Sunday, June 24, 2007

The pain of being in pain

Friday was a busy day, and generally with me and lupus that means a painful day. Normally, I take Lortab for pain, but my son was graduating high school on Friday, and that meant I had to drive to his graduation. That also meant no pain meds while driving. Usually my husband drives for me, but he had to go to work after the graduation which meant that I was on my own.

First I went to the doctor (primary care doctor. I feel I have to specify which type since I have one primary care doctor and about six specialists) and my prediction about what he'd say about my hair loss was correct. He said that he could send me to a specialist for scalp injections, but I'm passing on that option for now. I talked to him about my pain which is generally better. It's moved from unbearable to bothersome. A few months ago, my doctor suggested acupuncture, and that has been mostly helpful. The acupuncturist provides massage treatments, and the doctor gives me injections. Before those treatments, I was barely able to walk. These days, I'm able to walk without grimacing in pain. I told my doctor that I've had a headache for several days, and he gave me lidocaine injections in my shoulder muscles because he said I had tremendous tension there. I hate needles, but I get these shots because the pain of the needles are nothing compared to the pain of lupus.

After the doctor, I drove my son up to the graduation ceremony. My son is bipolar with schizoeffective disorder. To discuss the challenges of that is a blog in and of itself, so I really won't get into too much here, but suffice it to say, getting him through school has been a struggle. It was a day that many believed would never come, and it was a very happy, tear filled day for me.

Driving is a very painful task for me. I hate to do it, and on Friday I had to drive from Marina del Rey (where I live) to San Fernando Valley (where I lived up until about two months ago) for my son's high school graduation. By the time I got up there, my headache was slightly worse, and the pain was horrendous. I was barely able to walk when I get out of the car, but you grin and bear it, and that's what I did. No matter what's going on, I always try to make the times with my kids about them and not about my pain. After graduation, we went out to sushi. My son's favorite pastime. Then he said he wanted to just go home and "chill" with his friends.

By the time I got home, it was all I could do to make it up to my apartment and straight to bed. I've noticed that a lot of my lupus issues can be alleviated with just a little more sleep. I slept a few hours, and the headache and pain were a bit more manageable. By the time we had dinner, I was close to recovered.

All in all it was a pretty typical day of living lupie.

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