Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and all living creatures of every kind on the earth." Genesis 9:13

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

not much

I'm managing my sleep better with teensy doses of valium.  It's imperfect but it is sleep and I got 7 hours last night which was amazing.  I actually let my boss know I"m too tired to finish evals tonight and may start the day from home tomorrow.  Which she was ok with.  I'm having a very busy week and am so, so tired, and have still had daily asthma attacks since the test last week, but they are getting better and my chest hurts less, and today i even had my full voice for a little bit.  My doctor added a med back on, so I'm now on 2 daily inhalers, a pill, and a rescue inhaler and still not controlled.  The test results are still not back, and once those come in I'm going to go in to the doctor to do some learning about the balancing act that is now my life.  He told me that we'll just keep trying meds until we figure out what is easiest to handle, because as long as I'm where I am and am just uncomfortable and not feeling great it's better to do that than to do the more drastic oral steroids, which would probably clear some of this faster and give the meds an easier time working but the mania/mixed stuff would be harder to handle.  He's right, even though this way is hard and I think part of our talk will be setting a deadline by which time it's breathe or oral steroids.  However, I suspect that this will not be appropriate until about July because as long as it's cold it is harder, and then it will be allergy season.  This is a crazy tightrope act, one I never considered.  I got used to knowing what this could happen with bipolar and I have a pretty good grasp on what the bad things that can happen with my type and history are as well as the positive outcomes we had every reason to believe would continue until the day I went into that home with the whooping cough.  The one truly amazing thing is that I have a history of having 4-6 severe sinus infections annually.  This is usually because without being able to use decongestants things start growing and my sinuses become cesspools.  This seems also to have had something to do with nursing homes even though I've been exposed to colds this year for sure.  Anyway, it has been a year now since the last sinus infection.  If I get a cold while I'm still having daily attacks I doubt I could manage it without oral steroids.Yet I've made it without any colds through almost the whole winter.

And with that my eyes are closing and the vlium gives me only a short time to fall asleep so goodnight hwiht my eyes already closed.


WinnyNinny PooPoo said...

So glad you are sleeping. Gosh, I think you manage to balance everything very well with your illnesses and work and medication. And you have a very good medical team! Wonder if the asthma has always been lurking around and the whooping cough just made it really obvious??

Michal Ann said...

Soooooooo glad to hear about the restful night. I will pray you enjoy another good sleep tonight, dear Jen.

In peace I will both lie down and sleep;
for You alone, O LORD, make me dwell in safety.

Psalm 4: 8

Just Me said...

Michal-I woke up knowing someone prayed. I slept soundly and woke up at my usual time from my healthy days. I did go back to leep for a while simply because I need to rest as much as possible, but this is the most rested I've felt in a month.

The doctor thinks that I have probably always had allergies that have been brought into play by the change in my work environment. The town where I work has chemical plants that are clear triggers, as are smokers' homes, very unclean homes, etc. I had more trouble with fall allergies this year than ever before (although some of my "allergies" were stage I whooping cough) so this does make sense. I also have risk factors for serious environmental allergies; my medication allergies are one, another that also is linked to adult asthma is that I had a lot of topical allergies to weird things (disposable diapers; dog shampoo) as well as more normal like detergents as a kid and my sister had severe allergies to everything that required years of allergy shots and she still has dietary limitations. Oddly her allergies put ME at risk for adult onset ashtma. And also oddly there's a new study showing a link between giving up soy and developing asthma. The MAOI means no soy, and a year after starting it I have asthma. Weird correlation if nothing else.

So yeah, this may have been coming for a while. My doctor thinks the more sealed environment of nursing homes just protected me, as well as not being in and out of cold polluted air. Hard to tell but it does make sense.

Thankfully he's trying to help instead of telling me I have to change jobs, which I was afraid of when that conversation started.

WinnyNinny PooPoo said...

a lot of hospitals I work with (I do computer systems for hospitals) run huge ionizers to cut down on particulate in the air, I wonder if nursing homes do the same?? I wonder if you had an ionizer to put in your car/ portable one to carry into homes it would help?

Rachael said...

I'm sure someone may have mentioned this - but it struck me when you mentioned recurring sinus infections. Have you tried a saline sinus rinse? You can read about it here: http://allergies.about.com/od/noseandsinusallergies/a/nasalsalineirr.htm

Every year the inside of my nose gets so dry from using heat that I get terrible scabs inside my nose. The sinus rinse fixes that. It helps really well with allergies. I also thought of it because it won't interact badly with any of your meds. Just a thought. Hope you get a good night's sleep tonight - Thinking peaceful, breathing thoughts for you.

Just Me said...

I actually have a sinus rinse bottle. My doctor even gaveit to me. I've had it for quite a while because when I get sinus infections/colds I can't use decongestants and that gets the gunk out. I don't know how much it will help with the problems since most of it is during the day but getting what is left out of my nose at night is a good idea. Thanks.

WNP-some kind of ionizer for home is on my list; it's part of the allergen proof bedroom.

Michal Ann said...

Catching up on the saline rinse subject...

I've read that use of the rinse on a daily basis removes germs and viruses. They apparently need 24 hours to incubate so this can really cut down on colds and flu. Seems like a sensible theory.

Anonymous said...

How are you, Jen?

Glynis Jolly said...

How much is a teensy dose of valium for you? The reason I ask is that I have a hard time staying asleep. About 15 years ago I was on a low dosage of valium for spasticity and now I wondering if I need to go back to it.

Just Me said...

Glynis-I don't know that you'll see this as I'm not sure when your comment appeared; it didn't show up in my inbox for some reason.

I have a script for 5 mg of valium. I usually take 1.25 mg. I have never needed more than 2.5; however I am on high dose Klonopin so that kind of means I should need less.

I don't know why you needs meds for spasticity or sleep but truthfully there are at least a million better options for most people. I just am in a strange situation. I don't respond to prescription sleep meds, even at HUGE doses and in combinations. I'm already on a high dose very sedating antipsychotic. I have been through all antidepressants that sedate. I can't take many meds b/c of my MAOI. Etc. Originally I got valium after hospitalization when I needed some form of anxiety med every 2 hours and valium let me do that and still have something left for sleep. Now it's because after my ashtma is stable my psychiatrist will restabilize my less addictive meds. I find it a scary med, although knowing I'm addicted to Klonopin and valium is harder to get addicted to should help that. Plus my doctors have agreed this is a fine solution. I just don't like med changes.

I tried to comment on your blog but it wouldn't let me and I'm too zoned out to figure out how right now.