Category Archives: Grown-up Stuff

Exciting news! (for grown ups maybe)

>>We paid off our truck! We had been throwing extra money at it when we could and finally with our tax refund and some extra commissions from the hubby we were able to make it happen. We are really hoping that will be the last of car payments forever. Now we are using that money we were spending on payments to save for the next vehicle. Meh. It was actually more exciting in the days leading up to it than after. It very quickly lost it’s luster, but I’m sure I’ll be giddy when it comes time for what would have been the next payment, and instead of sending it to the bank, we’re just gonna tuck it away in its own little savings account.

>>We updated our wills AND got them signed and notarized! I had them printed off a couple weeks ago and they just needed the notarized signatures, so we stopped at the credit union on our way out of town last Friday. It feels good to have that done.

>>After 2 years of using and loving their products, I signed up to be an ItWorks! Distributor. You might hear more about this from me as I’m learning more about the products and the company. I’m not a natural salesperson and this is way out of my comfort zone, but
I’m really excited about it in a timid sort of way.

>>In two days, I will have been married for 20 whole years. Not to mention I am still crazy in love with my husband. We took a trip over the weekend and had such a great time that I can’t wait to tell you all about it. Very soon. Stay tuned!

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April Update

I am running a 5k next week. I haven’t been training for it. Occasionally I’ll get a run in, and I do fine. So I think I’ll do fine on race day. I won’t be breaking any records, but I’m confident I’ll finish on my feet. Which I guess is the most important thing to me. Just keep swimming.

This morning when my son went to pack his lunch, he found a gang of tiny ants in his lunch box. Eww. He freaked out, rightfully so I suppose, but he went a little overboard if you ask me. I mean, they weren’t biting ants, or even the flying kind. But still, what a mess. The kids managed to get out the door to the bus on time, while I did what I could to clean up before my ride came (dermatologist appointment today), but I’m sure there are still creepy crawlies hanging around here and there. I put his backpack in the garage because they were there too. This is per my son of course, because my vision, you know? They are too small for me to see, unless I know where to look. It didn’t help that his backpack is black, so the sneaky ants are camouflaged. 

Ugh. Then my ride came 15 minutes early, and I was still in my pajamas. But the driver was plenty patient, and everything was fine. The day could only go up from there, right?

And it did! The dermatologist seemed to know exactly what is going on with my face, and it turns out it’s not my fault! It broke out again when I was on the prednisonea couple months ago, and just won’t clear up. He said the prednisone was likely just a trigger for the underlying cause, which he believes to be rosacea. Stress is also a trigger, so I think I need less stress in my life. Anyone wanna take my kids for awhile? Or the dog? Or both? Anyway, the doctor called in a script for a cream, and I’ll go back in a few weeks to see if it’s helping. And he was a super nice doctor and didn’t make me feel crazy or neurotic, so I’m feeling better now. Amazing what a difference a kind interaction can do for your mood.

Now I have the whole day ahead of me, and with a positive outlook to boot. I’m thinking a nice cup of coffee and a good book are in my future today…

The Social Security Office

I had to visit the Social Security office today. Here’s the long version (because that’s the only way, really):

I’ve been receiving Social Security Disability Income for a full two years now. After you’ve received benefits for two years, they automatically enroll you in Medicare. I have health insurance through my husband’s employer, so I wasn’t real interested in Medicare, but if it’s free, I guess I can’t complain. What I learned, however, is that Medicare comes in different forms, and the two I was enrolled in were Part A (hospital insurance) and Part B (medical insurance). Now Part A is free, but Part B is not.

Now Part B could be advantageous, if it covered what my current health insurance doesn’t, and saved me more than I would be paying for the premium. But I never looked into it, because I learned that my participation in Part B would deem me ineligible for another program I’m part of. I currently receive assistance paying for my monthly Tysabri infusions (for MS, $20,000 before insurance PER infusion), and if I didn’t receive that assistance I would be stuck with about a $5,000 deductible. (I did warn you this was the long version.)

So basically, I could pay $120 per month for Part B Medicare and possibly $0 deductibles OR I could pay $0 premium and definitely $0 deductible. Now I was a straight A student, and I went to college. I chose the latter.

Simple, right? Not so. In March, when they sent me my Medicare welcome packet, I returned the card stating I was opting out of Part B. Then June came, and with it a welcome letter – and a statement of my insurance premium for PART B. I called to say W-T-F and they told me that was just a standard letter and that I would receive another one telling me it had been cancelled. Another month went by and my benefits came, less the $120 for Part B premium. I was not so happy, and I called again. They acted like they knew nothing about my opting out, and told me I needed to sign a form requesting cancellation, and that they would mail it to me.

At this point I didn’t believe a word they said, but I gave it a week to see if the form showed up. It did not. I called once again, but this time made the call to the local office, in case I needed to make an appointment. They said an appointment was not needed, but that I should come down and they would get it all straightened out. They made it sound so easy but I was still doubtful. I made arrangements (thanks Grandpa!) to get to the office today and guess what? It really was easy. The hardest part, literally, was signing myself in at the kiosk to get in line, when they asked me this question:

Are you….
1) Blind/low vision
2) Deaf/hard of hearing
3) (to be honest, I really don’t remember what was after those first two, but I was looking for an “all of the above” option)

I waited for about an hour, which is what they warned me it would be, and when they called my number I had to ask a few of the people waiting where #10 was, but they were all happy to direct the obvious newbie to her station, and I found it just fine. The gentleman was exactly that, a gentleman, and immediately put me at ease. He reassured me that cancelling was a simple process, and showed me where to sign, and before I even had a chance to ask, he was telling me they would be refunding me the two months of premium I had already paid, and the check will be on its way within the week!

I was so pleasantly surprised at how smoothly it went and I felt pretty silly for having been such a nervous wreck. No worries though, it’s done now and I can move on with the rest of my week. Is it really only Monday still?

 

 

New Things

Today may as well be recorded in the history books. Yes, it’s just your regular old Wednesday, but it was a day of new things for me!

1) A new pair of glasses. I’m so excited about these glasses. I had my eyes checked a couple weeks ago, and ordered new glasses then. They came in the day of my CI surgery, so I had to wait until the swelling went down before I picked them up. There are a few reasons I’m excited about these glasses. The biggest reason is that though they don’t correct the clouds, or you could call them blind spots, in my line of vision, they do make everything I DO see much clearer. This makes life a lot less frustrating for me. When you can only see a portion of what you are looking at, you would at least like that to not be so fuzzy. And the other reason I love these new glasses is because the arms are covered in paisley. I HEART paisley. I have a paisley key chain, paisley purses, paisley shirts… I even have paisley tattooed onto my upper arm. Oh, and I can’t forget about the paisley up in the corner of my blog, which happens to be the image identical to the stickers on my CI.

2) For the first time ever, I grilled. We purchased brats for dinner, and Mike showed me how to use the grill so I could make the food while he mowed the lawn. In all my years on earth, I have never had the desire to use the grill. And so, I never learned how. As it turns out, it’s ridiculous easy. And goes very well with a cold beer, I might add.

3) I wrote yesterday about becoming a faithful flosser. A friend commented on my blog post via Facebook (so the discussion won’t show here) and she was describing in somewhat graphic detail why she uses mouthwash. I’ll just say it basically involved ingesting bacteria, which is enough to motivate me to try it. Ew. So, today we bought a bottle of mouthwash and tonight I tried it. Dang, that stuff stings! They say to swish for 30 seconds but I don’t think I made it to 15 before I had to spit it out. Still, that’s better than none. It’s still one step closer to being a responsible adult, so I’m not beating myself up about the timing. I’m just proud I made that step.

So that’s enough grown-up activities for the day. Tomorrow I think I’ll stay in my pajamas and eat ice cream for breakfast!