Monday, June 30, 2008

Health Scare....or is it Scary Health?

This last week I had a health scare. Since around my birthday on the 21st I had been experiencing a lot of chest pain and pressure. I thought it was just gas buildup because I had been burping alot, so I was popping Gas-X and Rolaids like they were candy. Last Wednesday the pain and pressure were starting to get unbearable, but I took some Excedrin and the pain dulled quite a bit. Never went completely away, but it didn't seem as bad as it had been all week. (I had the pain and pressure all week and I still do.)

Finally Thursday night it came to a head. I was sitting down eating dinner with my family when suddenly it became very difficult to breathe and the pain starting going down my left arm and up into my neck. It really scared me....I thought I was having a heart attack. Randon talked me into going to the ER. I had protested because of the money issue. We just don't have the money to pay for the tests I knew they would run. Anyway, we finally get to the ER and by this time I am in tears it hurt so bad. They put me into a room right away when I told them I was having chest pain....I was kinda hoping they would forget to check me in but no such luck haha! So they did an EKG...still have some burns from that puppy. It didn't really show anything except for some odd little thing but the dr. didn't seem to concerned about it. They were thinking that since the EKG came back ok that I had either blood clots in my lungs or a collapsed lung. SO they did a chest x-ray and a CAT scan. Those both came back ok as well. They also drew a bunch of blood and ran about 9 different blood tests. I guess those all came back ok as well. I now have a bruise the size of a tennis ball on my arm that is BLACK from where they drew blood....I always bruise from the needle but I think this is the worst I have ever bruised. I also have a bruise and a knot in my arm from the IV. Diagnosis: Anxiety and panic attacks. I thought it was wierd because I was just eating dinner with my family when this all happened. I went to my doctor the next day and he put on some meds: an anti depressant, an anti anxiety, and a diabetic med. I am not diabetic, but I have been told I am PRE-diabetic so maybe this can help reverse that.

I had been on anti-depressants before and I stopped taking them shortly before my dad passed away. I was feeling good and didn't feel like I needed them anymore, so I stopped taking them. I probably should have started them again after my dad died and I never did. So I figure that all the stress of the last year, plus the stress we have had lately, just finally all spilled over. We have had 4 deaths in my family since last June, and that is ALOT. Plus the everyday normal stress, plus we have moved and are getting ready to move again, no money, no car, etc. It all adds up.

Now, I am gonna get on my soap box a little bit.

For a long time I have struggled with depression. For a long time I kept telling myself I didn't need meds to help me with it. It finally came to a point that I had to admit that yes, I did need some help from medication to "deal", I guess, with my life. It wasn't just me anymore that I had to worry about, I had kids. I would get into these deep deep funks that it would take me months to get out of. I considered suicide several times. But I never did. (This was all before I got married and had kids.) Anyway, I kept telling myself I didn't need the meds. I didn't want the stigma that comes with having to take an anti depressant. Even some members of my family were like, "Just get happy. Just get over it." etc. That didn't make it any easier for me.

If you think you need them, TAKE them. Don't let someones preconceived notions about anti depressants, or even your own, stop you from getting the help you need. It didn't do me any favors by being too proud to admit that I needed the help. Do I like that I have to take them? No. But I have recognized that in order for me to be a good wife, a good mom, happy....that I NEED them at this point. I hope I won't need them forever, but if I do, I do.

1 Totally cool people said::

Kimmarie said...

Angela, I didn't know you were going through all of this. We are here for you. I know many people on anti depressants and they do help. Sometimes you might have to try different ones to get it right. I did alot of research on Cymbalta and it seems to be the best so far. I had anxiety attack also this year and my mom in the past and both of us were relaxed at the time. the doctor said it hits you when you tend to slow down. (go figure!) Good Luck - keep us updated.