Discouraging

Initially, I was going to make this blog a remainder of the week post.  However, today I am feeling quite cruddy and that’s just discouraging.  I have been eating healthy, exercising, and doing meditation.  Instead of energized, I feel like I’ve been hit by a bus.  I still have this same sinus infection/ear infection.  It has almost been a month.  The antibiotics do not help and, unfortunately, today I started wheezing a bit.  That means a third trip back to the doctor’s office next week is most likely.  I did tell Rob that if I still feel this terrible on Sunday that I am taking the day to rest/sleep.  Work and after school have been very busy and a tad stressful.  I have had very little down time this week.  I am sure that is not helping my recovery.

However, I will now list the positives of my week:  being a classroom helper on Tuesday, Roger advancing to the next level in swimming, starting a liberal local book club, a very good teacher conference on Thursday, coffee with some great ladies this morning, dinner and conversation with my parents on Wednesday, and lots of love and sweetness from my son and my husband.  Seeing that list makes my infection not seem so bad!

Always something.

Update on the remainder of my week:

Wednesday I had an appointment with a new therapist.  I was told to arrive 15 minutes early to fill out paperwork.  I arrived early and no one was there until about 10 minutes after my appointment time.  That was a huge turn off.  Second turn-off was the décor.  Way too much cutesy/ranch type of décor with an overload of essential oils.  My third issue was her disagreeing with my internist about ending hormones at the five year mark.  And the final issue was that my appointment ended at 45 minutes (and that included the time they were late and the paperwork was filled out), so in actuality my session was 20-25 minutes and cost my co-pay of $40.  I did make a second appointment for November, but am not sure if she is the right fit.  Maybe I should try a second go.  I’m sure I will obsessively think that through.  That same day I made a flu shot appointment for Roger.  That was traumatic.  We got the numbing patch and he still cried and screamed when the shot was administered.

Yesterday I took my husband to his endoscopy/colonoscopy procedure.  One polyp was found and will be biopsied.  They took other cultures to make sure nothing else is going on in there.  He was very nervous but the general anesthesia seemed to have no affect on him after he woke up.  For me, I am usually tired and I nap and then I’m up all night.  He was up the remainder of the day and went to Roger’s hip hop class with me.

The beginning of the week I made a doctor’s appointment for my remaining cough and my stuffed right ear/popping ear.  Today was my appointment and I was correct:  I have an ear infection now.  It is always something!  Another round of antibiotics and, hopefully, all will be clear.

Health update

Yesterday morning I had a lumbar epidural.  I had a choice between local or general anesthesia.  I chose general anesthesia and am glad I did.  The back doctor had wanted a caudal epidural but I had extra bony growth, so the needle could not go the whole way in.   They had to do a higher injection.  The downside is that while I was under I coughed/sneezed the entire time.  I came out of anesthesia with a bad sore throat, almost no voice, and a raw nose.  Thankfully, they said I kept apologizing, so at least I was nice while under!  However, I had Rob make me an appointment at our internist to see if I had more than just bad allergies.  Today was my appointment and I have ANOTHER sinus infection.

My second appointment of the day was my follow-up with my orthopedic surgeon re: my ulnar nerve surgery.  I am doing very well and she released me back to work on Monday.  I told her how my other fingers are going numb and she fit me for a carpal tunnel splint.  However, she thinks the problem is stemming from my cervical issue.  I guess time will tell.  I have another follow-up in 3.5 weeks.

I would be in a better mood if I got more than 2 hours 19 minutes sleep last night.  The antibiotic shot must be somewhat working because my headache has subsided.  Here’s hoping I am more myself before I head back to the workforce Monday!

Still on Medical Leave

Everyday I have thought about updating my blog and everyday I am too exhausted to open the computer.  The high allergens are not helping my activity level.  Add to that the limited activity of the day and I am an achy zombie most of the day!  I have not been consistently taking any pain medication (even OTC, especially due to the fact I am having a lumbar epidural next Wednesday).  My sleep and energy levels are the same post-op as pre-op, which I am not very happy about.  I have been sleeping alone downstairs and I still cannot get a consistent five hours of sleep per night.  I have begun taking melatonin which makes me fall asleep quicker, but does not aide in any other way.

I don’t want this post to be all bah humbug, so I will note some positive changes I have been trying to make in the past couple weeks.  I have been attempting daily meditation via the app Headspace.  Secondly, I have started using MyFitnessPal app again, consistently.  I have shed a couple of pounds but find it hard to lose weight if I try to eat more than 1200 calories, which is too restrictive for me.  Hopefully when I can add some exercise in, that will help my endeavor of losing these 35 pounds I have gained in TX the past 4  years!

Next Thursday, I have my next appointment with my surgeon and am hoping I can go back to work part-time, at least.  I am very bored but do not think I have the energy level for full-time work, yet.

End of Week 9, Beginning of Week 10

The end of last week started Roger’s 7th birthday celebration.  Thursday night he could not sleep because he was so excited for Friday night’s Queen concert.  He was tossing and turning all night, sounding like he may be sick, and awoke at 4 am.  That day his sitter was sick and he had to occupy himself while I worked.  In the afternoon, we met his first grade teacher, looked around the classroom and around the school at some new things going on.  He was even given a kit kat for that night and some M & Ms from his principal.  He was thrilled, especially as she announced his birthday on the loudspeaker as we left the building.  I had an afternoon dentist appointment, which the candy made Roger hyper for but he did well waiting for me.  Luckily, I got him to take an hour nap before we left for the concert.  He enjoyed the show and was very excited during “Crazy Little Thing Called Love” but starting crashing at 10:30 pm.  However, when we got in the car, he perked up and fell asleep around 12:30.  Unfortunately, he woke up at 6 am on Saturday for his birthday.  Saturday was a pretty full day that started with gift opening.  We also had our dogs’ obedience class, followed by lunch, a classmate’s birthday party, School of Rock, pizza and cake with my parents and his best friend, Amanda, and her family.  Finally, he fell asleep around 9:30 pm and woke up at 7:30 am.  He NEVER sleeps that late.  It was amazing!  Sunday was his formal 7th birthday party at Bach to Rock.  It was the latest party we have had for him — ending at 4:30.  We were exhausted afterwards.  The birthday weekend ended with some lego play and Mooyah for dinner.

Last night an allergy attack woke me up around 4 am.  To say that I am a little tired is an understatement.  So, the start of my day was trying to fall back asleep followed by some Buzzfeed, mail, facebook, etc.  For some reason starting a new week put my mood in a bit of a damper.  In the past (even recent past), weekends seemed more stressful than weekdays.  Possibly, that is due to the fact that I like structure.  However, the past few weekends have relaxed me quite a bit.  I was blaming some of my back/arm pain on lack of sleep.  My pain levels have been pretty low Friday and Saturday which does not correlate with the lack of sleep.  It doesn’t even correlate with stress levels.  Setting up the house and the party are both stress factors for me, but neither aggravated my upper back/neck/head aches.  This week I have my 3 important surgeon appointments while experiencing virtually no pain.  My left arm was in a ton of pain last Thursday but that feels like a lifetime ago.  My headaches have been very mild the past 1.5 weeks.  I feel like my body is correcting itself before I make a commitment to surgery!  Due to no known nerve damage, I am pretty sure I will not opt for neck surgery .  The severe damage to my left arm nerve (assuming ulnar nerve entrapment) may force me to have surgery, pain being present or not.  If the time allots, I will give a brief synopsis of my appointments Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday.

 

Monday, Not So Funday

Usually I love Monday’s.  I get to get back into my work groove and my routine, which I love to be in.  However, this morning, I had to have a work call with my boss first thing in the morning.  The call was not stressful, but a small project was given to me for the day.  As the call continued, work emails kept pouring in.  On top of that, the dogs were barking on and off.  Also, our dryer was being installed.  I just felt so much stress.  When I feel so much stress, I speed up my work and try to do hours and hours of work in a couple of hours.  I become a tad crazy about the workload and try to complete it as quickly as possible.

I do not feel accomplished today.  Instead I wonder why do I do this to myself.  There was no time frame to finish the project but I put all this weight on myself to do a good job in an efficient manner.  That is the worker they hired.  I still work at that fast speed but now my head spins in the process.

This cycle of back pain – headache – depression – lack of sleep – utter exhaustion – lack of focus/concentration is burying me in a big hole that I don’t know how to dig out of.  Also, my allergies have been making a comeback although it is not high allergy season.  I wonder if my immune system is crushed under all this.  I feel so hopelessly BLAH.

I start physical therapy tomorrow and hope that will start some good cycle.  Secondly, next Monday I have an appointment with the pain doctor and am hoping that will help as well.  I contemplate seeing a new therapist who may not be so much of a cheerleader but give me a kick in the butt, but right now I do not know if I could deal with that.  I may have to physically feel better before I start feeling better mentally.  Or should I work on both at the same time?  With it being summer, I do not have many extra hours to work with to go to doctor’s/therapist’s appointments every day.

My poor husband has to deal with the brunt of my anger/grumpiness.  I unleash it all on him.  After I do or when I am alone, I realize what a terror I have become and feel so guilty.  Yet, the next flare up, I do the same.  I hope he realizes how much I love him and appreciate his support!

Good Morning, 44

Yesterday I was in such a foul mood all day that I had mentally prepared to write this blog about my 43rd year.  I will still write the intended post but I am not in quite the same sour mood I was when contemplating it.

I kept questioning why I was so depressed yesterday.  Was 44th the hard birthday for me?  People had said 40 would be hard but was not for me.  I was looking forward to my 40’s.  Why was turning 44 so depressing?  Then the realization was that last year was a hard year for me.

Physically, I had (have) issues with my back and had some other instances that I had to go to the doctor and, in one instance, the ER.  Hormonally, this year was utter chaos.  My testosterone levels went from non-existent to way too much and the physical ramifications of that are still rearing it’s ugly head:  body acne and body hair growth.  These were two issues I have never had in the past 43 years.  I had inquired at the OB/GYN how long I should remain on hormones (read 5 years).  They pretty much told me I could remain on them forever.  When I told my internist, she adamantly said 5 years maximum.  Since we decided to stop the pellet for 6 months due to the side effects, that means I shall remain hormone-free due to my 5 year anniversary of my hysterectomy is 2018.  Mentally/emotionally the testosterone made me more edgy and still is as I have to wait for all the excess testosterone to exit my system.  Besides the Biote hormone pellet, my 43rd year was full of medications for depression/bipolar/anxiety and allergies, as well as supplements.  I, with the help of my therapist, nutritionist and internist, have decided to wean off the majority of the medications.  Currently, my roster is fluoxetine, Zyrtec, multivitamin, probiotic, and vitamin D3.  I have cut out about 10 medications/supplements.

My 43rd year had been a year that I have dealt with being my most unhealthy self.  I have made small steps to try rectifying it but not consistently so.  In addition, 43 was a year of added stress:  Roger entering public school, my mother’s surgery, a short stint of returning to grad school, the passing of Snuffles, other family issues, etc.  Don’t get me wrong, there have been positives (mainly on the Roger front in regards to progress/growth).  However, I do not think I have allowed myself time for grief and that is why a low mood has persisted.  Is it too late to grieve?  How can one force oneself to grieve appropriately?  Does one just move past it and say hello to the new day/the new year and push through? So many thoughts as I enter year 44…