Tuesday, September 30, 2014

September 30th

As expected, this concert is definitely making my anxiety go a bit funny. I do have to stay til the end though, as I'm supposed to get a signed poster afterwards. (I pre-ordered my ticket, etc.) The problem I'm having is that I can't sit anywhere here, so I feel weirdly antsy. But I'm still having fun. :)

Monday, September 29, 2014

September 29th

Within Temptation concert tomorrow! I'm hoping that'll be super fun, because I hella love them. I haven't been sleeping well though, and I just feel like crap. So I'm going to try and go to sleep pretty soon I think.

Last night I was in a super crying mood. I started crying over one thing, and then after that, everything was making me cry. I couldn't go to sleep when I wanted because I was so randomly teary. I've been feeling a bit more cry-y than usual lately (seriously, I got choked up during the premiere of The Amazing Race AND when I started my rewatch of A:TLA), and I'm thinking that may be from the fact that I've been off my antidepressants for like a month now.

I've also been having what I consider to be brain zaps, although I'm not sure that's what they actually are. I know brain zaps are a thing, but I don't know if what I'm having is that thing. Basically, you know when you're in a plane, and it does a fast descent, and you get that feeling in your stomach? But you also kind of get it in your brain? I've been having that a lot lately. I know "brain zaps" (which are more often described as shocks) are common when abruptly discontinuing antidepressants, so that might be what's going on.

I also just feel shitty. Like, general malaise shitty.

I also feel like everything smells like cat piss around here. Today I cleaned (like, with soap and water) Cas' litter box, scoop, etc. It's practically brand-new squeaky clean. But the apartment still smells like piss and I think there must be some in the carpet. I've had the windows in the living room open for like two weeks and I've tried air fresheners and odor absorbers and nothing is helping. It also got cold. However, my room is stuffy. It feels gross in here. And it's messy, and I have no motivation to clean it. I started organizing and cleaning, but didn't finish. And the dishes need to be done but my aversion to getting my hands wet and having them feel cracked/dry mixed with how shitty I feel is not helping.

I need someone to come into my apartment and just clean it all up. It seems so daunting and every time I do clean part of it, it feels like it's still not clean, and my room is still stuffy but I'm cold from the living room and it stinks in here and there's probably mold in the sink and I just don't feel great about the whole thing.

Plus I hate the feeling I've got right now, the sleepy, generally ill feeling. No motivation, everything seems awful, I don't want to do much, etc. I hate that I still haven't been able to see a goddamn psychiatrist because even though I'm literally in a situation where I feel like crap and I can't work, NO ONE can or will see me. It's still another week before I get to see someone. And he's not even local. I have to drive an hour and a half just to get help. I feel like I'm simultaneously exhausted, sick, depressed, agitated, anxious, and on the verge of freaking out. It's a mess. I hope I can take Lexapro again and that it'll be okay for me to take SSRI's and that I can feel back to normal soon. My apartment is stressing me out. I need a magic fairy to clean my place and make Cas not be so smelly and to give me a nice, helpful medication to get me back on track.

It's cold in the other room but I still feel so stuffy in here. It's making me feel icky.

And hey, I'll probably have some strange men invade my apartment at 10:00 AM tomorrow to tear apart my bathroom. Awesome.

I hope you're all doing well. I love you all lots!

Sunday, September 28, 2014

September 28th

My new glasses aren't working out. The way the frames and the lenses go together just doesn't work- my prescription is so insanely high that the lenses bend so much that they distort the parts of my face that you seen behind my glasses. So it appears rimless glasses are out of the question. Luckily Lenscrafters is awesome and I can swap them out for some different ones. Thanks, LC.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

September 27th

I'm agitated with Two Dots. I feel like I'm on a level that's 85% about luck and 15% skill. I've got the skill down- I've had 126 levels to practice. But even if I do everything right, it doesn't give me the elements I need to complete the level. I've tried different strategies, and I've been on this level for three days or so. I think it's a game issue, not a Kate issue.

My Lush bath bomb was pretty sweet. Bathing is green water is fun. And my cupcake face mask was fun too! We'll see how my skin likes it.

Friday, September 26, 2014

September 26th

Well, my bathroom ceiling is gone again. More leaking. More bursting. But this time it happened while I was away sooo my bathroom got soaked. Including my two new bath mats. I still have the receipts and tags for those so they might be going back. I don't know what was in that ceiling water, but it's probably not nice. It's also going to be awhile before they can come fix my bathroom again and I'm supposed to be down in Minnetonka next week when they ~might~ be coming, which is a problem because I can't leave Cas there with them. I worry about him. He could run out the door or they could step on him or something. And I'm definitely not going to keep him in my room for that long. My bathroom here is cursed! But hopefully the bath bomb I bought yesterday is not. I don't think it is. It smells like Froot Loops.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

September 25th

Don't worry lovelies, I didn't forget about you! I'm just very sleepy tonight. I'm at my dad's house now, but I trekked out to the Mall of America to go to Lush, and it just tired me out. There was a lot of walking and a lot of sensory involvement. But at least I got Dippin' Dots! I also decided to try a bath bomb from Lush. I went there to get a facial cleanser, but I've heard wonderful things about their bath bombs, so I figured I'd give it a go. It'll be an adventure!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

September 24th

It's about time to start my yearly rewatch of Avatar: TLA! I might rewatch season three of Legend of Korra too. Then I have to finish my Hilda cosplay hat and my Luca Blight painting and mail like three things and I'm going home tomorrow to pick up mail and do laundry and whoa stress. I also have to return stuff and buy stuff and there's just so much to do.

Two weeks til I can get on my new meds. That seems like so, so far away because I just want to get back to work. I'm also going to the Within Temptation concert on the 30th but I'm not sure how well that's going to go. I'm really upset because I'm worried it'll just be sensory overload and way too much stress and I'll have to leave early which saddens me so deeply because I've loved them for years but since they're based in Europe, they don't come to the US much, and when they do it's to like NYC and LA. Grr. Dammit, I will enjoy myself!

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

September 23rd

I slept most of today. Whoops! But I had a lovely time with my new psychologist this morning. She seems really cool.

I'm painting again now! Tonight's theme: Two Dots. (Luca Blight is on hiatus because he's hard.)

Monday, September 22, 2014

September 22nd

How to tell your anxiety is a problem:

I bought this amazing sparkling pumpkin cider today. I had some, liked it, and thought gosh, vanilla rum would make this even better. So I put in just a wee bit of rum (like 1/4 shot) and then had a few sips. Delicious. Then I realize that whoa, I'm taking different medication these days, and Ativan and alcohol are both CNS depressants. So I poke around the internet and everyone is like DON'T MIX ATIVAN AND ALCOHOL because you'll get sleepy and go to sleep and stop breathing.

So now I'm terrified to go to sleep. I'm so, so tired and have been all day, but now I'm like "oh god it's the benzos/alcohol" and I had my last dose of Ativan hours ago and so, so little alcohol but I literally feel like I'm going to have a panic attack and I'm too afraid to sleep. And I need to be up early tomorrow but I'm literally scared to sleep because I had a small dose of Ativan hours ago and the tiniest bit of alcohol just now. Like I am legit afraid.

Anxiety ignores logic. I'm sure it's fine. It should be fine. But I'm terrified.

I get to see a psychologist tomorrow morning though! Maybe I'll tell her about this. I need some coping mechanisms, man.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

September 21st

Cas is hyper tonight. He's also really farty. I didn't sleep well last night, so I'm extra tired. Also hungry.

I have nearly all of my Halloween costume complete! It just needs to arrive in the mail. :)

Saturday, September 20, 2014

September 20th

Sup homies? I'm gonna work on my Luca Blight painting for a bit and then go to bed. I tried to do another painting without sketching it out first and it looks like shiiiit so I dunno what to do with it. Does anyone want an asymmetrical anchor?

Friday, September 19, 2014

September 19th

I'm so sleepy, but I wanted to get more stuff done tonight! I wanted to watch some Pokémon and Avatar: TLA buuut I'm tired. 

I got an amazing package in the mail today from the lovely folks over at Play Dots. They wrote me a sweet letter and sent me stickers! 

I had my first pumpkin chai latte of the year today to celebrate my progress, whee. Three years!

Time for sleep! I keep having weird dreams, so I'm hoping for something fun tonight. Maybe I can be a Pokémon master. 

Thursday, September 18, 2014

September 18th

Blah, I feel icky today. Not anxious, just unwell. And I'm kinda chilly. And my toilet overflowed today and flooded my bathroom. But tomorrow will be better!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

September 17th

I am super chilly right now. I'm gonna go to bed after some good ol' Lucahjin Twitch streaming.

How's everyone's week going?

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

September 16th

I went to Goodwill yesterday. I decided to poke around the men's tshirts, because I have very few tshirts and for some reason, all unisex tees get put in the men's section at Goodwill. (Except the pink ones.) I found this super comfy, slightly oversized grey tee and fell in love with it, but decided I didn't need it after I found something else that I did need- a cosplay piece I've been seeking out for many, many months. So I left the grey tee behind.

Today I went back to Goodwill. I was feeling stressed after doing some chores and wanted to find the comforting grey shirt and buy it. It had been on my mind since yesterday. I knew it would make me really happy. I went to the men's shirts, and it wasn't there. I scoured every size, every color. I checked the women's shirts. I checked the kids' shirts. I checked and re-checked. It was just a boring grey shirt, why would anyone buy it in the span of a day? I was devastated. I found another grey men's tee, just a plain one, to be a replacement. It wasn't the same, but it was still great. Then, in one last futile attempt, I went back to the women's activewear section. And there it was. My grey men's tshirt in the wrong size spot in the wrong place, it was there. I literally teared up. I'd been searching for almost an hour for this shirt. I grabbed it so fast and bought it (and the replacement grey tee that I also love) and now I'm in bed with my favorite pajama pants and my perfect new tshirt and my favorite perfume and I'm happy. Now I'm going to take a nap. :)

Monday, September 15, 2014

September 15th

Cas peed on the carpet today. I don't know why. I already had to get rid of the futon, I don't want to have to call in carpet cleaners. (I can't afford carpet cleaners!) He needs to get himself sorted out. He and I are cuddling right now though. He's nibbling my nose, though...I wish he wouldn't do that. Like, I know it's a big target, but still. It's a good thing he's so cute.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

September 14th

The sleepies are getting me. 

I woke up feeling great this morning. I felt like I was all back to normal. I got dressed all cute, did my makeup, it was nice. I went to Bed Bath and Beyond with the intention of also going a few other places since I have some giftcards, but I got bad tremors again leaving BB&B, and they got especially bad driving home. It was the full-body akathisia, not just the leg bouncing. So I stayed in for the rest of the day, feeling pretty lame. Now I'm thinking I'll take a little Ativan and sleep. I have to actually do stuff tomorrow, so sure, 6:39 PM seems like a reasonable time for some sleep. 

Not working is hard. I miss working. I also miss paychecks. How do I pay my bills? D:

Saturday, September 13, 2014

September 13th

I'm back in St. Cloud! I actually was able to do a few things today other than sleep, and Sarah even came over for a little bit. It also turns out that in protest of my absence, Cas took to peeing on the futon. Delightful. I also spilled an entire bag of cat food on the kitchen floor today. Welcome home Kate, everything is crazy! I'm going to try to go out tomorrow and just be outside a bit. The weather is nice, and being cooped up inside all day is no fun. I can't believe it's been almost a week since I was in the hospital. I feel like I'm doing better! Yay!

Friday, September 12, 2014

September 12th

I'm heading back to my apartment tomorrow. I need to spend some time with my cat. I miss him, and I know he's lonely up there. My poor baby! I'm gonna give him so many cuddles tomorrow. I'm excited to have access to a car again, too. I can't drive much because I'm so sleepy most of the time, but there are a few hours every day where I'm pretty alert. Those will be my getting-stuff-done hours, assuming going out doesn't freak me out too much. I've got quite a few doctor's appointments to make for this week, so hopefully I can get in to see who I need to see.

Sorry this has partially turned into a health blog. Short, silly entries and cat videos will return soon!

Thursday, September 11, 2014

September 11th

I'm constantly sleepy. I feel like I could sleep all day and all night, and I very nearly have been. I'm thinking about taking another nap now. I went to bed at like 10 last night and slept soundly til 6, then took a nap at noon until 3, and I'm still so sleepy. And I haven't even taken the long-acting med today, just half a dose of Ativan like nine hours ago. I dunno, man. I prefer this to being totally freaked out of course, but I'm ready to be all well again!

I'm pretty into Quiz Up lately. 

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

September 10th

I'm a very sleepy lady tonight. I'm doing okay, slightly better than yesterday. I just gotta keep on keeping on until the serotonin toxicity isn't an issue anymore, and then I can hopefully start taking a long-term medication again instead of (or maybe in addition to?) my calming meds. It's weird being so sleepy all the time. It's not tiredness, it's sleepiness. Like, droopy eyes and lethargy, not the tired you feel after you exert yourself. That plus my wiggly legs and inability to stay still is a funny combo, but at least I'm getting good sleep, I think. It feels refreshing, anyway!

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

September 9th

All right, I'm sleepy but I'm going to give you guys a very well-deserved update today!

On Saturday afternoon, my mom came up to visit me. We decided I should go to the ER, as my anxiety symptoms had gotten progressively worse over the course of about a week. At that point I was having a lot of fidgeting, tremors, restlessness, agitation, and trouble sleeping, plus I would get very anxious in any sort of public place. (For example, I was kind of tweaking out when I went to Walmart to make a return.)

Quick backstory: I was on a particular medication from about age 12 or 14 or so up until this past March, when I switched because while I felt the previous medication handled my anxiety very well, I still felt unmotivated and has some depressive symptoms. So from March up until about two weeks ago, I was on a newer medication. Two weeks ago, quite suddenly, I started experienced very noticeable anxiety symptoms. They got worse and I switched back to the highest dose of the old medication I was on without building up to it and without weaning off the other one, which was at the suggestion of the nurse at my doctor's office, as my doctor is out of the office for the month of September.

So anyway, my mom drove me to the ER and the doctors said I'd started too much of the old med too soon, and that I should just decrease my dose and I'd be fine. My mom and I went to Target and I started feeling light-headed and dizzy, a possible side-effect of the meds. Back at my apartment I felt tightness in my chest, which I attributed to the anxiety.

That night, my symptoms got worse. I was shaking, my chest was tight and I felt like it was hard to breathe. I was incredibly weak because for the past week I'd been shaking and fidgeting my legs uncontrollably, and it was moving to my hands and even neck when I would stand up. I felt dizzy and often like I was going to pass out. I didn't sleep that night. The next morning the nausea came, along with hot flashes, retching, and feeling like I was going to pass out. My mom was unable to come up to bring me to the ER, so I called for an ambulance. (Which just made me more anxious, because holy shit calling 911 and having to be taken to the hospital in an ambulance is scary.)

I had a great paramedic in the ambulance who immediately gave me some anti-nausea meds after I said I got motion sickness really easily, and riding backwards in a vehicle with no windows was like a nightmare. I still felt nauseous and anxious, but I managed not to puke! I was feeling very much like I was going to pass out and my chest was very tight though, so I got an oxygen mask.

At the hospital, I was put in a room and given one of those heart rate things for your finger, and then they left me in my room. I waited for 5-10 minutes and no one came in except the initial nurse who just took my info and gave me my wristband. I was still feeling dizzy and like I was going to pass out and had a lot of pressure in my chest, so I paged a nurse. And no one came. For 15-20 minutes I was in there clutching the guard rails of my gurney, shaking, feeling like I was going to pass out, feeling like I couldn't breathe, and no one came when I pushed the assistance button. Eventually nurse came in. I told her what was happening. Her response? "Just try to calm down and breathe." She then turned off the lights and left me. I was so frustrated by that. Eventually a doctor came in (his first response was, "Why are the lights off?") and told me someone would be in shortly to give me some medication to calm my system down. Then he left, and I was there still in distress. Eventually someone came and gave me something to essentially tranquilize me. I fell asleep pretty quickly after that, and then my mom showed up.

I was wheeled out to my mom's car my some nurse who decided I needed to go very quickly, so I was being pushed at an alarming rate which made me feel super light-headed. I got in my mom's car and proceeded to be about 25% awake for the car ride down to her house. When I got there I hazily went up to my bedroom and went straight to bed.

Yesterday I went in to see a psychiatrist. He told me I likely had serotonin toxicity, although luckily a pretty mild case. This was from switching to such a high dose of that medication without first weaning off the other one, then building up to the high dose. He told me not to take either of those meds and prescribed two new meds for me. One was the same one they gave me at the hospital, which is a fast-acting but not long-lasting sedative, and the other is a similar drug but one that takes a little longer to work and lasts longer. So I've been taking those for two days now, just on an "as needed" basis. I do the quick one in the morning and it calms me down a bit. But nothing so far has been able to stop my need to move/shake/wiggle my right leg. (You know when you're in class and someone's bumping their leg up and down during a test out of nervousness? That's me, just about 24/7 now.) I've also taking the longer acting drug but it makes me sleepy. I took it this afternoon and promptly fell asleep, and was awoken by my sister telling me it was 9:00. I was so disoriented that I thought she meant 9:00 AM. Since then I've eaten a bit and hung out with my sister. Luckily I'm able to interact and socialize in a home environment okay, although I still have a lot of excess nervous energy.

The plan going forward is to wait for the two serotonin-based drugs to get completely out of my system, and use the two newer "chill out" drugs in the meantime to manage my symptoms. I'm still not able to do anything in public as it's extremely overwhelming and I'm so anxious and restless and agitated, as well as still a bit light-headed. I may have a bit of withdrawal symptoms from the other meds too. Hopefully in a week or so I can try and get started on a new medication that I can just take once a day and it will get me back to where I was before this whole mess started.

My worry going forward is that I'm going to be one of those people who is either on a cocktail of drugs, or who can't find something that works and thus am unable to work or function well. This terrifies me. I was so happy at my job and doing well with it, and I want to go back and do it normally like before. I was pretty mentally okay for many years in terms of anxiety symptoms and ability to function, so this sudden change is really bumming me out. I feel very isolated, very alone, and very unhappy. I miss that just a month ago, I was functioning completely fine, and then things just suddenly went awry and no one seems to no why. I just want to be able to go back to feeling like I did before, not being bedridden and bound to my house and feeling so off.

Sorry this was such a long entry, but I wanted to give you all and update, and it'll be nice to have this for my own records too. Mental health is a funny thing, huh?

Also, a funny fact: While I was debating whether or not to call for an ambulance, I decided it was very important that I blog first, then call, in case I didn't have access to a cellphone or I was kept there overnight. Priorities! Blogging! Yay!

Monday, September 8, 2014

September 8th

I just had my first really long restore bout of sleep since the hospital. I'll post updates about my trip there tomorrow. For now, more resting!

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Saturday, September 6, 2014

September 6th

Being sick is not fun. I went to the ER today to get my medication sorted out because I was given too high a dose and got even more messed up. Going to the ER when you're panicking and anxious does NOT help. I thought I was going to jump out of my skin. Now I'm back at home and I still feel agitated and fidgety and nauseous and awful. And my stupid shoulder has a knot and I have a terrible headache and shoulder ache too. I didn't sleep well or very much last night. So now I'm watching QI and hoping to feel better soon. Being unwell is totally cramping my style. I just want to go to Caribou and get some pumpkin chai tea. 

Friday, September 5, 2014

September 5th

I'm still not feeling well. I went back to my old medication of many years and I think I started on too high of a dose too soon because I felt like hell this morning, and now I'm dizzy every time I stand up. So I've been in bed most of the day. I just want to go back to feeling normal. I hate feeling like crap. Being anxious is not a fun feeling. 

I still haven't gotten an iced pumpkin chai from Caribou yet! I need to do that. 

I hope you all have a lovely weekend!

Thursday, September 4, 2014

September 4th

I felt extra icky this morning, but I'm doing better now. I'm going to try and sleep some more. I'm a little hungry, but I worry that if I get up and get good, it'll wake me up too much and I won't be able to get back to sleep. 

I need to get back into A Feast for Crows. I had a dream about season five being filmed and now I feel the need to read!

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

September 3rd

I'm going to try and sleep now. I want to fix my sleep schedule so badly, and I'm still sort of sleepy, so wish me luck!

I've got some new perfume from a swap arriving tomorrow. I hope I like it.  

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

September 2nd

My cat has notoriously stinky poops. After he does a poo, it is customary for me to spray air freshener and shut myself in my room. (Living in an apartment with a cat is great, right?) I'm not always at home or awake when he goes, so it's not a huge deal because his litter box doesn't stay smelly, it's just right after he does a poo that it smells.

So I'm hanging out in my room tonight and Cas comes in. I smell something kind of funky and assume he just pooped. No big deal. But suddenly the smell intensifies. Like really, really bad. I'm thinking there's been some sort of poop emergency, but the litter box just looks normal. I come back in my room. Terrible. Literally gag-worthy. I sit down on my bed and lo and behold, Cas managed to have some poo stuck to his backside. Which was on my comforter.

Yes, there was fresh, notoriously stinky cat poo on my comforter. And because I'd grabbed my comforter to investigate, it was on my fingers.

After thorough hand-washing and then additional hand-sanitizing, I went back in my room. The smell was lingering. I combed through my carpet, stripped my sheets...no more poo traces. Just phantom poo smell.

So now the comforter is in the living room because it smells like hell's bowels and I have to get it washed tomorrow, and I'm in my room that vaguely still smells of poo.

An enjoyable experience overall, really.

Monday, September 1, 2014

September 1st

Happy September! I'm so excited that it's finally autumn, or just about autumn. The weather is changing, the leaves are going to start changing...pumpkin-flavored drinks are coming back...

Unfortunately, my start of autumn is slightly marred by the fact that for some reason, my meds seem to have stopped working. It's like I'm not even taking them. It started about a week ago and it's not gotten any better. I'm in this weird place where I'm constantly full of opposing feelings and reactions.
I'm really fidgety and restless, I can't sit still, and I feel like I'm going to jump out of my skin. Going anywhere that requires me to be there for a period of time wherein I can't leave (work, hair appointment, etc.) has been setting off anxiety attacks. It's this feeling that if I needed to leave, I couldn't. (Not because the doors are gonna lock and I'll be trapped, but because I have an obligation to be there.) This is one of the main reasons I hate flying, by the way- at least with work or an appointment, if I had a real problem (like if I threw up, for example), I technically could leave. But on a plane, you're literally trapped. Anyway, that feeling of being "trapped" has been going on really severely in the past week. I had the most stressful haircut ever on Friday, which is sad because the lady was so nice and it was by all means a relaxing haircut (I went to an Aveda salon so I got a scalp massage and such), but I felt so freaked out the whole time that I couldn't enjoy it.
Then on the flip side of that, I have no energy or motivation to get anything done. I just want to sleep all day. I feel like I can't even make phone calls. I laid in bed for twenty minutes today thinking about how I needed to call someone and I just couldn't. I don't know how to explain it. It took all of my energy just to go out and buy milk today. It's sort of funny because I'll be laying in bed super exhausted, trying to sleep, while simultaneously fidgeting around and tapping my feet and feeling like I'm freaking out.

So basically I'm in this place where I'm super anxious but also dealing with depressive symptoms, so I'm all messed up. I'm going to see about going back to my old meds that I was taking earlier this year, because this never happened with those. And I feel like shit. I love my job and I'm usually super ready to go to work, so I'm really not liking this feeling of feeling like I can't go to work. Not only is it hard to get myself out of bed to go there, once I get there I constantly feel on the brink of a panic attack. It's miserable.

I haven't had anxiety this bad since I was in middle school. I know it's illogical but that doesn't make it go away. I am constantly telling myself that what I'm feeling doesn't make sense, but that doesn't calm the part of my brain that's freaking out.

Remember: mental health issues are not a choice. People who suffer from them know that what they're feeling isn't "normal" - but knowing that something isn't right can't change the chemicals in your brain any more than someone with diabetes can choose to have different levels of insulin in their body. It's just chemicals misbehaving.

I hope you're all doing well. :)