Category Archives: thoughts

Tramadol Nightmare Finally Ends

                          

Tonight marks the seventh day I’ve been completely free of any tramadol. The peak of withdrawal for me was this past Friday night. I woke up with sweats, jerking muscles that were cramping, I puked a few times, I had an excruciating headache, and once I got out of bed the panic set in. I was up all night. I could not stay asleep. When I did sleep it was in increments of thirty minutes. It was a very rough night. That next morning, I began to wonder if I needed to enter a detox facility. It was that bad. As the day went on I was exhausted but as I kept focused on music, and moving around it got easier. I am now on day eight and all the withdrawal symptoms have departed!

I feel pretty good considering all my physical infirmities. My nerve tumor pain is high part of the day, but I manage through it here at home. I had a very successful day yesterday. Yesterday I was able to go out to a doctor’s appointment, make a grocery store trip, make a Walgreens stop, make a stop at the gas station, and do my dishes at the sink! This might sound trivial to some of my readers, but for me, that is extraordinary while only being on naproxen 500mg.

I have noticed a few changes since detoxing from the tramadol too. I have been struggling with severe fatigue for years now and concentration problems. I always walked around feeling foggy, and so fatigued I could barely hold my head up most days. This last week I noticed that the foggy feeling has subsided completely. I think more clearly. I believe the tramadol must have contributed to that cloudy thinking. The fatigue I felt was probably intensified by the tramadol as well. I am still tired in the middle of the day but it isn’t nearly as bad as it was while I was taking the tramadol.

I don’t see my pain clinic until the 24th, but when I do they will have to come up with another plan for my case. I am rejecting to be treated any longer with any type of narcotic, or any type of pain treatment that my body will become dependent on, that if I choose to stop taking it, I have to deal with withdrawals like I had to face with tramadol. There has to be a better way to deal with pain patients. There has to be a way to help us without turning us into pill addicts, or physical addicts. They’re doctors who work hard to get these special degrees. They should be smart enough to figure this out.

I strongly believe marijuana should be utilized in this area. If marijuana was utilized for chronic pain patients, it would prevent addiction across the board. Science shows that cannabis is promising for pain relief. “Science also shows that addiction is very low at only 30% likely to have a dependency problem and that the 30% who develop dependency are people who have psychiatric issues before use” (Hasin).

It is time that our nation takes the stigma that surrounds cannabis and completely remove it. We must begin taking rational steps in solving problems we face with addiction to opiates and other opiate type medicine, like tramadol. Cannabis is one logical step! We must begin taking logical steps in treating chronic pain patients and stop imagining they do not exist, that they do not matter, or that their quality of life is not just as important as any other patient treated in our nation. Cannabis would help so many avoid opiate addiction, it would help improve the quality of so many lives across our nation, and it would be affordable to them. If the Obama administration is serious about this new initiative to help fight opiate addiction, he will move to help legalize cannabis nationwide on the federal level for medical use with a proposed bill to congress before he leaves office. The ball is in your court Obama. Help us, not the prescription thugs!!

Sources

Hasin DS, Saha TD, Kerridge BT, et al. Prevalence of Marijuana Use Disorders in the United  States Between 2001-2002 and 2012-2013. JAMA Psychiatry. 2015;72(12):1235-1242. doi:10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2015.1858.

 

This is for you Drew….

Drew Lykins

(9/16/1977-7/24/2014)

 

It’s funny all the things in this world that don’t have much meaning to them. Well, until you lose someone special to you. Things such as lightning bugs at night, a day that mimics a distant old memory of a moment you spent with that person, things like the smell of fresh cut grass, a color you look upon from an old clothing article worn, the sound of a motorcycle revving its engine, or the smell of an oil spill from a mechanics garage….

I believe these things finally retain some sort of meaning to us after we lose someone because we want so badly to be near the person who is gone…

I find myself wanting to see stars in the night sky and lightning bugs flying around freely. I find myself wanting to see a red bandana; I want to smell the fresh grass after a rainfall, even a certain smell from the mud beneath my feet just to catch a glimpse of a childhood memory I know is there and I want to just be in that moment again even if it is only in my mind. That sound from a familiar song that reminds you of a smile they had.  I find myself wanting to lie in the grass gazing it up at the stars smoking that old familiar brand of cigarettes just to feel close to a memory.

You find yourself going over all the time and space in between the years that have passed. Dredging up, from deep inside, this solemn feeling of regret; regret that you have taken advantage of the fact that nothing lasts forever like you hoped.  Regret that you kept telling yourself there is always time. Saying quietly next time I will or I always have tomorrow. Then the day comes when someone tells you that special person is gone forever. You realize in that exact moment of the receiving the news how wrong you were about time, wrong about how life is tough not fragile, and how you wish you could have made just a few more memories, just a few more to add meaning to all the things you thought were miniscule, things surrounding you like the sound of rushing traffic, a cotton ball travelling in the wind, or the smell of brownies in the oven.

My dear friend Drew is gone. He left this world Thursday afternoon and these are the things I’ve been going through the last few days. I am heartbroken and I haven’t figured out how to start the healing process yet. I do not believe you heal from loss completely, you just learn to go on in a new normal of existence with that person absent. This will be the first friend I’ve gone back home to say goodbye too and that is because I loved that boy so much. I have memories with him as far back as I can remember. I feel good about a few things. I feel good that he did know I loved him and he knew he was an important friend of mine. He knew I would have moved the world for him if I had the power. I feel good that I believe deep in my heart he felt the same. The streets we grew up on were tough sometimes. Life at home wasn’t always pancakes and soda pop. School wasn’t always a playground. One thing was always constant though Drew and Rachel running together.

I look back on days of summer when I couldn’t wait to get outside to my bike so I could ride to see him. I look back at the times he snuck to my bedroom window at dark just to say what was up. What a ride. Many people around the neighborhood and school thought for sure we would have ended up being romantically involved, married, boyfriend/girlfriend but it never went that way. I think he loved me and he knew it would have ruined the years of memories we had built. It would have ruined our friendship. He was right if that is what he was thinking. Our love was more of a brotherly/sisterly love than a long lasting love that goes into marriage.

I can see him walking though our old high school, sitting at a desk in some classroom, smoking a cigarette across from the band rooms annex, walking down Hanna towards my bus stop, smiling or giving me a hand gesture as I held a camera, I can see him sitting in the back of the bus saving me a seat, looking back as I was deciding to flee the hometown to better myself with him telling me to go and I can’t help but smile.

Tears start to fall when I am done rolling those memories through my mind because I realize there is no chance of creating new memories, no more conversations, no more pictures to be taken, no more time left….because life is so fragile.

Drew I will love you forever my friend. Save me a seat up there …in the back…I remember we like it there…

 

love-friendship

A heart condition has arrived…

brokenheart

 

So Tuesday, September 24th I had to be taken off my bus in an ambulance. I thought I was having a heart attack. At first I thought it was an anxiety attack. What I have found out is my heart actually stops beating two beats per minute and when it jump starts back up on the third beat it starts in the 200 beats per minute range and rises, this is known as atrial fibrillation. 300 beats per minute is stroke area. Had my coworker in dispatch not called 911 for me I would have either stroked out, or had a massive heart attack. Yeah pretty scary stuff.

I went in yesterday to get a holster monitor on to record my hearts actions. I was put on a beta blocker to help slow the heart when it jump starts so I do not stroke out. It still hurts, and it still races but not at stroke limit. I am hoping I can just be medicated to fix this problem. My boss informed me that if I have a pace maker put in that I can not hold a CDL. I love my job. I don’t want to have to leave my job. I have met some very wonderful people there and the job saved my life.

When I first applied at PC I was at the lowest point in my life. I was ready to leave my husband, and take my own life. I had been disabled for 8 years prior and it had taken its toll on me. I was so thankful to PC that they gave me a chance. If I have to leave my job I am not sure how I will handle that.

Right now I am trying real hard to stay positive. I’m trying not to panic at the thought of having a serious heart condition that can’t easily be fixed. I still smile and try to keep my happy demeanor but deep inside I am terrified.

It was hell to adjust to being this disabled woman at 28…how will I adjust to a woman with a serious heart problem at 35? I’m suppose to start school in a few weeks to work on getting my bachelors in early childhood education. How am I going to do that if I have a bad heart? Should I put it off? I have all these things on my mind.

This will be my second brush with death in one year. The first was my car accident where I rolled my Ford Taurus and had to be cut out. I believe in signs. I wonder if this is a sign for me too. I’m not sure what it is trying to say however…

I’ve been through so much my entire life…I really have come a long way…and a part of me is very angry that this heart thing has shown up…I mean how much more am I going to have to go through…til it is time for me to have true continuing peace?

I was sexually abused as a child, I grew up with a schizophrenic mother, my first husband was abusive, I am a recovering opiate addict, I have been disabled since age 28, and I survived a roll over car accident.

I have overcome all of these things only to find myself faced with having a bad heart. I know that it is very possible my past drug usage and abuse might have brought on this heart condition. Not to mention I was a smoker for over 20 years…but when am I going to get a break?

Everyone around me tells me I am a pillar of strength and I amaze them. I feel real good about that. I have always wanted to change the world…I have always wanted to be someone important enough to save or change lives. I wanted to be the person that brightens others days by simply being me. I just don’t know how I am going to deal with a major heart problem if that is the case.

I worry this will be my tipping point. I am afraid this might be the straw that broke the camels back. Facing this heart situation has made me think about all the things I’ve done throughout my life that probably brought me to this point. It also has me thinking about how much more I want to do. I’m not finished. I’m not even close and a heart condition probably cuts off more of my time to do the things I want.

I know life isn’t always fair and bad shit happens to good people. I just wish I would be given a break. I am having a harder time each day enjoying what I should be enjoying. I’m tired all the time, hurt all over everyday, out of breath most of the time, and my heart hurts when it races. God what is your plan for me? What are you trying to move me towards or away? I need your help here…and I’m begging you to not put anymore on me because God I have no more strength. My endurance is gone.

I have been clean since 2006. I don’t drink but maybe twice a year. I don’t steal. I am a good mom to my girls. I am a faithful wife. I am a loyal friend. I am an honest person. I have asked forgiveness for my past sins against others. I help the less fortunate. I try to be a positive role model for those who surround me. I don’t know what else to do in order to have you give me a break. But tonight Lord I am asking you please….give me a break or this will break me.

Sick Of It All (**language warning**)

sickofitall

 

 

Sick and tired all the time

Oh how I wish I could rewind

Or fast forward this show

give me somewhere to go…

where my heart is free

where my soul can sing

where I matter in the world

Here, it’s so cold

It numbs me whole

Making me the fool

trying to keep my cool

using me like a tool

life is so cruel

and I’m fucking sick of it.

I want to cut my vein

bring on the end

but loyalty keeps me in

like being bedridden with sin

Is this really who I was supposed to be?

A lonely soul

Living in pain everyday

What price must I pay?

This is all fucked up…

I no longer want to play…

this part of suffering

with loneliness that could shatter worlds

pushing me to look for salvation

in things that only kill the soul

a bottle of booze

a bottle of pills…

fighting everyday to be someone new

Why have I been forsaken?

in all the good I try to do…

It’s not good enough for you?

I’m not alone…but I’m alone

and I’m fucking sick of it…

for my children I will carry on

an empty vessel at sea

pretending to feel free

but being confined by pain

I’ve been forsaken

For reasons I don’t see

I fight the urge to go…

even though

I’m fucking sick of it all…

For the love of…

brokenheartnow

I have been going to counseling now for about six months or so with my husband. The main reason for going was my marriage was over, or so I thought it was. Maybe it still is…this is what we are trying to figure out in therapy. We were in crisis mode when we decided to go. I had fallen out of love with my husband who I have been with for fourteen years.

It was not just one thing he had done to me that brought us to that point. It was years of neglect and many stupid things he has done, and things he said that built up and brought us to that crossroad. Through the years I tried to explain to him, I tried to show him, I tried to convince him, hell I even asked him to go to couple counseling with me. It took me to tell him I wanted a divorce to finally shock him into going to counseling. I was not impressed. I had been so detached and neglected I did not want to try counseling at this point. My thought was, “oh, NOW, you want to try counseling, what about last year when I asked?” When I mentioned therapy for us the previous year I told him I was feeling very insecure in our relationship and asked him to go. His reply to me at that time was, “You do need therapy, you are crazy not me.” So you can imagine how I felt with him, now ,after telling him I wanted a divorce, he was willing to try this counseling thing.

The first month I was not impressed. It took a long time to bring down the wall I had built. It took a long time to attempt to replace anger with something healthier. I still find myself detached from him quite a bit. Honestly I am not sure where our future is leading us…I agreed to do a year of therapy with the counselor because she said it would probably take that long to get us where we should be. So I plan on keeping my word because that is what I do. I am loyal.

I’m not fighting the therapy like I was in the beginning. I am letting it sink in and I am taking the advice on how to get back on track. I am doing this because I have seen my husband trying to make things better. He has realized many things through therapy…though I think he has a lot more to learn…I will try to be patient in this journey.

A huge part of me is scared that I will never feel attached to him like I was just a few years ago. I love him but I still have doubts about being “in love” with him. I have tried to find the main trigger that creates this detachment in me. I have figured out that it is the past crap he’s done, said and the years of neglect that remind me he is untrustworthy. I am not exactly sure how to get over that. I am not certain he is doing anything to remind me of that or if he is doing things that subconsciously remind me. That will be my next session with therapist.

I understand that love grows to different stages. I understand that the newly wed love stage will most likely not return for us but I know passion could if we could just stay attached. The problem with that is I can’t seem to stay attached to him and I am not 100% sure I truly want to. He is indeed untrustworthy to me. I mean he has said things to me that are awful. Was he lying when he said those things? He doesn’t believe those things now because why? Because I was actually leaving this time. See what I mean?

I am not claiming I’m perfect here. I know I’ve called him an asshole over the years. I have told him to fuck off more then I can count. I will tell you though I have NEVER said something so harsh and hurtful to him like he has done to me. This is where we still have serious problems…

I can’t forget the times he has told me I am crazy. I can not forget his reply when I wanted to go back to school was, “you can’t even clean my house the way I like what makes you think you can go back to school”, yeah, that was my breaking point. It was shortly after that I finally just said I wanted a divorce.

That was around March of 2012. It all came together right before I got hired at my current job.

I have noticed lately he is more likely to slump back into old habits. When he starts to do that I immediately detach. When I say detach, I don’t mean minor isolation, I mean detach as in putting myself on an island with no way onto that bad boy. It is very hard for me to reattach too. I understand I detach so much because it was many, many years of neglect, abusive spoken words, and snipping away at the trust. I am not sure we’ll figure this out but I am willing to finish out trying to do so.

I am not happy with him like I think I should be. I am not even sure I ever will be again…I do love him a great deal. He is a wonderful father. He isn’t a bad person. We have had many great memories. I wouldn’t wish anything bad on him either. But, I use to look forward to talking with him, going places with him, I use to respect his opinion…these days I still don’t give a shit either way…I try to give a shit but deep down I don’t most of the time…a huge part of me feels guilty for those feelings but I just don’t know what to do…will that change with continued therapy? I don’t know…stay tuned.