Unsettled

I’m feeling quite stressed out this week, I’m worried about a few things.

I’m worried that my mum is getting worse again, it’s so stressful. I feel there is no happy medium, her compliance with her treatment is becoming increasingly sporadic, and if she takes her meds then she is drowsy for the following 18-24 hours and will be wide awake at 4am when I am trying to sleep. If she doesn’t she is very difficult to communicate with but is awake. Trying to lead an imitation of a relatively normal life is not possible at the moment. I’m scared that she is going to get so ill again that she will be admitted again. She has no understanding about what she is doing to herself by not taking certain medicines, e.g. not taking her Insulin regularly, she has no idea how uncontrolled her Diabetes is and it makes me more angry that when her discharge from hospital was planned they said that it was essential her Diabetes was brought under control and that her consultant wanted her to be referred to Endocrinology for proper management. Since she was discharged this hasn’t materialised, neither has any on going care with that consultant or any other. Her social worker is inept, it’s just very frustrating, they have all made promises which so far they have failed to fulfil. I feel like I’m waiting for something to happen, like if she going to get worse again or is she going to be OK. I’m worried about how much weight she is gaining and how much she sleeps but no one seems to be sharing my concerns. My mum just seems to needing more and more care and yes I can accept it’s partly due to her age but I feel that the people who wrote her care plan(s) have failed my mum and me.

I’ve been thinking a lot about the past and I don’t think it is a good thing. I keep thinking about the bad things that have happened and I’m worried about history repeating itself. I am worried that I am going to fail my A Levels because I am finding a lot of the work very difficult or else I can’t be motivated to go my Sociology lessons which I find very boring. I want to snap out of this but I feel like I can’t stop myself from failing my A Levels and I’m terrified that I’m going to have to repeat the year which I cannot do, if it comes to that I think I’d just give up, it’d tell me that if I can’t cope with A Levels then I can’t cope with university.

I don’t normally look back on the past but a few things this week have kind of made me think about them. My childhood was a bit difficult because I used to be in hospital 4-5 times a week for my Eczema which was very severe at the time and there was nothing anyone could do, a lot of the treatment options were exhausted or not suitable for a 5-10 year old. I found some pictures of me when I was little which I normally try not to look at and it just brings back all the emotions of that time and the pain I was in. Although I did get a lot better I just don’t like thinking about it because I missed out on a lot of my childhood, my self esteem and other things were not good. I was basically mute and timid until I went to secondary school and I hated primary school with a passion. I don’t want to dwell on this and I know people have had a lot worse things happen but this is how I feel/felt.

I have been on half term this week and it hasn’t been that productive, I have organised my work and did some homework but other than that it hasn’t been productive. I have Mondays free so I want to try to get to grips with doing some Chemistry/Human Biology work to understand what I’m struggling with in lessons. If mum is asleep I can’t concentrate because I worry about her and have to attend to her when she wakes up every few hours in a confused state which can be concerning. If mum is awake I have to deal with racket she makes.

Asthma wise things are starting to get crappy again, or more specifically allergickyness is getting worse. I can’t stop sneezing and my eyes keep streaming, I keep getting hives around my jaw and above my chest and my eczema on my legs is very itchy and dry. I think my Hayfever season has started (I’m allergic to various pollens) because it doesn’t seem like a cold. It is times like these I kind of wish I could have Xolair.

 Argh I just feel like I’m repeating myself on this blog in the last 6 months or so, I get a bit more positive then next post it comes back to feeling like this – full circle, so predictable. 😦

My Goals

I’ve decided that I have a big overall ambition but I have lots of different ones too some  which I don’t discuss often.

Charity Work

This is something which is important to me, my plan has always been after medical school to do some kind of humanitarian work overseas. Its a big ambition as with my home life and physical health it might not be possible. In addition to that I want to do more charity work in general, I currently do some voluntary work for Asthma UK and the recent weekend I attended has inspired me to do more for them if possible. I want to also do a period of voluntary work in the local hospice, I think I will gain a lot from this in terms of insight and to be able to make a difference in any small way to the people there would be rewarding also.

A Levels

I need to finish all 3 A Levels this year and do very well in them this is my goal to focus on for the next 6 months and is my primary goal. It is vital I do well in these as only with these can I progress onto tackling most of my other goals. I should have finished my A Levels in 2007 but due to a series of unfortunate events e.g. being in intensive care during exams it did not happen. I then tried to go back at another school and do some A Levels but Asthma got in the way again so I decided to take a gap year in 2009 to have a rest and get my GCSE Maths at the right grade (I didn’t have a GCSE in Maths because I was in hospital during my GCSEs too)

I feel I have something to prove as people can write me off due to my difficulties and don’t think I can do things. I proved the head of A Levels at my college wrong when she said I would not be able to do the course due to my health, it hasn’t been easy I’ve overdid it sometimes but I got good grades last year and I need to pull up my socks and come out with even better ones.

Independence

I don’t have a lot of it due to obvious reasons, so developing this is an ongoing goal.

Studying Medicine (and becoming a doctor)

The biggie of course, it is very hard to get into and naturally I have to set myself something so hard to do and to not accept anything different. I am now 22 (!) and although people say I’m still really young, its hard to accept that there are people who are the same age already studying Medicine. But life happens and I think even if there weren’t all these problems 4 years ago I would not have been ready to study Medicine, I have had life experiences which will make me a better doctor hopefully. I have considered things long and hard, it would be very easy to give up if I did not really want to do this but I believe it is something I can do well and have something to offer despite the obstacles. I may not get into Medicine this year but I might next year and if not then I will do a degree in something related and reapply as a graduate but I will get there one day.

Weight Loss

Over the years the weight has crept on, I’m not happy with my appearance and it is self inflicted mainly so I think I need to ask for more support with this so I can improve my overall wellbeing and boost my self esteem somewhat so I can be happier with what I see in the mirror.

Swimming

I’d love to be able to swim! I had a traumatic experience when I was about 11 where I nearly drowned so didn’t try again but I really want to learn, its meant to be a great form of exercise too.

Get better at Maths

I have no confidence whatsoever in Maths and this is a big problem, I think I need to spend a period of time revising Maths and relearning some concepts so that I am more comfortable with it. In general I can do Maths if you don’t tell me its Maths, so I think there is some kind of block which means if you tell me its Maths I generally switch off because I know I can’t do it.

So yeah there wasn’t much of a point to this blog post, but I thought it’d be good to outline things for myself that I want to achieve.

Busy few weeks

I have had 3 exams since I last blogged, I had 2 Chemistry exams and a Biology exam, and I think I will need to retake at least 2 of them. Its not me being dramatic, I know that I did not do as well as I can in January. The worst thing is if I had revised better I am near certain I could have done well on those exams but by the last few days of cramming I knew it was too late. This means that in addition to the guaranteed 4 exams in the summer I will have at least another 2 on top from January meaning that I will have a total of 6 exams in the summer.

 
I am struggling at college again, I feel like I am out of my depth as we are doing a lot of maths and I am like math phobic if there is such a thing. I am feeling so tired too so I can’t concentrate properly and drift off. I have made plans to get more organised and manage my time off more effectively, I hope I can stick to this. I am very worried about the practical exams in Chemistry and Biology which are due to start in the next couple of weeks.

 
On the university application front, I have had 2 rejections, one for a Medicine course and the other for a Medical Physiology course. I am still waiting to hear back from my other Medicine choice (which is my favourite) and a Biomedical Science course. I don’t think I will be successful in getting into medical school this year, it is especially competitive this year and my application was not as good as it could be. I think I need to focus on getting the grades I need right now rather than worrying about what’s happening with my application.

Chemistry is feeling like an uphill struggle right now, but the worst thing is I can’t say I have exhausted all options to understand it so it is my fault. My teacher says that if I really struggle with something in it I shut off and don’t want to go near it because I’m afraid which makes the problem worse. It’s kind of got to the point where I don’t feel persevering with it will yield results so what’s the point in trying? That’s crazy I know.  I feel like everyone is getting on with their A Levels seemingly with no problems and there’s me so hesitant and lost. It is a bit irritating to hear people who have offers from their universities being so blasé about their exams etc though they haven’t  done anything wrong so I feel bad for feeling like that. Though to be honest it doesn’t take a lot to irritate me at the moment.

I attended an Asthma UK residential weekend last week weekend in Manchester (5th and 6th February 2011) it was a stressful experience. The content of the weekend itself was great, can’t fault it, though some of it wasn’t as applicable to me e.g. the workshops on Asthma and alcohol/drugs (I don’t drink alcohol or take drugs) I thought it was a good set of workshops in general. I got to meet up with some of my old friends, meet some old friends in person for the first time and also make some new friends. However the weekend wasn’t a wholly pleasant experience at times, it wasn’t anything to do with the workshops or anything like that, and it was outside of scheduled activities where these not so pleasant experiences occurred. Firstly, I believe that I can cope with stress if I know I will be stressed by something and how, I did not expect this weekend to be stressful or in the way it was. I knew I would not be sleeping well because it was a strange environment etc, but the hardest thing was the confusion that arose. I can’t deal with that; I need clarity (like anybody does) if I don’t have that I get a bit stressed. The kind of stress that I was under was unlike anything I had experienced before, I have had very little sleep and was starting to feeling unwell by the end of the residential and on the way home (fever, palpitations, shakiness etc) because of the lack of sleep then got a migraine (which I don’t think I’ve had before) on Tuesday evening meaning I had to miss college which I felt awful about.

I had a hospital appointment a few weeks ago (27/01) which didn’t go so well, I came away feeling a bit frustrated. I feel a bit like they don’t look at the improvements I have made, I said I’ve been a lot worse in the past and they accept that then they say that I’m still not well which makes me feel a bit dejected about it in general. I did something which I hadn’t before and asked what my lung function was, I was shocked to hear what it was, I keep making excuses for it like my technique or it being early morning etc. A few treatment options were mentioned but nothing has been made concrete and I was meant to have appointment this Monday (07/02) but I couldn’t make that appointment because it was bizarrely at 9pm! So I’m going back in March, and I think I’m going to write down the things I want to say. I feel quite happy to plod along with how things are and I don’t think its worth trying new treatments at the moment when I know other people are worse and need X,Y,Z treatments more so than me and I’m not as bad as I have been in the past, it feels wrong to me.

Asthma wise things were okay until a few days ago, getting increasingly more wheezy and tight chested but I think that is due to tiredness, it isn’t getting that bad that I need to be in hospital or anything like that, its just requiring nebs more often etc. So that’s the end of this ramble, not a lot has changed has it?! 😦