Saturday, 31 October 2015

Some ways to ruin a weekend

Yesterday as the last working day of the week was winding down, I found myself not exactly enthusiastically looking forward to the weekend. My main issue was that of the court ruling next week in the legal case in the Netherlands [1]. The matter thereby is that even though I have been cleared of any wrongdoing which would necessitate punishment, they can still punish me by having me pay an exorbitant amount of money as 'reparations'. To me that's still punishment and current Dutch law agrees with me, but one never knows what the court will decide.

As a result I wasn't looking forward to heading into the weekend, knowing what is waiting for me after it. I'll just have to face whatever comes, but that doesn't make it any easier.

Then last night I began to feel quite nauseous. Heading to bed early, I figured it was just the stress and maybe the food that day. Today I felt just tired and soon began to suffer from the same nausea again, accompanied by stabbing pains in my head, focused on the top left side. I know from experience that this pain means that part of my skin in that area will soon be turning extremely sensitive.

The nausea was new, though, or at least this particular flavour of nausea. This one was more subtle than the usual types I suffer through. After the day is nearly over and while I am writing this, both the nausea and pain seem to have pretty much fully faded, though I can still feel the skin on my head tingling and otherwise feeling weird.

Also at some point during the day I decided to throw this stabbing-pain-in-the-head symptoms into WebMD just to see what it would throw up and there I actually stumbled over an interesting symptom in its list of suggestions. The symptom related to sudden, aggressive anger and linked to a condition called PMDD, or Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder [2], which is an extreme version of premenstrual syndrome (PMS) [3].

PMS is something I am of course quite familiar with, but PMDD was completely new to me. Of the PMS symptoms as listed on Wikipedia I am intimately familiar with the bloating, lower back pain, abdominal cramps, swelling and tenderness in the breasts, cyclic acne and joint (hips, knees) and muscle pain (legs mostly).

A few days ago I was complaining to my best friend that I was feeling so incredibly irritable lately, to the point where a single setback - no matter how minor - would cause me to want to incite in rage. When I wasn't feeling like that I would just want to cry and feel horrible for myself. While the latter symptoms aren't that unusual for me, the former definitely are. It takes much more than just something simple to make me want to throw something heavy across a room or choke a puppy. But there I was, constantly having to hold back from sudden outbursts of rage.

Of the symptoms listed for PMDD, I can recognise a number which overlap with my PTSD and other traumatic disorders I have been diagnosed with:

  • Feelings of sadness or despair, or even thoughts of suicide
  • Feelings of tension or anxiety
  • Panic attacks
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Feeling out of control

Symptoms which I can more or less unique assign to PMDD would be the following:

  • Mood swings or frequent crying
  • Lasting irritability or anger that affects other people
  • Lack of interest in daily activities and relationships
  • Trouble thinking or focusing
  • Tiredness or low energy
  • Food cravings or binge eating
  • Physical symptoms, such as bloating, breast tenderness, headaches, and joint or muscle pain

What is clear to me is there is likely a severe and developing hormonal balance issue forming within my body in so far as it hasn't already. From the appearance of linea nigra and other pregnancy symptoms to increasingly severe PMS symptoms, including migraines, it's becoming hard to deny that proper research is an absolute and urgent requirement.

I will have to compile all of the above along with the medical files and a summary of the research questions and facts so far for my appointments with the gynaecologist and endocrinologist the coming months. PMDD is however an interesting addition to look at it if the symptoms do not vanish by themselves if the stress factors are reduced or removed.

For all I know, this feeling of incredible tiredness and being quick to anger is simply due to normal PMS combined with stress, PTSD and general lack of sleep and rest. The heavens know that 'rest' is one of those words which have fallen into disuse over the past decades until they ultimately got stricken and discarded from my personal dictionary.

Not having to pay that ridiculous punishment, getting proper medical help at long last and moving to a new, quiet place would go a long way to alleviating much of the stress I feel burdened by at this point. Only the future knows what will happen next, though.

I hope that my body can stop being a bloody medical experiment, though. It really isn't fun any more...



No comments: