Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Living with MS

In 1991, at the age of 31 I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. At the time I suffered temporary paralysis and spent several weeks hospitalized. Since then I have had 5 major surgeries, all due to complications with this disease.

For the past 14 years I have been on several different drugs, most recently Interferon Beta 1a, which in 1999 I stopped taking and now have an injection once a year or so of a new drug, similar to the interferon. Most of the time I live my life day to day with little or no symptoms of the MS. But with the type of MS that I have; relapsing-remitting MS , my symptoms can come and go; be minor or can be a major problem. So far I have been blessed and have not had much problems until recently.

Over the last several months I have seen an increase of severe leg pain and cramping, increase of Acid Reflux (which can also be caused by MS), and blurred vision. Over the last few days the pain in my legs has been severe. Now I have a new symptom that I have not had before. A sharp electrical type shock sensation with buzzing while moving my head, which is called L'Hermittes. Most of my symptoms I just pass off as getting older. But this one is quite aggravating. I certain way I move my head and ZAP! I wonder if the Bionic Man had those types of sensations? After placing a call in to my doctor, at the Mayo Clinic, he assured me that these symptoms would dissipate and that no major damage was being done to my spinal cord or brain. Easy for him to say, he's not the one experiencing a cow prod going through his head.

I say all of this not to complain, or whine, but to express myself. I know that DJ gets tired of hearing me say that my legs hurt and no one else seems to understand this disease, mainly because they can not see it with their eye, until the disease has ravaged the body. For years doctors thought I was a hypochondriac, until a gifted Doctor suggested I be tested for MS.

So from time to time, if I fail to post, or I get on here and whine, it's just for me to express myself, while dealing with what I refer to as "my disease" I'm grateful that I have had little or no problems with this disease over the years and I am sure that this current barrage of symptoms will pass as well.

For those of you interested in MS or ways to help fight the disease there are many web sites and organizations working to find a cure. One that I have recently found is through Clay Walker, the country artist, Website. Clay who also suffers from the disease is working to raise money to help find a cure. Check out his website here to learn more.

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Geeks & Jocks

For over the past 24 hours, every news station, radio station and conversation around the water coolers in Cincinnati has been about the "removal" of Bob Huggins as the Head Coach of the University of Cincinnati Basketball team. Even in Miami, Florida, this made the news.

Needless to say I'm am not, nor ever have been a big sports enthusiast. I've been to a few Reds games, one Bengals game and I have never been to a college sports game. It may have to do with the fact that in High School we had a very "important" basketball team. As I worked diligently to maintain my grades, the "jocks" on the basketball team were able to float through their classes, maintaining the same grade as I, and many times weren't even in class. A double standard that still exists in that High School to this day.

Jump ahead 25 years and now the major news story of the day in Cincinnati is the ouster of the head coach. Granted, Bob Huggins has done a lot for the school and the city. Before his tenure, UC Basketball was nowhere on the map. They are now a National name. But just last year he was arrested for a DUI twice! What kind of role model is that? The bottom line for me, is he left UC with 3 million plus. The average salary for a tenured professor at UC is only $80,000 a year. A head coach, who's graduation rate for his players is only about 45% leaves or is ousted and gets 3 million plus and National Headlines. Yet, a professor who educates our next generation of doctors, lawyers, engineers, and possible new governors and senators only makes about $72,000 to $80,000. But when they resign, retire or are let go, does that make the news?

It's sad to think that entertainment is more important than quality education. It's not only in Cincinnati, but across the nation. This was the case in 1978, and will continue to be the case 25 years from now. Entertainers, sports stars and the like will continue to make the money, while those of us that work every day just to get by will continue to live as we have for years. Thank goodness for the few geeks like Bill Gates and those like him that made it based on their intellect. There is a chance for some of us.

To Bob Huggins, I say goodbye to an era and enjoy your 3 million. To Pres. Nancy Zimpher of UC, who is academically minded and who doesn't like Huggins' history or philosophy...I say hats off.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

The New Christian Agenda?

I spent the first 34 years of my life in the church. I worked, prayed, played and sang for God and worshipped His Son, Jesus Christ. I still have a very strong belief and relationship with God. No, I do not attend church, these days as I feel it has become run by men and women and their ideas, loosing the real teachings of Jesus, but that is an opinion for another blog entry.

When I logged onto AOL this morning I was appalled at the headlines.
PREACHER WANTS LEADER KILLED. See who is on Pat Robertson's Hit List.

When I attended Church and also attended Bible School, I was taught to love one another as Christ loved his church. Since when does being a Christian mean to talk of assassinating leaders of other countries? I know that Hugo Chavez is an evil man, and yes, probably a threat to the U.S., but plotting an assassination? I am sure that he is not the first leader that the U.S. has wanted to assassinate. I mean it is common knowledge that Kennedy had a plot to do the same to Castro. But for a supposedly Christian leader to issue this kind of statement? Pat Robertson has shown his true colors before, and has unsuccessfully (thank God) run for the Presidency. This time the man has really went over the edge. What will be next? Kill all people that do not follow the same twisted opinions as Pat Robertson? All Democrats. Exterminated? All Homosexuals. Eradicated? All non-believers. Crucified? This man has truly become today's answer of a Pharisee. The sad thing is that many of his followers agree with him.

I pray, in my own feeble way, that this man does not speak for the entire Christian community.

Step aside Pat Robertson.
You are NO BILLY GRAHAM.

Friday, August 19, 2005

Car Trouble and TV Trays

So, you remember the time that we were moving and I went out that morning to start the car, and it had died?

Well let me refresh your memory...

DJ and I bought a new car back in February. A Blazer actually. Made by Chevrolet. He was going to sell his 1999 Cavalier and we would be a one car family. Well the alternator went out in it, so he failed to sell it. So when we decided to move into the suburbs, we were going to have to have two automobiles, so he went and bought a new alternator and he and his Uncle Redneck, put a new alternator in. All set, ready to go, let's move.

Well the morning of our move I went out to start the Cavalier and it refused to start. So, back to the drawing board. It actually took us two weeks, three different alternators until Mamma D, finally gave DJ the advise to take it to a mechanic and have the repairs done. Fast forward two days, and the car was ready. Fixed and set to go. I went to the shop to pick it up, and within four minutes of driving, the engine light came back on...the next morning no start. Dead again.

The mechanic paid to have the car towed back to their shop (he had better have paid for it!) and by the end of the day everything was taken care of. New fuses were added, a new alternator, and belts, and $238.00 poorer, we had 2 cars again.

So yesterday DJ had to get the "E Check". For those of you not aware of what that is, it's the governments way of pulling more money out of you for driving a car, that is unsafe to the enviorment. They check for proper use of gas and oil and if it doesn't pass their test, then you are unable to have it licensed. I think it is discriminatory against the lwer income driver, who can not afford a new car. But that is another blog entry for another day.

When he went out yesterday to do this stupid test, guess what? The engine light was on. That is an immediate FAILURE. (Of course unless your brother works at the E Check garage and will pass it for you. Which neither of us do). So back to GOODYEAR, he went.

This time it was the fan motor, belt and casing (what ever the hell a casing is). Another $385.00 for parts and labor. Not to mention the $24.00 for the E test, and $48 for the new license.

Now because of these added, unexpected expenses we can not purchase the dining room ensemble that I wanted to get this weekend.

It is reprehensible that I have lived in my new place now for over two weeks, without a dining room table or chairs...

Come on, where are my priorities? Using TV trays for dinner is vogue isn't it? Please tell me it is, because it looks as though that is going to be the way it is around here for a few more weeks.

The house-warming is set for September 4th, I HAVE to have them by then.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Hey Jude

It looks as though Jude Law was letting things all hang out recently while vacationing with his kids. Thank JOEY for the link and pictures, you are a doll!!

Maybe this little stunt was just a papparazzi shot, this could have been staged. It seems according to Yahoo news that Mr. Law has the best rear-end in movies according to the Brits...

"The actor's unplanned nude scene came just days after he was determined to have the sexiest rear end in show biz, according to a poll of 1,000 British moviegoers, who voted for Law based on his bath scene in The Talented Mr. Ripley. "

Regardless of why, or how, we say thank you Jude. You haven't let us down...

Speaking of showing yourself. I had an experience today that I haven't had. Yeah go figure, at 45 and not experienced everything. Anyway, I work in the service industry, in a part of town that you do not see too many good looking people, especially men. Those that do come in have teeth missing or so many tattoos you are not sure what their original skin color may be. But this guy walked in, about 25 or so. HOT. I mean drop dead HOT. Dark hair, dark eyes, nice build, and a great tan. Yes, my mouth was watering. He came in to purchase moving boxes. He smiles and looks at me and says...

"You got a bathroom I can use?"
"Sure, right back to the left."

He walks back to the bathroom which is in full view of the front door and my desk and whips out his manhood, and takes a piss leaving the door standing wide open.

Yes, I looked.
Yes, it was as nice as everything else about him.
Yes, he washed his hands.

He came back paid for his boxes and told me to have a good day.

Thanks, I will now.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Adding My Picture


I've added a new picture to my blog, and moblog. It's of me, of course. No I'm not really that vain, but...Okay yes I am. It's one of my favorites taken last summer in front of my parents home. I found it while unpacking and thought I'd share.

Monday, August 15, 2005

Summer Flu

I hate getting sick. And the worst is the flu. Even worse than that is getting it in the summer. I woke up Saturday feeling a little "puny" and by Saturday night I was out of it. The whole gamut of symptoms. I spent my only day off Sunday, in bed with a damn "Breath Right" strip over my nose.

Today I still have the lingering effects. Headache, body aches and the congestion and a slight fever. But I still went to work. Hopefully it will have run it's course by the end of the week. Until then I guess me and the bed will be friends.

Saturday, August 13, 2005

Routine

After two weeks were are finally settling into a routine at our new place. Routine. I hate that word, but we all follow a routine, don't we? Our transportation issues have cleared up and we both now have a vehicle to get back and forth to work. Now if we could just pay for the gas! Do you believe the prices!? I paid $2.57 a gallon on Wednesday to fill up. Absolutely ridiculous. Talk about a change in the routine. That makes you think twice about driving out to do some window shopping. But then again, all you Bush lovers asked for it. I'm sure his pocket book doesn't fell the crunch. Just remember all this come November 2008.

Last Saturday we had our first guest over to the new place for dinner. Silver came over and spent the evening with us, and we talked about all the things we still wanted to do to the place, and then settled in for a night of Big Brother. Now I'm not a big TV watcher, but those boys on Big brother this year, are just not quite as hot as last year. Silver routinely keeps us informed of all the reality shows and the hotties.

I also talked to my friend Kare-Bear this past week. It sounds like her hands are full. Her husband is re-locating to Savannah, Ga. and they are going to be moving there sometime in September. But there's one catch. Her ex-husband is fighting the move. He filed an injunction because he does not want his daughter to leave the state. So it sounds like a simple move has become a nightmare for Kare-Bear and the clan. What is sad is the effect this will have on Kare-Bear's daughter. Think about the kid, stop worrying about what this effect has on you and your routine daddy.

We still have a few boxes to go through, but those are pushed way back into a closet, so we will probably get to them in November, but for the most part routine has settled in.

Sunday, August 07, 2005

Week of Chaos

Well the move is completed. No, it didn't take an entire week, but this has been one of the longest weeks in most recent memory. As noted in my last post, we started the move off on the wrong foot when we awoke last Saturday morning to a car that wouldn't start. It was finally fixed yesterday! More on that later, but first the week in review; It took us almost four hours to load our moving truck. DJ, Silver, my two sons, Silver's son and DJ's cousin, "Horse", loaded it. Of course I worked the majority of the day, so by the time I got off most of the truck was loaded already (good for me!). Once we were loaded, DJ took the truck back to my place of employment to secure it for the night as we could not move into the new place until the following afternoon. Unbeknownst to DJ was that the security alarm had been activated at my office. You guessed it, they set off the alarm. So after my son AT crawled under the security fence and then entered the office, he officially committed breaking and entering, at age 12. Luckily we called the police in time and told them that it was set off by mistake, no harm.

We then had to stay all night at Mama D's place. With our three cats. She has three dogs and two cats of her own so needless to say, our cats were spooked and stayed under the bed the entire time they were there. The morning came complete with a great breakfast and cooler weather, and about 16 people to help unpack. We unloaded the truck in less than 45 minutes. Again I carried in very little.

Move completed, now just unpacking boxes. (Which I am still doing) Now Monday morning. Still no car by the way, so up at the crack of dawn so that DJ could take me to work I played the answering machine when I arrived and message number three was left on Sunday at 12:40;
"Michael, this is your mom. I know you are moving and you have no phone until Tuesday but I wanted you to know that I had an episode of something yesterday with my blood pressure and I had to be rushed to the hospital. But I'm ok" The last part she said with a broken voice, she was NOT ok. I just knew it. So for the next four hours I tried frantically to find her or someone to let me know what was going on with mom. Finally at three in the afternoon I contacted her. Fortunately, she was ok, and was released on Thursday, with no diagnosis other than cluster migraines which caused her blood pressure to jump up and down.

Tuesday we took the boys back home and finally DJ and I were abled to have the new place all to ourselves. The week did get progressively better, and after three tries the car is finally repaired. A faulty alternator (whatever that is) was our problem.

So here we are a week later and finally settled. The bottom line is, We love the place and we are both ecstatic. Chaos yes, but how boring would life be without it?