Cheeseburger or Chicken Sandwich???

I also have this horrible habit of overthinking everything and irrationally worrying about things that don’t need to be worried about. The worry and overthinking are often accompanied by their evil second cousin, guilt.

Some days it’s about which curtains to buy for my living room. Some days it’s about what to order at a restaurant. Other days it’s about what size clothing to buy my children. Or what clothes to buy or keep for myself (I am a habitual returner. Half the time, I swear I know I’m going to return the stuff while I’m standing in line to buy it) Others, it’s about losing something that I’ve borrowed from a friend or just generally messing something up with a friend (something that my friends are not mad about! This  describes this one perfectly, except add in about 10 more “I’m sorry/it’s okays” lol: Image12.

Notice all these things are really NOT A BIG DEAL. But in my brain, it’s like this: What overthinking looks like. Drowning in 1 foot of water. I stand there in the store paralyzed. WTF do I do?? WTF is wrong with me??? I spend my life agonizing over the cheeseburger or the chicken sandwich. It’s absolutely ridiculous.

This also happens when trying to make plans. If I choose friends over family once in a while, then I get real guilt from some of them, which then adds to the irrational overthinking/worry/guilt that was already there. But if I choose my family every time, I miss seeing my best friends that are an important part of my life too. My family will say something about making time for plans with family, and I think, if they could only see what’s going on in my head and how much effort I put into making everyone happy! Something specific happened today and it was: what if I cancel on this person but then that person will think I don’t love them enough and then that person will think I don’t make the right priorities but then I won’t get to see those people but then this but then that but then AHHHHH!   And my brain continues to spiral.out.of.control until it E.X.P.L.O.D.E.S.

 

So, you wanna go out to lunch with me? No? Maybe clothing shopping?? Anybody?

Made it to the other side

Here I am on the other side of my latest  attempt”fix.” I can write about it now because I’m finally feeling human again. Feeling “better.” As better as I ever feel. Up until today…not so much.

I did not realize how much this would wreck my body. How unprepared my body was for a the medicine it was not used to being pumped straight into my spine for 2 days straight.  I thought it would be no big deal. I made big plans for the weekend. I would be fine. I was not fine. I did not make it to those plans.

It was a lonely 2 days. My wonderful husband has been with me for so many attempted fixes that for this one, he had to go to work, so I went alone. And nervous. And anxious. When they finally said those sweet sweet words, “here is something to make you feel more comfortable,” I welcomed it with open IV tubes.

After that, it began. The horrible decision making. Is this making me feel better? What’s my pain level? What’s my pain level now? Do I feel better than before? How about now? I hate having to figure that out!! Then came the itching. OMG, THE ITCHING. It started off slow, trying to fool me into thinking it wouldn’t be so bad, then little by little, more and more and then by the afternoon, I WANTED TO CLAW MY SKIN OFF. And then when your doctor says to you later, well, try to set the itching aside and tell me how your pain was. YOU set the itching aside! I was losing my mind! I have no idea what my pain was or wasn’t. I was going insane. That’s what I can tell you 🙂 So they turned the medicine down and the itching came down some, but still not great.

Then there’s the whole process of going to the bathroom, which of course you have to do a 17 trillion times because of all of the fluids they are pumping you full of. But you can’t just get up and go! You have to unplug yourself from the wall before you can go. And then you still just can’t go, you have to make sure you aren’t tangled in all of your wires and don’t yank anything important out of you! Fun times. Especially when you feel like you’re going to burst. Especially in the middle of the night when the bedside light doesn’t work! Wheeeee!! Fun times!!

By the second day, I became an expert at the unplug and pee routine. And was losing interest really fast in walking the halls and all of the movies I brought. But what else was there to do? I tried napping a bit, but they didn’t want me doing that much. Oh yeah, I could itch and scratch. I did that a lot still! They finally switched meds late in the day but unfortunately that didn’t help a whole lot. Then eventually in the evening, it all got taken out and I finally went home. But it was all in all a very unpleasant experience. I did not feel very well taken care of by either my doctor or the nursing staff. And the meds were not fun. And when I got home, the itching kicked up something fierce, and I was back to wanting to claw my skin off again. It was terrible!! And then the next day was way tougher than I thought it would be…

So, I mentioned before that I had made all of these plans for the weekend. Well, when I was supposed to be attending all of those plans, I instead feel asleep right where I landed on my bed after a shower I took after seeing my son’s soccer game, the only thing I did make it to that day. I then slept for 4 hours straight and only woke up because my husband woke me up to eat. I fell asleep a bunch more times the rest of the day and just felt wiped out and awful all day.

Sigh, just another day in the life of a chronic pain patient trying to find something that will fix the pain.

Too many fixes to try

After 21 years, I’m very over trying all the fixes out there. Especially the ones that other people suggest. The minute you say “back pain” you instantly get “have you tried this?” or “my son had great success with ___” or “This worked great for me, you should really try this.” It’s exhausting to keep nodding your head and smile with each “new” suggestion. I say “new” because it’s usually acupuncture, physical therapy, chiropractor, yoga, massage. All things I have either OBVIOUSLY tried (I mean, am I an idiot?? wow, I’ve had back pain for 21 years but damn, I didn’t think to try massage! Gee thanks!!) or I cannot do because of my specific condition. So no, person who knows nothing about my back condition, I haven’t and probably won’t try your either blatantly obvious or really off the wall (I’ve tried plenty of those too, some of them quite horribly painful) magical idea that is going to be the one thing that will cure my chronic pain.

Yet, despite not wanting to hear all of those unhelpful suggestions, I do continue to fight for the answer on my own. I can’t seem to give up. I’ve had some doctors tell me it’s hard with chronic pain to know when to accept it because there always seems to be some hope that something will help. Not being able to give up is a blessing and a curse. It seems good to not give up. Especially if something might help some day. And it seems like it would be good for your mental health. Giving up seems bad for that. But it also puts you through a ton of crap that doesn’t end up helping, hurts like hell, injures your psyche, and leaves you more bruised and battered (physically and emotionally) than when you started the latest possible fix.

So here I am, on the brink of yet another possible fix. And in a confusing mental state leading up to it. You see, just a couple weeks ago, I actually started feeling a little better. A new medication may actually be the key. But yet, I feel the need to continue with this other trial fix to keep all of my options open. But because I feel better, I’m feeling conflicted about it. And throw in some general anxiety about the procedure and the whole “no fix has ever fixed before” and “the last thing like this that I tried a few months ago was one of the most painful fixes I’ve ever tried” and you’ve got the recipe for a big serving of doubt, anxiety, fear, and and worry.

But here I go again…