Monday, June 29, 2009

Five Year old Funny

OK - so this may be the last one.... Friday is the 6th birthday!

Last night we were all going out for dinner for my birthday ("A" insisted on paying).... and I didn't feel like going to any of my favorite restaurants.

So, we asked "a" where he wanted to go.


So - to China we went - and it was yummy!

July Coupon Winner

Blogger Steph said...

I'd love to win the coupons! Thanks so much for the giveaway! :)

Thanks for entering!

Steph, I've sent you an email, please contact me with your mailing address so I can get these out to you ASAP.


Friday, June 26, 2009

After 3 days out ill, boss returned yesterday

So, I finally had a chance to ask her why & how things happened.

1) She had to go through and define strict "roles" for each person on the team - and define how well that role fit into the structure. One fella got laid off because his role didn't fit in well (which is a bit bogus, but that's besides the point). My role used to be consultant; but because I've also been doing some programming - she decided I didn't want to be a data mapper anymore and that I wanted to be in server support (which I did manage to straighten out).

2) It wasn't until long after all of that that she was given an option to add another consultant for another group... and at that point since I'd already gotten 'labeled' as server support, it never occurred to her that I might want to be a consultant.

In all honesty? Honest mistakes - but I set out to make sure we were clear that although I enjoy programming (specifically programming software that simplifies processes for handing information)... that my career goals fall more in line with working between business & technical....

One of the things that I loved about working for a small department where both roles exist is that I was given flexibility to do a little of both. Apparently, HR won't allow that anymore. That's fine, it just would have been nice to have had a little discussion about this before decisions were made. I would have no problem having another programmer taking over my latest program and letting me get back to my goals. I could still work with that programmer to ensure that the program does what we need it to do. AND, I could get more work done. I've got no problems with that - but my boss thought it would be the last thing I would want to happen.

So, I now get to apply for my old position. Along with everyone else. So, we'll see how it goes. I'm tempted to apply for a couple of other positions while I'm at it... if I could be sure my supervisor would be aware of it... not because I want to switch to another department (as I really kind of don't) -- but so that she realizes that if I'm just one candidate for the job, then it's just one job I'd be interested in getting. (dirty pool???)

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

July Coupon Giveaway

I have a stack of between 100 and 125 coupons that will expire NO SOONER than 7/31/2009 (and some later than) to giveaway to someone leaving a comment! Please leave a comment by 10:0o pm CDST on 6/28/2009 to enter. If you do not have a blog with email address; leave your email address in the comment.

I will draw a random number on Sunday & email the lucky winner. They will have 48 hours to respond with their snail mail address... (or another winner will be selected). And the coupons will be sent ASAP.

I think it's time I faced my biggest fear

I've been told repeatedly that what is wrong with me "couldn't possibly be mulitple sclerosis". Sounds good right?

But then I ask - but isn't that extremely hard to diagnose? True, they say, but you don't show any of the common symptoms. Sounds great right?

I don't have lesions that appear in my MRIs - which are fairly common in ms and a common way to identify it. Wonderful, right?

But, still a nagging thought keeps pestering me.

So, I'm looking into it. I do not appear to have one of the most common symptoms which is muscle weakness/paralysis ... however, I do appear to have the other eight most common symptoms of ms. Which does NOT mean I have ms - since symptoms are very general - and could mean lots of things. But, if they can't be explained by anything else? ms becomes a real possibility. And, my $50K in medical debt is proof positive that we've tried to rule everything else out.

One other "symptom" that makes it unlikely - is that I have several symptoms that come & go multiple times a day .... whereas ms symptoms tend to last at least 24 hours or longer -- but, if you look back at a chart of when I'm suffering from these symptoms - I tend to go several months of having episodes or several months where I don't.

Not having lesions in the MRI? Apparently 25% of ms patients don't get those in the early stages of the disease.

It's not that I think I have ms... so much as I'm afraid I *might* have ms. It was very easy to take at face value the statements "it can't possibly be ms"; be thankful; and try not to think too hard about it. I think I have to dig a little deeper and push a little harder for clearer answers as to why they don't think it's ms. Because eight out of ten symptoms does NOT seem like it should get ruled out without digging deeper.

I can't seem to find anyone in the area who specializes in ms... but I did get a name of a nuerologist who apparently has a photographic memory.... because if it isn't ms, it's likely to be some extremely rare and hard to diagnose condition... and I think I want to broach the subject along the lines of "prove to me it isn't ms".... if he can find another condition - great - at least then I can start treatment. If he can't but he can prove beyond a reasonable doubt that it isn't ms, even better. If that doesn't happen, perhaps then at least they can put me on some medication "in case it is ms" which would slow the progress if it is ms; and probably do no harm if it isn't ms. If it works - all the better, if it doesn't - doesn't that say something as well???

Just to make sure I'm clear - I don't think I have ms, and I certainly don't want to get diagnosed with it. But, I've got something - and dozens of doctors haven't been able to figure out what it is other than to pinpoint that they believe it's something nuerological. I'm getting worse and their only treatment at this point is to put me on an anti-depressent. I'm just thinking that it's time to find out for certain it really isn't ms... so that the nagging worry in the back of my mind can finally be put to rest.

Boss still out sick


I really need to get out the "you screwed me over without meaning to" in a more politically correct manner...

There is SO much work and if there wasn't an opportunity to hire someone else, I wouldn't complain... I would just do the best I could to help.

But, now? Knowing that they're hiring someone to take the title of the job I used to have (and want) and they want me to do the things I used to do about fifteen years ago? (which I don't want).

Sigh -- talk about being unmotivated.

Monday, June 22, 2009

"A" is still working

Been two and a half weeks. AND, employer seems to be thrilled. "A" is the only employee and is apparently doing a great job. Working lots of hours... leaving the restaurant cleaner when he leaves than when he arrives. etc. etc.

Parole office accepted a letter from the employer stating that he was employed as proof of employment. "A" has started to pay his fines.

He was looking to get an apartment, but I think I've temporarily talked him out of it. It would do him far better good to save up his money while still living cheaply and have enough for a down-payment, etc.

So far, so good.

Plus, we all went swimming yesterday and on the way to dropping him off at the Y afterwards, we talked a little bit about fathers day. He told me I did far better raising him alone than any time he could have spent with his father. (is it too soon to hope he's growing up a little????)

Work - ugh!

OK - so somehow some wires got crossed at work.

We were short-handed, and I was told that I would need to help provide production support. Do some systems support (i.e., making sure servers were up and running, configured correctly, etc). I wasn't given a choice. Ok - no problem... I can help out. I got trained about two years ago, but then things all got changed around... and most of what I got trained on isn't being used any more. Since then, things got all hectic in the area I was working on, and that was the bigger priority. So, I never really got trained in support again.

So, for the past six to seven months, my supervisor keeps bringing up the fact that I haven't been working in support, but she kept coming back and realizing that whatever else I was doing was still more critical.

So, guess what? We had a re-org (which happens about every six months or so)... and I got a new job title. Systems Support Analyst. ? AND -- they posted a full-time position with the EXACT job title of the job I USED TO HAVE -- and THAT I WANTED TO KEEP. GRRRR....

So, we're short-handed? And we have permission to hire more people - and instead of keeping me on the career path I CHOSE to have, you sideline me into a career path I DO NOT WANT - and you're going to hire someone else to do the job I would prefer to do? WTF?

I'm ANGRY about the whole thing. Not to mention that the new career means downgrade in benefits? I'm PISSED OFF.

It's not like they even talked to me about the options. Or that I was given a choice. I was basically just trying to be a good team player and willing to take on extra duties if it will help; but I NEVER volunteered to change my career choices.


So, knowing that I recently screwed up and wasn't as politically correct in recent history; and worried that that was part of the reason why I was side-lined; I put out feelers. I talked confidentially with other team members to find out if the job opening would work for me (they all were a) in agreement that I'd be perfect for the task and b) angry that I was getting moved off-line to work in support).

So, today, I set up an appointment with my supervisor to discuss options and to inform her that I was not pleased and that I was going to apply for the other position. And... she's home sick today... so after over a week's preparation to go to her and complain and attempt to not burn any bridges while trying to find a way to correct any mis-guided attempts at helping me (as I'm not telling her that she derailed my career plans point-blank)... I now have no one to vent to.

Thanks for letting me vent!!!

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

If I had known all it took was another vent....

"A" has a job.

"A" had a hearing today and will NOT have to go to jail, but does have to return in a month with proof of employment.

Issue is that "A" got a job with someone who would prefer to pay him under the table. So, we'll see.

But, he's got a job - a JOB... one step further. He's working 6 nights a week, making sandwiches at a hole in the wall, with only one sandwich choice offered. Good ones... but only one option. Busiest after 2:00 am when the bars close. Only employee.... owner works noon hour - to afternoon, "A" is to come in and spell him; then owner returns around bar closing time and they work until the customers are done coming in.

"A" is now looking for an apartment, so we'll see....

Monday, June 08, 2009

June Coupon Winner!

Blogger Kristy said...

Thank you so much for such a generous giveaway! We love coupons.The name of your blog is so cute!

Kristy has been notified via email.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

a's graduation

Preschool held a graduation ceremony ... :-)

Unfortunately, my batteries died in the camera as we waited for the little guys to come out of the classroom.

I did manage to get one picture from my camera phone - it s*cks, but it's a pic.

I should know better than get my hopes up

I do NOT have hypersomnia.

I probably do NOT have symptoms from B6 toxicity.

Doesn't matter that 99% of the symptoms match my undiagnosed condition between the two conditions.

So? What's next? They want to put me on Prozac. hmmm....

At least there is a "next" - I shouldn't be so frustrated.

BUT, I'm so sick of being sick and tired... and not having any diagnosis.

My doctor is truly awesome though, at least I feel like I'm getting competent medical care now even if we're still without a diagnosis. He's really sympathetic, listens well, discussing things thoroughly and not at all like the pr*ck that I saw a couple of weeks ago - who had rather rudely suggested that I had been wasting everyone's time since it was SO obvious it was B6 toxicity; and he felt like the blood test was a waste of time (blood test came back low end of normal -- so hence, my currently getting worse should not be a result of too high levels).

I'm starting to lose feeling on my left side... sigh.

And although I don't wear heels every day, I'm still very sad that my balance issues have now driven me to only wearing flats - as heels & difficulty walking don't mix very well. My balance issues - although much less severe than a couple of years ago has become a constant companion again. At least this time (well, at least so far) I am still able to walk - albeit on flats.... sigh.

I've spoken to my supervisor - she's aware that things are going down hill... and that we may have a day at some uncertain time in the near future where I might have to work from home for an unknown amount of time. If I can't walk - then I shouldn't drive; which means I'll need to work from home. I'm hoping that it doesn't go so far this time, but there are no guarantees in life and I'm just extraordinarily lucky to work for a company where working from home will be an option.

I start seeing a counselor on Monday - "a" is having 2-3 potty accidents per day again; and I think the root of it is all the stress I'm living under and my inability to keep from passing that stress down.... from the "no, you have to get up and get dressed NOW" to the "no, you don't have time to eat breakfast, eat this cereal bar and get in the car NOW" to the "no, mommy's too tired to __________" -- fill in the blank.... just about everything falls into that category.

I figure if I can lower my stress levels, his will automatically lower as well. If that's not enough, then I might have to set him up to start counseling as well... he really doesn't have anyone to talk to besides his daddy... and his brother (who isn't very sympathetic).

"A" is still not working, and is at risk for getting a 10 to 15 day sentence in county jail for probation violation (the not working and not paying the fines part along with missing too many appointments). I don't know what it's going to take to get him to wake up and figure out that he's screwing things up worse and that he's just going to have to buckle down, take a job that he probably won't like and figure out how he can improve his fortunes from there.

My apartment is becoming a complete disaster zone - I do take time every day to pick up or do dishes or do a load of laundry, but honestly? Between the puppy who takes things out of the garbage and hides them and the child who drops things on the floor with impunity... I am SO NOT keeping up. It's gotten to the point where it's really, REALLY bothering me. But, I'm so stressed out that I can't do anything about it. While we're waiting until August (the first, best chance I have to file bankruptcy per my lawyer)... I've got a little bit of spending money that I won't have post-bankruptcy. So, I decided I was going to hire someone to come in and start cleaning to get at least the top layer of grime off.... and ... being a mom... I offered the job to "A" first. He's been out once - and he did a good job of taking it really seriously - I asked him to come out once a week and give a good, solid 4 hours of work in. He did, and it has really helped. Now, if I can keep it from degrading too much before the weekend, his next pass should get things that much more clean; and so on... I'm hoping that by August the apartment isn't going to need 4 hours a week and I can afford maybe 2 hours every two weeks or some other such smaller amount of time & cost -- and hopefully, by then, he's got a better main job and having less money from me won't be a hardship, but could perhaps give him a little money towards paying fines, and what-not. (not holding my breath, but one could hope).

Monday, June 01, 2009

June coupon giveaway!

My bad - a week late.... I usually want these to end the end of the month prior.... sigh.

BUT, never too late?

I have a stack of between 100 and 125 coupons that will expire NO SOONER than 6/30/2009 (and some later than) to giveaway to someone leaving a comment! Please leave a comment by 10:0o pm CDST on 6/6/2009 to enter. If you do not have a blog with email address; leave your email address in the comment.

I will draw a random number on Sunday & email the lucky winner. They will have 48 hours to respond with their snail mail address... (or another winner will be selected). And the coupons will be sent ASAP.

Lately the coupon karma gods have not been overly kind (bad Walgreens for quiting their monthly rebate program).... so hopefully, sharing the love will work out well!