The internet is not enough

I haven’t left the house since Wednesday. My Friday O & M lesson was rescheduled for last Wednesday, and I didn’t go to Gamma’s on Sunday as usual, because B had been sick and I’ve been under the weather, but couldn’t tell if it was sick or spoons.

I felt like a mack truck hit me (the motorized kind, not the Apple kind, weak attempt at a joke there, but it didn’t work) this morning, and wanted to take the computer into bed, B stayed home, and was still sleeping.

then he got up and remembered that we needed to look at the renewal notice for my medical benefits.

I’m on Arizona’sversion of Medicaid. They send out renewal notices like every 6 months, to try and catch people abusing the system. I think this is rediculous to do for those of us on disability, who are only using this insurance while we wait for Medicare. My income hasn’t changed. There are no cost of living increases in the works, so why do they need proof of income? If I were making under the table money, which I’m not, I could just as easily lie about it, even with the 6 month renewal, which I wouldn’t do because I’m too damned honest. This came off as a rant, and I am completely getting off my first point of this post, but this whole thing leads to that.


B looked at it and said I need proof of income. Social Security sends out a letter once a year. I don’t have a current letter, because I had to use it to do my taxes. I never thought to get the paper back. Note to future self, keep that paper and guard it with your life.

I called my friend who did my taxes to see if she still had it, because I couldn’t remember if I had had it for my last renewal. Anyway, I had snapped at B and called my friend and before I even asked how she was doing I went in to asking about the form.

I was in full panic mode. Tears were threatening. I have till Friday to get the info in, and B and I had forgotten the stupid thing because he was sick as a dog all weekend, and most everything out of sight out of mind for me. I absolutely have to develop some kind of system. In my sighted days, I would put this stuff in a certain place so I would see it. I need to do something. Blinks, any suggestions?

So I’m talking to my friend, oh hell I’ve said her name here before and its a common name so enough innuendo. I’m talking to Carol and she’s been through all this herself, so she tells me to calm down, , we can take care of it all this week at the local offices. Ok. deep breath. Calming down. Its so nice to hear Carol’s voice. A human voice. Not Alex, no matter how human he sounds.

We had just started chatting about a photo in a magazine of a woman with really hairy legs when my Grandma called. And then she called again. Oh no. She’s calling twice in a row. what happened. I answer. She called about this restaurant she had called about Thanksgiving dinner. I told her I was worried because she called twice in a row. She said I didn’t answer and my voicemail didn’t come on. So we talked about Thanksgiving and I told her about the stupid paperwork and then B came in and gave me a hug and was gonna go check the mail and I said I was calling Carol back.

Long explanation just to get to the point of calling Carol. But I felt like I needed to explain why I called, because if it hadn’t been for the stupid paperwork, I wouldn’t have called her, or anyone.

My friend Nancy warned me, way back before I had my computer, to make sure once I got my computer, to not dissolve into it. she said she’d seen that. Blinks getting computers and then never leaving the house, because really, you kinda don’t have to, and the last 5 days have proven that to me.

I didn’t stay home and isolate on purpose, like I sometimes do when the spoons are low, or I’m feeling blue. It just happened.

In fact I had gotten so busy, that I welcomed the break, but I’ve changed in the last month and a half. I used to love not leaving the house for a week. But then I made the decision to get a guide dog, and I started changing my lifestyle accordingly.

I’ve been doing Saavi 3 days a week, and then catching up on spoons and chores on Tuesdays and Thursdays. So when the schedule got messed up and I was suddenly home, I think it shocked my system.

I’ve learned that I have less bad MS days the more active I am, as long as I’m only active for a few hours here and there, and not every day. And when I sit on the computer for 5 days straight, and only talk to people through a synthesized voice, I forget how nice it is to laugh and hear another laugh.

Don’t get me wrong. The fellowship I am building on blogger is one of the best things to happen to me since going blind. I will never ever quit this. But if I don’t leave the house every other day or so, and if I retreat into the computer like this on a repeated basis, I’m going to slip right back in to the depression I was in when I first went blind.

Thats one of things I like about eventually having a guide dog. Having a reason to get up and out and get fresh air and sunshine. I must be lacking Vitamin D something awful, and that is the cheery vitamin, after all.

So if you notice I’m not blogging about anything outside the house, please give me a cyber slap across the forehead.

Back to life tomorrow. Hoping I’m not sick, so I can go to choir. And maybe to get the paperwork done. And maybe a meeting. My friend Kevin is in town and we had tentative plans to hit a meeting tomorrow. We’ll see what happens.

I need to commit to more phone time, and more face time, with friends, female friends and not just B, even though he’s a great guy, I need my girls.


Filed under Adjustment to blindness, assistive technologies, Choir, fellowship, guide dogs, NaBloPoMo 2009, politics, pooch preparation, rambles, rant, screen reader, spoons

6 Responses to The internet is not enough

  1. Damn government. I wonder if the office could fax you something? Hmmm. Na, probably good to go in the office and get a fresh copy. Next time you do taxes, make them take a copy and keep the original. Never part with the originals!

    I have a little container dealia bob that I always keep my current month’s pension stub in. That way if I need my dental or drug card, I don’t have to hunt through my cabinet o crap…which I really need to clean out.

    Maybe get a folder and stick some braille on it? Something like medicaid or something or med if that’s easy for you to read right now and then you can put the paper in there. Or you could buy a folder that feels different so you wouldn’t have to bother with the braille.

    Of course, it’s all about balance. If I had all JAWS all the time, it would be bad news. Get out and take in some sun when you feel better and have enough spoons.

  2. You know, while I agree it’s good to leave the house on a regular basis, you amaze me with all the activities you are involved in. You don’t HAVE to do any of the things you do (O&M, Saavi, choir, etc). You have chosen to do those things, and I want you to give yourself credit.

    I agree, all things in moderation, including moderation. But I think staying home in bed with the computer for a few days straight sounds a bit…heavenly.

    So you don’t get a cyber slap from me THIS time. You get a pat on the back! You sound like you’re on the right track. And I hope you feel better tomorrow!!

  3. Granted I don’t know you overly well, but from talking to you and reading your writing you don’t strike me as the type who is going to become one of those blind slaves to the internet. From the sounds of it you have a good core of friends and family in the real world and on the internet, so there’s a balance there. Sometimes with blind people, the ones who get sucked into the web and nothing else are the ones who aren’t that good socially. the world won’t accept them or they can’t handle the world because quite frankly, there are a lot of goofy blind folks out there and the net is a place where they can feel…I guess normal would be the word. They aren’t the type of people who can call somebody up and say “hey, let’s go for dinner.” They have nobody or almost nobody to hang out and do things with, either that or they live around people who do everything for them. You, to me, don’t sound like that guy. You keep yourself busy, and it sounds like a lot of the time you do spend online you’re mixing in having fun and learning things. I think you’re fine.

  4. *cyber slap* Wake up woman! lol (kidding)

    Government, don’t get me started. I’d like to know why the offices do not SHARE info. Computers allow this sharing but does one office give info that they need to the other office? Hail no!

    Okay…I saw a lot of name dropping R. Carol,Kevin. tisk tisk!

    Feel better cyber friend. All be well at your place!


  5. Here’s a dumb question. Is there OCR software for the mac? So you could just scan things? It’s a pain to sit there and scan papers and go nope, that’s not it, nope, that’s not it either, nope, that’s not it…but at least you can scan stuff to try and find it. There’s gotta be something…is there? I’m gonna learn so much about the Mac because of you.

  6. R

    I should have posted each comment and replied idividually lol! Still trying to come up with a good system here.

    Thanks everyone, and yeah, I don’t think I’m in danger right now. I know I do a lot, and true, I choose to do all this, and its so different from what I was like when I first went blind. Thing is, sittinghere for 5 days on the computer, just made me realize yesterday that yikes! I don’t like it! Haha! And, I’ve been physical 3 days a week for a month and a half, and then suddenly was just on the couch and I think my body is craving exercise. So it was mostly just an observation, that while I used to love sitting around for 5 days, now I don’t so much. And hearing a human voice is oh so important.

    As far as the paperwork goes, no, the offices don’t talk to each other. this involves federal and state, so they don’t communicate. So get this, I have to go to social security, get the print out. That will take the most time. There’s actually security you have to go through. Then wait your turn to go to the window. So I go and wait, get my paper, take it to the other office thats oh, 15 minutes away, drop it in an interoffice mail envelope, and leave. Hmm. Yeah. Just faxing to each other makes sense. Or even going paperless. Have a federal site where the state people could log in, see the info, and boom. Done. Everyone wants to go paperless, but not the government.

    I definitely need a brailled filing system. That will work fab. I can even stick braille labels on the papers. I have a labeler, just gotta find what I did with the extra tape.

    I’m not sure about scanners for the mac. I know there’s a scanner that just scans and talks, but those are tres expensive.

    So, I just had a nice lesson in all this. Keep all papers, which I usually do, talk to real people, get out and get some sun. Heck, even if I just take my cane and stand in the sun for ten minutes.

    Don’t know if I answered everyone, just kinda did a reply to everything I remembered being said 😉

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