RE-BLOG and UPDATE: The Bronze Killer and Me

POST ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED 7/03/2010. I am re-blogging it along with a new section as part of the national campaign for:
HEREDITARY HEMOCHROMATOSIS AWARENESS MONTH

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Still trying to catch up to where I left off before my trip. Too much to do but my body and mind just refuse to cooperate for more than a half-hour at a time. I am truly thankful for the fact that I don’t suffer from the huge mood-swings or periods of sudden rage that often accompanies Hereditary Hemochromatosis, at the same time though, I’m really frustrated by the increasing inability to focus both my mind – and my eyes. It’s like I’ve suddenly developed ADHD at the age of 56 and someone keeps moving my monitor closer than farther away then closer then… Well, you get the idea. HFE is such an odd disease in that it can have so many manifestations and it seems that no two people have the exact same combination of symptoms and the mix changes constantly.

Read More about Hemochromatosis Awareness Month

I’ve got great doctors – but none of them have HFE so they can’t really relate to what I’m going through, and I’ve been searching for other who have HFE to compare notes with. Through those searches, I came across a reference to the book “The Bronze Killer” by Marie Warder and on Amazon.com there were a ton of reviews of the book that were all just raving about how it’s considered the BEST book on the subject of HFE and more specifically, on the experience of the author’s husband and both children having it and how it’s affected all of them. Marie’s husband is like me in that he was not diagnosed until after he had already suffered permanent damage to his liver while her children were fortunately diagnosed before the disease had advanced that far. I ordered the book on Tuesday and received it Thursday. I used to read at least 1 book a day but those days are long gone and so I’m only on page 11. I’ll fill you in as I get farther along.

UPDATED INFO:

The importance of sharing medical records and information with your immediate family members must not be taken lightly or ignored. People rarely feel any significant symptoms of Hereditary Hemochromatosis (HFE) until it’s too late to avoid permanent, life-threatening harm. But unlike an unexpected car crash, broken spine, or burst appendix, the majority of cases of HFE CAN be predicted, tested for, and even prevented IF there is a known family history of a combination of certain risk factors (even where there’s no family history of HFE having been diagnosed). If a patient is found to have any of the genetic defects that can lead to Hereditary Hemochromatosis, from one or both of their parents, and before they have suffered any permanent damage to their organs, there are easy steps to take that can prevent most or possibly all of the debilitating and dangerous effects of the full blown disease and allow that patient to live a “normal” life and have a “normal” life-span.

Most people think that because they personally were never diagnosed with HFE then there is nothing in their medical records that could possible be of help to their family. WRONG! That’s because, despite being the most common of all genetic diseases, HFE is very rarely diagnosed. Before 1996 there wasn’t even a test that could positively identify it! But our medical records contain much more than a list of diagnosis and treatments. Doctors keep notes of symptoms you complain of, what they have tested you for, the raw results of those tests (meaning just the numbers without interpretation), and what the doctor suspected as well as ruled out as the cause of your symptoms. These are the most critical parts of your records because it is not a single number that is too high or too low that would indicate you MIGHT have Hereditary Hemochromatosis – rather it is the combination of which numbers are low, which are high, and which are “normal” – and how consistent those numbers remain or whether they steadily increase or decrease over the years and in combination with what other symptoms and diseases or conditions. So the judgment of which records are needed cannot be made by someone with either a conflict of interest and/or a lack of the specific medical training to understand the interplay of such information.

Yes, we each do have the right of privacy when it comes to our health records – but PLEASE consider the fate of your family: siblings, children, parents, grandchildren, and 1st cousins. Carefully weigh what is really more important: that none of your family ever find out you once had Herpes or an abortion or whatever else may be embarassing or even shameful – OR – that you can actually help save your loved ones lives or atleast allow them to have a better quality of life for a longer time simply by sharing your un-edited medical history?

A good way to start the dialog with your family members on the importance of being open and sharing, the Surgeon General of the United States has launched a public health campaign and has provided tools to help you create a Family Health Portrait. Access the My Family Health Portrait Web tool at https://familyhistory.hhs.gov/.

Now, back to the original blog post:

Completely off-subject but appropos for this weekend when those of us who are blessed to be Citizens of The United States celebrate our Independence Day on the 4th of July, I’ve created a few patriotic icons as well as a Desktop Picture (in 3 different screen sizes) for you. Enjoy!

Free Clip-Art / Icons & Wallpaper of the Day

The following images are either full or reduced size previews. Simply right-click (or control-click) on the preview to save the image(s) of your choice to your desktop. (Unless otherwise noted, downloads are 512px X 512px in .png format). As always, usage of any of the images offered on this blog are free for your personal use while subject to the limitations of my Creative Commons Non-Commercial – Attribution – No Derivatives 3.0 license. (See sidebar for details)

Star Spangled 1600x1200

1280×854 px 1600×1200 px 1920×1200 px

Old FlagColumbia

Freedom Flag

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Spinning Wheel Gotta Go Round

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So where the hell have I been these past 3 weeks? Ahh, if you only knew… 😉 To be honest, I have spent most of that time sleeping. My body and mind just had to escape from the physical pain and emotional strain that I’ve had to endure for so many years, and then try to regain the strength to go the next round. As to my health, while I certainly don’t mind not having to be pricked or to have my blood drained a couple times a week any more, it’s more than a little bit disconcerting to be told that the only reason for this change is because my doctors see no point in it anymore inasmuch as there’s nothing left they can try to treat me with. So while the good (even amazing!) news is that while the past chemo treatments failed to “cure” me, they were able to give my liver, pancreas and heart enough of a reprieve to slow down the rate that they were detiorating at, the bad news is that they are still detiorating and keeping me stuck in a hospital bed 90% of the time. Hereditary Hemochromatosis is such an insidious disease – atleast if you didn’t know you had it until it was too late to prevent major organ damage and other diseases or conditions from setting in. Sucky. I know this rant is in conflict with the promise I made to get back to my cheery self but I AM working on it and am getting closer to a genuine smile than I was last week. So progress is being made!


What goes up, must come down. Spinning Wheel…

Not all the news in my life is bad (as the above makes it sound). I’ve actually had some very good news on a couple of fronts. One, I just received the first edition of a 15-Month Calendar I designed, and however immodest it may be, I must say I’m really impressed with the quality of Zazzle’s printing and materials. They somehow made my artwork look a 1000% better than I could possibly imagine or even realized I was capable of. While I did all of the artwork and layout, without the right paper, ink, or expert application of the printing presses, the artwork would have been totally lost. So, for any of you who are contemplating turning your own artwork into useful products or beautiful prints, I highly recommend Zazzle. And if you’re just one who has a strong aesthetic sensibility and enjoy beautiful things, I hope you’ll consider checking out my Zazzle shop.

15mosCal-FrontCover 15mosCal-Back Cover

“Front and Back Covers of IconDoIt’s 15 Month Calendar (Nov. 2010-Jan. 2012)”

Okay, the other good news is that the Florida Appeals Court finally issued their opinion on my adversary’s attempt to overturn their prior opinion (that had been in my favor) and then my adversary’s attempt to have that Court strike my response to the Motion for rehearing. Not surprisingly, the 4DCA denied both Motions, which secures the awards already granted in my favor and allows me to seek restitution and damages. I’m praying my opponent finally “gets it” that he/she has run out of places to hide and it’s time to stand tall and accept full responsibility for the consequences of his/her decisions. We all f*ck up at times. We’re all human, after all. It is only in refusing to admit wrongs, in refusing to accept liability for them, in refusing to sincerely apologize for them, and then engaging in further wrongs with the purpose of deflecting the blame and consequences onto the very person harmed (unfairly) by the original bad decision, that makes one a pariah to society.

Enough of the monologue – and on to the Goodies! Tonight I’ve got a set of original images that have an obvious practical use right on your desktop. A set of folders that I’ve named “Slick”. Enjoy!

Free Clip-Art / Icons of the Day

The following images are either full or reduced size previews. Simply right-click (or control-click) on the preview to save the image(s) of your choice to your desktop. (Unless otherwise noted, downloads are 512px X 512px in .png format). As always, usage of any of the images offered on this blog are free for your personal use while subject to the limitations of my Creative Commons Non-Commercial – Attribution – No Derivatives – Share Alike- 3.0 license. (See sidebar for details)

Slick-Folder #1Slick-Folder #2

Slick-Folder #3Slick-Folder #4

Slick-Folder #5Slick-Folder #6

Slick-Folder #7Slick-Folder #8

Slick-Folder #10

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What Do LeBron James, Ron Shegda,The Sigal Brothers & IconDoIt Have in Common?

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It has been a monumental week, to say the least. I have been so overwhelmed with various events, emotions, and activity that I feel like Dorothy, caught in the Eye of a Tornado. From concern for my Father and Step-Mother with their transition to 24/7 in-home nursing care; to the sadness over the loss of an Uncle I had always hoped to know; to the whirlwind of activity on behalf of a good friend of mine, Leicester Bryce Stovell, Esq. when the media broke the news about his lawsuit against the most prominent professional athlete of all time; to designing a new logo and campaign materials for Ron Shegda, who’s running in Pennsylvania for State Representative from the 136th District, to getting new products out for my Zazzle store; and last, but not least, fighting with my own genetic demon (a.k.a. Hereditary Hemochromatosis) and its predictable unpredictability.

As a result of all that, I have not been able to post for several days and have not had the time or energy to either think or do some research in order to leave you with some interesting, useful, intriguing, informative, and/or controversial copy to go along with this evening’s new artwork. Forgive me. I hope to be back to “normal” (at least to what passes for “normal” for me) soon!

Free Clip-Art / Icons of the Day

The following images are reduced size previews. Simply right-click (or control-click) on the images you’d like to download> Each image is 512px X 512px, 72 ppi, in .png format. As always, usage of any of the images I have created and offer on this blog are free for your personal, subject to the limitations of my Creative Commons Non-Commercial – Attribution – No Derivatives – Share Alike – 3.0 license. For any other usage, please contact me directly via this blog or by my e-mail link in the sidebar. Written Permission and a License Fee will apply for ANY commercial use. (Follow link in sidebar for details) Thank You for Respecting These Conditions.

24-7 Nursing Care Clock

Do You Know Where Your Genes Are?

Basketball - It's In The Genes!

Basketball - Who's Your Daddy?

Logo for Ron Shegda Campaign Buttons

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The Bronze Killer and Me (+Patriotic Desktop Pix)

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Still trying to catch up to where I left off before my trip. Too much to do but my body and mind just refuse to cooperate for more than a half-hour at a time. I am truly thankful for the fact that I don’t suffer from the huge mood-swings or periods of sudden rage that often accompanies Hereditary Hemochromatosis, at the same time though, I’m really frustrated by the increasing inability to focus both my mind – and my eyes. It’s like I’ve suddenly developed ADHD at the age of 56 and someone keeps moving my monitor closer than farther away then closer then… Well, you get the idea. HFE is such an odd disease in that it can have so many manifestations and it seems that no two people have the exact same combination of symptoms and the mix changes constantly.

Read More about Hemochromatosis Awareness Month

I’ve got great doctors – but none of them have HFE so they can’t really relate to what I’m going through, and I’ve been searching for other who have HFE to compare notes with. Through those searches, I came across a reference to the book “The Bronze Killer” by Marie Warder and on Amazon.com there were a ton of reviews of the book that were all just raving about how it’s considered the BEST book on the subject of HFE and more specifically, on the experience of the author’s husband and both children having it and how it’s affected all of them. Marie’s husband is like me in that he was not diagnosed until after he had already suffered permanent damage to his liver while her children were fortunately diagnosed before the disease had advanced that far. I ordered the book on Tuesday and received it Thursday. I used to read at least 1 book a day but those days are long gone and so I’m only on page 11. I’ll fill you in as I get farther along.

Completely off-subject but appropos for this weekend when those of us who are blessed to be Citizens of The United States celebrate our Independence Day on the 4th of July, I’ve created a few patriotic icons as well as a Desktop Picture (in 3 different screen sizes) for you. Enjoy!

Free Clip-Art / Icons & Wallpaper of the Day

The following images are either full or reduced size previews. Simply right-click (or control-click) on the preview to save the image(s) of your choice to your desktop. (Unless otherwise noted, downloads are 512px X 512px in .png format). As always, usage of any of the images offered on this blog are free for your personal use while subject to the limitations of my Creative Commons Non-Commercial – Attribution – No Derivatives 3.0 license. (See sidebar for details)

Star Spangled 1600x1200

1280×854 px 1600×1200 px 1920×1200 px

Old FlagColumbia

Freedom Flag

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The ART of Survival

Posted by: Leslie Sigal Javorek – – – STICKY POST – – – Those suffering from chronic, debilitating illness and/or terminal conditions understand how isolating that can be, even when they are lucky enough to have (healthy) friends or family around them. Ironically, many who are blessed with not looking as sick as we really […]

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