Starting Up Again

It’s been many years since I’ve written here. I decided earlier this week to get back into writing on this blog specifically.

So what has been going on the last 3.5 years? A whole lot. I had a second bariatric procedure and I lost more weight. My highest weight was 440 pounds. I’m now 177. I was down to 164 but pandemic…….

I’m still working with infants in early childhood education. I’m still at the same place, though I’m brushing up my resume. I’m still coloring, though on my own. The meetup group doesn’t meet anymore because, well, *gestures wildly around*. I’m still baking and I’m part of an online baking “club”. “Club” because it’s only two of us. We are still trying to get people to join us.

A while ago, I quit therapy with Dr. D. I’m back working with her again. Dr. W (who I still see) encouraged me to start therapy again. I’m glad I did. The thing that made me walk away was her trying to dive into (what I recognize now as) my social anxiety. I wasn’t ready to tackle it and I was doing well in other ways. The break was good for me.

In terms of meds, I’ve been able to taper off the Haldol, Effexor and Celexa. In a few months, I’m hoping to start getting off either the Zoloft or Wellbutrin.

Last summer, one of the baby girls in my class at work had some possible vaginal bleeding. The way it was handled by my boss plus just the idea that maybe someone was hurting that little girl really messed with my head. At that point, I was seeing Dr. D. I ended up taking a week off to get my head screwed back on. The family left the center and I occasionally wonder what happened to her and hope she’s okay.

A couple months ago, we had a new family join the center. There are an infant boy, a toddler boy and a preschool girl. These children were removed from their mother. The toddler spent many hours just crying “mommy” over and over. The way the building is set up is there is a half door between the infant room and the toddler room. So I could hear every single scream. It broke my heart. It didn’t help that the toddler teacher was getting frustrated and would say “J, please stop crying.”. Let me say, that I totally understand her reaction. She had 6 other kids under 3 and it was overwhelming at times. I’ve been in her shoes. I was told A, the baby in my room, was born to a crack addicted mother. I need to do some reading on what the shorter term ramifications are of that. I’m probably most concerned about B, the preschool girl. She seems totally unaffected. I know she’s older than J, but she’s only 4.

I’ve been dealing with my reactions to those two incidents with Dr. D. After the baby girl, I took a week off to get my head back on the right way. Last week and this week, I’ve been on vacation. There were many reasons, one being the new family. Another is physical exhaustion. I’m still dealing with fibro. Two weeks ago we were so short staffed because of Corona. I ended up working 8-6 with a 2 hour break. It just wasn’t sustainable for me. I’m also the acting administrator for 4-6. Another staff member thinks she’s in charge and was being a general pain in the ass. I told my boss that E can be in charge since it seems that’s what she wants. My boss told me that no, you’re in charge and I deliberately chose you. And then there’s all the BS that needs to be done for Step Up to Quality. I was doing a good deal of other teachers’ work.

It’s definitely been a crazy year.

The Med-Go-Round Goes Round and Round

Reptiles Merry go round Worksheet

This is what life feels like right now.

I talked to Dr. W yesterday.  The voices are pretty bad right now.  She tried to increase the Haldol once before and that led to such horrible jaw clenching that I had to go down plus start taking Cogentin with it regularly.  Now, given my symptoms, she feels I should go back up and she increased the Cogentin too.

I feel like I’ve been on this ride for so many years.  And I’m going round and round.  I’m actually dizzy when I sit down and look at my med list.  I doesn’t help my list when you factor in the fibromyalgia diagnosis.

I see Dr. W next week.  We’ll see where the med-go-round stops then.

Weather Changes

I think weather changes are the worst for me.  Even though I find it difficult to tolerate the cold, this swing upward in temperature along with the rain is, once again, doing a number on my pain levels.

On a slightly positive note, the rebound muscles spasms I was having after waking up (my doc put me on a muscle relaxer at night) seem to have calmed down.  I’ve been trying to do some self massage using the molding around the doors.  It hurts like hell while doing it, but it does seems to give some modest short term relief.

I wish I could get a proper massage.  When I was doing PT in Korea for my back and shoulders, they started each session with about 20 minutes of massage.  And I went three times a week.  Strangely enough, my Korean doctors seemed to be more aggressive about pain control than my US doctor.  But that could be because she’s a GP, not a specialist.

I need to follow up on my Medicaid application.  I think if I could get into see a rheumatologist (I won’t even say a good one), I could do a bit better in the pain management department.  I also need to call my GP.  I’m on an NSAID for whatever sort of arthritis I have in my hands, elbows, shoulders and now feet.  However, I’ve been getting heartburn so bad lately, I could light up the city skyline.  I really hate to stop it because it does help a little bit with the pain and stiffness.  Unfortunately, there aren’t many options in those types of meds.  I tried Celebrex, and while it worked, I’d be reliant on my GP for samples.  At least with the Mobic, it’s only 4 bucks at a local pharmacy.

I guess that’s enough whining for one day.  I’m going to fill out a job application I got out of the blue in the mail.  I think if I’d stop feeling like such a failure for not being able to find a job, I’d be less depressed.

All That Jazz

Or maybe just some of it.  OK, probably none of it.

My brain is utterly fried.  I don’t know what to blame it on…  constant stress, depression, anxiety, fibro.  All of the above, maybe?

I guess if you want to look on the plus side, my PTSD symptoms are pretty much nonexistent aside from anxiety and a wicked startle response.  But I’m bone tired.  Like stay in bed all day bone tired.  And my bones hurt from the cold.  Spring can’t come soon enough for me.

My doc started me on a muscle relaxant at night.  While that’s a good thing (I think since I’m not waking up with spasms in my back and legs) my muscles seem to clamp down even harder during the day.  I could barely straiten my back yesterday.

I’ve applied for my state’s medicaid program.  I’m trying to figure out what the next step with them is.  The website isn’t exactly clear.  I guess I need to go in person.  Luckily for me, there’s an office in the city I live in.  It’s just a depressing place to go.  I’ve already found out that my current PCP doesn’t take medicaid.  Bad because I hate getting established with a new doctor.  Good because, well, to be honest, I didn’t really like my PCP to begin with.  On the other hand, who knows.  The new one could be worse.  And all this is stressing me out too.

I think the only thing keeping me sane is my kitties.  I’m house/cat sitting for someone this week.  Their kitty loves me.  He always wants to be on top of me, kneading me.  And damn it.  It hurts.  I can only put him down so many times before he gets more insistent.  Oh well.  It’s only for a few more days and then I’ll be back with my mostly non cuddly kitties.

7 Years

A lot has changed in 7 years.  I’m a marginally happier person, thanks to years of being away from my crazy family.  My health has taken a huge hit.  Fibromyalgia sucks big time.  I’m out of work, and would love to go back to teaching.  But, realistically, that’s not going to happen.  My body and mind can’t take the stress.  I’ll miss my treatment team in Korea for sure.  I had an excellent psychiatrist and rheumatologist.

I have no resolutions for the new year.  I’m just trying to survive one day at a time.

Not sure about the blogging thing, I logged back in here on a whim and saw it was my 7th blogging birthday.  We’ll see what the future brings.

As for me, I’m heading back to my warm bed to try to sleep off whatever disease my brothers and I picked up at church on Christmas Eve.

Back?

Or maybe not.

Fibro has decided to beat up my body again.  I don’t know if I can keep myself from crying.  Please no kind words about it’s ok to cry.  I’ve heard them all and, well, that message is too ingrained in my head still.

Well, isn’t this fun.  I’m going to do some stretches.  Hopefully without screaming.

Letting It All Out

Today has been one of those days where I just don’t want to exist.  Dr. P was slightly assholish for the first time.  He told me to look up ACT which, by the paper he showed me, looks like a combo of CBT and DBT.  I seriously didn’t need that today.

I went grocery shopping which almost pushed me over the edge.  At least it was pretty empty as it was only 9:30.

For some reason I wanted pancakes, so I bought the stuff to make them.  But making them left me so exhausted that I couldn’t really enjoy them.

On the way home on the bus, I spotted a furniture store and got off there.  I managed to order the platform for my bed using my broken Korean and a lot of pointing.  Unfortunately I ordered the wrong size.

I came home and took a nap.  I could barely get out of bed because I had spams in my lower back.  And of course it was too late to go see Dr. K, the ortho.

The delivery people came and as I was trying to clear stuff out, I tripped on the bed frame and banged up my leg pretty damn well.  I also did something to my left shoulder.

Now I sit here crying.  I have no desire to even contemplate dinner.  I’d go get a hamburger or something but walking three flights of steps again doesn’t seem like a really good idea.

I’m just so tired of all of this.  I wish I had a magic wand to take it all away.  And it looks like it’s going to rain the next couple of days.  Just wonderful.

I’m going to take my meds now and hopefully sleep.  Because I really am tired to the bone.

 

On preview, I don’t know how much weight I lost, but when I got up to go to the bathroom I just pulled my jeans down.  I thought I had unbuttoned them when I took a nap.  Nope.  They just pull right down over my hips.  And these are jeans that were slightly tight when I bought them in September.  Not that I’m complaining about that or anything.

Thank You Dr. P

Dear Dr. P

Thank you so much for treating me with respect today. I was afraid when I came in because of the pain you would think I was just drug seeking. But you didn’t. You acknowledged the pain I was in. And you tried to find ways to minimize it. Knowing that someone believes me means the world to me. I don’t know if the new combination will help but at least I have some hope now. Even when I was crying you didn’t belittle me.

So here are the changes. I am to increase the Cymbalta to 60 mg. She also added Mobic. It’s an NSAID. She also increased the Trazodone to 100 mg to try to get my sleep regulated. Her opinion is that the nausea and pain is related to the fibro but wants to hear the gastrointestinal doc’s opinion.  She also said that the Gabapentin might not have had enough time to fully kick in.

Yes I still hurt. Yes I’m still anxious and depressed. But at least someone is trying to help. I’m just glad she didn’t want to do a hands on exam. I don’t think I could have dealt with the pain.

 

Red Alert

So much has happened.  I had an upper endoscopy last Thursday that was a literal nightmare.  The good and bad news is they didn’t find anything.  So I’m still nauseous all the time and have stomach pains.  The doctor didn’t return my call today.  Hopefully he will tomorrow.  I’ve been crying off and on because the whole thing retriggered some of my PTSD issues.  My anxiety has been through the roof.  I guess I should call my GP and see what she has to say.  I’ve been trying to hold onto my sanity until I get back to Daejeon and I can see my psychiatrist there.

Sleep is a joke.  When I do sleep, I feel like I dream constantly.  They aren’t nightmares, per se.  But the people in them are faceless.  It’s really quite creepy.

I’ve been living with high levels of pain since July.  I was hoping it would calm down on its own, but that doesn’t seem like it’s going to happen.  Again, I was waiting to get back to Korea to see my rheumatologist, but that’s looking 2-3 weeks off.  I don’t know how much longer I can take pain at this level.  Sleeping hurts, sitting, stand and walking hurt.  Basically, everything hurts.  I guess it’s another reason to call my GP.

I’m worried about going back to work.  I’m worried about the time change and jumping right in to a new school with a curriculum I’ve never seen.  Just the thought of packing overwhelms me.

I’m tired.  I’m anxious.  I’m depressed.  And I hurt.

Fibro Blog

I’m trying hard not to rant too much about the fibro here.  I started a blog a while ago and I’m trying to update it a bit more often.  With time I hope I can get out of rant mode and into trying to help other people mode.  The diagnosis has only been official about a year, but I know it’s been going on since college and probably before.

So I just wanted to put that linky out there because I know there are a few fibro-ites who visit this blog.