Tag Archives: painkillers

Sleepy Zombies


That’s Bud’s contribution to today’s post.  He was lying at the side of me and put his head on my lap completely ignoring the fact that it was already occupied by the netbook.  Or, for all I know it could be a secret message to someone – ‘SOS.  Come get me I’m sick of tinned salmon.  They only give me pink because it’s cheaper than red’.  Okay maybe I should stop watching Homeland.

Speaking of watching things, I watch a fair amount of TV series/films that involve zombies, vampires, etc you know the sort of post apocalypse type things.    Now I’ve always thought that with my coping skills and initiative, and as long as I could obtain and learn how to use a gun or cross bow, I’d manage just fine particularly if the zombies were the really slow ones from the traditional films – the faster modern ones would give Usain Bolt a run for his money.  However, its become increasingly apparent that I could only manage now if I had a medical team (blood and kidley) along with a whole shed load of medication (particularly antibiotics as they always seem to be looking for them) and a pharmacist,  hand sanitiser (because people tend to look grubby in these sort of things), food (not just food but good food ‘cos treatment can make you uber fussy particular), a souped up mobility scooter (because I wouldn’t be able to run)… let’s face it learning to shoot straight would be the least of my problems.

 Oh and a dialysis machine.  Speaking of which I was so pooped yesterday after not being able to sleep on Monday night.  Usually I don’t have trouble nodding off but B had commented a couple of times while he was off on the fact that I was still awake when he came to bed over an hour later than me (and Bud) on pre-dialysis nights.  I think its like two friends who always had trouble sleeping on a Sunday night before work on a Monday.  I only said to my Auntie Ann the other weekend that I’m not as comfortable going unlike when I was going to the blood Day Unit this time last year.  We decided it was because I had to stay in one place for four continuous hours whereas even though I was sometimes at the Day Unit from 9.00 am until 2.00 pm I theoretically wasn’t restricted for most of that time.

Well Monday night I didn’t think I’d have any trouble sleeping.  I’d been to the Wool Shop in the morning and then took Bud for a double wander in the wood after deciding I wasn’t up to taking him for a walk on my own as I’d got a bit breathless walking through town.  Then when I had a rush of energy later in the afternoon I thought it would be a good idea to steam clean the floors while B went to his mother’s.  Bud has issues with the steamer – pouncing and barking at it, then settling down but eyeing it suspiciously when not on the bed avoiding it completely.  The phone rang when I’d just about finished downstairs and thinking it might be B I rushed to get it and ended up panting by the time I answered it – okay I might have been panting a little before – it wasn’t B but fortunately it was someone I knew well so it wasn’t a heavy breather phone call in reverse.  We chatted for about half an hour which was just as well as it gave me chance to get my breath back.  By the time B got home I’d nearly finished upstairs – I mean it’s not like it’s hard to do and I didn’t move any furniture just Bud’s basket, bins and a few other small things.  After all this I thought I would sleep really well that night but that wasn’t the case at all.  I’m just going to let that ‘all this’ sit there even though compared to what most people do in a day and certainly what I used to do ‘all this’ is ‘sod all’.

I made a bit of a boo boo with my painkillers too.  I took some at 4.00 pm just after I’d started and thought that if I took the others at 8.00 pm I’d get the benefit while I was still awake rather than taking them about 10.00 pm.  We (me and Bud or should that be Bud and I) went to bed at 10.45 pm and I just couldn’t nod off.  My back was cranky – that level where during the day it could be managed but when you’re trying to nod off it’s a bit distracting.  I finally thought ‘Well, I could take another Tramadol’ and went down to the kitchen to get one to discover that it was 1.02 am.  I went back to bed and contemplated getting up for an hour, having a drink, doing something crafty and then going back to bed as I have read that if you can’t sleep you should get up for a bit rather than just lie there but I kept thinking ‘No, I’ll nod off soon’.  I finally got up for a drink of milk and some malted wheat crackers and it was 3.22 am.  Doh! I had to get up at quarter to six.  As it was I did nod off and woke up wide awake at 5.23 am just before B pulled onto the drive.

I thought I’d at least have loads of time to drink the cup of tea B made us and eat my Weetabix but didn’t factor in throwing up after taking my tablets.  I took an anti-sickness and had some breakfast and fortunately took a sick bowl lined with a Poop Scoop bag with me as I saw the Weetabix and tea again on the trip to the Royal.  I probably would have made it without puking but the driver got a call asking him to go pick up someone who wasn’t originally on his list and me and breakfast parted company on the extended trip.

I tried to get a sleep yesterday tea time but think by that time I was over tired (I always thought that was an odd thing to say – that you’re too tired to sleep but it turns out to be true) and then the phone rang.  It was the friend who’d phoned on Monday and she was ringing to say that she thought she may be coming down with something so wasn’t too sure if she should visit last night.  We decided that I was probably at little risk of picking anything up as long as I didn’t lick her.  In case you’re wondering it’s a phrase that makes it easy to differentiate between infectious and contagious eg, chicken pox is contagious as you have to come into direct contact with stuff from the blisters either directly or through touching contaminated clothing so that falls into the licking category.  I know it’s not an exact scientific method but it works for me.

Just before Chris left at twenty to eleven I turned into a bit of a zombie myself and staggered upstairs straight after like I’d had a cup of whisky instead of tea while she was here.  I was asleep particularly before my head hit the pillow and got up at quarter past eight feeling not too awake but much better (with a little bit of delay onset muscle soreness presumably from using the steam cleaner – what a wimp) which is just as well since I need to take the car for a little spin later (only to the Post Office or I could wait until B gets up, mmmmm I’ll think about it) and I’m going out for my tea with a couple of friends – which reminds me I need to keep on top of the anti-sickness meds today just in case!

Bud’s taken over responsibility for being sick today.  At least I manage to get it into a pre-lined sick bowl and don’t just do it on the dining room floor.  Thank goodness for hard flooring.

Of course it’s not a heart attack

After I’d done my last post, when I mentioned letting the not so good things slide, I realised that I tend to do this quite quickly as I completely forgot to mention the quite bad pain I’d had in my chest the day we went to our last blood clinic appointment.

On the Thursday night I started getting some pain in my upper chest and by the time I went to bed it was actually quite bad. It initially crossed my mind that the pain was in a similar position to the awful discomfort I had during my stem cell transplant but by bed time time the pain wasn’t just in my upper chest it was also in my shoulders so my next thought was about where the pain would be if the rib with the plasmacytoma on it had broken or even that I’d done myself a mischief while throwing up. Since we were going to the clinic the following day it didn’t even enter my head to do anything about it at the time so I just took some Oramorph on top of my usual painkillers and went to bed.

I woke up Friday morning to find the pain was really quite bad, in fact it was the pain that woke me up. Now I do an odd thing when I end up in pain in bed, I use to do it quite often when I got regular migraines, instead of getting up and taking painkillers I carry on lying in bed in pain and then only get up to take them when I just can’t take anymore – fully realising that if I’d go up when I first woke up it would be feeling somewhat better by that time. So when I finally got my backside out of bed it was nearly 7.30 am. I took as many painkillers as I could (2 Paracetamol, 2 x 50mg Tramadol and not quite 5ml Oramorph) and went back to bed.

By the time I woke up again the pain in my chest had eased off but my shoulders were still sore. B and I got dressed and set off for the Royal. As usual I took my crocheting with me because even when I’m not feeling well I have to take something crafty with me – I think its like the equivalent of a child’s blankie. I sat in the car and didn’t touch my crocheting – the only thing I did was drink some of the ginger beer I’d taken with me (I was still being familiar with the sick bowl at the time and indeed saw the ginger beer again on the way home). It was as I was sitting there comtemplating the non use of the crochet hook that I suddenly thought ‘I wonder what a heart attack feels like’. I decidely it probably wasn’t, based of course on my extensive medical knowledge, because 1) I’d never heard of anyone mentioning shoulder pain, 2) surely the chest pain would be lower and 3) I hadn’t thus far keeled over!

When I mentioned to the Prof this pain (without using the words heart attack) it turned out it could have been one of two things. He ruled one out as I currently take Fluconazole – an antifungal medication which left irritation to the oesophagus by the large number of tablets I’ve been taking. The Prof upped the antacid medication to two a day and the pain eased off. It was still bothering my shoulders a bit on Saturday but had eased off completely by Sunday however I then forgot to take the evening tablet on Sunday.

Needless to say, apart from last night that is, I haven’t forgotten since. I woke up on the Monday morning and could barely move. I got out of bed, this time straight away, went downstairs, popped the same amount of painkillers as on the Friday morning and went to lie down on the settee. B had got up when he saw the slow way that I’d been maneuvering around the bedroom and fortunately was in the lounge to cover me with a throw (hand knit by me naturally) as I think if he hadn’t been there I would have literally lay there freezing before I could have done it myself.

I dozed somewhat fitfully* at first and when B got me a drink he held it up so I could use the straw without moving anything. Fortunately by the time I woke up from some proper sleep everything had settled down significantly and it hasn’t come back since.

When I was telling my Auntie Ann she recalled being in hospital and getting a pain in her shoulder. The nurse said it could be wind and Auntie Ann wasn’t sure if she was pulling her leg or basically just plain wrong. However a burp later the pain went. B’s Auntie S when I was telling her recalled a time she’d eaten toast before going to bed and awoke to chest pain and she has heart problems to start with. She contemplated that it might be a heart attack but asked her hubby to get her some hot water and again a burp sorted the situation out.

On the Thursday night before the Blood Clinic appoint I’d said to B that I wanted to walk down to the fabric shop for some fabric, funnily enough, and B asked me on the Friday morning whether we’d be going – okay, he more or less told me we wouldn’t – but of course I couldn’t just say no. It was only on the way out of the hospital that I admitted that I just wanted to go home.

Now although I may not actually have felt like using the fabric between then and now I was still a bit put out that we didn’t make it to the shop. So I’ve said to B that we’ll go after this Friday’s appointment. He said ‘We’ll see.’ Mmmmm, yes, we’ll see. I mean I have to finish off some outstanding stuff from Christmas. I’ve now finished the embroidery but need the material to back these…

and yes – there are two Christmas Trees.  I couldn’t find the angel pattern at one point.  And I don’t know about you but I can’t help thinking that the teddy bear looks like he’s desperate for a wee.

* I have no idea why that word when following slept or dozed amuses me.

Catching up

Wednesday 2 November – Saw Prof, got two units of blood donated by a wonderful stranger.  (This seems like it was about two months ago rather than just over two weeks.)

Thursday 3 November – Can’t remember exactly (at all) which must mean I did something so wild I’ve had to erase it from my memory OR I spent the day knitting and taking it easy following a long day on the Wednesday and possibly threw in a walk with Bud.

Friday 4 November – Charged full of wonderful stranger’s even more wonderful haemoglobin I had by 10.00 am cleaned down and painted the tops of three radiator cabinets, touched up the bottom of the lounge door and nearby skirting board and painted the banister handrail and newel post finials.  Now I realised as I was regaling my Auntie Ann later in the day with my escapades that this wasn’t actually that much and that the ‘old Paula’, to quote B, would have had a room emulsioned in a morning but I thought it was quite an accomplishment and my back certainly paid attention – it needed a sit down and an extra painkiller then and later.

In the afternoon we went to Auntie Ann’s but on the way stopped off to purchase a fridge freezer and a tumble dryer (because the old ones had only been bust for six and 12 months plus), and I was so decisive.  When we’d been a few weeks before I’d been all foot draggingly enthusiastic ‘Yeah, it’s a fridge, yep that’s one too, oh a black one!  I don’t want black.’

And I managed to persuade B that the ideal thing for tea was a Chinese takeaway.  He was reluctant as we’re, well technically I’m supposed to be sticking to a borderline neturopenic diet to rule out a potential stomach bug as opposed to a side effect of Revlimid but it was over a week since I’d had Revlimid.  B was more reluctant as he didn’t think I’d eat much but I stuffed it down and he had to fight for his share. Mmmmmmmmm!

Saturday 5 November – We were both up bright and early for once and went to town shopping.  We then had a walk with our small furry family member and went to a BBQ and fireworks display at our neighbour’s in the evening.  (Just in case you’re wondering we celebrate the 5th of November as Bonfire Night to commemorate Guy Fawkes’s attempt to blow up parliament.)  My back requested extra painkillers as I made it stand up in the cold and it was still getting over Friday.

Sunday 6 November – The fridge freezer and tumble dryer were being delivered some time between 10.34 am and 2.34 pm (and I think I’m precise with times).  B was going to get up at 9.00 am to empty the fridge.  However by the time he got up I’d cleared out the fridge, had a crochet, an extra painkiller – what a surprise, a sit down and then cleared out the freezer.

B then got up and moved the old fridge and cleaned the floor underneath – no photo is available as it may very well have been considered age restricted.  Whilst the fridge was moved Bud gave it the once over…

‘Ahh yeah mate.  I see the problem…’

‘it’s not plugged in!’

The new items arrived…

I got the privilege of reading the instruction booklet so I could tell B how it worked as the old one had about three buttons – hot, cool and go.

As you can see, although the fridge is stable, it needs a bit of attention to make it straight – B is in no rush so I think that might be the New Year and since I want the door reversed too and it includes just 32 easy steps I’m thinking that might be 2013!

I have to admit I may very well have attempted the door myself while B did this in the afternoon…

but I had a ballet to go to in the evening – just to watch, it was good blood but not that good!  Vienna Festival Ballet in The Nutcracker.  My favourite so far – okay fair enough I’ve only seen three but I liked this for the humorous bits – by which I mean there were funny bits in the ballet as opposed to just trying not to snigger when the male dancers  bound on in tight white tights – I mean really there was no doubt the Nutcracker could have cracked nuts!

And then Chris and I got another takeaway on the way home and it was almost equally as yummy as Friday’s.  Oh, and I needed an extra painkiller to cope with the theatre seat (this does become relevant later).

Tomorrow we’ll find out how much else I got done until I ran out of juice!

Oh and it was our wedding anniversary yesterday so although there’s no prize – other than a sense of smugness if you get it right – feel free to guess how many years we’ve been happily married!  Okay I guess that could differ between B and I so we’ll just go with how many years we’ve been married! ;D

Buddy the Yoga Dog!

I cannot believe I haven’t blogged for four days in a row.  I mean it’s not like I have a valid excuse – I’ve felt well.  In fact that’s been the problem.  I’ve felt so well I’ve done stuff that resulted in needing a sleep due to over exertion and a liberal increase in the consumption of codeine – basically double what I usually take.

You may (or may not) recall that our Tuesday afternoon Armchair Yoga Group at the local oncology centre got evicted from the room that’s been used for the past couple of years.  This was due to a new programme starting, the need of the room for chemotherapy in the future or just because… because we got conflicting information on this point.  Anyhoo we weren’t to be put off yoga-ing because it means a lot to all of us that attend.  Some of us would lunch and natter beforehand and some would attend just for the yoga.  Now it wasn’t officially identified as Armchair Yoga but basically since not many of us, other than the teacher, could even contemplate getting their legs behind their heads (or in my case not any more) and we sit in a chair to do it – Armchair Yoga seems appropriate.

It involves Piranha, no that’s not it, Panorama, oh bum, don’t tell the teacher, wait I’ve got it, it’s Pranayama which is breathing – of course that’s always a good thing, but this is breath control.  I have to say I used it when I had my Hickman line fitted, my PICC line and during my recent MRI.

Anyhoo other members of the group have been looking at new venues, and indeed may have found one, but in the meantime we’re rendezvousing in our lounge, not as an official yoga group just as a bunch of friends meeting up to wiggle things about in front of each other!

Therefore since Friday the house is possibly the cleanest it’s been since, urm, well {hanging head in shame} months.  B offered to give the hob the once over before he went to bed this morning, there was a bit of pancake batter that had missed the pan on Saturday lurking on it, and he was surprised when I said ‘Okay.’  Alright I did then say ‘It’s alright I’ll do it later’ but since he keeps telling me to take it easy he had to do it.  But I’ve had a whale of a time doing other stuff – which I’ll tell you about tomorrow if I remember.

So this afternoon our first yoga-ist arrived and was met by our official welcoming committee ie, Bud.  He wagged, he picked up and ran round, still wagging, with his raw hide bone,, he licked and then he did the leg press thing – when he wants fussing he leans his little furry body against your legs generally when you’re seated while you attend to his tickling requirements.  And then more and more people turned up and he was spoiled for choice and so excited – we’d reached full stiff legged, arched back waggy mode by this time.

Once we were all seated, there were eight of us, I moved his mat so it was between me and the next yoga-ite (what do you call someone who does yoga – if you jog you’re a jogger so maybe yogar) and as she said it looked like he had his own place in the circle.  Bud settled down with his chew and then nodded off whilst the potential new accommodation was discussed and then we started with the exercises.

We interlaced our fingers with our arms out in front and raised them over our heads and Bud’s head snapped up as he surveyed the goings on with a perplexed look on his face.  He then got up, did a quick round of the room and came back to me but wouldn’t settle.  I got him a treat and he lay down to eat it but then got up again and put the front half of his body on the settee and just stood there.  I scooched over, Bud jumped up next to me, like right next to me and settled down.  And he was quite happy to stay there until we did a standing stretch which caused a little looky at what exactly was happening this time.  But he was such a good boy (because he is, he is a good boy) and in fact someone said he I didn’t know where he lived he’d kidnap him – Bud at this point was snuggling with him.

We get to do it again next week and it’s just dawned on me if I can stretch it out until Christmas I won’t be having to do any pre-Christmas panic cleaning as B will have really kept on top of it!  YAY!!!!!