|Pulverizing The Pill Tray||Feb 17, ’06 10:15 AM
Why do I want to pulverize my pill tray? Who knows? Lots of different reasons I guess.
I probably feel the worst first thing in the morning. One of my first thoughts when I wake up is the medicine. I know I need to take some medicine to feel better, and the sooner I take that medicine the sooner I will start feeling better. But, to take the seven pills I have to take in the morning, I need to eat something. I hate eating first thing in the morning. I am the kind of person who doesn’t believe that Breakfast is a necessity. So, right off the bat I feel resentful that the medicines are forcing me to eat. But, if I don’t eat, then I will get another ulcer and I don’t want that to happen. So, I eat, I take the pills and I get on with my day.
I hate that I have to remember to take the pill tray with me if I go somewhere. Yesterday I had a lunch meeting for the Arthritis Walk Committee. I needed to take my medicine with lunch, and I hate that. I didn’t want to take the meds in front of these people. Which is ridiculous, because it was probably the first time I was surrounded by that many people that have understanding and experience with arthritis. I suppose it is harder for me to pretend I am not sick if I am taking pills in front of people.
Another reason I hate pills is Moon face. I hate Moon face. Moon face is what people with RA call the way that your face looks when it is bloated from medications. In my case it I can attribute it to the huge doses of Prednisone that I recently took, Prednisone causes moon face and weight gain. Two for one special! I can’t tell you how helpless that feels, to have to take a medicine that makes you gain weight and know that you are not going to be able to exercise that weight off like normal people do. Since the Prednisone I have been really monitoring what I eat. Eliminating things that I love, like pop and chocolate. Well, okay, maybe not eliminating, but decreasing significantly! Those two weeks when I had to take the huge doses I gained ten pounds. I have lost half of that, but the last five are sticking to me like glue. I feel like a jerk even saying that. I know it isn’t a crisis to weigh 122 pounds, and that I should be happy with that. But, really I like it when I am below 120, and I want to get back there. In the past when I cut out things and ate better the pounds just melted off, but that just isn’t how it works when the weight gain is from Prednisone. BB is totally supportive, telling me that he thinks I look like I have lost weight and that even if I haven’t lost anything this week I am not fat and I am beautiful to him. Of course I argue with him and try on different clothes in an effort to prove to him that things are fitting different. I can still fit into all of my clothes. Some things just don’t look the same on me. I don’t think I am ugly or anything. I just feel a sort of loss of control, that I can’t really change the moon face or the bloating. I have to just wait for it to go away. I know if I look back at pictures of myself, the last time I took large doses of Prednisone you can see Moon face in my pictures for almost a year afterward. Maybe no one else sees it. I realize I am my own worst critic, but I can see it, and it bothers me.
I have a friend with RA that shares my pill tray/pill hatred. She said that the worse part is that we are popping all these pills that are doing God knows what to our bodies, and they’re not even working! That is so true. I spend hours researching all my medicines now. Reading all of the side effects is instantly depressing. Taking drugs that people take for cancer like Rituximab, my pain med is also an anti-seizure medication, etc…. Some of the stuff is really scary. Especially when it says that long term side effects are not even known. Intellectually I know that I need to take the pills to get relief, even if the relief I experience is minimal. But, it just sucks.
I don’t even fill my own pill tray anymore. It was so hard to concentrate long enough to count out the pills, get them into those little spots, and not get confused whether I did this medicine or that medicine. I ended up getting so totally pissed off and wanting to throw the damn thing against the wall. So, BB took over. He fills it each week, and sets my medicine out on the kitchen counter for me each day. Leaves the empty bottles by the phone so I know to call and get them refilled. Without him I probably would have pulverized the pill tray already.
I suppose another reason I hate the pill tray is that it is a reminder. Because it sits out in plain site, and I have to handle it three times a day, it feels like it is constantly screaming at me, you are sick! You need me! It is not just a reminder to me either. It is a reminder to my kids. Cody understands, and he asks me thoughtful and complicated questions now. So, I feel okay about him. I think he understands, and he feels comfortable enough to talk to me about things if he doesn’t understand. But, Carsten on the other hand is too little to really understand. Carsten will ask me almost everyday if I have taken my medicine. The other day she was in the kitchen when I took it and she asked me if I was taking it for my bendy ouchies. Which is what she calls my RA. I said I was. She asked me how long it would be before I felt better? How do you answer that? When I give her cold medicine I always tell her how long it will be before she should feel better. I sure wish someone could give me a timeline. I just told her five minutes. What was the alternative? How do you explain to a four year old that you will always take medicine and you may never get better?
Well, better get moving this morning.