Toni: Reconstruction Thursdays – Finishing

Hi everyone — peeking in here for just a minute. I’m ~thisclose~ to finishing TDB (this damned book) (this draft), and since I’ve actually written close to 25K in the last month-ish, I haven’t photographed the “after” of the kitchen remodel. I’m also about to do a full re-do on my grand-daughter’s bedroom. They’ve moved into a new house where everything is beige–ceiling, floor walls, and we’ve got some pretty things to put in there. (Mostly, painting.) I’m also doing some Annie Sloan Chalk Paint on her furniture (er, sort of fixing the bad version of that that I started a couple of months ago and got annoyed with… you really cannot do the wax part of that process outside in the heat. I have to fix it now, because it dried blotchy and ugly as hell. And, also, I decided I didn’t like the color I started off with, so I’m going back to a neutral creme/antique look.)

Meanwhile, I put this up on FB, but thought some of you might laugh with me:


So… I get this letter from the orthopedic doctor I visited a couple of months ago. After swimming through the medical and legal mumbo jumbo, I shall paraphrase:

Dear Klutz Causey:

Remember that really painful shot we gave you in your hip a couple of months ago? The one that made you think fracturing your hip in the first place was easy-peasy fun and games? Turns out, it’s poison. Oops! We did not see that coming. The FDA, those lazy suckers, have recalled the drug off the marketplace, and just because we used it, doesn’t mean we meant to poison you. So, totally not our fault!

btw, if your leg has been irritating you, turned red, had lesions, turned purple, or has fallen off, again, totally not our fault, but you maybe want to call us. And lie down.

Otherwise, glad to have you as patient!

We promise not to poison you next time you come in. Because we’ve seen your x-rays–face it, you’ll be back.


The Totally Innocent and Hell No, You Can’t Have A Refund Doctor Group Boooya.


[Luckily, I didn’t have any of the side effects they’d listed, though I can’t say that the shot was particularly effective, either. At least I’ve been able to start back exercising.]


Hope y’all are all productive and pain free.

18 thoughts on “Toni: Reconstruction Thursdays – Finishing

  1. I need to write 25K in the next 2 weeks, so yeah, totally with you. Good luck!

    That might be the best paraphrasing I’ve ever read. LOL! But at the same, holy crap!

  2. Terrie says:

    Oh, that letter! If only the ones we got were really that direct. Very funny, but still — painfully true.

    And, wow, I am so impressed with how much you’ve been able to write in a month.

  3. Terrie — well, it’s rewriting / editing, so it goes a bit faster. It’s not nearly the drips and drabs I go through when sorting through all the possibilities of a first draft.

  4. I love how Big Pharma can, in essence, sell you a defective product (the shot) without having to give you a refund, the way any other supplier would.

    I was thinking about this a while back, because I have a rare medical condition that wasn’t even partially understood until I was an adult, so all of my childhood treatment, from age 3 to age 18, was COMPLETELY WRONG. It didn’t kill me, which was just a matter of luck, but it also did me absolutely no good, because they thought the condition was caused by one thing, for which they gave me prescriptions, when it was actually caused by a completely different thing, for which I got no treatment. Sort of like giving a person Vitamin C to treat a calcium deficiency, because, hey, they both start with a C.

    Anyway, I can’t help thinking how much money my parents would have had if they’d gotten refunds for all the prescriptions and orthopedic consults over the fifteen-year course of worthless treatments.

    Some years ago, I went to see a doc who claimed to have experience with my rare condition, and pretty much the first thing he said to me proved that he didn’t have a clue about it. He went on to give me some really bad advice (which I recognized as bad, thanks to a patient support group and self-education on the condition). Some months later, I got the Explanation of Benefits from my health insurer and was absolutely gleeful to see that the payment to the doc had been rejected, for complicated insurance reasons. I was REALLY looking forward to his trying to collect it directly from me (I’m a lawyer, so going to small claims court over it wouldn’t have bothered me at all, and I’d have enjoyed describing his malpractice as a defense against payment), but I think he realized collecting on it wasn’t a good idea, and I never got a bill. It ALMOST balances out my irritation with his incompetence to at least know that he didn’t get paid for giving me completely wrong advice.

    I don’t really blame the docs from when I was a kid, because medical science wasn’t advanced enough for them to know better, but the medical understanding of my condition is much improved now, and has been for more than thirty years, so this guy was just claiming expertise in something he knew nothing about. That’s intentional wrong-doing.

  5. Gin, that sounds like a real nightmare, all that you’ve gone through just to get the right treatment.

    I, many times, have wished I would have gone for the law degree instead of the philosophy or MFA grad degrees; it would have been so much handier sooooo many times to be able to deal with the legal mumbo jumbo instead of being philosophical about it.

  6. Lola says:

    Fun joke: what do you call a medical student who graduates at the bottom of his class?

    Answer: A doctor!

    I also have a friend who just graduated nursing school with an A grade. She said a lot of people in her class just barely passed with a C grade. Whether someone passes nursing school or medical school with the lowest grade or the highest, the diplomas all look the same.

  7. Oh Gin, that sucks! And then to have a doctor who show know better now falsely pass himself off as an expert, yikes!

    I had very bad skin from the time I was 12 or 13 and so my parents’ doctor, who I had just begun going to, prescribed tetracycline. It did nothing to my skin, but did he ever think to take me off of it? No. After we moved, did the new doctor ever think to ask me if it had helped or check in at all about the prescription? No. It wasn’t until I was 19 and in college and having stomach problems that a doctor asked about it and promptly took me off the med. I remain sensitive to antibiotics and prone to stomach problems (altho those have finally gotten so much better). I’d say “gee, isn’t it nice that things have gotten so much better!” but then I run into doctors or situations where they haven’t and I just throw up my hands in lieu of screaming.

    I hope you have a REAL expert working with you now!

  8. Geez, Toni, I’m so glad you didn’t have any of the side effects, or any bad effects from the POISON! Don’t you just love how those medical “professionals” aren’t responsible in ANY WAY for things going wrong?

    I look forward to your next pictures. And I hope your hip feels better enough that you don’t have to risk another dose of potentially poisonous stuff being shot into your body in an immensely painful manner.

  9. Kieran says:

    We just had a big medical scandal here in Charleston–23 people were exposed to Hepatitis B at a spinal care clinic when they received routine (but contaminated) shots. Three came down with acute Hep B. It’s outrageous that this ever happens!!!

  10. stephanie says:

    I just got a letter from my insurance saying they are no longer covering the type of migraine meds I use. The gist of their letter was something like, “Research shows it doesn’t work anyway so just take a Tylenol.” Um, really. Not gonna help.

    Thankfully I have a doctor that is putting in an ‘exception’ for me ’cause Tylenol doesn’t work for me anymore than drinking a glass of water!

  11. Jill says:

    Our whole medical system is SNAFU. It is going to get worse.

    Transparency is the new thing in medicine. Toni, that is why you got that letter. The docs, hospitals, whatever are to be open about mistakes and play nice and hope you do not sue them.
    Transparency is a good thing if handled properly

  12. Thanks, and yes, I have a great doc now. Earlier this year, I even got to meet some members of the research team that’s one of the top two or three groups studying my condition worldwide.

    And I almost went to grad school for philosophy, but chickened out and took the safe path. Or perhaps it was because I can never be philosophical about anything; I can laugh or I can rant, but acceptance comes very hard to me.

  13. denise says:

    glad the poisoned meds from the mom&pop pharmaceutical did no harm. doc had to cya himself.

    can’t wait to read the new book–it’s a dark suspenseful one, right?

  14. toni says:

    Yeah, I didn’t mind getting the letter — at least they were on top of it as soon as they knew and let me know. I was just cracking up at all of the legal hemming and hawing and “so totally not our fault” that was the majority of the letter.

  15. Glee says:

    Yanno, as part of a legal dept (but not an attorney). I frequently laugh at what happens to my paragraphs when the litigation crew and the contract geeks get hold of it and improve the understandability right out of it.

  16. toni says:

    Yep, Lola, I’ve come across some stellar doctors, and I’ve been subject to a few of those barely-passing-C-types who don’t put in the effort to stay on top of research and it can really mislead a patient who look at doctors and/or nurses like they’re gods. They’re just people, who followed a vocation. For some, it’s a calling, and those make a difference.

  17. toni says:

    Stephanie, I have cluster headaches, as well as migraines, and nothing worked on me. Finally, out of desperation, my doctor had heard of using Oxygen, but increasing the flow rate to 10 to 15ml (I think that’s the correct way to write that… though I’m likely to be wrong). I have to tell you, it changed my world. It would stop even the *worst* of the clusters (which are termed “suicide headaches” for a reason), and it alleviated the migraines almost immediately. What surprised us is that it broke the cycle of the cluster headaches–the individual cycles can last up to four months, and I’d have one or two, and bang, they would stop. I’ve been mostly headache free for about two years now. If I get one, I grab the O2 and fifteen minutes later, I get my life back.

    Unlike meds, no side effects.

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