3 Days ‘til My 50th Birthday – What I Did Today & How I Feel
With 3 days until my 50th birthday, I had set out to color my gray hair, and a million other things that desperately need to be done at home (like finding out when the tree cutter will be able to move the downed tree across our driveway)…and what did I accomplish today???
So I feel awful that I didn’t make any progress today…but I promised myself that I would not look at set backs as a total failure and then completely give up. I can’t. I won’t.
Part of the reason I got nothing accomplished today – AND the reason most of my blogs go up so late at night, is that I haven’t been able to sleep. I’m already a night owl, always have been. With the pandemic and everything going on in the world my sleep has been severely altered. It’s easy to tell me to not watch or read the news, but that’s not going to happen. My entire career involved news in one way or another. From my radio career, I often compiled and read the news on-air during morning shows – and in television I always wanted to be conscious of what was going on in the world so I wasn’t on-air with a giant grin on my face and making jokes if something major had happened.
The last couple months I’ve been wide awake until the sun comes up. I end up sleeping during the day – and all my time seems to have been wasted. I’ve taken sleeping pills before – and they didn’t work. Anxiety medication – nope. Melatonin – nothing. Advil PM or Tylenol PM – sometimes worked a little – but not it feels that my system has adjusted to them – so I’ve stopped.
I know that exercise would help me sleep better – but my energy level is so pathetically low it’s discouraging. I’ve always had low energy – and so did my mother, sister, and nieces. I have always thought that we all have to have something in common that causes it. But no doctors have ever figured it out.
Another HUGE factor in my sleepless nights – my overall health. Last year when my mother and my mother-in-law both passed in March – I was overloaded with stress – and during that time I started to forget to take my daily medication. Eventually, I had forgotten long enough (a couple of weeks) that I knew I couldn’t just start it back up. So I stopped all my medication cold turkey. That was the worst thing I could have possibly done.
As many of you know from my blog about having C-PTSD – I’ve been on antidepressants since I was 19 years old. Anxiety medication started in the last 15 years. Antidepressants must be tapered off under a doctors supervision – NEVER cold turkey like I did.
There was so much going on during between the two funerals that I didn’t notice things that were starting to happen to my health. Within 2 months I had gained 40 pounds, my heart rate increased, I was eating only a couple times a day – if that. My face developed an uneven skin tone – with patchy areas of melasma. Massive hot flashes were happening every day, and pain in my hands and feet like I had instantly developed arthritis in my fingers and toes.
I finally called my doctors and told them what I did. They were very concerned about the awful side effects I was experiencing of stopping the medication without tapering them. But at that time, the last thing I wanted to do was to go back on them…so I didn’t. By August, 5 months later, I called them both back – I was feeling extremely despondent – and knew it was time to go back on the medication.
Things are better, but not great. My weight has come down 10 pounds, but I’m still up 30 pounds. Peri-menopause has returned in all its glory … and oh yea, my psychiatrist retired – so now I need to find a new doctor during a pandemic.
So tomorrow is a new day … and I’ll try again.
And completely off topic … out of now where … lilies are growing in our yard?!?! We didn’t plant any bulbs … so I’m stumped on how they just showed up! It’s just one stalk!
Socially-distanced hugs to all of you!
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