Monday, October 28, 2013

Not the day I had planned...

Last week, because I finally became exasperated after staying up all night puking my brains out, I had called and left a message for my neurologists' office regarding the nausea and vomiting that I've been having now for months. I neglected to mention in my message about how I'm blowing up like a balloon and how my hair is falling out in handfuls. But no matter because today her office called me back and wanted blood work today, including an ammonia level.
Now I will admit that I quit looking up the side effects of medication ages ago, and as a nurse, perhaps I should be ashamed? But reading all the side effects of all the many medications that I've taken through the years was just freaking me out. As a result, I had an idea that the GI upset was a side effect of the medicine (which is why I waited so long to ever even call her office), but I did not know about the hair loss and weight gain. Nor did I understand why she wanted an ammonia level today. What's my ammonia level got to do with it?
Well, apparently, a lot. Ugh.  One of the side effects of Depakote is an increase in ammonia levels that results in EVERY ONE OF THE STUPID SYMPTOMS THAT I'M HAVING!!!! Lovely. It can also lead to reduced attentiveness and response accuracy. I am saddened to say, that I have caught myself doing (or not doing) really stupid things lately. I've also found it very hard to be motivated at work. I just haven't been able to get my mind on work. Not good! Who wants an employee like that around?!?!? I wouldn't!
So anyway, off I went to get my labs drawn. The results of them won't be back until the morning. Because of today's events, I missed most of the day at work. I swear, my employer is going to hate me. Anytime I have missed, and it's been a lot, it's because of my dumb head. It just makes me so aggravated. Why, oh why, can't I just be NORMAL? :(
Ugh. Don't mind my pity party today. I'm sure tomorrow I'll be just fine. Right now, I'll just fantasize about eating cookie dough... If I wasn't so dang nauseated, that's exactly what I'd do. Cookie dough always makes things better. (;

Side Effects

I am constantly hungry. I'm talking about being waken out of my sleep with my stomach growling. I've also gained a LOT of weight since my last medication switch and my hair is falling out in handfuls. My hair is so bad, that another co-worker asked me the other day if I knew I had a bald spot!!! I was HORRIFIED!!!! :( So I'm bald and fat. Lovely.
But I gets even better. I'm nauseated a lot. I actually vomit at least 1 day a week... And I frequently have diarrhea. (I did put a call in to my neurologist about this last week, but still haven't heard back.)
Guess these are side effects from the Depakote?

Thursday, October 24, 2013

When God chooses to speak...

There is a couple in my church that recently had a son they named Gabriel. The pregnancy was a nail-biter. Gabriel's parents received troubling news each and every time they would go to prenatal appointments.  I can't recall all of the details, but I know that once they were told Gabriel would have down syndrome and another time that he had problems with his heart.
Gabriel was born prematurely at a hospital a couple hours away from home that specializes in baby/children that face serious health issues. Although he was not born with down syndrome, he was born with a cleft palate and heart complications that resulted in open heart surgery at mere days old.  When his parents finally got to bring him home, this beautiful little baby had to have an NG tube (a tube through his nostril to his belly in which he receives his nutrition).
I'll never forget the first time that I held Gabriel. There is just something therapeutic about holding a sweet little baby.  In fact, back when I was nursing at the hospital, I remember the "older" nurses encouraging us to visit the baby nursery... particularly after a death.
In any event, it's no secret how I've struggled recently... Just the CONSTANT being sick... Hospitalizations... Numerous different medications... Neurologists... Time missed off work... and church... and life. And prayers that haven't been answered.
But then, I held baby Gabriel for the first time. As I gazed at his preciously perfect face, I realized that I was never wrong. Everything I ever thought about God IS true! He IS who He says He is!!! He DOES listen to prayers and He IS a tear collector! Here I held a precious little life that really, shouldn't have even been, except that there were numerous prayers lifted up for his life... and God listened.
Gabriel's not out of the woods yet, but he is already a testimony. And for me personally, he's truly been a messenger.

Any day pain free is a good day!

After 2 pretty rough days of migraines, accompanied with nausea, I woke this morning feeling okay! HOORAY! To keep my happiness going, it's fall now which means cooler temperatures! YAY! The heat seems to be a pretty big trigger for me, so I'm praying for a couple months of painless days.
In other news, I am getting fat. Yuck. Anyone know if that is a common occurrence with Depakote? The side effects that I've read didn't have it listed... Or maybe Relpax? Speaking of Relpax, I don't think I like it. You can only use it 3 days out of a 7 day week... I needed it A LOT more than that this week. :/ However, I do like how it doesn't leave me feeling all dopey... Just sort of takes the edge off.
Anyway, going to get ready for work and enjoy the cooler temps and waking up feeling a whole lot better. Happy day!

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Hate it when headaches interrupt my sleep!

Yesterday, all was well. Busy but good day at work. I felt fine. Things were good. Then I went to bed. DOM-DOM-DOM-DOOOOOOOM! I woke up at 1:00 AM with a horrible headache. We just got new pillows yesterday, and when I woke it was the smell of the pillows that was overwhelming me. I felt like I couldn't breathe and got very nauseous.
I ended up having to stumble to the living room and sleep pillow-less. I don't think I really slept though. Think it was more tossing and turning and grimacing from pain.
Worked all day with that same stupid headache. On a pain scale, it was probably a 6. The nausea did leave me though, so that made things tolerable. I've learned to deal with the pain in my head, but I still don't deal with vomiting/nausea that well - especially in public!
I'm home now and debating on whether I want to take a Relpax or just try to sleep through it... Since I can only take those Relpax 3 different days of a week, I try to space them out and treat them like they are gold!

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Headaches are weird.

Last night, I feel asleep on the couch with my son watching Disney's 'Hercules'. I was tired from a busy day, but otherwise I felt okay. A couple hours later, I shot up feeling like an ice pick had just been jabbed into my right eye socket. My husband was on the recliner, and I must have startled him because I remember him asking me if I was okay. The pain had me dizzy and I couldn't open both eyes. Somehow, I stumbled down the hallway and collapsed into bed. I remember putting pillows over my eye hoping the pressure would relieve the pain, and off to sleep I went.
Amazingly, I slept all through the night. I do remember having strange dreams, but not waking up until 6:00 AM is the first for several days. And when I woke, the headache was gone. How weird? I'm thrilled, of course, but I think it's weird. On a happy note, I didn't take any drugs last night - just slept it off. HOORAY!

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Champ of the "Remember When" Game

Last night, Martin and I played the game most married couples play... We played the 'remember when' game.  I  know you're familiar with this game.  "Remember when we first met?"  or "Remember the first time we went on a trip together?"
Of course no proper reminiscing game would be complete without some bursts of laughter... and memories of tragedies... or times of huge strain... or the times we were closest.  For nearly 10 years of marriage, there was one common theme that was woven through our 'game' - ANYTHING is possible. 
Some times, lots of times, we have to think back on milestones in our life to reaffirm that if those milestones were possible, think of how many more you will soon tackle! I am often so doubtful in myself, but as we drove and talked about all that we have achieved and all we have overcome, I began remembering one thing - I can do ALL things through Christ which strengthens me! How easily I forget a seemingly simple scripture that I quote to my children all the time. It can be so much easier to believe in others, but believing in myself has always seemed so challenging. Silly really, when time and time again the monuments erected in my life just prove the opposite of what I tend to believe (that I can't).
In the end, I think it's probably safe to say that I won the 'remember when' game!

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Call me crazy...

So... as crazy as this sounds, I officially became a "jewelry lady" by selling Premier Designs. I went to a party several weeks back, after never seeing their stuff. I fell in LOVE. So I agreed to host a party and it was SO easy and I scored SO much free stuff and before even thinking... I just decided to become a consultant!
My husband is totally supportive. I think he worries about me doing things that make me happy... As soon as I mentioned being a consultant, he was gong-ho! He even designed and ordered my business cards before I'd officially signed up! LOL
So now the true test; will I be able to do this (physically) and will I find anyone to host parties? Guess times will tell.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Bad day.

Bad day today. Missed work because of it. I'm due to start my period, and I have noticed that ALWAYS triggers severe migraines. I've taken Fiorecet twice today, so I may not make much sense. I'm tired. Sleepy really. I hate these headaches.

My husband stayed home with me today and has pampered me. He's also forcing me to drink water. Ugh. I just want to lay my head down, drinking water doesn't fit into that. But being dehydrated will only make things worse too.

We've ordered a new mattress. I've never had a new mattress before. We ordered pillows too. They are the kind with cooling gel. I've read a bunch of stuff that says how good they are for headaches. Can't wait till it's all here so we can try.

Going to drink some water now.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Walking in a desert

It's Sunday today, which means church for my family this morning. Church these days causes such a mix of feelings in me. Currently, I feel further away from God than I think I ever have. My prayers and my cries have gone unanswered for so long, nor have I heard His voice in so long, that I feel as if I'm in the middle of a desert... stranded... wandering around in circles... starving... reminiscing of streams and thinking I might see a mirage - my only chance of hope.
For the past several months, I've just been on autopilot. But I'm angry. I try not to be... I don't want to be... And there are times that I THINK I might be over it, but then is said or done and the anger just resurfaces. And I'm angry with God.
Strange how I feel some comfort in my anger. I could only be angry at someone that I have (had???) a relationship with. And yet I'm angry with Him because I feel like I never knew Him??? I feel confused. I feel lost. I feel as if a deep dark fog has settled over me in that desert.
But yet I still choose to believe one thing... "You are who You are, no matter where I am!"