Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Counting Sheep...I made it to 761

It's about 1:30 in the morning and I can't sleep; mostly it's because I've got this tight, dry cough that just won't quit. It feels like an asthma/allergy issue. The weird thing is my peak flow is 570 and my FEV1 is 2.09L, which hardly seems consistent with asthma and allergies. I'm hoping that by nebbing some hypertonic saline I can loosen up whatever is in there causing the irritation.

I'm really glad to see that my FEV1 has improved though. I bought a little home unit spirometer about 2 months ago. Initially I wasn't impressed. The breathing technique it requires is so different from what I'm used to. There's no tidal breathing or working to squeeze out those last few cc's of air. All you do is take a big breath in and blast it on out just like you'd do with a traditional peak flow meter. Now that I've gotten the hang of it, I realize that this technique has forced me to focus on being able to aim high and hard for that first second of breathing out.

Tomorrow will be the true test, however. I have a CF clinic appointment, complete with spirometry. I'm hoping and praying that my FEV1 will be satisfactory so that I can discontinue the IV antibiotics. It's getting to the point now where the cure is worse than the disease, so to speak. I'm on Merrem, which isn't causing any problems. The colymycin, however, is making my whole face itch and my lips and tongue numb. I won't even try to describe the gastrointestinal issues that come along with antibiotics. Let's just say YIKES! and leave it at that.


Today was my first day back at work after all of the hospital hooplah. It was more tiring than I expected. I did get assigned a rather interesting project. It's the first of its kind that I get to work on from the ground up. The assignment did a lot to bolster my self-esteem. I had been feeling like I wasn't getting my full use of my college degree because I was in the hospital more than I was at work lately. I felt as though I had worked so hard only to have a short-lived foray into the professional world. This project, however, is the very thing I wanted to be doing with my degree. It's interesting and meaningful, and doggone it, I think I can do it well!

Well, my hypertonic saline neb treatment is winding down, so I should probably try to get some sleep. I think instead of counting sheep this time I'll try counting sea shells. I'll imagine that the white noise from my air purifier is the sound of ocean waves, and that I'm walking along picking up shells one by one.

Not being able to sleep is for the birds. I hope everything works out so that you only count to 10.

Hooray for a challenging job. It must make you feel good to know that your company has the confidence in you to give you an assignment that starts from the ground floor.

Here's to a good appointment.
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