Tuesday, June 15, 2010

So Good To Have Luke Home

It's great to have Luke home. Not just because I love him to pieces but also because he's darn handy to have around.  He does a bit of yard work to help out ... carries things like laundry up and down the stairs for me ... reaches things.  Handy.

Yesterday we got a brand new bed!!!  Pretty exciting!!  It's our anniversary gift to ourselves.  We bought our first bed 26 years ago.  It was a "partial water bed" ... in other words it was a water mattress set into a frame that made it look like a real bed.  Several years ago we gave that up when we bought a mattress off friends of ours who picked up an inexpensive set for their cabin only to find it wouldn't fit in the room.  We threw a feather topper on it and that's been our bed for many years.  With Luke's extra hands and strength to get the old bed, the pleasant, young movers brought the new one in and set it up.  It's really high!  I almost need a stool ... not quite ... but almost!  And cushy!  It felt great to sleep on last night! 

I am so tired this week.  I had trouble getting through both yesterday and today at work.  That's disappointing.  I've been wanting to send some emails and make some phone calls to people I haven't connected with since before we left for Vancouver in May but I've just been so busy and now tired since I got back ... so please forgive me if I haven't talked to anyone for a while.  By the time I get home from work and then have home things to do, I'm too tired to think let along talk.  Even now I feel too tired to blog but I have things I need to record for my own records ... records to which all of you are privy, of course.

What I need to document is today's appointment with my family doctor.  I've been eager to talk to him and so made an appointment when I got home from Montreal.  I think I posted earlier about wanting to talk with a doctor about my theory that the morphine I'd been taking for the painful tooth problem had "cured" my stiff and aching joints, muscles and tendons.  I've been thinking about it a lot and because the morphine (or at least something) completely solved the problem temporarily, perhaps there's something I can take that will let me have my legs back permanently.  I can't even tell you what a difference it was to move normally.  Until I could for that brief while, I had kind of forgotten what it was like to move normally and I'd begun to doubt that I ever would again.  Sometimes you forget what "normal" was like.  It was wonderful.  So liberating.  I want that back.  Badly.  With that in mind, I was careful not to get my hopes up because I really had no idea.  I doubted that a doctor would keep me on morphine to solve the problem.

Anyway, I explained my experience and theory to my doctor who, while a little surprised, concurred with the evidence.  And he gave me hope!!  That was the most exciting thing.  HOPE!!  We're going to go with some trial and error to see if something less strong will have the same effect.  He explained that it seems that opiates are the family of medicine that helped me, morphine being the strongest in that category.  He mentioned codeine and something else as being in the same category.  They all have addictive qualities as well as some other possible side effects such as drowsiness and constipation.  But, as he explained, we'll start with less strong medications and see if they work.  If not, we'll keep try something else. If it turns out that morphine is the only drug that will give me back my legs, he says that provided my use of it is monitored, there's no reason why I can't take it.  He compared it to a diabetic needing their insulin to function normally.  If it turns out that I need morphine, so be it!!  But before we get to that point, we'll try some other things first.  I'm so happy to think that I will ... WILL ... get my legs back!! Just like I was able to for that short while, I'll be able to walk ... no, RUN ... up and down stairs instead of sometimes having to take them slowly, one at a time.  I'll be able to get out of the car normally instead of having to make sure both feet are on the ground and then using my arms (and compromised shoulders) to heave myself out.  I'll be able to start walking normally as soon as I stand up.  and I'll be able to stand up when I want to ... easily ... instead of gearing up for it and heaving myself to a standing position and then standing there for a while before starting to hobble around.  I'll be able to move so much more quickly.  My knees and heels won't ache.  My hips will feel more flexible again.  HOPE!  I'm so excited!

I had fully prepared for my hopes to be shot down.  For that reason, I had kept a lot of emotion under control and as soon as my doctor started talking about the possibilities, I started crying.  I felt silly.  I apologized.  I don't know if he understood why I was crying or not.  Maybe he sees enough of that to "get it" in his profession.  I tried so hard to not cry but couldn't help myself.  When I got to the car, with my prescription in hand, I just broke down and sobbed and sobbed!  It wasn't sad crying so don't get all sympathetic for me.  It was more embarrassing than anything.  I know what it was.  It was just tension release.  I hadn't realized how much I'd been suppressing my hopes and when I learned that there really is hope, I just lost it.  I was so red-eyed that I couldn't go right away to the drug store to get my prescription filled so I went home first to make some lunch and get myself together.  Then Luke drove me to the pharmacy and dropped me off at work while he went on to his grandparents' to do some yard work.  By then I wasn't crying so much but for the rest of the day I've been on the edge.  If I think about it, I start getting weepy again.  That's typical.  Does that happen to you that once you start crying it's really hard to stop and it's way too easy to start up again even when you don't feel you should be?  It's so frustrating because it's so open to misinterpretation.  Anyway, I had no good reason to cry today ... I think I just needed to release a lot of tension that I didn't even know I was holding in. 

So ... this drug I'm taking is Diclofenac.  My doctor says that if it's going to work, I'll know within a week.  He says it shares some similarities with both Aspirin and Ibuprofen.  I can't take Ibuprofen but we don't what it is about that drug that I react to so we can't say for sure that I'll have any trouble with this drug.  I'll know soon enough.  Of course, the possible side effects of this drug are a bit disconcerting but so are the possible side effects for most drugs.  It's only a week for starters so I'm eager to see if it will help.

I'm also starting back on the Tamoxifen again. I stopped taking it so that we could determine if it was causing any problems with my joints but I (and my Doctor) feel that it hasn't effected my joints. So, after being off of it for 6 weeks, I'm starting back on it.  Tonight.  And that means starting back on Vitamin D, Calcium, and Fish Oil.  And a multi-vitamin.  I'll slowly start adding the other supplements and vitamins that I stopped taking at the same time as the Tamoxifen. 

And that's my story this Tuesday. I need to go to bed ... in our brand new comfy mile high bed!! I hope I feel better and more capable tomorrow!

Happy Birthday yesterday, Alanna.  
Know that you, Ron and your kids are 
in my heart and prayers. 


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