The strength of our convictions

Hi readers. I’m going to soften the blow to my own resilient ego by using the word, ‘our’, as opposed to the word ‘my’. But you’ll know the truth.

I’ve said for many years I’d never go to a doctor again, said it because I believed it was true at more levels than are required for a quorum by the Universe. But I’m going to blame it on the cats. I’ve got to know what-the-hell this series of ‘attacks’ Jeanne mentioned in a commentary limerick are all about. Got the cats I’m trying to, sworn to try to outlive, provide sustenance and shelter for.

And something sneaked in to rob my macho and erode my confidence that’s going to happen if I don’t let a sawbones have a looksee. I’d figured the entire thing was just a single-incident, but that doesn’t turn out to be the case. In fact, a person looking at the way the incidents run who didn’t know I’m the luckiest man on the planet, and that symptoms mean nothing in my Universe would come away with the biased view that I’ve got something called pulmonary edema.

Which, if I’ve got, I might need to have some input from opinionated physicians concerning how best to proceed.

I don’t believe the VA owes me a damned thing, don’t believe there’s any moral nor any ethical reason health care for any non-service connected condition ought to be available to me that isn’t available to any other citizen, and that it would be irresponsible for me to avail myself of it. But here in the real world of cats and asphyxiation I’m not about to let little matters such as morals, ethics and social responsibility stand in the way. I’m going down to Odessa to the Social Security office, get a Medicare card, then take that and my DD 214 over to the VA hospital in Big Spring and tell the lady at the desk, “Tell me thank you for your service.”

Not because there’s anything anyone ought to be thanking me for, but because hells bells, I’m as qualified to take advantage of any opportunity to rob money out of the poor-box as any of the rest of these veterans. Maybe afterward I’ll get me a cap with VETERAN – First Cavalry Division. Maybe join the American Legion, VFW. Maybe get me a flag and posture around pretending to have a streak of wisdom somewhat unique picked up by trying to get a dose of clap in Asia half a century ago.

But failing all those other things, I’m going to have the VA medicos look me over, offer to pay for a freaking oxygen bottle and plastic hose. That’s the main thing.

I’m paying the price, even though I never killed any Communists to protect our freedom the way we’re enjoying the bejesus out of celebrating it today. I’ve given up all my vices, with the possible exception of coffee. Got lots of coffee already bought which I might give away or mightn’t. But other than that I’m dangerously, disgustingly clean living.

At the moment I’m in Andrews, Texas. Blew two tires getting here, and when the tires disintegrated they took out all my plumbing on the rear of the RV.

Life, however is good, and I’m grinning into it wondering just how many more delightful surprises I can survive before the whole thing gets humdrum and boring.

If you’re searching around looking for the luckiest man on the planet: as some guy playing Doc Holiday in a movie asserted, “I’m your huckleberry.” Don’t try being me if you’re not a professional at it.

Old Jules

20 responses to “The strength of our convictions

  1. Hey Jules.
    You don’t need the Medicare card to get treatment from the VA. They can’t bill Medicare because it would be fed gov billing fed gov.
    In fact, under some conditions it could hurt you. ( cost you money)
    Just go get enrolled in the VA system. Usually the urgent care dept can do your paperwork. If help is needed see your American Legion Rep or your Fed Congressman or Senator. Good luck

    • Tim, as I understand things, I think it might be better for him to be covered each way anyhow since the nearest VA is 60 miles away. He’s got a link to signing up online through the VA site to get the card though and you can get an appt. when you submit the application for the card.

    • Thanks Tim. Things are seeming better here. Gracias, J

  2. Hang in there, old trooper, I must doubt that this is it for you, based, of course, on a lot of (hot air) assumptions. Still I’m glad you decided to give it a shot and let those medicos stick a finger or two up your orifices, and I’m not trying to put a soft spin on it; if it turns out that they can do you over, and grant you another couple of decades to kick and jump, I’d say it’s definitely worthwhile. Hey, you know a thing or a million about blown up tires, and cats who don’t do as they’re told, so I think you’re well qualified to get this one down for us to be in awe about your spirit once again. I’d have faltered, for sure, facing half of what’s staring at you right now. The fact you’re telling us all about it show you’re not in this to let a few plumbing pipes loose on the road behind you, as long as they belonged to the RV, and not you. All this imbroglio above is just to tell you that we’re all 100% behind you, Jules, hoping it’s really nothing more that the annoyance of realizing that we too break once a while. All the best. Wesley

  3. Hope you can get some help. I was told I am dying and there isn’t anything they can do about it. But at my age and the fact that so far I have lived 10 years longer than my Dad did, I figure I will die before my illness kills me and I am going to enjoy myself and not worry. I am sure you will do the same. Keep us informed.

  4. Agree with colltales wholeheartedly. As a radiologist married to a pulmonologist with a sister who is an internist, we’ve all spent some time in our careers practicing medicine in the VA setting, and we would all agree that a trip to the VA is about managing your expectations. Nonetheless, I do think the docs working there, in general, try to provide the best care that the system will allow. The problem that you are experiencing is quite common and one that those folks could easily sort out. That being said, if you need a second opinion, I’m your huckleberry. Best of luck.

  5. Glad to hear you aim to seek medical help. We’re all pulling for you. 😉

  6. Coffee contains theophylline, a breathing aid; and, caffiene promotes diuresis. Am with you on your one vice to cling to. Good luck to you & a much longer life…

  7. I hope you feel better very soon. I am not a fan of this new development but I am a HUGE fan good health everyone’s in general and, today, yours specifically, Jack.
    The only reason I hang on to my DD214 is in case I am not as stubborn and strong as I pretend I am and I need comprehensive medical treatment. I have a loose plan to die at the same time my husband does BUT it could happen that he pisses me off to the degree that I die before he does just so he can get a taste of what it is I do around here.
    Sending positive wishes that you get whatever it is you need to feel better.

    • Elroyjones: These life adventures are sufficient unto themselves mosttimes. This one has the potential of being more sufficient than some of the others, but a person has to be careful not to demand too much of the surprises provided by the Universe. Gracias, Jack

  8. Good luck with it all… health, especially.

  9. Hope the doctor trip and all things medical work out for you and your cats.

  10. Jack

    I am sorry to hear about all your health problems. I hope you get the best of them quickly. You will be in my thoughts and prayers. Hope the red tape gets unravelled easily.


  11. Hope all is OK. The problem as I see it is saying never, You just pissed off the powers to be. Now go apologize.

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