28 September 2011

Medical Update

I saw my most excellent doctor today.  She suggested that my next step be a sleep study.  At this point, she (and the rest of my medical team) have identified and fixed all of the obvious, known causes of fatigue (my thyroid, my Vitamin D deficiency), so it's on to finding new and more interesting things.  There's still the possibility of this mystery thing that I keep alluding to (I've told a scant few of you about it in person), but she wants to rule out sleep disorders first, because she thinks the first question the specialist she wants me to see about the potential mystery cause will be whether I've had a sleep study done.

She said it's possible that fatigue COULD be stress-related (as the NP had suggested), but that this has been ongoing for so long, she thinks we're beyond that at this point.  That's when I told her about Orin, which is when I started crying.  I seem to do a lot of crying in her office lately.

She and I had a really wonderful talk.  She told me that it's been her experience that people who are facing death don't change (I kind of figured that - that only happens in the movies) and that they often cling more rigidly to their behaviour.  She said when she worked with cancer patients in the hospital (in rotations and such), she heard a lot of near-deathbed confessions and regrets, and she often wanted to shake the person and say, "Why are you telling ME this?  Call your mother/ex-wife/ex-husband/daughter/son/brother/sister and tell THEM this!  You just met me!"  But since the person never got the tools to handle these things, they won't suddenly get them just because they're dying.

She also advised me to think about the fact that I don't want to live with regret - and not in the "you need to be nice to him because you'll regret it if you don't" kind of way, but her advice was more "his pain is going to end - the physical pain and the emotional pain.  And it's going to end soon.  But this cross will be yours to bear, so do what you need to do for yourself, not for him, because you'll regret it if you act for him."

We had a really good talk, and she made sure that I've been talking to my therapist and that my therapist is aware of everything that's going on.  She asked me if I wanted some Xanax or Ativan, because she thought that it might be a good thing for me right now, but it's not something I'm ready for.  While I can see that it might be helpful, at this point, it feels like admitting defeat - like I've somehow let life's pressures get to me or something.

1 comment:

  1. I have found Xanax to be a wonderful tool.
    And what a wise person your doc is!
    If it is sleep apnea-related, you will see a difference the very next day.
    If you also have headaches, trouble concentrating and wake up feeling like you are drowning as well as the fatigue, it could be sleep apnea. If it is just fatigue, it may not be that.
    I am doing better, since my thyroid was checked again, and the med raised a tad. Still sick but energy is back.
    I hope they find a solution for you soon, hon.