anxiety, chronic illness, chronic pain, disabled, drugs, health, illness, medical marijuana, surgery

epidural steroid injection

on thursday i am going to have my sixth epidural  steroid injection. the injection helps control the pain from the problems in my back. i have spinal stenosis which is a narrowing of the spinal column which causes some if the discs to get squashed (like my technical term?) and pinch nerves.

i have problems at L4 and L5 as well as the sacroiliac joint. my pain doctor performs the procedure.

they say “procedure” but to me it seems a lot like surgery! i have to fast, stop taking NSAIDS several days before, etc.  i go to the surgery center and change into a hospital gown, a icky  papery shower cap sort of thing to gather up my hair. they give you cool socks with treads on the bottom. i love them. i’ve quite a collection now.

two nurses come in and put you under a blanket from a warmer, oh jeez that feels good. no matter how hot it outside, it’s freezing cold in the surgery center, plus it’s just reassuring to have a warm blanket over you. they put in an iv and ask me a million questions. even though i’ve done this many times, i still feel a little scared each time.

the nurses are so very very nice. when the doctor finishes her previous case she comes in and talks to me and then they roll me into the OR which is incredibly cold. i have to roll over onto the operating table and lay on my tummy. there is a head rest, like they use during massages. they start giving me fentynal and versed–conscious sedation. you are high as a kite, so it’s almost fun. lol

i hate laying there for 45 minutes with basically nothing on, my butt just hanging out, uncovered. joy. luckily the drugs make you not care too much because i find it extremely discomforting to be nude in a room full of people. there are lots of nurses. the doctor wears a lead apron because they use a giant x-ray  machine that is mounted  on the ceiling and tilts around as they need it to. that’s how they know exactly where  to inject the cortisone…pretty important since they’re putting it in my spine. the injections hurt some going in, but after that it’s not too bad.

when they’re done i get back on the gurney, more embarrassment because the hospital gown is totally open and practically flapping around as you move. then everybody gets to see everything!  i’m sure they don’t give a shit, seen it a million times. but i do! once you’re on the gurney they immediately drown you in warm blankets. the feeling is so good, like the drugs, it’s almost worth it just for that. lol

in the recovery room they put ice packs on your back, keep you awhile for making sure your vitals are good and you’re not going to have a bad reaction or flip out or whatever.

omg i have to pee once i get out of the operating room, so that’s a priority! another time i had this surgery, the surgeon was an hour an half late so i feel asleep. i woke up  and they were rolling me into the OR and i had to pee bad, i mean really really bad. but we were practically there so i couldn’t say anything. it was horrible!  i was pretty sure i would wet myself on the table. that’s not so good for a sterile environment. thank goodness the drugs made it so i didn’t feel like i had to pee. when i got out of surgery, i didn’t have to pee badly, go figure!

you don’t stay in the recovery long and your ride comes and takes you home. you have to have someone stay with you for 24 hours. then the back pain kicks in. it’s pretty unfun for a few days. i’ve got quite a bit of various medical marijuana edibles for that time.

after that, you wait. sometimes the injections work and sometimes they don’t. it’s a crap shoot. last one keep my pain low for about 9 months! most of the others did nothing. but i’ll try anything time after and after.  the pain is very motivating.

so now i get to worry about it until 8am on thursday. 😦

i’ll be ok though, i always am. 🙂

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anxiety, bipolar, chronic illness, comics, fatigue, fibromyalgia

the lie or the cold shoulder

today when i went to get my coffee the clerk asked how my day was going. i couldn’t help but answer with the truth i told him i was really really tired. he asked why and i told him, i have this disease and it makes me tired. how long have you been sick? it was clear he thought it was a cold or flu. i was embarrassed that i said it to a total stranger.  i just mumbled that i had a disease that was forever. there! i said it in public, even if i did mutter it!

it’s so hard to deal with situations like this. one option would have been to just say, oh i’m fine, thanks. that’s what i say when i’m nervous, or i’m actually doing really badly. i hate it. why does everyone have to ask. sometimes if it’s an internet person that i only know a little i say, do you want to know the truth or do you just want to hear i’m fine? i suppose that’s kind of rude, but that’s exactly how i feel. if you must ask how i am, be prepared for a lot of complaining or the cold shoulder.

sometimes i wish i didn’t have an invisible illness, that i had something you could see, or at least something people know about, but who knows anything about fibromyalgia? spinal stenosis is even worse. even fewer  people know what the hell that is. it’s not as invisible as fibro. i limp and walk with a cane. but the pain in my back and those awful flu-like symptoms of fibromyalgia don’t show, not does the awful nerve pain in my legs, not to mention the arthritis in my knees which doesn’t really affect my walking, it just hurts a lot.

i really wanted to explain fatigue to the guy i bought coffee from. of course he’d never get it, and in truth, i’d never actually say it, but it’s tempting. fatigue motherfucker, try it sometime! sometimes when i’m getting into to bed, for a nap,  or for the night, i have to sort out the covers, arrange the dog. get myself comfortable, etc. part way through all that, i’m hit with a flare of fatigue. i just fall back on the bed, none of those things done, i was just overwhelmed by frightening tiredness. sometimes i want to cry when i feel like that, but i’m too fatigued to even do that. i just laying bed for a little while and slip into sleep very easily.

i want to look fuss with my tablet and maybe even watch some Arrow, but my arms hurt too badly to hold it up. i have to sit at a table to do it. sitting up at a table or desk is hardly  comfortable with my ouchy back and hips.

i’m almost desperate to communicate. my sweet  husband is a very quiet introvert, he really doesn’t like hearing about things like my chatter when i’m nervous, or manic like right now. he’s not like my best friend; we don’t sit around and discuss problems or advice or support. his favorite thing right now is Planet Money podcasts. i shouldn’t complain, but sometimes i wish for a warmer, fuzzier partner.

i read the the first volume of Wonder Woman in the rebirth series (DC). it was really good. in terms of the art, most of it was great, showing her as the Amazon she is, tall, ready to fight at anytime. her costume is a little more stable, lol, it doesn’t look like her boobs are about to fall out at any moment and you wonder, how can she fight with a metal bustier on? she has a regular human lover! she’s been with Superman in the past, but this is intriguing and new.  the thing that i liked in every drawing of her was her hair. they (there are different issues by different artists contained in the volume i was reading.) all drew her with gorgeous flying and floating and curling hair in a great wavy, black and massive mane. i wish my hair looked like that! 🙂

Life, Uncategorized

complaining

i’ve been wanting to write all day but my head is in a weird place and i know i can’t organize my thoughts, i can’t come up with an  interesting subject and i probably can’t write very well tonight.

so, i’m just going to have a brain dump. i dump everything that’s on my mind and you can read it if you want to. and you always have the option to like or comment. you totally don’t have to.

i made an alcohol ink painting today, 2 in fact. this time i wore gloves so the ink wouldn’t stain my fingers  and ruin my manicure! one of the paintings was utterly  boring, looked like there were  only three colors, just sitting there, not interacting with each other. the other i worked on was bigger and it just turned out shit. i’m certainly letting you know i’m feeling grumpy!  OMG I CANNOT TYPE

the huz is installing a new light fixture in the hall way to the master bath and it just goes on and on and on and on…earphone time! i’m listening to Queen. what are you listening to?

i went to the grocery store, that’s right, i went on a tiny little shopping trip. that’s more than a tiny little victory! not only do i have trouble with having the endurance to go to the store, but i used to go there a long time ago, before i was sick. people i used to know sort of recognize me and try to talk to me. i wish these overly curious people would mind their own business. i keep wanting to say they were only trying to be nice, but they’re not. if you listen to what they say and they tone they say it in, there’s always an undercurrent of feelings of disbelief. when i don’t have my cane, people give me dirty looks when i park in the handicapped spaces (i have a handicapped parking placard).

i fell asleep just then lol. i woke up having typed the letter “a” bizillion times.i haven’t been sleeping with my CPAP mask on, well for one reason my face and mouth have been hurting so much, and also cause i am finally admitting i really really don’t like that damn thing. you have to lay your head on the edge of your pillow so most of your head is sorta sideways on the mattress to keep from having the mask smashed into your face, which makes me panicky and eventually really pissed off that i can’t sleep comfortably. it’s bad enough that the rest of my body hurts, i have to strap that torture device on my face.

my huz is playing the new Zelda now, i’m doing this, and mackie is back in his hidey hole behind my desk. i can’t tell for sure, but i think he brought a bunch of paper back there for a nest. i can hear him back there sounding like he’s nesting. domestic bliss!

 

Uncategorized

goodnight!

for the longest time I thought I had to have something significant to write here, something interesting and of import. I found myself wanting to write posts but not doing it because I coululdn’t couldn’t pin down anything original or well thought out. recently I decided, screw it! I don’t think a whole lot of people read this. I don’t have a cause per se, so i’m just going to ramble.

tonight I had an icky dinner from a Medditerainian dinner, the food was cold, and would still have been sub par even if it were hot. wasted calories and money. I feel ill and that makes me feel twice as bad because I can’t smoke pot. I know it would help. i’m looking at the bong (i’ve got to put that into the waaay back of the garage, our deep storage space!) thinking if only, if only. the stupid painkillers have made me constipated (even though i’m taking stool softeners) and that is contributing to the awful pain in my gut.

the part, ok, one of the parts, that really bothers me is that the percoset that I had to give up the medical marijuana for, isn’t killing all the pain. in fact, my hips, pelvis, butt, and back are aching constantly and giving me sharp pains if I move much at all. whoop ti doo. if I lived out in the boonies, i’d be howling at the moon like an unhappy dog.  instead, i’m grinding my teeth and swearing under my breath.

i’m looking forward to tomorrow because amazon is bringing me a new coffee grinder and the thermal mug i’ve always wanted, but didn’t realize it existed. I love the heat retaining qualities of stainless steel but I hate drinking of a metal cup. this one is ceramic for the top few inches and stainless below. obviously the part you drink out of is thr ceramic part. yay!

i’m cold and tired, not to mention grumpy. it will be time to crawl into my delicious bed with my lovely family (consisting of my husband and my dog) and sleep away my troubles, if only temporarily. the cleaning people came today and changed the bed. it’s almost untouched. WHEEEE! lol

goodnight!!

Uncategorized

going to the opera!

i’m so tired.

we’re going to the opera  today, a matinee. we’re seeing Mozart’s  The Magic Flute. it’s a late birthday gift for my   husband. i haven’t been to any kind of cultural arty event in years. i’m jpretty excited! but i worry about panic attacks and pain.

we leave in 1/2 an hour. oh god, i’m taking a couple of extra pain killers. i hope sitting in the uncomfortable seats won’t hurt too much, but i think it will. i’ll just have to do it for my husband. he deserves to do something fun.

wish me luck! hell, it might even be fun!

Uncategorized

walking the dog

i slept really well last night! that’s always an important  part of what shapes my moods.

andrew and i always have breakfast together during the week. today it was oatmeal, the old fashioned kind, i cook it in my rice cooker, which has a timer. put it in the cooker the night before have it go off at 8am and is ready when it’s time to eat! i put brown sugar, pecans, walnuts, bananas, and a sprinkling of granola  on mine. soooo good!

it never occurred to me that mackie could get on the table, but now i know better! we forgot to tuck in one of the chairs so i guess he climbed up  and ate the left over oatmeal in the bowl. i caught him right in the act! it looked so funny to have a short little dog on the top of a big dining room table!

i dread having andrew leaving for work because i have to take mackie out, which is no big deal…except…i know people are watching me from all the windows. i can hear them saying things, but couldn’t make out what it is. i can see the curtains in the front windows, being pulled back with spidery hands with a face pressed to the window. i stare at the ground as much as possible. i pull my hair in front of my face and hunch up my shoulders so i feel, at least a little, like i’m not quite as scared.

i know that stuff is probably not true, but that’s how i feel.

my mood is numbness, if that can be a mood. there was a lyric in a song, a U2 song, i think, saying that it was better to feel pain than to feel nothing. i used to think that was case until enough bad things, bad feelings, enough physical pain, enough daily emotional pain, taught me that was bullshit. when Bono wrote those lyrics, he must not have known what it’s like to live with mental illness.