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More reports from the recovery bed today.  My body is taking the next step towards recovery, which basically is that purge stage that gets everything back to working order.  I feel different today than I did yesterday.  That is a good thing.

My guess is that the other challenge I am facing with surgery is the one that most everyone else also experiences — the financial challenge.  One of the blessings I am experiencing is that the company I work for decided about a year ago to quit going cheap on the employee health plan, switching plans to BCBS, a much superior and very accepted health plan, complete in so many ways.  Since this year has been the year of surgery for me, with my foot surgery happening in January and the gallbladder removal this past Monday, I am giving that health plan a good test.  It is passing with flying colors, so far so complete that there have been little to no worries about coverage and payment.  Everything is quick and I know exactly what my responsibility is.  Because my deductibles were met earlier in the year, the out of pocket expense for the current surgery is expected to be zero.  That, my friends, is a blessing.

But, of course, a second surgery also means a second short term disability claim.  I have very little vacation or personal time left to use towards the five working day delay before the medical disability kicks in.  I may actually have to write a check to my company next week to cover the weekly paycheck insurance deductions.. and I will not get a paycheck for my time away this week.  That hurts.  At least it complicates life a bit — we have to figure out how we are going to survive through the next few weeks on what is left at the moment –$87.  Yikes.  And that is before I write that check for the insurance deduction.

Of course, our cat became sick yesterday.  He has sort of urinary thing going on.  Mir dropped him off at the vet this morning.  Yeah.  Let’s all heave a collective sigh together.  I just did.  It never freaking stops.  Never.  Ever. 

I am still on that long road to try to turn my family finances around.  There are things I need to do, but the main thing is to cut my family off to accessing my pay.  Sound cruel?  It feels that way.  But it seems to be the only way.  More than one person has suggested that I open another bank account, at a bank different than the one we currently use, and an account that only I have access to.  I am slow doing that, but I know it’s the only way.  Despite the dire financial straits, my family still does not get the urgency, my wife used to being bailed out.  She does not understand that planning, self control, and a bit of common sense will go a long way to changing our situation for the better.  I keep giving her chances, giving her a cash budget for groceries, for instance.  Out of $240 given to her for groceries in two paychecks, there were no planned meals and little groceries in our family store.  How does that happen?  Yet our son is constantly stocked with soda pop, they come home with sacks from their fast food forays almost every day, and even though Mir knew I was cooking dinner with ice cream in the freezer for desert last night, they still came home with McDonalds and hot fudge sundaes after school.  Un freaking real.

I should not write about this stuff.

But a lot of that last bit of information also falls on my shoulders.  Looks like I am going to have to be the tough leader, probably a bit of a dictator, by cutting them off totally.  I am slow making the steps necessary, but I am getting there.

Soooooooo, the challenges really are beyond the physical when it comes to recovery.  Really, getting physically better is the easiest part of this whole thing.  I am getting support from my own family though, my brothers and their families, both doing very well financially, have both sent gifts to me, one of the reasons I was able to pay the mortgage this week.  My mom did make sure that there was food in the fridge when she and dad visited this past Monday after my surgery.  I need to look at the blessings.  They are there and one of those blessings is the support I get from friends and family.

And the challenges will keep coming, I am sure.