Sunday, January 27, 2008

The Long Road Back

On Veteran's Day I awoke to find that I had vertigo. Vertigo is not just swinging or spinning. Vertigo is full on gyro spinning! I talking about forward, around and sideways, all at the same time. For someone who hates rollercoaster's and get motion sick watching boats on TV this is NOT a 'good thing'. Since then I have been pretty much confined to home.
The first few weeks at home were basically spent on the couch, leaning to one side and carefully editing what I watched on TV. The ER doc gave me a prescription for a motion sickness pill. That worked OK for a few days. I'd take it and pass out for a few hours. When I was awake and wanting to get to another room, I'd have to hold onto something and make sure that my head was down and move at a less than a snail pace. But it started to make me feel even sicker the more I took it. So my regular doctor gave me a prescription for a motion sickness patch. These are worn behind your ear for up to 3 days at a time.
Turns out I developed Benign Positional Vertigo. I had blood tests, an MRI and multiple visits with several doctors. The ENT was the one that got me on the road to recovery. Unfortunatly, I did see him until the beginning of this month.
He looked at my ears, gave me a hearing test (to rule out several other nasty things that are chronic conditions) and referred me for physical therapy. Who knew that there was PT for gyro spinning! Well, I've had good days and bad days. The PT started to work almost the first day. Problem was that by this time I still needed the motion sickness patch to function. Turns out you can get 'addicted' to these.
How do I know? About 2 weeks ago, the patch I put on started to itch about 8 hours after I applied it. 3 days later when I removed it, it looked like I had be burned with a cigarette. Fool that I am, I decided to try a half patch instead. Same result, so I stopped using it. Turns out that I developed an allergy to the adhesive.
I wasn't sure what was worse, the vertigo or the intense nausea that I developed. So, back to the doctor's I go. I was laying on the exam table, curled in a ball when he walked in. Another prescription and I was on my way home.
Here it is, 4 days later, and I'm feeling so much better. I'm still not 100%. I'm almost walking full speed, I can eat, knit, do some housework and I'm sleeping much better. I can't read full speed yet and I still can't spin. I still haven't driven my car at night and quick side to side movements bring back the spinning. That is subsiding quicker but I can't go back to work until I have that under control. It's one thing to drive my car with only me in it and another to drive a company vehicle.
Today is my birthday and it's been one of the best I've had in a long time. We stayed home and the Oldest came with The Boss and The Gift. Husband got Boston Market chicken with alot of fixin's and we played with The Gift. She's very mobile and such a hoot!
The cards were great, the house was cleaned (including being vacuumed, which has not been done since I've been sick. Don't ask!), the food wonderful and the presents perfect!
Oh The presents! Flowers, 1 bag of Lindt Dark Chocolate truffles, 2 Lindt 70% Dark Chocolate bars (turns out The Boss loves this almost as much as I do!) and 2 large boxes of Junior Mints.
Oldest, The Boss and I sang along with some of my favorite country songs. I learned that Oldest, after many years of running screaming from the house whenever I played anything remotely country, now knows most of my favorite songs.
The Boss and I sang and danced to one of her favorite's – 'The Devil Went Down to Georgia' by CDB! Gotta love that. And having received his newest one for Christmas, I was surprise to find out that Oldest knows all the words to 'Drinking My Baby Goodbye'! Turns out that the SO deemed that his song about her when they had broken up. And The Gift seemed to like it when I scooped her up to slow dance around the living room to my newest favorite song from Big & Rich.
So for now I'm OK with my progress. I need at least one more PT session under my belt and I'm hoping to be back to work before the Daytona 500 in February.
Oh and the house? Don't ask. I was making progress until last week. I'm hoping to get most of my spring cleaning done before I head back to work. I won't bore you with how much paper and junk I've thrown out so far or the state of most of the surfaces especially in the kitchen. Suffice to say, that Husband has not missed anything, Youngest is very happy with the shape of her room and I can walk around without tripping or sticking to stuff!
Having to stop cold turkey all activity has given me time to think and reflect. I've decided to change a few things in my life. I'm going to treat myself better. Maybe try yoga and see a nutritionist to pump up my immune system. I will not take on other's stress or try to do it all myself. I'm going to stop when I get tired and rest. I'm going to do something for my mind, body and spirit everyday and if it means that Husband and Youngest have to do for themselves so be it.
In other words, I'm going to be very selfish about what I do from now on.

1 comment:

Kathryn said...

Hey Kimberly,

I'm really glad to hear that you're feeling better. There's nothing in this world worse than feeling nauseous, so I can't even imagine how debilitating something like this would be.

I'm guessing that the doc had you on scopalamine (Trans Scop patch). That's some crazy stuff. A guy I know was taking it for seasickness, and a couple hours later on the boat, was hallucinating wildly. It turned out that morning, he felt behind his ear and the patch wasn't there. He figured it had fallen off in the shower, so he put another patch on. The first patch hadn't fallen off, it was just behind his other ear, so he was getting a double dose.

But anyway, I hope to see you soon at spinning.