November 28th, 2017

Me 2012

So Much Adulting

I won Nanowrimo on Sunday. I made a point of getting it done then, because this week marks the beginning of a new stage of augh so much doctoring in the cancer-treatment process. I am not going to go over it all right now. It's pretty much two solid months of stress and horrible, compounded by my job previously telling me that I could not take unpaid time off and by me being too low on PTO for all the free time the doctors expect me to donate.

This will be managed. Probably by spending a lot of money. -_-

So I started Monday morning by calling Snake n' Rooter to have them install a replacement shower head, and a replacement garbage disposal. The big disadvantage to garbage disposals is that when they stop working, which they will, you can't just go back to not having one. It messes up the drain flow and you end up with rotting food stinking up the kitchen.

The shower head I could've replaced myself, but I figured I would be lazy and have the plumber do it since I needed to call one anyway. Garbage disposals are complicated.

I told the plumbing service that I was available 8-11AM and after 3:30. Lut had an appointment at 12:45 and I wanted the plumber to have time to get both done before we left. They called back almost immediately, and said they'd send someone after 3:30.

After that, I called the disability check people to get a debit card set up for Lut. Their voice mail did not have an option for "get a debit card" or "talk to a person", although the website promised the former. I tried "send your payment to a debit card" and this got me to a human. Miraculously, I did have all the information they wanted for the debit card. So I got that set up, and the rep told me, "You will get the card in 4-6 weeks and after that it'll take a month or two until the disability payments are sent to it, so he'll get 2-3 more checks."

We haven't cashed the checks he has gotten so far. You can't endorse disability checks to someone else, so I can't deposit them in my account. Lut's driver's license expired in 2015, so he doesn't have photo id. I asked the rep if we can put the existing checks on the debit card when it arrives. Rep: "No! But any bank will cash them, even if he doesn't have an account. They're federal checks."

I told Lut, "We need to get you a valid id. We should do this today, if the DMV will take your old driver's license as proof of id to give you a new non-driver's id. Before your appointment because we won't have time afterwards."

So Lut got in the shower while I went online to see what he needed. A birth certificate, which we didn't know where it was, and proof of residency, which the uncashed checks should work for. It didn't say about using an expired ID to get a new ID. I called, and it went to voice mail, so I left a message. I sent a message through the online form, too.

I told Lut that I wasn't going to drag him to the DMV until I knew whether or not this would work. At 10:30, I got a call from the plumbing service: "We have someone who should be able to get there in 20-25 minutes, which is right at the end of your window, I know ... "

I said okay; it didn't seem likely that the DMV would get back to me in time for us to get a new ID anyway.

At 11:15, I figured the plumber wasn't coming and turned on the dishwasher.

At 11:30, the plumber showed up, and I turned off the dishwasher so he could work. It took him 20 minutes to install the shower head. By 12:30, he'd managed to get the old garbage disposal uninstalled. I shrugged and left him there alone to finish it. I think the chances a guy from a service would steal from me are near-zero. The main disadvantage is that there is a much better chance that some seldom used thing will turn up missing and I will wonder "Was it him?" -_- Even though it won't be.

Appointment went as normal. Lut's platelets are up for a change. \o/ But his white blood cell count is still down. Welp. They gave him his chemo shot. Next week will probably be the last of those, as he's going to the care of the bone marrow transplant team instead.

At 2:15 (!) the plumber called to let me know he'd installed the garbage disposal and .. the plumbing part worked? "It ran for half a second and then stopped. I think there's a problem with the switch. I'm very sorry, but I'm not an electrician."

Me: sor that's $400 to not fix the problem ARGH.

After finishing with cancer center, we went home to wait for the social worker. She showed up a little after 4, instead of at 3:30. We filled out the Medicaid app and assembled what we could of supplemental documents they'd want. They wanted a birth certificate too. Social worker: "You can order one online for $31.50 and it'll arrive in a few days."

So after she Ieft, I started to apply for a birth certificate online. This went smoothly for several steps. Then it asked me for his parents' full names.

Lut's father deserted the family when he was seven.

"... do you know your father's full name?"

Lut: "Nope."


Next plan: tear house apart looking for birth certificate.

Lut thought it was probably in the four cubic feet of solid paper jammed into the two drawers near his computer. I pulled out ALL the papers. I dumped 2/3rds of them in his lap, and took the rest -- most of the folders and envelopes and stuff -- into the living room to look through.

Fifteen minutes later, I actually found it.

*does all the happy dances*

After this, I decided to cook dinner. Once in the kitchen, I realized I'd never re-started the dishwasher, and flipped the switch for it.

Nothing happened.

I fiddled with knob and dishwasher lock a few times, and then started cursing the plumber roundly for not only not getting me a working dishwasher but also breaking my dishwasher.

Then I decided that, before I finished freaking out and exploded on the phone at the service, I would check to see if dishwasher & garbage disposal had their own circuit and it had flipped.

It had.

I went back upstairs and dishwasher worked again.

After the dishwasher finished, I tried the garbage disposal switch.

Nothing happened.

Oh well. I flipped it on and off a few times because why not --

-- and on the sixth flip it ran.


It's run a couple of times since so ... maybe it works fine now? I got nothin'.

I wrote a few hundred words in what was left of the evening, and talked to John on the phone for a bit, and played a few games with Terrycloth. Then went to bed early because Lut had a super-early appointment downtown.

Google said the drive would take 21 minutes. I alloted 45. It took 28 to get to the hospital, 3 to find parking, and 12 to get from the parking spot to the actual office where the appt was. So we got there about 2 minutes early.

And then they asked if we'd gotten paperwork in the mail to fill out. x_x

So we filled out 20 pages of new paperwork and saw the two youngest and most attractive doctors I've ever met. They were rehab specialists, and did lots of tests on Lut's reflexes/strength/sensitivity etc. He was feeling pretty good this morning, and did fairly well on the tests. The doctors gave some advice on exercising more (this is becoming critically important to Lut's chances here.) And they cleared him to continue with the bone marrow transplant process. \o/

Afterwards, Lut managed the walk back to the car. I took him home, went to work, and mailed in the Medicaid application.

I still have to mail the social security disability people about why he only gets $30. And get Lut a state id. But these things are fairly straightforward, at least. I might have to take a long lunch to get the state id settled, but I can stay late. Shouldn't need any more time off this week.

And this afternoon at work, my boss got back to me and said I can have unpaid time off as necessary. YAY!

Next week will be harder, but we will persevere.

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