I recently purchased this tulip like lotus plant, aptly named Angel Wings.
It has produced its first flower, reminding me that Jeremy is with me in spirit always.
The morning began badly. Although the topic of this discussion could be considered a little sensitive, I feel it is imperitive to record the details.
One of the side effects of Oxycontin is a tendency to constipation. It seems prudent to check for signs and symptoms after going to the toilet. This morning I was shocked to see, what appeared to be, a 40mg Oxycontin tablet in the toilet bowl.
I decided to discuss the matter with the Palliative Care Duty Nurse. Shann listened to my story and suggested that Dr Newton [Palliative Care Doctor] would be the one to ask on her return from rounds. I was told to do nothing and wait for her to get back to me.
What a surprise to find not 1, but 4 more tablets in the toilet bowl at lunch time. Panic!
Another phone call to Shann and then wait. Not long before I received a message asking if I would have any objection to using patches for pain relief. I said anything is preferable to this unbearable pain. I had no idea how long it had been since the Oxycontin was fully absorbed.
It was then I knew that I was being guided. I began to think about the series of events that had led to this. In the past everything was written in my Journal. The return of the cancer in the brachial plexus means that writing is difficult. Almost impossible actually.
It was December that I saw Judy Hickey the Physiotherapist at the Mater Hospital. She suggested that I could have chronic, low grade cellulitis which would require a course of a particular antibiotic. She felt the situation was quite urgent. Rather than wait to see my regular GP, she thought it prudent to see Dr Gupta [Radiation Oncologist] as he was somewhere around the hospital. Dr Gupta was busy, consequently I was seen by his Registrar who prescribed a course of Dicloxacillin. It came with a list of possible side effects. I was not surprised to find myself suffering from gut problems.
Spoke to my GP about the side effects. He changed the antibiotics as there were still symptoms of cellulitis. End of story...
Or so I thought!
Until today. I began to put pieces of the puzzle together.
I realised it was about the same time that the pain returned with a vengeance. I referred to it as acute. My thoughts now are that it was about that time that I stopped absorbing the Oxycontin. I increased my dosage from 20mg morning and night to 50mg three times a day. That was when we began to suspect something sinister hence, the current testing.
I once again phoned Shann as I began to think that, if I was right, 50mg patches would be far too strong. After all, maybe it was simply that the 20mg was not being absorbed, rather than a more serious problem.
Shann appeared not to understand my concerns and suggested I simply see my GP as soon as possible.
I changed GP's when my GP of 13 years standing told me that this cancer is going to kill me. I decided that I did not want to be treated by a practitioner that had given up HOPE, even if there was a chance that I had lost HOPE.
I felt I was on to something and phoned my daughter Megan to tell her that there was a huge ray of sunshine appearing on the horizon. Just a little chuffed that I had worked things out myself I was shocked when she said 'Mum, don't you remember what happened to me?'
Megs was given the same antibiotic and ended up in hospital. Seems like a check of the stool will determine if I require another course of antibiotics to fix the problem. Left untreated this condition can have dire consequences as nothing is absorbed [including the Oxycontin] Ouch!
In the meantime, I will have to discuss the problems with the Pharmacist when I go to pick up the prescription for the patches. Maybe I still require only 20mg of Oxycontin night and morning.
My rule is not to worry about how long I live, but to focus on how I live.
I intend to stay alive.. no overdose of Oxycontin for me.