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Thursday, November 29, 2012

It's Time to Get Moving Again

I can see some improvements in myself this week.  Not so much desire for emotional eating.  I eat a reasonable amount and I am okay with that for several hours until the next meal.  I don’t have this constant urge to munch all day like I have had for a while.

It’s time to make a plan, shop for what I need to carry that out, and get going again.

I got up “on time” this morning.  I took the dog for our usual first-thing-in-the-morning walk.  I got back and was thinking what to do next.  Typically I would go into the living room and turn on the TV while I checked e-mail, etc. for a while before getting ready for work.  Since my son is staying with me right now and sleeping on my couch, I haven’t been doing that.  I thought about going to the gym, but wasn’t feeling very motivated.  I began to think about how nothing was going to change or get better if I didn’t make some changes, so I got up and went to the fitness center at my lofts and did 20 minutes on the recumbent bike.  It’s a start anyway.

I’ve been behind on reading other blogs, but I have been doing more of that the last couple of days.  This really is a motivating thing for me, so I need to spend more of my free time doing that.  Michelle’s, in particular, motivates me.  I am not sure I will be physically able to become the athlete she has become, but she certainly makes me want to try.  I have to break myself out of this paralysis I have been feeling when I get home and start doing more physically.  I think if I will do that, the eating will begin to follow.

One of the things that I keep using as an excuse is that the kids are around all the time.  Jacob is staying with me and the girls are coming over every night after work.  I think this is partly because everyone is short on money, so they are coming to my house to eat.  And they also come to watch my TV, since I have cable.  Bethany comes and uses the gym at the lofts and rides my bike and takes her dog for a run through the downtown streets, etc.  For some reason, when the kids are there, I am less likely to get up and get busy.  I sit and watch TV.  I need to take my cues from Bethany.  I have to get myself up out of that chair, whether it is to get out and walk, go to the gym, ride my bike, do some housework, or whatever, even with the kids there.  Just because they are there doesn’t mean I have to sit around.

I am still having a significant amount of pain this week.  I don’t know what brought it on.  I thought it was from sitting around too much on my days off, but it sure is hanging on.  Perhaps I have gained some weight and it is having its effect.  I haven’t gotten on the scales, because sometimes that traumatizes me.  My clothes don’t feel significantly tighter, however.  But I am sure I have gained a few.  That is probably having an effect on the spondylolisthesis and pulling me more out of alignment.  I have an appointment with the reflexologist on Saturday, so maybe she can help.  I don’t know how to explain it, but when I get up to walk, the pain is pretty severe and I am bent over and slow and the radiating pain is increased.  It is hard to pick up my feet and I am more apt to trip.  I am also having more problems in my feet and ankles, so that makes it difficult.  I was also having trouble in my upper back yesterday.  Something I must have done in my sleep, because I woke up feeling like something was out of place at the level of my bra line on my spine.  There is a big knot of pain there, something feels out of place and I can feel numbness and tingling going out from that spot.  Last night when I lay down, I begin to feel like I was not going to be able to keep laying there.  Something about it was so uncomfortable, I didn’t think I was going to be able to sleep.  I realized I had a pillow by my left side and my arm was on top of that pillow.  I moved the pillow so my arm was resting on the bed itself (I sleep in an inclined position, so this caused my arm to fall away from my side more), and it suddenly relieved all the pressure I was feeling in that area.  I think sleeping with that pillow there the night before is what set it off.  Who knew an arm position could make that much difference?  But my spine is so sensitive and “fragile,” the least little bit of misalignment causes something to flare up.  It makes me feel old.  I think I may go get a chair massage this afternoon.  Maybe that will help work the soreness out of that area.

I remember Michelle saying in her blog (or one of her FB posts) that life was so much better after losing 80 or so pounds (that’s how much she had to lose).  She had so much more energy and pain issues were improved, etc., etc.  I want to get there.  I actually had twice that much to lose when I started, so it seems like it would make even more difference for me.  I don’t know how healthy my spine can become by losing weight and getting physically fit, but it would have to help a lot, I would think.  I am very tired of living this way.  I am very tired of being in constant pain.  And this is life with pain medicine.  I can’t imagine how it would be without it.

It’s time to get moving again.

One other thing -- Jacob and Stephanie both got jobs!!!  Yay!!!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Things are Looking Up?


Well, I don’t have a lot of news.  Other than I really need to get back on track.  I had four days off from work, which I sorely needed.  I didn’t do much except rest.

Of course, I had Thanksgiving Dinner with my kids.  They helped a lot with dinner and it did not seem overwhelming and everything turned out wonderfully.  Nothing dietetic about it, other than everything was made with fresh food.  No casseroles made from cans of soup and that kind of thing.  My daughters love green bean casserole, but I do not like using canned soup because it is so full of MSG and preservatives.  But we made a green bean casserole from fresh green beans, fresh mushrooms, and a crunch topping made from fresh shallots.  It is delicious – so much better than the kind with canned soup and French’s onion rings.  My son made a squash casserole, also from fresh ingredients.  Best squash casserole we ever had!

I remember the “old days” when I was quite a bit younger.  I could eat a couple of platefuls of dinner and then several desserts throughout the day and leftovers for dinner.  Can’t do that anymore.  One plateful and I was done.  I did have too much dessert, but no leftovers that evening.  So although the food was not low calorie, I was not able to eat nearly as much of it as I used to.

I did take some walks over the holidays.  I rested quite a bit, but that gets my body to hurting more, so yesterday I was up and around a little more.  Still, I seem to have this paralysis outside of work.  When I get home, except for walking my dog, I am not doing much.  I don’t like the way I feel when I am like that.  But I did need some rest.  Yesterday I tried to alternate times of rest and relaxation with times of being up and being busy.  But I still felt like I should have been doing more.  I need to push myself more.  I wish I wasn’t constantly having to deal with this pain, but at this point, that is wishful thinking and I just have to find a way to get what needs to be done, done and push through this.

The kids have been over a lot.  Of course, my son is staying with me right now, and my daughters are at my house pretty much all of their free time.  Of course, this was a holiday weekend, so I guess that is one reason.  The girls bring their dogs, so my loft is full of 4 people and 3 dogs.  It is keeping things pretty lively.  I am less likely to get up and be busy around the house when they are all there.  Hopefully things will get a little more like normal this week.

Steph will be changing jobs soon.  Actually, she is waiting to hear back about the one she really wants, but if she does not get that one, she does have another offer on the table too.  It will be enough for her to be able to pay her bills.  If she gets the one she really wants, she will have enough to pay her medical insurance too (which she will need, because they are nanny positions, and do not come with health insurance provided).  The one she wants would be for a couple, the wife of which is an attorney.  Stephanie told this lady who her mom worked for (Jerry), and as it turns out, this attorney’s firm is the opposing counsel on the big case I am always talking about that my boss is working on.  She knew who my boss was, for sure, although she wasn’t personally working on the case.  (Did I mention we are whipping the other side’s butt so far in this case?)  She is also friends with one of the female attorneys here in our firm.  I hope that will work in Stephanie’s favor and not against her.

The other family she met with wants her pretty badly and increased their offer to her.  If she does not get the one she wants most, she will take this one.  It pays significantly more than she makes now and she could make it on that income, except for the medical insurance part.  I would have to help her with that.  So, of course, I am wanting her to get the other one too.

My son also thinks he might have a job.  If he gets this one, it will be just a block away from my loft.  I am sure he will continue staying with me until he saves up enough to get a place in Dallas.

I say all this because these are things that would help me immensely.  It would help me a lot not to have to carry all this load.  I “worry” when I don’t have as much overtime, instead of being glad for the rest, because I need the extra money to keep us all afloat.  I can make it fine on my salary without any overtime if I wasn’t having to help my kids so much.  There are a couple of things I have had to help Bethany with lately, too.  One being she had a wreck and has to pay the deductible for the car insurance, and one is something she would probably prefer I not go into detail about.  Just one of those things that happens when you procrastinate because you are low on funds.  She says she is going to pay me back, but I don’t see how when she has just enough to cover her bills as it is.

Again, I am thankful that I have the means to help when it is needed – I just don’t want it to be needed so much.  This load is too heavy.

My eating today has been under better control.  The candy bowl is empty, so that is helping. My cubie is out today, so she didn’t refill it.  I would like to hide the bowl and see if she gets the hint.  People groan all the time about it, but she just laughs.  She is a tiny little thing and rarely eats anything like that, but I guess enjoys watching other people eat it.  Aside from the candy bowl, I have had some thoughts of getting something sweet (always sweet cravings with me), but I am in enough pain today that it is reminding me that is not going to get me where I want to go.  I had a bowl of soup (some homemade chicken tortilla soup I had left over), and that seemed to satisfy me.  I don’t seem to be thinking about eating all day long when the candy bowl is not staring at me all the time.

I walked my dog at noon, so that is my second walk today.  I had forgotten to take my medicine mid-morning, when my dose was due, and so I was really feeling it on my walk.  I’m really “waddling” today (which is the word they use to describe the typical gait for people with spondylolisthesis, which is certainly true for me when it is flaring up).  You want to limp, but both sides hurt, so you end up kind of waddling.  And my hips don’t feel right when I am walking.

I really need to make an effort to get up when my alarm clock goes off at 5:45 (instead of squeezing out 30 minutes more of sleep) so I have time to go to the gym and ride the recumbent bike.  I keep thinking they will be here to fix mine any day, but they haven’t yet.  I confess that one excuse I was making was that I felt bad leaving Cassie for the 30 minutes I am at the gym.  I try to use opportunities for exercise as opportunities to spend time with him and get him exercised too, but I can’t really do that when I ride the recumbent bike (unless I could ever get him trained on a treadmill – not sure how apartment management would feel about that).  But he would be fine those 30 minutes.  And with my son staying with me, he is not having as much time spent alone in my apartment.  So I just need to do it and start building that habit again.  I’m going to make a goal to do that in the morning.  If I get moving more, it would probably motivate me on my eating too.

December is always really tough.  There are tons of goodies around and special events to attend.  So moving as much as possible is important.  And I don’t have to eat it just because it is there.


My eating was definitely better yesterday.  When I got home, I had a ham and cheese sandwich (from leftover Thanksgiving ham).  I ate a few – maybe 5 – crackers with some peanut butter, and that was it.  That was pretty good for me, lately.  I can eat a whole sleeve of crackers with peanut butter pretty easily (heh-heh).

My improved eating has continued today.  I keep thinking about wanting to go get me something sweet, but I just never get around to it.  I had cereal for breakfast and a grilled cheese sandwich for lunch.  My son is cooking something for dinner, I think.  If it is like the last meal he cooked me, it will be fish with some rice and a veggie.  That’ll work!

Steph did not get the offer that was her first choice, so she will be taking the other one that was offered.  The good thing about this one is it starts before the other one would have (either Friday or Monday).  And she will be paid weekly, so she should have money coming in quickly.  That is good, because I don’t think I have enough coming in to cover all the bills this paycheck.

My son has a second interview tomorrow and hopefully has a job right down the street from my loft.  He can get started on that (it is waiting tables) and start making money pretty quickly.  I am sure tips will be pretty good – it is a fairly nice restaurant and the downtown crowd should be pretty good about tipping.  Lots of attorneys and business people going there for lunch, and residents and visitors at night.  Hopefully he can manage getting his own place (hopefully with a roommate) in the not-too-distant future.  At some point we need to make the switch (in our minds, mostly) to my car being my own again and his use of it being “borrowing it” instead of me feeling like I am borrowing his car.  Too bad he can’t move in with his sisters and cut their expenses into thirds instead of halves.  But they would really need a bigger place to be able to do that.

Anyway, hopefully a lot of the financial load is going to be lifting soon.  That should help with my motivation.  Now if we can keep everyone healthy and out of “trouble”!!!

My pain has been increased the last couple of days.  My friend at work who has similar problems to me with back and radiating pain says her pain has been increased the last couple of days too.  We wonder if the change in weather is having an effect.  I don’t know.

I broke down and ordered me some things I needed in the way of clothing.  Actually, most of it is shoes – or actually boots.  I didn’t have much of any decent “closed in” shoes for the colder weather, especially that are comfortable enough for walking to work every day.  My feet have been bothering me some.  I can’t wear flats – they do not provide enough support, but I also cannot wear too much heel, at least when I am walking to work (I could always change when I get here, though).  Anyway, I hit a “Black Friday” online sale and ordered me two pair of boots (dress boots, for work), some ankle boots, a jacket for weather when I need something to keep warm, but not so cold that I need my heavy coat, and a skirt.  I ordered a kind of brown trench-style coat, but it is hip length rather than full length.  I also ordered a denim type skirt that will look cute with the boots I have ordered and that can be worn with tops I already have.  I got all of this for $200 with the sale.  I put these on a credit card, which I don’t typically do, but I really needed these things for the sake of pain issues and weather issues.  But I budget $100 per month for clothing and I can pay this off quickly.  I do not like to keep a credit card balance and times seem so uncertain these days, I don’t think debt is very wise.

I did not get up and go to the gym this morning.  I was sleeping so good this morning, I just couldn’t make myself get up.  So often by morning I just can’t stand the bed any longer, because of my back, so with some good pain-free sleep, I wanted to take advantage of it.  But I really need to get going on this.  Sure would help with my pain issues would let up, but I have to push through anyway.  Hopefully I can report something positive tomorrow about that.

This is way too long, so I will close.  Maybe things are on their way to smoothing out a little.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Checking In

I felt like I needed to post just so you wouldn’t think I had dropped off the face of the earth.  Things have been incredibly busy and I have had no time to think about anything much, but work.

My friend and co-worker (who is my backup, and I hers) had to go to the ER weekend before last and was admitted for emergency surgery.  After the surgery, she fell and hit her head and ended up with her heart stopping and having to be revived.  She had gastric bypass three years ago (but still it was quite large, although not nearly as large as she was) and the emergency surgery came from that.  It seems some sort of band was left on her intestine and 3 feet of bowel died.  (I am not sure if that was from some kind of negligence, or just part of the risk of the surgery.)  So it had gotten to the point to where nothing would move through it and she had a blockage (what is it with people I know and intestinal blockages?).  Anyway, from just the surgery, her estimated time to be out was 2-3 weeks.  I don’t know if the fall and resulting blow to her head added any time to that or not.  But she very nearly lost her life.  She also has been working a lot of long hours, and although I don’t know that that had anything to do with what happened to her, it does make you think more seriously about taking care of yourself.

Anyway, not only do I not have any backup right now, I am having to carry her work load.  Fortunately, things have been a little calmer on the case our attorneys work on together, but another case my boss has, has been very busy, so I have been just as busy as always with my own work, plus the little bit added from my friend being gone.  So I have had no time to post.

I haven’t had much time to think about my own health.  Thankfully, the headaches are improved.  I did go to my doctor’s appointment and appointment with the reflexologist Monday.  I knew if I continued down the path I was on the week before, I would be down for a while too.  My spine doctor felt that the headaches were from stress, tension and overwork (as I did too).  She took a neck x-ray to make sure (one of the things that can come from a fusion is the space above or below the fusion can collapse).  Everything looks perfect there.  I knew it felt muscle related.  I also ruled out rebound headaches.  It was tension all the way.

I went to the reflexologist (someone I had known 25 years ago before I even moved to Dallas – we both lived in Lubbock, Texas at the time, and now have reconnected) and the first thing she said was, I can tell you one reason why your head hurts – your left shoulder is about an inch higher than your right, which means you are all out of balance.  This begins in the pelvic region, so she did a little work there, plus in my neck and shoulder area and on my feet (which is a reflexology thing (does wonders!).  It will require more work, but I felt better from that one treatment.  My doctor and Sharon both said I was on the right track with the muscle relaxants and I have been using them regularly through this period of having to work a lot.  I take a half of one when I am working, or I would be laid out on my desk, and a whole one at night.  It does make me tired, though.  But that is a whole heap of a lot better than my head “pounding” all the time.  I was ready to jump out of the window of my office, which is on the 25th floor, the week before.  The only time I could really get away from it was when I was asleep, but then I would wake up with it or it would be back within a few minutes of waking.  I had lost my ability to cope with it.  I know it was from working so many long hours, sitting at the computer for day after day of 12-hour days.  That has improved a little, but I still am having to work a lot.  I need to take some time off soon.  At least this week is just a 3-day week (but I had to work 10 hours yesterday).

My son is realizing his impulsiveness in walking out on his job (even though he hated it and it was causing him so much angst) was probably not such a good idea (I could have told him that, and have in the past).  He has asked a couple of times if he could borrow money for some gas so he could go around putting in applications.  I suggested he come stay with me for a bit – he was going to start looking in Dallas.  He would be right there in the hub of everything, where there is plenty of public transportation and plenty of job opportunities (Texas is still very good about that).  So he is staying with me right now.  I would rather do that than have to keep giving him gas money.  He has been waiting on me hand and foot -- cleaning the loft, cooking me meals, walking my dog, etc.  That has been kind of nice.  I am having to adjust to having to close doors, lol.  I can’t walk around in my short nightgown, and I have to close the door to the bathroom, etc.  I am very glad I got a loft with 2 bathrooms.  It only has one bedroom, but 2 baths.  The living room is quite large and he is sleeping on the couch.  It is obviously just temporary.  But I think it is a lot smarter for him to find a job in Dallas than in Arlington, since he hasn’t been able to get his car running.  He can’t keep using my car forever and Arlington doesn’t have the public transportation system Dallas does.  In Dallas, he can get to most anywhere he needs to go.

Stephanie is looking for a job diligently.  She had three interviews Friday.  Hopefully something will pan out soon.  I need to stop carrying this load for my kids.  I still would have to work long hours, but at least I could spend my money on a trip or vacation, instead of having to support them.  It’s my turn to get to do some fun things.  She did give my loft a good cleaning last week in exchange for my paying some of her bills, and the girls took my dog for a few days when I learned about my co-worker’s situation and having no backup.  I wanted no pressure at home added to what I already have at work.  It did help.  Except then I didn’t have the motivation to get out and walk, but little time for that anyway.

I did take a couple of good bike rides last weekend (not the one that just past, but the one before).  Saturday, I rode to the dog park that is on the outskirts of Downtown Dallas (under the freeway!).  Sunday, I rode to Katy Trail, then rode a ways on Katy Trail, then back home again. I did pretty good and didn’t have too much trouble with the inclines.  I walked the last hill, because by then, I was worn out.  This bike is much better on hills than the one I had before (or else I didn’t know how to do the gears or something).  Just as I was about 2 blocks from home, a cold front blew in.  Brrr, it was kind of cold (for Dallas, Texas).  Not for you guys in the Northeast, I am sure.  We don’t have enough cold here to suit me.  I felt like that weekend I was beginning to live the lifestyle I am working toward as far as having fun and getting exercise at the same time.  I did most of the riding with Cassie in my basket.  On Katy Trial, I took him out and hooked him up to the bike leash and just walked with the bike first.  Then I got on the bike and just walked it that way.  He is kind of scared of it, so I am trying to ease him into running behind it a little.  Then back in the basket and we rode back home.

I know this wasn’t much about diet and fitness, etc., but I wanted to check in and post about my current status.  I really, really, really need my life to settle down.


Thursday, November 8, 2012

On the Edge

Beginning what was to be day 1 of withdrawing.  No side effects yet, of course, except no pain relief this morning.  I typically set my alarm at 4:00 a.m. and take a pain pill so that it has time to take effect before my alarm goes off again at 5:45 a.m., when I get up (or thereabouts) to go walk my dog.  When I say pain relief, I mean back and leg pain.  I just turned off the first alarm last night and did not take any medication at 4:00 a.m.  My alarm went off at 5:45 a.m.  I turned it off and promptly went back to sleep.  I woke up with a start and looked at my clock and it said 7:00.  I panicked, got up and started hurrying around, getting ready to get out the door to walk Cassie.  I was about ready to walk out the door, when I decided to check the temperature on my phone to see if I needed a jacket.  When I looked at my phone, the time said 6:00 a.m.!  I forgot.  I typically set my clock in my bedroom 10 minutes ahead, and then I have never changed it when the time changed.  Lol.  Usually when I look at it, I see the time and I calculate that it is really so-and-so o’clock.  I don’t know why I do that.  In this instance, I guess it really worked.  I had already reconciled it in my mind that I was probably going to be late for work.  It was really only a few minutes after my alarm went off.

My headache this morning is on the mild side of moderate.  My pain level otherwise is not too bad, but I was noticing it more as I walked to work this morning.  Hips and knees and back were hurting more.  Maybe I should take something else early morning, but I really need to have something in my stomach if I take an anti-inflamatory med, so I probably won’t do that.

As I go through my morning, I see how much good the pain meds were doing, as far as the bodily aches and pains.  Headache is definitely better, but why?  If it is rebound, wouldn’t it be hurting more?  I do notice that my neck and shoulders are not hurting as bad.  They are not so tight.  I would attribute that to the muscle relaxant last night.  I had been out of those for a few weeks and that situation had been building up.  I don’t know what to think.

One thing I know.  I have to get moving on the weight loss.  I cannot take pain meds indefinitely.  If it is not rebound now, it will be.  I have to get to where I don’t have to take those on a daily basis.  I have been really nervous about getting to the place where I cannot do my job.  It is one thing for my back to hurt, but the headaches have been making it difficult to function.  I have to get better.

My mind is popping everywhere this morning.  I left my muscle relaxants home this morning (accidentally), so I popped home to get them (that is the advantage of living 5 minutes from work).  As I walked home, I realized not having the pain medication could be a problem with me having to walk so much now.  It was painful to walk home.  I got the muscle relaxant and walked back to work.  I was having quite a bit of pain in my hips, legs and knees, as well as pain shooting up the back of my heel.  That was going to be really tough with having to walk everywhere.  I took a half of a muscle relaxant when I got back to work.

By lunchtime, it was time to take a dose of medicine, just to avoid withdrawal symptoms (for the weaning process).  Still not much of a headache, but a little of one.  Not like I was having the last few days.  I did not go to lunch until 2:00 because my boss had a hearing that I had to get him off to.  I went home at lunch and walked my dog.  It was quite painful and it took a lot of effort, because of the pain.  I think I am going to have to have more pain control at this stage of the game.  And, the way the headache is acting today, it does not seem like it is rebound.  The muscle relaxant seems to be making the difference.

So here is my game plan.

1.     Continue with the pain meds for now, trying to take them as little as possible and only using them to facilitate keeping moving for weight loss purposes.

2.     Weight loss efforts have to begin NOW.  Not Monday, not tomorrow, but NOW.  Do the best I can with the food I have now.  Stay away from the candy bowl.

3.     I have a doctor’s appointment and an appointment with a reflexologist scheduled for Monday to work on the headaches, plus I will continue with the muscle relaxants.  I will also work on some neck exercises I found for cervicogenic (neck-related) headaches.

4.     Reassess the medication situation in one month.  If I am not making progress on weight loss, do I need to continue with pain meds?  They should be used to help me keep moving for weight loss.  Can’t stay on them forever.

 I am tempted, once again, to do something a little more drastic, diet-wise.  I need to get my weight moving.  But would I do it, for one thing?  Some things I thought about:  Medifast, Nutrisystem, Gastric Bypass.  Gastric Bypass is a no.  My insurance won’t pay for it (it is excluded).  I don’t really want to do it that way anyway.  And there is no guarantee it would be a lasting result.  I have thought about doing Medifast as a way to get some weight off fast, so I could get to feeling better physically, and then move to something more long-term.  I just don’t know if I could make myself do it.  I can’t make myself do the more moderate thing right now.  Same thing with Nutrisystem, although it is more moderate than Medifast.  I may do the Subway Diet again when I get paid.  It was my compromise last time.  A way to have a plan I didn’t have to give much thought to, it was convenient, and it worked.  But I did get tired of it.

I just feel very tired and discouraged.  But I want to get to feeling better.

This post probably seems disjointed.  I don’t feel very coherent today.  I really want to get free of having to take any medication.  I wonder if that will ever happen.  I feel on the edge.  Like I want to cry at the drop of the hat.  Like I am just barely hanging on to being able to handle my usual schedule.  Like something’s got to give.  But I don’t know what to do about it, except to just keep trying. And trying to be good to myself as best I can.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012


The headaches have been rough and are not letting up.  I have pretty much decided they are rebound headaches.  I do have some plans on some treatment options, just in case, but I decided this afternoon I am going to start weaning myself off of the narcotics.

That means that the next few weeks could be pretty hellish.  Not that they aren't already, in some ways.

One thing I am going to try is some reflexology.  Whatever is wrong, I know I have problems with tension and tightness in my neck and shoulders and I have heard and read that reflexology can help that a lot.  So I am going to look into that.

I have an appointment with my spine doctor to talk to her about some alternatives to the narcotics.  I know she will mention the injections, but I cannot afford that right now (and they never really did a lot of good anyway).  Perhaps some other kind of anti-inflamatory or something will help.

I went to a headache doctor late last year and he is the one who told me I was having rebound headaches then.  He wanted to put me in the hospital for five days to strip the narcotics out of me and start me on a regimen to help the headaches.  I could not take the time off work then, so I just weaned myself off the narcotics myself.  But I gained 40 pounds in the process.  Then my back got really bad again and I had to go back on pain meds again.  So I am going to have to be very careful in the process this time.  I wish I had the money to go in the hospital to do this.  I really do.  It is so hard to break your dependence on them, even when you have not been abusing them.

The symptoms, as I remember them, are extreme restlessness, including restless legs, insomnia, irritability, and  wanting to eat everything in sight, especially sweets.  I am going to have to wean myself off of them much more slowly this time.  It is not worth gaining all that weight, because then I will have increased pain again, which will make me need the pain meds more again, which will start the cycle all over again.  I think beginning with next paycheck I will do the Subway Diet again and see if I can lose some weight during the process.  During the process of the restlessness, I need to use that opportunity for activity, including walking, riding my bike, going to the fitness center, and riding my recumbent bike (if I can get the guy over here to finally get it fixed).  I will have to be prepared for all of these negative side effects and have a game plan.

I know it will be very difficult and I will not want to do the right thing a lot of the time.  The most difficult part, I think, will be my cubie's candy bowl.  I don't know why she feels the need to have that thing.  I am going to have to make it an absolute no-no.  I am going to give myself permission to sleep a lot when I am not working, mainly because when I have a headache, that is often the only way I can get away from it.  When I am working will be the most difficult part.  But sometimes when my head hurts, I feel naseous.

If I can steel myself to a difficult couple of months, by the first of next year, I could be feeling a lot better and possibly have a good little bit of weight off, which will help my back pain.  The back pain hasn't been toooo bad lately, anyway.

In the meantime, I have been pretty miserable the last few days.  I am on the verge of tears a lot of the time, but if I give in to them, that sets off the headache even worse, which makes me really nauseous, etc., etc.  I am taking way too many pills just trying to get through my days (most OTC).  That is not good.  I am sitting on the heating pad a lot when I get home, trying to get my muscles to relax.  I did get my muscle relaxants filled today, hoping that will help some.

One more thing to deal with.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Me and My Bike

Feeling a little better in some ways.  My appetite seems to have settled down a little bit in that I don't feel like eating to just eat.  I don't like the way I feel when I overdo, so I have not been doing that much.  I still need to work more on what I am eating, but the amount is better.

I braved the scale.  I have gained a few pounds, but not an exorbitant amount considering how much I have been struggling.

I am still struggling with headaches -- constantly.  I have basically had a headache for at least two weeks, only getting a break when I sleep.  My neck and shoulders feel so tight, I know that is a lot of the cause.  I have been working 12 hours a day, day after day, and I think that is part of what is causing it.  I asked for Monday off.  I need a break to try get the headache under control and I need to get away from sitting at the computer all day.  I wish I could take longer, but Jerry will be out of town Monday, so I felt I would at least do that.

 I got my bike! I know I said I got it earlier, but it turned out it was just my basket that was in, not my bike. But it came in last week and I picked it up yesterday. It is so pretty! And it is pretty easy to ride, compared to the last bike I had. I am not having much trouble on the inclines, when before, even though I was in fairly decent shape, I could barely make it. I put Cassie in the basket and we rode around downtown a little this morning. I think he gets a little car sick (he always gets car sick in the car), but he did good. When I get used to riding a little more, I will ride to the Katy Trail and try running him a little bit. I also have to figure out how to attach the bike leash. I am still kind of wobbly. That can't help Cassie's sickness.  The sickness wears him out.

The bike is one more step toward the lifestyle I want.  I want to be active while doing things that are fun.  I did enjoy my ride this morning.  I felt kind of self-conscious, but once I got going, felt better.  Most people were focusing on Cassie, so that helped.  People would smile and point.  Bethany was riding with him yesterday, and some yelled out, "I'll get you my pretty, and your little dog too!"  Everyone kept calling him "Toto."  I'll get some pictures of me with the bike -- I am pretty bad about not wanting to have my picture taken.

I am trying to speak up more about my needs -- with my kids and with my work.  It's a start, anyway.  Hopefully I am on my way to getting my mind back where it needs to be to make some progress.