August cycle

This month was a blue moon month, and also a blue cycle month. Two full moons and two cycles in one month. My friend Kristine calls my period my Wolf Time, since my periods seem to happen around the time of the full moon. ;)

This cycle began last night in the middle of the night. For a day or two prior, my body felt heavy and I was out of breath easier. I had very mild twinges of cramping, especially on Saturday. The PMS cravings were on the increase this month, a full week before my period.

This cycle is painful – I’m guessing a 7 on the pain scale. It got to be enough that I got nauseous this morning, whimpered in pain or cried out throughout the day, and finally dug into my old medicine stash of Vicoprofen.
Now I’m happily dissociated from the pain, but I’m bleeding heavily and have to go to the bathroom often.

While I’m sad to miss the Labor Day weekend’s events because of the pain, I’m happy that the worst of my pain will hopefully happen while I’m off work for the holiday, so I don’t have to miss any work.

I think my pain level is increased this month because I’ve been drinking a lot of alcohol this month. I’m still going through major depression in the wake of the divorce. Even though the divorce was final on July 5, 2013, I’m still a bit of a basketcase over it.

Today I spent the day sleeping; on the couch and in my bed. I used the heating pad all day. Right now I’m going back and forth between writing this entry, watching Ghost Hunters and watching Sleepy Hollow. I can’t seem to focus on any one thing for too long. I blame the vicoprofen. ;)

July cycle

So it’s been another 30 days, and george decided to show up yesterday. I’ve got my calendar set to 30 day cycles, now. Better than the freak accident of last month, when he showed up at the 19-day mark.

Today is Day 2 and is a bit heavier than yesterday. I went through 4 pads today.

Starting yesterday, I was depressed because I am easily out of breath, heavily fatigued, and in general bloated. This is so not the right time to pick back up on the exercise regimen, but the mental bashing happens every month around the time of my period – guilty at not having spent 3-4 weeks of uptime as a gym rat, working out and getting beefcakey. BAH. Whatever. I’m tired of the self-inflicted guilt trips already.

I’m tired – so tired. I had an asthma attack today – first one in many months – don’t know if it was brought on by weekend campfire, cleaning the tub last night with Tilex, or getting an email from my ex husband asking for his ring back (which sent me into a rage). The wheezing definitely does not help the already feeling out of breath issue. meh.

I have consumed 1,600mg of Advil to quell the pain today, and I used my rice heating pad at work. I have already added 100mg of gabapentin daily to make 300mg/day while in the endo flare. I hope I am not in any more pain tomorrow than I was in today. If I start missing work again, this will pile more guilt and fear on me, since I’m supposed to take a head teaching position come end of August.

Ugh. I can feel it – it’s getting heavier. I’m going to bed.

Pain at work

…Annnnd a pain flare, 7 on the pain scale, shaky and nauseous, hits right before a school assembly. Kill me now.

12:30pm – I pounded 800mg of Ibuprofen on the way to work, and it kicked in by the time I was leading the children to their assembly. However, I had to be up and down, sitting or kneeling on the ground, and it was still quite painful. Add to that a woman with a broken foot seated next to me, and so I could not navigate around her with ease in order to sit in front of the class to direct them during their assembly song. As a result, the children did poorly, and I got in trouble from my head teacher for not moving back and forth from next to the students to in front of the students and back again. I told her about my pain and about the woman’s broken foot in my way, but she was still upset. Of course, she herself could have gone in front of the children, now, couldn’t she?
One of the parents (a friend’s significant other) told me not to worry about it, but I am. The whole ordeal was just bad, because the owner of the school’s husband insisted that my first and second graders learn and sing California Dreamin’ by The Mamas and the Papas.
WHY. WHY did my head teacher allow that song for a Secretary’s Day assembly? I went to her weeks ago vetoing the song, and pleading with her to confront the guy and ask for another song. But she told me she picks her battles with him, and caved in for that one, but won’t cave to him for the graduation songs. Of course, SHE picked the graduation song to be You’ve Got A Friend by James Taylor. It’s a more poppy version by another artist, but still, it’s that song.

I meant to rant about my pain, and it turned into a rant about work politics. But there you have it. And I’ve popped another 800mg of Ibuprofen for the pain to keep it at bay.

Update on endo flares

As mentioned in my previous post, I have not been bedridden but for one day in…officially five months, now.

I’m enduring a new endometriosis flare, which is why I decided to post to my blog. While not currently bedridden, there is always the chance that the pain will get bad again as the endometriosis continues to grow, so I greet each non-bedridden day with a sigh of relief.

My head teacher is out of work this week with the flu. I had the flu back on February 8th, but Ms. V has it *really* bad. I filled in as head teacher yesterday and today, and will do so again tomorrow, so I’m hoping the pain doesn’t get any worse than it already is (I’m currently about a 6 on the pain scale).

I’m also down to my last few Tylenol 3 pills, so I have to be at a 7 or above on the pain scale before I can justify taking any. I just sent out a request on Facebook for anyone who is willing to score me some Tylenol 1 pills. It’s not Tylenol 3 but it is easier to purchase, especially if one lives in or really close to Canada, where it is sold over the counter.

I was supposed to start seeing a pain management specialist in the fall of last year, but finding out about my husband’s affair ended my rational world, and I could barely keep myself alive, much less pursue time off work for pain management appointments. I’m still in the woods psychologically speaking – the depression comes and goes, taking steep dives regularly but thankfully not every hour of every day anymore (thanks to Gabapentin and Zyprexa and Vitamin D).

I found out that I can remain on his insurance, but do I really want to? It’s just one more thing to keep me tied to him.
If I join my workplace’s health insurance of choice (Kaiser Permanente), I will have to pay a huge co-pay each time I do pain management and doctor appointments, until the deductible is met, and I don’t have the money to do that.

I don’t know which way to go.

As if going through a divorce and still dealing with medical crap, and all the associated medical bills isn’t enough… I had to put my cat to sleep on February 12. Kijika (Kee-yee-kah) had pancreatic cancer which had spread to his liver, and he was already end-stage renal failure. He lived a long life – less than a month shy of age 17 – and I did the best I could for him. I spent two days crying, but I had seen that day coming for nearly three years because of the renal failure, and since last September for sure when he got the cancer diagnosis. I am having him cremated and I will keep his ashes in a cedar box that the Vet is putting together for me.

My girl cat Zenaide (Zeh-nay-ed) has been wandering the house meowing with force, and it’s been driving me crazy. I finally caved in tonight and let her sleep on the bed – something I haven’t done since the last time I lived on my own (back in 2003).

That’s all I’ve got update-wise for now.

My world ended in 2012

I have been away for six months. The reason is that my husband had a physical affair which took me two months to prove, but once I did prove the affair, I was genuinely surprised that it WASN’T all in my head. I never thought he was capable of such betrayal from a person I spent TWELVE YEARS with. I was a complete basket case for three months, attempting suicide multiple times, and ending up in hospital for a week.

The good thing in all of this, as it relates to this journal, is that I was forcibly medicated with Gabapentin (Neurontin) as a mood stabiliser.

Gabapentin was recommended to me by my surgeon back in 2010, but I was too afraid to take it because of the listed side effects. I always hit into the rare category of side effects on any medication.
Now, being told in hospital that I would not be released unless I took medication, I had to give it a try. They started me out on a very low dose – 300mg – and I got head, arm and hand tremors. So they reduced it to 200mg and my mood improved fantastically.

What I also found out is that the neuropathy and severe pain were reduced to the point that I WAS NOT bedridden for the next FOUR MONTHS!!!

Last month’s cycle had me bedridden for one day, and this month’s cycle is hurting me enough that, had I gone in to work today, I’d have come home early due to the pain. Thankfully, today is Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, so I did not have to work. Hopefully by tomorrow, the pain will have abated again.

The bleeding is still heavy every cycle – that has not changed. But going from 3-4 days bedridden down to 0-1 day is a huge, positive change.

The Gabapentin has also helped me with chemical sensitivity – I don’t know how but it has. The nerve channels are blocked in the brain and the message that says, “I’M DYING” from the pain and from scented products is no longer getting delivered. The threat level has been reduced to, “Oh, that’s unpleasant.”

So I am thankful that I am on Gabapentin, now, but holy shit, what a path to travel to begin taking it.

I’m still not out of the woods, emotionally after the affair. There is no reconciliation – he declared he was in love with this woman, WHOM I USED TO BABYSIT FOR, and he said horrible things to me. One of the things he said with bitterness is that I have a need to continually let people know that I’m in pain, whether emotional or physical. I told him that my endometriosis blog exists for the very reason of letting people know I’m in pain, because talking about pelvic pain is still taboo, and people like me are putting a face to it. He told me he didn’t like that. He told me he couldn’t care for me anymore. He told me he didn’t love me anymore. And then he went back to HER, so I kicked him out of the house. He came back almost a month later to officially move all his crap out of the house, and he tried to take the bed, the couch, the dishwasher, the toaster and the microwave with him!!!! I forbade him to clean me out and threatened to call the police. I then hired a lawyer. He is the one who filed for divorce. The proceedings cannot happen quickly enough, but I want to make sure I’m not getting screwed. I cannot trust this man to be honest about *anything*, which is why I’ve hired a lawyer to check all paperwork he sends and all paperwork I have to fill out to get back to his paralegals.

It took me roughly five months to even accept that he was in his right mind, that he was capable of hiding so much of his sinister life from me. But then I found a thumb-drive with a bunch of his files on it, and it included letters and mix-tapes he sent to ANOTHER woman back in 2009. This appears to have been an emotional affair, but it lasted TWO YEARS. The affair began three months BEFORE our honeymoon…so only three months into our marriage. We’d been together for 8 years before we got married, but according to some of my guy friends, the very act of getting married scarred him or something, and he immediately regretted the committal, despite already being with me for 8 years.

This is why I have not posted to my blog in so long. I don’t know how often I will post in the coming months. My endo is fairly well-managed for the time being, but my emotional state is still shot.

The state of my insurance is up in the air – I don’t know how much longer I’m covered under his insurance policy, and my workplace only offers Kaiser insurance, which is a crappy HMO insurance. I’ve rationed the last of my Tylenol 3 for the past six months; I haven’t had ANY in five months – but I finally relented and took a half a pill today.

So much change. I want 2013 to bring me peace and happiness. I want to start healing both emotionally and physically. I write these things with the full knowledge that I also wish I just didn’t have to breathe, anymore. I’m so emotionally exhausted.

My cycle is longer since surgery.

It seems my period is late every month!

I just looked back through my calendar dating back to surgery on 12/17/10, and I see a trend.

My cycle is no longer 25 days.

It’s more like 27 or 28 days again.

It’s been 16 years since I’ve had a cycle of that length. :(

I’ve had anxiety for the past two days, thinking george was late. After all, I have this week off of work BECAUSE george was due.

In the summer time, the school I work for reduces staff hours, because we do not have full enrollment. The director tries to give everyone a chance to work at least half the summer, so a lot of schedule shuffling goes on to try to make it fair enough for everyone. Because of my known health condition, the director simply does not schedule me during the weeks that I could miss so much as a day of work from endo pain, so that another teacher who wants a full week can have it. I understand the rationale. I’m just glad they don’t do this to me throughout the regular school year.

So this week was slated off work, because george was due on Monday.

Well, here we are at Wednesday, and still no george, and I ended up giving myself an asthma attack over it this morning, due to how anxious I am. I kept asking my husband if there’s any way I could be pregnant, and he keeps reassuring me there’s no way.

“Wait. Asthma?”

Yep! I’ll tell you all about it in another post.

Late February cycle

I had about 12 consecutive pain-free days from last cycle til this one.

I began getting intermittent uterine and ovarian cramping on February 16, when I was feeling sad and missing my grandmother, as it was her birthday. She’s been gone for 25 years, but I still grieve for her.

Two days later, I spent the day grieving for a friend who’s been gone for 9 years. Every year around the time of his death, I get little reminders seemingly from beyond, that he’s still with us somehow. Because I was sad, I got cramps again.

A few days later, my spouse returned from a weekend-long gaming convention, and I was happy to see him, so we were intimate. The next day, I experienced either dyspareunia or premenstrual cramping, and then a day later (yesterday), george appeared two days early.

The thing is, I think I brought it upon myself. I’ve had a rough month emotionally, as I’ve been really sad for people who have died. And then I had a really bad day at work, wherein I got emotionally involved with a child who was having tantrums. When I tried to lead her out of the room so as not to cause further disturbance to the class, she had a big meltdown. I picked her up to expedite the removal from the class, and she wriggled free and fell to the floor screaming. My face was beet red with embarrassment and also with anger. In my effort to do the right thing (get her out so as not to disturb the lesson taking place in the classroom), it actually sped up the child’s complete meltdown.

Within minutes, I felt a trickle and a hot sear of pain, and I knew that I had made not one but two bad choices: taking the child out of class and causing myself a release of stress and anger hormones, which flooded my system and started the endo flare.

And I was supposed to be the head teacher all this week, as my head teacher is on a family retreat.

As soon as I got the child stabilised emotionally, and made sure the assistant teacher in the class was still running things alright, I called upon the director and the afternoon supervisor for help in finding substitute teachers, in case I could not make it in the next day.

This morning, I woke determined to get SOME work done. I wrote:

Attention: I am going in to work. Endometriosis can DIAF.
I’m the boss, dammit; I call the shots in this body.

I got through 5 hours before the pain and exhaustion took me out of the game. Then I came home and passed out for 3 hours with second round Ibuprofen and heating pad. Outside, we had an unusually warm and sunny winter day – it was in the 70’s, which is weird even for California. In February, it’s supposed to be raining hard all through February.

But because of george, I missed a beautiful sunny day, and I will miss it again tomorrow, too.

I spent the rest of the day today couch-ridden, working on importing endo blog posts over to Facebook.

The pain has been steady throughout the day, and I resorted to taking a half Tylenol 3 pill in the evening.
After dinner, I needed the other half pill. I’ve consumed 2,000mg of Ibuprofen today. The pain has been constant at 7 on the pain scale.

This evening, still in the thick of an endo flare, I counted out the days til the next one.

The next endo flare is due on the anniversary night of one of my favourite night clubs.

I’m seriously thinking of showing up – even if I have to arrive in my wheel chair. I AM SO FURIOUS WITH THIS ILLNESS TAKING JOYFUL EVENTS AWAY FROM ME.

Bedridden and missing work again

I had a lot of pre-george pain this cycle, to the point where I was taking over 1,000mg of ibuprofen to get through the day.

I had intermittent right side ovarian stabbing pains all day on Tuesday, January 24.

On Wednesday evening, January 25, I got a sudden droning headache, shivers, 
G.I. issues, crushing fatigue, runny nose. But because I have allergies, it could EITHER have been a food reaction OR a virus.
 People are dropping like flies at work from the stomach flu and bronchitis.
Interesting to note; the crushing fatigue started before dinner. Everything else began during dinner.
So was it a combo of PMS and fighting off a virus, PMS and food reaction, or just PMS?

On Thursday, January 26, I woke feeling much better. However, by afternoon that day, I had the distinct feeling of adhesions pulling deep inside my abdomen. I forget what side; I want to say it was the right side. I had forgotten to record it til Sunday in my calendar. According to facebook, I ate 1,200mg Advil to get through the day on Thursday.

On Friday, I was so busy that I don’t remember if I was having intermittent cramping. It was daycare day at school, and parent/teacher conferences were happening. I was floating from the preschool yard to the elementary yard to parent conferences all day long. Then I picked up one of my students after work and babysat him and his brother til 9:30pm that night.

The next day, on Saturday, January 28, I experienced mild uterine cramping. I chose to drink with friends rather than take any pain meds, because it was an all-day birthday gathering for one of my friends. I wasn’t ready to admit downtime was coming for me. I still wanted to play. I never got drunk that day, but I did have five drinks over the course of about 7 hours. I paced each drink and also consumed water.

I was not hungover on Sunday – like I said, I never got drunk. Sunday however was brutal. I experienced moderate uterine fullness and soreness, and spent the entire day on the couch near tears from the pain. My entire lower back was on fire, and deep inside my pelvis there was a volcano of death brewing. 

I took 800mg Advil, half a Tylenol 3, stretched slowly in doorways, used my TheraCane on the lower back, and used heating pads. I was close to having an emotional meltdown, because my period hadn’t even started, and yet I was in so much pain. Later, I dug into the Tylenol 3, which helped, so I took half pills of that for the rest of the day.

I had 15 pain-free days in January (non-consecutive). The good news though is that nine of those 15 were consecutive.

George arrived on time on Monday, January 30. I’d like to note that January is a “Blue Moon” menstrual month for me, since I got george twice (January 5 and January 30).

Sunday night I had gone to bed nauseous and expecting to get george during the night. Thankfully, I awoke on Monday with minimal pain and no nausea, so I went in to work. Of course, by the time I was leaving for work, the pain and nausea set back in. I was able to make it through the day on 1,100mg of Advil, a hamster bladder, and some whining.

On Tuesday, January 31, I wrote in facebook:
“So is it bad that I’ve been sitting here for the past 43 minutes, waiting for the pain to stop so I can eat food and get ready to go to work?

I guess the 800mg of Advil for breakfast so far didn’t do the trick.

I have 30 minutes before I have to leave for work, but I need to make the judgement call in the next 10 minutes in order to attempt to find substitutes for the day.”

Just under an hour later, I wrote, “Can’t find substitute – still short-staffed. Going in with heating pads strapped to my body like incendiary devices. Hoping for the best. I may very likely have to take a half of a Tylenol 3 on the job just to get through.”

I tried 800mg Advil, then 3 hours later I took 600mg more Advil to no avail, then a protein bar and half Tylenol 3. Finally, the extended care supervisor found some staff to juggle, and gently pushed me out the door around 11:20am. She’s super empathetic and in general awesome that way.

The pain hovered between 6.5 and 7.5 on the pain scale all day and all evening. I saw that I still had some Vicoprofen in the medicine cabinet, so I decided to give it a try again, since the Tylenol 3 didn’t appear to be dulling the pain enough for me. I took half a Vicoprofen and half a Robaxin muscle relaxer I also had left in the cabinet. The pain during this cycle has been centered low on the uterus and pressing into the bowels through the anus. It’s enough to make me whine and cry like a three-year-old. It’s been REALLY brutal.
Tuesday night, I was in bed before 9pm because of the strength of the medications I had taken.

In the middle of the night (3am), I woke from a crazy dream in time to find myself bleeding through my bedclothes. George had circumvented the thick overnight pad and went through my underwear and pajama bottoms to the bed. I had to change my clothes but was not about to change the bedsheets at three in the morning! Thankfully the bed wasn’t a disaster.
Wednesday morning, I awoke with heavy flow, nausea and grinding uterine pain. Thankfully, the woman I had asked the night before to sub got back to me and said she would come in. I took another half vicoprofen and half robaxin pill. Within 20 minutes, maybe less, I was higher than a kite, so I went back to bed. I was fine as long as I was bedridden. If I tried to get up, I was super dizzy and cranky from the medication.

The pain hit me again four hours later, so around 10:30am I took a half vicoprofen and half robaxin. Once again, it took roughly 20 minutes and I was higher than a kite from the meds. This time, however, I decided I was just DONE being so stoned. I was done being bedridden, and now I was depressed over it, because I couldn’t just stop being high. And besides, the pain was leaking through the meds – just as it had done with the Tylenol 3.

That’s when my memory kicked in – didn’t I have a problem with vicoprofen in the past? I turned to my own journal, knowing full well I’d find out that I had a big problem with vicoprofen. OH LOOK, THERE IT IS…
http://www.livingwithendometriosis.org/steph/2009/10/vicoprofen-review/

And so I spent much of the day stoned – trying to leech the meds out of my system. I took only Advil for the rest of the day and the pain crept back in, but I was adamant that I did not want to take any more opiates or narcotics til the bleariness of the vicoprofen wore off. And here I am, at 6:15pm, STILL FUZZY from that shit!!!

All I can do is smack my forehead and label the bottle THIS WILL KILL YOU or some other means of avoidance. I don’t want to throw the stuff away, because in case of emergency, I’d rather have something in the house.

Now…going back to the end-of-January pain cycle. I was saying it was really painful pre-george.

My question is, am I having a bad pain cycle because of the stress at work during the last two weeks of January (parent observations, prep for report cards, and parent conferences)

OR

am I having a bad pain cycle because I chose to drink with friends two days before george was due?

OR

am I having a bad pain cycle because of BOTH the stress and the drinking?

OR

am I having a bad pain cycle for no reason other than It’s Just Endometriosis?

It’s my age-old question, steeped with guilt over the possibility that I am doing the wrong thing to bring more pain.

Whatever the reason or lack of reasoning, the fact is that in the new year, 13 months after surgery, I am still missing work and still on occasion bedridden from endometriosis.

I was bedridden one month after my surgery when the first real menstrual cycle hit. I was bedridden nine months after surgery.
I was bedridden 10 and 12 months after surgery.

The good news is that since my surgery in 2010, I was only bedridden for FOUR cycles, and only couch-ridden during TWO cycles out of 14 cycles total in the year 2011.
That’s much better than I was doing before surgery, where I was bedridden nearly every cycle of the year.

Doing the numbers helps me keep focus, helps me keep a semblance of morale up.

I’ll continue to track bedridden times through the year 2011 and see if I’m edging back towards pre-surgery illness. I’ll continue to tweak my diet, even though overall, dietary changes have not in my opinion shown vast improvement to the overall pain level during each cycle. If I don’t keep doing something to fight, then there’ll be no reason to fight, and the endo really will consume me.

My workplace, some friends and family, and total strangers will not see any improvement in my condition. I see little fluctuations that to me are major. I must continue to point them out so you can see how major in the scope of my illness these small changes are, and why I must keep fighting.

A nightmare

(Reposted from facebook). The date today is actually Feb. 1, 2012, but I went back in time to put this journal entry as a followup to the Tired Of Always Having To Play Catch-up entry.

Morning Dream
October 20, 2011 at 6:01 am

I had been hanging out with Patricia somewhere on the peninsula, when it was time to return home. Something happened, where my car broke down or I missed my train or something. I called Catie, who agreed to come pick me up. I gave Catie the wrong directions, and we ended up going North on Highway 101 instead of South. We didn’t want to get caught up in San Francisco traffic. Catie knew a short cut, and suddenly we were on a skyway. Catie was no longer driving; we were alternately on a fast rail transport and in the back seat of a limo, heading along this skyway which ran along Highway 101 and the 280 interchange.

Suddenly there was a 3-year-old boy with us in the limousine; he had dark brown wavy hair and reminded me of a boy at the school I work at, but in the dream he was Catie’s second son. I don’t remember his name. He was walking around in the back of this limo, and for a moment stood in front of my sitting body. He placed his hands on my knees, put his head on my lap, like children do when being affectionate. He had been talking with me about something while I also had conversation with Catie.

I got a cramp, and my face twisted in pain. The child looked up at me in pure empathy and asked, “You feeweeng otay, Miss Step?”

I looked into the child’s caring eyes and softened my face. I smiled and replied, “Yes, I’m feeling better, now.” I tousled the child’s hair, and he smiled. Then I added, “Miss Steph needs to take her medication.”

Right at that point, I woke from the dream with level 8 endometriosis pain. I managed to get out of bed. It was 4:27am. I found and took a whole Tylenol 3 and promptly burst into tears from the pain.

I put myself back to bed with the heating pad, and laid there gritting teeth, moaning in pain, and doing breathing exercises for the next 30 to 40 minutes until the drugs kicked in. Finally, I was able to drift off to sleep again for a bit.

During sleep, my brain has always found creative ways to tell me I need to wake up to take care of myself.

 
October 20, 2011 at 11:58 am
I’ve already consumed 1,400mg ibuprofen today while barely maintaining at work. Severely short-staffed, otherwise I’d be home in bed. :(

 
October 20, 2011 at 2:41 pm
An actual 4.0 earthquake hit while we were performing our classroom’s first earthquake drill of the year, on the same day as the California ShakeOut drill. Much of the state did their drill at 10:20am, but we put ours off til the afternoon. The director came into the classroom and told us to keep the students under the desks, as we’d had an earthquake. She had no idea we didn’t feel the quake, and had no idea we were doing a drill. Some classrooms did feel the quake and dove under desks. So strange that we did not feel it!
Once the children learned there really had been an earthquake, some began to cry as we were given orders to evacuate the building. The school was given a quick examination, and officials let us back in. We talked about the quake, and the children finished off the day. I cannot remember what my pain level was through all of that, or if adrenaline set in from all the chaos.

 
October 20, 2011 at 8:16 pm
A 3.8 earthquake hit while my husband and I sat on the couch, either watching TV or eating dinner or both. I was drugged up on Tylenol 3 and still in pain from endo. I posted to facebook, “2nd quake in a day – as big as the first. I wanna go home!!!”
By ‘home’, I meant Michigan.

 
October 21, 2011 at 12:41 am
My husband had come into the bedroom to say goodnight. I was laying there in bed, all drugged to the hilt, talking with my husband, when another earthquake hit.
I couldn’t take it anymore, I burst into panicked tears, sobbing that I’m bedridden, and earthquakes keep happening, and how am I to get to safety if The Big One hits next, etc…my husband looked at me like I’d lost my mind. I was grabbing for his arms to pull him close to me for protection. I explained that we’d just had another earthquake. He didn’t believe me, so I grabbed my iPhone, which thankfully was right next to me, and called up the USGS website. Sure enough, a 2.1 earthquake had just occurred, in the same spot as the other two quakes. Now, a 2.1 is a minor quake – most people might not even feel it. This is the smallest quake I have ever felt, but I think I was in a heightened state of awareness/sensitivity that night. Three in one day freaked me the f**k out, I will tell you right here and now.

Think about it for a moment.

You’re bedridden with an incurable chronic pain illness, and a natural disaster occurs. You may or may not have one person with you at that moment. You are unable to react in a quick and potentially life-saving manner to get yourself to shelter. This was the first time in my life that I saw my illness as something that could kill me, because in my worst state of pain, I could DIE from not being able to move fast enough to safety.
That thought made me want to live in a bunker and never chance going out during an endo flare ever again.

I don’t know how I did it – maybe it was all the pain medication – but I was finally able to get to sleep that night, and as per my usual, I was stubborn the next morning and tried to go in to work.

On October 21, I had finished more than half of my work day before the pain ramped up around 3pm. I had been taking Ibuprofen all day to manage the pain, but just as my class let out for afternoon daycare, the pain spiked up and I nearly blacked out from blood loss and pain. Here’s what I wrote in facebook:

“My workplace is severely short staffed and my head teacher is always bitter about me taking time off due to the pain. Today the workplace got to see what it’s like when I don’t stay home on bedrest like I’m supposed to during an endometriosis flare. I nearly collapsed on a child while fastening him into his carseat at the end of the day. What happened was I was blacking out from all the blood loss and pain. Then I lost my balance and nearly fell over before opening the door of the next car.
The extended care supervisor thankfully is empathetic enough to sense when I’m in trouble, and took me by the arm, helping me to get my things. Then the owner of the school, also very kind, insisted on driving me home.
Now I take Tylenol 3 and go fall over safely in a bed.”

The next day thankfully was a weekend, not a work day. Again, my posts to facebook:

October 22, 2011 at 11:47 am
Heading into another endometriosis flare, after a morning of minimal pain. Just popped the Tylenol 3. The pain is ramping up faster than the drug will have time to kick in. I was stubborn AGAIN and did not overlap my meds. When will I learn; just because I was not in pain doesn’t mean I wouldn’t be soon.

October 22, 2011 at 12:12 pm
pain… winning

October 22, 2011 at 1:04 pm
guilt…pain…tears…frustration.

October 22, 2011 at 2:00 pm
Dissociation from pain finally kicked in after over an hour. I’m on 1 Tylenol 3 and 600mg Ibuprofen.

For those who ask why I only take Tylenol 3 and Ibuprofen for the pain, please see the growing list of all drugs (and therapies) I’ve tried to manage the pain.

Tired of always having to play catch-up

How is it that October’s cycle never got recorded here? I have a memory of writing it up!

I’m so upset that I have to first catch up on October before proceeding to November.

This blog is firstly for my own good, so I can track changes cycle to cycle. I can’t believe I didn’t make time to chronicle October.

Every month, it seems that I have to go back through my iCal, Twitter and Facebook accounts to piece together what the pain was like. I no longer keep a running log on this site.
It’s all real-time, in the moment on social networking sites. But the problem with that is once the feed scrolls, it’s gone. Out of sight, out of mind. What caused the pain to increase or decrease over a certain cycle? Oh I dunno, I posted about it over on Twitter and/or Facebook instead of HERE!

GAH.