Monthly Archives: October 2015

New Therapist and a New Nose

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I saw my new therapist this morning. It was hard. Every time you see a new therapist, you have to retell your life story. I definitely had a cry fest in her office. We also went over all my “behaviors” and came up with a plan of action to try to help me get better, which is what I so want. I’m just scared A) to do the work needed to do it, and B) scared to change. This week, I’m supposed to work on asking for help before I engage in behaviors, which I’m terrible at. I hate asking or help. I’m bad at it and I hate doing it and it’s hard and it hurts me physically. But that’s what my therapist wants me to work on this week.

After I met with my therapist, I went to see my surgeon, who cut stitches in my nose and took out the splints I had in my nostrils. That was painful! However, I can breathe!! My nose is straight and smooth and WORKS! I can chew my salad and BREATHE. I can take a drink of water and BREATHE! It’s amazing!! Who knew this was so cool?? My nose is still in a lot of pain. And I need to keep spraying it with the saline every hour for the next 3 weeks until I go back to see the surgeon again. My goal is to not purge during those 3 weeks. I have no idea how well this plan is going to work, but that’s the goal nonetheless.

DBT Skills Group Week 1: Wise Mind and Mindfulness

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Weekly Diary Card

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This is what we went over today, after going over all the group rules and standard do’s and don’ts of being in a psychiatric setting such as keeping information about the other patients private, and not having sexual relationships with one another.

The first picture is the weekly diary card we use for our group. We have to go through each day and mark with skills we used that day. We also have to mark how many times we used the card. Ideally, they want you using the card each day, but you can technically use it once a week. Then we went through what mindfulness and the Wise Mind are. On Mindfulness Handout 3, you can see a diagram of the Emotion Mind Trap. That’s basically when it’s raining (you’re full of emotion) and there’s a trap door in the well that leads to the Wise Mind and the emotion gathers on top of the trap door and you mistake the rain water for the well water, confusing your emotion for your Wise Mind.

Mindfulness Handout 3A has different ways to practice mindfulness that helps bring you to your Wise Mind. The homework (Mindfulness Worksheets 1 & 3) asks you to make a pro/con for practicing mindfulness and not practicing mindfulness, and to pick some of the different ways to practice mindfulness and to practice them.

One of the simplest mindfulness exercises I know is the one where you breathe in and focus on “Wise” and breathe out and focus on “Mind,” so I did that one for a few minutes earlier.

I find mindfulness very helpful, yet I almost never remember to do it. Especially when I need it most. I’m hoping having a couple weeks focusing on mindfulness will help me get better at it.

In which I carved a pumpkin

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After 3 nights of sleeping in the recliner in the living room to keep my head elevated, I got the ok from my surgeon to sleep in my bed last night. It was both better and worse than the recliner. My body was more comfortable. My nose less. I also can’t breathe through my nose at the moment due to the swelling and it being full of mucus and God only knows what else, so I kept waking up with my throat all dry and sore. I did, however, get more sleep than I got on the recliner. Or better sleep at least.

I woke up feeling pretty good. I took advantage of it and carved my pumpkin that’s been sitting around. It’s a kitty inside a witch’s hat.

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Then, around noon, my youngest brother called. His car was dead and asked if we could come jump him so he could go to a job interview. While we were out, we grabbed some groceries and prescriptions I had waiting. By the time we finished, I had crashed. My energy was nil and my pain was through the roof.

I’ve gone gluten-free again at my rheumatologist’s suggestion. It messes with my head. All I see are excuses not to eat and my eating disorder loves it.

I meet with my new DBT therapist tomorrow (nervous). I then go over and get the splints taken out of my nose (YAY). Hopefully after that, I can start blowing my nose again. Tomorrow afternoon, I have my first (2 hour!) DBT skills group. It’s going to be a long day and I’m still not feeling that great and still using norco to get through the pain. I honestly expected to be fully recovered by now. I clearly didn’t have a good expectation of what recovery from a septoplasty is like.

Nose jobs are no fun

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I had my septoplasty yesterday to fix my severely deviated septum. The surgery went well expect that I lost a lot of blood. However, I’m still here, so all is well.

Recovery after the surgery was rough. I woke up from anesthesia crying because I was in so much pain. They were giving me pain meds every 5 minutes and I was still in pain between a 7 and 10. Then, the high doses of pain meds made me incredibly nauseous to where I was dry heaving.

They wouldn’t let me go home until my pain was below a 5 and my nausea was under control, so I was in recovery for about 3 hours, which is 2 hour longer than they’d anticipated.

When I finally got home, I fell right to sleep while my mom went to fill my prescriptions for pain meds and antibiotics. I woke up when she got home an hour later and tried to watch some tv, but couldn’t follow anything, I was too out of it.

I was instructed to sleep with my head elevated, and my nose is too sore to lay on my pillow (I tried) so I slept in the recliner in the living room last night. I slept on and off. I was in a lot of pain most of the night, even with the prescription pain killer. I’ve also been leaking blood from both nostrils, which they said is normal, so I’ve been holding tissue to my nose almost constantly..

Today is one of the few times I wish I wore contacts. My nose is swollen and very sore, and my glasses hurt to wear. However, I’m blind blind without them.

I am still in a lot of pain and breathing is hit-or-miss because of all the extra mucus my nose is creating right now. I am not allowed to blow my nose. And I have splints up my nose while it heals. I get those out Wednesday. My nose is so swollen, I’m glad I remembered to take my nose piercing out before the surgery.

I def finitely can’t purge right now, which is messing with my head. I know I need to eat to heal properly, but knowing I can’t purge has me freaked out, so I haven’t eaten yet today.

I’m also having difficulty keeping awake because of the pain meds.So, for now, I’m off.

Weary

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I am tired. I am weary. I have been so busy this week. Between appointments, spending time at the hospital with my dad, treatment, pre-surgery stuff, helping out around the house, plus we have been going through our storage unit trying to get rid of as much as possible so we can stop paying an extra $200 a month on a storage unit to store a bunch of stuff we don’t need. That’s physically exhausting between the fibromyalgia and the rheumatoid arthritis. I woke up this morning fatigued, tired, ready to sleep another night. My body aches and my brain feels like cotton. I have another day of looking through boxes and moving furniture and then spending time with my dad at the hospital.

I’m grateful to be able to spend time at the hospital. But I feel guilty if I take time to myself because he’s there 24/7 alone, bored, restless, in pain. I know I need to take care of myself too, and I’m trying, but finding the right balance has been hard. Today is a week since we ambushed him. A week he’s been in the hospital. He’ll find out more tomorrow about when he can come home.

Surprise Busy Day

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I went to the hospital this morning to spend time with my dad. He had surgery yesterday. It went well. He has another surgery tomorrow. After the surgeries heal, he’ll need skin grafts. He’ll be in the hospital at least through early next week.

This afternoon, I had a follow up appointment with the ENT (ear, nose, throat doctor). My ENT is in the same hospital my dad is in, which was convenient, because I was planning to just walk over to my appointment, then go back and spend time with my dad after my appointment was finished.

However, during my appointment, my ENT decided I need surgery to correct my severely deviated septum. The surgery is next Friday, the 23rd. He sent me off to get an EKG, chest x-rays, and blood work for the surgery. That took a few hours (because hospital) and by the time I finished, I needed to leave, so I didn’t get to spend more time with my dad.

My fibromyalgia is flaring up very badly right now. I’m in so much pain.

Tomorrow, I have more DBT.

Update on My Dad

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After my dad was admitted to the hospital, I spent the night and next day with him, keeping him company, making sure he had everything he needed, listening to the doctors to make sure we knew what was going on, advocating for him. It was a long couple days, first in the ER, then in the hospital the next day. Last night I came home and slept. I just showered and I feel refreshed.

My dad’s infection spread into his muscle. The doctor said if he’d left it much longer, it’d be in his bone, and he’d had lost the leg. I’m relieved and so thankful that my family ambushed him and made him go to the hospital. He’ll need several surgeries and lots of strong antibiotics. He goes in for his first surgery today.

My sister is taking today’s shift. I wish I could be there for him, but I also know I need to rest today. I’m very sore, my fibromyalgia is flaring up from the hospital chair I spent the last couple days in. Even with my frequent walks I didn’t escape its cruel consequences.

I talk to my dad via Facebook messenger (because it doesn’t use his data since it’s over the hospital’s wifi) often. He’s, naturally, bored and restless. The next time I go up to see him (tomorrow) I’m taking cards and we’ll play cribbage.