How I Feel for the Week Ending 6.13.14…

14 Jun

Smiling, just like last week I am starting my report around noon. It would appear that I am a creature of habit LOL LOL, which isn’t always a bad thing.  It has been a wet dreary day here in not so sunny Florida during the last 24 hours we have had close to 4 inches of rain. Today our music selections begin with “Bully” by Shinedown, to fully appreciate Shinedown you must listen at 7 or 8.   Staying with a recent trend I feel the week has been a 2.75, not quite as strong as last week’s 2.75, but not enough difference to drop it any lower.

Over the past week I have been extremely careful not to stand over the grill inhaling the wonderful aroma of burgers and marinated chicken cooking, with the smoke being provided by the 80/20 lean beef burgers.

Doctor appointment wise it has been a busy week.  I met with Doc Head Monday and it was as always a productive meeting. Then on Tuesday I met with the Head RN for the Hospice Team that manages my health.  I thought (and it had been implied) that this was the meeting to determine if I were progressing towards end of retirement in a timely enough manner to stay under Hospice. Well it wasn’t really that meeting; the Head Nurse is required to visit each patience within her teams’ care on a periodic basis.  Smiling “she had heard so much about me,” she felt it was time we met.  When will I learn to just shut the f…… up LOL?  All kidding aside it was a very through 1st meeting. She visited with me for over 90 minutes, very engaging (as I have found most of the Hospice folks) and when it was over I asked her if this was in fact the meeting to determine if I were still a candidate for Hospice care.  Her response was that while this had not been the official meeting for such a determination, it was clear that I would be staying with the program.  Sidebar, we have been listening to a variety of hard rock so far, including Van Halen, Stone Temple Pilots, more Shinedown, Nickelback (for my Canadian friends) and Puddle of Mudd. Finally on Thursday I had my normal weekly meeting with the Hospice, this appointment when as expected and all my vitals were drawn from it.

This, like last week and the week before, my general health remains approximately the same. The coughing is about the same, tiredness seems normal this week; SOB better than last week, but I am not standing over a grill LOL.  Sleeping soundly is an issue, but in fairness I have never been a good sleeper, it just seems like in recent months it has gotten more and more erratic, and I am finding I am napping more than ever before in my life, this morning after taking care of the morning rituals and folding the cloths, I looked out the window at the gray ugliness, so I laid down for a couple of hours. 

Let get the vitals out-of-the-way for the week ending 06.13.14

  • INR = 2.3 taken 05.19.14 – next test will be 06.16.14

  • O2 level @ 2.5 LPM = 93 taken moments ago,

  •  Peak Flow = 225 taken moments ago

  • BP = 102/62 taken 06.12.14

  • Heart rate = 107 taken moments ago

  • Temp = 98.6 taken 06.12.14

  • Weight = 267 taken 06.13.14 my weight has been all over the place in recent weeks up or down as much as 6 or 7 pounds any given week.  I check my weight at the same approximate time daily. I talked to the Hospice nurse about this, and one of the long-term impacts of the disease is weight lost, soft smile if you can’t breathe it is difficult to eat.  Ergo you diet a natural unnatural way.

So ends the technical aspect of my “How I Feel This Week” report for the week ending 06.13.14, moving now to the word of the week discussion aspect. This week I have chosen “Therapy” as the word of the week. As I normally do I will start with the dictionary definition for the word.

ther·a·py  –  noun – the treatment of physical or mental illnesses

Full Definition of THERAPY :  therapeutic treatment especially of bodily, mental, or behavioral disorder

Examples of THERAPY

            1. He is undergoing cancer therapy.

            2. talking over my problem with you has been good therapy.

Origin of THERAPY

New Latin therapia, from Greek therapeia, from therapeuein

First Known Use: circa 1846

Before I started “therapy” I had no feeling about it one way or the other.  There was no negative stigma I ever associated with “therapy” my feelings were and still are simple; if you needed it you needed it.  Kinda like a pill, if you have to take it, take it.  But since I have been it I have found I have very real feelings about therapy.  I could never be a therapist; I would never want to be a therapist. I understand more than ever some folks are deeply troubled; some not so troubled, and still others that are a mixed bag.  My 1st experience with a therapist was an effort on my part to find out about the dying process, especially for a person such as myself who had a terminal disease that slowly killed you.  I had 2 sessions with that therapist, and I truly believed she answered my question within the 1st 20 minutes of our conversation.  Being honest I didn’t bond with her, and one of us had an agenda that didn’t seem to be in my interests.  But I did go back for a second session, same net result, but I left satisfied that I had the answer I sought.

Some 12 months or so after my initial experience, I was troubled, and again sought out therapy.  My Health Coach did the research and kinda sorta recommended Doc Head.  She wouldn’t and couldn’t push me towards a particular Doctor; she just laid out the info.  One of the single biggest aspects of the decision process was that Doc Head’s office was about 7 minutes away if I took my time.  Decision made, appointment made, and the rest is history.  I have been seeing Doc Head for over a year and not one moment has been wasted.  For those who have been following me for any length at all knows I am an open person, and will talk about anything.  But damn was I quick to open up to Doc Head.

I am not sitting here saying everyone needs a therapist, or that everyone needs therapy, but I am saying is that for those of us who do admit to a need, it is great experience.  To be able to vocalize thoughts, and not just let them spin around in your head is worth the price of admission.  To be able to say just about anything you want and not have someone judge you, to be as totally honest as you want and need (as long as you stay honest), to be able to talk about your pains, your disappointments, your needs, your wants, your desires and to be able to do so out loud, so not only does someone else hear them, but you hear those words, those thoughts, those needs, wants, and those desires aloud.  Trust me, they sound a lot different verbalized than they do rolling around in your head.  And as you verbalize there is someone 4 feet away asking you what makes you feel this way or that, they aren’t judging, yes they may be digging, but it has been my experience that sometimes you have to dig to get to an issue.  Smiling, sometimes Doc Head will just sit and knot her head, encouraging me to finish a thought, or come to a conclusion, or realize that what I am yapping about isn’t really the issue at all, but it could be the conversation starter that leads to the issue.  Also I have learned that not all issues are problems and that not all problems come from the issues you present. The best thing about therapy is it allows you to get things off your chest, but be warned sometimes the things you get off your chest find their own replacements.

Also there is joy to be found in therapy, it is the perfect place for me to brag, I love writing my blog. I love the thought that my words may have reached out and helped an individual, I can share stories about folks who have come to me and said “thank you” for this story, or this hambit of information, or how I helped them cope.  And when doing so I don’t need to feel modest, I don’t worry about sounding like a braggart, I even allow my head to swell with pride when I talk about the positive things my blog gives me, and the love I have for my  fellow bloggers.  I can and do talk of the pure joy it is receiving the wonderful positive feedback I have gotten.  Smiling and my therapist doesn’t even look like she is tired of hearing it LOL.

Of course you can say something stupid like your planning on taking someone out, but as soon as you do the Doc will drop a dime on you.  You can talk about a plan to commit suicide, again the Doctor will drop a dime on you and measures will be taken to prevent such actions.  There are laws that require a therapist to advise authorities if you’re planning such actions.  I am sure there are therapists that are trained specifically to deal with situations like these.

Okay I have bent your ear as long and as hard as I can for this post.  As always if you have any questions, concerns, or comments please feel free to bring to my attention, I will answer as completely and honestly as possible. Please take care, Bill


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16 responses to “How I Feel for the Week Ending 6.13.14…

  1. Chatter Master

    June 14, 2014 at 12:01 pm

    As always Bill I am finished reading and find myself thinking my way through here. The things we have to consider while living…. I noticed the weight drop before I read your following comments.

    I never really leave your posts having too many questions. But I leave them applying your observations to my life. I thank you for this process. And I’m glad Doc Head lets you feel comfortable enough to feel good about what you’re doing here. You should.

    • FlaHam

      June 14, 2014 at 1:42 pm

      Colleen, When I talked about my weight with the Hospice folks, what they say explains the weight lost with the most logical of sense. But sometimes I weigh myself and I am carrying 5 or 7 lbs more the next day and it makes no sense to me at all. LOL but I do notice some days the shorts go on easier than others. 2.75 weeks are good ones. I wouldn’t mind stringing 4 or 5 hundred together being honest, and that is always my goal. Have a great weekend and take care, Bill.

  2. The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap

    June 14, 2014 at 12:37 pm

    Thank you for this, Bill. agree with Colleen about being glad Doc Head lets you feel comfortable… love your LOL interjections throughout which brings home how wonderful your attitude is and how you inspire me so much. Love & hugs p.s. how about sending some of that rain our way!

    • FlaHam

      June 14, 2014 at 2:06 pm

      Paulette, Smiling, my blog is just an extension of me. I love every comment, every shared thought, and the countless support I have gotten. I know in my heart that my words have made it easier for some, and that continues to drive me. Knowing that some day Cari will read these words tickles me to no end. To cause a smile 5 or 10 years from now, how cool is that. And the friends I have made, what a joy that is. I hope you have a wonderful weekend, take care. Bill

      • The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap

        June 15, 2014 at 10:11 am

        Your heart is right! And big! And wonderful! Sending you a very special cyber hug and wish for a Happy Father’s Day with many more to come. xoxo ❤

        • FlaHam

          June 15, 2014 at 10:39 am

          Paulette, Smiling, I do love your hugs cyber or not. Thank you for the very sweet Father’s Day greeting. Take care, be safe, Love Bill xoxo

  3. benzeknees

    June 14, 2014 at 3:03 pm

    Maybe, because you don’t have to pay for it, therapy is a more intensive experience here – to get into therapy I mean. I have already done one phone intake (about 1 hour) & have now been advised to ask my doc to refer me to an therapist within my PCN (Primary Care Network) plus get a referral to a Beriatric support group & a Social Anxiety Support Group. Isn’t it always the way – you admit to having social anxiety (afraid to meet people for fear of being judged) & the first thing they want you to do is leave the house & meet strangers. Mind you, these strangers are supposed to be non-judgemental since they’re all in the same boat, but it is still difficult.

    • FlaHam

      June 14, 2014 at 3:44 pm

      Benze, I am sorry if I implied I do not have to pay for my therapy, I have a co-pay for each session. The therapy is not part of my hospice care program. Even if the Hospice program offered to provide therapy sessions I would stay with Doc Head because of the relationship we have developed, and continue to make the payments out of my pocket. I guess this is yet another difference between my US health care, and your Canadian health care. As far as the intensiveness of the experience, I think that is more of what I make of it, rather than what the therapist makes of it. When I went into therapy I embraced it as fully as I have embraced my disease. I felt it would only do me as much good as I was willing to let it, and I wanted to get the most out of it, and I have strived to get as much as possible out of the sessions. I am quite sure what you are going thru, and the expectations of what the process is has in store for you make it more difficult. And I don’t have a solution, but I do have a suggestion that you get as much as you’re sessions. Make them work for you. Please take care, Bill

      • benzeknees

        June 14, 2014 at 5:25 pm

        Bill, I in no way meant to imply anything by what I said. I was trying to make the point that because our healthcare & sometimes something like therapy (if you qualify) are not paid for by the patient (of course we all pay for it with our taxes), there may be a more intensive screening process to get going in the first place. We also have therapy we could pay for, but unfortunately I can’t afford to pay for it because I have no disability payments that have come through for me (yet still another battle to fight). Our government doesn’t like to give away anything without making you jump through a number of hoops to get it. Sometimes it feels like you’re hitting your head against a brick wall because you get one small part qualified & then they tell you to jump through a bunch more hoops & wait a few more months & then we’ll let you know. I guess I’m just feeling impatient right now. Sorry if I made you feel in any way bad. I wouldn’t do that to you for the world. I admire you & rely on you for your strength & determination as well as experience.

        • FlaHam

          June 15, 2014 at 5:47 am

          Benze, I wasn’t offended or anything, and you didn’t make me feel bad or anything. I just needed to clarify that Hospice only takes care of the issue that is killing a person. I recently got a new pair of glasses, I had to go thru the normal process with all the normal co-pays to get them. Soft smile, the biggest issue we face (you and I) is that when I talk about health care it’s kinda like comparing apples to oranges, they are both fruit, they both have the a natural wrapper, but the insides are significantly different. Years ago I would have thought a system of healthcare like you have in Canada was similar enough to that in the US but it didn’t take long for me to understand the difference begins right after the word healthcare. Take care Benze, I hope this clears up any miss understandings. Bill

  4. Barbara Farrelly

    June 14, 2014 at 7:51 pm

    Bill wrote of therapy: “To be able to say just about anything you want and not have someone judge you . . .”

    Thank you for taking us back to the beginning Bill where you started to deal with your diagnosis, emotionally.

    As my health worsened, I too needed to verbalize my feelings and for 10 years did so through a group therapy situation.

    It was, as it should be, a reflective time.

    We do need to unburden ourselves and that’s why it’s said therapy is getting ‘something off our chests’ 🙂

    • FlaHam

      June 15, 2014 at 5:59 am

      Barbara, Thank you again for your continued support. I appreciate it, and I truly look forward to your comments. I could not agree more with your assessment. Therapy is an unburdening, and while I don’t feel the weight comes off my chest, my head is sure lighter. Please take care and have a wonderful day. Bill

  5. sheridegrom - From the literary and legislative trenches.

    June 15, 2014 at 8:04 am

    Bill – Bravo, smart man that you are for recognizing you didn’t connect with the 1st therapist and moving on. Many individuals seem to stay stuck and think they don’t deserve better. When Tom insisted I enter therapy way back when, I was offended. I’m now convinced it was the smartest tool I have in my war chest. Excellent blog. Sheri

    • FlaHam

      June 15, 2014 at 10:43 am

      Sheri, I didn’t know how my acknowledgment and dissertation on “Therapy” was going to be received, and being honest I didn’t really care. Well that’s a lie, I do and did care, but I am glad it has been received well so far. Therapy is extremely important, and it doesn’t matter if your terminally ill or not. Sometimes you just need an outlet. Take care, Bill

  6. huntmode

    June 16, 2014 at 2:12 am

    Bill, I always look forward to your posts on Dr. Head. After your first one, getting one as good as Dr. Head was hitting the ball out of the park (if I may – I know little about sports). Too often we have to tailor ourselves to our friends, family, wives, husbands, co-workers in the ways they have come to expect us to be vs. who we are in present time. Having a good therapist, one with whom you are comfortable to be who you are in real time is priceless. So glad for you, my friend. Hunt

    • FlaHam

      June 16, 2014 at 10:10 am

      Hunt, I do feel quite fortunate to have Doc Head, she has been extremely good for me. Smiling yes expectations always come into play be what others expect of us or what we expect from ourselves. As honest as I like to think myself being, I know I am always holding back. Yet with Doc Head I hold back the very least, and it’s not like she is dragging it out, it comes out willingly. I think another thing that is cool with her is there never really seems to be an agenda for the conversation. It takes up it’s course and just goes from there. Which really works for me. Soft smile, as always thank you for your continued support and good wishes. Take care, Bill


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