Friday, March 27, 2009

Miss Me?

I've missed y'all! Blogger and life/time problems, but nothing serious!!

If I've successfully fixed the Blogger problems look for a post in the next day or two.

Sunday, August 31, 2008


I'm really at peace with my diagnosis. Maybe it's the Lexapro... Or maybe it's just easier because I remain mostly symptom free...

I saw my neurosurgeon this week. Once again I realize how blessed I am with my medical team. When I read stories about other MS patients with insensitive Drs., I can't reiterate how wonderful it is that I am in such good hands!

Said neurosurgeon saw me at 6:30 in the evening. He and his asst. waited around for me, obviously, I was the last patient! He is pleased with my progress and recovery from the surgery. Says I have good strength, and if didn't know how bad the weakness was before, he wouldn't have known I had a problem. That said, I do still have significant atrophy in those big thigh muscles. He said that when a nerve is damaged and not sending impules to the muscles (even in sedentary patients) it only takes 72 hours before the muscles start to atrophy. And it can take me up to 18 MONTHS to get back to where I was. As such, altho I am through with PT, he is going to send me to an exercise specialist to put a plan together of strengthening exercises for me to do on my own.

We also discussed the MS. He thinks the leg weakness I sometimes have when I walk, is not MS, but still related to my herniated disk. Hmmm. He showed me my MRI films (after some "reluctance" worrying that I was going to "obsess" about my lesions) I told him I might, but only until I could accept them. I just gotta know. So he called them up, and while I have a lesion each in my left temporal lobe, corpus collosum, medulla, c2-3 and t2-3 spines they are all tiny. The biggest lesion is 9 mm, which is like a third of an inch. None are active. He said if I didn't have the other MS symptoms I do (wacky reflexes, stuff in my spinal fluid) he might consider the "lesions" "UBOs" --unidentified bright objects" they sometimes discover in normal MRIs.

I also asked him what I do if I get other serious symptoms (temporary blindness for one) or what I do when I'm travelling--do I just assume its MS? Do I go to any old hospital? Is it ER visit worthy? And his first, flat out comment was "You immediately call me." Nice since I have both his home # and e-mail. Like I said, I can't believe what good hands I am in!!!

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Summer's Over

At least for me. I had a quiet July off from school. Wish I could say I did something fun and exciting. But as I've already posted, vacation wasn't an option for us again this year. However, it was a healthy, contemplative, restorative time for me.

I really needed to decompress after the wild ride I was on since January. And the good news is I've spent this last week in my office with my NEW boss. And she seems really, really normal and wonderful! Normal is a great compliment, believe me! I told her about my MS diagnosis and told her we would all figure out together what that means for me. I said that there are 3 triggers: heat (and in Houston we have to deal with that!), illness (and I'm usually pretty healthy) and stress. I told her that's where she comes in. She laughed and said (Honest to God) "I don't believe in work place stress." !!!!!

If this new and improved work environment and boss turns out like it seems--what a wonderful reward for me!

Sunday, July 20, 2008


It's been a busy month for me while I'm off work. Busy for me, probably not for you if you were in my shoes! I'm continuing my exercising. Walking every day. Doing stretching exercises every day. Hoping to start swimming this week at the Y.

I've embraced the MS Swank diet, which limits your fats and includes taking doses of "good" oils and fats. Mmmmm, nothing like a spoonful of flax or cod liver oil! I'm still crazy vitamin lady. I also read food labels like crazy and don't eat anything with bad additives (there's my weakened blood-brain-barrier. I can't assume chemicals and additives WON'T get into my brain).

I'm enjoying listening to an MS self-affirmation cd (no comments please). Whatever works.... And I've been reading. A lot. About brains, neurology, vitamins, MS. And every now and then a little fiction.

A little knowledge is a dangerous thing; I'm going for A LOT of knowledge!

Sunday, July 6, 2008

The Blues

I haven't posted in awhile. And no one seems to miss me! (Except you Faith, thanks!)

I haven't felt too creative or interesting. I think I'm just feeling blue. I'm off work for the month of July and was really in denial, or at least very good at compartmentalizing things, until this month. I knew I was going to have to really delve into this diagnosis this month. While I had time to, without having to be "up" at work.

I have been having a tougher time with flu-ish reactions to my Friday interferon injections. Fevers and non-stop headaches and tiredness. And I'm already tired of giving in to being tired! Which is what I have to do with MS. I'm not that kind of person to just give in to a weakness!

Then co-workers were difficult at work. People who have been recently informed of my diagnosis and still are happy being disagreeable (and gleeful and gossipy and petty) about something they think I handled inappropriately. I, of course, disagree with them, but even if I was wrong--they can't be supportive and give me the benefit of the doubt, knowing what a hellashis few months I've had? Apparently not.

And then the husband has been grouchy too. Even though he recently referred to me to friends as "superwoman." Which is a good and bad thing. It's a nice reflection on my ability to handle all this, but it also implies that I CAN handle all this with my superwoman strength and x-ray vision. Like I don't need his support. Which is wrong, wrong, wrong. Yet I also know I can't burden him with all my fears and weaknesses.

It occurs to me that even surrounded by friends and family, I'm really all alone in this! And obviously not doing well with it right now. And there's still all those darn medical bills to pay off and no spare money so of course, no summer vacation for us (and because husband was out of work 6 months last year, there was no vacation then either).

No tropical escape for me! It will remain my running fantasy. You see why I haven't posted. No great philosophical words here, just whining...

And for good measure, my hair is falling out.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Happiness Vs. Journalling

I've never been one of those people who can "journal." Years ago in the teen diary stage I'd always feel guilty if I skipped days, then weeks, then months. How could you continue a diary if you missed so much time? Later as an adult, as a writer, I'd read how I should be journalling every day, clearing my mind, doing "morning pages" or just dumping whatever (crap) is in my brain. I could never do that. It sounded so whiney. If I write, if I put something on paper that is "permanent" that someone else might eventually pick up and read, I don't want it to be so self-serving. Okay, so I have issues.

But I just had an idea about keeping a "happiness" journal. Just trying to write every day (okay, so whenever I get around to it--no guilt!). Any way, writing BRIEFLY about something that makes me happy or made me happy that day.

Maybe I'll post those here every now and then too.

Monday, June 2, 2008


I can't underestimate the importance of laughter! There are just some things that amuse me now and I am embracing them. TV shows: "Who's Line is it Anyway?" "Two and a Half Men," "Big Bang Theory," "Kathy Griffith," "Flipping Out," just crack me up. The kids' sense of humor, and Katlyn's "full body" hugs. Matthew thinks its too "Arkansas" to hug me. Which cracks me up too. My funny little Lhaso Apso, Maggie, loves me and is the goofiest little thing. I say all the time that she alone can get me through the depths of my MS. Listening to anything by Harry Nilsson--a blast to the past--brings a smile to my face and a song on my lips as I walk or workout.

And my Dr. wrote me a "prescription" that says "No housework FOREVER!" Which my son framed and put up in the kitchen. Now I doubt it will inspire anyone in this house to do chores in lieu of me, but it makes me laugh out loud everytime I look at it!

That and antidepressants and I have it made.