Thursday, May 17, 2007

Don't panic, don't panic!!

I had a good day yesterday and a shitty night.

We've started to gradually pack up the house to move. Well actually we've started to clear away all the crap that's accumulated, that we haven't got round to doing anything with for the past 3 years, so that we can then start packing. You know how it is.

Anyway that lasted about an hour and a half until I started putting on CDs and Nic and I got dancing until around 11ish. Built up a fair old sweat we did, listening to classic tunes (from 2003/4) and then we went to bed.

I'd noticed on my ride back from work and when I'd been dancing that my spleen was giving me some jip, which is to be expected because your spleen helps in the over-production of white blood cells and swells up as a result. On top of that being off my drugs for a week has been nagging away at me. I keep wondering what's going on, how this things eating away at me with nothing to fight against it. How it might be affecting me.

It must have been nagging away at me much more than I realised because at 12.30 having gone to bed and fallen asleep - uncomfortably because i didn't want to lie on my spleen side - I woke up in a muck sweat and very short of breath. I'd been half expecting the nightsweats to return, as this was what alerted me to the fact something wasn't right in the first place, but they really came back with a vengeance. I was sat on the edge of the bed blowing manically and dripping wet, very disoriented and starting to get panicky, because all my focus went to my spleen and suddenly it felt like it was the size of a football. So I got up clutching my side and went down the corridor and sat on the loo for a couple of minutes then got back up again.

After a couple of minutes I got my composure back and stareted thinking you'll be fine, you're OK, it'll pass, breathe deeply, breathe deeply, breathe deeply and gradually I came out of the panic and I stopped sweating and once I relaxed I was left just with my spleen hurting.

I dropped in to the hospital this morning just to check that everything definitely was OK and I got a clean bill of health - well comparitively - however my registrar said to me.

'Are you back at work yet?'

'Errr, well yeah, I haven't actually taken any time off'


'Well no, I haven't really felt the need to, to tell you the truth. I did go on holiday for a few days afterwards'

'Yeah but you had that booked already. Have you taken any time for yourself, to adjust to things?'

It was a question that threw me slightly, because I haven't taken any time for myself to adjust. It's made me think maybe I should take some time off. I consider myself fairly honest to myself and to those around me. When people have asked 'How are you?' and I've answered 'Fine under the circumstances', I don't think I've lied yet. I don't think I've yet put a front on for anyone. Now that could mean one of two things:

1. I'm fine and adjusting to things gradually and feeling fine

2. I'm in denial, feeling fine, but one of these days I'm going to breakdown and be a wreck

I can't help but feel that it's most likely to be the former. I've never been scared of a bit of therapy or taking time when I need it. I'm no longer someone who puts everything else in front of my well being. Equally, I don't consider myself a shirker either, I always front up.

But it got me thinking. Last night was a bona fide panic attack, it may well have been about a specific issue but nevertheless there's something going on up there, so I've agreed to get in touch with the psychotherapists that are attached to my Haematology unit, to talk things through with them.

I am however going to continue going to work as normal. I don't think it would do me any good to take time. I'm not sure what I'd do. The boys are at home during the day, so it's not like I'd get time to myself to think (I mean that in the nicest way) therefore I'm not sure it would serve the purpose.

And I've tried going away on my own before. I planned to go away hiking on my own for 4 days in the Peak District. At the end of the first day's yomping I headed home, walked through the door, walked in on Nicky, who had 2 friends to stay and when she asked:

'I thought you'd gone away to find yourself'

I said:

'Yeah I did. But I found myself a bit dull, so I thought I'd come home'

I then headed off to Kings Cross, clubbing with 2,000 other people.

I'm definitely better around other people.


Paul said...

When I had my heart problems I couldn't accept it Six. Even when my boss insisted that I went home at lunchtime for two months I hated the feeling of being treated like an invalid.

Then one day when I was out shopping )for an apple tree of all things) I suddenly thought "Sod it, I've worked bloody hard for nearly thirty years and now I'm ill." I thought of all the times I'd covered people who were skiiving, all the late nights, the weekends and decided I was going to have some me time to get to grips with this.

I remember the night before I went into hospital for a cathatar I just sat in the lounge crying because it finally hit home that I was ill.

There's a frightened little boy inside that big man Six, let him out sometimes and you'll feel better.

Six Years Late said...

I think you're probably right about the frightened little boy thing Paul. I don't know whether forcing it's going to do any good though. I'd rather let things come naturally.

I'm being honest when I say I feel better off at work. I promise I'll take the time if I feel I need it in the future, but for now I'd rather carry on as I am.

Curmy said...

Six, I think you're doing the right thing going to see the therapist, it must have been very frightening.
When my BP went through the roof 5 years ago, and my heart got enlarged, I scared myself stupid.
Now I don't charge about like a lunatic
By all means carry on working, but don't drive yourself into the ground.
Hugs Curmy

IsobelMagsBuchan said...

Just take care of yourself Six. It will all come out in the wash quite naturally and when you are ready, just like you say.

Big hugs.

The house move under any circumstances would be stressful. Moving when you've not long had the news you have had is enough to induce a panic attack in anyone. When we moved from London I think we spent about a month sorting, packing and disposing. Anyway at least you have freecycle for all the junk!

Span Ows said...

"You're better around people"...except on the MB where it seems to those that 'know' you that you're about to explode into a stream of hard-core swearing at the many morons that also reside there.

Six Years Late said...

Do you get that impression. It's very accurate, I want to shout my arse off.

I have a very difficult relationship with those boards at the moment. I keep feeling that I want to contribute, but I just find the people posting on there are a bunch of idiots. There used to be a lot of people there that you could have a constructive argument with but nowadays views are completely polarised along partisan lines. It appears people adopt a view according to what they ought to think owing to their persuasion, rather than taking each individual case and story on it's own merits.

Curmy said...

Well post more on Gavin's forum, Six, where the brains are, !

Sarnia said...

It's hard accepting that you're ill. When I had the BH I HATED it when people said "sorry that you've been ill". "I'm NOT ill" I'd shout.

In a way you're just trying to live your life as normal and putting the horrible stuff into denial - I know that I'd do exactly the same.

It's thinking that if you can carry on as you did before then it will just be as normal and as if nothing horrible had ever happened.

The best way to deal with it is to deal with it the best way you can.

the-spinifex-option said...

oh yes, the trip to the Peak district. I think I might have been one of the two friends Nicky had staying at the time.

It still makes me laugh, we thought you just couldn't cut being away from the big smoke.

Just because you've got Leukaemia, I'm not going to stop taking the piss.

Lucy said...

Well if you do find any answers to the whys a hows do share. My husband is so similar and his inability to just 'be' drives me potty sometimes. He needs to be with others whereas I am equally happy alone or not. He has to have something to be doing, and actualy dislikes having to think about things, much rather just do.
So if you find the secret let me know

Gavin Corder said...

I NOW believe I had panic attacks. I denied them. Me? I'm not afraid of anything. I thought I was asthmatic!

"No", says ye quack, "Fear isn't necessarily a symptom of a panic attack".

"Oh yeah? Righty!" says I in disgust.

"Trust my diagnosis", saith the quack, "you just walked into my surgery unable to breathe with your hands and feet dead, your fingers stuck to your palms, with your car running on the double yellows outside having driven 25 miles down the M4...

"Mmm, true" says I, nodding sagely.

"That fucking scared you, didn't it?" quoth the quack!

Gavin Corder said...

The point of my tale?

Go with the flow, Six. Let the expert tell you when to slow down.

IsobelMagsBuchan said...

Six, how did the move go and how are you and the family?


Six Years Late said...

Sorry to not get back Mags. I'm good, I've posted above by the way.