Desperate Times Call for Desperate Measures

I’m at Asbury Church waiting for a shower and laundry. They’ve stopped showers due to lack of hot water. I’m cold already, taking a cold shower would hurt and be the manifestation of hell on earth.

They are looking into it, so I am typing to have something to do.

I have a doctor’s appointment. Ears are still plugged and my intent was to go for that. But I have realized my coginitive decline has become worse. I need more sleep than 8 hours. 8 hours isn’t enough. And I just had a brain fart over “isn’t”. My brain is not in good shape and this homeless thing is making it worse.

I have spent several nights in various warming shelters since it’s so cold and smokey. I have slept on the floor, and as a stroke survivor, it isn’t easy to get up and down. Locked door handles are really helpful. I can pull myself up.

I drag my left foot when I walk. Getting therapy would help, but daily exercises would be a challenge. Have to live with that until I have a roof over my head. Whenever that will be.

I’ve met a few people: Cindy, Eddie and Lorraine. I will share some stories in the future. Just leaving a note here as a reminder.

And, just to remind you http://www.gofundme.com/Life4V

New Learning Curve – Homelessness & Failure at Adulting

Being scorned and told you made mistakes by a 67 year old at the age of 53 is ludicrous and humiliating. Experiencing that when he is fully aware that you have a brain injury is demoralizing. Keeping it up until you leave for the hospital because you fear you’re having another vascular lacunar stroke is inhumane. Making you leave and having to beg to be allowed to take your life saving medication and what you can fit in your car – there are no words.

When you are upset and can’t handle anymore, you can barely speak coherently without wailing/crying uncontrollably and can barely get the words out that you are at at the point of driving out to the desert and slashing your wrists, he makes a comment that it isn’t a bad idea.

The wife is an old friend, but she barred me from entering the house yesterday because I crossed the line. When I went to Emergency the other night, after the bru–ha-ha with them, and my pathetic past of failures to see to myself before anyone else, she was done because I had posted about her daughter on Facebook. I hadn’t used her name, it was pretty much “my friends daughter” was there too. That is it. She may have had a viral infection like I did last weekend. I don’t know and I didn’t speculate. I just said I saw the young woman there. I haven’t gonne back to see the post.

Wait -I’ll go check. My comment was the wife was taking the teenage daughter to the ER and he husband didn’t want to be in the house with me without his wife. No names. I was verbally violent – his parting shot that night. Because I had told him to Fuck himself after hours of bombardment. Yeah, by your estimation, I screwed up when I sacrificial my life to take care of mom. What did it get me? A stroke and homelessness it seems. And not able to work due to that brain damage.

Vascular lacunar stroke is a serious Mother, especially if you’re not in your 60’s when it happens, because there are no statistics if you are 49-51. I am 53 4 months and 9 days, in case you were wondering. I had the stroke 21 days short of two years ago. The last and most debilitating one. I’ve had at least two others previously. Maybe more. They aren’t sure. The lesions and dead brain matter overlap in differing severity.

They didn’t happen before 2012. That much I know. My vision was fine, I had my meds, and Mom hadn’t tried to kill me yet. Yet. That would change, but she died in May 2015. Yeah, you’d think. Her ‘Memory”still had an active force in my life in the form of her family. I was trashing the dead. How about her trashing my life? Never acknowledging her step son, who was all of 2 when she married Dad. Dad was a philandering snake, ok? But he was a good father to me and kept most of Mom’s shit out of my life, even her hatred of his family. Mom’s Christian upbringing was non-existent, other than drilling into my head what was acceptable, proper and expected. AndI got a beating when it wasn’t to here exacting, ridiculous standards. Even when I was 48 and she was 86. Slap and hit my head while my left arm is her death grip. Did I hit her? Defend my self against an 86 yo sociopath? Fuck no. She would have me arrested for elder abuse. She tried every chance she got. I stole from her, refused her food, was trying to steal her house, had stolen her car (that was also registered to me because she couldn’t drive and had surrendered her license thank God), I stole her mail, put loans of her property (car insurance that had my name on it since I was a licensed driver), the electricity bill (since she refused to pay for it since they were cheating her – a supposed loan I had made) and any piece of mail that could set her off. Which was anything. God forbid it still had Dad’s name on it. That was my fault. I was torturing her on purpose.

She wouldn’t write “deceased” on direct mail. Who’s fault, crazy woman.

Anyway, I never saught any services through Riverside County, because it was made clear I was just there for her and I was a capable adult and could work and maintain my life, but Adult Protective Services was watching! She had Alzheimer’s. Get a letter from her doctor. Who? The one who called you and reported me? She needs APS, when she tried to stab me?

If I couldn’t get a doctor to put in writing she had Alzheimer’s, do you think I could ger a letter stating I’m caring for her 24/7? That I took her to every doctor’s appointment, held her breast during a mammogram while she chortled not to get any ideas about a quick snack (I was 48 at the time, and she was 86 – yuck sick gross, you never breast feed me – and I really didn’t need to hear how Dad was such an excellent lover. There is no brain bleach!), flew down when she ripped out her hip and stayed for weeks and worked remotely from her house, drove down when she fractured her hand because she didn’t use a walker or afhere to physical therapy plans – ever, when she had a sore that wouldn’t heal on her face and I insisted she have a referral to dermatology and it was found it was melanoma and I had to look at her open face, teeth and gums to make sure they had done a good job. Because I am as much of a nurse as SHE WAS.

So much pent up fury, but I’m lying. She wasn’t like that AT ALL. Not in her youth or as they remember. Maybe. Pretty selective convenient memory.

And after all I went through and had to learn, because they learned nothing as immigrants other than what they absolutely had to, I have to learn for the first time.

Social Services – Food Stamps check. General Assistance check. MediCal check. Social Security and Lawyer Check. Housing – I have names, addresses, phone numbers.

I now I have a $226 car repair because I can’t drive without 1 tire and a 2nd ready to blow.

I slept in my car last night, and thank God I had my blanket and parka. It dropped to 42F this morning. My back still hates me. And I’m using my cane and sacrificing the aircast. My right foot is screaming, but I can walk with one good leg and not fall. The cane, the cast and me weren’t copacetic and I crashed into people and things and was a human Weeble wobbling close to falling down. It’s a precious look. Very fashionable.

I should find a food kitchen for later. I had a glazed donut. Couldn’t help but think of Bill Cosby and his bit about Glazed Donuts, but he was funny then. Not a predator.

I officially suck at adulting. It’s in print.

I leave this here again, http://www.gofundme.com/Life4V

Please go. See if you can help. Even $5 makes a difference.

And for God’s sake, tell the press, a news staton, a reporter or podcaster. My story isn’t common. The epitome when everything is done right and with the best intentions, and it still everything considered award-winning Muphy’s Law, thats special. Even “thank God not me” worthy. The last 5 minted on the evening news. Because I’m just crying wolf. There is no one out there like me. Contra Costa treats every patient like a close family member. No one has suffered, is suffering or has died in their care.

I remind you – 2 years for a diagnosis of vascular lacunar stroke. Other than the emergency room and a speech therapist, no other medical provider said a word about my stroke, other than shock I would want another aneurysm if I stopped taking Clopidgrel – there are other blood thinners that don’t cause eye hemorrhages with those who have retinopathy (I do), I have a pyschiatric issue with depression and an eating disorder when in fact my central nervous system has taken hit, I have a hiatil hernia (barium test showed that and another issue) and everything else you said is a lie, because you’re an old, ignorant fart that shouldn’t be handling medicine anymore. Or that Nurse Practitioner who lies to colleague’s and police and claim you assaulted her. Sure. An invalid with a cane sitting outside her reach and you behind a computer. Pretty fancy jujitsu. Pity I’ve had known.

But I’m just a whiner looking for attention. Why would I think there’s anything wrong with me? Because I have a history of VLS and you summarily dismissed it. And you mentally tortured me. Happy? Said I needed a shrink for my Pseudo-Bulbur Affect, for my eating disorder when I choke on my own spit, can’t process my daily tasks any way like I used to, can’t communicate as I used to except in writing. It would take me hours to say this with lot’s of umms and pauses and minutes for my mouth to catch up with my brain, or my brain to slow down to process the painful reality of articulating words. Just finding the words that I can say, clearly.

I’m sure I’m the only one.

Excuse any typo’s. Had to use the phone when the computer froze.

How Life bit me in the Ass and it Won

This post won’t be pretty or “polite”. There will be curse words and the truth.

You have been warned. Sorry/Not Sorry. I’ll spare last names, except two – those of my family. And one other because she is a worthless Bitch.

If I repeat myself ^^^^

You should be aware I am a Scandinavian Socialist and a Democrat. And if you don’t know what that is, READ. We don’t read enough about other countries and other people. The life we are now subjected to, not America but Trumplandia, is sick, disgraceful and circling the drain with the shit the GOP (Grand Old Prick’s party) has colluded to make real and oppress every American who isn’t rich enough to pay them off. Gerrymandering is one guaranteed way to keep poor and non-rich-whites and anyone of color very, very quiet. That is, if they can’t just get rid of them or kill them. God forbid anyone respectfully kneels during our National Anthem when sung at a sporting event.

What do soldiers do when they come across a  grave of a comrade in arms? They kneel. How unpatriotic, if you believe the bone-spur-draft-dodger-in-Chief. He likes heroes that aren’t captured, after all. Anyone else who doesn’t think just like him is a son-of-a-bitch. Or has a  low IQ.

God bless John McCain, a war hero that served and gave his Being to this country. Thank you, Sir, for your complete and untiring service. You are a human being more people should be like.

Life has been a bitch,  but I tried to do the right thing for everyone else except me. That was disastrous.

If a Jorgensen reads this – fuck you all for ignoring everything and staying in your self-righteous cocoon. If you are an Anderson – I am so sorry. Dad and I had our own hell to deal with and thankfully you were excluded from most of it. Except Karsten. I am so sorry for everything. I didn’t know, damn them all for lying. Especially, that self-righteous bitch who married your father. I know he regretted what he did. How he raised me was testament to that. All the things I learned that he wanted to teach you. Even soccer.  I became the person I am because of him. Gunn had nothing to do with it, If anything, I wanted to be the exact opposite, or a good and decent human being.

But let’s start from today and work our way backwards. That’s so fun. The culmination of my end. Some stuff left out…because length of post.

I had a stroke an, anoxic brain injury that killed part of my brain. If I had served in Iraq, I would be considered a Wounded Warrior. No, I am just a silly civilian who had a medical problem. Screw her. There are people with worse, REAL problems. But, I can type so I’m normal! HA! Not anywhere close to who I used to be. At this point, I have no idea if I ever will be again.

I had no actual medical care for my stroke, my brain injury, for 19 months. Why? Assholes were “taking care” of me. Medical doctors who didn’t do their jobs, but prescribed pharmaceuticals without followup. I had “symptoms”, but I wasn’t referred to specialists because I had to get over them. See a shrink for an eating disorder. No referral for that. Can’t swallow? Eating disorder. No hunger or thirst since the stroke? Eating disorder. Throw up or regurgitate while eating? Eating Disorder. Persistent nerve pain? Here’s a pill. Difficulty sleeping? Here’s a pill. Excruciating cramping of toes and calves? Here’s a pill. One of them shouldn’t be given to those with history of stroke? Give it to her anyway. A Barium test the speech therapist recommended? She’s not a doctor. What does she know? More than he did when I was tested because another doctor believed Jess and it showed a Hiatal hernia and Schatzi ring (again – look it up – I had to).

Trying to see a GI specialist who only took new patients on Friday mornings and in Martinez, when I was in Alameda and had to deal with the morning commute. Sorry if you’re late. Can you come in again in two weeks at the same time? Sure. Maybe it’ll only take an hour and a half instead of the 40 minutes during the day after the commute. At least less than two and a half hours if there isn’t another truck crash on the 580 and a vehicle crash on the 680 and lookee-loo’s who are as slow as fuck.

Another accident and bad traffic. Missed another appointment,

I am scared to drive in traffic now. The Road Warrior who put 100,000’s of miles on cars, driving all over the Western US, but way too much on the 5 between SFO and LA, is scared to drive because I don’t want to hit anyone or be in the way. I miss my Beast. She was a good truck. I can hear TAPs in my head. It’s a comfort.

I had to donate the Montero to charity in January past this year. New engine, but fucked up carburetor that bleed gas and I had no spare money to fix her. Couldn’t pass SMOG.  And my off-roading days are over as far as I can tell. I miss that shift and drift quality in that a bread-box of a Surfer Jeep. 30 years we were together. Oh well. Everything comes to an end eventually. Hopefully not me. Not now.

That day in January I waved  goodbye to her – it was two days after I saw Nurse Practitioner Berg. Bitch. On that Wednesday, we had an appointment so I could get refills for meds (the one’s that weren’t refilled and were out since before Christmas and her vacation when no one did anything while she was “out” or unavailable) and referrals to therapy and neurology and whatever else I needed because I couldn’t eat. Dangerous to a diabetic.

She went through my prescriptions. my therapy request (physical, occupational and speech), a neurologist and what else?  I didn’t know. My brain isn’t working. I said “I don’t know” and rapped my cane against the tile floor. She screeched and ran from the room. I heard voices and what sounded like “Fuck”and “hit me”. There was much commotion and a “Ranger” (security guard) came to the room and blocked the door. A psychologist came in and spoke with me, never saying what the trouble was, just that I couldn’t leave.

I was upset. Anxious. My mind reeling with confusion and uncertainty. Stupid me, I thought she was there to determine what had happened. All I could do was babel about how a woman who was once a MENSA candidate could end up here and no one would listen to her because she had a stroke. A lot of good it did me.

A short time later, when the police and ambulance arrived, a police officer and the ranger took me into custody, which meant they each grabbed an arm and forced me to a gurney so I could be restrained. I fought back. I was told not to resist. In my mind, it was too much like all the times Mom would grab my arm and beat me on the head and shoulders as recently as 2014. Yeah, an 87 year old woman with dementia beat me because she didn’t like how I cleaned the hallway and she wouldn’t stop until I was crying and in the fetal position. Something she had done to me since I was a child over anything including being late coming home from school after talking to a teacher, not having a communal gang-bang behind the classroom which she assumed I was doing at 12 years of age.

Not true Anna? Were you there for any of it? You’re too much like your big sister. Happy now? You’re more like Gunn than you know.

The police officer never told me what I had supposedly done. Just said for me to calm done (that  is so easy with my broken brain) and pretty much behave and just  take it. They both hung on until I was secured on the gurney. Two hands gripped to each arm and bodily control.

I was taken to Martinez from Brentwood, to CCRMC ER. They asked me some questions. I pee’d into a cup. And a psychologist told me the folks in Brentwood, especially a psychologist, Ruiz I think, had  said I was “grandiose and delusional”.  He wanted to make sure I understood what had been said and that I was being released because I wasn’t a threat to any one.

They provided a taxi to take me back to the car in Brentwood. I still had to drive to Alameda where I was house sitting, having been driven out of the house I was in in Brentwood.  I’ll get to that.

It was 10:00 pm and I was dead tired but still had to drive using GPS ’cause I can’t find my way around a cardboard box anymore and it’s dark and my eyes are shit. I make it to Alameda, unload the car ’cause I had stuff still left at Amanda’s and passed out on the bed and didn’t wake up until Diana found the car open the next morning with the keys on the roof, the car door open, the garage door open, the patio door open and me groggily dealing with being shouted awake.

The aftermath sucked. I dreamed that night. The first time I know of since the stroke. Of mom beating me and the cops helping her. Mmmm, happy memories.

I tried contacting news agencies, including 7 On Your Side, but nothing. No one gives a shit. Hey, at least I’m not black!  They wouldn’t have released me then. Probably.

And six weeks later, I had a knock on the door at 11:45 pm. It was the Alameda PD and they were checking on me over a suicide treat. A what? Facebook had called them because of a post I had made earlier that night. Yeah. a Facebook post for my GoFundMe campaign where, in the 2nd to last paragraph I had written, “would rather wrap my car around a post”, was a suicide treat. Frisked, handcuffed, and boarded onto an ambulance and taken to a Psychiatric ER in San Leandro where I was released 13 hours later when they had determined I wasn’t about to commit suicide.

Why did they take me in? That 5150 in Brentwood a few weeks earlier. That FALSE police report by that Bitch Berg and her Psychologist partner.

You know what else Contra Costa has done to me? Charged me for the ambulance ride to Martinez. They also banned me from using Brentwood Clinic because they want to spare their employees from unruly patients.

How about sparing their patients from do-nothing, lying staff? Terrorizing patients?  Physically detaining them? Why not start with that, Director of Ambulatory Services?

Then there was the whole bit with my dear friend Amanda and her fucking “happiness”. Why not try a new therapist after 8 years and not blaming everyone else for your issues? I had a stroke with brain death. Didn’t know? Neither did I. Did you ask? Neither did I, because I didn’t know what to ask even  and I couldn’t form words, dumb fuck. Did up on look it up on your phone like you do everything else? I had a tendency to cry. Not because you. Not that I could control it. It wasn’t meant to upset YOU or cause YOU distress. My brain isn’t under my control anymore. I wasn’t “doing” anything to you, you fat selfish fuck! I wasn’t conscious of any it.

When I made that Facebook post, I didn’t include you BECAUSE I WAS ALREADY LIVING WITH YOU AT YOUR INVITATION. I had to leave BECAUSE  YOU WERE MOVING. I asked if any of the people I knew had room to spare, and you went ballistic and MOVED UP THE DATE I HAD TO BE OUT. Not February as you first said. Not even January. But NOVEMBER JUST A FEW WEEKS AWAY.

You accused me of doing something to your skirt (ugly shit) and Brandon’s  boxers. Like what? WTF? I did your laundry every week, put it all away, fixed your closet so you could find shit one place in your fucking house that wasn’t a pig sty, and  you wanted to know what I had done with them? How fucking sick are you? After I had been doing it for months, falling and stepping over shit constantly. Cleaning up after myself just as I had in my own house which you hardly ever do except put it in the sink. Maybe. Bitch at your daughter for not cleaning up the bathroom to your expectations. When the fuck did you ever cleanup after yourself? Use a garbage can, not a bag on a hook in the kitchen that would be overflowing so trash was on the floor and all over the kitchen. Empty Dr. Pepper bottles on the couch. Candy wrappers between the sofa cushions. Shoes all over the floor at the base of the stairs for someone with a limp and movement issues to slip or trip over?

I was keeping Lili from doing her chores? I loaded the dishwasher so there would be plates and utensils to use for eating, not just stacked in the sink until she got to them eventually.

Sorry I had a stroke Amanda. It was cruel of me to have one and impacting you. How rude of me. What a rotten way to abuse our friendship. What a terrible thing to do to our  business. That same business that 2 weeks after my stroke, you needed to know if I was “in it or not”. Two fucking weeks, and I could barely talk, yet I have to have  give you an answer because you have to know because of your mental issues? Fuck that shit! Everyone has to kowtow to you and your issues. There are other people in the world. No wonder you have difficulty being partners with anyone else. You’re a self important bitch who can’t deal with anyone else suggestions until you can usurp them. Get a free ride and bitch how they do nothing. How about you not sharing but just taking over?

That weekend in Sonora? I assembled the shelving I had and you “helped” by holding the uprights while I drilled and fastened them together. I took them in from my car and I took them out to my car. Pine Ikea Ivar side rails and shelves. Shelves weighting 8 lbs each and there were more than 20 of them. I had brought enough for 21′ of shelving, but I stopped at 12′ because You didn’t want that much. You have a bad back, so you were useless. I have a bad back too, and that might have been the reason for my brain being deprived of oxygen when my neck muscles spasmed.  I wanted the show to be successful for you and it almost KILLED ME.  But, I am complaining out of turn. At least I got $160 from that show. How much I spent – who knows. I really enjoyed having to return the shelving to storage by my self. Moving boxes just to get to the space to return all that to my rented space A WEEK AFTER THE STROKE. Just so I could save you money and Brandon didn’t have to build anything.

I treated you so well. Like a little sister. If I were a lesser person, I would say you’re a self serving cunt, but that’s not me .  And I was never “critical” of your parenting, never said you lied to your kids, never made a claim against your narrow minded anti-immigrant rants. I had a different view and it was non-confrontational. Pity you never learned civil discourse. “They did stuff that affected me” isn’t an excuse to go off on someone else. A Muslim high school won’t impact your property value.

How did that move to Vacaville go? Oh wait. You didn’t move. Oops. My mistake. Good thing I got out of your life.

You did take me to a couple of doctor’s appointments. You did come  to the hospital when I had the stroke. I drove myself because ambulances are so expensive and you had your twice weekly therapist appointment that day – and needed it – so I drove myself. 3 days in the hospital. The only time I have ever stayed at the hospital that I can recall. Drove home too. I didn’t want to upset the little one. And that’s my problem – I don’t want to be a bother.

Less than two months before, I had a cousin  from Dad’s side of the family find me on Facebook. And I found out how much Mom and Dad lied about, especially Mom. I had a brother. Dad had a biological son and she alienated Dad’s family so they wouldn’t lie about what she had done FOR YEARS.  I knew I was adopted when I was 11, because Mom was a lousy liar, but Dad? Because of her, of course. Whatever kept her happy and quiet. Gunn was wife #3 and he had a child with #2? God forbid she was a STEP -MOTHER. She was barely a mother. That was too much to deal with and with a complete and healthy brain.

And 2 years ago I moved back to the Bay Area after taking care of Mom, her life and her estate, in Southern California with no help from anyone and she had Alzheimer’s Dementia.

That is my life in 24 grueling months. Good times, right?

Thank you to my Norwegian Anderson relatives, for your support and caring, especially since I needed that for my mental health and well being. Dad was a good man with serious flaws, a screwed up 3rd wife and in-laws. I got nothing from the Jorgensen side who lambasted me for telling ugly truth about the dead and didn’t say one fucking word about my stroke. That meant so much. Especially Freddy and his “good words”. Fucking lies and opinions based on NOTHING.

How Life Sucks Now

Not a hopeful title, but real.

I want to be a writer, a teller of tales based on actual facts. No lies for me! Had a lifetime of those, and lies damage the lives of those lied to and about.

I will continue to write about Dad. Too many happy memories are because of him. And if recounting her behavior is part of that it’s cathartic. Exorcising the demons, if you will.

Now to exorcise, and accept, the demons of today. Namely, life with the aftereffects of stroke.

I have been seen in the ER 3 times in 6 weeks. I have 3 neurological referrals and 1 from my current PCP. Paperwork and rote acceptance of scripts made it impossible for me to affect a reasonable and acceptable response on the phone calls.. Gee, if humans just listened and thought beyond the script! You know, thought like humans – not automatons! Situation has been resolved with plenty of phone calls, bitching and I can now be scheduled to actually see a neurologist. Geez Louise what a pain. Or simply FUCK!!! This is not NC17 rated folks.

I was seen in ER last night – again – and my friend Myrna took me because I didn’t want to kill anyone while driving the 5.8 miles to Valley Care ER. Or call an ambulance cause those fuckers are expensive. In by 6 pm, out by 10:30 pm, not too bad. Had blood work, EKG, Cat-scan, an bag of IV and I was advised to go home, rest, and make an appointment with a neurologist within the next 3 days. Hence, the rigmarole with insurance. He’s not covered, call here. You have to call back Sept 1, I can’t schedule you until then. Your PCP needs to see you for her to process a referral. OMG! Are you serious! I saw an ER doctor and I have to make another appointment to verify I need a neurologist when I already have 3 including one from her??

You know, next time a nurse asks me if I want to kill myself I’m tempted to say yes just to get a doctor who can get me to someone who will figure me out. SHIT! I am seeking medical help not the quickest way to ease my perpetual frustration with the medical profession. (Via euthanasia)

I received a call this afternoon from a person who is handing referrals. After I interrupted her enough and told her “let me finish!” I was able to explain I had handled the issue that kept them from handling it. They had to call to verify, but it can move forward now since they had already been notified. Twits. Listen, You may learn something.

I have barely enough money to live on, thanks to General Assistance from Alameda County and CalFresh (food stamps). $ 500 a month, $200 strictly for food, and certainly not “fast food”. The $300 in General Assistance pays for my car insurance (it’s AAA and I’ve been a member for 20+ years, there are cheaper, but better? Nope), my cell phone (Verizon – I like “coverage”) and tank of gas, maybe 1 1/2. A little bit left for I don’t know, toilet paper, Jack in the Box, soap, shampoo, laundry. Not the movies. Not shopping, Not anything “fun”. And certainly not rent for keeping my things. That would be $595 a month, not counting current late fees.

I could get a job. Sure. I’ll get right on that. But wait….I can’t do what I used to do and certainly, not 40 hours a week from 8-5. My mental capacity has bee ruined. Part of my brain is dead. I don’t know “how to” anymore. But your resume says….. That was before a devastating lucanar stroke changed and diminished me.

Dad did this amazing thing when I was little. We went grocery shopping and he would say. “The total will be around $51.75” or something. That never included tax, but did include produce. This was amazing to my young mind, until I figured out he was keeping a running total in his head of a full shopping cart of the family’s food needs. I wanted to be impress Dad that I could do it too, so I started to keep my own total. I told him when we got to the checker (leaned over and whispered, I think it will be…) and he stated his belief, and he was $1 off and I was $2. I was happy I had made a close total, and he said “not bad! Keep it up!” And I did. He eventually asked me what I thought it was, made me say it out load for the checker to hear, then gave his own total. We were never the same, but we were close to the total, usually produce threw me off more. Then, one day, I gave my total and he said nothing. I was perturbed, but knew better than to show it. I was 3 cents off! Holy crap! Mine was the narrowest margin ever, and I was 13! When we got the receipt, Dad noted the total on it and folded it and put it in his wallet. I asked him why. “You were closest to the actual total. I want to remember this day, because you bested me.” That was a very proud day for me. Knowing I had made Dad proud and it wasn’t just a grade.

We kept up our private competition until Dad died, or more succinctly our last trip to the grocery store November 2001. I still did it until I had my own stroke in November 2016. To stay as sharp as Dad and it was a happy ritual. I often hoped for a child who would want to do it too, and not because he/she was eager to please, but because it was fun to compete with the older set! Didn’t happen. And with the stroke, that “skill” went away. I can’t add more than a few numbers without using a pencil and paper. I keep trying, but I just cry now. That Pseudo-Bulbar Affect is a nuisance. Subtraction without a calculator doesn’t work. Multiplication either. Percentages become fractions causing much head slapping and mutterances of “Idiot” before I can get to the number. And I’m a Finance Specialist, with Assistant Controller, Operations Manager, Vice President of Operations and Director of Finance on my resume. I can’t do that, the finer points, for 40 hours a week from 8-5, so good luck finding a job! I would fail miserably, if I could physically manage to get to work and remain cogent, functional and awake by noon Friday. Or even noon Wednesday.

Yesterday, I tried to deal with the insurance debacle. and after 4 phone calls, I was so exhausted I had to lay down. I woke 1 1/2 hours late feeling worse, confused, barely able to think clearly, but enough so to ask Myrna to take me to the hospital. There is something wrong with me, because I feel like I am dying. And I don’t want to. I really don’t want to. There is so much I have to do to insure no one is treated as dismissively as I was by the medical staff that was charged to take care of me after my stroke.

Not like the doctor who asked me if I wanted to have another aneurysm by not taking a drug that made my retinopathy worse. Like having eye hemorrhages was enjoyable. Having routine quasi-lobotomies via eye injections was fun. (Excellent Optometrist – I never feel it, just see it, feel the pressure of it.) I had a stroke – my head was never cracked open. No doctor ever told me I had an aneurysm. Know something I don’t? Refer me to a neurologist then. No? You’re the “expert”, I guess. You never even said what kind of stroke I had. I just knew it was lucanar from the ER doctor who treated me, my speech therapist had to explain what that meant – 8 months after the stroke.

I’m bitching. Sorry. I may have some reasons to be bitter after a year and a half of persistent ignorance and apathy. I am hoping that will change now that I have new insurance through another County. Hell, they approved general assistance. If I had more than $50 in my bank account, the other County would deny me. I had enough to live on, supposedly. And people wonder why homelessness is such as issue. I know why it is in Contra Costa County.

They have medical practitioners who lie about their clients, even have them arrested and taken away on a 5150 for not actually doing anything. Have the Fire Department send a bill for the ambulance because Contra Costa won’t pay for that when it’s a violent incident by a patient against county workers. Don’t investigate – patients lie. How sweet and justifiable. I have PTSD now. The police and their “ranger” took my arms and “controlled” me until I was strapped to a gurney for transport. The Policewoman never said a word on what reason I was being restrained. I didn’t know until a psychologist informed me that I had supposedly hit, or tried to hit, my nurse practitioner, and her friend/associate informed County I was “grandiose and delusional”. I was released within hours because they found I wasn’t a threat or a harm to others. Then more stuff happened when I got to Alameda at midnight, including passing out due to exhaustion, leaving a garage door open and my car door open with the keys on the roof. Nothing was taken and I started “dreaming” again (I hadn’t since the stroke). Well, nightmares returned, especially of Mom beating me. Maybe that is why I “resisted arrest”, besides having no idea what I had done, just like with Mom.

I was so emotionally distraught after this event, having gone to Brentwood for my appointment, transported to Martinez on a 5150, having to take a taxi back to Brentwood, and driving back to the home I was housesitting in Alameda. And I had started my day at the house I was living at in Brentwood, packing and removing my belongings because my “Friends” wanted me out as they were selling the house supposedly and I was impeding on their (her) happiness. That is another tedious story. Let’s just say the “her” is nuts and a selfish bitch who doesn’t know anything about a stroke, it’s impact or what it does to a person, other than it had a “negative’ impact on her and I had to go. They are still in that house. I drove by there last week and they were in their front yard. Happy, Amanda? You got rid of me and your problems. Being friends with you was among the stupidest decisions I ever made, and thinking we could be business partner? It’s all yours now. I hope you fail astronomically. Two weeks after the stroke you ask if I want to continue? I could barely walk a straight line and could barely speak, but I cried too much for you and I was a potential trigger. So much for being your “big sister”. I never questioned your parenting (I could have), you were so paranoid over everything, even my Facebook posts. I couldn’t have my own opinion if it didn’t match yours? Controlling much? Many of your thoughts disgusted me and I never wrote about any of them and mentioned you, did I? I did your laundry and put it away as a way to say thank you for living there, and you ask me where your skirt and your husbands.boxers are? Where would they be other than where they were intended to be once washed? You criticize your daughter that she didn’t clean the bathroom to your standards…what standards? A plastic bag is the trash bucket for the house hanging from a hook in the kitchen, and you complain it isn’t clean enough? When you were at my house, where I had plenty of trashcans, I went around after you and picked up after you, even empty Dr. Pepper bottles. Did I say anything? Your house is a perpetual pig sty and you dare to comment about neatness? Accuse me of doing something with a polyester skirt I wouldn’t be caught dead in? And what would I do with male boxers? Moonlight as a transvestite? Where is my Rowenta iron by the way? Never could find it after you took it out of the laundry room. Or the yardage counter. I received $140 for my investment, time and energy. How much did I spend? I took back a few items you didn’t care about, and you got tons of my stuff when I moved for your “studio”, though I traded 3 months of cell coverage for the white shelving that you used, and some was destroyed or just gotten rid of. Just like gifts to your children, don’t want that anymore and who was it from? Off to Goodwill or trash. It’s just stuff, after all.

There are other episodes over the last year with other friends that has made this entire experience more than depressing. I’m vomiting words, because if it could happen it happens to me.

I am not lying. I have witnesses to actual events or gave emotional statements immediately following with proof of what had happened. And some people actually saw that behavior from them. I have been through too much and I didn’t cause it, just a victim of it. And I hate being a victim! Especially a victim to someone’s mental instability.

I need help….not agencies that can’t help. I need a neurologist to diagnose and help me, not lipservice from a idiot with a medical license. Talking is still hard for me, some days worse than others like yesterday. Some days I can write eloquently, or in a similar style that I used to but not consistently but it’s better than speaking.

I need financial help and ideas for jobs that I can try to do. A research assistance, for example. I can do that! I did plenty of research on stroke, enough to write an extensive paper on. And I have done it before for personnel manuals, startups. business manuals, product development. I’m a bibliophile. I can research anything from correct and valid resources. Not just the Internets. I did an application for Barnes & Noble for a Book Seller, they needed one at my local store, but I’ve heard nothing. I have completed applications for many jobs and positions, but they want a full time commitment and that is something I cannot guarantee, or really even try without needing to lie or end up in the ER or have a hospital stay

I don’t want to loose what I have worked for and many well loved memories and past endeavors, decades of heritage and ancestors. It would be like setting fire to my past and doing nothing. I don’t have much else. Family I barely know far away. A few trusted and loved friends. But is it enough to want to continue to live? No, it isn’t. It isn’t enough. Life is too miserable when you are alone and don’t have the ability or means to do anything. Or just the will.

Thank you for reading this. I wrote it and it made me happy to complete it. You have to take the small victories when you have them.

https://www.gofundme.com/wants-to-live&rcid=r01-153397110751-a09cf352a5ba4bee&pc=ot_co_campmgmt_w

I Will Go Down Fighting

I saw my therapist today, Pam. She’s a great MDT counselor. I may loose her due to “changing” counties. Even though it’s MediCal, she works for Contra Costa Health Plan. Bleh! Like I care now. Bureaucratic hogwash. I need to find out from Alameda, when they get my file. I could loose Jessica, my Pathology Therapist. Great, start from scratch. The last year doesn’t matter. At least to paper pushers.

For me not to be “homeless” anymore, they’ll want my paperwork, my bank records, and they’ll see monthly fees for storage units. Not $600, but getting there. If I can afford that, why can’t I afford a room? An apartment? Because, an apartment costs more than that, and electricity, and water, and garbage, and maybe internet. For low income housing, I need a job. That is a big problem. I don’t know what I can do anymore. And my resume goes against me now. A former Assistant Controller wanting to work at Barnes & Noble?  A Project Manager wanting to be a clerk? I know I’m making a big deal out of it, but I used to run HR, hired and fired people, surveyed resumes and made recommendations. Hell, I taught a class at a JC for those entering or re-entering the job market. I know!

I have to find a job, part time (I think, I don’t know how well I can handle it), and hope and pray I don’t screw up and get fired. Why do I have to? To live like a human being. To have money for gas for my car, car insurance, a cell phone, and my storage units. To hopefully qualify for low-income housing so I don’t have to pay for storage units anymore. I can salvage a semblance of a normal life, while still pursuing my Social Security claim and lawsuits against those cretins of medical care. Maybe I can prove I can’t work anymore in my field? Maybe.

I got a request for a signature for medical records by the person investigating my claim against the Nurse Practitioner who had me 5150’d. That’s progress. She will pay, that craven dishonest human.

More changes, more issues for me to deal with.

If you read this, please donate to GoFundMe. $10 helps a lot. I pay my debts to secure my future. Please help do that.

https://www.gofundme.com/wants-to-live&rcid=r01-153006701715-96a52efb25e44eec&pc=ot_co_campmgmt_w

Going to Die Because I don’t Matter Anymore

Not a great subject, but nonetheless true.

My fundraiser on Facebook has $204 and I can’t figure out how to transfer that to me.  More time wasted in the Internet and phone calls to useless people who don’t know the complete answer. It worked in February with the same information, but that was February.  Facebook has changed. It had to.

My bank account is  in the negative. I have $30 dollars left on my EBT (Food stamps) until it’s reloaded on  7/5. I have no money for gas, my car insurance, my cell phone or my storage rent. In less than a month, I really won’t matter anymore.

This will be in reverse chronological order, accept for the last three days. It’s easier for my brain and I will try to be brief, because some of it is painful to remember. I will be updating. When I am finished, I will type so. First names only will be used, or an initial for a last name, to protect many from derision and hatred, others due to their generosity and kindness. The reader can be left to decide as they see fit. I live with the truth. No lies from me. I had plenty of those throughout my life. I hate liars, especially one very dead liar.

Yesterday, I spent hours on the phone, called so many agencies I lost track. My frustration and blood pressure just rising, I concluded that round until Tuesday. I had to request to transfer to Alameda County from Contra Costa County because CCC did nothing except administer my food stamps (Cal Fresh) and MediCal, which was a joke. Changed appointments because the doctor wasn’t doing clinic that day or other thing that was convenient for them and inconvenient for me. Or change an appointment booked months in advance and didn’t tell me there was a difference in entry after 5 pm. I missed that appointment. It wouldn’t have mattered. That doctor was cold and wooden. I have depression and we need to deal with that. Had she looked at my endless list of prescriptions, she would have seen I take one daily.

Let’s just drug her up until she’s unable to protest. Why diagnosis her, or what’s wrong with her brain? She isn’t smart enough to understand those complicated medical terms. What a waste of my time. That needy cretin on the government dole. Where does she think she is? Canada? Blah! Socialism. My mind comes up with doom and gloom a lot lately. Depression or blatant dismissal? I walked out on her. First time I’ve  time I have ever done that. I have always had a deep respect for doctors. She was a robot. There was no respect, just dealing with another appointment. That was Wednesday. I saw my therapist a least. We talk about my depression. Why wouldn’t I be? No one ever wants to find out what is wrong with my brain.

After that depressing instance with that destroyer of hope, I decided to search out another source recommended I by my friend Wy, a place called Axis. It’s part of Alliance (Alameda health group) I found out. I couldn’t get an appointment until after the 4th. Pleth. I would go to the emergency room, but not Contra Costa. ValleyCare in Pleasanton was the closest choice on Garmin so I took myself there

The nurse I encountered after check in was another disbelieving, but the doctor was not! Dr. Sabin, I think, or close enough. She listened, what a change. She heard me, my pain and confusion and the loss I was feeling. Depression is part of stroke, but she went through my box of pills and saw the mood stabilizer I was on and every other prescription and commented I was taking a lot. I know. I have to swallow them all and not choke or have one end up in a lung. How I eat about a meal a day out of necessity because I have no appetite or sense of thirst. She asked me if I produce saliva. No one has asked me that. I do, but I can go for hours, 16 so far, without drinking anything. But, I have to take pills and they don’t go down without water. Too dry, they’ll get stuck in my throat. I know when I need to drink, my mouth is dry and gummy and needs re-wetting. Something new I figured out today. No one has thought to ask me before.

That doctor caused me to think about a lot of things and what has and hasn’t happened. I need a professionals help and knowledge and it wasn’t something I was getting for the stroke, just everything else sort of. She ordered a CT scan of my head and neck, my neck hasn’t been considered in years, though it was important with the stroke. A key player, if you will. And I discovered that this was a Stanford University Medical Facility. Thank God, an organization that strives to provide patients with good resources so they can thrive and survive. I had a measure more in hope for the first time in almost 19 months. Good health care does make a difference.

After 7 hours I was released to return “home”. I saw a Social Worker who gave me numbers and information for housing. I was given the name of a neurologist Dr. Sabin had met and thought would be a good match. I was given a prescription for Aspirin and advised to have my medications reviewed due to chronic conditions, not stroke recovery. The CT scan was “clear” for anything new, but that would be discussed with a neurologist. But to return if anything changed or I became worse. I had the feeling they cared. That was amazing and what I needed.

I slept well Thursday night and without melatonin, my sleep aide since the stroke. Woke up early, at 8, and started my day. I decided to take my friends Wy’s advice and make a few phone calls. First, to a Social Security Advocate. Lordy, but that was interesting.il

I had come across a group in Minnesota who would help you file for Social Security. They did, but not much more. Wy had told me when she hired an Advocate, they coordinated her doctor’s appointments, got the correct paperwork directly from the medical providers to insure Social Security had a proper file to make an educated decision.  These people in Minnesota did nothing but send me stuff that needed to be completed like a Medical Source Screening or something. I had given them all the providers names and addresses, but I still had to get hem completed properly. Yeah, Contra Costa didn’t do that and this firm PDSL knew that, but did they say anything? Of course not. They couldn’t even keep track if whether they had called me or I had called them and when. For the record, I called them three times as much as they called me.

I wanted to fire them, but this woman I spoke with Friday told me how to do that and what they would do if I decided to hire them. What any advocate would do. I have to request they exit my case and send me the paperwork. That way, I can hire another attorney and they can take their place with no loss of time or position for me. Now we’re cooking with gas!

Their number has been saved in my contacts. I know who to call.

I then called PDSL and after being transferred to a few different people, I told them I wanted to exit out of our agreement, I wanted a letter and my file and how long would it take? I stayed on message, even with the questions. I repeatedly asked her when I would receive the exit letter, by email and regular mail. Within 5 business days? Yes to both? She was sure, otherwise I would report them to the appropriate authorities and write anyone who would be interested in the story.  Companies do hate bad press. She stuck with her assurances. I backed it up with an email.

Next – Contra Costa County and MediCal. That took longer by 4 hours.

The menu of choices and the voice prompts are endless and take 6:41 minutes to get through before you get to the right department. I sat on hold for a while, decided against that and left a request for a call back since I was 23rd in line. I went to fill the aspirin prescription, waited while it was filled, and they still hadn’t called back. It has been an hour. I called again, went through the prompts and was back on hold and I got disconnected. Call again, but I ended up with Spanish speaking, so I called back again and sat and waited in my car with the phone plugged into the charger. This time I was 32nd in line. I waited listened to every interruption that my call was important and they would get to me an quickly as possible. Uh-huh.

Contra Costa Health Plan person finally comes on the line. I inform her I want my coverage to be transferred to Alameda. Why? Oh honey. Why did you ask? For the first time since the stroke, my eloquent poison tongue came back to me. For any who know me, I politely and pointedly cut a grown man down without profanity or a voice of scorn until he was crying. A top producer who had called one of my loan processors a “cunt”. She didn’t deserve that, and either did this employee deserve the same disgust I had for him but it was close, especially when she gave me offices in Solano County. “I’m sorry, I may not have said it distinctly enough for you to understand. I said I was in Liv-er-more, not Fair-field. I can understand the confusion.” Oops, I’m sorry, I thought I heard Solano. Yeah, that sounds just like Alameda.

You know what else? They’re behind in their paperwork. I found that out when I asked how long take. 2 months. What! It’s one electronically, and it takes two months? Have they restarted the Pony Express via Alaska? That’s when I was told about their delay in paperwork. How does Contra Costa get anything done? Do they need to hire competent, educated workers for the jobs? Not by what I have experienced.

On Tuesday, I have an Ombudsman for Social Services I have to call. To make sure she did it and I can use services in Alameda. She did something in the system to make it known that I have a mailbox in Brentwood BECAUSE I AM HOMELESS. Something I couldn’t get anyone else to do. It’s factually correct and why would I want that?

***************************

I went to bed at 1 am something, slept fitfully, went to the bathroom 3 times and on the 4th trip pee’d myself, drank less than 8 oz. of water throughout my 14 hour sleep journey, had nightmares and finally got up at 5 pm to take my med’s and eat something  – a banana and 2 Keebler Elfwiches. Hey, it’s food and my blood sugar was at 89. It got me thinking on my little smoke excursion. Yes, I smoke. Used a credit card yesterday to charge 2 packs.

I have CalFresh/Food stamps/ EBT a month and that affords me $6.15 a day in 31-day month of food. When you are homeless, and you can’t buy prepared food or a microwave meal, that means going to the grocery store everyday to get fresh food. Fruit will last a few days if it’s not too hot, bread won’t mold that quickly unless it’s hot – like a car, cheese, yogurt, luncheon meat – a few days if it’s cold, but not cold enough so you die. And a diabetic trying to maintain her blood sugar? Hardly.

You could use Ramen – not exactly a nutritious source of calories. You need water and a microwave and just ignore the sodium and carbohydrates. All food that is bad for you is cheap. Does Panera or ToGo’s take EBT? Not that I’ve seen. Either does Dominoes or Jack in the Box, so I guess they’re equally bad.

And because my friend didn’t want to see me homeless, I have a place to sleep, use a bathroom and prepare food. I even get to partake in meals. Gee, what a concept. Breaking bread with a less fortunate. Where is a food kitchen? Does a homeless shelter provide more than one meal at a specific hour? If you couldn’t sleep, do you still have to leave at a certain time? So many questions and so few answers and I can’t handle all that. A person can barely handle it without part of their brain being dead. I’m thinking of it now, and I have  no pressure on me, someone asking questions and requiring short, concise answers. I end up crying in frustration and they end up frustrated and ignoring me since I’m taking so long and it must not be that important to me if   I’m just going to be emotional and wanting pity. You know that look when you’ve seen it enough times. I’ve seen it too much, and heard the requests to calm down with it.

I don’t know what else to do and I’m loosing everything. I want to live but that’s getting harder to do without accepting I will have nothing but my miserable life such as it is.

I propose the same question I did in a Facebook post from March – I would rather wrap my car around an isolated light pole than be harassed in my car, raped or killed because someone thinks I have something they want. At least it is my choice and no one else is harmed. No one should suffer because of me.

https://www.gofundme.com/wants-to-live&rcid=r01-152978358798-6be9cfcbb40b4730&pc=ot_co_campmgmt_w

Why Stroke is a Death Sentence

I have always tried to be an optimistic person. Hell, I had to be with to be with the Reaper’s Apprentice as my adopted mother. Anything I have told people about my life with her was “G” rated. I could never tell the whole truth, because who would believe me?

My friend Chris said she was Bat-Shit Crazy when we were 16. That became the easiest, and shortest, explanation I used the rest or her life. I even told her that when I was frustrated. She always said, “I’m not crazy. You are!” Yeah, well, I wasn’t a narcissist nor was I Bi-Polar nor did I refuse all medical help and I didn’t lie and say I had medical training, but she did. And I don’t care if I can’t prove it or have tests to back it up, but she was directly responsible for Dad’s death. She wanted me dead. To maintain her supremacy in her universe, all detractors had to be silenced.. Because she was going to live forever! Psycho-bitch. And men wanted to her at 85. She was sooo sexy! They would kill a fat piece of shit like me to get to her. A mother’s love. How warm and fuzzy.

Dad had a stroke. 1000’s of brain aneurysms over a few days because she insisted to his Alzheimer’s riddled PCP that he didn’t need it his blood thinning medication – his coumadin. His cardiologist said he had to take it for the rest of his life because of the pace maker, but he was on sabbatical (Doctors without Borders) and Mom didn’t like him because he had challenged her medical “credentials”, so out of site and out of reach  and she could get her way. And she did.

When I ended up living with her, she took all my medication and threw t hem out. Flushed down the toilet, threw it in the city trash can, nothing recoverable. My ex-husband and I were going through a divorce and my doctors were in Northern California. I was in Southern California because that is where the Sea Witch lived. She hated the sea, so not sea witch. She was more like a destructive dust storm, or an emotional vampire.  Technically, she was a succubus draining joy and happiness from everyone. Succubus hits more notes for me. I was “drug addicted” so she had to correct that. Drugs for Diabetes and Hypertension are so bad for you and are gateway drugs to Coke and Heroin after all.  See? Bat Shit Crazy Succubi.

So Dad had had the stroke. I walked in his shoes, in his shadow. I drove myself to the hospital, because those fuckers are expensive, not because I didn’t want to bring unwanted neighbor attention like Mom.  Besides, no one was home and I was alone as usual.

Those first few days after Dad’s stroke, the first few days after my own, I knew too well how he felt, what he thought, what he knew he was facing – his imminent death. Mom wasn’t around anymore and couldn’t do anything to halt my recovery, but his? She did everything to make sure the Hospice workers did nothing to help him, to help him towards recovery. I saw this for weeks. A week there, back to work and home for 10 days and back to SoCal to be with him. To watch over him. To talk with him and keep Mom from hovering and screaming at him to be normal. Never to help him, just to make sure no one did. For nearly 4 months. She insured he would die because she was bat shit crazy and he knew that. He told me  shortly before his stroke, “Mom isn’t well”. The code phrase I knew so well from hearing it over the years that there was something very wrong. He knew she had dementia. And he knew I would have to take care of her just as he had for over 40 years. She would be my burden now, just as he had warned me when I was 19.

Though he was in hospice, a death watch, she was convinced he would miraculously recover. They were going home to Norway! He promised! She wouldn’t allow the Hospice workers to perform therapy. Dad had difficulty swallowing, yet she made him food as if nothing had happened. He had to get up to go to the bathroom, yet he needed two people to get him out of his bed and to the small and narrow “water closet” type room that had the toilet. Dad would be “embarrassed” if he wet the bed. Any adult would. I know from personal experience. His stroke was right hemisphere too. Like father, like daughter.

Dad was in constant pain. His muscles were atrophying, shortening. The Hospice supervisor got a prescription for Morphine. Mom had a fit. No! They weren’t going to make him an addict! I was there that weekend. Dad and I could communicate, just as we had for years under her evil gaze. It was all in the eyes and facial expressions, which Dad could still manage with half a working face. So, as I sat there, holding his hand, I asked him, “Do you want me to put an end to this?” A very deep and solemn nod.

Mom was railing at the hospice supervisor in the Living Room and I went to put a stop to it. I went out there and said, “Dad has something he wants to convey. He wants his decisions to be understood.” Of course, Mom was shocked. “He won’t speak! You’re lying!” He did have difficulty speaking, but he could still think and communicate. Mom just never took the time to figure out how. She never did with either of us.

The woman came in and spoke directly to Dad, asked him if was comfortable. He gave “meh” lift to his shoulders, a lift to the corner of his mouth. But his eyes. They showed his pain, his thorough fatigue. He was physically and mentally done. He had been summarily tortured for 3 months. He managed to choke out a few words. My name and decision. I said, “Dad, do you mean me and I decide for you?” An emphatic deep nod of yes. He jerked his head right and said “NO!” Meaning, Mom couldn’t speak for him, that’s what the Supervisor asked. He kept shaking his head and repeating “no”. It broke my heart, made me cry, I hated her in that moment. It would worsen over time, but this was about Dad and I would protect him if I could – against her. She denied his wishes, saying he had no right. That I didn’t care. That I wanted him dead. No. I wanted him to know peace, something he had been denied for years.

I had to leave later that day, but Dad would receive care in unison with his condition. I had arranged over the weeks for a hospital bed, a portable commode, a walker, an oxygen machine, a humidifier. Whatever made it easier for him. We chatted, I often walked him to his car with the succubi perched in the only window with a front view. Remember “Bewitched? Gladys Kravitz? That was Mom’s nickname. I gave her that when I was a kid. Dad would chuckle, shake his head, and mutter an agreement. Admonish her when she would yell at me. “Gunn? You can’t take a joke? So he’s got a point. You’re nosey.” Not as much nosey as a menace. That’s another story for another time, but let’s just say, the police told Dad to control his wife. Ha!

I spoke to the cardiologist. He even came by to check on Dad, much to Mom’s consternation. When I asked told him I was going to file wrongly, death charges against Dad’d PCP, he looked sad and put his hands on my shoulders and said, “I will do all that I can, but you can’t do that because of your Mom.” At the time, I took it as concern for her. Now I know different. He knew the truth – the whole truth. She should have been locked away, like Manson. She was psychotic. Her family had no idea and didn’t want to know. Big Sis was happy in America! Yeah, she was happy.

I left latter that afternoon, sat with Dad for a few more minutes, quietly chatting. Dad had tinnitus, he wasn’t deaf.  If you spoke slowly and distinctly, he could understand you. Mom yelled. He couldn’t understand even then, I would translate in my quiet tone, looking at him directly, holding his gaze. I had done that for years. Even modulating my voice, making it deeper and easier for him to understand. That’s how I got my 3-octave range.  My stroke took that. I can’t sing anymore. But, I spoke to Dad. I told him I would be back in a few days, forour at most. I knew he was fading. He shook his head, said no. “I won’t be here”, he choked out. “Daddy, don’t say that. You can’t leave me yet!”, I cried.  He just shook his head, muttering no.  Then, he said, “I love you, Venke. Always.” I sobbed. I kissed his cheek, rested my head next to his, the closest I could do to a hug. Such moments were rare between he and I. Mom would get jealous, make noises, saying it was “improper”, commenting to me about it later. She was wrong. Always.

Those would the last words I would ever hear him say.

I had the long drive home, I managed it in about 7 hours. I got a call from the Hospice supervisor around 7:30 pm that night, Dad was in a lot of pain and really restless, would it be ok to give him a dose of morphine? If his doctor recommended it, of course. She would prescribe it at the doctor’s direction. Mom was interfering again.

I got home shortly before midnight, unpacked the car quietly as Kevin was asleep and hated to be woken up. I sank into bed and passed out.I was so tired and I had to be at work at 9 am.

At around 2 am, the house phone rang. I didn’t run to get it, voicemail would. I knew. That was Mom. I didn’t want to talk to her. I went to the house phone after a few minutes, dialed into voicemail, a hysterical Mom sobbing Dad was dead. He had died in his sleep. I had to come right away.

I called her back, told her I would drive back. She was still sobbing, telling me she couldn’t do this alone. I had to take care of everything. She didn’t know what to do. Yeah, I know.

I woke Kevin and told him. He gave me a hug, told me he would be done in a few days, but “work”. Yeah, I know. With barely 2 hours sleep, I hit the road. That is when the 5 became my trail of tears. I drove, finally watching the sun come up over the Basin. By the time I got to the house, the first time I came home and Dad wasn’t there for a quick hug and an air kiss, the coroner had been there and all the rented equipment had been removed. He had been cleared out, as if never there.

He was cremated. I still have his ashes. The final bill came from the hospital and we owed nothing.  Dad’s cardiologist had insured that Dad’s PCP retired, wouldn’t see patients again, his diagnosis made public.  He did more than I had hoped for.

A stroke is a death sentence when you are alone. Even more so when you have never had anyone who stood beside you when you couldn’t stand on your own. Just a hand reaching out to help you to your feet so you can take the first few steps back to the land of the living. I did that for Dad. Mom didn’t know how. She never let me morn him. He left her, after all, and he lived with that betrayal the rest of her life and blamed me for trying to steal him. I wasn’t really his daughter. I was a woman who wanted him – a man 46 years older than me. She was more than just cray-cray. She was evil incarnate.

That is what I live with everyday, every minute, every second. Living with the impact of a rare stroke and not getting the medical help I am entitled to has left me bitter and angry and so profoundly disillusioned. Especially after today. The LLC I contracted to help me get Social Security, I’m just a number they will earn 25% of what SS grants me when they give me the lump sum from the original application date to the approval date. What are they doing? Filing forms they legally need to as proof they were “working” and deserve that 25%. They do nothing else. I don’t have a person assigned to me. I just talk to whoever answers the call. They listen and say nothing until I sufficiently get it out of my system. They offer no advice, no words of encouragement. I could be talking to a robot. There is no difference.

I was told Social Security is taking 20 months for appeal hearings. Almost 2 years. Kinda like Contra Costa and Section 8 housing, but their waiting list is two years old just to be added. To put it simply – I’m screwed.

I’ve used that phrase a lot lately.

20 months until a hearing for SS to decide whether I’m disabled or not. The claims I’ve filed with the Medical and Nursing Board will have been investigated and may well be decided by then, because that shit is computer recorded and in ink -and blatant. But 20 months with just food stamps. No money for gas, no insurance for the car because no money, can’t take a bus because no money, so how do I get to the store?

I have a safe place to lay my head, shower, brush my teeth, use a toilet. It’s a home, but not mine. I am but a humble and very appreciative guest. They are not family. I explained this to the legal LLC, but I’m not homeless. I don’t qualify for an expeditious hearing. This is an accepted practice now? Expected? This is inhumane. A farce. A blot on our “system” of government. We’re not a shining city on a hill. We’re the trash heap behind those trees lining that exclusive golf club. And it’s in Palm Springs in August. Mmmmm. smells like something large and furry died.  Decomp is so memorable.  Ever driven by a skunk roadkill? Yeah, that smell, but so much worse.

That is what my life is like right now in a way any one can imagine. Dead skunk on steroids.

20 months I am supposed to live and exist in a borrowed space while my things are rotting and corroding? When I get SS, what happens? I get an apartment buy my furniture is rotted or moldy or unusable, so I have to buy new stuff. Where? Goodwill? Salvation Army? St. Vincent de Paul’s? Cruise curb dumps for decent finds? Dumpster dive?

I’ll be dead, because why would I want to live through that just to live? With nothing? Over a stroke that I shouldn’t have survived? Some care enough to step up and help me, but I know plenty of people who will become an obnoxious nuisance if you use illegal alien instead of undocumented resident. Get bent out of shape and use insulting tones, even inferring you’re ignorant and deserved to be dismissed. They take on that righteous cause, but use their voice, their soapbox, to help another human being they know and spent time with? Too busy or not important enough to pause their knitting or spinning or bitching about some other topic that is important and has bent their pique? Cry me a river, darlin’. Ignorant snowflake.

I have known selfish people. and some very beautiful selfless people. I have been honored to be friends with the selfless ones. Knowing them enforces my belief that kindness and respect  are the only human traits that we can share that prove we are the same and equal.

20 months. It could be 2 years – 2020 – before I see a possible resolution and I can access a system I worked and had money put into since I was 16. I had the stroke on November 29, 2016 and it won’t be adjudicated until June 2020 at the earliest? And I can’t qualify for a home because I can’t work and SS hasn’t determined I am disabled? Why live?

This is a lonely existence. It’s been that way for years. I can’t do it anymore.

I leave the link again, because I can’t believe my life has no meaning. If nothing else, I am a voice for all those who have no voice, who are ill and homeless and have no one.  I’m one of them. It needs to change. The United States should never treat their citizens like this. Not when we’ve lived here our whole lives, born on this soil under this Flag, pledging our allegiance to a failing and toxic political process.

https://www.gofundme.com/wants-to-live&rcid=r01-152905179688-b964707c279e4c74&pc=ot_co_campmgmt_w