Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Anti-Depressant Woes

My PCP and I decided to switch up my anti-depressant.  Some of the side effects of Celexa were starting to get annoying.  I was ale to deal with them at the 20mg dose, but when we upped that to 40mg, they become much worse.

So far things seem OK with my mood.  I seem a bit happier.  She did warn me that some people experience manic episodes or anxiety.  So I might be experiencing some mania.  That's OK.

Unfortunately I am also experiencing some of the not so pleasant side effects, such as sleeplessness and nausea.  The nausea is the worst.  I can deal with some restless sleeping, but feeling sick to my stomach for a few hours a day is just blah.  Yesterday was the first day I really noticed it.  Sunday I felt a little nauseous but it passed quickly.  Yesterday however, I ended up laying down to try to get it to pass.  I had gotten up at 6am (woke up and couldn't get back to sleep) so I thought maybe that was the issue.  That didn't work so I had some ritz crackers and plain white rice and I felt much better!  Seemed I needed some food in me.  Today I am trying that again, but with a bagel and butter.  So far its not working.  I might have to whip out the white rice again today.  I also noticed that it seems to come on at the same time.  Yesterday it was around 10am and today it was just a little before that.  I might try taking it in the mornings and seeing if that helps any.

Anyway, that is it for me.  I have a meeting with the transplant team next Wednesday to go over everything so I will make sure to post what happens!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

A Beautiful Fall Day for Pondering

Today I sat out back watching my dog sniffing around and digging in the dirt.  I was on the last step of the deck stairs, comfortably dressed in sweats and socks.  The cool breeze felt wonderful on my face.  I sat there admiring the leaves changing, thinking how pretty they looked against a steel gray sky.  This is the reason I chose October for our wedding.

Then my mind drifted to how I felt physically.  I took a somewhat deep breath (for me anyway) and let it out slowly.  I could fill myself up, apparently halfway, according to the PFT machine.  Inside I could feel the rumble of some mucus.  Totally different than only a few days ago when I was crystal clear of goo.  My exhale had a hint of crackles in it.  I lasted a whole 4 days off of IVs before the mucus came back.  But I don't mind.  You see, I got over a week of clear, unobstructed airway inhaling.  I didn't hear crackles, I didn't feel crackles, and my doctor said I sounded amazing.  That was the best part.  I sounded amazing!  Me, going through a transplant evaluation sounding amazing!  50% of my airways were working.  How awesome is that, and considering I don't think I have ever been above 80% it is REALLY amazing.

However, this 50% and the 50% I was at 3 years ago feel entirely different.  How so I bet you are wondering? Well its not just a number.  Yes, the number itself is important for many reasons, but it really doesn't paint a great picture of how you feel.  The only thing that is similar is my coughing.  This type of cough I have had forever.  Sometimes it is mucus filled and other times it is entirely inflammation.  But either way the cough is there.  The differences are a much longer list....

Energy level - now I NEED 10 hours of sleep to function and not be miserable.  Then I was sleeping 5 maybe 6 hours a night and functioning like a champ.

Lung pain - it was almost non-existent 3 years ago.  Today I am always in some sort of lung pain.  It varies from just barely there to OMG where is the Motrin.

Mucus - I used to rarely cough stuff up.  It was there sometimes but it was very difficult to get it up.  Now (notwithstanding this resent clean-out) I can cough up goo almost daily.  Before green scared me.  Now it is a color I am used to seeing.

Exercise - though I couldn't run a mile, I could dance all night long, with a few breaks for coughing fits and some rest.  Now even the thought of dancing all night makes me want to sleep for a week!  Also the need for O2 with exercise is new from this last 50%.  Yes I did monitor my O2 and though I don't dip far I still go into the upper 80s, sometimes lower (like class on Tuesday when I walked in my O2 was 84% lol).

Travel - Loved it and it didn't bother me at all.  I could travel all the time and I didn't need to rest up like I do now.  It takes me a few days to recover from traveling now.  Whether its plane, train or car I am exhausted after visiting family and friends.  Mainly because of lack of sleep which is in point number 1.

So you see, I might be at 50% lung function right now, but I feel more like my baseline of 40%.  I guess on October 26th we will see what I am at by then, as that is my follow up transplant appointment.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Ever Wonder When Up Might Turn Down?

The past few days have been a whirlwind of ups.

Saturday we went to the venue and put the deposit down and officially picked our wedding date.  It felt great to be able to make such a huge decision!  Sunday we went to the Topsfield fair and I saw my afghan on display with a beautiful blue ribbon hanging from it. I won first prize in my crochet division.  I was stoked!  It totally made my day.  Monday was my 31st birthday (yay for another year!), and my soon to be sister in law, niece and step daughter went wedding dress and bridesmaid dress shopping with me.  We had a blast!  I think I even found THE dress!  We had margaritas afterwards to celebrate and they were delicious!  That night I got an email from my college saying I had been officially accepted into the graduate program.  I was floored and totally NOT expecting that!  I was told I would need to take some classes and get more academic referrals in order to be accepted.  So to receive that email totally took my breath away!

Then today the shocker!  Yes there IS more....I hit 1.47L, or 50% with my FEV1.  SAY WHAT?!?!?!  Yeah that number is higher than I have had in like 3 whole years.  Amazing for me!  I feel fabulous and look great.  Now I just have to hold on to that wonder number until I walk down the aisle.

Being the realist / pessimist that I am it makes me wonder when the downhill will start.  It has to start at some time right?  I can't go up and up and up can I?

Don't worry I am not sulking and waiting around for it to happen.  I am thrilled with what HAS happened since it seems to me its been a while when so much has gone my way.  I plan on finding a way to embrace my new found healthy numbers and live more.

I am very very pleased with this all!!!

Monday, October 10, 2011

I am OFFICIALLY a Graduate Student!

Congratulations!  You have been admitted to the School of Graduate Studies at Salem State University.  Your acceptance is a tribute to your credentials and potential for success, and we hope you join our dynamic learning community.

Its OFFICIAL!  How awesome is it to receive that on your 31st birthday :)  fabulous present indeed! :)

Friday, October 7, 2011

Wedding Date Picked

We picked the time, place and date!  October 19th, 2012 at a great hotel right by us.  It is going to be awesome! Tomorrow we go to put the deposit down and I have already signed the contract.  I was giddy with excitement last night when we made the choice.

Now on to the details.  My favorite part.  And to celebrate my 31st birthday on Monday I am going dress shopping!!!!!  Yay!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

A Friend Needs Help with a Vest

I may have blogged about this before I don't remember.  A friend of my friend's has bronchiectasis and has a vest she has been using almost 3 years.  This entire time she has been fighting with them to cover it.  They refuse.  Her doctor and social worker have sent letters to the insurance company explaining she needs it in order to breath.  Their response: she has a husband who can do chest PT on her and therefore doesn't need the vest.  As everyone knows, the vest allows us to have independence.  We don't rely on someone else to do our chest PT.  Insurance doesn't understand that.

If any of you know of foundations or organizations that can grant her money I would love to hear about them.  Or if anyone has a vest they are no longer using and want to get rid of I am sure she would be willing to pay for the shipping.  Please send me a face book message if you have any information that can help.

Thanks in advance!