Wednesday, December 9, 2009

"Managing" in the Twilight Zone (Reply)

(Picture left: "Tommy," a loving Pomeranian rescued several months ago and yesterday finally finding his fabulous and forever home.)

amby111 has left a new comment on your post "Dancing (Dizzy) Ballerina": Patty, I hope you feel better soon. It is worrisome to get sick when one lives alone with lots of animals to care for. I'm glad you have a friend who could help out.

Reply: Thank you so much for your kind thoughts.

Part of sharing this experience on the blog is to remind those living alone with animals the importance of having some kind of arrangement for care of the pets in case of any emergency. It is especially important that such trusted person(s) have keys to the home (a good thing to have anyway in case one ever loses keys.)

What I didn't say the other day is that I have experienced vertigo before. In 2002, I had the condition for about 8 months before it finally subsided and went away on its own. That was after all kinds of medical tests that revealed nothing significant other than "stress" and once again resulted in a prescription for Zoloft which I never filled.

The problem with vertigo is that it can come back years later with a vengeance. And I am only in the early phases of it now.

It doesn't seem there are any real "cures" for this condition other than time itself. Doctors typically prescribe anti-depressants because the anxiety, fear and nervousness that accompanies the condition (i.e. lack of control) can be worse than the imbalance itself. It can be very frightening and unnerving to be walking around and feel the ground wavering beneath ones' self. Sometimes there is also a sense of "fading out" or nautiousness that goes along with it.

In short, its like living in the Twilight Zone.

The episodes come in clusters sometimes lasting several hours before they subside or temporarily go away all together.

Exercise, especially dancing or long walks (if one is up to them) really do seem to help at least on a momentary basis.

For now though, I have had to give up swimming and or getting on subways -- things that the loss of are, in and of themselves depressing (especially, the swimming.)

Yesterday, one of our dogs ("Tommy" the Pomeranian) was adopted from a foster home way downtown and I had to request the adopters, a lovely older couple to pick me up in their car and drop me home following the adoption. The people were exceptionally gracious and understanding. I hate feeling so deficient, unpredictable and vulnerable, but wavering on a subway platform is simply not an option.

Anyway, the best one can do when experiencing episodes of vertigo is to try to manage the condition, not panic and anticipate that time itself will eventually take care of the problem.

Unfortunately, it just seems to take a lot of time to get rid of the problem and for the body (or ear) to once again, right itself.

In the meantime, an occasional shot of brandy, an episode of "Two and a Half Men" and some mindless, happy old rock tunes to dance to help get one through the worst of times in the "Twilight Zone." -- PCA


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