Wednesday, July 8, 2009

I Think the Universe Hates Me....

Yesterday was nuts, literally, (and you'll know why in a minute.) Ah, who am I kidding everyday is nuts around here, but yesterday was especially insane it seemed.

It started with the cable guy.

Our Cable and Internet are included in our rent. They aren't the best services, but they're free, so I don't care. I don't complain too much. Well recently the cable company needed to upgrade the boxes, and went around to all of the condos installing them.

They missed us.

So fast forward three weeks, and I finally get someone to come out to switch our boxes. On Twitter I always get tweets from people saying how cute their cable guy is, former marine, dark hair, buff get the picture.

But this is me we are talking about people. I get the scary looking fat guy that has greasy hair and way more body hair than any human should ever have. Never mind the fact that he has absoutley NO idea what he is doing.


He kept hooking up the cables, and couldn't get the sound to work. Everything he tried seemed to fail. He was breaking a sweat while messing with the cables. As I was sitting on the couch Totally tweeting about it. watching him, he reached down and scratched his nuts unit.

I sat there for a second before thinking to myself, "This guy did NOT just scratch himself in MY living room."

My breakfast quickly started rising in the back of my throat. I so wanted to hand him some hand sanitizer, offer him some scalding hot soap and water, something.

After some more messing around with the cables and eventually calling for reinforcements we finally got the cable to work, however all of my HD channels still don't come in. So something isn't hooked up right.

Oh well. I would much rather be without my HD than watch Mr. Scratchy Scratch sitting in my living room, while I sit there and wonder where else those nasty hands have been.

After he left I got out the trusty Clorox wipes and wiped down everything he touched. Then I got out the Lysol and sprayed everything again, for good measure.

Of course my Tweet friends wanted to know why I didn't get a picture. Simple answer is that I really did think about it, but my phone makes this little clicky sound when you take a picture.

What was I supposed to say? "Hey dude I really can't believe you just scratched your nuts in my living room, do you care if I snap your picture? Because my Tweeps are never going to believe this....Oh, and while I'm at it, let me give you this twenty gallon back up container that I have of hand sanitizer."

Welcome to my life people. Welcome to my life.

After the whole Cable Guy incident, I thought things couldn't get any worse.

There I go thinking again. Why don't people remind me how dangerous it is for me to think?

Rhett was playing on my bed, and all the sudden I hear that dreaded gooey gurgling sound, and then Hunter. "Ewwwww gross!!! Mom his G-tube!!"

Rhett jumps off the bed and goes running down the hall gurgling.

I run and grab him, get his emergency gastrostomy kit, as well as his two tubs that we keep on hand and full of medical supplies at all times.

It's like a scene from ER with me ripping open gauze with my teeth to cover his stoma hole, holding him down with one hand, filling up a syringe with the other hand, using my elbow to keep his gauze over his stoma, then filling up the balloon of his mickey button to see if it just fell out, or if it has a hole.

Well of course it has a hole in it.

I open up a box that has a brand new Mickey Button in it, and fill that one up as well to make sure there are no holes in it.

This one has a hole too.

So out comes the ghetto Foley catheter. Thank you God, this one doesn't have a hole in it!! I lube it up with KY Jelly and slide that sucker in. Rhett flips out and crunches up his stomach muscles and pushes really hard. The plug that is in the Foley Catheter pops out, and since you know, I just fed the kid, he has plenty of goo to push out.

The plug wouldn't stay in so I ended up clamping the tube by bending it and taping it to his chest. I know-I have totally awesome Macguyver skills.

All of this is done by myself, with a squirming three year old who, during this time has sprouted 8 arms and legs and become an octopus.....and it was done in under 7 minutes.

There should be an Olympics for special needs moms or something.....

-How fast can you switch out a G-tube?
-How quickly can you put in an NG tube AND get it in the right position?
-Can you hold down a 3 yr old and change a poopy diaper that's filled full without getting it all over the carpet and/or bedspread, all the while trying to keep the dog from licking everything?

I could win some serious gold medals.

This is what the aftermath looks like when you have a g-tube emergency and you are all by yourself.

Fortunately Home Health was able to bring out a new button.

Unfortunately for us, our insurance only covers 1 button every 3 months, and the spare we had was just received last month. We had to order two buttons, one to put in now, and another back up, so we just paid for two buttons out of pocket. And really, at $156.00 a pop, we didn't have the money to pay for it.

There went gas and groceries. Sigh.

All I can say is why Universe, what did I ever do to you?

I am adding a Pay Pal button, mainly because we are going through a super tough time right now financially. Andy's pay checks take home have only been around $150-$300 take home. Our insurance premiums are killing us, but we have to have it.

Car sales aren't the best. We are currently looking for a new job, myself included, but until then I don't know what to do. We have sold everything we own over the last three years, lost our home, depleted any savings and 401k that we once had. We still have to pay rent, utilities, have gas and feed our kids. Our family can only help so much.

When you take into account that any extra money we get usually seems to go towards medical stuff. (Rhett's buttons, Chloee's new glasses, etc...) It becomes super frustrating.

I am also working on doing some raffles, and we have some great products that companies have donated, so look for that in the coming week.

Above all thank you for sticking this out with us, through the good times and bad. We appreciate all the prayers and the friendships that we have found.

God Bless


Queen Mama said...

I am praying for you!

I work in cable, so I know the techs can be ugh, GROSS!

Good luck with everything. I would donate if I could!

Shelly said...

I really don't know how you guys get by (with a family of what 6?) with $150-$300 a week. I currently make about $395 a week and I struggle to get through the week.. and I have no kids yet..

I hope things get better for you guys real soon. You guys defiantly deserve a break for once..

Lund7 said...

Sorry you are going through tough times. You have a right to feel like the world is against you!! I sent a small donation...hope it helps.

Also, I would be happy to donate if you do a raffle or auction from my "Sox That Rock" blog. Let me know.


stephanie said...

I absolutely love you. You're seriously living in the hot seat but can some how write a post that has me laughing, not at your misfortune of course, but that you can write this post with humor.
Keep the laughter going,even if it's fake, trick your mind so you don't loose it.
Always, always in my prayers!

Lily said...

The first part made me laugh so hard and I am totally amazed by your nursing skills. We need to talk about your fundraiser ;-)

Sarah said...

Be sure to contact makers of the mic Key to get you a new button...they should replace the broken one for free.

and if you have to start paying Out of pocket for them...get an AMT one instead. They are way way way better...and they still fit the mickey extensions.

You'll have way less problems with the AMT one...way less breakage and way less granulation problems. from friends BTDT.

They just make them to withstand stomach acid better and have a better balloon design.


Shari said...

Pam--how can they say you don't qualify for anything (food, insurance, etc) on Andy's paycheck amounts? I hear you! I know you are so frustrated and probably mad, too. Please send me your mailing address at

Kevin and Cami said...

Pam, you are awesome! I will be praying that you and Andy will both be able to find good paying jobs (or at least Andy so you can stay home with your kiddies) with good insurance. I hope things start getting better for you soon.


datri said...

Pam, I really admire you for having such a sense of humor through all of this! You rock! You should write a book, surely you have enough blog posts to fill one.

Stephanie said...

Pam - I swear we HAVE to be related. ;) If you would, in your "spare" time, stop by out site and e-mail me your snail mail address. I have several regular G-tubes that you could use in case of an emergency that Christopher can't use anymore. They are the wrong size for him as his stoma has stretched out. Also, we had the same issues with our insurance/G-tube. 2 things, first - get ahold of your doc and have him write a letter of neccessity to your insurance that you need 13 tubes/buttons per year. Have him put in the letter that Rhetts meds are so acidic that they balloons do not hold up as they should and you HAVE to replace his button once per month, and you need to have a spare (13 instead of 12). This usally works. The other thing that I have been telling everybody with buttons and tubes - get ahold of Kimberly-Clark. They have a complaint form and usually replace your buttons if there is a hole in them straight from the package. I would also call your medical supply and demand a replacement for the new on with a hole too - at no charge!


Steph and Christopher

Anonymous said...

I am sorry you are having a hard time, it stinks having no money :( I know that Discover is hiring right now and their insurance is really really good and not that much money monthly...they pay around $11hr. You should check as well, they are always hiring for their different divisions. I also know that OC Tanner might be hiring soon for maintenance if Andy is handy with machinery, keep an eye on their website. You could also try, they are a stay at home call center and they might be hiring right now, you would not have to work outside the home!

Midwest Mommy said...

I think we have the same cable guy!

You are an amazing mom.

Anderson Family said...

Your post made me smile as well - even through the bad times you manage to make things sound so funny. I love the cable guy story - so true! And what a woman for handling the G-tube emergency - I can't believe you were able to do all that on a wiggly three year old. We think of you often!! By the way Carter had to have his bottom sternal wire removed in February because of a staph infection - I'm sorry Rhett will have to go through that too.

Silvia said...

I hope things get better for you very very soon.
You are a wonderful family and you deserve the best.
Con cariƱo.

Anonymous said...

Hi Pam! I'm so sorry things continue to be so hard and frustrating for you all. I do keep you in my prayers though!

On the G-Tube buttons-if the balloon is defective, your home health company should replace them for free. The manufacturer of the button will replace defective buttons to the company, so you should not have to pay extra.

Hope that helps!?
Janel in Denver

Anonymous said...

You could also check out a BARD button. They are repalced once a year, and do not fall out, pull out, etc. AMT has the MINI buttons, and they are just as good as the Mic-Key. But from a cost standpoint, once a year is a better alternative.

Janel in Denver

COOLWHIP said...

Can you see yourself 4 years ago? Probably never imagined that senario? Congrats on being a pro. I watched a little girl during the day that had a stoma, and micky button, I just prayed everyday that thing would stay in.
Our problems consist of keeping Eva from carrying her baby sister around by her neck, and keeping her inside. Or form cutting her own hair, and dealing with the bazillionth staph infection.
Your doing great. And keeping your head above water. I hope your husband finds the job he needs to take care of you, with out the worries.

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

Sorry things are so terribly frustrating...actually there is no word for it is there? In retrospect Mr. Scratchy is a kind of a gross comedy sketch ...just imagine when he goes home..."Hi Honey I'm home!" Too silly. I've never seen a hunky cable guy either. As for medical insurance....geeze...Andrea (my daughter Owen's mom) has been told they'd used up their med equipment and won't pay for more oxygen either and Owen has it 100% of the time at 3/4. I mean really,Keep him alive until July and have him hold his breath til Jan.??? Andi wrote them a letter, they could either pay for it or she'd put him back in the PICU for it and they could pay thousands more.
Seriously, my husband has been in the car business for 30 years and it has never been as bad as now, so collect what pay you can and LOOK, LOOK,LOOK. ANother tip, when Rhett goes in the hospital to tweak
things and has surgeries, the nurses can usually come up with some extras of things to tuck your way. I Pray you get a one mom does this is beyond me. Praying continuously for your little flock.

Heather, Sebi, Janson, and Jack said...

Man, it's been a rough week for us all! I empathize and know that this WILL (By the Grace of God) turn around SOMEHOW! It has to, right? And I totally want to be in the SN Mom Olympics. Sending love and hugs to all y'all!

Aimee said...

Ok... so seriously, have you ever thought about going to nursing school? You would make a fabulous nurse!

and on the finance thing, I totally feel your pain! Kyle is back working but we're still playing catch up. I sure hope that things start going better for you guys really really soon. Let me know if there's anything I can do to help. ((HUGS))

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