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Does anyone really read this anyway?

by on October 12, 2013

So this post is titled “Does anyone really read this anyway?” which doesn’t really matter because I’m going to write it and put it out there in internet land regardless, but in the event that I have a fan base (omg, I just snorted Orange Julius up my nose, that is the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever written) I felt I owed you all an explanation for the lack of posts and what will likely be a deluge of new material.

About a month ago my husband and I finally made the decision that we need to move over the giant mountain range to Denver. We’ve both lived there are various points in our lives and we met on that side of the mountain, but we hadn’t really wanted to live or work there again. As it turns out, we have bright children. I know that must surprise the few of you that actually know us, but there it is. Anyway, with the brightness sometimes comes… shall we say… emotional intensity. (No, really, that’s what it’s called.) We need to find a program that will allow Thing 2 to learn how to better handle and control her emotions. Thus, we decide to make the move to Denver.

In this, I decided to tell my boss that we were going to start looking over there but didn’t have anything definite and promised I wouldn’t leave him in the lurch. I love my boss (not like that, outside of work I think we might kill each other, but as bosses go he’s pretty rad) and I wanted to make sure that I wasn’t keeping anything from him. I don’t do lying, it’s not worth it and I have no reason to lie to him anyway. 

With my announcement that we would soon be looking at moving to Denver, he decided that he needed to take the time to train someone new for my position. This effectively puts me out of a job at the end of the month. I’m not angry or hurt over this, I agree. Business wise it’s likely a good choice, although I still think that waiting until the end of December would have been fine, hence my original suggestion. This job does have a lot of components though so I can’t fault him wanting to get someone in before the next big event. Rant rant rant, blah blah blah. 

So that leads me to my first announcement: I will not be working, earning money, or otherwise filling my time (until the local strip club stops laughing at my application and calls me back) so I will have more time for you beautiful people. More stories to enlighten your lives. More reasons to be thankful that you’re not me. More of me in general really. 

And in learning more about me than you ever wanted to know, I will let you in on my next announcement: I have a degenerative neurological disorder called essential tremor. Apparently 10 million Americans have it. Well, 10,000,001 now really. 

It’s kinda like Parkinson’s but not. There are similarities and differences. It can lead to Parkinson’s but not all the time.  It could be Parkinson’s just misdiagnosed, but we won’t know until the path diverges enough to be clear on this. 

With the diagnosis came medication to control the shaking. If you know who Katherine Hepburn is then you know what the shaking of ET looks like (not the alien, the disorder). That beautiful lady had ET and I do too. I don’t have it to the degree that she had it in her later movies, but I’m told it will likely get there. 

I’m not so much depressed about this, it is what it is and I can’t just wave a magic wand and change it. It’s not terminal and I am still functioning enough to have most people not even know I shake at all. I would much rather laugh about it than worry about it. 

The medicine, however, is fodder for so many quandaries. For starters, the typical medication prescribed for ET is a beta-blocker. I can’t be on a beta-blocker because my blood pressure and heart rate are phenomenal and that would just make me pass out. No one wants a 2** pound woman passed out and shaking on the floor. Not a pretty sight. So the next medication given is an anti-epileptic, or anti-convulsion medication. This is what I get to be on. This is what caused the pharmacist to eye my car keys, turn her head, and asked very concerned “Are you taking this for seizures?”

I just laughed and explained it was for tremors. I giggled all the way to the car though. 

Next, you have to ramp up this medication. Typically people start super low and go up until they find something that works. The pills are 50 mg each and they’re tiny. A lot of people start at 12.5 mg, I was started on 25 mg. 

For those of you math geeks out there (or nurses, or anyone else that cares) that means that you have to cut your tiny pill. For me it’s in half, for others it’s in quarters. Why do they not just make smaller doses? Honestly, you’re asking someone that either shakes involuntarily or has seizures to take a sharp instrument to cut up a tiny white tablet that isn’t that stable despite being flat on two sides. Seems like a recipe for disaster.

I’m happy to report that the first day after I took my pill (taken at night due to drowsy side effect) I notice a big difference in my tremor. It was like I’d been riding a boat in rough seas for 15 years and suddenly I woke up to the calmest, smoothest sailing. Not perfect, but not nearly as bad as it normally is. This means I can type better and faster with less mistakes. This means I don’t have to constantly move to hide my twitches. This means I found the courage to get the help I needed for this.
This also means side effects. They’re supposed to wear off, but two days in I haven’t seen any improvement. I get randomly dizzy, waves of nausea, and often sluggish. Not the best when you’re trying to tie things up the last few days of work. Also not great when you’re chasing after 2 three-year-olds. I felt good tonight so we had a ladies night, but 20 minutes after taking my pill I’m drowsy and want to throw up. Guess that means it’s the end of the post. 

Just wanted to let you all know that I’m coming back for more. Lots more. And you can count on it showcasing the Pin Perfect Life… NOT.


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  1. First off, I try to read all your posts, punk! Second off, I can’t believe we both have Essential Tremor – stupid thing runs in my family so when my mom finally started investigating what she had (that was a nightmare of a process with doctors), I began to realize I might get it one day too. When my shakes first started, I was in serious denial. They got worse. I denied more. Then I broke down and spoke with my doctor. Propranolol was like a miracle for me and I hate that you can’t take it. I also had good BP though and it hasn’t messed with it (same with my mom and her dose is double mine), but that is still a scary risk. I hope the anti-convulsant you’re on begins to help, I really do. I understand the nightmare of the tremors and how they get worse with emotion… I hate it when they take my voice, but the meds made that better, so mostly it’s just my hands. I know all too well what it’s like to hide the tremors so people won’t make judgments and it won’t affect my practicum or classes. I hate breaking down and telling people what’s going on and I hate having to explain it and get their pity looks. When I’m very upset it’s my entire body and nothing is more frustrating that not being able to control yourself. 😦 If ever you want to rant, compare notes, or cry, I’m here. *hugs* I love you and we’re strong enough to live with this and still be amazing (if you don’t believe just look at at the woman you sited, Katherine Hepburn – she’s a constant reminder for me (good and bad, lol)).

    • 🙂 Thank’s lady. After finding out that you had it a few years ago, it started to make sense to me that i might have that too. It just wasn’t bothersome enough to get help for it at the time. As the meds work more each day I’m realizing how much I shook and I amazed more people never said anything. When I called Mike and told him he was like “good, you know the whole bed vibrates at night when you’re asleep?” I honestly didn’t know I shook all night. I can type better now which is awesome. Not thrilled that the girls have a 50% chance of getting it but we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it. 🙂 It seem to be something that’s hard to explain to people since it’s not Parkinson’s but it is similar.

  2. My son has the same condition. It’s terrible that with any medication there are always side effects… even antibiotics. BTW… I’m reading this 🙂

    • At lease we can get the help we need though. I can tell I’m not getting as dizzy or nauseous today so that’s good. 🙂

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