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Bertha Venation

Profile Information

Name: Bertha. What else?
Gender: Female
Hometown: Huntington Beach, CA
Home country: home, sweet home
Current location: Fountain Valley, CA
Member since: Wed Oct 15, 2003, 09:30 PM
Number of posts: 21,475

Journal Archives

Lupus/Arthritis drug

I don't have a lupus diagnosis, yet. The doctor I've been seeing has been trying to get my hip/knee pain under control before she diagnoses me. She says, however, that I do have the - marker? - for lupus.

She's had me on etodolac for pain for about six weeks. It helps, but not a whole lot, and not consistently.

Two weeks ago she added Plaquenil (hydroxychloroquine). To my surprise, the combination is working pretty well. Thank you, Dr. Nandipati!

But I have a problem: since I've been taking the Plaquenil, I've been having anxiety attacks. Not full-blown - it's mostly the physical feeling of an anxiety attack, with the blood running cold, and the weakness in the chest and just generally that I get.

Even pseudo-anxiety attacks - that's all I need. Has anyone else had this problem?
Posted by Bertha Venation | Thu Dec 31, 2015, 10:27 AM (15 replies)

Edited: Two questions for those in the know about residential rentals.

What would happen if I rented a house that accepted one pet, and I signed that I had one pet, but actually had three, and later - days, months, years - the landlord/owner discovered that I had three pets?

Edit: Do you know if there is a legal limit on pets in a single-family detached house? I'm going to the county website, but if you have a quick answer for Orange Co, CA, I'd love for you to educate me. Thanks.
Posted by Bertha Venation | Sun Dec 27, 2015, 07:31 PM (13 replies)

I must re-home six cats.

We have ten. All are healthy and very well-cared-for. Both of us loves each one of our kids as individuals. The funny groups and sounds they make in deciding who's going to groom whom, who's going to play or rip together, and who's going to growl over his or her breakfast, make us both laugh every day.

We're moving across the country (Maryland-California) next year. We need to re-home all of them, really, but four of them have problems and I wouldn't ask anyone else to take them on.

It will be hard enough to find them homes, but making it harder is that the youngest of them is eight years old. Two of them are tame only with me. They are all beautiful in heart and spirit.

First, thanks for listening.

Second, do you have any ideas for where I can go to get the word out, and/or how I can find potential fosters/homes? I'm in Maryland and will drive to any part of this state, and to DC, northern Virginia, Delaware, and part of Pennsylvania. Thank you.

(Tomorrow will cross-post to the lounge.)
Posted by Bertha Venation | Tue Dec 8, 2015, 10:56 PM (17 replies)

I would like to say I'm thankful.

Although our immediate needs are met, although we have more than many, I'm anxious and afraid.

My wife has rightfully decided, after suffering a brain injury that has probably ended her career in IT, to retire. There are (is?) a number of financial problems with this, but the fact is that she needs to retire. I told her that if we have a poorer retirement, so be it. So fucking be it: it is her happiness that is important. Her quality of life. Her enjoyment of life. Her sanity. Those are the important things.

We've said for 15 years that we will move home to Southern California after she retires. But we didn't envision her retiring like this.

We're underwater in our house. I've been reading up on short sales. The thought scares me, but I don't know if housing in this area will improve enough in the near future for us to break even. With the huge, enormous growth of new residences of all kinds surrounding us (where used to exist trees with attendant wildlife), I doubt it. And I don't know if a short sale would even be approved. Since I've been unemployed, we've maxed out our credit, so I doubt this, too.

I haven't worked since July '13. I'm studying to be a medical transcription editor. My goal is to finish by March 31, and to secure employment very soon thereafter. But I don't know how much I'll earn; there's really no way for me to tell at this point.

When we move home, we're merging house with one of my sisters and her daughter. My sister retired early, in July '13 (forced to do so by unendurable working conditions), and she has a small retirement income, but not enough. I don't know how she's squeaking by. Surely she will have found work by the time we move home. My niece, due to some emotional problems, has never worked. (She will be 28 on the 6th.)

I'm anxious and I'm afraid. I'm navigating the worlds of real estate, cross-country moves, merging a home of three cats with a home of ten, moving ten cats across the country, and starting a new career - all without a map.

Did I mention that I'm anxious and afraid?

However, we have

deep love, affection, and respect for each other
a roof, affectionate pets, ample food and clean water, and safe personal transportation
people who love us and whom we love - family and chosen family and friends

and I am deeply, deeply grateful.

How can I be anxious and afraid with all of this? But I am.
Posted by Bertha Venation | Thu Nov 26, 2015, 08:42 PM (3 replies)

questions about traffic law

We were in a bad wreck on Tuesday. A tractor-trailer changed lanes right into me and sent me spinning across all lanes, hitting other cars along the way. I wound up parallel to the jersey wall (fortunately out of traffic) and facing the wrong way. By some lucky wrinkle in the universe, we weren't hurt. Battered and bruised, but no blood, no broken bones, and, surprisingly, no airbags. But I'm afraid they might total my Camry.

The trucker claims that I changed lanes into him. Since we blamed each other, the trooper was required to cite both of us. I was cited for "changing lanes when unsafe" and the citation further states that I "contributed to the accident." That's BS, but it's going to be up to a judge to decide, because I did no wrong.

Does anyone know if it would be good to hire a lawyer for this?

Another question: if I'm found to be the one who caused the accident, will I get a point on my license?

Posted by Bertha Venation | Thu Nov 26, 2015, 10:57 AM (12 replies)

grammar tests suck

I have to identify the agreement error in this sentence:

He complains of abdominal, neck, and chest pain as well as the need for urination, though her Foley was in place.

As I see it, there are two: pronoun agreement and verb tense agreement. (Am I right?) I can only choose one answer.

Posted by Bertha Venation | Sun Nov 15, 2015, 01:50 PM (30 replies)

testing/math question (not a math test)

I'm trying to figure out whether it's worth it for me to re-take a test.

I've scored 99% on an exam of 47 questions. If I re-take the test and score 100%, what will be my average score?
Posted by Bertha Venation | Mon Nov 9, 2015, 11:35 AM (3 replies)

With thanks to many, I report --

we were able to make our house payment.

We may not get all we need from the gofundme campaign, but that's ok. You have no idea what an emotional relief it is just to have made that house payment.

Most contributions have been anonymous. If you are Anonymous, I thank you from the bottom of my liver (it's bigger).

Really. Thank you. I wish I could say it in a way that makes it stronger, in a way that can convey my relief. But all I can say is thank you. My gratitude is enormous.

Posted by Bertha Venation | Fri Oct 9, 2015, 09:45 AM (1 replies)

"Not a sermon - just a thought" is a crock. of. shit.

Do you have something similar on broadcast radio in your area?

Here in the Washington, DC metro area, the pastor of McLean Bible Church (I think) comes on with a concentrated altar call. The latest, just heard, included this line: "You know, it seems to me that the only way to not be afraid to live is to not be afraid to die." (best I can remember)

Then the pitch: the only way to be not afraid to die is "through Christ." WTF is this "through" business? There's a local carpet business here in Southern Maryland whose motto, printed on its trucks, is "Serving Jesus Christ Through Carpeting."

Not a sermon. Just a thought.

PS I'm an atheist but am not anti-Christian, or even anti-religion. I respect your right to worship.
Posted by Bertha Venation | Thu Oct 8, 2015, 12:57 PM (5 replies)

One of my cats is extremely unhappy and there's nothing I can do about it.

Rat Face, our five-year-old tuxy, is beleaguered by four of our other cats. She stays in the office all the time, afraid to go anywhere but the basement, where the litter boxes are.

I am probably anthropomorphizing her, but I can't help it. So here goes: she lives in a constant state of fear and anxiety. It's impossible for her to relax. I think she must be very, very sad.

I spend as much time as possible with her. She has learned to come out and sit with me when I'm on the computer in the dining room, but she'll only stay out here when I'm here. Mrs. V. holds her in her lap at least part of each day when she's working, but she hasn't been able to work for almost two months, so Rat Face is more lonesome than ever. Spending time with her is the only thing I can do for her.

Her misery is my fault. My inability to say no has blessed (?) us with ten cats. My only other option for improving her life involves making her an only cat, and I can't do that.

Got questions? Got ideas? Thanks.

PS Feliway doesn't work.

Posted by Bertha Venation | Wed Oct 7, 2015, 05:12 PM (9 replies)
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