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Here's a reminder to take care of yourselves

Noellesmom
Posts: 1315
Joined: Aug 2010

On an otherwise routine GYN annual checkup, I complained of some pain which resulted in an abdominal CT which revealed a "spot" on my bladder with a biopsy scheduled in three weeks (that old waiting game sounds familiar, doesn't it?).

Now, I'm willing to believe this is going to turn out to be scar tissue or something benign but hope it serves as a reminder to those of us who are caregivers not to neglect our own heath care.

Especially those of you who have recently lost someone: don't fail to take care of yourself during such a vulnerable time.

Hugs!

luz del lago's picture
luz del lago
Posts: 452
Joined: Jul 2010

Hoping that all goes well and that the waiting period is not too stressful for you. Keeping you in my thoughts. Take care and let us know how you are doing.

Lucy

Noellesmom
Posts: 1315
Joined: Aug 2010

Your calm and soothing voice is always welcome.

UKLady's picture
UKLady
Posts: 85
Joined: Jan 2011

I wish I had taken your advice some weeks ago - my own (treatable) thyroid cancer came out of remission three weeks ago. As sole caregiver it is tough for me to even find time for the tests. I always seem to be fire walling Steve's emergencies of late!

I should have taken up my blood tests sooner but it was too easy to say I don't have the time.........or energy!

We should have a caregiver health check campaign!

Take care

Lyndsey

Noellesmom
Posts: 1315
Joined: Aug 2010

Energy is definitely an issue.

Prayers lifted for resolution of the thyroid cancer.

Hugs!

UKLady's picture
UKLady
Posts: 85
Joined: Jan 2011

Thanks -I so appreciate the thoughts :-)

Lyndsey

3Mana
Posts: 829
Joined: Aug 2010

They say sometimes when you have alot of stress that all kinds of things can happen to your body. I'm hoping when you get your results that everything will be okay. I'll say a prayer for you! Let us know what you find out, okay? take care! Carole

Noellesmom
Posts: 1315
Joined: Aug 2010

I will, Carole. Previous surgeries on my bladder make me believe this really could just be scar tissue that needs to be removed.

But, with cancer, we have all learned to be hyper-vigilant!

karenbeth's picture
karenbeth
Posts: 194
Joined: Sep 2010

I haven't gone to any doctors appts since my husband got sick 8 months ago. Dentist, Gyn, dermatologist...all over due! I just got word that my PCP is leaving and he recommended someone else, so I'm thinking this is a good time to schedule something. I'm lucky that I am a generally healthy person. But you are right, you never know.

Good luck to you, I will keep you in my thoughts.

ketziah35
Posts: 1154
Joined: Jun 2010

I am trying to emotionally healthy sfter exposure to my family. I hurt my foot in June and the heal of my foot continues to hurt. I guess this is a reminder.

Thanks.

here4lfe
Posts: 296
Joined: Jan 2010

I need to schedule a physical LOL

Best

DrMary's picture
DrMary
Posts: 527
Joined: Nov 2010

but we do. I managed to get off my butt and see the ObGyn after many years, but that was because my husband's cancer was found to be HPV in origin and it was no longer "routine" to go get a pap smear (I was also having some suspicious symptoms). That turned out to be fine and then I had time for nothing else during my husband's treatment and recovery.

I know I should go in for a physical - I gained about 10 pounds during our trip to the heart of darkness and my blood pressure is up. Of course, I have no more leave left, and it seems that every second of my time is taken up with work and my family.

Let's all make a pact - I'll start. I'm setting an alarm on my PDA as well as on my Yahoo calendar. It will go off during my break on Monday to remind me to call my GP (who I haven't seen in 5 years) to ask for the first appointment available. Then I can work out who will cover so I can go. I'll post when I have this done.

I'm not looking forward to this - I will have to admit I haven't done the mammogram he wanted years back, and that I not only didn't drop the recommended 10 pounds but gained another 10. However, I know you folks won't let me avoid this. . .

Anyone else need a kick in the pants? Post your plans to call your doctor on Monday and we'll all bug you about it until you get it done. I'm much better at keeping track of other peoples' appointments, anyway.

here4lfe
Posts: 296
Joined: Jan 2010

Doctor AND Dentist

Best

ketziah35
Posts: 1154
Joined: Jun 2010

I need to lose weight!

neverquit
Posts: 221
Joined: Oct 2010

OK, I'm in too. I have not been for a physical in........ never. I did, however, go to the gynecologist (it was 18 years since my last exam) in September. Mike made me promise him in the summer to go as he did not want to get well and then lose me because I was too pigheaded to go for those checkups (he knew me so well - how I love him and miss him).

And since I did promise him that I would also get a physical this Spring, I appreciate the reminder as I want to keep my commitment to him. Besides, if I don't go, he may find a way to rap me in the back of the head (from the spiritual world) or something.

Noellesmom
Posts: 1315
Joined: Aug 2010

Is amazing.

Kudos to everyone who has stepped up and realized we aren't taking care of ourselves.

And hugs to everybody, too!

DrMary's picture
DrMary
Posts: 527
Joined: Nov 2010

I did make the appointment for Wednesday - my doctor made it just too easy. He has a PA now, so I will at least get the lecture from someone new. He also does online scheduling and late hours once a week - I think he's one of the good guys.

Anyone else make their appointments today?

luz del lago's picture
luz del lago
Posts: 452
Joined: Jul 2010

Everything checked fine, just deficient in vitamin D, so got an RX for it. Still taking Celexa and Ambien, and labs were good in regards to side effects.

Thank you all for the encouragement!

Take care,

Lucy

neverquit
Posts: 221
Joined: Oct 2010

Waiting for a call back as mine was not in today (vacation). If I don't hear back by Wednesday, I will call again.

here4lfe
Posts: 296
Joined: Jan 2010

Doctor only. I hate the dentist !

Best

DrMary's picture
DrMary
Posts: 527
Joined: Nov 2010

and mine's a real sweetie. I probably would never go, but I schedule my appointments to be the same time as my kids'. The only good thing to say is that, after several years of going regularly, the only pain is the "routine" one of cleaning, probing, etc. I don't have to worry about major repair issues as he's fixed them all.

I had waited previously until I cracked teeth - I don't recommend this. Come up with a good incentive to reward yourself for going.

here4lfe
Posts: 296
Joined: Jan 2010

Thanks for the kick!

Best

DrMary's picture
DrMary
Posts: 527
Joined: Nov 2010

Yeah, well I shouldn't have expected that the doctor would say "just lose a few pounds and your blood pressure will come down." He doesn't care why it's up, he just wants me to take medicine. I'm very depressed - it has always been low and I hate being "someone with high blood pressure."

The above statements are made even more stupid by the fact that much of my family has a genetic kidney disease that causes high blood pressure (kicks in during middle age). My father died too young (of cancer) for it to have shown up, so I don't know if I even have a 50% chance of having it (his mother did, so he could have - if he didn't, I can't). You'd think I would be more aware of the risks of high BP. . .

So the good news is I will finally find out - with my BP up, insurance will pay for the test to check my kidneys.

The other good news is that I didn't wait so long that I had a stroke or something.

I'd still rather not be faced with medicine for the rest of my life. Sorry to be a poop right now - I'll be more cheerful after I finish all my tests. Right now, I want to have a beer, eat a ton of chips and cry.

This is the other reason we put off seeing doctors.

P.S. No, I haven't told my husband - I'll wait until I get all the information. He has enough to worry about now.

Pennymac02's picture
Pennymac02
Posts: 336
Joined: Aug 2010

I used to give blood regularly, a couple of times I was turned away because my BP was too low. Now I find myself on not one, but two BP meds, 40 pounds overweight, and unable (or unwilling) to get on a "need to be healthy kick". I HATE being someone with high blood pressure! And I'm willing to do ANYTHING to lose weight, except diet and exercise, of course. : )

DrMary's picture
DrMary
Posts: 527
Joined: Nov 2010

So I got put on Benicar - my BP went right down to 120/80, but my pulse is up to 80 (I had been about 60). Did you have effects like that? I'm also a bit dizzy - not dangerous (kind of fun, actually).

About diets - a friend went on Nutrisystem as she really needed to lose almost 40 lbs and couldn't. She's lost 17 lbs so far - although I suspect that is because some of that food is inedible. Some of it she likes, however, and she claims to be happy with the program. Her health insurance paid for part of it, also.

With Doug still trying to gain back about 20 lbs, and me also trying to feed our 13-year-old boy (he is growing so fast you can see if if he stands still long enough) I have not been making much low calorie food, so I don't see me dieting any time soon.

Exercise is another story - that 50 minutes when I'm on the elliptical in the morning before work is the only time I really feel at peace. It's not making me lose weight, but it might be saving my sanity. . .

here4lfe
Posts: 296
Joined: Jan 2010

Keep on walking. I am starting my exercise again. The people I know who have high BP who have controlled it with diet and exercise are very happy.

Best

DrMary's picture
DrMary
Posts: 527
Joined: Nov 2010

You'd think that after the devils I faced with my husband's cancer, I could get through a simple test tomorrow to see if I do indeed have my family's genetic kidney disease (which I was sure I hadn't inherited until my BP went up). I'm a wreck. It doesn't help that I haven't told anyone (except y'all). Doug has a big project due tomorrow so I don't want to worry him unnecessarily and I don't want to put the burden on my kids.

I'd really like a short vacation from real life right about now. . .

Noellesmom
Posts: 1315
Joined: Aug 2010

Coming your way, Dr. Mary. Try to remember doing the right thing is rarely easy.

I admire you for getting out in front of the potential issue.

Let us know what you find out. How long do you have to wait for results?

Noellesmom
Posts: 1315
Joined: Aug 2010

Let's see - my mom has been in and out of the hospital since the first of the year, my husband is still recovering from his bout with hypopharyngeal cancer (next PET is 4/12), I have a spot on my bladder with biopsy next Monday, I am lethargic, have gained 25 pounds since Jim got sick trying to eat with him to keep him eating, my exercise has been nil since I take Mom and Jim to all their appointments and work full-time...yep, I'm definitely stressed and too busy to start a health regime.

Yet, still, I am going to. I am tired and stressed and I'm not eating right.

Here I go on my "taking care of me" new start. I've got to take care of myself because no one else can do it for me.

I am definitely on the upswing of motivation and have started modifying my diet (Jim eats just fine now, thank you, and I don't have to be the cheerleader for that anymore) and will walk at least fifteen minutes after I get home tonight.

Tired of being tired. Time to get over it.

Hugs to all of you! Hope you can reach down inside yourself wherever your motivation is hiding and pull it out and get going.

It is more than time.

DrMary's picture
DrMary
Posts: 527
Joined: Nov 2010

Routine has always saved me - I learned that from my step-father (who lost his wife to cancer in the 40s and found the only way to go on was to make everything a routine). It has helped me to make only one change at a time and find ways to make it a hard habit to break. I found that I could handle one "improvement" a week (like exercising 5x/week, or removing snacks from the house, or getting to bed at a decent hour, no matter what).

The only time of my life that I have any control over is the hour before breakfast, which is why I do cardio then. I set everything up the night before (including making a protein drink and putting in in the fridge) so I have no excuse to avoid it - no searching for the running bra, or finding a good program to watch, as I have it all there. So far, that is the only "good-for-met" thing I've been able to keep up on. I might go back to logging my eating on CalorieCount - it really does help me remember to not overeat. . .

Which I'm tempted to do right now - my doctor will get the results of my ultrasound in 2 days and I'll start bugging him. I tried to get the technician to offer an opinion but she wouldn't. I watched over my shoulder and was positive I saw cysts and all sorts of nasty things in my kidneys, but I have a pretty active imagination.

Good luck on the biopsy - spots on bladders are often calcium deposits. . .

Noellesmom
Posts: 1315
Joined: Aug 2010

Whatever this is it is near the neck of my bladder, blocking complete emptying of the bladder and, thus, providing me with UTI's (or, perhaps, frank bladder infections) since late January, possibly before. Also, some significant pain in my very lower left quadrant.

Ready for it to be gone as I don't do so well with antibiotics and have been on them almost constantly for a couple of months. Don't like that.

And be sure to let us know your test results. When do you expect to have them?

DrMary's picture
DrMary
Posts: 527
Joined: Nov 2010

and it was good news - normal kidneys, which means I am unlikely to have PKD (the kidney disease my aunt and uncles had and all of my cousins have) as the cysts show up in the 40s (I'm 51).

Of course the bad news is that the raised blood pressure is indeed due to my crappy life style. Even if I keep up with exercise and lose weight, I might still have to take this BP medicine the rest of my life. Argh. But it's better than cancer and better than having kidneys that are going to explode.

On a sad note - my father's siblings all died of PKD, 2 before they knew what it was. He died of brain cancer before we knew about the disease, so we never knew if he had it. However, neither my brothers nor I got it, so it is likely he was not carrying the gene. What luck, the only one in a family of 4 to not get the gene, and he was the one to get brain cancer.

OK - everyone else out there: have you had a physical in the last year? Do you need some encouragement to go get one? Don't forget the dentist and OB/Gyn. Are you over 50? Have you had a colonoscopy? (I will need lots of bugging to get that last one.) Had your eyes checked lately?

I'm going to repost that last paragraph on a new thread - folks will be invited to post their "checklist" of health issues they know they should take care of. We'll all give helpful hints and bug each other to see our doctors. I know it helped me to know you folks weren't going to let me skip (I was pretty close - I was in tears today when I went to get my results, as I was that scared).

Noellesmom
Posts: 1315
Joined: Aug 2010

Glad things are going well in that department and hope the exercise and diet at least result in reduced or easier-on-the-body blood pressure medication, Dr. Mary.

Hugs!

ketziah35
Posts: 1154
Joined: Jun 2010

I have been dogged tired since December. Just couldn't figure it out why I was so tired and stressed. Low and behold I discovered the miracle drUg-vitamin B12. Began taking it this weekend and I have started to cook again, which will help me with my weight. I broiled some salmon and a steak had a salad all is good.

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