Sick and Tired

Saturday, July 19, 2008

I've been trying to not actually write this particular blog entry, because no one likes to hear other people whining. But the more I resist, the more my fingers want to move over the keys. I am not well and I am not handling it well. I am possibly being the world's biggest baby, but seriously, I feel like crap. And if you're just here to make me feel worse (*cough*Vanderbilt*cough*), then go away, because that's pretty much the opposite of what I need right now.

The friend with whom I pity partied yesterday, generously shared a virus with me last weekend that, for her, ended up as a sinus infection, an ear infection and bronchitis. I'm happy to say that my sinuses seem fine, in fact, so fine that when our air conditioner started pouring out air that smelled of melting plastic, I smelled it so strongly I thought I was having a seizure or some other hallucination. My lungs and ears, however, are down for the count.

I have one of those deep chest coughs where every time you take a deep breath the immediate result is barking. The kind of cough where you cough until you gag because you can't stop. It's really really unpleasant. And one of the extra special side effects is that coughing increases your intracranial pressure, which normally wouldn't be a problem. But it's me, so normal obviously isn't the answer. My brain doesn't have enough room to deal with high pressure and consequently for the past 2 days I've been lightheaded, my left arm has alternated between tingling and completely numb and I have just wanted to crawl into a small hole and die. My ears are also both hurting something fierce and they too are affected by the cough. It's not good. The fever is mild but energy zapping and I just feel bad all over.

Beyond the disgustingness of this crap is also an ongoing battle with insomnia. I've kind of felt like if I didn't acknowledge it that maybe it would go away on its own, but it's not. Since we returned from our honeymoon, I've probably slept soundly no more than 3 or 4 nights total. I lie in bed each night for an hour and a half, willing myself to sleep, trying not to wake my husband. And I'm doing everything I can to encourage sleep. I'm not lying in bed all day during the week (anymore, that's an adjustment I've made), I'm setting an alarm so I'm up before 9 each morning, I'm not drinking caffeine much after about 5pm and I'm not lying down until I'm drowsy, which usually isn't until after midnight. Most nights, sleep doesn't begin until between 1:30 and 2am.

It's amazing because I'm exhausted all day long, until it's time for bed. And it's just starting to wear on me. Like right now, I'm tired, sick and wanting to nap. But at the same time, I know that taking a nap will likely further prevent me from sleeping tonight and I can't tell if it's smarter to grab sleep now when I'm pretty sure I can get it, or try to sleep solidly at night, a concept that has alluded me for a month?

I don't know. I'm tired. I don't feel good. I feel like a child. I don't know what to do. The cough laughs at cough drops, I don't own anymore tylenol cold or dayquil/nyquil drugs, and I don't know what to buy. No cold medicine says "for chest cold wherein you sound like a seal and feel like an elephant is sitting on your chest." Now that would be a helpful label.

So instead, I'm sitting here with tears in my eyes, just trying to make it through the day so that maybe I'll get some sleep and feel better tomorrow. I'm just sick and tired of being sick and tired all the time.


Anonymous said...

Katie I know you are feeling really bad right now and I am saying this in the most loving and kindest way. What you have described is no where near what you have been through before and you made it then. Just remember you will get better. I wish I had some great secret to tell you, but I don't. Just know that you are being thought about and I hope you feel better soon.

Anonymous said...

I'm so sorry that you're feeling so poorly. I've been sick the past few days too so I empathize. Have you been to the dr.? sounds like you might need some antibiotics. It's awful not being able to get a good rest. I hope you feel better soon.

Lisa C.

Anonymous said...

I don't know if you have tried it yet but Mucinex(the kind the pharmacist has to get) has been the best for me. I think I like it b/c it has guafinisen(sp) in it and that seems to help my ears the most. Hope you feel better soon!


Anonymous said...

I'd say sleep when you can get it. Your schedule will get back on track. But your body needs sleep. And worrying abt not sleeping at night won't help.

GO NAP, you have permission :)

~~Silk said...

Nap. Then when you wake, make an appointment with a doctor. You're tearing up your membranes, and that's like fertilizer to germs. Go. Doctor.

Daisy, Just Daisy said...

I am in no way trying to "over-react" but if your cough really does sound like a seal, there is a teensy tiny chance you have pertussis i.e. whooping cough. And you need certain medicine to get over it..... I know, I know you were probably vaccinated against it as a child, but they've been learning that yay! the vaccination needed a booster! and so for a lot of young adults, they don't have enough immunities against it.

I'm sure you *dont* have whooping cough, but if your coughing hasn't gotten better by Monday, it might not hurt to get it checked out.

(Or at least ask Slappy if in his medical opinion you sound like you have a bad cough or a seal-bark cough?)

And to help with the cough (and sleeping) might I suggest:

1 large mug of HOT freshly brewed tea

2 tablespoons of honey

1-2 tablespoons of whiskey

Whiskey tends to cut the cough down a little and the honey can soothe- the heat of the tea opens up your membranes and lets you absorb the goodness. I lived on this when I had pneumonia.

joanne said...

No medical advice here but I do think that if your body wants to sleep, no matter the time of day, then you should sleep. It's the best medicine even if it screws up your schedule a little. Hope you feel better soon...sending good thoughts your way. ;)

Ness said...

Get thee to a Dr. The symptoms are enough alone but with increased cranial pressure to the point of symptoms, it can't be good for your brain to be going through all that hacking. I would say that the stress of the wedding and the robbery are messing with your sleep, understandably. Go to the Dr. and let him/her figure it out. It's too much for your tired self to deal with and with your job coming up and school, you need to be feeling good.

Lanny said...

I hope you feel better soon! It certainly doesn't sound pleasant.

Anonymous said...

It works for me:

- To drink at least 2 litres of pure water a day.
- To drink poleo-mint with honey.
- If the cough is dry you need something to soothe the throat: very hot milk with tons of honey and a RATHER generous addition of a distiled spirit. And helps both: sleeping and coughing
- some sort of balsamic oil with eucaliptos, thyme and something else (get it in a naturalist shop of sorts) inmersed in cotton and stuck in your chest helps a lot to open the bronchyes

get better and try and relax!

kim-d said...

Well, I've read through all the comments and it appears the only other helpful thing I could do is ship old dead Dimples to you. Although she sits at the end of my driveway in all her dead-as-a-doornail splendor-ness doing ME absolutely no good whatsoever, YOU could look at her and be reminded that you're in better shape, even barking like a seal, than she is. I know. I am THE MOST CARING AND COMFORTING FRIEND OF ALL. I'm known for it. :)

Listen to all these people, and listen better than you ever have to anything I've ever told you. BWAHAHAHAHA! Seriously, especially the ones who say to nap. Lots of times, if I didn't nap, I would get an insanely inadequate amount of sleep. So do it, and worry about a "sleeping schedule" later. That's it for my words of wisdom at this time. But not to fear, there will always be other times :).

David said...

thanks for dropping by my blog and leaving a comment.
I hear you on the staples. I hated mine as well.
Your scar picture is almost as scary as mine from
April. I was left with a baseball seam scar. No straight up and down.
Sorry to hear about your other ongoing issues.
I think my fear is based on the fact that I just had the same invasive surgery with all the risks 90 days ago. I feel like I can only get so many shots at a high speed drill, fractions of a millimeter from my brain.
But I am keeping my sense of humor about the whole thing. 9 months ago I was in a coma on life support and given hours to live.
everyday is a huge bonus.
Thanks again for stopping.

Anonymous said...

Do you s'pose that the sleeping issues are related to having another person in the bed? Many, many times I have moved to another bed because I just couldn't sleep next my husband. It's a big adjustment, and sleep is more important than intimacy, after a certain point.

Anna in IL

Flea said...

Everyone has given you such good advice. :) Please take some of it. We want to see you well, even if not as badly as you do. And naps are a wonderful thing. Get better, Katie. :)

Anonymous said...

Nap when you feel sleepy, whenever it is. A sleep deprived body cannot heal. And puhleez go to the doctor, young lady! ((hugs))