Sunday, February 24, 2013

Why All the Fighting?

by Leann

Seems as if 2013 has turned out to be the Year of the Fight for me. And just when I think one fight is over, up pops another skirmish.

First, there is my kitten Marlowe, whom I adopted in mid January. Less than a week later, I was fighting to save his life. He started having seizures, had a high white blood count and it was impossible to tell exactly why. It took several days to eliminate the seizures and only this past week did he finish up his antibiotics. But just when I thought he was on an even keel, he had another seizure. Right now, after an increase in his seizure medicine, he is acting fine and is seizure free. But I am watching him closely. (And I adore him, by the way!)

Since 2010, I have been trying to get my Cats in Trouble series sold to an audio producer. I kept bugging my agent and at times heard nothing but ... "we're trying." That fight, (after a lot more "bugging") might soon be over--I hope! Stay tuned. (Big smile.)

My medication. I have a list of fatigue based illnesses, asthma and a syndrome called Chronic Daily Migraine. Yes. I get a migraine headache every single day. I never know when it will hit, but imitrex takes care of it within 20-30 minutes. So, what's that the fight? My insurance changed prescription providers in September. I have been fighting them ever since because THEY decided (I'm talking to you, Express Scripts/Medco) that I only needed 27 imitrex for 90 days. (You'd have thought I was asking for heroin!) I have serious issues with prescription drug providers overruling doctors about what their patients need, but that's another story. I THOUGHT this fight had ended when I won an appeal (after a lot of work documenting all the medical tests I have endured). But after 3 hours on the phone this week TRYING to talk to a human being at Express Scripts, I discovered that though a committee had approved my medicine, the order just hadn't made it over to the pharmacy to be "processed." The woman said, "Do you want me to do that now?" DUH. YES. Now the website says it is "being processed." FOR THE LAST 2 DAYS.

Then there's the house plan fight. We are planning to build on the lake lot we have owned for 8 years. But my husband and I do things very differently. We have spent most of 2013 fighting over how to get a plan we both can live with finished. Finally, in the last week and a half, we found a new designer who works very fast. I am still holding my breath, however. I think you can tell why after all I have just written on this blog.

I need a spa day. I need peace. I need deep breaths. I need to feel like I don't have to fight. How about you? Ever had a span in your life where you felt like you were at war with the world?

21 comments:

  1. I definitely understand your frustration Leann. I went through a time where it really did feel like EVERYTHING in my life required a fight. It is frustrating, depressing, and very draining. It was hard to keep a positive attitude and I found that I reached a point there I EXPECTED a fight. Then, if by some miracle, I managed to get something that didn't require hassles, I was suspicious - "waiting for the other shoe to drop". Good luck with everything. And, BTW, I REALLY, REALLY hope the Cats in Trouble books make it to audio. Paws crossed!

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  2. Ah, Leann, I wish I could return the favor and give you that spa day and some peace. That's what your Cats in Trouble series does for me: Jillian and her brood bring me a sense of peace. Your writing brings happiness to many people. Thank you.
    I cannot imagine what it must be like to have a migraine every day; that is truly awful. I hope you and Marlowe both feel better soon.

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  3. I wish you all the best Leann, and I hate it when an insurance company wants to dictate to me what medicines to take. That is for me and my doctor to decide, not for them. They just have to pay for it, as I pay lots more for my insurance every month.

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  4. I felt under siege for months because like you I have ha chronic illness, for me it's rheumatoid arthritis and for many months the dog next door barked every day. For hours. I gathered up the strength to ring their bell and speak to the neighbor. Twice. She did not come to the door, but was home and has stopped leaving the poor thing out back for hours on end. A happy ending for me and I hope for you.
    Building a house on a lake? I see a lot of peaceful days in your future.

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  5. Thanks everyone. It is comforting to know I am not alone. One fight I can handle--we're always going to have them--but it seems Shakespeare got it right: "When sorrow come, the come not single spies, but in battalions."

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  6. Sorry to hear your problems with your insurance company.
    As both a physician and a patient currently undergoing chemo (prophylactic, we're positive they got it all) I can tell you that NO insurance company nor pharmacy is allowed to overrule your doctor's orders (dosage, frequency etc.) unless they:
    1) perceive a health issues such as a drug/drug interaction or allergy
    2) clear it with the prescriber

    Unfortunately, an insurance company has the following legal loophole.
    "We didn't say you can't have that medication, we just won't pay for it"

    Fight them & be prepared to make a public stink if necessary, it's truly amazing how fast these bean counters back down when faced with someone who knows their rights & is willing to fight for them.

    Good luck.

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  7. My daughter who was overweight, was prescribed a weight loss medication (can't remember the name of it now). Initially the insurance company rejected it stating they didn't cover weight loss medications, but then changed their mind (can't remember why-apparently was the way their policy was worded). This approval, however, lasted 2 months because we were near the end of the year). When January 1, rolled around, they would no longer cover this medication as they changed the wording so they didn't have to cover it.
    I'm so sorry to hear about your little kitten and the seizure issues. Our dog was 13 1/2 yrs old and started having seizures, just out of the blue. The doctor tried giving him anti seizure meds but they were occurring every 1-2 hrs and we ended up having to put him to sleep. Its a terrible decision to have to make. I hope your kitten does well on his medication. Blessings to all of you.

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  8. Yes, when the first denial came, it had a sentence about how they would fill the prescription if I would pay for it. But I figured once I did that, it was over. So I spent a lot of time documenting all the tests I'd had done and I won the next appeal. In the meantime, I had to buy enough medicine to get me through these months of waiting--but NOT from Express Scripts. One thing I wrote in my appeal letter was "I reserve the right to publicize the actions of Express Scripts in all the social media sites I subscribe to." So, that's what I am doing. :-) I hope your remission is completely successful! Good luck and thanks for stopping by!

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  9. so sorry about your dog, Dianne. It is so hard. Marlowe is having a great day today. I take each one as a little gift. I hate what the online pharmacies are doing to people in need. I cannot imagine when I am very elderly being able to go through all the red tape and phone calls that I just endured to get a necessary medicine prescribed. Greed is driving this and that makes me see red!

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  10. A chronic illness is debilitating, and it qualifies as a disability. That means that you are covered under the ADA - Americans with Disabilities Act... see where I am going with this is you check out the ADA and see if there is any possibility of suggesting to them that their holding you hostage in this manner is a violation of your civil rights; threaten them... and maybe they'll speed up...
    GOOD LUCK!

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  11. What a way to kick off the year. Glad things are turning around. As always you are in my prayers.

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  12. I'm sorry to hear that Marlowe is still struggling so, Leann. I was hoping that was going to be a thing of the past. Hopefully, though, he can continue to be seizure free, even if he has to stay on the medications. He's such a sweetheart! Bless you for trying so hard for him. And I will keep quiet about health insurance companies--except to say I hate, despise, loathe, detest, and abhor them.

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  13. Thanks lavender and dollycas! I know in my heart that I have a disability, but it's hard to put that label on yourself after trying to win the constant struggle with fatigue and pain. But perhaps you are right, lavender! I know a few hotels where I have stayed have an ADA liaison so I can book a room without perfume and fragrances in the linens and on the carpet. I was never so grateful when I realized the hospitality industry actually GETS that not everyone is the same! :-)

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  14. Thanks Carol. Each day with Marlowe is a blessing. And I'm sure with you on the health insurance thing.

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  15. Im sorry to hear about your little kittens health, and the other problems that you are having..
    you definitly need a spa day!! =)

    Sometimes..I struggle with frustrations of being a Single Mom with a child with a disability ( but I wouldnt trade my life for a minute!! )

    Im sending prayers.

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  16. Thanks Melissa! It's always better after I just write it all down! It helps me see why I am so tired!! :-)

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  17. I understand that writing is a release, and so is reading. I hope you can resolve our issues soon. Whe we were designing our dream log home we had lots of disagreements. But inthe end our compromises resulted in a home we both were comfortable living in.

    I also want to take this opportunity to thank you and all the Cozy Chicks for my surprise in the mailbox! It sure put a big smile on my face. Whomever lives in N Greece, NY, that is near where I grew up. Small world...Rita

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  18. I want to thank you for your comment about fragrance free rooms. I never thought about that even though I can't stand strong odors. I had a problem with a principal when I taught because I could not stay long in a building with paint fumes. (I came in for parent's night). I still have a problem when someone wears a lot of fragrance. It is an allergy that others do not respect.

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  19. Leann, sometimes it seems life sucks. It is a fact! But, then when I think about it, Life is OK it is some people you run into who suck. Now for the baby, has the vet checked his B-12 level? The reason I ask, we had a Cocker Spaniel baby who had seizures, not as frequently as Marlow, but still seizures. It was a low B-12 level and giving her a tablet every day stopped the seizures. Probably not the same, but worth a thought.

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  20. Thanks Annette! I think maybe I'll just crush a little B 12 (I have plenty) into his food. Plus, I notice he has done better since I added the probiotics. He had such a rough start, I think supplementing him is a good idea. I have some whole food feline multi-vitamins from Standard Process and I'll crush those up, too. The little guy eats like a horse and won't turn his nose up! As for life throwing curve balls, I have to say, I am handling these latest "battles" much better than in the past. I guess 5 years of therapy is paying off! :-)

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  21. I am so sorry for all the trouble you're having, Leann. You are an amazingly strong woman. I don't know how you manage to do so much.

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