Kristin McQueen Suck It Cancer
I wanted to take a moment to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a healthy, happy new year for you and your loved ones!
As you may have noticed the fundraising goal has been increased. It reflects the frustrating reality that Kristin's Blue Cross Blue Shield policy is out of network for Northwestern hospital and she needs another brain surgery in the new year. The test implant Kristin had in December provided some relief from her occipital nerve pain allowing her to do what we take for granted-putting her head on a pillow without extreme pain. Being out of network would incur a $15,000 out of network cost plus an expense of 50% of all costs beyond the deductible. The amount is really daunting but so is the pain. This is the first surgery Kristin has had that seems to relieve some of her pain.
If any of your are fundraising experts or know of any that would like to help we are all ears! Kristin is still unable to work so there are expenses like food, rent, heat, etc.
Many thanks and happy holidays!
Boy, I went from no updates for months to "here we go again" pretty quickly. I'm running on two and a half benders (only a couple hours last night) since this weekend and it's only Wednesday so I'm sorry if there are typos. No, there isn't any news on the brain front yet, but in usual McQueen fashion I have another surgery to fill the time before that one happens. Seriously WTF. You may or may not remember I had to have my foot fixed (again) in September. I had grown more weird shit like I did last April only this time it turned into an aggressive Staph infection as well that required 4 months of antibiotics, a bone graft as well as a tendon graft. The bone graft is healing but my body has not taken the tendon graft and has left me with, for lack of better words, a hole in the bottom of my foot. It's been 3 months now since surgery and that incision/hole still hasn't closed. This has become quite the ordeal. I haven't been able to run at all or even just walk normally since the end of July. So when I went back to my foot doctor on Monday he gave me the ever familiar sigh that I get from pretty much every doctor I see and he told me that this isn't common. Growing a weird infected blob that latched onto my tendon wasn't common to start with and shocker, this healing pattern also isn't common. So he took some ultrasound images of the tendon and saw a lot of fluid build up and some other junk in there, and x-rays showed the bone graft was healing but he didn't like how this was getting close to encroaching on that graft. Unfortunately this means another surgery for me. He has to remove the tendon graft and clean up that whole site and stitch it again so it can heal properly. I asked if he could just do it ASAP so I can get it over with so I hopefully don't have to worry about this for whenever Rosenow has a date for me with the brain stuff. I was hoping for a week from today (Wednesdays are his surgery days) because all that poking and prodding on Monday has left me limping again, but of course they couldn't make that work. So December 26th it is. Maybe I can convince him to just web my foot to make me swim faster. Hmmm...not sure how that would work for running though. Next year I'm putting "tropical island vacation" on my Christmas list. The past two years I've been in the ER and this year will be surgery. Good lord, this is turning into quite the eventful off season already. No problem, just squeezing in another foot surgery before they saw my head open again. Way to end 2018 and start off 2019 with a bang!
The picture on the left is a couple weeks after surgery in September and the one on the right is today. My foot looks less alien like now but is still swollen and the outside doesn't move yet. It basically feels like he sewed someone else's foot onto mine. Hopefully this surgery will fix it already and I can be done with this issue. Stabby continues to be more fired up and there isn't much I can do about that. I don't understand how my body and mind can be on such opposite ends of the spectrum ALL.THE.TIME. My mind says I'm a normal functioning human being that likes to race, sleep normally, hang out with my friends when I want to and go to work to support myself. My body thinks that is absolutely hilarious and absurd and does everything possible to prevent all of that.
So I'm hoping I won't be in a boot for too long so I won't have to take more than a week or so off work. They still aren't offering me many patients but I would like to take what I can before the noggin surgery since I'll be out much longer with that one. I had to humble myself yet again today and go to Dupage County Services to apply for assistance with my utilities and also ask about the SNAP program (formerly known as food stamps). Yes after 3 years I'm finally conceding that I'm there. I have to admit that every time I write about having to get financial assistance it is through tears. I usually delete it and re-write it about 4 times and so far today is no different. I don't like complaining about it and I don't want it to come across as looking for pity. It's always just to remind you that there's more to illness than just the physical. I know some of you get frustrated with me on this (accepting financial help) but if you really put yourself in this position, not just for a couple weeks or months, but for 3 YEARS you had to depend on others' help despite all your efforts to remain independent, hopefully you can understand a little bit where I'm coming from. That being said, I'm extremely grateful for all of you and all of the anonymous help I've received along the way. I'm also just grateful to have this platform to get the yucks out and hopefully educate a little along the way.
I'm frustrated as hell with life but I'm continuing to trust that SOMETHING will turn around at some point. Then hopefully it will be a domino effect and things will start to fall into place. Or maybe they already are and I'm just not realizing it. Either way, each day will pass and I can piss and moan or laugh and be grateful. Laughing is way more fun and less stressful so let's press on!"
Kristin goes back to the doctor on today so the doctor can check things and change the dressings. Kristin is not sure how much longer the stitches have to stay in or how long she has to be in this boot now. This has become quite the ordeal.
If yourself in a position to help Kristin as the new month starts I want to share she is on Venmo for those of you that use it and her handle is @kmcruns
Have a great week/month!