Tag Archives: stress

Well that’s…unexpected

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I finally got the hip x-ray results from the radiologist the other day, and it was kind of a shock. My doctor initially thought hip impingement, which ended up not quite being the case. I’m at risk for FAI, but that’s not the underlying cause of my hip problems.

I turns out that I have acetabular retroversion in both hips, and that this puts me at risk for FAI. This is a really difficult disorder to describe, as it’s pretty abstract. Basically the socket in the hip is supposed to be rotated towards the front, so that you would be looking into the opening were the head of the femur not there. With acetabular retroversion, the socket opening is turned so that it’s not in that forward-facing position; rather, it’s turned towards the back. Here are some x-ray images that depict normal hips versus those with acetabular retroversion:

Normal hips. The green line and arrow represent the lip of the front of the acetabulum. The yellow arrow and line represent the back lip.

Hips with acetabular retroversion. Again, the yellow represents the front and the green represents the back. In “A” you can see the characteristic figure eight pattern that identifies it. You can also see the rotation in figure “B,” where you can’t really see into the socket.

My x-rays also showed degeneration of the symphysis pubis. Not quite sure what that means, but it definitely doesn’t sound good. Looking it up, it looks like it’s usually associated with aging or postpartum women. Since I’m neither, it’s a bit more confusing. Another source said that abnormal pelvic mechanics can contribute degeneration, which I guess the AR would constitute as that…But I still don’t know what the implications of that are, or how it could be halted.

I’m honestly kind of worried at this point. My hip pain has only gotten worse over the past few weeks, to the point where it’s almost constant when I walk. And I’ve been getting groin pain, which I never did before. I was reading that when a person with AR starts to get hip pain, it’s a sign that the body can no longer deal with the abnormal pelvic mechanics. Again, I don’t know what the implications of this are, but I’m definitely worried. I don’t get to see my sports medicine doctor until the 18th, so I have some time to worry, but I’m hoping to start up PT again this week, so maybe he’ll be able to give me some answers.

I’ve also had other nonsense to deal with. Particularly: roommates. Good. Lord. Can I tell you just how excited I am to live by myself next semester? I never, ever, ever want to live with another roommate ever again, unless it’s my BFF in Chicago. First, I’ve got one roommate throwing an absolute fit because she doesn’t want to pay a third of the electriv bill, she wants to pay a quarter. One roommate moved out and isn’t coming back, so it makes sense to only split it three ways instead of four (since she’s literally using no energy), but this girl is all mad because she claims that she paid for her quarter when she barely lived there the first half of the year, and that she used like no energy (not true — she does laundry like every three to four days, so her portion of the bill is by FAR the largest). We finally settled it so that I would be paying the last two week bill by myself, and she would pay a third. Which really makes no sense and isn’t fair, but whatever. I don’t want o fight about it.

Cliffnotes on the other issue, as it’s kind of a long story. My other roommate also brought back her demon cat, behind my and my other roommate’s back, after telling us she wasn’t bringing her back over the summer, and has been lying about it to us. I caught her red-handed with the cat the other day when I went down to pay my rent. The cat has already torn up the apartment and torn up my own personal leather couch. I tried to gently confront her about it all but she was really combative, so I walked away, as I did not want to fight. I then got a text from a friend with screenshots from her Twitter account, which she had made private and afterwards had an absolute freak out about me, calling me a “lunatic” and “psycho” and saying I was “stalking” her and that that was “disturbing” and “scary.” …What?! The girl is just really immature and childish. I wrote her a message addressing all this and explaining why I (and my other roommate) were upset, but I haven’t heard back from her yet. I actually had to e-mail it rather than send it over Facebook as I had planned, as she BLOCKED me over Facebook. Again…what?! Does she think this is going to make the situation better or solve anything? So anyway, I’m giving her a few days to respond, and if she refuses, I’m going to management and I am going to suggest they move her out. I have too much medical stuff to worry about right now to also have to be dealing with this. But maybe she will respond and we’ll get it all sorted out. Fingers crossed.

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Is anyone else sweating to death? …No?

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Oh my goodness, the weather. So it’s finally nice out. This past weekend was great — 60’s to high 70’s, breezy, clear. In short, amazing. And then the actual week started, with the temperature getting up to around 80. Okay, I would prefer the 70’s, but I’ll take anything over snow…And then the storms came, and with them: humidity.

The humidity. Holy crap. In the past year or two, I’ve thought that I might be more sensitive to humidity than most people, but it’s never been a huge problem. But now my medication has been reduced for my memory, and I’m becoming more aware of all sorts of symptoms. The symptom today is my sensitivity to temperature and humidity. I can tell you how humid it is before setting a foot outside. I will lay in bed all night sweating to death if the temperature is higher than about 65 and there’s any sort of humidity. I’m dreading this summer. I don’t know why I’m looking at schools out west — I would never survive it.

It’s really frustrating because my roommate just doesn’t get it. I talk about how miserable I was all night and she’s like “It was perfectly fine in here last night.” Well, for you it was. You don’t have a disorder that’s wreaking havoc on your body all the time. For someone like me with fibromyalgia, a single degree in temperature can be the difference between being comfortable and being miserable. A tiny bit of humidity can make trying to sleep a hell. (In general, I think my roommate might also just be very insensitive to a lot of different things — sounds, smells, temperature, sight etc. I’ll hear things that she never notices, and I’ll smell things she never will. Or, it could be that I’m way more sensitive to stuff like that because of the fibro. Or it could be both. It’s probably both. We’ve also been a bit rocky this week because she likes to be very neat, and I’m not so neat when there are a lot of things going on and I’m stressed out. I came back from class the other day with all of the stuff I had in the living room piled on the floor outside my door, even though it wasn’t that much, but it included my laptop and camera. I was pissed. I understand she likes to be neat, and I try to respect that, but she also needs to try to understand that I’m not a neat freak. The way for her to deal with needing things clean is to just ask me to put things away, not pile it up. It’s not like I would ignore her — I would do it because I would know it was bothering her. And I was about to clean that stuff up anyway because my parents are coming tomorrow. She just couldn’t wait. Ugh. Anyway, back to humidity…).

I really hate when I bring up an issue like this and get an incredulous, unbelieving look from her and others. They just don’t get it. Just because they’re unaffected by something, they can’t understand that for others that same something might be a huge issue. This has been a problem between my roommate and I for a while. She tends to time her laundry poorly, so she’ll be running the washer and dryer past midnight some nights. It doesn’t bother her at all. For me, it’s torture. I can’t sleep because of the sound of it. She just doesn’t get it, even when I explain it to her, and she still does it even though she knows it bothers me. Same with smells. There have been times where she’s made the most rancid-smelling salmon. I’m pretty much vomiting from the fishy smell, and she doesn’t smell anything at all. I’ve tried to ask her not to make such smelly things, but she just doesn’t understand. She can’t smell it, so she thinks I’m just throwing a fit over nothing.

Blah. I just need to live by myself. I’m at that point. I love my roommate to death, but especially with all of these unique fibro symptoms, it would be a lot easier if I just lived on my own and dealt with them on my own. That way I’m not inconveniencing anyone, and I can take care of myself. Just a few more weeks until graduation, then I get my own apartment in the fall! Thank goodness!

Blah, stress

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I guess I haven’t written in a while. It’s been a super stressful week or two. The biggest source of stress: scheduling.

So I’m staying one semester past graduation to finish some art credits for art therapy graduate school requirements. My first hurdle was getting a time ticket to register, since the registration office had it down that I was graduation and that was that. That process took a week, but I finally got my ticket and the all-clear to schedule for another semester.

Next: figuring out what classes to take. That took a week or so. I kept creating a potential schedule, but then would remember something that I had to leave time open for, or some reason I couldn’t take a class. But I finally got it, and with time open to continue doing my volunteering. Check.

Then I had to figure out how to register for them, as I did not have the basic art pre-requirements for any of the courses. I got into the drawing class I’m in currently by permission of instructor after submitting a portfolio. I thought that’s what I would have to do again. I spent a week and a half trying to get the art department to respond to my e-mails and get me the answers I needed. I literally went down to the department office seven times to try to talk to the secretary to figure out what to do, and she was never here. 10:30? “Oh, she left for lunch.” 12:30? “Oh, she’s not back from lunch yet.” 3:00? “She went home early.” 8:00 am? “She’s not in yet.” 1:30? “She’s in a meeting.” This went on for a week, then finally someone told me to go to another guy who’s an adviser for the art department. Went to him and he told me that I needed to fill out force-add forms. Force-add forms? I didn’t have to do that last time…

So I went and got the forms and filled them out, including all the reasons I had to take the classes and why other class sections wouldn’t work. Turned them in and the secretary (who was actually there as soon as I had gotten an answer!) and she told me she would e-mail me with the decisions on whether or not I got into the courses within a week or two. That was last Friday. Went in on Thursday to check and see what the status was on the decisions, because I’m really anxious about getting into the courses I need. They’re not making decisions until APRIL 22ND, after everyone has already scheduled. So not a week or so — three weeks. I seriously almost burst into tears when she told me that.

Here’s the deal: I need these classes now, so that I can apply to graduate school on time. And I need all fifteen of those hours, or I’m behind. And I’ve already signed a lease to live in an apartment off campus for the next semester. So I’m here, no matter what. When I was first trying to figure out if I could stay another semester, the advising office made it sound like it would be easy and no big deal. If I had known that I would get this much push-back from the art department, and have this many difficulties trying to register and get into courses, I would have said “Screw it” and taken courses at a university close to home.

Blah. So I have to wait two more weeks to find out if I’ve gotten into those courses. The stress continues. At least my work load has decreased a bit — last week was my hell week, with presentations, research paper drafts due, and exams. Thank goodness all that’s done ^^ And yesterday my roommate and I took a roadtrip to the Cincinnati Museum Center to see the museums and the Dead Sea Scrolls. The museums were cool (especially the Children’s Museum! It made me wish I were still a kid!), and we went to Newport to get dinner before our time slot for the Dead Sea Scrolls. The scrolls were a huge disappointment, though. The exhibit wasn’t set up well, and there was no regulation for flow through it. We were in there for an hour and a half and we barely saw anything. We did see the actual scroll, so I guess mission accomplished, but I would have liked to see more. Oh well, everything else was fun ^^

Hopefully I’ll find out about my schedule soon and my stress level will greatly diminish! After that I should be cruising to graduation!

Is this week over yet?

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Good lord. This has been the longest week of the semester, I think. It just never ends. I’ve been trying to figure out my schedule for next semester, which has been a bit of a nightmare. I need 15 credit hours for graduate school, all art credits. My first schedule I had seven different classes on my schedule — drawing (3 credits), painting (3), ceramics (1), sculpture (3), woodworking (1), metals (1), and printmaking (3). Wut. Yeah, that wasn’t going to work. Also because it would interfere with my volunteer work. So I tried again — drawing (3), painting (3), ceramics (3), and sculpture (3), with three credits during the summer with a special program that my university offers. Much better. But now the problem is actually getting all that scheduled, since I don’t have a registration time ticket (since they think I’m graduating and leaving) and because I haven’t taken some of the pre-req courses for a few of them. So I’ve been running around all week trying to figure out who to talk to to get all of this resolved. It’s been crazy, and I’m still working on it.

I’ve also been running myself ragged trying to get everything done this week. I managed to get my one exam that I forgot resolved (I can take it and get half credit, and then extra credit, so it’ll be fine), but I still have a million other things to do. I’ve been trying to finish drawings, working on schedules, writing papers, figuring out group projects and meetings, attending a plagiarism hearing as a witness for my roommate (she got off, basically only because of my testimony), picking up my cap and gown for graduation, and trying to figure out what project I’m doing for my volunteer work. I have to go work on stuff tonight for that volunteer work project (playtime, we call it!), figure out what we’re going to do, and then test it a few times. And, just to add to the stress, I’ve barely had time to eat the past few days. I tried to make barbacoa in my crock pot, but for some reason it totally messed up and was burnt black. I have no idea what went wrong, as I followed instructions to the letter. So last night I ended up eating a corn dog for dinner at like nine o’clock. Ew.

To make everything worse, I haven’t been sleeping well all week. They installed a new light on the apartment building across the way, but it’s not a normal flood light. It’s like a prison yard spot light. Even with my shades closed and my curtains (which are supposed to be light-blocking) pulled, it’s like trying to sleep during the day. I’ve been sleeping with a blanket over my curtains. It’s ridiculous. And because that makes my room so dark, I have a lot of trouble waking up in the moment without at least some natural light. I don’t know what to do, short of getting a ladder and punching out that light.

This lack of sleep is really running me down. I’ve been having more flare-ups than usual, and my hips are killing me. We had to stand all class for my drawing course (but we’re finally doing color — yay! Side note, I love color and I love pastels because I can layer color. We had to draw two fruits, a banana and an orange for me, and use only four colors to draw it, which I chose orange, yellow, green, and purple. My instructor thought I was cheating and using more than four colors. Sorry that I just know how to blend and pick colors? I’m just really good at it. Anyway…). All that standing has just been killing my hips. And then I got to the building where my next course was, after running all around campus trying to get answers for my schedule while exhausted from lack of sleep and fibro-fog, and the elevator up to the third floor was out. I was in the basement. So I had to drag myself up all of those stairs. Ugh. Now my hips hurt even more, even while just sitting here. At least we’re watching a movie in my class, so don’t have to actually think or pay attention. Instead I can write this post!

Anyway, sorry for the rant. It’s been a long week and I just want it to be over. Playtime tonight, then one class in the morning and I can go home for the weekend and see family. It can’t come soon enough! Cheers!

Ew, rain

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Guys. It’s gross out. It’s been raining all morning and I think it’s supposed to rain for the rest of the day. Yesterday was gorgeous — we got up into the high 60’s — but today is just blah.

For the first time really, I’m noticing how the weather affects my pain levels. I think it’s because I’m finally paying attention to all potential life and environmental factors and how they might be influencing me. Last week I had a beer for some pre-St. Patrick’s Day celebrations at my school and the next morning I woke up completely sore. My arms hurt, my legs hurt — everything hurt. Just one beer triggered a major flare-up. Wine doesn’t seem to do that to me, but beer does. That’s alright, though, because I really don’t like beer and I probably wouldn’t drink one just for kicks.

The weather is a problem, however, since it’s not something I can avoid or control. Rain seems to be the worst, as well as sudden weather changes. I’ve also noticed that high humidity increases my pain and I’m really sensitive to it — I know it’s humid long before I even go outside (typically I’ll be sweating and unable to sleep during the night as the humidity rises), while the rest of my family has no idea until they leave the house. There hasn’t been a big thunderstorm since my fibro has gotten worse, so I’m not sure what that’ll do. It also hasn’t been that warm since it’s gotten worse, so we’ll have to see what high heat does this summer. Cold isn’t fun, but it’s not terrible either. Finally, I’ve noticed that the time change seems to have thrown my body a bit out of sorts — I really hate adjusting to changing times.

Overall, a pretty blah day. My legs really hurt, which made going and staying asleep difficult last night. And now my arms really hurt, making typing this kind of difficult and painful. I think I’m going to make a trip to the chiropractor this week to get some adjustments done and see if that helps. I also have a sports medicine appointment tomorrow for my hips, so we’ll see how that goes. And, finally, a dentist appointment later in the week (which is always kind of awful — I have a hard time getting the dental hygienists to understand that I can’t keep my mouth open for six or seven minutes at a time like others probably can. It hurts too much, and I pretty much leave the office exhausted and flaring every time). In the mean time, I’m just going to try to relax and enjoy my spring break (key word — “try.” I realized as I was leaving school that I had completely forgotten to take an online exam that was due. So I’m trying to get that worked out with my professor. I really need to get this memory stuff fixed — hopefully this won’t stress me out too much this week!) and work on turning my antique mall-found apple crates into an awesome DIY coffee table and end table! Pictures of the process will definitely be posted!