Friday, May 22, 2009

Judge Not...Even if You are A Judge

On Thursday I was required to attend a Social Security/Disability hearing. I have been trying to get disability for more than 2 years with no success. Anyone who knows me or has been around me at all knows that I am pretty messed up. I have what I call a "mystery sickness" that leaves me unable to walk without assistance, lift or bend, or even sit for very long. As I type my fingers and hand are swelling. Anyway, it's pretty bad.
So previously I posted about a Functional Capacity Evaluation that I was required to do. I did do it and failed miserably. This gave Dan and I, and the attorney great hope for going in to this hearing. Our hopes were quickly smashed within 5 minutes of entering the room.
I am aware that judges have specific rules that they have to follow, and that there are many people that try to scam the system. This judge was WAY out of line in her words and actions. I have been given several diagnosis over the past few years. All of which are real, but none of which show a root cause. The attorney attempted to argue this point. She got about 10 words out of her mouth before the judge said that none of what she saw was a diagnosis, and that the attorney had not done her job assuring that the file was complete. The attorney started to speak and the judge pretty much shushed her and asked if she had a diagnosis, at which point the attorney said there are many. The judge said that these are not diagnosis, they are symptoms. The attorney said no, and the judge said there is no diagnosis, only symptoms and this is because, and she said looking at me, THERE IS NOTHING WRONG ! THIS IS WHY THEY CAN'T DIAGNOSE!! As the attorney tried to explain that this wasn't correct, the judge said that she was done and would continue the case so that the file could get completed and to come back with a diagnosis. Then we were excused. No idea when we will do this again and wondering how we are going to meet her demands. This poor attorney. She did not feel well and absolutely dislikes this judge. She warned me that the judge was this way and to be prepared, but she is at odds as to what to do now as well. I do feel at least a little bit that the attorney went in defeated. Not sure what to do now. I don't have a choice. She was appointed by the company my Long Term Disability hired. I do think she will keep trying for me though. She is sincere, just seems scared of this judge. OK, on with the day of yesterday...
So, (I know this probably drives my friends who are English majors crazy to start paragraphs and sentences with so and my overuse of commas, but this is how I talk) we came home from SLC and I was pretty much fit to be tied. Dan was frustrated, we pretty much felt hopeless. This is when Alta and Nicole(My former neighbor and soon to be former neighbor) showed up. Nicole has tried everything she can think of to help me and I'm sure Alta has as well. They brought us these yummy cupcakes from someplace called the "Sweet Tooth Fairy" to cheer me up. They stayed and chatted for a bit at which point I mentioned that part of my problem is that I first heard about some of the diagnosis I had been given from the attorney. Apparently I have bulging discs, and swelling at the base of my skull around my spine. Hello!!! The attorney said she had heard of something like this before and it had to do with these things they called tonsils that are in the back of your neck right where your spine meets your brain. That she had looked all over for a diagnosis related to this. Only to see in the notes about the swelling and discs. Maybe it's just me, but this seems to be something that isn't correct don't ya think?? I was told that I had what they called I think Vestibular dis bulge but that it wasn't anything to worry about. Hmm, if it's nothing to worry about, why was it put as a problem in my records and then I was told nothing. Anyway, when Alta and Nicole heard this, they immediately said that there was some one they knew who had this problem and they would be back soon. They came back with a print out from Google regarding a neurological condition called Chiari Malformation. This is a condition where the "tonsils" swell and prevent or slow down spinal fluid from circulating. It kind of pinches the very bottom of the brain. Symptoms are...and tell me if any of these ring a bell in regards to me - Headache, neck pain, dizziness or equilibrium issues, visual problems, ringing ears, sleep apnea, muscle weakness, chronic fatigue, NUMBNESS AND TINGLING IN ARMS AND LEGS, and fine motor skills. There are more, but I will spare you. OK, so they seem to be on to something. Dan looked this up and found pages and pages about it. I am trying not to get too set on this, but it is hard. I have an appointment with yet another neurologist on June 1st. I will be begging for some kind of diagnosis. Not only for SSI, but for my own piece of mind. I am really trying not to just become totally depressed and lose hope. This sickness even matches things from my childhood. I have to try and think that maybe I got the meanest judge on the earth so that she would turn me away and I could get my diagnosis and some help. I don't always remember this, but I am trying.
Thanks to all of you who are trying to help me and who have shown care and concern to me and my family. We hope things will work out soon. THANKS ALTA AND NICOLE, you succeeded in at least giving me hope for a while.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Y Hike

Kyler, Megan, Aubree, Jake, Jake's friend Caden, Aubree's friend Katie, Megan's friend Kamrie, and I hiked up to the top of the Y. For those who are not local, there is a large Y on the mountain above Byu, and there is a well maintained trail that leads up to it. More Here. We left the house about 7, picked up a few friends, and headed up to the mountain. There are 10 turns that take you to the bottom of the Y and 12 that take you to the top. I figure, if you are going to do it, you might as well go all the way, so we went to the top. The first 2 switchbacks are the furthest away from each other, and I thought that I was going to die before I made it to the first turn. I have been up this trail a few times last year, but this is the first time this year. I thought that it was quite an accomplishment for all of us, and I even beat Kyler to the top. There was a woman who went up and back 3 times while we did it once, but I am trying not to let that make me feel bad. I made it, and that is all that matters.


Monday, May 11, 2009


I really known nothing about volleyball and less about coaching, so I was amazed that the group of kids that I attempted to coach this season ended up winning the season-end tournament for the City of Provo. These kids knew much more about volleyball than I do, and one of the mothers had coached before and really helped me out. I just showed up at practice and ran drills that I found on the internet. We are having a pizza party provided by the city this week to celebrate the end of a great season.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Jake turns 8 !!

Jake recently turned 8. April 28th to be exact. He has been waiting for this birthday. Here are a few pics from his birthday and baptism.

Do the words "Mini Me" come to mind? They even have the same gap between their teeth. When Jake was born, the doctor said he was going to go buy some little round black glasses (Dan wore glasses then) for Jake, because he had never seen a baby that looked so much like his father before. It's amazing. This was after Dan had given Jake our gift, which was some video games. This is explains the excitement, although Jake is known to make faces like this whenever a camera is near. Dan does this as well, must have caught him at a moment.

These are the 3 Amigos, or Stooges, or whatever you want to call them. When you get the 3 of them together, we could just call them trouble :-) Just kidding guys.
This is Jake's little birthday party he had with his two best buddies. Max is in the back and Caden is in the middle. I'm sure you all recognize Jake's mug :-p
Dan took them to McDonald's and had some dinner, then went to Nickelcade and played video games for a while. They came home with these cool skull rings. Hmm, Jake was not happy when I wouldn't let him wear it to the baptism.

This appears to be Caden trying to drive . They had loads of fun playing all sorts of video games. Apparently so did Dan.

This is the picture that they always take before baptisms. A picture of the one being baptized with the one doing the baptizing. Dan has baptized and confirmed all four of our kids. We are now done with this . Jake is our baby.

I'm going to have to find a way to get the picture on the front of the programs on here. It was perfect. Cameron and Nicole did a great job making them.

Jake and Max have been friends since they were 2 1/2. It was very fitting that they had the opportunity to have this experience together. They really are like brothers. They play and even argue like brothers.

This is another pic of the boys. They are looking pretty snazzy in their suits and ties, although Jake shed the jacket as soon as possible.

We had a luncheon with both families of these boys afterward and it was wonderful.

I had some other pictures that I tried to download, but I think it made the file on the blog too big or something. Anyway, I need to leave something for Dan to post about.

I have had so many thoughts running through my head the last few days. It's humbling to realize that your baby is not a baby anymore. I can't believe that he is 8. Seems like it hasn't been that long. However, life certainly moves along whether we like it or not. I am proud of Jake for making the decision to be baptized, and hope that through the experience of being able to do this with his friend, he will have a lasting memory and they will help each other. In Jake's 8 years, he has had much to deal with. He has had Grandparents live with him, a mother who is not always able to do the things that she would love to do with him, he has watched his father have to work and be gone more than he should have to be, in order to keep us afloat. Jake is a great kid. He seems to have a special spirit that helps him to be able to deal with things as they come. I am happy that even though I may have some shortcomings as a mother, my kids seem to know what's right (Not that they always do it) and to love us and each other. This is all parents can do. Teach them right and hope they listened.

We are proud of Jake especially at this time. We look forward to the next step. Although I am feeling old now, what will it be like then? :-/