Fibromyalgia Syndrome

I’m still struggling with depression and anxiety.  Just when you think you feel okay you relapse.  Another interference is my physical problems., which I’ve been told can cause physical problems. Does it every end?

I’ve been going to doctors for 6 years now with this pain that controls my body.  I’ve received x-ray’s, mri’s, ct scans, injections, nerve conduction study, you name it.  No one could figure out where the pain was coming from.  Well except, I do have osteoporosis, neuropathy, and arthritis.  LOL!   The orthopedic talked about surgery on my neck, but when I heard of the risks, I declined. I went to a neurologist for the study and found out about the neuropathy, and was given Gabapentin, which helps the nerve pain, especially restless legs.  He then recomended a Rheumatologist.

The Rheumatologists ran a ton of blood test and came to the conclusion I do have some rheumatism, but also gave it a name “Fibromyalgia”.  I guess that’s what they call it when they fcan’t igure out what it is.

The pain I have can be intense everywhere especially my legs and feet. I have spots on my fingertips that can really hurt when I touch them. My hands go numb and feels like needles all over even my arms.  I could never get out of bed at lease 30 minutes after taking the Gabapentin .  I couldn’t move!  I had no strength in my body and still don’t. Walking was an adventure stumbling all over the place.  Even my brain feels confused and disoriented.

The rheumatolgist prescribed to start with Predinisone, a steriod.  For the first month I could actually get out of bed and go walking.  I could drive longer distances without pain. He told me I couldn’t be on it forever.  I’m now on my second prescription with lower doses and it’s not as productive.  So I don’t know what comes next.  I just don’t want to go back to the beginning.

I paint and do photography so this has been disabiling for me. Below is some of work in my Etsy shop for sale.


Etsy Shop

 

Bipolar – Hypomania

Triple Falls-Dupont National Forest

Triple Falls-Dupont National Forest

Definition: Hypomania (literally “under mania” or “less than mania”) is a mood state characterized by persistent disinhibition and pervasive elevated (euphoric) or irritable mood but generally less severe than full mania.

This is a horrible feeling.  I haven’t felt this since I was first diagnosed.   I’ve always been hyper but this was almost out of control.  It actually was scaring me. I couldn’t stay still I had to do something all the time. When watching TV I had to be reading, searching on the computer or iPhone.  My mind was always spinning with all kinds of thoughts. 
I’ve got a project going right now creating jewelry for my Etsy shop.  I’ve been compulsive by spending too much money on supplies, buying books or magazines. I read about different designs to make.  My heart races and I feel as though I have consumed eight cups of coffee.  I breathe rapidly and my blood pressure goes up.
My mom use to get on to me saying, “Vickie sit down!” I was walking back and forth between rooms, because I couldn’t decide where I wanted to go. I do this now. I stayed up all hours making jewelry or search on Ebay for supplies. Being a perfectionist, I want to make the best earrings or necklaces with the best material.  I’ve been hearing sounds that get my attention..  I’m worn out!  Oh, let’s not forget the grocery store – I have to go all the time and I buy food I don’t eat.  I’ve been eating a lot too.  I’m calling this hyper eating.  But, I’m enjoying it that’s the problem.
I’m so glad I use digital camera’s and not film or I would be purchasing all kind of film on ebay.
Having Bipolar is confusing.  Your never know what will happen next.  Some where along the line I triggered all of this.
The following is something I read on Hypomania Episode symptoms.

“A hypomanic episode is not a disorder in itself, but rather a description of a part of a type of bipolar II disorder. Hypomanic episodes have the same symptoms as manic episodes with two important differences: (1) the mood usually isn’t severe enough to cause problems with the person working or socializing with others (e.g., they don’t have to take time off work during the episode), or to require hospitalization; and (2) there are never any psychotic features present in a hypomanic episode.

Here are the symptoms I found
  • Decreased need for sleep (e.g., feels rested after only 3 hours of sleep)
  • More talkative than usual or pressure to keep talking
  • Flight of ideas or subjective experience that thoughts are racing
  • Distractibility – yes I can switch to another idea quickly
  • Increase in goal-directed activity (either socially, at work or school, or sexually (not me, what sex!) or agitation
  • Excessive involvement in pleasurable activities that have a high potential for painful consequences (e.g., the person engages in unrestrained buying sprees, sexual indiscretions, or foolish business investments)
There’s a possibility that my episodes were brought on from a cortisone shot in my hip.  I was sick with high pressure, nausea, hot flashes and irritability.
I went to my doctor and she put me back on Bipolar medicine Depakote, Now I read the side effects and they weren’t good – depression, and damage to liver.  I have hepatitis and this is not good.  Every medication says that.  I haven’t started it yet because I’m scared to. So what do I do?

Night Terror in Adults

I'm Scared!

I’m Scared!

I haven’t written in a while for a number of reasons, but plan to catch up.  What I want to talk about is Night Terror in adults.

Lately, I’ve been having realistic nightmares or nightmares that are violent and seem so real.  Along with these nightmares I have bed wetting.  At 63 years old!   It’s been occurring a lot lately and I’m not sure why.   They some of the reasons are from medications, post traumatic stress syndrome, depression, anxiety, and guess what?  I have all of them.

Last night, I was having one of these night terrors and at the same time I was bed wetting.  The nightmare was so real.  I felt that someone had come in the house. I could hear some strange noise like growling or moaning.  I was struggling trying to move and I felt like I was frozen.  I struggled to run when it felt like someone jumped in bed with me.  I looked over me and it looked like someone was under the covers, along with this strange noise.   I finally was able to jump out of bed and I was falling all over the place.  I was able to grab the hallway door to keep from falling.  I had to pee so bad.  I stood in the doorway looking at my bed for more movement then realized there was nothing there. I went to the living room to check the front door and the door stopper was still in place.  So, no, no one came through the front door.

All my nightmares are sleep terrors.  Struggling and running.  Is the overactive bladder  causing the terrors, or are the terrors causing the overactive bladder?  I’ve had to resort to those diaper panties.

I’ve been having these night terror’s almost all my life.  When I was a child I  was a sleep-walker.  My mom found me at the front door grabbing the door knob.  I had real life nightmares about running from monsters, and seeing things that weren’t there.  To this day I think I really did see these things – witch flying across the moon, and someone grabbing my leg in a cemetery.  There was also a burly monster, and when I ran from him.

I was running so fast my feet lifted off the ground and I flew from rooftop to rooftop.  It was crazy.

I don’t know what to do because this is disturbing my life.  During the day I’m so tired and just want to sleep.  Could I have sleep apnea?  I know that at times I can’t catch my breath.  Sometimes I just stop breathing.

What do I do? Well first I placed a call to the sleep clinic to see if I need to have testing.  If you’ve had these problems I would love to hear from you.

 

 

Not Bipolar

Vickie Hibler Photography©

Vickie Hibler Photography©

There’s been many changes in my life since my last blog. I’ve gone through a lot of mental changes.

I went to another psychiatrist and he took me off all my medications – Lithium, and Paxil, except Trazodone and my blood pressure pills.  Instead, he gave me Latuda a new Bipolar medication.   The problem?  It was too expensive especially living on medicare.  There was nothing left for me to take. I’ve taken just about every medication you could almost think of tand they caused hallucinations, blackouts, seizures and memory loss. I lost a lot of memory taking Lithium. So I went cold turkey and got off Lithium and Paxil and didn’t experience any manic episodes.  With hepatitis c I have to be careful with medications I can take.

After 6 months my head was clearer than it had ever been.  I thought about all the bipolar stuff and remembered a guy I met in the mental hospital who had bipolar. We talked about it a lot, and I couldn’t relate since I’ve never had manic episodes the way he did.  I saw him get really sick and it was scary.  So I thought, well maybe I was misdiagnosed and it was ADD, depression and anxiety the whole time, and not Bipolar.

I did have to go back to my old doctor and get some anxiety medicine, Clonazepam, and Paxil for depression.  This has been working rather well.  I’ve always had anxiety but never really got treated for it.  I use to have bad panic attacks in the middle of the night after my abusive relationship, which is where the Trazodone came in.

I asked the doctor if she thought it was possible that the doctor at the mental hospital classified me as bipolar after attempting suicide after becoming terribly depressed, and started binge drinking, because he wanted to call it something. And this is after my son told me he was going into the military for six years, and my boyfriend was sleeping with another woman 20 years younger.  I couldn’t take all that so I drank to make it go away.  That one trip to the mental hospital became my desolate trip through life.  I had a stamp on my head.  “I’m Bipolar.”

Lithium Took My Emotions

Vickie Hibler Photography©

Vickie Hibler Photography©

I truly believe while I was on Lithium it took my soul from me. I had no emotions – I didn’t cry and I was a cold inside.  Things that I use to be passionate about were gone.

I’ve been off Lithium for a month now and I feel like a real person again.  Now, I cry when I watch a feel good movie, and laugh when something is funny.  It’s good to feel that again.  My anxiety level isn’t as high, but I still get it occasionally, but not as bad.

in 1999, I was diagnosed with bipolar/manic depression.  Why?  I attempted suicide and drank too much.  Why?  Sometimes we can only handle so much that we just break down.  I found my boyfriend of 5 years in bed with a girl 20 years younger, and my son informed me he was going in the army for 6 years.  That was enough to send me over the edge

I started binge drinking and then I fell into major depression, which I call “Major Depressive Disorder”.  This is a variety of different moods.  I was so depressed and felt like I had nothing left in the world.  I felt like everyone leaves me.

Is bipolar the name to give to someone who is very depressed.  I’ve seen a really bad bipolar case and I was nothing like that. If anything I’m manic.  I can get on a high same as hyper which I’ve had all my life but couldn’t that have been my ADHD?  Who knows.

Is It Bipolar Disorder or ADHD?

I’ve had ADD since I was very young and in school. But in the 60’s ADD was not diagnosed disease.   I went through life struggling  and not being able to succeed in anything – especially work.

I’ve been confused over the last four years on whether or not the Bipolar is actually the ADD since bipolar medications were not working.  One doctor would say I had bipolar the other would ask if I thought I had bipolar.  I DON’T KNOW THAT’S YOUR JOB!  All the medications were doing were just medicating me, and making me feel sick all the time. Because of my Hepatitis C the only medication I could take at the time was Lithium.  I was told it didn’t affect the liver, but it did affect the kidney’s.  The last doctor said I wasn’t taking enough Lithium to do any good but enough to harm me.  He said, ‘You have a dead brain.  Nice thing to say, huh?  So why am I on medicine that’s not helping.  I don’t feel doctors have gone in great lengths to diagnose what I have or had.

I’m convinced after two weeks of being off Bipolar medications and feeling better than I have ever had – Bipolar was not the correct diagnoses.  I’m mad yet at peace in a way.  I did some research on Bipolar vs. ADHD and found they are similar but not the same –

 

Do I or do I not?

Do I or do I not?

1. Age of onset: ADHD is a lifelong condition, with symptoms apparent (although not necessarily impairing) by age seven. While we now recognize that children can develop BMD, this is still considered rare. The majority of people who develop BMD have their first episode of affective illness after age 18, with a mean age of 26 years at diagnosis.

2. Consistency of impairment: ADHD is chronic and always present. BMD comes in episodes that alternate with more or less normal mood levels.

3. Mood triggers: People with ADHD are passionate, and have strong emotional reactions to events, or triggers, in their lives. Happy events result in intensely happy, excited moods. Unhappy events — especially the experience of being rejected, criticized, or teased — elicit intensely sad feelings. With BMD, mood shifts come and go without any connection to life events.

4. Rapidity of mood shift: Because ADHD mood shifts are almost always triggered by life events, the shifts feel instantaneous. They are normal moods in every way, except in their intensity. They’re often called “crashes” or “snaps,” because of the sudden onset. By contrast, the untriggered mood shifts of BMD take hours or days to move from one state to another.

5. Duration of moods: Although responses to severe losses and rejections may last weeks, ADHD mood shifts are usually measured in hours. The mood shifts of BMD, by DSM-IV definition, must be sustained for at least two weeks. For instance, to present “rapid-cycling” bipolar disorder, a person needs to experience only four shifts of mood, from high to low or low to high, in a 12-month period. Many people with ADHD experience that many mood shifts in a single day.

6. Family history: Both disorders run in families, but individuals with ADHD almost always have a family tree with multiple cases of ADHD. Those with BMD are likely to have fewer genetic connections.

On number 3 – I don’t have mood swings.  When the doctor asks me how many times do I cycle I don’t know what to tell him because I don’t know.  To me it’s normal reactions.  In number 4 “they are normal moods in every way except intensity” is right on.

My mom has ADHD as well as my son and who know who else in my family especially mom’s side. She had to quit school when she was 14 and worked as a waitress most of her life.  I finally had to quit work because my mind was just not getting it any more.

Having being diagnosed with Bipolar felt like a death sentence.  I lost friends because they had heard bad things about people with bipolar.

Am I Bipolar or Not

Please what I’m about to say is not for everyone to try.

For years I’ve been told I had Bipolar – it started when I became very depressed because of a traumatic incident that happen to me. To much was too much for me to handle, so I started drinking a lot then a suicide attempt.  I committed myself to a mental health hospital where I was diagnosed with bipolar.  Was I diagnosed because I was depressed, or because at the time I wanted to end my life?

That was back in 1999 when I was diagnosed with Bipolar.  Is Bipolar just a name they give you if your depressed?  While in the hospital I saw people who truly were bipolar and it was scary.  I never got that way.  They drugged me so much while in the hospital I didn’t know my head from my ass.

Recently, I went to a new psychiatrist,  because I had moved and wanted to get closer to home.  I wasn’t sure I liked him, because he seem so mean.  When I met him he seem to know what was wrong with me before any testing.  It’s because I told him.  He said that the Lithium was not doing me any good on a low dose.  It was hurting me more than anything – killing my kidneys and liver.  Also, I was taking meds that didn’t work together.  He said, I had a dead brain.  He said, I probably had slept apnea since my  neck was thick.  Once again a doctor putting things in my head.  He took me off all my medications except two and my blood pressure medication and put me on Latuda with Celexa.  That combo did not work it made me sick.  So he put me back on my Trazodone that I had been taking for 35 years. It worked.  He scheduled an appointment in two weeks.

I had to tell the doctor that I had forgotten I was leaving to go out-of-town could we reschedule.  Instead of a week he rescheduled me in about a month.  I asked why he said,”well if you cancel I put you back some. Ridiculous!  It was like he was punishing me for changing the appointment. He also threatened that if I did not like his plans, I could go see another doctor.  When I asked for more samples because I was running out – he said, “sorry but I’m going on vacation” and I don’t leave medicines with the front desk.  I was like “I can’t be off my bipolar medication for 2 weeks!”  He just said “sorry”. I was livid and pissed.  How can a doctor talk to you that way by threatening you and trying to control you.  I wrote him an email telling him doctor’s don’t treat their patients that way and I don’t want to see anyone that does.  I never heard from him.

Today, I feel better than I ever had. I actually feel things, my mind is clear, my eyes aren’t blurry, and I sleep better. Oh, I get confused, but that’s my ADD, which I know I have and had since I was born. I feel I was treated for the wrong thing.  THIS, makes me angry going through life feeling like crap by taking the wrong medications.

What I did isn’t for any body – just pick doctors carefully.  The controlling doctor is not what I needed but it did make me think about my future.

(grammar and English are not my strengths)