Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Death by Drowning

I didn't realize how long it had been since I had posted until I logged on today. Things have been all discombobulated and each day is its own type of beast.
I suppose that I will list a couple of updates for those of you who may want one. This post was originally going to be a "Reasons Why Catheters are From Satan" list... but it got a bit too serious and then a bit too sarcastic for my liking.  I am sorry if any of this doesn't make sense or is some ongoing tangent. It's how my brain is firing at the moment.

  • I did have to have Foley Catheter Numero Dos placed last Tuesday. I would tell you the story, as it truly doesn't seem possible that this last visit could be any MORE stressful than any of the others... But it was. And the story could be my proof, only there is only so much that I could allow myself to say before my blog becomes some strange form of Medical Pornography (okay. that's a bit harsh and exaggerated... but close enough that it isn't some bold faced lie)... I did manage the anxiety and the situation way, WAY better than I can believe. So, Gold Star for me... or something... There are still a couple of theories being loosely bounced around about why this is all happening, but nothing is really actively or aggressively being done about it. All I know is active, jittery, obsessive 24 year old females are not made to live with tubes and tape and bags attached to them. (unless they are scrap booking at some water park themed mall. don't steal this foolproof business idea. copyrighted as of now!) 
  • I have decided that I am going to tackle the above situation exactly as explained. There will be no hospital stays or trips back to The Mansion or moving back with my family in Cali. I am going to make it work, for however long I have to, with the highest level of sanity and self direction as the universe allots for me that day. It won't be perfect, but I have fought too hard up to this point to fall back now. So, I guess forward is what I've got. 
  • Mi Madre will be flying in to spend some time with me this weekend. I am excited to have some home grown company and an over abundance of homemade Mexican food. AHH! I can already smell the cilantro and tortillas! It's okay... be jealous. If anyone who lives near me wants any salsa verde, I sure I will have vats of it to spare. 
  • I slowly but surely have eased my way back to work. It sucks and is painful and there are some moments that I want to just cry, it has been good for me to get out of the house and out of my mandatory sweats dress code and communicate with people. This next work week (starting with a double on our 2nd busiest day of the year) will be back to my normal full time schedule. Hopefully my patience will hang in for me. I'm sure, as I have the last few years that I will post my favorite and most ridiculous Le Cheese Valentine's stories tomorrow-ish... 
  • Therapy has been a bit scattered for me this past month. I have seen Reese WAY more than usual as she has been bringing me in for Emergency Scrape-Stephanie-Off-the-Ground sessions after most of my doctors mishaps. She has done a phenomenal job  at keeping me going and being my biggest advocate with all kinds of providers that I have been dealing with along with my family and close friends when I can't seem to see straight and do it myself. I can't help though, but to want therapy to go back to "normal," which usually consists of my three ring circus hour of Sarcasm, Seriousness and Super Sarcasm. I miss the comic relief and slightly irreverent commentary that usually rules the office. 
  • I didn't register this until after talking about it with J yesterday, but I have reached the 5 year mark from my first day at The Mansion. I cannot believe how different I have turned out to be. If you can imagine, I spent over 72 hours without speaking when I arrived (other than timidly squeaking out "I'm Stephanie, 19, from CA") I was terrified of breaking ANY rules, even by accident and was dead set on doing everything perfectly and making sure that every other person was okay before I would even think about my own mess... Oh, How times have changed, how much more vocal I have become, how all of my missing spunk and smartassed-ness has come back to me full force and then some and how I opposite this "perfect patient" was than the one who was there for my final few days of my last Mansion stay... Me trying to break as many stupid little rules as I could, just to see what would fly... It's quite the impressive list, if I do say so myself. While I remember and feel slightly sorry for that scared silent version of me, I do not miss her in the slightest. 
  • This being the latest obnoxious thing to enter my world... I apparently thought that my life was not interesting and challenging enough, I accidentally dropped my phone in the sink while trying to do my dishes... Stupid shallow hoodie pockets! So, it is currently sitting in a sealed container of uncooked rice in the hopes that this phone Death by Drowning will turn into some resurrected miracle. It doesn't hit you how much you rely on all of your technology until you can't text the completely unnecessary eulogy of your beloved cell phone Marge to your friends and family so you can mourn together  (Yes, I  named my phone and basically everything else I feel needs one.)
  • I am currently trying to get through all 8 seasons of 24 at an un-human pace, by watching several episodes each night with Barney as sleep continues to allude me. I can't help but hope and wish that there are many Jack Bauer's out there saving us all by running around for 24 hours at a time kicking more ass than a Kardashian would know what to do with. 
Alright. I feel like continuing to list my thoughts will just digress further into nonsense, so I'll stop. That, AND, I have dinner and memoir reading and 24 to prep for. Let the night begin!


Friday, February 1, 2013

Bye Bye Brain

Let me just start out with a sentence of sheer honesty..

This week has been beyond shitty. 

I have been to the doctor more times and had more strangers examining and placing things in my urethra than I feel like are legally necessary. I also understand that I have to take even the smallest victories and celebrate them, otherwise my life looks quite sad... So I feel over the moon levels of excitement to say that the Golden Purse (my foley catheter) is GONE! I went to the urologist yesterday and after not much chatting or examination that the "ONLY logical explanation" to my problem was that all of my medication is causing retention. Almost as quickly, he decided that it would be best if I placed my own catheters 5 times a day! Let me just say that I was not a fan of this option, and when I said something about it, the nurse told me that I could do it that way or I could put the "Purse" back in. Well... Then... Fuh...
I silently started to cry as the nurse and her assistant (I'm guessing) came in to TEACH me the Art that is self catheterization. She told me to completely rid myself of my bottoms and my less than helpful paper drape as "you can't hold a drape and put one of these in. so, you might as well just get used to it." More tears came down as I obeyed... and not to get totally graphic about it... But she then had me put one leg up on the exam table and then KNEELED on the ground underneath me and got beyond personal while trying to teach me how I was to do this multiple times every day. I was given a couple other instructions and told to keep up this until I saw the doc again in a MONTH! 
By the end of my appointment, I was openly crying... and while I didn't want to talk, share, explain or do anything other than get as far away from this horrible experience as I possibly could... I do remember feeling so surprised that no one had asked me if I was okay, or asked what was upsetting me or even if they wanted to be rude about it and say, "What in the hell is your problem?" At least at that point they have been acknowledging that what was happening was not okay with me... But, they didn't.

I left the appointment with J in toe (who has seen more of my madness than I'm sure she was ever ready for this week), got into my car, where I immediately text Reese and told her that I was coming in for a session. She had blocked off a bit of time for me as a last-resort-just-in-case scenario after my urology appointment, but I didn't hesitate taking my 3rd session this week for even a second.

I sat in Reese's office, bawled, came unglued and managed to try and tape the pieces back in place long enough for me to walk out of there. I can't remember everything that we discussed in there... But, we did talk about how having a short 7-14 day stay at The Mansion may be helpful to me as I tried to figure out what in the frig is going on with me medically, and if I did actually need to cath myself or have one placed again that I would be around a beyond loving staff who knows far more about my trauma and my potty problems than I care to admit. I also think that somewhere in there that I told Reese that she could call my mom and give her a more detailed explanation as to what is going on and see if her coming here, or me spending some time at home in Cali would do me some good.

I don't know if any of this is a good idea. I don't know if this is a bad idea. I don't really know if I am in Utah or on Mars at this point. All I know is that yesterday morning I didn't know how to pull urine out of my own bladder and tonight, unfortunately I am able to successfully cath myself (yes. I just said "cath" Apparently Catheter and I are bosom buddies now so using its full name just seems unfriendly). I was like 3 hours into my work shift this morning when all of this treatment"planning" hit me and I starting sending texts and emails to my providers trying to slow this train down. I don't think that I know what I need right now... All I know is that I am beyond exhausted, and I am pretty sure that my brain is still trying to catch up with itself.

So basically,

Get back to me in a week. 
Also, I hold myself completely NOT responsible for ANY stupid thing that I may say, fleetingly think or even dream until my mental faculties are back in business.
And I promise to stop talking about urinary systems, just as soon as they stop invading every facet of my life.
Because, I just think its icky.