Today is another loop ….

The last couple of days, I’ve had a dizzy spells. Nothing major, but as time has gone on, they’ve gotten worse. Until today.

Today was not a good day. I kept feeling lightheaded, had trouble staying focused, or even awake and felt nauseous. I talked to one of my coworkers about how much worse it was getting, and she convinced me to call my PCP’s office.

I talked to the same nurse I talked to last week, although she didn’t cop to it. I relayed to her the issues I was having, and repeated back to her the instructions the “nurse” gave me last Thursday when I talked to her.

I told her, and posted last night, the meds she told me to take, and in what dosages. Unfortunately, the dosages she gave me were WRONG!

Instead of the 40 mg of Lisinopril I was told to take, I’m supposed to take 20mg. THAT EXPLAINS WHY I FEEL LIKE I’M FALLING APART! I had Cheryl check my blood pressure, and it was still, surprisingly, high. I’m hoping that’s because I was upset about everything. With any luck, it’ll all even out in the next day or two, and I’ll feel better. In the meantime, I head back to see my Doc on Tuesday, to see what he has to say.

I understand that accidents happen, but I really, REALLY felt terrible. I’ve laid in bed and felt lightheaded without it involving alcohol. Oh well.

As a side note, I got a call back from the Sleep Clinic, finally. I do have Obstructive Sleep Apnea, and get to have another sleep study! This time, it’s to get my levels all squared away for my CPAP!! Thankfully, they’re supposed to be great about helping with all the insurance company bullshit that goes along with DME (durable medical equipment). Let’s hope.

Stay happy and love each other!

Linda ❤

Life’s a roller coaster ride!!

The last couple of weeks have been a real roller coaster for me. Up and down. Feeling like crap. It hasn’t been a banner month for me! But here’s hoping we’ve turned a corner…

For those of you that were unaware, the last several weeks, I’ve been having real issues with edema – fluid retention. I was careful to cut down on sodium (which I’d already done) and I was drinking upwards of 2+ gallons of water a day, and it seemed to take up residence in my legs.  I’ve always been pretty thick in the calves and such, but I devloped some flat out cankles.

For those of you unfamiliar with the cankle.

For those of you unfamiliar with the cankle.

When I went to my July 15 weigh in, I was just starting to notice the swelling, and that week, I lost 4 lbs. I was a little disappointed, because I expected it to be more, as I had gained a week previous, and I was busting my ass to stick with the plan. My RD told me to not fret, losing 4 lbs in a week was a big deal, so I brushed it off and was determined about next weeks weight in.

The following week, on July 22, I gained 5 lbs, almost topping 480 again. I was devastated! But my RD thought it was the fluid, and suggested I call my doctor (PCP) the next day. I went home, had a “fuck you” moment, and ate a entire container of hummus. At least it wasn’t ice cream!

The next day, I called Dr. Popescu’s office and talked to a nurse. I explained what was going on with my fluid retention, and how it was affecting my weigh ins, so I started taking my HCTZ again, knowing it is a diuretic and hoping it might help. She told me she’d talk to him and call me back.

The next day, I got a return call from the office. The first thing she did was scold me for not taking my meds correctly. (I call bullshit on that; I told him 2 months before that I’d stopped the HCTZ because it makes me pee like a racehorse, and sometimes, I’m slow getting to the potty! I refuse to have an accident at work!!) Second, she was going to call me in scripts for a fluid pill and potassium, and I had to change my blood pressure medicine. She then made an appointment for me for next Tuesday afternoon so that he can follow up with me.

Here is the final tally of my current meds from ALL my doctors:

Lisinopril – 40mg per day (up from 20mg)

HCTZ – 25mg per day

Pantoprazole – 40mg per day (Dr Ali prescribed after the EGD)

Iburopren – 800mg three times per day (my little bit of heaven from Ortho)

Lasix – 40mg twice per day

Klor-Con – 20mg a day while I’m taking the lasix.

He prescribed the lasix for only seven days, presumably so he can see how I’m doing before deciding to write a new script for me. Strangely, the potassium is a full month plus two refills? Whodawhatsit?

The plus side to my new career as a pill popper is that they seem to be working!! The edema has gone down considerably in the last two weeks or so, and that’s a good thing, despite the fact that I pee every fourteen minutes.

I had my weekly weigh in after work today and I lost…

ELEVEN POUNDS!!!

Thank you, Lasix, for becoming my new best friend!!

That being said, I’m now less than 20 pounds from my pre-op goal. That makes me a happy girl! And I don’t want to jinx anything, but I haven’t used my cane at work the last two days. Shhhhh!!!

What did you do on Monday?

This girl went to a Bariatrics support group meeting, and now I’m at the hospital for my sleep study. The tech is a real sweetheart. We even spent the last hour talking books. Which is a good thing, because she was wiring me up at the same time.

image

That’s a great look, isn’t it? Should only be another hour or so and I can go to sleep.  My ass is dragging and I’m ready for some sleep.
I’ll try and post more tomorrow; the pulse oximeter is getting in the way!

Sweet dreams,

Linda

 

Edit – because I should never be allowed to blog from my phone!

I really need to get better at this blogging stuff…

I know, I know. I haven’t posted in two weeks. Yes, I suck. Here’s an update on what’s going on in my corner of the universe.

  • The path came back from the biopsies they did during my EGD. Everything looks a-okay. I still haven’t filled the Protonix prescription, though. I keep forgetting it’s on my nightstand. The Ibuprofen has started to affect my stomach a little, so I really do need to start taking it.
  • The knee is definitely getting worse. It scares me that I have so long to wait for knee surgery, and it’s already this bad.
  • I haven’t heard anything back from Dr. Ali’s office or Dr. Popescu’s about the EKG thing, so I still don’t know if I need a cardiac clearance. At least I have plenty of time before surgery for them to get things hammered out.
  • I had my weigh in today and lost 4 pounds. Not a huge amount of weight. It probably would have been more except….
  • I’m retaining fluid. A lot of fluid. Pam said she figured I’m probably lugging around an extra five pounds..in my ankles. They’re looking like tree trunks today. I started taking the HCTZ again, in the hopes it would eliminate some of it, but it’s only the second day. If it hasn’t cleared up at least a little in the next few days, I’m calling my PCP.
  • Work has been terrible. One stressful shitstorm after another. I almost turned in my notice yesterday. It was that bad.
  • On a happier note, my daughter Mariah turned 23 last Friday. Pam told me at our last meeting that I need to get out more, so we took a trip to the casino in Salamanca. Only took a little dough with us, and came home empty handed, but it was still a fun time. We took one of her friends with us, then came back to my house and I gave her the gift of cherry jello shots, which they both seemed to thoroughly enjoy. (I had one.)

That’s about it for now. I’m going to relax with my feet propped up and do some research for my nutritionist in regard to insurance billing. Yes, I deal with insurances all day at work, so of course that’s what I would do on an evening off. It’s just that she is such a nice person, and I want to do what I can to help her get her business off the ground. It’s totally selfish – if she has to close up shop, that means I have to do my monthly weigh ins in either Titusville or Erie. I’ll take Russell over both of them every day.

Enjoy the sunshine, if you’re getting any, and remember to be kind to each other.

Linda ❤

What I failed to mention….

After I posted last night about My Crappy Day, I realized that I didn’t go into much detail about the EKG. So here goes…

When Anita called me from UPMC Bariatrics, she told me that my EKG came back abnormal, and now they are insisting I have a cardiac clearance before my surgery. She asked if I had a cardiologist, to which I replied “ugh no. I’ve never had an issue with an EKG before!”, so she told me they would FIND me one, and have them call me with an appointment. This news did not thrill me. I’ve taken so much time off work so far, and I hate being at the mercy of a doctor’s office to make appointments for me. They always make them in the middle of the damn day, and I have to miss a ton of work!

So this morning, I called my PCP’s office to get his take on everything. I spoke to Karen, one of the nurses. After I told her my issue, and that I wanted Dr. Popescu’s take on things, she took my name and number and said she’d call back once she pulled my chart.

Twenty minutes later, she called. She said she was looking at my EKG, and said that Dr Popescu didn’t have a problem with it, that it was “within normal limits”. And he’s not just a Family Medicine doc, he’s an Internist. This is kinda his wheelhouse. So I asked Karen what I should do. I relayed my frustrations about missing so much work to which she replied “But it’s going to be so worth it!” – I’ve heard that a billion times so far.

Finally, I asked her this – if he thinks my EKG is okay, could he write a letter to Dr Ali telling him his opinion? I’m thinking that should be enough, right? Karen said she would talk everything over with him, and let me know what he said.

Unfortunately, I didn’t get a call back today like I was hoping, but oh well. Everybody cross your fingers and toes that I won’t have to go to the cardiologist!

In the meantime, enjoy your holiday weekend safely. And remember – fireworks are fun, but there are vets out there who don’t do well with them, so keep in mind who’s around when you set them off.

Be kind to each other, always.

Linda ❤

I’ve got some good news, and some bad news. Which do you want first?

I’m the gal who always wants the bad news first. I’m not sure why that is. Maybe it’s the “glass half empty vs. half full – no, wait, my half just spilled on the floor” mentality I’ve had for so many years. Regardless, I always choose to hear the bad stuff before the good. So today, kids, you get the same treatment.

I had a terrible weekend food-wise. Cheeseburger, pizza, french fries. The usual suspects. Foods I’ve always loved. I’m not sure if it was stress about my upcoming scope (which was super easy and I had zero problems with) or what, but I was a bad, bad girl. When I talked to my nutritionist today, I likened it to an alcoholic on a bender. It felt good at the time, but the aftermath was a gut full of garbage and a heart full of regret.

I gained 1.6 pounds.

Honestly, I really expected worse, so I’ll appreciate the fact that I recognized how much I screwed up and consider it a fall. I know that there will be good days and bad days, but hopefully the next time will be just a stumble instead of a faceplant in the mud puddle of my life.

The second bit of not-so-great news came from Anita at UPMC Bariatrics. We played phone tag today for two or three hours, and finally connected right before I left work for my meeting. Apparently my psych eval came back and I passed with flying colors. My EKG? Not so much. That little nugget threw me a little bit, but I’ll be okay.

The visit with Pam went really well. She helped me recognize that when I feel the need to comfort myself with food, I need to find the discipline to remove myself from the situation. She told me that the frontal lobe of the brain, the part we use to control free will and make decisions, is strengthened every time we discipline ourselves. So the old ladies with whipsmart retorts who can remember everything dating back to 1920? They’ve got amazing frontal lobes. And I want one too.

I told her that Dr Ali wants me to start drinking 2 to 3 shakes per day, and she agreed wholeheartedly. She also gave me samples of Bariatric Fusion vitamins and told me I need to take them twice a day. I also need to take 1200 to 1500 mg of Calcium with Vitamin D3 every day. She told me to split it up over two or three doses a day as research shows that anything more than 600mg at a time isn’t fully absorbed. The more you know, right?

So, I’m back on track, and have my eye on the prize. But the prize has changed. It’s no longer “my surgery”. Now, it’s to be better. Not better as a person, because I know I’m awesome. It’s to make my body better. To make it well. I have an eating disorder. I need to make my body well.