unico_love: (crystal ball)
Not feeling anxious unless I leave my bed. Occasionally I can go out shopping, if there is a hint of a "reward." I overdraw my bank account by $4, but didn't get penalized. I also went over my credit card by about the same amount, but didn't get penalized. I've been taking from savings. I guess overspending has been helping me avoid my real problems and acted as a form of escapism. I've bought a lot of new clothes because nothing in my closet fits. Still gaining weight... I'm going to get my colors done into a personalized fan, which my mother thinks is a waste of money. Well buying new clothes in styles and colors that look good on me and obsessing over the color and style analysis is taking my mind off the fact that I look pregnant and feel fat. It's either this or *completely* starve myself and then end up back inpatient in the ED Ward and spend the money on that instead. Which would she prefer? I mean, I have no appetite. It's common at 11pm for me to ask Michael if I had remembered to eat that day.

John Kitchener, my favorite color/style analyst, I think, considers me half Romantic and half Youthful (AKA Ingenue in other systems). Both are completely yin. He said to think "Marilyn Monroe meets Emma Stone." That made me feel a little better about my appearance. I never before cared for Marilyn Monroe, but now I'm starting to. I want to learn more about her and watch "My Week with Marilyn" because she sounds like she was a very sweet and naive person. I'll always be an Audrey Hepburn first first, though. When I'm healthy my weight/size is a little closer to Audrey's (by a *smidge*) but I have a more rounded figure than her still and a face more like Marilyn's. So, still more of a Romantic.

John also said, color-wise, he saw Winter, Spring, and Summer in me and that I'm a tough case (no wonder I kept switching what season I thought I was!). He could see me as a Snowflake Winter (the shortest and most delicate -- personality-wise like Snow White or Alice from Alice in Wonderland), a Soft Spring, or a Summer. He said he saw a lot of "Subtle-Blended in me, AKA Summer). He is coming out with a book explaining all this next year. Very excited about it! He's a very kind man who adopted a litter of kittens (6!) and wrote on my FB and conversed with me despite his business and my inability to pay him. It's good I've decided to go the route of having a personalized fan made instead of a draping given that I probably don't fit neatly into one season (I'll see what my analyst has to say, but I think she agrees, as most do, that I am LSp mostly). I'm also a "Playful Winter: The Ballerina" in another typing system, which I love.

My mother is really tense and anxious lately and often takes it out on me. That makes me anxious and I feel like a failure. My brother can also have a snobby attitude, like he's in-charge of my mother's house. All the cats are over there now as she tries to sell this house. I still haven't gotten my salivary cortisol test results back! As I said before, I have osteoporosis and got those results back.

Izzy is back in the US! Saw her in Chicago first for a showing of My Neighbor Totoro and then to see the Chicago Art Institute's museum. We saw a special showcase of Impressionism, Fashion, and Modernity. Impressionism is my favorite so I'm so glad we went and saw it! I'd wanted to see it since I'd last been in Chicago months ago and I saw a poster for it at a bus stop. I was in a lot of pain, though, in my legs, hips, lower back, and shoulder wear I keep my purse. Maybe due to not enough exercise? I have no idea. I am okay sitting in bed, but sleeping or walking/standing hurts.

Today I went to a thrift shop today and bought a lot of tops, mostly in corals, light blues, and dark purples. I couldn't fit into a Medium Aeropostale top. That was... upsetting. At my healthy weight I comfortably wore a Small from there, both top and bottom.
unico_love: (Default)
So. Yeah. Had my bone density test. I have osteoporosis and a high risk of fractures.
unico_love: (Possession)
I'm going to start working on April's picture soon. It's hard for me to concentrate, but once I get started on drawing, it's easy for me to continue usually. I have to stop obsessing over my illness(es). My brother and I used the same phrase to describe what it seemed my new endocrinologist was doing in trying to blame my high prolatin on Zyprexa (which my psychiatrist highly doubts): grasping at straws. Everything points to a tumor of a decent size, but there is no tumor. Even if there is a tiny mass of cells secreting Prolactin (an extremely tiny tumor), why all the headaches? Why the seizures? Why the vision problems? Also the cabergoline hasn't really helped yet. Maybe it has lowered my Prolactin level, I don't know, but I still have the same symptoms. I've been on it less than 2 weeks, though... My brother told me a few days ago that he had said to my mother, "I know it sounds weird, but I kind of hope my sister does have a tumor," and apparently my mother agreed with him. Because a prolactinoma is easy to treat, clear-cut -- it would make sense out of this mess. Now we are back to not knowing. Back to more testing and being ill. Who knows when this will be solved?

However, one thing I think I figured out -- my hip pain is bursitis. My grandfather had that and I think my mother does.
unico_love: (red rose girl)
I just got back from the doctor's appointment. My doctor is East Indian and very pretty (Michael agrees!) She was nice, but didn't want to get my hopes up. She thinks my high prolactin could be caused by Zyprexa (bitch endo said my levels were too high for it to be meds). She wanted to see if I could change meds and get off Zyprexa. I'm like... That always ends in a huge disaster>_> I get TOTALLY nuts! I've been on almost all the alternatives and nothing else works. And I still have the same symptoms. I just realized I could test going off the Zyprexa for a couple weeks or a month, especially now I'm off Yasmin, which made me bonkers as hell, just to check my Prolactin without it. Maybe I will do that if my prolactin doesn't decrease substantially on the anti-Prolactin med. I wanted to just stop taking Zyprexa now, while on the med, but that's too many variables. But this all made me very disappointed because I've read so much about hyperprolactanemia and how it can cause many, many symptoms -- all of which I had. My doctor focused on the irregular periods, which I've had all along. And which I really could care less about. A few periods a year is fine with me! But she tried to get milk from my nipples and couldn't, which you usually can with prolactanemia. She read off a chart of symptoms for me to say yes/no to, and I said "yes" to most.

Interestingly, she seemed more concerned about my cortisol levels. She asked me if my (normal) urine test was before or after my cortisol dex suppression test (borderline high). The urine test was after, which she said could be because the steroids in my suppression test. Also I'm on inhalers (steroids) which can suppress cortisol. So she wants to look into that more. She even felt for my hunchback for Cushings, I think! But if I have Cushings it's either a mild case or the beginning stages. And I'm much rather have a prolactinoma:( Everyone says "Oh, it's good you don't have a tumor!" A small adenoma that shrinks and all the side effects go away with a simple med is better than all this other crap!

She said doing bone density testing on pre-menopausal women was complicated and rarely done, even if there was a fracture, and osteoporosis was not usually associated with pain. Then why do my hips hurt so much?? They hurt both while I was very active and non-active. But I'm not going to push for a test that's not going to show anything.

She basically wants to start from scratch and do retesting of thyroid, cortisol, and prolactin in a couple weeks, with me off steroids (trying not to use my inhalers). Then in three weeks, see her again. Then we will go over the results and plan the next step (maybe go offf Zyprexa, plan the next Cortisol tests, maybe sex hormone testing, maybe look into what could be causing my body hair loss, etc.) She said she had to look over my file more and other information. I really hope she studies up on prolactanemia and the kind of symptoms it can cause (same with high cortisol and anything else I might have) because I feel like my symptoms can be explained... I feel the body hair issue is definitely endocrinological, so as long as I've got that going I've got her hooked :P
unico_love: (crystal ball)
Just got back from the doctor. She was very nice, but basically has no idea what's wrong with me. She's not used to patients with high prolactin, high cortisol, loss of body hair, early onset bone density issues (at least, she never has been the one in charge of dealing with it), etc. She definitely thinks the cause of the prolactin needs to be found because my levels are so ridiculous. There are two endocrinologists in our medical group -- an older, more experienced man and a young woman whom everyone reported back about positively and who is very good about contacting my doctor's office about how things go with patients.

I decided on the female due to the fact that she may be more up-to-date on new medical information, I'm more comfortable with female doctors as far as this stuff goes due to my PTSD, she probably wouldn't have as long a wait (I was told), and just a gut feeling. It turns out she did her fellowship at Mayo Clinic! She also has only been in practice 1 year! To me that's like a kid! But it should relax me. Also I'm hoping that means that, just starting her career, she's eager to prove herself, energetic, not full of herself, etc. Now, I had the *opposite* of this experience with a male doctor (psychiatrist) just out of med school who was first in all his rotations. Oh my gosh, that was bad. So I don't know why I think this will be any different and she won't just think I'm a hypochondriac. I just have a good feeling about her...

And, shockingly, there was an opening at 1:30pm tomorrow!!! The staff member I made an appointment with sounded shocked, too! Heh. So hopefully luck is on my side. My doctor wanted the endocrinologist to do the bone density test because she (gp) wouldn't know what she was doing, but to come back to her if the endo refused.

And my nightly cortisol (or whatever it is) rush has kicked in. Totally anxious and racing heart and shaking. Took Klonopin and Atarax and will see if that slows things down.
unico_love: (Hotaru with umbrella)
No news on the MRI yet. I just got called about my *urine test* from awhile ago. It was normal. But that is the most unreliable of the tests, often giving, not only false negatives, but false positives. I'm going to have to fight her for a late nigh salivary test for Cushings. Also she said I didn't need a bone density test even though high prolactin and missing periods puts you at high risk for low bone density, regardless of the MRI results. I asked the office worker I talked to to ask the endocrinologist again. If she says no, I'm going to ask my regular doctor for a bone density test, or even my psychiatrist. I had to get my testosterone test from my psychiatrist. Which I still don't know the results of because he's so busy and I haven't seen him since then. I did try to get those results sent over to my endocrinologist *I think.* My memory is horrible now. But I think basically all my hormones were low but cortisol and prolactin, so I'm not surprised the endocrinologist hasn't told me about it, if she did get those results. I don't like my endocrinologist. I want a doctor that wants a lot of testing. I'm going to wait until I get my MRI results back, then push for more Cushings testing. Or if I just get a chance to talk to the doctor. Hopefully something showed up on my MRI and I can see the doctor soon and get all this stuff straightened out. I might need to go to a specialist, anyways, so all these issues would be handed over to them. If that's the case, no point in trying to find a new endocrinologist. Best just to stick this one out.

Sick a Flu

Apr. 1st, 2013 09:20 pm
unico_love: (crystal ball)
Well this weekend wasn't the greatest. Saturday we had Cory, Kat, and Kat's husband, Chris come over. But that was later in the day. Earlier in the day I sat around as lazy as I usually am. And it was nice to see my friends, and we had pizza for dinner, but I couldn't tear my eyes away from the computer while they were watching bad old B movies. And then I started feeling more ill. The tickle in my throat from that morning was followed by a full-blown sore throat, aches, and chills. I eventually went into my bedroom to type more privately, and stayed there the rest of the night. Eventually, I couldn't really move, so a shower wasn't an option. I stayed fully dressed and Michael gave me my night meds. I didn't wash my face or brush my teeth. I couldn't sleep. I took way too many pills (not going into detail here because it might trigger people with suicidal ideation or whom have attempted suicide on pills in the past). But it makes me more sure than ever I have Cushings, considering how many pills I was taking (not a ton all at once) and how they didn't make me sleepy. I must have a ton of cortisol still running through me at night. I am going to demand the late night salivary test for cortisol.

I eventually fell asleep and spent the rest of the day in bed, in bad pain, including in my fingers and toes. I got myself propped up at 6pm and Michael gave me the computer. As the hours wore on I did better and better and eventually showered. I slept last night. I woke up today still feeling ill, but not nearly as bad.

Michael and Dan went to Chicago to see the moving From Up on Poppy Hill, but I didn't feel well enough to go. I still feel sick and weak. We also called the scheduling center about my MRI, but there are no sooner appointments available. We left a message for my endocrinologist about my bone pain and asking for a bone scan. Didn't hear back from her today...
unico_love: (Delight)
I received a call around noon that my cortisol from my suppression test was "borderline" so I have to do a 24 hour urine test, which I'm starting tomorrow morning. I'm a bit nervous about the idea of having Cushings after reading some bad cases of it and even a bunch of obituaries. One site called it "The Most Dangerous Disease You've Never Heard Of." Cushings has a tumor in the pituitary gland releasing tons of cortisol. I also have very high prolactin, which would likely be due to a tumor in the pituitary gland releasing tons of prolactin. That means I would need two tumors. I'm hoping that's not the case... I can't wait to get my MRI.

An interesting thing: My MRI at the hospital is set for April 6th. That's my maternal grandmother's birthday. She went into the hospital (in the 1970's) to die on my birthday, January 13th (same day of the week even -- Thursday).

I feel over the past month I have grown progressively weaker and sorer. My fatigue is worse. Just taking a shower or walking next door is hard. I'm slacking off on my chores, but I'm determined to clean the bathroom tomorrow. I'd also like to read and crochet... It sounds so simple, yet it's so hard.

I don't feel asocial at all -- I'd love to talk to people online, and friends in the area -- you can visit anytime! I hope Cory can visit this weekend. I feel bad about turning him down last weekend. I hope I can go to church this weekend, but the fatigue and acheing is worst in the mornings -- no matter what time I go to sleep.

It's ironic that when I was sick in the summer I feared I had a brain tumor and everyone told me I was being a hypochondriac and to stop looking things online, and then I gained more weight and people thought I was just being anorexic and wanting to lose weight, and it turns out I likely have a pituitary gland tumor that caused weight gain, as well as depression, anxiety, pain, and a bunch of other problems.

My family and Michael are very worried now, wondering if it's cancer or something. Because they see how I've changed and how things just don't make sense.
unico_love: (Delight)
Today was a better day than yesterday, at least. Michael missed his teaching at church and we both slept in. Cory was unable to come over, which was fine. Michael and I went to the free gem and mineral show at the Dupage Fairgrounds in Wheaton. Michael bought 3 carved stone animals -- a bear, a rabbit, and a cat. I bought a gorilla for Cory. I also bought an aventurine for myself, since they should bring good luck, and green moss agate earrings for Izzy. While I was flipping through the pendants on index cards, the first one I stopped at was labradorite -- the bracelet I'd been hoping to buy next month, probably as my last bracelet for awhile. Then I recently had been backing out of it, due to expenses as of late, but now I am more sure I should buy it if I can. Labradorite helps with intuition, seeing past illusions, and is associated with the brain (close to the pituitary gland -- where I'm having problems). Even if it doesn't help on a physical level, it's symbolic.

Then we went to the pet shop for cat food and we went to Aldi for human food. I skipped my shower tonight because my stomach is really bothering me. I keep trying to find information about hyperprolactanaemia, but most of the information is on Trying To Conceive messageboards. I want a board for people that is I Hope The Treatment Makes Me Infertile and Sterile. Also I want to get tested for Hashimoto's and mosaic Turner's Syndrome. I know I was just tested Saturday for Cushing's Syndrome. My endocrinologist seemed to assume I had Hashimoto's because it causes most hypothyroidism, but this pituitary stuff can cause it, too. A friend with Turner's Syndrome thinks I sound like mosaic Turner's and I can relate to a lot I've read on it. Endocrinologists often test it/diagnose it, I guess. So eventually I'd like to see about that.

Tomorrow I'm calling the endocrinologist's office to see if I need a sooner MRI appointment than April 6th because she said "as soon as possible" and that is not very soon. I also have to call my psychiatrist, part of the same hospital and who recommended this endocrinologist, and tell him what's going on.
unico_love: (Cat mask)
"Don't bend; don't water it down; don't try to make it logical; don't edit your own soul according to the fashion. Rather, follow your most intense obsessions mercilessly."
- Franz Kafka

Sometimes I wonder if I do have Avoidant Personality Disorder because I often won't read the comments or communicate with someone I disagree with. I will sometimes state my view and maybe listen to what they first say in response, but after that I try to escape because the situation will only upset me further and people tend to stick with their own preferred beliefs, regardless of what others say (I try not to be that way, but I, too, prefer my own opinions usually). I love doing creative activities like art and writing, but I'm not overjoyed at the thoughts of sharing it in any kind of competitive format or a situation where it's likely to be judged. I like seeing others' work and I'm not a good critic aside from beginners at art or with grammar so I tend to focus on what I like when I see others' work. When I show my work on LiveJournal or Deviant Art I'm usually open to suggestions, but it doesn't feel like I'm competing with anyone else - just myself. Also I usually am not totally satisfied with my work, even if I like a specific piece; I always think I should practice more before really showing it to the world or looking into competitive or professional formats to get more feedback or maybe have some success. It makes me really overwhelmed or anxious to send out a query letter, write up a letter or resume, submit slides, etc.

So being alone so much, being hesitant to communicate on instant messengers, refusing to look at potential conflicts, finding criticism hard unless I divorce myself emotionally from what I produced, etc. lead me to wonder if I do have Avoidant Personality Disorder like I was diagnosed by my psychologist who did all the personality tests, IQ test, etc. on me. However, she's the only one that diagnosed me with that condition and it was based on my personality tests high anxiety scores/high Avoidant Personality Disorder score. I often don't know how to respond to questions on tests like that, though, so I don't know how accurate it was. It's true I do have a lot of anxiety... I desperately want to be close to people, yet I fear bothering people in any way and that leads me to avoid a lot of situations even anxious people don't usually have a problem with. I'm always first to volunteer for an unpleasant task due to my anxiety about bothering people. I think those tests were right in showing my PTSD scores as much higher than my depression scores, an unusually low score on Antisocial Personality Disorder traits (12%, I think, when 50% is average), and a low Schizoid Personality Disorder score (30-something%). I am definitely Bipolar, though, and I scored in the average range on that. So the tests definitely aren't full-proof... I also think my IQ test results overestimate my abilities, which is rarely what I hear other people say. I am really not all that knowledgeable a person and my memory is in shambles since returning to Zyprexa. I'm also slow. I do have some strong points related to critical thinking, though, I will admit. I believe I learned that from dealing with my mentally ill, yet intelligent and clever, father and from my great tutors in high school.

It's not even that I hope for a positive response when I open myself up to critique/criticism -- I just feel embarrassed easily and dissatisfied with my level of work. Right now I don't want to show any of my work, except maybe some poems. I would send stories or art to people who asked to see it, though, in a casual way. And I will keep posting my art to Deviant Art and here, since LiveJournal feels like a safer way for me to express myself. People of all ability levels show their work on these kinds of sites, after all. I don't want to give up my creative activities and in recent years poetry writing especially has started to help me emotionally. I just don't need external validation to keep trying to improve my abilities or work on creative activities.

I also enjoy scrapbooking, which is creative, even though I'm not impressive at scrapbooking (at all). I'd kind of like to make an art journal where I write down things that inspire me or little poems/poem bits with pictures I draw or collage. It sounds like a lot of work, though, and I tend to be pretty simple in the kind of art I do. I'm reading a book that kind of makes me feel better about the last novel I wrote, despite my disinterest at the moment of querying. The book Shanghai Girls by Lisa See is about two sisters over the course of their life. It doesn't have a clear-cut "plot" exactly... There are a number of subplots in my last novel, but the overall "plot" is mostly just the growth and maturity of the protagonist over the course of several years.

For my next novel I want to write a young adult fantasy novel that does have a clear-cut plot. I'm going to incorporate fantasy and plot elements I like from all sorts of formats, but mostly fantasy-oriented -- other fantasy books, anime, live-action and animated fantasy, fairy tales, etc. I'm going to work on more brainstorming on that later today. I also will hopefully start drawing human figures again tomorrow, for practice. I'm out of canvases and need to buy some more this week. Then I will paint again with acrylics. I want to paint detailed Impressionism-type paintings like I used to do. I've veered a little away from that recently and some of my paintings I think are too simplistic. I will photograph the last few and post them soon. They're not very impressive, though. Oh well, I like to remind myself even when my writing or art doesn't turn out as good as I'd like that I'm still learning. Sometimes I can put the work aside for awhile and then fix it -- sometimes I just let it sit or even paint over it. I have a giant canvas I'm not satisfied with, but I'm not sure if I want to just paint over it. I'm also not sure how to improve it, though:-/
unico_love: (childlike empress)
This morning I went with my mother to get my tests done for my psychiatrist. I'm a bit irritated because I didn't have the cholesterol test (the one I couldn't get done yesterday because I needed to fast and nobody told me this). I had a cholesterol test too recently so medicare wouldn't pay for it. My cholesterol test turned out normal last time. I was getting the test this time because I'm on Zyprexa. I will just have my papers sent from my endocrinologist (who did the cholesterol test) to my psychiatrist, if he wants to see them.

There was a long wait even though no one was there. There must have been a problem in back. No one was coming out, but the woman called after me for her blood test came out before me, because I also needed an EKG. My blood was drawn easily and quickly (it can be hard to find my veins). I had a good phlebotomist. Then immediately afterward I had the EKG, which was fine. I hope the tests aren't too expensive.

Also I talked to my psychiatrist on the phone last night and he called in my appetite suppressant prescription. I have other prescriptions to call in, myself, so I will do that today and pick up prescriptions tomorrow. So, several problems solved.

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August 2013

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