Log in

No account? Create an account

Previous Entry | Next Entry

The State of the Union(less)

Hello my most surprising internet friends

As many of you may know, On Tues, February 23rd I became so ill that I was hospitalized. My feet legs and midsection were swelling with water. A nagging cough that had been hanging on for a month turned into a relentless dry hacking and I lost the ability to travel even short distances without needing to sit down to calm my breathing

after 3 days of observation I have been sent home with an Easter basket of medications. Looking over them all It's hard to say what they think I got. No doctor ever came forward and said "THIS one thing" was the culprit. We know my heart is big and floppy, possibly from years of stress deadlines and High Blood pressure, or just as likely for a guy my age - it's a virus. They don't know.

Now at home the swelling is down, but is still being controlled with "water pills" that are supposed to make me pee like a race horse. The Dry hacking cough has turned "flemmy" which I prefer -- get the stuff out of me I say -- but it's also more painful. I have a basket of Meds for Blood pressure, Cholesterol, Borderline Diabetes, and Antibotics, flu shots, N1H1. I got it all. Maybe one will do the trick -- if not back to the hospital I go. I guess.

<SOAP BOX>There is no union for a guy like me, A freelance artist. There is no easy 401K, no dental, no health care. All Eli and I have is our diligent  scrimping and saving of every dime to plan for a future.

This one stumble could undo all of our hard work. Why? Because how the American system has chosen to take care of each other in this country is so fundamentally broken, it's like a Greek tragedy. Call/Write to your Senator or Congress Person and tell them that we can not continue to live this way. What is the United States of America if not the largest trade union on the planet? WE the people need that bargaining power. -- Universal Health Care - for all.</SOAP BOX>

What I wanted to talk about was you guys. Oh my god. the outpouring of love and support I have received in the past three days has me on the verge of tears. You are all such beautiful awesome people, and I can not thank you enough. Money has been coming in from the Donation Link that the Foglios set up. Which will go a long way to prevent my total financial collapse. I truly feel like George Baily at the end of "It's a Wonderful Life" surrounded by so many friends. It's a lonsome life as a freelance artist. And you seldom get a chance to see what kind of an effect you have on other peoples lives. Thank you all so much



( 26 comments — Leave a comment )
Feb. 26th, 2010 11:11 pm (UTC)
Chey - there is an ongoing thread for Girl Genius discussion in the Other Media forum at RPG.net, and of course folks there have expressed their concern for you (they've suggested sending you a "Glad You're Not Dead" card ;P). May I link or copy this entry to that thread for the folks there?
Feb. 26th, 2010 11:16 pm (UTC)
yes please. It's only here on LJ (the system I use the least) as it's actually the best suited for a long winded post -- such as mine
Feb. 26th, 2010 11:23 pm (UTC)
Thanks, I've copied it over there. Oh, and I was wrong, it's "Get Well Since You're Not Dead."

Since what I tell you three times is true, I'll add this one more time for good measure - please let L and I know if we can help in any way at all.
Feb. 26th, 2010 11:14 pm (UTC)
I'm so relieved you are at home and starting to improve. Hopefully they can come up with a long term diagnosis and remove any unnecessary medications.

I will continue to pray for your health, as the world needs more of your amazing creations! Also sending prayers of strength for you both as you sort out the financial repercussions.

Hooray for the Foglios for starting this fund for you, and thank you for mentioning it. I'm adding the link here for folks so they don't have to go look for it:

Feb. 26th, 2010 11:14 pm (UTC)

I'm coming over tonight, btw. Mostly to visit the cat. :D Hahaha! Kidding. You know he's dead to me!
Feb. 26th, 2010 11:16 pm (UTC)
Oh, and . . .
I am so fucking glad that you're doing better. I hope to hell that something in your Cornucopia of MedsTM will turn out to be the magic bullet that fixes you up.
Feb. 26th, 2010 11:19 pm (UTC)
Dearest Cheyenne, you have me on the verge of tears. Please take care of yourself, listen to your doctors, and rest. I will get another little donation out to you when my bank account gets a transfusion. It's not much, but I hope it helps. Take care of yourself - you are irreplaceable.~Flora
Feb. 26th, 2010 11:47 pm (UTC)
[impulsively hugs Cheyenne] I've been sharing the updates from you and Kaja on Plurk, where there's been active concern and wellwishing from people who might never try to contact you directly. There's a lot of people rooting for your recovery.
Feb. 26th, 2010 11:53 pm (UTC)
I'm SO glad that you are out of the hospital and hope it doesn't turn out to be Congestive Heart Failure. I know someone struggling with that right now, and it's no fun.

I have one of my bags set aside to auction off for you as money is tight for me right now.

Hospitals suck.
Feb. 27th, 2010 12:27 am (UTC)
I am SO glad you're okay - you had me worried a bit there! I am in the same boat as you, so although I wish I could give now, I can't. :( So I am applying for SSI since I have a *pre-existing* mental condition to back it up with, one the psychs have been studying for years - ADHD. (Some days, it's not fun; others - I make people laugh.) I'll probably be refused, but we're getting a lawyer to help me out since FL right now (work-wise) is an *employer's* market.

Any road --I'm glad you're getting better, and think of it this way: next time you go out for groceries, you'll know every single public bathroom 'tween your house and there! ;) Besides, this world needs more people like you - different IS good! *hugs*
Feb. 27th, 2010 01:52 am (UTC)
doctor addvice, plus hospital)
i will happily donate some as soon as my paycheck comes in.. (sigh) timing, you know.

that said....
i know when you are sick you cant really be coherant enough to ask... BUT you dont need to go back to the hospital (and the higher fees)

you NEED to get the paperwork from the hospital and have a doctor look at it.

first of all, call the hospital with your "patient ID number" and explain that you dont understand the diagnosis.....
see if there is any further information.

then hand everything you got (a copy! not the original) to a good general practitioner and ask them to tell you what to do next. which may mean more tests....

IF YOU do not have a good GP.... there is a VERY good one who does consultations on a payment plan (cheap) who doesnt practice near you :( but can do email/phone conuslt.
LJ user witchwestphalia
aka "Dr. Betsy"

she is very good.

as to the rest of it...
you need to make sure you drink enough water, that you have electrolytes! and that you cut your "simple carbohydrates" and sugars down. this cannot hurt and probably will help.

Feb. 27th, 2010 01:57 am (UTC)
I'm glad you're doing a little better and I hope it continues to improve.

I understand the pain of our medical system. I've been sporadically employed for two years w/o insurance. Luckily, nothing terrible has befallen me. My husband was a freelance artist until just a few months ago. He has Type 1 Diabetes, so the ride has not been fun. :P

Anyway, well wishes and hugs!

Feb. 27th, 2010 02:02 am (UTC)
You had me so worried, Cheyenne! I posted your paypal link as well, hope that helps a little. And I'm going to repost this over on my blog too. I've gotten comments from a couple of folks who are very interested in hearing how you're doing.
Feb. 27th, 2010 02:09 am (UTC)
I've been in and out of the doc myself for the last month, with acute bronchitis and something "that's probably viral". Fortunately it doesn't seem to be anywhere near as bad as what you've been going through. Good luck and you can bet I'm down for universal healthcare!
Feb. 27th, 2010 02:39 am (UTC)
whoops, that was me. thought I was already logged in there.
Feb. 27th, 2010 02:59 am (UTC)
out of the hospital is better than in the hospital.
you do good work in the world. we want you to keep doing it for another few decades, plz.

all that good health advice up there? take it. eat more vegetables. move your body. keep your blood pressure down. (be a carrier, not a sufferer.)

and know that there's a whole community of people you don't even know that've got your back.
Feb. 27th, 2010 04:09 am (UTC)
Glad you're home, even if it is with more pills than even Agatha could build a clank to shake a stick at.
Feb. 27th, 2010 04:14 am (UTC)
Very glad you are back home. You had us all very worried.

I also understand your frustration with dealing with medical bills. I have been uninsured for over a year now and I have medical conditions like yours - high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, etc. If I may, I would like to offer some advice based on my experience.

First, if you haven't already, take account of your current financial situation - your monthly income, your savings, and all of your monthly bills. Once you have this done, contact the billing department at the hospital and talk to one of the consultants about your lack of insurance and difficulties in paying. Depending on your particular situation, you might be able to get some of the cost waived (if not all of it). Barring that, you might be able to get on a payment plan so you can budget the cost with low monthly payments. Currently, I'm paying off my medical bills by giving the hospital $25 a month.

Second, talk to your family doctor about the medications you are on. See if you can get the $4/month or $10/3 month supply ones that places like Walmart offer. Also, some doctors have drug samples they get from pharmaceutical companies and give them to their patients that are uninsured and have financial problems (like myself). These are basically free drugs - to both you and the doctor.

Third, go to TogetherRxAccess.com and sign up for the prescription savings program. It is a program set up to help the uninsured get the medications they need at a discount. Hopefully, this will save you some money in the long run.

Finally, remember that you are not alone in this, and your friends and fans are rallying to aid you in any way they can.

Good luck and good health.
Feb. 27th, 2010 04:35 am (UTC)
I'd say you're welcome to move to Canada, as our health care system sucks less, but there's apparently some issues regarding Xxxenophile and the Canadian border that would make Phil grumpy, so I'll just stick with hoping the fools who need to be told what 'teabagging' means meet the wrong end of a flesh-eating squid.

. . . wait, would there be a right end of a flesh-eating squid? I'll need to experiment.
Feb. 27th, 2010 04:47 am (UTC)
What ho brave and mighty gentleman adventurer! Glad to hear your home again! Our worlds have been a bit dimmer and washed out in your absence, and I'm not just speaking of the black and white GG comics!
Feb. 27th, 2010 10:33 am (UTC)
No, seriously - very glad you're back home, even though there haven't been any proper answers yet and you've still to fully recover. I have no advice, no great words of wisdom to offer - just my best wishes and signature get-well-soon vibes ZWFUMMMMMMMMMM.
Feb. 27th, 2010 11:18 am (UTC)
So sorry to hear you're in the hospital. You are one of my favorite people, sending you love and hugs for a quick recovery. You in all of our thoughts and prayers and I'll let everyone at Farpoint know.

You get better,

Feb. 27th, 2010 03:08 pm (UTC)
affordable Health Care
I would advise anyone who can live off internet leavings to go to this site and plan: http://www.escapeartist.com/

The cost driving taxation, litigation, and regulation are removed when you are away from the monster, this can make healthcare affordable. You can be across the boarder, keep your income the same/ or similar and reduce your expenses while living better.

Your friends could visit.
Feb. 28th, 2010 03:32 pm (UTC)
Hey Cheyenne, I posted your link as well. I also let John at Zanadu know and he passed the word on to Perry. John hopes they'll be able to get something together to help you out somehow.
Feb. 28th, 2010 03:39 pm (UTC)
You colour our world and have for so long. When your life is in dark shades of grey, let us help bring back some colour to your world.
Mar. 1st, 2010 04:01 am (UTC)
OMG, I just heard today about this from spaced!
*Please* call me if there's *anything* (constructive) I can do.
( 26 comments — Leave a comment )