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georgette12 (@georgette12)

Managing Lifelong Mental Health as a Senior

Mental Health | Last Active: Oct 23 10:05pm | Replies (499)

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Oh….while i have the time….update….today will be my third visit to the grief counselor since being a voluntary inpatient at a psychiatric crisis unit in colorado.
Since i have been back i have been taking depakote, 1000 mg. In the a.m. since that prevented sleep…even by taking in a.m. i have had to take melatonin at night. 5 mg. I am not always able to sleep though. If exhausted…then i can.

Mentally, i just constantly feel like crying all the time. Last time i saw the counselor we ended up going back in time to when my youngest son’s father killed himself.

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I don’t know if I can claim to be an inspiration. I’ve had a lot of missteps along the way, and have survived by the grace of God and the help of counselors and friends, not to mention my faithful service dogs. It’s going to be a challenge to make it through the next few months.

Though I’m not aware of any suicides in my family, having attempted suicide myself several times has made me increasingly aware of the negative impact it has, especially on family members.

The strange and irrational problem is that when I’m in suicide mode, reason is very clouded, and rational thought flies out the window. I made a woman mad when, after she had literally gotten into a woman’s face and said, “suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem”, I looked at the speaker and told her that saying things like that are a waste of breath. The suicidal person knows that and has almost certainly heard it numerous times, and it’s not only ineffective, it can be counter-effective. The suicidal person is not thinking with her rational mind, so it does no good to try to reason with her.

Having the pain from a bowel obstruction added to existing physical and emotional pain was really hard to take. For one thing, I was given dilautid for pain, which does a great job, but I learned that while it gives great pain relief, it causes headache. And, being on that meant stopping the 2 meds for neuropathy – Duloxetine and Morphine sulfate contin – and the pain in my feet got steadily worse, up to 9. I was so glad to get home and have my regular meds. My feet are down to 3-6again.

I live much closer to medical care than I did 10 years ago, where it was a 2.5 hour drive each way to doctors (and groceries, Walmart, drug stores, Costco, a hospital, and McDonalds). Now it’s only either 30 minutes or an hour drive, though the small local hospital, my pcp and therapist are only 20 minutes from home. So, yes, living in a rural community has its benefits, but there are surely disadvantages.

My stomach pain is down to 2, which is certainly better than 9, but with my history, it’s still a cause for concern. I’m trying to take it slow on the food, but my wife made a delicious Alfredo lasagna today. Probably richer than I should have eaten.

Tomorrow, I’m seeing my pcp and therapist. Wednesday to the ophthalmologist to prep for the next cataract surgery next Tuesday. Thursday, this week, is the cardio ablation, which takes 3+hours, with 6-8 hours recovery and a possible night in the hospital. Next Monday is speech therapy as part of trying what to do about my dysphagia. Tuesday, cataract, as I said, and Thursday, 2 brain MRIs and one spinal MRI as part of MS assessment. ASAP after that will be the neurostimulator implant. And I hope that will be the last of my medical procedures for a while, except for assessing for MS and looking for cause of dysphagia and esophageal dysmotility.

I compare my list of ailments to those that others are suffering from, and I feel like a complainer who has it pretty good. I pray that each of us in the group will continue to find answers and make discernable progress.


@jimhd Hi Jim: Thanks for reminding us of what life can bring and the ways in which we can cope. You are a great teacher by reminding people of what to say (or not to say) to depressed people, you are so right! You have been an inspiration to many of us and I appreciate your participation in our Mayo community! Best wishes during the coming weeks as you have these medical procedures. Teresa