Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Drowning in email, update on Mark

I am an email packrat. If you have ever sent me an email about anything at all, there is a very good chance I still have it. Unless it's one of those forwarded jokes or cute slideshows or something like that; most of those I delete. But if you wrote me more than two words, chances are, it's there. I also save my responses, you know, in case anyone ever misquotes me, I can prove them wrong. ;-)

I am also an email procrastinator. I have a very extensive filing system with folders and subfolders for different people I correspond with, a section for all of my various web accounts etc. But… I very rarely file things immediately, a few things here and there, but the majority sit in my inbox until it gets so full that it becomes nearly impossible to find what I need.

I do have filters set up to route my higher volume groups to specific folders that I can skim through and then bulk delete. But even then, I still accumulate quite a bit.

So I have spent the late afternoon and evening today trying to tame the email monster that is my inbox. I started off with around 1400 emails, and have managed to whittle it down to 989 so far, reading newsletters before deleting, filing anything I want to keep, and flagging those I still need to respond to, hopefully before they get buried in a sea of new emails.

Am I the only one who is this obsessive about keeping email? I do occasionally look back in them to find some specific bit of information, but it's very rare, and most of the time I could probably get the information almost as quickly just by contacting the person again. So why can't I just let them go?

So, anyway, changing the subject… Mark had his follow-up with the doctor today about his hip. The news was not especially good. Here's what I can remember about what he said the doctor told him. Basically, one of the discs in his spine is elongated and pinching a nerve or something like that. Options are…

  1. Do nothing. It may or may not get better, 50-50 chance. If it does, it would take 4-6 months.

  2. Physical therapy. Mark had good results with this when he did it for his upper back about 5 years ago, but he is now working in the completely opposite direction from the facility, so the time involved just getting to and from therapy would be very significant. His bosses have been incredibly understanding about the time he has missed so far, but this may be pushing it.

  3. Cortisone shots. One to three shots, depending on how he responds.

  4. "Needle" surgery.

  5. Full-blown surgery.

The doctor recommended option 3. Mark is leery about the pain involved in getting a 5-minute shot, even though they do numb the area first, but this seems to be the most practical at this point. So now we are waiting to hear what the insurance says about all this. Apparently, depending on what they say, he may end up going the therapy route instead.

We have a major road trip schedule to start in just a few weeks. Mark is remaining optimistic that we will still be able to go. Hopefully, the shots will be approved and will have done their thing by then, because if they don't work, I really don't see how the trip is going to be feasible. Especially without causing him a major setback in his recovery. Sigh…

3 comments:

Francine said...

About the email: I used to be an email packrat.Until it got ridicluous. Now I ruthlessly delete anything over a month old, unless there is a special rason not to.


About Mark, oh, that sucks. Th Cortisone shots sound REALLY nasty. Good luck in making the decision and getting the insurance company to agree. And ((hugs)) to him.

Tania said...

Can I just say OUCH! No fun, poor Mark. And yes, I keep email, but I do read ASAP and I file away as I go. If my inbox gets over 20 I start to freak out. I love going back and reading email, weird, I know.

Melinda said...

Add me to the email junky list. I have 600 messages in my inbox at the momebt, and that is only because I deleted/moved about 300 the other day. I'm a packrat and that even spills over onto my computer LOL!