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2015
constanceclum

day 1 again

Posted by constanceclum Aug 31, 2015

and no excuses from me. It happened and now I'm ready to be done with it. I've been coughing so hard my sides are painful. Since they took all my mood stabilizers away from me and the steroid they gave me causes depression, I am pretty much a basket case. I am going to mental health ER tomorrow early in the morning. It's usually a 5-6 hour ordeal.

This morning was hard but I'm doing better now. The shortness of breath I'm having along with the cough from just a few days of smoking reminds me that smoking is not really something I want to do.

I'm just thinking of what I did or thought that caused me to smoke. I think it's always the same for me "stinken thinken" Being sick most of the summer gave me an attitude of not really caring about the consequences. Unfortunately, that attitude goes away as soon as I light up and I can't wait to get back off them.

Connie

constanceclum

Hey everyone

Posted by constanceclum Aug 27, 2015

Just want to let everyone know what's been going on. For those that don't know I have had very hard to deal with symptoms. Brain blanking out, very weak, trouble with conversations (not able to find or use the right words) and just too many more to go into right now.

On Sun. I was having the same symptoms but also had heart palpitations and pressure so I went to the ER and I just got home yesterday. Apparently my glands that regulate electrolytes and water is not working. Last mo. my Calcium was high and now my sodium was extremely low, causing all my symptoms. That is due to my inhalers with steroids and now the fix is taking more, but different, steroids.

My complete inability to sleep more that 4-5 hours, I think, was do to anxiety. I am going to fess up and state when I got home I drank about 3 beers and smoked 2 cigarettes. I have no excuse. I certainly told myself over and over that  a cig would not make anything better and it didn't. So I am resetting my quit day untill today. Taking all prayers that anyone has too offer

love to all

Connie

constanceclum

Hey everyone

Posted by constanceclum Aug 22, 2015

It's 2 months of freedom for me. I'm at the point that if I am busy, I don't think of the evil things. When I do get the crazy thoughts, I can easily push them away. And all of you elders pretty much told me that this would happen. For people that are new here, that should be inspiration that if you listen to the people that have gone through this and follow their advice, you will accomplish your goals to quit.

I am realizing now that I do have all the symptoms I have  had over the past few weeks. It's not continous and I really wanted to get better so I have been in denial.  I have talked to my Drs. nurse a couple of times and my Dr. was on vacation plus she only works part time. Mon. I am going to call and tell her that I need to be seen asap.

Take care all

Connie

constanceclum

Hi everyone

Posted by constanceclum Aug 19, 2015

and thrilled that you are all here. It's been pretty uneventful for me and the craves/urges/thoughts I now can push out of my head while doing deep breathing. They only last a couple of minutes now. 

I don't remember if I blogged before about us moving. The rumor was that the landlord had sold the property and I know it has been for sale since we moved in 5 yrs. ago. I don't see where it has been sold online but we are still going to move. This place is very old (since the 40's) and as far as I can tell, has never been rehabed. There is mold under the building which is not good for anyone but especially for people with lung disease. Anyway, I feel not so pressured and can save some money (it's so expensive) plus the deposit for my cats. I hope to be moved by winter.

It is, for me and everyone on this site, one thing after the other with this thing we call life but a cig. does not help anything.

Connie 

constanceclum

Yay!

Posted by constanceclum Aug 17, 2015

Just got back from the Drs. My B/P is 117/60. I am thrilled about being able to stop a med. and actually 2meds as up until last Dec. I took 2 meds to control my B/P.

The NP recommended me to have the Pharmacist come in. I told him all the symptoms I've been having and what I did as far as lowering my doses. I also told him about the NP at behavioral health raised my neurontin from 300mg/day to 900. He said that was likely the cause of my symtoms and he said that weaning myself off and starting over with a new Psychiatrist was the right think to do.

I am an educated RN and I worry myself sick over the uneducated or the educated but not in healthcare people as they have to maneuver through the system where so many mistakes are made. I wouldn't work today as a nurse no matter how much they paid me.

constanceclum

8 weeks smoke-free

Posted by constanceclum Aug 17, 2015

Yes, it seems like 6mo but a lot as happened since then. including quitting drinking. Most expert say to not do both at the same time but my lungs have reached a severe level of damage and I know I couldn't (like most people) quit smoking while drinking. And I'm not going to take up any more time talking about the pneumonia I got. I'm better now. I'm going to mention a few good things: O2 saturation-98% at rest, was 93% prior to quitting smoking, pulse in the 80's as opposed to over 100 when I was smoking and blood pressure well I'm having it checked today after my Dr. discontinued my BP meds 3-4 weeks ago because it was so low. I will never ride a bike, swim, or play tennis again but I am pleasantly surprised at what I can do like, I can talk to a friend while walking without getting so short of breath I have to stop, I can shop, eat out, go to AA meetings and so much more. I will be able to tolerate more after I complete pulmonary rehab. What I'm saying is it is never too late to quit and have a good quality too your life. And so many improvements like taste and smell.

Now it's time for NML but I am prepared and, because of  my God, my friends on EX and my willingness, I will make it.

Connie

constanceclum

look at our newcomers!

Posted by constanceclum Aug 16, 2015

I realize that I'm a newbie too but I am reading the blogs of the people that came after me and they are so awesome. From what I am reading they are doing all the right things and I think, thanks to you elders, that they got this

I have 8 weeks tomorrow. I am sure of it because I remember last monday was 7 weeks. I was thinking about it as I was driving because it wasn't making sense. I was thinking that my quit date was the 28th of June and I was going round and round in my brain over it. I got home and looked at my calendar and saw that the 22nd is my smoking quit date and the 28th was the day I picked up my white chip.

I am enjoying my Sun. afternoon/evening. I hope you all are too.

Connie

constanceclum

Finally! Maybe?

Posted by constanceclum Aug 15, 2015

As far as physically "feeling" like I am going to die if I don't get a cigarette, I am having the best morning yet since I took the patches off 2 weeks ago. My experience during this journey has been the first couple of weeks reminded me of hard labor (childbirth) where the craving, like a contraction, would get so strong it engulfed my whole body. It did lighten up a bit but that feeling of the "emptiness", which felt like my air and I would die if I didn't get some has been pretty strong in the morning for the past couple of weeks. This morning I feel completely neutral. I'm hoping I'll have a couple of easy(ier) weeks before NML. I'm also hoping no one rains on my parade because this isn't my 1st rodeo and I'm prepared for anything. I think I'd kill my husband before I picked up a cig. Don't turn me in I'm just kidding. I can keep him alive and NOPE at the same time.

Hope everyone is enjoying your w/e so far. I know I am

Connie

constanceclum

Let's make a pact

Posted by constanceclum Aug 14, 2015

Get out of the problem and get (and stay) in the solution!

Connie

I have through a whole bipolar's set of emotions reading blogs this morning. I can't decide if someone was truly wanting to play arm chair psychologist or an excuse to leave and smoke. I know if I was reading those blogs at the time (my computer was being worked on and I guess I missed some blogs) I would have blown a gasket. I give our elders a lot more credit, I believe you have thicker skin than you were given credit for. I believe you are aware of the raw emotions a newbie is going through when they don't want to "hear" the tough love. Tough love works for some and not so much for others. But I know now I had to change my thinking and Dale did that for me. I'm quite sure my comments at the time didn't "hurt his feelings".

Enough of that. My Drs. nurse called yesterday and I was (like today) feeling quite a bit better. Still some fuzzy-headedness but I haven't been sleeping well either. I think my symptoms were from the meds and it has taken some time for them to get out of my blood system. Anyway, My Dr. is on vacation and she just told me to call back if they get worse. She said she was having a conversation with an intelligent women and could see no problems. Haha what does she know.

I am looking forward to an awesome smoke free weekend for all of us!

Connie

constanceclum

Good morning everyone

Posted by constanceclum Aug 13, 2015

Things are better, so far, today. I am thinking, and hoping, that my symptoms have been medication related. I am still waiting for my primary Drs. nurse to call me back. I stopped taking the cogentin awhile ago. It as well as Abilify was prescribed by a Psychiatrist that was never nor will he by my Dr. I have to wait another mo. to see my new psychiatrist. In the mean time, a friend is going to work on getting me in to see her Psychiatrist which is not in a "clinic" and does not take medicare. He charges (I guess for people on medicare) $60.00 every 3 months. In the mean time I am not on meds that I should be on but it's still better than having those symptoms.

For the 1st time I talked to an EX friend on the phone. It really felt good to put a voice to the name and "talk" about smoking issues as well as more personal things.

I am just hearing about Pres. Carter having liver cancer that has spread. He and Rosalynn have been my hero for all the humanitarian things they have done so I am praying for them

I hope everyone has a terrific smoke free day.

Connie

constanceclum

Good morning all

Posted by constanceclum Aug 12, 2015

I haven't been here for a day or 2. A friend of ours has been cleaning this computer and updating it to windows 10-for free. How cool is that? We have known him for 9 yrs and it's the barter system. He doesn't drive so we give him rides when he needs one. He still only charges $50.00 to fix and upgrade for anyone living in or around Charlotte.

What I want to share about my quit and what I think now. I have "quit" 3 times in a little over 6 weeks because I chose to use patches. I can't tell if they "take the edge off" or not. I had a horrible time starting at 21mg, another horrible time when I went to 14 mg. and now that I am off all patches, the horrible cravings are/were back. I will never have to quit again, but if I did, it would be "smart turkey" all the way.

I still have the symptoms of fuzzy headedness, hard time in a conversation as far as finding words or completely saying the wrong word and not pronouncing it right. I'm not cordinated with walking and I stumbled as if I were drunk a few times. To be honest I'm not sure what is nicotine withdrawls and what could be very serious. I'm not sure what discipline this falls under, my Psychiatrist or Neurologist. So I called and left a message for my primary Drs. nurse to call me back

Connie

constanceclum

peaceful sunday

Posted by constanceclum Aug 9, 2015

I went to church this a.m. with some friends. I was invited last week by an old girlfriend and I wasn't sure of it. It's presbyterian and I haven't been to an organized religion since I was a kid. I prefer the nondenominational ones. The church that I'm a member of has several campuses and 15000 members. I didn't like going by myself because of all the people. I guess I am a church snob. So I decided to go to this church with my friend last week and the congregation was so small, maybe about 30 people, the pastor was about 80 and, yes he knows that bible inside and out but I think his best sermons are very much in the past. But you know what? I have never felt more welcome. I have prayed and prayed for God to put someone in my life to go to "my" church with me, I think he put someone in my life to go to a different church.

I am still struggling with the empty space I feel in my chest whenever I take a deep breath and It's so funny because for the longest time, I couldn't even take a deep breath.

I never realized how wordy I am until I started blogging on this site. I'm pretty quiet in "real life"  It's something I should practice on.

All of you enjoy what's left of your Sunday

constanceclum

it's a new day

Posted by constanceclum Aug 8, 2015

I am feeling better this morning. Tomorrow will be 1 week off the 14mg patch so I guess I will be going into heck weak. When I quit in the fall (after 2mo. of being on 21mg patch) I relapsed. I can't remember when I wrote a blog about it saying I wasn't prepared for the strong cravings, I got a reply asking why in the world would I not be prepared. I felt like an idiot. After all the eductaion and advice I got on here, why would I not be prepared. Well now I am prepared and I didn't smoke. I give all the credit to yoyou guys and God.

Cogentin is a parkinson's med. A few years ago I was on abilify for a long time and got tremors so bad I needed both hands to eat. My Dr. sent me to a neurologist to rule out parkinsons which, after a year of follow-up she did and concluded they were because of abilify. The Dr. I saw in the clinic was not my regular Dr and will not become my reg as I have requested a new one (just for a different perspective) I wanted to go back on abilify (it is not as sedating as some of my other meds I've been on with the med I was put on by the neurologist) She had at 1st put me on cogentin but it gave me the same symptoms I am having now. I told the Dr. about it and he said he didn't think the low dose of abilify that I am on would cause tremors.

Having so many Drs. and being on so many meds causes so many problems. If I'm not better by Mon. I will call my Dr. but I am already feeling better and totally prepared for heck week.

constanceclum

NML?

Posted by constanceclum Aug 7, 2015

I am @ 61/2 weeks without a cigarette, so I am wondering if I am there yet. I feel like the 1st week of quitting. Fuzzy-headed and spacey, very poor memory and can't find words or stumble over them. Cogentin made me feel like that when I was on it a few yrs. ago so I stopped taking it. The Dr. that put me on them (I think for sleep) will not be available to me and since he is not going to be my new Dr, I stopped taking cogentin. I worked as an RN in the 80's and 90's I feel safe doing this but I don't recomment this to anyone else. I go to clinics that accept medicare or sliding scale so it takes awhile to get to you (me). Sun. will be a week since I've been off the 14mg patch and if symptoms are still there, I'll call my Dr. Symptoms often fade in the afternoon and evening.

I was up early to take Scott to work. I needed the car to go to blood pressure clinic to check it after being off meds for 2-3 weeks.

I didn't have that feeling of wanting to kill him for his cigs this morning. I really love these days. I did a dangerous thing in stopping my patches early. I kept forgetting to change them and I was comfortable so I did the experiment of seeing how well I would do without them. I still had some in case of an emergency. Well after the 1st couple of days it was like going through hell week all over again but I didn't (I'm really hard headed) put a patch back on. I live on NOPE, I don't do that anymore and I never want to go through another hell week again. I don't believe I have another quit in me. I think today will be a good one. Or come hell or high water, I'll make it one.

So my friends in freedom, wishing all of you a very good Mon. if there is such a thing

Connie

constanceclum

so far so good

Posted by constanceclum Aug 5, 2015

It's still early so time will tell. I didn't mention it but I haven't worn a 14mg patch in 3-4 days so those symptoms could be from nicotine withdrawl. I am going with that so I don't feel the need to see a Dr. yet. If I have symptoms at the end of the day, I will call my Dr.

Thanks for your concern. It means the world to me. I will do all I can to stay as healthy as I can. There are too many smoker's out there that need help to quit.

I just adore all of you

Connie

constanceclum

f/u

Posted by constanceclum Aug 5, 2015

I just want to say that I am not smoking today. I reset my clock. My answer to the question of why or what happened is my total belief in halt. I have been exhausted the past mo. not sleeping well at all. I had no idea what was wrong with me which caused major anxiety and I still don't really know the answer as to what now.

I know there are no excuses but I certainly haven't been myself. Apparently the low sodium has affected my brain and my thinking, speaking balance and severe fatigue have got the best of me.

Connie

constanceclum

Hi everyone

Posted by constanceclum Aug 4, 2015

I haven't blogged in a few days. I have been on here to read but not writing. I've been having some issues of being fuzzy-headed with extremely poor memory and not balancing well. I hoped with my new mood stabilizers it would help. I cannot remember anything. I cannot spell or use grammar and I use to be very good @ that. I have put off calling my Dr. I got myself so burned out on anything to do with medicine but I think I better get it over with.

Take care my EX family

Connie

constanceclum

Checking in

Posted by constanceclum Aug 1, 2015

I just wanted to let everyone know, that as hard as yesterday was,, I did not smoke. Today is much better. Usually, when I have days with cravings that bad, I can tell myself that tomorro will be much better. It really does seem to work that way. 

Have to go now Dinner time

Connie