Sunday, October 26, 2014

Old, alone, and unwanted!

You may know that one of my lifelines is a Seniors Ministry I have at a local Assisted Living Facility (ALF).  These people are sweet, salt of the earth, lonely people.  The are forgotten for the most part.  If their families visit at all, it is once a month or even less.  The visits are short, the conversations are stilted, and those who visit are glad to get our of the ALF as soon as they can.  It is as if they think they will catch whatever their relative has!

When the opportunity came to us for this Ministry, I was happy and frightened at the same time.  When I was younger, we had m\Linda's Father in a Nursing Home because his Alzheimer's had become combative.   It was difficult to visit him, especially in his last year or so, because he did not recognize us.  On the other hand, if I went out of the room to check with the nursing staff, when I came back in, I was a new visitor!  It made him happy, so who was I to argue.

Now that I am older, and dealing with LBD myself, I identify with those who I minister too.  They are very attentive during our weekly studies and they ask good questions.  After our study, they love to discuss the news of the day or any other topic!  They are lonely for outside contact and Linda and I provide a small dose of that needed medicine.

We have been blessed to conduct two Baptisms for this group.  The most recent was last Wednesday.  The gentleman I Baptized has advanced MS.  So he is very rigid and has difficulty moving.  Yet, he climbed the 20 steps to the Baptismal on his own.  His second issue is that he is afraid of water.  So, stepping into the Baptismal waters, which were about 3 feet deep, was a monumental act of courage for him. But, he did all he needed to and we Baptised him!  Praise the Lord!!

When he came out of the water, the smile on his face lit up Heaven!!!

Now, think of this.  The Activities Director of the ALF loaded up 11 moderate to severely handicapped individuals over the age of 70, onto a bus, delivered them to First Baptist Church of Gulf Breeze, Florida, and unloaded them into the Sanctuary for a Church Service!

The Pastor at First Baptist is 40 and has little idea how to minster to Seniors, especially those that are handicapped either physically or mentally.  He has approached me about starting a Seniors Ministry at First Baptist and I agreed.  Why?  There are many more individuals in ALF's all over Gulf Breeze that need and hunger for spiritual ministry!

They are not monetarily wealthy people but they are wealthy in experiences and love.  And every once in a while, there is one person, ready to accept emus Christ as their Lord and Savior.  They only need an Ambassador of God to help them close the deal.

Working for God with these precious people keeps me wanting to keep going!  I love them and they give me back more love and friendship than I could ever hope for.  Why don't YOU stop by an ALF close ego your home and open up a relationship with just one of the forgotten people.  I guarantee you will receive blessing that far exceed anything you invest!

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Activity blanket

My wife noticed I have difficulty controlling my hands when I am sitting.  She noticed this today at our son's home.  I am constantly ringing my hands, rubbing my arms, rubbing my pants, or other hand activities.  She recommend we get an activity blanket.  The idea actually excites me since I am always doing something with my hands.

I am either picking my fingers, or rubbing my hands, my arms, or using the computer to search endless subjects my mind comes up with.  So, maybe a blanket with different textures and maybe some mechanical activities might help me control this busy hand issue.

This is an admission on my part that my LBD is progressing and I am OK with that.  In fact, I am more and more giving up fighting this disease.  I actually feel better relaxing and not fighting this disease.  For instance, I do not drive anymore.  Yes, I still have my driver's license and I could still drive.  But, why should I?  Driving is difficult and stressful for me now.   Then there is the liability issue if I were involved in an auto accident as the driver.  So, why stress?

On the same point, if an activity blanket, or as it is sometimes called a fidget or busy hand blanket, helps me deal with my hands always searching for something to touch, then I want one!!

This is truly an interesting change in my mental approach.

No one like to read or talk about the tough times!

I notice many of the posts I write about the tough, emotional, issues that I suffer caused by LBD are the least read.  Yes, I can and do check statistics.  Why, I am interested in what interests you.  No!  I do not change what I write about.  Why?  Because MUCH of what I write is unfiltered, emotional, feelings and actually problems that are happening at the time I write about them!  This is a real time log of my life.

My wife is very resistant to read about LBD.  I have given her articles from LBDA.Org and she never reads them.  My son is the same way.  Why?  My guess is they have their heads in the sand!  As long as I am doing relatively OK they believe I am "normal" and they can relax.  If I mention a new or increasing symptom, my wife calmly changes the subject.  Now, in her defense, she says she mentally catalogs those symptoms and changes.  But, she does not read about this disease.

I on the other hand, have done tons of research because I want to know what is and will happen to me.   That is the technician in me.  ow does it work, why does it work, what was the last thing it did before it failed, and is there a way to fix it.

For instance, recently I have begun hand shaking.  This is new.  I have great difficulty getting my fingers on a button or even on the correct key wen typing.  The other day, I was trying to grab something with my thumb and it would NOT go where i wanted it too!  Annoying issue for me.

LBD is an emotional disease for the person with it.  As things go wrong, or as the Lewy Bodies settle in a new portion of the brain and screw that function up, it lets the sufferer know he is NOT in charge of what is happening.  For instance, blood pressure fluctuations.  I am experiencing more dizziness when I get up or move quickly.  This is something I MUST pay attention to, because I could pass out and fall!

Back to my point.  I do try to write about the good times and issues.  But, LBD is NOT a good thing to have and I find myself getting more angry about having it!  I guess that is normal!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Don't compare me to someone else!

When I was a little boy, and even into my teenage ears, my birth Mother, Betty Kampf, always used to hold me up in a negative way, against Henry Barry, the son of her friend and hair dresser, Cammile Barry.  I ALWAYS fell short of the excellent example that Henry set!  Right!  He turned out to be a draft dodger, he went to Canada to avoid service to my country.  Notice I said; "My Country".  Henry deserted My Country so it is no longer his, even though President Ford gave the Viet Nam draft doggers, this chickens and cowards, amnesty.

Henry grew up in the two parent home.  Yes, his parents did not sleep together and his mother had boy friends, but, he did not know that then.  He was a child of privilege!   His family was well off, if not rich.  His uncle owned a string of Buick dealerships, up and down the East Coast.  I don't remember what his father did, but they were well off.   I did not like Henry.  And I did not like being compared to him and always coming out in third place.

I never did that to my son or my grandsons. I have seen wives try to do this to their husbands!   "Why aren't you like so and so!  He coaches soccer, is president of the PTA, and is this and that."   I actually had a woman try to compare her husband to me, in front of both of us!  I drew her up short! Quickly!!

Two people are not the same.  We are all different!  We all have different experiences, skills, abilities, strengths, weaknesses, and habits.  

In any case, I have always hated being compared to others.  But, some neurologists and other doctors have tried this with me.  I treat them the same!  I let them know that my experiences with LBD are exactly that, MINE!!   What I am experiencing is most likely different than the next person.  Yes, we have some similar experiences.  But even those may be experienced differently or at different times or frequency.

My point is, lost, I suppose.  I was sitting here, alone, living in the past.  I had an urge to call my mother on the telephone, just to talk, be noise, and see how she was.  Then, Henry and how my mother treated me came to mind and I got angry and upset and decided not to call her.  Which is good, because she died in 1991.  But, that fact escaped me for a while.

Now, I am sure some of my fellow LBD sufferers experience the same sort of mental confusion.  But, their's is probably different than mine.  But we all are on this confusing journey, thing to make sense of where we are and where we are going.  Of course, we will never figure that out.  Maybe I should not be left alone at home!  Or, maybe it is good to deal with the emotions of the past.  The founding Commanding Officer of SEAL Team Six, Dick Marcinko, a fellow Slovak, used to say: "Pain is God's way of letting you know you are still alive!"  I wonder if that applies to emotional pain?  If so, my brain is still alive!!

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Stress of selling our home

As I wrote earlier, yesterday was great!  Today has been more difficult.  I was called by our realtor at 0800!  That's 8 AM!!  Is this woman nuts?  She said we had a showing at 2:30PM.  Then, an hour later she called and said we had another showing at noon.

I realize people have to look at the house to buy it.  But the stress comes when we have to get the two miniature poodles in the car and disappear for that hour or so.  We did OK for the first showing, except that we had to disrupt our friends from out of town's departure plans.  The sec on showing was not as easy,  We packed up and left well before the showing and we were headed back when my realtor called with the excuse that the showing realtor was running lat and would not be here until 4PM!  At that, I told my wife I needed to be home!

Being out of my familiar surroundings, trying to coral two poodles in the back seat of the Subaru, driving around in neighborhoods I don't want to be in is stressful and makes me angry.  And by the time I got home, I WAS angry.  SO, I went to sleep, after the late realtor took some woman around our home that was obviously not interested in the house and most likely not able to pay for it!

I have sold many homes, and I know it is stressful.  But now I have full blown LBD and I am not of the mind to put up with stupid, mental midget Realtors!!  I pray the house sells soon.

Great therapy!

Yesterday, we had a visit from an old shipmate.  He and his wife and brother and sister in law came to Pensacola to visit and vacation.  Today, is their 43rd wedding anniversary!  We have not seen each other in 31 years, yet it was like we have been together the entire time!

Sea stories, catching up on the last 31 years, and good fellowship.  It was a wonderful day.  Early yesterday morning, Chris, from Azalea Trace, called us to see how we were doing.  He asked if there was anything he could do and I said, I would like our guests to eat dinner in the Azalea Trace dinning room.  Chris said; "No problem"!

Now our friends, might have been a little concerned about eating dinner at a retirement home!  I am sure they pictured pureed food, no sharp kitchen tools, sparks, and bibs!  When we walked into the grad lobby at Azalea, they were awe struck!  Dinner was first class.  Steaks, tilapia fish, dessert, the salad bar, were all delicious. The wait staff went above and beyond.

After dinner, we took a tour of the facility and they were further impressed.  All in all it was a great evening.

Being with my old shipmate as just the therapy I needed.  When we returned home, we sat in the living room for a while, did NOT turn the television on, and when to bed early.  I fell asleep quickly and slept through the night.   Nothing is better for me than being with old shipmates.  Thanks Dave and Reba!  Come again soon.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Doing what I liked to do, one more time

I am a NASCAR fan.  I watched a race, a few years ago, that Mark Martin won.  In the post race interview, he was in tears.  Mark said,  I know I may never win another race, so this is so emotional to me!

Today, my son and I went shooting at a new indoor range in Pensacola.  It is a "Class A" facility in all aspects.  As good as Camp Allen in Norfolk.  Just James and I.  We had breakfast, went shooting, in a very relaxed atmosphere, and the range personnel were friendly and engaging.  It was a good time and I eve shot pretty well.  Yes, my vision gives me pro blame.  I can no longer see the front and rear sights, and the target.  So, I have to line up my front and rear sights and then look at the blur that should be the target.  But, I know how to compensate.  Maybe I should change to "front sight" shooting.

The Mark Martin story came to mind and I realized this could be the last time I go shooting.  I tired easily and we were only on the range for about 90 minutes.  When I was an active shooter, I could shoot all day and still be fresh.  I remember IDPA matches at Blackwater in North Carolina where I would shoot, moving from one stage to another, all day in the heat.  Yes, I was tired at the end of the day, but I could still shoot the night shoot!  Today, I came home and took a nap.

The reality of all this is, LBD has robbed me of stamina, strength, and vision.  All things necessary to do what I have loved to do, for a long time.  Days like today illuminate the losses I have experienced.  These days bring all the is negative about LBD to the forefront.   Maybe, that is why I seldom do things like this.  When I do, I realize where I am in my journey.

Still, I enjoyed my day,  My son looked out for me all day,  He looks for the signs that am getting tired.   When I was younger, and so was he, he would complain if I wanted to leave the range before dark.  Now, he takes carer of me.  Days like today are important to me.  Bonding time with my son.  I need to make more of these happen.

Sometimes, it is hard to judge where I am in this journey.  On days like today, my position on the map that shows my journey with LBD is very evident.


Thursday, October 9, 2014

My wife, my caregiver, my friend

I have not written about my wife in a while.  I am sorry about that.  She is everything to me and I love her.  This is her second time around with Dementia.  Her father died of Alzheimer's in 1991.  Back then, there were no medicines, no memory support units, and no understanding of the Dementia patient.   If they were in professional care, they were tied to chairs if the wandered, left to themselves, and cleaned up and dressed only when visitors or family were expected.

Today, there are medicines to extend mental capacity, memory support facilities that do their best to give the Dementia paint a normal, fulfilling, interesting, life.  And more is being learned.  I have met professional caregivers through the Alzheimer's Association that have degrees in Senior Care!  That never existed when my Father In Law was suffering from Alzheimer's.

Since this is my wife's second dance with Dementia, she has some ideas as to what to expect in me.  Yet, I still surprise her.  For instance, before we knew I was affected by LBD, I would do unexpected, socially unaccepted, behaviors at Church Board meetings!  She would correct me, and even chastise me for my fooling around in an important meeting.  She, nor I, never that I had Dementia and she did not know at that time that I did not know what I was doing or that what I was doing was not acceptable.  She and I do now.

When I has a bowel accident, she never even blinks.  She just says, we can deal with this.  She helps me remember things, find the correct word, and deals with my need to always know where she is, even in our home.  She has never got anger when I ask her what her name is, or where we are, when we are laying in our bed.  She understands these issues and takes them in stride.

It was my wife and my Neurologist in Virginia, Dr. Mary Bowles, that encouraged me to write this blog.  My wife designed both of my blogs and still keeps them up to date and me on track.

She meets my every need.  She even anticipates my needs!  Let me relate something she did for me, early in this journey.  It was the night before an appointment with Dr. Bowles.  My wife wanted me to have my thought together to see her and wanted me to put together as symptoms list.  I did not want to.  I resisted her and became sarcastic.  She yelled at me and let me know this was not just about me!  She had an investment in this journey too!!  That was a very important lie eon for me to learn.  She does have a big investment in me and my well being.  She like being with me and wants me to be as well as I can be as long as God will let me.  Of course, I have to do my best and follow doctor's directions.    Now, I am a team player in this journey.

Her Dad could not help.   We never knew he was effects with Alzheimer's until her Mother died.  By then even if there was a treatment available, it was way too late.  We were blessed in that we were diagnosed early, by a tenacious Neurologist, and medicines were developed that would help me maintain or at least slow the progression of my Dementia.

Now, I am loosing mental ground at a faster rate.  We see evidence of that everyday.   I compare this to a slow leak in a tire.  n the beginning, the tire stays up and you can drive.  Then, as you loose more air, you can feel the car handle different.  Little by little, you notice the car does not drive the way it did.  Then, you hear the flopping noise of the tire as it comes apart and no longer supports that corner of the car.

I am at the stage where the handling is getting worse.  The tire is still there, but after loosing half of it's air, the car wobbles and sways, as goes down the road.

My wife has her hands full with me.  But she manages it well.  I am blessed to be her husband.  Thanks Linda!

After the diagnosis, why do we go to the doctor?

Discounting the Psychologist I go to for help dealing with my emotions, I wonder why we continue to go to doctors after we have a confirmed diagnosis of LBD?

Why do I ask that question?  Let's look at the facts.  My meds have not changed in a long time.  As far as the memory portion of my disease, there are no other drugs I can take.  Unlike my Neurologist in Virginia, this Neurologist does not do follow on cognitive testing.  I can agree with that.  I know my mental capacity is deminishing.  There is no need to spend money to confirm that.  And, why confirm tehe down turn.  since there is no other meds or treatments to help.  As far as my anger issues, my doctors are very reticent to prescribe any meds to help with that issue until I become physically violent!

But, I go to see the neurologist once every six months and the Psychiatrist every three months.  Yes, they write the prescriptions to keep me on those med that are slowing the process of my LBD.   But, I still see these visits as an increasing waste of time.  Today, I saw the doctor that writes the prescription for all of my memory drugs and my depression meds.  He asked some pertinent questions and then said he would keep my meds the same.

Baring a violent outbreak or other issues that would require institutionalization, I really don't understand what I have all these appointments.    I will see my Neurologist this month and I am going to ask him about my blood pressure drops that have lead to light headed issue and almost passing out.  Also, bowel issues and other balance issues.  Since Sinemet causes me so many negative issues, I doubt he can help with the balance issues but the other autonomic issues he may want to address.

I just wanted to bring this topic us, as the patient, and see if anyone else has issues with the numerous, I believe useless, doctor's appointments.  Of course, I may just be having paranoia issues as most LBD patients do.  After all, people have stole food from our home and followed me!  These things I am sure of.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

How little things cause BIG issues!

I am in a period of stress and anxiety.  Our house is on the market.  We are under contract at a CCRC.  We have given them $35k and our apartment is in the process of being remodeled.  We are on the hook for a substantial last payment and monthly payments that are bigger than anything I have ever seen.  The sale of our home is required for this to work.  Even the mention of budget, payments, or money makes me sick.

Now, before someone writes me and tells me everything will be OK.  Or even that God has this in His hands.  I know that!  But, my mind does not process things like this in a manner that even relates to logic, truth, or faith.  Instead, I for into panic, fear, and depression.  I get angry, defensive, and my fight or flight emotion kicks in!

I have had many long thoughts and dreams about running away!  Really!  Running away, hiding, being homeless, and never having contact with this life again!  Serious stuff, I know.  But it is where my mind escapes too.

Those of you without LBD need to understand that those of us with LBD do not have a mind that deals with reality like yours does.  My mind is broke and does not function like it used to.  For instance, social filters.  You know, saying things in a social environment that are not appropriate.   That was early in the journey.  Now, I panic when I face change, or difficult situations, or even normal daily issues.

When we are at Azalea Trace, I am comfortable, even happy.  I feel it is the best place for both of us.  When we are win our apartment, even in it's pre-remodel state, I feel at home.  Today, we spent time there planning where our furniture will go.  But, now, a few hours later, I am in a panic.  Overwhelmed, frightened, and depressed.

So, I will retire to my bed and escape to sleep.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Considering a Continuing Care Retirement Community?

First of all, thanks for all the well wishes and prayers connected to our acceptance at Azalea Trace.  We are very blessed to be moving into this exceptional community.

I have been very open about our desire to move to a CCRC and I have received many strange looks, quizzical looks, looks of disdain, and questions about my sanity!  The last should have been know by anyone who has know me more than a week!  But the biggest question I get after; "Why would you do that?" is;  "Is that a place where they take ALL OF YOU MONEY!?"

The simple answer is NO.  But, they do have an entrance fee that is substantial.  Some CCRC's have lower Entrance Fees.  Some have NO entrance fee.  That's correct!   Some have no entrance fee.  However, in those communities, if and when you need assisted living or skilled nursing care, you pay at the going rate of that time.  Now, if you are just retiring, with no know major health issues, a no fee community would be good or even the best for you.  But if you are relatively sure you will need more care in the future than you or your spouse can provide on your own, a community that locks in your costs may be the answer.  It certain was for us.

Then, there is the tax break.  No, up front I will tell you I am not a tax attorney or a CPA.  You must check with the IRS, your attorney, and your CPA on any tax information.  However, my research tells me that a significant part of the entrance fee and the monthly living costs can be tax deductible as medical expenses because you are purchasing health care in advance.  Much like your premium on your medical insurance.  Now, most of us never reach the threshold of medical deduction, but with the entrance fee, you may.  Again, check with you people.

The other reason we are moving is peace of mind.  I cannot do home maintenance anymore.  Heck, I can't do personal maintenance anymore.  I need to wear my glasses to safely shave.  I am not permitted on ladders, after I cut the beam my ladder was leaning on at our Home Church in Virginia Beach!  Me, the saws all, the 2X10 beam, and a 20 foot extension ladder all came down at he same time!! Scared Pastor Fred to death!  So, you can see, home maintenance is not in my future.

Living at Azalea Trace provides all we ever wanted and more.  Is is costly.  Yes.  But God has provided for us richly.  He set this entire move up and I trust Him for our future.

I hope this answers some of the questions we have received.  We appreciate every one's concern for our well being.  And rest assured, we will be better off in Azalea Trace than anywhere else.  Come visit us after we move in and I am sure you will agree.

Saturday, October 4, 2014

My life in the past

I have written before about my life in my memories.  I spend a lot of my time reliving my life.  You will note I say, reliving instead of remembering.  That is because I actually can place myself in those memories, as if they are what I am doing right now.

I have had urges to call my Mother, even though she died in 1991.  I have had other urges to call or talk to other deceased relatives or close friends.   I have also had immediate feelings that I have the duty and I am late or that I need to get to work.

Today, I was shaving.  Nothing remarkable there, except I now need to wear my glasses to shave safely!  I can't see what I am doing without them.  Then, I was transported into the small bathroom of our rented home on Fairville Avenue on the west side of Cleveland Ohio.  I remember being a boy, maybe 11 or so, watching my Dad shave.  He used a shaving cream that came in a tube.  He got his brush wet with hot water from the tap, and then spread the soap from the tube on the brush.  He would then lather his face with the brush.  Then her would replace his glass.  I asked him, why do you wear your glasses when you shave.  Dad said; because I can't see what I am doing without them!

Reliving my past consumes much of my time.  Much of it is pleasant, like my memories of Dad.  Some is not so pleasant and some even upset me.   Some of these memories I cannot shake.  They stay with me all the time.  Others come and go.  Many of my mistakes and wrong doing haunt me and many times I have vivid memories of wrongs that were done to me.

I seldom think of the time I live in.  Politics upset me because I see the America  live dying.  So, I choose to actively ignore the news.   I find little interesting about the time I now live in.  The only time I am mentally engaged with the world around me is when I am teaching God's Word.  Otherwise, the past suits me fine.

Life was free of the confusion of my disease then.  It had a future and endless possibilities.   Now, I only see endless confusion with no future.   It is no wonder that my mind relives my past.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Lewy Body ups and downs

Lewy Body Dementia is such an up and down disease.  I have written about the up times I have experienced recently.  And the good days are always shadowed by the down days.  Tonight the sundowning is worse, I am angry, and while I am still in control of my emotions, I am extremely upset and overwhelmed.

This week has been extremely stressful and busy.  Yes, good things cause stress too!   But it seems the good times make the down times deeper and more drastic.

I have also written about my increasing mental disconnection and fog.  This seems worse tonight.  Things that should not or would not upset me before are enormous issues to me now.  For instance, my wife was talking about budget issues and her successes in managing our resources.  I have told you before that my wife is an expert manager of our finances.  But her talking about it caused me great stress and anger.  Now that is not normal.

So, as we travel down the LBD road, numerous bumps, potholes, and sink holes seem to cause increasing disruptions in our lives.  These disruptions are difficult for the sufferer and the caregiver, equally.  I realize that.  But, I can only deal with my side of the pain.  I am not sure my wife understands that.   And I am not emotionally equipped to tell her.  

New phase of mental fog

We had our cognitive screening for admission to Azalea Trace.  My wife went first.  So, I was sitting outside alone, in a strange place, trying to hone my grasp on the facts I thought I would be asked.

Then yesterday, my wife had a scheduled Bible study and we had the appointment at Azalea Trace to select the materials and appliances for our apartment.  We decided to have me accompany her to save time and gas.   I was alone in the car waiting for her for three hours.

During both of these alone times I noticed a significant feeling of disconnected mind.   I could not remember the date, month or year.  I could not make mental connections or sequences.  I was in a fog.

These episodes are occurring more often and seem to be more disconnected.  As write this, I am having problems formulating words and sentences to explain how I feel.  This is truly difficult to experience.

I am now drawing a total blank.  So. I will close and add some later.

After a break;  I seem to need a small number of people around to talk to and just have by me.  I used to get energy from large groups.  For instance at Navy events where there are many people that I know or have a professional relationship with.  Those events used to energize me.  Now, they drain me and exacerbate my memory and anger issues.

This fogginess is increasing in depth and occurrence.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Things are looking up!

When I retired, I had a period of rebound.  Because I was away from the inherent stress of my profession, I felt better.  Less stressed.  I felt like someone had taken the 100 pound weight off of my chest!  It took a while, but that was how I felt after the initial shock of retiring wore away.

Today, we met with the facilities director to select the colors, flooring, appliances, and even the plumbing fixtures for our apartment at Azalea Trace.  After that meeting, I began to feel like the 100 pound weight had been lifted off of my chest!  I am beginning to feel like this is really going to happen!  We really are moving to a exceptional facility that is willing and able to care for Linda and myself, no matter what!  All my worry, concern, and searching will be done.  We have a CCRC that will meet our needs.  I am beginning to feel happy, secure, and even free of worry.

Yes, we have to sell our home.  But we have been on the market one day and we have already had a family tour our home!  Our home is in the ideal location in Gulf Breeze and I believe we will have no problems selling our home.  Yet, since it is not sold yet, that is a nagging issue for me.

So, when God brings the new owner of out home to our home, I will have nothing else to worry about.  Remember, I do not have any exposure to the budget.  So, those issues are left to the capable care of my wife, who is a great manager of our income and savings.  I am blessed to have her by my side.

So, things are on the up swing for me.  I know more down turns will come my way.  That is the nature of this disease.  But, outside stressors are being reduced and that is good.