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

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Med changes suck

They just do.  This is the 2nd day on my slightly increased gabapentin.  I am not sleepy at night but I was groggy today.  That may be the flu shot residuals, it may be depression, it may be exhaustion and it may be the med.  I don't know how to tell.  Maybe tomorrow it will be more clear.  It did not feel medicated.

The thing about this is that this is one of my "it may or may not work but it can't hurt to take it meds".  We know it had some effect when it was started and when I went from 300 to 400 mg.  So it does something.  There is no way to know how much though.  Probably not a lot, especially with the low dose.  I don't think it even really has research showing it acts as a mood stabilizer, despite lots of people being on it for that.  I'm willing to take it because at some point in the past it did clearly show that it helped a bit.  But I hate not having any way at all to know what is going on now.  I'll know in a few days if my mood is more stable I guess and if it isn't and I can tolerate it I can increase by another 100 mg.  That's the dose where I had a lot of problems in the past but other variables were in play then that make doing it this way worth a try at least.

I honestly feel like just laying in bed, closing my eyes and refusing to move or take meds or think for about a week.  I think I may cancel Dr. Mind since I am tired from the med (or from whatever) and I think that rest may be more beneficial this week because he is feeling so bad that he just isn't himself.  I can't see handling very well getting up and driving up there when exhausted and then having him not be well enough to do the session.  If I do that it would give me 5 days in a row without any appointments.  And that sounds blissful right now.

Otherwise I seem to be getting sleepy.  Going to take advantage of that.

Friday, October 24, 2014

or a flu shot

When I was feeling so bad yesterday I forgot completely that I got a flu shot on Wednesday.  I'm still depressed, that started before Wednesday but I don't think it is getting as bad as fast as I thought because once I rolled on my arm and remembered why it is sore I remembered that my mom felt bad after hers and that being so tired I didn't want to be out of bed would be a reasonable reaction to depression PLUS a flu shot.  So today I feel slightly better.  Not great, still depressed and tired, but I made it until I can stat my med change and tomorrow my mom is going to help me get my house clean again.  Which will be a vast improvement.  I've just barely been here in almost 2 weeks and that's not good.  One bad thing about a tiny place is that mess accumulates rapidly and just a little bit of stuff out of place is enough to look like a disaster has occurred.

The other thing with being tired that I need to remember is that I have not been allowed or able to exercise much at all for 19 weeks.  I can't even just take a walk yet, not long enough to really be exercise for more than my ankle.  So the increased intensity in PT this week may be more draining than it seems like it should be.  It's a long time still before I can do real exercise (not until January at the earliest) so I need to just remember my stamina is down.  I also want to find out if I can walk on a treadmill at home. I'm doing 5 minutes at therapy now and since my mom has a treadmill maybe I can start trying to walk on hers enough to get some real exercise, even if it is the 30 minute miles I'm walking now and without an incline.  Anything would be something at this point.  The treadmill also makes me practice proper gait and the more I practice that the sooner I will not be limping and walking with an exaggerated heel-to-toe pattern like I am now.  I want to walk so that nobody knows anything was ever wrong with my ankle.  It will take a while longer but that's my goal.

First though, I must recover from this flu shot that has attacked me so viciously. 

Thursday, October 23, 2014


My mixed episode dramatically changed from being primarily agitated to being very depressed in the last 48 hours or so.  I went from sleeping less than usual to wanting to do nothing but sleep.  I'm even falling asleep before midnight and taking naps.  Those things never happen.  Tomorrow I increase my gabapentin which we hope helps and doesn't snow me.  I've been on 400 mgs of gabapentin for quite a while now without major problems but in the past 600 mgs was enough to knock me out and make me completely incapable of doing things like writing emails (I actually sent emails that read sdkjflasjdfoiajr and not to the person I intended to get that priceless message) so we don't know for sure what 500 mgs will do.  I hope help me feel better fast.  I suppose I probably could start my light therapy now but I want to see how things progress for a few more days before risking increasing the mania.  It's so hard to believe it is there, even my PT noticed today that I wasn't myself (ok, I've been going there 2-3 times per week for 2 months, probably it's not that surprising that they notice; the whole staff notices when I'm using the treadmill instead of the easier recombinant stepper) but still I usually can hide this for 45 minutes.  Not today.  If it doesn't work I have no idea what will happen because as far as I know the only remaining options are to add older, often nastier anti-psychotics at a low dose and hope for the best.  Because of my history of movement disorders that has to be done very carefully and we've tried to avoid it.  I also don't want to have to take meds 3x/day.  I'm just getting back on my morning meds, which often are forgotten when I have an episode.  Since one is thyroid it is probably part of why I feel so crappy but I can only do the best I can.  I'd go back to just taking it at night but I need to take nexium twice a day with this much Seroquel so I have to remember the AM meds anyway.    Even then I break the rules. I somehow didn't know synthroid had to be taken on an empty stomach and never did it that way so my dosing has always reflected taking it not quite right.  Not changing that now.

I realized today that it is going to be five years in a couple of days since my first hospitalization and starting Emsam.  That is one med decision I am absolutely glad I made.  Emsam and Serqouel XR made a huge difference in my life and even though they don't work as well now as they used to they probably keep me from feeling much worse than I typically do.  I was so afraid and the whole thing was ok.  I just remember how much of that depression I wore on my face and hate knowing that any part of this one is also visible.

At least tomorrow I'll be back at my house in my bed with my poor cats.  I've been dog-sitting for 2 days and the timing just couldn't have been worse.  I'm also mad because somehow nobody asked me to do this and I found out at the last minute when I had planned a med change already.  I need so badly to just be able to sleep as much as I want to for a couple of days.  If I cancel Dr. Mind which I might I don't have anything until Wednesday which would let me get some rest and adjust to my new dose of gabapentin.  I'll figure out Dr Mind this weekend.

Otherwise not sure what to say.  All I want to do is sleep for as long as I can and with the dogs that won't happen.  Hopefully they'll let me go back to sleep in the morning like they did today.  Also hopefully my mom will be home earlier than I really expect her to be to take over.

And I just realized that I have only a week and then time change rears its' ugly head and will mess with me even more.  That is really not good.  Hope I get through a lot of this in the next few days......But in reality things just are going to be kind of rough for a while.  Lots of tough changes happening any time now.  Holidays.  Potentially the first holidays with things vey different than ever before and they will be very different no matter what.

Anyway, I have nothing interesting to say.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014


This is the least I've posted in any month ever.  It's been a hard month to come up with things to say because usually I am writing about what I am thinking about.  This month I've been running from my thoughts.  Partly this is a mixed episode that started longer ago than I realized and I just haven't been in the mood to write.  There has been a lot of grieving over my brother and I don't want to write much about that on here.  But there's also been an issue with Dr. Mind being sick and he has missed some appointments and when he is there he is kind of out of it and so while he at least made sure I got the mixed episode treated medically last week (sort of; read on) counseling isn't the support it usually is and that's making me avoid my racing thoughts in every way I can.  That's been even more true as I've been pretty paranoid this time around and it's better to not let your mind and words run free while paranoid. 

Dr. Mind being sick has been really hard.  I don't know what to say beyond that aside from I miss him and I feel so bad because he truly has been suffering terribly, but this is showing me how grateful I should be that he isn't leaving.  To be honest I'm sad for him that he isn't doing that, he really wanted to and it was his dream for many years and it is so hard to have a decision made by your health.  But I know now how much I miss him when I'm seeing him every week so I can't image having to say good-bye.

Along with those things my life is just busy now.  I am only doing PT 2 times per week now instead of 3 but I usually spend around 2 hours a day working on it at home on non-PT, non-painful days.  (Sometimes I overdo and pay for several days).  On painful days I do a lot of stretching.  Last week my mom was out of town and I thought I was going to have a very quiet week but right before she left a golden retriever mix showed up.  We did everything to find his owners and nobody responded or contacted the pound.  So I went to get tags for him and the pound lady remembered him from him being in there the week before after running away from home.  I told her to call the owner (he was legally mine) and arranged to have him picked up. Then I cried all day.  He had been neglected and had no socialization with humans or other animals and he is the smartest, sweetest boy ever.  I wanted to keep him so badly.  Giving him back was going to be awful.  But she actually asked if I wanted him while I was working up the courage to ask if she wanted to give him up and so we gained a dog.  He's really my mom's, I can't have a dog with my cats in this tiny space but I spent all of last week with him helping him to adjust.

I had a med change ordered (increased gabapentin) but we agreed I should wait until my mom was home to do it because I had trouble being very out of it on a higher dose of gabapentin in the past and we've kept it low to avoid that possibility.  I wasn't very aware that I was out of it the last time so I wanted my mom to tell me if I was out of it and unsafe to drive.  I arranged PT so that I'd have several days to adjust and then found out that my mom was going to be out of town with my sister and nieces for a few days this week and I'm dog-sitting and somehow they forgot to ask me.  My mom feels really bad about it but I'm not going to get to start the med change until Friday night now.  I'm just not going to worry much about missing counseling Monday.  It's not going very well anyway and this is a dreaded 5 weeks between social security checks month so missing a counseling session helps my budget greatly.  I just hope that it works.  I'm tired of feeling bad and I really need this drug to help because the options are quite limited.  Dr. Brain has a few people on more Seroquel than I am taking, however it doesn't seem likely that I could handle that because I am having a very difficult time peeing on this dose.  And once you are on so much there isn't a small boost that is going to do anything anymore; 50 mg is such a tiny percent of my dose that it isn't going to be more than a drop in the bucket.  I had a panic attack that was really bad a week and a half ago and I absolutely couldn't pee until it settled down because I have to focus on relaxing to go and mid-panic attack (it lasted a couple hours) I can't do that.

I can't even remember what else has been going on.  My keyboard wasn't working for quite a while and that was making typing a blog post pretty difficult.  My Anna cat seemed near the end for a while but I took her in and begged for an antibiotic shot to see if it helped her because she seemed to be at the end for days and that turned into a couple weeks and nothing was happening, so I talked to the vet about hospice and she can have unlimited antibiotics until they don't work anymore, and she has been doing great for the last few weeks.  I cut back her nausea med to once a day and she is actually eating cat food again and eating a much larger volume than before.  Hopefully she doesn't get puke-y again. 

I spent quite a bit of time with my brother last week and we talked and laughed and I honestly felt good being with him.  It was a good thing and very much needed.  I hope that I can maintain something like this until things change again.  That could be about any time now.  It could be months more but it is nearing the average wait time.

otherwise I need to empty the kitty litter.  I really meant to do that earlier but I fell asleep.  I bought some of that new lightweight stuff and maybe it is ok for cats who aren't in renal failure but for my cat who pees gallons it sucks.  So I have to totally empty the thing and start over.  I'll wind up with a smelly trash can all night because i'm not going out in the cold to the trash bin but it's better than a smelly bedroom.  I want my Anna to be here as long as she has a happy life but I absolutely will not miss the kitty litter in my bedroom.

I am so tired.  Maybe I'll get to sleep early tonight.  It would be great since I have to sleep at my mom's the next 2 nights.  Ugh. 

Or can I just fall asleep with icky litter one night??????  I think we shall see.  Tomorrow is so much easier to manage all that.  Or not.  Guess it depends on falling asleep.

Thursday, October 16, 2014


I am still here.  It's been a crazy few weeks.  My laptop keyboard settings were messed up by my cat walking on the keyboard one night when I fell asleep without closing my computer.  There have been trips to the vet, a very dramatic story involving adopting a stray dog while my mom is on vacation (he'll be hers), there is PT and this week was my first day with both Dr. Mind and Dr. Brain in the same day (which works out to a very, very long day), sleep deprivation, a mixed episode, a few days of being really paranoid, some changes in how I am seeing my brother (again and this is partly why I'm not writing; I can't explain it well without saying more than I want to at this point) and more. I'll catch up soon but probably not until my mom is back and I'm not watching the new dog constantly.  He's a very good Houdini so I can't just let him into the dog yard until we know for sure he cant jump the fence.  I even spent a long time today with a drill, spare boards and zip ties sealing off an opening so he cannot possibly get out that way. 

I'll be back soon.

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

Two shoes!

I haven't been feeling very good the last few days (stomach issues and now a migraine would like to start along with that which is directly from a very long day going to see the orthopedist with the largest possible number of bad drivers each way).  So I'm going to keep this short but it's a big day, so here goes:  I am weaning out of my boot and into a shoe.  I took my first steps unsupported at his office and then at home I wore a shoe for a couple of hours until it was really making my incision sore.  I'm going to have to wrap that for a while until it toughens up.  There are places that the incision goes over these bone anchor things whichare little pins things that will eventually be absorbed into the bone.  They stick out a little and rub the healing tendons and irritate the skin as well.  I can't do scar massage yet because of them. And they seem to be getting pressure from the shoe as well.  I have a brace to wear when I'm in the shoe for the next 3 months.  Since I won't have that or the shoe on at night I guess I'll be using crutches at night until I can walk barefoot safely.  I am retiring the night splint though.  Free sleep!  Bliss!

He confirmed everything has healed well.  I've been having some concentrated soreness and he was able to get my repaired tendons to come in and out of their groove a little bit but not like they were before and not in a way that is bad, just something they are doing enough to get sore while healing.  I don't know if that will stop when they aren't inflamed anymore.  That would have been a good thing to ask.  If they are a problem I know there is a procedure to widen the groove they rest in; I'm not sure why I didn't have it with the other if there is an issue but as long as it is harmless I do not care at all.  The ankle is welcome to click away.

And now I'm going to try to figure out whether my tummy or my head needs help more.  I so much want to go to sleep but if I do I will wake up at 11 and be up until 6 and that would be bad.  Big day showing off in PT tomorrow.

I thought I had one more thing to say here but my tummy is making it hard to focus and get through thoughts.  So another time I guess.

I go back New Year's Eve and that will be my final visit and should be the end of the brace as well.  At that point I will be 6.5 months out so it will be about time.  I never dreamed it would take so long.