Covid Results, Migraines, Friends

First off, I got my covid results back yesterday. No coronavirus detected! That was certainly a big relief! Now I don’t have to worry about staying quarantined for weeks!

On the sucky side of things, I did have a full-blown migraine last night. I’m not sure if it was caused by my anxiety about the test results the past few days, or something else, but it was miserable. When I get migraines like that my neck kills me too (you can actually feel the tension and swelling in the back of the neck). Like most migraine sufferers, I can’t stand sound or light, and I get nauseated and dizzy as well. I went to bed early and slept about 9-10 hours, but still feel the aftereffects of it today and fear it coming back in full force.

I’m also a little sad because while I was unsure of my covid status, some friends of mine got together for the first time in forever, and of course didn’t invite me (I don’t blame them, they knew about the covid possibility), but it still bummed me out that I missed the chance to see them.

Covid? Update

Well, I did get the test done yesterday at a drive-thru testing center. I was so glad it was drive-thru, because the last thing I wanted to do was be around a bunch of other potentially covid-infected people when I wasn’t sure if I have it yet or not. My doctor decided to go ahead and test my husband too. (By the way, the test wasn’t that bad, I’ve had MUCH worse medical tests!)

We won’t know the results for about a week probably. I’m not sure what to do in the meantime? Do we go ahead and quarantine ourselves in the house since we don’t know? If we do that and we are infected, we will end up being quarantined for about 3 weeks at least.

I don’t know how that will work when someone has to go get milk, prescriptions, and other essentials and it is just the two of us living here. I guess we just minimize going out as much as possible? We definitely won’t be visiting anyone, going out to eat, or shopping for unnecessary items.

Any of you had to self-quarantine at home? Any tips?

Covid?

Man, I feel bad. About 4-5 days ago at least, I started having issues with a sore throat and stuffy nose. I figured maybe it was a little cold, or even allergies. I started having worsening asthma symptoms and chest pain too, but figured that was the heat (it always triggers my asthma some).

Today, I woke up feeling like I couldn’t move or get out of bed. The body aches and fatigue are unreal. Worse even than some of my CFS flareups. Everything seems slowed down, and my brain is super foggy. I’ve also had headache, itching all over (and what looks like it might be hives), nausea, and a fever off and on.

I’m not sure if it is covid, but man I feel bad. I am in contact with my doctor about it and will probably end up getting tested. Our county is a hotspot here in Ohio, so it easily could be Covid.

Now, I’m going back to bed (even though I slept more than 12 hours). Goodnight.

Covid Masks – What’s Your Experience?

The whole covid mask thing has been a struggle for me. Probably for several reasons:

#1 – I have bad asthma, especially in hot weather and wearing a mask makes it much worse. Sometimes to the point that I have to escape a store or building immediately so I can breathe again before I have a full-out asthma attack (masks are required in buildings in our county).

#2 – I’m autistic. I have sensory issues galore and masks drive me crazy. I don’t like the feel of them and for me, I never really adjust. Of all the kinds of masks I’ve tried, the only ones I can even kind of stand are the surgeon ones, but even those bug me, and I can only bear them for a short time.

#3 – I have a little piggy nose, so I can’t keep a mask up, it is always slipping below my nose. It has gotten to the point that sometimes I quit pulling it up because it will just slip down again in 2 seconds, and it is easier to breathe with my nose uncovered anyway.

#4 – Anxiety. I think this plays into the asthma and the sensory issues thing. The more my asthma and sensory issues worsen, the more my anxiety kicks in, till the point where I’m not even sure if I’m having trouble breathing because of the mask and asthma, or because of the anxiety.

At this point, I pretty much just try to do outdoor activities or if I do have to go to a store or something, I get in and out as quickly as possible. Thank God I don’t have to work at a business. I don’t know how I would survive.

So what has your experience with masks been? Do they bother you? Did you adjust and get used to them? Are they required where you live? Do you have any of the same issues I have with them?

Not Taking Your Psych Meds

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Maybe it is the bipolar, but I tend to go through cycles where I stop taking my antidepressant or bipolar medicine because I start thinking either it doesn’t really work for me, I decide I would rather try natural alternatives, or I start thinking that the new agers are right and the pharmaceutical industry is trying to poison us all or trying to block or destroy our pineal gland with the medicine so that we can’t have real, meaningful spiritual experiences (or so that we can’t exercise any innate psychic powers – whatever they may be).

During these times, I do at least taper off. I’m not stupid. I don’t do the cold turkey thing. And honestly, I DON’T notice much of a difference with some of the meds, even after being off them for a month or more. However, I do notice a difference with the antidepressant and I notice it quickly. I’m not sure sometimes though if it is really the medicine or my fear of going off of it since I have taken antidepressants for YEARS and feel almost dependent on them at this point.

Anyone else experience anything like this cycle of suspicion, doubt, and desire to be off the psych meds for good?

Struggling to Blog

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Lately I have really been struggling with motivation to blog. Due to a depressive slump, I’ve been having trouble with the desire to do much of anything, but blogging especially has fallen by the wayside.

It makes me feel bad because I truly do appreciate this community and love the interaction I get with all of you, but when the whole world feels dark, it is hard to even try to reach for some light.

I’m not sure if my current state is just a continuation of the depression I was already feeling, or if it is worsened by gradually switching mood stabilizers (Seroquel to Lamictal), but I am hoping the situation improves soon. I have only been on the Lamictal since Monday and am only on the first dosage level, with at least two increases planned, so maybe my brain is just struggling to adjust.

I’m hoping my passion for blogging will return eventually, but for now, I’m trying to hang in there. If I’m not as active as usual, all of this stuff is probably why.

Doctor Televisits – Like Them or Not?

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During the Coronavirus quarantine, I have had to do several doctor visits by video chat. So far, I’ve had to do them with my family doctor and psychiatrist, and starting this week, I will be doing them with my counselor too.

I must admit I’m not big on the whole televisit thing. I always worry about our internet connection during them because we live out in the middle of nowhere and have satellite internet (which sucks). But even aside from that, it makes me more nervous for some reason and makes me feel awkward sharing personal information. I have always hated talking on the phone and feel this is kind of similar.

I guess the upsides are that I don’t have to get dressed and ready to go out, or sit in a boring waiting room, but I still prefer the face to face contact. My counselor did offer in-person appointments but we would’ve had to wear masks, and I can’t wear a face mask for long because it irritates my asthma.

What about you? Have you had to do doctor televisits during Covid? If so, how do you feel about them?

First Appointment with New Psychiatrist

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I had my first appointment with my new psychiatrist yesterday (my old doctor unexpectedly retired last month). Yesterday’s appointment had to be via video because of Covid. I was super anxious about it beforehand, not knowing what he was like or if we would be a good match. For a first visit, I would MUCH prefer an in-person appointment, but that wasn’t an option for now.

Fortunately, he seems caring and understanding and listened to me very well. I felt like he was trying hard to understand my situation and symptoms and that he took all of my concerns seriously. I guess I couldn’t ask for much more.

Because my anxiety and depression have both been bad lately, we are trying a new medication combo to see if that helps. I will no longer be taking the Seroquel and instead will be taking Lamictal. He is hoping I might be able to wean off the Prozac too if the new med works, since the antidepressants don’t seem to do much for me anymore (and if I take higher doses it tends to cause hypomanic symtoms).

Lamictal is known for not causing as much weight gain as other mood stabilizers, so I am all for that! I hope I won’t have many side effects from it, but we’ll see.

Why I Don’t Like Porn

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I’ve never liked porn. It used to be because I was a Christian and felt like it was “sinful” to look at porn. After leaving the church, my moral beliefs about porn became confused, but I still felt that something was off about the whole thing.

So, being me, I started investigating the porn industry to try to figure out a logical moral stance on the issue. The first problem I came across is probably the most serious issue with porn in my opinion – far too many women (and probably some men too) in the porn industry are forced into the profession through human trafficking. In other words – SEXUAL SLAVERY. Additionally, many underage girls are used in porn and their ages are lied about.

Another issue I came across was the prevalence of violence and physical/verbal abuse (specifically towards women) to be found in porn. Some studies suggest that up to 90% of porn on the market features some kind of violence or abuse towards women. What do you think this does to the minds of young kids and teenagers who watch?

Lastly, porn has some real-life personal problems for men particularly. Porn has a real addictive quality to it. Many men get to the point where they can’t stop watching even if they want to. Many addicted men develop erectile dysfunction, even young guys, because watching porn often can make your brain unable to respond to any sexual stimuli other than porn. This has ruined many relationships, as men become unable to perform sexually with their wives, girlfriends, etc. Further, the secretive nature of addiction (if involved) can take a toll on any relationship.

One good website to find out more about these facts and porn studies is truthaboutporn.org. They feature a huge database dedicated to scientific studies about the harmful effects pornography can have.  They also explain how porn can damage individuals, relationships, and society in general.

Feel free to share your own thoughts, feelings, and experiences about porn in the comments if you wish! I have often wondered if maybe we need an “ethical” porn option (guaranteed to be free from sexual violence, abuse, trafficking and underage participants) , but even that wouldn’t address all of the harmful effects porn can have on individuals and relationships.