Monday, November 29, 2010

Not So Thankful Today

As I read through everyone else's blog posts and facebook comments, I am kind of thinking..."What's wrong with me?"

Everyone is writing about how thankful they are this season for this or for that.

I don't feel that way.

I feel bitter right now. 

I feel like shit nearly everyday...and I am not thankful.

I know I sound selfish.  I know there are millions of others out there in the world suffering and starving and unable to enjoy their families.  But I cannot help it.

I have tried to make a list of all the things I am grateful for, like so many of you did over the holiday, but everytime I write it, I feel like a phony and erase it.  Because deep down I feel like having a pity party for myself and want to throw a temper tantrum like a three year old.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Turkey Day!


Our attempt at a "Family Photo"


All the kiddies

Oy...bright sun, less than amused!

Milo & Maisy insisted on driving to Grandma's for Thanksgiving dinner!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

So Sad

Back in 2008, my father had emergency back surgery, which has subsequently left him with chronic lower back pain and permanent nerve damage.  I took him to see a new Pain Management Specialist today...and I am JEALOUS!

Totally green with envy...because next week my dad is scheduling to have a trial Spinal Cord Stimulator placed!

Of course, regardless of the fact that it was my dad's doctors's appointment, I immediately asked if he also placed Occipital Nerve Stimulators.

The answer was a big "NO".

BUMMER!!!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Medial Branch Blocks Round 2

I had an appointment with Dr. B. (pain management specialist) yesterday.  It was just a routine follow up, however we scheduled 2 more medial branch blocks at the c-1 and c-2 levels for December 2nd and December 9th. If those are successful, I may proceed with more Radiofrequency Lesioning.

I have no idea if I am making the right desicion, due to the fact that the previous RFL at c-3 to c-7 failed, but I feel compelled to try again.

It is particulary difficult when my family, friends and physicians all have such differing opinions.

There is just something about Dr. B. that I trust. 

...and I know that pumping myself full of anti-depressants and beta-blockers isn't doing squat for my pain.

Click on the link below to learn more about this procedure.

http://www.valleyambulatory.com/images/chen/Cervical%20Medical%20Branch%20Block1007.pdf

My New Favorite Song

Monday, November 8, 2010

Neuro Update

Jesse took me to see Dr. K. this morning.  It was my follow-up appt for my series of Occipital Nerve Blocks.  As soon as he walked into the room and asked how I was feeling, I burst into tears.  I was afraid to tell him the treatment wasn't successful.  I feared he would throw the "self-defeating attitude" line at me again.  I knew the blocks wouldn't work as I have had them numerous times before...which led to the RFL...which didn't work.  Anyway, he was more sympathetic than I was going to give him credit for.  He wants me to continue the Prozac,  is adding Savella for my occipital nerve and left sided facial nerve pain, and is still adament I stay away from pain medication.  Ha.  I came home and took 2 fioricet, a soma & phenergan.  Some might say I am being non-compliant.  I say I am being somewhat proactive.  I am tired of hurting while washing & brushing my hair, applying make-up, being touched, and vomiting.  It is NOT normal for God's sake!  People don't vomit on a weekly basis because their head is pounding so badly it's difficult to be upright. 

So my current/updated POC:

Prozac 80mg daily
Savella titrate to 100mg daily
Bystolic 2.5mg daily

Ice packs & massage therapy

What meds do you all take???  Is there anything I haven't tried???


Saturday, November 6, 2010

25 Adjectives I Would Use to Describe Myself....

I stole this idea from "Oh My Aches & Pains".  So here goes...

1.  Emotional
2. Fatigued
3. Grateful
4.  Ambitious
5.  Daring
6.  Motivated
7.  Passionate
8.  Enthusiastic
9.  Loud
10. Caring
11. Understanding
12.  Tall
13. Skinny
14.  Moody
15.  Crafty
16.  Clean
17. Defeated
18. Silly
19. Embarassed
20. Envious
21. Knowledgeable
22. Outgoing
23. Broken
24. Helpful
25. Casual

Such a conflicting list!   Guess it depends on the day and on my mood! =)

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Loss of a Baby

*A little bit about work...I abided by HIPPA regulations and no specific information or names have been used.*


"The leaf with a teardrop reflects both intense suffering of loss and hope for the future.  Though fallen; the leaf maintains it's vitality symbolizing hope.  It cradles the teardrop with it's upturned edges creating a sense of comfort.  As seasons change, so do feelings.   Just as there is winter and spring, there is sadness and hope."

...This is what hangs on the door's of patient's who have lost a baby, whether it be miscarriage or stillborn.  This past weekend, I cared for a family who's baby was born sleeping.  Unfortunately, the mother also had some serious medical issues that required diagnostic testing following her delivery.  Wouldn't you know it...the technician came bounding through the door, cheerfully congratulating the new parents on the birth of their new son.  My heart sank.  I then proceeded to nudge the technician all the while shaking my head "no" and mouthing the words "their baby died."  Obviously, she did not realize this and never intended to bring my patient to more sobbing tears.

Well...not only did this happen once...it happened AGAIN!  When I finally was able to order my patient a meal tray, the dietary staff came bounding in with the same cheerful enthusiasm, congratulating my patient and her husband on their new baby!  I wanted to crawl under a rock...and sob with them.

I know the heartache of loosing a baby.  I lost two.  One which I delivered prematurely at home, the other, under anesthesia via a D&C before the birth of my second son. 

While all of the stories surrounding the loss of a baby are different, I feel that the emotions are similar.  Which are summed up in the quote under the leaf.  It's the loss of the future, and all the hopes and dreams we had for that child.

After realizing that the majority of our hospital staff were unaware of what the sign on the door's even meant, I took matters into my own hands.  I decided to write an article for our hospital newsletter, educating employees throughout other units just what these signs meant and to please use discretion and sensitivity when encountering these patients.

I thought it was going to be a fairly simple task.  I mean...how difficut could it be to tell people what a simple purple card with a teardrop and a leaf means???  Well it was way harder than I thought.  First off...while I am somewhat comfortable speaking of infant death because of what I have dealt with personally and professionally, alot of people aren't.  It's very difficult not to be blunt, or offend someone.  Also, I needed to take people's education levels into consideration.  I had to keep it simple, yet intelligent enough not to sound like an idiot.  I just hope I got my point across and saved some mother's in the future from going through the same experience as my patient did last weekend.

Back in the Day

I long for those days when I used to wake up...

the sun was shining...

the cool air was blowing...

coffee was brewing...

and I'd jump in the shower with boundless energy.  I'd pick out the perfect outfit and accessories to wear.  I'd blow-dry and straighten my hair.  I'd apply my make-up flawlessly.  I'd wake up my babies, change and feed them.  We'd plan a day of shopping or going on playdates at the park.  The biggest things on my to-do list were to make dinner and go to random dentist or pediatrician appointments.

Boy...has life changed.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Fur Babies

The other loves of my life, my fur babies, Milo & Maisy!