Feelin’ Alright…

Thursday was a pretty important day.

My day started with an appointment with my optometrist, and you may remember a month ago when I posted about my original eye exam. The doctor said I had pressure building in my right eye, and I needed to come back for another exam. The doctor said the pressure may lead to glaucoma, and I have been freaking out about it ever since.

Anyway, I arrived at the optometrist, they put me through a few tests, dropped some drops into my eyes, took photos of the inside of the eyes, and checked the pressure of the right eye. The pressure number was 22 during the first exam, and Thursday’s number was 20, which was good news. The cornea still looks okay, and while the optometrist will monitor the pressure, it looks like I’ll be okay for the time being…

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What The Hell Is Going On?

Okay, I realize I have been beating my shoulder injury to death – maybe that’s why it still hurts – but yesterday, the issue with my soon-to-be-ex-surgeon got a little weird. Since I caught the Chinese Wuhan Virus, I have been jogging or cycling every single day. Because my knees are terrible, I have been biking ten miles a day.

When I am cycling, I usually have one ear bud in to listen to music, podcasts, whatever. I was about six miles in when the phone rang. I looked at the phone and noticed it was the office of my shoulder surgeon. I ignored the call.

For those of you who don’t remember, on March 8th, the surgeon promised he would give me a status update in one week (March 15th). I waited patiently, not wanting to be a bother, then Covid kicked in. Three weeks at home, and not one return call from the surgeon’s office. When I saw my primary, I told him I would find a new surgeon.

The surgery scheduler left a voice mail, which I ignored until I got home, and said she wanted to schedule me for an appointment.

ARE. YOU. F**KING. KIDDING. ME?

I considering calling back, but I knew deep down I would have throttled her over the phone. Instead, I fought fire with fire and ignored the call. It took them nearly three months to call me, there was no status update, and no apology. But this chick wanted me to give them more money for another useless appointment? Get bent!

Ironically, the physical therapist called moments after the surgeon’s office left the voice mail. I begin PT on Thursday, and when the shoulder gets a little stronger, I can look for another surgeon. I’ll probably wait until the fall, because summer vacations are almost here, and the division will have less detectives than normal.

Head And Shoulders Above The Rest

Well, it’s been two weeks since my despicable insurance company canceled my shoulder surgery, but yesterday I finally received some fairly good news.

The surgeon’s assistant – a very nice woman named April – called yesterday and updated me on the surgery front. My surgeon has been battling with the insurance company since February 19th, the day they canceled the procedure with little warning.

The first thing April said was, “I’m sorry. I cannot imagine how you’re feeling right now.” April was in the office for both my previous appointments, and the pain was obvious. I told her the Advil doesn’t work, and the Tylenol is just hit and miss, but I don’t have a choice but to suck it up…

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This Would Have Been D-Day

So, this has been one hell of a week. My Aunt Jeanie passed away Wednesday, yesterday was six months since my mother died, and today was the date when I was supposed to go in for shoulder surgery.

Obviously, that still isn’t on the agenda.

To be perfectly frank, I’m starting to care less and less. The insurance company is being a-holes, and at this point, I figure the bicep will eventually detach, and I’ll just go to the hospital to get it repaired. I honestly don’t know how our medical benefits turned to shite in just a few years, but it is noticeably worse than it was even last year.

I’ve been told it could be weeks – or months – until I am approved for the surgery, and to be honest, I don’t even care anymore. When it happens, it happens, and I’m downing aspirin and drinking beer before bed to stave off the pain.

When I am closer to retirement, the city allows you to purchase a few years of insurance by using your accumulated sick and vacation time. At this point, I don’t see why I would even bother. What used to be a great plan has gone to crap, and medical benefits were the only good part of this job. No longer.

Canceled

So yesterday I was stuck in classroom training, learning about legal updates and human trafficking. You know, upbeat stuff. Our phones have to be switched to silent during the classes, and when I got home, I noticed I had a missed call. It was from the orthopedist’s office, so I immediately called back, hoping everything was a go on the surgery front.

Nope.

The scheduler called me – and apparently six other patients – to let me know my surgery was canceled.

The scheduler – Cathy, a very nice woman – said my insurance provider first stated the insurance wouldn’t cover the surgery (which is ridiculous) then added the surgeon was not in their medical group (which is a lie). The insurance company approved my surgery Wednesday, then decided to revoke is Friday. This after I passed the surgery clearance and was ready to get the Covid swab. I guess I should be thankful they told me eleven days out and not the night before…

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I’ve Got A Hot Date!

Well, it took twelve days, but I have finally been scheduled for my shoulder surgery. The scheduler called yesterday afternoon, and after apologizing profusely for the wait, she gave me all my information.

Apparently, the douche canoes at Blue Cross Personal Choice were dragging their feet on approving the surgery. Literally the only good benefit of being law enforcement in this town is the medical benefits, and lately even the health insurance has been going south.

The scheduler, a very nice woman, by the way, asked, “So, do you want to do the surgery last week?” I replied, “It hurts more every day, but I see your point.” I have to see my primary doctor for a surgery clearance – bloodwork, EKG, etc. – then a Covid test. If both come back okay, I’ll be ready to go.

The surgery is scheduled for Friday, March 5th, and barring any issues, I’ll be home the same day.

As for the blog, I have no idea how I’m going to proceed. If I can type with one hand without too much discomfort, I’ll put up three posts a day. If I can’t, I’ll figure something out. My primary concern is getting through the operation and going gangbusters in therapy.

I’ll get some pre-written posts up the weekend of March 5th in case I’m too tired, woozy, disabled, etc.

In the meantime, it’ll be business as usual here.

True Detective Stories

So yesterday began my second week of nightwork. Nightwork is a two-sided sword; it’s great to sleep late, but it’s also the busiest time of the day. When I walk through the door the stress begins, so I usually don’t want to be bothered until I’m settled in and ready to enter the day’s jobs.

The sergeant walks in, and after a few minutes of prep, he starts giving people dates for our yearly classroom training. All four classes need to be finished by November, but my division wants the classes done as soon as possible. (They sent a guy to the pistol range in a snowstorm last week.)

So the sergeant is giving out dates for class training, and he turns to me. “Wyatt, I’m scheduling you for CPR on February 25th.”

Eh… what?

I assume the sergeant either hates me or has the onset of dementia. I politely reply, “Do you think that’s a good idea?” The sergeant looks at me, puzzled. Finally, I say, “Do you think it’ a good idea to send me to CPR with a torn bicep and possible rotator cuff injury.” I mean, the compressions alone would probable be unbearable.

The sergeant stops, and starts with, “I mean, you could probably do it…” A moment later, the lieutenant walks up after hearing the conversation and says, “Um no, we’re not doing that. If he wants to take regular classroom training, do that, but his surgery is supposed to be at the end of February.”

Common sense pravails.

P.S. – It’s been a week and a half since the appointment with the surgeon, and I still haven’t received a date for the surgery. I called on Wednesday and left a voicemail with the surgery scheduler, and she has not gotten back to me. So this is going to be awesome, especially when they call and say “It’s tomorrow,” and I tell them I didn’t get a Covid test and didn’t get the surgery clearance. It shouldn’t be this difficult.

Halfway There

So I had an appointment with the orthopedist Friday, but yesterday while sitting in work, the office called and said they could fit me in. I jumped at the chance.

When I arrived the nurse asked how I was feeling and I was blunt. “The first two weeks were great with the cortisone shot, but this week it feels like I’m being stabbed in the shoulder every five minutes.”

“Really?”

“Yes. It feels like one of my kids grabbed my hand and started pulling downward. It’s not ideal.”

The surgeon came in and reread the MRI. A moment later, he asked if I wanted to do physical therapy. I replied, “I was expecting surgery, because I thought you said therapy wouldn’t work.” He asked what I wanted to do and I said, “Surgery.”

The surgeon agreed, so I’m looking at surgery at the end of this month or the first week of March. They have to find a slot in the doctor’s surgery schedule, and will contact me with the date. In the meantime, I need to get a surgery clearance from my primary doctor and need to take a Chinese Wuhan Virus test – which I’m dreading.

The doc is ordering my post-op medications – Percocet for the win – and will set up my physical therapy. He stressed the PT is important, and I reassured him with “I fractured a bone in my foot and I had a severe contusion on my knee. I went to therapy every day, so no worries.”

Surgery should be fine, but the doc said he may have to “clean up” a few things near the shoulder. As long as he doesn’t find anything crazy, I’m looking at a four to six-week recovery.

The Cold Shoulder

DISREGARD. THEY CANCELED AGAIN BECAUSE OF THE SNOW. I NOW GO FRIDAY. MAYBE.

Today is (supposed to be) the follow-up appointment for my shoulder, three weeks after the surgeon decided he needs to go in there and fix everything.

The surgeon had to cancel the Monday appointment because of the snowstorm and asked if I could come in today. I obviously said yes because the shoulder hurts more often than not. I seriously need to see the surgeon soon because I’m hoping he’ll give me a date for the operation. I imagine the office will be open, but if they reschedule again, I will be very displeased. I can’t even help shovel because it’ll just make the shoulder worse.

I welcome this day because the pain has become progressively worse. (Saturday at work was unbearable.) I think the cortisone shot did help, but the throbbing pain is continuing. I’ll let you know how things turn out, but if I’m scarce for a while, its because the appointment took longer than expected.

Shouldering The Burden

By now most of you know I talk about everything and anything here, and much of it revolves around personal matters. Such is the case today, since 1. I have literally no ideas for posts, and 2. I’m looking for advice from you good people.

A few months ago, my left shoulder started bugging me. For years I would throw a football, baseball, or Frisbee to the kids, and my shoulder would hurt immediately. It’s like I would throw my shoulder out at the first toss. After a while the pain would subside, and I’d go on with my life.

When the gyms were open – thank you for nothing, Herr Wolf – I would experience some pain while shoulder presses. So, I’d either stop or adjust my body so the shoulder wasn’t a problem. I didn’t want to go to my primary doctor during the Chinese Wuhan Virus, because I figured they’d poo-poo it because of the “pandemic.”

Now the shoulder is worse. Shock, right?

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