.psa.

Jul. 22nd, 2017 02:28 pm
yuuo: (So I'm breaking the habit tonight)
My anti-depressant is supposed to be working, but the last two days, I've been so depressed that I'm forming suicidal ideation again.

For anyone going through this but doesn't like to talk on phones, text 741741. It's a Crisis Line, same as the phone ones, but you'll get talked through with text messages, instead of talking out loud. Good for a lot of reasons. Some of us have phone anxiety, and not everyone's in a position to be able to use an out loud voice at the moment they need the help.
yuuo: (Here's to us here's to love)
Wife's double-mastectomy went well. Surgeon said he got everything that looked abnormal out of her breast and lymph nodes. (I'd hope he got it all out of her breasts, he took those completely off.) What he took out looked like scar tissue to him, so it's possible she's 100% NED. (Note: NED, not cured. There is no cure for Stage IV breast cancer.) NED meants she's got a decent chance at being one of those tiny outliers who live decades beyond diagnosis. She's already made it past the average three years, and is running strong.

The surgery to remove her ovaries was also successful- they did those at the same time.

She is home, and kinda fading in and out regularly from pain and painkillers. (Hydrocodone/Ibuprofen is a magical thing, and also, if you have issues with Acetaminophen for whatever reason, like my wife, whose cancer had metastasized to her liver, demand this stuff. It's one of the only opiates that's stronger than Tramadol that doesn't come only with Tylenol in it.) But at this exact second, she's up and coherent and on her laptop.

Photographer friend, is who is the first father I became friends with and therefore is very important to us, is leaving today, and it saddens me. Wife's parents leave in a few more days, and Wife's best friend/heart sister is showing up right after that, so I have help with Wife's drains and general care at least until she's at a point where I can do it by myself without having a meltdown. I love my wife, will do anything for her, but uh. I'm not a natural caretaker. I'm not a white mage. I'm the defender. I will fight to the death for her, but medical care is a bit beyond me, at least for long term. So family and friends are all in town to help and I'm so grateful for it.

I'm getting excited to be roleplaying on IJ again. I've been getting some with Wife, but that's on hold until she's fully coherent on a regular basis and can tag without feeling wonky. But, my own heart-sister is joining in, and I'll be playing with her in the meantime. ^_^ Happy me is happy.

I've been kinda plugging away at Hephaestus in the meantime, and Prometheus will be picked back up once I know what's going on in the parts those two overlap at the end. I have a chapter in there to finish now, but it's smushy fluff, and while I love smushy fluff, I have trouble writing it. I'm that writer who likes to rip up your heart and use it for lawn mulch with little reprieve. Suffer my pen. Mwaha.

Cats are doing fine, all told. Loki got his annual and his three year rabies on Wednesday, and Wife went in for surgery on Thursday, so he is more riled than the others. Lots of new people, constantly invading their space (we had some other friends over last night for weekly gaming session), one of them ended up taking a dump on the floor out of stress protest, and we think it might've been Loki, but we're not sure. Thankfully, it was Carolyn who was here to clean it up, and I was at the hospital, so I didn't have to deal with that. :p I'm such a nice person (I would've done it if it'd been me to discover it. I'm not terrible to my cats.)

Although, speaking of taking care of the cats, I need to clean their box. Will do that when I'm done here.

On the mental health front, my doctor put me on clonazapam for my anxiety, since the Ativan had just stopped working and the hydroxyzine was only good for low grade treatment. It puts me to sleep, but it calms my mind in the process. The Ativan put me to sleep, but I was still wound up tighter than a spring when I'd wake up.

I also got my Fetzima upped, because not only is it an anti-depressant, being an SNRI instead of an SSRI, it helps with anxiety... and energy levels. So in about a week, I should start seeing an end to my hypersomnia, at least the level it's been at. It's caffeine pills in the meantime so I can be up when Wife needs me.

And now, I run to do that cat box. Have a good day, friends.
yuuo: (Can somebody help me?)
So I got a call from United Health Care, who are partnered with Nebraska state Medicaid, to follow up on their services, make sure I'm getting what I'm needing from them, and help them figure out where the gaps are and how to fix them, which, I think, is fucking fantastic.

What's odd is that she was confirming my diagnoses, and mentioned that she had bipolar on her record. Which... was news to me. I asked her what my psychiatrist had on record, and she confirmed schizoaffective and anxiety, which... is also odd. My formal evaluation testing came up with those diagnoses, but the doctor went in and did some futzing with the diagnoses so that while the anxiety/panic disorder was correct, I had schizophrenia and possible depression.

I have no idea where the bipolar came in.

And, of course, I can't get into my patient portal for that provider without calling the office for a new link to register with (weird set up, but at least it's with the same portal system as my PCP, so I can switch between the two providers with one login) to see what the fresh hell is up with that.

It is also just now occurring to me that my therapist might've submitted the bipolar diagnosis, since she is licensed to make such calls. Which means I'm super happy that she's volunteering to come with me to my next appointment with my doctor.

My wife wanted to go with me originally to help me remember all the complaints I've had, because not only do I have such a shitty memory that I lose track, I get a bit anxious just seeing the doctor and get afraid that I'm not 'perfect enough' if I'm not responding to his treatments well.

But. Well. We got a letter in the mail on Saturday.

My wife's bilateral mastectomy is the sixth.

Which.

Is when my appointment is.

And I can't reschedule, because I'll run out of my meds before I can get in again, and they won't refill without an office visit anymore. Thankfully, when this came to light at therapy on Monday, my therapist was wonderful and volunteered to come with me, since she has been taking notes on my various concerns and I haven't been, and again, the anxiety and shitty memory. I used to have a decent one, then my disorder got out of control, and the meds I was put on for it fried what was left of my memory neurons.
yuuo: (You knew the deal- no one gives a damn)
Today is one of those days.

Lately, I've been happily existing on about six hours or so of sleep a day, all in the afternoon, which is the nastiest part of the day weather-wise anyway, so why the fuck would I want to be awake and active then anyway, right?

Then I made the mistake of sleeping in my own bed, and yesterday, my sleep was such shit that I slept almost 20 hours. This isn't a crash from the slight hypomania I was riding, because after I napped a few hours on the couch, I felt so much better than I had after longer-than-healthy 'rest' in my bed.

I'm going to be trapped on the couch forever.

But, as usual, my wife got tired overnight, because she is a normal person with normal circadian rhythms. So I'm alone right now.

We were folding laundry a little bit ago, and she was boggling that she's now a size eight.

I am a size twenty-four.

I was fine with it coming up, because I'm super happy for her and proud of her that she lost all that weight- she was a sixteen this time last year. But, she made the mistake of acting guilty and trying to assure me that she loved me despite my size, and how she wishes I could be that little, too.

I wish she'd just left that alone. Because now all I can hear is my doctor's disapproving voice, telling me to stop drinking soda, stop eating dairy (to be fair, I suppose, I'm mildly lactose intolerant), start eating healthy, I need to start exercising, this weight isn't good for me.

Well no fucking shit.

The last time I lost weight, it was because I'd simply stopped taking in any calories that weren't a few sodas a day. That's all I existed on. My depression had manifested over those two months as a lack of desire for food, and a lack of energy to cook on the rare occasion that I was hungry.

Then I saw that I'd lost about thirty pounds in a month and was super happy, so I decided to continue that the healthy way. I started eating health, as much as I could on our budget, which made me miserable because I hate healthy food and I always feel hungry after a 'normal' meal of it. I exercised for a minimum of an hour every day, first thing in the morning. I thought that'd make me more alert, lose more weight, make me happier. After all, that's all the things that good diet and exercise are supposed to do, right?

Whoever tells you that exercise wakes you up, that it's fun, that it helps you lose weight, that good food is like medicine? They're fucking liars.

I gained every pound I'd lost back and then some. I felt more miserable because exercise actually brings my mood down. I was tired more often.

So now I'm worked up because my choices are apparently A) be doing all the things I'm supposed to be doing, but miserable because I'm gaining weight and hate what I'm eating, or B) stop eating entirely and lose weight and still feel hungry, but at least it's not because food is making me miserable.

Fantastic options.

Then my wife informs me that she's tired and wants to go to bed.

I slept twenty hours. I am not tired. I will not be going to bed any time soon.

So now I'm alone, with nothing to do that doesn't just make me more depressed. I can't work up the energy to write, I don't like the book I'm reading, I don't have access to my art program on this laptop, and I cant go to the desktop to work on something there, because my desktop's power source is dying. The fan is whining in pain. I risk setting my computer on fire if I go on it. And this laptop is so ancient and slow and dying, that I am writing about three lines ahead of what shows on my screen, because it's lagging, and that's in all browsers, so don't anyone fucking tell me to switch to Chrome. My Firefox works no worse than Chrome on this piece of shit, and Firefox has all my logins and my extensions that I need to switch between roleplay accounts easily.

And that's another thing.

The only thing my brain is willing to hide behind is roleplay, because it's both creative and interactive, but lately, I have had to beg, fight, and cry for every minute of it I've gotten, and I'm starting to think that nobody fucking cares about me anymore. People don't talk to me, nobody's missed me on Facebook, where I haven't been in a few days. I don't think anyone's even noticed I'm not interacting there.

I'm alone, bored, and miserable. And fat.

I should just go take my medicine and an Ambien and sleep for the next twenty-four hours again.

But I can't do that, because I have therapy at two today, and there's stuff to do around the house, since we found out at the last damn minute that my wife's surgeons scheduled her surgery for next fucking Thursday. When we were expecting not until four to six weeks. I have my next psychiatric appointment... next fucking Thursday. And I can't get out of that, because I will run out of my medicines if I do, and my psychiatrist's office won't do refills without an appointment.

Which means I have to get up early to take my wife to the hospital, wait around for a few hours until they get off their asses and actually take her into the OR, sit around for several more hours, hoping and praying that she doesn't die on the table while they remove half her chest, then wait with her in recovery, then make sure she's sleeping well enough that I can skip off to my pdoc's appointment, all while dealing with my mother-in-law (who has been a right pain in the ass and doing nothing but hurting my wife), my heart-father, and a few days later, my heart-sister-in-law crashing on my couches.

Which is the only place I can go with my laptop, and again, desktop is dying, so now I won't have anywhere to go at all.

I can't help but think I would be better off just committing myself and asking to stay a month until all this goes away. It's either that, or I may be tempted to drive my car off a goddamn bridge.

This is the way my brain works. This is what depression looks like. This is what anxiety looks like. This is what mental illness looks like.

My advice? Avoid it if you can.
yuuo: (Happy hurts sometimes)
Happy to report that I'm almost off the Zoloft. I got a partial prescription of 50 mg pills, with instructions to take them for one week, then cut them in half and take those another week, then I'm done. Huzzah!

Risperdal dosage has been cut in half. I suspect we might stop it entirely next time.

Still on only 40 mg of Fetzima. Would be happier with more, and we discussed waiting until next time to mess with my anxiety medicines. My anxiety has been through the roof lately. I'm scared to leave the house sometimes. But the doctor didn't want to fuck around with too many medicines all at once, so I'm to just hold on and hope for the best in the meantime.

Mental health medicine roulette sucks, but what is, is. At least I'm getting off the Zoloft and the Risperdal. One thing at a time.
yuuo: (Don't leave me like this)
Yeah, yeah, I know, I said I'd do something for Schizophrenia Awareness Week last month. Medicine changes and stress and plain old fashioned depression stopped that. I'll get to it some time. I can't promise when.

That said, I've got a pdoc (abbreviation for psychiatrist) appointment in about an hour and I'm not looking forward to it. I'm hoping he'll take me off the Risperdal entirely, leaving just the Latuda. I want to start getting off the Zoloft, too. But I'm scared we're going to maintain status quo, and that's not good enough. The progress is too slow. I want an increase in the Fetzima, a decrease in the Zoloft, and a cessation of the Risperdal.

I guess we'll see what the doc wants to do.

I miss Ritalin. This tired all the time nonsense is bullshit.
yuuo: (Can somebody help me?)
We'll start the week this year with a poem from my wife, describing the experiences I've related to her over the years. (This is in part to buy me time to do actual posts I've been promising. Good grief, at least I only have a week and not an entire month like breast cancer.)


Sounds Of Silver
By [personal profile] kuchenhexe

Isolation in a crowd is loneliest of all
Amid all the voices, whispers rise and fall
People press around you, faceless in a haze
If there's a method in a madness, then method's surely crazed.

Perhaps if you're a half step in a world where rain falls up,
You see what should yet never did sip from comprehension's cup.
Sad but true, far more are blinded, fully turned away,
Cloaked and draped in silver fog, dissolving in the gray.

From the cacophony jangle of a tumultuous crowd,
To the low insidious whispers when the silence is so loud,
Colors can be lovely, the silver fog can seem to be melody divine
But even Sirens are serene as you sink that final time.

As you hear the sound of silver, there's an echo of distress,
Schizophrenia is a burden, and its struggle gives no rest.
Because if you'll open up your eyes and listen close,
The sound of silver is repeating the call of the SOS's note.

Hear us, help us, don't forget us, tossed carelessly aside.
Put quality of life within our reach and bridge the fog's divide.
We're not the misconceptions that Hollywood likes to hear,
Money and tickets hand over fist preying on social fears.

Fund research to find new drugs to help us stabilize,
So we might leave the land of fog and have productive lives.
In this sound of silver, hear our cry, the SOS distress.
Don't sweep us under and forget us, we try our very best.
yuuo: (Wherever I go I take you with me)
EEG results are in. I am Depressed. My brain shows no signs of physical damage. My working memory is surprisingly good. My attention is in the shitter.

At least it didn't come back "You are 100% okay you big faker mcfakeyson." Which was my fear.

My prolactin blood draw also came back, my levels were up in the sixties. Which means my prolactin levels match that of a very pregnant woman- it should be 2 to 29 ng/mL. So uh. Yeah. He's weaning me down off the Risperdone, and keeping me on the Latuda. We've removed the .5 mg midday dose, and will decrease more the next go-round.

We also started me on Fetzima ER, which is a serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor (SNRI). Which is different from Zoloft, which is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI). SSRIs are the more common ones used, but since I had a bad reaction to Lexapro many a moon ago, and the Zoloft stopped doing anything fairly quickly and didn't respond to dose changes, we're trying a different type. But, since Fetzima takes a month to kick in, in the name of not sending me to the hospital from feeling shitty, we're not taking me off the Zoloft until I've been on the Fetzima a month, just to keep me from dropping too much and too fast.

So, here's to hoping the Fetzima works, because I really need out of this depression spiral. (Can I say that I have a feeling getting my prolactin levels under control might help, too? Pregnancy hormones, yikes.)

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