Wednesday, February 28, 2007

We interrupt our regularly scheduled programming...

OK, no bashing me on spelling this time. I'm typing this directly into Blogger, which doesn't have spell check, and I'm too lazy to dig out the dictionary for words of which I'm unsure. So if I "party" for "partly" or "rejuvanate" for "rejuvenate", you guys are just going to have to forgive me.

No big entry tonight with continuing details about our reproductive life. It's late, I'm tired, and I didn't feel like rambling on about my lethargic ovaries this evening. Instead, I drove two hours south to have dinner with one of my BFF, Louis. (Is it ok to say "BFF" when you're talking about a guy, or is that a little lame and girly?) Louis and I have been friends since we were eleven .... since that fateful, pre-destined day in the sixth grade when he first transfered to our school, and was the shy, skinny new kid with glasses, and being the obnoxious tattletale concerned classmate I was, I let him know that Ryan Helms and Roby Mason were planning to beat the crap out of him at recess.

So pretty much, for the past thirty years, Louis has owed me his life. Which I remind him of every time I see him. However, since we live nine hundred and fifty miles apart, it doesn't happen often enough. He was in Florida on business this week, so he drove two hours up and I drove two hours down just so we could meet in the middle for dinner. AND, he offered to share his dessert with me. Is that a BFF, or what?

Normally I let him pay back his eternal debt and gratitude for saving his sixth-grade hide by letting him buy drinks, but not tonight. PartLy because I donated blood today and the technician told me no alcohol for 48 hours, and partLy because last I heard, the highway patrol frowns upon drinking and driving. And rumor has it that you can't get Diet Dr. Pepper in jail, so there is no WAY I'm going there!

So instead, I'll post and ask for positive thoughts for Blaine and me tomorrow. I think, finally, at long last, the shit has hit the fan and Blaine has reached his limit.

Remember the shoulder thing? The mass in his shoulder, and the fact that ever since his surgery in Seattle, he hasn't been able to raise his arm? And how his PCM (primary care manager) had no idea, so ordered a ultrasound, cat scan, and MRI, all of which were inconclusive? So he authorized a referral to a surgeon, who Blaine saw two weeks ago. (I'm not even sure if I posted about this part .... I was too busy getting started with the never-ending post about my fertility-drug-induced hot flashes and mood swings) Anyway, the surgeon took one look at the mass in his shoulder, said, "Yes, that's indeed bizarre. I have no idea. But, I'm not the person you should see. I'm a *general* surgeon. I think you need to see an *orthopedic* surgeon. Thank you. Good day."

So we waited two weeks for ANOTHER referral to an orthopedic surgeon, who Blaine saw today. He looked at Blaine's cat scan and MRI results, examined his shoulder, and said, "Yes, that's indeed bizarre. I have no idea. And SINCE I have no idea, we are going to go on the assumption that your head and neck cancer has mestastisized and you now have lung cancer. The bottom of your shoulder is technically the top of your lungs. I want you to have a bone scan and get pictures of your lungs immediately. Thank you. Good day." And Blaine was left standing there, thinking, "What? Did that guy just say lung cancer???? Is he freaking kidding me???"

Now, I'm sure this doctor is a go-to orthopedic surgeon, and if I ever have tennis elbow, or a nice, juicy ACL tear that needs repairing, he'll be the one I call. But it bothers me that he sort of, psuedo, unoffically diagnosed Blaine with lung cancer considering ..... a) he is not an oncologist, b) he is not a lung doctor, c) they haven't done any tests yet, and d) well, for goodness sake, even if we don't believe it to be true doesn't mean we want to hear those words said out loud!

And this was pretty much the point today where Blaine said: "I. HAVE. HAD. IT."

Currently, he has nine different doctors, treating him for all different things. His pain management specialist, his oral surgeon, his head and neck surgeon, his oncologist, his psychologist, the new pain psychologist they are sending him to, his prosthodontist, this new, orthopedic surgeon /slash/oncologist /slash/lung doctor, plus his primary care manager who is supposed to be coordinating all this. His orthopedic surgeon wants these tests done asap; he has an appointment in Seattle on Monday to meet with his head and neck surgeon to see how the surgical sites (head and arm) are healing from his surgery last Nov, and he's slated to meet with his oncologist (also in Seattle) to get another MRI done to make sure his head and sinus area is still cancer-free. He has an appointment on Thursday at Fort Gordon to meet with his oral surgeon to see how the posts and implants they just put in are healing . Blaine's excited to work with the prosthodontist because that means he'll be on his way to having teeth again. Oh, and did I mention that they're sending him for sleep study next week because he's still only sleeping a few hours each night due to pain? Cue pain psychologist.

So I think the lung cancer comment today was the final straw and Blaine decided he was tired of having thirty-seven chefs in the kitchen. Only they're in kitchens all over the country. And none of them know what the others are doing. And they just keep throwing shit in the pot and stirring. (I know, that's a lousy analogy, but its after midnight and I'm sleepy.) So he called his PCM and apparently left a very nasty voice mail for the nurse .... which, if you know Blaine, know how extremely out of character that is for him. But it must have had the desired effect, because they called back and said he has an appointment tomorrow morning at nine "to discuss things."

There's a phrase used in the military .... cluster-fuck: Definition as follows: "Miltary term for a situation caused by too many inept officers, cluster referring to the insignia worn by Majors and LT. Colonels, oak leaf clusters. 'The planning for this operation was a complete cluster fuck.' "

Not very polite, but to the point. Blaine's medical care has turned into a cluster-fuck. I truly believe he has nine competent, caring doctors (in fact, a few of them are practically saints, as far as we are concerned and we do believe we owe one or two of them Blaine's life) but we are sick and tired of the right hand not knowing what the left hand is doing. It's time for somebody to put a stop to the cluster fuck and get this mess straightened out.

Hopefully we'll be doing that at 9am tomorrow. Wish us luck.

PS. If you really, really, badly want to tie this into the previous infertility entries, I'm pretty sure there's a joke to be made somewhere about the shoulder mass being nothing more than wear and tear on an over-developed rotator cuff from all the "deposits" Blaine had to make all those years. But I'm too lazy to find the joke.

63 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hoping and praying you get nothing but good (and conclusive) news tomorrow!!

California Friend said...

Ditto what anonymous said; With all you've been through, I don't know how you guys have done it without going totally crazy. Love & prayers from California.....

Pat

Jeri from hawaii said...

Blane has the patience of a saint, so I can imagine that it must be a little unsettling for him to FINALLY reach his limit - something the rest of us mortals would have done long ago!

Thanks for the definition of cluster fuck - a phrase I have used many times in the past...but in all honesty I can say I never really gave any thought to the cluster as reference to the gold & silver (Major & Lt Col) insignia. Nice to have that piece of trivia tucked away for future use.

Of course I will be praying that all goes well tomorrow and that Blaine most certainly does NOT have lung cancer. And pox on the ortho guy and his lousy bedside manner.

Lisa said...

Hugs to you all. I've never heard of the expression you used but I *can*relate to it with my own husband and my heart goes out to you all for the frustration, fear, out of control and downright angry it makes you feel when a group of specialists in different areas seem completely unable to sing from the same hymn sheet. Complete and utter hugs for you all. Love and prayers for today - whatever the outcome you will cope. Lisa

Diana said...

Just wanted to say GOOD LUCK! I truly hope good things come out of this "discussing things." You have all been through SO much and it can never be said enough how amazing you all are for getting through it with humor! Sending lots of love and good wishes your way!

kim said...

DOCTORS! Gotta love 'em, huh? Please know that, here in MN, there is a person with crossed digits trying to hold a rabbit's foot while praying wildly, at the time of your appointment this morning. I cannot even begin to imagine the way Blaine feels; how much does the poor guy have to go through!! I CAN sort of imagine how you feel, Kristie, and it isn't good and it isn't easy. That's why I am SO GLAD you were able to meet up with BFF Louis last night. How cool is it that he was in a place where meeting up was possible, at a time when you needed a BFF!! CO-INKY-DINK? I THINK NOT! For today, just know that all of your blog BFFs across the land are "here" for you. Please update us when you can...

KirstyB said...

Oh. My. Gosh. You guys have just been through the ringer and back when it comes to Blaine's care. Huge, HUGE hugs from Ohio...really hoping that you can get things figured out with his PCM today...or, at least, hit them all with a clue by four!! HUGS!!

Anonymous said...

I'm so sorry you have all been pulled in so many directions! We'll be praying you get info that is both organized and good. Certainly too many cooks in the cluster fucked kitchen!

Meg

Ginny Deegan, Mtn. Home AFB said...

Wow...definitely way too many cooks in the kitchen! I hope Blaine's PCM is able to get some things sorted out tomorrow and maybe, hopefully, offer some answers. You guys have been waiting for what seems like forever to find out exactly what this mass is. How horrible of that doctor to say he has lung cancer without any test results saying so. You will be in my thoughts and prayers.

On a lighter note...my husband, who is also in the Air Force, says cluster-fuck all the time. I had no idea that is what the "cluster" refers to. To be honest, I don't think he does either. LOL I think it's just something he's heard and now repeats. That phrase sure fits with Blaine's many doctors!

Kristin Hicks said...

I hope Blaine sets his PCM straight today and they are able to help him get what he needs. My prayers will be with you guys, especially at 9 a.m. this morning.

By the way, being the military brat I am, cluster-fuck was used by my dad on occasion and he was a Major :0). He must have meant the Lt. Col. definition of it when he used it. :0) I was taught it by him and have used it in my adult life on occasion. Love the word. I've never heard that explanation of it.

Kristin in NC

Pamela Earley said...

Ditto on the first comment posted. Sending you all prayers, good vibes, crossed fingers, and what ever else we can think of. Shoot - we'll sacrifice a chicken if you thought that would help.

Praying for you all.

JoAnn from MN said...

Interesting....my husband sometimes uses the term "clusterfuck" when describing situations related to work. Now I can impress him with exactly where the word originated because I am certain he has no clue.

Please, please keep us posted. I read every single day but don't always respond. Blaine is in my prayers. He truly deserves a break and I will be praying in earnest that he can get out off this hellish hamster wheel and get some answers. Thinking of you both.

Two Kids and a Husband said...

Oh Gosh...I really really hope that it is something super easy and not anywhere close to cancer....Like maybe a cyst or maybe his joint is out a bit?? I don't know but I am praying for you... you guys have been through enough stuff already...time for a break...Julie

Jen from WI said...

Keeping you in my prayers.

Anonymous said...

Being a retired military wife, I would say the use of the term cluster-fuck is very appropriate here. I cannot believe what y'all have been through! I can't believe that ORTHOPEDIC surgeon would even mention the words "lung cancer" to you without running tests and/or sending you to a more appropriate doctor for a real diagnosis. Maybe things will finally begin to get straightened out after your meeting this morning. Prayers are with you both!!

Gayle from AL

Simply Jenn said...

I don't even know what to say, but my thoughts and prayers are with your family. I think most people's breaking points would have been reached years ago. You and your family really are inspirational, and I don't mean that in the geeky way that it sounds.

Anonymous said...

Geez Louise, guys...Saying a prayer for you both.

Cheryl
Warner Robins

Tracy said...

It is 9:30 am and I am hoping that you and Blaine are getting some answers to all of your questions. Saying prayers that everything will come together.

Sarah said...

Again. Wow.

The ortho surgeon needs a good reality check. Up. Side. His. Head.

I hope the pain pscyhologist will take Blaine's pain seriously and not try to pull the "it's all in his head crap" that some people try to pull.

And right now you are at the doctor and I hope and pray that the PCM will pull everything together and get ya'll some answers. Blaine must be very patient. By now, I would have done some sort of public destruction of property. *Well, probably not, but I would have FELT like it.*

Eliza said...

I've rarely signed in (a true testament to my selfishness) but today, I'm wishing you both the biggest hugest luck in getting Blaine's medical care sorted out so that HE is the one being taken care of and not the mismanagement of his care.

And I certainly hope mr. orthopedic guy was smoking something.

Renee said...

WTF???????????????????????

Anonymous said...

By now you have hopefully seen the dr, and may still be in the office. I am sending good thoughts your way for only good, CONCLUSIVE news! Poor Blaine, after all this I think I would have reached the breaking point a long time ago. He is definitely patient to have put up with it for this long. Anyway, good luck today!

Trisha

Amy said...

Oh Gosh. My heart just goes out to you guys!!! That ortho sounds alot like the PA who diagnosec my hubby, the known cardiac patient complaining of arm pain ESPECIALLY left arm pain, with carpal tunnel of the elbows! Unfortunately, my sweet hubby died 15 hours later. My faith in the medical profession is pretty much nil at this point, but I sure am sending up prayers for you guys, cuz Lord knows you deserve to have an accurate diagnosis and plan of care. Give 'em hell Blaine!!!
Hugs to all of you and I'll be praying.

Amy
www.caringbridge.org/visit/gerryheidt

Lisa said...

Forget the book, Kristie. I see a movie deal in your future.

Here's hoping and praying Blaine gets good news today and gets off this rollercoaster he's been on lately.

Briana said...

Praying that all goes well today and that Blaine can finally find someone who can figure out what is going on with his shoulder. And praying even harder that it's NOT lung cancer.

Anonymous said...

I am with Renee'! WTF???!!! I do hope that today gets at least a new PCM for Blaine. I don't like him or this new surgeon for that matter. They both piss me off! You tell them that too...that should really get them moving! WE are thinking of you guys. I will call you later. Enough is enough!
xoxoKim

Stephanie Hain KCMO said...

Kristie, I'm praying for Blaine's recovery, and truly - that these doctors will get in sync and fast.

Sue said...

I'll be thinking of you and Blaine all day today. Good luck getting this whole situation sorted out with the PCM! There has got to be a better way to handle all of this!

Sue (ALL-Kids)

Andrea said...

Oy, that sucks. I hope things get straightened out at the morning appointment. I only know the tip of the iceberg when it comes to frustration with medicine because last fall it took three months and about fifteen different tests for my gastro doc to figure out my abdominal problems were due to a failing gallbladder. I cannot imagine that multiplied by nine doctors and a much more serious diagnosis. Praying for you.

P.S. here from Mom's Daily Dose and hooked on your fertility/parent journey. I only just saw in your header the part about your daughter and husband having cancer. You've been through it, haven't you? So unfair.

All-Kids friend said...

Hi Kristie,

I hope you get good news today and at least get sent to The Right Dr. Praying that it is NOT CANCER.

Hugs,
Machelle Johnson,

Anonymous said...

Kristie and Blaine,

Praying you get some answers and some solutions today.
Claire

Anonymous said...

Praying for a PLAN.
Susan

Liz in Sumner said...

Praying for good news and not bad....are you both coming up here? Need a ride from SeaTac to UW hospital?? Just email me - flakeyjakester@comcast.net.

katy said...

I think everyone who signed is on the same wavelength so I will just so ditto........hopefully someone will have the sense to send Blaine for tests TODAY so he can know what he is dealing with and not have to sit around for days and wonder

katy said...

OK......just SAY ditto, not so...my mom is an English teacher so I still have that little bit of rebellion going on at 40!

Anonymous said...

Thinking of you guys today. Please let us know what they say...thinking good thoughts for you.

Katy

Tracy Stanley said...

Oh my goodness! I have so been enjoying the ongoing saga of your attempts to become parents that I had somewhat forgotten about poor Blaine. You and he are definitely in my prayers. I'm hoping you get some real answers -- and that the answers are GOOD!

Lisa in Hamilton, OH said...

You know I will be praying for you and for Blaine...these Drs need to stop cluster fucking around and get this figured out!!

Lisa from Hawaii said...

I think Renee said it...WTF????

Keeping you all in my thoughts and prayers!!

Lisa H.

Tracy said...

Just checking back to see how everything went. Thinking of you and Blaine.

Anonymous said...

I must agree with WTF???!!
I went to this site today hoping to get my fill of the next baby-making chapter but instead here I sit depressed, confused and bewildered for you. I hope all went well at the doctors appt. and when you have the time...update us, especially on Blaine.
Kristina
Ohio

Marisa said...

Prayers for Blaine and the whole family.

Anna in IL said...

I am extremely familiar with the term "clusterfuck," and I would agree, it seems to cover this situation to a "T."

Praying that the upcoming appointments give positive, all-clear, live-a-normal-life answers.

Rena' said...

WTF!!!!!! Thinking of you all. Hope you got some answers in this morning meeting.

Connie F-G said...

After 18 years of marriage to an AF officer I have to admit I haven't heard your phrase! We've been through those ranks too. I'll have to ask Danny about them. I can think of a few other phrases for all those cooks you've been dealing with in all those kitchens and I hope you get some changes made.

Praying for a postive outcome on the multiple doc situation and the shoulder hump.

Hugs,

erunginung said...

Sending prayers and thoughts your way, Kristie.

Anonymous said...

Your family is in my heart, and I'm praying for good results today. Seriously, praying to God Almighty to spare you. Never met you in person but love you anyway. Hugs.

Claire in Indiana

Anonymous said...

I sure hope the cluster**** goes away and stays gone. Prayers for all of you.
warmly,
Debbie E.

Denise Ward said...

I'm praying that Blaine's appointment will go well and that he'll only receive good news for a change. I also pray that all these doctors can get on the same page and clarify everything that's been going on so that you all have a definite answer about the shoulder. It sounds like a recurring nightmare, to say the least. My husband, who's a Canadian army brat, hadn't heart of the "cluster fuck", so your entry proved to be educational, as well.

Anonymous said...

Hey Kristie and Blaine, by now it's a little after 3 in your neck of the woods so I hope that you have gotten some kind of news. Hopefully of the good kind. I don't know how you have endured throughout all this "stuff".

Would offer a ride from Sea-Tac to the hospital but suspect you have other plans. Be grateful you aren't here today, we have 5 inches of snow at our house. Lovely to look at but.............

Wishing, hopeing, and praying for answers and a plan for the mysterious bump.

Also never knew what the definition of "cluster fuck" was. Thanks! And take care, Elaine from Lynnwood, WA

Anonymous said...

Oh good God. I don't have time to read the comments, so if I repeat other people, I am so sorry.. I check in daily with you, and have since I found Kendries site two or three years ago. You usually make me laugh out loud (I am usually more of a 'chuckler', so that's unusual) but today, I cried. Actually cried. You have all just been through enough already, and I can't imagine how scary this is. But.. I will pray that the doctor is wrong wrong wrong, and that this is something easily fixed AND NOT CANCER. There. is. just. no. way.

Please update soon, I am flying to see my mom in SC, and she doesn't have a computer (can you imagine?) so I'll be Kristie free for the next six days...

You're all in my prayers.

Rosemary from Albany NY

Marcia said...

You guys have been in my thoughts and prayers all day. I've checked in about 5 times for an update. Hopefully you got some good answers today!

Anonymous said...

Dear Kristie,
I'm praying that all goes well tomorrow for Blaine. I pray that a correct diagnosis is made for his shoulder and that it will be nothing to do with cancer. I'm so sorry that he is going through so much, it's awful. I hope and pray that he can stay strong and get well again.
Take care both of you,
Love Angela

Naidne said...

Allow me to interject a few more colorful military expressions for you... I believe SNAFU ("situation normal, all f***ed up") and FUBAR ("F***ed up beyond all recognition") also apply to this cluster-fuck of a situation. I'm sending you good thoughts, and I'm preparing your DDP drip, Kristie.

Cathy M said...

Once again I have to say....I can't believe this!!! That ortho must have a ginormous set of balls to say something like that. Lung cancer.....no way....it can't be.
I'm keeping everything crossed that I possibly can and sending lots of positive thoughts your way.
I can send a jumbo box of Hello Kitty bandaids your way. They fix everything at school!!
Hope you get some answers soon!
Love and lots of prayers from Suwanee.....

Cathy

ProBagLady said...

Just sending all the good mojo - thoughts - prayers - and any other good stuff I can muster...

With Faith, Hope and abundant Love,
Sherrill
"The Mile High City"

Leeann said...

What a giant load of shit. Blaine has been through enough and I pray to God that whatever you guys have found out and ever find out again is nothing but positive news. I am concerned you haven't posted yet but hopefully it is a no news is good news scenario.
I will definitely be hopping on and off the site til I find out the latest news.
Big hug to Blaine.

Clara Zimmerman said...

I have been thinking about you all today. I hope things were conclusive, finally. Take care.

Megan said...

I dont even know what to say about this. I just hope that the Dr. is a complete dumb ass and no clue what the hell he is talking about. Seriously, you dont ASSUME about something like cancer. I have been thinking about you guys all day, let Blaine know I am thinking of him and wishing him well and that he proves that Dr. is a big giant dumb ass!

I love you guys,
Megan

Care said...

I hope the appointment went well today - and better yet that you got some answers. Good answers. Not this inconclusive crap. Your family will be in my prayers.

Anonymous said...

Kristie and Blaine,
I have just now read the update from last night.
Sending prayers and good thoughts that this is just a HUGE mis-intrepretation of the tests and data.
I still think something happened in the last surgery, right when he noticed the "lumpy thing" and couldn't move his arm.
Tons of hugs coming your way!....Reg

Sarah said...

Sending many prayers upward to the Big Guy for you and Blaine!! I hope that by now you have seen the coordinator and have some answers!!

Sarah

Sherri in NC said...

Sending nothing but good thoughts your way today Kristie. Hope to hear some good news from today's appointment. Your family could certainly use a break in this roller coaster ride you've been on for so long.

Sherri in NC