It passed

I’m fine again. The illness, whether physical, mental or a twisted combination, has passed, and I’m able to smile again and am not obsessing anymore. Hallelujah.

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PSA: Check your breasts!

This is a friendly reminder to CHECK YOUR BREASTS for lumps!!! Yeah. You’ve done it for years and never found anything abnormal so you may have gotten lazy, like me. Do it. Go do it right now and then continue to do it regularly so you know what your normal feels like and can detect slight changes.

Otherwise, you might be like me, who hasn’t really gotten around to self-checking in a couple of years and also may not have had an appointment with a gynecologist in the same amount of time. So my breasts have been ignored for a couple of years, which didn’t seem like a big deal since nothing had ever been unusual with them.

Until Friday evening, when suddenly I felt a pain as if I’d been punched in the breast (one side). It hurt so badly. I felt the area and there’s a hard lump there about the size of a kiwi or an egg. Well who is open on a Friday night? (No one.)

On Saturday, I went to the Urgent Care. They were all booked up for the day, so they transferred me to another Urgent Care. That doctor said I needed a mammogram ASAP. By this point, it was excruciatingly painful. I couldn’t raise my arm on that side. Going up and down stairs was quite painful. Touching the area was way too painful. I have to be gentle when walking, even on flat surfaces.

But, the mammogram places all around the city are booked solid. It doesn’t matter if you’re walking around with an extremely painful lump the size of an extra large egg in your breast. I have an appointment scheduled for a few days in the future and in spite of calling around all morning today, that is still the best I’ve found.

Now, I’m not saying it’s cancer. The doctor thought that the way the lump moves is more like a cyst. But there’s only one way to find out for sure.

So this is your friendly PSA: Follow through on routine breast-lump self-checks. Do it. Because if I had noticed this gigantic lump when it was slightly less gigantic, I’d have saved myself a lot of pain! I recommend it.

Weaning off Lexapro: Days 89 – 124

Scraggly trees and a dark sunset with interestingly patterned clouds

Sunset through a pattern of gray clouds

Meds:

  • 5 mg Lexapro, normal thyroid meds
  • Vitamins if I remember (maybe a couple of times a week)
  • Exercise (walking, bicycling, skiing)

Symptoms:

  • ANGST
  • Irritability only with certain people (such as my bf)
  • Insomnia now that I’m back home
  • Longing
  • Feeling that something BIG is going to happen soon (CHANGE)
  • Confused. Torn. Mixed up.

Journal Items:

  • There’s no way for me to remember and write what has passed.
  • But I did go to my parents’ house. And spent time with my beloved, beloved dog, who has heart failure now. He’s living on borrowed time thanks to responding well to medicines. Every day he’s with us has always been and will remain a gift.
  • My dad’s going to turn 70? What? How?
  • Practicing music
  • Studying for class
  • Walking, very short walks with my dog, and longer walks with my mom
  • Skiing with my folks, and my bf when he came

The mountains, the snow, the smells, the sounds. The fresh air, the cold wind. The gravel, I could roll around in it and never get enough.

I miss it all so much. My heart stayed there. I’m a split person as I have been the whole time, but it’s more obvious right now. I’m dissociating mildly here right now. I’m not connected to this place. I don’t like living here.

But life is complicated and I have to let it slide in this moment of time. I believe the reduction of Lexapro from 20mg to 5mg has really made a large difference in me. I *feel* more like I used to feel, so long ago (I’ve been on Lexapro for over a decade). But that doesn’t mesh well with what’s around me today. I believe that the Lexapro put a bubble around me and I was okay with things I would never have been okay with before. It might reach back far enough to say that I wouldn’t have been married in the first place if I hadn’t been on Lexapro and had such drug-thickened skin. Life is weird.

LIFE IS REALLY, REALLY WEIRD!!!

I’m listening to this song all day today:
https://youtu.be/djEg4O3b2IU

Weaning off Lexapro: Days 74, 75

Meds:

  • 5mg Lexapro(crazy), normal thyroid meds
  • exercise: walking and bicycling

Symptoms:

  • Quicker to become irritable
  • Quicker to feel hopeless about relationship

Journal Items:

  • This has been a difficult couple of days relationship-wise.
  • Bedtimes are out of control and I’m feeling extremely passive aggressive over it, which doesn’t help me accomplish anything productive, believe me.
  • I need to redo my resume. I need to apply to jobs again. I need to get a job. I need to earn an income.
  • Because… I need to feel more independent. I’m of half a mind to cut & run from this relationship right now. But I can’t feel objective about it when I’m so financially dependent right now.
  • Rant: I KNEW these things in advance. I TOLD myself I’d be more careful the next time. But that damn honeymoon period, so to speak, locks me into a relationship and I get to know and care about the other person. Then later, when it all settles out and the person doesn’t have the qualities I already know that I need, it’s hard to get out. What are the two main things I’m bitching about right now? *) Not a dog person, which is IMPORTANT to me, and *) Has even worse executive functioning than I have, which is a BIG DEAL for me. And I’ll add another: not fully aware of how poor his own executive functioning is. Definitely blamed ME for avoiding certain conversations, when it was so, so clear that the convos didn’t happen because we’d both forgotten and never got around to it! Give me a LITTLE bit of the benefit of the doubt, would ya? This is all not. easy. [[Note to the reader: this is NOT an unbiased story and it is NOT a complete picture in the slightest. I’m merely venting some poison.]]
  • I’m studying very slowly but thoroughly right now (it’s an important class, so I’m opting for over-studying rather than under-studying, atm).

Weaning off Lexapro: Day 44

Sunset with pinks and oranges and yellows, and deep blue

Sunset tonight

Meds:

  • 10mg Lexapro; norm thyroid meds
  • multivite tablet
  • fish oil
  • sunshine & a little bit of walking

Symptoms:

  • woke up with terrible stomach ache
  • feel kind of sick but no concrete symptoms
  • head feels heavy; a little irritable

Journal Items:

  • Appointment with [assistance] (can’t remember if I’ve ever written about this before, so I’ll leave it w/o comment). I think it went well. I feel a lot more focused on studies again, and on finding a part-time job
  • I finally, after an entire year since qualifying, signed up for the reduced bus fare for low income people
  • Feel exhausted and kind of sick

Tomorrow Preview:

  • Tomorrow, I get up at 6:45am to get ready and leave for a memorial service that is a ways away
  • Tomorrow, I MUST finish chapter 8 in my studies

Weaning off Lexapro: Days 41 and 42

Meds:

  • 10mg Lexapro, normal thyroid meds
  • electrolyte beverage
  • medium-low amount of walking

Symptoms:

  • Depressed mood
  • Hopeless thoughts, about my life & relationship
  • Not motivated to move or do anything

Journal Items:

  • Yesterday was awful. Did I do anything productive at all? I felt just awful, emotionally
  • I’m sure I did laundry and I applied to two jobs
  • Today, I volunteered with cats and … that’s all

Weaning off Lexapro: Day 40

Meds:

  • 10mg Lexapro, normal thyroid meds
  • electrolyte beverage
  • a little bit of walking

Symptoms:

  • Fretting over my current relationship with bf
  • UPDATE: A symptom I’ve been forgetting to mention but have been experiencing for a couple of weeks: a strange, warm, fuzzy feeling in my stomach. It’s very unusual for me. It’s almost like, a positive, warm fuzzy happy feeling? It’s really weird.
  • UPDATE: The acid reflux stuff seems to have eased off

Journal Items:

  • Got up for an appointment with a course professor at 9am
  • Went for a walk afterward
  • Ate breakfast/lunch at a cafeteria type place
  • Went to a library to focus on my studies
  • Kind of frittered away time once I got back home
  • Watching horse videos online and some stuff on learning disorders
  • Wrote an extremely long email to relationship counselor (she’s already replied; she’s very nice and makes me feel hopeful)
  • Ate dinner late (9pm)
  • Getting ready for bed