I think this is so important for people to read and understand. Last weekend I was asked why I was pushing myself so hard. Here’s the answer: No one else knows precisely how I do things, and no one else knows how difficult it is for me to get these things done. They don’t have to live with my pain for a second. I’d prefer to blame myself, and only myself, if there is a missing item or a mistake made (I made a big mistake a few weeks ago and had to return two items that I would normally NEVER screw up, but all it took for me was stress, distraction, and a single moment of feeling overwhelmed.).
I may have horrible days, like today, when I did have to ask for help, but there are many 10+ pain level days when I force myself to grocery shop and run errands because no one else will ever be as thorough as I am. Yes, it bothers me, but I don’t have much choice. When I DO ask for help, people act like I just asked for ten million dollars, so I don’t accept help any more unless someone offers and I feel the offer is genuine.
I know what you’re thinking. “This is the first time they’ve thought of it in all the years they’ve owned you?!” In all seriousness, I made the appointment myself, long before my Urgent Care fiasco of last Tuesday.
However, at 5:00 a.m., I really don’t need Large Paws (Kitten) walking all over me from head to toe to shove me out of bed. I’m not sure what that was about, other than to annoy me and get me into the kitchen to give them their breakfast. Five a.m. Really?! Since when is that acceptable?! I mean, it was still dark out (at the time). This is what happens when you raise food-aggressive cats, people.
When I woke up and started making actual sounds, having dragged myself to the cough medicine, I heard Cat plummet down from wherever she was with a little “Boom!” onto the hard wood. The second I do anything even remotely interesting, day or night, I am subjected to the “Boom!” and her elephant steps come flying down to see what I’m up to. I walked into the kitchen and said “Are you both in here?” before turning on the light. There is NOTHING normal about that kind of behavior, or discussions with cats who only want food and nothing else. I swear, I won’t see either of them until I get home from the doctor. Unless I’m feeding them, they now have zero use for me whatsoever. Can you feel the love?!
Later today is my first appointment with a new doctor in a little over five years. My last one went a little something like this “I don’t want anymore pain patients!”, which was practically yelled at me, disdain as long as a month on this doctor’s face. Yeah, and I don’t want a doctor with a stick up his ass, but “pain patients” are probably the reason you can pay your student loans from the subpar ‘medical school’ you went to and we’re probably the reason you can make your car payment each month, so shush.
If you’re a D.O. and not an M.D., you didn’t go through the same training methods or learn the exact same things. If I wanted someone to treat me holistically, I’d go to a naturopath, not a D.O. Call me a snob, but I want someone who has their shit together, regardless of the two letters after their name. I’m a person, not a number in a chart. I don’t want to be passed on to the Physician’s Assistant (especially not this doctor’s assistant who could have killed me if I wasn’t a smart patient that spoke up last week.), Nurse Practitioner, etc. I just want to keep it real. If I have to wait weeks on end for an appointment with the actual doctor, then I want to SEE the actual doctor. It’s not a lot to ask.
I go in today with zero expectations. Honestly, they couldn’t be any lower than they are. I did write up a detailed medical history for her since it’ll be a while before she gets mediocre-at best records from my previous physicians. The lab is next door to the doctor’s office, so I suspect my first order of business is to be thoroughly vamped. Good luck. The only way you’ll get so much as a drop of blood is by going into my hands or wrist. You might have better luck with a paper-cut. At the mere mention of blood work, my veins disappear. I typed that and only two are visible in my left wrist and forearm. The others have gone bye-bye. They’ve been through a LOT over the years. 😦 My appointment is a little before 3:00 PM, so there’s no way in hell I’m fasting on the potential she wants to run tests I don’t actually need. I don’t have diabetes (Thank God and Goddess.), but she can run a hemoglobin A1C ’til the cows come home. The only thing I think will be high is my cholesterol, because it runs in the family, but it’s always been good previously, so I’m not going to agonize over it. My white count will be elevated, as it always is, which is indicative of an infection OR an autoimmune disease. This time, it would be hard to tell which because I’m fighting off two infections. I’m usually just fighting my body. 😦
In the history report I started with concussions and worked my way up to the reason I’m going there. Not once in this report do I use the words “Chronic Pain” or “Fibromyalgia”. I decided I want to be diagnosed properly, and therefore, she can refer me to a Neurologist and a Rheumatologist, and whomever else for that matter, but I’m not using those words until a new doctor does. I do not want or need another doctor treating me like crap because the words “Chronic Pain” and “Fibromyalgia” make them uncomfortable. Or worse, label me as a “drug seeker” when I am not. I’ve never once asked or demanded pain medication from a doctor.
I am still recovering from the infections I have and the case of Bronchitis. I missed a couple of doses of antibiotics, so I still feel pretty awful. My sinuses are terribly painful. I keep hoping it’ll rain and that some of the pressure will ease, but thus far, not a single rain drop. Figures.
I won’t lie; I’m concerned that so much is wrong with me and that no doctor on this planet will ever get to the bottom of it. I’m sick to my stomach, wondering what I’ve inherited genetically considering my brother has had a quadruple bypass, which the doctors said was not anything he did or didn’t do health-wise, but a genetic issue. Both of my parents had heart issues young; my mother died as a result of her heart giving out. My Grandfather died at 40 from a massive heart attack. More than half of my family has had or had cancer. So while I’ve got good genes in the looks and youth department, internally, I have just cause to be concerned.
I am the only person in my family with any form of Chronic Pain. My brother told me that his migraines got better post-bypass surgery. Ever since then, I’ve wondered if my heart is a ticking time bomb waiting to take me out, despite being told twice that it’s healthy and working as it should. And when it comes to cancer, I have a lot of cause to worry as a non-smoker who was subjected to secondhand smoke for the majority of her life, which is precisely how my Grandmother got cancer, twice. She also hid from the sun my entire life and still managed to get skin cancer. I’ve spent the majority of my life covered in sunscreen, and now and then, I still get a little burn here and there if I haven’t reapplied and have been out in direct sunlight longer than two hours. We talk about global warming, but we should also address the holes in the ozone layer when we discuss the need for sunscreen. People are developing allergies to the sun, and are wearing SPF 100 just to be outside for 10-30 minutes a day, if that. Hell, they have to wear it indoors too, because UV rays can and do come through the glass.
Less than an hour has passed since I fed Large Paws and Bunny Paws. I haven’t seen them or heard from them since. They’re doing a lot to boost my self-esteem, let me tell ya!
And so, today’s journey begins with pulling my shit together, preparing myself for this appointment, and going. Like I said, my expectations are low, but I’ve managed to work myself up into some very respectable panic attacks between Sunday and this morning. 😦
Wish me good luck. I keep hoping I’ll just be hit by a MACK truck and be able to call it a day. What can I say? I’m tired of this crap.
copyright © 2017 by Lisa Marino & Blackbird Serenity, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
This is not how I would personally describe anxiety, but everyone’s discussion on the subject at hand will be slightly different. Mine, however, is drastically different.