Life

Unhealthy coping mechanisms and alone time

I could lie and say I’m in an emotionally better place than after Valentine’s day and the Mr. and I’s anniversary but I’m not going to do that. The mental fuckery that is playing games in my head space is definitely a part of it but the home dynamic, family stress and my ‘lost evening’ this past weekend all contribute to really turbulent time right now.

That all being on top of the achy hell my body is in due to my dumb-ass decision to lower my Planquenil dose before getting the OK from ANY of my doctors. This being after some extensive reading on the possible side effects hydroxychloroquine can have. My doctors have been so gung-ho to get my gut stuff figured out (don’t get me wrong I’m thankful that they’re working on it), the muscle weakness, tingling, burning, WTF… has kind of gone on the back burner. That doesn’t meant it isn’t a concern, though.

Clearly Planquenil hasn’t been a miracle drug for me (honestly in the past it’s lack of working well has made me double my diagnosis simply because it works well for so many others caught in the early stages of disease). Even at 200mg daily there has never been a marked decrease in pain, fatigue, stiffness or other symptoms (at least not for longer than a day or two, not long enough to be considered the end of a flare or start of remission). So I took it upon myself to decide to lower the my dosage. Mainly to see if it really was causing a drug induced myopathy (in which case reversing it asap would be important) but also I think somewhere in me there was the tiny question of is it actually doing anything positive at all (not just the nausea, weakness and blegh feeling).

Three weeks later…

Achy, weak, tingly muscles no different….achy, stiff and swollen joints much, much worse.  Just when I almost had myself convinced “hey maybe those fuckers got it wrong.” Nope… I they got it right, I still happened to have Lupus and the drugs I take actually seem to do something even if it doesn’t feel like it most days. I’m not really sure if that’s a comfort or a piss off at the moment. It just is what it is, I suppose.

No matter what it all is or how it is, it’s all put me in a really foul funk. Which means using some unhealthy coping mechanisms on occasion to just…not deal with it all.

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Now I remember the picture being taken, but not too much after that. Ya see, liquid goes down nice and smooth even though it might wreak some havoc once it’s down there if it’s the kind I had in that glass (and on it’s way back up… yea). I managed to roast a turkey, mash some potatoes and function the rest of the night (and vent like an angry mean drunk later in the evening)…Apparently alcohol IS the solution, obviously just not a very good permanent one.

I have to be particularly careful when it comes to drinking in excess, not only because physically it can do horrific damage even to a healthy body (which I don’t have) but because the after effects of binge drinking can have major effects on mood/mental disorders like anxiety and depression. While a night feeling flighty and fancy free is great for a release from those grips, it always comes back to bite me in the ass. Usually for this exact reason I am much more careful about how much and how fast I drink and definitely making sure that the meal comes BEFORE the margaritas…

The fact that I’m mentally more tolerant to unhealthy coping mechanisms is a warning sign that I’m not doing well. Along with a few other telltale signs as well. I’m not sure yet if it’s ‘the darkest before dawn’ part of S.A.D. that is taking hold along with the everything else making this end of winter particularly brutal or if some of life’s complications really are complicated enough to require some permanent changes around here…only time will tell, and because of my mental illness and my worsening physical state I don’t think I’m in any condition to be making decisions wisely at the moment anyways.

Just because big decisions can’t be made and life altering changes shouldn’t be handled at the moment doesn’t mean healthier coping mechanisms can’t be used to try and free out of this funk a little. With Monday a stat holiday and the Mr.’s last day home I took advantage and dared to attempt a  drastic but healthy change….you know me right?

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Now normally I try and not look undead before a camera lens catches a glimpse but even straight out from under the faucet I was pretty impressed with the vibrant new ‘me’, even if it was all ON my head. A valuable use of a hangover day and a welcome distraction from everything that was going on IN my head. With my physical limitations especially getting worse in my hands and shoulders, doing my own hair has become an all day, labor intensive affair.

Now that that’s all over and done with I get 3 days of quiet reflection all to myself. Mr. Bigshot is off at a conference for work and it’s just me and the 3 Mango spawn here at the homestead for the week. Everyone that has been let in on this little tidbit somehow thinks this puts me at some disadvantage… How exactly? I just have one less human to clean up after for a few days, I don’t really see the problem. If there’s an emergency I know how to call 911.

Honestly apart from the fact that it’s just plain weird sleeping alone I really don’t mind the peace and quiet in the evenings, the lack of tension building because of all the bullshit caused by ‘silence’ while he still was here or the fact that there’s no power play with the kids constantly.

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I can make myself a plate of pasta with spinach and as much fresh grated parmesan as I can stand, sit in bed and play Runescape till the wee hours and watch  chick flicks just because I want to and it effects no one else.

Maybe not taking this time alone to think more about things to come and the long scheme isn’t the healthiest approach either, but it’s what I need at the moment and I’m going to take full advantage of the time I have (considering in reality most of the day is still full of tiny footsteps, meal prep, cleaning and just basic mommy duties as usual). Living in the moment and enjoying the parts of being alone I don’t get often is about the best thing  I could imagine I could be doing with this bit of ME time I’ve been given.

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8 thoughts on “Unhealthy coping mechanisms and alone time

  1. I am happy reading your post today, but not in the good way you might imagine one being happy. I’m happy in the sense that I completely understand what you are saying about the Plaquenil. I go through this same thought process on a regular basis. I still feel like shit, so surely there is no point in taking meds. So I take it upon myself to adjust meds only to find out that the f-ing doctors are right. I am sick, I do need meds and then I make bad choices for my health… because? Because I’m pissed off that I just reinforced the fact that I am indeed sick and so I might as well just go ahead and do what I want I guess. Anyway, sorry for the rambling, all meant to simply say, I get it. I love your hair and recently added some teal to mine. Another attempt to just say “Whatever” to my illness. Cheers to healthier coping mechanisms, or just plain coping ❤

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    1. It’s amazing how gratifying it can be to be aware that we aren’t alone. Knowing that we’re not crazy (or at least we aren’t the only crazy one…) in how we feel about our illness, symptoms or reactions or even how we choose to sometimes cope even if it’s unwisely. I don’t like the idea that other people are suffering, but it’s nice to know that I’m not the only one that sometimes feels almost like I have to ‘test’ if my medications actually are doing something (and end up regretting it afterwards). We do what we have to to cope and to come to grips with what we have to live with. Cheers right back at ya. xoxo

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  2. Yes to all of that! I sometimes think it’s the medications making me feel sick or anxious or depressed or whatever, so, like you said, I feel the need to test it out. I agree, I don’t like knowing others are suffering either, but it is nice to know that others can understand what we are going through. xoxo

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  3. Awesome!!! I hope you enjoyed your Me-time!! And that pasta looks preeemmmm …. as does the hair!!
    I hope you get some answers about whats what with your health soon – god knows you could use a break!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have loved my ME time for the most part, apart from the weather being as gloomy and grey as possible. That pasta…ugh I could bathe in it! I had made enough for it to last me the whole time Man is gone… who cares if I wreak of garlic and stinky cheese right?

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      1. I’ll say! Wreak away lol … what a way to go!
        I’m glad you enjoyed … hope you get some more time soon to chill by yourself … I do the chick flick, nice food thing when the partner goes too … bliss … sheer bliss!! xo

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  4. Seems to me that your creativity compelled you to tinker with your meds. Sometimes we just gotta test things so that we can come to our own conclusions. Sometimes we need to exert our free will to prove to ourselves that we still have some control over our lives and our illnesses.

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    1. You really bring up a good point. Sometimes it does feel like I have no control over my own treatment (or at least no more than saying yes or no to my doctors recommendations). Even if it wasn’t physically helpful, it still feels like the right choice to at least try. Thank you. 🙂

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