Tuesday, May 31, 2011

If You Say PT OT Fast It Sounds Cool

This cold is having it's wicked way with me and, like the hero of a romance novel, it just can't get enough. Apparently, my immune system is way sexy. Spent the day yesterday fighting the asthma. Now the adrenals are getting pissy.

But I'm not gonna blink.

Oh hell no.

Gonna have to be sicker than this to updose.

(Everyone else is over it already, by the way.)

Took the toddler to OT for an evaluation and am torn. On the one hand, yes, she has some deficits. On the other, I'm not sure they are so horrifically bad that we need to not be able to pay more medical bills.

For now, she'll have both PT and OT and we'll see what the official reports say. The toddler was falling all over the place at OT and I have this sinking feeling we will be going to PT forever. In fact, if the Rapture came, God would make us stay behind just so we could go to PT (assuming we were pure enough to be taken, which we probably aren't).

The OT also dogged the specialist*. So that's two people now that agree the specialist is a tool. I need to get moving to replace their sorry ass. I've kind of just been ignoring it since I don't think there's much of a diagnosis to be had, but if the specialist's tool-ishness crosses over into their quality of care, eh, who knows? Maybe something salient has been missed.


*In a very professional way. Dogged is maybe too strong a word.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

And Then...

It just never stops over here. When last we met, I had tanked but, instead of updosing, I tapered. That went better than I think anyone expected.

Of course, I had some adrenal weirdness, which I ignored. Because, dammit, my HPA axis is either working or not, anything above not is to be ignored at this point.

No, I don't understand how there can be quite so much flank pain with a taper of an already sub-physiologic dose in a body that has demonstrated some portion of HPA axis recovery. Really I don't, but, so long as the HPA axis is showing signs of life, it's going to have to sink or swim without an updose.

My teeth are finally starting to feel better. Which is good as I had given serious consideration to yanking them all out and just gumming my food for the rest of my life. The pain went down by increments of 10 to 20% at a time. Right now I'm teetering between an 80 to 90% improvement.

It would help if the cold we've all caught didn't require quite so many popsicles (sugar free) to calm the raging sore throat.

The cold irritates the epicenter of the infection in my mouth. Brain freeze is nothing. Try a pissed off tooth sometime.

So we are all sick here. Primary symptoms are sore throats and being crankier than the Hulk. Basically, everyone's being a jerk and arguing over popsicle flavors. The hubby has also been dogging on the low carb ice cream I've been kind enough to share with everyone even though they could get their own, much cheaper, full sugar ice cream.

Oh, hey. Listen to that. I know that horking sound. The yellow lab is puking up his dinner in the bathroom. Awesome. Plus, super extra special bonus...another tornado watch/warning tonight! (We had five touch down last week within 10 miles of us, did I mention that?)

We are like the Cedar Point of bad-things-that-aren't-horrible-yet-I-don't-see-any-of-you-jumping-for-joy-when-they-happen-to you over here. I should sell tickets.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Unexpected

I thought for sure I was going to updose after last night's post.

Instead, I got stubborn and tapered.

I felt that was probably a stupid move, but I was not happy and taking a stand.

Amazingly it has been fine.

I feel good.

So...the moral? Stupidity can be good????

In other news, the professional ebook I did broke the top 10 list in several categories on Amazon. Which is amazing cool.

However, FYI, you don't have to sell so many books to get there depending on the book topic. I published in a niche topic and am still not breaking even financially even as the book rises in the Amazon ranking system. Odd, no?

Still, I can now put on my resume 'top 10 author on Amazon' which is cool. How many people can say that?

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Going Down

In basement.

Again.

Tornado spotted.

Too much tired.

With flank pain.

Lethargic.

Hard to move my arms.

Lay down every chance I get.

Still don't want to updose.

The HPA axis works.

Has to.

Don't want to undermine it now.

Damn it.

We'll see what happens.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Tired Redux

I'm tired. Finally hitting the wall BUT I refuse to admit it could be adrenal. Seems to me I've been pretty farking busy and normal healthy people would probably take a nap.

I took two.

In the same day.

But still not calling it adrenal.

Crossing fingers I can taper later this week to 5mg.

Yes, I'm serious.

The teeth are slowly killing me. Think sinus pain combined with toothache, the kind of toothache that requires a root canal. The dentist called in antibiotics for me, which has helped with the gum sensitivity and decreased pain in the teeth that weren't touched by a drill. The five that had fillings? Still hurt. A lot.

I'm told this pain can last for months.

So basically I got rid of the cavities and, in the process, gave myself a long term toothache.

I have all the luck. Try to contain your jealousy.

This is making it really difficult to find the motivation to follow through on the wisdom tooth surgery I need to have as soon as the HPA axis is up and running at full capacity.

So my question for the universe at this point is, when does my turn as target of medical f*ckuppery end? Any possibility I am over my quota? Can we audit my account? I'm awfully tired of getting jacked up every time I let a medical professional touch me.

I swear, by the time I get the normal old age stuff, I'll go in for a heart bypass and come out with a penis.

Which will be put on backwards.

Of course! Duh!

The toddler's last day of school is tomorrow. Hallelujah. She's been saying more positive things about school so I think the teachers finally got their sh*t together and started actually managing the classroom properly. Her Early Intervention assessment won't be until late late August. Hopefully something positive pans out from that.

My mom friends and I are forming a daughter study group as we are all feeling the stress of trying to raise strong, emotionally whole girls. I'm not the only one struggling with how to handle the preteen preview that occurs at the ages of 3 and 4. I'm excited about the group, I think it's going to be good. At least we can cry on each other's shoulders.

Ebook-wise, a review finally came out from a top tier blog which has generated some sales. Still not enough to convince me that non-fiction is much of a money maker. I'm furiously working on other projects, but it is very slow going.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Tornados and Chornic Illness

So we are in the basement waiting out a tornado warning. The storm is surprisingly mild despite the hail. We haven't even lost power. I've been in a few tornados and this is calm like the creepy movie villain you expect to be a sociopath, only to learn s/he actually supports orphans in Africa. Cognitive dissonance big time.

Twenty minutes down the road? There's a collapsed exterior wall at the local mall. Waiting to hear if there are injuries.

The one thought I had was, how do I make sure my meds survive the apocalypse with me?

Have you ever thought about that?

I had a mental picture of me huddling over my pills because goodness knows I would have to updose to survive if a tornado took the house.

This would be the year to amp up your natural disaster preps.

Guess how many tornados so far this year?

1000

In an average year we have just 500. Not even 6 months in and we're are up 100%.

Same goes for deadly tornados.

On average the US gets about 20, but this year? We're at 50.

We have emergency preps. Solar flashlights. Crank radios. I did a pretty good job of grabbing wallets, purses, keys and meds, bringing them to the basement with us. But I sure didn't feel prepared. Not by any stretch of the imagination.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

For Brittany

Brittany left the following comment on a previous post:

Hi, I just found your blog. I've been trying to taper off hydrocortisone, and I'm afraid I'm not going to be able to get off. It's been over three years. I started at 30 mg and I'm finally at 2.5 mg after being on 5 mg for several months, but this decrease is not going well. I'm so extremely tired - it's so hard to stay awake. (My recent challenge/acth stimulation test showed an a.m. cortisol level of 6.)

I really don't know what to do. I have so many things I want to do, and feel like my life is on hold for this - I'm going to Europe this summer and my husband and I would like to have kids. This decrease went okay at first, but I just keep feeling more and more tired. I'm wondering if my adrenals have just recovered as much as they are going to, and this level isn't going to be enough.

My endo isn't sure I'm going to be able to get off, and said maybe it's autoimmune, even though a test for that came back negative. I have hashimoto's though, so I know that can be related.

I read through some of your posts - I'm now considering taking some B5...Any other advice you might have for me? (I had been on a bunch of supplements before, but a natural doc was the one who prescribed hydrocortisone for my fatigue in the first place, which led to a ton of horrible side effects that he insisted initially weren't from the steriods...so I got out of the natural things and stopped googling as much...but I'm getting desperate.)

I'm sorry you've had to deal with so much.
- Brittany

Here are my thoughts on your situation...

1.Do you have a diagnosis? It sounds like maybe you've been limbo-ing it for three years. So if there's no diagnosis after all that time, now is the time to try and get that squared away. After three years, your endo either needs to step up his/her game or be fired.

2.Has the endo done an ITT test? This will show Secondary Adrenal Insufficiency (which it sounds to me like what you have, but FYI I'm no expert).

I have a document that does a great job explaining the diagnostic testing for adrenal insufficiency. It's online somewhere but I can't locate the link, so email me if you want me to forward a copy (pissedoffpatient AT gmail DOT com).

Otherwise, this is a good link on diagnosis.

3.Is your endo someone who actually has dealt with adrenal issues? Or does their practice primarily focus on diabetes and thyroid? If they don't handle a lot of adrenal patients, you really want to see someone who does, especially since you want to have kids--I think you're going to need a higher level of care than a run-of-the-mill endo, especially with the Hashi's in the mix too.

Most adrenal patients I have corresponded with go to Mayo Clinic. You can email me and I can share some other names with you, maybe they are closer to you than Mayo. Also there are a few clinics you should avoid but I don't want to name them publicly.

(Note, if you think you'll need a reproductive endocrinologist to get pregnant, this would be a good time to visit a few and see what they say. REs tend to be more creative thinkers and they might have some ideas for you both in terms of treatment and in terms of maybe recommending other endos.)

4.Have you connected with other adrenal patients online? There are patients that know more than me (and the doctors).

Two forums I can recommend are:

MdJunction Adrenal Insufficiency Forums


Dusty's Site

5. For vitamins, steroids inhibit absorption of nutrients and I definitely have had issues with that, which is why I think I find vitamins so helpful. I would start with a good B vitamin, not just B5, but all the Bs and I would take it twice a day (you'll pee out any excess).

As for other vitamins, you always have to weigh the benefit against the risk, interactions with other medications and know what levels are toxic so you don't poison yourself. Plus take vitamins a couple hours after the steroids, don't take everything together or else the steroids will inhibit absorption.

I have found magnesium and potassium to be helpful with the muscle cramping associated with steroid withdrawal/adrenal insufficiency, but your experience may vary.

I highly recommend the Consumer Labs website. The membership is about $20 and worth every penny. They provide a survey of clinical research, test vitamins for quality and just make it easier to figure out if you should take something or not.

6. Eat a low carb whole food diet to avoid steroid related weight gain and prevent diabetes. Just FYI steroids mess with insulin which is why they can cause type 2 diabetes.

I have found some vitamins help keep insulin in check, but that may or may not carry over for you. I use Alpha Lipoic Acid and Chromium GTF.

7.When you go to Europe, carry hand sanitizer with you and use it frequently. The germs are different in Europe and the last thing you need is to add a bug your immune system has never seen before to the mix.

Paris 2006 almost put me in the hospital and that was before my current adrenal situation.

Also, tweak your dose before you go so feel human and are up for long days of sight seeing.

I hope that helps and that you find some answers!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Flaming Aftermath

We are going to be out of town for the next few days. Hubby has some male bonding convention/sport thing and invited us along for the hotel pool privileges.

I may or may not post. Just depends. My hope is to get some work done now that the stomach flu has had its way with me. I've been kind of useless most of the week due to all the puking.

So...the fire. The dry cleaner is cleaning the drapes with some kind of ozone therapy which is recommended for fire damaged textiles.

We will be throwing out the area rugs in the dining room and the blinds in the kitchen. The hubby has the nose of a dead man and thinks everything smells fiiiine. So we are in delicate negotiations regarding what will be kept and thrown out. I am losing, badly, which is kind of odd given that if I can smell it and I have asthma and since it bothers me, shouldn't we cater to the more sensitive nose/pair of lungs???

We are also washing the walls and cupboards with baking soda water. Plus, setting out bowls of vinegar. Yes, vinegar, plain white vinegar. It's actually really good at absorbing odors from fires. Just like the internet said. Amazing.

For the most part, the way I look at it, we learned a very important lesson on fire safety at a very low cost.

We need smoke detectors in completely different locations. Our house has a closed floor plan and smoke travels slowly (in fact most of the smoke damage came after the fire was out) meaning, by the time our current detector sensed it, the fire would have outpaced the smoke and we would have been trapped.

Basically, our previous level of fire safety? Was lethal. I'm grateful we are finding this out now.

Note that our fire safety met recommended guidelines and conformed to popular advice. Make of that what you will, but the fireman friend I talked to? Gave me tips that run counter to what the officials say. Such as there should be a smoke detector in your kitchen, even if that means it goes off every time you cook.

He also rolled his eyes at me a lot and thought stupid at me so hard, I could hear it.

I'm adding a new rule for living with whacked out adrenals: No cooking when you are so tired you can't see straight.

And everyone should take a second to be sure that their fire detectors work and maybe add a few. Smoke detectors have a life span of about 10 years. The battery may be okay, but the sensor can go bad, so if your smoke detectors are about 10 years old, pitch 'em and get new ones.

PS: I haven't had to updose yet! Yay! I am tired. Not gonna lie. But I think it will be okay.

PPS: The asthma is okay. I'm congested enough to have lost my voice, but not tight and it's probably going to be fine.

PPPS: Remember the five cavities I had filled? Weeeeell, I'm having some issues (Of course! Silly me expecting things to go well!). Crossing fingers I don't have to go back in for a root canal, a redo on the filling or antibiotics for an infection.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

The Toddler Proves She's Amazing and I Am Calamity Jane

So after the stomach flu and the missing dog, I almost set the house on fire yesterday.

All those times I've referenced being in a fog and going through stop signs? All the cognition on time delay due to adrenal stuff?

That caught up with me.

Apparently, recovering from the stomach flu with impaired adrenal function on top of not being quite fully awake yet is the new fire triangle.

I turned on the wrong burner, the burner without a pot on it, and went to take a shower. A nearby dish towel caught fire.

The toddler noticed the smoke and pulled me out of the shower with shouts of 'smoke'.

Not one smoke detector went off. Not one. Which is amazing because there was a lot of smoke.

I ran out of the shower and threw the towel in the sink and doused it with water. I am now terrified, even a day later, which is irrational, that I missed a spark somewhere and the whole house will burn down while we are asleep.

The house smells terrible and the asthma is not so happy with all the smoke inhalation. I don't know what the threshold is for smoke damage, but we may lose our drapes and I suspect our clothing will never quite lose the smell of near disaster.

I still have not updosed, but I am dragging enough now that maybe I will. I continue to hope if I leave my body hanging just a little bit, it will step up and do the right thing. That may not be logical. If the asthma gets bad enough, it's a moot point anyway as I'll have to updose for that.

PS: We will be installing many many more smoke detectors. The current configuration would not sound the alarm until after all exits had been blocked by fire, which is pretty dumb.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Looking for the Dog

The yellow lab ran away yesterday. The hubby turned to help the toddler with her coat and he just took off.

I was a bit more adrenally knackered than I realized when I wrote yesterday's post. Every time I sat down, I fell asleep. Very tired and lethargic.

But I hauled my ass up (in slow motion) and we drove, in separate cars, up and down the street to look for him. I called animal control and every animal shelter in the city to leave our number.

He's 8 years old. Never run away in his life. (Never got in the garbage either, before last week!) To start now? Really bad timing.

We gave up after an hour and came home. Hubby went out, as planned, to dinner with his extended family while I stayed home to nurse a sour stomach and hid my burst capillaries from view. Hoping, praying our yellow lab would find his way home. I even turned on the porch light.

Then, a huge stroke of luck, the dog sauntered into our neighbor's garage and he brought him home. Thank God. I would never forgive myself if anything bad happened.

Unfortunately, I feel much worse now with the stress of the stomach flu on top of a missing dog. I don't want to updose. I think it's better to let my body hang as long as possible in the hope that will spur further HPA axis action. Or, you know, this could spectacularly blow up in my face, but I'm trying to be optimistic.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Blindsided Up the Chuck

I was up all night puking, you?

At least it is allowing me to take the steroids this morning.

Didn't updose too much. Just took 10mg instead of 7.5mg because I felt so awful I couldn't face the thought of finding a knife to cut a pill.

Pretty lame.

Now that the steroids are in my system, I could hack it, but not before. I can also now walk normally (vs. the sad zombie shuffle) and stay conscious (that was difficult until the 'roids hit the bloodstream) and am together enough to write this boring blog post--aren't you thrilled?

You are witnessing the miracle of modern steroid addiction! In excruciating detail!

I broke all the capillaries in my face which FYI looks terrible. Not a good look for anyone.

So we'll see how much of a set back this is or isn't.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Who needs adrenal problems when you've got kids?

The toddler has decided that 6am is the best time to seize the day. This is a big change from her usual 7:45-8 am wake-up call.

So while 6am is not particularly early, it is if you haven't seen it in a long while. I've been visiting for about two weeks now and I'm ready to go home already.

Add in a regular rotation of 4 am crying because a lovey can't be found and blech.

So it's all catching up to me now and I'm a little tired (complete with headache), plus miffed about it, since, if we were sleeping like usual, I would be feeling great.

If it's not one thing, it's another.

We've tried a couple different approaches to try and get her to sleep longer*, but no dice. Apparently, I will be spending my summer rising (and setting) with the sun.

The big toddler news is....she's alternating legs going up stairs!!!!! HUGE improvement.

Now we have to get her alternating on the way down. But finally some good progress after a year of PT. I can tell she's getting stronger because she's not leaning on me as hard when I help her on the steps.

The sad terrible no good news is the toddler told me the other day "I don't have any friends and no one likes me because I'm mean." That's pretty much verbatim what she said.

Well, I don't know about you and your kids (if you have kids), but that kind of statement was not what I was going for when I sent her to preschool. So glad we (and my parents) could pay all that money to completely destroy my kid's self-esteem.

Where is the parenting manual for this one? If you've got it, can I borrow it? Because I am at a loss.

I can not imagine how she must feel about herself to be able to articulate something like that. It's just heart breaking. It makes me want to never send her out in the world ever again.

She is not a mean girl. She is a perfectly normal, lovely three year old. I see her in action enough to know this is true.

I've been telling her that she is not mean, she's little and still learning and we all make mistakes. I tell her those kids saying that crap to her are wrong and she should not believe what they say about her.

And then I sit on my hands and bite my tongue because momma bear? Wants to rampage.

We are definitely not sending her back to that toxic pit they call a preschool next year. I may actually keep her home just so I can be sure her social interactions are positive for a while.

These early years are so formative and it concerns me deeply to see her having such a terrible first experience with school. I hope the damage is not something that will follow her through life.


*Of course we bring her into bed with us, that's like Parenting 101, but she fidgets constantly and I end up with toddler toes in my butt crack. Cold toddler toes. Yes, I wear underwear and pants even, but it's like there's a magnet in my butt crack.

You try sleeping with wiggling toes up your butt and let me know how it oworks out.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Upward Trend

I feel pretty good and am all over the place as a result.

Deep cleaned the house one day.

Next day, I wondered why I bothered as the house had resumed it's usual no-one-ever-cleans-me look.

My house is emo-slob.

Then we had a day where we did a post office run, Early Intervention (EI) packet drop off, lunch with grandpa, a quick dash through Toys R Us for a bday gift, and back to the EI offices to sign stuff. Then I drove for an hour, with the toddler screaming like a banshee*, to drag her to a circus.

The circus was a hokey-pokey one ring affair. The juggler? Was also the stagehand.

The stage lights? Could be found at your local Home Depot and are otherwise known as garage/construction lights.

The stars were peeling off the megaphone. The Ringmistress wore granny pants and a sequined top my grandma might have worn to bingo. It was fantastically cheesy and the toddler loved it despite her aversion to noise.

(I wish that circus had a blog, but they don't. I checked.)

Then we drove home and went for a walk.

Today, we have swimming class, a birthday party (which the hubby informs me I will be the parent in attendance because hell to the no is he doing a bday party anytime soon**), and the dogs go to the vet for a second shot.

Compared to what I was living before, I'm at Olympic go-go-go levels now. I get nervous about doing too much too fast, but I'm also having fun. I like having a life.

I'm now trying to figure out the next taper. I don't want to wait too long because then my body starts to show the extra steroids. Can't go too fast because then I feel the lack of steroids.

WHY my body is so princess-in-the-pea sensitive, I don't understand. WHY can't the HPA axis just ramp up and MOVE?

I might start playing with alternate day 5mg/7.5mg dosing next week and see how it goes.


*The highway was "too noisy". She dropped her rabbit etc... Toddlers are a little nuts. Just FYI.

**But I'm the one who had the bday party from hell, remember? While he was in Vegas 'working'? Hubby always gets the well-executed parties (or Vegas). I get purgatory with a sugar high (and no Vegas).

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Scattered Bits of Mental Shrapnel

I feel better. I think I'm okay, but I may waffle on that later.

Took the toddler to the zoo yesterday in summer heat. Spring has kind of sucked. Either too cold or too summer. The heat did me in a bit.

Sometimes I do too much.

But at least the headache I had for two days finally left the building. Hallelujah.

Can I talk about the garbage for a second? I will somehow make it relate to medical stuff.

This should be interesting.

I am immensely puzzled as to why logic failed. The garbage smelled. Ergo it should be moved. Otherwise the dogs would get into it, which is exactly what happened.

The hubby has an alternate view, which is the dogs should not have touched the garbage.

I'm scratching my head on that one. I blame his Commie upbringing in E. Europe, where dogs were disposable. Except the hubby does love our dogs. I don't know. I'm just puzzled on how the communication utterly failed.

The situation does sort of mirror my medical life. I point out an objectively observable problem with an objective history and am ignored totally.

Me:"See that history of a cortisol of 1.3?"

Doctor:"Yes, so what?"

Me:"Can we please test my am cortisol. I think I'm having the same problem."

Doctor:"Uh, no."

The government should hire me to be the spokesperson who breaks the news of alien invasion. That way they can tell the truth, but absolutely no one will take it seriously.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

More Dog Tales and Adrenal Crapola

Had those 5 cavities filled today. Shoulda updosed. Face planted into bed the second I got home. My head hurts.

So two days good and now two days bad.

Maybe I should do that blood work after all.

But I keep thinking, I'm on a subphysiologic dose, I should be fiiiine, right? But this isn't steroid withdrawal either. So WTF?

So the dogs, which are much more entertaining than me. First the yellow lab unplugged the freezer with his butt. We all remember this, right?

Then the hubby put all the defrosted meat garbage (some of it was too far gone to save) in a place where the dogs could get it.

I told him to move the garbage.

He did not.

So the dogs got into it.

Duh.

Next day, the yellow lab is horking up balls of aluminum foil on the dining room carpet.

Doh.

Tell hubby to move garbage again.

He doesn't. Because why? I don't know. It's some male genetic malfunction.

Dogs therefore obliterate a bag of mowed grass.

Turns out, they don't like grass. Not like that. So they just spread it around and look at me like 'bitch please' as if I screwed up their food order.

Then they tore into another bag because the hubby lets them loose in the yard with the garbage.

By this point, the hubby sees the light and moves the damn garbage bags.

Finally.

But he makes a mistake. He thinks he moved all the garbage and left the recycling in place (which the dogs won't touch).

Except he moved the recycling and left the garbage.

So for the third time in the same day, the dogs are in the garbage.

We finally broke out the hydrogen peroxide and mixed it with chicken broth to make them puke it up.

Moral of the story? We are bad with garbage. Also, dogs will eat aluminum foil if it contains enough rotting meat, who knew?

Why didn't I just move the garbage? I kept thinking the hubby took care of it, only to find out, after the fact, that no, it had not been moved.

The bag of grass was on me, but they had to pick at it through a fence. I thought it was safe. I was wrong. Next time? I will move it all myself, cramping muscles and all.

Oh, the dogs are fine. Feeling a bit betrayed by that tricksy chicken broth, but fine.

I hope this was entertaining. Not sure if my energy is good enough to do the story justice. The stupidity was painfully funny to me.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Of Queen Bees and Easy Targets

Preschool has been a struggle the past few months.

Did you know that the pre-teen crap starts in preschool, at the age of four. Yes, really four.

FOUR!?!?!? Craziness.

Go read the link. I'll wait. Yeah, I know, it made me blink too. WTF?

Sadly, it sounds a lot like the toddler's preschool, so it's true. It's all true. OMG. Suddenly, I am so grateful I didn't go to preschool that frequently when I was a kid.

The toddler was the absolute youngest in her mixed age group. 2 3/4 to their 3 and 4 (now turning 5). All the relational aggression has rolled downhill and landed on the toddler because the older kids have the social skills (and the desire to practice them) to bury her, much to her utter bewilderment.

I thought it was all social aggression girl stuff. I had been butting heads with the teachers ("It's all normal, what do you want us to do about it?"*) over the whole thing in the hopes my daughter would stop labeling herself as a 'mean girl' or telling me about all the kids who aren't her friend anymore or which ones were going to make fun of her.

As if all that wasn't heartbreaking enough, today I learned there's more to it.

You see, the toddler has been falling at preschool. I did not know this because they never said anything to me (communication is not their strong point), so I naively assumed she wasn't falling.

Except, I learned today, she was. Often into and onto other kids.

Which has given her the rep of being a pusher.

Which is like handing the Queen Bee of the group a match and lighter fluid to better mark the target. No wonder the toddler has been so anxious about going to school the last few months. I would be too! She doesn't know if she's going to fall, who she's going to fall on and if they are going to target her for it or not. That's in addition to all the other social BS. I'm surprised she even walks into the classroom of her own free will. I wouldn't!

I've been dragging my feet on the Early Intervention packet. A form of denial I think, but boy did this news light a fire under my butt. It's ready to go as of 10am this morning, just need to make some copies. The EI program here has a preschool with OT and PT services and hopefully a more sensitive environment where the toddler won't be railroaded socially just because she's got a bum leg.

*Kids pee their pants. They bite people. That's all normal too, but since when do we just throw up our hands and do nothing about it? I didn't get that memo and I'm not sacrificing my kid's self esteem in the name of normal.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Today Went so Well, I Don't Want It to End

I had a lovely Sunday. Yes, it was Mother's Day* too, but mostly it was a lovely Sunday.

Because I finally felt half way decent. The muscle pain, which has been excruciating for the last few days, was gone. I had the energy I needed for the day (although I still napped against my will, laid down on the couch and then bam! o-u-t).

Plus it finally stopped raining. The sun came out and it was the most perfect Spring day so far this year.

And...the toddler slept until 9:30! It would have been a personal best except for the fact that she was up a 4am long enough for dread to brew in the pit of my stomach.

The relief I felt when she finally went back to sleep? Defies words. Please, please, please no more 4am wake-up calls.

We lazed in bed as a family until almost noon, watching my favorite morning news show CBS Sunday This Morning. I don't drink coffee, I watch morning news shows. It's my thing and I've mostly given it up to cartoons being TV free since becoming a parent.

Then we bought a bunch of garden stuff with carefully hoarded gift cards and completely redid our front landscaping. Well, the hubby did all the digging, I watched, coordinated, and did a little planting. The toddler pranced around in her bathing suit (which was the only thing I could convince her to wear) and watered plants like a drunken fairy, which is to say, she missed more plants than she hit.

No eating out since we still had about a billion tons of meat from the freezer the dog unplugged with his mighty butt. I now have 9 containers of roast beef and gravy in the freezer. Nine!!! Does anyone like roast beef that much?

Last, but not least, the hubby and I went for an evening walk together. Which we never get to do, but another babysitting score allowed us to stretch our legs after putting the toddler to bed.

It was just a lovely family day with decent adrenality (that is not a word, just roll with it). I told the hubby if things continue to go this well, I may not need to go to the lab for an am cortisol after all.


*Infertiles don't generally hype Mother's Day out of courtesy to those who are still waiting for their babies. For anyone trying to have a family and failing, Mother's Day is painful. I have my baby and the residual pain of infertility is still there.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Action Adventure

The hubby and I scored some babysitting last night and went to see Fast Five, which is an action adventure movie where criminals are the good guys and drive fast cars.

After we left the theater, I told the hubby, "I feel like we should be aspiring to badassery. Like we're underliving."

"Yeah, me too."

"Hey, let's trick out the stalling minivan and do a bank heist."

"Can we have hydraulics too?"

"Definitely." We laughed, picturing a 'soccer mom' minivan humping the road.

"But do you have the energy to be a bad ass?" the hubs asked.

"Well, I'll probably need naps and right now my eyeball muscles are spasming so my aim will be off when I shoot at the cops."

"How will the napping work?"

"Once we break into the bank vault, I can sleep in there. I just need like an hour. We'll have to build some kind of distraction for the cops into the plan."

"Like what?"

"Ummm, aliens?"

"I don't know. Sounds like a lot of work. Maybe we're not up for badassery."

"Yeah, there's probably no adrenal insufficiency in badassery."

And then the minivan stalled, leaving us to stew for a good 10 minutes before it decided to work again. So much for our action adventure career.

No, we still don't know what's wrong with the van. We're working on finding a third mechanic, but our hopes are not high for a solution right now.

Maybe we should check its cortisol levels?

Thursday, May 5, 2011

This Post Is Supposed to Be About the Dog, but I Digressed

Hi. I'm bleeding to death.

It's like deja vu over here.

Only this time I know what's going on and have some drugs to deal with it.

So maybe I can stay out of the ER, the OB's and the PCP's office. (You know, last time it took 3 medical visits to deal with my va-jay-jay. Am I a flasher or is medicine just inefficient?)

On the steroid front, I'm doing alternate day dosing 7.5mg and 10mg. 10 mg feels much better than 7.5mg.

That sucks. Serious loss of ground there. It's like the HPA axis took its toys and went home.

Bitch.

I think the I'll be going to the lab for a stick next week. Still need to call the lab to see what time they open and verify the order is there waiting for my veins to visit.

Toddler had PT yesterday and I left the appointment feeling sad. First, she fell again. Not a bad fall, but the same fall she's been doing since she learned to walk, which is very frustrating after all this work. Then the PT told me she was seeing lots of "red flags" and we really need the OT eval asap.

Cue sad momma followed later by poppa. The toddler is smart and sweet and hiding the red flags at pschool, so hopefully it will all end well. Until then, we will worry.

The big news... our dumb dog unplugged the freezer. Which we did not discover until after all the meat had defrosted.

So I now face the task of cooking roughly 30lbs of meat today. Due to that dumb dog you see to the left. (Yeah, he looks cute but FYI he eats poop and smells like it too. So do his farts. And burps. Which he is not above passively aggressively entering the room where you are just to fart and then leave. He's not cute enough for that.)

Cooking it is one thing, eating is a whole other problem. I've got 3 roasts, 2 flank steaks, 2 pkgs of ground turkey and 24 boneless chicken breasts. All need to be cooked between today and tomorrow, but there is NO way we can eat it all.

We are thinking of having the neighbors over for BBQ chicken. Wanna come?

Monday, May 2, 2011

Time for a Stick

My blood pressure is yo-yoing again.

Last night I had a low along with low blood sugar and diarrhea out of nowhere.

Right now the bp is super high, to where it hurts.

I've lost ground in terms of what I can do. Taking naps. Never feeling good for very long.

So the goal at this point is to figure out how I can get to the lab for an am cortisol blood draw. This takes some coordination since I don't want to drive without steroids in my system, but we'll figure it out.

I'm also regressing to 10mg of HC instead of 7.5mg.

PS: Got some great ebook news on my professional project. I sent review copies out to industry experts and top-tier industry bloggers. Got an email from a major expert today saying:

1.My book is awesome.
2.90% of the pitches they get suck, but mine was the exception
3.They are going to promote my book because they like it so much.

Which I think means I'll sell a whole 2 more copies or something.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Too Stupid to Live, but Alive

I realized this morning, when I woke up, that maybe last night's post may have been a bit alarming.

I was out of my mind with fatigue. In an altered state that I suspect most people have to take drugs to achieve.

Addicts be jelus.

Anyway, I was not too worried as, long time readers will recall, I've fought 80/50 BP at home and won. Not afraid to drink the olive brine over here. Or pickle juice.

Just needed to stay up to be sure I didn't bottom out, which I didn't. Makes me think I didn't take everything twice.

As for double dosing on the asthma drugs, that has happened before and it can make me feel like crap, but it passes. Also, in other areas of the world, higher doses are used and deemed safe. So I figure the risk is low.

The acne antibiotic? I'll have really clear skin for once. I hope!

The problem was, I broke routine which is what triggered the (alleged) double dose.

Anyway, nothing bad happened. I updosed the Hydrocortisone today back to 10mg. Woke up with normal energy which was nice. I still need more sleep than I'm getting, but I've had a few nights now with no interruptions which helps even if total sleep time is sub-optimal.

At this rate, I worry that I'm going to end up a permanent member of the adrenal club. The taper is not going well and my brain is mush.

But I must have some HPA axis functionality to be on such a low dose, right? WHAT is going on?

This actually echoes a conversation I had with my PCP who referred me to the current endo, which yielded an am cortisol of 6. It makes me a little leery about things right now.