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Showing posts from July, 2015

The "Others"

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I'm having a rough day and I think my brain fog is due to how hot it is outside. I know, you're thinking "Hillary - wtf! You used to live in the Middle East!" Truthfully, I love the heat but my body does not. It causes my symptoms to worsen. When that happens, I try to put out as much good energy as I can. I practice mindfulness, meditation (various forms), and gratitude. Right now, I need to shed some light on the "others". The "others" are people who take the time to check in on me (even just asking how I'm feeling when they see me) and those that actively take care of me (it takes a village, people!) - these people are my rock.

First, there's my husband. We're coming up on our fifth wedding anniversary. Does that mean I can get him the traditional gift of wood? Anyway, my husband is my rock. He keeps me centered while also making me crazy. He gives me time to rest when I need it and tries to keep it all together when I feel like my …

The Week(s) from Hell

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Ever had a really bad day? The kind of day that makes you want to curl up into a ball and just cry. That bad. So bad your head is pounding and your heart is hurting. That. Bad.

Welcome to the last few weeks of my life.

While battling depression (thanks, dysautonomia!) I'm faced with some obstacles in my path. They aren't just obstacles you can easily walk over. They are boulders. That won't move. They are mutherfrickn' big massive boulders that won't budge. They are the things that happen in your life where you can only control how you react but you can't control these boulders.

And they mess with me.

I'm working longer and harder at work. I'm drained by the time I get home and ill by the time I get in bed. I sleep (kinda), wake up, and do it all over again. I feel like Bill Murray in Groundhog Day except I want to physically punch people on a daily basis. Strength is not actually punching people, by the way.

What a mess! I'm a mess. I have stuff g…

Anxiety + Symptoms = Chaos

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One of my close family members is really sick. I won't go too far into detail because it's not my story to share - even though it definitely affects me. I'm sitting in a hospital right now - waiting in the post-op surgical waiting area. I'm waiting. Just waiting. It can take two hours for my loved one to regain consciousness. I'm nervous, worried, and anxious - so my symptoms are going INSANE. This has been going on since last night.

Last night I envisioned sitting here and waiting. Then my symptoms started going nuts. My nausea got worse. I was convinced I was going to barf. I couldn't calm my system down. My heart was racing. My blood pressure was really low. I was having what most people categorize as a panic attack but this is just what happens when my symptoms encounter anxiety.

So, for now I just sit and pray - anxiously awaiting word that I can go see how my loved one is doing. I'm contemplating. I'm meditating. I'm also working - just to ke…

You're Doing Great!

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A few days ago, I spoke with a friend of mine (read: ex-boyfriend) who practices medicine in Israel. He started reading my blog and reached out to me to see how I'm doing. I was a) stunned because he read my blog; and b) shocked because he cared enough to reach out. As I went through my symptoms with him he reminded me that I'm lucky I received a diagnosis as quickly as I did (about a year) - for most people, it takes three or more years to get diagnosed. It's a diagnosis of elimination - it's not this or this, so let's see if it's this other thing.  It's my own private version of hell.  Tests. Exams. More tests. CT scans. Blood work. More blood work. More CT scans. More Exams.

At the end of our conversation, my friend said "you're doing great!" - he meant that I'm holding up well and using this blog as an outlet to educate and get my feelings out there. He's right, though. I AM doing great - so far on this journey, I've been my b…

The Sky is Falling

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When I was a kid, my Bubba (grandmother) used to read me the story of Henny Penny - ya know, the chicken who thought the sky was falling and the world was coming to an end. Well, this morning, I felt like the sky was falling. I woke up late. I test my blood pressure (BP) twice - both times it was insanely high (which is NOT normal for me, it's normally very very very low). I was sweating like a pig (schvitzing like a chazer if you know Yiddish). My hair was sopping wet - even after blowing it dry straight. I scared the crap out of my youngest child and then my husband and I started fighting.

Whew. That's a lot to happen before 6:30am.

I feel gross. My symptoms are crazy acid reflux (like the kind where the acid hits the back of your throat), really bad nausea, aches and pains, a headache (again), rapid heart beat, and I think I'm getting thrush in my mouth (gross!). Did I mention aches and pains? It feels like I got hit by a truck.

I slept from 8:30pm to 5:10am - I tossed…

Moving On...

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Last week, I was a little freaked out over how this holiday weekend was going to go. When you have an invisible illness, it's hard to plan for a holiday. This weekend, we spent a fair amount of time by our pool - which is generally a "no-no" for people with dysautonomia since heat can make you feel really ill. I got lucky. My kids took extra long naps on Saturday (which gave me time to rest up before we went swimming) and they were relatively easy to deal with on Sunday. Friday was also fairly fantastic.

For years we'd go to my mom's house for a BBQ before going on the boat to watch the fireworks. Well, this year, I wasn't feeling up to the fireworks (my stomach was churning and I was so nauseous that all I wanted to do was lay down) but we still went to the family BBQ - which was awesome. My family loves to dote on my kids, so having other people hang out with them gave me a much needed rest. My oldest insisted on going barefoot in the grass (that's a ne…

Holidays are the BEST...and Worst

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For someone with dysautonomia, holidays can be amazing and nerve wracking. We tend to eat what feels right in the situation, but we also can get really nauseous with the smell of food. Case in point, Hannukah. We eat a lot of food that isn't good for you: potato pancakes and donuts (or, as we call them levivot/latkes and sufganiyot). Normally, I LOVE the smell of potato pancakes cooking. During Hanukkah last year, it made me want to throw up. In fact, I did - I threw up at my sister's house during Shiva for our mom (sorry, Kim - I never told you). The smell was awful.

Well, this weekend is Fourth of July weekend - so, Happy Birthday, America! This holiday could either go really well OR really poorly. We're heading to my parent's house for a BBQ on Friday and then fireworks on the boat. I haven't been on a boat since getting sick. Anxiety sets in. I might throw up. I might get dizzy. I'll likely be nauseous. I'm pretty sure I'll turn green. FUN times, r…