Fear

Probably one of the worst fears as a social worker that I have is that I will find one of my clients dead during a home visit. Over the years, I have lost over 30 clients to suicide, murder, illness, drug or alcohol related issues, etc. This week I had one of these scenarios at work but luckily our worry was unfounded when we later found the client safe in the community.

I do not handle death well. Some may say that I am overly attached to my clients but I do care about them and many of them have lost their natural supports over the years. While I hate when people do safety checks on me I sometimes feel the need to do them to ensure that my clients are safe and okay. What are your thoughts on safety checks?

I think I would rather be safe and sorry for caring too much than letting someone suffer for days because I didn’t act. Thank God that this week the client was safe!

Hope you all have a good day.

W L.

Merry Christmas.

Merry Christmas to you or in Swedish, God Jul. Praying that you are all able to spend time with loved ones, whether friends or family and are able to find some blessing in this holiday season.

As this Christmas season is here, I am grateful for so many things but am most grateful for just another day to spend with the people I care about. I’m thankful for one of the most memorable holiday seasons in my life which I was able to share with my significant other and our families and friends. I am grateful for medical doctors who can tell us we’re seriously ill before it becomes terminal. I’m thankful for the small little ways that our friends and family show us that they love us and the medical treatments that prolong the lives of cancer patients no matter how difficult they are.

And though my focus has been on myself and trying to meet my own needs since getting the cancer diagnosis, I hope to be able to return to blogging every day to every other day once I get my energy level back. But plus know, I am choosing gratitude as my outlook. I have so many things to be grateful for. Housing, a job, Al (my dog), my significant other who is amazing, my friends and family, the people I work with, etc. ,and all of you.

What are you most grateful for? Please understand that I may not be able to to post much on my blog until I gain some strength and energy.

Love Wendy

Recent events

I have not felt well since I had bronchitis for six to eight weeks this August and September. I remained exhausted after my lung x-ray cleared and still was fighting a nasty cough that would not go away. My lymph nodes have been swollen since this summer. I sleep as soon as I get done eating dinner. I finally started to push the doctor on why I felt so bad and the answer has been a little overwhelming. It is the reason I have not been blogging. I am looking at a lymphoma diagnosis that appears to be spread throughout my body. I have been in a lot of pain and discomfort especially in the bones Ive broken before. I am not one to complain about pain but this has been intense at times and unlike anything I be ever gone through. I have tests scheduled for tomorrow and next week for an MRI, Bone Scan, and pet scan. Because of all the appointments and such I reduced my work schedule to four days a week. I was having difficulty making it through a complete work week. I now take a day off towards the middle of the week to rest and rejuvenate to finish the week out with.

There is a tumor on my adrenal gland and another on my pituitary gland. It makes for crazy hormone levels.

But one of my strengths is resiliency. I am a fighter. I have managed to tell most people around me and start accepting their help. That’s a tad bit more difficult for me to do.

So bear with me as I go through the next few weeks.

W L.

Celebrating 100+

Thank you all so much. I now have over 100 followers on my blog. I couldn’t have done this without you!!!!

You inspire me to keep going and sharing even when things are difficult. I appreciate your feedback and support and kind words of encouragement.

Thanks for helping me making this milestone happen.

W.L.

Light

I am finally beginning to feel like I can see some lifhr at the end of the tunnel after increasing my Prozac this past Friday and taking a day off work to recuperate and deal with my mental health. The sise wddexta are the down side to taking PeoAc though. Diear came the horrible nausea and vomiting and headaches. Now for the sexual effects. We rarely talk about these aide effects but they definitely impact one’s sex life. I’m lucky enough to have female providers to talk to these issues about but it is never easy to through it out there in conversation and be willing to say that this drug is impacting my sex life and how. My clients are too embarrassed to even bring it up to me when we talk about side effects even when encouraged to do so. I think so often that mental health professionals determine that a stable life is more important than a sex life and that isn’t necessarily the priorities in that order for some folks.

But for now I will remain content that I am coming out of this depression a little bit more each day and the suicidal thoughts are diminishing as time passes. Hopefully nothing will happen to rock the boat so to speak for a while.

W.L.

Tonight’s quote

“You are worth more than your darkness.”

I am using the above quote to remind myself that I have more to offer life than my level of depression. So often when we get depressed we feel paralyzed by it and stop moving which in turn leaves us feeling helpless and hopeless. I need to push past these feelings as best as I can to try to shake off the depressive funk I am in or to see if I am having a paradoxical reaction to the Prozac which the psychiatrist gave me to life my mood and help with OCD symptoms. Before I started the Prozac I was obsessively ruminating on certain thoughts and issues continuously and never relaxing. Since starting the Prozac I have been able to let some to most of the obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviors go. This in turn has allowed me to relax enough to, according to my therapist to feel the level of depression that I have had all along but was masked by the severity of the OCD symptoms. Feeling as depressed as I have this week has been scary for me to admit to anyone especially when you were just given a med to help relieve it. I have three more days on this new dose for it to improve or the doctor said she will discontinue it if it is worse or not better.

It is so hard when we fall into the abyss of depression to remember that you have more to offer than the darkness around you because that is all you feel. I have to work hard to remember the qualities and talents and skills that I have to offer when I get down this low. It is hard for me to even recognize them at times when struggling. But the truth is I am a good clinician, caring and compassionate, loving, kind and loyal. I usually work hard to get my work done and make sure it’s done right the first time. I’m smart with a sense of humor that most of close friends get to see. I am determined to work despite several set backs both physically and emotionally. I have survived 100 o/o of my worst days and there have been some pretty crappy ones along the way. So despite my feelings, I am doing better than I thought.

W.L.

R and R

Spending resting and relaxing today. Last night I finally slept more than a few hours for the first time this week after finally taking a prn med for mixed or manic states for situations like being on steroids. Last night I ate dinner before crashing. The next task is a shower. While these may seem like such simple tasks they can become overwhelming when someone becomes depressed or in a mixed state who is diagnosed with Bipolar disorder.

I am slowly putting my feet back underneath me after a pretty intense period of instability. If you don’t know the risks of taking steroids with a mood disorder I strongly encourage you to educate yourself about it… especially if you have been diagnosed with Bipolar disorder. I hope that is a very long time before I have to go through this again. I cannot handle being on steroids for such a long time and unfortunately six weeks of intermittent use was enough to destabilize my mood to the point of nearly ending up in the hospital. It is a serious issue for all to be aware of even if the steroids are the inhaler type.

So my thought processes are still a little slower than usual and more guarded. Hopefully things will continue to improve as I wait for my appointment with the psychiatrist on Tuesday afternoon.

I appreciate everyone’s support during this time as I have shared my struggles on my blog. I needed to decompress somewhere and let out the fear I was feeling. I know I will be okay eventually and back to myself. I apologize if I made anyone worry. Sometimes we all go through dark moments. I just poured mine out on my blog the other night when feeling so alone in it physically.

W.L.