enduringplum: (Come Hither Gaze)
( Apr. 10th, 2009 12:36 pm)
I think I may be getting depressed again. I felt terrific throughout my fertility treatments and during pregnancy, which was no doubt due to all the hormones, but now that I'm no longer exclusively breastfeeding I have been having bouts of tearfulness during the day and, during those rare moments when I'm not engaged with Miranda, I feel very listless and lost. I don't want to take prescription anti-depressants, because those always make me feel like I'm made out of cardboard after a while and then I stop taking them, which totally defeats the purpose, but I also don't want to slip in to a serious depression. If I see myself heading down that road I will definitely seek medical intervention, but for now I'm going to try the "activity therapy" route and look in to herbal/holistic supplements/treatments.

Edit: I'm going to stop taking the vitex supplement I began taking a week ago. It may be the culprit.
enduringplum: (Come Hither Gaze)
( Apr. 3rd, 2009 08:34 pm)
I spent all morning trapped in the bathroom, suffering through my post-gallbladder woes. Fortunately that should clear up entirely in six months to a years.

When I could finally move about without fear of embarrassment I had a traumatic incident with a cockroach that resulted in a half hour of me retching, trying not to hyperventilate, and almost sobbing. I'm not scared of snakes, spiders, tarantulas, bees, or wasps, but I'm completely phobic when it comes to cockroaches. I really need to work on that.

I did get some of my errands done, but I was too exhausted and missing Miranda too much to finish, so I went to my mom's house and hung out there. Miranda was napping when I arrived, so I just laid down next to her for a little while.

I keep reminding myself that I'm not fully healed, so I'm bound to be more easily exhausted than usual, but it just seems a little extreme; I plan to mention it to the doctor during my follow-up appointment next week.
enduringplum: (Brown Sugar)
( Mar. 30th, 2009 12:19 pm)
I'm feeling much more ready to purge my closet than I was the last time I made the attempt. Last time I hung on to way too much, because I just wouldn't have had more than four everyday outfits if I'd given it all away, but I have to accept that I must buy new clothes that fit me!

I'm going to get rid of everything that doesn't fit within one size, up or down, of my current post-pregnancy body; maternity clothes will go in to the attic for three or four years and if I don't get pregnant (or have not yet begun further fertility treatments) within that time, then they can go to the Goodwill (or a needy pregnant woman), too.

I'm happy to report I can actually jam my wedding ring on to my finger, although I can't yet wear both rings again. Progress!

Post-Op Update )
Well, it's finally out! I honestly have already noticed a reduction in my pain level, despite the discomfort from the surgical incisions (really, the only one that bothers me is the one on my solar plexus, which so far is discouraging me from standing up straight).

Surgery Day )

Miranda and Conrad are still with my parents, so the house has been eerily quiet; the night before my surgery it was difficult for me to sleep without Miranda snoring softly beside the bed and Conrad snoring on the floor at the foot of the bed. Miranda should be coming back home tonight some time, but she'll either be going back to my folks in the morning or one of them will come here, because I'm not supposed to lift more than fifteen pounds for the next two to three weeks.

Today I'm just going to take it easy and enjoy the quiet and solitude (and hopefully not vomit!). I may do some knitting or some very light gardening, like planting the coleus seeds Triple_Phoenix gave me. Or I may just veg on the sofa all day if the TV doesn't nauseate me.
enduringplum: (Brown Sugar)
( Mar. 17th, 2009 12:25 am)
My surgical consultation today was pleasant, despite the cumulative four and a half hour wait surrounding it. The resident who interviewed and examined me today will be present at the operation, which is reassuring, as is the coincidence that he reminds me of Holden Caulfield because of the multitude of silver hairs all over his head.

I have to return on Friday afternoon for a consultation with someone from anaesthesia and my actual surgery will be Tuesday next week, the 24th.

Before now I was feeling extremely fearful about having surgery again, but after meeting with the surgeons today I feel much more relaxed about it, especially since the resident with whom I've developed a bit of a rapport will actually be in the operating room that day and so will hopefully see me as the person he spoke with, rather than just a patient devoid of personality and background. I'm actually looking forward to it now, because it should relieve my pain immediately (barring certain complications) and gradually resolve my other symptoms.

I'm going to make an appointment for a mani and pedi sometime before my surgery.
I started having another gallbladder attack around seven last night, so I ate some soup and waited around to see if it would get worse. When it definitely seemed like it was getting worse, I mentally said "fuck it" and had a small bowl of ice cream, then had Carl call my mom to come over to watch Miranda.

We got to the E.R. around nine and, surprisingly, it was nearly deserted and they were able to see me right away! I was pleasantly surprised and I'm thankful we went to University Hospital, because they actually gave me pain medication, did an ultrasound (which revealed "thousands of tiny gallstones"), and made me an appointment with a surgical practice for March sixteenth! Previously the best I was able to get was an appointment for a gallstone ultrasound in May, so my E.R. visit did yield good results in that respect, at least.

My mom and dad watched Miranda for me again today while I slept off the pain medication, which still had me dizzy and nauseated at noon today; I'm very sensitive to pain medications, especially narcotics, so getting the medication in my I.V. was rough on me, but not nearly as bad as the gallbladder pain. They prescribed an opiate pain reliever that is supposedly safe to take while breastfeeding, but I'm dubious.

The doctors and nurses, both residents and faculty, were all very attentive and considerate once it became apparent that I wasn't just after drugs and they weren't at all rude before that, just brisk and business-like; the overall bedside manner of the whole staff became pleasant after I was first examined by a resident (and he was sweet to begin with).

I suppose I can thank my Bedstemor and Grandmother Clinton for predisposing me to gallstones, but at least this experience has made me thankful for modern medicine.

I'm going to try to make it to Jodi's Mardi Gras party tomorrow, but I just don't know how I'll feel. I'm still a bit disoriented and sore from the pain medications and I'm anxious about the possibility of having another attack away from home. I may just make cookies (which I'm not supposed to eat) and stay home with my little family.
enduringplum: (Come Hither Gaze)
( Feb. 17th, 2009 08:21 pm)
I had a bad pain day today, which reminded me that I need to pace myself- I can't wake up at six in the morning and go to bed after two the next morning! I don't know what I was thinking.

Carl came home early to look after Miranda while I got some rest and I do feel a lot better now, although I'm still feeling weak, sore, and somewhat disoriented.
enduringplum: (Brown Sugar)
( Jan. 15th, 2009 12:11 am)
- spent yesterday walking around downtown, trying to get to the LSU Medical Center to get set up with the "yellow card" for free health care for poor folks; as I was walking around in the cold, crisp, bright and dark day I felt like I was looking out through someone else's eyes, not living my own life

- Miranda has her MRI in the morning; I'm not sure what to expect with the anesthesia, but I feel she will be in good hands

- actually made it to my knitting group tonight and got a third of the way done with a scarf for my mom

- my mom is leaving for Germany on Saturday and will be there for fifteen days; I hope to have said scarf done before Saturday

- if I want my gallbladder examined, let alone removed, before sometime in May I will have to suffer another attack and go to the LSU Medical Center ER

- I don't want to suffer another attack

- ferret bowling is still fun and Orbit gives funky kisses
I had bad back pain all day yesterday, but I assumed it was just from carrying a fussy Miranda around everywhere; it turns out it was my gallbladder again, which I figured out after I woke up in excruciating pain around two in the morning. I took two Tylenol with codeine, but that didn't give me any relief, so we went to the emergency room (after my mom came over to watch Miranda, who slept through the night for the second time!) where we weren't seen until around seven in the morning, after arriving there at three-forty. They tested my urine, my liver function, my pancreatic enzymes, and what not, but all that was fine, so I'm perfect on paper, but my gallbladder has to come out - I didn't have much labor pain, but what little I did have was intense and I would prefer to go through a lifetime of that pain rather than another five minutes of the pain I had last night: it just sucked beyond all belief, I can't even explain it. At least Jodi would understand.

When we got home around ten, I made an appointment with Catherine at the Musician's clinic to follow-up after my ER visit, which is on Tuesday morning, then I went to sleep since I'd only had an hour of sleep since eight o'clock Thursday morning; after I eat this sandwich I'm going to go to sleep for a few more hours, then go to the store to purchase some soups, since I'm supposed to stick to clear liquids and bland-as-possible foods like Cream of Wheat (joy!) and crackers.

I'm totally amazed to realize that the back ache I've been experiencing for the last few weeks must be related to my gallbladder, because since the pain finally passed around six in the morning I've been completely pain free. I think I didn't recognize the back ache and stomach aches I've been getting as related to my gallbladder because it has shifted from the position it was in while I was pregnant, when it was smashed up against my rib cage, and because the aches have felt somewhat different- more deeply aching rather than stabbing- than before.

It must have been those damn, delicious parsnips.
enduringplum: (Blush)
( Jan. 8th, 2009 11:56 pm)
Tits/Ass )
It only took seven years, but I finally feel sure about what I want to do in the way of a career, but it means I need a lot more school, which will be harder (but will probably feel more worthwhile) now that Miss Miranda is a part of our family.

I'm okay with taking my time and my health has been so wonderful since I became pregnant that I feel like I can actually handle motherhood and a light class load. It's really shocking to me how well I've been since conceiving and I've been feeling even better since Miranda was born; a lot of my very annoying PCOS symptoms, especially hirsutism, have become noticeably less pronounced and while I still have joint pain, I don't have the intense muscle pain and overwhelming fatigue I so often had before she was born. I do still have sensitivity to sunlight/heat that will cause me to break out in a bright red rash across my nose and cheeks, but I can certainly live with that, especially since with good health and high energy any depression I might feel finds it difficult to stick around - it's such an amazing change - I haven't felt quite like my self in so long and even my sex drive is returning. I feel like I've experienced a life-changing miracle in more ways than one because of the profound change in the way I feel and I'm afraid of doing something to lose the good health I've suddenly been granted.

I haven't had any bladder pain since early in Miranda's second trimester, which has been wonderful. I'm still careful about what I eat and drink, but not having to feel afraid of taking a piss, for fuck's sake, is more wonderful than I can really explain.

Now if I can just keep my Medicaid insurance I'll be in great shape, because I'll be able to keep up with my medications.

School )
enduringplum: (Babydoll)
( Dec. 1st, 2008 10:09 pm)
First Shots )

Otherwise Miranda and I had a good day! We hung out with Catherine, the wife of one of Carl's good friends, and her son Jude, who is about two months older than Miranda. It's great to see Catherine looking so well-rested, because it reassures me that I will be able to sleep a straight eight hours again one day, which will be better for both me and Miranda. Miranda also enjoyed her car rides and then had a nice nap in her swing while I did some cleaning around the house and repotted the kalanchoe Carl bought me for our two year anniversary (which I forgot).

She's just now fallen asleep and I was, to my surprise, able to put her down for a moment, so I'm going to get some laundry folded.
enduringplum: (Gush)
( Nov. 7th, 2008 05:25 pm)
Miranda Update )

Otherwise Miranda is doing very well. She's grown another inch, she now weighs eight pounds and one-and-a-half ounces, she tracks objects well, and she pushes up with her arms often now and continues to lift her head well. Not to mention all the coos, smiles, and funny grunts she treats us to.
I'm having gallbladder pain again, much to my chagrin. I guess I'll have to figure out my Medicaid status so I can do something about it.
enduringplum: (Brown Sugar)
( Oct. 5th, 2008 11:54 pm)
I'm extremely sleep-deprived, but I'm certainly not complaining; the last two weeks have been wonderful and I'm looking forward to the days and weeks and all the milestones to come with Miranda. So I don't drive those of you who read this totally batty, I will be putting all my Miranda-related posts (of which I'm sure there will be very many!) behind a cut; there's nothing quite so boring as a parent who goes on and on about their children, so I'll let y'all choose when you'd like to be subjected to that sort of thing.

The Doctor, Thrush, and Diapers )
enduringplum: (Default)
( Aug. 20th, 2008 09:57 pm)
It's great to have my own computer back. Funnily enough, a former co-worker from Borders was the one to repair my computer. He returned fairly recently from two years in Japan, which is where he also got married! I always liked him personally, but found him irritating to work with, but I'm sure plenty of people felt the same way about me, too, and he seems like he's in a job that actually interests him now and which he can enjoy, unlike the bookstore job in retail hell where we met in the first place. I'm not going back to retail unless our circumstances become desperate; I think I would go in to fast food service first and definitely try waitressing before that, despite my questionable ability to balance a tray!

My feet have become very swollen over the last couple of days, probably because I've been so busy. Now that my gallbladder doesn't feel like it's killing me I can't sleep and have to get things done around the house! It must be the "nesting" urge kicking in that everyone talks about.

Our washer and dryer were delivered yesterday, but the cords and vent tube are too short to be installed in our closet, so I have to stop by the hardware store to get longer versions. Mischa has agreed to help Carl muscle the stacked washer and dryer in and out of the closet tomorrow night, so Carl can get behind them and connect everything; even with longer hoses, Carl's the only person slim enough to squeeze in and out of that space.

I will be practically beside myself once I can do laundry without leaving the house!
I brought my MacBook in to be repaired, but it probably won't be looked at for a few days. I told them to call me to give me a time estimate before they begin working on it, because their hourly rate is ninety-nine dollars, so I obviously can't afford ten hours of work; frankly, even three hours of work will be difficult enough for us to manage right now, especially when we also have to cover the cost of any replacement parts. From now on I'll always buy the extended warranty on any Mac or other laptop I buy - argh! PC desktops are easy enough to fix with the help of my friends or dad. Hopefully the problem with my Mac is just the back light, but according to Misch it could be the LCD, the motherboard, or both. :/

My gallbladder has been much, much better for the past week (although I'm having a bad flare up at the moment), so much so that I've been able to function almost totally normally! It's been nice, because I've been able to get things done around the house (although no heavy lifting) and out and about. I saw the surgeon again a few days ago and he said that as long as there's not another period of extended, severe pain or any fever, I should just get in touch with him six weeks after I deliver; however, if my pain subsides totally after I deliver, then I probably won't contact him unless I have another pain flare later, because I would prefer to completely avoid surgery and there's a slim chance that I won't experience any more trouble from it unless I get pregnant again.

Our washer and dryer are supposed to be delivered and installed tomorrow, which I'm very excited about: it will be so much more convenient to be able to do laundry at home, rather than having to haul it to either my parents' house or the nearby laundromat, then wait there until it's done; however, all that waiting on the laundry did allow me to get a lot of knitting done, so it wasn't all bad.

I finally got in contact with a local WIC office. After calling all the different numbers I found online and in the phone book for the last several months, I finally found an accurate number with staff who answer the phone today, although I had to call a homeless shelter to get that information; the New Orleans government really doesn't make it easy to find the assistance that is supposed to be so readily available to their low income citizens. Today I drove all over town trying to find two WIC office locations that supposedly opened after the hurricane, but which simply don't exist anymore: one address is an empty lot on Tulane Avenue and the other is an empty, boarded-up building. Someone from the office I managed to reach by phone should call me back with an appointment time no later than Monday, but I won't be holding my breath. At least my determination finally put me in touch with someone at a WIC office, which is a step in the right direction!

Birth Plans, Et Cetera )
enduringplum: (Babydoll)
( Aug. 3rd, 2008 11:14 pm)
Well, the surgeon's verdict is that I need my gallbladder removed, but he's unwilling to risk pre-term labor by performing surgery, although the risk of that is relatively low. I have to see him every week now to re-evaluate my gallbladder's condition, because it's so inflamed that he is concerned that it could make me very ill very suddenly, but he still thinks it's best to wait to remove it.

It hurts constantly and there's very little I can do to get any relief from it. When the burning pain is the biggest problem an ice pack helps a little, but usually I have intense stabbing pains through my upper right abdomen to my back, just below my right shoulder blade. Movement and pressure make the pain worse, so I'm pretty much out of commission and spend most of my time trying to lay very still. I'm used to dealing with chronic pain, but I rarely have to deal with such intense pain sustained over so long a period of time; usually I have pain that hangs around at a low to mid intensity with flare-ups of intense pain that last a day or two, but this is much worse simply because it never stops and it's totally unpredictable. My abdomen also itches constantly over my gallbladder, which seems like a ridiculous complaint at this point, but it bothers me. I think I've finally hit disgruntled.

I was prescribed Tylenol 3 with codein for the pain, but pain pills always just make me throw up and then immediately fall asleep, so I've only taken one so far; I'm also hesitant to expose my baby to an opiate in the womb, although I'm not sure how much would cross the placenta. I couldn't find any useful information for gallbladder pain relief online, because surgery is the recommended treatment. Unfortunately my gallbladder doesn't seem to respond to changes in my diet, because it hurts just as much after every meal, regardless of how unseasoned and low in fat the food was.

I'm extremely unhappy and irritable because of this, but I am pleased that there's no problem with my pregnancy, but just a problem with me that is due to the pregnancy; I'd much rather have it that way.

Carl has been wonderful through all of this. He's been doing all the cleaning and looking after the animals, he's fixed me meals, run to the store for me a hundred times, and taken me to my surgical consultation, all without once complaining.

She couldn't give me an official diagnosis, of course, but the ultrasound technician did see a number of gallstones in my gallbladder. Fortunately, I don't have an infection, but there's always the chance that one can develop the longer I have stones in there. I haven't spoken to my doctor yet, so I have no idea what sort of treatment he'll recommend; I want to do what is best in the long run and safest for my pregnancy, which may mean an open-style surgical removal of my gallbladder, but I'll just have to see what my doctor recommends. Honestly, it's just good to know that what's been causing my pain and dizziness isn't a bigger problem.
enduringplum: (Come Hither Gaze)


( Jul. 27th, 2008 09:23 pm)
Apparently my computer is broken in some bizarre way that Mischa can't properly diagnose. The screen won't come on, but the monitor display also won't display on another monitor when the computer is hooked up to one. However, my machine is apparently still working, because Mischa was able to eject my Sims 2 disc from the disc drive and transfer music from my iTunes to his own computer. Mischa thinks it may be the motherboard, which doesn't make me any happier than if the LCD needed to be replaced, which it may. I'm going to call a local computer repair shop tomorrow to get their rates, then bring it in if I'm able.

I might not be able to bring it, however, because I've been having horrible pain in the upper right portion of my abdomen all weekend. I'm used to dealing with chronic pain, but this has been so bad that I haven't been able to function. It's especially bad about a half an hour after I eat anything, so it may very well be my gallbladder, as Esther suggested when I first complained about it a couple months ago. I eat a very low fat diet under normal circumstances and that hasn't changed since I became pregnant, but apparently enough has changed in my body to cause a problem.

It could also be the pain of my abdominal muscles splitting, but it's not in quite the right place and I haven't heard that pain described as intense or persistent as this has been. Whatever it is, I'm calling Esther about it in the morning, because I've very nearly reached my limit with it and nothing I've been doing is able to relieve the pain when it's at its most intense.

I'm not feeling particularly perky, but things could be worse, so I can't complain too much about the few problems I have to handle. I have to be honest, because overall my life is very good; I always have Viva Pinata to play when I have to stay stationary and there's always a kitty nearby to cuddle.

Exciting Gallbladder Update )


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Enduring Plum


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