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My ObamaCare Horror Story

ObamaCare Horror Story

Recently, I saw this post on Facebook and I knew I had to respond, to help others see the horror of ObamaCare. This is my story…

My life has changed completely. I cannot eat whatever I want anymore. There’s no toast with my morning coffee. My morning coffee isn’t even recognizable as MY morning coffee anymore. It used to be with cream and two sugars. Now, there’s no sugar. Lunch was always a simple sandwich with some fruit, but now lunch can never be a sandwich again. Dinner was like an Italian family affair with pasta dishes, laughter, and talking. Now the pasta is missing and so is the rice. Meals just aren’t the same and they never will be again.

I used to stay at home and do my household chores. When I was finished with them, I could spend my time being creative by spinning yarn, weaving, drawing, or writing. Sometimes, I would just get lost for hours on Pinterest. That has all changed. Now, every time I eat something, I am forced to be active afterwards. I have to take long walks regardless of the weather. I’m trudging around our neighborhood in 90 degree temperatures!

My schedule used to be so spontaneous. Sometimes I would stay up most of the night reading a book that was so interesting I couldn’t put it down. I would turn in at 5 or 6 in the morning and sleep until early afternoon. I was carefree and didn’t need to worry about schedules. Now I have a schedule for everything.
I never had to worry about co-pays and prescriptions, doctor visits and tests. Now, I have to pay for co-pays. I have to go to a doctor regularly…every three months! And everything three months, I have tests done. I’m being poked and prodded and this is entirely the fault of ObamaCare.

You see, before ObamaCare, I couldn’t afford to go to the doctor and so I didn’t. For years I had no idea that my body was slowly dying. I had a disease that was so well hidden. Millions have it and don’t know…and I was one of them. After ObamaCare passed, I went in for a simple blood test after I experienced some strange feelings on my feet. The doctor’s nurse called me three days later to let me know the harsh reality: I am a diabetic. They called in two prescriptions and left it at that for the time being.

I was shocked! How could I be diabetic? I started doing research and, armed with new knowledge, I scheduled another appointment that I would never have been able to schedule before ObamaCare. It turns out that diabetes, at least Type 2, has a lot to do with genetics. It’s a progressive disease too, so as time goes on I may have to add meds or even insulin. My doctor agreed to a meter so I could test my blood glucose and a dietician so I could get some ideas on healthy eating habits to control my blood glucose levels. We agreed that I could have some time to control my diabetes with diet and exercise. For now, I would skip taking the drugs.

And so began my new life. I read and researched. I tested and tweaked. I cut out sugar and reduced my carb intake dramatically. I go for a walk after every meal and I go to the gym at least 4 times a week. I’ve lowered my HbA1c from a 9% to a 6.5% and I’m still going.

ObamaCare changed my life. I can’t eat the same things. I exercise now. I have a schedule. I get to keep my eyesight. I get to not further damage my kidneys or liver. I get to keep my legs. I get to finish raising my children and watch them grow up and into lives of their own with children of their own. Without ObamaCare, I wouldn’t have known I was diabetic until I had a high so high that I crashed my car while driving or passed out in a grocery store. Now I know, I’m informed, and I’m in control of my healthcare because of it.

Diabetes, Type 1 and Type 2, is a pre-existing condition. No one chooses to get it any more than someone would choose to get cancer. It’s real and it kills. Under Trump’s healthcare plan, it WILL kill. If this new plan passes, my horror story will just be beginning.

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Meet the Artist (Things About Me)

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In 2016, I wrote a post titled “Basic Things About Me” and over time some things have changed while others have stayed the same. I thought perhaps an update was in order. This is a combination of that post and the “meet the artist” post that was floating around.

1. I turned 41 this year. I don’t know if I’m having a mid-life crisis or if I’m just tired of playing things safe, but I have this overwhelming desire to dye my hair crazy colors (silver and lavender) and just embrace everything unique.

2. I celebrated my 19th wedding anniversary in November of last year and I’m starting to think of ideas for celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary. We’ve always promised that we would finally take a “honeymoon” when we made it to 25 years. I don’t fly or get on boats, so we’re basically planning something in North America.

3. My boys are now 14 (he’ll be 15 this year as he is always so quick to point out) and 17. The 17-year old has just grasped that time is so fleeting. He cannot understand how he is already 17. Neither can I to be honest. Both of them are taller than I am. That gives me three times the number of people to help me reach stuff on the top shelf in the kitchen or craft room and it also gives me three times the number of people telling short jokes. I can’t decide if that’s a win type situation or not.

4. I did it. I graduated Magna Cum Laude with a Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice and a minor in Community Leadership. I miss school as I’ve been out for an entire year. I have not yet done anything with my degree as I have been trying to decide what’s next for me and for my family. School, for me, was originally something to do when the boys went to school. It was a lifelong dream to graduate college, but I didn’t really have a plan past that point. I recommend against that particular way of doing things, in case you’re wondering.

5. I was recently (three weeks ago) diagnosed as a Type 2 Diabetic. It was both totally expected and a surprise. I had been getting lucky on that for over 20 years and I knew it would catch up with me eventually. Since that phone call from the nurse three weeks ago, I have brought my HbA1c down 1.8% and I’m still going. I have my ups (literally) and my downs (not quite so literally) but I’m going to keep at it because it’s high time I started taking care of myself. My goal is to not have to take medications to control this at this time.

6. I love creative expression and I engage in it whenever possible. Currently I enjoy writing, drawing, coloring, spinning yarn, weaving, knitting, sewing, and beading. I want to learn crochet, pottery, and glass work (stained glass and creating things like my own beads). I know where there are classes for the first two, but I haven’t found a class for the third yet.

7. I collect journals, writing paper, fountain pens and ink, wax and wax seals, art supplies of all kinds, yarn, fiber, fabric, and stuffed animals.

8. My likes: I like seeing vivid colors. I like the view of a gorgeous sunrise or sunset, the full moon, and the clouds before a hurricane. I love the scent of rain, men’s cologne, fresh cut grass, leather, raw silk, and puppy breath. I love the sound of kittens purring, a child’s belly laugh, music with a good drum beat, a really good thunderstorm, and the sounds of night outside. I love the feel of the cold spray from a waterfall, the burn in your muscles after a fun hike, the brush of cashmere against your skin, and the prickles of kittens kneading on your arm. I love the taste of hot tea and strawberries with vanilla yogurt. I absolutely adore getting mail that is not bills. I enjoy reading a great book. I love happy surprises.

9. Dislikes: I hate peas, potatoes, liver, onions, and peppers. I hate the smell of skunks, cigarette smoke, diesel fuel, and deep fried anything. I hate seeing child abuse, animal abuse, hate, bigotry, and apathy. I hate hearing people chew, ice chipping, people fighting, children crying, and needless machines making racket. I hate the feel of a commercial wool sweater. They are itchy. I hate the feel of hot sheets, a thin coffee cup, and popcorn kernels in your teeth.

10. Fears: failure, dentists, clowns, and the things I conjure up in my head when I’m worrying.

11. I believe in our justice system. I believe in law. I believe in community. I believe in standing together. I believe in love. I believe that, while things can always improve, we must work with what we have. I believe in resilience. I believe in moving forward. I believe in I can and I will. I believe in personal power. I believe in education. I appreciate those who see the good in life, even when faced with adversity.

12. Things I always have with me are my phone, a pair of headphones, a hair scrunchie, chapstick, a pen, my Fitbit, and MyID.

13. Work: I’m currently selling my handcrafted art. You can see that at http://www.shaunnamichelles.com. I also sell Scentsy, which you can find at http://www.fairyfragrance.scentsy.us. My upcoming projects include writing and perhaps a livestream, but I’m still thinking on that one.

If you would like to know something I haven’t spoken about, please ask!
Until next time,

Blessed Be,
Shannon


I’m Back…I Think

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I haven’t written a thing for this blog in quite some time. I think I was a little overwhelmed by trying to keep my personal, work, and writing blogs separate. I’ve let one blog go completely and the one for work will probably continue to be a struggle for me because I prefer to create without expectation or explanation. This one will combine my writing, my personal life, and whatever else I happen to want to put here. I suppose this is your public service announcement that I will be writing again and it will not always be poetry or prose to enjoy, but also my real and raw rough draft life. The thing about a rough draft life is that there is always something to change, to improve, to tweak and you only get one chance to do it. There’s no going back and there is no do over. You can only step from where you are. For me, that means stepping forward with a bit less stress and one to two less blogs! I hope you’ll stick around and let me know what you think. Until then,

Blessed Be,

Shannon


Wings of Change

silhouetted-butterflies

The wings of change flutter softly by

Gently touching a moment on her cheek as she plays

in blue overalls muddied by cakes made from nature.

She barely notices as she swipes them away

and runs for the house from the rains that cloud the sun.

The wings of change flutter softly by

Softly landing on the tip of her button nose as she hops from foot to foot

in her brand new clothes that her mother made.

She gives no second thoughts to flipping them away

waiting for the large yellow bus to take her to school on her first day.

The wings of change flutter softly by

Delicately playing in her hair as she studies her image in the mirror

Putting the finishing touches on her makeup and hair.

She is too busy to see as she combs them away

Getting ready for her high school graduation day.

The wings of change flutter softly by

Casually landing on her shoulder as she smiles

At the boy she has just met under the large oak tree on campus.

She is too enamored to see them brushed away

As he puts his hands on her shoulder to draw her in for their kiss.

The wings of change flutter softly by

Gracefully touching each of her breasts

as she grips the hands of her love

She is in too much pain to watch them fly away

As she delivers the twin little girls.

The wings of change flutter softly by

Noiselessly fluttering seconds by in beats of wings

As she watches her daughters play in the yard

She is too content to watch them fly

As she holds the hand of her love.

But the wings of change flutter softly by

Gently persistent in imperceptibly bringing change

Even as her hair grows gray and her face shows wrinkles

She sees the fluttering now

In her aged hands as she sits next to the man she loves

And picks up their grandchildren for a hug.


Tell Me a Story

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Tell me a story

of places far away

a place I can go, a place I can stay

for just a little while, a part of the story I’ll be

make it something wonderful

a story just for me

Tell me a story

with action and love

I need a happy ending

to fill me with hope

Tell me a story

make it up as you go

take me with you there

don’t leave me alone

Tell me a story

bring it alive

with words carefully chosen

and I might tell you mine.


What’s in a Name?

Whats-in-a-Name

     The name of this blog came about by way of a conversation with one of my Literature Professors. He once said that a piece of writing is never quite finished, you just reach a point when you are prepared to release it to the world and that becomes your published piece. Basically you are, as a writer, constantly in a state of “rough draft”. I have found this to be true for almost all of the things I write. I look back on something I have written and find ways to write it better, more succinctly. I pull out these writings and edit them from time to time. Nothing ever feels “finished”, just “finished enough”. It is with that understanding that I write. Knowing that I will go back and change things later or maybe not at all. Sometimes, you put your piece out there and hope that it is finished enough to move people. So is the case with this blog. I hope that the pieces I put here are finished enough to move you.