Posted by: Yang | January 17, 2010

shortness of breath…

It is 3:09 a.m, Sunday January 17, 2010. Everyone is sound asleep, something I wish I was doing too. Instead, I’m up doing an Albuteral neb, hoping that it would help ease the shortness of breath that I woke up to. Its not surprising though, because I have been feeling a below my baseline for a few days now. At least for the last week or so, maybe even two. I just know that a week or two after I got out of the hospital, it seems as though I came home and caught an infection. Funny how that works, went into the hospital cause I wasn’t feeling too good. Only to come out feeling better, and then seem to start declining again. And now, for the last week and a half now, I’ve been experiencing some sharp shooting tingling pain under my right shoulder blade. At least thats where it started. A few days ago, I felt it in my left shoulder too. Originally I thought it might be a pneumothorax (collapse lung). But then I wasn’t ‘out of breath’, or any of the symptoms of a sudden collapse lungs; sweats, fast heart rate, extended burning pain under the shoulder blade, and of course, short of breath. However, my breathing was some what a little more difficult than usual. Maybe not enough to cause any alarm, but enough for me to notice something wasn’t right. I figured, if thats the case, then maybe I should give it a few days. A few days turned into a week, and a week turned into about two weeks. The sharp shooting pain comes every now and then. Mostly when I either sneeze or cough. There have been a few occasions where I’m just sitting or doing nothing and it just comes on. When it does happen, it comes and go fairly quick. A couple of times, I have been short of breath when that happens. Usually once it passes, I’m back to normal so I figured maybe it was just my nerves. After all, I did havce surgery done on my right lung in the past for a pneumothorax. And so I try to self diagnose myself, using what I know and checking online for symptoms and all. I know that should go in to the doctor to have it checked out, but part of me feels that if my body can heal it on its own then I’ll let it do its work. Its ironic cause if it was someone who was having these symptoms, I would be suggesting for them to go in and have it checked out right away. Maybe the reason why I don’t want to go is because I feel like I just got out and its hard for me to accept the fact that maybe I’m coming down with another infection. I wish that this isn’t the case, but theres a part of me that is certain I’m coming down with an infection. And this infection is whats causing the shortness of breath and the other symptoms that has made me feeling under the weather. It hasn’t been bad to a point where I’m tired and bed ridden. But psychologically and emotionally, I am very exhausted. Which must mean that my body is fighting this infection pretty hard for me to feel this way. I feel like I’m pushing myself mentally to be as positive as I can, believing that as long as I stay positive, try to maintain my appetite and do my treatments, my body will do the rest and weather this infection. At least thats the idea. But tonight probably has been the worst so far because it woke me up from a ‘good’ sleep. As I said earlier, I have been feeling short of breath every now and then. But since last night, around 11pm when I got home, something felt off more than the last few days. I figured maybe it’ll pass. So I did my vest and neb treatment as usual, and 3/4 of the way through, I felt a dull sharp pain under my left shoulder blade. That got me short of breath for a little bit. Since then, I have been trying to sleep and stay calm. And when I decided to go to sleep around 12:30-1, I was having a hard time falling asleep. Each time I laid down, on two pillow, I kept on feeling short of breath and it was a challenge taking a full deep breath. I should also mention that I have the oxygen on at 2 liters as well, since I started my treatment earlier. So of course, as expected, because I wasn’t able to take full deep breathes, my mind starts going into panic mode. Which makes the situation worse. But I try to stay calm so I got up, did some upper body stretching. Tried to take some slow deep breathes. After a few of those, it seem to help a little. At least enough for me to be able to fall asleep. Only to be woken up suddenly cause I felt like I was short of breath again. Not exactly sure but all I know is that I came to, realizing that I wasn’t asleep anymore. It was like my body woke itself up, then it took a sec or so for me to realize that. Once I realized I was up, I was wondering why. Then I noticed that my breathing was short and faster than usual. Not like I just got done running but on a scale of 1-10, where 10 is fast, I would say maybe a 5 or so. Lets just say fast enough for me to be woken up by my own body. I think it was trying to wake me up and let me know something wasn’t right. So I got up and started to do some stretching again. I forgot to mention that since this has been happening, for the last 2 weeks, during the evenings and night time, I have seriously thought about going in to the E.R. Only to feel ‘better’ during the day and then I don’t follow through to get the check up. Earlier was no exception, I was very tempted to wake one of the other drivers up and take me to the E.R. But I held back cause I rationalized that if I can somehow keep it under control where I can fall asleep, then it can’t be that bad. And if it does get worse, then I can always call 911. I know that I’m probably pushing my luck here, but for the reasons I mentioned earlier, I have not gone to the E.R or clinic to get checked up. Foolish? Probably so. I know that the sooner I get in, the sooner I can be treated. So it’s only logical that I go in. That’s not hard to figure out. But I guess mentally it is very hard for me to accept the fact that I’m getting sick again. It is now 3:48am, which means I’ve been up for at least 45 mins now, just typing and hoping that I will be able to go to sleep later. I went downstairs and bumped up the oxygen to 2.5 liters now. 2 liters seem like it wasn’t enough so hopefully 2.5 will do the trick. Thats another sign that lets you know you’re coming down with something. Not only that you have to use the oxygen, but that the liters keep on going up. Sad how sometimes there’s all these signs and symptoms that you see and realize, but still won’t act accordingly. Where’s the logic and sanity in that? Perhaps it’s tainted and distorted by the fear and disorientated state of the mind when it is under the influence of this chronic illness. I”m not sure if that made any sense, but in my mind it did. Times like this, it would be nice to have a doctor like House to be the one to diagnose and treat me. But above all else, I really wish this doesn’t have to be at all. The illness, the short of breath, the infection, the constant battle to just be normal. I just want all of these problems and burdens to dissappear. I guess what I’m saying is that I’m tired of being sick and tired. I have hung in there for the fight, infection after infection and its wearing me down, mentally and physically. My body and mind can only take so much. Once in infection mode, my mind somehow defaults to a negative mentality. Which doesn’t help cause it’s suppose to be positive.

Okay, I think my body is trying to tell me to go back to sleep now. Feels like the neb and typing helped somewhat. Breathing doesn’t feel so difficult now, so hopefully I’ll be able to go lie down and fall asleep. Wake up refreshed and feeling well rested. That this early morning was just a fluke and a thing of the past. Cause life is full of things to enjoy and live out. I need and want to get better, so that I can enjoy every opportunity I get with life. Life isn’t about being sick and feeling shity like how I have been. It’s about LIVING and ENJOYING the life that you’ve been giving.


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