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06-12-2002 @ 12:12 a.m.
Restoring Faith in the Medical Community

Yesterday was the last day of school. YAY!!! Joey got an award of merit for having a Positive Attitude in the school-wide awards assembly. When I first heard that, I was thinking "oh great--that's the kind of award, like Good Citizenship, they give kids when they can't think of anything else" but when I saw Joey after the assembly, she was so proud of her award. "Mom, this means people like to be around me!" She was terribly excited. So I guess I was wrong. We grown-ups just don't get it sometimes. She got a classroom award, too, for being the Best Problem-Solver which I felt was an award for me because I'm often asking her "Use your problem-solving skills to figure this out," or "What can we do to solve this problem?" and we'll brainstorm on ideas to fix the situation. I'm delighted to see that this has carried over to school.

Today started off well--I awoke at 8:25, five minutes before my alarm went off. That was a good one. Then I showered, dropped Joey off and went to my doctor appointment. The one I made three weeks ago. She had me complete a survey about depression and then we talked about it. She asked me how I would feel about using an antidepressant and I said I'd be fine with that. So she prescribed Celexa. I have an appointment to recheck my depression in 3 months (and have a pap smear).

We also talked about my concerns of being hyperinsulinemic. I have polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) and just about everyone with PCO is insulin resistant and develops hyperinsulinemia which often turns into diabetes when your bodies tissues are no longer sensitive to insulin and your blood glucose levels start to rise. I have all the classic symptoms. The research I've done on this indicates that there is now a protocol to use Metformin/Glucophage for hyperinsulinemic patients as a prophylactic measure instead of waiting until the person has full-blown diabetes and then treating them after the fact. I'm quite happy about this because the research I've done indicates that when insulin levels are normal, fertility is often restored but better than that, the lipogenesis (fat-making) effects of excess insulin go away and people can finally lose weight. I've talked to two people I know who are on Metformin and both have had their menstrual cycles become normal (after *never* having had normal cycles) and both have lost a significant amount of weight. Not that this is a diet pill or anything but the sad fact is that even when you're dieting and exercising and working hard to lose weight, if you have all that insulin in there promoting fat building, the best you can hope for is not to gain weight. Losing is nigh on to impossible.

My doc also changed my allergy medicine because the claritin wasn't working at then gave me a different medicine for reflux because the one I was taking--zantac--is contraindicated with Metformin.

I'm feeling much relieved. When she started talking to me about the depression, I felt a tremendous weight being lifted off my shoulders--it was amazing. I almost started crying right there in the exam room. I was thinking, "You're taking me seriously! You believe me. You aren't rolling your eyes at me and telling me it's all in my head, like Jamie's doc does. You're wonderful!" I started feeling better right that minute without taking any drugs!

I totally felt like a druggie when I left, though, because of all the samples. She gave me a month's supply of the acid reflux medicine and a 3-week supply of the allergy medicine and a 2.5 week supply of the celexa. I'm not supposed to start the metformin for 2 weeks. I liked getting all the samples, though. My insurance pays for all my meds (well, except for the $10 copay) and my prescriptions would cost $60 to fill all right now because there are 4 of them and 2 are 90-day supply prescriptions so I have to pay 3 copays for them. They didn't used to do that but a year or so ago, I noticed that they started it with my expensive allergy medicine. Oh well--sure beats having to spend $50/month on my allergy medicine.

And the phlebotomist actually listened to me when I told her I was a hard person to get blood out of and suggested that she use a butterfly needle and that it was often easier to get blood from somewhere besides the standard antecubital area. She got me with one virtually painless stick about halfway between my elbow and my wrist. It's about time someone actually paid attention when I explained something about my body.

So after my great doctor visit, I went to Delyn's to make strawberry jam. It was chaotic there because her two older boys had friends over and Joey was there and then there was the 2 year old and the baby but somehow we managed to make a boatload of jam! We even called the pectin people to find out how to fix the jam we bottled that didn't have any pectin in it. We rock.

She and I talked and talked and talked. We've been becoming closer and closer friends over the past 6 months or so. We've been friends for 4 years but I've been closer to her husband than to her but lately we've been talking on the phone and doing more and more stuff together and I really like it. She's such a quality person and I really value her friendship. I know when I tell her something, it's in the vault and that is very important to me. We spent a lot of time talking about depression (her husband is also suffering from depression but he doesn't want to see the doctor about it) and about adoption and about kids and pregnancy and life in general. We just talked up a storm. And even when Russell took the kids to see a movie, we kept on talking until after 10pm! It was great. Good people, she is.

So all in all, it was really a wonderful day. I'm so glad I finally went to see my doctor and that she was receptive to and not threatened by my research and I'm glad I got to spend the day with Delyn. ::happy sigh::

And it was hot and sunny today.

Some days are just wonderful.

--L

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