Fractured Facade

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Friday, March 26, 2010

Numb, Not Dumb

My husband regretted having me go with him to have the doctor look at something that was growing on his knuckle. For weeks he kept poking at it trying to make it "go away." I couldn't stand looking at it so I dragged him to the doctor. Apparently it's some sort of cyst that usually sprouts on the wrist and not the knuckle. The doctor gave him three nothing...try to drain it with a huge needle...or get surgery. He opted for choice # 2. I couldn't watch. The doctor said it might not work, or it could come back again. To be honest I don't see any difference afterwards other than my wallet being a couple of hundred dollars lighter. Well maybe a teeny-tiny little difference, but not much. Getting surgery is out of the question so for now he's just going to deal with it. I suggested putting duct tape on it for a couple of days to try and smother the thing but my husband won't go for it.

A more important discovery form that visit was that my husband's blood pressure was up again. It hadn't been high in years but now it was spiking. Last year, particularly the last couple of months, have been stressful to him as he worried about keeping the shop open. Thankfully since the weather has broken people are emerging from their houses and we've been busy again, but that doesn't mean the physical damage to his body hasn't already been done. The doctor put him on blood pressure medicine which at first my husband didn't want to take. The doctor handed me the brochure and asked if I'd like to see my husband drooling in a nursing home after he had a stroke. He's taking the pills.

While we were there the doctor asked about his cholesterol levels. Last time he had them checked was two years ago at the Carillion Clinic. We both did and my levels were higher than his! When I mentioned that to the doctor he asked me what I was doing for it. I said I was trying to keep it under control by diet and exercise (I actually said this with a straight face.) He informed me that high cholesterol is usually 70%/30% genetic/diet so if I had a family history (I do) no matter how much I exercised and watched my diet I couldn't bring it down to a good level. I just brushed it off. We were there for my husband, not me. The doctor drew blood to check his levels.

The next day they called and told my husband to come back in. His levels were high but they wouldn't give us specific numbers, so he made an appointment to go back in two weeks. I'll be curious to see if his levels are lower than my most recent test in December. At that time my gyn told me to make an appointment with my family doctor to get on medicine. I ignored him, but now I'm having second thoughts.

For the last couple of weeks I've been feeling really strange -- sluggish, easily winded, my arms and legs fall asleep, a lot. Sometimes when I'm sleeping, and sleep is rare in itself, I awake arms numb and have to shake them to get the circulation moving. I can feel my heart flutter once in a while. The latest event is that my lower lip will suddenly vibrate for no reason at all, like the heart flutter. I'm thinking that maybe the blood is not flowing free enough through my body. I'm thinking that maybe I do need to get on medicine because I don't want to wind up drooling in a nursing home with my husband feeding me. I know a sign when I see one. I may be numb, but not dumb. I made an appointment to see the doctor the day before my husband goes. While I'm there I may ask for sleeping pills as well. I need to fall asleep and then stay asleep for more than two hours at a time. Maybe it's time I stopped being so anti-medication. I'm not getting any younger, or healthier, without it.


  1. I felt the same way you do about medication. I was against it. I figured that with the way I work (and I do work on my sculpture etc) I would be fine. My blood pressure started increasing over the years as did my cholestrol level. With medication I've got all under control and feeling on top of the world. (that is not to say I won't drop over tomorrow) I tested myself in January to see if I really needed the cholestrol medication. I went off of it for 6 weeks, just to be sure. When I went back to the doctor, I found that the level had risen dramatically. I immediately went back on and will test again in 6 months to be sure it went back down. You are doing the right thing to do what is necessary to stay healthy. Good job!

  2. Oh, geez, this is tough. My husband is on two blood pressure medicines. It is scary. When the doctor put him on his second meds, I became the food cop. It's not fun, but the second set of meds really scared me.

    Fingers crossed for positive results!

  3. I really want to get my energy back. It's taken me a while to admit I can't do this by myself. I hope for positive results too. Thanks!