Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Hack, Hack, Hack.....Coughing up a Lung Here

I apologize for the repeated blogging. I guess I'm using this as a place to vent and journal, in addition to sharing with others what it is like living with a chronic illness. So, it's 1:30 a.m., 1:37 a.m. to be exact and I'm awake. Obviously. I've slept for a few hours, but can't seem to get back to sleep. This time, it's one of these awful coughing spells that continue to plague me. I was diagnosed with asthma last year, although, at the time, they said it was minor. I still doubt whether or not I truly have asthma. I have a rescue inhaler that I've only used a few times, plus Singulair for daily use, which I've never taken. The supposed asthma is another thing I want to discuss with the doctor at my upcoming appointment. These coughing spells really seem to me to be a continuation of the respiratory virus I've had. The same thing happened to me last winter. It's mostly drainage that causes me to cough. I suppose I need to be taking something for it. I hesitate to add yet another drug to my regimen, but if it helps it will be worth it.

So, moving in different direction, at the beginning of this year I picked a word that would be my word for the year. It's a word that I will think about and try to incorporate into my life as much as possible. I had two words in mind. Gratitude and encourager. I settled on encourager. Because of my limitations, I sometimes feel as if I'm not able to give to others the way I should.  Many things are too difficult for me to do. For instance, there's a family at church who has a very ill child. Our small group decided we would prepare meals to take to the family. Well, honestly, I have enough difficulty preparing meals for my family, so preparing meals for another family would be very hard for me to do. But, I can write a note of encouragement to this young mother. I remember when I had a real bad flare up of my illness, I received a card in the mail along with some encouraging words and little cards with uplifting sayings and Bible verses, this made me feel so good. I know I am still able to offer encouraging words to others; this is something I've always done, especially with my family, but I'm now trying to do it more with others. I've set my plan in motion by ordering a Current catalog. If you're not familiar with Current, they are a company which has the cutest greeting cards and gifts. They have a real nice box of assorted greeting cards that I plan on ordering. I figure I'll keep a book of stamps in the box and carry it with me; using any free time to write cards. I know how I felt when I got a card from a friend. I'm hoping that I can make others feel the same. Of course, I'll benefit too. Encouraging others really is a gift to ourselves in addition to being a gift to others.

Oh my, it's after 2:00 a.m.! I really should try and go back to bed. I'll give myself until 2:30, then I'll try and go back to sleep. Before I fell asleep this evening, I had a crying spell. I really don't know exactly why I got so emotional. I think part of it is that I'm so lonely. I miss Cindy so much. I haven't heard from my next closest friend in weeks. I'm not sure why, but we will go weeks without talking. I sometimes feel abandoned. I really need a friend who I can talk to every few days. Cindy and I spoke nearly every day. Sometimes more than once a day. Oh, how I miss that. How I miss her! I do have friends that I can call, but sometimes I wish they would call me first. To my friends who are reading this, this is not directed at any one person in particular. It's not my intent to call anyone out here. I'm just speaking from the heart. I think part of the problem is that my friends who are healthy don't know what to say to me anymore. I think my condition scares them. And, my friends who are dealing with chronic illness themselves aren't always up to calling. I am going to try and make more of an effort to call one of them every few days. At least I will feel like I'm doing my part in keeping the friendship going.

I don't think I've mentioned it here, and if I have sorry for the rerun, but I'm trying to lose weight. I'm really trying. My goal is 30 pounds. I'd like to lose it in time for the graduations in May (it would also be nice to have this weight off for our 25th Wedding Anniversary in September), but I'm not sure how realistic that is. I've lost about five pounds in three weeks which I think is about right. I don't want to lose too fast. I don't think there's much danger of that happening since I'm not able to burn very many calories. I've made a list of rewards for myself at different milestones along the way. For example, when I lose five pounds I'm going to buy a pair of earrings (guess what I'm doing tomorrow?). Ten pounds is a new DVD or CD. At twenty pounds I get a Wii Fit. Somewhere in there, I'm going to get a makeover at one of the stores in the mall. I also am going to buy some new clothes...I figure I'll need some once I get the weight off. I'm also going to get an Ipod. I have an Ipod shuffle, but I really want one that I can see the songs and playlists. Wish me luck!

OK, it's 2:20 a.m., I'm heading back to bed. Oh, groan....here comes the dog. I guess he needs to go out. Honestly, sometimes I feel like it's just like we have a baby in the house again. But, what are you going to do? And, what would we do without our pets?



  1. It's me again! :):)
    I'm sorry to hear that your are missing Cindy and that you had a crying spell. That could have attributed to the coughing. When you cry you get a lot more drainage.
    I feel badly that I've not been better about calling you..I was telling my Mom that it seems that I've been so depressed that sometimes I don't even feel like talking. That's why I'm glad I started writing on the blog again. I had seemed to have dug myself into a cave..I am glad that I'm able to talk to you on here. It's made me feel better and I hope you too!
    I had done a pen-pal swap for a while with the ladies I blog with. One was from Canada, one from S. Africa even..It was nice. Then it seemed that everyone got onto facebook and then didn't much feel the need to blog anymore. I thnk one has been whisked into farmville and frontierville world :) She totally disappeared..which is too bad, because she was a big help in connecting me with so many of the sweet ladies that write and even e-mail me..
    I love the idea of rewarding yourself!! That is a GREAT idea :) I am up this morning, but I am so tired. I feel like taking a nap :)
    Great, I see on the Weather Channel that we might get more snow. I think I've had my fill of the fluffy white stuff..I LOVE the pics you added..Very nice!!
    I better go for now..
    Love and hugs, Jerelene

  2. I going to put my two cents in...

    Although your asthma was considered "mild" when you were diagnosed you may be having some flare ups because of the extreme cold, and the MG. Both things will make breathing more difficult and increase secretions. You may need to take your Singulair daily, even though you don't like taking too many medications.

    I'm glad your weight loss is coming along!! I think I would have to rearrange my rewards. I would get the WiiFit firs so I lost weight quicker, than I could get all the other goodies on my list much faster, I know it sounds a bit selfish.....

    I think it's great that you are sending cards for your church group, remember it's not what you give to others, but the fact that you are giving period.

    I can only imagine how hard it was to lose your friend Cindy. When there is illness in a friendship it can really test a relationship. Some friendships stand the test of time, even better than some marriages. Others fall by the wayside, I think other people's illnesses make us think of our own mortality.

    I wish you lived closer, you are having such a hard time right now, I just want to fix you a cup of tea, or a diet coke!!

    It will get better, it happens in it's own time, be patient, have a good cry now and then!

    Your FRIEND,

  3. Jerelene~I'm sorry you've been dealing with depression. Don't be too hard on yourself though. You've been dealing with so much between your health and everything else. I know what you mean about Farmville and such lol...they do tend to suck people in; I'm sorry they stole your fellow bloggers. Maybe they will come around after a bit. I played farmville for a while, but honestly it stressed me out too much. Oh, I bought my new earrings! I do think rewarding myself is very motivating.

    Hang in there!

  4. Rachel~You are probably right about the asthma. I'm going to see if my new doctor has looked at the PFT's yet and get his take on it.

    Rachel, I like your idea about the Wii Fit! Maybe I'll have to rethink this. I do think that it is a big motivator for me though, so I sort of stuck it in the middle of my goals.

    Thanks so much for the kind words about Cindy...and about fixing me a cup of tea or diet coke. I'll take both. lol It would be great to live closer!! We could take turns helping each other out.

    Thanks for being my friend.