Is there anybody in there?
I’ve been pretty comfortably numb for about two weeks now, which is a good thing…I think.
I’m now on Week 6 of the mysterious Hive Outbreak 2013 and its now classified as “chronic” with still no definitive explanation of the cause. I keep becoming acclimated to the anti-histamines and have had to increase the dosage three times, just to keep me from itching myself into an even more severe reaction. The latest increase has left me virtually unconscious for the past two weeks, except when I have to miss a dose to be coherent enough to drive to another doctor’s appointment.
Six weeks of living in an environment a polar bear would love because any type of heat or warmth is my mortal enemy. Six weeks of very basic, bland foods on the chance I’ve developed a food allergy. Six weeks of none of my usual soap, shampoos, conditioners, lotions, moisturizers or makeup. I can’t even use a washcloth because any sort of brushing or rubbing motion against my skin causes more areas of outbreaks. Six weeks of cold showers with a double dose of anti-histamines after to prevent a whole body hive reaction from toweling off. Six weeks of living in oversize t-shirts and yoga pants two sizes too big so my clothes don’t irritate my skin. And six weeks of feeling like the Elephant Man when I have to go out in public with an outbreak on my face and/or neck.
I’m currently under the care of four different doctors that are trying to pinpoint the cause and waiting for the results of a biopsy of one of the areas that was broken out that day. I’m also waiting results of an array of hormone tests because thyroid problems and apparently menopause can cause a chronic outbreak.
After six weeks, we still don’t have a clue what’s causing it, but after the latest medication and lifestyle changes, I’m at least comfortable. Not always conscious, but comfortable. I feel like I’m about five seconds out of synch with the rest of the world, but I’m trying to keep up.
On the plus side, I’ve been without my morning coffee for over three weeks now and the caffeine withdrawals are no longer holding me hostage. I’ll definitely switch to decaf when/if I decide to start drinking it again. My water intake is almost tripled to keep the anti-histamines from getting me too dehydrated (one trip to the E.R. due to that was enough). Chocolate is another thing I’ve been without. I’ve never had cravings for it before, but since being told not to eat it, now I want it all the time. But the even stricter diet has resulted in losing almost ten pounds in the past three weeks, which I’ll put in the plus column. I’m trying to focus on the good things, no matter how small, just to keep my sanity through this whole ordeal.
Thanks to everyone that sent messages of concern, both through the blog and through Twitter. I’m still alive. I miss you guys and hope to be back to visiting with you soon.