Wrong and Annoying

Wrong and Annoying

It feels like everything I do is wrong. I’m either doing something incorrectly, or not doing things I should be doing. I feel like I’m doing things wrong even when I’m just talking. I seem to say the wrong thing and upset people. I react the “wrong” way and it tends to piss some people off. I know, somehow, it’s not really my fault, but it still feels like I’m in the wrong. The easiest way I can think to fix most of these issues is by not talking. I feel like I should withdraw from my group of people and stay alone with my dog. At least I know that I can’t bother him the way I bother others.

I think that one of the things that tend to bother some people is that I’m always trying to make everyone else happy. I ignore my own emotions and focus on others, which I know can be annoying. Thinking of others is my way of dealing (or not dealing) with my own emotions. I feel inadequate and weak.

Right now, I’m overwhelmed with feeling like I’m wrong. When I got another bill in the mail for more than $4000 from my husband’s surgery last year, he freaked out. I tried to explain to him about out-of-pocket maximums, deductibles, and appeals. I filled out and completed the appeal, but what if the bill is for real? Then we’re screwed. Even worse, I’ll have to tell my husband about it and he’ll be really frustrated. No matter what I do, it just feels wrong. I always try to fix everything when he gets upset, even when he’s not upset with me. I just wish there was an easy answer to everything or anything.

I’m really tired of feeling wrong. I feel like I push people away. I don’t want to push my family away. At least I know I’ll never push my dog away. That’s the good thing about pets; they love you no matter what.

Clozapine Refills Are Getting Easier

Clozapine Refills Are Getting Easier

Every week I get my blood drawn to check for any possible side effects from taking Clozapine. The medication can cause many serious side effects, and the blood tests are there to catch the issues before they get too serious. My blood work results are finally all within normal limits. At one point, they got so bad that my pharmacist said they may not be able to continue filling my Clozapine prescriptions. We still have to keep an eye out for any issues since I’m increasing the medication slowly. I’m still doing weekly blood work, but I’m almost half way through it. At six months, I get to switch to every other week. At least it’s something to look forward to.

It’s also been getting easier to get my Clozapine prescriptions filled. I haven’t had to call the pharmacy and see if they have my blood work results, which is what I have had to do up until the last two weeks. I haven’t had to call the lab to have them fax over the results again either. The pharmacist is also no longer questioning my blood work  because my results are finally normal. I’m glad this is finally getting easier, it’s about time. All I  have to do now is hand the pharmacy my prescription, and 30 minutes later my medication is ready to be picked up.

My Tattoos Remind Me

My Tattoos Remind Me

I use tattoos and jewelry as reminders for myself that I have gotten through these times before and I can do it again. My aunt gave me a personalized bracelet that helps me when I’m dealing with suicidal ideations. It reminds me that my family loves me and that I can get through this.

The picture for this post was based on me. The artist was using me as a base of the image. I decided to get this tattoo done after I had gone through a horrible depression. I had also just lost a bunch of weight that I gained during the depression. This tattoo is to remind me that I’ve gone through this before and I can do it again. At this point in life, I do know that I’ve gone through depressions and weight gain before, many times. I do believe that I can get through it again, I just have no clue how long it will take. That is the hard part. It’s hard when you don’t know how long your life will be this way.

I have other tattoos to remind me of other things. I have my father’s plane in flight located between my shoulder blades. On one rib cage is some of the sheet music for Fur Elise, which is also a reminder for my father. On my other rib cage is a quote that reminds me of my friend who was also my AA sponsor. We are still friends, more like family. On my thigh, my tattoo shows my transformation from addiction to sobriety. My back tattoo represents the metaphorical hell I’ve been through with my bipolar episodes and PTSD.

For me, tattoos are a great reminder. They remind me where I’ve been and how far I’ve come. Maybe I should get another one. I think I’ll wait a little while before doing it. I like to make sure I really want one. I don’t want to be impulsive. My old artist is back in Connecticut, but my cousin is a tattoo artist and lives near me.

When It Rains, It Pours

When It Rains, It Pours

When it rains, it pours. I’m just so exhausted with life; however, the second I think I can finally relax, something else happens. I’m overwhelmed and about to burnout. The dishwasher broke over the weekend. At least I rent this house, so I don’t have to pay to have it fixed, so that makes it simply inconvenient instead of a huge problem. It’s not like when the microwave died. I never realized until then how much we rely on microwaves.

In the yesterday, I got a medical bill for my husband for $4100; it was for anesthesia for his back surgery last year. I mailed in an appeal for it today because we met his out-of-network deductible and out-of-pocket maximum with the surgery. Since we met everything, I don’t think we should be paying this bill. I called the company where the bill was from and let them know that I sent in an appeal. At least everyone on the phone was really nice about it.

A lot of medical bills have been coming in. I’ve paid some, made payment plans with others, and also appealed one. It’s just a bit overwhelming to have all of these bills coming in at once. Many of the bills are from October 2015. They took their sweet time sending us a bill; I feel like I should be able to take my sweet time paying the bill.

My dog cut his paw the other day when he was outside. The short story is that he tripped over a tree stump. I couldn’t even see where the blood was coming from, but I was able to stop it by holding a towel to his paw for a while. Then, I stuck his foot in a bowl of hydrogen peroxide. Every other way I tried to clean his paw was not working. The bowl of hydrogen peroxide worked great. I worry about him though. He always has skin infections; they improve and then get worse again. Now, I’m worrying about the cut as well, even though it’s not bothering him at all. I’m just a worrier.

Life just keeps coming, although I wish I could take a break from it all. I suppose that’s what will happen when I’m in Cape Cod in August.

So Many Medical Appointments

So Many Medical Appointments

This week has been full of doctor/medical appointments. I had my blood work done on Monday, talk therapy was yesterday, today was my gyn to treat my interstitial cystitis. I feel like all I do is go from one doctor to the next, over and over again. My blood work went well this week. I saw the woman who normally asks too many personal questions; she’s quite inappropriate. I was told that I should report her, but I didn’t. This last appointment, when I saw her, she only asked how I was doing. She didn’t try to tell me how I should treat and manage my bipolar disorder. I get extremely nervous when I see her, but now I know that I can see her without having her get inappropriate.

My therapy appointment went well. I actually opened up to him a little more than I expected. I told him some things that I’ve been thinking about that I haven’t told anyone else. It felt good to finally get some of the ideas that are running around in my head off my chest. It would have been better if talking about it made it go away. Instead, it just brought the negative thinking to the front of my mind. I keep going over and over it in my mind. I wonder when it will stop. At least I have someone I feel comfortable talking to about it. I’m not comfortable talking about it here yet, but maybe I will one day soon.

My gyn treats my interstitial cystitis, also called painful bladder disorder, by doing an installation. They are very uncomfortable, only sometimes do I yell or swear during the treatment. I’ve been doing the treatments every week for a couple of months now. Today, I found out that I finally get to do the treatments ever two weeks. I’m ecstatic about that.

I wish I could have a week without doctor appointments. I suppose the next time that will happen will be when I go to Cape Cod, although I’ll still have to get my blood drawn in order to get my Clozapine prescription. One day, I believe I will have a doctor-free week. It may not be today or even this month, but it will happen at some point.

Talk Therapy Today

Talk Therapy Today

I have therapy today, in a couple of hours. I like my therapist; he’s wonderful and I feel comfortable with him, which is not normal for me. However, sometimes I go in and I have nothing to say. That’s unheard of, I always have something to say. I have no clue what is going on with me. I used to go to therapy and just talk on and on. The past couple times, he had to ask me questions to get me to start talking. That never used to happen. One of the things about me that anyone who knows me knows that I almost never stop talking.

Lately, I’ve been trying to talk less at home. Sometimes I feel like I’m annoying people, like my husband, so I’m trying not to talk unless it’s important. I tend to talk about obvious things, things that aren’t necessary, and I also repeat myself. Some of this is due to my memory loss, but the rest of it is just who I am.

I have been going to therapy continuously since I was 14 years old. That’s a lot of talking; maybe I’m running out of things to talk about. I have a few ideas in my head that I want to talk to my therapist about today. Hopefully, when I get there, I will remember the topics. I guess we’ll just have to wait and see. I still find it pretty funny that I would be short of words.

Sad Nightmare

Sad Nightmare

Last night I had a terrible dream last night, it was a nightmare unlike any others I have had. My father was in a coma in the hospital for a few years. I would go visit him, hoping he would wake up, but nothing would happen. Then, one day, he finally awoke but he didn’t know who I was. He didn’t know who anyone in our family was. This was horrible. I was crying in my dream and I woke up crying as well. In real life, my father died over 12 years ago and I miss him more than I thought possible. I wish I could have a good dream about my father; then it would be like having him back, even if it was for a moment.

I tend to have a lot of bad dreams and nightmares. The only good thing is that I tend to forget them shortly after I wake up; however, I do wake up scared or sad. It often takes me a little while to figure out what is real and what isn’t when I first wake up. Most of my nightmares are about my past or they involve losing loved ones. I would like to stop my nightmares without taking any new medication. Maybe I should put up a dream catcher above my bed to catch my bad dreams.

When Is It Enough?

When Is It Enough?

At this point, Clozapine is causing a few side effects such as weight gain, drooling (increased salivation), and dystonia. I have to figure out when enough is enough. There are medications that can help with these side effects, but I’m already taking enough meds. I’m currently on Lithium, Tegretol, Cytomel, Deplin, Mirapex, Clozapine, Inositol, Depo-Estradiol, and Depo-Testosterone regularly. I also take Zofran, Percocet, and Valium as needed. I’ll probably be adding Cogentin to this list after I talk to my doctor today about the dystonia.

How many more medications can I add to this list? Every medication has side effects, even the ones that I’m taking to fix side effects of other medicines. It’s a vicious cycle. I know I need to take something, I’m assuming Cogentin for the dystonia, because I can’t handle the pain and discomfort.

I’m trying to decide when enough is enough with a medication. I believe that the Clozapine is helping me; however, it is the cause of the three side effect weight gain, drooling, and dystonia. I just can’t figure out if I should stop the medication or not. I made a decision earlier that I would keep taking this medication through the next two months of dosage increases. I have been told that once I stop increasing the medication, my body may adjust to it and the side effects may lessen. It’s hard to make decisions like this. I’ve gone through a long list of meds that didn’t work. Now, I may have found a medication that actually helps, and it causes all sorts of other problems. I know that my other option is IV Ketamine, and I really don’t want to do that. I suppose I will put up with these side effects for as long as I can.

Another Side Effect of Medication

Another Side Effect of Medication

The side effect I’m experiencing is from taking Clozapine. It is a side effect I’ve experienced before from a different medication, Seroquel, so at least I know what’s going on; I’m not scared or nervous, I’m just frustrated. The side effect is called Dystonia. It is a movement disorder that can cause muscle cramping and can effect as small as one muscle group or as large as your entire body. I’m lucky because the dystonia only has an effect on my lower legs, specifically my ankles. At night, or whenever I get tired, the muscles in my ankles start cramping and causing pain. I used to take Cogentin to counteract this issue, but I stopped taking it when I went off the Seroquel because I didn’t think I needed it anymore.

This past week, I have been especially tired because I haven’t been sleeping that well. This past week is when I first started to notice the dystonia acting up again. When it first started, it was just annoying. As each day passes, it gets more and more uncomfortable until it gets too painful to deal with. Maybe it’s part of what is keeping me awake at night. It’s hard to sleep when you’re in pain and can’t sit still because of the cramping. Last night, I went through my medicine cabinet and found my old pill bottle of Cogentin from a few months back. I took 0.5mg last night, and I took a dose about 30 minutes ago. Tomorrow, I will email my psychiatrist and let him know what’s going on with this issue. I will also ask him if I can take 1mg because the 0.5mg does not seem to be working.

Sometimes, it seems as if some medications can cause more problems than they can help. Clozapine has many side effects, and I’m lucky enough to get several of those side effects (that’s sarcasm, just so you know). Although, I suppose I am pretty lucky. The dystonia could have an effect on my entire body, but luckily it is only a problem in my ankles. I try to remind myself that things could be worse. I try to remember to be grateful for what I have.

Missing My Father on Father’s Day

Missing My Father on Father’s Day

Today is Father’s Day. I’m trying to remember any of the Father’s Days that I spent with my dad, but I can’t. I think that’s because of my memory loss from ECT. Years ago, my mom made several DVDs for everyone in the family that are all about the entire family. Maybe I could watch some of those videos today to have them help bring back some memories. However, they could make me more emotional than I am, and I really don’t want to deal with that right now.

I think I’ll keep myself busy today by cleaning. Staying busying keeps my mind from wandering sometimes. It gives me something to focus on, which can be helpful. A memory of my father just came to me, and I’ll try to write about it, but I am tearing up a bit. I would practice playing the piano just about every day. My dad would come in and sit in the big white leather swivel chair. He would sit there, listening to me, and he would put his arms up as if he was a conductor, conducting an entire orchestra. He would do that all the time. He loved it when I would play Fur Elise and Flight of The Bumblebee. He’s probably the reason why I love classical music.

My dad and I used to go skiing together. He would even fly me out to mountains that were a couple of hours away, such as Sugarloaf, Sugarbush, Whiteface, etc. I remember one day he woke me up very early and asked me if I wanted to go skiing. He made sure I didn’t have any tests that day in school, and then we got dressed and went to his airport (where he kept his plane). I can’t remember which mountain we went to that day, but I do remember skiing and having lunch together in the ski lodge.

I also remember that any time my mom would go away for the day, my dad would have us clean the house so it was clean when she got home. The funniest part of it is that he would sit in the family room reading the newspaper while my brother, my sister, and I would clean. Then, when my mom got home, he would say, “I cleaned the house for you.” That used to annoy me, but now it makes me smile.

I used to hang out with my dad in the break room of his pharmacy. He always wore a white shirt at the store and a pocket protector. Everyone knew my dad, and he was friends with everyone. His employees and his friends would hang out in the break room drinking coffee and telling jokes. I never understood what they were saying because I was so young, but I had a great time simply being there with my dad.

So I do have some memories of my dad; ECT didn’t wipe them all out. I still don’t remember any specific Father’s Day, but that’s okay. As long as I can still hold onto the wonderful memories that I do have, I will be happy. Happy Father’s Day.