Monday, February 23, 2015

dr visit

This update is mostly for my dad, and so I can remember everything that happened at the Doctor visit today.  We talked for a long time about everything that is going on with this month long migraine.  I asked if there was any chance that something different was happening in my brain, not saying the words brain tumor, but I'm sure he knew that was what I was thinking.  I mean, how long can a migraine really last?  He said that any migraine that lasts longer than 2 days is considered a 'long' migraine, so this one is unusual, but not really that much, because once it passes the 2 day mark,, they really all fall into the same category.

He said they don't understand why people get them and as far as he knows, there aren't any local studies of migraines, but he gave me a website to check into.  I'm going to see if I can possibly try to join a study and maybe be on the cutting edge of new drugs or shock therapy or maybe surgery or something.  When he asked how things were before this migraine and I said that I had things under control with probably 3 migraines a week and I was happy with that he was really shocked.  3 a week?  That's good?  Wow, he didn't think that was acceptable, but then I told him I hadn't missed a day of work with having a really bad (level 8 almost every day) for the past month.  I'm one tough old gal.  I come from good stock.

So, after testing my strength and balance, he suggested we try the botox in more places and with more shots.  I got 9 shots across my forehead and on the bridge of my nose and then one in each temple and then 6 across the back of my head, right above my neck.  He says it will take 3-4 days for the full effect, but I can already feel it working.  The forehead is starting to go numb and the back of the head as well.  He says I could have some troubles lifting my head.  That's ok, I can walk around with a neck brace :)  I could make a nice quilted one, like the Elizabethan collars.

 I could start a new fashion trend.  You will see.  Or, maybe like the African necklaces that when the people take them off, their necks fall over because they don't have muscles to support them anymore.

I'm so desperate for anything to work I don't really care what I look like.  Tomorrow should be interesting because the small puncture wounds will really be visible.  Last time it looked like a cat got ahold of me.  I can see some of them already.  I have to come up with a good story for the kids.  They already know about the steroids and now botox.  Good thing they know I'm crazy.

nothing in moderation

So this is my coffee collection.  I can't seem to do anything in moderation.  I actually like the cappuccino flavors a lot and am getting used to the other coffee ones as well.  I'm trying to mix some of them together and by adding milk to the coffee, the dirt flavor isn't quite so strong.  It isn't helping my headache, but does give me some extra energy to make it through the day.  I actually understand why so many people are addicted to the stuff.

making faces

 I'm headed off for Botox this morning. This is the last time in about 4 months I will be able to make faces so I figured I had better make as many as I could before the botox takes effect!
 I sure hope it does something...anything.
It's been a terrible weekend.  Last night I didn't sleep well.  The headache is terrible today. It feels like a small person is trying to climb out through my eye and is pushing against the back of my head.  I'm going to ask to see if the doctor will do another brain scan.  He probably won't, but it won't hurt to ask.  The allergy medicine isn't doing anything for the ear stuffiness either.  My ears plug up and make it so I can't hear well in the mornings.  But, on the bright side I have the day off of work.  And it's a beautiful sunny day out there.  The wind is really blowing, but at least we don't have 3 feet of snow.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

A bad couple of days

 This is my daughter's boyfriend, doing some fancy tricks while waiting between quidditch matches last weekend.  He just couldn't sit still!
It was funny watching my daughter be so aggressive.  At the end of her last match, she got a yellow, penalty card for choking out a really tall guy.  She didn't do it on purpose, but it was funny anyways.  She's always so polite and thinking of others, so to see her pushing these big guys and grabbing the ball away from them made me laugh!

These pictures were taken by one of the photographers at the quidditch match last weekend and since my own life is a little boring right now I thought I'd share them so you had something to look at.

I go in on Monday for more botox for my head.  I'm happy to say I made it through another week of work, but it sure is rough.  The neurologist thinks I'm on too much Topamax so I cut back to 50mg in the morning and 100 mg at night and I'm not sure if that's what is causing yesterday and today to be so bad, or maybe it is starting Nasonex for the 'allergies' the other doctor thinks I have because of the dizziness and ear stuffiness or exactly what is going on, but I sure am miserable.

Plus, I was hopeful because I finally got ahold of the guy who will eventually be coming out to fix my quilting machine.  He was all set to come out from a city about 1 1/2 hours away on Sunday, but then called yesterday to say his truck broke down and he may be able to come next weekend.  I've stopped holding my breath on getting it fixed.  I kept passing out in anticipation.

I have no desire to start a new project because there is no hope of finishing anything.

I am working on a crochet afghan for my daughter and it is taking forever, but the end is in sight.  I hit the half way point last weekend and now the rows are getting shorter.  It's made on the diagonal, so now that I'm more than half way there, each row gets smaller and smaller.  That's not saying much because she wanted it to be big enough to cover her head to toe and she's really tall!  We got the yarn when she was home for Christmas and she thought I would have it finished in about 3 days.  She's so funny!

I'm walking and napping and drinking coffee and trying to take meds and not take meds.  Maybe I should stand on my head.  I've tried everything else out there that anyone has suggested.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

more botox

 So after back and forth emails and phone calls I finally have another appointment with my neurologist for next Monday to get another round of Botox for my migraine that's lasted 25 days.  I guess he just doesn't have any other options at this point.
 The Botox didn't work last time, so I really don't have much hope of it doing anything, but I should count my blessings that I Have good enough insurance to cover something.  From all the research I've done myself, I'm on the best preventative medicines for the migraines and since I've tried almost everything else that's out there and this has worked the best out of everything, which isn't saying much.  I sure wish there was someone doing research to find a cause and an actual cure for these things.
Trying to work through the issues of a migraine and deal with forgetting things or trying to focus on learning new material has been difficult.  Being super dizzy and confused every day has been more difficult than dealing with the pain.  Knowing that the pain isn't going to kill me makes it easy to deal with.  Being confused and forgetful is hard.  Today I had a list of things I was supposed to get done and when they asked me at the bank if there was anything else they could help me with, I told them I knew there was something else, but I would have to come back because I couldn't remember what else I was there for.  Giving myself permission to take extra time to remember, or 'do over' things that I should be able to do right the first time is taking some time to get used to, but may be a new way of life for a while, until I retire, or someone finds a new treatment.

Monday, February 16, 2015

a new camera

 Yesterday morning I was considering buying a new camera.  I love taking pictures and wanted to get the latest and bestest so I could capture some action shots at my daughter's quidditch match.  I was watching the other photographers to see what type of cameras they had and looking online to see what I could get for how much.  I have a Sony Cybershot from about 2004 and it has a 13x zoom lens.  I took these pictures from about 100 yards away sitting down, without a tripod or stabilizer or any fancy knowledge of what I'm doing.  The kids were running full steam and after seeing the types of pictures I got, I'm thinking I really don't need a new camera.
That camera has followed me everywhere and I'm surprised it has lasted me so long.  Most things made these days last about 2-3 years.  It's big enough that I haven't lost it and small enough that I can take it anywhere.

I use it to take pictures of quilts that don't move and kids across a soccer field who run full steam.  It has so many settings on it that I don't understand and I'm sure if I took some time I could learn a lot more about it.

If it ever breaks, I will replace it with something similar because it really does a great job.

I'm still basking in the fun of the weekend. I've decided I need a four day weekend about once a month.  I wonder what I can do to arrange for that.  Sorry to all of you stuck in the snow, but I'm really loving this warm winter we are having.  I know this summer we will be hating it when our grass is brown and we can't take showers, but this morning's walk was glorious!

Sunday, February 15, 2015

They qualified!

So my daughter and her boyfriend's team both qualified for World Cup today in the matches.  It was a really great day, weather wise and game wise.  They actually had a game against each other.  Spending `12 hours outdoors is good for the soul.  I need to plan more days like this for sure!

Saturday, February 14, 2015

the game of quidditch

So the game is based on the Harry Potter books/movies where you run around with a broomstick between your legs and try to throw a ball through the hoops.  Each person has a different color headband to let you know what their role in the game is.  One person wears a yellow sock with a tennis ball and is the snitch and he comes in at the end of the game.  You earn points for getting the ball through the hoops and earn extra points for catching the snitch, which also ends the game.  If you are down by more than 30 points, you don't want to catch the snitch, because then you lose.

It's a combo of dodgeball, field hockey, water polo, capture the flag, soccer, tackle football and tag.  I'm surprised nobody gets hurt more than they do.  Some of the kids wear padded helmets, but most don't.  They played either 3 or 4 matches today and each match lasted 30-45 minutes.  The kids can sub out whenever they need to, but some ran the whole time.

It was really fun to watch and the kids were really good sports.  You can start a team, no matter your age, so even if you are 40, you can start your own team and compete in the World Cup.  It's never too late to dream.  But, I doubt you would be able to compete with these young kids.

a really great day

Today was just what the doctor ordered!  We spent the entire day outside in the beautiful sunshine and met my daughter's boyfriend Sam.  He's really nice and friendly.  He's from Tustin, which is in S. Cal, near where I grew up.  We got to watch some great quidditch and just relax.  I've haven't felt this great in 3 weeks!  I am going back tomorrow to watch some more quidditch and to spend some more time with these two cuties!

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Nurse Linda

I got three shots from Linda, the spanking nurse, today at Kaiser.  She's about 4'2" and will spank your butt right before she gives you a shot.  I think it's so you don't feel the actual injection.  It works because the shots didn't hurt until they went in.  I got Toradol, an antinausea and a steroid.  I've never had the steroid before and usually the Toradol and antinausea knock me out for the rest of the day, but I guess the steroid is counteracting the other two because not only am I not knocked out, but I'm also not getting relief from the migraine.

The doctor is also trying me on another round of steroids.  I sure hope I can sleep tonight!