Thursday, November 20, 2008

Discrimination saga continues

Well, I filed a code of ethics violation with the local association of REALTORS against the evil one who did not rent me an apartment. I didn't want to sue, but I did want to do something. I thought this way she'd get a letter at least, maybe even some education, and a letter would be on file somewhere about her actions against me.

So I went on the web to the association's risk management link, where I found a link to the national REALTORS' code of ethics. There was a local association's grievance form there, too. (An Acrobat .pdf that you could type in--hooray!)

So I filled it out, saying the REALTOR had violated Article 10 (will not discriminate on the basis of...handicap...etc.), telling the story, which I was able to use the blog post above to refresh my memory :D Of course, I had to add dates and name names. Then I signed it, made the husband sign it, and faxed it off. Have I mentioned that buying a fax machine was my best investment of the year? So useful for the disabled! And the abled! And it has paid for itself over paying the local copy shop.

I got a letter from the local association yesterday. They had reviewed my complaint and referred it for a hearing before the Professional Standards Committee. They amended the complaint with two more articles from the code: "REALTORS owe a fiduciary duty to their clients" and "Realtors must provide competent service." We had to sign to agree to the amendments. First, I checked with my wonderful best-friend-who-is-also-a-lawyer. She had some questions, too, so I called the "risk management person at the association and got some clarifications. So we signed it, and I faxed it this morning.

By the way, "violations of the code of ethics ay result in a letter of reprimand, a fine up t $5,000, probation, the requirement of additional ethics courses. or in sever cases, suspension or revoation of membership rights." But first, a hearing...will keep you posted.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

I think a realtor discriminated against me

I've just been told that I will not be given a lease on an apartment. The realtor is the owner's daughter, and claims he made the decision. She owns and/or manages many units in Ocean Beach.

On Thursday, when we viewed the apartment, she told us the application would depend on the credit check. On Saturday, she called and told my husband that our credit check was very good. Then she asked my husband if I was legally disabled. When he told her yes, she said her father was worried he would be required to make modifications. My husband said that modifications would not be necessary. We would make any necessary changes in such a way that they would not effect the apartment, and we would remove them when we left. He tried to describe the removable tub grab bar I use now. She asked if I would sign a waiver. He said he would check with me. He called me and I said yes, I would sign a waiver. He called her back and left a message. She then said she would have to check with their legal department. (I figured any legal department would tell them you can't discriminate!)

On Monday, the realtor called and said her legal department was closed for the holiday. Today, she called and said we weren't getting the apartment. The legal department would take a month to research the case, and she needed to rent the apartment right away. My husband was kind of dumbstruck. He called me. I called her cell and said I wasn't asking for or needing any modifications, and I was willing to sign a waiver. Then I said that California Civil Code prohibits discrimination based on disability. I said I wasn't looking for a lawsuit.

Then she called up my husband screaming that she hadn't discriminated against us because of disability. The other applicants do not have a dog, and offered a two-year lease. Hubby said we were not given that option, but she kept screaming she did not discriminate. (The sign said pets ok, and we took Spot on Thursday, so she could see how small and quiet he is. She said she didn't have a problem with him, and loves dogs.)

So what do you think? I'm pretty upset, but I know that a lawsuit is out of my reach. I wonder if and when I find another perfect apartment, will I be able to get it? It is hard to find them with no steps. That take dogs. With fenced in yards...oh the list is long. I am disappointed, and hurt. It is wrong, and unfair, and illegal. But it's not like we were recording the phone calls. It is not like I have a lawyer on retainer, or that this is the worst case of the year.

Next time, I won't take my cane? Because this is my fault, because I am differently abled. NO, NO, I must blame the realtor and her father. I'm putting this all down here in part to vent, and to keep a record. Beware--there are many people who are not good people.

Originally, I named the realtor's name in this post, but on reflection, I removed it. I did not want a lawsuit. Using the blogosphere did feel good for a little while, but petty revenge is not what I need. So I will move on, and persist in believing that there is justice and what goes around comes around.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Not no news

No needle biopsy. Almost yeah, but no, it's clearly a lymph node with "activity". So now it joins the roster for surgery on 7-30: behind ear, in front, down neck, shoulder. Whee. I had the MRI Friday. It was the first time one truly bothered me physically. I blame the swollen node affecting my ear. I had vertigo when i when to get up and ever since. Not terrible, but I notice it when I shift levels or turn from side to side. Definitely not shopping weather. After the surgery, three weeks to rest, then radiation. Sort of messes up my plans!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Nervous Nellie

My grandmother used to call me that when I was little. I always have been nervous. Kind of funny (peculiar) when you consider that this central nervous disorder endlessly sends my nerves flaring. This week has been hard. I have a severely swollen lymph node just in front of my left ear. I saw the resident subbing for my primary care on Monday. Nothing obvious seemed wrong, so today I am having a needle aspiration and biopsy. Joy.

Meanwhile, I've been having muscle spasms in my jaw and head--muscles Ive never thought about, but ouch. Plus my legs are bad. Lots of little muscle spasms--feet, arms, calves--all kind of separate, but still enough to stumble or awaken. My primary care told me last week that Abilify, the medication I am taking for supposed bi-polar, has a host of effects on the CNS. Her discharge note said to discuss with my psychiatrist if there was change in fatigue or legs. Did I mention fatigue, or my legs? My body feels like it belongs to someone else. I have to stop this. No, I can do it.

Of course, the psychiatrist changed this month. I see the new one next week. Should I start by demanding to get off this medication? No, I have to share my concerns. "How do you do? I don't think I need all these meds?"

Tomorrow, I am scheduled for an MRI. I canceled PT today. I should ride my bike. That so great to do in front of the housekeeper...

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

She lives

As I like to say, rumors of my death are greatly exaggerated--thank you Mr. Twain. I just got off a long phone call with my primary care. I've had 5 months of hell that I will not even try to document right now. Trust me, hideous. Meanwhile, believe it or not, my thyroid has gone for a dive (my THS is up, in other words). This when I just got off the two nasty nasty meds I was taking for psychological troubles, that I and a few other people aren't sure I really had/have. But I am still taking stuff, to be careful. And because saying, "I'm not crazy," is the first thing any crazy person says. Wait. I may rant about the $1300 bill I had to pay because albuterol gives me such insomnia that I become delusional..nuff said for now.

I've gotten a little hung up on invalid equals invalid. I would love to be validated. Guess I need to go to the flash cinema in Hillcrest.

I can't change the blog name without starting it over as a new blog. Just add an "s" at the end. I went back to work half time after four months on disability. To the many, very nice, curious people, I have said "multiple medical issues". That's my story, and I'm sticking to it.

More wrangling over prior authorizations for meds this week. Boring. Waste my time--you're welcome! Next it's a PET scan Wednesday, then I expect another appointment with the surgeon. Then scheduling the next surgery. More boring, in a completely scary way.

I'm not saying this in the spirit of "poor me". I just need to let it out a bit. I may be blogging here a bit more frequently, as venting does help. And she does live.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Your milage may very

I have not abandoned this blog. At least not permanently. I did hit a slough of despond there for a while. All I wanted to do was sleep or read. I felt like I didn't have anything to say to anyone, in conversation or in writing...

I've stayed on the antidepressant, even though it seems to have made things worse rather than better. Hubba Hubba told me 12/26, when he increased the dosage to 30 mgs that I should feel better in about 10 days. I didn't. But I persevered. For my birthday, Matt gave me a stationary bicycle. Then we looked at the set up instructions. They were way past our level. So, on New Year's Eve Day, we had our friend Joe come over and he and Matt put it together. Yeah! I can now bike to nowhere in the comfort of my own bedroom.

I started riding 5 minutes a day, and have increased to 11 at this point. Doesn't seem like much, but I think if I can get it up to 20 min. a day, it should make a difference at least in my cardio health. Plus, when I went to the primary care on Tues., my blood pressure was 125/84. Golden numbers for me.

The visit with the primary care was just routine follow up. However, I have had a new wrinkle crop up. I have three dime-sized lumps on my scalp. I thought they were a zit at first, or a new mole. But they didn't pop. They did itch, and I had great difficulty not scratching. And they had begun to hurt. So it was time someone looked at them. Madam Milktoast said they were an infection, and prescribed an antibiotic and a steroid liquid topical thing, Fluocinonide. Another lecture on the dangers of skin infections. I had to ask, since this is the third one in less than a year, is it due to the Copaxone. I should discuss that with my neurologist. I should call this number in 5 days for a dermatology consult. The word biopsy was uttered. I immediately flashed on the skin biopsies I had 2 years ago that didn't heal properly. I think the under bra side one never will at this point, but it is mostly a souvenir.

OK, fill prescriptions, etc. In 3 days, the lumps no longer hurt, but they haven't gotten much smaller. Oh well. Then yesterday, I get a call from Shiela, Milktoast's nurse. They got back my labs. My TSH (thyroid stimulating hormone) was a 0.06 on Tues. Normal range is .5-5.5? I am seriously low. Gee, maybe that's why I've been so tired and down! Hyperthyroidism. I'm sad to say, no weight loss. Change dosage of thyroid hormone and dance.

I am wondering why, if I went eight years, 1997-2005 without a change in my thyroid levels, why is this the third change in 1.5 years? Once again, is it the disease or the treatment?

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

what is and isn't wrong

OK, I've been feeling like I don't have much to say. This applies across the board--conversation, blogs, twitter. There's been a lot of nothing. I've been wondering if this is the "flat" feeling that my brother told me he had on Paxil. No highs, no lows. Though it feels kid of low. Hubba Hubba upped my Lexapro dose to 30 mgs last week, and told me it wouldn't take effect for about 10 days. It has been seven. I wonder what happens if that doesn't work. Try another medication? Have to titer down off this one first? Just guessing. Then I wonder, maybe I'm not depressed? I always think back to the period at the end of my marriage. I really did feel like a black cloud above my head followed me around. At times, the black cloud came down and closed me off from everything. That was my definition of being depressed.

Crochet is going ok. I have now mastered the half double crochet stitch. Not that I know what I am going to do with it. Soon, I will look at baby blanket patterns, so I can crochet something for Kelly's baby by April. The crochet is calming. I wish I could do it all day.

The Lexapro does seem to be causing some bruising. Not like Coumadin, but almost every injection leaves a small bruise now. I am still religious about rotating the sites. I really don't want to damage the tissue.

I also have some strange bumps on my scalp. They started with one bump around Thanksgiving. Now there are two large bumps and some smaller ones. They are not painful, but itchy. I will have to show them to my primary care at my appointment next week.