We’re BACK!

Yup, we are back in CO! We are now living on the Air Force Academy in a nice big house in a lovely area. It takes Ken a long time to get to work, and eventually that may be a problem, but for right now? It’s amazing. AND it’s even safer than living on Carson, because security is more strict here. You can’t get to our area of the base unless you have a military ID or are escorted by someone who is. That will make parties difficult, but I don’t feel like I need to be armed to walk the dog around my neighborhood anymore.

Here is a cut, because the rest is me listing a super long complaint about the healthcare I received at Fort Bliss. But at the end of that is more interesting stuff, kind of. If you like hearing about my future plans for the house and dance and school and things.

Speaking of that (walking)- I am having a biopsy done in a couple of weeks. Remember the Dirty Girl incident? I didn’t really go into it then but the fracture they found was caused by a tumor on my talus. It’s destroyed about 25% of that bone and they are going to drill into the rest of it to biopsy it and see what it is. One thing they mentioned was a giant-cell tumor. You can read about it at the link there.  I guess that’s what I hope it is, because I don’t know what other options I have that aren’t going to kill me. “Just nothing” isn’t really a likely thing to hope for because well, tumors don’t just randomly happen, they always have a cause. I’ve pretty much spent the nights since I got the appointment wondering how terrible it would be to die on the table. This is because amusingly, I also have borderline high blood pressure and my new (amazing) doctor decided to take it seriously and I am going to have to wear a 24-hour blood pressure monitor to see what’s going on, like do I just have white coat syndrome every time or what? Because it’s been like that for a long time. She’s ALSO the first doctor to take the protein and blood in my urine seriously (also a chronic thing for years now). I really, really like this doctor.

Speaking of doctors, I’m going to rant a little bit about the care I received (or didn’t?) from William Beaumont Army Medical Center, or WBAMC for short. I went in there that day, like I wrote about. First nobody really talked to me when they came into the room, they just looked at my stuff and poked at my foot and left, or had conversations about my foot like I wasn’t there, or just started talking to me without introducing themselves. The PA at least introduced herself and told me why they were holding me (the lesion, except they didn’t know that’s what it was at the time), and said that someone from ortho would be in to tell me more. Some lady came in and put a hard splint on my foot and when Ken said that Ortho was going to come in and look at it, she said “I *am* ortho,” like he was an idiot, or had insulted her somehow. She then didn’t really answer any of my questions about the lesion and finally admitted that she hadn’t seen my CT scan, so couldn’t answer them. Ken later saw her manning the front desk because she wasn’t actually Ortho, she was a freaking nurse.   That’s  WTF#1.

WTF#2 lasted from the next day to about a week and a half later. I was told to call back in 24 hours and to ask to speak to Ortho to make an appointment, and to find out about the lesion. Only nobody knew wtf I was talking about, and I apparently didn’t have any sort of follow-up appointment or anything. Ken finally ended up driving me to their office and making them write a message for the doctor to make me an appointment. They called while we were on a trip and made me an appointment over the phone; this was about 2 weeks after the injury. When I went for the appointment, the person who had seen me and told me to call him 24 hours later? Turns out he was a resident and didn’t know that he had to update my appointment in the SYSTEM and not just leave a note in the “notes” section of the my (digital) file. The intake person yelled at him about that in front of us; she said that she didn’t have time to look over every file he turned in to see if he had made an *appointment* in the notes section, and she’s right. Hopefully he learned.  I at least got a full-body and ankle-specific bone scan out of the deal.

WTF# is the actual Ortho dr himself (not the resident). He did finally sit me down and tell me what was wrong, and explain exactly what was borked up. He said my talus looks like someone took a bite out of it (imagine an apple), and that it weakened the neck of the talus where an important blood supply is. If the blood supply is compromised by a fracture, it could kill the entire bone, because it doesn’t heal very well because the blood supply isn’t very good there. Dead talus=VERY BAD. So he wanted to do corrective surgery, yay! Unfortunately he needed to find out if this is cancer first. So he told me I had 2 choices: San Antonio (10 hours away) or Albuquerque (5 hours away). For a biopsy. This is the month before Ken was supposed to leave, and also the month before finals. We chose ABQ because it was closer, but then I couldn’t get an appointment with them until May 7. Ken would be in CO by then, and I’d be alone, the week before finals, trying to drive 5 hours in a stick shift vehicle, and oh by the way I would have had a hole drilled into my ankle bone, be on crutches, and had to finish cleaning my house for the move-out inspection. I voted NO. Then the dr randomly called and made me an appointment for May 1, where he was kind of a dick about me not going to the specialist in ABQ and said that oh well, guess you’ll have to do in CO then. He also specifically recommended *against* doing physical therapy to get my ankle back to normal. He pretty much washed his hands of me when he found out I hadn’t seen the specialist, even though had I *kept* the appointment, it still wouldn’t have occurred yet (this was May 1, and the specialist’s appt was May 7, remember?).

 

SO! FFW to this place. I called BEFORE I got here and made a doctor appointment. That’s obviously an improvement over chasing after doctors at WBAMC for a month and a half.  In that appointment, my awesome new doctor (Dr. H) not only gave me a referral, she also ordered a bunch of labs (blood and urine) to see if it was the same as the day of the injury, and threw in thyroid and cholesterol stuff just for gp. Then she told me how to access my labs online! She was amazingly helpful and very informative. She let me know how to get in touch with her if I needed to, and I have since c0ntacted her using those methods so I know they work.  She says I’m vitamin D deficient but since I rarely left the house while living in El Paso, I’m not surprised. I bet that just in the time I’ve spent outside since being here, I’m back to normal, but I will take the vitamins she prescribed until she says otherwise. Which reminds me, I need to go pick them up. Oops.

The specialists that I saw this past Friday said that they are really appreciative of all the imaging that Dr. O from WBAMC did. They also found *another* lesion, so I have two, not just one. They also think that it’s ridiculous and stupid that he specifically told me not to do physical therapy, because I still have all this swelling and pain from the torn ligaments and tendons that were damaged during the sprain. I wish I had a gif of the ortho’s face when she told the oncologist that I was *told* not to go to pt. It was great, and I felt super vindicated.  The biopsy is on the 18th. I have been wondering about dying on the table because it’s general anesthesia, and what if something happens because of my weird blood pressure? I decided that I was actually OK with it, other than not getting to do more stuff, because at least I wouldn’t wake up, I’d just die and it wouldn’t hurt. There are worse ways to go.  I would just worry that Ken couldn’t care for the animals like I want them cared for. And I would like to see my nieces again.

 

SO. Once we find out what’s up with my ankle, I imagine I will be scheduled for reconstructive surgery. I’m ready! I have lots of plans! I think that I may want to try to get certified in Unmata-style ITS. I may also be biting off wayyyy more than I can chew. We will see. I know I can’t wait to get back to ATS again. I really miss dance people.  I also want to get back into shape. I know everyone says that. I know I have said it a lot. I’m serious now though; I don’t want to be a fat chick in CO, it sucks! And there is SO MUCH to do here! I’m going to get stronger and more fit and goddammit, I’m going to finish a damned Dirty Girl! I may or may not avoid the big pink triangle though. ;)

I also plan on helping my best friend get her house ready to sell. That should be fun for me, I love power tools and building stuff. I already designed an indoor/outdoor cat run for her rowdy little thing that she adopted.  I may be headed over there tomorrow to help her fix the screens so her cat can’t push them out and escape.

I want to help Maya grow her restaurant. I talked to the people at Kitchen Nightmares but they said that it just wouldn’t work out. They wanted someone that would fight with Chef Ramsay and Maya just isn’t it. I am hoping the guy we talked to, JP (although Maya decided to call him by his name and not his initials) somehow manages to get them to do “a very special Kitchen Nightmares” or something where he just does some humanitarian stuff instead of losing his shit and having to eat garbage and vomit in the closest trash can.  I am going to work hard on getting her in a bigger place if I can.

Operation Credit Repair is going well. Slowly but surely the credit cards are being paid off. We are going back to NC to visit my family and one of Ken’s friends in July. I am hoping we can get to the beach for one day too, because it’s just been too long since I’ve seen the ocean.  When we get back I imagine I will have my surgery scheduled, and Ken will start getting ready to go to NTC in California a few months after.

We are back to doing Bountiful Baskets again, so I hope to be cooking and thinking up new fun (and healthy!) recipes to post.

I am just so glad to be back.

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