Pain, Phobias

Made It

I went to the dentist today because I’ve been having jaw pain.  It’s most likely TMJ from clenching my jaw and grinding my teeth.  Yay.  Just add it to the list of crap in my life.

The reason for the title is that I’m a huge wuss.  I hate going to the dentist.  I’m down right phobic, actually.  I ended up getting a referral to the local dental school to check out a root canal I had a while back.  She also filled a small cavity.  I hate the balloon lip feeling I get from the Novocaine.  I’ll eat some mac and cheese for dinner because mac and cheese always makes me feel better.

So, next week I go in for a cleaning.  In theory, that is.  I haven’t decided if I’m going to keep the appointment.  Phobias are irrational things.  And even through I know it’s only a cleaning, that doesn’t always help.  Maybe I’ll talk to Dr. D about it tomorrow.  Sigh.

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Medication, Mental Health, Pain, PTSD, Sleep

Itty Bitty Baby Steps

After working on it for like a month, I’ve finally called a psychologist.  I tried doing the Psychology Today route.  Too confusing since my insurance is administered by X company, but because it’s Medicaid, people who take X don’t necessarily take my form of X.  Today I worked up the courage to call X company directly and get some names.  I took those names and Googled.  Luckily one of the people specializes in trauma.  I left a message on voice mail.  Thankfully, she’s out of the office until Monday and I can quit stressing over it until then.

Earlier, I saw useless GP.  Remarkably, he wasn’t all that useless today.  I guess it helps if you go in focused and only asking for one med change.  A few weeks ago, I started Couch to 5K.  I messed up my previously messed up ankle.  So after resting for almost a week didn’t do anything I made the appointment.  Now, all of this could have been taken care of last week, but drunk family member fell down in her driveway and I had to take her to the ER and wait around while they scanned her head.  I barely know this person, but nobody else who could do it was around.  I swear, I think I’m going to start using the phrase “Not my monkey.  Not my circus.” around my family.

So I see GP.  He orders an x-ray basically to cover his butt should the 6 weeks of PT he prescribed not work and he wants an MRI.  I guess having a GP who also does sports medicine is handy.  He says I can continue walking, but no more than a half mile or so and no C25K period.

He also gave me a referral to a different rheumatologist to evaluate for seronegative arthritis.  Despite lab results and symptoms and joint pain responding to steroids, current rheumatologist doesn’t think there’s anything else going on aside from fibromyalgia.

Oh, and I get to increase the Vitamin D I’ve been taking because I’m still deficient despite taking a standard 2000 IU a day.

Only other thing is I had a sleep study done.  I wish they’d hurry up and send the results.  I had a split study, where they monitored the first part and then put me on a CPAP machine the second part.  I’m guessing the fact they did the CPAP means I had a significant number of apnea events.

Psychiatrist is being a bit pushy, but I don’t expect less.  She’s ready to call up Company X and go off on them because they want to do her job.  She’s the one pushing therapy.  I think things have lifted a bit because as I said above, I’ve been able to deal with looking into it.  She also wants me to go back to the NAMI group I used to attend.  But I haven’t been there for like 10 years.  There’s a meeting tomorrow night.  But I don’t know.  I guess I’m minimizing things again.  I get all “But it isn’t that bad” all the time, despite evidence to the contrary.

And no, dear psychiatrist, my mother’s voice isn’t going away.  It’s been in my head my entire life.  And no, I’m not psychotic.  I think we’ll have to agree to disagree.

Fibromyalgia, Medication, Pain

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.

Anxiety, Cats, Emotions, Fatigue, Fibromyalgia, Health, Medication, Pain, Stress

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.

Exercise, Fibromyalgia, Pain, Randomness

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.

Health, Pain, Venting

Not Fun, That’s What

Let’s back up.  I saw my Dr. P yesterday.  I have to get up at 8 to be there by 9 thanks to a half hour bus ride.  Of course at 8:30, there were NO SEATS ON THE DAMN BUS!  I don’t do well on buses to begin with.  I get motion sick sitting down.  I don’t have  ton of strength in my arms to begin with and my hands always hurt.  That makes hanging on to those rings fun.  I mean really, so I look like a gymnast or a monkey?

So I finally got to the office.  I see Dr. P.  I’m crying as I walk in.  Don’t want to talk much about it, but crap going on at work.  He took one look at me, got a nurse to do a BP, temp and glucose stick.  Now because Korean cuffs are almost always too small for me (this one included). I learned this summer (while they were using correct sized BP cuffs) they over estimate my BP by a good 30 points.  They measured me at 110/80 which makes me a hell of a lot closer to 80/50.  My temp was down around 95 (for no good reason, I had a shirt and a jacket on) and my glucose was 65.  Plus I was dehydrated (yeah, I know I know I know).

He treats a lot of older folks who have a hard time getting enough nutrition, so he has some nutritional IV stuff and saline on hand.

After we went through the whole work thing he sent me into his treatment room to where the nurse was going to start an IV (he had already given me a couple of glucose tablets and I had stopped shaking so bad).  So what do you get when you try to start an IV on a hypotensive, hypothermic, dehydrated person?  At least 15 sticks.

So I got there at 9 and left at 1.  A great way to spend my birthday, no?  So I went to an Italian place and then a coffee shop and got cake.  At the coffee shop, they had handmade, stuffed kitty keyrings.  So, happy birthday to me.

Fibromyalgia, Health, Medication, Pain, Positive things, Sleep

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.

 

Depression, Dreams, Fatigue, Fibromyalgia, Pain, PTSD, Work

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.

Depression, Fibromyalgia, Pain

Depressed

I’m depressed. I don’t really have the option of seeing the doctor right now. I will have to wait until I get back to Korea. Part of it is a flare up of the Fibromyalgia. I’m in so much pain right now it hurts to type. I’m using my new tablet with it’s speech function to write this. The cats is laying on top of me and that hurts. I kick her off but she comes right back up. Yesterday, when I took my shower the water on my skin was terrible. I started back on the Gabapentin. I know it should help with this kind of nerve pain, but waiting for it to work is not fun.

This sounds horrible. I do much better when I can type. Maybe tomorrow will be a better day. If it is, then I can actually type are real blog entry. This speech thing is fun and it works pretty well. I just don’t think this way. But it is definitely handy.

Pain, Phobias

One More Step

This dental thing is not going to be an easy process.  Because of the fibro, I’m especially sensitive to pain.  So even with the Novocaine, he still had to double up in some places. Actually it made me laugh a bit because my nose was numb.

Interestingly, right now the pain seems to be where a couple of those needles went.  The tooth he pulled… let’s juts say if he wants to do that again, I don’t want to be awake.  It didn’t hurt per say, but the sounds.  OMG, I just shudder thinking about it.

I was fine until everything was over.  Then I started crying.  I couldn’t help it.  The man sent one of his hygienists to get me lunch.  My stomach was going crazy, so I just took it with me.  I gave the sandwich to my boss and drank the banana smoothie.  I’m afraid to eat.  I made some mashed potatoes for dinner.  I got about three bites into me.

Off to bed now. I have to teach my last (yay!) vacation class in 12 hours.  Plus the cats are trying to kill each other.  This is definitely a night for the PRN anxiety med Dr. P prescribed.