Jun. 19th, 2007

cassy_g: (Default)
So, as I alluded to in my previous zombified post, I am not exactly well these days.

For those of you that don't know, about 2.5-3 months ago I started experiencing some serious fatigue. As one friend of mine put it, "In all the time I have known you, no matter how little sleep you get, you have never sounded 'tired'. Right now, you sound like you are going to drop - go to bed!" In retrospect, I think that's about when this all sort of started.

In the time since then I have been getting progressively worse. I remain exhausted all the time (I have been sleeping 12-15 hours a day!), I have a hard time concentrating, or focusing. Things that use to be easy for me to sort out and think about take serious effort, and sometimes I just can't piece things together at all. Then there's the constant getting stuck on what I am trying to say, or completely not being able to find the right word, or just absolutely forgetting what I am saying mid-sentence. For someone that is use to multitasking constantly, being able to barely manage one task is beyond frustrating.

Along with all the thinking problems has been a slowly deteriorating motor skill problem. At first it seemed like just normal mucking up with my ability to type, and it's gotten worse. I drop things, and stumble, and generally am way more uncoordinated than normal. My being "accident prone" has reached some new levels lately.

About 5 weeks ago now, I woke up with a serious headache, and absolutely no appetite, which I just attribute to being in so much pain. Unfortunately, it persisted and wasn't going away with over the counter stuff. And I was having double vision in my right eye. Eventually it got bad enough for me to go to the doctor.

So, 2 weeks ago, I went to see my general practitioner who after doing some tests and realizing that I was having very limited mobility and weakness on my right side (which I hadn't even really noticed myself, I guess I had been ignoring it), decided that he thought I had thrown another clot and had suffered a second stroke. He then sent me to have a CAT scan and an angiograph, so he could confirm his suspicions, and be sure it had been a clot and not something like an aneurysm before putting me back on blood thinners. In the mean time, he put me on prednisone and wrote me a prescription for codeine to help with the pain.

Last Thursday, I had my follow-up appointment with my general practitioner, who gave me both good and bad news. The good news was that the scans and tests all came back great! No brain tumor, aneurysms, or (and the weird part) stroke. The bad news was, I hadn't had a stroke - and from the other tests, it indicated to him that mean there was something very wrong with my central nervous system.

He said he suspects that I have multiple sclerosis, but since he was wrong about the stroke (not that I blame him for that - it made sense to me too since I had a history of clots!), he didn't want to make a final determination on the matter. He said he would feel better if I went to see a neurologist, who could be certain what's going on. So, I have an appointment at the Comprehensive Neurologist Specialists office on June 26th to find out what is wrong and what I have to do to be better.

In the meantime, my general practitioner's treating my symptoms by putting me on a high dose, then tapering prednisone (you start out taking six pills and it drops by one a day until they are done), and since the codeine wasn't helping my head, he wrote me a new prescription for vicodin.

The prednisone seems to help some, but as the dose has been dropping off, so has the way I have been feeling. Yesterday, after having been cooped up in the house except for doctor's appointments for several weeks, I decided I would go out and have lunch.

This turned out to be a catastrophically bad idea. I was only gone maybe 2 hours at the most, but by the time I got home I felt horrible and like I couldn't move. That was when the reality of how sick I have gotten kicked in, and truthfully, scared me a little, enough that I called the neurologist's office this morning to see if they had any cancellations. They didn't but I plan to call every morning to see if they can see me sooner.

On the one hand, I am extremely relieved to find out that I don't have anything serious or urgent like a brain tumor or aneurysm. On the other hand, I am extremely frustrated with not knowing exactly what it is and how to deal with it.

Compound that with my strong work ethic, and I can't help but feel like I am letting people down. But, as hard as I try there is only so much I can accomplish in a day. And it is no where near the levels I use to be able to do without even thinking about it. There are some days that I feel grateful to get out of bed at all, none-the-less be able to work on anything.

Since I don't like to be the provider of incorrect information, I have also been reluctant to talk about it because I really don't know what's wrong with me at the moment, other than what the doctor is presuming to be my issue. I am only doing so now because I am feeling so very frustrated with not being well, and I really want people to know that if there are things I haven't done that I should have, it isn't because I haven't wanted to do them.

I really do hate just how difficult it is for me to formulate thoughts, and process information, and just remember things. It is making me feel like someone less than I am - like I am not me. And even though I don't know specifically what's wrong with me yet, I do know as certainly as I did when I had the blood clots, there's something really wrong.

In any case, some days are better than others - today isn't so good, I have been really just worn out and taken several naps, and it's only three in the afternoon. Yesterday's misadventure really took a lot out of me it seems. Oh, and did I mention, I don't have health insurance, and have no idea how I am going to be paying for all of these things?

But now, I am going back to bed before I pass out at the keyboard - again.

July 2009

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