Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Eat Drink Sleep


If you've read my Star Wars Run post, you might have noticed I've gained weight. In fact, nowadays I dare not weigh myself anymore. But, just in case you think I've been irresponsible and stuffing my face with snacks and whatnot, let me explain. This weight gain is legit. See? I even put it in italics so you know for sure it's legit.

Before I dive into my excuses, I am happy to tell you I was able to exchange my wrong medal for the correct one. So I'm able to get on with my life now.

And I've got my official results from the Star Wars run. I think I did pretty good! Seriously though, I wish I can run faster. Losing some weight will help. Well, currently the situation is more of a stop gaining more weight.

Speaking of which...

Sometime in July 2015, two years ago, I started having headaches at the back of my head, on the right hand side. At that time, the headaches came with my digestive problems which my doctors said could be just one of the many symptoms of gastritis. So when I complained of headaches, the doctors  told me to take panadol (paracetamol). Then in August last year, the thing happened with my gallbladder. So it ended up being removed which turned out to be a good thing because most of my digestive issues disappeared. I thought my headaches would disappear as well. But they returned. At first, slowly, then surely.

This year it got real bad. Sometimes I had them daily. Sometimes the whole day. Sometimes a few hours. It didn't matter. It was hell to me. Some days the headaches disappeared. Like during my Hong Kong trip? Zero headaches. A week after I came back, the headaches returned with a vengeance and would not stop. Every day and every day, they came. Sometimes they spread and that meant I would spend the whole day in bed. Panadols didn't work. The pain just got worse and worse and always the headache started at the same spot - at the back of my head. And all I could do was wait it out. Wait for it to go away.

One day in April I found myself googling for painless way to die. That was when I realised this was serious. I was in too much pain. I couldn't handle it anymore. I made an appointment with the polyclinic to get a referral to a specialist. Surely some doc out there can cure me?

Some days, the Universe is good to me. At the polyclinic, I barely sat down when my number was called. What? No waiting time? My doctor was a sympathetic woman. She listened to my story and finally said I had better see a neurologist. Usually I wait months before I get an appointment to see a specialist. Again, the Universe had my back. I got to see a doctor the following week. What?

The verdict? The doctor said he suspects my headache is due to a deterioration in certain segments of my neck and spine. I had a MRI 10 years ago which he could view. Anyway, the doctor suggests I try a medicine which he said is effective for his patients with similar problems. There are patients with similar problems? Music to my ears. If the medicine does not work, I'll have to go for a MRI. (which I am so hoping to avoid - isn't it like lying in a coffin?)

So I tried the new meds. Thankfully, it's quite inexpensive. The first week I took half dose. It didn't work. The headaches came fast and furious. The first day after my full dose, still the headaches came. After that, suddenly, magically, the headaches stopped. I couldn't believe it myself. I shake my heads vigorously just to be sure the headaches aren't lurking around. Nope. The headaches stayed away. The pain in the neck and shoulders which come with the headaches stayed though. Actually it's almost as if the headaches continue to come but I can't feel them anymore. Occasionally I feel shadows of the headache but they never push through.

To fix my neck issues, I went to a physiotherapy. Unfortunately, the therapist made things worse. So I won't be seeing him again.

I've been taking the meds for a few weeks already and I found myself with all these pain free hours while I'm awake. I was worried one day the meds might stop working so I've been making full use of my pain free hours. I started looking at my bag pattern making. The last time I made a serious attempt to revive my bag pattern making was before I went to the hospital for my gallbladder. I entered the hospital a bag pattern maker and emerged a baker. Yes, that's what happened to me. Maybe I was a bit insane in August last year because when I looked at the stuff I was working on, they were like gibberish. So I scrapped everything and started from scratch. I have to say this. Writing instructions is so much work. The details! If the meds carry on working, who knows? I might even publish a new bag pattern this year.

The one bad thing about the meds? It makes me sleepy. I have to sleep like 12 hours at least for the sleepiness to wear off. If I sleep less than 12 hours, I'm like a zombie all day. Did I say there's one bad thing? There are actually two. One of the side effects of this pill is sudden unexpected weight gain. Not exactly something I'm happy about. It's not that taking the pill itself results in the weight gain. It's that my appetite increases and a lot of food starts to taste good to me. I have all these desires to eat whatever I wanted. It's quite scary because I really don't want to get fat. Anyway, I did indeed gain weight because many times I gave in to my appetite.

Yesterday I went back to see the doctor again and he says I need to try acupuncture since physiotherapy didn't work out. I can't wait to feel needles all over my neck. <shiver> The doctor says I cannot sleep 12 hours a day. He has come up with a solution. I have to take the medication earlier. As simple as that. The doctor also warned me that the possibility of me becoming very, very fat is very, very real. It's one of the side effects of the medication. I am very, very scared. He gave me a strategy to counter my insatiable hunger. Drink water. Thanks doc!


Bethany said...

Oh man. When my migraines increased to at least once a week I thought it was terrible, but every day all day? My sympathies, dear. I hope these new methods work for you!

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