Posts tagged ‘sick’

February 13, 2012

It Didn’t Look That Bad

by pastortimfowler

Last week I was off the blog scope as some of you may have noticed. What stinks is that I had a lot of really awesome and cool stuff to say. Now I forgot it all and I have to blog about why I did not blog all last week; I was sick.
I don’t go to the doctor very often. Before I do, I will try every home remedy possible and use the tried and true method of waiting to get better first. After raising 3 kids I have become pretty good at judging what is a cold or flu and what is just a simple bump or bruise versus the major stuff that needs doctors assistance. I became very good at looking at the back of a throat to see if it was just red or had little white bumps that meant Strep. Through the years I did not miss the call too often and even got to where I could look in the mirror with a flashlight and diagnose myself.
Monday of last week I woke up in the middle of the night with a fever and a headache. This lasted a couple of days then just as quickly as is came on me it left. The next morning though I noticed a tingling in my throat that later that day turned to a burning and then later it became difficult to swallow. So I grabbed my flashlight and went to the mirror and took a long look and all I saw was some redness. So I gargled with some salt water and took a few Advil and suffered through it. The next morning I could hardly swallow my own spit. Again I looked in the mirror with my flashlight and only saw red. So I did the last thing any man wants to do and that was call the wife to come have a look. As soon as she looked she said, “Oh yeah. You have strep.”
We argued for a minute about why I did not see the white bumps that she claims were covering my throat but she insisted that I go to the doctor no matter what I saw or didn’t see. The only reason that I agreed with her to go was that I was scheduled to leave the next day for a men’s retreat and we were gonna go snow tubing and I knew that I was not snow tubing with my throat hurting that bad.
Once at the doctor’s office, I told the doctor that I did not see anything that looked like strep, but my wife said she did. I told her that I want to be safe and that I had to travel the next day. She, the doctor, told me that looking for the white spots was not a foolproof way to know if it was strep or not but it was the normal most of the time. So she grabs the wooden stick and crams it down my throat and starts to laugh. “What white spots did you not see? You throat is covered in them.”
How could I miss this? I looked several times. My diagnostic skills had never been questioned like this before. This was devastating.
After the exam and the test came back quickly with a positive, the doctor showed me the stick that she used to test me with. It looked like a pee test strip and she asked me if I saw the three lines. She said normally there is one, maybe two lines that indicate a positive, but this one had three. I looked at the strip and did not see a thing. The doctor then asks, “Do you wear glasses?”
So tomorrow I have my very first eye doctors appointment. Things just didn’t look that bad.

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August 18, 2011

Doctor’s visit

by pastortimfowler

My wife and I are among the many who do not have health insurance. Because of this we do not go to the doctor very often. Even when we had insurance, years ago, we did not go that often. I hear people complain all the time about how much their out-of-pocket expenses are even with insurance and have to fight back the laughter. They are complaining about paying $20-50 in co pays for an office visit and we just paid a lot more than that. Even at ten times what your deductible is, this visit was cheaper without insurance. How? Because you are paying for your insurance every paycheck whether you go to the doctor or not.
Don’t get me wrong, I would love to have insurance for when something major happens. But for regular illness and injury stuff, I had just as soon pay them out-of-pocket. At least then I can negotiate and ask for options without an insurance company to tell me what I have to do.
So you are probably thinking that I don’t like insurance companies. Wrong. I could care less about them. What I don’t like is how people think that insurance is such a great deal and use it all the time. If more people would quit using insurance to cover colds and sniffles and bumps and bruises, all of our medical costs would go down, and the cost of insurance would too. Doctors can’t cure the common cold, make a bruise or pulled muscle heal any faster or prevent you from ever getting sick or injured. With the way people flood the doctors with trivial stuff that would get better on its own, doctors spend far less time than they need to on the big issues that require their services. I wonder how much better attention a patient with a major illness would get if the doctor had not just treated 10 snotty nosed kids who have a cold.
God made our bodies to be amazingly resilient. They can and do fight of all sorts of germs and viruses. They can mend cuts, tears, and bruises. They learn to make defenses against the germs that make us sick and do an incredible job at it, without the aid of a doctor. Believe it or not, most pills only help the symptoms not heal the problem. Sure they can aid in the work that you body does, but rarely do you get better any faster.
I do believe in some preventive medicine. Immunizations are great at keeping us safe from some pretty nasty stuff. Eating well and exercising are good to maintain a healthy weight and fend off illnesses cause by being overweight. Doctors are experts at spotting certain things that can be stopped early, like cancers, and as we age there are things they can help monitor in order to begin treatment as soon as possible to extend our life expectancy.
My point of this is in hopes of people getting back to some common sense living. Insurance companies are not evil. They do not exist to offer us the cheapest possible medical care possible. The exist to make money. That is what companies do in America. If companies don’t make money, you don’t have a job. Making money is not wrong and we can’t blame insurance companies for it either. If you don’t want them to make so much money, quit using them so much. Cut back on coverage. Pay for more stuff out-of-pocket. Let you body and your kid’s bodies heal themselves like God designed them to do.
Can you imagine what it would be like if we used car insurance like we use our health insurance? If every time we were due for an oil change, we filed a claim, flat tire, file a claim, wiper blades, file a claim. No one would be able to afford auto insurance and those who didn’t have it would pay outrageous prices for what is now very common procedures, or not get them done at all.
Thankfully, my wife’s appointment went fairly well. She had a few minor issues, a few screws loose, (haha), and got a few prescriptions. We have the money in the bank, or had it there, and we have found that we both could lose a few pounds, so not eating every other day will help there since the money is now gone. This was a needed visit though and I am glad that we did not have to have insurance just so she could go.
There was a day when our moms would give us some soup and juice and a warm blanket and love us through the sniffles. She would put a band-aid on the cut after she boiled it out with peroxide and we rarely saw the doctor. Maybe we need to return to some of that and quit having so many trips to the doctor’s office.

April 15, 2011

Sick Mind

by pastortimfowler

Be careful what you ask for, you just might get it. We have all heard that. I am living it. I asked for blog ideas and, wow, the topics are great. Tough, but great. Today the topic has to do with a recent incident in which a mom took her own life and the lives of her children. A horrible thing to even think about.  What could have made this poor woman end it all like this?
Many people believe that suicide is an unforgivable sin resulting in hell for that person. I am talking about thinking that God will not forgive it. Two reasons why some think this. One, it is so selfish and we can’t find closure for our own feelings, and second, if the last act before death is a sin, then that person was not able to ask for forgiveness and therefore dies with unforgiven sin resulting in hell.
I personally do not believe that the Bible teaches that suicide is unforgivable. Let me deal with this from scripture, then I want to give a more personal and even medical reason for my thinking.
When Jesus died on the cross, he did not die for a specific sin of a lust, a lie, or a murder. He died to pay the death penalty for all of humanity’s sin. Jesus was our sacrifice and His death was accepted by God in place of our own if we ask. The moment we ask for forgiveness, we are made children of God, being born again. We are no longer under the penalty of the law as law breakers, but under the grace of a loving Father who has taking the responsibility to raise His spiritual children. If you have ever raised children, even really good ones, they still disobey us parents. We do not disown them, but lovingly correct them. And if one of them were to ever commit suicide, we would not stop loving them and immediately disown them either. We would mourn out of love, not disown out of anger. Romans 8:38,39 tells us that NOTHING including death, can separate us from God’s love:
38 I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love which Christ Jesus our Lord shows us. We can’t be separated by death or life, by angels or rulers, by anything in the present or anything in the future, by forces 39 or powers in the world above or in the world below, or by anything else in creation.
The Bible clearly says that God’s children are given eternal life, not life based on our ability to ask for forgiveness every time we sin. God wants us to recognize it when we sin and ask for forgiveness as we grow, but there are times when we don’t or can’t recognize that what we do is wrong. This brings me to a personal and even medical reason to why suicide does not condemn one to hell.
Many children are born with birth defects. Some with physical and others with mental, and they are welcomed and loved as they should be, despite their birth defects. Children with mental illness often can’t recognize right and wrong and therefore we do not punish them as such.
Sometimes things happen in life that cause our brains to stop functioning properly; injury, illness, drug abuse, or even mental abuse. This can cause a seemingly normal person to snap and do something wrong, even kill someone or their self. We have to make choice on how to deal with these people.
The brain is an organ like lungs, hearts, and kidneys. They operate on the basis of chemicals and blood and oxygen flow and when things are imbalanced due to injury or illness, they don’t function properly. Brains can get sick or injured too. And when they do, we see things that we think are in the control of someone, but they may not be capable of control at all.
I do not believe that anyone who has a “normal” brain will purposefully kill another or self. Normal people do not do this. Someone who is sick enough to kill others needs to be put somewhere to protect innocent lives. Those people are still someones children and even a murderer’s parents love their child. But someone who wants to take their own life often does it because signs were missed, and they have slipped past the normal ability of the brain to cope. Sadly we can’t protect them anymore.
But if they were children of God, He will welcome them under the cover of Christ’s death on the cross and not under the condemnation of their sin. God at that time promises that He has healed the sick mind.