Positive Changes

When I last posted here over two weeks ago there was a lot going on. I had just been informed about a new employment opportunity, my Coast Guard documents were moving again, and I had just had an epic failure in an MRI machine. There was a lot of turmoil and I wasn’t really feeling all the good. Over the past two weeks my wife and son had their winter break, and last week my son and I lived through a horrible flu like bug with fevers, chills, coughs, and snot that my wife brought home from her classroom. It has been a wild couple weeks, but I am happy to report that all the issues I listed above have been resolved. At the risk of having this read like a journal entry let me get you up to speed.

As I had written about before the plan for my elbow MRI was to make a trip to a facility that had a large bore machine just to take a look and see if I thought I could make it work. It took a week or so for me to find the time to pull that off, but about a week and a half ago I was finally able to get to their office and have a look. I had hoped that they would allow me give the machine a test run, but the just let me stand in the doorway and look at it. The truth was it didn’t look that much bigger. It was noticeably shorter, but it didn’t look like the opening was significantly larger. Without a whole lot of choice in the matter I went ahead and scheduled a time. Two days later I was again sitting in the waiting room when the same lady who showed me the machine before came to get me. She recognized me from the “tour”. They got me situated on my belly at which point the opening really didn’t look that much bigger. I almost bolted at that point, but I figured I would let them put in me in and see what happened. When the table slid into the machine I was pleasantly surprised. My shoulders fit in without touching the sides, and I could keep my head up which allowed me to see through the machine. I was tense but I closed my eyes and focused on pleasant thoughts. I was fishing with my dad. I could feel the sun on my skin; I could hear the rope in the hauler, and see the water spraying off the rope in the sunlight. It worked and in about twenty five minutes it was over. I felt like a new man with that weight off my shoulders.

I also posted here a couple weeks back that the sacrifices I had made relative to the Klonopin had paid off, and my Coast Guard documents were finally moving. There were a few minor post medical review hiccups, but last week I received an envelope from the National Maritime Center that contained my credentials with all the privileges I had asked for. The process took four and a half months, but it is over for another five years. There was a letter enclosed that I need to sign and return that explains my waiver for Major Depressive Disorder and states that chronic use of Klonopin will void my credentials, and that any use of the drug within 46 hours of exercising the privileges of my credentials is prohibited.

The final update involves my employment situation. As I expected my potential employer sent me a proposed outline for a job offer. It wasn’t and official offer, but it was the groundwork for putting something together we could both live with. They missed the mark financially by a little. They were talking about making an offer that would have be about $1,000 a year below by 2011 income which was my worst earning year since 2003. It was a starting place, but I wasn’t thrilled. I agreed to take to them last Monday. Over the weekend prior to the appointment I struggled with the potential decision. I was going to ask for a little more money, but even if they turned me down on the money the job was so much more secure. Should I take it anyway? It was a lot more driving and involved some things that I didn’t really want to do, but on the other hand they were asking me to take on some greater challenges in marketing and promotion that could be interesting. Over that weekend I began to come down with the crud my wife brought home from work and Sunday I had a mild fever. I got about two hours of sleep Sunday night. I couldn’t make my brain stop moving. I didn’t want to make this decision. There was no clear right answer.

Monday morning I was sitting at this computer doing a couple emails prior to leaving the house when at 7:30 my phone rings. I pick it up and the Caller ID shows the number for the salesperson’s cell phone at the company where I am going to discuss employment. It is the cell phone number that will be mine if I end up working there. What is strange is that the sales guy who was leaving is supposed to be starting his new job. Nobody should have that phone right now. When I answer I hear the voice of the guy who was supposed to be leaving. He never really wanted to go, and his bosses made him the same offer they made me. This amounted to a decent raise for him, and he was calling to let me know he took the offer. There was no longer going to be an opening.

I was relieved that the job situation took care of itself, and I was spared making a difficult decision. Some good did end up coming from the conversations I had with my wife about the potential changes. We had never intended to live in our current home more than a couple years. The housing market had other plans, and we have been here seven years. Our son is 2 ½ and one thing we are in complete agreement on is that we don’t want him in this school system. Talking about all the potential professional changes for me led us to realize that we are only a year and a half from preschool. If we want to get out of here we better start figuring out how we are going to do it. The realtor that sold us this house came by Saturday, and thinks we can get out of here for what we owe, and maybe even a slight profit. We have been offered a piece of family land with enough value to provide instant equity on a new place which should prevent us from needing a down payment or PMI so getting out of here without much profit should work ok. The wheels are turning now and we are beginning to make progress in a new direction.

My head is doing well. With the MRI and job decision behind me my anxiety levels are noticeably lower. I have been sleeping pretty well, which leads me to believe that maybe the post Klonopin insomnia is finally over. Maybe the withdrawal is complete. Things are certainly looking up.

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6 thoughts on “Positive Changes

  1. FYI—I wanted to report some interesting news to you. 8 weeks ago my internist put me on 50, 000 IU of Vitamin D a week. It’s one pill, taken once a week. My vitamin D levels were too low. I’m on my last pill now. I didn’t think I would notice any difference. I was wrong. The biggest difference? I’m no longer melancholy. And, some of my anxiety symptoms have diminished. I cannot get over the change in my daily mood, and there’s been some SERIOUS stuff going on around here which would warrant some major melancholia, sadness, and anxiety. AND, I’ve had to increase my Topamax to 200 mg/day which, in the past, has always caused clinical depression in me. All this is to say, making certain that vitamin D levels are where they should be is NO JOKE. There are studies that are bringing evidence to the scientific community that link low vitamin D levels with a plethora of health problems including depression and anxiety. (http://www.webmd.com/depression/news/20120110/low-levels-vitamin-d-may-be-linked-depression). I won’t kid you; the first two times I took the vitamin D blast, I had a mofo of a migraine. It does affect the brain, but it got better. I really encourage you to get your levels checked. My level was 18. It should really be no lower than 30. The upper level is 85. Something to consider as you continue making your way…I never thought something like that could make such a huge difference.

    • I have experiences this before. Last winter I had a physical and the discovered my Vitamin D levels where very low. I was given a 5,000 IU daily supplement. I was good about for awhile and it helped, but I slipped over time. This winter I have tried again along with a general vitamin supplement and the effect has been noticeable

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