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Scheherazade in Blue Jeans
freelance alchemist
Robitussin tastes like childhood. 
12th-Oct-2015 01:59 pm
Everything hurts/Doesn't work
I've been saying I need to get back to posting here, but life has been boring because I have had the Death Cold that's been going around. Which has turned into acute bronchitis + bronchospasm, because my lungs.

This happens often. My lungs getting colonized, turning what would have been a quick misery for a healthy person into a month-long ordeal for me. I was hanging in there all last week, but took a turn for the worse this weekend; managed to hold on until this morning, called my doctor - and found that he was out for Columbus Day. >.< So. Urgent Care.

It's been a really long time since I've had to go to Urgent Care or the ER for anything to do with my lungs; last time I went was because of the broken foot, and that was very clearly A Problem. I was concerned that I wouldn't be taken seriously about my symptoms, that they'd dismiss it as just a cold, that I'd be all tiny and frustrated and not-listened-to as I tried to explain that my lungs do this all the time and I'm really not in here over nothing. I'm really medically fragile, not Hysterical.

And then the doctor swooped in, looked at my brief medical history, and said "Oh, EDS! What type?" and I knew I would be okay. Because a doctor who knows about EDS knows that people with vEDS have fucked-up hollow organs. He knew that I was in there because sometimes when vEDS patients' lungs are unhappy, they'll just fucking collapse (which mine did when I was hospitalized for pneumonia twice as a kid).

My lungs are apparently super loud right now. Which made him chuckle, because he knows chronic pain patients - how we present as looking pretty okay and speaking in full sentences when in reality shit has gone very wrong in our bodies. I might be a little textbook there.

So I got a nebulizer treatment. And that helped a *little* bit, but not enough, so I got 60mg of prednisone right there and a prescription for more, plus Robitussin with codeine.

"Do not hesitate," he said, "to come back here if you have any more difficulty breathing, or if you start coughing up anything green. Seriously. Come right back." I should've come earlier. I'll do better next time.

But yeah, I won the Urgent Care lottery. Seriously. This never happens.

I hate Robitussin.

gizmometer is also sick, and was talking about taking Dimetapp and liking it, and I full-body shuddered, because Dimetapp is the flavor of my childhood. My respiratory system has been screwy since I was four, and I used to have to take Dimetapp every night. I hated it. I remember bargaining with my mom - if I took my Dimetapp, I got five pretzel sticks. No, ten. No, fifteen.

(Childhood with fucked-up lungs: Dimetapp, Ventolin pills, leaning over a sink full of hot water with a towel over my head to keep the steam in, oxygen tent in the hospital, the hideous shock of pneumothorax.)

I took my damn Robitussin, because I don't think the bronchitis has ever been quite this bad, and I have to take it seriously. Or maybe this is basic bronchitis and I'm just nervous because of the vEDS diagnosis, because I know more ways in which this can hurt me.

(Different people treat me different ways, when they grok that my body is not a healthy body. I like Matthew's response: he tucks the knowledge away and treats me no differently. Pity frustrates and annoys me; it accomplishes nothing. Trust that I'm taking care of myself and will let you know if there's a problem or if I need an accommodation, and give me days where I can go without thinking about it.)

So that's where I am right now. No spoons. Steroids. Rest and hydration.

When I was talking about how I needed to get back to posting here, I asked melebeth what I should post about; she said zombies. I have already written my final word on zombies! So here it is: "Becca at the End of the World".
Comments 
12th-Oct-2015 07:28 pm (UTC)
Should this happen again, and you have sufficient energy to spare, please talk to your pharmacist about alternatives. You may even be able to get cough ingredients + codeine custom flavored! Without even costing extra.
12th-Oct-2015 07:35 pm (UTC)
Will do! I think at some point I knew it was an option, but I was totally out of spoons by the time I got to CVS...
12th-Oct-2015 08:24 pm (UTC)
My doctor started researching after I went to her with a long list of symptoms I'd had at various points in my life and asked her if it could be EDS, and the next time I saw her she also gave me a referral to a cardiologist. But she does take my symptoms more seriously now, I think. (the most annoying one is sill my loose knee, ankle and elbow joints)
12th-Oct-2015 08:33 pm (UTC)
My regular doctor is totally awesome! I'd held off on going to Urgent Care over the weekend in hopes that I could see him today, but his office is apparently closed today, and I really couldn't wait any longer. (PT really helps with my knees and hips.)
12th-Oct-2015 11:29 pm (UTC)
hmmm can we plan to meet up sometime during Arisia?
13th-Oct-2015 06:16 pm (UTC)
We can try! Arisia is so chaotic. >.
12th-Oct-2015 08:31 pm (UTC)
I sympathize about the acute bronchitis + bronchospasm - and thank you for the word, because it's perfect!

I have an off-again / on-again similar issue - cold or such, gets me coughing, I continue to cough, because my lungs feel irritated and want to get rid of the irritation (when there's nothing there), which irritates them more, which makes them cough more - wonderful positive feedback loop. :-(

I get better and worse, and then realize I've had this deep hacking cough for 2-3 months. This was a nearly annual thing for ... 10 years? Maybe 15?

A few years ago my doctor realized what was happening, and prescribed a long-term inhaled steroid (Flovent) - that reliably kills the cough about 2.5 weeks after the initial infection has been put down, or I start taking it, whichever is later.
15th-Oct-2015 10:46 pm (UTC)
I feel you on that horrible coughing feedback loop. It sucks! Mine is triggered by allergens, especially cat dander. And sometimes from nothing I can identify (pollution I guess? Just plain old asthma?). I use an inhaler to calm it all down, and I'll brew a cup of Breathe Easy tea by Traditional Medicinals when the inhaler doesn't work right away.
12th-Oct-2015 09:48 pm (UTC)
Robitussin does indeed taste like childhood.
14th-Oct-2015 05:18 am (UTC)
Yellow Triaminic. *shudder*
14th-Oct-2015 11:31 am (UTC)
My mom always gave be the orange, and I loved it.
(Deleted comment)
13th-Oct-2015 09:33 pm (UTC)
Oh, yeah, lung collapses are fun, aren't they?

You know, you don't have to be doing anything interesting to post here. I can't remember the last time I did anything interesting, and I'm posting regularly. :)
15th-Oct-2015 04:14 pm (UTC)
Anonymous
Oh gods, I sympathize about the childhood lung thing, "Dimetapp, Ventolin pills, leaning over a sink full of hot water with a towel over my head to keep the steam in" but mine was never that bad although my sister's was.

I'd send you some spoons if I could; no fun at all. Glad you won the Urgent Care lotto.
18th-Oct-2015 11:46 pm (UTC)
"we present as looking pretty okay and speaking in full sentences when in reality shit has gone very wrong in our bodies." This is me, all over, except unlike you, I'm not compliant, so I could be having textbook symptoms of a thing I should be at least medicated for, if not hospitalized and maybe operated on, and I will look basically fine and if I complain at all and someone asks if I need to go to the doctor/hospital, I will INSIST that no, it'll go away and I'm fine.

Edited at 2015-10-18 11:48 pm (UTC)
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