Today’s post is going to be about random stuff……kind of like a newsletter. As if all you fine folks didn’t know enough about mi vida loca, haha!
I saw my sister Louise today at Dr. A’s office when I brought her some of her things from home to take to the assisted living facility. Man, she looks GOOD. She’s lost a ton of weight that she didn’t need, there’s a spring in her step, she is off ALL narcotics and basically, she is thriving at that place. She isn’t even using oxygen much, her skin tone has some color to it…….and her memory is almost as good as it was when she was at her peak in her fifties.
This is NOT the same woman who fell and broke her pelvis and hip at my house six months ago. This is a woman who has regained her mojo, and as much as she still dislikes the place where she lives, even she has to concede that she really is doing extremely well there. She looks better than I’ve seen her in many years…..like since before she went back to her husband (who later passed away). I’m so proud of her, and yes, I’m even a little proud of myself for helping make it happen.
Now, for those of you who are new to this blog, meeting my sister at the mental health clinic has always been something of a game as the three of us—Louise, Dr. A and I—pretend we don’t know each other and then make this big production of introducing ourselves. Today that didn’t happen; as the two of them came out of the office, he was telling her not to buy any yellow shirts, knowing I was right around the corner. For some reason I blushed, which I hardly ever do, stuck out my tongue and said “I’m never going to live that one down, am I?” amid general laughter.
“Are you kidding? Around here? NEVER!” replied Dr. A, who then patted my shoulder and told me he wanted to see Louise in about a month before sprinting for the sanctuary of the back office. (Literally. He really does sprint, even though it’s a small office and he has very long legs. I’m just waiting for him to do a face-plant in the ficus.)
It’s weird seeing him in between my own visits, because he doesn’t act like regular doctors and just give me a polite nod. Instead, I get the full-scale greeting and the teasing just like when I go in for my appointments. I’ve always liked that about him. He treats his clients like good friends, but also strikes a balance between the personal and the professional and there is a line that doesn’t get crossed. There is NO mistaking who’s the doctor and who isn’t, and that is comforting…….not to mention critical during the frequent storms I experience. And as a clinician myself, I not only admire his approach, but strive to emulate it in my nursing practice.
I’m doing a lot better. In fact, I feel completely normal again……just not so normal that I think I’m beyond all this bipolar business. I know better than that now. If I hadn’t had a defining episode before, this was it—the one that left NO doubt in my mind whatsoever of what I am dealing with. Maybe I needed it as a kick in the head to make me realize that it really is not a life crisis, that it really is permanent, and that it really messes with me when I don’t take good care of myself.
Speaking of which……as much as I loathe it, the bedtime routine is working. I still can’t get to sleep before 12:30 AM, but at least I’m IN the bed with the TV off (and no computer) a full hour before I crash for the night. I’m sleeping better and am not as groggy when I wake up in the morning (although cutting back on the Zyprexa is helping that cause along). Of course, it’s much easier to to do this in the winter months when it’s dark and the weather is evil, and the nice warm bed calls to me; it’s going to be hell in June when the days are long and the nights are warm and full of delights. But the truth of it is, I’m getting adequate amounts of sleep and that is making me feel normal, every bit as much as the meds do.
Dammit……I hate it when doctors are right about these things!