Wednesday, November 2, 2011

More Mental Health

Discussion with psychiatrist today (this conversation has been slightly edited for my own comfort):

Doctor: (looking at my form) I see you're having a lot of trauma in your personal life right now.

Me: You think?

Doctor: Where are your parents moving?

Me: Near Hilton Head, South Carolina.

Doctor: Why are they moving?

Me: Well, they say the weather, but it's the same weather here today as it is there. I don't know. It's upsetting. I love my parents, but this is making me nuts. I know that's where they want to be and that it will be better for my father's business, but it's going to be really hard on me, physically speaking.

Doctor: I can imagine. You know, I have a little cottage in Shepherdstown for rent. It's really cute - one bedroom in an upstairs loft, a jacuzzi tub downstairs. Nobody knows how old it is. My wife won't let me sell it. Could you seduce them into renting the cottage from me?

Me: They insist on moving. They already bought a house.

Doctor: With your mom's illness, there might be a contractual way for them to get out of the closing on the house.

Me: You don't understand. They want to move. I even had a huge fight with my dad about it and they're determined to move south.

Doctor: That kind of puts you in a bind with your fibromyalgia. How far away is it?

Me: (gritting my teeth) Ten hours.

Doctor: That's kind of far for you to travel. I don't think you should be traveling that far.

Me: Uh, yeah. I don't really go more than two hours in any direction. Plus, if there's a crisis and I have to be there for a long period of time, I will be ten hours away from my kids.

Doctor: That must be upsetting. Oh. I see your father in law passed away. I'm sorry.

Me: Yeah, that was traumatic. It was very unexpected.

Doctor: Your life is kind of in turmoil. I see it also says that you are having weight gain and abdominal discomfort. How's your appetite?

Me: I'm starving. All the time.

Doctor: How can you be starving when you have severe abdominal discomfort?

Me: The pain is below my stomach. It makes no sense, I know. Maybe the Lyrica?

Doctor: That's possible. You might have to back off the dosage.

Me: Except it's helping the fibro. Can I rent your cottage? I could escape from my kids.

Doctor: Sure. I'll rent it to you, if you want it. Is the zoloft helping?

Me: The zoloft is allowing me to cope. I actually cut back on the anti-anxiety med.

Doctor: I would think you would need that right now.

Me: Well, I didn't tell you when I cut the dosage back the last time I was here so I would have the extra pill for the really bad days.

Doctor: That's reasonable. We won't change the prescription.

Me: Thanks.

Doctor: You look much better than the last time I saw you. I think this is a better weight for you.

Me: I don't care what the scale says, as long as it doesn't hurt.

Doctor: How much do you weigh?

Me: Seriously?

Doctor: Well, you're much less "drawn" than you were the last time I saw you.

Me: That's amazing, considering I feel like my life is falling apart.

Doctor: Well,  your life is very difficult right now, but you're completely stable. Here's a refill on your sleep med and I'll see you in three months. Exercise as much as you can. You know, needlework is exercise.

Me: (Slightly hysterical laugh) I cross stitch until my hand hurts.

Doctor: There you go.

Med Student: You're really bipolar?

Me: Oh yes. Dr. J thinks I should be in his theater troupe.

Med Student: That's remarkable.

Me: Well, I'm pretty dramatic. Theater is a hobby I should consider.

Doctor: We have some great productions coming up. There's a one man Christmas Carol.

Me: Um, how is that possible?

Doctor: He plays all the parts.

Me: Okay....maybe acting isn't for me. That just sounds weird.

Doctor: Well, you could do anything you wanted, once your life settles down. Look at Patty Duke.

Me: Oh, Kay Jamison is my idol.

Doctor: Isn't she in Baltimore now?

Me: Somewhere on the east coast, last I read. She was in California and then moved here. But that was awhile ago.

Med Student: Who is Kay Jamison?

Me: If you're interested in bipolar, she wrote An Unquiet Mind. Best book on bipolar ever. She's my idol.

Doctor: I'll see you in three months. Hang in there.

Me: I appreciate that.

(Completely medicated for your protection, but still impulsive as hell and prone to bursting into tears at a moment's notice.)

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