This is my story. I was born in 1953. We didn’t have Fluoride in the water yet. Everyone had fillings in their mouth. As I grew up in a neighborhood of similar houses, with new families in all of them, it sort of resembled the old “Our Gang” TV show. Of course TV was Black & White with few channels but we had Mickey Mouse. I don’t know if every baby boomer feels this way but back then on our little street everyone knew his or her neighbor. Mothers stayed home, dads took the only car to work and everyone looked out for each other. Lets skip ahead, about 50 years. By now, married to another baby boomer, with 2 daughters and a career, our generation had pretty much trashed the planet, worshipped the almighty dollar and went about our lives with the attitude that everything would always remain the same. There really wasn’t too much to fear. However, some of us feel the transgressions of the masses in our physical bodies. Some label us as Empaths, some think our physical issues are all in our head. There are many new theories that illness may be associated with stress that our minds can’t manage and so they manifest physically. I am one of these people. I was thirsty from birth. I used to think that maybe because I was adopted, I didn’t get enough to drink because I spent my early weeks in a nursery with all the other discarded babies. Ridiculous, I know. Stress. I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue in my forties. My adopted father and my adopted brother were both dying in different states and I spent months trying to fix all of it. What’s to fix? Okay lets rephrase that. How about manage. I tried to manage my job in Chicago, my family in Indiana, my adopted father & mother in New Jersey & my brother in Philadelphia. The result was my brother & father died in the same 24 hours and we had a double funeral. Stress. A year later I walked into a bagel shop to order breakfast and I couldn’t speak. PTSD was added to the list of illnesses. I mentioned how I was thirsty my entire life. Now my teeth were breaking. I assumed that the reason was because as you age the fillings shrink and the teeth brake. I have broken every tooth in my mouth, sometimes the same teeth 4 times. But I was still working and had insurance and although extremely costly managed to have them capped as they broke. Stress. Then came the odd mouth tic. Declining health sometimes is so gradual you don’t give it too much thought. My doctor sent me to an ENT and his own Dentist because of the white hard spot that was developing on the tip of my tongue, thinking it might be cancer. Stress. Which reminds me, I forgot to mention the breast cancer I had at 36. That was 30 years ago and they were barely on the cusp of reconstruction and there wasn't any genetic testing either. There was radiation however, and they radiated the entire half of my torso from my neck to bottom of my ribcage through to my back. Stress. The burns were so egregious that my breasts swelled to 4 times their size from the edema the burns cause along with the open wounds that made you wish you would die with every shallow breath you could manage. The shallower the better so your breathing would not move your chest too much because each tiny breath caused the open wounds which were caused by the burns to expand. Getting back to 2001 or so, I also had chronic dry eyes with multiple corneal abrasions. My eye doctor at the time told me I had the dirtiest eyes he had ever seen. By my mid 50’s I had divorced, remarried and moved several times. The person I worked for closed his office in Chicago and I was jobless as I approached 60. Stress. As my husband and I talked it over, and not wanting to look for another job, especially with escalating health issues, we decided that I would start a dog hospice. Ever since the simultaneous deaths of my adopted father and brother, I had stated many times I wanted to become a Hospice worker. Unfortunately, we also realized that with my own health issues that would never be feasible, but I still wanted to do some meaningful work and I have loved dogs my entire life. Empaths are drawn to working with animals. I began by adopting a dog and becoming a member of the rescue that had him. Pretty soon I was bringing home fosters and we became foster failures. We realized we needed a larger place with more land. We found an old farm being sold with 10 acres that had been vacant and on the market for 3 years. The owner whose parents had the property for 50 years assured us that we could do whatever we wanted with the property. His daughter, the listing agent as well as the family attorney never commented on the statement and we assumed this was the truth. Yes, we know, buyer beware. We purchased the property, which we named Le Château de Chien, https://www.facebook.com/OurRescueFarm/ in 2014 and started the renovations to create the 501c3 nonprofit for abused, handicapped and senior dogs we named Petite Trésors Rescue & Sanctuary https://www.petitetresorsrescue.com
We knew we would need a source of funding and thought this was a perfect setting to hold farm weddings. But with all renovations, especially with very old homes, in this instance 1860, a number of horrific undisclosed issues reared their ugly head and there were issues with laborers, plumbers, electricians, and painters and on and on adding thousands of dollars to the project. We moved in on November 8, 2014 with only 1 sink and no counters anywhere. The next day we had no water. It seems that there was a lot of iron in the well water and the filter the plumber had installed was clogged within the first 24 hours. Stress. The next weekend, liquid was bubbling up in the toilet & shower when I drained the tub, however, the septic tank had been emptied before we closed on the property. We were informed the footings from the deck that might have been there 50 years, we didn’t know, were directly placed on top of the sewer tiles and crushed them. As 25 dogs were running throughout their new home and the 40 feet plus of re-routed sewer tile mud, just 1 week before Thanksgiving, I thought why not write a blog and call it 100 Muddy Paws. Stress. By now, I had been falling very hard, almost daily. Then one morning I couldn’t use my hands. I couldn’t hold a pen or cup. I went to my pain doctor and requested a referral to a hand specialist. My doctor stated that he wanted me to go to Rush Hospital in Chicago because he was positive the problem was caused by my cervical bones and the doctor he sent me to agreed. I had surgery to fuse my neck but the issues continued. At my eye doctor exam, a new doctor saw me who was filling in for my regular eye doctor. You might remember him from above? The doctor who told me I had the dirtiest eyes he had ever seen? But this new doctor, Justin, after examining my eyes told me he wanted to refer me to another doctor and that I would not have to worry about eye insurance because it would be covered under medical insurance. The new doctor took one look at my eyes and said, “you do know you have Sjogrens, don’t you? I had never heard of this but the doctor, Dr Rob Moses of Moses Eye Care Centers, stated I needed to get an appointment with my Rheumatologist and he had to do a special eye test to take a baseline for the medication my Rheumatologist would put me on. On the way home from the appointment, with my best friend driving me, I Goggled Sjogren’s Disease. It seems that Sjogrens steals your salivary system. I had every symptom mentioned. The medication can affect the retina and I needed to be tested every 6 months. Two and a half years later I was taken off the only medication they have for Sjogrens, because my vision, poor at best, was already being impacted from the medication and neither my eye doctor nor my Rheumatologist had ever seen this happen before someone had been on the medication for 10 years. Stress. In addition, after seeing the Rheumatologist to confirm the Sjogrens diagnosis, I was also diagnosed with Lupus. Just recently I read that the hand issues I have are also attributed to Sjogrens. This was all during the first year at the rescue farm. Stress. The next year, almost to the date of our purchasing the farm, my husband lost his job. He had been the Senior VP and CFO of an insurance company that was unique in only insuring nonprofits. He had been in the accounting part of insurance for 40 years, over 20 of which were with his current company. Sadly, the CEO wanted to retire and decided he wanted a big payday. He sold the company for millions promising to “take care” of my husband but refused to extend his contract. Instead of “being taken care of” the new company told my husband they were getting rid of all the CFO’s across all the companies they had acquired. Stress. In this day and age, this is not a new story. Greed is very common. As we scrambled to find ways to keep us and the shelter going, we partnered with a man who wanted to run the weddings we had counted on to fund the shelter on our property and just pay a commission for use. This sounded great since he immediately booked 3 weddings and the commission would have paid the bills. So as part of the advertising, he placed a very large sign up on the side of our barn. Then the county came calling. It seems we needed a variance. Stress. You may think I’m crazy, and you wouldn’t be the first, but I have always had the gift of sight. I see things that are going to happen before they do. I already knew what this outcome would be. After paying well over $400 for a nonrefundable application fee along with over $400 to send registered letters to approximately 50 homes, the meeting date was set and every one of those 50 some people came and voted it down. I refused to go to the meeting because I already knew the outcome. The event sign came down and the For Sale sign went up the next day. Now we were left to try to make ends meet until we could sell the property. Stress. Our daughter, who moved from Colorado with her husband to Indianapolis to be closer to help out as I continued to physically deteriorate, suggested we rent out the upstairs on Airbnb. When we were renovating, we had implemented a number of changes so that the first floor of the home was set up for us (and handicapped accessible) to live with the rescues. The second floor had it’s own great room, 3 bedrooms, a yoga meditation room and full bath with an additional full bath in the entrance foyer. We acquired SuperHost status that first year, but it was seasonal due to our guests staying here so they can easily access the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore beaches and hiking trails. The next year my daughter told us to try Hipcamp. To our shock, we had the same result, SuperHost status and enough bookings to hopefully get us through the winter. All throughout this time, I was exhibiting more and more symptoms. By 2018, beside the Fibromyalgia, Chronic Fatigue, Sjogrens and Lupus I was exhibiting neurological issues, neuropathy, breathing issues, coughing, choking when eating or drinking, mouth ulcers, (remember the white spot on the tip of my tongue?) callous from my tongue repetitively hitting my teeth looking for moisture, pernicious anemia, TMJ, memory issues, speech difficulties, elevated liver enzymes, leg cramps and falling, very hard, almost daily and hitting my head. I must have bones of titanium because I haven’t broken any bones, but probably have had more than a few concussions. Stress. After we purchased the farm with the 10 acres, the owners subdivided their remaining acres surrounding us and sold them. When the people to the south of us built their home in 2017 they created a little hill to put their house on top. I wanted to start a beehive business from the very beginning when we purchased the farm. I thought of all the ways I could make things from raising bees to help fund the shelter like, bath & body products, honey, candles and more. Plus I wanted to supply the flowers for the anticipated weddings and help the environment. We had saved all the doors and windows from the house during the renovation process and I could imagine my Greenhouse made from the recycled farm wood, doors and windows, just like the Greenhouses and She Sheds on Pinterest. The house on the hill drove all wastewater into the pond on their property and expanded their pond onto our property connecting to our pond. About a month before moving into their new home, Rick and Eileen King came to our door and said they wanted to dredge their pond and would it be okay to be on our property since the boundaries were no longer visible. The only thing that entered my mind at that time was, first, they recognized there was a problem and second, they were rectifying the issue. However after dredging the pond, as it refilled, the problem became even worse to the point of drowning our bees, taking out the orchard we planted and parts of our landscaping. Stress. We approached the owner, Rick King, and explained the situation. He acknowledged that there was a problem and asked to see where the bees had been. We had removed the boxes but the tarp they had been on was still in place. Rick King then said he would contact his landscaper, Small's I believe, and have them fix the problem since he had already paid them $70,000. We heard back from Rick King within a day or two that he had instructed them to divert the pond west and they had mistakenly diverted it east which caused the problem. He went on to state that he was having them fix the issue however, when requesting compensation for the damages and loss to our property, Rick King refused to compensate us on any level. Stress. We now realize they dredged the pond to cover the destruction they caused before the after pictures required by the building permit were taken. Two years later we still can’t access some of our acres. The county has told us, there is nothing they can do and we should get an attorney. With what? Stress. By now we were totally out of money, my husband couldn’t get a job and was afraid to leave me alone. Someone still had to take care of the rescue, the 10 acres, clean and do laundry for the Airbnb, do all the cleaning and laundry for our section of the house, do all the grocery shopping, cook all the meals and take me to the doctor. I have told everyone since the day I married my husband that he wears a cape, walks on water and leaps tall buildings in a single bound. He is clearly Superman. We knew that at some point we would not have any medical insurance for about 18 months after his Cobra ran out until turning 65 and being eligible for Medicare. One of the earliest symptoms I manifested is urinary incontinence. Stress. My Rheumatologist said she felt it was caused by inflammation from the Sjogrens and my hands continued to have unmanageable pain, along with the other pain from Fibromyalgia, Lupus, Sjogrens and Chronic Fatigue. My husband has found me sobbing in the shower because I can’t lift my arms to wash my hair. I rarely have left the farm in the past 5 years other than to go to the doctor or hospital. There have been times I just wanted to go with him to run an errand but in the time it took me to get ready, maybe 2 to 3 hours, with my husband patiently waiting, I was too exhausted to leave and went back to bed. So while we still had Cobra insurance, I opted to have 2 Medtronic’s devices inserted in both sides of my sacrum, one was for bladder control and the other was for hand pain since I knew we had no money for doctors, hospitals or medication until we qualified for Medicare. One side healed quickly without complications, but the other side felt slightly sore the entire 18 months. In the summer of 2018, approximately 2 to 3 months before I would turn 65 in August and get Medicare health insurance, I began having issues on my right leg. I thought that the implanted devices must be pressing on my sciatic nerve and my leg would be numb but at the same time, it felt like someone was hitting me on the hip, leg and ankle with an axe. I scheduled my surgery to have both devices removed as neither one had actually worked to alleviate any of the symptoms they were implanted for. At times, the pain was so disabling that I would scream and sob as I was lying in bed. I couldn’t even sit up to eat. Stress. The surgery was August 13th; 3 days after I turned 65, to remove the devices and the pain immediately subsided. But the side that had always been sore became infected. I was admitted to the hospital as an emergency and had surgery the next day to remove the infection and insert a wound pump. I was there for 5 days on a cocktail of IV antibiotics because they did not know what they needed to treat me for until the cultures came back. I had MRSA, probably for the 18 months that the device had been implanted. I was put on the proper IV antibiotics and discharged with a Picc line and portable wound vac. I was also required to go back to the hospital 7 days a week for 3 hour infusions and a nurse came every few days to my home to clean and redress the wound vac. The last week of infusions I started feeling unwell every afternoon. My last infusion was scheduled for a Thursday in September. The night before I had a raging fever, excruciating headache, and chills that no matter how many blankets I had I could not warm up. I told my husband I couldn’t go for my last infusion but he insisted. At my last infusion the doctor sent me back to be readmitted through the ER and I started with a whole regime of antibiotic cocktails again while they sent out test after test to determine the source of this new infection. On day 7 I was released with a diagnosis of Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever. Someone had died from this two weeks before. It was now October and I could not believe how weak I was. Stress. I would sleep until 4:00 in the afternoon and go back to bed a couple hours later. As each symptom presented, I was referred to a specialist. I now had a Rheumatologist, Gastroenterologist, Cardiac Specialist, Pulmonologist, Hematologist, Infectious Disease Specialist, Urologist, Pain Management Specialist, Psychiatrist, and was then referred to a Neurologist. All of these appointments took months to set up, get lab work or imaging and then it was summer again, now 2019. The first results were from an MRI of my brain. The result the Neurologist told us is that the MRI shows I have been having chronic strokes for years. Stress. The last time I traveled was 2017. I went to Seattle to see my only grandchild for their first birthday. I was in excruciating pain nearly the entire visit and had an extremely painful headache. The next morning when I woke, looking in the mirror, I saw that one side of my face seemed to have collapsed and my eye was drooping. I took a selfie and texted it to my husband. He immediately thought I had developed Bells’ Palsy. Now 2 years later I realize it was one of the strokes. Stress. Because of my issues with corneal abrasions, particularly horrific on flights, I can no longer travel. When I was taken to the airport for my flight home my eyes were swollen shut and I couldn’t see to walk let alone read signs and had to request a wheelchair to get to the gate. Stress. I mentioned I was adopted but I also found my birth mother. She died in her sleep from a heart attack or stroke within 6 months of my adopted father and brother dying, when she was 64. I have felt that I was living on borrowed time for the last 2 years. In addition to the strokes, women with a history of breast cancer and autoimmune disease are 40% higher in likeliness to have a heart attack. The Neurologist ordered and finished a total of 6 tests. I had an appointment to get my results on August 13th. The final results from the 6 tests showed the reason for the strokes is a blockage in my brain, in addition, Autonomic Nervous System disorder, which causes a multitude of symptoms including my current symptoms of poor balance, difficulty with movement, poor coordination, bladder dysfunction, poor blood pressure control, body temperature, digestion, breathing, heart rate and more that generally impairs the autonomic nervous system from doing all these functions without you thinking about them. Next Dysautonomia, which involves the neurons and glial cells. It is estimated that over 50% of Sjogrens patients are diagnosed with these disorders. And, Postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS), which contributes to fatigue and further significant disability. Next, Small Fiber Neuropathies, which have many of the same symptoms and can be caused by a lack of vitamin B12. There is an additional disorder called MTHFR, which is a gene mutation. I have 2 MTHFR mutations, which is probably the cause of some of these disorders. One form of MTHFR genetic mutation keeps your body from absorbing B vitamins. If you research vitamin B deficiency you will find a number of the same symptoms as many autoimmune disorders. Some other MTHFR mutations keep your body from ridding itself of toxins, another causes miscarriage since the body is not making foliate, another causes lack of Intrinsic Factor (IF), which causes Leaky Gut Syndrome, and there are more. However, the medical community has almost zero knowledge of these mutations and what they do or how to treat them. Stress. Anxiety, depression and emotional instability just from dealing with the multiple progressing autoimmune diseases also add to the mix for patients. The Neurologist stated that he was incapable of assisting any more with my case as anything further would need to be handled by Mayo or Cleveland Clinic where they would have the staff trained in rare neurodegenerative disorders. Stress. We had 11 campers booked at our Hipcamp for 4th of July this summer 2019. The county contacted us again. It seems we now need a variance for the Hipcamp. They shut us down and we have again lost a viable source of funding for the rescue. We have filed for bankruptcy and would not even have the funds to afford the gas to drive to one of these clinics. Stress. For the time being, I have made it clear to family, friends and doctors that I wish to be DNR status. I also feel that I am not a viable contributing person in society. My marriage is a source of angst due to my husband, whom I dearly love, basically becoming my fulltime caregiver. Stress. The amount of work that goes into keeping everything going is so much more than 2 seniors can manage, especially since one of the two is disabled. I mentioned before about having the gift of sight, although I would argue as to the word gift. I have suddenly manifested a burst of energy and I am nesting like a mother does before giving birth. I am trying to get as much as possible finished for the rescue that I can manage in the hope of not being even more of a burden when I am gone by leaving things unfinished for my husband and family. Last year we almost didn’t make it through the winter. In February, my daughter and her husband drove up from Indianapolis to help us out. They filled our bare refrigerator and freezer, took us out to eat, bought my meds and gave us a visa card to buy the next months meds. I was also able to have a consignor come to the farm and pick up clothes, shoes, purses and jewelry with the proceeds from the sale going directly to the shelter. We have had bills pile up for 5 years, have been driven to the brink of insanity from calls from collection agencies, told our electric and cable were being turned off and yet somehow, someway, we are still here. We recently had a benefit and campaign to fund dental treatments for 20 dogs. So far we have only made enough money for 7 dogs to be treated. I live in daily fear of breaking another tooth because we have no money to fix the teeth I broke in the last 5 years. Stress. My husband probably hasn’t seen a dentist in over 10 years. Many people are shocked by my decision to become DNR. Some people get it and some do not. I have always believed in quality of life over quantity. There has been no quality in the last 5 years and who in their right mind would want to increase the quantity when they know they will continue to spiral downhill. I imagine I will die of a heart attack or stroke but the truth is it could be from any of the multitude of issues associated with each disease and or stress. The low hemoglobin levels (a Sjogrens symptom), another bad fall, which happen daily and my head is hitting the floor more and more, to the point that my most recent CAT scan shows my cervical fusion is coming undone, another cancer associated with Sjogrens, who knows. I recently went to the ER twice in one week. I am now undergoing tests for heart damage they found. We were informed both Sjogrens and Lupus damage organs including the heart and I have two chambers that are leaking. In addition, the medication I take to get up out of bed each day also damages heart muscle. I am now telling my story so that others, who also are having unexplained chronic health issues, might get information much sooner than I was able to. When I first started this journey of progressing autoimmune diseases over 50 years ago, we didn’t have computers or Internet. Now as I research each new symptom, I am overwhelmed by the masses of people who have similar issues and can’t find answers. I have started vlogging https://youtu.be/3yslr8gBmqg on YouTube my continuing journey to hopefully share something meaningful so that others might find answers in time to possibly prevent the ravage my body and mind have had to endure. For now, this is what I want to say. Everything we have been through would be worth it and I feel that I could die in peace, if only I knew that my husband and the rescue were okay. It breaks my heart daily to watch my husband, who I have described many times as God’s gift to women, silently take on more and more burden. The listing contract for sale of the farm has run out and now we will try to sell it on our own. By now you may be asking if I have this special gift of seeing what will happen, how did we get here. The problem is that no one ever believes me and that just causes more stress because I first see it in my mind and then try to get someone to hear me, which never happens. So I am forced to go through these things twice, once when I foresee it and then again when it is actually happening. STRESS. I started vlogging on my 66th birthday August 10, 2019. In one of my vlogs I talk about the POWERLESSNESS you feel when this is the life you are living. You are forced to watch your world fall apart, your dreams die, and you are so powerless to do anything to prevent everything that happens and continues to happen as everything becomes worse than the day before. My intention is to vlog as much as possible, to document the ongoing decline of my body until the end. We have also opened our home to anyone who is currently dealing with chronic illness to come for group meetings and share their stories along with caregivers and hopefully create a support group, Mary’s Autoimmune Support Group https://www.facebook.com/groups/2400288900230099/?ref=share
I want to dedicate this process to the website Smart Patient, a site that is a forum for patients who can't find any answers from doctors but together find answers from each other. To follow my continuing story you can go to my website https://www.petitetresorsrescue.com and choose vlog.
Update: November 1, 2019
We had no water coming into the house. We host on Airbnb solely for the purpose of funding our shelter for abused, handicapped and senior dogs. There is never enough money and recently we had to decline 2 separate bookings due to our well pump going out. We keep a Home Warranty of America policy for all systems and appliances here at the Airbnb, Le Château de Chien. When we called to get the well pump fixed we told HomeWarranty of America that it was an emergency and we had 20 hospice dogs, an Airbnb as well as a disabled person in the home and this was an emergency. HomeWarranty of America assured they would have someone out as soon as possible and said they would mark it as an emergency. 24 hours later we still did not have water and we had not heard from anyone. We called back HomeWarranty of America and they stated they could not find anyone to come out, however, if we found someone they would honor the replace or repair we had in our coverage. We were able to have the well pump, which needed to be replaced installed and water restored. Then On Monday, November 4, we faxed all paperwork to the HomeWarranty of America office. They then stated they would only pay $821 of the $4,560 dollar bill. We are desperate for help here.
Update November16, 2019
On Friday, November 8, I went to my eye Doctor, Nicole Albright of Moses Eye Care Centers, because the stress of the issues dealing with HomeWarranty of America had caused all of my Autoimmune Diseases to flare. When this happens a number of symptoms begin to display and are not manageable with the normal medications and treatments used. As a result, I had corneal abrasions in both eyes, along with unmanageable pain throughout my body, incontinence, difficulty breathing, unmanageable fatigue, increased imbalance causing more falls and more. So in the pursuit of getting my eyes assisted with healing, my eye doctor will put membranes over the eye individuality. Since my right was in more pain that is the eye the membrane was placed. As I was discussing my latest diagnosis’s, which came from the Neurologist and my inability to go to either Mayo or Cleveland Clinic, she asked if I was interested in getting a second opinion. When I asked what she had in mind, she informed me that they have a Neurological Institute of Merrillville, literally down the street from her office. Of course I wanted to pursue any suggestion made from this office because they have been instrumental in getting me help with every medical issue I have had. After giving me the name of the Doctor she wanted me to see, I called for an appointment. To our shock, they had an opening the next week on Wednesday, November 13, 2019. Since I also had an appointment to see Dr. Albright that afternoon to switch out the healing membrane from my right eye which had completely absorbed it in a few days, be were given a time to be there of 10:45am. We met with the Doctor who we had been referred to and after a history and physical as well as having him review all tests performed by the preceding Neurologist who released me stating he was incapable of helping me further, the Doctor set up an appointment with a Neurologist who specializes in ocular neurological issues for the next week as well as a Neurologist who specializes in strokes the following month. He then went on to ask if there was anything he could do to help me in any way that day. I told him how the overwhelming stress of dealing with the water pump breaking, and the HomeWarranty of America now not wanting to honor their previous assurance of reimbursing us for the service we had at their suggestion, had caused all my many disorders to flare and the pain on my right side from the middle of my shoulder blade going all the way up to the middle of my head was so severe that I could not lift a fork to feed myself. He kindly offered to give me a shot in the trigger point on my shoulder in the hope that it would relax my muscle enough to alleviate some of my pain. However, when attempting to give me the shot, the muscle was so hard it was as if he was trying to stick a slab of granite. As a result, in trying to pierce the muscle, unfortunately my lung was punctured. This was not apparent to either of us at the time. I then left that office to go to my eye Doctors office and have my membrane put in my other eye. I also told her about everything that had taken place at the Neurological Institute and she was shocked at how fast I was seen, as normally it would have been approximately 3 months for an appointment. In addition, I had developed more eye issues that were not apparent before I was looking out of my left eye only while the right eye remained closed over the membrane. My left eye was incapable of seeing normally. Words looked like hieroglyphics and looking down, my clothes or blanket or whatever I saw appeared to constantly be moving. After my appointment we left to return home. We arrived around 4:00pm. I was there approximately 5 minutes when I had to cough. As soon as I coughed I experienced acute pain in my right chest that radiated to the spot where I had been injected. I could not breath. This had happened approximately 2 months before and that was when I went to the ER and subsequently was told my heart was damaged and I have been on a list waiting for a 30-day halter monitor for over a month. Thinking that it was again the stress of everything going on, I took a flexural and Valium in the hope that I would relax and be able to breath as well as using the inhaler prescribed by my Pulmonologist. However, after allowing an hour or so to see if any of those methods would work, we decided to go to the ER. After starting an IV, taking a chest x-ray as well as a number of blood tests, I was informed that I had a collapsed lung and they needed to put a chest tube in immediately and transport me by ambulance to the hospital. The next day after reading the latest X-ray my Pulmonologist felt I needed to stay an additional night so they could hook up the chest tube to a machine. I was released Friday evening with instructions to call my primary and Pulmonologist on Monday.