Friday, November 7, 2014

Changed my mind.

I don't have a report for you about the visit with Dr Davidson on Wednesday because I decided to cancel. Yes, the magical appointment that I was given within three days of requesting it, it seems, was for purposes other than what I thought. Isn't that interesting?

Now I think that the timely appointment materialized because it was a good way to get me to think fast and make important decisions to stay on my path. My purpose of making the appointment to see Dr. Davidson was to get put onto a different pain-control regimen. I soon realized, however, that that decision goes against the decision I made during Rosh Hashana to go off my pain meds and see where my body is, regarding pain. That blog post is here.

What was happening when I wrote about the heightened pain, and made that call to Dr. Davidson, was withdrawal. It was the week I had cut out a small dose of the Fentanyl. There are side effects of doing that, which fool me into thinking that what I feel is permanent. One is **extreme** fatigue, like that under-water feeling I described previously, that I couldn't get out of bed no matter what. Next side effect is heightened PAIN. This has happened a few times already, each time I cut a dose of the Fentanyl, the pain gets really bad, alarmingly quickly. Not usually the first day of the dose lowering, but starting on the second or third day. This is extremely hard to sit with and wait for it to blow over. When I feel strong pain, I can't think clearly to reason that it will probably blow over. I jump to: No! This is unmanageable! I must be released from this pain or life as I know it will be forever changed. It's scary, you know? But if I wait out that first week after I've lowered the dose, my body will adjust, and I am again left with the levels of fatigue and pain I am more familiar with.

That is what happened between last week and this week. I feel more balanced now, within my unbalanced sort of life.

So, I am going to "stay the course" as one U.S. president was famous for saying (in his case, though, the course needed to be changed!!). I am going to make the next small cut of dosage starting on Sunday. I am not looking forward to it, but I am committed to trying to be narcotic-free.

I had week-long amnesia toward my goals. I suppose it's because I didn't know what to expect, and it was all very scary- the unbearable exhaustion, the heightened pain. Now I know that it lasted a week, and then my body leveled out, thank Gd. I don't want to do this to myself for another week, but I will. I want to be narcotic free, or as free as possible.

I wish the power drink that I ordered was delivered on time. It was supposed to be part of the plan to give me the energy I need during withdrawal. It was delivered to my parents house in NY. I specifically told them not to deliver it there, but rather to me in Israel, but they goofed anyway.

Well, there are reasons for everything. We just usually don't know them.


  1. Do you need to do this so quickly? It seems to me you need some more balanced time before you go into haywire again. Unbearable pain is also a strain on your nerves and heart. Treat yourself gently despite the overall goal you have set yourself. You will get there Shabbat Shalom

    1. Tzippi, thanks. You are right. I do not need to do this quickly at all. I am not ready for the next lower dose. I'm not even sure that I lowered the first one correctly. i am needing guidance. I am lacking clinical support- I came to this realization today, assisted by my sister-in-law, Elizabeth Kashin.
      My pain doctor, with all his goodness and significant career and reputation, is not helping me figure this out. He told me to just start reducing the dose and see what happens. Call him if I need perscriptions for smaller dose patches. I now am wearing a patch cut in half, and I am not 100% sure that it is clinically right to do this, although he told me it is corrrect. I am still in more pain than I was before. I am so confused. I am going to call my medical rav and see what he says. Each time I have used his advice, I was steered in the right direction.
      My intuition is that I should go back to Dr. Davidson- the appointment I cancelled last week in Jerusalem. I got to him originally through the medical rav, and I feel that he (Davidson) is the one who can lead me through this.
      So yes, I am taking it slowly. Thanks.

  2. Good luck with stage two. Glad you are feeling more balanced. Have a great week!

    1. turns out I amnot feeling so balanced. Stage two will wait.

  3. Seems to me that a good pain doc should be able to help you wean off, cuz it's the other side of the same coin, no? Glad you're considering going back to him anyway (at your own pace).