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Home from the doctor

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Well, I finally saw the doctor today. The first thing she did was to chew me out for not calling her sooner! She ordered some lab work to see exactly where my health is, although she DID say that I have sturdy heart and lungs, which is at least a relief.

I've resisted antidepressants but she said, "Listen to your doctor!" and prescribed Celexa for me (yes, Mom). So that effectively settles the alcohol question, because you can't drink while taking antidepressants. I'm having a little "going away" party tonight, then whatever is left over is getting poured down the sink. I also have to see a psychiatrist soon to talk about the depression (this in addition to seeing Arthur). She's also scheduling me for a sleep study because I'm such a touchy sleeper. This may or may not indicate anything, since I've been an insomniac literally since infancy. But I'm having the study, and I may need a CPAP. Not sure how I'm going to get that big, honkin' monster into my bedroom, but we'll see.

Finally, she strongly urged me to look into weight loss surgery. She said she thinks I'm a good candidate for it, so I'm going ahead with it. Obviously, there's a long process involved, so nothing will happen in the next week or so, but we'll see. One of the big things that stopped me before was that they used not to do it in my area. I would have had to go to San Diego, about 600 miles south of here. But that's changed, and they do it here in Northern CA now. Lot to be learned and figured out yet.

The biggest problem I'm having right now is the sense that this all means I failed -- that I wasn't emotionally strong enough to fight off the depression, that I didn't have the spine to lose weight without intervention. Something I need to discuss with Arthur and with the psychiatrist.

Meantime, she doesn't think I have ALS. She said she gets hand cramps as well, and she's sure it's just garden-variety carpal tunnel. That would be the least of my issues right now!

Oh -- and she gave me two hugs before I left. Probably the medicine I needed most.
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  • JUNEBUG4967
    I think Anarie made some great points in her comments. And it is not easy doing weight loss surgery. My son did gastric bypass a few years ago. he has to be very careful what he eats, how much and make sure he gets enough protein. He has gone back to exercising and is staying active to keep the weight off. The main thing he as to watch for is over eating at any one time. Not everyone is successful with this or other types of weightloss surgeries. My SIL had stomach stapling and has since slowly gone back to her old way of eating along with slowly increasing the amount of food at a sitting and has regained most of the weight she originally lost. I think you are probably one who would keep the weight off because you already have goals where you want to be thin so you can do certain things. Listen to your dr., the shrink and Arthur. They are there to help you. I wish I was closer to be able to give you a real hug, but here is the best I can do wwith a cyber hug. emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    1674 days ago
  • SPEEDY143
    Here's three emoticon emoticon emoticon YOU are not a failure Mary. There are different paths for everyone and it sounds like you are finding yours. Stay strong sweetie emoticon
    1681 days ago
    Your doctor sounds great. Stick with the plan!
    1681 days ago
    I'm so glad you're getting the Celexa. Do start with that. Depression, insomnia, and obesity are all so closely bound together that it's hard to fix any of them without addressing the other two. You may find that dealing with the depression and the insomnia will get the weight loss moving and let you postpone the surgery. It's certainly not going to hurt, and once you've been on the medication for a little while, you're going to notice improvements in things you thought were completely unrelated to depression.
    1682 days ago
    I'm so glad you got your emoticon !

    Remember, the only true failure is giving up without trying.
    1684 days ago
    I'm so happy you went to see your doctor. She sounds very caring. I really think you have to stop beating yourself up. Most of us here need help to lose weight or to fight off depression. Just because you seek help does not mean you have failed. In fact you are a winner to admit you need help. Take the help and get better....God bless.
    emoticon emoticon
    1684 days ago
    It almost sounds like you think accepting weight loss surgery is cheating, somehow, because you're not doing it by sheer will-power, guts and determination, From what I've read, weight loss surgery is far from taking "the easy way out." So many people have been praying for a miracle for you; maybe this is it. Your doctor -- God bless her -- thinks you'd be a good candidate. And you have all of us rooting for you, whatever decision you ultimately make. You are so loved. Nothing you do can change that. emoticon
    1684 days ago
    First I have to chastise you. I have been taking anti-depressants for over 10 years. I felt good enough to go off last November and if you remember that was a disaster and I was back in in a month. I know I am NOT WEAK. Would you tell a diabetic she was weak because she took insulin. I know you wouldn't.
    Second.... oh, so glad you got the hugs. I know this whole process was a challenge for you and I am sooooooooo proud that you followed through.
    Third: a prediction. A year from now you will be in such a different place in your life!!!!
    1684 days ago
    Glad to hear your news. I know a lot of people who have had weight loss surgery and have also cared for scores more as a nurse. It's a good option for people who need that extra help. Make sure that when you find a bariatric surgeon (the specialist who does it) that you check out his/her references. You'll also have to meet with a nutritionist who will help you learn what you will and won't be able to eat. This is just another step on your journey, and you're moving along. Take care!
    1684 days ago
  • LINDA!
    How many doctors hug their patients? Not many! I am glad that you received advice from a caring physician. I also have had insomnia since a child. I don't remember not having insomnia. Take care....having the surgery may be just the way to go. I went on anti depressants in 2008. I feel much better. emoticon
    1684 days ago
  • JILL313
    Hi Mary, It's great you went to your Doctor and she is helping you feel better about life and yourself. Follow exactly what she advises you to do and by all means try out the Celexa but as she probably told you it takes a few weeks to fully get into your system. I know you'll be happier and enjoy your life more. It is a good idea to see a Psychiatrist or Psychologist who can give you further medical and medication advice about helping Depression. Having gastric Bypass Surgery is a huge decision. There are pros and cons to everything including this surgery. Quite frankly, I've only known 2 people who had this surgery a wife and her husband. She has lost and maintained her weight for years but he initially lost weight and then ate back his weight and is now heavier than when he had the surgery. I'm so happy you took the most important step and that is being really honest with yourself and your Dr by telling her exactly how you feel. I am so proud of You. Continue to take really good care of yourself and you'll be in my prayers and thoughts.

    Hugs & Love,

    1684 days ago
    Your doctor sounds great. Please remember depression is an illness not a weakness
    1684 days ago
    That took COURAGE! Good for you!
    1684 days ago
  • LIS193
    Your doctor sounds like a wonderful person - listen to her! :)
    You have not failed anything - life can be very overwhelming and you can't handle everything on your own all the time. You went to see your doctor - that is not failure, that is a huge WIN!!
    1684 days ago
    Glad you saw the doctor and don't save your medicine, take it!!!!!

    1685 days ago
    You didn't are human! Aren't we all? Good work on getting to the doctor and getting things sorted out!! Good luck on whatever comes next! Jeannie
    1685 days ago
    I'm so glad you saw the doctor and got a few answers.

    As for failing, you haven't "failed" in any sense. Depression is a disease that has many facets and therefore needs many facets in order to control it. Whether it be talk sessions with Arthur, the assistance of medication, and/or other avenues, they all work in tandem.

    As for the weight loss, you haven't failed there either. You simply haven't found what will work for you. Maybe surgery is the answer for you. Now is the time for research.

    1685 days ago
    You haven't failed, you need extra help. Help is being offered, take it. Depression can also be a chemical imbalance so how could you do anything about that? That is like me blaming myself for my diabetes. Not entirely my fault. So do your research and planning. emoticon
    1685 days ago
    I GLAD that you got to see the Dr.

    NOW, my girl, you oughta know that you can't fight depression and win, all by yourself! You NEED that extra help, and I know that you have Arthur, but sometimes we NEED more than just an "Arthur" !!!! SOMETIMES we NEED to listen to our Doctors (or friends) and bite the bullet, so to speak, and TAKE that medication. It CAN be a lifeline!!!!

    Don't be so down on yourself about the suggestion re the weight-loss surgery, either! Many people in your situation have a very hard time trying to lose the weight. A lot of people get extra support from those they live with and close family - neither of which you have. Factor in the Depression, too, and I can TOTALLY understand why you are where you are. Just accept that the WLS is a helping hand to get you on that road!!

    BIG hugs,
    Kris xxxx

    1685 days ago
    It sounds like she is a very nice doctor. As others have said you now have a plan and implementing it will keep you busy and as you get things done you can get great satisfaction from that. You are not a failure- everyone has problems and we just have to keep trying. By the way- don't throw the remaining alcohol away -freeze it to use in sauces. I do that all the time, though when I think of it it's not that often that there is any wine left in my house! Good luck!
    1685 days ago
    You have a plan and it is the best one for YOU.
    1685 days ago
    You haven't failed hun! You've taken positive action to get yourself well.
    Everyone has critical times like this and so often it's left too late to help- you've done great in going to your doctor. emoticon you're on the way to better health already!! emoticon
    1685 days ago
    I'm so glad that you went to your doctor and that she is going to help you. Don't think of this as failing, but you are putting yourself first in line now. You've talked about always doing things for other people and now you get to put all your focus on Mary. I'm so happy for you.
    1685 days ago
  • SROUS1340
    It soundsl like you have a wonderful doctor. I took anti-depressants for 5 years and they probalbly saved my life. For sure helped me to keep functioning. It's not a failure, it's strong to accept help when you need it. And the weight loss surgery sounds like a wonderful idea too. It will help you get on with your life, to find energy to chase your dreams, maybe even attend culinary school...Congratulations, it is a lot to think about and do, but it's all good. emoticon
    1685 days ago
    First things first - you didn't fail - you made an appointment and are listening to your doctor. I am so glad you are getting help and maybe you will start feeling better. (HUGS)
    1685 days ago
  • SHARON10002
    You are so very lucky to have such a CARING doctor! So glad you went, and it sounds like she is going to help you tackle things one by one. Don't be so hard on yourself- we all have needed help at least one time or another. . . . Sometimes things are just more than we can handle on our own, and it's not that we're not strong - sometimes they're just too overwhelming for us.
    I have a cousin who has battled against her weight for 60+ years of her life. She just had gastric bypass surgery done 8 weeks ago, and has lost 38 pounds to date!
    Try to be a little gentler on yourself. . . you deserve it!
    1685 days ago
    Amazing how much good hugs can do! Don't beat yourself up. Be very good to yourself right now.....and always. You've started down a new path. Look upon that as a positive thing and give yourself a pat on the back for getting to this place. Meanwhile, here's another ((hug)).
    1685 days ago
    You sound like the trip to the Dr has you feeling better. I'm happy for you. Insomnia can create havoc, not enough sleep affects weight. When my sleeping is normalized I always find it easier to lose weight and more importantly, lack of sleep is sure to leave my nerves a jittery mess. The CPAP is ackward but the rewards are worth it. Thank you for posting today.
    1685 days ago
  • JUDY1676
    I am so glad that you took the first step to finding your health. Am sending lots of emoticon . Remember that depression is an illness and you have taken the first step to recovery. Your spark friends are here to support you and to encourage you in this journey.
    1685 days ago
    I am glad that you got in to see the doctor. I am sending you "HUGS" too!

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

    1685 days ago
  • ELSCO55
    emoticon It takes a strong person to first admit they need the help.
    1685 days ago
    Here are some more hugs to go along with the ones your doctor gave you!
    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    1685 days ago

    Comment edited on: 7/10/2013 9:53:21 PM
    Your doctor sounds like a wonderful person! I am so glad that she takes your health so seriously, and is so caring. Truly a bright spot in our health care system.

    Please do not beat yourself up over needing help. Depression is a clinical issue, and a deep clinical depression is not something that can be conquered alone. Seeking help for that, and the weight issue, is a responsible move on your part, not proof that you have failed. It takes a strong person to admit that they need help, and to accept it. I hope and pray that all of this help will bring you into a brighter spot in your life.

    1685 days ago
    Today is NATIONAL PINA COLADA DAY, so I hope you had SOMETHING before giving it all up or pouring it down the drain! emoticon
    1685 days ago
    Ahhh... it sounds like you've got yourself a good, supportive, resourceful doctor there, Mary! That's good to hear - you deserve the best. I feel pretty optimistic about your medical concerns, too. I'd felt pretty sure - even at this distance and without knowing you - that you didn't have ALS, but that you do have health situations which must be addressed. I can share with you that I took Celexa for about a decade, and it was almost magical the way it lifted my depression. We're all different, but I didn't need any counseling while on it, and in my own case, my internist prescribed it - though it's probably optimal to have a psychiatrist do this. Practically within about three weeks of my starting to take it, those around me noticed a marked difference in me - mostly, that my usual habit of worrying was gone. For me, Celexa had some nice anti-anxiety effects, too. That's what prompted me to stop all drinking, and to this day - I've been off Celexa for a couple years now - I still don't drink at all. It's a depressant, so I'd rather just abstain from it at this point.

    Anyway, I'm glad to hear, too, about the possibility of weight-loss surgery for you. I understand that's quite a challenge, but under the right circumstances, wow, can it be beneficial. All the best! emoticon
    1685 days ago
    Mary, I am very glad you went to the Dr. and are listening to her. You know, it's not failure or lack of a spine to need the help you're getting. Quite the opposite. It's the sign of a very successful and strong woman to do the things that need doing to take care of you. THAT'S what's important.

    You are doing the right thing. HUGS and hope that you're feeling better quickly.
    1685 days ago
    Dear Mary,

    You haven't failed at all. Taking the initiative to make an appt, showing up and not skipping out, being truthful with your Dr. , starting a new drug to help you, quitting the alcohol etc.................. Are all signs of a WINNER to me!!!!!!!!!

    So very proud of you my dear. I know it was hard but the outcomes will be fantastic all because YOU put YOURSELF first.

    You inspire me to take action on some things I have been avoiding. Like my own mail.

    Please make sure you throw out those extra BP pills if you got a new one filled.

    emoticon - Kristan

    1685 days ago
    I'm sure glad that she gave you hugs when so needed! emoticon It sounds to me like you could be on your way to becoming more and more healthy. emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon and Good luck to you too!
    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    1685 days ago
    YEA! So glad you went to the doctor, sounds like you are on the right track. You are strong enough to do this, doesnt matter what "help" we take to get us there. We all need help and support, thats why we are on sparkpeople! ((hugs)) so proud of you for taking this step! emoticon
    1685 days ago
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