The last three and a half years have seen a continuous downward spiral of my health. It’s been hard, watching bits and pieces of function just fall away. I’ve always been competitive and driven, so watching this happen has made me want to scream.
This has been the first semester where I think I may need to completely withdraw for health reasons. I started the semester with a sinus infection that just wouldn’t go away. Three courses of antibiotics knocked it out, but then a viral infection settled in, and it took forever to clear out. That was just the start of things. Then I suddenly started having tons of pain in my left arm and hand, with my fingers spasming and dropping things. At the same time, my dysautonomia symptoms started flaring worse.
My doctor tells me that the symptoms in my hand and arm are a pinched nerve in my neck. They’re hoping that it’ll clear up with physical therapy, heat and ice. It’s better now than it was before, but I still have times when I can’t type, when I can’t write. It stinks. And it HURTS. My shoulder, my arm, my hand…they all hurt, sometimes stabbing, sometimes electrical, sometimes pins-and-needles so bad that I have to shake my arm because I can’t stand it.
And the dysautonomia…well. I collapsed on Monday. I collapsed again on Thursday, on the way to class. I missed work on Friday, because I’d collapsed twice in a week.
I’ve missed so much school, so much of my clinical, that I probably need to take a medical withdrawal this semester. I’m failing everyone. I’m scared, because my dysautonomia has gone so badly awry and because I worry about the pinched nerve. I’m afraid I won’t be given a chance to finish my degree. And I am tired. I am so, so, SO tired of all of this.
So that’s why it’s been quiet around here, and I’m sorry about that. I’ve missed out on things I very much wanted to be part of, and I’ve missed talking about things that were worthwhile conversations, and I’m hoping that someday that will change. I’m also afraid of what will have to happen in my life for that to change.