Daily Archives: October 26, 2017

Owner of a Loner Heart

It strikes me, the irony, that I should finally, at last, be free of the loneliness that has followed me like a black dog through my years–that it’s not permitted for me to simply enjoy the profound pleasure of being alone without being lonely. No, other things must rise to the surface and break the spell.

I’ve not been well, the last few years. And I’ve had my share of grief and loss, and chronic pain to boot, with a couple of injurious falls thrown in. Trips to medical practitioners were not particularly productive of substantive reasons for my general malaise, exhaustion, swelling of the ankles, heart palpitations, and occasional crushing chest pain.

I chalked it up to stress and anxiety and grief and depression. That’s plenty, don’t you think?

I slogged on, in the belief that all of my symptoms could be attributed to aging, plus piss-poor protoplasm. Then I ran low on my blood pressure pills. In the olden days, I might have simply ordered myself some, since they’re not controlled substances. Nowadays I am not comfortable doing that. I made an appointment at a retail medical clinic. Doc-in-a-box.

The place turned out to do real medicine, to a point. There’s a young Nurse Practitioner (NP) in designer scrubs, assisted by two even younger medical assistants. They weighed and measured and took notes. The NP came in and asked the screening questions and briefly examined. He ordered an EKG. I was impressed.

A young male assistant came in wheeling the EKG machine. We joked until it was time to push the button. Then I breathed quietly while the machine read my heart’s electrical messages.

“Wait here, please. Armando will speak to you about your EKG.”

Eh? Armando? Oh, the cute little NP. My EKG? Why, what’s the matter with it?

“When did you have your heart attack?” Inquires Armando, not without an accusing aspect. (Trying to get one over, eh? Concealing heart attacks, or so you thought?)

Hmm…hem….errr, so I guess that’s what it was? Because I went to the Duke University ER one of the times I had chest pain, but they didn’t find anything. And I followed up with a cardiologist, who did a nuclear stress test because I was too exhausted to complete the regular treadmill stress test. I thought it was odd that he didn’t stop to think about why I should be so exhausted. I thought maybe I was being too concerned about trifles, so after being told my heart was normal, I decided to behave as if it actually felt normal.

In fact, my heart did not then and does not now feel normal. It hurts and squeezes and flops around like some airless fish inside my chest. It is downright disconcerting, but I can ignore almost anything, especially in the service of denial.

So let’s see that EKG. Oh dear, it’s telling us there’s some scarring on the south pole of the heart, where it rests up against the diaphragm. Sonofabitch, just where it was hurting so badly, a couple of months back.

Sigh. I had a heart attack.

Such very strange words to say, or to read: I had a heart attack.

And now what? Do I start behaving like someone who has heart attacks (40% of women who have a heart attack will have another within 12 months)? What would that look like? Maybe I’ve already had another one. I have no way of knowing, since I have chest pain on and off all the time. Should I worry? Do I care?

What’s the responsible thing to do? Get a referral to a cardiologist, I suppose. But I don’t want a catheterization! I don’t have family, friends, or any support whatsoever. Invasive procedures….nah.

Oh, and my heart rate was 47. Normal is anything over 60. Why would my heart rate be 47? Well, I do suspect my thyroid gland of being sluggish, which could certainly cause a slow heart rate. Or, damage to the heart’s electrical system. I’ll vote for the thyroid…can be fixed with pills.

So I told my son that I had a heart attack. Telling him felt surreal. Listening to him react felt surreal. I imagine that in a few weeks my brain will have readjusted to this new state of being. Right now I’m just kind of wishing the whole thing would go away.

I guess I’ll need to start taking some anti-platelet drug or other. I’m deathly allergic to aspirin. Oh, how tedious. I’ve just recently become comfortable with the chronic illnesses I’d been given up to now. Perhaps that was my mistake! Being comfortable, after a fashion.

Dentist Visit

I go see the dentist today.  Yay.  I hate seeing the dentist.  THe guy I have now is fine, good, and professional, but I just hate the entire process.  I’m such a baby about it I have to have nitrous oxide just to have my  teeth cleaned.  Otherwise I get really freaked out with nerves.  So I will leave and go there in just a bit.’

Bob is doing inventory today–I probably won’t hear from him until he gets home this afternoon.  I remember how freaked out I used to get over inventory because it meant the salesman was in town.  I’m so glad that’s not happening today.

I can tell I am anxious about class. I have had anxiety dreams every night since my program director made the announcement about taking over the class.  Mostly dreams like I can’t find my classroom for teaching, or I don’t have my work done on  time for the W class.  Stuff like that.  But I haven’t had to take Xanax for any of it so I count that as a plus.

WEll, I need to go brush my teeth and get ready to go to the dentist.  Pray that they won’t find anything that needs fixing :).  Everyone have a good week.

 


Warmth

It’s just one of those givens in life that we take for granted. Until something necessary breaks and then you realize…HEATING IS NOT OPTIONAL. My mood and will to live and comfort level skyrocketed last night when R got our heat working. It had two seperate issues but he took 45 minutes, took measurements, fixed some loose connections, banged the blower motor into submission, and voila…my daughter and I woke up to warmth this morning instead of an ice palace.

Gratitude is immense.

Hell, I may just bite the bullet and start nodding mindlessly during his political tirades. I’ve never given a damn before and I really don’t give a damn now, it’s just that natural rebel instinct that kicks in when someone tries to tell me their opinion is the ONLY legit one. I don’t think they could put Scooby Doo into office without me finding something to disagree on, like, I am totally not eating Scooby snacks to honor you, dude…It’s all become so clearly ridiculous to me. Leave me out of politics. My personal beliefs have nothing to do with their agendas, they’re just the ones fucking with my rights to those personal beliefs and the right to practice them. Aside from that…I’m out. Let Prez Trump do his thing and hope for ‘the best. I’m done getting ulcer-like stomach aches about a topic that truly bores me to death. I think I can mindlessly nod and pretend to agree or be interested during R’s tirades. God knows I do it often enough for my child’s tirades on everything from My Little Pony to Pokemon to ‘you’re the worst mom ever because you won’t let me change my outfit for the sixth time today!” At some point…you just gotta let the children have their tantrums and disengage as much as you can.

Children…Yeah, even with the seasonal depression coming on due to the lack of sunlight and the cold temps…I can’t fucking wait. REALLY. Her friends being at my house day in and day out, and even when I send them away they still play out in our yard which gets her all wound up…Bring on the 5 p.m. darkness and cold so these brats will go indoors. I let S stay at our house to catch the church van last night and come 8:30 when they got back…she couldn’t find her mom. House was dark and locked, I got no message or call-who the fuck does that???? Wasn’t til after 9 when the mom finally drove up looking for her kid. WTF? And this was all while R was trying to fix the furnace so I am sure the stampeding shrieking kids helped him focus. I was gonna tell Spook no more of this girl catching the bus at our house but apparently, it’s not an issue cos that whole family is moving next weekend. And much as I don’t like to see my kid’s heart broken…Buh-bye. The only thing the trailer hood retains and replaces more than bugs and cop cars driving through are people moving in with oodles of kids she can play with next spring.

I’m kind of a monster, I guess. Oh, well. It’s life.

Actually, I only have monstrous tendencies when pushed to my limits. And I’d say her dentist appointment, me seeing the nurse doc, going without heat several cold days, losing all our kittens, the dryer breaking down…Yeah, the monster is peaking out because damn…too damn much going wrong too or being demanded of me when I am running on E. I’m doing my best. Even if those around me seem to want me to feel otherwise. Fuck ’em.

I took doc nurse’s advice about upping my melatonin at night so maybe I can stay asleep. Well..I woke a couple of times but went back to sleep…but come alarm time, I was so groggy I could barely sit up and help my kid zip her coat. So until they create a sleep helper that doesn’t leave me that impaired come morning…I’m just gonna have to live with interrupted sleep and never being fully rested.

The more I think back to my visit with nurse doc yesterday, the more convinced I am that for whatever reasons…I really want to go back to Dr. B. I can’t explain it, I just….feel like she is skeptical of everything I say. She finally stoppd the perpetual clacking on the computer while I talk but there’s still…something unsettling there. I can’t get true help from someone I feel is…well, not team Morgue. Dr. B always made it clear he was pulling for me and he recognized my intelligence and potential and he empathized openly with what I am going through…Maybe it’s her fresh out of the box master’s degree but I’m not getting what I need from my appointments with her. And as society as trained me because, hey, I am mental, I keep bullying myself to suck it up, they’re just glorified pill pushers anyway, does it matter who writes the script? To me…I guess it kind of does matter yet here I am, months later with the same feelings and still invalidating myself because it’s what I’ve been programmed to do.

I’ll leave the deep thought for another time. For today…we have heat at home, food in the fridge, we are physically healthy, our cats are good…There are things to be grateful for.

I think depression may be the greatest magician of all time the way it presents me with its grand illusions of impending doom. Of course, when that’s basically 7 months of your life every single year…the illusion is the reality even if the doom isn’t real. My feelings are real. And if depression were a person, I’d totally tell them to fuck off and just avoid them or make a voodoo doll of them.

Unfortunately, I can’t walk away from my own brain and its trickery. Ain’t that the big problem. No escaping me.

Woodworking workshop 3rd session

Absolutely love this!

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This Job Is Causing Wild Anxiety!

Well, I have a job, but I’m not doing shit!  Literally, they do not give me anything to do.  I sit in my chair and spin.  It’s the most anxiety-provoking thing, like, how long are they going to give me a paycheck for doing nothing???  And why in the hell did they hire me in the first place??  Supposedly they’re wildly understaffed and way behind on projects, but somehow the work is not cascading down to me.  Do they think I can’t do it?  If so why am I there?  Do they think I am a princess?  I don’t know.  It is baffling.  I can’t write anymore.  I have to go to bed so I can get up and do all this bullshit again.  I might go crazy.  HELP MEEEEEEE!!!


Filed under: Bipolar, Bipolar and Anxiety, Bipolar and Crazy, Bipolar and Stress, Bipolar and Work, Bipolar Disorder, Psychology, Psychology Shmyshmology Tagged: Bipolar, Blogging, Mental Health, Mental Illness, Psychology, Reader