Saturday, January 30, 2016

Better, Worse, Same

I'm not really here.

I'm having to force myself to come here and write, and even when I do I'm leaving half-finished drafts when I inevitably run out of steam. And what's worse is that I'm essentially rewriting the same post over and over. I see the older drafts, maybe even give them a once over, think, "I could rewrite this better from scratch." Start all over and get confused/distracted/tired at roughly the same place on every one.

So my brain is weird right now, in that sort of unfocused way, but my emotional well-being has been better. I'm unable to get mental health care through my county (I'm not addicted to anything or actively self-harming/willing to be institutionalized for it, and that's the limit of their powers right now) so I've been taking St. Johns Wort regularly and it's been helping with that wave of depression I was getting nearly every month at the end of my periods, the last two (three?) have gone great. Woohoo for emotional stability! I'm so relieved not to be afraid of myself anymore.

My head is not great lately. I always think that winter is easier on me because I don't have to worry about the heat, but the weather changes are frequent this year - thanks el nino - and I'm finding myself planted in my chair far more often than I'd like. The nausea is back, and it's brought body aches with it. I feel like I've got weights attached to my limbs, and I'm sleeping a bit more than I feel is normal for me.

My IC continues to stay under control, I haven't had any pain at all and my usual frequency and urgency remain usual. I am still following my IC protocol, but not nearly as strictly as I was when I was healing. I don't avoid anything entirely but eat only very infrequent, small portions of ingredients that I know flare me, like onion or citrus.

Oops, running out of steam. Is this a complete post? It is if I say it is, so it is.


Monday, January 11, 2016

On the Eve of my 37th Birthday

I'm recycling the title from last year's bday post because I liked it so much.

I'm ready for 37. Bring it on. 36 was hard, my mental health was a mess, I felt more alone than I can ever remember feeling, and I didn't know for sure that I'd come out of it alive. But here I am, another year older, another year wise-assier.

I'm not in a much different place than I was a year ago; I'm still studying spanish, I still live in a wee house in a big-tree forest and still have two dogs, a man, and a whopping case of the migraines. But this year I took some control back. I started it off by beating my IC into remission (if there is such a thing) and now I have pain extremely rarely, and it wouldn't even be worth mentioning if I wasn't specifically mentioning it. That gave me some confidence, so I started doing more research and following my own instincts, outside of my doctor's limited recommendations. I began using essential oils, vitamins, herbs, and supplements for my health issues and while I haven't found anything for my migraines, I've developed a routine that has helped my emotional state, my immune system, and my skin. With the promise of better access to mental health care in the coming year, things can only improve, at least on that front.

The migraines remain. At least they're consistent. I've had some really good days though! A few really terrible ones, lots of mostly awful and frustrating ones, and not a few where I just kept going, despite what I felt, because sitting still was making me feel like a slow-growing mold that had started to rot. The other day I was walking in circles picking up clutter and putting away stray hair clips because I simply couldn't sit down. Despite not being able to think or really even see, I was still compelled to keep moving, keep sorting, keep doing, until I began stumbling into furniture and finally laid down, and almost immediately fell asleep. So, no improvements physically, and none expected in the year to come, but never say never, because nothing is certain.

I'm made some strides in setting boundaries for myself and my health, and I've stuck to them. This is something I'm starting to really like about myself. Some might see it as being rigid or unkind, but I have to protect myself at least as much as I would protect a friend. No one would fault me for protecting a friend.

I am getting some baaaad baby fever. I'm still not in a great place financially to have a kid, and I'm unsure what it would do to my health and certainly doubt my ability to care for a baby with a constant migraine, but my heart aches.

Tomorrow, I plan to spend the day with my mom, who is dealing with some significant health issues. She and I have always been close, and sharing a birthday has always felt special, but this year is harder for her, and I'm glad we're going to be able to be together. I'm tempted to never leave her side again.

It's a beautiful, complicated, sad, joyful, hilarious, ridiculous, painful, demanding, interesting, fabulous life. And I'm here.