Thursday, October 1, 2015

Yesterday Was a Merde Day

Pardon my French, but it was one of those rare shitty days. We don't have many. We have a lot of very good days, and quite a few in the wonderful category. But yesterday was an accumulation of frustrating, annoying, irritating crap.

Started with a trip to see Donna-Lane's oncologist. We're averaging about three trips a week to the hospital, plus occasional home nurse visits, plus weekly physical therapy. Our Peugot is almost like a driverless car and all we do is program in the destination.

D-L was feeling really drained from chemo treatments. We went to the wrong floor at first for the breast cancer centre, neglecting to check in at their reception, so back down then back up. Only to be told she needed a blood test before seeing the doctor. It wasn't on the schedule we'd been given, as were previous blood tests. Nurse said it was supposed to be automatic every time. News to us. Walk out of the building, around the corner to another building, upstairs, prick the finger, get the lollipop (the blood tests are in a children's wing), downstairs, around the corner, down the hall, up to the 2nd floor again. More tiring, unnecessary movement for my wife.

So D-L saw the doc, who wanted her to get a cardio scan in case the chemo has damaged her heart. First we'd heard of that possible side effect. Fortunately the doc got an appointment for the scan the next morning (though at 10 til 8; I'm not big on early mornings and counting the two-day conference I attended this would be three 6am wake-up calls in a row).

After discussions with the doctor about possibly changing the chemo cocktail, we left but Donna-Lane needed to check with the nurses regarding future schedule. I found a seat in the hallway (the salle d'attente was full) and tried to fix my iPad, which has been weirding out for a week. I wasn't aware, then, that D-L had gone back to see the doc because they had given the doc the wrong blood test the first time. White cell count was even lower. Not good. Now she's really fatigued.

She waits in the hospital lobby while I retrieve the car from the parking garage about 3-4 blocks over. Takes me 20-25 minutes to get back to the hospital because it's now rush hour and another hour or so to get home, even weaving our way through communes (Swiss suburbs, not hippie havens) away from the city centre.

On Facebook we learn the latest bad news about a relative in the States who has some serious health issues from a recent accident. We're concerned too about the spouse and others who are very close and anxious. We're also waiting on medical test results for another relative. And we learn that a friend in the expat community has a, hopefully temporary, medical issue serious enough to keep them offline.

As I'm cleaning up the kitchen, I rub against something rough, thinking it's dried spilled food on the stove. Closer inspection, the cooktop is cracked. No idea how it happened, and the owner of the house is in the mountains. We'll buy a new one.

We receive word that the Indiana federal judge has denied the requested preliminary injunction in D-L's lawsuit against the US government (with six other expat plaintiffs) to throw out the onerous FATCA financial information reporting scheme which is causing overseas banks to arbitrarily close the accounts of any Americans. Kinda tough to live day to day without a bank account, eh? The lawsuit will continue - somebody has to stand up and speak out against bad laws and regulations.

All of this, though, doesn't begin to stack up against what our relative is going through. Or migrants forced into barbed-wire camps like animals because they seek a better life in Europe. Or the poor people still in Syria who are being bombed daily by at least 10 different countries, reducing that beautiful country to piles of rubble.

Hope your day was better than theirs. And ours.

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