Depression Marathon Blog

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Diagnosed with depression 17 years ago, I lost the life I once knew, but in the process re-created a better me. I am alive and functional today because of my dog, my treatment team, my sobriety, and my willingness to re-create myself within the confines of this illness. I hate the illness, but I'm grateful for the person I've become and the opportunities I've seized because of it. I hope writing a depression blog will reduce stigma and improve the understanding and treatment of people with mental illness. All original content copyright to me: etta. Enjoy your visit!

Friday, January 8, 2016

No guarantees

Life. It's throwing a lot at me right now. I admit, I'm a bit overwhelmed. I've been very busy with work, medical appointments for Jet and I, taking care of my house, attending meetings, trying to fit in regular exercise around all of the above, and now finally updating my blog.

I'm still trying to adjust to being away from home for up to 9 hours per day, four days per week. Actually, I work again tomorrow, so it will be five days of work this week. It's a lot for me. I know it's "normal" for a lot of people, but it's not something I've even been able to try for years, and it's still very new. I'm not sure yet if I'm handling it well or not. Fortunately, I've still got some time to decide whether or not I'm going to make this a permanent schedule change.

The work schedule is not the only uncertainty I am currently experiencing. I saw the orthopedic specialist about my Achilles yesterday. An ultrasound clearly showed my Achilles is still torn, and after a long discussion I decided to go ahead with a surgical procedure called Tenex. The doctor gave it a 75% chance of success, not as great as I'd like, but certainly better than doing nothing. Unfortunately, after the February 1st surgery, I will have another 2-3 month period of relative inactivity while I heal. I'm not looking forward to that, but I've got to do something.

I've also got to do something about my teeth. I saw my orthodontist yesterday, and the braces are not doing the job we intended them to do. I'm still missing a permanent canine tooth, more than one year after pulling the 46 year old baby tooth that was occupying the space. We've been trying to pull down the permanent canine with the braces for over a year, but it's not moving.

In fact, instead of the braces working to pull my canine tooth down, the ankylosed canine is pulling all of the surrounding teeth up. I now look worse than when we began this whole process! I'm going in Monday to have braces added on my lower teeth, which we hope will, with the assistance of multiple rubber bands connecting top to bottom, straighten everything out. But there is no guarantee.

In the meantime, I have two holes in my mouth where teeth should be, the fractured, infected molar on the upper left which had to be pulled in October, and the canine on the upper right. I am going to the oral surgeon in two weeks to see what he can do. Despite the considerable expense, I'm hoping he will be able to put implants in both empty spaces.

I'm tired of an ugly, empty smile (missing canine) and frustrated with only being able to chew on one side of my mouth (missing molar). While it is very likely he will be able to implant the molar, whether he will be able to do anything with the missing canine is very uncertain. I'm worried about that.

I dislike worry and uncertainty. In hindsight, which is of course perfect, I never would have begun the orthodontic journey. I'd still have a baby tooth in my smile, but at least it would be a tooth! Looking back, I also would have pursued a second opinion on my Achilles tear much, much sooner. There's no guarantee this surgery will work, but if I had pursued it months ago, perhaps I'd be back running by now. And perhaps not... I'll never know.

Likewise, I have no way of knowing for sure which decision is the "right" decision when it comes to my work schedule. At least I'm getting time to give the potential schedule a trial run. I'll have some first hand experience on which to base my decision. Perhaps that will make me feel more certain when decision time comes. And perhaps not...

Life. Sometimes I wish it came with guarantees.

1 comment:

Jean Grey said...

You have a lot to deal with!

I am in the process of getting implants. It is a lengthy procedure if you need bone grafts but not too bad. It just takes time. I think it will be worth it.