A Lot to Deal With, But I Should Probably Count My Blessings

One of my weird symptoms is back, although people can be complete klutz's sometimes; however, everyone knows what is "normal" for them. 

I fell again, in the same weird way.  My feet just came up from under me and I landed on my elbow I think (because it really hurts) on the hard wood floor and started yelling in pain.  I chalked it up to the maids just coming that day so maybe the floors were slippery, no clue.  But the next day I stubbed my pinkie toe so bad that it was bleeding from the toenail and still really hurts. Great, my race is Sunday with a painful pinkie toe.

On their own, big deal, so I was a bit klutzy.  But I was doing this A LOT not that long ago, and it is so weird to just fall with your feet coming out from under you and land backwards without tripping on anything.

No, I'm not concerned I have something majorly wrong with me, but as you age do you keep doing more and more stupid stuff?  Is that why there is that whole "Help!  I've fallen and I can't get up!" commercial?  I don't FEEL old, I don't ACT old, yet suddenly my body is screaming "I am old!" I feel like.

So Mark has been having a really tough time at work for awhile, I don't know if I've even mentioned it in my blog.  He hates when I talk about him here and is more concerned than I am that my blog will get discovered by someone that we know.  But yes, he is so incredibly busy and stressed.  He's been working 12 hour days, coming home and then may be on conference calls for the rest of the evening just to get woken up in the middle of the night by people calling him.  He works all day on the weekends, but at least he can work from home and be on conference calls.  But he has to be ready to join a call in a moment's notice, and I've seen what happens if he does not dial in on the dot.  It's really way to much to go into, but if this deadline is not met, I'm sure there will be people who will pay the price, including the highest of executives.  One of them even told him the success or failure of this project was in his hands.  That's a lot of weight on your shoulders.

Okay, that's the backstory.  So he wants to finish this project and quit.  He can't actually leave until the first of the year because he signed a contract with his company when they moved us that he would be with them for a year or we would have to pay them back. 

He told me last night he had begun looking at jobs, then said he had been looking in Texas.  IN TEXAS?  I just got the frick out of there and do NOT want to go back!  I would be so unhappy if we moved back there, those people are not like me, I'm not like them and it is so incredibly wonderful to be around Midwesterners again, but he hates it here, even hates the people here (except for his friends, I'm sure).  But I adore the people here, they are SO much nicer and it feels so comforting to be around people who have similar values to myself, unlike Texas.

So my not just jumping for joy upset HIM.  I guess he felt like I was trying to keep him trapped in a job where he is so miserable.  I'm not, but you know, I've been through a FREAKING LOT this past year, and moving again does NOT appeal to me one bit.  And I really love our house, our neighborhood with the running trail, the weather (except for the horrible winters), I don't even know if I am emotionally capable of going through that again.  It actually crossed my mind to let him find a job in Texas with him thinking I am okay with it, then I will just inform him I am not going to move, to just go on without me because I can not do this again, but that may add even more stress than moving.  He then probably wouldn't take the job and be bitter at me for the rest of our lives.  My little family unit is my whole world, I can't imagine what I would do without them (I'm including my dog in my family unit) : ).   

Moving to a new state, hysterectomy, medication issues, now possible thyroid problems, and this is just the end of August with four more months to go in the year.  My therapist told me no stress, just concentrate on getting better, but seriously, is she kidding me?  That's all I get all the time!  Does anyone think that Mark's being so very stressed about his job day after day does not stress ME out as well?  No, not feeling sorry for MYSELF over this. HE has to work all the time with incredible pressure. HE is the one suffering, not me, but of course, I worry about him all the time and am constantly trying to think of ways to make his life easier, at least when he gets home.  I don't always tell him things that are bothering me because he has way too much on his plate and I don't think *he* is emotionally capable right now of dealing with anything more.  I know if it were me, I wouldn't be able to.  I wouldn't be able to do what he is now doing.  That is WAY too overwhelming and I have no doubt I would be in the psych ward by now.

UNLESS.  Unless I'm not actually bipolar, I have hypothyroidism which can mimic bipolar disorder and have had it for a long time and gone undiagnosed.  Of course my family doctor did not tell me that, but after checking online for the symptoms, I realized he did not ask me about any of the emotional symptoms because, of course, he already knows I have those, he knows I see a psychiatrist, he knows I take medication, he knows I am bipolar.  He didn't need to ask me if I had those symptoms because he already knows I do. 

So I've been wondering...if I am actually diagnosed with this, what should I do?  Would anyone even tell me I should try to go off my psychiatric medications and see how I feel?  I don't know, I honestly don't.  I'm sure no doctor wants any sort of wrongful death lawsuit if I committed suicide, or did anything else irrational.  But it is very common to be misdiagnosed as being bipolar if you have a thyroid problem, hypothyroidism causes depression, hyperthyroidism causes mania, I THINK, haven't done much research into it.  It's like all of the symptoms are complete opposites.  The same things are effected, just in opposite ways.  I'm constipated, but people with hyperthyroidism get diarrhea - just an example.

But I don't know that I have this yet, it is simply a theory and I am getting WAY ahead of myself.  The only thing to do, the only thing there ALWAYS is to do, is simply wait.

Is The Mystery Solved? TWIST!

Oh my gosh, someone commented on my blog (TWICE, she took the time to comment about it TWICE) about what they thought was wrong with me from my description, and it is exactly what my family doctor thinks is wrong with me!  It was Lynn - I just went and looked!  It was like he was in my head, it was really surreal.  He kept saying,  "Do you have this?  Do you feel that?" and it was so weird, like how could you POSSIBLY know that about me?  He's pretty certain I have a thyroid problem but I have to wait until Wednesday to go in for a blood test.  But it's totally possible I don't I'm sure, and you know what?  I don't care, just fix me, you know?  I doubted it because I JUST had a blood test in April and everything was perfect and I reminded him of that, so I'm getting some other kind of test, he said there were like 600 things to check for thyroids and I have absolutely no clue what I am talking about.  I just know because I am so super constipated he told me to buy a bottle of magnesium citrate and drink it and stay home the rest of the day and part of tomorrow so....guess I won't be constipated for long. : )

He said something funny though, and I can SO see this happening, even I can see myself doing this!  He said women come in all the time and say they have been gaining weight, they don't know why, and they must have a thyroid problem but they never do.  But he said it is people like me who try to take care of themselves, don't feel good but don't understand why, and find it hard to believe they have a thyroid problem.  I really was totally blown away, even though Lynn gave me a head's up.  Sure, I do try to take care of myself, but I have a lot of room to improve.  I could name a million things that he could tell me I should be doing that I'm not or that I should not be doing.

I actually went in because I pee'd my shorts when I ran fast (LOL).  He said if it just when I ran fast, not when I cough or laugh or anything else, let's not make an issue of it right now.  Wear a panty liner and see how that goes, and you know?  I'm 100% okay with that.  He started mentioning all the possibilities I had read to fix it that I do NOT want to do and I'm sure he knows that about me, I'm a tough customer to sell to, but I needed to make sure this wasn't something that was going to just get worse.   And I guess I don't know that it won't, but if this is all it is going to be, I can deal with it without pills, surgeries, blah blah blah!  It has zero impact on my life.  I'm more concerned with things that DO affect my day to day life.

Okay, that's it.  Boring medical post but Lynn, if you read this, thank you. : )

Caution, pretty gross

I finally made an appointment with my family doctor, today at 1:00pm (unless I cancel which I am notorious for doing these days). The catalyst was not my concern about being tired and sleeping so much, but the fact that when I run really hard, like speed intervals, I...hmmm...I  don't know how else to say it but be blunt.  I urinate a little and cannot stop it.  It wasn't a big deal when I would just have 20 second intervals and the little dribble would last for about a second.  But when I did 16 intervals of 8 minutes fast/slow, the 2 minutes of running fast 8 times amounted to a LOT of urine.  When I was walking back home, I touched the back of my shorts and they were SOAKED, I mean how embarrassing?  No one could have been able to tell.  I wear running shorts for sweat - they hold moisture and wick it away and they are black, but I think any good running shorts you would not be able to tell if they were wet no matter the color.

I got in the house, immediately took them off and was horrified at what I found, just how wet they and my panties were.  This has never happened to me before and I've been running, a bit off and on, for 2 years.  So this must have something to do with my hysterectomy and I am NOT driving an hour and a half to my GYN who just talks to me scientific terms anyway.

So while I'm there, might as well address the tired concern, and another concern - constipated all the freaking time.  I just know I'm holding about 1.5 - 2 pounds of ick inside me, and I already take stuff for constipation, and used a mild laxative TWICE yesterday.  Nothing. 

I know, way too much information, but remember, I use my blog to document EVERYTHING. 

I don't know.  Exercise induced asthma, now what I think is called stress incontinence where when I run I...get incontinence, does it seem easier to just stop running?  I don't think so.  Why not fix the problems?  For the stress incontinence, if that is indeed what I have, one website said a solution, if it is not serious, is not to cough or run.  How in the world do you not cough?  Uh, that is they type of asthma I have anyway. 

I refuse, REFUSE to let any of these stupid medical conditions keep me from doing ANYTHING.  Not mental illness, not medical issues, I just want to do what I want to do!  I could see if someone told me if I continued running eventually I would not be able to walk because of the condition of my joints or knees or whatever reason people medically have to stop running.  I want to go back to school, so I will.  I want to get back into the workforce when I finish, so I will.  These are all just minor setbacks, everyone has them, not just "mentally ill" people or "people who have had hysterectomies".  Although, sure, I've read complete horror stories about people who have had hysterectomies.  And just the same, who has a mental illness that hasn't tried a psychiatric medication that was worse than the devil himself?

I could get depressed, feel sorry for myself, but I'm not and I don't.  Just be proactive, there's hope, I'll get it fixed.  Just without surgery.  NO MORE FREAKING SURGERIES!   I'm sick to death of having surgeries.  Unless it was something I wanted, like a boob job and liposuction, then I'd be down with it. : )

OMG, Hypomanic, But Why Is It So Wrong?

So strange, but I guess I shouldn't be so surprised.  How many times has this happened to me now?  More than I can possibly count.

Mark and I had a 2.5 hour drive to pick up his "toy" he recently bought and had it modified mechanically and a very unique paint job.  It turned out above his expectations I think, which are incredibly high, *especially* for cars, I would describe as obsessive even.  I'm convinced he has OCD, which he doesn't deny, when it comes to details and could be a blog post by itself.  Just like I say it's hard to live with someone with bipolar disorder or depression, it's also difficult to live with someone with OCD who, from a list of symptoms of adult autism, has every single trait.  But I'm not a psychiatrist and am in no position to diagnose him.  I've also been convinced at different times that he was a narcissist, a sociopath and a psychopath.  So I'm not good at playing p-doc. : )

See -there I go AGAIN! ALREADY off topic!  I could go back and delete all of that, but I'm not going to, it proves a point.  I know what I am right now and I keep trying to rationalize it, I don't want to believe it, I tell myself that some other "normal" people act like I am now and it's not weird.  But that doesn't matter if it is true, it's not normal for *me. 

Pretty sure I'm hypomanic.  Here's the point where I want to start to list symptoms I see in myself right now and then argue against it, but I won't. 

Mark and I drove to pick up his car together.  I talked the whole way which isn't so unusual for me, I'm a talker and one of those people who doesn't enjoy silence unless listening to a great song.  But it was the *way* I was talking.  The thoughts were coming so fast, so random, I could hardly get one thing out before I had something else to say on a topic completely different from what I was just talking about.  I believe it's called "pressured speech".  Mark made a comment that I was being SO INTENSE, and I just told him that was ME.  I really loved things or I didn't, I really liked someone or I really didn't.  No in-betweens, so of course, to me, that simply meant I am passionate.  Maybe that's true, who knows, but the thing is, he was trying to tell me I wasn't acting like myself.  Well, and also that I was overwhelming him without saying those exact words. 

Everything was SO this and SO that.  We had dinner in the small town after we picked up his car and headed for home in our separate vehicles, and everything was good, but they had these little chocolate covered caramels sprinkled with sea salt that they brought with our coffee at the end, which is also unlike me.  I *never* drink coffee at the end of a meal at a restaurant. 

So, these little caramels covered in chocolate, they were just out of this world.  It's not like I ate a lot of them, just one and a half and they were pretty small, but they were the BEST I ever had.  They really were very good, surprisingly and strangely good that they came from a restaurant in a small town.  I had to ask ALL about them, let everyone know exactly how awesome they were.  Found out they had their own pastry chef who made them on site, even found out she was a young female.  When the owner who came to our table and was so, so nice asked how everything was, of COURSE I had to rave about these little chocolates.  She said I should take some home with me but I shouldn't have even eaten the ones I did.  I told her she needed some kind of online service where I could order them and have them shipped to me.  My idea was that they would make awesome gifts - the best chocolate caramels I'd ever had IN MY LIFE?  Why wouldn't that be a great idea? 

I guess I charmed her because when do you ever leave a restaurant and the owner insists you take their card, and also pulls out her personal business card with her name on it?  I clearly charmed her, but that's another symptom as well.  People LOVE when I am like this.  Who wouldn't want someone to rave about them right to them?  I loved the girls ring and told her so at the body shop, I mean it was just like that all day, but think about it.  Who doesn't love to be complemented, told they are so incredibly special for whatever reason with such enthusiasm?  I got to hear her whole relationship story then - over 8 years worth, the ups and downs.  And of course I told her I related to it ALL because I felt like I did at the time which just prolonged the conversation.  Now that I'm thinking about it, I can't relate to much of what she said AT ALL.  My husband and I didn't wait to get married until after we had kids and they started asking questions about why we have different last names.  But see what I mean?  Whatever it was I was doing had people telling me personal stories about themselves.  Yet...it was a small Midwestern town and people are just friendly like that.

And that is just ANOTHER thing.  I decided I was so incredibly charmed by Midwesterners yesterday.  In the suburbs, especially the one we live in because people who live in Chicago are a bit more hardened - they still seem so very nice to me, just not AS nice in comparison. The young people in my suburb seem to be incredibly wholesome, awesome attitudes, great values and so very, very sweet.  I told my husband it was like I wanted to shelter them so they never became hardened, never have a chance to lose that special quality about them that they didn't realize they had.  They remind me of myself at that age - small town girl in Kansas, also the Midwest.  Yes, they are really wholesome and sweet, but I really feel so passionate that it crossed my mind that I wished I could shelter them from becoming hardened?  That's a bit over the top about how intense I felt about it.

Our drive took us through a lot of small towns and we saw some abandoned houses along the way.  I wanted to stop here, there, everywhere, everything was so unbelievably interesting to me.  I even suggested we take the time to stop at abandoned houses and walk through them, thinking about how much fun that would be.  I still think it would be fun, but uh, probably not the greatest idea especially when you have an appointment.  

It seems like I could go on and on thinking of symptoms that are, as my husband described, "intense".  WHY does it have to be wrong that when you are experiencing the world, it is exciting and you want to tell people what is so special about them or what you have enjoyed?  But it is, I know it is.  Because as fun as it is right now, I will crash and it will be just as not-fun soon. 

There is a song that I wish, when I met people, I could say "listen to this song, every word, and then decide if this is something you can deal with" before we proceed into a friendship. Yes, I could try and TELL them, but writing about it or a song just seems to work so much better.

I suppose I should not put off my psychiatrist visit any longer.  Better reschedule that visit.  But I really want to tell her that I'm doing FINE right now, I'm better, not depressed, nothing is wrong with me.  If I tell her something is, then she will try to bring me DOWN.  I don't WANT medication that brings me down.  Seriously, who would and that seems really stupid.  I just want medication that prevents depression.  I seriously don't know if I can tell her I believe I may be hypo, but she is a psychiatrist, trained in these things, unless there are symptoms people do NOT want to have, she would have to be trained to look for them when she sees them.  Since I know what the symptoms are, I believe I could disguise them, but I could I really?  Could I really resist telling her I just love THIS about what she is wearing, and THAT in her office, or whatever?  But...why does that have to be bad?

Here is the song I want to share with people that I meet, ask them if they would like to proceed with a friendship, would they be able to handle this?  I just watched it again and thought wow, I miss Ray Ban Wayfarers, I should buy a pair.  Ha!  Even I realize that is not using good judgment at the moment, but yet, and here I go again, they are SO incredibly awesome! : )

I Go To Extremes - Billy Joel

Songwriters: JOEL, BILLY
Call me a joker, call me a fool
Right at this moment I'm totally cool
Clear as a crystal, sharp as a knife
I feel like I'm in the prime of my life
Sometimes it feels like I'm going too fast
I don't know how long this feeling will last
Maybe it's only tonight

Darling I don't know why I go to extremes
Too high or too low, there ain't no in-betweens
And if I stand or I fall, it's all or nothing at all
Darling I don't know why I go to extremes

Sometimes I'm tired, sometimes I'm shot
Sometimes I don't know how much more I've got
Maybe I'm headed over the hill
Maybe I've set myself up for the kill
Tell me how much do you think you can take until the heart in you is starting to break?
Sometimes it feels like it will

 Darling I don't know why I go to extremes
Too high or too low, there ain't no in-betweens
You can be sure when I'm gone I won't be out there too long
Darling I don't know why I go to extremes

Out of the darkness, into the light
Leaving the scene of the crime
Either I'm wrong or I'm perfectly right every time
Sometimes I lie awake, night after night
Coming apart at the seams
Eager to please, ready to fight
Why do I go to extremes?

And if I stand or I fall, it's all or nothing at all
Darling I don't know why I go to extremes
No, I don't know why I go to extremes
Too high or too low, there ain't no in-betweens
You can be sure when I'm gone I won't be out there too long
Darling I don't know why I go to extremes

I don't know why, I don't know why
I don't know why, I don't know why
Out in the dark, into the light

Either I'm wrong, perfectly right
I don't know why

I Loathe Having to Get Presciptions!

I haven't posted in over a week, but seriously, I just haven't had the energy or desire to write.  I've had so much in my head that I've wanted to get out, but it just wasn't in me.

I totally blew off my therapist and psychiatrist visits AGAIN last week.  I haven't rescheduled with either yet.  I say "blew off", I called to cancel with my therapist an hour before the session, but I was a no show for my psychiatrist.  They called about an hour after my appointment time to ask if I was okay and to reschedule.  Of course, I let it go to voicemail as I do just about every call. 

This week, I am getting better.  I have more energy and am more motivated to get things done.  I had to cut back on my Pristiq to make the samples last until I can go in and get some more before I get a prescription and that is SO FRUSTRATING!  The whole medication thing right now is really frustrating me!  How freaking hard is it to just get a prescription?  All of my other doctors don't seem to have a problem getting prescriptions to me, what is the deal??  Sure, she said she faxed in a prescription for Pristiq, but they have no record of it.  The increase in Latuda has been a nightmare.  I think it's because on my previous dosage it was over $1500 every three months, so with the increase it would be around $2100 every three months.  My husband told me the insurance company doesn't actually pay that much, it is negotiated way down but they are showing me the retail price online.  He would know, but I'm always skeptical of everything.  The pharmacy rejected my increase (I didn't know they could do that?), sent me three, THREE letters that they would not fill it, I got a letter from the insurance company that it was approved after my doctor did some kind of "QE request" and sent in some kind of documentation that I needed it.  So I called the pharmacy and ordered it again and they said they would send it to me.  THEN I got a letter from the pharmacy that it was on hold by the pharmacist.  THEN I got the medication in the mail of a refill of my OLD dosage.  Oh my gosh, it is driving me insane.  I want to throw all the medications away and stop being chained to a psychiatrist for my sanity!  Just be me, happy, depressed, whatever, just not freaking out over prescriptions.  I never had this problem before.  But I don't want to get suicidal and end up in the psych ward again so what other choice do I have?  I'm doomed to live in stress over this forever.

So I'm taking my old dosage of Latuda and 1/4 of my dosage of Prestiq.  No, I don't feel as positive as I did on 100 mg of Prestiq, but I may just taper off of it until I can get a prescription.  That crap makes you really sick within 24 hours of missing a dosage!  That is so very stressful to me, to feel sick or knowing I will get sick - very dizzy and start vomiting - if I miss a dose.

The last couple of days I haven't been sleeping *as*  much and have gotten a lot done.  I actually felt like going to the grocery store, started the laundry bright and early and had it all folded the next day.  Took the time to figure out WHY our new dryer hasn't been drying like it should after not working as well for weeks and not doing anything about it.  Called the stupid school that says I owe them $3k and have begun the process of figuring it all out.  Started the process of enrolling in school for October but haven't signed any paper work yet.  I've been walking my dog every night for 30 minutes.  Of course he is in heaven over that part. : )

My biggest passion right now is running.  For the first time I'm not running to burn calories or lose weight, although I would never have started if it wasn't a great way to burn calories.  I am just absolutely obsessed with improving my overall time.  If I didn't see such dramatic results, I wouldn't be nearly as motivated or put up with some of the incredibly grueling runs that my program dishes out.  But they give me major improvements, just from one week to another!  I have a 5k race on Sunday, we'll see how that goes.  I only signed up for a 5k to gauge my improvement, but my real goal is a 10k under 60 minutes in November.  My program finishes the beginning of November and I plan to race around Thanksgiving, so I still have plenty of time!  This week I have a 7 mile run, ugh. One endurance run a week, one easy run a week, and two interval runs a week.  The interval run yesterday kicked my ass. 

I still can't get over sleeping for at least a few hours every day during the day.  I sleep the same amount at night and am now sleeping less during the day, but I still get tired.  It's not as bad though, I don't feel like I can't keep my eyes open anymore.  I've done a lot of things to try and help though.  It's always the worst after a run so I've started making recovery smoothies when I get home.  They are actually really tasty!  One cup of light soy milk, a scoop of chocolate protein powder, a banana, about a tablespoon of flax seed (I can't remember what it does for you now, just supposed to be really good for you), and about 5 ice cubes and blend it all.  I absolutely love it!  The ground flax seeds adds the only tiny bit of not great tasting to it, but now I don't even taste it.  It's just yummy. : )

I bought vitamins for physically active women, but I just started those so I don't know how much they will help yet.  They have a lot of B vitamins in them which give you energy, but I don't really know how much the body absorbs vitamins through a pill.  But, I have done something UNhealthy. Yesterday I ordered some JACK3D to use before I run.  But is that really THAT unhealthy?  People drink energy drinks, drink coffee, I don't really see it as being SO bad as taking some sort of supplement before you exercise.  The only thing is...I'm concentrating SO HARD on being healthy right now, making the right food choices, exercising, getting lots of sunlight, it goes against everything I've been doing.

Since my tiredness is improving, I may hold off on going to my family doctor.  I don't know if it was cutting back on my medication, if I am healing from my hysterectomy and my body is adjusting to my runs and not shutting down completely, although I was way tired before then.  Again, I don't know WHY I get so tired and it started after my Lamictal debacle.

I suppose a trip to the family doctor is in order, but I just had a blood test that was normal and healthy in April, absolutely everything was in the normal range.  Anything could have changed since then, or maybe it's not chemical, or maybe....who knows the possibilities that I can't even think of.  I'm not a doctor. : )

Still Tired, But Better

I feel better but I am still sleeping a lot, have no energy most of the time and am in bed, sleeping or not, a lot as well.  It's not that I'm trying to escape anything, I am literally physically drained.  It's worse so on days that I run, which is 4 days out of the week.  I have actually gotten home from running, made a protein smoothie and been so tired I couldn't even shower first and gotten into bed with my running clothes still on and fallen asleep for a few hours.  Yes, incredibly gross to get into bed under the covers after running before you shower, I realize this and am grossed out by it too, but am simply exhausted.  Running used to give me SO MUCH ENERGY!  It *could* still be from my hysterectomy - if you do too much, it completely drains your energy to try and heal you.  That was on April 19th though; however, I did read a forum where women said they were still getting tired when they did too much who had their hysterectomies around the same time as me, and I know they are not doing anything nearly as intense as running.  But if I tell my psychiatrist, her field is psychiatry, she will probably relate it to that and assume she has sedated me in some way.  If I told my GYN, he will relate it to his field.  I suppose the best answer is to skip specialists and just go to my family doctor and not try to guess what he will say, which I am big on doing. 

This couple who lives near us has a little bulldog who is CRAZY about my dog and they keep letting it out or get out without being secure in their yard and she comes over and onto our deck when Bailey is outside and basically traps him.  He hates it and is pretty scared of her, he doesn't even like being in the yard now.  I had talked to her not that long ago and we were becoming friends, but the other day I looked up and the lady was on my deck AGAIN retrieving her dog, and that always makes me so mad so I went outside to get Bailey who was freaking out and I can't remember what I said.  I thought she was wanting me to leave Bailey outside so they could play or I don't know, but I know I said something like I'm taking my dog in and it must have offended her.  She had started out by saying her dog had run out the door when her husband opened it.  They always keep the blinds on the back door window open just enough so the bulldog can look outside all day, but yesterday I noticed she had bought some kind of tall plant in a pot and positioned it so her dog could not see our house, I'm assuming so he would not see when Bailey is outside.  She has always told me her dog watches for him all day and has a special bark when she sees him to let her outside.  I guess that's the end of a possible friendship, but if it means protecting my dog, fine, so be it.  It's not MY fault they can't keep their dog in their yard and of course I'm not going to appreciate it!!  They are just lucky Mark has not already gone over there to tell them off.  I had to stop him from doing it!   

Mark has been working nonstop, it is absolutely crazy.  He works 12 hour days, gets calls at night at home, then spends weekends most of the day on conference calls.  I feel really bad for him, he is totally exhausted, but at least he has a reason to be unlike myself who just lays around and am tired.  I try to help him with what little energy I have, try to make his life as much easier on him as possible, I just don't know how much I am actually helping.  He acts very appreciative but is he Why just being nice because he thinks I am "sick" right now?

My therapist told me I have been through a lot lately, I wasn't taking that into consideration.  Moving from one city to another, having a hysterectomy, my whole medication problem, all in a short period.  What is the big deal?  Wouldn't a person without a "mental illness" be able to deal with that?  She thinks those are all very emotional issues on their own.  But people GO THROUGH things and just plow through, they don't have the luxury of taking time to stop and just sit around until they "feel better".  But...the reason I am not in school right now is because both she and my psychiatrist TOLD me not to go this semester.  I didn't need the added pressure.  Why do they think I am so fragile?  Yes, I am sure if I read back in my blog I will see that I have been a TOTAL basket case.

OMG I absolutely and totally hate this disease.  You can act and feel and pretend to yourself that you are "normal", then bam, reality strikes and reminds you that maybe you're not so "normal" after all. Does my husband hate the fact that sometimes he has to carry me?  He's been so supportive, so kind about it all, but how does he REALLY feel?  It's hard for me to believe that he's just okay with everything. He excels at just about everything he does, he doesn't let anything at all stand in his way of what he wants to achieve, and he does achieve what he sets out to do.  He is the most determined person I have ever met, it's actually one of the things that really attracted me to him, but it is impossible for me to live up to the standards he has set for himself.  How can I not compare myself to him?   It makes me feel like an absolute failure and loser.

I think I am going to start school in September although I have not been given the green light from my therapist or psychiatrist yet.  They haven't given me a red light either, it just hasn't been discussed.  All that my therapist has said is that I need to meet new people, find groups where there are people that I have something in common with, that sort of thing.  She told me there ARE people like me out there, but I really question that.  Yes, I have met one since I moved her and absolutely adore her, she is one of the few people that I feel is really genuine which for some reason is so important to me right now.  I've wondered if I should find some sort of support group for people with bipolar disorder or depression, but then again, I really don't want to be constantly reminded that I have this disorder and sit around and talk about it once a week or month.  And in the psych ward 12 years ago, I did make a friend that carried over to the "outside world", but that didn't go so well.  She turned out to be pretty flakey as far as friendships go.  She was a good person, fun person, but....well, of course she had issues, we had both been in the psych ward!  But I was very determined to get better, do anything and everything I possibly could and she seemed to want to fall back into her same patterns, which was cheating on her husband.  I just couldn't agree with that, at least not to the point of doing what we needed to do to get better, I wasn't trying to judge her but I tried to stop her and that was the end of the friendship.

I received a letter from my old school telling me I owed them $3k and they were freezing my transcript until I paid it.  That made me furious and I put it out of my mind because I couldn't deal with it.  I finally got the strength to do something about it and called them and they were actually quite nice, although did not say what I wanted to hear, of course, that they had made a mistake.  I do have a paper trail however.  We'll see how this plays out.  I can still go to school in September though.  My last school already has the transcript from there and even though it is in Texas, they have online classes which my therapist already suggested I take.

Blah, seems like I write too long entries lately, but just trying to record what is going on in my head right now for future reference. 

Med Nightmare!

I just went through what someone who depends on medication would consider their worst nightmare!

I really have no idea what is going on.  My doctor increased my Latuda but the pharmacy wouldn't fill it, they kept saying it was too early but it was a different dosage and I received 3-4 letters from them telling me so.  Then Pristiq - they seemingly never got the prescription.  WORST NIGHTMARE - RUNNING OUT OF MEDICATION when you you KNOW there are horrible withdrawal symptoms!

So yesterday I was out, completely out of samples, nothing was on the way to me (my insurance requires me to use mail order), and I kept calling and calling my psychiatrist office to get more samples.  FINALLY towards the end of the day they told me to come in and pick them up, but it was too late.  I see now that the withdrawal symptoms of Pristiq are similar to Effexor withdrawal symptoms, and it does not take long at all of being off of it to start feeling like complete shit.  I was sitting in the waiting room waiting for the samples, willing my head to stop spinning and praying I wouldn't throw up.  When I got them, I took the medication by the water fountain, then had to face the horrible drive home feeling that way.

The Latuda - I figured out what that was all about.  Latuda is a very expensive medication.  For 3 months, which is how I get my medication, it is over $1500.  So my psychiatrist INCREASED the Latuda, from one pill to one and half pills per day, and I think the insurance company flipped out.  For weeks, without my knowledge and me just thinking everyone was ignoring me, my psychiatrist was making a case to my insurance company, providing some kind of documentation per the letter I got that showed I needed the medication (I wonder what she said?  That I'm certifiably crazy?) and the insurance company said they had reviewed her request and approved it.  I have a bit left and it is now on the way.

But this frustrates me!  It wants me to throw it all away and not be dependent on drugs, not have to worry if I have what I need, panic if I am running out and don't know how to get what I need.  I don't like feeling dependent on a psychiatrist not only to be what society deems as "normal" but not to get terribly, terribly sick if I do not get what my body is physically addicted to.  Okay, it's not just to be what society deems as normal, but the main reason I take all of this crap is really to stay alive, my depression is so dark, so deep, I don't think I would survive without it.

I've been running a lot and many days, I guess because my runs have been pretty intense, those days I am completely drained of energy.  Last week I had a counseling appointment and did not forget it, but I fell asleep and did not wake up until my counseling appointment would have started.  Her call actually woke me up, but I had been dead asleep and didn't answer the phone, even though I saw who it was.  I may have just gone back to sleep.

That was Thursday I think.  So Friday she called me again, herself, maybe even twice.  I didn't answer or listen to the messages, I had no idea what to say.  I fell asleep?  That sounds so lame.  But...I just missed an appointment, why is my therapist freaking out over it?  Anyone else that goes to a therapist, if you miss an appointment, does your therapist freak out and call you and call you until you answer?

No calls from her over the weekend, but sure enough, Monday came around and she called AGAIN.  This time I answered and she asked if I was okay and said she just wanted to know that I was okay after missing my appointment.  Uh...what in the WORLD have I told her to make her worry so much about me?  Mark has a therapist and I don't think she would call everyday until she heard his voice, but then again, I can't imagine him ever having an appointment and just missing it without calling well in advance.  He's very structured, dependable, we are so opposite!

So what was she so worried about?  I was in a car accident?  I ran away and was living on the streets?  Or that I had committed suicide or had attempted and was in the psych ward?  It makes me wonder what patients she has, my psychiatrist sent me to her.  What in the hell have I SAID to her?  Or is the fact that people with bipolar disorder have a high rate of suicide concerning?  Maybe I should ask, but if it was suicide, I don't think she would say that.

I'm more optimistic, but in bed a lot.  Not sure why - I keep thinking it is from the energy being drained from running but I have no idea and do not want to quit running.  I'm really enjoying it.  On the days I do not run, I am still lazy around the house and may still lay in bed, although not as much.

I've been making my own "recovery smoothies" after I run thinking I need to recover from my runs and maybe it is helping, I don't know, but they are good for me anyway so I'm going to continue.  I've been really, really cold in the house lately and have no idea why.  Maybe the more I run I'm losing body fat and it's not keeping me as warm.  These are all wild guesses about everything.

My therapist was very gracious and scheduled me for an appointment on Wednesday even though I've missed two now.  I offered to pay for the one I missed but she refused.  The thing is, I have no idea what to talk about in therapy.  I just feel like she thinks my issues are all chemical, and maybe they are, so why talk about anything else.  I think she is just concerned about getting me well in the present, not even touching anything in the past right now.  Perhaps she thinks I am not at a point to even deal with anything properly, not capable.  Honestly, I do not know.

I've had this really, really big issue with people lately - wanting people to be genuine and so sad that so many people, the majority of people I know, just simply aren't.  Most people put up these fake facades, you see only what they want you to see, some fake life that doesn't really exist.  I want a real CONNECTION to people, I'm not in my 20's anymore.  It's not all about liking the same music and wanting to go to the same clubs and party.  Maybe some people are okay with people who are not genuine, but I'm not.  I want absolutely nothing to do with them.  There's a song by Billy Joel that I always thought he was talking about finding a lover, and maybe he is, but I also feel the same way about everyone.  I just want someone to be HONEST with me, and that is so very hard to find.  To be real, to show who they are, not fake.  Genuine.  I listened to this song for this reason and have no idea what led me to it and cried for at least an hour.  I tried to explain to Mark what I was feeling but like so many things, he just didn't understand.

Why does it seem like there is no one who understands me a lot of the time?  Am I really so weird?

Double the Pristiq!

I think I'm slowly climbing out of my hole.  The week before last, I had three appointments: therapist, psychiatrist and dog groomer.  I cancelled all three, I just could not bear to leave the house, but I did have the courtesy to call and cancel each appointment, even if it was at the last minute.  Everyone was incredibly gracious. 

Last week I FORCED myself to keep my rescheduled appointments.  For my dog, I threw on some clothes without showering that morning, and picked him up the same exact way several hours later.  I think I went to see the psychiatrist without makeup.  I was better with the therapist - actually early, dressed neatly with makeup.

I explained my situation to my psychiatrist - that I didn't FEEL depressed, I just had no motivation to do anything.  She disagreed, she said that WAS depression, that I didn't have to be crying all the time or feel sad for it to be depression. 

So, she doubled my Pristiq, and I must admit, I do feel better!  It will be a week tomorrow.  I had started running and then stopped for almost a week, but started back up again and have stayed on track.  I'm now up to a slow five miles or a quicker two miles.  My goal is to be able to run a 10k in under 60 minutes.  In case anyone is wondering, that's less than a 10 minute mile.  My goal has always been to run a 10 minute mile, and do less than that for a 10k would be awesome!  We shall see!  Now for THAT, I'm quite motivated at the moment!

A few days after I had doubled the Pristiq, I realized all of a sudden that I had been laughing at things and it felt really, really good.  I actually felt joy and it seemed different, as if I hadn't felt it in awhile, yet...I didn't even realize it had been missing.  I'm sure I had laughed in the last month or two but I hadn't felt like that, not happiness, if even for a few minutes when you just forget about everything and laugh when something is funny, does that make sense?
My birthday was last Friday, and the Pristiq had kicked in before then.  I had told my husband awhile back I was going to buy a new dress and shoes for dinner on my birthday, but when I was unmotivated, I decided any one of my dresses I already had would be okay, I didn't want to be bothered with it.

But the day before my birthday, I had the energy to go shopping!  After trying on several dresses on what I decided was a "fat day", I finally chose ANOTHER little black dress (you can wear that for just about any occasion I can think of, so how in the world could you ever have too many?), but I also got, for ME, some racy heels.

I was really excited about my shoes for some reason.  When my husband got home and I showed him, he LOVED them, they really are quite sexy, but he said "you've NEVER owned anything like that before.  What has Pristiq done to my wife?"  Ha, I know!  I even told the lady at Ann Taylor I wanted them because I had never in my life owned a pair of shoes like that.  See...that is how racy I am *not*.  When the raciest pair of heels I own is from ANN TAYLOR!

I had gone for a run on the morning of my birthday and did not use my emergency inhaler before I left, which I don't always do, and got super, super lightheaded. No matter how slow and long I walked to recover, it did not go away and I had to call my husband to come and get me.  Luckily he had taken the day off for my birthday. I used the inhaler as soon as I got home and those are NO JOKE!  It is not called "emergency" without a reason - it really does work instantly!  People who joke that they are allergic to exercise really shouldn't joke about it.  There are people who actually *are* "allergic" to exercise and have to do all sorts of things so they are able to do it.

When I got home, I saw he had decorated the house while I was running!  There was the coolest birthday banner with these dangling things strewn in the sunroom with a present, cards, and TIARA!  I was the birthday princess! : ) He gave me the Garmin watch I'd been wanting since my running watch had broken, we spent the day together then he surprised me with his restaurant choice in Chicago that night.  It was really a great day.

I did want to write about something because it really, really concerned me and I ended up taking up most of my psychiatrist visit talking about it, asking my doctor questions about it to understand.  My husband told me about a former employee at work that had sued the company.  He had been seeing a psychiatrist and somehow the company had access to his psychiatric records and used it against him.  He only told me to caution me about what I said because it shocked *him* what the lawyers were able to find out.  Does that scare the bejesus out of ANYONE ELSE besides me???

She told me the only way the company could have had access to his psychiatric records is if the former employee had signed something giving access to them.  For instance, if he said the way he was being treated forced him to get help psychiatrically and to prove it, he allowed access to his psychiatric records thinking it would help his case.  I mean I questioned her about it one way up and down another until I felt satisfied that someone was not going to get access to my records without my knowledge or consent.  How in the world could I be honest?  That includes my therapist as well, but I didn't talk to her about it the next day.  My psychiatrist answered my question for me.

I want to start school in October but received an alarming letter the other day.  My last school said (incorrectly) that I owe them $3k and until I pay they have frozen my transcripts.  I need to call them but I seriously don't want any stress right now.  THAT overwhelms me, so SO overwhelms me but it is something I have to do soon because if I can't resolve it with them, I will have to hire an attorney, and who knows how long THAT process will take!

So...it will be a week tomorrow that I will have been taking the doubled Pristiq (100mg).  Not 100% yet, but better, so there is hope. : ) 

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