Friday, September 28, 2007

Vision- Panic? Anxiety? Stroke? Monster?

Panic? Anxiety? Stroke? Monster?
What Happened?
Image Size: 8" x 11"
Paper Size: 9" x 12"
I had gone to bed a little earlier Saturday night, and got up earlier Sunday morning. A good time to drink coffee, look out the window and watch the morning colors change outside my window, I thought. If I drank coffee. Instead, I fed and watered the cats, changed the litter box, got a Sprite out of the refrigerator, and settled down at my computer. I was going to get my blog done early, for a change. I read my e-mail, glanced at the newspaper, and took a couple of asprins. I thought I would finish my blog early, work on pictures that I started the night before, and be sure to wake up the rest of the family so they could go to church.
Suddenly, I felt overwhelmed with illness. Was I going to die? Wouldn't anyone come in to check on me?
I felt like one eye shifted to the top of my head, the other one drooped, while my mouth hung open. My nose twisted upward. I leaned into the desk and clutched my arms. My neck seemed to be bulging out on the sides, my whole head distorted. Big, wavey lumps ran up and down my left arm and my body, into my feet and back up again, with smaller lumps going through the right arm. The left arm seemed to hang out and grow large as if it were inflating like a balloon. I gripped the carpet with my toes. I started to cry, but I knew that no one in the house would come to help me, even if they were awake. And there was nothing anyone could do. I couldn't go to a doctor. I felt really hot, then cold.
"Relax. Calm down". I told myself, but it didn't help. Maybe I was just upset because I had seen Tammy Faye on tv before she died, then heard of her death. But that was not today, or even yesterday. She was not upset about her situation, and was at peace, so why should I be upset. And, just think, my old friend's husband died just last week, and I wasn't that upset then. No, they were both okay and out of pain now. That shouldn't bother me.
The strange feelings got a little better and I walked into the bathroom, then the kitchen. The rest of the family was still asleep. I sat down at the computer again, feeling a little weak and strange.
"I'll look at something on the computer," I told myself "Or work on the pictures I was working on last night. I'll feel better if I do some art work."
I couldn't. The feelings and tears hit again, went away, and returned at least once more. I lost track of how many times this happened.
"Maybe death is close, maybe no one will come help me." I thought I was being silly, but I was feeling tired.
"Maybe if I sleep a while." I got in bed, put a movie on tv, though, for once, I didn't really care what was on. I didn't even care that there was an infomercial playing, but I did change the channel. I slept until my youngest grandson woke me before noon.
I tried to change the tv channels, but I couldnt' remember or find the numbers that I usually used. "I wonder if I have had a little stroke, " I thought. I struggled to remember the numbers and ended up just pushing the buttons, going through all the channels.
It was later in the day before I could remember the numbers of the channels that I always watch. That was okay, though, because I could just push numbrs until I found something I could watch. Still, I worried that it might be a symptom of something more than a panic attack.
My chest and my head felt funny, but, my head and my neck had been bothering me for a while. I thought that my head felt tight because I need a haircut. My hair is too heavy, and long, and it pulls. The headache is probably sinus trouble. My chest sometimes felt as if my heart is doing flip flops. But it was doing that before and the doctor didn't find anything other than the bundle branch blockage that I've had for years. Since my blood pressure has been really high, and has gone untreated for a couple of years, I thought that this could be a stroke. I'm not all that young anymore-except at heart.
Some of this, I thought, could be because I haven't had my thyroid medicine in over 2 years, or my blood pressure medicine, or any of the other 10 medicines that I was taking regularly before the money ran out.
I tried to remember exactly what happened, later, so I could write it down. It was a strange and frightening experience, and one I hope to never go through again. As the day wore on, and I ate a little, I started to remember the numbers on the remote control for the tv stations, and my typing improved some as I worked on my blog.
But, in trying to remember exactly what happened so that I could describe it, if needed, I couldn't remember all of it. There is a big, blank spot in my memoroy from my first realization of big blobs running up and down my body, tears, being too hot, and having trouble breathing, to being cool again, quickly, and gripping myself in front of the computer, wishing someone would come see about me. The next things I remember, vaguely, were of going into the kitchen and the bathroom, returning to my computer, more symptoms, then feeling tired and thinking I should try to rest.
I ddin't feel there was any use in telling anyone. No one could do anything. The ambulance won't come to my house because of their huge fee. My family largely ignores me. They don't want to be bothered.
I had been thinking, for so long, about my eye problem, my knee problems, my finanaces, or the lack therof, worrying about repairs that need to be made on my house, what is going to become of us, etc. But, when I got up that morning, I was thinking, pleasantly, of doing a nice blog, then spending time with my youngest grandson. I wasn't dwelling on anything and thought that I was relaxed. But, then, I have had esopohogal spasms and choking problems, when I was about to enjoy a nice, relaxed meal. Maybe, if it was a little stroke, it was helped by the fact that I had taken a couple of asprins. Or, maybe, it was just fear and worry that has taken its toll.
Whatever it was, I certainly I certainly don't like it. It's most unsettling, disturbing, and another thing to worry about. I sure don't want to go through that again!
For the next few days, I still felt a little strange, but continued to feel better as time passed.
I probably didn't actually look like the painting above, but I felt like I looked like a monster-all distorted. The nearest thing that happened to me previously, that reminded me of this was when I got hit in the face and neck by Lysol spray that went through the a/c ducts from the utilty room to the bathroom where I was washing my face. The same thing happened when I got into poison ivy when I was pulling vines out of a tree. My face and neck were all swollen, distorted, twisted, crusty, purple, green-just awful looking. Doctors said they don't like to give shots for that, anymore, but, when they saw me, they gave in and gave me shots, and ointment. I was miserable. I looked like a monster.
This time, I think that I just felt like I looked like a monster. Maybe it was just early practice for Halloween. I don't even want to think about having that happen again-even for a great Halloween look! A wig, a black dress, and some green makeup will do nicely for a costume.
"Panic? Anxiety? Stroke? Monster?" was painted using Winsor Newton watercolors on 140 pound Arches watercolor paper.
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