Another two months flew by and when last Tuesday came around it was already Entyvio time again. Currently, things are going well… really, really, well in my life. I took a new job and it has satisfied the need I had for change and professional growth. I have also had a few exciting new opportunities come my way with this blog that reminded me why I am on here, which is always encouraging. Overall, I have been feeling pretty empowered by all that 2018 has brought me until this moment. With all of that being said, I knew this state of remission wasn’t due to luck – I had to keep up with Entyvio to keep this momentum going.
The morning of treatment I was restless (will I ever not get nervous for this?), so I got up early, went to the gym, and ran 1.5 miles to ease my nerves and get out some of this energy. I could have cried (in a good way!) about three weeks ago when I went into my gym to do a short workout and ended up getting on the treadmill and topping a run out at 3.25 miles. I couldn’t imagine doing this even 3 months ago! And I have never really been a runner so this was big progress, comparatively.
What truly feels like overnight, my energy has come back, my mood has improved, I don’t feel the need to lay down every hour, my skin has started to perk up and so has my appetite. I don’t wince when I get up out of my chair at work because my hips and knees feel like bone is rubbing on bone. I haven’t iced my knees in months now. I only Uber to work because I am late, not because it feels like I can’t physically walk.
It feels amazing to just feel again – to feel hungry, eat a whole meal and satisfied without the fear of shooting stomach pains, to feel restless, to feel my legs carry me without burning, to smile and mean it. In the last month, I have gone to a Pilates reformer class, a legit boxing class, interval training, barre class and of course – back to what I know, yoga. I feel the confidence I once had from working out creeping back in and I can’t help but feel happy.
… Part of feeling like this is acknowledging how I got here, one critical step to which is keeping up with treatment. While it’s absolutely not my end all, I can’t ignore what it has done for me. The other things that have helped I will get back to next week. So when my next appointment came up and I SO badly wanted to avoid the conversation with my new co-workers about treatment, I instead owned it, had the talk, and went to the appointment. Keeping consistent with these maintenance medications is beyond annoying, but for me right now, it’s something I need to remember as vital.
It is difficult for me to go from waking up feeling great, to willingly putting myself through this treatment knowing how I will feel later on. Another part of remission and recovery is not overdoing it when my body is recovering, which is irritating because I was on a roll there with working out! I tend to hit it hard when I am feeling like my old self, but grounding my mind and being more thoughtful will benefit me in the end. Definitely a strong thought, but execution can be difficult.
I went in to the appointment with only positive vibes, thinking to myself that maybe since I am feeling so good, the recovery time will be quicker. Within the first 10 minutes I felt my head heat up and my throat become scratchy. I ignored it, realizing I hadn’t had much water. Drank more of the cold-pressed juice I brought and hated … waited … nothing got better. The itching was more prevalent, and I started to realize that it feels like flu coming on – which, unfortunately, is Entyvio hard at work.
After about 45 minutes (we had to slow administration down again – normal time is too fast, and it makes me sick), I thought – this session really, really sucks. The whole “common side effects include: fever, sore throat, flu symptoms, cold symptoms, pain in arms and legs, tired feeling, headache, joint pain, itching, nausea.” Yeah, I had them all, for about three days. The day of, I got in bed around 7:30p, feeling quite defeated.
I did make it to work the next day but sorely regretted it. Rinse and repeat for a few days, and by Saturday I was feeling about 75%. I went to a barre class and then took Henry for a run and to the dog beach. (Huge debacle there that wore me out.) Maybe it was the exposure to the elements, but Sunday, after an 11 hour sleep cycle, I still felt foggy.
As quickly as it felt like I turned a corner to feeling healthy and great, I was slammed right back into feeling sick. How did I spend the last year feeling this bad?! I don’t know and that scares me. Feeling so great and then so awful from treatment helped me refocus my lens on life. When you are so limited on energy you just stay in survival mode, just trying to power through to the next thing, but right now I have the opportunity to prioritize what I allow to take up my time and I am thankful that I have the capacity to assess my happiness.
In the sentimental moments I get every now and again, I feel that it’s important to call attention the following: Please remember to appreciate your time. Strive to be your ‘best self’…and to do that, you have to know yourself and your limits. Stop selling any more time to negativity. Stop talking about each other. I am so sick of listening to that. Appreciate any differences you have and move on. Don’t overcommit and end up burning yourself out and becoming resentful. Watching people do these things is so frustrating, especially when so many of the problems are solvable. Focus on what matters to you and what adds to your life, not what takes away. I have a lot to work on, as always, but I am extremely grateful I can even put these thoughts together right now. Figure out what can make you say the same. 🙂