Thursday, October 25, 2012

....In sickness and in health

Well, it's true. I've spent the past month testing out those vows.

About 2 weeks before my birthday (roughly the first of September), I had a few days where I just didn't feel that great. But, school had just started back up, and there was lots of pressure being put on me for this semester, and I just blew it off as stress.

Fast forward to the Wednesday before my birthday. Enter nausea and general feelings of ickiness. Really?!? I'm going to be sick on my birthday. Seriously? So, I just tried not to hurl. Then Sunday. Oh Sunday. Sunday, September 23rd, will go down in history as the first day, that I would have gladly let someone perform weird science experiments on me to quickly end the pain.

Fast forward to the afternoon trip to the ER. They "thought" (you'll understand the quotes by the end) it was my gallbladder. Sent me off to do a CT scan, but I refused pain meds, because let's face it I had two tests I was trying to study for. I didn't have time for narcotics. So, CT scan showed my gallbladder to be okay. Well, at least non-life threatening. So, they gave me some drugs for nausea and pain and sent me home to study.

Spent the week thinking that I was going to die. Luckily I had a doctor's appointment on Wednesday. The "doctor" (you'll understand these quotes later too), and I'll use that term here loosely, said that some of my symptoms didn't match, but the pain was consistent with gallbladder, so "against her better judgment" she would send me for an ultrasound, because she would hate to be wrong. So on Friday, I had an ultrasound done to check the gallbladder out. According to the results, there were no stones, but the pain was also better than it had been earlier in the week. So, the "doctor" informs me to just enjoy the weight loss, and that not to be worried that I can't eat, can't drink, and have fairly decent pain, and she would see me again in a few weeks. Hopefully it would work itself out. Nice.

So, after the big time brush off, and after being told repeatedly, that "it was all in my head". I began to believe it. I figured, okay, maybe it's nothing. Maybe the older I get, the lower my pain tolerance has gotten. Maybe it's just a muscle being spazzy. Maybe, maybe, maybe. So I gave up. I thought that everything would eventually (probably about the same time I graduated) work itself out.

Then, about 2.5 weeks ago, I had a day of pain, nausea and it was a general day full of suck. So, I found a new doctor, hoping that this one would show some concern and not take the "wait and see" approach. So, I went. She thought, gallbladder. So she sent me for a HIDA scan. Which, was the longest 2.5 hours of my life. Take a nap, they tell me. Sure, because I've always wanted to take a nap, laying on a 2x4 with a pillow that makes paper look fluffy, in a room that apparently doubles as a meat locker on the weekends. Sure. I'll get right on that. I can't lay on my back because of the pain, so that was just a great, relaxing moment where I wanted to take a nap. Right.

So, my gallbladder, whom I have named Gertie played nice. Even after I barfed on the technician because she told me I had to chug an 8oz can of Ensure. Have you had Ensure? It's the nectar of the devil. It's awful, it has a weird after taste, it smells, it's thick. (Burp) Sorry, apparently the memory of the stuff is enough to get my stomach rolling again. So, I drink. I lay down, I tell them I'm going to vomit. I was told to breathe. Well, after the techs catty responses that I would be fine, I hurled, all over her brand new Nike's. They were cute. Not so much after that. However, the next tech, thankfully believed me when I told her that I couldn't drink all of that and not hurl again. So consequently, she let me drink half. Gertie, smiled for the camera.

So that's where I am today. Still have pain. Still have nausea. Still have some other weird, and rather gross side effects that I will spare you from. You can thank me now.

I have an appointment with a gastro November 20th. Yep, I typed that right. It's the earliest that I can get into see the doctor I wanted, or any doctor in my network for that matter. So I wait. And I hope that I don't hurl on a customer, a professor, or a boss. That can't help my grade or my job.

There are tons of things that it could be, and I would love to try a gluten free diet, and no dairy and to stand on my head when the moon is in the 4th house of the rising dog's, mother's, brother's, cousin's, friends house. But, alas, I have homework to do. I'd say I have laundry and cleaning, but I can only manage a few minutes before the pain takes my breath away and I have to take a break. So to say that my grades, my house, and my desk are a disaster, is an understatement. I don't think that a nuclear blast would cause as much destruction as this - whatever this is, has caused.

Thankfully, I have had a husband, who has stepped up to the plate. He's done laundry, cleaned, cooked, wrapped presents, and taken care of me. I'm quite appreciative for, because let's face it, there have been days where, I've googled "at home organ removal" out of desperation for some relief from the symptoms, that are making me crazy.

Which I find ironic. The doctor's think I'm crazy and everything is all in my head, yet, the actual symptoms are making me crazy.

As much as I'm glad that John is an amazing guy, and that he loves me enough to put up with my whiny, sick self for the amount of time that he has. He's given me pretty flowers, and brought me lunch, and gone out of his way to make this experience less...sucky.

I know the posts are sporadic while school is sucking up all my time, but I don't even want to just click publish on some that I have already written, because my heart's not in anything that I do these days. I'm in survival mode. I'm trying to keep my head above water with school, which is hard to do when you don't want to study because you feel so horrible, or you actually do study, but can't remember what you just spent the last 2 hours reading because you just want the pain to stop. I had made some commitments to events and other things this semester for Scentsy and other things, that I just don't care if I do or not. There are days where getting out of bed is an accomplishment. Then again there are days when it's just the pain, and I can manage to kick some butt and take some names, but when every.single. thing that you eat or drink makes you wonder what you were thinking about when you decided you had to eat or drink because you just want to curl up in a ball in a corner and not move so you don't hurl on someone, it gets hard. It takes a beating on your brain, on your heart, and after 1.5 months of the same stuff, your soul. Thankfully, I've had a better understanding of a friends journey with a cancer diagnosis this year, and I have a new level of respect for her after all of this.

I'm hanging on. Some days with a good, solid grip, and other days, well, I'm quite sure that my whining motivates those around me to chop on the branch I'm hanging on to. I'm not patient, and I want answers yesterday, so for those that follow me on twitter, and on this blog, I just want to say thanks for the love, prayers, jokes, and funny comments that you have sent my way. I'm quite sure that you are part of the group that's keeping me sane. Hopefully, this is an easy fix, whatever it is. I'm trying to find the blessing in this whole thing, but when your grades suck, and you feel bad, and you would rather lay in bed than go shopping for new clothes in smaller sizes, it's hard to find the blessing in anything. Although, I'll admit the weight loss is a nice fringe benefit, I can kiss that lovely number I had seen on my scale for 5.8 months goodbye, but I'd have rather kept the pounds and felt good, than this.

So, when I whine on Twitter, Facebook, or this blog, I'd like to ask you to do me a favor. Tell me to quite my whining and do some freaking homework. I might think your a jerk, but my GPA will thank you.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Ode to Bob

It's been a hard few days at our house. Our beloved friend, Bob, has passed away. We are all so saddened by this loss, and during his brief eulogy there were many tears shed by all.

Let's now take a moment of silence in honor of Bob.

::Silence, in which there is the faint sound of angels singing and birds chirping::

Let me tell you a little about Bob.

He came into our lives purely by accident. See, John had decided that he wanted a fish in his office at work. So after a trip to SmartPets, he was the proud owner of a pretty Beta fish. After a few days, and John's enjoyment of the fish at work, he declared that I should have one at my office too. However, since I wasn't there as much as I had been, thanks to school, I didn't know that the little guy would survive. Besides, I thought it cruel to feed him on Friday, and let him starve until Monday. So John talked me into getting a fish for my office that would live at home. He would clean the tank, and feed him and love him and call him...George (name that cartoon!).

So George came home. Everyone was happy. Except the longer that George was with us, we realized that he was...special. And I'm not talking about having a super cool talent, or a neat trick, or that he could swim faster than the speed of a speed boat. No, George was...well, there's no easy way to say this. George, was a dork fish. He wasn't the sharpest tool in the shed, not the brightest crayon in the box, a few fries short of a happy meal. I'm sure you get the idea.

George preferred to...well bottom feed. He liked to float around and watch his fishy dinner flakes float gracefully through the clear water, and land on the beautiful neon gravel at the bottom of his tank. Then later, when he was hungry, he would turn himself in a fish with an incredible amount of buoyancy, and...bob for food. So, it was apparent that George had been misnamed, and well, from that day forward, he became Bob.

You should have known this was coming.

Bob the Magnificent

 Amazingly so, Bob had been a part of our family for the better part of 2ish years.

We had Bob, sitting on this self for about 5 weeks, when the dog, finally discovered something was up there.

Friend or Snack?
Bob, like I mentioned before was...special. He was fondly referred to as a dork fish. Bob's not only speciality was bottom feeding, but Bob, had an imaginary friend. I was doing some laundry one day, and walked by Bob's tank, and as Beta's are prone to do, he was "fighting". Fighting is actually good for a Beta, because it helps to keep their colors bright and the fish in good health. So it's often a good idea to have 2, and place their tanks close together and allow them to fight for a few hours a week to keep them healthy. We would place a shiny pan or a mirror up so Bob would have this opportunity.

Love at first bite, err sight.
Well one afternoon, I was changing out the laundry, and Bob suddenly woke up from his mid-afternoon slumber and starting fighting with...nothing. The cabinet was empty, the dishes put away, and Bob was just going to town. About that time, John called, and I told him, as a joke that Bob, had an imaginary friend. Thanks to the question of what was his name (John should know that I can think on my feet) Stan, the imaginary friend, was born.

The first part of September (yes, I know I'm a month late), we came home to discover that some time between the time I went to bed the night before and that afternoon, Bob had taken his final swim. We knew that the time was coming, and frankly, because John had gone through 4 fish at work (2 of which I'm quite sure committed suicide because his office was so cold) that we knew that Bob wasn't going to be around forever, and frankly, we were surprised he had made it this long. Yet, amazingly so we were saddened by the loss of our finned friend.

I hadn't really planned on getting another fish, with school, work, homework, Scentsy, blogging, and trying to have a life that didn't revolve around school and homework, it wasn't a high priority. But John and I talked each other into it. So off to SmartPet's we went.


Stan, the imaginary friend.

Yes, I'm aware that they make hospitals with padded walls for people just like me.

I think that we should rename him to Speedy Gonzales (name that cartoon!) because the fish never, ever stops moving. This was the best picture I got, because he wouldn't be still long enough for me to take it.

Faster than a speeding speed boat.
He's a pretty blueish greenish color. With a hint of purple. He's constantly moving, and he always fights. Me, a pan, air. Doesn't matter. I'll be surprised if he doesn't have a heart attack between now and Christmas. However, at first I was leery that Stan was his name. So I've patiently been waiting for his personality to come out, and I've discovered that Stan's name is actually very fitting. See, I had often though that the imaginary Stan often pissed off Bob. Bob would swim around in circles looking pissed off, like Stan had ran over, tapped him on the shoulder, woke him up from the best nap ever and ran off. Stan fits, because he is never still. He is always darting about in his small tank. I'm not sure he sleeps. Of course I don't stand by the take 24 hours a day, but surely at some point he does. Bob slept. I'm quite sure that Bob was a college student. He woke only to eat and when someone pissed him off. Usually me, flicking the tank with my fingernail wondering if he was dead. Or Stan. Apparently Stan was a rowdy 2 year old on a sugar high.

Goodbye Bob. I hope you enjoyed your beautiful sendoff. I hope that Le toilet and the sewage system processional was the exact type of sendoff you were hoping for.



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