The Physical Ailments Archive

Transfusion

Posted June 24, 2019 By kmarrs

Despite getting an iron infusion about a month ago, as of Friday, June 21 my hemoglobin is sitting as a 7.6. With the healthy range being 12-16, this means I’m trying to function with about half as much blood as I need to be a functional human being.

All things considered, I’m doing spectacularly at this.

I honestly thought that the brain fog and zero spoons (refresh yourself on spoon theory if needed, please) was because I’m trying to juggle school/work/family/and now a job hunt. (More on that last part later.)

Anyway. I clearly can’t stay at a 7.6 so I wasn’t surprised when I received a call from my hematologist’s office first thing this morning. I just didn’t know what the plan of action was.

Turns out I’m going in for a blood transfusion on Wednesday the 26th of June.

I’m actually super excited for this.

Which I guess might sound weird. Blood transfusions make people rightfully nervous. They aren’t standard protocol unless there is trauma and thus are associated with accidentals and disasters and other things that involve massive blood loss. So there is a stigma to them, is what I’m acknowledging.

However, this is not my first blood transfusion. It’s probably closer to my 5th. Though I don’t have an exact count.

Needing the occasional blood transfusion is just a fact of my life now.

Usually, I get iron infusions, which is just basically iron particles suspended in like a saline solution, that get sent straight to my bloodstream via IV. I get those every 3 months, or so. These force my bone marrow to make blood. But it seems the last one either didn’t work or there is something going on.

Possibly a bleed. My iron levels are great it’s just my hemoglobin that’s super low. So this indicates I’m bleeding somewhere. Which probably means more tests. Which I don’t have time for. So I’m super stressed about that.

Anyway, I’m writing this and posting this as it happens. I didn’t want to queue it. So this is fresh news. I’ll follow up next week, or so, with news about the job hunt.

Be the first to comment

Keeping a Finger on the Problem

Posted May 27, 2019 By kmarrs

I have a new app recommended to me by my therapist called HeartRate+ Pro that I’m supposed to use for 5 minutes, 3 times a day (or 15 minutes once a day) to learn how to better control my heart rate.

The idea of the app is that the camera flash tracks your pulse while you breathe in time to the preset pattern. This breathing pattern is supposed to trigger the ideal heart rate.

So far I’m having limited luck with it. But it’s early yet and I’m not using it religiously like I should.

I need… I need to get better about that.

Because the thing is, if this tool can help lower my heart rate, I can start ADHD meds all the faster!

Be the first to comment

Post-Op

Posted May 9, 2019 By kmarrs

I had that surgery this morning. It went really well. I’m in recovery mode at home just kinda riding the oxy high. They gave me oxy which is a lovely thing that they did.

I’m going to keep this really short because I’m hyper aware how stoned I am right not. Legally and rightfully. But uh…

Anyway, life is mellow today. I return to the chaos of finals week tomorrow but I’m giving myself today to just heal.

So Hi. I’m here. I’m alive. Not that there was a question on that. But I don’t even feel like death, except for my throat from the tube. I’m just sort of quiet and mellow and when provoked, silly. But there are worse ways to be post-op.

Hmm… this needs an image…

This candle is a lot smaller than this photo implies. It’s the mini candle. Good stuff.

So this candle was bought from DnD Apothecary and is super amazing. It came in a bundle with a metal D20 and a small wooden treasure box just big enough to hold 2 D20s. Luckily, I have a second metal one because, well, I also have a larger version of their candles, this one in the Woodland Ranger scent.

They are a small etsy based business but I really love them!

(Disclaimer: No one is paying me or asking me to plug them. I stumbled upon this person on Tumblr. Followed the link to their store. Bought a couple of candles. Plan to buy a couple more. And thought I’d share the joy that is this store with all of you. I really love their candles. They have soap too, but I have not tried it.)

Be the first to comment

Surgery

Posted April 29, 2019 By kmarrs

On May 9th I am getting something called an Endometrial Ablation. Which basically means they are removing the lining of my uterus. If all goes as planned, this means I will stop having a menstrual cycle.

The official reasoning behind this is my anemia. I’ve already had a tubal ligation, meaning I can’t have anymore children, so there is no medical reason for me to continue to lose blood every month, especially while suffering from anemia. This is a legit concern. So we’re putting a stop to it.

What it means for my gender dysphoria is off the record and not a concern. But considering a lot of trans people in my position go for full hysterectomies, if not full reconstruction…

What I’m doing is fairly routine and an outpatient procedure. I’ll only miss one day of work, and that’s because I couldn’t schedule for a Friday.

I’m, like, really excited for this surgery. I’m so sick of losing blood every month. It’s such a useless process at this stage in my life. Gender dysphoria not withstanding…

Be the first to comment

Strep

Posted March 28, 2019 By kmarrs

Lucas came down with strep throat last week. He woke up Thursday morning with a severely swollen lymph node in his neck so I took him to the ER at about 7 AM. My intent was to go to work after. But when we found out it was strep, and my own throat hurt, as did Sammy’s and Thomas’. So I instead spent the day getting us all tested.

The rest of us were fine. We all just had colds. But Lucas was not fine and was put on Amoxicillin.

5 days later, Tuesday afternoon, he’s suddenly covered head to toe in a rash. The dreaded Amoxicillin rash is no joke. It’s pretty bad. And there isn’t much you can do for it.

We called the pediatrician and they gave us the thumbs up to stop the meds. We’re due to show up in their office in a few hours and they will determine the next step as far as antibiotics go. You can’t really just stop mid treatment. That’s how antibiotic resistant strains happen. So we’ll see.

Poor kid.

Be the first to comment

Caffeine

Posted March 25, 2019 By kmarrs

I quit soda in the fall of 2018. The sugar in regular soda was getting to be just too sweet. But the diet soda was giving me migraines. So I went with the healthy decision to just quit all soda cold turkey as soon as it became cool enough outside that I could make up for it with warm tea.

Instead I ended up taking on a major water habit that has me going through about 75 oz of it through the course of the day. I am hydrated, to say the least.

I was also still drinking kickstarts, usually two at a time. See, kickstarts aren’t soda. They are juice based with added caffeine. Caffeine I was using to self-medicate my ADHD. Also, I was drinking them enough that if I went without I went into wicked caffeine withdrawal and, again, migraines.

However, a 2-3$ a day habit when you’re hurting for food money is not a good habit. It wasn’t every day. But it was close enough. So I took advantage of the stomach flu I had and while I was already dying, I detoxed from the kickstarts. This was very early February, so just recently.

That left me with coffee and tea. Which I was fine with in moderation. For the most part I don’t have access to coffee, at 4-5$ each, and only regularly drink tea. (I only like lattes and cappuccinos. No matter how much crap I add to office black coffee, I can’t drink it. So I buy it from the Starbucks next door or at the Kroger and it adds up, even for just a few times a month.)

The thing is, after I gave up the kickstarts, and was only drinking a cup or two of tea a day, my headaches all but disappeared.

Then one fateful Thursday I had access to too large coffees in a short span and suddenly my headaches was back to how it had been.

Which leaves me to believe I have a caffeine sensitivity. And am probably better off quitting coffee too.

I’m still going to drink tea, but tea has yet to make me sick. Even black tea. So I think I’m safe there?

Or it’s possible if I quit black tea too, the mild, simply annoying headaches I still have will clear up completely. I’m not sure.

I know my resting pulse even without recent (6-12hrs) caffeine intake is around 120. Which might be anemia. However, my hemoglobin is currently healthy and my rate is still up.

So I’m curious to see how this all plays out.

I don’t want to give up tea. I really don’t like most herbal teas though. But really, as sick as I am, drinking nothing but water and the occasional juice might be what’s best for me.

But tea is good for my mental health.

So we’ll see how this plays out.

Anyway, it’s in writing. I’ve given up soda, energy drinks (aka kickstarts) and now coffee. And I’m drinking more than the daily recommended water intake.

.

Edit: Since writing this, I have since quit all caffeine including tea. I have fewer headaches and my pulse average is down 10 beats. I’m thinking this decision is for the best.

Be the first to comment