Well, it’s been an exciting holiday season. At least that’s the excuse I’m going with for having not written much here. Hopefully, you’ve been too busy to read it, so we’re even.

And as the year draws to a close, I am dealt the classic good news / bad news scenario. You see I threw my back out this past weekend. The good news is that it’s been a whole year since I did that last, and it’s been close to 10 years since I’ve gone anywhere near that long without an “episode”. The bad news is that dammit I went a whole year!! I thought I was all better!!

So in uncharacteristic fashion, I immediately (well, on Monday) try to get an appointment with the physical therapist who got me on my feet a year ago. Mind you, it’s December 29th, and I need a referral. So I start by calling my insurance company to find out if I have enough PT visits left to be treated on 2003. No problem there, just make sure the referral gets filed. Okay, so I call my doctor and explain to her nurse’s voice mail that I want the referral. So far so good. I get a call back within the hour, she’s willing to send the referral if I just call her back with the therapist’s fax number. Hey, this sounds easy. So I call the therapist’s office, and it starts to get scary. They can see me at 12:30, but before then I need to have the doctor fax them a continuation of my earlier referral. But wait… since I was “discharged” from the earlier treatment, the new referral needs to be a continuation, but with a new diagnosis. And then they also need a 2004 referral because they all expire at year end. For cryin’ out loud. Has it occurred to anyone that medical costs are so high because for every minute of medical treatment you receive there’s about 90 minutes of paperwork to be filed?

But the upshot is that the therapy appears to again be effective. My son couldn’t understand why I had to pay somebody to “beat me up”, but the short term pain is worth it if it gets my butt straightened out. My boss was intrigued that someone had figured out a way to straighten me out, and asked if she could consult with the therapist as well. And I also got a new “bed buddy” out of the deal. Honest, that’s what it’s called. It’s just a strap-on microwavable hot pack – which is not nearly as interesting as the name implied it might be.

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