes.  They are bad enough to be causing problems but not bad enough for surgery yet.  The doctor spent a good deal of time explaining that these are normal as we get older.  I can’t even tell you how many times she told me about the things that happen as we get older.  I got the point and she just kept dwelling on it.  Anyway, I am waiting on a voucher for a new pair of glasses.

The grandchildren (Kailey, Sam and Dalton) have been here a bunch over the last couple of weeks.  It’s been fun to watch and listen to them.  They are all so precious.  Charlie loves having them here, we don’t get to see the girls often enough.  Dalton and Sam will both be in kindergarten in the fall so we have been practicing letter sounds and same and different and writing.  It’s fun to watch them learn.  Being a grandparent is so much fun and so rewarding.  God has really blessed us.  We do wish we could see the other 5 grands, but they are too far away.

We are still trying to find fundraisers as we have nothing in the account yet for the kidney surgery.  I pray that we will soon be able to get something together to put into his account for it.  There is no way that we will be able to afford to do it without the help.  I know both of us will rest a little easier once we are able to get this coordinated and started.

Everywhere we go and every one we meet we try to bring up the whole kidney thing.  We have had 3 people who said they were going to be tested but we haven’t heard from the clinic if any of them ever followed through.  If you know of anyone who might be willing to be a donor please give them our information so we can get in touch with them.  Charlie NEEDS a kidney badly and we are searching everywhere for a donor.

Well, I think that catches y’all up.  I am having trouble seeing the screen so I am going to sign off for now.  Please keep the following in prayer:  1. Charlie’s foot.  2. Charlie’s surgery on July 3rd. 3. Our Finances.  4. Fundraising.   5. The Social Security hearing.

Thanks for being so faithful everyone.  Sorry I haven’t posted in so long.  Both of us need your prayers and encouragement badly right now. I will try and be on at least once a day from now on.  Blessings to each of you.  Have a wonderful week.

Charlie & Sherrie

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