Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Stupid tests and Simplicity 2594 emerges from the magic closet

Stupid, stupid tests.  I had the "evoked potential" tests yesterday, as ordered by the neurologist. On the surface, they seem like pretty simplistic tests to take. Sit there with some electrodes attached to your skull and chill out. But you're not allowed to move OR tense up. Um, hello, how are type A personalities with chronic pain issues related to chronic muscle tension supposed to take this test? For two of the tests in particular, the tech said if I tensed up or moved, he would have to start the test all over again. So I did horribly at that. He moved on to another test and then back to that one at the end.

Test 1: stare at a block on the center of a tv screen, one eye at a time, while all these black and white squares dance around it.  It looked like a video game circa 1982. They used gauze to cover my eyes one eye at a time. Well, when it was time for the right eye to stare at the screen, the gauze over my left started sliding down my left cheek. But I wasn't supposed to move or talk. I felt like I was concentrating more on the gauze moving down my face. By the end, I had some peripheral vision in my left eye. I wish I had said something. But I'll tell the doc.

Test 2: Put on some earphones and listen to clicking sounds. This is the test where he kept saying I was moving or tensing but he didn't know where.

Test 3: The tech put some device on my wrists that made my fingers move. But I wasn't allowed to move anything else or tense up. I'm thinking, how am I going to get through these tests? I channeled the energy of the most competitive person I know, thinking that if it were her, she would be able to be perfectly, utterly still and not tensed. After that I got through test 3, then went back to test 2, and got through that.

I don't even know what those tests were for.

At the checkout desk, I asked if my bloodwork is back ("no") and how it's going getting the authorization number from the insurance company for the MRI ("hrm, your file hasn't moved out of dictation, but once it has moved on, then the person who calls the insurance company gets it and will make the call").

The waiting room was more full this time, and I had to wait and see people sitting there with their big folders full of old fashioned films and looking glum, terrified, and/or bored.

I felt like, I don't belong here, this is not my path, why couldn't we wait to get the bloodwork results back before doing these tests, I don't like this tech, I don't like the tension between the tech and the person he is training, I am ready to get off this treadmill of doctors and nurses and techs and tests.

I went to the car and FINALLY had the BIG CRY. I have been waiting for the big cry to happen for a while now.  and then I went to Whole Foods and bought cookies.  You know, the double chocolate chip ones that are $1 each.  SO GOOD.

Last night I saw my chiro. He said my periods of numbness could be neurological, but it could be musculoskeletal. It could be that I'm having pockets of hypoglycemia when I'm lightheaded. He thinks I'm wound up right now which only makes it worse. Hyperventilating would also cause numbness. He did his active release technique on muscles and nerves that go into my skull and down my arm and leg. So my plan is to start an enhanced stretching routine, sleep more, eat even better than I'm eating already, not read any medical website, and chill out.

OH, and today was the first day I wore Simplicity 2594. Mary Nanna has talked about her Magic Closet where garments she doesn't like go to ferment and emerge better-liked after a period of time. I made S2594 TWO YEARS ago and finally wore it today. Here's how I styled it, with this very cool glitter belt from a Princeton consignment shop clearance rack for $4.

simplicity 2594 that i made 2 years ago and wore for the first time today

and here's the back:
simplicity 2594 that i made 2 years ago and wore for the first time today

I last talked about it here on my blog, and also pattern reviewed it.

I remember, it was such a struggle to make this shirt; that yoke was horrible to sew. But I loved wearing it today with the belt!

Pete sent me this very cool get well card today; I just love it! (also love how random sewing fluff is in the picture):
amazing get well card from Pete

Thanks for listening to me yammer on about my health issues.  I've decided too that I'm healthy, I'm healthier than I think I am, and there's nothing wrong with me.

Be well and good night!


  1. I'm a lurker and this is my first comment. I've been reading for a while.
    Wowee, what a crap day you had. You EARNED those cookies and any calories (I'm up in Canada, no Whole Foods for us) you probably burned off from stress.
    Hang in! Wish there was more I could do. I'm sending good vibes your way.

    And I love the "magic closet" idea. Good idea for those "meh" garments.

    Take care,

  2. The dress looks like it matured nicely in the magic closet and has come out just in time to pick you up.

    Living with chronic pain must be very, very hard.

    I heard a talk by a woman who wrote a book on mindfulness meditation who lived with chronic back pain for 30 years. She had some very interesting ideas about aversion which I put into practice in things in my own life - it helps but it doesn't cure, darnit.

    Hugs and kisses from across the planet.

  3. What a lousy day. Do not let the doctors tell you the pain is all in your head. You know it's there, and they need to find the cause. I wish I could just bring you home with me and feed you chicken soup!

  4. Ah, what a great get-well card. That's a lot of tests and dr. visits and all that jazz. I like Len's perspective on things! Let's go with that....

  5. Put that crappy day behind you and get involved in doing what you enjoy (like sewing ;-) )

  6. Who wouldn't be tense? As soon as they tell you you can't tense up or move at all of course you'll be tense and move a millimeter. That's hard! I'm glad you're having the tests done though; it's about time you got all those out of the way. It is frustrating that the drs. are having a hard time diagnosing. I love the dress with the glitter belt by the way; and chocolate chips cookies are always good for what ails you. Hope you have a GOOD day today!!

  7. Oh, those tests sound simply dreadful. My chiropractor is my savior, he does so much for me, I hope yours can for you. Do you do yoga? It has helped me so much.

  8. HUGS! All that tenseness is not going to be helping things whatever the tests end up saying. Can you plan in a massage or other relaxing stuff?


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