Tuesday, November 8, 2011


Happy Tuesday friends. I've been waiting to write this post till I was sure it was going last so here it goes.....AFTER ALMOST 2 AND A HALF YEARS, I AM OFFICIALLY OFF MY PAIN PATCH!! I took off the patch on Halloween night because after not meeting my first goal of being off by October 1, I made a second goal of November 1. Again, I had to wait a few days to see how my body would respond being without it and I didn't even mention it to Harrison or my family till a few days later because I didn't want to jinx it.

A few people have asked me if I was proud of myself for what I've accomplished and for some reason, I've had a hard time saying yes. I know it is an accomplishment but I think because I have had endure the loss of many other goals, such as work achievements and my Masters degree, I feel that making this step isn't really anything to be proud of because its just something I had to do to make any type of progress toward the things I want in my life. I'm glad the process is over but I'm also worried about the next phase. I've found myself getting caught up in what i want to happen and accomplish next and where I want to be 6 months from now. I have to remind myself sometimes to slow down and that I have accomplished something and its ok to be proud of myself.

We had a great weekend in Boone with family and friends. The weather was beautiful and it was nice to not have a schedule and to just be able to relax and enjoy the company of people you love and care about. I have been really active since Thursday and have pushed myself passed its limits so my body hasn't exactly been happy with me since we got home but I feel like it was worth it.

Thanks for reading and thank you to all of you who have supported me and encouraged me the past few months as I have been going through the weaning process. I could not have done it without you. I love you all. You have no idea how thankful I am for each and everyone of you.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Doctors appointment

Well things at my pain doctor went pretty much as expected last week. I am going to stick to a dose of 12 for another few weeks, then try to come off entirely. Then, as I predicted, my nurse practitioner recommended to give my body a break for at least a month to let my body just adjust and not make any changes. Since I've been weaning pretty quickly since September, even though I am ready and willing to keep making progress, I know from my nursing experience with my babies that trying to do too may things to fast can easily backfire. So i know its probably smartest to just let my body take a breather for awhile and get used to not being on a constant 24/7 source of pain relief. As per my nature, I continue to worry about what comes next. I worry about how my body will respond to making the jump from my current breakthrough medication to something not as strong. As I have been weaning off the fentanyl, I have noticed that the morphine and my other medications seem to effect my body more because the pain receptors in my brain are less saturated with medication. So hopefully since my neurotransmitters are more receptive, something less potent will still give me effective pain control when I really need it. I am trying so hard to not take the medicine as much but sometimes, I just can't take the pain.

I'm researching a lot and considering other forms of pain control like biofeedback, relaxation and meditation, and for the first time, looking into a chiropractor. Even though a chiropractor may not be able to help with my neck since my fusions, I'm hoping to get relief for my back and help with my alignment, positioning, and posture. I still have several hurdles I have to jump before I will be at the point that I want to be, but I am trying to keep myself focused on today and on taking small steps forward...even though I know that sometimes, there will be steps backwards, like today when I'm dealing with a lot of pain, am very uncomfortable, and frustrated that it is so beautiful outside, and I'm in bed.

Its very hard for me to give myself credit for what accomplished, even though I'm getting so much encouragement from my doctors, Harrison, family, and friends. I guess on days like today, I tend to blame myself because I think that maybe I put myself in this position by something I did the day before or by being too active. Even though it may seem like very small tasks for most people, yesterday I got my massage, went to the store, payed bills, folded laundry, cleaned up the house, and cooked dinner. Again, these seem like such simple tasks for the average person, but for me, its a lot. Somedays, I just like to feel "normal" even though by the end of the night, I can already start feeling what is most likely inevitable.

The next four days are going to be really busy, but hopefully really fun and I can only pray that I feel okay. Tonight, one of my dearest friends who recently got back from his second deployment with the Air Force is coming into town and we are going to spend the day together tomorrow. He has been one of my closest friends since high school and even during his deployments, has been one of the most supportive, dependable people I have. Even when he is Lord knows where in the world, he always makes it a point to call or email me every week or two. I always get excited when I see his "restricted" number pop up on my cell phone. I'm so thankful he is home safe and so proud for all he is doing to protect our country and our freedom.

Tomorrow night my whole family is headed to the beautiful mountains of Boone, NC for our annual trip with our dear family friends the Convingtons. This is always a trip I look forward to but the past couple years, my pain has kept me limited and I haven't been able to go on the hikes we always take so I'm hoping that maybe this year I can. We always have so much fun hiking, shopping, eating, playing cards, watching football, laughing, and just being together. This year the Covington clan has a baby on the way and a new engagement so there is sure to be a lot to celebrate this year. Pray that I will feel decent because the next 4 days are something I've been looking forward to for months. It will be good to get out and spend the day tomorrow with one of my best friends and get away this weekend and be with family and friends.

I've got a lot of other things on my mind right now that I don't really want to get into in this post but maybe soon I'll get the courage to open up about a few of these things because its been weighing on me quite a bit. For now, I just ask that you pray for me while I sort through some of these things.