Thursday, November 27, 2014

A Complicated Holiday

It won't be the typical Thanksgiving this year, and that's probably a good thing.

I read that there are going to be protests and fasts today; people are mad about working for sub-living wages, they're mad that a police officer shot an unarmed teenager and is suffering no consequences, and of course, they're mad because this holiday is a hypocritical mess of pretending white people were friends with the natives of our country and didn't actually commit genocide.

And it's not the same at my house this year, either. We don't have money for groceries right now, so I'm making what I can with what we have. Lentil loaf for me, chicken for him, instant potatoes, mushroom gravy and whatever veg I throw in there last minute.

Despite the hypocrisy of the holiday and the frustrations I may have in my own life, I do like to try and be thankful, it's a good plan to appreciate what we have.

So, I'm grateful for the lucky combinations of food in my pantry and fridge that is allowing me to make something resembling a thanksgiving meal. I'm thankful for the roof over my head, the people who care about me, my dogs, and the internet. I'm thankful for justice, when it happens, and for those who stand up when it doesn't. I'm grateful for the trees and the quiet, the clean air and peace that living in the country provides me. I'm lucky in a lot of ways, and it does me good to remember it.


Monday, November 10, 2014

The First Steps are the Steepest

So, I finally told my doctor that I am sometimes horribly depressed and it often coincides with menstruation or ovulation, and also my periods are brutal and heavy and painful and she prescribed me a progestin pill. I was hesitant until she said it might stop my period, I am ALL ABOUT THAT.

My periods have gotten worse and worse over the years, and it's been really affecting my life for the past six months, probably longer really, but my head affects my life, and my IC affects my life, and the depression affects my life; the period problems kind of blended in with all that for a long time.

I started it on day four of my period, and the bleeding did not miraculously stop, but my cramps sure did, almost immediately. Maybe they were already on their way out, but I doubt it, and I got all excited. My head did hurt a little more with exertion, but it was nothing I couldn't handle at first.

Unfortunately, my IC symptoms went out of control after a day or two on the progestin. I didn't connect the two right away, not for another few days, but my diet has been perfect as far as I know, and I'm pretty sure I don't have a UTI, so as soon as I realized the only other change in my routine, I stopped the pills and now, 48 hours after my first missed dose, I'm finally starting to feel definite improvement.

The migraines are hard to deal with, but I've had time to adjust to the sacrifices. They've taken away relationships, my ability to work, and so much of my freedom, and I thought I was coping with it rather well for a while there, but the interstitial cystitis has really showed me another side of myself. I didn't know the depression could get this bad, and I could live through it. I didn't know I could handle this much pain, and still walk around like a semi-normal person.

The migraines often come with so many other symptoms - slurring of words, dizziness, irritability, and confusion, for example - that I am not always totally with it when the worst of the pain is hitting. But the IC has no cognitive impact, I feel it completely and my faculties are cruelly intact. This is torture. This is shake your fist at the heavens and curse deities for having forsaken you pain. Sometimes I wish I wasn't an atheist.

But, it's getting better! At least I'm not crying at every pee anymore. The pain is still substantial, but going from a 10+ on the pain scale to an 8 means the world. It means sanity.

And even though the stair gave out under me, I think I just took my first step towards something better.


Sunday, November 2, 2014

Everybody Poops (On Themselves)

Did I tell you guys about how I shit myself recently? It was surreal.

I love telling stories about stuff like this, poop and periods and disgusting things children do, because while people are sometimes shocked that I talk about this stuff so easily, once I finish a story, someone else has one to top me. We all experience the disgusting parts of being human, we should talk about it, and laugh about it more.

I used to get these bouts of diarrhea that I was fairly certain were dairy-related. I hadn't had one since I went vegan, but I ate some cheese in the midst of my being so sick I didn't have the energy to feed myself properly, and therefore woke the next morning at three am with a gurgling belly and an undeniable urge. I took some pooper pills, it stopped after a while and I felt relatively better, relatively quickly. At the same time, the never-ending IC flare had actually turned into a urinary tract infection, so I was taking some pain pills that make my pee bright orange but dull the bladder spasms beautifully.

SO. I've gone through this pooping rigmarole before, and at first it was the usual response. Normally, once I take the poop pills, my digestive system stops totally for about 12 hours, after which operations started resuming slowly, but I don't expect to really poop again for two days, and then it will be pretty much business as usual.

I made it to the second stage, operations were getting fired back up, and I was feeling my first urge to pass gas, so I casually leaned a bit in my seat to let it out gently and WOOSH. Leftover poopwater shot out my butt, soaked my pants and was starting to soak my chair.

OHMYSHIT. So, I jumped up to get a rag to save my chair, and when I looked down at the seat I was horrified to see the stain was BRIGHT ORANGE.

OHMYSHIT. I hurried to soak the rag in water and save the chair, which I did, and had to change my lower clothing entirely (socks too! lolgag), and had to stain treat and wash everything immediately and the whole time I'm alternately baffled at how I became a grown adult who deals with watery shit without crying, and giggling at how the one time I've shit myself since toddlerhood it has to be bright orange.

My favorite comfy pants still bear a faint stain on the inside, and it cracks me up every time.