Monday, May 2, 2011

Healthcation

Tomorrow, I will go in for my fourth IVIG treatment. So as I type this I’m loading up on liquids, organizing some reading materials to keep me company while I’m “hooked up,” and trying to get some rest since the ten hours of treatment, over two days, tends to leave me pretty exhausted after it is complete.

Now, that’s the easy update. The not so easy update is that for the past four weeks I have been on medical leave from USAA. Medical leave sounds very technical and not very descriptive so in an effort to add some color to a gloomy situation, I refer to it instead as a “healthcation.”

I’m not looking to make light of my situation, but vacation is defined, in part, as a period of suspension of work, usually used for rest and by late March, I could no longer ignore my body pleading for relief.

The deteriorating vision in my right eye (detailed in this post), is one of the factors that led us to trying IVIG as a more aggressive treatment for my MS. As February drew to a close, my eyesight was becoming worse. Fluctuating changes to both my eyes became a weekly occurrence. Sometimes, my left eye started to get cloudy, later returning to normal; while my right eye got even cloudier (to the point of being able to see very little) until reverting back to its current, limited function.

My eyes were playing tricks on my mind as I’d be pressuring myself to continue business as usual with my job: reading an article, reviewing a presentation, etc. Reading leisurely is significantly different than focusing on a business case and often I’d find myself getting dizzy, nauseas to the point of even vomiting once (or was it twice?) at work as the room was spinning around me.

Who was I kidding? I’ve discussed this journey before; I’m not Superman and pushing myself to the brink only does more harm to my body and nobody hands out trophies for recklessly endangering your long-term health. That’s not being a warrior, it’s being stubborn and neglectful to the reality staring right at me – I was getting worse, not better…am I going to wait until I wake up one day and have NO vision in my right eye?

Whether it is the constant pain in my legs, vision issues, managing ever increasing fatigue – and the cognitive hurdles that resulted from these and other symptoms – I knew the time had come.

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