Mood Drop

I’m sad today… and I don’t really know why.

I took my meds…. AND the boyfriend came over for a while last night. We watched The Orville, which is hilarious… We snuggled, which I love… We argued about Star Wars, which was a riot… I threatened to take his legs so he can never leave, which sparked a laugh about how he’s not used to my dark sense of humor… But after he left, I dunno. I felt like something was wrong.

I can’t really explain what was missing or wrong. I felt like I talked too much… but he assured me I didn’t, and that he likes listening to me talk, because I’m interesting and know lots of things. I just… I dunno. I’ve been down since then.

I took my meds last night. I took them this morning. He’s been snapping me all morning. Everything is fine. Work is fine. I just feel…. wrong… And I don’t like it.

Unsure how to proceed.

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Time Heals, But Leaves Scars

Well, it’s been a terrible year so far.

Closed the year with less than half an office. Mom got pneumonia and ended up in the hospital. Keagan died. Work sucks. Still have no idea what to do with my life. Turning 30 in 116 days.

It’s true what they say, that time heals all wounds, but they don’t tell you that it leaves scars. You never forget how much hurt or how bad it felt, and if you’re anything like me, you live in terror of feeling it again.

Without Keagan around, I’ve been able to spread my love around more. By that I mean that I’m paying more attention to the remaining animals, not that I’ve taken up banging strangers. For example, I finally got Bdo on some itch medication, so he’s more comfortable than ever now. He’s always had skin allergies, but after Keagan’s passing it became important to me to get the problem handled, instead of just hobbling along as we have for the past seven years. Also, Kira doesn’t annoy me as much, even though she’s still as needy as ever. I have the time to give her now, I guess. I can see now that I was giving most of my time to Keagan, because he was my favorite… so she’s happier, too. I think that’s important.

Kyrie is still as aloof as she’s always been, but now I worry. She’s 14 and a larger breed than Keagan… she’s going to be my next loss, but when will that come? Not soon, I hope… three more years with her would be great. She’s slower than she used to be. She sleeps a lot. I worry she’s depressed, and maybe she is, too. Keagan was with her for 13 years. That’s a long time to have someone around. I keep trying to give her attention and get her to play, but she’s just not 100% interested. Still hurting, I guess. She kept thinking one day I’d come home and bring Keagan with me. She looked for him for over a week… and the day she didn’t look anymore was heartbreaking. She’s doing better than that day, but she still seems… sad. I guess that’s to be expected.

I’ve also taken to obsessively worrying about my mother. She still isn’t right. Next week we’re going to a pulmonary specialist to see if she has asthma or COPD. She’s not happy about it, and the doctor really wants us BOTH to get tested for sleep apnea, but it is what it is. I need her to be better… I didn’t know what I was going to do without her, and I don’t want to meditate on that again for a long while.

Seems the universe has decided that year 29 will be the worst year ever… it kind of has been. I’m emotionally more stable, but in general everything is terrible. If I wasn’t medicated, I might be dead now… I don’t even know how I got through having to put Keagan down myself. I couldn’t have done that before. I’d have rather died myself. I guess that’s a testament to the drugs, but I’m getting really tired of things just making me stronger instead of killing me, tbh.

I was getting frustrated at my depression over Keagan in the last entry… but I do think that it’s better to know why you’re depressed than to just be depressed for seemingly no reason. I knew what to be mad at, and I knew what caused me pain…. it didn’t make the pain better, but at least when people asked what was wrong I could tell them.

I’m still sad. A lot. I’m sleeping more than usual. My eating habits are whacked out again… but I guess it’s getting better. I ordered a necklace with a good picture of me and Keagan in it…. that helped. I still need to find a good one to hang in the house, but until my internet gets fixed tomorrow I’ve been unable to flip through all my pictures to find a good one.

Things are bad. I hate everything. But even with all the animosity for living that I have, and all the tears I’ve shed in the past 6 months… I’m still not as sad as I used to be… and all that tells me is that I was really fucking sad…

Pieces of Keagan

Yesterday I picked up Keagan’s ashes from the vet. I’d be lying if I said that wasn’t incredibly hard, emotional, and oh so final. It’s not that I was really holding out hope that he’d magically come back, but getting his ashes back from the vet just cemented that in my mind. There was no hope left, not even the highly unlikely magical kind. He’s gone and he’s never coming back.

It’s been a hard week and a half since I lost my best friend, soul mate, and dog. I cry a lot. I wake up in the middle of the night, reach out for him, and he’s not there. I look for him in the morning. I still count to four when I let the dogs out. It’s been a process trying to adapt. Today was especially hard for me, because with his ashes the vet gave me his paw print, but I had to bake it to set the print. I don’t know why, but I found that incredibly sad. I bawled. I couldn’t deal. I called my mom and told her to just talk to me, and like the good mother she is, she did. I don’t think I’ll ever stop missing him… ever.

The animals miss him too. Kyrie continues to look for him every time I come home. It’s like she’s aware he went away, but he’ll obviously be back. It’s heartbreaking to watch her look behind me to check for him every single time I come home. Kira has decided to emulate Keagan to the best of her abilities. It makes sense, seeing as Keagan was the favorite. She’s always been so jealous, and with him gone she’s attempted to do all the things he and I would do together. At first, I was resentful of that, but I’ve come to realize that even if I dislike her motives, her heart is in the right place. She just wants to make me happy, so she’s doing what Keagan used to do to make me happy. it’s hard to stay angry at that. As for Bdo, I can’t tell if he’s entirely sure of what’s wrong, but he knows something is wrong. Since Keagan’s passing he’s started to get hives. I think it’s a physical manifestation of stress. he’s always been allergic to stuff, but never so badly. I took him to the vet and he’s managed to get a skin infection, so he’s on stuff for that as well as the itching, now. I think Kato took it the hardest. She tries to find him at night, and when she can’t she cries… and then I wake up and cry. It’s been hard on the whole family.

Mom has been supportive but also sad. He was part of her life, too, after all. I took his ashes and put them in the glass display case with Joie’s. It’s fitting since they used to share a kennel. It made mom cry to think of it. Makes me cry, too.

It’s been so hard, but I know I’m going to get through it. You don’t get over someone dying, but you have to move on… so… I just keep taking it a day at a time. Other people don’t understand what it’s like, because they see dogs as dogs, but Keagan was so much more than a dog. That’s what they don’t get.

The Hardest Thing

Last Saturday I took Keagan to the vet for his arthritis. He was having a lot of problems getting around. They prescribed him gabapentin, which I thought was funny, since I take that for anxiety, and carprofen, which is an NSAID pain reliever. I was delighted he perked right up and seemed to feel a lot better.

Tuesday evening, he was really weak. He didn’t want to eat. He didn’t want to go outside. He just wanted to lay down. I was worried, but we had auditors, so I was planning on taking him to the vet Thursday or Friday. That idea went out the window when I woke up at 2am and he couldn’t stand up. He’s wet himself, and he’s crawled across the floor to get out of the wet. My heart sank. I considered rushing him to the ER, but instead I made him comfortable and laid on the ground with him for the rest of the night. I barely slept. I just wanted him to be okay. In the morning, he still couldn’t stand, though. I called my mom and told her had to go to the vet, and she came over to help me get him downstairs, and later into the car so I could get him there.

The vet, a very nice man by the name of Dr. Fedder, who always called Keagan my mutant (for what else can you call a Corgi/Husky hybrid?), said that Keagan was extremely anemic. The first potential cause could be a tumor on his spleen. They’re very vascular, common in old dogs, and very fragile. It was very possible that he’s had it, and that when he started moving around more, it ruptured: meaning he was bleeding into his abdomen. The surgery to save him would need blood transfusions and had a very low survival rate, along with a very high cost. The other likely cause would be an autoimmune disease. It’s harder to diagnose, and I’d need to take him to the emergency vet for a series of tests. If it was an autoimmune disease, he’d need to undergo blood transfusions, chemo, and a lot of pills. Survival was 50%.

In what has been the hardest decision I’ve ever had to make in my entire life… I chose to let Keagan go. He was 17, the survival rates were very poor, and I didn’t want to put him through chemo and pills or surgery at 17 years old. I couldn’t live with myself if I’d selfishly put him through all the stress and pain just for 6 more months or maybe a year… I didn’t want to watch him slowly degenerate right in front of me, just because I couldn’t let go. It hurt more than anything I’ve done, including when they ripped my wisdom teeth out. I’d rather have done that every weekend for the rest of my life than have to have let him go… but life doesn’t work that way.

It was a blessing for me that this experience was nothing like when I had to put Joie down all those years ago. Joie bled out into his abdomen, too. His blood pressure was so low that the shots didn’t work. They gave him enough to put down a St Bernard, and he was a small Bichon thing. We ended up having to hook Joie up to the anesthesia machine and watch him struggle to stay awake. He wasn’t ready to go. He was scared to leave. It was excruciating. While letting Keagan go was excruciating for ME, he didn’t fight it. They gave him the sedative, and he nodded off like he was supposed to. I promised him he’d be okay, and so would I. I told him to say hi to Joie for me. While he had low blood pressure, the second shot worked almost instantly. He stopped breathing, and he was gone. I don’t think he even saw it coming… which is best for him, and probably me.

The vet said I could stay with him as long as I wanted, but he got cold so fast… so much faster than I would have ever guessed. I hated to leave, but he just wasn’t there anymore.

I’m having him cremated, and I get a paw print.

I went home and cried. I folded up his kennel and rearranged so that when I come home tonight the first thing I do isn’t to be reminded he’s gone and collapse. After that, I got in bed and didn’t move again until my mom came home. She brought dinner and we watched some mindless cooking show at her place.

Sleeping was hard. I’m so used to him being there, curled up next to me. I woke up in the middle of the night and reached out for him, and he wasn’t there. I woke up in the morning, and he wasn’t there. I let the dogs out and I counted 1-2-3—- there was no 4, and I just cried. I cried on and off all morning, trying to get ready for work.

I managed to get up early enough to sit in the living room while everyone ate. Bdo didn’t eat all his food. Kyrie didn’t eat all her food. Even Kira, who didn’t even like Keagan, because she was so jealous of him, didn’t eat all her food. They know something’s up. They know yesterday morning he was here and I was sad. They know I came home without him and was sad. They know he didn’t come home and I’m still so very sad. I wish I could explain it to them.

I’m incredibly sad. Keagan was my best friend. He was my soul mate. He was my constant. He was my world. No one will ever love me as much as Keagan. I love all my dogs, but Keagan was, and always will be special. I’m going to be incredibly sad for a very long time…

In the meantime, I have to be okay, because I promised.

One of the hardest parts of that is Kira. I was mad at her yesterday, because Keagan died and she never liked him. I was mad because I thought she wouldn’t even notice he was gone. She noticed, though, and it’s got her messed up. Also, I can’t be mad at her for being jealous: I favored Keagan all the time. And lastly, I can’t be mad at her for not being Keagan. She loves me uncontrollably. She does. No one will ever love me like Keagan, but if Keagan loved me like a soul mate, Kira loves me like an obsessed stalker.

I started thinking Keagan was going to die when he turned 10, because Joie died at 10. Keagan kept on going and was in great health till the last 24 hours, and I conned myself into believing he’d always be there…. Now I have to adjust without him… and that hurts so much…

I’ll never forget him.

Steps Backwards

So.
I have high blood pressure.

My mom has high blood pressure and I’m incredibly fat and inactive… so, it’s not like this is unexpected or anything. What was unexpected is how stressful high blood pressure can be.

Let’s bullet this real quick.

  • So, I saw a shrink. She put me on Effexor. She requested some blood work.
  • My primary saw the blood work and wanted to talk about it, as well as just see me for the first time, since I finally picked a Kaiser doc.
    • My blood pressure at that appointment was high. She asked me to come back in like a month to recheck that it’s okay, because I thought it might be White-coat Hypertension. I don’t like doctors.
  • Before that recheck I saw my shrink again, just to see how I’m doing. I was doing great. Felt lots better. Started exercising. Woke up feeling pretty good on the daily. Wanted to increase just a little for weird depressive episodes.
    • Shrink had a nurse take my blood pressure since she saw it was high at my last doc visit, and Effexor CAN increase blood pressure.
    • My blood pressure was hella high. Like, to the point the nurse asked if I was having chest pain.
    • She got a higher ranking nurse to take it to confirm.
    • Blood pressure spooked my shrink, so she cut back the Effexor and gave me Wellbutrin.
  • Went to my blood pressure check.
    • Blood pressure was crazy high.
    • Nurse got panicky look and went to get higher ranking nurse to confirm again.
  • Doc scheduled me for an EKG and started me on Procardia.
  • Go to EKG. Take mom for moral support.
  • LPN is nutzo.
    • Can’t find the EKG order.
    • Tells me I don’t need to be there cuz it’s prolly White-coat Hypertension.
    • Brings me a 10XL gown to put on.
      • I’m fat, but I’m not THAT fat.
      • #bedsheet
    • EKG is fine. No damage to heart.
  • Take Procardia, Wellbutrin, and reduced dose of Effexor.
    • Feel bad.
    • Hard time waking up.
    • Very tired.
  • Get tired at work, so bosslady sends me to Rite Aid to check my BP.
    • BP is 183/123 according to machine.
    • Panic.
  • Mom takes me to Kaiser to have a nurse check my BP in case Imma have heart attack.
    • Nurse is cute guy named Joe.
    • BP is fine. 130-something / 80-something.
    • Advised that home devices and public machines are inaccurate.
      • For best results, sit for at least 5 minutes before taking BP.
  • Email Shrink about tiredness after mental breakdown over frittata.
    • It’s Effexor withdrawal.
    • Prescribes smaller pills.
      • Week 1: 1.5 pills
      • Week 2: 1 pill
      • Week 3: 0.5 pill
      • Week 4: Stop Effexor
    • Should help withdrawal.
    • Wait.
      • We’re stopping Effexor?
        • Not what I thought was happening.
      • Are we going to increase the Wellbutrin?
      • What if the Wellbutrin doesn’t work?
      • Panic.
      • Sadness.

And that brings us to today.

I picked up the pills… so I was up to 75mg… She knocked me down to half a pill (37.5mg) and added half a pill of Wellbutrin. So then she called in 37.5mg pills of Effexor, and I’m to take 1.5 of them this week to combat tiredness and withdrawal. Then decrease till I’m off Effexor.

That’s fine, I guess… but I feel like we’re moving backwards. I was doing great on Effexor. I’m on blood pressure meds now. The only up I’m seeing with Wellbutrin so far is that I don’t have the urge to smoke, even though I’ve been stressed out and sad. Great! But I’m supposed to be on vacation next week and I was really hoping to feel motivated to live so I can get some shit I wanna do, done. Right now I just want to sleep and cry. I’ve wanted to sleep and cry for years and I was finally kind of out of it, and now… we’re back here…

So I emailed my shrink… and asked when we’ll be increasing the Wellbutrin… because maybe it’ll work. It’s fine, if it works, but I am not currently fine. I had a freak out yesterday over cutting tomatoes… It was daunting, TO THE POINT OF TEARS, to cut tomatoes to put in a cake pan with eggs. That’s not better. That’s some shit I’d do before I started Effexor.

I feel very discouraged… I dunno what to do other than try to trust my shrink, but I’m not… great… at trusting mental health professionals…

In better news, I’ve lost some weight. Not a noticeable amount of weight, but 5lbs in 8 days. So, that’s good. I’m trying to keep up on exercising. Mom and I have been walking the dogs around the block a few times every night… we can’t go far cuz she’s still on oxygen at home, and all of us are out of shape, dogs included, but we’re doing SOMETHING. We didn’t go last night cuz of the freak out and general fatigue, but I did force myself to get on my stationary bike. I made it 12 minutes before my legs felt like they were going to explode… It’s not impressive, but it’s not bad for my first time in months.

I just… want to get better… Why is getting better so hard?

If I feel better, I can take better care of myself.
Not sad = can exercise & less binge eating.
Can exercise = will exercise. Less binging = less caloric intake.
Exercise + less calories = weight loss.
Weight loss = better heart health & better mood.
Repeat as needed.

But… that’s just not where I’m at right now.

Can’t Sleep

Life has been hard… for a while now…

I want to be better…

I try to be better…

But I just don’t feel like it’s getting better…

The distractions are less distracting.

The hobbies are hard to do so I can’t fill the void.

People want to see me, but I don’t want to see the people.

I hate wishing it was different…

That I were different…

Life is hard.

What happens when the optimism runs out?