Goodnight Moon. Goodnight CPAP.

My life has been kind of a hot mess lately and I’m not even completely sure way. I think it’s because I’m starting to make some big decisions and a lot of things are changing. I’m going to have a thyroid “procedure” done and I’m making a huge career change. I’ll talk more about those in another post. This post is about my CPAP.

I’ve known for awhile that I might have sleep apnea, I just didn’t do anything about it (stupid I know). I just didn’t want to have to go to a sleep center and I definitely didn’t want to have to use a machine. I’d starting having symptoms a few months ago.: the chronic fatigue, feeling like I’ve been holding my breath under water when I wake up in the morning, brain fog, trouble remembering things, etc. It also doesn’t help that both my dad and my mom’s mom have it. Double whammy. I finally decided to go to my doctor because I just couldn’t handle it anymore (especially not with all my other thyroid related problems). I told my doctor and he was like yeah you probably have it. My grandma and dad were both patients of his.

I was relieved when he told me I didn’t have to go to a sleep center (I hate not sleeping in my own bed). He said that a sleep study company would mail me a device that monitors my sleep and then I just mail it back. Super easy! That’s exactly what they did. I got it in the mail and had to use it for 3 nights in a row. There was a tube that went under my nose, a sensor on my finger, and a sensor that wrapped around my chest. All three plugged into a box that strapped to my wrist. When a sensor would move out of place, the box on my wrist would say “cannot detect chest sensor” and wake me up. The first night it did this several times. Like how are supposed to monitor my sleep if you won’t let me sleep? So rude.

After I was finished with the sleep test, I mailed it back and then had an appointment with my doctor. He confirmed that I had mild sleep apnea. Yay! Not. A week later a guy came to my house with my new CPAP and showed me how to use it. I have had such a horrible time trying to use this thing. First of all, I’m highly claustrophobic. I thought that getting the nose pillow wouldn’t be bad. Nope. I was wrong. With the nose pillow you have to also wear a chin strap (for the first few weeks) that keeps your mouth closed. Your mouth has to stay closed in order to create a seal. If your mouth is open then the air is getting out and defeating the whole purpose of the CPAP. I already sleep with ear plugs because I’m a light sleeper. I also have to sleep in complete darkness. Earplugs + complete darkness + chin strap + nose tube = I feel like I’m being buried alive. Then sets in the claustrophobia and anxiety.  I ended up having to sleep with a lamp on to ease some of the anxiety of feeling like I was being buried. I has helped and made it easier to sleep with the thing. Two other things that haven’t help: my nose is stuffy and the nostril pieces hurt my nose. I forgot that my nose gets stuffy with my sinus infections that I get quite often. That’s going to be a problem. I also noticed that because of that I alternate between mouth and nose breathing. I’ve been waking up feeling like I’m suffocating. I’m going to call them this week to see if I can switch to one that covers my nose and mouth. I don’t know how that will do with my claustrophobia, but it has to be better otherwise. In order to keep my machine covered by insurance, I have to use it consecutively for the first 30 days for at least 4 hours each day. I’ve been doing a lot of my time during the day while I’m watching TV so I don’t have to use it much at night. That’s bad, I know, but I’m going to have to do it until I get a different mask. I will keep you updated on how that goes.

Anyone else have to sleep with a CPAP?

Like a Surgeon

Every January I talk about how I’m going to become a better blogger. By the time February rolls around I realize that that’s a lie. I hope to change that this year. There are going to be a lot of changes. I have already started some. But first I’d like to catch you up on what’s been going on in my life.

As you know my thyroid hates me and has been plotting against me since 2012. At the end of 2015, I was taken off of the anti-thyroid medications that had been bogging me down for the previous 3 years. Not only were they cramping my style (because of like a thousand side effects), they were damaging my liver. My new Endo was like “Woah man! We need to take you off that crap like right meow.” Okay, she said it more professionally, but you get the idea. So she took me off the meds and I started seeing rainbows and cartoon birds everywhere I went. Well not really, but I was starting to feel better. I wasn’t as lethargic and I actually felt like doing things. My chronic back pain wasn’t as bad and I was able to go to the gym and work on my fitness with Fergie. Towards the end of the year, I had lost 30 pounds and I thought that it could only get better. Sike! I started feeling crappy again. My tremors were back and so was my lethargy and chronic pain. I shook my fists at the heavens and yelled “Why!?!” while rain poured on my face and dramatic music played in the background. I went back to my Endo so she could run some tests and charge me 5 million dollars. Her conclusion? I was hyperactive again. Not just a little, but super, turbo hyper active. My Graves antibodies were through the roof. They are supposed to be at 35 or lower. Mine were a little over 2,000. Yes, I used three zeros there. With this news she gave me two options: remove it with surgery or kill it with radioactive iodine. The second one seemed sketch, so I was like “yeah give me that surgery,yo.” Just kidding I don’t really talk like that, but you know what I mean. Another reason I picked the surgery was because my sister had it done lasted year and it turned out very well for her. Fast forward to today, I met with my surgeon. This was the same surgeon that my sister had, the one recommended to me by my Endo. He did an exam on my neck and said I didn’t have any nodules (which I already knew), nor did I have cancer (which I also already knew). He said that because I had neither, he didn’t think that I should get the surgery. That was a relief because I really didn’t want the surgery. That just left me with the sketch radioactive iodine. Rut row. The surgeon and I discussed it though and it actually doesn’t seem so bad. He said that there may be some side effects, but that they’d be temporary. I’d also have to get a hotel room for a few days because I couldn’t be around people. So for this treatment, I take a pill that kills my thyroid and then I get to avoid people for a few days. Sounds like a win for me. I also wont have to miss as much work as I had originally thought which is nice. A couple of downsides to not having the surgery is I won’t get to have a cool battle scar that matches my sister’s. I also won’t get to keep Lestrade (my thyroid) in a jar. Haha that would have been gross and I totally wouldn’t have done it? Now all I have to do is wait to hear from my Endo telling me when to come in and get the treatment. Hopefully soon so I can just get it over with. Well I think I’ve bored you enough for tonight. That’s pretty much all I’ve been up to. If I think of more I will make another post later. I’m also going to make some 2017 goal blog posts so look for those. For now, Adieu.

[Side note: how I named my thyroid Lestrade. Greg Lestrade from BBC Sherlock is played by Rupert Graves. I have Graves Disease that is causing my thyroid problems. Well I thought I was being funny at least.]

Life Update

Religion:

About a month ago I started going back to the Mormon church. I had been missing it lately. I like being back. I know it’s where I need to be. From now on you’ll see Mormon related posts. I’ll still post about other things so don’t worry. I’ll still keep some Pagan practices as well. I’m actually doing a 90 day Book of Mormon challenge on my Instagram if you want to join in. My IG is @ldsgingerasrai.

Health:.

I don’t think I ever updated you on my thyroid levels. I went to my general physician and Endocrinologist and they both told me that my levels are normal! That’s awesome news. I still notice symptoms from my Hashimotos, but I have a lot more good days then bad days now. I really think that it was my Graves medication (Methimozole) that kept me sick. My new Endo said that my old Endo was over medicating me. She took me off my meds at the beginning of the year and ever since then I have slowly started feeling better.

I still haven’t gone back to doing Whole 30, but I’m really trying. When you’re on it you have to cook every meal. But that’s been hard because I don’t have the energy most days. I know that if I go back on that I will have energy. It’s a vicious cycle. I also need to plan my meals better, that’s a huge part of it. I’ll get back to it though. I really want to start taking care of myself. I want to keep my thyroid levels normal and get my Hashimotos under control.

I have signed up at Planet Fitness 3 weeks ago. I really enjoy going (when I have the energy). I try to go even when i don’t have the energy, but some days it’s really bad. I did good the first week, but these past two weeks I’ve only been a few times. I’m still losing weight most days. I’ve lost a total of 24 pounds!

Family:

My sister has been on her mission for a month now. Only 17 months left! I miss her so much, but she is doing the Lord’s work. She’s really enjoying it. I knew she would, she’s a great missionary.

On July 30th, my nephew Carter turned 3. I can’t believe how big he is getting! He’s such a character.

Weigh-in #2 & Health Update

I missed a weigh in. It’s been 23 days since the last one. Oops. Anyway, let’s get on with it.

Starting Weight (3/18/16): 238.2

Last Weigh-in (6/6/16): 225.4
This Weigh-in (6/26/16): 223.6

Pounds lost from last weigh-in:
1.8
Total pounds lost:
14.6

Total inches lost:
12″

I had been slacking on my Whole 30. I wasn’t doing terrible, but I wasn’t following it correctly. I’ve definitely learned my lesson. Anytime I had gluten, dairy, or sugar, I got an upset stomach and had a food hangover the next day. Rice and legumes made me incredibly sleepy.

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Another thing I noticed was when I was strictly following Whole 30, I had really bad insomnia. Like going to sleep at 4am every night insomnia. When I when off, i was able to go to sleep earlier because I was so tired. My mom said it was all the carbs I was eating. Now that I’m back on Whole 30, I’m of course having trouble sleeping again. I’m going to try and eat a bunch of carbs (potatoes) before bed to see how that works.

Because of my bad sleeping patterns, I’ve slacked on my exercising. I’m going to change that this week. I want to start walking again and add in weights. I will keep you updated on how that goes.

Weekly Review + This Week’s Goals

Review for 6/6/16-6/12/16

Health– Well I didn’t get as far as I wanted to with my health goals this week. I only did strength training one day, I didn’t walk at all, and I still couldn’t get to sleep before 4am. I also had too many “reintroduction” days. I at least I know for sure which foods I can and can’t have now.

I did however get blood work done at my doctor’s. I don’t go back for a review until July 5th.

Spirituality-I still didn’t meditate. It’s hard for me to actually mediate on little to no sleep.

Work-I worked as many hours as I could and did some much needed advertising.

Art-I finished painting all but one of my mini altar sets. Now all I have to do is make the pouches and they’ll be ready to list on Etsy.

Goals for 6/13/16-6/19

Health– Work on the goals I didn’t accomplish last week.
1. Strength training 3 days a week.
2. Walk 3 days a week.
3. Get to bed before 12am.
4. No reintroduction days. They just make me sick.

Spirituality-Actually meditate instead of just talking about it.

Work:
1. More advertising.
2. Add complimentary water and beverages.

Art– Pouches for the altar kits and get them listed.

Blog-Now that it’s kind of slowing down at work, I want to start writing more articles/posts pertaining to Paganism and Witchcraft. I feel like I don’t have enough in here. I want to write them geared more towards beginners like myself. It’ll help me learn too. I’ll be posting which topics I plan to cover later this week.

Weekly Goals 6/6/16-6/12/16

Health:
Get more sleep: These past two weeks I haven’t gone to bed before 4am. It’s been horrible. This week I’m going to really try to get on a better sleeping schedule.
Start walking again: Because of my lake of sleep I’ve gotten behind on my walking.
Add in strength training: My sister called me dainty. I don’t want to be dainty. I want to be a warrior!

Spiritual:
Meditate more: I always talk about it, but don’t actually do it.

Work:
Work more hours: It’s a slow week so far and I need monies.

Art:
Finish my mini altars: I want to get them listed by the end of the week.

New Moon Sun Tea

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I’ve always wanted to make sun tea and I thought I’d add a little magic to it. The new moon is tonight so the intentions for this tea is “New beginnings”. Here’s what I did:

First I added in the ingredients.
Lavender for healing, purification, and sleep. One of my new beginnings is to get more sleep.

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Lemon slice for cleansing, purification, spirituality, and removing blockages.

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Fresh peppermint from the garden. Peppermint is good for healing and purification.

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I put the herbs and lemon slice into a mason jar and poured in filtered water. If you don’t have a mason jar, any glass jar, bottle, or pitcher will do. Just make sure the container is glass (plastic has poisons that soak into the water when left in the sun) and has a lid. If it doesn’t have a lid, cover the top with a piece of fabric and secure it with string or a rubber band. Here’s mine:

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When I finished putting the jar together, I added a sigil I made last night. The sigil I made was “new beginnings”. Simple, but effective. I also made a sigil card to go with it. The sigil card is lime my full moon goal cards. On the back I wrote out my new beginnings. I have three.

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After the sigil was added, I set the jar outside where it would get lots of sun. I set it in the pot of my sunflower, Sunny. Now I just let it brew and charge in the sun and I’ll enjoy it tonight during the new moon.

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