Thursday, March 26, 2009

What I've Been Up To.....(no good)

Well, I’d say “I’m back” but that seems to jinx things. Let me just say that the reason I haven’t been blogging is that I am still trying to figure out the ear thing. The pain level is constantly around 6-8 on a scale of 10 so it makes it hard to get up the enthusiasm to write. I have had a few hours where the pain has gone to about a 3 but then it comes back up. The great thing about having a blog is that I found out some of you are good readers and worried about why you hadn’t heard from me and so have called. It makes me feel all warm and fuzzy, with a side of pain, that there are folks out there who worry about me when something is askew. Living alone in my cottage with that spiral staircase and the shower door that sticks shut, sometimes my mind goes to the place about “how long would I be stuck or immobilized before someone missed me and would come or send help.” “Help I’ve fallen and I can’t get up.” Sometimes when I see those cheesy ads for the medical alert necklace for pretty old people I wonder if I should get one. But I have found out through this ear thing that I am more connected than I sometimes believe. Phew. I’ve been given the name of an ENT who is supposed to be really good and am making an appointment with her. What you haven’t known, because it isn’t in my blog, is that the day after I last posted the pain got so bad and I was so frustrated and starting to get worked up about the pain that my throat started closing up and so I drove myself to the ER near my house and checked myself in to have someone take a look. The ER doctor was very nice. But he couldn’t find anything. They ran a CAT Scan of my head. I am happy to say that the report noted that there are no unexpected empty places and the white matter looks normal. But unhappy that they couldn’t find anything wrong. So I was directed to see an ENT the next day. I didn’t really have a referral for one in particular and the straw I drew was this young boy who did exactly what my regular doctor did but prescribed something different. I’ve been on that now for about a week and still not better. So I will try the new doctor just as soon as I can get in. I am starting to wonder if I have some kind of nerve damage that is permanent, because I don’t think you can see nerve damage. In a word, it sucks.

On a good note, Andy has been home since last Friday on his spring break. After a weekend of hanging out with his friends, he got to have his wisdom teeth pulled and is in recovery process. The surgery went really well (not impacted, teeth came out whole, no stitches, only a few hours of bleeding, not much pain, no nausea). He is anxious to be able to drive again and get out of the house so he is not taking the heavy duty pain meds and seems to be OK without. He actually thanked me several times for taking care of him. He’s been very sweet, more communicative and enthusiastic than is oft the case, and even asks me (and really wants to know) how my day has been when I get home. And how my ears are doing. He did not learn this behavior from his father. I am hopeful for him.

Speaking of which, I have been thinking about the saying “a high pain tolerance.” I have been told that before by doctors over different things. And then I was thinking, duh. Anybody who knew me in my former life, as wife to my wasbund, is aware of my high pain tolerance. And I think kinda that that wasn’t necessarily a good thing, if you know what I mean. Well, I hope that I don’t end up having to learn to live with this ear pain thing. I have new empathy for folks who deal with constant pain. I am kind of getting used to it which doesn’t mean that it gets better. It’s just that my expectations to not have it are growing slimmer. I have tried so many medicines I’m sure my body doesn’t know what to expect. I’m disappointed that I am back to my no sleeping at night patterns. I blame it some on the steroids and prescription antihistamines. It’s weird to be relaxed from one medication but wired from another. I have discovered middle of the night Spike channel that shows various caught on video shows. Crooks, car crashes, plane crashes, car chases, people snapping psychotically, etc. Oh, and also, on another channel the “Real Wives of New York. This is what I watch in the middle of the night. I am not sure why. Probably because it gets my mind off the pain, which seems to get worse when I lie down. It feels like a dirty little secret to admit what I am watching. But the blog is about sharing dirty little secrets so now you know.

I sure hope to be able to write next about how the new doctor figured it right out. Made some simple adjustment and I am pain free. I would love to write that. Soon. Until then, I’ll write when I can and whine when I can’t. Thank you for all the good follow up.


Follow up: I have an appointment with the recommended specialist next Wednesday. Oh boy. Another week of this sh*t. I would have made a stink but since I've had this for five weeks or so now what's one more week of hedoublehokeysticks? At least I won't have to go to the follow up appointment with the young boy who didn't seem interested in what I thought he should know. So far, nobody seems concerned that I was in Sudan and may have picked something up there. Nobody thinks it's worth checking out to see if this is a reaction to a prescription I started the same time the pain kicked in. Nobody seems to be concerned that I was up and down on little planes and big planes. Nobody seems to think there's any connection to getting this right after I had been through a rough, very hot experience. Hope the new doc will at least give me the courtesy of hearing everything and consider this a good mystery to solve. Not give me some two week prescription and send me on my way.

Thank you. Venting is good...


Anonymous said...

Jen, good to "read" you again, but not good news about the ear thing. I have you in prayer kiddo, get better it's almost sailing time!
Love ya
Deb S.

Anonymous said...

UGH!! I am so pissed that your ear pain is still resident. I know coping is hard, but I'm glad you were able to post a blog that had some positive spin. Hang in there, Sis. I'm glad Andy's teeth extractions were not dramatic and that he's been good, caring company. I love you! j