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Stoned

This is long, boring, and unneccessary but I wanted to put the frustrations I’ve been having into words. I mentioned before how I’ve been going through medical issues for the past year and a half and I was going to leave it at that. But, I bitch and whine to my husband about it so much, I thought writing about it would help. I swear, I get the weirdest fucking medical problems. I’ve had an issue of getting salivary stones for years.

I never even knew something like this existed and for seven years, I would get this horrible pain on the right side of my neck when I ate or drank anything. I could feel the submandibular salivary gland get hard as a rock and cause so much pain and itchiness from below my chin, up into my right ear.

It may not seem like a big issue but I couldn’t even take a sip of water without the salivary gland flaring up.

When we moved to Seattle, I was finally able to see civillian doctors instead of military ones and the ENT there diagnosed me. I had surgery to take out the stone within the week. My one request was if she was able to save the stone, I would love to see what was making my life hell for seven years. She was more than happy to oblige and I still have that damn stone in a box somewhere.

After that, I would get frequent infections and flare ups in that gland. I had the option years ago to have that gland taken out but I was really hesitant. To be honest, it was because of the horrible experiences I’ve had with military doctors over the years and the incompetence so, there was no way I wanted one of those doctor’s to cut me open.

Things seemed to simmer down until last August when I had this horrible pain in the gland and it got so bad, I could barely move my tongue. Luckily for my husband, I wasn’t able to talk much for a few days until the antibiotics kicked in and I got some relief.

It cleared up, or so I thought, and then boom, it came back a few weeks later. I was referred to an ENT and he was pretty quick to say the gland really needs to come out. The hesitation came back about having this surgery, especially since I had three others within months of this one.

But, I decided to finally get it over and done with once and for all. The doctor didn’t feel the need to do a CT scan which still pisses me off because he didn’t think I had any stones in there and it was just the salivary gland that was infected. I had the surgery and I thought I was fucking done with all of the medical shit I had been dealing with.

Just when I had celebrated being done with this bullshit forever, the symptoms came back. The itchiness, the pain, and additionally, something that felt like a hot fire poker on the floor of my mouth. This time, a CT scan was done and yes, I was stoned from another stone. The ENT also noticed that a fucking hole was what had developed in the floor of my mouth as a way for my body to try and expel the stone that had been in there for who knows how long.

I know. It’s really fucking gross.

I had surgery for that five months ago and again, thought I was done. done. done.

Nope. Not even close.

I come to find out that the duct to the submandibular salivary gland was still in there because there’s a nerve to the tongue that wraps around the duct and it can be tricky to take out. It can cause permanent paralysis on the right side of the tongue.

Oh joy.

I could also tell at this point that the ENT didn’t know what the fuck to do with me. So, he put me on antibiotics.

The infection went away.

Then it came back and he put me on antibiotics again.

Basically, my whole summer was spent dealing with these gross infections and taking an overload of antibiotics which I absolutely hate. I not only worry about antibiotic resistance but also, if feels like my stomach is being shredded. I’ve been on half a dozen different kinds of antibiotics and also found out by way of another CT scan I had in August is that there are now smaller stones in my sublingual salivary gland.

Fucking fuck.

I was frustrated, my doctor was frustrated, and I was pissed off. I don’t feel like my normal self at all. My body is tired of fighting these infections. My ENT finally waved the white flag and referred me to a doctor in Boston.

I saw him last week and he hasn’t seen my scan results yet but felt at least two stones in the floor of my mouth.

His plan is to take out that fucking duct that’s probably causing these stones, and taking out however many stones are actually in there… besides the two he felt.

It looks like the surgery will take place in the next few months.

So, that’s where I’m at now…. hurry up and wait. That’s what it feels like. This new ENT doctor wants to act fast but there’s that waiting game of making sure this is the best plan of action.

This whole thing has my anxiety so out of whack. I just hope that soon I’ll be feeling healthier again.

Hopefully, more like myself than I’ve felt in the last 18 months.

Comments { 1 }

The Big V

I was really wanting to have another baby but my uterus isn’t having it. I had another miscarriage this past July and was ripped apart. Infertility is such a mindfuck. It’s consumed me for years. After this last miscarriage, I told my husband I can’t go through anymore and that we are done in the having babies department.

I finally told my husband he needs to get snipped. It’s really time. With all of the surgeries I’ve had, I couldn’t imagine going in for another fucking surgery to get my tubes tied. My husband went to the doctor not long after I told him I can’t go through another pregnancy loss and before I knew it, the time recently came for the vasectomy.

Woo hoo! I didn’t know I would be so happy. I’ve been dealing with all kinds of birth control methods all these years and it’s going to be so nice to not have to worry from my end anymore. We’re not going to have the freedom until about four months after the surgery since they have to test his sperm at the three-month mark and the four-month mark.

I’ll be honest. This has me overcome with emotion since I know I’m ready to close down the baby factory but this closes a big chapter in my life. I always wanted to have at least two kids but I know I’m very lucky that I have one. My heart goes out to the women who’ve been trying for years to have a baby and haven’t been able to.

It also stings when my daughter tells me she would still really like to have a brother or sister.

But, I know this is for the best, especially because I didn’t have to go through the big V. My husband is always so calm, cool, and collected so I was stressing out about the procedure for him.

Which leads me into the prep for his surgery. Let me just say, this is the first time in a long time that I’ve had to share a bathroom with my husband since we moved into our new house last year. His shaved facial hair trimmings drive me mad because they get all over the sink and he’s apparently blind to it.

While preparing for the big V, I now know there’s something worse than facial hair trimmings.

My husband had to shave his balls the night before and ewwww, the hairy ball hair got all over the sink and he set the shaver right by our toothbrush holder. To top it off, there was a pile of pubes teetering in our bathroom trash, just waiting to fall over all over the floor.

I gagged my way through cleaning some of it up and wanted to be like “Dude, can’t you just flush your pubes down the toilet?” But, I wanted to cut him some slack since even though he was acting as cool as a cumber, he had to have had some nerves, although he really doesn’t express his emotions very often.

He eventually cleaned up from the Pube Storm of 2017 but ick, ick, ick.

My husband had the procedure in the afternoon and was given a Valium which was fun to see because I don’t think he’s ever had one before.

When we got home, he was still good and drugged and laid in bed while he put his balls on ice and watched James Bond movies. He had to rest for two days which I know was hell for him because the man never stops moving. If he’s not out mowing the grass, he’s cutting something up with his chainsaw or kayaking or riding his bike.

It’s a pretty strange feeling knowing we won’t be having any more kids. I didn’t realize I would still be longing so much for another child.

It makes me wonder if that feeling ever goes away despite how old I get.

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I’m A Mess

This past year and a half has been very difficult for me. I had five surgeries within 14 months, starting in 2016. It’s why I haven’t really been blogging as often as I’d like. I won’t bore you with the details of the surgeries but they came in such rapid succession and that’s what has made me go from anxiety with occasional panic attacks to my current state which has transformed to severe anxiety with frequent panic attacks, including the dreaded anxiety attacks first thing in the morning.

I didn’t take as good of care of myself as I should have with each recovery from surgery and it’s definitely taken a toll on me. I feel so anxious all the time and my body still feels like it’s in recovery mode. It’s been frustrating for me because I’m still not 100% physically and the frustration leads to anxiety which leads me to have panic attacks.

If you’ve never had a panic attack, you’re very lucky. Mine starts out with feeling a sense of dread. My heart starts pounding. It’s difficult to catch my breath. My mind starts racing. I feel dizzy. My heart gets to where it feels like it’s going to beat out of my chest. I feel like I’m going to give myself a heart attack. The sense of dread increases. My heart’s beating so fast, my mind is racing, I’m feeling dizzier, and there are times I even get so worked up that I throw up from the anxiety and panic. It feels like I’m a prisoner in my own body and want nothing more that to escape myself.

So, for the past 18 months, my anxiety has grown to where it can be debilitating at times. I’m getting more concerned now because this is the time of year that my depression starts rearing its ugly head.

Since I cut out all news out of my life last month, the anxiety has become a little more manageable. I’ve been trying to ride out the panic attacks without reaching for my xanax prescription but that can be really difficult. Hmmm, would I rather feel like I’m in a fight or flight state of panic for half the day or should I take something that I know in 20 or so minutes will have me feeling more in control of my thoughts? But, I don’t want to have to depend on medication every time.

The problem is, I still have an ongoing medical issue and while I’ve had two surgeries for it where I thought both times that I’ll finally be feeling healthy again and won’t have to deal with this problem anymore. Low and behold, once I’m confident it’s finally not an issue anymore. the fucking thing pops back up. I feel like there’s no end in sight and my ENT doctor has been calling this “unusual and rare”.

He seems to be at a total loss about what to do and mentioned sending me to Boston. For now though, he’s waiting to see if medication will help. I know it’s not going to because in the past it never did.

I’m just feeling so frustrated and at a loss.

What I’ve been missing is writing. I know that’s something that will help clear my head and help my anxiety while also giving me an escape from these ongoing medical issues.

I just don’t know if I can still keep up the blogging, not that I’ve really been keeping it up that often. But, I’ve been blogging for over seven years now and I’m not quite sure I can completely let it go. So, for now, I figure what the hell, even if I don’t have much to say, I should just write anyway. It’s such a nice vacation from my anxiety ridden mind and the physical pain I’m still in.

So, now you know what’s been going on since last year. It feels good to clear the air and talk about the terrible time I’ve been having.

I know I’ll get through this rough time but right now it feels like it’s going to last forever. I’ll leave you for now by saying thank you for listening to my issues.

I’ve got issues, you’ve got them too, so give yours to me and I’ll give mine to you.

Your welcome for getting that song stuck in your head.

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Shoo Fly, Don’t Bother Me

I don’t like my psychiatrist. I’m sure he’s an okay guy but he comes off as really cold. But, I deal with him since I don’t really have any other options.

I usually dread going to his office and leave there more stressed than when I went in. I’ve been having some severe anxiety and frequent panic attacks for months now and it feels like I’m slowly suffocating under the weight of this anxiety.

I was pouring my heart out to this psychiatrist at my last appointment and he started eating a banana. I always laugh at the worst times. Nervous laughter. Seeing him eat a banana combined with me feeling very emotional and in tears combined with the phallic shape of the banana combined with my mind is that of a 12 year-old boy equals laughter.

He gobbled down the banana while I composed myself and the tears started coming. He starts swatting at the air and I try to continue talking to the spastic display in front of me.

He took notice and said “It’s a fruit fly. Go on….”

At this point I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry. I had been practicing what I wanted to say to him for weeks. And, there he is, swatting with both hands with his arms flailing about.

I’m trying so hard to keep a straight face while he continues swatting at this fruit fly. I went back to being an emotional mess and my head was down. When I was about to tell him something really difficult, he slapped his knee and said “Got it!”

I looked up to see him wiping off the remains of the fruit fly in his hand.

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Failure To Thrive

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*I couldn’t read this back so there’s probably mistakes galore. And, sorry it’s so long.

Just typing this first sentence sends me into a panic from thinking about a terrifying moment one morning back in July. It’s been the main reason I had lost any interest in most things, including this blog. But things have been building inside my head and I need to be rid of them.

I’ve talked in the past about the hypoglycemic episodes we’ve had with my 6 year-old. Within 24 hours of her being born, she was rushed to the NICU for low blood sugar which was in its teens.

The hummingbird was taken off of medication within 2 months of being born and we thought that was the last of dealing with hypoglycemia.

Two years later, I went to get her up one morning and she was still sleeping, which was unusual. I woke her and while I was picking her up, she started twitching and crying while having spasms. She has never gone into a full-blown seizure though.

With each hypoglycemic episode she’s had over the years, there have been some where we could still treat her at home with honey and juice, and some where we would need to go to the emergency room. There were times where she would be released from the ER within 6-8 hours and other times when her blood sugar wouldn’t regulate and kept dropping to scary levels so she would have to be admitted for 1-2 weeks.

To this day, I worry 24/7 I worry about the possibility of her having a low blood sugar episode. Several of her episodes have been when she was sick but then there have been some episodes that have just come out of the blue.

The little bird has had so many tests and been to so many doctors but at the time, they didn’t seem to have many answers as to what was causing this. Also, the bird is small for her age so the specialists we’ve seen believed that there was another underlying issue but hadn’t been able to figure it out.

So, to be honest, I can feel like a wreck most days with the worry of whether or not she’s going to eat enough to keep her blood sugar up. She’s also very athletic and since she’s such a picky eater with not much of an appetite, that makes the worry and stress overwhelming at times.

We always make sure to have snacks with us wherever we go in case she may start showing signs of hypoglycemia. There have been times she had been so low upon waking up that we needed something much quicker to get the sugar into her because she can be very dazed and can’t follow simple instructions.

I usually dip my finger in honey and start wiping it on her lips and thankfully she has always responded to that by getting to where she can take it from a spoon. It’s probably only been a few minutes when dealing with these low blood sugar episodes but it feels like time stands still.

The bird didn’t have any severe episodes for a while and after we started seeing her most recent specialist, for the first time I’ve felt like I can ease up on the worry a tiny bit and I welcomed that.

When we go to her specialist, I cringe when I hear him say “failure to thrive”. It’s something we’ve been hearing over the years and I know it’s because of how small she is. She’s 6 but about the size of a 4 year-old. Hearing failure to thrive makes me fell like a failure as a parent even though I know we do our best. She’s just not a big eater.

Over the summer, my husband booked a cabin where we had stayed the previous year. It was really cool for us since living in Maine for the past few years, this was the first place we’ve lived where we’ve been here long enough to start traditions with our daughter.

We were also celebrating our 100th wedding anniversary in July so I was actually more excited than I was the previous year we went camping. And, yes. I think staying in a cabin is camping and that’s as close to “outdoorsy” as I’ll get.

I’m certain my kid was a fish in another life because she can swim for hours, which is what she and the husband did for the first few days.

We were all having a really great time, despite being a human mosquito buffet for 4 days and missing the comfort of my couch. My 6 year-old was eating pretty good and we were reconnecting as a family so I felt like I was finally able to unwind on our little vacation.

I promised her that we could sleep in the same bed the last few nights, which is a treat for her. I think it may have been my husband walking out of the bathroom that woke me up early that morning but within a few seconds, I felt the hummingbird twitching violently in the bed.

I took her in my arms to try and see if she was coherent but right away I saw that she was having a full-blown seizure. I want to throw up after typing that because all of the fear comes flooding back from that moment. I called to my husband to grab some honey but we found we didn’t have any. In fact, we only had things she would be able to drink, like juice, to help her get her blood sugar up but she was way past the point of being capable of drinking anything.

While I still had her in my arms, my husband rushed back with some strawberry jam that I started rubbing around her lips but she couldn’t even take that. That was the moment her eyes went into the back of her head and the hummingbird went limp. I feel terrible for even having this cross my mind at the time but I really thought the worst, I thought this was it. We had never experienced her in such a terrible state and I went in a state of shock, all while calling her name and trying to get her to come to.

She was throwing up before she lost consciousness so the jam I was able to get into her just came back up. The panic set in since she wasn’t responding and during this whole time, my husband was trying to get cell reception which was non-existent. The hummingbird started to show some signs of coming to… after what seemed like ages when in reality this episode was maybe about a few minutes. It’s strange how time seems to go in slow motion in an incident like this.

I was finally able to give her more strawberry jam on her lips and she was able to lick it off her lips but she still wasn’t responding to anything we said and in a daze. Understandably. The jam was all over the bed and the two of us were covered in it.

We knew we had to get her to the ER but since we were in the middle of nowhere and not familiar with the area, it made a very terrifying situation even worse. My husband found that the nearest hospital was over 45 minutes away and we had to rush the decision of what to do and decided it would be faster to take her to the hospital.

The hummingbird was still throwing up and in between, she started to accept the strawberry jam I was feeding her with my fingers. It was the car drive that lasted what felt like forever. We finally made it to the ER and thankfully, the little bird was in a much better state but my adrenaline was pumping like crazy and I still felt like I was going to throw up my heart.

They told us that her blood sugar was still pretty low at that point and we spent the next six hours there. This episode with her low blood sugar and seizure left my husband and I stunned but we had actually handled it more calmly than previous times with her hypoglycemia.

Reality hit me after a few hours while I was sitting beside my 6 year-old’s bedside. Seeing my child in that kind of medical emergency for the first time when it came to her seizure has honestly fucked me up. Feeling completely helpless while she had been lying in my arms and thinking the worst has guaranteed that my heart will never go back into my chest again.

I was asking the ER doctor all sorts of questions about seizures and having confirmation that there is absolutely nothing that you can do while someone has one made me angry. I felt that this is my child that I protect and love more than anything, yet I just have to let her ride it out was bullshit. I was irrationally angry about it for quite a while. It made the every day stress of dealing with her hypoglycemia shoot up with thoughts of not only dealing with her symptoms of low blood sugar but that now seizures were something that she might experience again.

When we went to see her specialist within the week, he told us that the chance of her having another seizure was high for the next two weeks and it was two weeks of hell. I didn’t want her to leave my sight. We are really lucky that she has the doctor she does because he is fantastic and has this soothing way about him. Although, after that visit, I was on edge.

To help the hummingbird’s blood sugar stay stable over the night, her doctor has us add a few tablespoons of uncooked cornstarch in yogurt that we give my daughter as a snack before bed. The cornstarch helps slows the digestion of what she eats and so far, she hasn’t had any episodes of hypoglycemia since. We’ve been back to her doctor for a second time and it seems like she’s doing much better with the addition of cornstarch. She’s even gaining a little more weight.

There have still been times since that we felt the need to check her blood sugar if she’s acting unusually tired and yes, that weird noise you may have heard a few weeks ago was probably my kid screaming at the top of her lungs. She still hates getting it checked and my heart breaks every time.

I’ve been teaching her more about nutrition and how important it is for everyone, especially for her because of these episodes she has. Things are sinking in for her that while candy is a treat, it’s so important to make healthier choices with food, like sliced avocado or cashews with craisans.

Every day I still feel like I’m teetering over the edge with the worry that this day may be the day her blood sugar takes a dive. It’s not easy when my anxiety already eats at me as it is. I just want to hug every parent out there who also has kids who have a health condition. And then sit down with a big glass of wine and a very loud ‘cheers’ because parenting isn’t easy.

Comments { 17 }

Hyperemesis Gravidarum

Since I had hyperemesis gravidarum with my first pregnancy, with the little hummingbird, I’ve called it “that Harry Potter sounding spell”. I’ve since had it with each pregnancy and let me say this.

It is NOT “bad morning sickness”.

HG isn’t anywhere in the same category. One of the ways that I’ve tried to describe it to my husband is that it’s like comparing a paper cut on your finger to breaking your hand.

I much rather refer to hyperemesis gravidarum as extreme pregnancy sickness. Not that morning sickness is a walk in the park but HG is horrible and something I wouldn’t wish on anyone.

While I was thankfully never hospitalized for it, last year when I was pregnant, it was agony for many months. The only thing that I could really keep down was iced tea lemonade and I remember how my ob/gyn became really concerned when I lost over 10 pounds in just a few weeks.

As far as my experience with it, something as simple as water is completely and utterly repulsive when you have HG. Even smelling water was horrible. Yes, water had a smell to me.

Sounds and movement even aggravate HG. Like when I would lay on the couch and my daughter would hop around by me. I would be in agony. Or I would still be in bed and my husband would be talking to the hummingbird and his deep voice would seem amplified and actually make me sick.

Hyperemesis gravidarum is like when you drink too much and get the spins and say “I’m never drinking again”. But instead, you have this awful motion sickness feeling 24/7 for several months.

Pregnancy should be such a happy time. Being excited about seeing the beautiful life that you’ve created and hopeful when it comes to the future with your child.

Every single day, I felt like I wanted to die when it came to having HG. Sure, I thought I would die because of how sick I felt. But at times, I would think being dead would be much better than dealing with the day-to-day sickness that was completely overwhelming when it comes to having hyperemesis gravidarum.

The so-called “happy time” in my life was such a nightmare for me. I tried everything possible to help with this awful pregnancy sickness. I’m allergic to the more common anti-nausea medication but would take another kind and still, it did very little to ease the HG.

Nothing helped my issue with hyperemesis gravidarum.

I have given so much thought when it comes to having another child because of dealing with hyperemesis gravidarum. It’s truly the hardest decision I’ve had to make. Especially with having a 6 year-old to care for.

Despite wanting to have another child more than anything in the world, having HG with my last pregnancy was more brutal than the previous times and that concerns me.

Time is ticking away to try one last time. I’ve been trying to convince myself that it will be perfectly fine if I just have one child. It makes me feel ungrateful at times to want another, especially when so many people go through heartache and many years to try for a baby.

But honestly, I long to have another child… even if it means my head will be in the toilet for 9 months.

Comments { 6 }

Purrell Force Fields Would Really Come In Handy

Just when I felt like my writing mojo was finally coming back, time hasn’t been on my side. FYI, this post isn’t for sensitive stomachs.

The hummingbird has gotten sick countless times since she started Kindergarten. It’s one of the germiest places, apparently.

My 6 year-old has a few weeks left of school but has gotten two different ailments in the past two weeks. Last weekend, she had a stomach bug. I felt like I won the not very pukey child award prior to this since she hasn’t been much of a thrower upper. That’s a word.

Sure, she’s done it every now and then but nothing too bad.

Until last week.

After catching vomit in various ways… cupping hands, getting a giant bowl, grabbing her and sprinting to the bathroom, etc… I feel like I should get a barf badge to sew on my Brownie sash from when I was in the 4th grade.

Better yet, all new parents should be given a sash so we can receive badges for the milestones we go through with our children.

Pumping breast milk and accidentally spilling that precious liquid gold? There’s a badge for that.

liquid-gold

Potty training your child? There’s a badge for that.

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Surviving Toddler PMS without going through with your plans of running away from home? Get out the sewing kit… because there’s a badge for that.

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My husband ran and got a bowl. A tiny, little bowl that would be more suitable for a kitten with a hairball. He must have noticed my death stare because he said “What?”

And then we had a conversation I never thought we’d have. The conversation about what bowl would be best for Little Miss Pukey.

My husband’s side of it was any bowl is suitable and he had grabbed a bowl which he uses to take his lunch to work sometimes. Gag. But my side was the bigger the bowl, the better to catch any and all kinds of puke. And it would need to be a bowl we would never, ever, ever use again. But, it would be put in the medicine and towel closet and forever be known as the puke bowl.

I can’t believe we discussed this either.

These are only stunt bowls but the size I grabbed is on the left. My husband’s is on the right.

krenit_bowls_green_01

So, I carried this bowl around wherever the hummingbird went for the next few days while she was home from school. At least it was better than using my hands or having vomit all over my shirt.

The bird was finally feeling better and finished out the school week. Yay!

And then she got sick again. Fuuuck. Of course it was on a weekend.

Her pediatrician has walk ins during the week for only half an hour at the ass crack of dawn. So, off we went. Things seemed to be looking up and then her doctor did a test.

A few minutes later, it came back positive for step throat. Fuckity fuck.

Poor kid.

After the pukefest and strep and all the school she’s missed this year, we can kiss that perfect attendance award goodbye. But really, how in the hell do some kids never miss one day of school from Kindergarten to their Senior year?

Are they surround by some protective barrier we can’t see? A Purrell force field perhaps.

I should start working on that before the hummingbird starts first grade. Wrap her in bubble wrap to prevent bumps, bruises, and scratches, put her in a hazmat suit with a built-in alarm system, and have a Purrell force field follow her everywhere she goes.

Then, I may not be so freaking anxious whenever she’s not in my care.

Who am I kidding? I’ll always be that way.

What kind of parenting badges would you like to receive?

Comments { 5 }