Unhappy New Year

What a way to see in the New Year!  This was not the way I had hoped to start 2013….

But I knew they could keep me safe.  I needed reassurance and answers.

Looking back and laughing ironically now, I remember quite clearly telling my Pdoc that he had until Friday to sort me out as I had a wedding I had to attend on January 5th.  I was given leave to attend the wedding, but by 10:00pm, my mind and body were exhausted and I felt terrible for leaving early.

Little did I know that this was going to be anything but a short stay.  In fact, my discharge date was April 12th!  Yes, 3 1/2 months in a single bed, away from my family, having my life controlled by doctors, nurses, regulations, group therapies, schedules and let’s not mention the food!  And in all this time, my darling hubby came every afternoon and stayed for dinner – he only ever missed 4 days!  He would not give up on me, even though at times I could tell how painful and frustrating it was for him. Oh God, how I love him! xxx

Overnight leave was not allowed, but I was allowed day leave and hubby would take me home on weekends if I was up to it.  But I wanted a night at home.  I wanted to sleep in the arms of my adoring husband… so I plotted.  In true ‘Terri’ style, I walked up to the very straight faced male Nursing Co-ordinator and pleaded my case for one night at home on the grounds of sexual frustration!  OMG the look on his face was priceless.  I told him it had never been denied before for this reason and he promptly told me that no-one had ever asked for this reason.  Needless to say, after thoroughly embarrassing him, he approved and I did get my night at home 🙂

So, medically, it was decided that I would be taken off the anti-depressant immediately to try and control the jerking.  Overall, I was on/off three or four different meds in this time and nothing seemed to help.  I was either wracked with anxiety or medicated so heavily that I felt like a zombie.  I even underwent another course of ECT, but sadly, this did not work to lift my mood either.  I did however have a period of time that the jerking subsided and I wasn’t walking around with legs wide apart trying to keep steady on my feet, but it didn’t last.

I had severe stomach pains for well over a month and had an endoscopy.  I was treated for H-Pylori with a very strong course of anti-biotics.  It didn’t help.  I would wake with anxiety around 4.30 am every morning, shivering and absolutely freezing (even though I had 4 blankets and had my air con set to 26 degrees in the middle of summer).  I had another MRI to compare to the previous one of four years ago and this time the news was not so great.  I was told that I have a benign brain tumour and some small lesions in my brain.  They compared it to the previous MRI and they noticed that the tumour had been there then and had been missed as it was tiny.  The Neurologist wants to remove the tumour but told me I was in no condition mentally to have the operation.  We will ‘wait and watch’ and I am due for another MRI early next year. My thyroid also decided to get in on the mix and was swinging from hypo to hyper. I had to adjust my dose of thyroxine on more than one occasion.  God, please give me a break……

I was told that I had Major Agitated Depression and Generalised Anxiety Disorder.  And it seemed to be treatment resistant.  My next option was to try a drug called a MAOI, but this would mean that I would have to adapt to a restricted diet and could cause serious complications if accidentally taken with other medications/supplements.  I decided that I didn’t want to subject myself to this and through discussions with my Pdoc, I convinced him that after a 4 year break from Zoloft, I would rather give that a go again.  It had worked so well for 16 years…. why not give it another chance?

I could tell that my Pdoc was frustrated with me at times.  I was so agitated and highly irritable, I knew I was not the easiest patient to treat.  I just wanted to go home.  So he doubled my dose of benzos to try and ease the anxiety.  He also started me back on Zoloft.  By now, I had withdrawn.  I barely left my room.  I cried and cried – I wanted to go home!  The decision was made that I was not making progress in hospital and I could be discharged with the arrangement of seeing my Pdoc weekly and also having a community nurse visit weekly to check on me.

As wobbly and off-balance as I was, I couldn’t pack fast enough…………

av9

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